WWE SmackDown Report – 1/28/2022

Jan 28, 2022 - by Marc Middleton

– The WWE Royal Rumble go-home edition of SmackDown on FOX opens live from the T-Mobile Center in Kansas City, Missouri as Michael Cole welcomes us. He’s joined at ringside by Pat McAfee. They hype tonight’s face-off between Seth Rollins and WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns, plus Sonya Deville vs. Naomi, and The New Day’s Big E and Kofi Kingston vs. Madcap Moss and Happy Baron Corbin.

– We go right to the ring and out comes SmackDown Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair as Samantha Irvin does the introduction. Flair makes her way out as the pyro goes off. She heads to the ring as Cole hypes the 30-Woman Royal Rumble Match on Saturday night.

Flair says it is her honor as champion to do something that the Kansas City Chiefs and quarterback Patrick Mahomes will never do again – bring a title to the city. Fans boo. Flair says the fans aren’t the only ones heartbroken as 29 other women will be beat up and tossed out of the ring by her at the Royal Rumble on Saturday. Flair goes on about The Rumble and how dominant she is. Flair says usually the Rumble winner picks their champion to challenge at WrestleMania, but she will change the game this weekend when she picks her challenger. The music interrupts and out comes Shayna Baszler with a new theme.

Baszler apologizes but says all that talk about bodies breaking in the Rumble was music to her ears, her kinda language. Baszler gives Flair some props but warns that she will not hesitate to snap Flair like a twig, limb by limb, if it ends up just the two of them again tomorrow night. Baszler promises that after she tosses Flair over the top rope, she won’t waste any time in picking Flair as her WrestleMania 38 opponent, she will just have time for her limbs to heal up. The music interrupts and out comes Aliyah. Aliyah says she doesn’t know if it’s OK for her to be here but it seems like just anyone can come out. Flair asks who she is. Aliyah introduces herself and says she has a lot of butterflies in her stomach ahead of her first Rumble Match, which could lead to her first WrestleMania.

Aliyah is in the ring now. Flair says she has 0 chance of winning tomorrow night. Aliyah brags about her recent record-setting win over Natalya, and says she’s optimistic. The music interrupts and out comes Natalya now. Natalya talks trash to Aliyah and says her record-setting win was a fluke. Natalya brags about being a three-time Guinness World Record holder and says she will make it four tomorrow night. The music hits and out comes Shotzi next. Shotzi says what a preview this is of tomorrow night, all these massive egos clashing and descending into chaos, creating the perfect opportunity for someone like her, someone exactly like her, to sneak right in and seize the spotlight.

Shotzi laughs and fans boo. The five Superstars argue. Flair says this is enough, none of you belong in the ring with her and none of you stand a chance tomorrow night. She goes on but the music interrupts and out comes Sasha Banks making her return to a pop. Banks stands on the apron as the pyro goes off and fans cheer her on.

Banks declares that The Boss is back, baby. And she’s ready to rumble. Banks drops the mic and stares Flair down. Flair steps forward and then turns to Banks, and waves at her, taunting her. Banks slugs Flair and decks her with a right hand. Flair goes down to one knee. The other Superstars start brawling as Banks watches from the apron, laughing. Natalya drops Aliyah in the corner and then turns around to drop Flair. Aliyah ends up dropping Natalya with an enziguri. Baszler dropped some of the others to the floor. Baszler charges Aliyah but Aliyah sends her to the floor. Aliyah turns around to a big boot from Natalya, sending her out.

Flair and Banks are alone in the ring now. Flair turns around but Banks is staring at her. Banks catches a kick, insults Flair and acts like she smells, and ends up dumping The Queen over the top rope to the floor. Banks celebrates as her music hits. Flair seethes at ringside as Banks dances around in the ring.

– Sheamus and Ridge Holland are backstage with Megan Morant. She asks about facing Cesaro and Ricochet tonight. Holland says he can still hear the crunch of his nose breaking at WWE Day 1, and now it’s his turn to return the favor and smash Ricochet like the parasite he is. Sheamus gets hyped up over Holland and goes on about ways Holland is just like him. Holland presents Holland with a protective face mask like he used to wear. They head to the ring.

Ridge Holland and Sheamus vs. Cesaro and Ricochet

We go back to the ring and out comes Ridge Holland and Sheamus for this rematch from the WWE Day 1 Kickoff pre-show, which was won by Sheamus and Holland. They hit the ring to pose as we go to commercial.

