WWE SmackDown Results and Grades 22 Jan 2021: Roman Reigns’ ‘Adam Pearce’ plan fails spectacularly

WWE SmackDown results and grades: The Royal Rumble is almost here and WWE still has finalise the stars who feature in the men’s and women’s matches.

Roman Reigns enters Payback with Paul Heyman (WWE)

This week’s WWE SmackDown also featured a big title defence and an obstacle course but we start with the results and grades as The Tribal Chief shares his anger.

Pearce vs Heyman

Paul Heyman and Roman Reigns were in the ring and Reigns was upset over the Kevin Owens surprise from last week.

He said he didn’t believe in ‘card subject to change’ and his back was a mess carrying the company. Adam Pearce came out after being ripped into by Paul Heyman but the authority figure ended up accepting a match to face Heyman.

Grade A

Reigns is gold on the microphone, we have seen that for a while, but Pearce is also looking good.

He wasn’t involved in earlier storylines as heavily but this is certainly one of the more interesting angles in WWE.

Tag champs in action

Liv Morgan and Ruby Riott got a chance to impress as they faces the Women’s tag champions, Asuka and Charlotte.

Billie Kay created a diversion which helped Riott and Morgan take advantage. However, a second such distraction stopped Riott from getting the win and that allowed Charlotte to hit the natural selection and get the W.

Asuka and Charlotte beat Riott and Morgan

Grade B

Kay is a bit of a problem for the Squad and it seems they will also chuck her out soon.

The match overall was good and it will be interesting to see who the rivals for the tag champs are.

Cesaro vs Ziggler

Daniel Bryan was speaking about how great the Rumble is before Cesaro interrupted him and reminded him of how he was beaten last week.

The Swiss star put out an open challenge and Dolph Ziggler was the one to come out. The match went back and forth before Cesaro got the win via the Neutralizer.

Cesaro beats Ziggler

Grade A

Cesaro and Ziggler are so talented in the ring and it showed in this match. This was an excellent match and it again highlighted that Ziggler deserves more time in the ring.

Cesaro seems to be getting a push too and hopefully, this isn’t a one month thing.

Banks vs Reginald

After last week’s challenge, Reginald, the sommelier of Carmella took on Sasha Banks.

The SmackDown champion tried to get him down but Reginald was able to squirm away thanks to some flips and tricks.

However, that didn’t last long as Banks was able to submit Reginald via the Banks Statement.

Banks beats Reginald

Grade B

This was an OK match given that it was never going to be a proper contest between the pair.

However, it was miles better than what WWE could have put on and they should do more inter gender matches, even if it is for comedy.

Intercontinental title match

Big E wasted no time in attacking Apollo Crews as he defended his Intercontinental title. However, Crews shot back at the champion and got a quick two-count as well.

The pair were fighting before Sami Zayn released himself after handcuffing himself as a mark of protest. He hit both stars with his finisher to cause a no contest.

Grade C

Zayn making his way to the ring was fine but WWE had hyped the match up for so long and it ended up with this finish.

We should see a triple threat match between the trio now and this should be a cracker.

Obstacle challenge

Bayley was first to try out the challenge and she cheated a bit by running around the obstacles rather than going through them. She finished with a time of 1:12, Belair started the course on fire but things took a twist as she had to carry Otis instead of Chad Gable.

However, she still powered through and beat Bayley’s time by 17 seconds. Bayley then attacked her rival.

Grade C

The big talking point was seeing Belair carry Otis without much of an issue. This was never going to be a crazy good segment and, well, it showed.

Dominik vs Corbin

Baron Corbin took on Dominik Mysterio as the rivalry continued from last week. While Dominik impressed in some segments, it was Corbin who got the win.

Corbin beats Dominik

Grade C

This felt a little short than expected but there was nothing great to bring up from this.

Main event

Pearce was ready in the ring before Heyman came out with his hands taped up. However, he tripped on the ring steps and feigned injury, similar to what Pearce did last week.

Reigns then replaced Heyman and he attacked the authority figure relentlessly. He seemed set to sent Pearce through the table before a hooded Kevin Owens attacked the Universal Champion.

Owens sent a huge message to Reigns but hitting him with multiple stunners and then sending him through a table as Heyman looked on shocked.

Grade B

It was a fun tease to see Heyman walk down and possibly face Pearce but it was never going to happen.

Reigns and Pearce could have been fun too but the big message was seeing Owens not only keep his rival down but dominate him ahead of the Rumble.

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Saiyed Adeem Karim

Ditching a corporate job to follow a dream isn't easy, but when football comes calling, who can say no? Been following the beautiful game since 1998. Liverpool addict, F1 fanatic!