Friday Night Smackdown had quite the card with two title fights and a gauntlet match where the winner would challenge Roman Reigns at the Royal Rumble pay per view. Apollo Crews versus Big E for the Intercontinental Championship and Street Profits versus Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode for the SmackDown Tag Team Championships.
The Tribal Chief Roman Reigns opened the show and he called out Adam Pearce for something but before the business resumed he directed attention to a clip then a video package of the Owens/Reigns feud appeared and how Pearce booked a match between Jey Uso and Kevin Owens. The main thing I focused on this segment though was how deep Pearce's voice was. Was he sick? Was he just talking deeper? I don't know but it sounded deeper to me. Well this segment was more of Reigns being an incredible heel and also him asking Pearce who was stupid him, Pearce, or Vince McMahon. Nothing happened to Pearce in this segment but it did not seem like it was over because Reigns kept looking back as he left.
Big E then took on Apollo Crews in E's first title defense of his reign. These two powerhouses did not fight along but it was entertaining. After a superplex from Crews it led to both men being pinned. The match was a draw and in a draw title goes to the champion. Crews thought he won and was not happy so he slapped E causing the match to restart. Big E was fired up after the slap and was able to retain.
Sonya Deville was then seen talking to Pearce about her status in the WWE and her return and about Pearce possibly facing Reigns in which he said he was done wrestling. So it seems Deville wants to work with Pearce as a manager and back him up when needed and learn from him. Bianca Belair and Bayley had yet another exchange of words to keep their rivalry going and both women also announced their entry into the women's royal rumble match.
The "Untouchable" one Carmella then was shown in her dressing room with Reginald and she talked more trash directed at Sasha Banks saying she is more talented than Banks and that Banks only won Wrestler of the Year in all wrestling promotions in Sports Illustrated list was because Carmella took a long vacation... Carmella you are great but you know that's not why. Carmella is good on the microphone but a lot of what she has been saying in promos towards The Boss just does not make sense in my opinion.
Tag Team action then happened with the title fight between The Street Profits and Ziggler and Roode. This was a solid match and Roode and Ziggler ended up getting the win and defeating the 11 month Champions! After the win though Roode and Ziggler returned to the ring and punished the Profits a bit more then celebrated their big win! I'd rather Roode be a Singles Champion but as long as a title is in his hands or he is on television consistently I'm happy.
Deville and Pearce were then shown talking about the Rumble before Paul Heyman interrupted and talked to Pearce about the situation with Reigns. Heyman then informed Pearce that Pearce would be in the gauntlet match and Heyman acted like he was doing Pearce a favor by helping him achieve a former dream but we all know it was just part of Roman Reigns plan at revenge on Pearce.
Before the gauntlet match Riott Squad were shown with Billie Kay who was trying to join them and then when they started to say no she turned on the waterworks. This caused Liv Morgan trying to be nice to her and leading to Kay taking that as a she is in then she left but not without the resume handoff. Kay is comedy gold and this is the partnership I need.
The gauntlet match then began with Sami Zayn versus Rey Mysterio and before Zayn entered was shown with his own personal camera crew. He then talked about the injustices against him by the WWE and how he was put first in the gauntlet match as part of a conspiracy and his cameramen were their to capture all the injustices against the former Intercontinental Champion. Zayn was then massacred by Mysterio leading to an early exit and leading to me being sad.
Shinsuke Nakamura then entered the match next. Nakamura was more of a challenge for Mysterio so much so that Nakamura submitted Mysterio winning and advancing. King Corbin then came out but informally and attacked Dominik Mysterio who was out supporting his father as well as Rey Mysterio just putting more salt in the wounds of Mysterio.
The match then continued with Corbin facing facing Nakamura and Corbin started off on top against an already weakened Nakamura. Corbin also entered without the Knights of the Lone Wolf. Without the help of the Knights Corbin was unable to get the win when Nakamura was able to pull out the win and stay in the gauntlet. Daniel Bryan then entered the gauntlet next.
These two definitely need a singles match in the future again but in a normal non gauntlet format because these two brought it. Bryan seemingly had the match won with the Yes Lock but Nakamura was barely able to get his legs to the ropes to break the submission. This was a battle between two masters and Shinsuke continued his run and got the win.
Before Adam Pearce entered Reigns and company entered. When Pearce finally entered Reigns and company then attacked Nakamura. Reigns then threw in Pearce and Jey downed him. Jey then placed Pearce on Nakamura so Pearce would get the win and Reigns would have a chance to punish Pearce at the Royal Rumble. Hopefully that performance by Nakamura will lead to something but it's hard to imagine what. Either way Pearce is in for a world of hurt at the Rumble.