WWE Friday Night SmackDown Results (5/12/2023): Thompson-Boling Arena, Knoxville, TN.



The WWE World Heavyweight Championship tournament continues tonight.

WWE Friday Night SmackDown returns on FOX at 8/7c this evening from Thompson-Boling Arena in Knoxville, TN.

On tap for tonight's show is the return of Roman Reigns, Liv Morgan & Raquel Rodriguez vs. Bayley & Dakota Kai for WWE Women's Tag-Team Titles and Cameron Grimes vs. Baron Corbin.

Also scheduled is Edge vs. Rey Mysterio vs. AJ Styles, as well as Austin Theory vs. Bobby Lashley vs. Sheamus in the SmackDown bracket of the ongoing WWE World Heavyweight Championship tournament.

Featured below are complete WWE Friday Night SmackDown results from Friday, May 12, 2023. The following report was written by Rajah.com reporter Matt Boone (@MattBoone0709) as the show aired live from 8-10pm EST. on FOX.

WWE FRIDAY NIGHT SMACKDOWN RESULTS (5/12/2023)

The "WWE Then. Now. Forever. Together." opening signature airs now to get this week's show off-and-running. From there, we shoot live inside the arena where Michael Cole and Wade Barrett welcome us to the show.

World Heavyweight Championship Tournament (Opening Round)
Edge vs. Rey Mysterio vs. AJ Styles

Edge's theme then hits and "The Rated-R Superstar" emerges to a huge pop. He heads down to the ring to get this week's show started. The WWE Hall of Fame legend stops and kisses his children in the front row as he heads into the ring.

"The Rated-R Superstar" settles in the ring, where Rey Mysterio and AJ Styles are already waiting. The bell sounds and we're officially off-and-running with our first World Heavyweight Championship tournament action of the show.

Mysterio and Styles both go after Edge early on, and after beating him down in the corner, the two begin focusing on each other. Edge recovers and all three get after it. Edge hits Styles with a big boot to the grill and then puts the boots to him on the mat in the corner.

Rey and Edge start mixing it up in a different corner of the ring as the fans chant "Let's go Edge!" We see Edge hit an Edge-O-Matic for a close near fall on Styles. Styles kicks out and the action continues.

Moments later, Edge is taken out on the floor, as Styles hits a baseball slide style drop kick through the ropes as Edge was going for a DDT off the apron to Mysterio on the floor. With Edge and Rey laid out and AJ in the offensive driver's seat, we head to a mid-match commercial break as the action continues.

When we return from the break, we see Edge dominating the offense until Rey fires up for a big comeback. He gets Edge and Styles both in position for a 6-1-9, but doesn't hit it. Edge starts to fire back up now. He lays out Styles as Rey is recovering.

When we return from the break, we see Edge dominating the offense until Rey fires up for a big comeback. He gets Edge and Styles both in position for a 6-1-9, but doesn't hit it. Edge starts to fire back up now. He lays out Styles as Rey is recovering.

Edge heads to the top rope but Rey stops him. Rey climbs up after him but then Styles scoops him from underneath and hits a sit-out power bomb into a pin attempt. Mysterio kicks out after a count of two.

The three stack up on the top rope again and we see a hurricanrana into a super-plex spot for a close near fall, however Styles kicks out of the follow-up pin attempt by Rey. Rey then drop kicks Edge into position for a 6-1-9 but Styles yanks him down from the floor.

Styles loads up for the Phenomenal Fore-arm but Edge moves and looks for a Spear. Styles avoids it and Edge gets lined up for a 6-1-9. Edge avoids it and counters Rey into the Edge-ucator submission. Styles recovers so Edge lets go and locks him in it.

AJ makes it to the ropes but that means nothing in a triple-threat match. Rey ends up hitting a 6-1-9 but then is taken out by Styles. Styles follows up with a Phenomenal Fore-arm on Edge for the pin fall victory. With the win, Styles advances in the tourney.

Winner and ADVANCING in the tournament: AJ Styles

Bloodline Updates Tonight

We see an extensive video package showing the six-man tag-team featured co-main event at WWE Backlash, specifically the looming issues between Solo Sikoa and The Usos -- particularly Jey Uso.