Back from the break and Holland and Sheamus wait in the ring as Cesaro makes his way out first. Ricochet is out next. We see a pre-recorded promo where Ricochet announces his spot for the Men’s Royal Rumble. Sheamus starts off with Cesaro and they immediately lock up, going to the ropes and then the corner. Sheamus pushes Cesaro away and they argue. They tangle and Sheamus takes Cesaro down first. They fight back up but Sheamus goes to the floor for a breather.

Sheamus fights back in and they lock up again. Cesaro takes Sheamus down to the mat with a headlock. Sheamus mounts some offense but Cesaro levels him with a clothesline. Cesaro with a big stomp to the chest. Cesaro brings Sheamus to the corner and in comes Ricochet off the top rope with an axe handle.

Sheamus turns it around on Ricochet and in comes Holland. Holland goes to work on Ricochet but Ricochet sends him to the floor, dazing him and keeping control. Ricochet flies and takes Holland down at ringside for a pop. We go to commercial.

Back from the break and Ricochet fights Sheamus off but Sheamus catches him with a big Irish Curse backbreaker. We see how Holland leveled Ricochet with a huge shoulder during the break. Holland tags in now and man-handles Ricochet around the ring from corner to corner. Holland with a big overhead throw from the corner and some trash talking by he and Sheamus as fans boo but some cheer.

Holland keeps Ricochet down and scoop slams him in the middle of the ring again, then drops an elbow. Ricochet kicks out at 2. Holland bends Ricochet over his shoulder, holding him there. Ricochet ends up flying and taking Holland down but both are on the mat now. Sheamus and Cesaro tag in at the same time. Cesaro unloads and delivers big uppercuts in the corner. Cesaro runs into a back elbow but then nails a springboard corkscrew uppercut. Cesaro dumps Sheamus over the top rope to the floor. Cesaro runs around the ring and smashes Sheamus into the barrier with a big running uppercut.

Cesaro brings Sheamus back in the ring and goes to the top. Cesaro with the crossbody but Sheamus rolls through. Cesaro blocks the Irish Curse backbreaker and rolls Cesaro for a close 2 count but Holland runs in and breaks it up. Ricochet flies off the top rope with a missile dropkick to Holland. Sheamus levels Ricochet with a big jumping knee. Cesaro comes right back and slams Sheamus with a big backbreaker for a close 2 count. Sheamus blocks the Gotch Neutralizer.

Cesaro blocks a Brogue Kick and doesn’t see Holland tag in. Cesaro readies Sheamus for the Cesaro Swing but the legal Holland runs in and drops him with a headbutt using the mask. Holland then drops Cesaro with Northern Grit in the middle of the ring for the pin to win.

Winners: Ridge Holland and Sheamus

– After the match, the music hits as Holland and Sheamus celebrate in the middle of the ring, standing tall over Cesaro. Cesaro clutches his nose and Cole says he may have suffered a broken nose from the headbutt at the end of the bout.

– Our Progressive-sponsored replay shows how Kevin Owens and Seth Rollins won a non-title match over SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Usos last week, which bans The Usos from being at ringside for the Royal Rumble match between Rollins and WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns. We see Rollins backstage now and he’s all smiles. His face-to-face meeting with Reigns is coming up. Back to commercial.

– Back from the break and we get a “By The Numbers” video for the Royal Rumble.

Naomi vs. Sonya Deville

We go back to the ring and out comes Naomi to a pop. The camera cuts backstage and we see Sonya Deville with referee Dan Engler. Cole says Deville is a competitor tonight. Deville is talking down to the referee, saying he works for her and when Naomi goes down in the match and Deville pins her, he must… the referee interrupts and says he’s sorry but he has to call the match down the middle. The referee walks off and Deville isn’t happy. We go back to the ring and Naomi continues her entrance as we go back to commercial.

Back from the break and Deville makes her way out. The referee says he expects a fair and clean match, and he will call it down the middle. Deville stares at him. The bell rings and Deville misses or ducks Naomi, and goes the corner for a breather already. Naomi tries to stay on her but Deville yells at her to get back. Deville ducks a lock-up attempt again and goes to the corner again. Naomi isn’t happy and fans boo. Deville yells at the crowd as they boo. Naomi goes to lock up again and Deville kicks her, works her over and tackles her.

