Welcome to the Live Results Blog for WWE SmackDown episode on January 20, 2023, which featured the build-up for Royal Rumble 2023 event.
Roman Reigns and Kevin Owens were supposed to sit down in the ring to sign a contract for their Undisputed Universal Championship at Royal Rumble. What went down in this segment? Did we see further problems between Sami Zayn and Roman Reigns?
4 matches for SmackDown Tag Team Championship contender tournament took place on the show. Drew McIntyre and Sheamus took on The Viking Raiders. The Brawling Brutes faced Imperium, Maximum Male Models faced Legado Del Fantasma and Los Lotharios took on Hit-Row.
Tune in below as we post results from WWE Friday Night SmackDown episode of January 20, 2023, with live updates, winners, and highlights.
- Drew McIntyre & Sheamus defeated The Viking Raiders(Erik & Ivar) in Round 1 Match for SmackDown Tag Team Championship Contender’s Tournament via pinfall.
- LA Knight defeated Rey Jones in a singles match via pinfall.
- Hit-Row(Top Dolla & Ashante “Thee” Adonis) defeated Los Lotharios(Angel Garza & Humberto Carillo) in Round 1 Match for SmackDown Tag Team Championship Contender’s Tournament via pinfall.
- Imperium(Ludwig Kaiser & Giovanni Vinci) defeated The Brawling Brutes(Butch & Ridge Holland) – Round 1 Match for SmackDown Tag Team Championship Contender’s Tournament via pinfall.
- Legado Del Fantasma(Cruz Del Toro & Joaquin Wilde) defeated Maximum Male Models(Mace & Mansoor) – Round 1 Match for SmackDown Tag Team Championship Contender’s Tournament via pinfall.
The show opens with a recap of how Sami Zayn vs Kevin Owens match ended last week. We see The Bloodline’s cars getting into the parking lot. Sami puts his hands out for a fist bump but Roman does not bump him back. Sami is shocked.
Drew McIntyre & Sheamus vs The Viking Raiders(Erik & Ivar) – Round 1 Match for SmackDown Tag Team Championship Contender’s Tournament
The Vikings rush Drew and Sheamus before the bell. Sheamus and Erik start the match in the ring. Sheamus counters in the corner by sending Erik into the turnbuckle. He clotheslines Erik to the floor. Ivar drives Drew into the apron and barricade. Sheamus fights off Ivar before throwing Erik into the barricade.
Sheamus hits 10 Beats of Beltran on Ivar, followed by doing the same on Erik. Sheamus climbs to the second rope with Erik but Ivar pulls Erik down. Sheamus is thrown to the floor and Ivar hits a cannonball on him as we cut to a break.
Erik hits a backbreaker on Sheamus as we return. Erik puts on a shoulder lock after some blows to the chest. Sheamus gets back on his feet and they start to trade big strikes. Erik kicks at his knee and hits more blows before bringing in Ivar. Ivar hits a crossface punch. Erik tags back and Sheamus hits him with Irish Curse Backbreaker.
Tags to Drew and Ivar. Drew hits a couple of clotheslines before avoiding a powerslam to hits a big punch. He hits a suplex on Erik before hitting a neckbreaker on Ivar. Ivar blocks FutureShock DDT and hits a kick to midsection. Drew hits a Michinoku Driver to get a two-count. Ivar hits a sit-down senton to counter.
Erik and Ivar double team to hit clotheslines for a two-count. Drew hits a headbutt on Erik. He joins Ivar on the second rope. Erik saves Ivar from the superplex. Sheamus hits Erik with White Noise. Drew gets up and hits superplex on Ivar to take us to a break.
Ivar is hitting back elbows on Drew as we return. Drew explodes out of the corner with a clothesline and then hits a futureshock DDT. Ivar hits a spinning kick to stop the Claymore. Sheamus and Erik tag in to trade elbows. Sheamus hits a body slam. Valhalla distracts Sheamus and Erik hits him with a Saito suplex. Ivar tags in and hits a splash from the top. Ivar is shocked when Sheamus kicks out of the pin.
