Raw sorts out their wins and losses after Survivor Series!
Both the Raw Men’s and even Women’s teams won at Survivor Series, but their champions had tougher times. Will Asuka, the New Day and Drew McIntyre have to watch out for challengers trying to pounce on “vulnerabilities?”
- Raw Tag Team Championships: The New Day VS The Hurt Business; The New Day wins and retains the titles.
- WWE World Championship Contender Qualifier: Matt Riddle VS Sheamus; Riddle wins and advances to next week’s Triple Threat.
- Raw Women’s Championship: Asuka VS Lana; Asuka wins by disqualification, and retains the title.
- Asuka & Lana VS Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler; Asuka & Lana win.
- WWE World Championship Contender Qualifier: Keith Lee VS Bobby Lashley; Lee wins and advances to next week’s Triple Threat.
- Alexa Bliss VS Nikki Cross; Bliss wins.
- WWE World Championship Contender Qualifier: Randy Orton VS AJ Styles; Styles wins and advances to next week’s Triple Threat.
PLAY BY PLAY
The Raw Men’s team is in the ring!
They and Adam Pearce stand together as Pearce notes we saw one of the greatest main events in Raw history when Drew McIntyre became a two-time world champion against Randy Orton. And then we saw an end of an era at Survivor Series, were we all bid a final farewell to the Phenom, the Undertaker. But we also saw these superstars in the ring defeat SmackDown in a dominant clean sweep! Results like that deserve rewards, so one of these five might be McIntyre’s next challenger. That brings us to tonight. Pearce wanted to give every man of Team Raw a chance to stake their claim to a title match.
Pearce wants “Captain” AJ Styles to start but Sheamus speaks up. Firstly, Styles was not the captain. Secondly, Sheamus congratulates his friend, Drew McIntyre, on becoming a two-time WWE World Champion. They go way back, they’re bets of friends, and as last night goes, Sheamus being the most valuable member of the team- Styles cuts Sheamus off there. Most valuable? Yes, Styles is repeating his words so clearly he heard Sheamus right. Styles says that we all know McIntyre is Sheamus’ buddy, sure, but Styles says this is the “good ol’ boy” system. Not gonna happen! And furthermore, most valuable? N o, that’s the captain, Styles!
Keith Lee speaks up and does NOT hate to interrupt here, because not only did Keith save Styles, he pinned SmackDown’s captain, and so he is the obvious choice of the title opportunity. Styles complains but Riddle speaks up now. “I would like to be WWE Champion, and I think we all did last night was pretty sick.” Last night, Riddle beat King Corbin. That was sweet! Does that make Riddle the King Bro? Does he get a crown? Riddle would like to face McIntyre, win, and become WWE Champion so he could have that dope sword to go with the crown. Sheamus says Riddle is the dope. Fire Face, c’mon, bro. Riddle will win the title, get the sword and the crown, and let him hold them.
Don’t call Sheamus FIRE FACE! Yeah, no more nicknames. Skipper, didn’t you like yours? And so did Bro Lee, right? But Fire Face wasn’t even his first choice anyway. Though, Fire Crotch was already taken. What does Mongoose think? Pearce says “last but not least,” Braun Strowman will have his time to speak. What does Pearce mean by “last?” It is just a saying, Braun. Braun grabs Pearce and shouts “Do you know who I am?! Do you know what I’ve done for this company!?” The team tries to calm Braun down but he HEADBUTTS Pearce!! The team tells Braun that was uncalled for, but he tells them to back off. Will this jeopardize not only Braun’s chances at the title but his chances at being in the WWE?
Raw shares footage of an encounter between The New Day and the Hurt Business.
Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods were filming a video when The Hurt Business walked by. MVP taunts them as “The Worst of the Worst,” for having lost “embarrassingly” to the Street Profits. Shelton Benjamin says the Raw Tag Team Championships are missing prestige, which only gentlemen like the Hurt Business can bring. The Hurt Business want New Day to give them a championship opportunity tonight. Woods says they just did this, and remind him what happened? Cedric Alexander says it was what New Day got at Survivor Series. While the New Day were cosplaying like fools, Alexander was on the sidelines, and he hates being on the sidelines.
The Hurt Business crowds the New Day but Kofi tells them to back up a bit. Alexander says they’re not asking, they’re telling the New Day, they’re having a title match tonight. And then the spotlight will be where it belongs: on Alexander. Kofi says this was their day off, but MVP says there’s no such thing for champions. Woods accepts the challenge! Will the New Day rebound at the expense of the Hurt Business? We find out, next!
Raw Tag Team Championships: The New Day VS The Hurt Business!
The introductions are made, the belts are raised and the Raw after Survivor Series has a golden opener!
The teams sort out and we start with Benjamin and Woods. They tie up, Benjamin puts Woods in the corner but Woods slips away! Woods swivels his hips and smooths his hair but MVP tells Benjamin to be “controlled fury.” Benjamin and Woods circle and feel out the grapple. Benjamin tackles Woods and rains down rights! Benjamin floats all over Woods, brings Woods up with a half nelson but Woods moves around. Benjamin stays on top of Woods, brings him back down then rams a knee into the shoulder! Woods writhes and goes to a corner but Benjamin is after him with a TOSS! Woods ends up in the other corner and Benjamin brings him back up, for a snap suplex! Cover, TWO! He tries another cover, ONE, and Benjamin KICKS Woods down.
Benjamin drags Woods up, Woods throws body shots and haymakers, but he runs into a BOOT! Alexander is fired up and Benjamin KNEES Kofi down! MVP says, “I love it when a plan comes together,” and Raw goes to break.
Raw returns and Woods endures a chinlock. Benjamin leans on Woods as Kofi and the fans rally up. Woods throws body shots and then arm-drags Benjamin away, rolls to dodge, hot tag to Kofi! Kofi springboards to ax handle Benjamin, DECK Alexander, then rally on Benjamin with chops and a dropkick! Kofi runs to leaping lariat! Fans clap and Kofi fires up, for the NEW~ DAY~ Boom Drop! Kofi aims from the corner, claps it up, but Benjamin ducks Trouble to kick and whip! Benjamin runs in, Kofi slips out and kicks back! Kofi goes up top but Benjamin throws haymakers to stop him!
Benjamin climbs up, Kofi fights back and headbutts Benjamin away! The ref is busy with Benjamin, and Alexander ARM-DRAGS Kofi to the apron! Alexander gets away with it but Woods saw that! Woods goes over to check on Kofi as the ring count climbs. Kofi rises as it’s at 8, Benjamin KICKS Kofi down! But the count is 10!! New Day survive!!
MVP is furious but the New Day gets away! MVP thinks his guys won, but that’s not how the rules work! Woods rubs that in on MVP but MVP says this isn’t how it’ll go! MVP wants the ref to restart the match so it won’t end like this. New Day doesn’t want to lose like that, right? The New Day says they gave Hurt Business their shot, but that trash talk doesn’t sit right, so we’re still going!
Fans cheer on their screens while Kofi and Benjamin stare down, and Raw goes to break!
Raw returns and Kofi circles with Benjamin. They tie up and fire off fast hands! Kofi gets around to mule kick, kick and kick and then fire off body shots and haymakers! The ref counts, Benjamin shoves Kofi away. Kofi runs back at Benjamin but gets TOSSED out of the ring! Kofi clutches a leg and Woods hurries over to check on him. Alexander talks trash that Kofi is done, but the ring count is climbing again! Benjamin gets Kofi in before 9 and stomps away. Benjamin tags Alexander, and they feed Kofi to knees! And then a clothesline! Alexander hops up, lines up the shot, and ELBOW DROPS! Cover, ONE!!
Alexander tries another cover, ONE, and Alexander hammers away on Kofi! Alexander gets the leg and gets Kofi in a partial Queen Angelito. Kofi endures, Benjamin tags in, and the knee is the target of Benjamin’s stomps! Benjamin drags Kofi up and around, and hits a SHIN BREAKER! Benjamin drags Kofi around, and drops an elbow on the leg! Tag to Alexander and Alexander drops an elbow onto the leg! Alexander has a toehold, Kofi endures as Alexander punches away on the knee, and Alexander even cranks harder on the leg. Alexander has a standing SNAP LOCK! Then a TRAILER HITCH!
Kofi endures, reaches for Woods and Alexander taunts Woods to help Kofi! Alexander drags Kofi away, tags in Benjamin, and Benjamin stomps Kofi down. Benjamin drops knees, drags Kofi around by his leg again and has a standing toehold. Kofi endures but Benjamin drops down for a kneebar! Fans rally, Kofi CHOPS and CHOPS and is free! Benjamin hurries after Kofi, reel shim in and clotheslines him down! Benjamin talks smack and has Kofi in the corner. Benjamin drags Kofi up by his hair and puts him on the ropes. Alexander stands back as the ref watches him, and Benjamin wraps the leg on the ropes. Alexander tags in and he dropkicks the leg! Cover, but the ropes are too close! Kofi gets free but Alexander tries again, TWO!
Alexander has the leg and he turns Kofi for a partial Crab. Alexander drags Kofi around, tag to Benjamin. They mug the leg again and Benjamin drags Kofi up. Benjamin headbutts Kofi to the corner then throws haymakers. Benjamin runs in but Kofi ducks under to shovel Benjamin out! Alexander tags in before Benjamin falls, but Kofi throws him out, too! Kofi crawls but Alexander yanks Woods off the apron! Kofi elbows Benjamin away, and boots with the good leg! He gets Benjamin for SOS! Cover, TWO!! Benjamin and Kofi are both down but Benjamin tags in Alexander. Alexander chop blocks Kofi’s leg! Woods glares as Alexander covers Kofi, TWO! KNEEBAR! Kofi endures as Alexander pulls on the leg!
Fans rally up, Kofi pries free and he brawls with Alexander on the mat! Kofi heads for Woods but Alexander drags him away. Alexander heel hooks but Kofi kicks him away again. Kofi hobbles but gets the hot tag to Woods! Woods rallies on Alexander, leg lariats! He dumps Benjamin out, puts Alexander on ropes, SLIDING WRECKING BALL! Woods rains down right son Benjamin, gets in to trophy lift and DROP Alexander! Cover, TWO!! MVP shouts at Alexander to get up but Woods has him in a corner. Woods runs into an elbow, Alexander uses ropes for the TORNADO DDT! Tag to Benjamin, OLYMPIC SLAM! Cover, Kofi breaks it!!
