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While the Raw after Wrestlemania usually tends to earn the most attention from WWE fans, Tuesday night’s SmackDown Live had its fair share of surprises in the aftermath of “The Showcase of the Immortals.” In the beginning of the show, Smackdown Commissioner Shane McMahon addressed one of the biggest elephants in the room: With Daniel Bryan officially cleared to compete in-ring, Bryan had officially resigned from his role as General Manager to become a full-time performer.
Thankfully, McMahon knew the perfect person to fill Bryan’s shoes: Former WWE Divas Champion Paige. While Paige had announced her retirement from competing in-ring on Monday night’s Raw episode, she wasn’t planning to leave the WWE Universe anytime soon, much to the delight of the crowd. Paige also declared that the main event of the night would be something WWE fans have wanted to see for years: Daniel Bryan taking on AJ Styles.
Later on in the show, Smackdown’s Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair got an unpleasant surprise in the form of NXT’s Billie Kaye and Peyton Royce. While Kaye and Royce initially congratulated Flair on her victory over Asuka at ‘Mania, she quickly got caught off guard by a vicious assault from “The Iconic Duo.” With Charlotte still reeling from the attack, Money in the Bank winner Carmella took advantage of the chaos by finally successfully cashing in her Championship match contract and quickly pinning “The Queen” for the belt. It’s been a long time coming, but “The Princess of Staten Island” got what she always wanted.
As Paige promised, the show ended with the much-anticipated showdown between Bryan and Styles, the current WWE Champion. It was a risky play for Bryan—he’s not that far removed from an injury hiatus, and Styles is at his peak—until Shinsuke Nakamura charged the ring and assaulted Styles with a brutal Kinshasa as payback for their ‘Mania match. The feud between Styles and Nakamura is only just beginning, and time will tell who will come out on top.