happy royal rumble eve
source: @wwe, twitter, screenshot

It’s time for a big SmackDown in a Nutshell, and all I can say is Happy Royal Rumble eve, everyone!

Seriously, let’s make that a thing, right? Why not?

Happy Royal Rumble eve. Let’s speak it into existence.

So, we are less than 24 hours away from the Rumble. Seriously, I am writing this as the main event happens, so 24 hour from now, we should be in the midst of the men’s Rumble.

Royal Rumble eve, indeed.

So we can expect final hype for the first major PLE of the year. Are you excited?

I know I am.

Will there be any surprises? Perhaps.

We do know we have the semifinals in the SmackDown tag tournament, so there is that too.

And, Kevin Owens taking on Solo Sikoa…so that should be top notch.

With that all said, it is time for…

SmackDown In A Nutshell: Happy Royal Rumble Eve, Everyone!

happy royal rumble eve

source: @wwe, twitter, screenshot

Let’s crack this one open and find out!

Best Match of the night:

The semis of the tag tournament were satisfying.

As was the main event.

Flip a coin if you wish.

This segment was fun too, so I add it here…because I can.

Worst match of the night:

Lacey Evans and Jazmine Alure.

Short, so there is that. Somewhat surprised Evans’ return appearance wasn’t held for tomorrow evening, but we’ve had so many vignettes.

Plus, her as a surprise…I don’t think it moves needles.

Star of the Night

The Bloodline and Kevin Owens will be the big story, for good reason…but lots of good work all around, I think.

happy royal rumble eve

source: @wwe, twitter, screenshot

Another good example would be the segment that showed off Austin Theory, The Miz, New Day, Lashley and Lesnar.

A lot going on there, but a lot to enjoy too.

Spot of the Night:

Nothing spectacular, but that pop up power bomb that Sikoa took on the announce table?

That table didn’t give. Ouch.

Jobber of the Night:

Can I get a nod for Miz, New Day and Theory?

source: @wwe, twitter, screenshot

They had to suffer for Lashley and Lesnar.

But, the big one was Jazmine Alure, losing to Lacey Evans.

Upset of the Night:

No match…but I wonder if The Tribal Chief is a wee bit upset tonight.

Holy Sh** Moment of the Night:

Surprised, but not really, to see Sami Zayn right out of the gate. I figured he’d be there, as soon as Reigns told him not to be.

source: @wwe, twitter, screenshot

Now, with him working with Jey…will we see more than just Sami out of the Bloodline eventually?

After sort of surprising us on RAW, he did it again tonight.

He being Brock Lesnar.

The Beast came in through the crowd and attacked Bobby Lashley, then declared that he’d see Lashley again in the Rumble.

We had to figure he would be in. Not going to be a surprise entrant though…which makes me think we have some bigger ones coming?

LOL Moment of the night:

Michael Cole showing us shots of Roman Reigns in Fallon’s green room, because Reigns is a guest on the show on Friday.

Except, fun fact…the show tapes in the afternoon. So, they showed him sitting there, but that was like, seven hours old.

Reigns, by the time we saw that? Probably already in San Antonio.

Noteworthy Moment:

It seems notable to point out that Rey Mysterio actually defeated Karrion Kross on this show.

Probably just building to a bigger match on a follow-up show, perhaps at Elimination Chamber, where Kross gets the decisive win…but still.

Sami did not listen to orders, and Jey went along with it. Will one man-or both men-pay?

Overall lowlights:

I would say there wasn’t enough for the women.

We had a pre-taped Charlotte-Sonya bit, and Xia Li announced for the Rumble. And then Lacey Evans’ squash, and that was about it.

I truly hope we have some epic surprises in the women’s match to make up for this show and RAW.

Overall highlights:

In spite of the lack of women on the show, it was still a good show.

Crazy segment with a unique mix of talent, ranging from The Miz to Brock Lesnar.

The tag tournament matches were good, and have given us an interesting final. Imperium versus Ricochet and Braun Strowman is definitely unexpected.

Kevin Owens and Solo Sikoa was good, and plenty of twists for the Bloodline storyline to boot.

After the final bell:

And just like that, Royal Rumble eve has wrapped up.

OK, not a thing, but it’s a thing. And I have to say, I am super excited for the first big event of 2023.