Alexander gets in but Kofi kicks and tosses him out. Kofi aims and bounces to SLINGSHOT into Alexander! Benjamin reels Woods in, Woods sunset flips out of the bomb, the NEW DAY WIN!!
Winners: The New Day, by pinfall (still Raw Tag Team Champions)
Maybe the Hurt Business should’ve just cut their losses, because now they’ve actually LOST! Will New Day prove they’re still the best on Raw, no matter what?
Adam Pearce walks out of the trainer’s room.
Charly Caruso asks how he is doing. The doc told him to take it easy this week. But obviously he has Braun escorted out of the building. He can’t speak to the consequences of Braun’s actions, but if it were Pearce’s call, Braun would be fired. Understandable, but now she asks who he was going to handle the WWE World Championship situation. Before he can answer, Bobby Lashley walks over and asks he wait to talk business. Lashley says he would never have done what Braun did. And second, Lashley was the only champion on this brand to win at Survivor Series. So perhaps they should discuss that before a decision is made. Pearce excuses himself from the interview to do just that. Is the United States Championship about to take over the world… title picture?
Raw returns, and Charly tries to interview Pearce again.
Lashley made a compelling case, but now- Randy Orton walks over…? Pearce needs another minute, Charly. Clearly the Viper wants to add to the conversation.
Backstage interview with Lana.
The Ravishing Russian went from being smashed through a table nine weeks in a row to being Team Raw’s SOLE SURVIVOR! How is she feeling? She is so shocked and happy! That was the greatest moment in her career, she feels on top of the world! Well, the Raw Men’s Team won and are in line for titles, so perhaps Lana will get a rematch with Asuka? She can’t even think about that right now. She wants to live in the moment. If she’s dreaming, don’t wake her up! Will Lana make dreams come true soon enough?
Charly returns again to talk with Pearce.
Pearce has spoken with Lashley and with Orton, what is his decision now? He has come to a solution: everyone has made a claim, that is what he wanted. But this needs to be settled in the ring. Three 1v1 matches will determine the entrants in a Triple Threat #1 Contender’s match, the winner facing Drew McIntyre for the title! And the first one tonight: (Matt) Riddle VS Sheamus, and that is NOW!
WWE World Championship Contender Qualifier: Matt Riddle VS Sheamus!
“Bro…!” Dopey, the King of Bros, and the “Fire Face” Fella face off for a spot in an epic Triple Threat! Who will be but the first of three in next week’s golden opportunity?
The bell rings and Riddle circles with Sheamus. Riddle still thinks they’re cool from Survivor Series but Sheamus slaps the bro fist away. No more Fire Face nicknames, stupid! Riddle says Sheamus should have respect, but Sheamus shoves him! So Riddle waistlocks and jumps on! Sheamus shakes Riddle off and gets Riddle in a facelock. Sheamus grinds Riddle down, Riddle slips around and jumps on again. Sheamus throws Riddle off this time and Riddle gets up fast. The two circle again and tie up. Sheamus puts Riddle on ropes, the ref calls for a break but Riddle gets around again. They reluctantly honor the ropebreak but the ref reprimands them both.
Sheamus headlocks and throws Riddle down, but Riddle keeps his shoulder up. Sheamus traps an arm, and Riddle endures as Sheamus tortures the fingers. Sheamus keeps on the headlock but Riddle pops out the back to get a hammerlock. Riddle returns the crank, and throws in elbows. Riddle keeps calling Sheamus “Fire Face” as he shifts around for the double wristlock. Sheamus fights up and rams Riddle to a corner! Sheamus KNEES Riddle hard and low then CLUBS him down! Sheamus has the top wristlock now and he bends the arm way back. Riddle endures, Sheamus digs his elbow into Riddle’s eye!
Riddle fights up, Sheamus claws his face, but Riddle throws body shots. Riddle fights free, throws forearms, and more forearms, and a CHOP! And more forearms, and more CHOPS! Riddle seethes but Sheamus CLOBBERS him! Sheamus kicks Riddle while he’s down and Riddle goes to ropes. Sheamus digs his knee into Riddle’s head but the ref counts. Sheamus lets off, argues with the ref, but then he brings Riddle up just to throw him down with the hammerlock. Sheamus headscissor squeezes Riddle but Riddle bridges up. Riddle moves around, gets Sheamus with the ARMBAR! Sheamus scrambles to a ropebreak! The ref counts, Riddle lets off at 3, and Sheamus bails out.
Sheamus tells Riddle to play by the rules, and Riddle says he can stay out then and lose by ring count. Sheamus gets in, they both kick each other, but Riddle fires off forearms. Sheamus throws body shots, knees and then suplexes Riddle up and over! Cover, TWO! Sheamus has a keylock and then shifts to throw elbows into Riddle’s head. Riddle fights up, fireman’s carries, but Sheamus fights free. Riddle fires off hands, Sheamus shoves but Riddle kicks him! Riddle runs but Sheamus clotheslines him out hard! Sheamus goes out to the apron and leaps, into a FINAL FLASH! Riddle gets Sheamus for a BROSPLODER! The ring count climbs but Riddle drags Sheamus up and in at 5!
Riddle aims, runs and BROTONS! Cover, TWO! Riddle grits his teeth while Sheamus sits up. Riddle lines up a shot and KICKS Sheamus in the chest! Sheamus sits up and Riddle KICKS him again! And stomps him! And KICKS him against ropes! Riddle drags Sheamus up, Sheamus throws heavy body shots and he DECKS Riddle with that right! Riddle ends up on the apron, Sheamus brings him up to beat the Bodhrain! Sheamus gets all 10 and then dumps Riddle down. Riddle groans while he stirs and the ring count begins again. Riddle stands at 5, gets in at 7, but Sheamus is right on him with European Uppercuts!
Riddle boots back from a corner, runs but into the IRISH CURSE! Cover, TWO! Sheamus pushes Riddle around but Riddle is still in this. Sheamus drags Riddle up, Riddle holds ropes to avoid the whip, but Sheamus KICKS him low! Sheamus shoves Riddle to a corner then RAMS into him! And then POSTS him! Riddle flounders out, but dodges as Sheamus runs in, and Sheamus POSTS himself! The BRO KICKS return! BRO! BRO! BRO! Riddle lets off as the ref counts, but he and Sheamus catch each other with forearms! Sheamus catches the kick, Alabama lifts for the ALABAMA SLAM! But he can’t make the cover, and Raw goes to break!
Raw returns and Riddle is fighting up out of a chinbar and armlock. Riddle throws body shots, then forearms, but Sheamus shoves to KNEE Riddle down! Cover, TWO!! Sheamus can’t believe Riddle survives! Sheamus pushes Riddle away then stands on a hand, to stomp it! Sheamus drags Riddle up, scoops him but Riddle slips off, spins Sheamus and PELES! Sheamus tumbles out of the ring! Riddle gets up, builds speed to the corner, and then goes to the apron to PENALTY KICK! And then FLOATING BROTON! Riddle puts Sheamus in, then climbs up top, for a CROSSBODY, but into Sheamus’ arms! Sheamus hits a SWINGING SLAM! Cover, TWO!!
Sheamus is shocked as he stares down at Riddle. He stomps Riddle to the ropes, then drags him back to stomp him more. Sheamus ties up the legs but Riddle resists the Cloverleaf! Sheamus kicks Riddle and turns him over, CLOVERLEAF is in! Riddle endures and drags himself over, ROPEBREAK! Sheamus holds until 4, and he has no idea what it’ll take to solve Riddle. Riddle is on the apron, Sheamus brings him back up, but Riddle stops the Bodhrain! Riddle has the arm for a DRAPING KIMURA! The ref counts, Riddle lets go at 4 then he hotshots Sheamus away! Riddle gets in, gets around, Sheamus elbows and switches to drop down and drag Riddle to a HEEL HOOK!
Riddle endures, CHOPS and forearms Sheamus, but Sheamus clubs him back! Sheamus cranks on the leg, Riddle is down, TWO as Riddle sits up. Riddle kicks and kicks with his free leg, and kicks and kicks, until he is free! And he still kicks! Cover, TWO! Riddle grits his teeth again as Sheamus sits up, but Sheamus ducks the PK, only to get a FINAL FLASH!! Cover, TWO!?! Sheamus survives and shocks Riddle! Riddle fires himself up, foams at the mouth a bit, and he drags Sheamus to a drop zone. Riddle goes up top but Sheamus clubs him down! Sheamus clubs Riddle more, then climbs up behind him. Sheamus brings Riddle up but Riddle hits back.
Riddle sends Sheamus down, adjusts position but Sheamus hits him again! Sheamus climbs up, throws forearms, then fireman’s carries Riddle! He shifts Riddle around, SUPER WHITE NOISE!! Cover, TWO?!? Riddle survives and Sheamus is beside himself! Sheamus looks at Riddle from the corner, even more unsure how to put Riddle away. Sheamus beats his own chest, firing himself up. Riddle stands but then drops before the Brogue arrives! Sheamus laughs, he thinks Riddle is done. Sheamus brings Riddle up, “You’ll never be tough like me!” Riddle HEADBUTTS! ROUNDHOUSES! But Sheamus ducks the next, to Electric Chair lift! Riddle punches back, rolls through but Sheamus rolls it back! CLOVERLEAF!! Riddle endures, turns it back over, drags Sheamus down to a victory roll! RIDDLE WINS!!
Winner: Matt Riddle, by pinfall (advances to the Triple Threat Contender’s Match)
The Fella is FURIOUS that he got beat by the Bro! Who will Riddle be meeting next week in that match?
Asuka finds Lana backstage.
The Empress heard Lana might want to challenge for the title. Oh, no no, she was just interviewed about being the Sole Survivor, and the question came up. Lana was not even thinking about that. Asuka is the best in the world and Raw Women’s Champion! Well that’s okay, Asuka loves challenges. She accepts, and will see Lana in the ring tonight. Who knows? Maybe Lana goes home the new champion! Lana is happy to have her newest opportunity, but is she worried it won’t be as easy as her Survivor Series win?
Raw presents an all new Firefly Fun House!
Bray Wyatt and Alexa Bliss welcome us back! Tonight is about something truly evil! Vile! Disgusting! Repuslive! It’s “friendship.” Ew~! Friends will always let you down! One minute, you’re best buds, playing ball, skipping stones, burning the midnight oil together to solve a puzzle. Then the next minute, they’re burning other things… Wyatt still gets flashes of what Orton did. But trust Bray when he says friends are no good. Just like Alexa’s former friend and tonight’s opponent, Nikki Cross.
