Matt’s Smackdown Recap 1/10/14

What crack in the Shield? [Photo courtesy of]
What crack in the Shield? [Photo courtesy of]
WWE: Smackdown
January 10, 2014
Philadelphia, PA
Wells Fargo Center

The current WWE champs are as follows:
WWE World Heavyweight Champion: Randy Orton (12/15/2013)
WWE Intercontinental Champion: Big E Langston (11/18/2013)
WWE U.S. Champion: Dean Ambrose (5/19/2013)
WWE Tag Team Champions: Cody Rhodes & Goldust (10/14/2013)
WWE Divas Champion: AJ Lee (6/16/2013)

Your hosts are Michael Cole and JBL.

Luke Harper & Erick Rowan vs. The Usos

No Bray Wyatt or Daniel Bryan here tonight. Harper and Rowan just APPEAR in the ring – freaking everyone out. Jimmy is *your* face in peril for the majority of this one. Skip ahead to Jey getting the hot tag. He knocks Rowan to the floor and levels Harper with forearm smashes and superkicks before landing a Samoan Drop and the Buttalanche (credit: CRZ~!). Momentary distraction causes Jey to receive a Juvi Driver by Harper for two. To the floor we go, as the Usos will fly on the Wyatt boys. Harper wipes out Jimmy with a crazy Discus Clothesline though, leading to a double-countout. (9:30) Whoa, Jey takes one of the best bumps into the stairs I’ve ever seen. Harper and Rowan look to do a number on him, but Jimmy saves with superkicks and pulls his brother out to safety. Now that it looks like the match is completely done and over with, Daniel Bryan and Bray Wyatt ambush the Usos. In the ring, Busaiku Knee Kick to one of the Usos! Sister Abigail to the other one. Cole – “This is the craziest thing I’ve ever seen!” Follow the buzzards, ya’ll. **

In the back, WWE World Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton complains to Smackdown GM Vickie Guerrero for putting him in a match tonight without consulting him first. Orton says he’ll give the Authority a piece of his mind… on Monday night. Make sure you stay at this emotional level for the next 72 hours, Randy!

Time for MizTV. More like ZzzTV, amirite? His guest tonight is the Big Show. Why did he throw Brock Lesnar across the ring on Monday night? Because Show doesn’t like Brock Lesnar, and because he *can* throw Brock Lesnar across the ring. He challenges Brock to a fight, which instantly brings out Paul Heyman. He gives Show the option of fighting Brock Lesnar at the Royal Rumble. Okay by him.

BATISTA RETURNS ON JANUARY 20. Plus, he’ll be competing in the Royal Rumble on January 26!

Montage video for the major announcement for the WWE Network. Yeah, I’m getting that. It releases February 24!

Rey Mysterio, Sin Cara, and Los Matadores (w/El Torito) vs. Curtis Axel, Ryback, and the Real Americans (w/Zeb Colter)

First time we’ve seen Los Matadores in a while on Smackdown. They control Axel and Cesaro to start with headscissors and such. Sin Cara and Ryback square off with Ryback selling dropkicks. Sigh. Tag to Rey and Ryback finds himself in 619 territory, but he slides out to the floor before Rey can deliver. We get some regrouping as we take a commercial break. When we return, the match completely breaks down. Los Matadores deliver STEREO SUICIDE DIVES to take out Ryback. El Torito somersault dives onto Axel to take care of him. Meanwhile, Mysterio tries the 619 on Swagger, but gets caught and slammed for two. Sin Cara makes the save and falls out to the floor with Cesaro. Swagger Bomb gets countered with a headscissors into the ropes as Mysterio finally hits the 619. Flying splash by Rey gets the win. (4:30 shown) So much for the roll the Real Americans have been on lately. *½

Promo video for Cena/Orton at the Royal Rumble airs.

