WWE Smackdown Live Review & Results: January 23rd, 2018

A Trouble of His Own Making

Aaaand the loophole was finally seen and exploited by the duo of Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens, who have come to be referred to by AJ Styles under the stupid, stupid name “Kami” (or Kemi, since Kemi would make a more equal composition of their names, but who cares). Within WWE logic, Owens and Zayn’s logic made complete sense (and yep, we will not use “Kami” unless it becomes an actual team name). AJ Styles technically asked for a handicap match in a moment of frustration, and that is exactly what he will get come Sunday.

A pleasant thing we want to note is that through this segment, WWE had demonstrated very nicely how to build smart heel characters. These characters are those who make legitimate arguments that have just enough obnoxiousness to make people hate, yet just enough logic to make people think: “Hmm, these guys, you know, they kind of make sense.” It would be safe to say, Owens, Zayn, and The Miz all belong to this category, and we cannot have enough of these guys.

Good Outlooks

The last bit of in-ring interaction between Gable and Benjamin and The Usos before the latter’s tag team championship defense against the former this Sunday at the first “Big 4” event of the year, Royal Rumble. To be honest, we do not have much to discuss about this segment. It was a decent match, and an okay booking step – not making the champs look inferior, but also reminding the on-screen audience about Gable and Benjamin’s dangerous potential to upset the Samoan boys in 5 days. Solid win for Chad Gable.

Jump Rope!

Naomi took on Liv Morgan tonight, and we were quite impressed with Liv’s athleticism. That was not to undermine Naomi’s ablilities, but we were just surprised at Liv’s flex game (giggity). Fun little match. What followed was kind of predictable – women from all stables going at each other, and so were those from the same group – Becky Lynch tried to toss Naomi over the top rope without success. We like how Charlotte Flair never joined that commotion and just came out calmly with a microphone. That really helped build her “one level above the rest” character. This week, the women of Smackdown finally outdid those of RAW.