Ribbit, pay no attention to this, Bliss. You can’t let a friend like Cross hop away. Who da F is you? This is the Friendship Frog, of course! And he believes friendship lasts forever. Is that so? Indubitably! Well Alexa should show the frog what she’ll do to her “friend,” Nikki. Alexa asks for a little help, and Bray whispers in her ear. Those scary eyes return! This doesn’t seem very friendly. Alexa bashes him with the branding stick! Friendship Frog is now pudding. That’s enough. Now please, join us in a moment of silence for the frog. A video shows the frog growing up from tadpole to pollywog to full fledged frog. He played baseball, graduated from college, and “Always eat what bugs you” was his senior quote in his yearbook. And of course, his debut and final appearance on FFH. He was 40?
Friendship Frog was a fine amphibian. A real shame he… croaked. HAHAHAHAHAHA! Okay, bye~! See you later, Nikki! Um… Will Nikki end up looking like Friendship Frog before the night is over?
WWE Tribute to the Troops returns to television!
Sunday, December 6th on Fox, WWE again thanks the men and women of the US military by putting on a special show! Check local listings for showtimes.
Raw Women’s Championship: Asuka VS Lana!
The Empress of Tomorrow may have come up short against The Boss in their Champion VS Champion match, but that’s not going to stop Asuka from reigning over Raw! At least, it shouldn’t. Will the Ravishing Sole Survivor shock the world all over again?
Raw returns and Lana makes her entrance. The introductions are made, the belt is raised, but Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler come out to intimidate Lana. Of course, they pretend that’s not why, and join commentary instead. The bell rings and Asuka ties up with Lana. Lana arm-drags Asuka down and Asuka claps some respect. Asuka and Lana tie up again, Lana headlocks but Asuka powers out. Asuka drops down, tries to pop Lana up but Lana counters to a cover! TWO, and Asuka ducks a kick, to pop-up KNEE Lana down! Asuka has the ref move as she baseball slides at Lana but Lana dodges! The WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions taunt Asuka for taking even this long to beat Lana, but Asuka splashes them with someone’s water! Nia attacks and that ends the match!
Winner: Asuka, by disqualification (still Raw Women’s Champion)
Whether Asuka egged them on so this would happen or not, Asuka wins the match and retains her title! But now the tag champions are mugging her! Lana watches as they splash Asuka with water now, then drag her to the table. Shayna clears it off for Nia, but Lana saves Asuka! Lana and Asuka get in the ring, then get away as Shayna and Nia storm in! Asuka says it won’t work like that, but Nia grabs the mic. “You started something, get back here an finish it!” Shayna adds on, because she and Nia want a match with them tonight! Lana and Asuka accept! Raw goes to break, will the Ravishing and the Empress take down the Irresistible Force and the Queen of Spades?
R-Truth does a WWE Shop commercial.
After all, this Friday is Black Friday, as in deals, deals, deals! But then a referee shows up. Truth says his title is not for sale, but then Drew Gulak SMACKS Truth with a toy Money in the Bank briefcase! Gulak covers, but the lights start turning off?! The ref bugs out of there, and Truth knows HE is here! He who? THE FIEND!?! Gulak turns around and “YOWIE WOWIE!” Oh it’s just Akira Tozawa in a Fiend mask. he gets himself a free WWE 24/7 Championship pillow. Get that and more now at WWE Shop!
Asuka & Lana VS Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler!
Raw returns and Lana dodges Shayna’s knee in the corner! Lana fires off knees and kicks of her own, then a heel kick! Lana brings Shayna around, whips but Nia makes the tag! Lana ROUNDHOUSES Shayna but Nia throws Lana by her hair! Nia looms over Lana and taunts Asuka. Nia drags Lana up to TOSS her! Lana gets to a corner and Nia mocks her pain. Nia brings Lana up to TOSS her again! Nia and Asuka shout at each other, but Nia reels Lana in to CLOBBER her! Nia kicks Lana and says Lana got lucky. Nia chokes Lana on the ropes, lets off at the ref’s count, but throws Lana out to the floor.
Tag to Shayna and Shayna stomps Lana on the outside. Shayna puts Lana in the ring at 4, stands on Lana’s foot, and then taunts her to try and tag Asuka. Shayna drags Lana back to drop elbows, then drags her up for a neck wrench. She even ties up Lana’s legs in a pretzel to keep her trapped. Lana endures, Asuka and the fans rally for her, but Shayna knees Lana down. Tag to Nia, Shayna drags Lana over and puts her in the corner. Nia runs in to corner splash! Nia drags Lana by her hair, pushes her back down, then pushes her around “because you suck!” Lana got lucky, and yet she’s the sole survivor?! Nia pushes Lana around more and then drags her up. Lana hits back!
Lana fires off clawing hands and kicks, but Nia RAMS her into the corner! Tag to Shayna, the tag champs mug Lana, then Shayna snapmares Lana to KICK her in the back! Shayna stands on Lana’s head while she pulls on a leg, then the other leg. Shayna bends Lana past a normal Half Crab and even toys with her, before she SLAMS the leg down and KICKS Lana in the side! Lana sits up but Shayna kicks her again! Shayna toys with Lana, but Lana crawls along ropes. Shayna runs in but Lana dodges her slide! Lana kicks Shayna away, hot tag to Asuka!
Asuka SLIDING KICKS Shayna down! Asuka hip attacks Nia! And elbows Shayna! And kicks! Shayna grits her teeth but Asuka ROUNDHOUSES to a CODE BREAKER! Asuka fires up to hip attack in the corner! Shayna fights the waistlock off but not the BACK HAND! Asuka GERMANS Shayna away! And SLIDING WIZARD! Cover, TWO!! Asuka keeps on Shayna with KICKS, but the buzzsaw is blocked to a trip and KNEE! Cover, TWO!! Both women are down, Nia trips Lana off the apron! Nia headbutts Lana away from her corner, then pushes her towards the announce desk. Nia wants number 10! The ref reprimands but Nia scoops Lana up.
Lana fights out to ROUNDHOUSE back! Lana fires off but Nia pushes her away! Nia roars and runs at Lana but Lana ducks, and Nia tumbles over the desk!! Shayna grabs Lana for a KIRAFUDA! The ref says Lana isn’t legal, but Asuka is and she rolls Shayna up! ASUKA AND LANA WIN!
Winners: Asuka & Lana, by pinfall
Lana celebrates, but only as she runs away to the stage so Shayna and Nia can’t get at her! Will Lana’s apparent win streak continue?
Riddle finds MVP backstage.
MVP the OG! “Sup, dude?” No fist bump? Okay. But what’s up with “Big Bobby?” Riddle was hoping to wish him luck tonight. Well Lashley has to get ready for his qualifier. What does Riddle want? Oh that’s right, Lashley is against Keith Lee. Probably one for the ages, bro. But question: Riddle has a million ideas for business investments. Everyone loves what? Pizza. What else does everyone love? Yogurt. So therefore, pizza flavored yogurt. And that is just the tip of the iceberg! Riddle suggests mixing yogurt with “prot” and it’s BROGURT! Riddle has ideas for days!
No, stop. MVP can’t believe Riddle thinks Lashley has time to listen to all this. First thing’s first, stop saying “bro.” Second, MVP appreciates the spirit, so get all those great ideas and maybe come back with them in a couple weeks. Like Shark Tank! Yes, exactly like that. If they like his ideas, maybe they will do business. If they don’t, they’ll do some business. Riddle isn’t what the difference is, but will the All Mighty and the Limitless One tear down the ThunderDome with their qualifier?
WWE World Championship Contender Qualifier: Keith Lee VS Bobby Lashley w/ MVP!
Braun Strowman’s sudden fit of rage cost him this opportunity, and now another behemoth will cash in. Will next week’s Triple Threat #BaskInHisGlory? Or will it feel the pain at the hands of the Hurt Business CEO?
The bell rings and Lashley gets right in Keith’s face to shove him! Lashley then waistlocks but Keith backs him to a corner. They break with some unease, but Lashley kicks back and facelocks! Keith holds off the suplex, spins out and headlocks. Lashley tries to power out but Keith holds on tight. Lashley spins out and the two fight over the wristlock. Keith powers Lashley back but Lashley gets around to headlock. Keith powers up and lifts Lashley, but Lashley cranks on the headlock! MVP says to keep it up and Lashley holds on as Keith tries to power out. Keith stays up, squeezes Lashley with a bearhug then powers out! Lashley rams him but Keith stays up!
Keith swats Lashley’s punch away, bumps Lashley off buckles and fires off big hands! The ref counts, Keith lets off at 3 but back elbows over and over now! Keith opens Lashley up for the GRIZZLY MAGNUM! Keith then backs off to run back in, but Lashley dodges! Lashley keeps moving, LARIAT, but Keith stays up! Lashley snarls and Keith grits his teeth, but Lashley gets the COMPLETE SHOT! Cover, ONE?! Lashley is furious but he wants Keith to get up! MVP says to lock it in, and Lashley wants the full nelson! Keith fights that off, Lashley pushes him but Keith rolls and ducks to run Lashley over! Lashley flounders up and Keith clotheslines him out!
Keith smirks as he gets an idea. Keith builds speed but MVP is in his way! The ref tells MVP to stay back but MVP claims he hasn’t done anything. Keith goes out to chase MVP! But he doesn’t see Lashley coming and Lashley CLOBBERS Keith! Lashley fires off forearms, the ring count climbs, but Lashley RAMS Keith into barriers at 5! Lashley gets in at 7, but then goes out after Keith again. Lashley fireman’s carries Keith!? And POSTS him!! Lashley manages to take Keith down but almost crumbled underneath him! Raw goes to break, will Keith still be in one piece?
Raw returns and Lashley grinds Keith down with a double wristlock. Keith endures and fans rally on their screens but Lashley cranks harder on the arm. Keith fights his way up, pries the hold apart a finger at a time, but Lashley KNEES low and hard, over and over! MVP says Lashley needs to grind Keith down but Keith fights his way up, Lashley turns Keith for a neckbreaker! Cover, TWO, but Lashley has the arm again! The ref says Lashley’s knee is on Keith’s throat so Lashley lets off. MVP protests, that was Keith’s chest, not his neck! Lashley goes back to a chinlock and he grinds Keith down again, but Keith endures and reaches out. Fans rally but Lashley cranks Keith back and away from ropes.
