On Tuesday night, this week’s episode of SmackDown Live was set to be headlined by Jeff Hardy putting the WWE United States Championship on the line against Shinsuke Nakamura. Fans have been waiting for this match to happen and it was going to be quite an exciting night for wrestling fans, but unfortunately, it won’t happen. WWE issued an announcement on Tuesday afternoon that Shinsuke Nakamura has suffered an injury and is in no condition to compete.
The news kind of came out of nowhere on Tuesday afternoon and there still isn’t a lot of information about it. According to the official website of WWE, Shinsuke Nakamura suffered the injury “last night” which would have been Monday evening, but he didn’t even wrestle yesterday.
According to Wrestling Inc., Nakamura’s last match was on Sunday night at a WWE Live Event in Fresno, California. He was in a Fatal 4-Way Match for the United States Title which saw Jeff Hardy retain over him, Shelton Benjamin, and Samoa Joe.
On Monday, there was a WWE Live Event for SmackDown Live in Bakersfield, California, but Nakamura did not have a match. The same Fatal 4-Way took place for the U.S. Title, but Rusev took Nakamura’s spot this time around.
Now, the championship match between Shinsuke Nakamura and Jeff Hardy has been scrapped, but the title will still be defended on SmackDown Live.
EXCLUSIVE: Unfortunately, @ShinsukeN sustained an injury last night and is not medically cleared to compete. However, #USChampion @JEFFHARDYBRAND will issue a #USOpenChallenge TONIGHT on #SDLive! pic.twitter.com/1wefUTFRRM
— WWE (@WWE) June 26, 2018
Yes, Jeff Hardy is still planning on defending the WWE United States Title, but he won’t know his opponent until after he is already in the ring. Hardy has now issued an open challenge for the belt and he must wait to see who will answer it from the SmackDown Live roster.
Then again, WWE could swerve everyone and have a superstar from Monday Night Raw or even NXT answer the call.
SmackDown Live is still looking to be a stacked show and the preview from the official website of WWE provides many other interesting segments.
- The Bludgeon Brothers to appear on “Miz TV”
- Becky Lynch goes one-on-one with Peyton Royce
- Xavier Woods of The New Day squares off with Rusev
- The cast of Netflix’s GLOW are coming to SmackDown Live, and they have a message for Naomi
UPDATE at 7:15 p.m. Eastern
— Wrestling Observer (@WONF4W) June 26, 2018
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Jeff Hardy has done well as a fighting champion with the WWE United States Title and he’s set to defend it again tonight in an open challenge on SmackDown Live. The fans were really looking forward to seeing him face off against Shinsuke Nakamura and it may happen in the future, but it won’t take place now. From this point on, it will be interesting to see just how much information is given about the injury suffered by Nakamura and how serious it is.