WWE Smackdown Report PARKS'S WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT 1/15: Ongoing "virtual time" coverage of the show's return to Thursday night, including Daniel Bryan's first match back from injury
Jan 15, 2015 - 9:00:09 PM
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WWE Smackdown review
January 15, 2015
Taped 1/13/15 in Baton Rouge, La.
Aired on SyFy
By Greg Parks, PWTorch Columnist (Twitter: @gregmparks)
- WWE Open.
- The new Smackdown open aired.
- Fireworks once again led off the show. Byron Saxton was in the ring, and he introduced Daniel Bryan. Bryan walked to the ring, ready to compete, which is a welcome sight. Michael Cole and Jerry “The King” Lawler were shown at ringside. Lawler was able to feign his excitement about being on Smackdown rather well. “You’re certainly in good spirits tonight,” said Saxton. Well, duh. Bryan said he’s not in jeans but he’s in his gear, and it feels great. Saxton cued up a clip of Bryan getting destroyed by Kane in April, his last WWE action. Bryan said that’s the reason he’s taking things as seriously as he is now, despite his usual air. Bryan reminded fans that he and Kane were tag champions for nine months. He considered Kane a brother and a friend, but Kane ended up stabbing him in the back. Bryan said numerous doctors told him he’d never wrestle again. Bryan vowed to fight Kane and win. He also said he’ll win the Royal Rumble match, then win at Wrestlemania. The crowd chanted “yes!” to those scenarios.
He said people think that’s a pipe dream. “Do these people think I can do it?” he asked. That led to a “yes!” chant as well, and Bryan himself joined in on it. As he and the fans chanted, “King of Kings” interrupted and The Authority walked out, sans Stephanie McMahon. Kane vs. Bryan will get underway after the break.
1 – DANIEL BRYAN vs. KANE
Bryan attacked right at the bell, but was subdued by Kane. Bryan gave Kane a drop toe-hold into the buckle. Triple H, Big Show, Seth Rollins, and J&J Security were all stationed at ringside. Bryan tied up Kane’s leg in the rope and dropkicked it. A neck-breaker by Kane was sold heavily by Bryan. DDT found the mark for Kane for two at 3:17. Bryan had the advantage and dropkicked Kane, who was at ringside, through the ropes. He came off the apron, but Kane gave him a shot to the throat. The Authority taunted him as the show went to break at 4:40 of the match.
Back at 9:03 of the match. Kane was still in control. Side slam and a two-count by Kane at 10:01. Bryan finally worked free from Kane’s grip and hit a cross-body off the top rope for two. Bryan connected on kicks to the chest, but Kane again kicked out of a pin. Bryan dodged a chokeslam and wrestled Kane down for the Yes Lock. As he did, Joey Mercury and Jamie Noble hit the ring to break it up.
WINNER: Bryan, via disqualification, at 12:37. They couldn’t even put Bryan over cleanly in his return? I am surprised they went so long in his first match back, too.
After the match, Bryan was able to escape further punishment from The Authority by dropkick Big Show off the apron and dodging a Rollins briefcase shot. Bryan backed up the ramp as The Authority pursued him, but they stopped in their tracks when Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose came out to stand side-by-side with Bryan. Triple H, on the mic, responded by making a six-man tag for later tonight, in the hopes of ending the uprising. I assume it’s Bryan, Reigns and Ambrose vs. Big Show, Kane and Rollins. Cole assumed it too.
- Back to the announcers, who plugged the upcoming Intercontinental Title Match in which Bad News Barrett defends against Sin Cara.
- Also, next, we’ll see the video package on Randy Savage upon the announcement that he’ll be inducted this year into the WWE Hall-of-Fame.
- A graphic aired plugging the six-man tag main event that was just announced.
- The announcers talked about Randy Savage and they pitched it to the video package on his career. He’ll be inducted by Hulk Hogan.
- Tweets from Triple H, John Cena, and Bret Hart were shown on-screen, reflecting on Savage’s career and the announcement of his HOF induction.
- Backstage in the dark, Bray Wyatt cut a promo. He said he is the forbidden fruit and the cure. He said society labels him as a threat. Wyatt said you can only contain a poison like him for so long before it seeps through the cracks and infests everyone. He said he’d win the Royal Rumble match. “Accept your fate…follow the buzzards.” I hope we don’t get promos from him every week about winning the Rumble. It becomes more and more clear how pointless his promos are when he has nothing going on.
