1/6 WWE Friday Night Smackdown results: Barnett’s review of Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso vs. Drew McIntyre and Sheamus for the Undisputed WWE Tag Team Titles, Ricochet vs. Top Dolla in a men’s Royal Rumble match qualifier, new Smackdown Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair appears


By Jake Barnett, ProWrestling.net Co-Senior Staffer (@barnettjake)

WWE Friday Night Smackdown (Episode 1,220)
Memphis, Tennessee at FexExForum
Aired live January 6, 2023 on Fox

The Bloodline jumped the barrier and started to throw furniture and inflict incredibly mild property damage to the ringside area as the show kicked off. Roman Reigns’ music hit and he made his entrance with Paul Heyman. Michael Cole and Wade Barrett joined the broadcast on commentary. Footage was shown on commentary of John Cena and Kevins Owens defeating Roman Reigns and Sami Zaynon last Friday’s Smackdown. Roman assembled the Bloodline in the ring and demanded that Memphis acknowledge him. 

He then told Paul Heyman that they were going to start out a little differently tonight, and he would give the people what they want, because he wanted to hear from the Honorary Uce right now. Sami got a nice chant, and said they started this show the same way they started Raw, and all of 2023 to let people know that this year belongs to the Bloodline. He said Solo won his match, and the Usos and Sami Zayn won their match on Monday, and they are sending the message that 2023 is their year. 

Roman then continued and said he didn’t want to talk about this year, he wanted to talk about last year. He asked the audience if they watched last  week, and it was the biggest Smackdown match of the year against Kevin Owens and Roman Reigns. He laughed as some people say they lost, but then said Sami lost because the Tribal Chief doesn’t lose. It isn’t in his makeup. He then questioned why Sami decided to call his shot like Babe Ruth. Roman said that’s what he does, and he questioned whether Sami wanted to be him. He got in Sami’s face and screamed at him about whether he wanted to be him or wanted to run the Bloodline. 

At that moment, Kevin Owens interrupted and made his entrance. Kevin said that he thinks Roman has some issues with misdirected anger. The last time he saw him like this he was the cause of it, and he thinks he might be the cause of it again. He told him he has a KO problem, not a Sami Zayn problem, and told him that he thinks it’s time he takes care of it. He challenged Roman Reigns to match at the Royal Rumble for the Undisputed WWE Heavyweight Championship. Roman accepted, and said what he really wants is for Kevin Owens to go away forever. 

Owens said he would do Roman a favor and leave, but not forever, because he would see him at the Royal Rumble. He told Sami he would see him whenever he digs his balls out of Roman’s pocket. Roman looked furious as the segment ended…[c]

My Take: A solid opening segment. Roman played his part well of barely containing his anger until it was time to explode on Zayn. Owens getting that last dig in at Zayn makes you wonder if his time at the Bloodline might be coming to an end. The Royal Rumble seems like a good spot for a turning point in his story.

Charlotte Flair pulled into the arena in a convertible. Michael Cole advertised an appearance from her for later. The New Day made their entrance to the ring, with Kofi Kingston being the active competitor. Kofi will face Santos Escobar. Video footage was shown from earlier today where Santos told Kofi he would eliminate him from the Rumble, and that the sun was setting on The New Day. Legado Del Fantasma made their entrance after the video. Woods accompanied Kofi to the ring, and Escobar was accompanied by Zelina Vega, Joaquin Wilde, and Cruz Del Toro.

1. Santos Escobar with Legado Del Fantasma vs. Kofi Kingston with Xavier Woods: They battled back and forth early on. Kofi celebrated after tossing Santos over the top rope mimicking a Royal Rumble elimination…[c]

Santos was in control as the show returned. He landed a running kick and scored a near fall. Woods interrupted with his trumped to cause a distraction to buy Kingston some time. He was able to roll up Escobar for a two count. He then fired back some kicks, but Escobar cut him down with a punch to the gut. Kofi fired back with an SOS and got another near fall. Both men ended up on the ropes in the corner, and Escobar attempted to pull Kofi into the ring with a superplex. 

