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SmackDown In A Nutshell: A Blue Brand Happy New Year

It’s Friday, so it’s another SmackDown In A Nutshell [1]. Not just any though-this one is a blue brand happy New Year!

As in, yes folks, we’ve made it to 2021. Crazy, but hopefully 2021 can be an improvement over the bizarro 2020 that we’ve all just endured [2].

In any case, we may have a new year, but we will likely be getting some of the usual fun. The Royal Rumble [3] is just a few weeks away, so we can expect that to be a key focus on the show.

Roman Reigns [4] still has to deal with his Kevin Owens problem too. KO is not yet out of his hair.

Of course, that also means Jey is going to be busy with Kevin Owens too.

So what else can we expect out of a blue brand happy New Year?

Perhaps some more from the new look Carmella? No doubt still chasing the new SmackDown Women’s Champion, Sasha Banks…

And let’s not forget, it’s Big E’s first SmackDown [5] since winning the Intercontinental Championship…so we have to see what’s next there too.

So, it’s a blue brand happy New Year!

blue brand new year
Image Credit: provided via wwe.com

Let’s crack open this Nutshell and get the party started!

Best Match of the night:

I liked a few, but I struggled to decide which one warranted best of the night.

I liked the main event, but one gripe-the match itself seemed to wrap up too quickly and too cleanly.

I liked the tag match with Bryan and Otis too.

Worst match of the night:

Any match with Tamina seems to get consideration here, and tonight was no different.

Star of the Night

Sharing it three ways. Kevin Owens, Jey Uso, Roman Reigns.

They have carried their weight and then some.

Honorable mention to Big E, I liked his first night as champ. Even with the latest Sami stuff.

Spot of the Night

No brainer here, but Kevin Owens landing through the table from the mid-level of ThunderDome. I think the camera work made the bump look a bit higher than it was, but it was still not a painless one.

Jobber of the Night:

Not a traditional jobber here, but Kevin Owens. I think he did a great job this show, as he has been the past several.

I couldn’t put my finger on it exactly, but this program, with all three Superstars, is working better and better each week.

That’s a good thing, because it would seem as though we are getting at least a few more weeks of it.

Holy Sh** Moment of the Night:

That was a substantial two on one beating that Kevin Owens sustained from both Jey Uso and Roman Reigns.

The brawl included a use of the ThunderDome set that I don’t think we’ve had before (or I just blanked). That had the three men up into the middle level of screens.

Of course, going up there was to set up a nice table spot, which was telegraphed once the camera angles started to look up at the Superstars.

Botch of the night:

Tamina missed a kick badly. Not shocking, in spite of the lineage, she’s often not fun to watch in the ring.

Noteworthy Moment:

We have a Sonya DeVille sighting.

DeVille, of course, has been off television for the last few months after losing a match to Mandy Rose. The stipulation was she had to leave the company, but we know how those go.

The expectation at the time was that DeVille had been written off due to her ongoing stalker situation, and that she’d come back when things were settled.

It was thought at one point that she could have swapped brands during the annual draft, but that did not happen.

Kind of a quiet return for her, will be interesting to see where this goes.

Overall lowlights:

My big complaint? Tamina.

Maybe it’s me? I just can’t get into any of her matches.

Overall highlights:

We made it to 2021! Yay!

Big E looks good as champion.

Roman, Jey and Kevin continue their fun. I await to see what comes next (Jimmy? Does KO finally get some backup?).

After the final bell:

WWE was in a tough spot, as they tend to be this time of year. It’s still amidst the holidays, plus there is the college bowl games going on.

Add to that we are still in the middle of the pandemic (or, maybe not the middle, but somewhere in the thick of one?), and it makes it an interesting show to pull off.

Sonya DeVille was the big surprise, if you could say it was big. Here’s thinking that any bigger moves (IE, a returning Uso or something) may happen next week or beyond.

Not a bad start to 2021, in my own humble opinion. Not a bad blue brand new year at all.