WWE SmackDown off-air notes: Daniel Bryan vs. Shinsuke Nakamura

Daniel Bryan’s first bout with Shinsuke Nakamura in WWE came in the form of a dark match at last night’s SmackDown tapings in Montreal.

The match happened after 205 Live went off the air, with Bryan winning by disqualification. Bryan was hitting his “Yes” kicks when Nakamura gave him a low blow for the DQ, but Bryan stood tall after the match by hitting a running knee as Nakamura was going for the Kinshasa.

The match lasted for under 10 minutes.

Bryan and Nakamura (and UFC fighter Lyoto Machida) were roommates during their time at New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Los Angeles dojo in the early 2000s and both have spoken about wanting to wrestle each other at this point in their careers.

Bryan didn’t appear on television last night, with the storyline explanation being that he wasn’t cleared to compete due to his chest being damaged in the Greatest Royal Rumble. Big Cass brought a little person dressed as Bryan out to the ring, made fun of him, and then gave him a big boot after admitting that it was just an actor.

The Usos defeated Rusev & Aiden English in last night’s pre-SmackDown dark match.

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