Kofi avoided the suplex with a headbutt. He then attempted a flying nothing, and Escobar intercepted him with a knee strike. Santos then made a cover for a near fall. Kofi attempted what appeared to be a jumping double stomp, but Escobar caught him. Kingston was able to shove himself off and land the double stomp anyway. After a distraction from Vega and Joaquin Wilde, Escobar landed a kick and the Phantom Drive and got the win. 

Santos Escobar defeated Kofi Kingston at 10:01

Late in the match, Cole said a major announcement would happen after the match. The announcement was the confirmation that Roman Reigns and Kevin Owens would face each other for the Undisputed Universal Championship. 

Backstage, Paul Heyman consulted with Sami Zayn outside of the Bloodline locker room. He wasn’t allowed in, and Heyman reminded him about what he told him last week about being three steps ahead. The Usos walked past Sami to go into the locker room. Heyman told Sami that three steps down the road might still be a bit behind. He patted Zayn on the back and told him he still loved him, but he wasn’t allowed in the locker room…[c]

My Take: A solid but not spectacular match. There wasn’t a lot at stake and the numbers advantage for the heels made the outcome seem a bit obvious.

Backstage, Liv Morgan cut a promo. She said 30 women fighting in the Royal Rumble is chaos, but she thrives in chaos. Liv said entering last would be the easy path, but if she had her way she’d enter at number one and kick the crap out of everyone that came after her.

Wade Barrett expressed excitement about Bray Wyatt being in action at the Royal Rumble. Footage was shown of Uncle Howdy delivering a Sister Abigail to Bray Wyatt last week. LA Knight was shown backstage and Kayla Braxton asked him about the encounter. He said he found himself walking through Memphis and asked himself “Do I really feel the way I feel?” Knight said he didn’t care if Uncle Howdy did his work for him, he’d be happy to kick the pieces of Bray Wyatt around when he’s done. He then said that when the lights go out at the Royal Rumble, Wyatt’s light go out, and that’s a fact. 

In the arena, Karrion Kross and Scarlett made their entrance in Black and White. Footage was shown of Emma slapping Scarlett a few weeks ago, which led to this match. Up next Kross will team with Scarlett to face Madcap Moss and Emma…[c]

My Take: We’ll see how much is expected of Scarlett in the ring. It hasn’t been her strong suit in previous companies.

2. Madcap Moss and Emma vs. Karrion Kross and Scarlett: The match was joined in progress. Emma and Scarlett quickly tagged in and Emma took over quickly. She threw Scarlett into the corner and landed a couple of lariats and an Emma Sandwich for a two count. She then attempted a butterfly suplex, but Scarlett spun free and landed a forearm strike. Scarlett then landed a suplex of her own with a bridge for a two count. Emma fired back with a butterfly suplex, and Karrion Kross broke up the pin.

The referee scolded him and Emma slapped him across the face. Emma backed up and Moss made a tag into the match. He hit the ropes, and Scarlett grabbed his feet so Kross could land a lariat. Emma approached Scarlett on the floor and was tossed over the announce table. In the ring, Kross avoided Moss as he charged into the corner. He then landed a Kross Hammer and the Kross Jacket for the submission victory. 

Karrion Kross and Scarlett defeated Emma and Madcap Moss at 3:29 of TV Time

After the match, Kross put a Rey Mysterio mask on Moss and put a Mysterio tarot card in his hand. He addressed Mysterio by talking to the camera, and said he told him that he knew that would be him soon. Cole and Barrett put over last week’s episode as the most watched of 2022. He then gave some of the credit to Ronda Rousey vs. Raquel Rodriquez and introduced a video package for the match. It also focused on the quick title change to Charlotte Flair. Charlotte is up next…[c]

My Take: Not much of a match, but what was there worked fine. I’m surprised they didn’t get a little bit more of out of this feud, as it seems Kross is moving onto Mysterio.

