Welcome to Ringside News’ coverage of WWE SmackDown! Please keep refreshing throughout the show for constant updates once it kicks off at 8:00 PM EST.
For tonight’s episode of SmackDown, two matches have been announced, and they are both title matches! Let’s take a look at tonight’s announced card as we keep in mind that we are one week closer to the Royal Rumble.
First up, The Street Profits will defend their SmackDown Tag Team Championships against Robert Roode and Dolph Ziggler. The feud between these two teams reached a boiling point last week when, while the Profits were celebrating in the ring and mocking Ziggler, Ziggler and Roode interrupted their celebration and attacked them. Who will emerge victorious tonight?
Also on tonight’s show, Intercontinental Champion Big E will defend his newly-won championship against Apollo Crews. After Crews saved Big E last week following a beatdown from King Corbin and Sami Zayn, Crews accepted Big E’s open challenge last week for tonight’s show.
Finally, as stated earlier, it is worth remembering that we are one week closer to the Royal Rumble. We will likely see more superstars declaring themselves for the rumble, and Kevin Owens is probably still seeking revenge against Jey Uso and the Tribal Cheif, Universal Champion Roman Reigns.
Remember to continue to refresh the page throughout the night as we bring you live coverage of WWE SmackDown and leave your comments on the show below! We will being coverage when SmackDown goes live at 8:00 PM, EST!
Before the Show
Before the start of tonight’s show, WWE’s Twitter announced that the main event of the show will be a Gauntlet Match to determine the #1 Contender for Roman Reigns’ Universal Championship at the Royal Rumble!
Roman Reigns’ music hits. Reigns, Jey Use, and Paul Heyman come out and start to head towards the ring. As they make their way down to the ring, Michael Cole explains the rules of the Gauntlet Match – one on one, pinfall or submission eliminations until only one man is left standing.
Roman gets on the mic and says that there is “a lot of discussion” about what they did to Kevin Owens. He says that he likes and respects Kevin Owens for never laying down and never giving up. He says that Owens put him in a tough spot and he “had to do what I had to do.”
He says that he cares about the locker room and he cares about everyone there, as that is his responsibility because he is at the top. He says that Adam Pierce is to blame for Kevin Owens not being able to compete and make money and provide for his family. Reigns calls out Adam Pierce, and Paul Heyman shouts for “Pierce! Now!”
Pierce does eventually make his way down to the ring. Roman says that he wants Pierce to watch a video package that he prepared. It shows clips from the cage match between Kevin Owens and Roman Reigns and Kevin Owens asking Pierce for a match against Reigns.
The video package goes on to show Paul Heyman telling Roman how Pierce was the one responsible for the match and how Roman told Jey to take care of Owens. We get a recap of Owens beating up Jey and Roman attacking him.
After the video, Roman asks Pierce what he has to say for himself. Roman says that he wants Pierce to take responsibility for what happened to Owens. Roman says that Pierce should have cared about Owens’ well being.
He says that he and Heyman do their job, but Pierce didn’t do his job in taking care of the talent. He says that Pierce is to blame. He says that Pierce had an opportunity to make amends for his actions, but Pierce booked the Gauntlet Match.
Pierce says that he wants to put the best talent against Roman, but Roman keeps turning Pierce’s words on him, asking Pierce if he thinks Roman is bad as his job or if he is saying that Roman is stupid.
Roman says that if Pierce thinks he is stupid, that’s a problem because it means that he doesn’t respect him. He says that when people don’t respect him, there are consequences. He grabs Pierece’s jacket and pulls him towards him, but Heyman convinces him to back off.
Roman says to Pierce, “Right now – right now – you’re perfectly safe.” Roman, Paul, and Jey leave the ring and head up the ramp.
We are told that Big E will defend his Intercontinental Championship against Apollo Crews next.
Back from commercial, and Apollo Crews is already in the ring.
Apollo Crews vs. Big E for the Intercontinental Championship
Crews starts explosively, with a dropkick and a kick to Big E, taking him off his feet and pinning him for two. Crews goes to the top and goes for a dive, but Big E avoids the dive and takes out Crews with a back elbow.
Big E drags Crews to the apron and hits him with a standing splash onto Crews on the apron. In the ring, Big E goes for a back suplex, but Crews lands on his feet and lays into Big E, hitting a splash onto Big E in the corner.
Crews hits Three Amigos German suplexes, pinning Big E for two. Big E rolls to the outside, and Crews goes to the apron. He kicks Big E in the face, then hits a moonsault onto Big E from the apron.
