Who would have guessed that WWE Monday Night Raw would end with Bray Wyatt and the Wyatt Family standing tall after laying out Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar? It was just the kind of ending that WWE Raw needed going into this Sunday’s WWE Royal Rumble 2016, as the only major players before last Monday night’s final throw-down appeared to be The Big Dog and The Beast Incarnate. Now that Bray has shown the WWE Universe that he and his minions will be a force to reckon with during the Royal Rumble Match, has the narrative for the Road to WrestleMania been significantly altered?
WWE taped this week’s episode of WWE Thursday Night SmackDown on Tuesday in Dayton, Ohio. Assuming you don’t count WWE Superstars, this episode of SmackDown will be the last show that WWE airs before the Rumble on January 24. With the champion being laid out on Monday, this will be his last chance to save some face before he puts his title on the line against 29 other men in a 30-man battle royal.
Prior to the airing of the show on Thursday, WWE has already let it be known that SmackDown will feature Roman Reigns facing the League of Nations in a handicap match, the New Day will face Dolph Ziggler and the Usos, and the Intercontinental Champion Dean Ambrose is a guest on MizTV along with his challenger for Sunday, Kevin Owens. Of course, the WWE Universe hopes to get a response from the Wyatt Family, and the rest of the WWE roster will have to try to make their case for their inclusion in the hour-long free-for-all taking place Sunday. If you can’t wait until Thursday night to know what happens on SmackDown, the full spoilers are provided here.
Note: The following contains full spoilers for WWE Thursday Night SmackDown, airing January 21, 2016.
- After the Highlight Reel ended so violently on WWE Monday Night Raw, Chris Jericho came out to open Thursday Night SmackDown in front of the Dayton crowd. As he should be getting used to by now, he was interrupted by The New Day. They blamed Y2J for the “death” of their trombone. Chris Jericho (who appears out of shape lately) spun the interruption into a six-man tag featuring The New Day vs. Dolph Ziggler and The Usos. While the details aren’t clear at this point, one would assume this will play into the talk Jericho had on Raw with Stephanie McMahon about his power (or lack thereof) to book matches as he pleases.
- The Usos and Dolph Ziggler defeated The New Day in their Six-Man Tag Team Match. The Usos will face The New Day at the Royal Rumble for the WWE Tag Team Championship. It is unclear whether the teams will be a part of the Rumble Match, although Vince alluded to them winning two weeks ago on Raw, and they even made up their own “New Day” rule about entering the match.
- Becky Lynch defeated Alicia Fox. Lynch goes on to challenge Charlotte for the WWE Divas Championship on Sunday.
- Dean Ambrose and Kevin Owens both hit The Miz with their finishers on MizTV.
- Bray Wyatt defeated Ryback. Both men will enter Sunday’s Royal Rumble Match, but I think only Wyatt has a chance at being around near the end.
- Titus O’Neil defeated Stardust again. I’m guessing the Stardust gimmick ends soon and Cody transitions back to his regular self. Maybe on Sunday.
- In the main event, the League of Nations lost via disqualification. They were teaming up on Reigns post-match when The Usos came to make the save. But then The Wyatt Family laid everyone out again, so Bray and company are looking pretty fierce going into the Royal Rumble.
These spoilers for WWE Thursday Night SmackDown were confirmed at Bleacher Report. USA Network airs Thursday Night SmackDown at 8/7c. Replays of WWE SmackDown can be streamed on-demand beginning Fridays with a Hulu Plus subscription.
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