Welcome to the Smackdown Review for January 30 2017. For both this and Raw, I will go over what the big talking points were, pick the match of the night, and look ahead to the next show. And since the Mixed Match Challenge has started, I will review who won this weeks match up.
Trouble in Paradise
Shinsuke Nakamura basked in his win from the Royal Rumble. Getting the stage set for his match with AJ Styles at Wrestlemania, he was interrupted by Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn. The two got in his face until AJ Styles came out. Suggesting a tag match with him and Nakamura against Owens and Zayn, he then proceeded to help his rival kick the interlopers off the ring. That match would be booked, but the bigger news was that next week Owens and Zayn would face each other and the winner would get a shot at Styles at Fastlane. The promise of that shot immediately caused friction between the best friends, ending with Zayn walking out on Owens during their match. This worked so well it’s a wonder Shane McMahon didn’t think of it before.
The Next Test
After winning two falls to zero against Chad Gable and Shelton Benjamin, the Usos were in a celebratory mood. Promising that the tag team division would stay locked down, Jimmy and Jay seemed to be on top of the mountain. That is until the Bludgeon Brothers came out and stared down the champs. The Usos match up well with anyone who has their talent and speed. What will they do when faced with the power of two insane and hard hitting monsters?
Almost a New Champ
Charlotte might not have been chosen by Askua, but that did not mean she was resting on the Road to Wreslemania. She claimed that she wanted to Rhonda Rousey as her opponent. This brought out the Riott Squad who got into her face and then proceeded to beat her down. As Charlotte was trying to get off the ground, Carmella came in with the intention of cashing in. The problem was when she went for a super kick, she hit the referee and knocked him out. This gave Charlotte time to recover and Carmella was not happy as she retreated. This was probably one of the most creative ways to tease a cash in a very long time.
Match of the Night
Jinder Mahl vs. Kofi Kingston vs. Rusev vs. Zack Ryder (Fatal 4-way to determine the number 1 contender for the US Title) (Rusev wins by submission)
It seems that Rusev Day comes earlier and earlier ever year, but this Rusev Day was especially eventful. After cleaning ringside of everyone’s backup. The match turned into a move exhibition as everyone seemed to hit their finishing move in succession. It looked like Jinder Mahl might end up on top, but Rusev was able to take down him and Zack Ryder, which left Kofi Kingston in the Accolade for the win. Rusev gets his shot next week at Bobby Roode and it just so happens to fall on Rusev Day.
Mixed Match Challenge Week 3
Brawn Strowman & Alexia Bliss vs. Sami Zayn & Becky Lynch (Strowman and Bliss win by pin fall)
I said in my preview video on Monday that if Becky Lynch and Sami Zayn could get on the same page, they would be able to upset Braun Strowman. What I didn’t count on was Zayn not wanting to get in the ring with Strowman. Zayn was a heel, offering encouragement to Lynch, but making a tag almost impossible. When Stowman finally got his hands on Zayn, he proceeded to throw him around the ring floor. Bliss was able to hit Twisted Bliss on Lynch after standing on Strowman’s shoulders. Raw is the team to beat, and we will see next week if Smackdown can finally get on the board.
Chad Gable and Shelton Benjamin were able to beat Tyler Breeze and Fandangio. Ty Dillinger put up a vicious effort, but fell to Baron Corbin. Next week, we will see if the best friends are no more after their match.