Cole and Barrett made the announcement of Money in the Bank moving over to London on July 1st, 2023. Drew McIntyre and Sheamus were then shown at Jerry Lawler’s bar and grill. They argued and slapped each other increasingly harder as they recalled their history together. As they continued to slap each other, they said when the lads are in town, it’s banger after banger and celebrated along with the bar patrons. They’ll face the Usos for the Undisputed Tag Team Championships in the main event. 

Back in the arena, Charlotte Flair made her ring entrance in an elaborate new robe. She was handed a microphone and got a cheap pop by asking Memphis if they missed her queen. Charlotte asked the crowd to finish the catchphrase “Payback’s a bitch” and told them to ask Ronda because she knows. She then said she was away for 8 months, and said she was overwhelmed by the reaction when she won the Smackdown Women’s Championship last week in Tampa. Charlotte said she’s always been about three things and that’s passion, consistency, and dedication to her craft. She said she will always do and ask for more, and she will knock down any obstacle in her way. 

Flair went on to say that Champions expect the unexpected and rise to the occasion, and that’s what she’s done 14 times. Sonya Deville made her entrance and asked her to hold on. She said the hillbillies in this building might not be bright enough to see through her lies, but not her. Sonya claimed there should be an asterisk next to her 14th title reign, because she beat a half dead Ronda Rousey. The crowd chanted “Whoop that trick”, and Charlotte chuckled and the crowd thinks she’s a trick. 

Sonya asked how she’d fare against a fresh fighter, and demanded that Charlotte put her title on the line right now. Charlotte polled the crowd, and they just chanted “Whoop that trick!” Charlotte accepted and called Sonya a trick one more time. 

3. Charlotte vs. Sonya Deville for the Smackdown Women’s Championship: Sonya landed some quick shots, but Charlotte fired back with a big boot…[c]

My Take: A bit underwhelmed by Charlotte’s return to the robe and standard gear. I guess the presentation last week was a one time thing? The promo was fine but nothing memorable.

Deville was in control as the show returned. She held onto a chinlock on the ground. Charlotte battled to her feet and landed a jump kick in the corner. She then landed several chops and a back suplex. Charlotte kipped up and played to the cloud, but Sonya landed a side kick to the face. Charlotte attempted a somersault lariat of sorts, but it looked a bit clunky in execution. Sonya rolled out to the apron. Charlotte pursued but was hung up on the ropes. Sonya jumped back into the ring but ate a spear. Charlotte then applied the Figure Eight and got the tap. 

Charlotte Flair defeated Sonya Deville to retain the Smackdown Women’s Championship at 8:44

After the match, a video package that recapped Cody Rhodes’ return to WWE was shown. After the video, Ricochet made his ring entrance for the next match…[c]

My Take: A quick victory for Charlotte. The Smackdown Women’s division needed a boost and Charlotte offers that, but they need to get some challengers ready for her ASAP.

A Lacey Evans video package was shown. She will be using the Cobra Clutch as a finisher a la Sergeant Slaughter. Hit Row made their entrance, with Top Dolla facing Ricochet in a Royal Rumble Qualifier (you need to qualify now?).

4. Top Dolla (w/Ashante Thee Adonis and B-Fab) vs. Ricochet in a Royal Rumble Qualifier: Dolla tossed Ricochet off the top rope into the ring, and then landed a front kick for a two count. He maintained momentum with a choke against the ropes. Ricochet fired back with a kick and a floatover cutter. He then went to the top and landed a shooting star press for the win. 

Ricochet defeated Top Dolla to qualify for the Royal Rumble at 2:10

After the match, Dolla raised Ricochet’s hand and showed some respect, but Ashante and B-Fab took some cheap shots at him from behind. They then performed an assisted slam of sorts, which brought out Braun Strowman to make the save. Backstage, Roman Reigns told Paul Heyman to “bring him in”.

