The final SmackDown show before Royal Rumble was aired live from Kaseya Center in Miami, Florida. Women’s Tag Team titles were defended on the show. Bobby Lashley and The Street Profits went face-to-face with The Final Testament.
The last bit of hype was created around the Fatal 4-way match for the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship. Let’s review everything that happened on SmackDown from January 26.
Verbal Exchange Between the Challengers of Undisputed WWE Universal Title
Michael Cole replaced Kevin Patrick on commentary. The show kicked off with the Grammy Award Winner Eladio Carrion. He recently had a song named “RKO,” and Randy was a part of the video. Eladio introduced Orton to the ring.
Randy came out and thanked Carrion. Randy praised Roman and The Bloodline for their recent work. But he said he’d beat Reigns using the three most dangerous letters, RKO, tomorrow to become a 15-time World Champion.
AJ Styles arrived and said LA Knight stepped over him for an opportunity. He talked about his history with Orton.
LA Knight arrived with his catchphrase, “Lemme talk to ya!” He said that he’ll face Solo later tonight and beat him. Then he’ll beat Roman, Styles, and Orton at the Royal Rumble. Knight walked away, and Styles delivered an overhead kick to Randy.
Analysis: It was not the most intense promo, but it worked well to hype this match. Knight will face Solo later tonight.
Carlito vs. Santos Escobar
The match began at a quick pace. They attacked each other with chops and punches at turnbuckles. Escobar used his heel tactics to get the advantage. Garza and Carrillo’s distraction allowed Santos to deliver a suicide dive.
Escobar ripped Carlito’s shirt off and removed the tape from the injured arm. He targeted the arm and delivered a double knee strike to the chest. We saw a super hurricanrana from Escobar from the top rope for a two-count.
Carlito bounced back with some clotheslines and a dropkick. He delivered a snap neckbreaker for a nearfall. Carlito landed a spinebuster. Carillo was on the apron, and the referee was distracted.
Garza took advantage and sent Carlito out using the ropes. LWO and Legado del Fantasma brawl at ringside. Elektra Lopez joined Legado to even the odds against Zelina Vega. The distractions allowed Escobar to beat Carlito with a rollup pin.
Winner: Santos Escobar
Analysis: It was a decent match. The arrival of Elektra Lopez is a new step in this long story. The faction Legado del Fantasmalooks complete now.
Backstage: Jimmy Uso tried to align AJ Styles with the Bloodline to take out a common cause in LA Knight.
– Youngest NXT GM Ava greeted Nick Aldis backstage, who congratulated her. Lashley and Escobar picked up their Royal Rumble entry numbers.
– R-Truth was there, too, with a basket containing Royal Rumble numbers. Truth thought of Aldis as Pearce and was happy about his hair growth.
Women’s Tag Team Championship Match
Katana Chance and Kayden Carter vs. The Kabuki Warriors
The Women’s Tag Team Champions Katana Chance and KaydenCarter start strong. They took out Asuka and Kairi Sane with stereo slingshot dropkicks to the outside, followed by a corkscrew plancha by Katana.
After the commercial, The Kabuki Warriors dominate. Asuka applied an ankle lock on Chance. At ringside, we saw a beautiful dropkick/splash combo by Kayden. She got Asuka back in the ring and landed a springboard leg drop for a near fall.
Asuka fought back and delivered a codebreaker, followed by a backstabber by Kairi. The Kabuki Warriors landed stereo kicks, but Chance broke the pinfall. Sane jumped with a failed attempt to deliver the In-Sane Elbow.
Carter delivered a Swinging DDT to Asuka. The champions delivered the Keg Stand on Asuka, but Kairi Sane somehow broke the pin.
Ultimately, The Kabuki Warriors delivered a reverse DDT/In-Sane Elbow Drop combo to claim the Women’s Tag Team Titles.
Winners: The Kabuki Warriors
Analysis: We have the new Tag Champs. The Kabuki Warriors once again have the titles. Damage CTRL celebrated after the match.
Backstage: Paul Heyman wanted Sikoa to fix the problem, and Solo agreed. Heyman later advised Jimmy to seize the opportunity and win Royal Rumble to defeat an injured Seth Rollins at WrestleMania.
– Bayley and Bianca Belair got their entry numbers from Nick Aldis’ office. The Role Model wasn’t pleased with the number.
Bobby Lashley and Street Profits face-to-face with The Final Testament
Lashley and Street Profits were in the ring. Bobby told the fans about the accolades he and the Street Profits achieved so far in WWE. The lights went out, and The Final Testament arrived on the stage. Scarlett entered the ring.
Lashley told Kross to stop playing games. Paul Ellering said that Karrion Kross has no fear. Kross said that there would be no fight tonight. Street Profits went to attack AOP while Scarlett clawed in Lashley’s eyes.
This gave enough time to Karrion Kross, who delivered a KrossHammer to Bobby. AOP took out the Street Profits, and the Final Testament stood tall.
Analysis: This feud is cooking nicely. The Final Testament looks better. We are arriving at a point where Lashley and Profits will need a female member to cope with Scarlett.
Backstage: Jimmy Uso picked up his number in Nick Aldis’ office. He said, “No, Yeet,” and walked away.
Carmelo Hayes vs. Austin Theory
The match began with some athletic moves from both competitors. Waller delivered a cheap shot while the referee was distracted. Hayes gained momentum with a headlock slam and a satellite facebuster for a two-count.
Another distraction from Waller allowed Theory to deliver Ataxia for a near fall. Both tried for the rollup victories, where Theory was successful when he pinned Hayes using the tights. Waller and Theory continued the attack, but Trick Williams from NXT made the save.
Winner: Austin Theory
Analysis: Hayes lost the match, which was a bit shocking. Trick Williams’ appearance was an exciting move.
Solo Sikoa vs. LA Knight
Knight began to attack Solo’s hand from the very beginning. He stomped on the hand and smashed it off the ring apron, the commentary desk, and the ring post. Jimmy’s distraction allowed Solo to deliver a midair uppercut to get a sigh of relief.
Solo delivered the Samoan Drop and a clothesline. Knight replied with a diving bulldog followed by a diving clothesline and a side leg sweep. LA knocked Jimmy off the apron with a running knee.
A failed Samoan Spike attempt from Sikoa met with a DDT from Knight. Ultimately, AJ Styles delivered a Phenomenal Forearm to Knight to end this match in disqualification.
Styles ran Knight into the steel steps. Jimmy gave AJ a chair to sideline Knight. Instead, Styles used the chair on Jimmy and Solo. Orton ran down and took out Styles. Randy delivered a Snap Powerslam to Jimmy and a back suplex to Sikoa.
Orton was on fire. He delivered the Hanging DDT to both Jimmy and Styles. Styles suffered RKO, and Randy posed in the ring. Seconds before the show went off air, Knight delivered the BFT on Randy.
Winner: LA Knight via disqualification
Analysis: It was a fine main-event match, but the post-match angle was the highlight. The fatal 4-way is fully hyped, and we are less than 24 hours from the Royal Rumble PLE.
Overall, an exciting Road to Royal Rumble came to an end with this show. The fans are all pumped up for the mega event.