Lashley throws forearms, runs, but Keith ROCKS him with a forearm back! Keith roars and runs, but Lashley hurdles over?! And then comes back to CLOBBER Lashley! Lashley drags Keith up to SUPLEX him!! Lashley stalks Keith and dares him to get up! Keith slowly rises, gets the arms but Keith pushes him away! Keith is in a corner and elbows Lashley away! Lashley staggers but comes back, Keith HURDLES Lashley and Lashley POSTS himself! Keith throws body shots on Lashley then DECKS him with a left! Lashley flounder sup into a corner splash! Keith keeps moving to POUNCE LASHLEY!! Since when has someone done that to Lashley!?
Keith follows Lashley outside to CROSSBODY Lashley down!! Keith puts Lashley in but the ref misses MVP as he POSTS Keith!! The ring count is 7, Keith rolls in slowly at 8, but Lashley demands Keith get up! Lashley gets the arms, but the full nelson can’t even reach across Keith’s broad shoulders! Keith revives, powers out of the nelson, and he backpacks Lashley for a SENTON!! MVP runs in and attacks!!
Winner: Keith Lee, by disqualification (advances to the Triple Threat Contender’s Match)
What is he doing?! Now Lashley DEFINITELY lost this match! Keith DECKS MVP and finally catches his breath. But perhaps that was a business decision to spare Lashley an actual defeat. One way or another, Keith is heading to the #1 contender’s match! Who will join the Limitless Bros in that epic opportunity?
Alexa Bliss VS Nikki Cross!
Perhaps two of the greatest friends in modern WWE history, with multiple tag title reigns. Nikki wouldn’t know what she’d be without Alexa. But then, when Alexa was without Nikki, The Fiend pounced, and now the Goddess is but a proxy for the madness inside the fun house. Before making her entrance, Nikki tells Sarah not to ask her any questions. Nikki doesn’t give up on friends. Alexa is the one who gave that up. We’ve all seen what’s going on here. Nikki has been trying to help Alexa free herself.
But she’s done trying. Alexa made it clear she no longer wants help, or Nikki. Message received. Alexa can have The Fiend. Nikki is sick and tired of worrying about this. The only thing she cares about now, is beating the FIEND out of Alexa! Will Nikki win this match against the friend she lost?
Raw returns and Alexa makes her entrance, as twisted as it is now. The bell rings and Alexa smirks at Nikki as Nikki shouts “What is wrong with you?!” Nikki grabs at Alexa but Alexa is playing around. Alexa slaps Nikki’s hands away! Hot hands, she wins! Alexa then dodges Nikki and waves at her. Nikki runs in but into a drop toehold! Alexa then bails out and Nikki gives chase! Are they playing tag now? Alexa gets back in and she teases Nikki. Nikki drags Alexa out and headbutts low! And then CLOBBERS her! Nikki seethes as she drags Alexa up and into the ring. Nikki runs corner to corner at the laughing Alexa to stomp away on her! The ref counts, Nikki lets off at 3.
Nikki cools off, only to stomp another mudhole in! She lets off at 4, drags Alexa up and reels her in for a lariat! Nikki drags Alexa by her arm but Alexa laughs as Nikki CLOBBERS her again! Alexa doesn’t seem to take this serious as Nikki THRASHES her about! Nikki lets off because it’s still Alexa, but she shouts, “LISTEN!!” Nikki thrashes Alexa more and that got Alexa to stop laughing. Nikki DROPS down on Alexa, covers, TWO! Alexa scrambles to a corner, Nikki runs in to BASEMENT CROSSBODY! Alexa gets up slowly but Nikki fires off forearms! The ref counts, Nikki lets off, and then Nikki throws Alexa down! Alexa starts to cry?! She’s begging Nikki to stop, and seems surprised to be in the ring, wearing what she’s wearing.
Alexa asks Nikki what’s going on, but Nikki is after her again! The ref has Nikki let off, and again Alexa asks what’s happening. Why are they fighting? Why is she in this outfit? Nikki, please, help her! Nikki doesn’t know what to do now that Alexa is sobbing. Nikki comforts her friend, Alexa apologizes, but then hits a COMPLETE SHOT! Was it just an act?! Cover, Alexa wins!!
Winner: Alexa Bliss, by pinfall
As if this new Alexa wasn’t twisted enough! She played on the heartstrings of her best friend and took the victory out from under Nikki! Will Alexa continue to toy with Nikki until Nikki breaks?
Raw says #ThankYouTaker
The tribute highlight reel plays again, documenting the 30 years, from 11/22/1990 to just last night at Survivor Series and the #FinalFarewell. There will never be another.
WWE World Championship Contender Qualifier: Randy Orton VS AJ Styles w/ Jordan Omogbehin!
Practically a PPV main event in itself, the Viper and the Phenomenal One both want that WWE World Heavyweight Championship back around their waist! Orton only just lost it, will he get one step closer to having it back again? Or will Styles and “O-moss” be the ones joining Riddle and Lee next week?
Raw returns again and Styles makes his entrance. The bell rings and the two circle. They tie up, Styles rolls Orton, ONE! Oklahoma roll, ONE! Orton gets away and Styles backs off with a big grin on his face. Styles and Orton circle again, approach and Orton kicks low! Orton CLUBS Styles, whips him but Styles ducks, slides under but runs into an uppercut! Orton stomps Styles’ leg, scrapes his laces off Styles’ face, and stalks him to a corner. Styles throat chops back! Orton sputters while Styles storms over and rams into him! And again! The ref counts, Styles lets off but brings Orton up to whip to ropes to dropkick him down! Cover, TWO!
Styles keeps his cool as he gets Orton back up. Orton pokes Styles in the eye! Orton smirks as he drags Styles up to throw him out, then stalks behind him. Orton throws more EuroUppers on Styles, then whips him, into Jordan! Jordan keeps Styles from falling, and even pops him up to the apron and Styles sliding KNEES Orton down! Orton staggers, Styles goes out and gives him the back suplex to the desk! Orton’s move is used against him as Raw goes to break!
Raw returns and Orton is after Styles on the top rope with haymakers! Styles ends up in the ropes an don the second buckle, but Orton drags Styles up to the top! Styles slips through to trip Orton up! Orton hits a buckle and Styles CHOP BLOCKS a leg out! Orton clutches his leg and Styles stomps away on him! Styles hits a knee breaker then goes after the leg with a toehold and wrench! Orton reaches for ropes but Styles drags him away, for another knee breaker! Styles cranks on the leg but Orton pulls hair. The ref counts, Orton has to let go and Styles goes after the leg harder. Styles has the leg bent back even more but Orton CLUBS away on Styles’ chest! Styles lets go of the leg and Orton hobbles up, only for Styles to be right after him again!
Orton throws straight rights and Styles staggers away. Styles gets the leg again and rolls Orton! Orton rolls through to stomp Styles down! Orton drags Styles up by his hair again, hangs Styles out to dry on ropes, and Styles bounces and flops down! Cover, TWO! Orton grows annoyed with Styles but hobbles back up. Orton drags Styles up by hair, reels him in, and suplexes, but Styles slips out to CHOP BLOCK again! Styles fireman’s carries but Orton elbows free to get the BACK2BACKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Orton grows frustrated but he still looms over Styles. He brings Styles up and puts him through the ropes! Styles escapes that, kicks the leg then catches Orton to roll him!
Orton fights off the Calf Crusher but Styles CRANKS hard back! Orton endures as he reaches, but Styles pulls back harder! Orton grabs ropes and Styles lets go before a count. Styles hobbles, but he runs back at Orton, into the SPINNING POWERSLAM! Cover, TWO! Orton watches Styles rise on wobbly legs, but Styles denies the RKO! Styles ENZIGURIS Orton down! But Orton flops out of the ring to save himself! Styles aims, slingshots, but Orton avoids the forearm to trip Styles up! Styles bounces off apron, Orton puts him back in, but THE FIEND IS HERE! He pokes his head out but then disappears! Orton hurries back into the ring, looks around again, but runs into a boot from Styles!
Styles prepares his forearm, springboards but Orton trips him up! Orton pulls Styles through, DRAPING DDT! Orton hears the voices in his head, but The Fiend starts turning off lights! And then the lights come on with the red, and The Fiend is right behind Orton!! Orton freaks out, but then the lights go down and The Fiend is gone again! Styles is aimed at Orton, springboards in, PHENOMENAL FOREARM!! Cover, Styles wins!
Winner: AJ Styles, by pinfall (advances to the Triple Threat Contender’s Match)
Orton’s past comes back to haunt him, and cost him! Styles moves on, making the already limitless Triple Threat into a phenomenal one! And Bray laughs at Orton from the shadows. Will Bray make sure Orton pays in full for what he did oh so long ago? As for Styles, will he be able to take advantage of a Triple Threat situation with Keith Lee and (Matt) Riddle?
What a great Raw to follow Survivor Series! Amazing, even! Though, no Retribution was interesting. Maybe they’ll make a big deal of it next week. But we got a great bit with the Hurt Business and New Day. The set-up to the tag title match made sense, as I expected for many of the champions tonight. The match-and-a-half they had was great, too, and it worked out for Hurt Business to have egging on New Day backfire. I’m sure the feud will continue, and I have a feeling TLC, in perhaps a Ladder match will end up being how it ends. For that matter, Lana’s story for the year has to end with her winning a Tables match. She didn’t go through a table tonight, and she really only got an assist in the tag match we ended up with. I feared this about a month ago, but will Lana and Asuka end up a team against Nia and Shayna in a tag title match? Will Lana’s first title will be a tag title alongside Asuka? A bit of a bittersweet thing, I suppose.
The story of Alexa and Nikki went to a new level tonight. That was evil genius for Alexa to “return” as a way to trick Nikki. I am even more adamant about their part in this having a Firefly Fun House match finale. Their past apart in NXT, their past together on Raw and SmackDown, all of it and more needs to be referenced before we get a definitive finish. Then, the story of the night was of course in relation to the world title. I found it very surprising that Strowman did what he did to Pearce, and then he ended up completely OUT of what we got tonight. Lashley and Orton wanting in on the title talk was natural, the miniature tournament was a great idea, and all three matches we got were incredible.
