WWE SmackDown results, recap, grades: Brock Lesnar pierces car with forklift, tears door off truck

Brock Lesnar was on a mission to tear down SmackDown on Friday night. The WWE champion sent the universal champion Roman Reigns and company packing, nearly for good, on the road to WrestleMania 38.

Lesnar transformed from “The Beast Incarnate” to “The Monster Truck”, destroying a car before literally tearing the door off a truck. It was Lesnar intensity at its silliest and most sublime in what was an action-packed and chaotic episode for the blue brand. Elsewhere on the show, SmackDown Women’s champion Charlotte Flair laid out title challenger Ronda Rousey ahead of the Showcase of the Immortals. Flair lured her opponent to the ring and ultimately stood tall over her foe.

CBS Sports was with you all night with recaps and highlights of all the action from the Spectrum Center in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Brock Lesnar paves a path of destruction

Roman Reigns, flanked by The Usos and Paul Heyman, opened the show boasting about how The Bloodline assaulted Lesnar at Madison Square Garden. Heyman bragged that Lesnar was not in the building and Reigns accused his opponent of being fearful. Heyman received a text message informing him that Lesnar was indeed in town before the stable made a quick exit.

The Bloodline made their way to a loading dock, stepping inside a car to make their escape. Queue Lesnar, who pierced the windows of the vehicle with a forklift. Back from commercial break, Reigns and company managed to enter a truck but Lesnar was in hot pursuit. “The Beast Incarnate” ripped a door off the truck as The Bloodline sped away.

Lesnar made his way to the ring with truck door in hand. The WWE champion tossed the door in the ring and reasserted that he is coming for blood come WrestleMania.

Flair stood tall over Rousey ahead of WrestleMania 38. Flair lured Rousey to the ring by taunting her. She got the upper hand on the title challenger, choking her unconscious with a kendo stick and driving her through the announcer’s table with a powerbomb.

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The opening and closing segments felt, mostly, like a sidestep when it comes to storytelling, particularly the encounter between Lesnar and The Bloodline. At least Flair got a serious momentum boost heading into her title defense. That being said, destruction is always fun and WWE delivered plenty of it. Crazy cowboy Lesnar driving a forklift and tearing the door off a truck are classic examples of silly, nonsensical sports entertainment goodness. The Lesnar vs. Reigns stuff felt like an effort to close the gap to WrestleMania, as opposed to building on it, but it was good fun. Flair powerbombing Rousey, the latter of whom was left with a bloody mouth, had great intensity. Grade: B

What else happened on WWE SmackDown?

  • Shinsuke Nakamura and Rick Boogs def. Los Lotharios (Angel Garza and Humbert Carrillo) via pinfall after Boogs landed the Boogs Cruise to secure his team the victory.
  • Drew McIntyre and The Viking Raiders (Erik and Ivar) def. Happy Corbin (w/ Madcap Moss), Jinder Mahal and Shanky via pinfall after McIntyre nailed Shanky with the Claymore. Notably, Corbin tagged out of the match every time McIntyre was tagged in. Madcap Moss made a joke at Happy Corbin’s expense during the pre-match interview and Corbin did not appreciate it.
  • Sasha Banks and Naomi vs. Liv for Brutality (Rhea Ripley and Liv Morgan) ends in a no-contest after Natalya and Shayna Bazler intervene, assaulting all four participants. WWE Women’s Tag Team champions Carmella and Queen Zelina Vega were at ringside. Authority figure Sonya Deville was impressed with Natayla and Bazler’s aggression and rewarded the duo by adding them to the tag title match at WrestleMania 38. It is now a fatal four-way tag team match featuring the four tandems in the segment.
  • Johnny Knoxville cut a pre-recorded promo, explaining how he made a career off ignoring common sense and was going to bring the fight to Sami Zayn at WrestleMania.
  • Michael Cole informed Pat McAfee that he was being called to Vince McMahon’s office. McAfee later entered the ring and delivered a passionate speech about how pro-wrestling shaped him. Enter Austin Theory, McAfee’s WrestleMania opponent, who informed everyone that McAfee was to apologize to Theory or lose his WrestleMania match. McAfee apologized for beating up Theory, how poorly his parents raised Theory and for making Theory relevant. Theory shoved McAfee at the segment’s conclusion.
  • Ridge Holland (w/ Sheamus and Butch) def. Kofi Kingston via pinfall after landing Northern Grit. A nod to Sheamus and Butch for distracting Kingston leading to the finish.

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