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The January 8 issue of Friday Night SmackDown felt like part two of the Blue Brand holiday for the new year. With several important matches for the title and important moments ahead in the construction of the WWE Royal Rumble, this had a chance to be a huge show.
Kevin Owens pushed too far into the war with the Roman reigns, and the head of the table, along with Jay Usso, made sure he was badly wounded. This left the door for announcing a huge match with gloves.
Sami Zayn, Daniel Bryan, Ray Mysterio, Shinsuke Nakamura and King Corbyn will face off to determine the No. 1
Big E has promised to be a combat champion, and this began with the announcement that he would defend his WWE intercontinental championship against the man who helped him defeat Sammy Zayn and King Corbyn last week, Apollo Crews.
Street profits also continued their rivalry with Dolph Ziegler and Robert Rudd, putting their titles back on the line. The heels had already used every trick in the book and failed, but now was the time to bring out their best secret tricks.
SmackDown started strong, but the show is only being built for a brighter future. The list must continue to rely on young impressive rising stars to thrive in 2021.
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Roman Reigns paid tribute to Kevin Owens for his fight against ambition. He blamed Adam Pierce for the injuries to KO for the sanctioned match between Owens and Jay Usso. The head of the table showed Pierce a video package of what had led to KO’s injuries.
Reigns ran away from the authority for the fact that Owens was injured. He came into Pierce’s face because he didn’t show him the respect he deserved by allowing him to choose his next contender instead of waiting for a glove match.
Pierce couldn’t defend himself when the table boss approached him, wondering if he was being called stupid. Management barely gives way, but leaves Pierce with a lasting threat.
While it would make more sense to include glove members in this segment, Reigns carried it the same way. His fierce attitude towards Pierce was hard to ignore and created the quiet potential of the one-off match between the Head of the Table and the independent veteran fighter.
Casual WWE fans may have no idea who Pierce is, but the five-time NWA heavyweight champion could certainly sell out rivalry to outsiders with Reigns. It all depends on whether he can be released for action so late in his career. The possibility of history is unlimited.
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Apollo Crews came after Big E from the beginning and looked the best man all the time. He easily threw the WWE intercontinental champion. After a massive superplex, the two legs were locked for a double pinfol, as a result of which the match ended in a draw.
The crews demanded the title and slapped their friend in the face. This convinced Big E to restart the match. An angry champion followed Cruz until he was caught with a knee in the face.
A spinal explosion and a frog nearly won the victory, but Big E refused to stay down. E fought back with force, dressed his challenger with a stretch muffler and planted it with the Big End to win.
Big E vs. Crews goes for a draw; E def. Crews from a crash at restart to save the WWE Intercontinental Championship.
The strange reservation and lack of time left an impressive and energetic sprint between two motivated performers. The Big E and Crews were ready to do the job and gave fans an impressive physical war of strength and speed. The replay must be given at least another five minutes.
The crews were annoyed by the turn of the heel after slapping their friend in the face in disappointment. It would be too early to turn it around, but Crews could sneak in if it finally makes it thrive on SmackDown.
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Bianca Belair announced his entry into Royal Rumble, followed by a break from Bayley, who decided to enter the match and remove The EST on his way to a new management. Carmela boasted behind the scenes that she had defeated Sasha Banks, making it clear that she was still more talented than The Legit Boss.
Dolph Ziegler survived the onset of the Montes Ford unrest after injuring his injured left leg, after which Robert Rudd did the same. Ford was still refusing to slow down, hitting the somersault on his heels, which apparently caused some damage to his leg as he struggled to stand up.
Angelo Dawkins realized that he would have to fight alone for a while until Ford recovered, and the heels gladly turned the match into a handicap victory. Ford received the hot label and had to get a physical, not an explosive, that worked for a while, including a discussion lariat.
Showoff planted a Ford with a Facebook booster from the top rope to stop it. Dawkins made a decisive save, but failed to reach the marker as Ziegler knocked down the older man in the apron. While Ford drove out a fisherman, he was not in the column after a spine / Zig Zag combination.
While Dawkins was caring for his injured partner, the newly crowned champions attacked The Street Profits from behind.
Ziggler and Roode beat pinfall winnings to become the new SmackDown team champions.
It was absolutely the best that these teams looked together. Ford, as always, was the star of the show, but in a completely different way. He sold as a champion to make it clear that this was never a fair fight. Fans had already noticed that the winnings were better, so it was important to clarify how different this was.
Ziggler and Roode had to win this match. If they lost after all, the duo could break up. We hope that WWE will finally get involved with the teams for a while. Profits have held gold on team brands for most of last year, so it will be fun to see them back on the hunt.
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Behind the scenes, Pierce spoke with his new assistant, Sonia Devil, who doubted whether the authority would enter the match with gloves after Raines threatened him. Paul Hayman told Pierce he was in the glove game. Billy Kay talks to The Riott Squad to join the band.
Sami Zayn brought out a special team of the cameraman to make a documentary that reveals the conspiracy against him. He entered the ring and immediately rushed with 619 to be the first to be eliminated by Ray Mysterio. Shinsuke Nakamura made Mysterio touch the barn.
King Corbyn attacked everyone on his way to the ring, sneaking in attacking the Artist. The king used this edge to dominate Nakamura, but his opponent refused to give up even after Deep Six. He caught Corbyn returning to the ring with Kinshasa to eliminate him.
Brian knew he had the advantage, and he founded Nakamura in his third straight battle of the night. A technical war ensues between these veterans, where Brian seems to be fighting in his bag while Nakamura catches him running with Kinshasa for a shocking elimination.
Pierce reluctantly went out with Roman reigns, and Jay Usso and Hayman encouraged him. Uso attacks the Artist with the Head of the Table. Then Reigns knocked out Pearce and grabbed him over Nakamura to win.
Pierce won the glove from Nakamura’s last elimination to become the new No. 1 contender in the WWE Universal Championship.
This match had some interesting stories along the way. Nakamura felt like a strange person in this race, but stole the show with one of his best performances in the WWE. He and Corbin looked great together, and it was fun to see the Planet Champion and the Artist again.
At the end of this Nakamura show, the Artist looked as good as ever. It was made as the upper face of the blue mark. Even if he “lost”, it is clear that Nakamura is now placed as a future top contender for the universal champion of WWE.
Pierce is a veteran performer who potentially gets a big break. He has worked well as an authority and this may be the reward for his work in this role, as well as training at the Performance Center. The story was created to make him the biggest possible outsider for The Head of The Table.