Riddle VS Sheamus was a slugfest, Lee VS Lashley was an incredible heavyweight bout, and of course Orton VS Styles was worthy of a main event. Even Fiend getting involved, freaking Orton out, was good because obviously, we’re getting that feud next. For that matter, assuming Keith doesn’t win next week to revisit his encounters with McIntyre earlier this year, I would think going after the US Championship would be the natural follow-up. I think with Riddle’s Hurt Business “Shark Tank” promo, he’s probably not winning, so both he and Keith will be involved with Hurt Business simultaneously. Therefore, I would think Styles wins, and Jordan will be ringside for an epic match with McIntyre. Hell, McIntyre VS Omogbehin could be something great just on how imposing Omogbehin is naturally.
My Score: 9/10
Mitchell’s WWE 205 Live Results & Report! (1/22/21)
And you thought last week was big!
205 Live doubles down on historic matches!
Not only are two 205 Live OG taking on a BRUTAL combination in Thatcher & Ciampa, but the WOMEN’S Dusty Cup comes to the purple ‘n’ orange!
- Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: The Way’s Candice LeRae & Indi Hartwell VS Gigi Dolin & Cora Jade; The Way wins and advances.
- Men’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: Tony Nese & Ariya Daivari VS Timothy Thatcher & Tommaso Ciampa; Thatcher & Ciampa win and advance.
PLAY BY PLAY
205 Live explains how a certain Dusty Cup match came to be.
It was on NXT that Ashante “Thee” Adonis was in a match with the cruel Karrion Kross. Kross showed no mercy to Adonis as he hit him with TWO Doomsday Saido Suplexes and the blindside forearm smash. Then he would show no mercy to Adonis’ tag partner, Desmond Troy, by wrapping him up in the Krossjacket submission! The damage done was too severe for either man to compete tonight, and now they’re OUT of the Dusty Rhodes Classic! However, there is a new team that has been formed.
The Professor of Pain and the Psycho Killer put each other through torture inside the Fight Pit, and in the end, they found respect for each other. They’re now a killer combination and having their tag team debut TONIGHT, in the tag team tournament! Will they put the Premier Athlete and Persian Lion through similar suffering, all for a shot at history and the NXT Tag Team Championships?
Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: The Way’s Candice LeRae & Indi Hartwell VS Gigi Dolin & Cora Jade!
How is this for history? 205 Live has its first-ever women’s match, and it is for this historic women’s tag team tournament! But will it be even more historic for the two debuting superstars? Or will Candice & Indi Wrestling dominate where the boys, Johnny & Austin, failed?
The teams sort out, Indi starts against Jade and the two circle. They tie up, go around, and Indi throws Jade down. Indi says Jade is NOT #Impressive, but Jade hits back with body shots! Indi knees low, whips Jade to a corner but Jade dodges! Jade tags Gigi and Gigi dodges Indi for a BOOT! Jade BOOTS Indi, then Gigi runs in to spin and ROCK Indi with a forearm! Indi hits back, drags Gigi over and tags in Candice. Candice stomps Gigi down, brings her up and through the ropes to choke her. The ref counts, Candice lets off at 4 to then CLUB Gigi down. Candice stomps Gigi, taunts Jade, but misses the leg drop!
Gigi rams Candice to the corner, tags in Jade, and Jade runs corner to corner to SHINING WIZARD! Jade brings Candice around but Indi is in the way of her run. Candice CLOBBERS Jade then covers, ONE! Candice hammers away on Jade, dribbles her off the mat, and fans boo as Candice drags Jade up with a chinlock. Candice has a neck wrench, fans chant “You Still Suck!” but Jade fights her way up. Candice CLUBS Jade, whips her to the Way’s corner, then runs in for a back body block! Indi tags in and she taunts Gigi before hitting Jade with a forearm! Indi throws Jade down to cover, TWO!
Indi keeps on Jade with a cravat for the neck crank. Jade fights up, fans rally and Jade throws body shots. Jade whips, Indi reverses and scoops for a sidewalk slam! Cover, TWO! Indi keeps her cool, tags Candice, and Candice wrenches Jade to snapmare and chinlock. Candice digs her knee in but Jade endures. Fans rally, Jade fights up, throws more body shots, then breaks free to uppercut! Jade runs but wobbles, but she elbows Candice again! Jade baits Candice into her own corner, dodges, but Candice gets Jade’s leg! Jade kicks Candice away, hot tags to Indi and Gigi! Gigi didges, fires off on Indi, KICKS away on the leg, then kicks that leg out! BUZZSAW!
Gigi DECKS Candice for good measure before she BOOTS Indi down! Cover, TWO! Gigi snarls as she drags Indi up and clubs her on the back. Tag to Jade, they bring Indi around together to double suplex but Indi fights it off! Indi BOOTS Jade, kicks Gigi and reels Gigi in for a suplex of her own! Indi holds Gigi up for a count of 10 before the SLAM! Gigi bails out so Indi tags Candice. Candice runs into Jade’s roll up, TWO! Jade Oklahoma Rolls, TWO! Ghost pin, TWO!! Candice flounders up but gets around Jade to roll her up, TWO!! Indi tags in and kicks Jade to then back suplex SLAM! Cover, The Way wins!
Winners: The Way, by pinfall (advance to the next round)
Candice and Indi are making their way into the semifinals! But will Kacy Catanzaro & Kayden Carter be in the way of The Way making history?
Men’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: Tony Nese & Ariya Daivari VS Timothy Thatcher & Tommaso Ciampa!
The Premier Athlete and Persian Lion have been here since day one of 205 Live, and were looking strong going into this match when it was against Adonis & Troy. But again, it has only been a couple days since NXT, are the Professor of Pain and Psycho Killer in any shape to face them on their home turf?
The teams sort out and Nese and Daivari seem to laugh at the two former enemies trying to be a team now. Daivari starts with Thatcher, they tie up and Daivari goes after an arm. Thatcher pries him off of that with a chinlock and then grinds into a headlock. Thatcher throws Daivari down, pulls on his head, but Daivari tries to pull hair. Thatcher just smiles that jagged tooth grin as he gets back up and goes after Daivari’s arm! Thatcher wrangles Daivari with a hammerlock, traps it with his legs then gets Daivari’s legs. Thatcher pulls Daivari into a Bow ‘n’ Arrow! Daivari endures, it becomes a cover, TWO!
Thatcher grabs at Daivari right away and has a facelock. Daivari endures, gets around, waistlocks, but Thatcher pries at the arm. Daivari tags Nese in, Nese rolls Thatcher up, TWO! Thatcher trips Nese and has the foot for a toe ‘n’ ankle. He shifts to a heel hook, then gets the arm but Nese scrambles around. Ciampa wants in, so Thatcher tags him in! Fans cheer as Ciampa wrenches Nese’s arm and drags him down. Nese resists the Fujiwara but Ciampa wrenches through again to a wristlock. Nese chinbars to get the arm, but Ciampa slips through to headlock. Nese throws Ciampa off but Ciampa headlocks and throws Nese down! Fans cheer as Ciampa grinds Nese into the mat.
Nese fights up, gets free to waistlock but Ciampa switches. Nese bucks Ciampa off, runs in and trips Ciampa up to go after the leg! Ciampa kicks Nese away, facelocks Nese in return and grinds him down. Fans rally, Nese moves around, and Nese powers Ciampa to the corner. Nese puts the leg on the rope, tags in Daivari, but Ciampa fights out with forearms and elbows! Ciampa DECKS Daivari but Nese trips him up! The ref reprimands but Daivari drags Nese to the corner to SLAM the leg into the post! And then he SLAMS the other leg! Thatcher storms over as Daivari keeps on the legs but the ref shouts at everyone to get back to their corners.
Daivari puts Ciampa in, drops elbows on the leg then stomps it, then drags Ciampa from Thatcher. Daivari drops more elbows, stomps the leg more, then clamps onto the leg to step through, for a Figure Four! Ciampa endures, Thatcher coaches him and the fans rally up! Ciampa drags himself and Daivari over but Nese gets in to hit Thatcher! The ref has to keep Thatcher back but Nese drags Daivari and Ciampa away! Nese tags in to stomp away on Ciampa, and Daivari finally lets Ciampa out of the hold. Fans boo and jeer while Nese flexes. Nese drags Ciampa over, tags in Daivari, and they split the wishbone on Ciampa!
Nese runs at Thatcher but Thatcher DECKS him first! Daivari has Ciampa’s leg but Ciampa enziguris back! Tag to Thatcher! Thatcher clinches Daivari for a BELLY2BELLY! Then a BELLYBELLY for Nese! EuroUppers for both Cruiserweights back and forth! Nese runs back in but Thatcher has the arm! Thatcher clamps on but has to stop Daivari first. HEEL HOOK! Nese pulls Thatcher’s ears and HOTSHOT BULLDOGS! Thatcher is down, Nese tags in, and Nese hurries to PREMIER TRIANGLE MOONSAULT! Tag back to Daivari and Daivari climbs up, LION SPLASH! Cover, but Ciampa breaks it!
Fans fire up as Ciampa returns to his corner. Daivari and Thatcher crawl, Nese tags in first! Thatcher kicks Nese away, and tags Ciampa back in! Ciampa rallies on Nese and Daivari with forearms and CHOPS! Ciampa CHOPS Daivari again but Nese dropkicks the bad leg out! Nese and Daivari both go up, DOUBLE- DECKED! Nese gets a knee, Daivari gets a forearm! Thatcher and Ciampa glare at each other, Ciampa gives Nese WILLOW’S BELL! Cover, Ciampa & Thatcher win!!
Winners: Tommaso Ciampa & Timothy Thatcher, by pinfall (advance to the next round)
These two were tearing each other apart on NXT, but they’re standing together on 205 Live! Will Ciampa and Thatcher tear their way through the tournament to put their names on the Dusty Cup?
A good episode, though with some obvious results. While Gigi Dolin (Priscilla Kelly) and Cora Jade (Elayna Black) are very good wrestlers, they weren’t going to beat The Way, and it says a lot that Indi got the pin for this one. Candice & Indi are among the favorites to win the tournament, and I’m betting on a stellar match between them and KC Squared, Catanzaro & Carter. Gigi & Jade still made a good combination, and their aesthetics match up well, I hope they stick together.
Ciampa & Thatcher becoming a team after their Fight Pit match is a pretty cool way to follow up, and naturally they were going to beat the first team they faced. The OG had good combinations, but Nese and Daivari have been perennial jobbers to the stars even before this. Thatcher & Ciampa take on Undisputed Era next and that is going to be a great match that could go either way. Given the history between Undisputed Era and the current tag team champions, Lorcan & Burch, I give it 51-49, UE wins so that they can get a shot at the champions.
My Score: 8/10
Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Results & Report! (1/22/21)
Will Apollo be able to #ThinkBig and be a champion?