Crews rolls Big E into the ring and pins him for one. Crews drags Big E into the corner and sits him on the top rope. Crews follows and hit a superplex on Big E. Apollo rolls through the suplex and he and Big E seem to both cover each other. The bell rings and Crews celebrates, saying, “I won,” while Big E looks confused, and we go to commercial.
Back from commercial, we get a replay of the finish of the match. Both men had their shoulders down. The referee says that the match ended in a double pinfall, and it was a draw.
Big E tires to apologize to Crews, saying, “I don’t make the rules, man.” He wants a fist bump, but Crews slaps him. Big E hands the belt to the ref, saying “ring the bell.”
Big E vs. Apollo Crews for the Intercontinental Championship
Big E hits a series of suplexes, then a running splash on Crews. He picks up Crews and goes for the Big Ending, but Crews evades and goes to the apron. Big E runs at Crews, but Crews brings up a knee.
Big E falls to the mat and Crews hits a frogsplash on Big E, pinning him for two. Crews picks up Big E, but Big E escapes and tries to backslide Crews. Crews blocks and rolls up Big E for two.
Crews hits a kick to Big E, then hits a spinebuster and a standing moonsault onto Big E, pinning him for a two count. Big E rolls up Crews into a pin, but then transitions into a submission. Crews kicks Big E away, and Big E tries to go for the Big Ending. Crews escapes, kicks Big E.
Crews goes for a back suplex, but Big E escapes. Crews runs at Big E in the corner, but Big E stops him and plants him with a ura nage. Big E picks up Apollo Crews and hits a Big Ending, pinning him for the win.
Winner: Big E
Adam Pierce is shown backstage on the phone with someone. Sonya Deville. Deville seems that she will be working in an official capacity, as Pierce says that he needs help and Deville says that she wants to help.
Pierce welcomes Deville back, but Deville thinks that Pierce is entering the Gauntlet Match. Pierce shuts that idea down, but commentary says that is still up in the air about whether or not Pierce will join the match.
Back from the commercial, and Alyse Ashton introduces Bianca Belair for an interview after Bianca announces that she has declared for the Royal Rumble. Before she can say anything in her match, Bayley interrupts and says that she will also enter and she win the match.
We get a recap of the Street Profits celebration last week and Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode’s beatdown on them that led to tonight’s championship match.
The Street Profits make their way down to the ring for their tag team championship defense, and we go to commercial.
Back from commercial, Carmella is backstage talking about how she is better than Sasha Banks after Sasha was named Sports Illustrated’s #1 Superstar of 2020.
SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Street Profits vs. Bobby Roode and Dolph Ziggler for the SmackDown Tag Team Championships
Angelo Dawkins and Dolph Ziggler start the match. Ziggler gets Dawkins in a headlock, but Dawkins escpaes and gets one of his own, then tags Ziggler down with a shoulder tackle and a dropkick.
Ford tags in and they hit a double shoulder tackle on Ziggler, then Dawkins drops Ford on Ziggler, and FOrd pins him for two. Ziggler fights to his feet and tags in Roode. Roode stomps away at Ford in the corner.
Roode lays into Ford, tossing his face into a top turnbuckle. Ford fights back and pins Roode in the opposite corner. Roode kicks at Ford’s injured knee and creates separation. Ford dumps Roode over the top rope to the outside.
Ziggler runs at him, but Ford drops Ziggler on the apron as well. Ford hits an elbow on Ziggler, knocking him to the outside. Ford hits a suicide dive onto Ziggler and Roode, but when he tries to stand back up, his knee gives out. Dawkins drops to the floor and runs to Ford’s side, asking him if he is okay.
Back from commercial and Dawkins is the legal man as Ford is off the apron and trying to help his leg recover. Dawkins hits a back body drop on Roode, then a spinning splash and a bulldog on Roode, pinning him for two.
Dawkins almost tags in Ford, but thinks better of it and Roode takes advantage of the lapse, tagging in Ziggler. Ziggler lays into Dawkins, raking at Dawkins eyes and taunting him.
The official pulls Ziggler off of Dawkins, and Roode uses the distraction to hit Dawkins in the face. Ziggler locks in a front chancery and Dawkins tries to reach for Ford, but Ziggler gator rolls Dawkins away.
Ziggler locks in an armbar and tags in Roode, who lays into Dawkins’ arm. Roode hits a neckbreaker on Dawkins, pinning him for two. Roode taunts Ford on the apron and keeps Dawkins away from him.