Sheamus tries to fight both opponent and manages to hits a knee to Ivar’s face. Drew hits Claymore Kick on Erik. Sheamus hits Brogue kick on Ivar to get the pinfall.
Winners – Sheamus & Drew McIntyre
Roman Reigns and Paul Heyman are backstage when Sami Zayn interrupts them. Sami asks Roman if there is any problem between them. Roman asks him about his reaction to The Usos attacking Kevin Owens during his match. Sami says he felt a bit blindsided when The Usos attacked when he was just about to put Owens away. Sami says he did not know the plan and was kept in blank. Roman tells Sami, “Get Out”. Roman says when did it start that he has to run his plans by Sami. Roman tells him to stop using him and start his own Bloodline or whatever with Kevin Owens. Heyman signals Sami to go away quickly.
We hear from Raquel Rodriguez backstage. She says she will win Royal Rumble in her homestate and it will be the biggest moment of her career.
LA Knight vs Rey Jones
Before the match, LA Knight gets on the mic and says he will switch off Bray Wyatt at Royal Rumble. The bell rings and Knight corners Jones in the corner but suddenly, the lights start flickering with Firefly Fun House logo appearing on the big screen. Knight quickly hits a cutter to get the pinfall.
Winner – LA Knight
Firefly Fun House episode starts on the big screen. We see all the usual characters- Abby The Witch, Ramblin’ Rabbit, Huskus The Pig and others. Bray says he missed all of them. Rabbit says he is worried about Royal Rumble as he is afraid of dark. Huskus says he likes dark chocolate. Bray says he always wondered what kind of parents would name their child Los Angeles Knight.
Wyatt adds that everyone should be afraid of the dark. Uncle Howdy appears on the TV screen in the Fun House and says it just needs a push to set one on his path. Bray gets serious and says Knight opened the door for this and should be ready to face consciousness.
Los Lotharios(Angel Garza & Humberto Carillo) vs Hit-Row(Top Dolla & Ashante “Thee” Adonis) – Round 1 Match for SmackDown Tag Team Championship Contender’s Tournament
Garza starts against Adonis. They counter arm-wringers before Humberto comes in for double team hip-toss. Adonis hits a dropkick on Angel to take over control. Top Dolla tags in and hits a hip toss on Garza. Dolla hits a big slap on his chest when he goes to the announce table. Back to the ring, Garza tries to fight out of a waistlock.
Humberto and Adonis get the tags. Humberto gets a two-count after a sunset flip. He hits an enzuigiri to send him to the floor before Garza comes in to hit a dive on Top Dolla. B-Fab distracts Humberto by picking his ankle. Garza rolls up Humberto to get the pinfall.
Winners – Hit-Row
We get another video package for Cody Rhodes now.
Braun Strowman announces that he will be in the Royal Rumble match and that everyone will get these hands.
Flair & Deville
SmackDown Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair makes her way to the ring. She is in her ring gear. We get a recap of how Sonya Deville attacked Flair backstage when she was denied a rematch. Flair takes the mic and asks Sonya to come out to talk to her face-to-face. Sonya comes out and says Flair does not feel that she deserves a shot at the title. She says everytime she comes out, she looks like a star. Last week, it took 6 men to separate her from Flair.
Flair agrees that Sonya is a star but so are other women at the back. She asks Sonya if there is anything different with her, and why others should not get a shot at the title. But, if Sonya wants to fight, she would fight her right away. Sonya denies the match and says there is nothing for her and says she will agree for the match if Charlotte puts her title on the line. Adam Pearce comes out to interrupt but Sonya decks Flair and leaves the ring.
Roman asks Paul Heyman if he believes Sami. Heyman says he never liked Sami but he never questioned Roman’s vision for the Island of Relevancy. As his Wiseman, Heyman suggests it is better to have Sami on their side when they are about to sign a contract with Kevin Owens for a match for Universal Championship.