Deville mounts Naomi with lefts and rights. Deville stomps away in the corner now and the referee scolds her for not listening to the 5 count. Deville slams Naomi face-first into the mat, then grounds her and talks some trash. Naomi gets free and mounts some offense, sending Deville to the apron. Naomi rocks Deville in the corner. Deville blocks a move and kicks Naomi down, then pounds on her some more for a close 2 count.

Deville yells at the referee to count faster. Naomi rocks Deville and then dropkicks her to the mat for a pop. Naomi rocks Deville in the mouth and sends her to the floor as the referee counts. Naomi sends Deville face-first into the edge of the apron twice, then rolls her back in the ring for a 2 count.

Deville rolls back to the floor from the opposite side of the ring and Naomi goes for a baseball slide under the bottom rope but Deville catches her and drops her to the floor with a draping DDT. We go to commercial with Deville in control.

Back from the break and they’re in the ring now. Deville counters a move and drops Naomi with a Spinebuster for a close 2 count. Deville grounds Naomi now and keeps control, having a few more words with the referee. Fans boo as Deville goes on, now grounding Naomi in a headlock and talking trash. Fans rally for Naomi but Deville slams her back down by her hair. Naomi kips up, surprising Deville, and then kicks her down with a kick to the head. Naomi with another kick, and a springboard kick to the face from the corner, which stuns Deville.

Naomi with a springboard Stunner for a pop. Naomi unloads in the corner now, then delivers a running Bulldog into the middle turnbuckle. Naomi goes back to the top for a crossbody. Deville still kicks out. Naomi comes back with a big leg drop but Deville still kicks out at 2. Naomi shows some frustration now. Fans chant for Naomi now but she gets launched face-first into the middle turnbuckle.

Deville goes for a big vertical suplex in the middle of the ring but Naomi counters and turns it into a big snap DDT but Deville stays in the match. Deville comes back with a suplex into a big side slam for a close 2 count and she can’t believe it. They briefly tangle and Naomi hits the Full Nelson sitdown slam in the middle of the ring for another close call.

Naomi drags Deville back to the middle of the ring but Deville is holding on to and pulling up the ring apron cover, which distracts the referee. Deville takes advantage and rakes Naomi in the eyes, then holds the tights for the pin but Naomi still kicks out. Naomi misses a right hand but comes right back with the Rear View as fans chant her name. Naomi follows up with the top rope split-legged moonsault for the pin to win.

Winner: Naomi

– After the match, the music hits as Naomi stands tall and celebrates. The referee raises her arm but quickly retreats so he doesn’t have to deal with Deville. Deville recovers and quickly marches up the ramp without stopping. Naomi continues her celebration while fans cheer her on. Naomi takes the mic and tells the fans we finally did it. She says after 153 days of Deville tormenting her, it still wasn’t enough to stop the glow. Deville is watching from the entrance-way now. Naomi says somehow she still managed to shine through, just like she will when she wins the Royal Rumble tomorrow. Naomi taunts Deville and tells her not to slip on her tears on the way out. Naomi leads the crowd in singing “Goodbye!” to Deville now. Her music starts back up and the celebration continues until Deville comes back out, now wearing a jacket over her gear. A furious Deville yells for the music to be cut. She goes on about how excited Naomi is for The Rumble, then says as a WWE official, she can’t let Naomi go into The Rumble without a little surprise. It’s a special guest entrant… and her name is… Sonya Deville. Deville has put herself in The Rumble. Deville seethes and tosses the mic, then walks off to the back. Naomi shakes her head in the ring.

– Kayla Braxton is backstage with SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Usos. They aren’t worried about being banned from ringside during Seth Rollins vs. WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns at the Royal Rumble because no matter what, one thing will remain the same – and still, Universal Champion Roman Reigns. The Viking Raiders walk up and The Usos acknowledge them as their new challengers. The Usos downplay them and say they stink. Erik and Ivar admit they do love a good feast, and they do come with a manly odor, but they also love their axes. We see the axes they are holding now, which seems to worry The Usos. They taunt The Usos with the axes and The Usos walk away a little afraid.

– We go back to the ring and out comes Sami Zayn for another episode of his stunt show, InZayn. It looks like Jinder Mahal and Shanky will be his guests tonight. Sami heads to the ring and we go back to commercial.

