WWE SmackDown Tribute to the Troops 2023 Results – Dec. 8, 2023
December 8, 2023
Providence, RI – Amica Mutual Pavilion
Commentary – Kevin Patrick, Michael Cole, and JBL
Quick Match Results
- United States Championship #1 Contender Tournament First Round match – Santos Escobar defeated Dragon Lee via Phantom Driver (pinfall)
- United States Championship #1 Contender Tournament First Round match – Bobby Lashley defeated Karrion Kross via Spear (pinfall)
- Asuka defeated Charlotte Flair via Roll-up (pinfall)
- LA Knight & Randy Orton defeated The Bloodline (Jimmy Uso & Solo Sikoa) via RKO (pinfall)
Santos Escobar & Bobby Lashley Advance in US Title Contender Tournament
Friday’s SmackDown Tribute to the Troops 2023 show featured two First Round matches for WWE’s United States Championship #1 Contender tournament.
The first tournament match was Santos Escobar defeating Dragon Lee.
The finish to this match involved Lee hitting a running knee strike to Escobar causing Escobar to fall out of the ring. Lee tossed Escobar back into the ring but before he also went back in, he had a staredown with Dominik Mysterio at ringside. Lee then climbed to the top rope for a high flying move only to be stopped by Escobar who tripped him up and hit a Phantom Driver for the pinfall victory to advance to the next round of the US title #1 Contender tournament.
The second tournament match was Bobby Lashley defeating Karrion Kross.
The finish to this match involved Lashley hitting a Spear to Kross for the pinfall victory in a mostly one-sided match to advance to the next round of the US title #1 Contender tournament.
CM Punk References Backstage Brawls Incidents in AEW at Friday’s SmackDown Show
Friday’s SmackDown show featured an in-ring promo segment involving CM Punk.
During his promo, Punk talked about his upcoming decision on which brand he will sign an exclusive contract with this Monday and called out Roman Reigns stating that he wants to win the Men’s Royal Rumble and do the one thing he has not done in his career, which is to main event a WrestleMania. Punk also stated about his past history with the “wiseman” Paul Heyman and him being the “OG” Paul Heyman Guy.
Following some more words, Punk mentioned Kevin Owens name as someone he could potentially team up with to take on the Bloodline due to Owens’ past history with the group. Punk then referenced his infamous backstage fights incidents in AEW stating “I don’t know who would feel comfortable working with somebody who randomly just punches people in the face backstage” in regards to him teaming up with Owens.
“I don’t know who would feel comfortable working with somebody who randomly just punches people in the face backstage…” 👀@FightOwensFight, you can’t be doing that. 😂@CMPunk #SmackDown pic.twitter.com/Rhld9Zahde— WWE (@WWE) December 9, 2023
During his time in AEW, Punk was involved in two infamous backstage brawl incidents with the first taking place at AEW All Out 2022 involving Ace Steel and The Elite and the second taking place at this past August’s AEW All In event involving Jack Perry that led to his firing from the company.