SmackDown results, Jan. 8, 2021:The Head of the Table imposes his will on SmackDown’s high-stakes Gauntlet Match
Universal Champion Roman Reigns made it possible for WWE Official Adam Pearce to win the Gauntlet Match and become The Head of the Table’s challenger at Royal Rumble. Plus, Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode captured the SmackDown Tag Team Titles and so much more.
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Roman Reigns called out WWE Official Adam Pearce to take issue with his recent action
After laying waste to Kevin Owens last week on SmackDown, Universal Champion Roman Reigns called out WWE official Adam Pearce to take issue to with him making the match between KO and Jey Uso that ended in such carnage. He also wanted Pearce to explain himself after he made a Gauntlet Match to determine The Big Dog's next challenger at Royal Rumble this week -- pitting Rey Mysterio, Sami Zayn, Shinsuke Nakamura, King Corbin and Daniel Bryan against each other in pursuit of a Universal Title opportunity.
Rather than attack Pearce when he felt disrespected, The Head of the Table stopped himself at the last second and proclaimed that perhaps everyone is safe before leaving Pearce in the ring to contemplate the conversation.
Big E def. Apollo Crews in an Intercontinental Championship Match
After accepting Big E’s open challenge last week, the dynamic Apollo Crews battled The Powerhouse of Positivity for the Intercontinental Title.
There was some confusion over an apparent three-count after a Superplex by Crews. It was soon explained, though, that Big E and his challenger both scored the pinfall at the same time, resulting in a draw that allowed Big to keep the title.
Crews wasn't happy with the result, and when Big E tried to give him a fist bump, Crews slapped the Intercontinental Champion. As a result, an irate Big E agreed to continue the match right than and there. Unfortunately for Crews, the larger-than life titleholder earned a clear victory with the Big Ending.
Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode def. The Street Profits to become the new SmackDown Tag Team Champions
After a vicious chair assault at the hands of Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode last week, The Street Profits put the SmackDown Tag Team Championships on the line against their outspoken adversaries.
However, it soon became clear that Montez Ford's leg was still injured as a result of his opponents' attack one week ago, putting the titleholders at an incredible disadvantage. Nevertheless, Ford heroically fought through the pain, despite the continued nefarious actions of his opponents.
Eventually, the injury became too much, and Ziggler and Roode soon hit a Spinebuster into the Zig Zag to capture the SmackDown Tag Team Championships!
In the aftermath, the new titleholders added insult to injury by attacking The Street Profits and knocking them out of the ring.
Rey Mysterio def. Sami Zayn - Gauntlet Match Part 1
As he made his way to the ring for the first part of the Gauntlet Match, Sami Zayn explained that he decided to enlist a documentary crew to witness and uncover the conspiracy against him that cost him the Intercontinental Championship. However, when Zayn turned his back and failed to notice the opening bell ring, Rey Mysterio took full advantage, hitting the self-professed "Master Strategist" with the 619 into the splash off the top rope for the victory.
Shinsuke Nakamura def. Rey Myserio - Gauntlet Match Part 2
In the second part of the Gauntlet Match, Shinsuke Nakamura overcame The Master of the 619 in a much more challenging matchup. In the final moments, Mysterio once again hit the 619 on his opponent. But when he went for the splash off the top rope this time, The Artist got his knees up and locked in the armbar to make Mysterio tap out.
Moments after the bell, King Corbin charged in and attacked Dominik Mysterio, Nakamura and Rey before the start of his part of the Gauntlet Match.
Shinsuke Nakamura def. King Corbin - Gauntlet Match Part 3
After a pre-match attack by his imminent opponent, Nakamura next locked horns with King Corbin in the third part of the Gauntlet Match to determine who would challenge Roman Reigns at Royal Rumble. Despite Corbin's brutal efforts throughout the contest, The King of Strong Style hit a Kinshasa out of nowhere for his second win of the night.
Shinsuke Nakamura def. Daniel Bryan - Gauntlet Match Part 4
Although Daniel Bryan had already revealed his plans to win the Royal Rumble Match on Jan. 31, he entered the fourth part of the Gauntlet Match ready to get to The Big Dog sooner against the resilient Nakamura.
After an incredible showdown by both The Leader of the "Yes!" Movement and The King of Strong Style, Nakamura had enough presence of mind to once again raise his knee at just the right moment and defeat Bryan with another Kinshasa out of nowhere.
Adam Pearce def. Shinsuke Nakamura - Gauntlet Match Part 5
After defeating Bryan, an exhausted Nakamura turned his attention to the emerging Universal Champion Roman Reigns, Jey Uso and Paul Heyman. Their entrance preceded WWE Official Adam Pearce, whom Heyman had earlier pulled some strings to get into the high-stakes matchup, whether he wanted to compete or not.
However, before Pearce reached the ring, Uso and The Head of the Table suddenly entered the squared circle and attacked the war-torn Artist. Moments later, Reigns threw Pearce into the ring and set up the unhinged Jey to hit him with a superkick. Then, after Reigns called for the opening bell, Uso draped the WWE official’s unconscious body over The King of Strong Style for the three-count. As a result, Adam Pearce will battle Roman Reigns at Royal Rumble for the Universal Championship!