Big time challenges go down on SmackDown!
SmackDown goes big as Big E takes on Apollo Crews’ rematch challenge, and Bayley takes on Bianca Belair in the ULTIMATE obstacle course challenge!
- Charlotte Flair & Asuka VS The Riott Squad w/ Billie Kay; Charlotte & Asuka win.
- Cesaro VS Dolph Ziggler; Cesaro wins.
- Sasha Banks VS Reginald w/ Carmella; Sasha wins.
- WWE Intercontinental Championship: Big E VS Apollo Crews; Crews wins by disqualification, Big E retains the title.
- Ultimate Athletic Obstacle Course Challenge: Bayley VS Bianca Belair; Bianca wins.
- Dominik Mysterio VS King Corbin; Corbin wins.
- Adam Pearce VS Paul Heyman w/ Roman Reigns; No Contest.
PLAY BY PLAY
Roman Reigns heads to the ring!
The Head of the Table, with Special Counsel, Paul Heyman, is back to open SmackDown, but no Jey Uso? Roman and Heyman are not in a good mood after the bait ‘n’ switch Adam Pearce pulled over on them with Kevin Owens. Heyman hands Roman a mic as fans boo and give thumbs down on their screens. “So KO said he was going to deliver a message today, huh?” Or is he not? No, we’re not going to see Kevin Owens tonight because Roman said so. Now let’s talk about last week and “card subject to change.” Real clever. A lot of people made comments about Pearce getting one past them, outsmarted them.
But let’s make this clear: “That way of thinking is beneath me.” Card subject to change is how losers think. It’s how people who are scared to come to work think. Roman doesn’t miss appearances, he puts in work! Legitimately! It took Roman’ sown health being at risk during a pandemic to keep him away. So he never wants to hear anyone say anything about him missing appearances. But what if Roma started thinking like “a puss” like Pearce, talking about his elbow and shoulder hurting. No one would doubt it because of the work Roman puts in! Roman’s knees hurt, and so does his neck. But what else? His ankles have been bad since college. And his back… Heyman says just the weight of it all is making Roman’s back hurt, because Roman’s been carrying the WWE for YEARS!
But what if Roman’s back continues to hurt until the Royal Rumble? What if he can’t make it because of that? Pearce walks out and says this is going too far. Heyman says Pearce is being rude not even addressing Roman. Pearce says this is spiraling out of control, and Roman can’t believe he wants to talk about control. We know who is in control. But what’s out of control is that Pearce is going against Roman. That Pearce is doing a favor and putting Kevin back into the Universal title picture. And the fact that Pearce is favoring Kevin! This isn’t even really a favor. Pearce is Kevin’s BITCH! And he’s also Roman’s bitch.
But what Roman really can’t stand right now, is Pearce having the audacity coming out here and complaining about how his body feels. Pearce hasn’t been in a match for six YEARS, but he’s talking about how his body hurts. Pearce is next to the thoroughbred of the WWE, a man who does 52 weeks a year, multiple days a week! Roman never complained, never stopped and busts his ass for this place, and that is why Roman is who Roman is! And Pearce is going to complain, whine, MOAN about stuff? “No wonder you never made it to the WWE.” Heyman chuckles at that one.
Pearce asks if this is funny to Heyman. It is. Pearce can take it from Roman but he won’t take it from Heyman. Oh? Well that’s disrespectful. Disrespecting Heyman is disrespecting Roman. Heyman, straighten Pearce out. Heyman is given the mic to speak. Pearce disrespected the Tribal Chief and his family. Heyman’s known his family 15 years. Roman’s family would not be friends with someone who isn’t tough! Do you know what it is like to be a friend of the Anoa’i family? Everyone buys into Heyman’s persona, that he’s “impotent as a man.” Heyman’s from New York, he whoop yo’ ASS for disrespecting the chief. Wanna stare Heyman down?
Heyman may not be a lawyer but he’s from a synagogue full of them. In Florida, a verbal contract is BINDING. So if you want something big for the main event, how about this? Pearce VS PAUL HEYMAN! What?! Heyman offers a handshake, and Pearce TAKES IT! The challenge is accepted!! Pearce will have his first match in six years, against Paul E. Dangerously! Roman says at the end of the night, Pearce gets his ass kicked. #BelieveThat.
Sami Zayn heads to the ring!
He has a sign with #JusticeForSami on it, and he brings out cuffs?! Sami is going to cuff himself to the ringside barriers as a form of protest because he is not part of tonight’s Intercontinental Championship! How will WWE officials respond to Sami’s sudden SmackDown sit-in?
SmackDown returns and Sami claims he is being victimized, but he will enter the Royal Rumble to counter it! Sami says he had Apollo Crews beat, though with hands somehow on Apollo’s tights. But then Apollo does the same thing back to him and Apollo wins?! That is not fair! But then the Empress of Tomorrow interrupts Sami with her entrance, followed by The Queen’s! The WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions are here!
Charlotte Flair & Asuka VS The Riott Squad w/ Billie Kay!
The Queens of Tomorrow have a lot going on as individuals on Raw, but they return to SmackDown to focus on their teamwork! Meanwhile, Liv Morgan & Ruby Riott haven’t been able to focus with the Femme Fatale frantically interfering. Will Billie be a burden as the Squad has a chance at earning a championship opportunity?
As the teams sort out, Natalya and Tamina are watching from backstage. The bell rings as Charlotte and Ruby start. They tie up, are in a deadlock, but Charlotte pushes Ruby to ropes. Ruby pushes back but Charlotte headlocks and throws Ruby down. Ruby keeps her shoulders up, fights to her feet, but Asuka tags in. Charlotte snapmares Ruby, Asuka runs Ruby over with a shoulder! Asuka headlocks Ruby, Ruby fights up but Charlotte tags back in. The Queens of Tomorrow hand Ruby off and Charlotte bumps Ruby off buckles! Charlotte digs her boot into Ruby’s head but lets off at 4. Ruby flounders, Charlotte taunts her to reach for Liv, then CLUBS her down.
Charlotte looms over Ruby, drags her up and whips her to a corner hard! Ruby falls over, Billie protests on the apron but Charlotte runs her off. Ruby rushes at Charlotte but into an elbow! Liv tags in as Billie shouts at Charlotte! Ruby rushes Charlotte but is thrown out, and Charlotte grabs at Billie! Liv apron dropkicks Charlotte back in! Liv hurries up top and leaps to crossbody! Cover, TWO! Billie can’t believe she’s being helpful as SmackDown goes to break!
SmackDown returns again and Charlotte blocks a buckle bump to give a buckle bump! Charlotte stomps away on Liv, backs off as the ref counts, and lets out a “WOO~!” Fans clap on their screens, Charlotte scoops Liv but Liv slips out. Liv runs, Ruby tags in, Liv huricanranas and Ruby runs in to tilt-o-whirl! Charlotte blocks the headscissors but Ruby fires off forearms! Ruby goes up and gives Charlotte DEADLY NIGHTSHADE! Cover, TWO! Tag to Liv, Sami is still filming his protest, and the Squad double SLAMS Charlotte down! Cover, ONE! Liv tags Ruby back in, they stomp away on Charlotte in a corner, and then tag again.
Ruby and Liv bring Charlotte out, double whip but charlotte stops herself to kick and forearm and CHOP! Charlotte CHOPS away, throws Ruby into buckles then kicks Liv low! EXPLODER! And kip up! Charlotte fires up but misses Liv in the corner. Liv runs into the backbreaker and BUCKLE SHOT! Tag to Asuka, SLIDING WIZARD! Cover, Ruby breaks it! Ruby runs but into Charlotte’s BOOT! Liv dropkicks Charlotte and enziguris Asuka! But Asuka has the leg for an ANKLE LOCK! Liv tries to roll through but gets caught to a trapped-leg GERMAN SUPLEX! Asuka kicks but misses, Liv rolls her to swing. Asuka blocks, reels Liv in, but Ruby tags!
Asuka lets Liv go to get Ruby, but Billie distracts! The O’Conner roll is rolled over but Billie argues too long! That costs Ruby, she has to kick Asuka! Liv saves Ruby from the hip attack but falls on Billie! Ruby SUPERKICKS but Asuka counters the Riott Kick to the pop-up KNEE! Asuka runs, tags Charlotte, CODE BREAKER to NATURAL SELECTION! Cover, the champions win!
Winners: Charlotte Flair & Asuka, by pinfall
Billie went from helping to hindering the Squad again! Will this partnership fall apart before Billie’s very eyes?
Billie finds the Squad backstage.
She apologizes for, for… For what, Billie? Stopping Ruby from pinning Asuka? Messing this opportunity up for them?! Yeah… Well for someone who doesn’t mean to, she’s pretty good at it. Maybe that should be put on the resume. Well, all the great teams have overcome obstacles! Billie has good news, though. She talked to Sonya Deville and the Squad is in the Women’s Rumble match! They can practice throwing Billie out over the ropes! Billie can pretend to be Bianca or Mella! No, there is no “us” anymore. The Squad works better when it’s just Ruby and Liv. Sorry. Will Billie ever catch a break?
Daniel Bryan is here!
And he goes past Sami’s new sign, where SAMI is an acronym: Stand Against Moral Injustice. Clever. Bryan goes to the ring and fans join in the “YES!” fingers on their screens. Bryan says a week from this Sunday is one of the most unique and historic traditions in the WWE, the Royal Rumble match. And even saying that, this time of year, a chill goes down Bryan’s spine. It’s a little hard to explain why but Bryan will give it his best shot. “It’s the uncertainty of what number you’re going to. It’s watching the countdown for every superstar that comes out. It’s waiting for that buzzer to hit, for that music to play, for you to run down, nobody knows that you’re coming, and you don’t know who’s coming out next!
“It’s the exhilaration of competing against 29 other superstars that could go over an hour, and it’s every man for themselves.” One of the most challenging, grueling things you can do in the WWE, and that makes Bryan feel alive. Despite all the pain, all the uncertainty, it is absolutely worth it because the winner gets to face the champion of their choosing in the main event of WrestleMania! Bryan is very proud of his career, he’s accomplished a lot. But the one thing he has never done is win a Royal Rumble! Experts, commentary, Michael Cole even, will say- Cesaro interrupts!