Roode whips Dawkins into his corner and tags in Ziggler. Roode tries to whip Ziggler into Dawkins in the corner, but Dawkins evades and tosses Roode out of the ring. Before he can make the tag to Ford, Roode pulls Ford off of the apron.
Ford fights off Roode and is in clear pain, but he gets back to the apron and tags in. He takes out Ziggler with a series of strikes and kicks. Ford hits a back body drop on Roode, but his knee gives out. Ziggler runs at Ford, but Ford hits a back drop on Ziggler. Ziggler lands, but Ford hits a discus lariat, pinning Ziggler for two.
Ford tries to climb to the top to hit a frogsplash. Roode tries to pull him down from the apron, but Ford kicks Roode away. Ziggler jumps to the top rope and hits a facebuster on Ford from the top rope, pinning him for two.
Ziggler waits for Ford to get back to his feet and he runs at Ford. Ford catches him with a superkick and lays on Ziggler, pinning him. Roode breaks up the pin, but Dawkins tosses Roode out of the ring and tries to get Ford to make the tag.
Roode gets on the apron and attacks Dawkins. Dawkins rights off Roode, but Ziggler attacks Dawkins, knocking him off the apron. Ziggler attacks Ford’s bad knee, and Roode tags in, hitting a fisherman’s suplex, pinning him for two.
Roode goes to hit a Glorious Bomb on, but Ford hits a step up enziguri on Roode. Roode tags Ziggler in, and they hit a spinebuster into a Zig Zag, pinning Ford for three.
Winners: Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode
As Ford and Dawkins try to get to their feet in the ring, Ziggler and Roode attack them from behind and celebrate.
As Pierce and Deville are backstage, talking about potential challengers for Roode and Ziggler. Heyman shows up and Deville excuses herself. Heyman says that he respects Pierce and he knows Pierce’s history.
Heyman says that he knew Pierce’s goal was to be a WWE Champion. He pulled a few strings, and now Adam Pierce is in the Gauntlet Match. He says that Pierce has the chance to achieve his dream, “Courtesy of Roman Reigns.” The Gauntlet Match is up next!
Back from commercial, we see the results of the tag team match last week with Tamina and Natalya losing to the Riott Squad along with Billie Kay attaching herself to the Riott Squad.
Backstage, she approaches Ruby Riott and Liv Morgan, and Billie Kay asks to join the Riott Squad. Ruby says no, but Billie starts to cry. Liv says, “It’s not that we don’t want you-,” and Billie cuts her off, saying that she knew they would agree. She hands them her resume and runs off.
Rey Mysterio, Sami Zayn, Shinsuke Nakamura, Daniel Bryan, King Corbin, and Adam Pierece in a Gauntlet Match to Deteremine the #1 Contender for the Universal Championship
Rey Mysterio comes out first and Sami Zayn’s music hits, and he complains about how he is in the top stop in the Gauntlet Match. He says that its a conspiracy targeting him. He brings a camera crew with him to document the conspiracy.
When Sami gets in the ring, Rey Mysterio immediately hits him with a dropkick and a 619, pinning him and eliminating him.
Shinsuke Nakamura comes out next, and the gauntlet match will continue after a commercial break.
Shinsuke locks in a headlock on Rey, then takes him down with a shoulder tackle. Nakamura rolls Rey, but Rey rolls through and kicks Nakamura in the face, pinning him for two.
Nakamura fights to his feet, but Rey takes him down with a hurricanrana. Mysterio goes for a baseball slide to Nakamura on the outside, but Nakamura blocks and hits him with a knee.
Rey gets back in the ring and hits a sliding sunset bomb, but Nakamura rolls through and hits a running knee on Ray. Nakamura rolls Rey back into the ring, pinning him for two.
Nakamura sets Rey up in the corner and hits a running dropkick onto Rey, pinning him for two. Nakamura hits another knee on Rey, pinning him for two again. Nakamura sets Rey up on the top rope. He goes for a superplex, but Rey blocks.
Rey punches Nakamura away, then headbutts him back to the mat. Rey hits a dive onto Nakamura. Rey rolls up Nakamura for two. Rey runs at Nakamura, but Nakamura dumps him to the apron. Nakamura kicks Rey in the face, but Rey fights back.
Rey tries to attack Nakamura, but Nakamura catches him. Rey escapes, sending him to the middle rope. Rey hits a 619, then goes for a frogsplash, but Nakamura gets his knees up and catches him in a an armbar. Rey submits and is eliminated.