Back from the break and Sami is sitting at a table in the ring. Mahal is sitting across from him, and Shanky is standing up behind Jinder. Sami has his own talk show set now.Zayn says they’ve re-packaged things because the stunts and pranks got a little out of hand and due to Johnny Knoxville, he almost went to the hospital. Sami says because of this, InZayn is now a live podcast talk show, not a stunt show. He introduces Shanky and Jinder, saying they will be in tag team action tonight, and also knocks Rick Boogs and WWE Intercontinental Champion Shinsuke Nakamura.

Sami thanks Jinder and Shanky for being here, and Jinder thanks him and says it’s an honor to be on his pilot episode. Sami interrupts and goes on about how he doesn’t want to talk about Knoxville, and never wants to hear his name again. Fans chant for Knoxville now and Sami says they will edit that part out. Sami says this is a show for intellectuals now, and will be for smart people only. They go on and Jinder talks about dealing with Nakamura. Jinder says they both have proteges now, and he has Shanky. Sami apologizes because Shanky has probably never even heard of Knoxville. Jinder says actually Knoxville and Jackass are huge in India, and all around the world. Shanky says he loved the Bungee Port-o-Potty stunt. Sami doesn’t believe Jackass has worldwide fame, and says the show is probably only for the kind of locals you’d find in Kansas City. Fans boo Sami and Sami says all of this will be edited out.

The music interrupts and out comes Boogs on his guitar. He introduces himself and then gives a big introduction to Nakamura. Boogs shreds and begins the entrance for the WWE Intercontinental Champion. McAfee goes wild at ringside. They enter the ring and the teams face off. Nakamura kicks Sami out of nowhere, sending him out of the ring to the floor. Sami acts like he’s going to rush the ring to fight back but he puts the brakes on and stays outside of the ring. Boogs starts playing some more as Cole sends us to a WWE 2K22 trailer and we go back to a break.

WWE Intercontinental Champion Shinsuke Nakamura and Rick Boogs vs. Jinder Mahal and Shanky

Back from the break and Shinsuke Nakamura is going at it with Jinder Mahal. Sami Zayn is on commentary. Nakamura takes control and tags in Boogs, then sends Jinder into him for a big assisted slam. Boogs keeps control and in comes Shanky.

Shanky and Boogs face off before going at it. Boogs over-powers the big man in the corner, but Shanky turns it around and beats Boogs into their corner. Boogs ends up fighting both Shanky and Jinder, knocking Jinder off the apron. Shanky grabs Boogs for a tight hold but Boogs powers up with a suplex and breaks it. Both are down now. Jinder comes back in the ring.

Sami runs over and yanks Nakamura off the apron, sending him face-first into the edge of the apron. Jinder works over Boogs in the corner now but Boogs just takes it and hulks up. Shanky tags in and they double team Boogs now but he fights them, then drops Jinder with a Polish Hammer. Boogs keeps running and stuns Shanky with two flying shoulder tackles.

Boogs then drops Shanky with the Polish Hammer for a big pop. Boogs struts around the ring and then manages to get Shanky into the abdominal stretch, then power him up into the Boogs Cruise slam for the pin in the middle of the ring.

Winners: Rick Boogs and Shinsuke Nakamura

– After the match, Nakamura’s music hits as Boogs celebrates and Nakamura recovers at ringside from what Zayn did. We go to replays. Sami talks some trash and taunts Nakamura from the stage while Boogs stands with Nakamura at ringside.

– Kayla Braxton is backstage with The New Day’s Big E and Kofi Kingston. They get riled up and talk about how when one of The New Day members win the Royal Rumble, they all win. They go on with the energetic promo and head out.

The New Day vs. Happy Baron Corbin and Madcap Moss

We go back to the ring and out comes The New Day’s Big E and Kofi Kingston. Fans cheer them on as they hit the ring and we go back to commercial.

Back from the break and The New Day looks on as Happy Baron Corbin and Madcap Moss head to the ring. We get a pre-recorded promo with Corbin and Moss talking about how it will feel good to embarrass The New Day. Moss cracks a joke on Drew McIntyre and Corbin eats it up. Moss and Big E go at it to start. Moss dodges a move and drops Big E, then shows off a little too much. Moss runs the ropes and gets dropped by a back elbow for a 2 count. Big E and Kofi double team Moss now and Kofi covers for a 2 count.

