Friday Night Smackdown 1/22/2021


They recapped the Roman Reigns and Adam Pearce angle from last week. It ended with Kevin Owens making his return.

Universal Champion Roman Reigns and Paul Heyman made their way to the ring to start SmackDown. The fans gave Reigns a thumbs down, and they piped in fake "You Suck" chants.

Reigns noted Kevin Owens wouldn't appear tonight because he said so. He brought up Pearce and Owens's plan from last week. Reigns mentioned some fans said Owens and Pearce got one pass them.

Reigns was furious that Pearce got out of the match because of an injury. He said it took a serious health risk during the pandemic to keep him out of the ring. Reigns talked about all of his injuries and noted his back hurts from carrying the company.

Reigns said his back injury might keep him from the Royal Rumble. Adam Pearce interrupted and said things are getting out of control. Reigns got in Pearce's face and was mad that he complained of his body hurting.

Reigns said his back injury might keep him from the Royal Rumble. Adam Pearce interrupted and said things are getting out of control. Reigns got in Pearce's face and was mad that he complained of his body hurting.

Reigns pointed out that he never complains about his injuries. He mocked Pearce for complaining and said he's not surprised that Pearce never made it to the WWE.

Heyman thought that was funny and started laughing. Pearce didn't like that Heyman laughed.

Pearce said he'll back down from Reigns but won't take it from Heyman.

Reigns noted he just disrespected Heyman, which means he disrespected Reigns. Heyman got in Pearce's face and talked about his history with Reign's family.

Heyman decided to give Pearce a huge main event for tonight. Heyman then challenged Pearce to a match for later tonight. Pearce agreed, and Heyman versus Pearce is official for the main event.

This was a good opening segment. Reigns was awesome, but all three played their roles well.

Thumbs Up


Michael Cole and Corey Graves ran down the line up for tonight, but Sami Zayn interrupted. Zayn was with the documentary crew and handcuffed himself to the barricade.

Back from the break, Zayn brought up Apollo Crews cheating last week. Zayn noted he got caught cheating moments earlier, but Crews didn't get caught. Suddenly, Asuka's music hit and cut him off.


WWE Women's Tag Team Champions Asuka & Charlotte Flair defeated The Riott Squad (w/Billie Kay) to retain the titles

**1/4

Thumbs Up

They showed Natalya and Tamina Snuka watching in the back.

Riott rolled up Asuka and had the match won, but Kay distracted the referee. Asuka hit the hip attack on Morgan, which sent her into Kay on the floor.

Flair then hit natural selection on Riott for the win. Cole pushed the idea that the Riott Squad had the match won, but Kay cost them the match.


In the back, Kay tried to apologize to Riott and Morgan. Riott pointed out she had Asuka, but she caused a distraction. Kay tried to make up with them and got them both entered into the Royal Rumble (how the fuck?).

The Riott Squad turned down Kay and noted they're better when it's just them two. Kay was devastated as they walked away.


Cesaro defeated Dolph Ziggler

Bryan joined Michael Cole and Corey Graves on commentary.

Cesaro and Ziggler had a fun short match.

Cesaro gained the early advantage with an uppercut in the corner. He followed up with the giant swing.

Ziggler recovered, and they traded a series of pin attempts. Cesaro avoided a superkick, but Ziggler hit the Zig-Zag for a near fall.

Ziggler slowed the pace down with a sleeper hold. Cesaro broke free and lifted Ziggler in the air. Ziggler countered with a hurricanrana, but Cesaro reversed into the neutralizer for the win.

***1/4

Thumbs In The Middle Pointing Up


SmackDown Women's Champion Sasha Banks defeated Reginald (w/Carmella)

Carmella sat at ringside and drank some chamgpange.

**

Thumbs Up

My problem isn't with Reginald. It's the fact that Reginald exists...






and is mentioned by name like we are supposed to care


In the back, Paul Heyman gloated that their plan worked out perfectly. He knew what Reigns wanted him to do and challenge Adam Pearce to a match.

Reigns noted there isn't a plan. He hired Heyman but expects him to be a man. Reigns told him to handle his business and told Heyman to be a man again.



Intercontinental Champion Big E vs. Apollo Crews ended without a winner

Zayn took off the handcuffs and jumped in the ring. He rocked Crews with a helluva kick and gave one to Big E as well. The referee called for the bell as Zayn yelled at Crews and Big E.

DUD

Thumbs Up


Michael Cole and Corey Graves noted that Roman Reigns left the ThunderDome and won't be around for the Paul Heyman and Adam Pearce match. They pointed out that Kevin Owens isn't at the ThunderDome either.

They showed a promo from Owens from earlier today


Owens noted that Reigns couldn't beat him without help from his family. Owens talked about his tattoos and his grandfathers. He admired both of them and was disappointed they never got to see him make it to the WWE. He learned from them and won't stop fighting. He promised to be the last man standing at the Royal Rumble.


Obstacle Course Challenge: Bianca Belair defeated Bayley

Michael Cole hosted and introduced the participants. Bayley grabbed the mic from Cole and sent him away. Bayley walked Belair through the course and pointed out that Chad Gable is going to help out.

Bayley went first but her course was easier. Bayley did a tire flip, tiny hurdles, ran around the walls, carried Gable on her shoulders, and dunked a basketball although she missed the first time.

Bayley then made the course tougher for Belair including having to carry Otis on her shoulders. Belair easily beat Bayley's time and dominated the course. Bayley jumped Belair from behind and beat her down.


Thumbs Up


Also Gable has been a subtle heel for months and the only one to not notice is Otis the prototypical WWE dumbass babyface


King Corbin who sucks and is boring defeated Dominik Mysterio who sucks and is boring

**

Thumbs Down

You'd think this was an even catcher's catch can match. No, in prototypical WWE fashion the Babyface was made to be a geek by losing quickly & soundly to a heel equal to his level.

Seriously this was a squash, which has this reporter asking, what's the point?


Paul Heyman vs. Adam Pearce

This wasn't a match and was more of an angle.

Heyman taped his fists as he walked towards the ring but tripped on the steps.

Heyman tried to get in the ring again but pretended to have an injury. Heyman then noted that the card is subject to change.

Roman Reigns music hit and he walked to the ring. He rocked Pearce with the superman punch. Pearce tried to fight back but Reigns hit a low blow. He tossed Pearce into the screens and beat him into the stands.

Reigns put Pearce in the stands. Suddenly, Kevin Owens in a hoodie jumped Reigns. They fought down the ramp and into the ring. Owens avoided the superman punch and hit the stunner.

Referees tried to hold Owens back but he continued to attack Reigns. Owens hit a second stunner and a pop-up powerbomb through the announce table. Owens yelled at Reigns as SmackDown went off the air.

Thumbs Up


Overall: Thumbs Up

A Good Show


Infinitely better than RAW which is indistinguishable from WCW in the year 2000


Also Jey Uso was not seen, heard from or referenced at all tonight. I uh...wonder what’s going on there.