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WWE SmackDown: 1/7/2022

It always seemed like Monday Night Raw was the superior WWE weekly show, and honestly I can see why. The Attitude Era mainly had Raw to work with to showcase some of the biggest moments in not only wrestling history, but entertainment history. SmackDown was introduced back in 1999 and since then it had its own cult following, having fans primarily favor either the red or blue brand. However the late 2010’s, 2020 and 2021 proved that SmackDown is usually the most anticipated weekly wrestling show, then usually it’s AEW’s Dynamite or WWE’s Raw. Did the first SmackDown of 2022 on FOX succeed, or did it feel pretty mediocre as Raw this past week? Well, let’s find out!

credit from: 411Mania


Brock Lesnar before Raw went off the air this Monday told an interviewer that he’d be appearing on this week’s SmackDown and hope he would see the Universal champion, Roman Reigns. And Lesnar got his wish because the Tribal Chief was cleared to appear on this week’s SmackDown, and the two world champions; the two biggest names in WWE’s history were once again face to face with each man holding their respected championship title. Before 2021 ended, Reigns fired Paul Heyman as the Bloodline’s special council with a Superman Punch to Heyman’s face resulting in Lesnar making the save and evening the odds. So it made sense to have Heyman essentially favor Brock Lesnar once more, however Heyman showed that he actually still admires Roman Reigns to the point in which he misses our Universal Champion. Brock wasn’t having any of it and told Heyman to shut up, and with that little distraction Roman was able to knock the Beast down on his feet with a Superman Punch, of course leaving the ring before Lesnar was back on his feet. I love this suspense of who Heyman’s eventually going to side with, because even Lesnar in the past had put his hands on his advocate. Really great opening to kick off the show.

Match 1: Rick Boogs vs Sami Zayn (Rating: 2.75/5)

At first, I didn’t really see why Shinsuke Nakamura and Rick Boogs were ever paired up. I mean sure, the man knows how to play the guitar very well and always plays Nakamura’s theme with said guitar almost weekly; but it’s when I see Boogs wrestling in solo matches that I see why they’d pair him up with such a legend in the business. He’s Nakamura’s hype man and is great at getting the crowd behind the current Intercontinental champion; also not to mention that Boogs can actually wrestle very well. Boogs used his powerlifting strength to get the win over Sami and afterwards, a fellow “Jackass” ran into the ring and tossed Zayn over the top rope. It was Johnny Knoxville, and it was announced that he’d be competing in this year’s men’s Royal Rumble! (Which means that we’d definitely see this man take a wicked bump and be eliminated from the match.)

Match 2: Championship Contender’s Match; Charlotte vs Naomi. (Rating: 2/5)

Prior to Naomi coming out and challenging Charlotte in this impromptu match, Flair actually played a video package and showed off who’d be some of the participants in the women’s Royal Rumble match. While I won’t list down the women that were announced, I will say that the match already seems very packed! Now onto Naomi; she came out and confronted Charlotte and basically just threw out the challenge. Charlotte Flair’s without a doubt the biggest name in women’s wrestling in this modern day and age of the sport, and rightfully so; the woman’s a 13 time women’s champion, a former Royal Rumble winner, the woman who ended Asuka’s undefeated streak and the daughter of wrestling legend “Nature Boy” Ric Flair. And as talented as Charlotte is, I don’t see why there’s a need to make her always triumph. Sure, she’s lost aplenty; but the match wasn’t for the championship. Charlotte could’ve lost to Naomi then beating her at the Royal Rumble payperview. Now sure it’d push Naomi further down in the rankings, however it would give Naomi momentum and have the crowd behind her; eventually there leading to a possible rematch with her dethroning the champion. Unfortunately that wasn’t the case as Charlotte beat Naomi, due to of course shady officiating thanks to SmackDown “general manager” Sonya Deville. I really wanted Naomi to get another feel good moment.

Match 3: SmackDown Tag Team Championship Street Fight; The Usos (c) vs The New Day. (Rating: 3.5/5)

I honestly never get tired of seeing these four men competing against each other, at all. The classics both teams have had against each other, they go down as some of the greatest tag team matches in all of wrestling history. Stipulation matches usually enhances the quality of a feud, and this street fight was no exception. The Usos seem they’re going to be using their version of the 3D as they were able to retain the championship with that move through a table. After the show though, it was revealed that we’d be getting Roman Reigns’ next challenger at the Royal Rumble for the Universal Championship. With a simple but familiar knock on the door, in comes Monday Night Raw’s Seth “Freakin’” Rollins and we’re once again getting another classic in the Reigns vs Rollins saga.

Final rating: 3.5/5