WWE Smackdown Report PARKS'S WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT 1/22: Ongoing "virtual time" coverage of the Thursday show, including Daniel Bryan vs. Kane in a No-DQ Match
Jan 22, 2015 - 9:00:08 PM
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WWE Smackdown review
January 22, 2015
Taped 1/20/15 at the University of Texas
Aired on SyFy
By Greg Parks, PWTorch Columnist (Twitter: @gregmparks)
- WWE Open.
- A recap video aired chronicling John Cena’s attempts to get his friends their jobs back in a handicap match on Raw.
- Smackdown Open.
- After fireworks shot off inside the arena, Daniel Bryan came out. A graphic showed Bryan’s match against Kane tonight in which if Bryan loses, he’s out of the Royal Rumble match. Michael Cole, Byron Saxton, and Jerry “The King” Lawler were shown at ringside. Bryan interacted with the crowd a bit at first and talked about how important the Royal Rumble win would be for him. He brought up Sting (but not “The Vigilante Sting”) and his first appearance on Raw. He really wanted to talk about what John Cena did on Raw. Bryan said he knows three guys who have something they want to get off their chests. Ryback came out first. It’s hilarious how the announcers are acting like these guys have been gone forever. Erick Rowan came out next, then Dolph Ziggler.
Ryback took the mic first. He said it felt like he was watching the world pass him by when he was let go. He thanked John Cena and the fans and said The Authority sucks. Strong words. He handed the mic to Rowan. Rowan said maybe being gone was a good thing, because he was once naïve and a puppet. But lately, he has seen himself in a new light. He said he knows who he really is. He spoke to the sheep mask then handed the mic to Ziggler. Ziggler talked about what he did when he was gone and said he ate stuffed crust pizza and watched Triple H and Stephanie’s workout videos. He said he earned the right to go toe-to-toe with the best and The Authority tried to take it away from him and all of them. He said The Authority considers them a threat. Ziggler said he’d rather sit in the ring and take The Authority’s punishment than complain on a podcast. The funny thing is they can take all the shots they want at C.M. Punk; I don’t think the guy cares. The Authority came out to interrupt.
Seth Rollins had the mic, flanked by J&J Security, Kane, and The Big Show. Ziggler said he doesn’t recognize Rollins without his nose up The Authority’s backside. He challenged Rollins, who wanted to put Ziggler in his place, but said he wasn’t going to. He said he has more important things to do than deal with Ziggler. Rollins previewed his Royal Rumble match. Ziggler made fun of Rollins running away from Brock Lesnar. Kane called Ziggler “disrespectful.” He addressed Bryan and reminded Daniel that he has to go through him if he wants to be in the Royal Rumble match on Sunday. Bryan cued up footage of Lesnar taking out Rollins, Kane, and Big Show on Raw. Show took the mic and called Bryan a “greasy mall hamster.” Uh…okay. He called the babyfaces “losers” and Kane said he’s capable of “depraved levels of sadism.” He told Ziggler that, as a new employee, Ziggler starts at the bottom of the ladder. Except not, because he’s getting a match against Bad News Barrett. I see the 20-minute gabfest has infected Smackdown now as well. Barrett came out and faces Ziggler next.
1 – DOLPH ZIGGLER vs. BAD NEWS BARRETT – IF ZIGGLER WINS, HE QUALIFIES FOR THE ROYAL RUMBLE MATCH
The stipulation was added during the break. Ryback and Erick Rowan will have similar opportunities on the evening. High dropkick by Ziggler for one. Barrett caught Ziggler with a hard kick to the chest in the corner, then sent Ziggler shoulder-first into the ring post. Barrett smashed Ziggler’s arm into the ring-post a few times. Barrett continued on offense in the ring, focusing on Ziggler’s arm. Ziggler kicked out of a pin attempt as they went to break 4:17 into the match.
Back at 8:14 with Barrett pounding his forearm into the back of Ziggler, with Ziggler hung up on the top rope. Ziggler created separation and had time to recover while Barrett sold an injury. Elbowdrop for two by Ziggler at 9:47. Superkick caught Barrett for a near-fall. Barrett missed a big boot, but found the mark with a mule kick. He set up for the Bull Hammer. Ziggler instead dropkicked him and hit the Zig Zag. It was enough to get him the win.
WINNER: Ziggler, at 11:18. In case you were wondering, yes, Bad News Barrett IS the Intercontinental Champion.
The closing moments of the match were shown.
- The announcers talked on camera with the front of the desk higher than normal, hiding their notes/laptops/etc. Cole sent it to a video of a few famous tag teams from the past taking out The Ascension.
