The John Report: WWE SmackDown 06/14/24 Review

WWE Smackdown Review June 14

This week’s WWE SmackDown featured Kevin Owens facing Solo Sikoa in the main event along with Cody Rhodes and AJ Styles exchanging words ahead of their WWE Title match at Clash at the Castle.

This edition of Smackdown took place one day before the WWE Clash at the Castle PLE also in Glasgow, Scotland. Check out my WWE Clash at the Clash Preview for my thoughts on the five matches.

From the OVO Hydro in Glasgow, Scotland, this is Smackdown for episode #1295. Follow me on Twitter/X @johnreport. Let’s get to it.

They showed WWE Champion Cody Rhodes walking backstage. AJ Styles was also shown walking backstage joined by Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson. Kevin Owens was also shown entering the building.

It was Corey Graves and Wade Barrett on commentary.

The WWE Women’s Champion Bayley made her entrance to support her buddy Naomi, who was in action. Chelsea Green was the opponent joined by Piper Niven, who is Bayley’s opponent at the Clash at the Castle PLE. The start of Green’s song is Samantha Irvin saying “It’s Chelsea Green” in a unique way.

Chelsea Green claimed they were hometown heroes since Niven is from Scotland. Green said that the fans get to witness two crushing defeats when she beats Naomi and Niven beats Bayley. Green said that “we” are about to become the new WWE Women’s Champion.

Naomi (w/Bayley) vs. Chelsea Green (w/Piper Niven)

The fans started with the “Hey Bayley” song that she always gets when in Europe. Naomi knocked down Green with a shoulder tackle. Naomi charged, Green begged off and Naomi slapped Green in the face. Naomi ran the ropes leading to a split-legged leg drop for two. Naomi hit a corner dropkick on Green. When Green left the ring, Naomi tried an attack, but Green punched her. Green kicked Naomi to knock her down.


Naomi hit a running cross body block. Green came back with a dropkick to the right knee. Green went for a clothesline, but something messed up and she shoved Naomi down. Naomi came back with a kick to the side of the head. Naomi hit a springboard roundhouse kick. Naomi hit a suicide dive onto Green on the floor. Back in the ring, Naomi hit a cross body off the top on Green for two. Naomi worked over Green with punches and Green came back with a hair pull takedown. Green went up top and hit a missile dropkick for two. Green tried to do a rollup pin while using the ropes, but Bayley shoved Green’s feet off the ropes and told the referee what happened. Naomi was back up and she used her legs to hook Green’s arms followed by Naomi bridging back for the pinfall win after about nine minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Naomi

Analysis: **1/2 The match was okay. The finish felt a bit flat to me because it came right after the spot where Bayley prevented Green from using the ropes to pin. I thought that they could have done a better job of using a finish that gave Naomi a more decisive win. Green does well as the over the top heel character while Naomi is easy to root for.

A clip was shown of Apollo Crews getting attacked by Legado del Fantasma last week.

Baron Corbin was backstage talking to Smackdown GM Nick Aldis. Corbin talked about looking forward to a fresh start on Smackdown. Legado Del Fantasma walked in and Aldis told Corbin they could pick this up later. Aldis said that they were fined for what they did. Aldis told Escobar that next time, a fine would be the least of your worries. Escobar suggested a match with Apollo Crews tonight. Aldis liked that.

The Grayson Waller Effect talk show was up next.


A video aired about WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Bianca Belair & Jade Cargill. They had some strong words for the two teams they were facing at Clash at the Castle. They said they’ll leave Clash at the Castle still your Tag Team Champions.

During the introduction of the Grayson Waller Effect talk show, there was that QR code on the screen.

Grayson Waller Effect with #DIY

Grayson Waller and Austin Theory were in the ring as the WWE Tag Team Champions. There was a table and chair along with signage. Theory asked where the plants were and Waller trashed Scotland by saying even fake plants didn’t want to go there. Waller introduced the #DIY boys Johnny Gargano & Tommaso Ciampa for the talk show segment.

Gargano and Ciampa tossed the one chair that Waller set up and threw it out of the ring. Waller said it was an expensive chair. Ciampa said that this is Waller’s role, but he wondered what Theory’s role was here. Waller said that this show was a thing before they were a tag team. Waller claimed Theory was his best mate and he would take a bullet for him. Gargano suggested they show footage from last week. There was a clip of last week when Waller pulled Theory in front of him and Gargano dove onto Theory. Gargano said that Waller used Theory as a human shield. Waller claimed that was AI. That’s funny. Waller said that he beat Gargano while saying they are champions for a reason.