- The Usos and Naomi came out. They face The Miz, Damien Mizdow, and Alicia Fox, next.
2 – THE USOS & NAOMI vs. THE MIZ & DAMIEN MIZDOW & ALICIA FOX
As the heels came out, they showed a graphic for The Usos vs. Miz & Mizdow in a tag match at the Royal Rumble. They also showed Fox vs. Naomi from Raw. The Usos got the better of Miz to start. Miz was clotheslined over the top. Jey held open the ropes so Jimmy could dive through on Miz. Mizdow finally tagged in, but before he could contact the opposition, Fox tagged herself in. that meant Naomi came in, and they went at it with Naomi hitting a headscissors take-over. Top-rope cross-body by Naomi for two. Fox tagged out to Miz. Miz put the boots to Jey. Eventually, Jimmy made the hot tag and landed a Samoan drop. Jimmy hit a corkscrew off the top which Miz so successfully side-stepped that saying it barely grazed him is generous. The finish came when Mizdow was pushed into a superkick by Miz, who then hit the Skull Crushing Finale for the win.
WINNERS: Miz, Mizdow and Fox, at 4:46. A fine match with some of the loose work within it (including the aforementioned corkscrew) a bit distracting.
- Backstage, Renee Young was with Roman Reigns. Reigns said if the Royal Rumble was tonight, he’d put himself first, but he has no problem working with Ambrose and Bryan. Reigns said he wants another chance to screw The Authority. But he said to make no mistake, it’s all about him at the Rumble. That was a much better promo, in content and delivery.
- Paul Heyman was power-walking into the arena backstage. That poor cameraman having to back-track and keep up with him. He comes out next.
- Paul Heyman strode to the ring. As he did, they showed a clip from the contract signing on Monday night. Heyman said he has no problem admitting for the first time in his career, he is scared. He said Brock Lesnar does what he wants because he can. He talked about Lesnar’s recent accomplishments, all done because Lesnar felt like doing them. But now, Lesnar is pissed off and has a purpose – to get his hands on Seth Rollins and F5 him into the past. Seth Rollins’ theme interrupted Heyman and the MITB contract holder walked to the ring at a brisk pace himself, followed by J&J Security.
Rollins said he isn’t afraid of Lesnar. In honor of Smackdown returning to Thursdays, Rollins proposed a Lesnar vs. Rollins match right now. He was very hyped up during this promo. Heyman called it a “grandstand challenge” and said Lesnar was not in the building. Rollins threatened to curb stomp Heyman. He backed Heyman into the corner but Heyman kept flapping his gums, almost challenging Rollins to do so. Rollins got uncomfortably close to Heyman in the corner and laid out his plan of how to beat Lesnar and John Cena at the Rumble. Heyman took the position that Rollins shouldn’t curb stomp him because The Authority has already been out of power once…what’s to say they won’t be out of power again someday? Heyman said he himself has gained power every day he’s been in the company. And his client, Brock Lesnar, has a death-grip on the WWE World Title. Lesnar can run things by being champion or he can protect the NEW champion when HE decides the future is now. Rollins considered Heyman’s words as Heyman confidently headed to the back.
- The previously announced six-man tag is the main event tonight.
3 – NATALYA vs. NIKKI BELLA
No entrance for Nattie. Paige was at ringside with Natalya. They showed Tyson Kidd inexplicably causing Paige to lose on Raw. Natalya applied a leg-lock on Nikki, but Nikki kicked out of it. Natalya lifted Nikki off the ground and slammed her. Nattie sold an arm injury and hit a seated dropkick. Clothesline for two. Brie got on the apron as Natalya applied the Sharpshooter. Paige slapped Nikki behind the ref’s back and Natalya locked in the Sharpshooter for the win.
WINNER: Natalya, via submission, at 2:41. The work in this one was not bad. Having Natalya in there allows the Divas to do more ground-based stuff that they may not be able to do with other Divas on the roster.
- A replay aired of the distraction, the slap, and the submission (and no, those are not names of “Seinfeld” episodes).