As Nakamura’s music hits, King Corbin runs down to the ring and attacks Domink Mysterio, throwing him into the steel steps. He then hits a chokeslam on Mysterio in the ring, and Corbin is the next entrant.
Back from commercial and Nakamura and Corbin are already going at it. Corbin hits a lariat on Nakamura, pinning him for two. Corbin strikes away at Nakamura in the corner, then tosses him facefirst into a turnbuckle.
Corbin continue to lay into Nakamura and runs at him, but Nakamura dodges. Nakamura hits a kick to Corbin’s head, and he rolls out of the ring. Nakamura goes for a diving axe handle, but Corbin catches him and drives his back into the ring post.
Back in the ring, Corbin covers Nakamura for two. Corbin punches at Nakamura’s head, then hits a back suplex, pinning him for two. Corbin picks up Nakamura and goes for a suplex. Nakamura lands on his feet and kicks Corbin in the face.
Nakamura starts fighting back, and Nakamura kicks Corbin into the corner. Corbin whips Nakamura into the opposite corner and runs at him, but Nakamura catches him with another kick. Nakamura goes to the top rope and hits a diving kick into Corbin’s chest, covering him for two.
Nakamura goes to the corner and signals for a Kinshasa, but Corbin picks him and up and hits a Deep Six, covering him for two. Nakamura catches Corbin in a triangle submission, but Corbin hits a power bomb on Nakamura.
Corbin goes to the outside and, upon his return, Nakamura catches him with a Kinshasa, pinning him for three and eliminating him. Daniel Bryan comes out next, and Nakamura stares at him, taunting him to bring it on.
The bell rings and Bryan hits an dropkick immediately, then dumps Nakamura to the outside. Bryan hits a diving through the ropes onto Nakamura. Bryan rolls Nakamura back into the ring and goes to the top rope.
Bryan dives off the top into a kick from Nakamura. Nakamura hits a suplex on Brayn and goes for a Kinshasa, but Bryan catches his leg into a half Boston crab submission. Bryan transitions into an ankle lock, then hits a German suplex, bridging into a pin for two.
Bryan lays into Nakamura with Yes Kicks. Nakamura dodges his final kick, then catches Bryan and takes him down in an attempted armbar. Bryan counters and goes for an armbar of his own, but Nakamura blocks it.
Bryan transitions into the Yes Lock. Bryan wrenches away at him, but Nakamura gets to the ropes and forces a break.
Bryan picks up Nakamura by the wrist and hits him with an armbreaker, then lays into him with kicks. Bryan sets Nakamura on the top rope, then goes for a hurricanrana, but Nakamrua blocks and hits a diving knee on Bryan from the top, pinning him for two.
Nakamura hits Bryan with knees to the midsection, then goes for a high kick. Bryan ducks and goes for a kick of his own. Nakamura dodges and goes for an armbar on Bryan. Bryan rolls Nakamura into a pinfall attempt for two.
Both men are back to their feet, but Bryan gets the upper hand with kicks and strikes. Bryan connects with a kick to the head. Bryan hits a pair of running dropkicks into Nakamura in the corner, but when Bryan goes for his third, Nakamura hits him with a Kinshasa, pinning him and eliminating him.
Bryan picks up Nakamura and they shake hands. As they share words, Roman Reigns’ music hits and he, Jey Uso, and Paul Heyman come out. They stand at the top of the apron and Nakamura stares them down as he waits for Adam Pierce.
Back from commercial, and Pierce comes out. Reigns, Heyman, and Uso follows him down to the ring. He is wearing sweatpants and a jacket.
Before Pierce can get in the ring, Jey Uso and Roman Reigns get in the ring and attack Nakamura. They lay into him, stomping away at him. Uso picks up Nakamura and hits him with a superkick. Reigns follows it up with a Superman Punch. Uso hits him with a dive.
Reigns gets out of the ring and puts his arm around Pierce. He tells Pierefce to do his job, and tosses him into the ring. Uso hits him with a superkick, and Reigns tells the timekeeper to ring the bell.
Reigns tells Jey to pick up Pierce and Jey lays him across Nakamura. Jey and Reigns force the referee to count the pin, and Pierce wins the match.
Winner: Adam Pierce
Reigns, Heyman, and Uso stand tall in the ring over Adam Pierce as SmackDown goes off the air.
And that’s the show! What a series of great matches. What did you all think? How will Adam Pierce get out of this situation that he has found himself in with Roman Reigns? How will Nakamura respond to these events? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below, and check back Monday for our coverage of Monday Night Raw!