Ciampa said that he didn’t think the great fans of Scotland came here to watch a stupid talk show. Ciampa said he thinks they came here to see a fight for those Tag Team Titles. Ciampa said they wanted a title shot tonight. Waller trashed Glasgow again. Waller told them that they couldn’t drive a wedge between them. Gargano said #DIY are coming for the Tag Team Championships and there were #DIY chants.

Gargano said that everyone was sick of hearing from Waller. Gargano spoke about knowing Theory for a long time. Gargano mentioned he is proud of what Theory has done on his own. Gargano told Theory that Waller was using Theory and Theory didn’t need him. Waller punched Gargano, so that led to a fight. Theory shoved Waller out of the way and Gargano superkicked Theory. Ciampa hit a running knee, Waller avoided it and Ciampa hit Theory with the knee smash. Waller pulled Theory out of the ring. #DIY posed with the Tag Team Titles in the ring and the fans cheered.

Analysis: It seems obvious at this point that Waller/Theory team is going to split up soon. Maybe it’s too obvious, but they are certainly building to it every week. Waller avoided two strikes there while Theory got nailed, so it continued the story that Waller is using him just like #DIY said. Anyway, I think it should lead to #DIY winning the Tag Team Titles soon.

There was a recap of the end of last week’s show when The Bloodline beat up Kevin Owens and The Street Profits to end the show.

Kevin Owens was backstage in a Latino Heat shirt for Eddie Guerrero. The Street Profits and B-Fab walked up to Owens saying they were united. Ford said that they can’t stand The Bloodline like Owens. The Street Profits and B-Fab kept chanting “we’ve got your back” to Owens, who said he liked chants.

Legado Del Fantasma’s Santos Escobar entered with Angel, Berto and Elektra Lopez.


There was a backstage scene with Grayson Waller talking to Austin Theory about how #DIY weren’t good guys. Bayley and Naomi were walking down the hallway as the camera followed them. They walked up to Blair Davenport, who mocked Naomi’s outfit. Bayley stopped Naomi from going after her. Bayley thanked Naomi for having her back and they hugged. Chelsea Green walked into the screen saying that come tomorrow, that title will be “all ours.” Piper Niven showed up to tackle Bayley and Naomi against the wall. Niven left with Green.

Analysis: A cheap attack by the heel Niven to get some heat going into her match with Bayley at the Clash. I think Bayley winning is the likely result there.

Apollo Crews vs. Santos Escobar (w/Angel, Berto & Elektra Lopez)

Crews hit an overhead belly-to-belly suplex. Escobar left the ring, so Crews put him back in the ring. Crews was sent to the apron leading to Escobar dropkicking Crews to the floor. Escobar sent Crews into the side of the ring apron. Baron Corbin made his way down to the ring to fight Angel and Berto. Corbin beat up Angel and Berto easily. Back in the ring, Crews hit a press slam on Escobar followed by a standing moonsault for two.


Escobar was in control of the match with a leap over the top leading to a senton on Crews. Escobar hit a backbreaker. Crews came back with a splash and some clotheslines. Crews hit two straight German Suplexes and another clothesline. Crews hit a fallaway slam into a Samoan Drop for two. Crews went up top, but Escobar stopped that with a jumping kick. Crews knocked Escobar down, then Crews jumped off the top and Escobar hit a jumping knee to the ribs to stop that attack. They exchanged strikes, Crews got a hold of Escobar and Crews hit a Death Valley Driver for two. Corbin got attacked by Angel and Berto at ringside, but Corbin beat them up. Crews went up top, Lopez shoved him down and Escobar did the ROLLUP OF DEATH~! for the pinfall win after about eight minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Santos Escobar

Analysis: **3/4 I hated the ending because the ROLLUP OF DEATH~! is so overdone as a finish and I didn’t like it in this spot. I get why it was done to show Escobar had the numbers game advantage. I just think the finish could have been better. It was good to see Crews in a quality match on television because it’s been a while. Crews can really go in the ring, but he hasn’t been getting many chances. As for Corbin, it looks like he’ll be in a babyface role and I don’t mind seeing him with Crews as a couple of veterans.

A Progressive Match Flo replay aired to show the history of Cody Rhodes and AJ Styles leading their match at Clash at the Castle.

Cody Rhodes, the Undisputed WWE Champion, was shown walking backstage for a promo segment up next.


They showed WWE superstars at ringside including Andrade, Cedric Alexnder & Ashante Thee Adonis and Pretty Deadly. Yes boy! I miss Pretty Deadly being used on television more often.