From there, we shoot backstage live and we see The Usos are stretching and appear to be in a good mood. Michael Cole and Wade Barrett then remind us that for the first time since WrestleMania, "The Tribal Chief" Roman Reigns is here tonight.

World Heavyweight Championship Tournament (Opening Round)
Sheamus vs. Bobby Lashley vs. Austin Theory

Now we head back inside the arena where Sheamus' theme hits and "The Celtic Warrior" emerges as Michael Cole proclaims this "FIGHT NIGHT!" in Knoxville, TN.

As the WWE veteran settles in the ring for our next World Heavyweight Championship Tournament bout of the evening, we head to a pre-match commercial break.

When we return from the break, we hear the familiar sounds of the entrance theme music for the WWE United States Champion and out comes Austin Theory. Already in the ring is Bobby Lashley, as well as Sheamus, who made his way out before the break.

The winner of this match advances to the semifinals against AJ Styles in the SmackDown main event for this evening. The bell sounds and we're officially off-and-running with our second opening round bout in the ongoing World Heavyweight Championship tournament.

As soon as the bell sounds, Theory exits the ring and thinks he's being smart, until Lashley and Sheamus both follow him out there and proceed to beat him down and stomp the hell out of him. Back in the ring, Lashley hits a swinging neck-breaker on Theory.

Sheamus hoists Theory up and hits a rolling senton. Lashley clotheslines Theory out to the floor. Lashley turns his attention to Sheamus and now "The All Mighty" and "The Celtic Warrior" begin duking it out.

We see Sheamus beat Lashley down and then he gets Theory in position for his Ten Beats over the Bowery spot. He connects with each one as the fans count along with each shot that lands. Afterwards, we head to a mid-match commercial break as the action continues.

As we settle back in from the commercial break, we see Lashley slamming Theory into the steel ring post as Sheamus recovers in the ring. Lashley re-enters the ring and he and Sheamus start brawling again.

Lashley catches Sheamus off the ropes and looks for The Hurt Lock, but Theory re-enters the ring and drop kicks the two to break it up. Theory covers Sheamus but Lashley breaks it up and then starts duking it out with Theory.

Theory catches Lashley with a big boot running into the corner and then a modified sling blade for a close near fall. Theory then turns his attention to Sheamus, choking him with his boot in the corner of the ring as the fans boo.

Sheamus hits an Irish Curse back-breaker and then connects with White Noise for a close near fall. Lashley is driven into the steel steps at ringside to leave Sheamus and Theory alone in the ring. He looks for a Brogue Kick but walks into a Spear from Lashley.

Theory goes for A-Town Down but walks into a Hurt Lock from Lashley. Sheamus hits a Brogue Kick but Lashley knocks him out of the ring and takes the pin over Theory. At some point, Lashley got badly busted open and is covered in blood all over his face after the win.

With the win, he advances in the tourney and meets AJ Styles in the semifinals in tonight's main event. We see a shot of Roman Reigns' locker room door and then head to another commercial break.

Winner and ADVANCING in the tournament: Bobby Lashley

Grayson Waller Effect Coming To SmackDown Next Week

When we return from the break, we see Adam Pearce backstage on the phone when in walks former NXT Superstar Grayson Waller. He talks about debuting his Grayson Waller Effect talk show segment on next week's show. Waller is happy to be here on Friday's.

Baron Corbin vs. Cameron Grimes

Now we head back inside the arena where we see Baron Corbin finishing up his ring entrance, in progress. After he settles in the squared circle, his music dies down and he awaits the arrival of his opponent.

With that said, another NXT call-up makes his way out, as Cameron Grimes heads down to the ring for his SmackDown in-ring debut. He settles in the ring and his music dies down. Corbin hops on the mic and mocks Grimes before the match.

The bell sounds and we're officially off-and-running with a match that lasts all of 10 seconds, as Grimes immediately rolls Corbin up and scores the upset victory. Corbin is in disbelief.

Winner: Cameron Grimes

Looking Back At Brock Lesnar's Attack Of Cody Rhodes

After the quick match, we shoot to an extended video package that shows highlights of the interaction between Brock Lesnar and Cody Rhodes from Monday's Raw, complete with Lesnar's savage attack and demand of wanting "a fight" after telling Cody to "LOOK AT THIS FACE!"

