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Smackdown 1/22/2021: Big E defends IC Title against Apollo; Heyman vs. Pearce Main Events; Plus More

Here's what's on tap for tonight's Smackdown:

  • Bayley's Ultimate Athlete Obstacle Course Challenge: Bianca Belair vs. Bayley

  • WWE Intercontinental Championship Match: Apollo Crews vs. Big E (champ)

Tonight's show opens with highlights of the Pearce/Reigns/Owens contract stuff from last week.

We're in the ThunderDome and kicking things off with the WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns accompanied by Paul Heyman. Reigns gets a mic and the crowd chants "you suck". Reigns says Kevin Owens was suppose to deliver a message to him tonight but that won't happen tonight. Reigns says just like last week, card is subject to change. Reigns says card subject to change is how losers think. Reigns says he doesn't miss appearances and always shows up to work. Reigns it took his health condition in a pandemic to force him away. Reigns mocks Pearce's injury. Reigns says he's got injuries too. Reigns make is hurting from carrying the damn company haha. Reigns says it's hurts so bad he may not be cleared for the Rumble. ADAM PEARCE IS HERE to say this has gone too far. Pearce gets in the ring and says this is spiraling out of control. Reigns says what's out of control is that Pearce went against him and did Owens a favor. Reigns says the fact that Pearce favors Owens is out of control. Reigns calls Pearce Owen's bitch when therefore makes him Reigns' bitch. Reigns runs down Pearce and says no wonder Pearce never made it to the WWE. Heyman laughs and Pearce takes offense. Reigns tells Heyman that Pearce is disrespecting him which means he is disrespecting Reigns. Heyman on the mic now to also run down Pearce. Heyman says he's more than capable of handling himself. HEYMAN CHALLENGES PEARCE TO A MATCH TONIGHT!!! PEARCE ACCEPTS!! Reigns tells Pearce he's going to get his ass kicked!

Commentary discusses what just happened. Up next is Charlotte and Asuka against the Riott Squad.


Back from the break, SAMI DECLARES FOR THE ROYAL RUMBLE. Zayn complains about his loss to Apollo Crews last week. ASUKA MAKES HER WAY TO THE RING TO INTERRUPT!

Non-Title Tag Match

Asuka (WWE Raw Women's Champion) & Charlotte Flair (WWE Women's Tag Team Champions) vs. The Riott Squad w/ Billie Kay

Natalya and Tamina are watching backstage. Charlotte and Ruby start it off. They lock up and Charlotte takes Ruby down. They go to the corner. Snap mare by Charlotte and Asuka tags in. Frequent tags by the champs as Charlotte keeps control of Ruby. Ruby is sent hard into the corner. Billie distracts and Liv tags in. Billie distracts again and Liv takes advantage with a drop kick. Liv with a cross body off the top to Charlotte as we go to a commercial.

We're back with Charlotte taking Liv to the corner and delivering kicks. Liv avoids a slam and hits a rana! Ruby tags in and fires with some punches and sends Charlotte into the turnbuckle and gets a near fall. Liv tags back in. ZAYN IS STILL OUTSIDE. The Riott Squad tag in and out to isolate Charlotte. Charlotte fires back with chops. Charlotte hits a fall away slam on Liv. Kip up. Back breaker to Liv by Charlotte. Asuka tags in and hits a sliding knee for a near fall. Liv fights back and tries an enziguri but Asuka counters with an ankle lock! German suplex by Asuka! They trade counters and Ruby blind tags. Ruby has Asuka rolled up but Billie Kay was on the rope so the ref didn't see it. Asuka is up and HIP ATTACKS BILLIE!! Charlotte tags in. ASUKA DELIVERS A CODE BREAKER TO RUBY AND CHARLOTTE HITS NATURAL SELECTION FOR THE WIN!! Billie continues to be the downfall for the Riott Squad. Why does Charlotte always have to get the win for their team?

W: Asuka & Charlotte Flair via pin @ 8:33

Sasha Banks will face Reginald later tonight. We see a video of Bianca Belair training for the obstacle course challenge.

Backstage, Billie Kay apologizes to the Riott Squad. Ruby is pissed and says Billie cost them a win. Liv tells Billie to add that to her resume. Billie spoke to Sonya and GOT BOTH RUBY AND LIV IN THE RUMBLE! Ruby tells Billie doesn't get it. Ruby and Liv are moving on without Billie.

