entertainment

WWE SmackDown Scores: Winners, Scores, Feedback, Highlights From Jan 1st | Bleacher report

0 out of 6

    Credit: WWE.com

    Happy New Year, and welcome to cover the first 2021 WWE SmackDown match.

    WWE has been looking to start the year by leaps and bounds after the tough 2020 as it prepares for the annual Royal Rumble on January 31.

    Roman Reigns scored two victories over Kevin Owens in both TLC and Cage Match. This week, the clan chief submitted a request to the management regarding KO.

    We’ve also seen the Big E fight Baron Corbyn In a title-less match just one week after defeating Sami Zayn to win the Intercontinental Championship.

    Sasha Banks and Bianca Bellaire teamed up to face Bailey and Carmela after the two teams lost to Asuka and Charlotte last week.

    Let’s take a look at everything that happened in SmackDown this week.

1 of 6

    After WWE praised John Hopper with graphics and summarized the Steel Cage match last week, Reigns made his way into the ring with Paul Heyman and Jey Uso.

    The world champion spoke of how his gold glove is an indication of how everything he touches is transformed into greatness. He says Heyman was neglected and saved. He said Usu was the best year of his career because of what he learned from the tribal chief.

    Owens came out and yelled at Reigns, saying he had his chance and failed. KO said that despite everything Reigns tried to do with him, he was still standing. He told Reigns he must be embarrassed that he had to use Uso to win.

    Owens said he would request a match with G to give him some payback before leaving.

    Degree: B +

    analyzing

    Reigns has been on top of his game for quite some time and this promo is yet another example of how far he’s gone since turning heels.

    As always, KO put on a solid show on the microphone, too. These guys work well with each other because their pictures are so different. Reigns is the poster boy while KO is the champion of the working man. It’s a great combination.

    This was a good way to start the premiere but the actual match might have been a better option.

2 of 6

    Big E’s first game after winning the IC title was also the first game of 2020. King Corbin served as his opponent while Sami Zayn worked with the commentary team.

    The two powerful forces were locked down and traded some removals to start things off. After two minutes, Corbyn took control and stopped his opponent.

    Wesley Blake and Brandon Cutler watched how their boss controlled the event. The king encountered the spear of Big E’s arena but ended up running straight to The Big Ending.

    Zayn, Cutler, and Blake E attacked for causing disqualification. The big guy fought hard but Apollo Cruz ended up saving everyone and taking them out. After the break, this turned to Crews, E vs. Zayn, and Corbin.

    The hot tag resulted in Big E throwing Corbin around the ring with a trio from the belly to the belly of suplexes followed by a running machine gun. After a close call with Helluva Kick, Corbin and his knights abandon Zayn. The crew hit him with a Powerbomb bomb to win.

    Degree: B

    analyzing

    This was an enjoyable pair of matches even if it was better to have one long match on both parts. However, anything that gets Crews on TV is acceptable.

    Zayn is one of the best high heel shoes in WWE right now. Every little thing he does is perfect for his personality and elevates everyone around him.

    It was a bit surprising to see Crews get the pin in place of the Big E but if that leads to some kind of nudge, it makes sense.

3 of 6

    Billy Kay accompanied Natalia and Tamina to the ring in their match against Liv Morgan and Robbie Riott. Kai tried to shout encouraging words, but Tamina told her to remain silent.

    After the opening shooting from Natey and Morgan, Tamina took control of Riott and put it in the corner. The green-haired wrestler rolled and tagged her partner for a series of hits.

    Riott Squad worked together to eliminate Tamina with a Russian double leg pass. For some reason, Kai decided to switch sides and roots for Riott and Morgan.

    Thanks to the distraction from Kai, Morgan was able to install Tamina. Kai celebrated like she did something special but Riott Squad acted like she didn’t want to do anything with her.

    Degree: C +

    analyzing

    This was a fast-paced match that would have been so much better if they had been given another five minutes. Morgan looked especially good with some of her hits for Tamina.

    Stranger Things with Kai were funny but just pointless. Do you want to beat the Riott squad, or join it? We don’t know yet. Should we care?