Roman Reigns Heads To The Ring With The Bloodline

We then head back inside the arena and hear the familiar sounds of Roman Reigns' theme music. Out comes "The Tribal Chief" along with the rest of The Bloodline -- Solo Sikoa, The Usos and Paul Heyman.

As The Bloodline gets the pyro and fireworks treatment, they continue to head to the ring as we head to a commercial break before the segment gets started. When we return from the break, the group is settled into the ring and the music stops.

"Knoxville, Tennessee -- ACKNOWLEDGE ME!" he begins. Reigns says there's a lot of talk about royal families and families of prominence in the business. He says let's be honest, there's only one. He says every man in this ring headlined night one and two of WrestleMania.

He says he knows there's only been two nights of WrestleMania for so long, but he assures us they will be the only family to ever headline both nights of WrestleMania as long as they do so. He then talks about who has stepped up recently and says it was Solo Sikoa who stepped up.

Reigns talks about how when you're thrown into the deep end -- you either sink or swim. He says it's clear to tell now that Solo swims like a shark. He talks about handling the Riddle problem. He tells Solo not to worry about Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens.

He says they aren't the problem. He says there is a real problem. An actual problem, but it's not Sami and Kevin. He says the problem are your brothers. The fans "ooh" and "ahh" as Jimmy and Jey Uso show their reactions on their faces.

Reigns asks The Usos if they thought they were just gonna lose the titles at WrestleMania and then demand a rematch, dedicate it to Roman Reigns and lose again. He questions why they would dedicate a tag match to Roman Reigns, the greatest of all time.

He says they literally have tag-teams in their family lineage and they dedicate a match to him -- and then lose it to boot. He says he took a little time off for himself and The Usos embarrass him and his family. He doesn't want to hear anything from them unless it's an apology.

Reigns sees Jimmy smiling and questions if he's thinking they're filming commercials again. He asks if he's a clown and if he amuses him. He pie-faces him hard, like Conor McGregor to Michael Chandler on The Ultimate Fighter.

The crowd chants something with curses in it as the audio goes out. When it comes back, Jey Uso tells Reigns they apologize. He tells him that if Reigns gives him one more chance, they'll win the tag titles back.

Roman continues staring down The Usos as he passes the mic to Paul Heyman. Heyman tells them that he pulled all strings he could and got a rematch for the tag team titles booked for WWE Night Of Champions 2023 against Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn, but it will be Solo Sikoa and Roman Reigns who win them. Roman dedicates the match to The Wild Samoans.

WWE Women's Tag-Team Championships
Liv Morgan & Raquel Rodriguez (C) vs. Bayley & Dakota Kai

We shoot backstage for a quick interview with Damage CTRL. Bayley tells Iyo Sky it's okay she came up short at WWE Backlash in her attempt to capture the women's title. She blames herself for putting too much pressure on her and vows to win the tag titles tonight.

On that note, the theme for Liv Morgan and Raquel Rodriguez hits and out comes the reigning, defending WWE Women's Tag-Team Champions to the ring for our next match of the evening. As they settle into the squared circle, we head to a pre-match commercial break.

When we return from the break, we see a vignette hyping the success of WWE Backlash, narrated by Wade Barrett. We then shoot backstage and we see The Usos looking vulnerable and paranoid that everyone is laughing at them. They confront LWO and get into a war of words before storming off.

Now we head back inside the arena where the challengers from Damage CTRL -- Bayley and Dakota Kai head to the ring accompanied by Iyo Sky. The bell sounds and we're officially off-and-running with this title tilt.

After we see the champs jump off to a solid offensive lead, we see Bayley using some cheap under-handed tactics to shift the offensive momentum in their favor. We then shoot to a mid-match commercial break as the action continues.

When we settle back in from the mid-match commercial time out, we see Bayley and Kai still dominating the action, however when Bayley gets too focused on bossing Iyo Sky around, it back-fires as the reigning champs pick up the pin fall victory to retain.

