WWE SmackDown comes waltzing back into our lives tonight (Jan. 14, 2022) with a show emanating from the Chi Health Center in Omaha, Nebraska, featuring all the latest build to the Royal Rumble pay-per-view event coming up on January 29.
Advertised for tonight: Now that he is the number one contender to the Universal championship, Raw superstar Seth “Freakin” Rollins returns to Friday nights to annoy the hell out of his former Shield brother, Roman Reigns. Rollins will no doubt remind the world of his great record of success against the Tribal Chief.
Come right back here at 8 pm ET when the SmackDown live blog kicks off once the show starts on FOX. It will be below this line here. (Note: Going forward, there will be no ban on GIFs or images in the live blog threads. Feel free to post as you wish.)
WWE SMACKDOWN RESULTS AND LIVE BLOG FOR JAN. 14
All your eyes have ever seen, all you`ve ever heard is etched upon my memory, is spoken through my words. All that I take with me, is all you’ve left behind. We’re sharing one eternity, and I’m liveblogging this here pro wrestling show for these folks.
The show opens with a recap of the Universal Championship scene of late.
Seth Rollins laughs backstage.
We get a hype reel for the return of Lita.
The Usos make their entrance and get on the mic.
They point out that the shirts they’re wearing have Paul Heyman’s face scratched out and say they respect the New Day but they have the tag titles. They lay out a four-way match to determine number one contenders to their tag titles, consisting of Los Lotharios, Cesaro and Mansoor, Jinder Mahal and Shanky, and the Viking Raiders.
But before the match can begin, the Usos set the brawl off with a couple superkicks and bail as chaos erupts and we go to break!
Cesaro & Mansoor vs. Jinder Mahal & Shanky vs. Los Lotharios (Angel Garza & Humberto Carrillo) vs. Viking Raiders (Erik & Ivar)(WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship #1 Contender’s Match)
Back from commercial, match in progress, Mansoor taking it to Carrillo, puts him on the apron and eats a shoulder thrust for his trouble. Off the top, Manhattan Drop counters, tag to Cesaro! Tilt-a-whirl backbreaker, uppercut, Erik tags in and gets in Cesaro’s face!
Garza legal, tears his pants off and Shanky immediately tags in! Big man squares up with the viking, shoving him off the ropes, throat thrust, lariat, quick tags and working Erik over with Jinder follow. Warbeard tags in but finds himself similarily isolated and we get a tower of doom to send us to break!
Back from commercial, Mansoor tags out to Cesaro, the Swiss Superman in hot with boots and uppercuts, mounted punches in the corner, diving double axehandle! Samoan Drop follows, Warbeard tags in and Cesaro uppercuts him before putting the big man in the swing!
Los Lotharios clear house, double dropkick to Ivar, Garza eats a Banzai drop and Humberto finds himself in the danger zone...
Viking Raiders win by pinfall with the Viking Experience on Humberto Carrillo to become #1 contenders to the WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship.
Post-match, the Usos get back on the mic and talk history, pointing out that vikings never went to Samoa.
A recap of Naomi vs. Charlotte Flair from last week follows.
Naomi rolls up on Sonya Deville in her office and says that everything that comes out of her mouth is a lie.
Toying with her is one thing, but messing with her career and costing her an opportunity, she will not let stand, and she’s about to give her one right now. Sonya Deville says she’s the boss as long as she’s wearing the jacket, and threatens her with everything up to being fired if she puts hands on her.
Sami Zayn makes his entrance to send us to break.
Back from commercial we get a video package covering Roman Reigns’ and Seth Rollins’ time in the Shield.
Sami Zayn gets on the mic and rambles about the conspiracy against him again and calls Johnny Knoxville out. He says he’s officially entered the Royal Rumble and he can do anything Johnny can. He’s gonna show the world tonight that nobody is better than Sami Zayn!
And to that extent, he welcomes us to the first episode of In-Zayn, his own Jackass knockoff. He goes to the back and gets wheeled out in a shopping cart and says he’s gonna jump the ring in the cart. He complains about the cart being small and suddenly realizes that this is dangerous and asks for a second.