Daniel Bryan makes his way to the ring. He locks eyes with Sami who's still handcuffed to the barricade holding his conspiracy sign. Bryan is in jeans and a sport coat. "Yes" chants from the crowd. Bryan says the Rumble is coming up and he gets a chill down his spine just saying "Royal Rumble". The uncertainty is exciting. It's exhilarating to compete against everyone and not knowing who's next. It makes Bryan feel alive because the winner gets to face the champion of their choosing at WrestleMania. Bryan says he's proud of his career but he's never won a Royal Rumble match. CESARO IS HERE TO INTERRUPT. Cesaro thought he beat sense into Bryan last week. Cesaro taunts Sami on his way to the ring haha. Cesaro says he is winning the Rumble and not Bryan. Bryan is done talking and wants to fight again. Cesaro declines. Cesaro says he's sick and tired of proving himself. CESARO ISSUES AN OPEN CHALLENGE TO SOMEONE IN THE LOCKER ROOM. DOLPH ZIGGLER IS HERE. He says he's been in the second most Royal Rumbles and his stamina unmatched. Ziggler tells Bryan it's not 2014 anymore. Ziggler accepts Cesaro's challenge!

Cesaro vs. Dolph Ziggler (WWE Smackdown Tag Team Champion)

Daniel Bryan is on commentary and the match was already underway after the commercial. Cesaro spends the early going trying to ground Ziggler. Ziggler tries a sleeper but Cesaro backs him in the corner and hits a big uppercut. CESARO SWING!! It's a LONG SWING TOO!! 1...2...NO!! Cesaro misses a charge in the corner and Ziggler gets a near fall off a roll up. Both men trade a series of pins all for near falls. Cesaro counters a super kick and Ziggler counters an uppercut and HITS A ZIG ZAG!! 1...2...NO!!Ziggler locks in a sleeper. Cesaro powers out and lifts Ziggler for a suplex. Ziggler knees his way out. CESARO COUNTERS ZIGGLER AND HITS A NEUTRALIZER FOR THE WIN!! Another great win for Cesaro! I personally hope he keeps it up!

W: Cesaro via pin @ 3:30

Commentary talks more about Heyman vs. Pearce. Sasha Bank vs. Reginald is next! Highlights of how we go to that match.

Sasha Banks (WWE Smackdown Women's Champion) vs. Reginald w/ Carmella

Banks makes fun of Zayn on the way to the ring. Commentary says Banks will face Carmella at the Royal Rumble. Carmella joins commentary. The match begins and Reginald offers Banks a flower. BANKS SLAPS THE HELL OUT OF REGINALD!! Reginald counters Banks off the top surprisingly!! Waist lock by Reginald and Banks escapes. Banks is frustrated. You can tell Reginald is athletic. Banks had to chase Reginald around the ring. Reginald taunts. Banks is able to plant Reginald with a bulldog. Banks misses double knees in the corner but avoids an elbow drop by Reginald. Banks counters a power bomb with an arm drag. Bank tries a cross body from the top but is caught! Banks is able to send him to the outside. METEORA OFF THE APRON BY BANKS!! Banks takes Carmella's champagne! Reginald counters a back stabber!! BANKS COUNTERS REGINALD WITH A HEAD SCISSORS AND LOCKS IN THE BANK STATEMENT!! REGINALD TAPS!! Post match, Banks throws Reginald out of the ring. Banks will officially defend the title against Carmella at the Rumble. More of an angle here than a match.

W: Sasha Banks via submission @ 3:58

Roman Reigns and Paul Heyman talk backstage. Reigns wanted Heyman to destroy Pearce verbally not in a match. Reigns asks what people will think of him if Heyman doesn't handle business. Reigns tells Heyman to be a man and take care of things.

WWE Intercontinental Championship Match

Apollo Crews. Big E (champ)

Apollo charges right into a belly to belly by Big E!! Apollo rolls to the apron. BIG E SPLASHES HIM ON THE APRON!! In the ring, Big E charges right into a back elbow. Crews fires with kicks and an enziguri. Standing MOONSAULT!! 1...2...NO!! Two Germans by Apollo but Big E blocks a third. Uranage by Big E!! 1...2...NO!! They go to the outside. Big E talks trash. Apollo with a moonsault off the apron!! Back in the ring, both men go to the top turnbuckle. Apollo blocks a superplex and head butts Big E until he falls to the mat. SAMI ZAYN UNHANDCUFFS HIMSELF!! Crews hits a drop kick off the top!! SAMI IS IN THE RING AND HITS A HELLUVA KICK ON APOLLO!! A HELLUVA KICK TO BIG E!! Sami Zayn tells his camera men that was just justice being served haha.