    Riott and Morgan’s continued winning streak should lead to a shot in the tag titles soon. They have the momentum. They just need a final installment.

4 of 6

    Belair and Carmela kicked off the event. EST forced Mella onto the carpet and started working on her arm. Bailey got the card and hit a kick from Belair.

    Banks and Blair worked together in ringside to knock out both opponents with some duo attack. We returned from a pause to see Bayley and Mila control the speed.

    The boss arrived hard to get a mark as the EST team struggled to break free from Bailey. The Suplex hit a lovely vertical but Carmella got in and prevented her from making the mark.

    I finally got in and I went to Carmela. Corey Graves made a joke from the Mandalorian while watching the true love of his life being beaten by the SmackDown women’s heroine.

    Belair knocked Bayley out in ringside while The Boss manages to lock the bank statement on Mella. Reginald pulled her out of the ring and Banks forced him to pay. This allowed Mila to hit the terminator to get the pin.

    Degree: B +

    analyzing

    This was a really good match that everyone should take the time to watch. All four women performed as if they were working in a large PPV.

    Mila who gets the pin would set her up for a second match with Banks for the title below the line, but the real superstar in this match was Belair.

    EST always looks very crisp with every move. It collides with textbook suplex tool making it clear how many people don’t know how to do it properly by comparison.

    Bayley and Banks are the best in WWE and showcase those skills. One of the best things about The Role Model is its ability to elevate others to the level we saw in this match.

5 out of 6

    Daniel Brian and Otis teamed up to confront Cesaro and Shinseuki Nakamura. Cesaro took control early and brought Brian to the corner to Nakamura could enter.

    We returned from intermission to see Cesaro and Nakamura still dominate The Yes Man. Swiss Superman got two gear with a slingshot attachment.

    Brian gets to Otis and The Dozer starts running over Cesaro. Chad Gabel encouraged him when he threw Cesaro and hit the caterpillar.

    Brian is back with the sunset flipped off the top rope for two numbers. Nakamura hit him with a kick in the face before putting him in an arm. Otis dismantled it but was taken out in the process. Brian Nakamura put in Yes Lock to win.

    Degree: B +

    analyzing

    Once again, WWE made a strong tag team match. It was the fourth in a row on this show, but each one felt different in their own way.

    Otis and Gable’s team might either be cool or a joke. It depends on how WWE booked them going forward. The pre-match video featuring Otis and Brian working hip-hop wasn’t a great sign.

    Cesaro and Nakamura remain among the best and most used stars on the list. Let’s hope they have more success in 2021.

6 of 6

    As soon as the bell rang, Owens dealt with Oso and began to empty him of rights and rights. He punched Aws in the mat and hit his head at the top of the barrettes.

    No matter what Uso tried to do, Owens kept the upper hand. He tells Usu that none of this was his fault and he should blame Reigns for continuing to beat him.

    We returned from a commercial to see Uso block Owens from accessing the superplex. Avoid KO splash and hit dazzling to win. This happened about 30 seconds after we got back.

    Owens didn’t stop there. He kept hitting Uce as he tried to get Reigns out. He tied Uso with the top rope and kept punishing him while the clan chief remained behind the scenes.

    Osso put on some crates near the stage and climbed up as part of the group. He was about to jump on him when Reigns appeared out of nowhere to attack him. Usu recovered and helped his cousin hit KO with the chairs.

    The strikes lasted several minutes and ended with throwing Owen through a table from about 10 feet high. The show ended with Reigns standing tall over his fallen opponent.

    Degree: B

    analyzing

    The match with Uso and the ensuing defeat made Owens look like a badass but it wasn’t an actual wrestling competition. It was still very fun.

    Uso is very good at selling and Owens is incredible at the verbal side of the game. Together, they kept everyone’s eyes on them until Reigns appeared to clean the bats.

    The table spot at the end looks great. This spat was pretty cool and it’s no surprise that WWE wants them to keep going. They will likely have a rematch at The Royal Rumble.

    Overall, this was a good show. WWE booked some strong matches and progressed with some events. Deville’s first promo after her return will be fun.

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