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SmackDown Spoilers – Daniel Bryan Stands Victorious

SmackDown Review
Episode Air Date: 1/29/2015

I introduced this concept with the most recent Next Day NXT Review and I really enjoyed it. It made watching the show a lot easier, because I got to actually sit and watch it. I only took notes when they were needed, rather than trying to cover every element of a show. Like I said in the NXT Review, this wont work for you if you have not seen last night’s episode of SmackDown.

First Note
Triple H doing some damage control. Dude is gonna do great when he takes over.

Next in line for the Throne, the King of Kings (Courtesy of WWE.com)

Next in line for the Throne, the King of Kings (Courtesy of WWE.com)

I did a quick news piece on this last night, but it’s worth going into again on here. Triple H really is primed to take over from his Father In-Law. He’s got the crowd on his side. As much as he plays the authoritative villain, he’s still the guy responsible for NXT, D-Generation X, and some pretty great matches out of a long, storied career.

I actually shared this theory with Dane Curley the other day. Keep in mind; it’s mostly just me searching for a way to not have to believe that Vince McMahon has completely fallen out of touch. Anyway, what if after the 2014 Royal Rumble, Vince McMahon saw his opportunity to go out as the best villain on television in a long time. A villain so good that he knew all he’d have to do is ignore his fans to really get them back into the show.

There’s a whole documentary that claims, “The Montreal Screwjob,” was actually just a work that Vince McMahon and Bret Hart planned out so that The Hitman could have a dynamite segue into WCW. My point is: who really knows what is going on, but people are watching again. I’ll say that much. Royal Rumble 2015 coverage was all over the place.

Second Note
1st match: Roman Reigns vs. Big Show

My brother Kevin was in the room while this match was starting and his reaction was, “The Big Show is still around? How old is he now?”

Part of me agrees, and I’ve actually written as much before, but he’s also Big Show. I have been watching that giant bastard clomp around the ring and tear people apart since I was seven. So I really don’t mind that it seems like he’ll be around forever. Plus, in a situation like Reigns is in, Show was a great person to put him against. See, when it comes to the Big Show, whether you win or lose, you will work your ass off the whole match. Fans needed to see Roman doing work, and that’s what they got.

Third Note
Rollins is the man

The Future of the WWE (Courtesy of WWE.com)

The Future of the WWE (Courtesy of WWE.com)

He really is. I wrote this note while he was in the ring, praising his own performance at the 2015 Royal Rumble. He earns every bit of praise he gets. The Triple Threat for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship was the Match of the Year, and it’s not even February. Anyone who wants to take that title should get to work soon.

Fourth Note
Yay, Ryback

That one pretty much sums itself up. I’ve written about my indifference to the monster before, but I was mostly glad I didn’t have to sit through him and Rollins. I’m sure Seth would’ve made it watchable, but he’s got better things than that in store.

Though, Dolph Ziggler and Eric Rowan came out not long after J&J Security hit Ryback with a cheap shot and made it three on one. Rowan and Ziggler evened the odds. So much so, I thought an impromptu six-man tag match was about to happen, but I guess they’re saving that for Fastlane.

That way, the fan favorites can let a little revenge on Pay-per-view television.

Fifth Note
Kane is still crushing the sinister promo.

Glenn Jacobs, otherwise known as Kane, has been crushing every job he’s given for the last twenty-odd years. Turning him into the character Kane gave him something consistently interesting to play, much more so than Issac Yankem, D.D.S. A testament to the character’s staying power is the fact that here he is, almost twenty years after his debut at Bad Blood, still delivering sinister sounding promos with every bit of gusto he can manage.

What really had me floored is the fact that he’s Corporate Kane now, but he’s still at the top of his game. The promo had me plenty excited for his Casket Match later in the night with Daniel Bryan.

Sixth-through-Ninth Notes
Rusev and Lana get a great reaction. Their promos are solid, and their entrance music is perfect
It must be annoying for John Cena to have to address fan reaction to him every time he steps into a ring
The “face of the place” is a great saying for John Cena to use
Cena vs. Rusev at Fastlane could be cool, but really? Cena’s going after the US Title?

This was a surprisingly awesome segment. Rusev and Lana came down to the ring first, and after Lana talked for a bit, Rusev actually picked up the microphone. He cut a great promo on John Cena, which, of course, led to the Purveyor of Hustle, Loyalty, and Respect to come down to the ring. He took issue with Rusev claiming he has no desire, due to the fact that he doesn’t currently have a belt around his waist.

As soon as John entered the ring, he got his typical fan reaction, forcing him to stop and address it. That must get inconvenient. He essentially has to explain to them, night after night, that he got to the top for a reason. It was also during this promo that I heard John Cena call himself the “face of the place” for the first time, and I thought it was great.

Finally, Cena and Rusev at Fastlane is for Rusev’s US Title? Really? Has Cena ever bothered to chase that belt again since he lost it after WrestleMania 20? Or is this the first time? If so, that’s big news.

Tenth Note
Bella promo was terrible

There’s not really much I can say here. Paige was being interviewed and then the ridiculously attractive Nikki and Brie Bella come over and play the bullies, throwing some unbelievably lame insults her way. So she slugs them and they put her down. That’s the whole deal.

Eleventh Note
Kevin [my brother] called The Ascension, The Road Warriors

There's a new "Mad Max" movie coming out, right? (Courtesy of WWE.com)

There’s a new “Mad Max” movie coming out, right? (Courtesy of WWE.com)

Kevin pretty much heckled the show the entire time, but he is unfortunately not wrong about The Ascension. It’s not a good sign for the only young and upcoming team on the main WWE Roster. They really need to change their attire up. The Road Warriors thing makes them look about thirty years too late to the party.

Final Note
Casket Match!

I call this picture, "this is gonna hurt." (Courtesy of WWE.com)

I call this picture, “this is gonna hurt.” (Courtesy of WWE.com)

This is what I tuned into this show for. I got a little bit of a bonus with Triple H starting out the show, but I had to push myself to get through the rest of the show. This, however, I had no problem with. Maybe it’s just because I’m a big fan of both guys, but I thought the match was great. Daniel Bryan and Kane are very much in tune, as longtime friends, and it shows in their work. The trust was clearly there as Bryan risked life and limb to compete again.

It was highly physical and played host to a great display of in-ring psychology. My favorite part was the finish, though. It was a great way for David to take Goliath out and deposit him into that pine box.

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