Non-title match: WWE World Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton vs. WWE Intercontinental Champion Big E Langston

Orton is clearly overpowered to start and takes several sabbaticals on the floor to start. He cheapshots Langston to take control, but allows Big E to get back on his feet, causing Langston to work over his arm. Orton pounds away again, but Big E explodes on him with a backbreaker. How about one more? That gets two. Langston spears Orton in the corner and tries the Big Ending, but Orton slips away and retreats to the floor as we go to commercial. When we come back, Orton has Big E stuck in a chinlock. He fights out, but then gets dumped on the floor. Orton slams Langston’s head on the steps a few times, doing all he can to hurt this monster. Back inside, Langston fights out of another chinlock and PSYCHES himself up for the comeback. Clotheslines, belly to belly suplex, and the People’s Splash gets two. Before this goes any further, Orton delivers the reverse backbreaker. DDT through the ropes connects, but Langston shoves off the RKO into the corner and avalanches Orton. As Orton begs off down in the corner, he seizes the moment where he thumbs Big E in the eye without ref Charles Robinson ever seeing it. RKO! That gets the win. (11:00 shown) Ric Flair, he is not. Orton could have taken this way further and helped build up a rising star. He took some moves and had to outsmart Langston to win, but hardly sold anything and gave Big E only one moderately serious nearfall. **½

From the deepest darkest place in the arena, Bray Wyatt and his family discuss the evil temptress called fate and something about the Usos having weird twin problems. When the word “lie” comes up, Daniel Bryan SPEAKS. With a blank stare on his face, he says he can’t believe that everything he has been told is a lie.

Fandango (w/Summer Rae) vs. Xavier Woods (w/The Funkadactyls & R-Truth)

Spoiler alert! On the Main Event this past week, Fandango interrupted Xavier Woods’ match with Antonio Cesaro and cost him the win. R-Truth joins us for commentary. He and JBL are “down like four flat tires, dawg”. That was actually pretty funny. R-Truth also tells us that he has taken Xavier Woods under his wings, because what kind of a bird only has one wing? I mean if the poor thing did only have one wing, it would just be somewhere flying around in a circle, freaking out his whole family. Hardly a match. Xavier gets dumped on the floor and shoots back inside with a roll up on Fandango for the quick win. (1:20) Afterwards, Summer Rae steps to Xavier, but don’t step to Xavier, because you’ll get owned by the Funkadactyls. Fandango attacks Xavier from behind and winds up taking a RNR Express double dropkick by R-Truth and Woods to send him running. ½*

In the back, a faceless interviewer checks on the Usos. They may be down, but they will get back up on Monday Night Raw, as they challenge Bray Wyatt and Daniel Bryan to a match.

Time for the Old School Raw Rebound. They show us all the nostalgic appearances. I think Dean Ambrose may have had a mark out woody when Jake put the snake on him. For more details, check out Scott’s Raw Recap.

The Shield vs. The New Age Outlaws & CM Punk

On the mic, Roman Reigns now feels he has the only claim to being the “Best in the World” since he defeated CM Punk this past week on Raw, Dean Ambrose tells us that he hates snakes, and Seth Rollins says he can’t wait to put the New Age Outlaws out of their misery. Believe in the Shield. Punk and NAO dominate to start and send the Shield flying out to the floor to take us into commercial. When we come back, Road Dogg is *your* face in peril. He gets in a brief comeback on Ambrose with Shake Rattle and Roll and the Shaky Knee Drop. Rollins blind tags Ambrose and surprises Road Dogg with a springboard knee strike. Isolate, isolate, isolate. They stretch his face, stomp his ribs, and squeeze his chin. Road Dogg catches Reigns telegraphing a backdrop and delivers a DDT. Rollins runs in to stop the hot tag by knocking Gunn to the floor, but turns around into a backdrop by Road Dogg. He makes the hot tag to Punk instead. Swinging neckbreaker and running knee strike to Ambrose. Flying body press gets two. Go2Sleep fails and they KO each other. Tag to Gunn, he is rocking and rolling like its 1999. This guy has not lost a step. Jackhammer to Reigns! That gets two. Punk still can’t get the GTS on Ambrose, but settles for a suicide dive on Rollins. While Gunn looks for the Famouser on Ambrose, Reigns cuts him off with a Spear for the 1-2-3. (11:00 shown) Cole is now convinced that there is in fact not a single crack whatsoever within the Shield to close out the show. Good, harmless fun. Not to abuse hyperboles like our esteemed commentators do, but the New Age Outlaws really did look good here. Road Dogg taking the punishment and Billy Gunn getting the hot tag can still be a formula for success if it’s used to put over young guys. ***

Final Thoughts: Fun show involving the Wyatt family and the Shield. I am disappointed with the Orton-Langston match. I don’t know why I should be though considering it is Randy Orton after all.