Corbin tags in and sends Kofi to the corner, then splashes him and tosses him to the mat. Corbin works Kofi over and knocks Big E off the apron. Corbin runs into a corner kick from Kofi. Kofi comes off the top rope and nails Corbin, then dropkicks him. Moss tags in but Kofi dropkicks him to the floor. Kofi goes to the top and leaps out to the floor but Corbin and Moss both catch him in mid-air, then ram him face-first into the ring post. We go back to commercial.

Back from the break and Moss is stomping away in the corner to keep Kofi down. Corbin tags back but Kofi blocks a double team and tags in Big E. Big E launches Corbin and then Moss with big belly-to-belly throws. He goes for another on Corbin but gets hit in the throat. Big E with the Uranage. He goes on and hits Corbin with another belly-to-belly after he runs out and then back in. Big E dances over Corbin and runs the ropes for the big splash. Big E rallies the crowd now, then tags in Kofi as they chant for The New Day. Corbin blocks the double team and takes control. Corbin and Moss with more offense now.

Kofi kicks out of a Deep Six after Moss goes for the pin. Corbin tries to interfere but Big E sends him into the steel ring steps. Moss runs into Kofi’s boot in the corner. Big E tags in and they hit the Midnight Hour for the pin to win.

Winners: The New Day

– After the match, Big E and Kingston celebrate as the music hits.

– Cole and McAfee send us to another Royal Rumble promo.

– We go back to the ring and out comes WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns as the pyro goes off. Reigns raises the title and heads to the ring as we go back to commercial.

Back from the break and Cole announces WWE Hall of Famer Kane for Talking Smack tomorrow. We go back to the ring and Reigns raises the Universal Title in the air as the pyro goes off. Before Reigns can speak or do anything, Seth Rollins’ music hits and out he comes. Rollins enters the ring and Reigns stares him down. Fans are hot as they meet in the middle of the ring. Reigns takes the mic as Rollins plays to the crowd. Reigns then calls on Kansas City to acknowledge him, and most of them do but others boo.

Rollins taunts Reigns and acknowledges he played Reigns like a fiddle last week. He congratulates Reigns on getting his cousins disqualified last week, making their Royal Rumble bout one-on-one. Reigns says it was a decision – sit around and let Rollins embarrass his family, The Bloodline, or punch Rollins in the face and get the same result. Rollins says Rollins brought more shame to the family than anybody if getting pinned by him means embarrassment.

Reigns says he said this last week but again Rollins is living in the past because he, Reigns, is in God Mode now. Rollins touts some of their moments from the past and Rollins says it was all water under the bridge. Rollins asks what about when he took a steel chair to Reigns’ back and changed the game forever, meaning when he broke up The Shield years ago. Reigns gets a bit angry now and Rollins keeps taunting him. Rollins says that one stings a little bit. Rollins knew what he was doing when he used the chair on Reigns, it was for his own good, he knew it would catapult Reigns into stardom. Rollins says Reigns should thank him for all the money, the private jets and everything else he’s received since then. Rollins says Reigns has done it all except one thing – beat Rollins when it matters the most. Rollins wants Reigns to know its not personal when he takes the title tomorrow night. Rollins says, “My brother, I will always love you.”

Rollins laughs at Reigns now as Reigns seethes. Rollins continues to taunt Reigns, who is silent now. Rollins laughs some more and dances around the ring. Reigns mentions how Rollins used that chair on his back to break up The Shield. Reigns has tried to forgive Rollins, he really has, but he will never forgive Rollins for what he did to “us” – The Shield. Reigns says he hates Rollins. Rollins laughs and says he knows Reigns hates him. Rollins says Reigns calls him a clown but the joke is Reigns, his title reign, The Bloodline, his cousins, his whole family, his daddy and uncle, and tomorrow night it all goes up in smoke.

Rollins laughs and Reigns shoves him. Reigns is furious now. Rollins taunts him and laughs some more in the middle of the ring. Reigns walks past Rollins to exit the ring and they bump shoulders on purpose. Reigns immediately turns back around and tries to connect with a Superman Punch but Rollins ducks it and rolls out of the ring. Rollins’ music hits as he dances on the entrance-way now, taunting Reigns and laughing. Reigns seethes in the ring as the Royal Rumble go-home edition of SmackDown goes off the air.

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