The SmarK Rant for WWE Friday Night Smackdown – 01.03.20
Live from Memphis, TN
Your hosts are Michael Cole & Corey Graves
The Miz interrupts a Daniel Bryan wrist-taping and he swears vengeance on the Fiend, vowing to take away everything that he loves. Wait, did he kill Blackjack Mulligan? I wouldn’t have thought that Miz had it in him. That’s hardcore, man.
Sasha Banks & Bayley v. Lacey Evans & Dana Brooke v. Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross
I suppose you could put together a worse tag team than Dana and Lacey if you had lots of time and motivation. For those keeping track, this match has future implications towards who Bayley will defend the Women’s title against next, as well as who gets a shot at the Women’s tag team titles next. That seems like a lot of pressure to put on them. So Bayley does her generic heel promo until Lacey interrupts, talking about how they’re trash-talking her daughter. What? They didn’t say anything about her daughter! We take a break after all the jibber-jabber and return with Lacey attacking Sasha, but Nikki Cross comes in and gets a rollup on Lacey for two. Over to the “much improved” Dana Brooke, according to Michael Cole. You know, the one who lost in like 30 seconds to Bayley multiple times. Also, I’m assuming I know the answer already, but have they already dropped the thing with Elias and Drake Maverick and all that? Alexa runs wild on Sasha for a bit, but Bayley cuts her off and chokes her out on the ropes. Sasha goes to a chinlock and gets a dropkick on Alexa for two. Everyone somehow lands on the floor in a horribly contrived setup spot, and Nikki hits a dive as SMACKDOWN ROLLS ON. Back from the break with Dana running wild now, but Sasha and Bayley double-team her in the corner and Sasha gets two. They double-team Dana in the corner for a boring heat segment, but she fights back with a suplex on Sasha and makes the hot tag to Lacey. Lacey with a knee strike on Bayley, but goes up and misses the moonsault, and the Bayley to Belly gets two. Everyone runs in and Lacey fights off Sasha before hitting the punch, and Dana comes off the top with a senton to finish at 13:24. The replay shows Dana landed RIGHT on Sasha’s ribs, completely neglecting to land with her feet. Match was dull and meandering, and I have no idea why we even needed Alexa & Nikki in there. And they even asked the same question themselves before the match! **
Meanwhile, Otis is so broken up about Dolph Ziggler stepping on his cake last week that he can barely lift his keg of beer.
Meanwhile, The Miz is so glum that even the New Day can’t cheer him up with 2020-themed pancakes. And Miz still won’t shut up about the Fiend, and wastes perfectly good pancakes due to his grumpiness. First the cake, and now the pancakes. It was like when WCW used to blow up cars every week on Nitro but with baked goods.
Elias is here to sing a song. And that’s the segment.
Meanwhile, The Revival bitches about various stuff, but Chad Gable stops by and we get short jokes to set up a singles match.
Chad Gable v. Dash Wilder
Gable gets a northern lights suplex for two, but he goes up and gets crotched, and Wilder brings him down for two. Cole brings the hard-hitting journalism by telling Dawson that “maybe if you guys won a match once in a while you wouldn’t get put in those gimmick matches”. They JUST had a shot at the tag titles at TLC due to winning a multi-team match! On this very show! Gable tries an anklelock, but Wilder drops him on the top rope, and Gable reverses back into the anklelock for the submission at 2:50. No one cared. *1/2 The Revival proceed to the beatdown, but Sheamus finally returns and the Revival runs away. And then Sheamus turns on Gable immediately and lays him out with a Brogue Kick to make him look like a complete jobber as they completely waste whatever babyface juice they could have gotten out of him with his big return. They were just literally HANDED a top babyface on a show desperately lacking in them and they throw it away for a feud with fucking Shorty G.