Cody Rhodes and AJ Styles go Face to Face

Cody Rhodes made his entrance wearing a suit and with the Undisputed WWE Championship in his hands as usual. No fireworks as part of this set. The fans were singing the “Kingdom” song as Cody made his way to the ring. There were “Cody” chants when the music stopped.

Cody: “So Glasgow, what do you want to talk about?” Cody said that a few weeks ago, he actually thought that AJ Styles would retire. Cody said that wrestlers don’t want to be that guy who overstays his welcome and has one more match and one more run. Cody said that AJ was starting to look like that guy. The crowd did one of their unique songs for Cody, so he stuck his arms out leading to cheers. Cody said that Styles has been given the impossible task of making Cody say the words…and the fans said “I Quit” while AJ Styles’ music played for the interruption.

AJ Styles walked out into the arena joined by Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson since The OC is reunited again. Styles said that Cody was really worked up about this. Styles said it was easy to get Cody worked up since all he had to do was retire and Cody lost his cool. Cody wondered why Styles was on the floor. Cody told Styles to leave “Horace and Jasper” so Styles could face Cody man to man. Styles touched The OC’s fists and G&A went to the back.

Styles made his way into the ring while the fans sang their “Cody Rhodes” song again. There was a decibel meter shown on screen showing it was over 90 decibels. That’s loud.

Styles told Cody they are nothing alike. Styles said that it took him 17 years to climb the ladder to get to WWE. The fans chanted “shut the f**k up” at Styles. AJ said that they welcome Cody with open arms and they couldn’t wait to make Cody a star. Styles said when it got tough, Cody quit WWE. Styles said that Cody also quit New Japan Pro Wrestling. Styles said that Cody quit Ring of Honor too. Styles mentioned that Cody helped start up a company and he quit it too. Styles told Cody that he couldn’t handle the pressure. Styles said: “When the going gets tough, Cody Rhodes gets going.”

Cody admitted that he has made some big decisions in his career. Cody said he walked away from WWE, NJPW, ROH and his buddies and he started somewhere else and he walked away from there too (AEW reference). Cody said he did not quit. He bet on himself that he was something more. Cody told AJ he was right. Cody said if he quit then he would not be standing here holding the most important title in the entire game as the WWE Champion. Cody spoke about Styles as somebody he idolized and if anybody quit then Styles quit on himself. Cody said that Styles had to pretend to Mark Henry to get another WWE Title shot. Cody said that Styles has become a resentful coward and that’s a bitter pill to swallow but he has no problem shoving the pill down his throat to make him say “I Quit.”

Styles said that it was natural for Cody to say “I Quit.” Styles said he can’t quit being phenomenal. Styles spoke about how his family would rather have him at home. Styles said that he’s tired of putting his body on the line night after night. Styles said that he’ll be done when he says he’s done. Styles talked about Cody Rhodes not quitting inside Hell in a Cell with a torn pec. Styles said that you’re not going to be in the ring with Seth Rollins because you’ll be in the ring with AJ Styles. Styles said he’ll do whatever it takes to get that WWE Championship. Styles said he’ll do whatever he has to do to beat Cody so badly so that saying “I Quit” will be like a gift to Cody. Styles said that’s what he’ll do. Styles left the ring while Cody was left alone with the title.

Analysis: That was a great promo segment. AJ Styles made good points about Cody “quitting” wrestling companies. Styles even referenced AEW without saying their name, which was an interesting way to go with the promo, but I certainly don’t mind it. That made the promo feel more personal, which is always a good thing. Cody fired back saying that he didn’t quit because he bet on himself, which is also the truth. They have done a nice job of building the rematch in just three weeks. I’m looking forward to the match that Cody should win.

The Street Profits and B-Fab were interviewed by Cathy Kelley. B-Fab mentioned The Bloodline and that led to Tama Tonga & Tonga Loa attacking The Street Profits. The fight was broken up by WWE officials and GM Aldis. Kevin Owens showed up to try to fight, but he was held back.

Analysis: It continues the story. Simple enough.


A video aired from Shayna Baszler & Zoey Stark talking about how they are going to win the Women’s Tag Team Titles at Clash at the Castle.

Nia Jax vs. Michin

Tiffany Stratton was on commentary. Michin got a couple of kicks and even hit the Eat Defeat boot to the face. They left the ring, so Michin shoved Jax into the ring post. Stratton got up and tossed a drink onto Michin. Back in the ring, Jax ran over Michin and hit an elbow drop. Jax hit the Annihilator splash for the pinfall win in less than two minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Nia Jax

Analysis: * A squash win for Jax thanks in part to Stratton distracting Michin. I don’t think Michin needs to be protected like that before taking a loss, but it does create a story for Stratton to have a match with Michin. Anyway, no surprise that Jax would win here.

