Notes In Observance – WWE SmackDown 1/14/16: Triple Main Event

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.

By Nicholas Jason Lopez


“Notes In observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.






(Aired 1/14/16)

Triple Main Event 

– The title of this post not only reflects the show’s three main events, but how much the show has picked up since this new three-man announce team has developed. You’ve got Mauro Ranallo – proven play-by-play guy who actually calls moves by their names and references past careers in retrospect to storylines, Byron Saxton – coming into his own as a “babyface voice of the fans,” all combatting with Jerry Lawler – back to full-heel mode, cracking jokes and his classic self, letting us live in the 1990’s once again. These three were on point the entire broadcast and actually make SmackDown something you want to see.

– The opening in-ring segment involving WWE Intercontinental Champion Dean Ambrose, Sheamus, Kevin Owens and Neville was a solid way to hype the night’s main event tag, featuring all four combatants in their respective roles. Ambrose was in loony mode as he challenged Owens to a Last Man Standing match at the Royal Rumble, which was accepted later on. Sheamus got some mic time as he referred to Ambrose as a source of annoyance and looked to get him back for the cut he had on the previous Raw that caused him to get stitches. Sheamus also placed some jealous in Ambrose’s best friend “stealing his Title.” Owens spoke well for himself here and hyped up the Last Man Standing match, plus doing the heel thing of teaming up with Sheamus to ambush Ambrose, which provided the perfect cue for Neville to save his future partner, as they cleared the heels from the ring. No mic time for Neville necessary and all the steps were created to see these guys battle in the Teddy Long classic.

– Not sure why we needed another tables match between The Dudley Boyz and Luke Harper/Erick Rowan, but it was a decent time-filler. Both teams went back-and-forth briefly before the pretty lame finish of Bubba Ray knocking Harper off the steel steps into a table on the floor below. The Wyatts had Braun Strowman on the outside but were sans Bray for a change. The post-match attack gave the Wyatts some heat back as they put both D-Von and Bubba through respective tables. Is this simply a ploy to build the trio as a threat for the Rumble match? One would think Wyatt could stand a deep chance in the Rumble match and who knows what kind of records Creative will have Strowman break for the match?

– There was an attempt to liken WWE United States Champion Kalisto to past top-card Latino predecessors like Eddie Guerrero and Rey Mysterio, as he mentioned in his backstage promo and it came off well for him, since he was now a humbled Champion and determined to keep it that way. Who seen this coming for one Kalisto?

– The last time we saw The Social Outcasts (Adam Rose, Heath Slater, Bo Dallas, Curtis Axel), they challenged The Wyatt Family to a match and then helped Ryback clear them from the ring. Flash forward to later in the week and they were seemingly heels again, which was fine and all, but defeating the jobber-tastic team of Damien Sandow/Goldust/Zack Ryder/Jack Swagger do little favors after we see it. Ryder had a brief moment to shine as did Swagger, but Social Outcasts quickly wrapped it up. The BoDog finish appeared botched when Dallas accidentally kicked Slater off the apron, but nothing came of it afterwards.

– Alberto Del Rio was eager to take back his Title and make Kalisto pay for his fluke victory and bring everyone back to reality in his backstage promo. Solid work as always.

– Commentary really raised the stakes of the United States Championship match between Kalisto and Del Rio. The in-ring story already had Del Rio working Kalisto’s arm the whole match to set up for his Armbreaker submission, which Ranallo cleverly likened to his Mixed Martial Arts days, while Lawler dismissed Kalisto as a shrimp and Saxton defended Kalisto’s underdog ways to the crowd at home. Everything came together well and the match picked up organically towards the end. Kalisto pulled off an impressive head scissors takedown at one point before King Barrett showed up and started helping his partner by merely being a distraction. There was a good trade of near-falls by both men before the telling moment became Kalisto taking a nasty spill on the floor when Barrett pushed Del Rio out of the way and that helped Del Rio make Kalisto tap out to his Armbreaker to get his belt back. Not sure if the hot potato-esque storyline is good for Kalisto, but it does help the feud and give the two an excuse to fight again, perhaps at the Rumble.

– The great Becky Lynch push continued as she again put on a fiery backstage promo performance, being proud about attacking WWE Divas Champion Charlotte on Raw, before proposing a challenge against her for the Rumble. Go Becky. She also had a funny line about Charlotte being allowed to bring whichever family members she wanted.

– The Brie Bella-Lynch match had some brief storyline explanation of Bella wanting to fight Lynch since her chance to fight and defeat Charlotte on Raw was thwarted by Lynch. All in all, this was basic enhancement stuff as Lynch worked her usual spots before making Bella tap out to the Disarmer. If anything, Lynch’s being established as a true contender now. The fact that the Divas division is revolving around this one storyline is crucially beneficial to Lynch getting over more organically.

– In terms of entertainment purposes, the Sheamus/Owens-Ambrose/Neville match was there, but was rather forgettable since it only ended in a DQ when Owens hit Ambrose with a piece of the announce table cover. The show ended with Ambrose hitting Dirty Deeds on Owens and Neville hitting his Red Arrow. Advantage: Ambrose.






Quick Results

  • Tables Match – The Dudley Boyz def. Erick Rowan/Luke Harper (w/Braun Strowman) via pinfall
  • Eight-Man Tag – The Social Outcasts def. Goldust/Zack Ryder/Zack Ryder/Damien Sandow via pinfall
  • WWE United States Championship – Alberto Del Rio def. Kalisto (Champion) via submission to regain Championship 
  • Becky Lynch def. Brie Bella (w/Alicia Fox) via submission
  • Dean Ambrose/Neville def. Sheamus/Kevin Owens via DQ

About Nicholas Jason Lopez

Just a 29-year-old Brooklynite. Nothing more, nothing less. Currently a freelance journalist with two websites - Pro Wrestling Opinion and The Music Bugle - he has also been published on sites such as The Bensonhurst Bean, Sheepshead Bites, Review Fix, College University of New York Athletic Conference, Dying Scene, Brooklyn News Service, All Media NY, and Yahoo Voices. He has also interned for The Home Reporter/Brooklyn Spectator based out of Brooklyn, NY.

Posted on January 23, 2016, in WWE and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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