Cesaro thought he beat some sense into Bryan last week, but here Bryan is again talking about how he’ll win the Rumble. Cesaro appreciates Bryan explaining the rules, but Cesaro could’ve done it better and in five languages. But that’s besides the point. Bryan is NOT winning this year’s Rumble, Cesaro is. As the first-ever Andre the Giant Battle Royal winner, Cesaro is an expert on this. Bryan didn’t forget about the loss, but instead of talking, how about putting the mics down, and they can fight it out again? Cesaro says no. Cesaro is sick and tired of proving himself week after week doing the same thing over and over! He beat Bryan, and Bryan isn’t dressed for the occasion, Cesaro issues an open challenge! Anyone who has already declared for the Rumble, come on down!
The one to answer the open challenge is… Dolph Ziggler! One half of the SmackDown Tag Team Champions is here asking about the conversation. Ziggler has been in the second most Rumbles ever. Ziggler can go all night long, ask anyone. And aside from himself and his colleague, Robert Roode, there is no one that can go toe-to-toe with Ziggler except maybe Cesaro. No offense to Bryan but it ain’t 2014 anymore. But if we’re talking about a Rumble challenge, Ziggler wants to win to go to Mania and get paid! So Bryan, scoot over, and Cesaro, consider your challenge accepted. Will the Show-Off show up the Swiss Cyborg?
Cesaro VS Dolph Ziggler!
SmackDown returns and Bryan has joined commentary for this great match-up already underway. Ziggler has Cesaro down and has a leg, gets a cover, TWO! Cesaro gets a lateral press but Ziggler keeps his shoulder up. Cesaro pushes him around, gut wrenches and lifts but Ziggler resists by grabbing Cesaro’s leg again. Ziggler shifts, rolls, has a cover, ONE! Cesaro tries a cover, ONE! Cesaro waistlocks but Ziggler gets the ropes. Ziggler elbows Cesaro away then jumps on for a sleeper hold! Cesaro stays up, RAMS Ziggler into buckles and is free. Cesaro runs in to BLAST Ziggler with that EuroUpper! Ziggler flounders into a trip and then a SWISS SWING!
Cesaro brings Ziggler around and around for a count of 10, then maybe 15 even, or 20! Cesaro throws Ziggler, covers, TWO! Ziggler survives the swing, Cesaro stalks him to a corner, then runs in, only to get POST! Ziggler rolls Cesaro up, TWO! Cesaro back drops, Ziggler sunset flips, TWO! Cesaro sits on the cover, TWO! Ziggler sunsets, TWO! Cesaro, TWO! Ziggler, TOW! Cesaro high stacks, TWO! Ziggler pops him to a cover, TWO! SUPER- No, Cesaro blocks but uppercuts into a backslide,. Cesaro slips out, but into a ZIGZAG! Cover, TWO!! And yes, Sami is still protesting. He’s even memeing! “Sami was robbed, change my mind.”
Cesaro and Ziggler slowly rise and Ziggler sleeper holds again! Cesaro gets up, shifts Ziggler from backpack to a front facelock, for a suplex! Ziggler knees free, kicks low then runs, into a pop-up! Ziggler tries to huricanrana, but Cesaro makes it a NEUTRALIZER! Cover, Cesaro wins!
Winner: Cesaro, by pinfall
Michael Cole points out this is two times in a row that Cesaro has beaten a former world champion! Will Cesaro take the Rumble and be a WrestleMania contender?
Sasha Banks VS Reginald w/ Carmella!
It is very rare for WWE to do co-ed matches like this, and certain against a champion like The Boss against the sommelier in employment of The Untouchable Princess of Staten Island. Will Reginald ruin Sasha’s momentum towards the rematch with Mella?
SmackDown returns and Mella makes her entrance to accompany Reginald to the ring, two other assistants bringing the champagne and drinking glasses to the ring for them. Mella and the champagne join commentary as the bell rings. Sasha tells Reggie it’s time to put up or shut up, but Reggie presents her with an orange rose. Sasha accepts the rose but goes to slap Reggie! He blocks, only for Sasha to SLAP him with the other hand! Sasha knuckle locks, goes up and uses the ropes to arm-drag, but Reggie handsprings through! Mella says that’s her Reggie! Reggie waistlocks but Sasha resists the lift and slips out the back to switch. Reggie does the same and rolls right out of the ring!
Reggie plays some cat ‘n’ mouse and does a back flip off the apron! But Sasha wrecks him with a baseball slide dropkick! Sasha whips Reggie at the steel steps but Reggie leaps up and over! Mella applauds the bit of flair, Sasha gives chase, they go in the ring and speed things up with hurdle for hurdle. Reggie shows off with that flip, Sasha goes up and springboards, but Reggie blocks the sunset flip! Reggie wheelbarrows Sasha but she turns that into a BULLDOG! Sasha wants Mella to see why she’s the boss, but Sasha misses the meteora to hit buckles! Sasha avoids Reggie’s elbow drop, Oklahoma roll but Reggie slips out!
Reggie avoids Sasha’s dropkick to bomb lift, but Sasha arm-drags free! Sasha runs in but is put on the apron, but she knees Reggie away! Sasha goes up, leaps, crossbody but Reggie holds her up! Reggie pops Sasha up but into another arm-drag! Reggie is sent out, Sasha hurries to the apron, METEORA! Sasha slaps the champagne out of Mella’s hand! Sasha goes back into the ring with Reggie, brings him in for a backstabber but he rolls through! Sasha kicks him, and knuckle locks to flip up and into another METEORA! Mella sneers but Sasha tilt-o-whirls and drags Reggie down by his arm! BANK STATEMENT!! Reggie taps, Sasha wins!
Winner: Sasha Banks, by submission
Sasha got her revenge on Reggie, and throws him out to Mella! Will Sasha do the same to the Princess at the Royal Rumble?
Roman Reigns sits in his private room.
Heyman says Roman was brilliant. They got Pearce! “We? What’re you talking about?” Heyman knew what Roman was up to, he fed right into it. Roman simply passed Heyman the mic to do what he does better than anyone, and that is verbally rip someone to shreds. Roman didn’t say Heyman should challenge Pearce to a match. But Heyman has stepped into it, so he has to do this. Roman didn’t hire some punk to be Special Counsel, he hired a man. So Heyman needs to go out there and represent Roman as a man and handle business. “Paul, be a man. Handle your business.” The Special Counsel has no words, will he have no defense against Pearce?
WWE Intercontinental Championship: Big E VS Apollo Crews!
Sami Zayn is irate as Big E taunts him with the belt. But Sami is not the champion’s concern, he’s taking on the man in the ring! Big E and Apollo have been in friendly competition, but after what Heyman told both of them over these last few weeks on Talking Smack, will all of that go out the window?
The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and it’s time to #ThinkBig or go home!
Apollo rushes Big E but right into an OVERHEAD SUPLEX! Apollo goes to the apron, Big E follows and stomps him, to then run and APRON SPLASH! Big E is fired up and gets back in to run at Apollo. Apollo elbows back, BOOTS back, then runs, into a scoop! Apollo slips off, and ENZIGURIS! Big E wobbles into a BOOT! Standing moonsault! Cover, TWO! Apollo keeps focus as he stalks Big E. Apollo waistlocks and GERMAN SUPLEXES Big E! Apollo holds on to GERMAN again! Big E elbows over and over until he’s free, and he gets Apollo with the Urenag-E! Cover, TWO! Big E keeps his cool as he goes out after Apollo.
Big E and Apollo end up by the announce desk. Big E tells Apollo he’ll never make the mistake of disrespecting him again. Apollo pushes Big E away, then dodges him to go up the apron and MOONSAULT! Direct hit and down goes Big E! Apollo gets Big E back in at the ring count of 8 then climbs up top! Big E hits Apollo first then climbs up to join him. Big E throws forearms, stands Apollo up, but Apollo resists the superplex! Apollo throws headbutts as fans clap on their screens! Big E falls back, Apollo adjusts, but Sami uncuffs himself! Sami’s strike is over as Apollo leaps to missile dropkick Big E!
Apollo resets but Sami HELLUVA KICKS him!! SAMI SCREWS APOLLO!
Winner: Apollo Crews by disqualification (Big E is still WWE Intercontinental Championship)
And then Sami HELLUVA KICKS Big E! And Sami has the nerve to talk about injustice! Sami says HE is the champion, but that this is what Big E and Apollo deserve! Will Sami get what he deserves soon enough?
Kevin Owens speaks.
“I showed up to work today, and I was told I couldn’t get into the building because Roman Reigns pulled some strings to make sure I wouldn’t be there. Roman, dude… It’s fine. But just know this: at the Royal Rumble, there’s no more strings for you to pull.” At the Rumble, they will settle this once and for all. And Roman calls Kevin “a cockroach that won’t die,” and tells him to just stop fighting, but Kevin can’t do that. Roman has yet to beat Kevin like the champion he claims to be. Roman did not earn those victories. The family did that for him.
And the other reason Kevin keeps fighting is this. Kevin has a lot of tattoos, and they all have a story behind them. He has his wife’s name on his wrist, his kids’ names on the other side, then one to remind him of his parents. Kevin fights for all of them, but he has tattoos on his knuckles. These are his grandfathers’ initials: M for Melvin, his dad’s dad, and P is for Pierre, his mom’s dad. Those men had Kevin’s back all the way. They were his biggest fans, and nothing made them happier than seeing Kevin in the ring. The biggest regret Kevin will have is that he didn’t make it to the WWE in time for them to see, because they both passed away just before.
But they will always be with Kevin. The mark they left on Kevin will always be there, because both men battled illnesses that should’ve made their lives a lot shorter. Those two men refused to quit, and because of that, Kevin was lucky to have many, many great years with them. So how can Kevin stop fighting? That is why Kevin will not stay away and why he will #JustKeepFighting. That is why come Royal Rumble, Kevin will be the Last Man Standing.
The Street Profits have a basket.
Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins see Ziggler talking with Sonya, and have a quick question: Are you ready~, ready~? This is a celebratory basket for congratulating Sonya on her new job and office! But don’t jump the gun! They’re not just congratulating her on the new gig. She sits next to Pearce, looking pretty, but they have business. It has been two, two weeks, since the Profits lost the SmackDown Tag Team Championships against Ziggler & Roode, Entertainment Dysfunction. Put that on a t-shirt, it’ll make millions! But that aside, the Profits- Sonya knows they want their rematch. She’s so smart!
