January 24, 2014
Grand Rapids, MI
Van Andel Arena
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)
Tonight’s episode of Smackdown is in memory of George Scott 1929-2014.
Your hosts are Josh Mathews & JBL.
– Big Show & Rey Mysterio vs. The Real Americans (w/Zeb Colter)
Still sitting in the wheelchair, Zeb Colter reminds us that Big Show punched him in the face two weeks ago. He still wants to know what that masked Rey Mysterio is hiding. Just another week of xenophobia here. Show manhandles the Real Americans by himself and throws them to the floor to take us into commercial. When we return, Rey is *your* face in peril. Giant Swing to Rey, but it’s less impressive on a guy his size. Rey fights off Swagger and Cesaro with a HEAVILY contrived and exposing double DDT. Hot tag to Show, he hip tosses both the Real Americans out of the corner at the same time – really playing up his “Big Showness” heading into the Rumble against Brock. 619, Knockout Punch, and the splash from Rey off Show’s shoulders onto Cesaro gets the win. (6:00 shown) Afterwards, Paul Heyman appears and warns Show that Ba-rock Lesnar is PISSED after what happened to him this past week on Raw and will conquer Show and then the rest of the WWE universe. *½
– The Miz vs. Brodus Clay
Bad News Barrett appears at the top of a disguised crane to troll the Miz and Brodus Clay. While Brodus is distracted, Miz capitalizes with a kneeling DDT for the win in 1:15. Afterwards, Miz goes over to try to get Barrett to come down and fight him like a man. It won’t happen, but I bet it will at the Royal Rumble! ½*
Royal Rumble ad showcasing all different kinds of cool stats.
– Non-title match: WWE Divas Champion AJ Lee (w/Tamina Snuka) vs. Cameron (w/Naomi)
Cameron fights back and hits AJ with that split-legged leg drop for a near-fall. Tamina takes a baseball slide in the back of the head for no reason. That allows AJ to capitalize and nail the Boma Ye for the win. (1:30) 222 days as Divas Champ, only 2582 days to break Bruno’s record! After the bell, Tamina beats up Cameron because she did deserve it, while Naomi gives AJ Lee a Bubba Bomb. I would look for a Divas title match between those two at the Rumble. ½*
Time for the Raw Rebound! It’s all about Batista. If you missed anything, check out Scott’s Raw Recap for more details.
Somewhere dark and scary in the arena, the Shield – specifically Roman Reigns – promises victory in the Rumble match. Believe in the Shield.
– Ryback & Curtis Axel vs. Los Matadores (w/El Torito)
By-the-numbers heat and hot tag match here. I can never tell these Colons apart. As one of them sets up for a pescado on Ryback, Axel rolls him up for the win. (3:00) I don’t know which would be more hazardous for your career: losing to Los Matadores or selling for a midget in a bull costume. Anyway, the latter happens as both Ryback and Axel must take their licks of the little guy. ¾*
CM Punk comes to tell Kane what he thinks about being placed in the number one spot in the Royal Rumble match. Well, Kane is anywhere around. Punk just says all this decision does is make him that more motivated to do exactly what the Authority doesn’t want: for Punk to win the Royal Rumble for the first time and main event WrestleMania. Just like anyone else, Punk plans to MAN UP this Sunday, punch everyone in their stupid faces, and throw out the 29 other guys to be the last man standing. Kane finally comes out to give Punk the odds of him actually winning the Rumble. Punk hits Kane with some truth calling him just a suit with no balls. People who have drawn #1 in the Rumble match have won before and Punk can do it too because he’s the Best in the World – since day one.
Promo for Daniel Bryan vs. Bray Wyatt that will happen at the Royal Rumble.
– Luke Harper & Erick Rowan (w/Bray Wyatt) vs. The Primetime Players
Bad week to be Darren Young and Titus O’Neil. Young gets dominated and finished off easily with the Discus Clothesline from Harper in 1:00. As if that wasn’t enough, Young receives Sister Abigail as well. When Bray gets done with Daniel Bryan, the people will be able to deny him no more. Follow the buzz-OH LOOK, IT’S DANIEL BRYAN. He stands by the people that tells them not to fear. After the Rumble, Daniel promises that Bray Wyatt will be trapped in his prison from then on. Bray reacts just as you hoped he would. ½*
– Fandango (w/Summer Rae) vs. Kofi Kingston
Opportunity for Mathews and JBL to describe Kofi’s Royal Rumble feats. Emma from NXT in the front row bothering Summer Rae. JBL debates with Josh over the ridiculous claim that Kingston’s win over Randy Orton is the biggest upset in the history of RAW. Trouble in Paradise finishes Fandango. (3:00) I’d love to see what these two could do with inspiration and 10-15 minutes. Seems like a main event for the Main Event show. *
Promo video airs for Orton/Cena at the Royal Rumble.
– Goldust, Cody Rhodes, Big E Langston & the Usos vs. The Shield & The New Age Outlaws
To start, the Usos and Big E Langston have their fun beating up Ambrose and Rollins. When Reigns gets the tag, things change a little bit as he hits Big E with a jumping clothesline and backs him into the corner. When Ambrose tags in, the tide turns back into Big E’s favor as he levels Ambrose with a belly to belly suplex. Tag to Cody. He does just fine against Rollins and Ambrose until Gunn gets a blind tag and drills him with a clothesline. He puts the boots to Cody until we take a break. When we come back, Cody is still stuck on the wrong side of town. Eventually, neither Ambrose nor Rollins can suplex the man from the top turnbuckle. In comes Reigns. He gets kicked away and drilled with a moonsault press. Hot tag to Goldust and he uppercuts and delivers a spinebuster to Road Dogg. Gunn looks to take him out, but Goldust gives Gunn a flying headscissors! WHAT? Shake Rattle and Roll fails as Road Dogg then runs into a powerslam. Goldust looks for the Final Cut, but Rollins comes from out of nowhere with a flying knee. Big E runs down Rollins and down come the straps for the Big Ending, but Reigns saves his partner with a Spear to Big E. Jimmy Uso superkicks Reigns down, allowing Jey to hit the Flying Splash! With the Shield now out on the floor, Jey planchas onto them. Meanwhile, Gunn trips up Jimmy and hits him with the Famouser. Disaster Kick to Gunn! Pumphandle Slam by Road Dogg to Cody! Next thing you know, Goldust schoolboys Road Dogg for the near-fall, but the Shield break up the pin all at once and the ref calls for a DQ. (10:00 shown) Big 10-man brawl erupts as the locker room empties to get people a glimpse of what the Royal Rumble will look like. CM Punk gets his own entrance to join the fight as we close out the show. Love the bombs they threw at the end, but you could see the finish coming all night long. **½
Final Thoughts: Feel free to skip this one. If Raw didn’t already get you pumped for the Rumble, I can’t imagine this would do the trick.