After a breather he commences the stunt... and begs the guys wheeling him to stop at the base of the ramp. He gets out and gets in the ring and says he’s just checking some things and pledges that he’s a thousand times tougher than Johnny Knoxville but he doesn’t want to get hurt over nothing.
Rick Boogs appears on the apron and when Sami turns to talk to him, Shinsuke Nakamura appears from behind... KINSHASA! Boogs with the military press... RUNNING MILITARY PRESS SLAM OVER THE ROPES AND TO THE FLOOR INTO THE CRASH PADS!
Aliyah is interviewed in Gorilla.
She says she’s all nerves and tonight she gets to wrestle Natalya, and she hopes she just puts on a good showing and doesn’t embarrass herself.
Nattie rolls up and says she’s gonna do awesome tonight and there’s no shame in losing to her in your singles debut, given her Guinness records and such. Aliyah is shocked that Guinness records are still a thing and Neidhart shoots her the evil eye.
Aliyah makes her entrance and we go to break.
Back from commercial, Natalya is still hanging out at Gorilla to tell us that Guinness World Records are still very much a thing and why she’s a favorite to win the Royal Rumble.
Natalya attacks before the bell and works Aliyah over something fierce over referee DA Brewer’s protestations! Brewer finally manages to separate them and checks on Aliyah, but she can’t respond and he calls the ring announcer over to declare her unable to compete.
Aliyah protests and DA rescinds the call and the match is on!
Aliyah vs. Natalya
Aliyah right in there...
Aliyah wins by pinfall with a schoolboy pin.
Backstage, Adam Pearce and Sonya Deville are watching.
The thermostat is running hot and Sonya is sweating.
Commentary promises us Lita, after the break.
Back from commercial we get another Rollins/Reigns history vignette.
Michael Cole is in the ring to introduce Lita.
She says she’s finally home and she recounts her career highlights and says she’s generally been satisfied with her career, until recently. See, now there’s a Royal Rumble, and she wants to win it and main event WrestleMania.
Enter Charlotte Flair.
She takes the interview over from Michael Cole and tells her to shut up, she didn’t know this was Flashback Friday. She’s entering the Royal Rumble as champion and she’s going to win and pick her opponent, and asks how Lita’s going to handle the humiliation when she ends her comeback run at the Royal Rumble.
Lita asks how she’s gonna throw anybody over the top rope with her giant head, surely she’ll just fall over. Charlotte says she’ll just break Lita so hard that she retires, Lita goes to slap her but stops short and Flair still flinches! Kick to the midsection... TWIST OF FATE!
We get a recap of Ricochet breaking Ridge Holland’s nose.
Sheamus is interviewed at Gorilla.
He asks what’s missing and points out Ridge should be standing here right now and instead he’s sitting at home on the couch with his nose sticking out the back of his head, and it’s Ricochet’s fault. That’s okay, he’s gonna break Rick’s nose.
The Celtic Warrior makes his entrance and we go to break.
Back from commercial, Ricochet gets an inset promo where he says he’s gonna break Sheamus’ face tonight.
Ricochet vs. Sheamus
Side headlock, block the shoot off, Ricochet hangs in there into a headlock takeover! Holding on through a back suplex attempt, shot off, lariat, clubbing blows, powerbomb reversed into a Frankensteiner over the ropes and to the floor! Ricky off the ropes, corkscrew tope lands flush!
Rolling the Celtic Warrior back inside, he bails to the opposite side of the ring and trips Ricochet up into the apron! Catapult into the frame of the ring and Sheamus is fired up as we go to break.
Back from commercial, Sheamus has a kneeling surfboard locked in but Ricochet breaks away. Jawbreaker, back suplex, lands on his feet, springboard crossbody and the One and Only is fired up! Chops and forearms, off the ropes, sidestep the Brogue Kick and the Celtic Warrior is on the apron!