Kevin Owens walked out of the Trainer’s Room while Jackie Redmond (normally on Raw) was there to talk to him. Owens said that it looks like The Street Profits won’t be able to have his back because of the attack from The Bloodline earlier. Owens left.

Analysis: It paints the picture that Owens could be alone out there as he faces Solo Sikoa in the main event.


Logan Paul, the United States Champion, was at the Tetris Championships in Pasadena, California where he says he got beat by a bunch of 14-year-olds. Logan Paul was shown. Paul was shown arriving home where a friend said “your boy from LA” was in his pool. Paul walked out to the pool where he saw LA Knight in the pool. Paul wondered how LA Knight got past security and got in the pall. Knight got a phone call. Knight claimed he had to do. Knight said they would have had a great time. Knight said he’ll see Paul in Chicago next week and bring that US Title with him.

Analysis: They are going to continue to push this feud as LA Knight pursues the US Title. I think Knight should be the guy to take the US Title either at Money in the Bank or SummerSlam.

Carmelo Hayes was in the crowd doing a promo. Melo said that LA Knight flew all the way to Puerto Rico just to go into Paul’s pool. Melo called Knight trash. Melo said that he doesn’t chase opportunities like Knight while saying that opportunities come his way. Melo said he has an opportunity to qualify for Money in the Bank next week and then he’ll be Melo in the Bank. The fans were chanting “shut the f**k up” at him like they did to Styles earlier.

Analysis: I think Carmelo Hayes being in the Money in the Bank match is a great idea. I don’t think he should win or will win, but it’s good to get some fresh talent in a match like that.

Solo Sikoa and The Bloodline were shown walking down a hallway. Smackdown GM Nick Aldis was there telling Tama Tonga and Tonga Loa they are barred from ringside. Aldis said if he sees them out there then they are all suspended.

Paul Heyman talked to Solo Sikoa backstage as the fans chanted “We Want Roman.” Heyman said that if Solo loses this match then you lose your leadership position to guys that don’t respect leadership to begin with. Solo said that if he loses this match, he is coming after Heyman. That left Heyman with a stunned look on his face.


Alba Fyre and Isla Dawn, who are from Scotland, were interviewed by Jackie Redmond in the entrance area. Fyre said that they will make history right here in Glasgow, Scotland (cheap pop). Dawn said they didn’t come all the way home just to come home and said that they would become the new Women’s Tag Team Champions at Clash at the Castle.

Analysis: A very basic promo to show that they are ready to go. I’ll pick Belair & Cargill to win.

There was a rundown of the Clash at the Castle card.

* WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships: Bianca Belair & Jade Cargill (c) vs. Shayna Baszler & Zoey Stark vs. Alba Fyre & Isla Dawn

* Intercontinental Championship: Sami Zayn (c) vs. Chad Gable

* WWE Women’s Championship: Bayley (c) vs. Piper Niven

* World Heavyweight Championship: Damian Priest (c) vs. Drew McIntyre

* I Quit Match for the Undisputed WWE Championship: Cody Rhodes (c) vs. AJ Styles

It was main event time as Solo Sikoa made his entrance and was joined by the “Wise Man” Paul Heyman. Kevin Owens was up next and he got a big pop from the crowd. Owens had a “Scotland 3:16” Stone Cold shirt on.

Kevin Owens vs. Solo Sikoa (w/Paul Heyman)

Owens was aggressive with strikes right off the bat. Solo bailed to the floor, so Owens chased after him on the floor. Owens threw Solo into the Prime bottles at ringside. Back in the ring, Owens clotheslined Solo out of the ring. Owens knocked down Solo with a clothesline on the floor. Owens hit a Frog Splash off the apron onto Solo on the floor.


The match continued as Owens went for an attack, but Solo got out of the way and knocked Owens out of the ring. Solo threw Owens into the steel steps at ringside. Back in the ring, Owens came back with punches and Solo came back with a back elbow to the chest. Solo hit the running hip attack against the turnbuckle. Solo charged, Owens avoided that and Owens hit a DDT. Owens beat up Solo with a barrage of punches followed by some stomps. Owens and Solo each ran the ropes leading to Owens hitting a running clothesline. Owens went up top, Solo went after him by the turnbuckle and Owens hit a Tornado DDT off the ropes for two. Solo blocked a kick leading to a Samoan Drop for two. Solo shoved Owens back, Solo hit a superkick and Owens came back with two superkicks. Owens hit a cannonball against the turnbuckle. Owens went up top and hit a Swanton Bomb for two. Owens went for a move on the apron, but Solo did a back body drop on the apron. That led to a break.


