About Last Night

WWE SmackDown 01/09/18: ...And Justice for All

This episode is littered with meddling from management

by Owen Douglass | January 10, 2018


About Last Night is a quick reflection on the matches and segments, or random observations, from a wrestling show that sticks out to us the morning after we watch them. If you would like to get your comments featured, chime in below in our comments section or tweet us. You can also help support us on Patreon.

About The Show's Weird Pacing...

He didn't have a match nor was he on commentary

I want to start off by pointing out that this episode of SmackDown had a really weird flow to it. There were lots of quick matches and quick transitions to the next segments, sometimes with segments happening within segments (the Shane McMahon/Daniel Bryan interaction in Gorilla Position, Becky Lynch's insert promo, etc.). Yet with all this rush to get through things, we still got full entrances for people not involved in match, with Bobby Roode getting one to be on commentary and both Charlotte Flair and Naomi getting them to stand at ringside. The priorities for blocking out the show just felt all off. They only have two hours to get the ball rolling for the Royal Rumble, they need to use that time smarter.

About Mojo Rawley...

TFW you hear Mojo's theme

Have you been paying attention to Mojo Rawley and Zack Ryder on Twitter? These two have been exchanging video promos, and it's established that Mojo is actually a really great talker when not saddled with what the WWE writers give him. And while his theme song is still really bad, he's also pretty entertaining in the ring as he had a solid match with Zack Ryder to advance in the United States Championship Tournament. It's a shame Bobby Roode was sitting ringside to serve as a distraction from the match, but it wasn't too bad. I feel Mojo has a bright future as a midcard heel, even if this tournament isn't going to be his big moment.

About Benjamin & Gable Demanding Justice...

#FREETHETAGTITLES

Last week Shelton Benjamin and Chad Gable thought they had won the Tag Team Championship, but they don't know how tag team matches work and that only two participants can be active at a time. Gable (who was inactive) pinned the Uso that was also inactive, so a second referee came down to point this out and get the match restarted. The Usos ended up getting the legal win in the end.

Gable & Benjamin came out to the ring this week to try to demand that the referee "frees the tag titles", which I guess means give the belts to them. I'm really enjoying the promo style these two have, even if it's a bit of a ripoff of The Usos. They add enough of their own flavor to make it their own, with Benjamin always being the one to set up Gable to say his points. The result of this was Daniel Bryan giving them a 2 Out of 3 Falls Match at the Royal Rumble. At least this makes up for the Raw Tag Title match that's also going down.

About Breezango GETTING THE WIN...

THEY DID IT!

I love Breezango and Rusev Day (that's the official team name now, and it's amazing). So when they were pit against each other in a match I was torn on who to root for. In the end, Breezango needed the win more since Rusev Day is already riding high on being over with the crowd while Breezango has been hurt with constant squashes by The Bludgeon Brothers. That doesn't mean it wasn't surprising when they actually got the win, and it was a pleasant surprise that they gave it to them. Since The Fashion Files was banished to being online only I was worried about what this meant for them getting a push. Maybe there's hope for them yet.

About Shane McMahon and Daniel Bryan...

Yup, these two are totally on the same page

We got to see the issues between Shane McMahon and Daniel Bryan continue on this week's episode, as both made decisions independently with the other unsteadily standing by them afterwards in awkward meetings. Shane kicked things off by putting Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn in a handicap match against AJ Styles, Shinsuke Nakamura, and Randy Orton. Then Daniel Bryan interrupted Chad Gable & Shelton Benjamin's protest in the ring to take Gable's words literally and put them in a 2 Out of 3 Falls Match at the Royal Rumble. It came to a head during that match when Shane kept interrupting when Owens & Zayn continued to try to escape with countouts and disqualifications, restarting the match to eliminate those outs.

The biggest moment between these two of the night was after Bryan's tag title announcement, with Shane losing his cool due to Bryan giving another shot after The Usos had just beaten them fair and square. I think it's pretty clear Shane is going to be the one going heel after all this, since he is a McMahon, and Daniel Bryan is just being an agent of chaos to push him in this direction. Where it ends up going in regards to a WrestleMania match is the most interesting part. What if Daniel Bryan miraculously gets cleared to compete?...

What did you think of this week's SmackDown? Let us know in the comments!


About Owen Douglass

Owen Douglass is a co-founder of ProWrestling.Cool and one of the hosts of the Heel Turn podcast. With over 20 years of wrestling experience, there isn't much that shocks him these days.

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