Ricky cuts him off with kicks, step-up moonsault... NOPE! Slingshot to the apron, headed up top, shooting star press... NOBODY HOME! Tilt-a-whirl backbreaker connects and Beats of the Bodhran ensue! Lariat puts Ricochet back in the ring proper, fireman’s carry and he climbs up top but Rick stirs and escapes with elbows!
Kick to the face, another one, smashing Sheamus face-first into the post, slingshot sunset flip powerbomb, into the cover... STILL NO! Back and forth, Ricochet ducks a lariat, handspring cut off...
Sheamus wins by pinfall with the Brogue Kick.
We get a recap of Aliyah’s shock victory over Natalya and are informed that, at 3.17 seconds, it’s now the record for fastest victory in WWE history.
Adam Pearce and Sonya Deville are chatting about it in their increasingly hot office. Pearce says he’s gonna go check with maintenance and a sweaty Sonya takes her jacket off.
Naomi busts in and Adam barely returns in time to break it up and give Deville a chance to put her jacket back on. Naomi complains about last week and Pearce says she’s right and she deserves another opportunity, and he grants her a rematch next week. Naomi tells Sonya she best stay in her cage, and we go to break.
Back from commercial we get another Reigns/Rollins vignette.
Kofi Kingston is in the ring to read a proclamation from King Xavier Woods.
Our liege has fallen victim to a calf injury and he’ll miss the Royal Rumble. However, his majesty declares that a Royal Rumble cannot truly be royal without royal representation, so Kofi will be competing in it.
Enter Happy Corbin and Madcap Moss.
Happy is happy, and says he hasn’t been this happy since they destroyed Drew McIntyre’s neck. Moss has silly jokes about the “Poo Day” and Kingston mockingly convulses in laughter before saying he’s gonna drop a royal deuce on Madcap’s forehead.
Kofi Kingston vs. Madcap Moss
Kingston headscissors’ Moss to the floor, off the ropes, trust fall senton wipes the heels out and we go to break!
Back from commercial, Moss has a rear chinlock but Kingston fights to his feet and out with body blows. Whip reversed, crossbody caught and reversed into a fallaway slam! Putting Kofi into the corner, putting boots to him, Kingston fires up, big leaping lariat off the ropes, roll-through, Penalty Kick, Boom Drop!
Kofi off the top, diving crossbody caught, Madcap rolls through, he slips out, O’Connor roll blocked, SOS denied...
Madcap Moss wins by pinfall with the neckbreaker driver.
Seth Rollins makes his entrance to send us to break.
Back from commercial, Roman Reigns makes his entrance.
He squares up across from Seth Rollins and takes the crowd in briefly before requesting that Omaha acknowledge him.
Rollins says this is quite a moment and he was thinking, for old times’ sake, they could do the fist bump. Roman says that’s beneath him now and Seth brings up the look on his face when he entered his office last week. He was the last person Reigns wanted to see, and why would he?
Their track record in singles matches for titles is one-sided, in that he’s won them all, and he gets why Roman wouldn’t want to see him. Reigns says he must be sleeping under a rock, ‘cause he’s in god mode now, son. He’s the tribal chief, the head of your table, the provider around here!
He’s the greatest of this generation, no questions asked, and the greatest to ever do this. Rollins says he came out here to acknowledge Roman and all of his success, everything he’s done. He just has a question for him— can Reigns look himself in the mirror at night and say he’s done that all by himself?
That’s the difference between them, he was climbing his way up the ladder while Roman was playing football, and back in the Shield he held his hand, and after that he still couldn’t do it on his own. Reigns laughs him off and says Seth is a waste of his time. He looks and sounds like a clown because he’s a clown, and he clearly doesn’t have the requisite star power to get on Roman’s level.
If you were looking for a megastar, he wouldn’t have chosen Rollins from Raw, he wouldn’t have even chosen him out of his own household, he would have picked Seth’s wife, Becky Lynch. The Usos try to jump Rollins but he gets away! Ducking and dodging, he gets the better of the Usos and returns to square up with Reigns briefly but Jimmy and Jey give chase!
Seth slips away and jaws at Roman.
That’s the show, folks.