Winners and STILL WWE Women's Tag-Team Champions: Liv Morgan & Raquel Rodriguez

Sheamus Isn't Impressed With Pretty Deadly

We shoot backstage after the women's tag team title bout and we see Sheamus and his pals hanging out when up walks former NXT Tag-Team Champions Pretty Deadly. Sheamus asks which one is Pretty and which one is Deadly.

They don't make a good impression on "The Celtic Warrior" and head off as Sheamus utters, "Pretty Deadly" in disgust to wrap up the quick backstage segment with the newcomers to Friday night's. After this, we head to another commercial break.

Bianca Belair's Championship Celebration

As we settle back in from the break, the longest reigning women's champion of the modern era in WWE, Bianca Belair, makes her way down to the ring -- which is completely decked out with the red carpet, giant balloons, etc. for the "Championship Celebration" for "The EST of WWE."

The Raw Women's Champion settles into the ring here on SmackDown and fireworks explode as the fans pop. Before she can say a word, however, she is interrupted by the theme of a former women's champion, "The Empress of Tomorrow" Asuka.

Asuka walks up and stands in front of Belair. The fans chant for Belair and Asuka helps lead the chant. Belair extends her hand to shake Asuka's hand, but instead, "The Empress of Tomorrow" sprays the black mist in her eyes. She screams and officials rush to her aid and then we head to another commercial.

World Heavyweight Championship Tournament (Semifinals)
AJ Styles vs. Bobby Lashley

AJ Styles' theme hits and he makes his way out to the ring as we return from the break. As he settles in the ring, Michael Cole and Wade Barrett run down some scheduled action for next week's SmackDown.

We return live in the arena and the theme for Bobby Lashley hits and out comes "The All Mighty" for this semifinal showdown against "The Phenomenal One" in the ongoing World Heavyweight Championship tournament.

The winner of this match will go one-on-one against Seth "Freakin'" Rollins in the finals of the WWE World Heavyweight Championship tournament at WWE Night Of Champions 2023 on May 27 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Now the bell sounds and we're officially off-and-running with this one. We see Lashley dominating the action in the early goings, beating Styles down and taking him out of the ring. He rams him back-first into the ring apron.

Back in the ring, Lashley continues to pulverize Styles as we head to a mid-match commercial break as the action continues in our main event of the evening. When we return from the break, we see Lashley continuing to beat down Styles.

Lashley ends up missing a big Spear on Styles and his shoulder smashes into the steel ring post from inside the ring. Styles follows this up by locking Lashley in his Calf-Crusher submission on the mat. Lashley screams in pain but eventually escapes.

Styles beats on Lashley as the cut opened up on "The All Mighty" earlier in the evening gets busted open again -- badly. Lashley is bleeding profusely from the head now and his face quickly becomes a crimson mask. Styles punches away at Lashley to rip open the cut even worse.

Bobby goes for a gut-wrench power bomb but the knee of Lashley gives out. Styles follows up with a big shot. Lashley catches Styles leaping into the corner and he looks for the Hurt Lock. He locks it in and Styles begins fading. Styles hops through the ropes while in the hold, forcing the ref to break the hold.

AJ rolls out to the floor to recover but Lashley comes out after him. He slams Styles' face into the same ring steps that busted his own head open earlier in the evening. He hoists Styles up but Styles escapes out the back door and rams Lashley face-first into the steel ring post.

Back in the ring, Styles loads up for The Phenomenal Fore-arm, but Lashley catches him on the ropes. Styles escapes and looks to roll into another Calf Crusher. Lashley avoids it and powers Styles up for a suplex. Styles knees his way free. Lashley hoists him up again and hits a running power slam for a close near fall.

Lashley again goes shoulder-first into the steel ring post as Styles moves when he was charging at him. This gives Styles the opportunity for a Phenomenal Fore-arm. He connects and covers him for the pin fall victory.

With the win, Styles advances in the tourney and will meet Seth Rollins in the finals at WWE Night of Champions to determine the first-ever World Heavyweight Champion. Styles looks at the title on the podium at The O.C. runs out to celebrate with him as this week's show goes off the air. Thanks for joining us!

Winner and ADVANCING in the tournament: AJ Styles