Bobby Roode becomes U.S. Champion: For a rather dull episode (more later), this was the shining moment over the two hour show. Throughout his tenure in NXT, Bobby was presented as nothing less than a champion. Obviously, it’s not always seamless when moving over to the main roster, so it was nice to see him get this victory. I look forward to see where his storyline goes from here, and if it will lead to a match against a returning Dolph Ziggler. Props go to both Roode and Jinder Mahal for wrestling twice in the show as well.
Royal Rumble Promotion: While I could have done without the “selfie” style format, I was pleased with the WWE’s promotion of the Rumble match. It’s good to see the entrants talk about the Rumble, along with their desire to win. It makes it seem important, and puts the spotlight on not just the match, but what it means to actually win.
Everything else: This was just a boring show that seemed to drag on too long. I’ve criticized Smackdown recently for becoming repetitive with the same matches and wrestlers, but it goes to show not only how valuable those wrestlers are, but how shallow the roster depth is. If other wrestlers had been showcased or built up to mean something, WWE could have the main eventers take a week or two off without any worry. Instead, we get an episode like this. In addition, Smackdown did it again by not only changing a previously promoted match once, but twice within a week, as the U.S. Title finals were supposed to be at the Royal Rumble, and then were moved to next week, only to conclude this week. To me, it was unnecessary, poorly planned, and took up too much time of a two hour show.
Jeff Indelicato has been a fan of professional wrestling since he was knee high to a grasshopper (little kid) after coming across the Wrestling Challenge episode after WrestleMania 7. He has not looked back. His passion has led him to winning wrestling trivia contests in his city, and even won him his Senior Talent Show by dancing to Shawn Michaels’ theme song. When not annoying others with wrestling talk, he loves spending time with his family and friends, and focuses on his other passion: movies. Follow him on Twitter @the_Indel or send him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S COLUMN: WWE SMACKDOWN HITS & MISSES 1/9: Styles and Renee sit-down interview, Gable & Benjamin talk, Bryan and Shane bicker, Lynch vs. Riott, Rusev & English vs. Fashion Police