Kofi Kingston v. The Miz
So Miz is supposed to be all morose and moody, and he comes out and does his usual wacky entrance. And then he goes back to being all grumpy again. So Kofi frustrates him with a few takedowns, but Miz rolls him up for two. Kofi with a back elbow, but Miz tosses him out and follows with a baseball slide that misses. Kofi keeps teasing him, so Miz stomps him down and tries the figure-four. Kofi escapes that, so Miz hits the marshmallow knees in the corner, which Kofi rightly shrugs off and comes back with the Boom Drop. Miz tries the Skull Crushing Finale, but Kofi rolls him up for the pin at 4:00. Miz attacks after the loss and he’s so fired up that his punches were almost making contact! Oh man, he’s in a dangerous place now. Just a match. **
Meanwhile, Daniel Bryan and Roman Reigns are already teasing a Wrestlemania match. Somehow I don’t think so.
So during the break we get an ad for WWE Champions, where they say “Download the game and play as Hulk Hogan now!” because Scopely are huge rat-faced liars. Trust me, you have a better chance of getting hit by lightning while cashing a winning lottery ticket than you would ever have of getting Hulk Hogan in that game. That game is a soul-crushing money pit and you would do well to stay far away. It’s too late to save me.
Meanwhile, John Morrison pops out of the Miz’s dressing room and that’s his big return. Wow, my world is rocked. They should rocket this guy to the damn moon as their top babyface immediately. But first he’ll have to do a bunch of jobs to prove his loyalty and punish him for having a career outside of WWE, and then they’ll wonder why no one cares by Wrestlemania. But maybe I’m a pessimist.
Otis v. Drew Gulak
But first, Gulak has a 372 slide Powerpoint presentation about why Mandy Rose would never date Otis. And as usual, Gulak gets completely squashed, as Otis gets a press slam while we cut to the back for one of those awkward scenes of Mandy and Sonya having to watch a screen in the background while looking at the camera. Otis with the corner splash and Caterpillar to set up a pump splash for the pin at 2:23. ½*
Braun Strowman v. Cesaro
Strowman tosses Cesaro around and we take a break. Back with Cesaro taking out the knee to get the heat, and Nakamura adds a cheapshot from the floor as Cesaro ges two. Cesaro goes up and Braun catches him with a chokeslam attempt, but Cesaro reverses into a sleeper. Braun quickly escapes that and makes his comeback with shoulderblocks to chase everyone to the floor. Sami hides under the ring while Braun shoulderblocks everyone, but then he runs interference and Cesaro tries the Neutralizer. Andthen Braun slams out of that for the pin at 8:18. And then Nakamura attacks afterwards and lays out Braun to set up their title match whenever that actually happens. *1/2
Dolph Ziggler & King Corbin v. Roman Reigns & Daniel Bryan
Corbin attacks Reigns in the corner to start, but Ziggler comes in and gets double-teamed by the babyfaces. And then the stupid Fiend stuff plays and we take a break. Back with Roman beating on Corbin, but he walks into a Deep Fried Six for two. So the heels double on Reigns and Dolph gets a neckbreaker after some trash talk. Corbin sends him into the post a couple of times and follows with the Dine & Dash, but Roman counters with the superman punch and makes the hot tag to Bryan. Bryan finally wakes up the crowd after two hours of yawn-inducing non-action and gets the Yes Kicks in the corner before hitting a rana from the top, but Dolph rolls him up for two. Bryan reverse to the Yes Lock, but Corbin makes the save, so Roman spears him. Dolph tries the Zig Zag on Bryan, but walks into the running knee. And then the lights go out again and the Fiend attacks. And we get Bray Wyatt destroying yet another babyface as the match is thrown out at 12:00 because booking finishes is HARD. Match was fine, but Bryan clearly knows his place in this storyline and does not give fuck #1. **1/2 And we get another threat of dog food being dumped on Reigns, but the Usos have apparently finished all their court dates for their DUI charges and make the save to end the show. Hopefully they don’t drive Roman home or we might never see him again. Maybe if Baron Corbin was a better bartender he would have cut them off sooner.
Well, some stuff happened. Unfortunately it was on this boring-ass show.