- At the Royal Rumble, the New Age Outlaws face The Ascension.
- Daniel Bryan vs. Kane in a no-DQ match is tonight.
- Roman Reigns was shown talking to a producer backstage. We’ll hear from him next.
- Renee Young was backstage with Roman Reigns. She sent it to footage of Reigns beating up Big Show at Raw Reunion after Show knocked out Ric Flair. Reigns said Show keeps reminding people he’s a giant, but a guy like Andre the Giant never had to. He said Show is just insecure. Reigns said the Royal Rumble match is going to be crazy, but he’ll be just fine. He said no one is going to watch his back, so everything he gets, he earns.
- The announcers discussed the Royal Rumble PPV and how it’s on the WWE Network. Cole noted there’s no commitment with the Network and that you can cancel at any time.
- Ryback came out for his match against Rusev. It’s next.
- The exterior of the arena at the University of Texas was shown.
- Fandango and Rosa Mendes were backstage with the tumbler for the Rumble draw. Yes! Fandango selected his Royal Rumble number in front of referee Rod Zapata and seemed pleased with his number. Behind him was Dean Ambrose, who took Fandango’s number (he had set it down to nuzzle with Mendes) and replaced it with his own.
2 – RYBACK vs. RUSEV – IF RYBACK WINS, HE QUALIFIES FOR THE ROYAL RUMBLE MATCH
“You’ll see a mermaid doing the splits before you see The Authority doing the right thing,” said Lawler. Shoulder tackle by Ryback, but Rusev rolled out of the ring before a cover could be made. Rusev took the fight to Ryback in mid ring, stomping and kicking his foe. When Ryback got another advantage, Rusev again bailed. Dropkick by Rusev caught Ryback coming off the ropes. Ryback was in pain at ringside as they went to break 2:53 into the contest.
Back at 5:59 of the match. Rusev wrapped Ryback’s leg hard around the ring post. Saxton is now the heel announcer, by the way. Rusev began to toy with Ryback. Ryback surprised Rusev with a suplex. Powerslam by Ryback for a near-fall. A missed kick by Rusev led to a backpack stunner by Ryback for two at 9:15. A powerbomb attempt went awry for Ryback, and Rusev connected on an Alabama Slam. That got him a two-count. Ryback delivered a few haymakers. Rusev ran into a belly-to-belly suplex. Ryback advanced to the top rope. Rusev shook the top rope, causing Ryback to crotch himself. Kick to the side of the head by Rusev. He dragged Ryback away from the corner and only registered a two-count. Accolade attempt by Rusev, but he couldn’t wrap the second arm. Ryback powered out and hit a spinebuster. Rusev dodged a Meat-Hook clothesline and went to ringside. Ryback foolishly went out after him (take the count-out win!) and the two battled there. Ryback sent Rusev into the barricade, then mounted him and pounded away. Ryback snuck into the ring to win via count-out.
WINNER: Ryback, via count-out, at 13:19. Hey, a babyface booked to look smart! Both men seemed a little winded in the last few minutes of this one.
Rusev attacked Ryback after the match, but Ryback intercepted a kick and gave Rusev the Meat-Hook clothesline. He got Rusev up for Shell-Shock, but Rusev snuck out the back and took a walk.
- A graphic for Bryan vs. Kane was shown.
3 – NAOMI vs. BRIE BELLA
Paige and Natalya joined the commentators for this match. No entrance for Naomi. As the Bellas came to the ring, they showed an inset interview with the Bellas. They trash-talked Natalya and Paige and what it must be like to be in a relationship with them. Naomi with a quick roll-up for two. Dropkick followed that. Jumping knee to the face by Naomi. Brie’s forearms showed a lot of light. She brought Naomi down throat-first across the top rope. Nattie and Paige were not exactly best buds on commentary. Knee to the gut by Brie. She went into Brie Mode, which was relatively unsuccessful. Brie did bring Naomi’s leg over her shoulder and gave her a face-buster for the win.
WINNER: Brie, at 2:19. The match was about as enjoyable as the commentary. YOU decide if that was a compliment or not.
- Emanating from a dark place, Luke Harper cut a promo telling the viewers to send anyone into the Royal Rumble, but not anyone they want back. He said Erick Rowan won’t even make it into the Rumble match. He asked, “are you scared yet?”
- Goldust and Stardust chose their Royal Rumble entry numbers from the tumbler backstage. That…looks like more than 30 numbers in that tumbler.