Sonya knows they were champions for 312 days, won two Slammy Awards, so yes they deserve a rematch. But Ford is still recovering from the leg injury. If he gets in that ring too soon, gets hurt and is out of action, that hurts SmackDown as a whole. So hear her out: For now, hang out, keep doing your segments to hype the show, and let another team get the opportunity. Then when Ford is 100%, he and Dawkins get back in the game and back in the title picture. Cool with t hat, fam? yeah, that’s cool. Golly, Sonya, thanks for your concern. Enjoy the basket! It’s expensive. But will the long wait really work out in the Profits’ favor?
Ultimate Athletic Obstacle Course Challenge: Bayley VS Bianca Belair!
The Role Model wants The EST to prove she’s still got it when it comes to being the strongest, the fastest, the roughest, the toughest, etc. Therefore, SmackDown is setting up a truly challenging obstacle course for them both to run! Who backs up their words, after the break?
SmackDown returns and Michael Cole presides over this special competition, and gives the introductions for Bianca, then for Bayley. Bayley takes over and says DING DONG, BYE Cole. This is her show now! And look, Bianca, this is what Bayley has for her. America Ninja Warrior ain’t got nothing on UAOCC! This is of course timed, starting right here with the “big ol’ 400 pound tractor tire,” which you only need to flip once. Go down the ramp, take on the short hurdles, climb the trio of military walls. And then Bayley even got advice from Chad Gable and Alpha Academy, he will put you through the full body test, the fireman’s carry!
But that’s not all! The very last challenge is grab the basketball, put it through the net, and time stops at the exact moment the ball exits the bottom of the net! The competitor with the shortest time is of course the winner! Let’s get the clock going, and Bayley wants to go first. Bianca says that’s fine, and we begin… NOW! Bayley flips the tire, hurries down the ramp, though not quite that quickly, and takes on the hop hurdles to go right at the military walls. The short one seems to throw her off, and she just weaves around them?! Is that allowed?
Bayley fireman’s carries Gable, and he seems to be heavier than he looks. Bianca “cheers” Bayley on as she goes from one end to another, then she gets the ball to DUNK- no, wait, there! Bayley finishes at 1:12. But she says she did Bianca a favor. “Let’s EST up this course,” all for Bianca. Oh, the hurdles are now full hurdles, and Bianca wraps her braid. GO! Bianca easily flips the tire, runs down the ramp., leaps the hurdles, leaps the walls, but she isn’t carrying Gable, but OTIS! Bianca has 40 seconds, she carries the 330 pound Otis with ease, then gets the ball and even dares Bayley to play D! She breaks ankles and DUNKS! She had 17 seconds to spare!
Winner: Bianca Belair
Sorry, Bayley, but that’s the power of the EST! Bayley is a sore loser and throws the ball at Bianca! And then hammers away with forearms and stomps! The ref reprimands but Bayley doesn’t care, as she POSTS Bianca and knocks down the basketball hoop! Bayley storms off, perhaps having proven she’s the meanest on the roster.
Rey Mysterio coaches Dominik backstage.
Rey reviews with Dom that Baron Corbin is a former boxer, so he has to watch out for the hands. Dom says Rey can trust him to have this. Dom is comfortable with his skills and has prepared. Okay, then we’ll do it his way. But if something goes wrong, they do it Rey’s way. That’s fair. Dom heads out, will he be able to trump the Wolf King?
Dominik Mysterio VS King Corbin!
SmackDown returns as Corbin is already in the ring. Dominik makes his entrance, leaving Rey backstage so he can handle things. The bell rings and Dom circles with Corbin. They tie up, Corbin powers Dom to a corner but Dom dodges the hands to throw hands of his own! Dom rams his shoulder in but Corbin shoves him away. Dom dropkicks but Corbin stays up. Dom whips, Corbin reverses but Dom wheelbarrows and throws Corbin out of the ring! The ring count climbs but Dom slingshots, only for Corbin to get clear and CLOBBER him! Corbin drags Dom up and into the ring, covers, TWO! Corbin already glares at the ref as he grows annoyed.
Corbin stalks Dom, drags him to ropes and stands on him! The ref counts, Corbin hops off at 4, then drags Dom up to throw body shots! The ref counts, Corbin lets off at 4 again, then stands Dom up. Corbin whips Dom corner to corner hard! Dom bounces off buckles to hit the mat, and Corbin takes his time bringing Dom back up. Corbin brings Dom around, reel shim in but Dom slips out to dropkick a leg! Corbin ends up on ropes, Dom dials it up but the call is blocked! Corbin drags Dom from ropes, yanks but Dom lands on his feet, only for Corbin to DECK him! Corbin reels Dom in and hits END OF DAYS! Cover, Corbin wins!
Winner: Baron Corbin, by pinfall
The Wolf King wins because he did this his way! Will the Mysterios regroup and draw up a winning game plan?
Adam Pearce VS Paul Heyman w/ Roman Reigns!
Scrap Daddy’s switcheroo not only got the better of the Special Counsel last week, it might be why he stuck his foot in his mouth this week! Will Pearce’s return to the ring also get the better of Paul E. Dangerously? Has the Head of the Table truly left Heyman hanging?
Heyman is taping his hands on his way to the ring, but stumbles off the steps? The ref checks on Heyman but he says he’s fine. Give him a minute to walk it off. Heyman fumbles on the steps again and Pearce smells a plot. After all, he let his “bum leg” be why Kevin Owens is back in the title match. And just as he knew, Heyman cites “card subject to change.” This was the trump card Heyman had up his sleeve! Roman did NOT leave the building, he’s heading to the ring! Now that the bait ‘n’ switch is on the other foot, will Scrap Daddy be scrap metal?
Adam Pearce VS Roman Reigns w/ Paul Heyman!
Roman SUPERMAN PUNCHES Pearce the second he’s in the ring! This isn’t even a match because the bell hasn’t rung! Heyman says he has obviously found a suitable replacement, and Roman is pulling steps apart. Pearce throws a haymaker! Roman glares at Pearce, and LOW BLOW KICKS him! And then throws Pearce OVER the barriers! Roman is snarling as he goes around the way to drag Pearce up and throw him INTO ThunderDome screens! And then he drags Pearce up to throw heavy forearms! And then throws him into stage wall! Fans give thumbs down but that’s not going to save Pearce from Roman’s wrath!
Roman fireman’s carries Pearce and puts him on the upper level, the same place he threw Kevin off of. But speaking of, Kevin runs in and attacks Roman! Kevin saves Pearce as he throws haymakers and bumps Roman off barriers! Roman throws Kevin into screens, throws haymakers of his own, then they brawl to ringside! It’s Royal Rumble come early! Roman puts Kevin in the ring, storms in but into a USUPERKICK! Roman SUPERMAN PUNCH- NO! STUNNER from Kevin!! Kevin dares Roman to get back up! Roman sputters as he gets out of the ring but Kevin whips him into barriers! And clubs away on his back!
Referees rush out to try and stop this, and Kevin backs off to cool off. But then Kevin comes back to STOMP Roman into barriers! Roman flounders back up, referees try to talk Kevin down, and even Pat Buck, Pearce’s coworker. But Kevin gets past them to give Roman another STUNNER! Kevin wants Heyman to say something but Heyman has nothing to say! So Kevin brings Roman over, pops him up, POWERBOMB through the announce desk!! Kevin is pulling steel steps apart! The refs keep him from bringing that over to Roman! Kevin says Roman’s lucky the officials are here to stop him, but it won’t happen at the Royal Rumble! Will Kevin truly #StunTheWorld when he is THE Last Man Standing?
A great SmackDown that honestly could’ve been a go-home to the Royal Rumble in some cases. Charlotte & Asuka VS Riott Squad was good, but naturally the champions win, mostly because Billie was too involved. She has been kicked out of the Riott Squad, though she wasn’t really a member to begin with, but I feel like they could’ve gone another week, though. Natty & Tamina were watching backstage, I wouldn’t mind seeing them get a match with Charlotte & Asuka, even if they were to lose. The match of Sasha Banks VS Reginald was pretty good, mostly because Reggie is insanely athletic. Depending on how the story goes of him being Mella’s sommelier, maybe he can split off and get into like 205 Live and the Cruiserweight Division to freshen things up a bit.
But of course Sasha wins, she’s the champion. I have a feeling this means the go-home sees Mella standing tall so that Sasha is still the favored to win. The “Ultimate” obstacle course challenge was very clearly going to be won by Bianca, but I commend Bayley for trying to rig it in her favor. Though, shouldn’t she have been penalized or even disqualified for outright skipping those military style walls? Pretty sure we’re getting a match between the two, and Bianca can sell the bad arm to “overcome” it and win, for big momentum going into the Women’s Rumble.
The Profits had a good segment with Sonya, and I like that, at least on the surface, Sonya is being a responsible official and having the Profits wait so they can be healed up. But I wonder if there will even be defenses in that time, as there aren’t many tag teams on SmackDown. It’s mostly the champs, the Profits, Cesaro-Nakamura, and maybe Alpha Academy, aka Gable & Otis. Dom VS Corbin felt like filler just to get things to what Rey was talking about last week, which should’ve just been what we got this week. Unless it was because the person they have in mind (Cain Velasquez) isn’t available right now because of some COVID concerns. That I’d understand.
Sami Zayn “protesting” this episode just so he’d be ringside for the Intercontinental Championship was a pretty good long game for the episode. Sami’s signs were clever, but it does seem a shame for what should’ve been a huge match. Maybe we get another Triple Threat for this title, and that is the way Big E loses. Though, I think it’d work well if Big E won, making his reign feel even bigger from having dealt with two contenders. After that, Big E can face just about anyone else on the roster, such as Nakamura, Cesaro or even Otis. And speaking of, Cesaro had a good promo with Bryan and a really good match with Ziggler, but I feel like all these wins are setting Cesaro up to not win the Rumble. But I said the same thing about Bryan making it his mission to win the reason he won’t, so maybe as far as SmackDown goes, it’s between the two of them as Rumble finalists.
And again, we got a lot of great stuff out of the Roman Reigns story. The opening promo segment was really good, it helped set up the main event, and gave a great tease of Pearce VS Heyman. But Heyman using the fake injury and “card subject to change” back on Pearce was also very clever, and naturally it was Roman who would beat Pearce up to get back at him for everything so far. Kevin had a really good promo, made a great save, and got to stand tall tonight with the table bomb. I’m curious as to Kevin’s part in the go-home next week. I can’t see him standing tall two weeks in a row just to keep the math in Roman’s favor, so maybe Roman turns this around to then defy the math and still retain the title. I’m pretty sure Roman does retain, and we leave it up to the Rumble to decide the rest.
My Score: 8.5/10
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