Air Date: 28/1/16
The show opens with New Day pissed off about The Rock’s actions on RAW, they are interrupted by The Miz who is also pissed off. The heels are very quickly interrupted by The Usos, and then Titus O’Neil and Dolph Ziggler as we head to the first match of the show in the most typical Smackdown way possible.
New Day (Big E, Kofi Kingston, and Xavier Woods) and The Miz vs. The Usos (Jimmy and Jey Uso), Titus O’Neil, and Dolph Ziggler
This was your standard filler eight man tag match. Everyone got to get some stuff in and looked good, and there were some fun spots. Titus seems to be getting a mini-push and while he sucks as a singles guy, him working as a hot tag and ragdolling people around here was a lot of fun. Titus O’Neil pins The Miz with Clash of the Titus ** ¾
Kalisto (c) vs. Neville (WWE United States Championship)
On paper this should have been a crazy high flying match straight out of WCW’s cruiserweight division. Instead we got a pretty solid match with some cool high flying spots, but the pacing just didn’t feel right at all and the finish came completely out of nowhere. Bit of a let-down, this. Kalisto pins Neville with the Salina Del Sol ***
We head to the Highlight Reel with Chris Jericho next. He hypes the crowd a little and brings out Dean Ambrose, who has a potted plant for some reason, and Roman Reigns. They banter back and forth about the triple threat match coming up at Fastlane with Brock Lesnar. Dean and Roman have no problem fighting each other and staying friends, and Dean isn’t afraid of Brock although Roman thinks he should be. The Wyatt Family comes out to interrupt, and a six man tag match is made for tonight’s main event. This was a fine segment to help build the Fastlane main event.
Curtis Axel (w/Adam Rose, Bo Dallas, and Heath Slater) vs. AJ Styles
The Outcasts cut a short little promo on AJ before the match, with Axel pissed off AJ eliminated him from the Royal Rumble. The match itself was quick and dirty, with the only real notable thing being that AJ has finally hit the Styles Clash, which he seems to have been avoiding using so far. AJ Styles pins Curtis Axel after a Styles Clash ** ½
Charlotte (w/Ric Flair) vs. Natalya
Charlotte and Natalya had one of the first matches that really made people stand up and take notice of Charlotte, and really helped the rebirth of women’s wrestling we seem to be seeing right now. This wasn’t anything like that, but was a perfectly fine throwaway TV match. Charlotte submits Natalya with a Figure 8 ** ½
Charlotte goes to attack Natalya again after the match only for Becky Lynch to come out and chase Charlotte off.
We get a video package of Goldust again trying to R-Truth to team with him before the show. This was far funnier than the RAW promo, which in hindsight was actually kind of funny.
The Wyatt Family (Bray Wyatt, Luke Harper, and Erick Rowan w/Braun Strowman) vs. Chris Jericho, Dean Ambrose, and Roman Reigns
This started off a little lame, but in the last five minutes or so we got some pretty fun sequences. It’s rare I say this, but I think Rowan is slowly developing into a pretty solid worker, he looked especially good in controlling Jericho. Roman Reigns wins by DQ after Braun Strowman interferes ***
After the match The Wyatts go after Roman, until Big Show comes out to make the save and gets beaten on as well. The faces eventually get the upperhand and stand tall to end the show. Fucking hot finish to the show.
Smackdown is always incredibly skippable, but this was an easy to watch show with a pretty awesome main event segment.