The New Year’s Day episode of WWE SmackDown promised to deliver Big E’s first big test as Intercontinental Champion, while the upcoming Royal Rumble pay-per-view continued to take shape.
This week’s episode of the show kicked off with Roman Reigns who was feeling smug following his victory over Kevin Owens in a steel cage last week. Roman talked about how his gold glove is a reference to how everything he touches turns to greatness and built up his cousin before he was interrupted by Owens who wanted a match against Jey Uso later in the night.
Big E vs. King Corbin
It was a short match between the two men before Big E hit the Big Ending and was about to pick up the win, but Sami Zayn interfered. After The Knights of the Lone Wolf attacked Big E along with Sami Zayn, Apollo Crews came out and evened the odds.
Apollo Crews and Big E def. King Corbin and Sami Zayn
The match was later sanctioned into a tag team match between the four men, while the Knights of the Lone Wolf remained at ringside. Corbin and Zayn struggled to co-exist, and after several issues, the King and his Knights left Zayn alone. Crews took advantage and delivered his powerbomb for the victory.
The Riott Squad def. Natalya and Tamina
After weeks of issues with Liv Morgan and Ruby Riott, Billie Kay turned manager this week for Natalya and Tamina. Kay was quite the distraction at ringside which didn’t’ seem to help her team, who were easily defeated by The Riott Squad when Morgan rolled up Tamina. After the match, Billie Kay seemingly switched sides and celebrated with The Riott Squad.
Carmella and Bayley def. Sasha Banks and Bianca Belair
After last week’s mismatched Women’s Tag Team Championship match, these four women had a score to settle. After Bianca Belair disposed of Bayley at ringside, Banks locked in the Bank Statement on Carmella, but Reginald pulled Mella out of the ring.
After an altercation between Banks and Reginald, Carmella took advantage of the distraction to hit Mella Buster to pin the SmackDown Women’s Champion.
Backstage: Sonya Deville was seen walking past the Women’s Division on SmackDown with the likes of Tamina and Billie Kay turning their heads as they became aware of her presence. The commentary team announced that Deville had been reinstated on the SmackDown brand.
Montez Ford Written off TV?
Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins came out to the ring to deliver their predictions for 2021 before insulting Dolph Ziggler and Bobby Roode which brought the two men out. Ford was attacked with a steel chair in the brawl which was seemingly there to write him out of the show.
Daniel Bryan and Otis def. Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura
Otis teamed with Bryan to test his mettle against former Champions Nakamura and Cesaro. Bryan was alienated from his partner throughout the match, with Otis waiting patiently for the hot tag. Otis finally got the tag and managed to avoid the Kinshasa before Bryan secured the victory with the Yes Lock.
Kevin Owens def. Jey Uso
Owens had a point to prove after personally getting this match approved by Adam Pearce, and he started out the contest by taking down Uso and targeting his injured leg. Kevin Owens was on top throughout the match and got the win following a frog splash.
After the match, Owens handcuffed Uso to the ropes and continued the beatdown as revenge after Uso handcuffed him to the cage last week. Roman then ambushed Kevin Owens and the duo fought among the fans in the ThunderDome. Uso and Reigns then destroyed Owens with steel chairs before throwing him from the stands.