- Renee Young was joined backstage by The Big Show. She tried to ask a question but Show chastised her for trying to “take control” of the interview. Show said he’ll knock out all three men tonight, then moved on to the Royal Rumble match. Show is acting like he drank three Red Bulls before this interview. He slowed down as the interview progressed though. Show said no one can eliminate him from the Royal Rumble. Kane walked up and said he’s in the match, too. The men traded sideways glances but Show didn’t respond. Young’s outfit and hairdo make her look like Traylor Howard in “Monk.”
- Barrett vs. Sin Cara for the I.C. Title is next.
4 – SIN CARA vs. BAD NEWS BARRETT – WWE INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH
Cara received a truncated entrance. They showed him beating Barrett last week on Smackdown to earn this shot (but not the post-match Barrett attack). Eden Stiles handled formal ring introductions for this. Cara surprised Barrett with a few roll-ups early. A boot sent Cara to the mat. Cara got out of a suplex attempt and hit a springboard headbutt then a springboard cross-body. Cole brought up the past issues Barrett has had with Cara, but only in vague terms. Cara fell victim to Winds of Change. Bull Hammer missed and Cara rolled Barrett up for two. He picked up Barrett with one arm and slammed him. After a missed senton, Cara went for another springboard, but Barrett hit him with a Bull Hammer and pinned him.
WINNER: Barrett, at 2:49. There had to be another way for Cara to earn a title shot beyond a one-off upset of Barrett. I’m sure Cara will now go back to the dregs of Superstars and these two weeks won’t matter in the long run.
They replayed some key moments in the match.
- The announcers talked about the WWE Network coming to the UK and Ireland on Monday.
- Tonight, Bryan & Reigns & Ambrose vs. Rollins & Big Show & Kane.
- Dean Ambrose was warming up backstage. He addressed the camera, saying he didn’t play well with others as a kid. He said he’s in the Royal Rumble match this year, and it fits him well. He said not to count him out…but count him in. As for tonight, the one thing he has in common with his partners is that they detest The Authority. He said no one tells him what to do…he just goes out and does it.
- All participants made separate entrance for the main event, which is next.
5 – SETH ROLLINS & THE BIG SHOW & KANE vs. DANIEL BRYAN & DEAN AMBROSE & ROMAN REIGNS
Ambrose and Rollins exchanged offense, with Ambrose hitting a neck-breaker in mid-ring. Reigns and Ambrose made a wish with the legs of Rollins. Vertical suplex delivered by Reigns as he stared at the others standing in the heel corner. Kane tagged in and fought with Reigns. Reigns connected on a jumping clothesline. Bryan made the tag shy of the four-minute mark of the match and again battled Kane. Bryan was thrown out of the ring in front of J&J Security. The babyfaces came over to even the odds. All six men began to brawl on the exterior of the ring. It was a brief one as the faces stood tall in the ring amid “Yes” chants as they cut to break at 5:09 of the match.
Back at 8:45 with Amborse vs. Rollins. Ambrose ended up getting hung up in the corner by his knee, a knee which was storyline injured in his Ambulance Match with Bray Wyatt a few weeks ago on Raw. Ambrose sold for an extended heat segment. The hot tag was finally made at 15:26. Bryan was the recipient. Hurricanrana off the top rope on Rollins for two. Kane came in and chokeslammed Bryan, but Reigns made the save on the pin attempt. Big Show began to take apart the announce table but before he could get very far, Reigns speared Show (and himself) over the table. Rollins broke up the Yes Lock but Ambrose took him out, as well as J&J Security. Ambrose came off the top and landed on all three of them at ringside. Running knee caught Kane (I guess) and he picked up the win for his team.
WINNERS: Ambrose, Reigns, and Bryan, at 17:54.
As Bryan celebrated in the ring, Triple H’s music played and he came out. He said Bryan got lucky tonight so next week on Smackdown, Kane gets a rematch. He said when Bryan loses the match next Thursday, he’ll also lose his opportunity to compete in the Royal Rumble match. They closed with Triple H’s music playing and Bryan looking frustrated in the ring.
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Greg Parks has been covering WWE Smackdown for PWTorch.com since January of 2007. He is the host of “Moonlighting with Greg Parks,” a PWTorch VIP-exclusive audio show posted each weekend. Follow him on Twitter @gregmparks for live Tweeting during Raw, Impact, and PPVs, as well as other bits of wisdom. Comments, questions and feedback are welcome, and can be sent to email@example.com.
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