Imperium(Ludwig Kaiser & Giovanni Vinci) vs The Brawling Brutes(Butch & Ridge Holland) – Round 1 Match for SmackDown Tag Team Championship Contender’s Tournament
Vinci and Holland start the match. Holland hits a hip toss before some double team work from The Brutes. Kaiser gets a blind tag and hits a tilt-a-whirl slam. Butch goes for joint manipulation on the elbow. Vinci gets the tag and Imperium duo double team on Butch with crossbody and leg sweep. Holland is knocked off the apron to take us to a break.
Butch fights out of a suplex and tags in Holland as we return. Holland hits a couple of clotheslines before dropping Kaiser in the corner. He hits a running powerslam before hitting a double back body drop on both opponents. Vinci is thrown to the floor.
Butch gets the tag and kicks at Vinci. Butch and Holland with tandem attack on Kaiser in the corner. Holland is pulled out by Vinci. Butch puts on an ankle lock on Kaiser in the ring. Vinci gets a tag when Kaiser reaches the ropes. Vinci hits a senton on Butch. Holland pushes Kaiser away when Imperium were going for double-team powerbomb.
Butch fights back against Vinci and hits a torando DDT. Kaiser and Vinci get the tags. Holland hits a powerslam on Kaiser. Vinci saves Kaiser from a double team attack and hits a brainbuster on Butch on the floor. Vinci gets a blind tag from Kaiser when Holland was going for White Noise. Imperium hit Imperium Bomb on Holland to get the pinfall.
Winners – Imperium
Paul Heyman comes to Sami Zayn as he was sitting alone backstage. Heyman tells him that The Tribal Chief wants to see him.
Shayna Baszler is backstage and asks us to imagine fighting others with injured shoulder or ankle. Baszler says she will be in the women’s Royal Rumble match and others should be vary of her.
We get a video package for WWE RAW with its 30 years history.
Karrion Kross is backstage and talks about how he will face Rey Mysterio next week. He says he will take Rey out and following that, he will take out all other 29 superstars in Royal Rumble. Time is running out.. Tik Tok.
Legado Del Fantasma(Cruz Del Toro & Joaquin Wilde) vs Maximum Male Models(Mace & Mansoor) – Round 1 Match for SmackDown Tag Team Championship Contender’s Tournament
Mansoor hits an armdrag on Wilde. He hits a dropkick before Wilde brings him down with an armdrag. Mace gets the tag and sends both men from Legado to the floor. MMM duo pose in the ring. Legado duo work in tandem to take over control. Mace breaks the pin after a double-team move on Mansoor.
Mace runs over Del Toro and Wilde before Wilde counters in the corner to block a double team move. Mansoor is dropped on the top turnbuckle on his groin. Del Toro hits a missile dropkick on Mace after Wilde hits a DDT on Mansoor. Legado finish off Mansoor with a double team finisher to get the pinfall.
Winners – Legado Del Fantasma
Sami Zayn gets into Roman’s locker room now. Roman says Wiseman has made him realize that Sami was just looking for some clear communication. Sami says he loves Roman and would do anything for the Bloodline. Roman instructs him to get the Usos and get ready to leave the town as soon as they are done with the contract signing.
The Contract Signing
Roman Reigns makes his grand entrance and just has Solo Sikoa and Paul Heyman with him. Roman sits down at the table waiting for Kevin Owens. Owens comes through the crowd. Owens pulls Solo to the floor and sends him into the barricade. Owens hits a stunner on Roman in the ring. The Usos run out and pull Owens to the floor.
Owens fights them off and drops them at the ringside. Owens hits a pop-up powerbomb on Roman to put him through the table. Owens snatches the contract from Heyman and signs it. Sami Zayn runs out and seems conflicted once again as he stands on the apron. Owens runs out through the crowd when The Usos recover. The show goes off the air as Roman comes back to his senses.