They came back with about six minutes left in the show. Owens battled Solo on the turnbuckle, which led to Owens knocking Solo down. Owens hit a Frog Splash off the top for two. Heyman had a shocked look on his face. Owens went for a Stunner, Solo blocked that and Solo hit a Spinning Solo for two. Solo hit a second Spinning Solo for two. Solo charged, Owens hit a superkick and Owens hit a second superkick. Owens went up top and went for a Swanton Bomb, but Solo blocked it with his knees. Solo went for a Samoan Spike, Owens avoided that and Owens hit a Stunner for one…two…but no because Heyman put Solo’s foot on the rope and the referee stopped the count at two. The referee Charles Robinson didn’t see Heyman get involved. Owens grabbed Heyman on the floor. Solo saved Heyman and hit a Samoan Spike on Owens on the floor. Back in the ring, Solo hit a Samoan Spike on Owens for the pinfall win. It went 17 minutes

Winner by pinfall: Solo Sikoa

Analysis: ***1/4 A good match that got a lot of time. I thought that Owens might get the win, but instead, it was about Solo looking strong against Ownes for the second week in a row. Heyman played a big role since he put Solo’s foot on the rope during a pin attempt and that cost Owens the match. I thought that Owens was terrific in the match as the veteran who really carried it in terms of bringing the intensity throughout the match. I’m fine with the result because Solo needs to pick up some wins.

After the match, Tama Tonga & Tonga Loa ran down to the ring and beat up Owens with punches. Tama and Loa teased putting Owens through the table, but here comes Randy Orton to a huge ovation.

Randy Orton made his way down to ringside and threw Tonga Loa into the barricade. Orton slammed Tama Tonga onto the barricade. Orton got a hold of Solo and Owens set up him against the ropes so Orton did the Vintage DDT off the ropes. Loa was in the ring, so Orton dropped him with an RKO. Solo Sikoa left with his guys.

Kevin Owens hugged Orton to thank him for the save. They showed replays of what happened. Orton and Owens posed in the ring while the fans sang Orton’s theme song. Orton did his arm pose. That was the end of the show.

Analysis: Welcome back, Randy Orton. It has been about three weeks since we saw him, so I hope he enjoyed the break. The rivalry just keeps going as Owens & Orton continue feuding with The Bloodline. I don’t know when it’s going to end, but for now, it continues.


Three Stars of the Show

1. Cody Rhodes-AJ Styles

2. Kevin Owens

3. Solo Sikoa


The Scoreboard

7 out of 10

Last week: 7.25

2024 Average: 7.31


Final Thoughts on WWE Smackdown

A solid show, but I wouldn’t say great or anything like that. I think the Kevin Owens-Solo Sikoa match was very good with Owens really working hard while Solo did well too. It was a controversial finish since Paul Heyman put Solo’s foot on the rope during a pin attempt after a KO Stunner. Solo hit the Samoan Spike twice to win, so it protects Ownes a bit. The Bloodline attacked Owens post match, and that led to a great pop for Randy Orton since he made the unadvertised return. All of that was booked well.

I thought the promo segment between Cody Rhodes and AJ Styles was the best part of the show. Since they have an I Quit Match, Styles did a terrific job of mentioning the things that Cody quit. Styles mentioned Cody creating AEW without actually saying AEW, but it did get a mild reaction. Cody fired back saying he didn’t quit other companies, he bet on himself and it paid off since he’s the WWE Champion. Well played by Cody.

Bring on Clash at the Castle on Saturday afternoon for me.

The next WWE PLE is Clash at the Castle in Glasgow, Scotland on June 15th. Here’s the lineup so far.

* World Heavyweight Championship: Damian Priest (c) vs. Drew McIntyre

* I Quit Match for the Undisputed WWE Championship: Cody Rhodes (c) vs. AJ Styles

* WWE Women’s Championship: Bayley (c) vs. Piper Niven

* Intercontinental Championship: Sami Zayn (c) vs. Chad Gable

* WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships: Bianca Belair & Jade Cargill (c) vs. Shayna Baszler & Zoey Stark vs. Alba Fyre & Isla Dawn

You can watch WWE Clash at the Castle, streaming live Saturday, June 15, at 2 p.m. ET/11 a.m. PT on Peacock in the United States and on WWE Network everywhere else.


Thanks for reading. Go Toronto Blue Jays. You can contact me using any of the methods below.

John Canton


Twitter/X: @johnreport