W: Apollo Crews via DQ @ 2:56

Commentary claims Roman Reigns has left the ThunderDome. I'm not sure I believe that.

We cut to Kevin Owens sitting in a car saying he showed up today and wasn't let in the building. He knows Reigns has something to do with it. He tells Reigns that he can't just stay away. Owens says Reigns hasn't earned any victories against him. Owens talks about his tattoos. He talks about his family having his back. He regrets that his grandparents aren't here to see him on the big stage. They're the reason why he won't stop fighting. He says he will be the last man standing at the Rumble.

Commentary hypes the Royal Rumble. Some names that are in the Rumble that haven't been announced before tonight are Dolph Ziggler, Shinsuke Nakamura, Big E, and Tamina.

The Street Profits are walking backstage with a fruit basket. They run into Sonya Deville who just finished talking to Dolph Ziggler. The fruit basket is for her to congratulate her on her new job! They say never mind it's not. They want their rematch against Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode. Deville will give them their match when Montez Ford is 100%. The Profits don't seem happy about it. Deville takes the basket.

We see the lead up to the obstacle challenge. Highlights from the Ding Dong, Hello show last week. It was great stuff by Bayley! The obstacle course is next!

Bayley's Ultimate Athlete Obstacle Course Challenge

Bianca Belair vs. Bayley

Michael Cole is overseeing this thing. Bayley takes Cole's mic and insults him before dismissing him! Bayley says American Ninja Warrior has nothing on her! Bayley tells Belair the order in which they need to do everything. Chad Gable is helping out with it. Bayley has her own personal jump suit haha. Bayley goes first and she is taking her sweet time! They have to fireman's carry Gable! BAYLEY'S TIME IS 1:12!! Bayley says she's doing Belair a favor and they customize the course! BELAIR HAS TO FIREMAN'S CARRY OTIS!! BELAIR DOES IT EASY!! BELAIR BEATS BAYLEY'S TIME WITH 17 SECONDS TO SPARE!!

W: Bianca Belair with time of 0:55


Dominik and Rey Mysterio talk backstage. Dominik promises Rey he is prepared. Rey says he can do it his way this time but if things go wrong, they do it Rey's way next time. Dominik vs. King Corbin is next!

King Corbin vs. Dominik Mysterio

They lock up and Dominik uses his speed to avoid Corbin. Dominik with a drop kick and a head scissor sends Corbin out of the ring. Dominik leaps over the top but Corbin side steps him and hits a big clothesline. Near fall for Corbin in the ring. Corbin chokes Dominik across the bottom rope before delivering punches to the body in the corner. Corbin sends Dominik hard into the opposite turnbuckle. Dominik escapes the End of Days. Dominik tries a 619 but Corbin grabs the legs. Big right hand by Corbin and THE END OF DAYS FINISHES IT! Squash.

W: King Corbin via pin @ 2:18

Heyman heads to the ring wearing his suit still.

More highlights of last week's contract signing.

Adam Pearce vs. Paul Heyman

Heyman tapes his fist on the way to the ring haha. Nice touch. HEYMAN TRIPS COMING UP THE STEPS! THEN HE FALLS OFF THE STEPS!! Heyman says "Card subject to change". HERE COMES ROMAN REIGNS!!! SUPERMAN PUNCH!! Pearce falls out of the ring! Reigns goes to the outside. Reigns with a low blow! Reigns throws Pearce over the barricade. Reigns beats his ass all around the arena!! Reigns puts Pearce up in the stands.

KEVIN OWENS IS HERE TO ATTACK REIGNS!!! They brawl back towards the ring. Super kick by Owens. Owens avoids a Superman Punch and OWENS HITS REIGNS WITH A STUNNER!!! More brawling on the outside. Referees and officials come out to separate them. OWENS STUNS REIGNS AGAIN ON THE OUTSIDE OF THE RING!! OWENS POP UP POWER BOMBS REIGNS THROUGH THE ANNOUNCE TABLE!! Owens tries to get the steps to hit Reigns but the referees and officials stop him. End Show (No match ever offically happened here).

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