My Take: Not much of a match, but Hit Row needed a change and hopefully this gives them some life.

A video package aired for the Gunther vs. Braun Strowman Intercontinental Title Match that’s happening next week on Smackdown. 

Backstage, Sami Zayn pensively approached Roman Reigns in the locker room. He told Roman that he acknowledged him and he didn’t mean to give him the impression that he was attempting to be him or take power in the bloodline. Roman did not accept his apology and told him that he didn’t deserve how he spoke to him earlier, and made his own apology. Sami told him it was fine and that he was under a lot of pressure as head of the table. Roman said it was no excuse, and he was embarrassed to say that Kevin was right. 

Roman told Sami that he wasn’t mad at him, he was mad at Kevin and taking it out on him. He called the KO problem resolved and turned to Heyman. Paul told Sami and next week, Sami would face Kevin Owens one on one. Sami said he would take care of the problem for Roman. The Usos’ music hit for the main event, and Sami went to leave. Roman told him to sit down and they would watch the match together. 

In the arena, The Usos made their entrance with Solo Sikoa. They were followed by Sheamus and Drew McIntyre…[c]

My Take: Roman never once apologized for anything he did to The Usos, but he apologized to Sami. It’s an interesting setup for the final chapter of this story.

5. The Usos (Jey and Jimmy Uso) vs. The Banger Bros (Sheamus and Drew McIntyre) for the Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championships: Jimmy and Sheamus started the match. Sheamus landed some strikes and made a tag to McIntyre. He threw Jimmy across the ring, and he quickly tagged out to Jey. McIntyre landed some right hands to Jey and backed him against the ropes, but Jey used his quickness to escape and land some strikes to the ribs of McIntyre. Jey landed a vertical suplex on Drew and tagged out to Jimmy.

Jey landed a cheap shot on McIntyre from the floor and Sheamus protested. Jimmy landed an uppercut to McIntyre and tagged in Jey so they could land a double headbutt. McIntyre fired up and landed right hands to both men, and then dropped to the floor. Jey managed to dive through the ropes and shove McIntyre into the barricade on the floor…[c]

Sheamus landed clubs to the chest on Jey as the show returned for a 20 count. Sami ate popcorn while watching the match backstage, and Roman looked less than amused by it. The Usos fired back on Sheamus with superkicks, followed by an Uso Splash by Jimmy for a near fall. McIntyre and Sheamus clawed back into the match with a Double White Noise. McIntyre then flew over the top with a dive that landed on both of them a moment later. He then hit Jey with a Claymore, but Jimmy managed to break it up at the last possible second. 

McIntyre missed a charge into the corner, but Sheamus tagged him anyway to give him some air. He went for a Crucifix Power Bomb on Jimmy, but he broke free and The Usos landed 1D. McIntyre managed to get in to break up the pinfall. McIntyre got sent to the outside, where he was taken out by Solo and put into the time keeper’s area. The Brutes ran down and cleared solo from ringside. Sheamus hit Jey with a Brogue Kick, but Jimmy pulled him from the ring. 

Sheamus jumped on The Usos at ringside, and pulled Jimmy back into the ring. Jey jumped on the apron, and Sheamus kicked him. That led to Jimmy rolling him up from behind, and Jey giving some leverage behind the ref’s back to score the win. 

The Usos defeated The Banger Bros at 13:34 to retain the WWE Unified Tag Team Championships

After the match, Sami was shown spilling his popcorn everywhere and celebrating backstage. Roman once again looked at him like he was on his nerves. The Usos crawled to the back and Sheamus and McIntyre were upset with the outcome.

My Take: A fun match to close the show. There wasn’t any doubt about the outcome, but it was a good time while it lasted. Overall, this was an entertaining show with only a few down moments. The Bloodline continues to carry the show in a big way and it’ll be interesting to see how they pivot to a different chapter once they turn on Sami.


Readers Comments (1)

  1. Snoreline story needs to end already.

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