4 – ERICK ROWAN vs. LUKE HARPER – IF ROWAN WINS, HE QUALIFIES FOR THE ROYAL RUMBLE MATCH
No entrance for Rowan. The two men brawled at the outset, and Rowan rammed Harper’s head into the turnbuckle. Rowan ran right into Harper, knocking him down for a two-count. Rowan tossed Harper into the corner and splashed him three times. Spin kick by Rowan for two. Harper fought out of a full nelson by biting Rowan’s hand. Powerbomb by Rowan for two at 2:41. Rowan climbed to the top rope, but missed a splash. A kick by Harper was followed by a big clothesline. Harper pinned his former partner.
WINNER: Harper, at 3:19. I like that they didn’t have all three make it into the Rumble, at least on this show. A unique match because of the hard-hitting, brawling aspect both men brought.
They replayed a few key moments in the match.
- The Authority pow-wowed backstage. Kane asked Rollins to borrow J&J Security tonight. Rollins OK’d it. As the three men left, Rollins told Big Show that they have to keep Bryan out of the Rumble.
- Cole thanked Danko Jones for “Gonna Be a Fight Tonight,” the official Royal Rumble theme.
- The Royal Rumble “By the Numbers” video aired.
- Damien Mizdow presented The Miz with a Pumpkin Spice Latte. Miz asked if this was to make up for Mizdow pretending to be a part of the Kliq Monday Night. Mizdow apologized but did say the crowd seemed to like it. Miz brought Mizdow back down to earth by saying the crowd is never cheering for him. He’s an extension of The Miz, so when they’re cheering for Mizdow, they’re really cheering for Miz. Miz said there wasn’t enough froth. He walked away and The Usos approached Mizdow. Usos trying to talk Mizdow into breaking away from Miz, specifically in the Rumble match itself. I like the planting of that seed on the part of The Usos there.
- Daniel Bryan came out for his match. The main event is next.
- Cole plugged the six-man Elimination tag match on the Royal Rumble pre-show, pitting The New Day against Cesaro, Tyson Kidd, and Adam Rose.
5 – DANIEL BRYAN vs. KANE – NO-DISQUALIFICATION MATCH; IF BRYAN LOSES, HE IS REMOVED FROM THE ROYAL RUMBLE MATCH
As Kane came to the ring, they showed Kane interfering on Raw during during Bryan’s match with Bray Wyatt, followed by a post-match chokeslam and assault. Bryan hit a cross-body for two. He went to the apron, where J&J Security wasted no time in creating a diversion. Outside the ring, Kane delivered a neck-breaker to Bryan. Kane dropped Bryan across the barricade. A kendo stick was retrieved from under the ring. Kane wailed Bryan in the back with it. Back in the ring, Bryan avoided another shot and took over possession of the stick. He brought the stick crashing down on the shoulder and side of Kane. Bryan alternated kicks and kendo stick shots. He went to the top, but as he came off, Kane dropped him with an uppercut. They went to break with Kane throwing Bryan out of the ring at 3:22.
They returned 6:48 into the match. DDT for two by Kane. Bryan went for a suicide dive onto Kane, but Kane punched Bryan as Bryan made the dive. Kane whipped Bryan into the steel steps. J&J Security began to take apart the suddenly sturdy-looking announce desk. Bryan countered Kane, then again, sending Kane head-first into the ring post. Suicide dive found the mark this time. J&J Security finally got physically involved, leading to Kane recovering and hitting Bryan. In the ring, Kane ascended the top rope and ended up caught in the Yes Lock. J&J Security broke up the move. Bryan whooped Noble and Mercury, but Kane chokeslammed him for a two-count. Kane grabbed a chair at ringside. Bryan gave Kane a drop toe-hold into the chair in the corner. Running knee to the face by Bryan followed by the pin.
WINNER: Bryan, at 12:15.
As Bryan celebrated atop the ramp, Big Show came out and gave him a punch to the kidney. He kicked Bryan down the ramp. Show, Kane, Mercury, and Noble put the boots to Bryan in the ring until Rowan, Ziggler, and Ryback evened the odds. The locker room emptied, as is tradition on the go-home show. And some of these guys likely won’t even be in the Rumble match! Dean Ambrose got his own theme music as he came out, as did Roman Reigns. The ring began to empty as Reigns went right after Big Show. He gave a Superman punch to Noble and Mercury at the same time, then he speared Titus O’Neill. Ambrose, Reigns, Bryan, Ziggler, and Ryback were left in the ring while Show and Kane stood on the apron. The show closed as everybody stared each other down.
Did you watch Thursday’s Smackdown episode? Send your 0-10 score & Reax to firstname.lastname@example.org for our TV Reax feature.
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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