January 25, 2021
St. Petersburg, Florida (Tropicana Field)
Commentary: Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton, and Samoa Joe
Results by: Mike Tedesco of Wrestleview.com
Quick Match Results
- Charlotte Flair defeated Shayna Baszler by disqualification when Nia Jax attacked Flair
- Six-Woman Tag Team Match: Shayna Baszler, Nia Jax & Lacey Evans defeated Charlotte Flair, Mandy Rose & Dana Brooke via leg drop by Jax on Brooke
- Xavier Woods defeated Slapjack via Shining Wizard
- Sheamus defeated John Morrison via White Noise
- Handicap Match: John Morrison & The Miz defeated Sheamus via Skull Crushing Finale by Miz on Sheamus
- AJ Styles defeated R-Truth via Calf Crusher
- Gauntlet Match: Riddle defeated The Hurt Business
- Riddle eliminated Shelton Benjamin via roll up
- Riddle eliminated MVP via knee bar
- Riddle eliminated Cedric Alexander via roll up
- Raw Women’s Championship: Asuka (c) vs. Alexa Bliss was no contest due to Randy Orton hitting an RKO on Bliss
In-Ring: Drew McIntyre, Goldberg, The Miz, John Morrison
WWE Champion Drew McIntyre’s music hits, and he makes his way to the ring after recovering from COVID-19. McIntyre says it feels so good to be back and thanks the WWE Universe for their “get well” wishes. McIntyre was lucky with the symptoms of COVID-19. He was fatigued and lost his sense of smell, but he was lucky. McIntyre is 100% now and will be 100% on Sunday. McIntyre is dedicating Sunday’s match to all those suffering from the virus. We will get through this.
Speaking of things people are sick of, it’s Bill Goldberg vs. Drew McIntyre for the WWE Championship. McIntyre would be out of his mind if he took Goldberg lightly. McIntyre has watched this man since he was a teenager. In a system not designed to succeed, Goldberg emerged and went 173-0, running through Hulk Hogan for the title. Then he ran through The Rock and others before disappearing for years. The last thing to go in a heavyweight fighter is the power. Goldberg returned and started a new streak. Every champion he’s challenged has been defeated. This Sunday, McIntyre is ending Goldberg’s current streak. Drew McIntyre will remain WWE Champion.
The Miz and John Morrison make their way to the ring. McIntyre vs. Goldberg could be like Kong vs. Godzilla. However when something happens, there are consequences. Either one of the people in that match could wind up injured. Whoever wins the match will be a sitting duck. They’ll hit the ring and beat the holy hell out of whoever is champion. Then Miz will cash in. All you’ll hear is something like this: “The winner and new WWE Champion, The Miz!”
Goldberg makes his way to the ring and gets in McIntyre’s face. Goldberg simply says, “You. Me. Sunday. You’re next!” The Miz is trying to egg them on to attack each other. John Morrison joins in as well. McIntyre and Goldberg bring Miz and Morrison in the ring the hard way. Goldberg then murders Miz with a Spear, while McIntyre crushes Morrison with a Claymore Kick. McIntyre and Goldberg go face-to-face while McIntyre raises his championship up in the air.
Charlotte Flair vs. Shayna Baszler
WWE Women’s Tag Team Champion Charlotte Flair is backstage in Gorilla Position. Charly Caruso asks what is on her mind. Flair says Shayna Baszler thinks she’s the Queen of Spades, but her crown is imaginary. Flair is betting on herself for this Sunday. Charly asks about the situation with Ric Flair and Lacey Evans. Flair says she’s seen her dad in a lot of dark places, but this is the darkest. It’s a lot to carry the weight of the name Flair, but for tonight she has to face Shayna Baszler.
They lock up, and Flair takes her down before hitting Jax with a baseball slide. Baszler quickly goes for a Kirifuda Clutch, but Flair gets out and big boots her down. Flair then applies the Figure Four Leglock. Jax immediately hits a leg drop.
Winner by Disqualification: WWE Women’s Tag Team Champion Charlotte Flair
Mandy Rose and Dana Brooke run down to break up the double-team. Lacey Evans then charges the ring and attacks Flair. A brawl is happening in the ring as we go to commercial.
Six-Woman Tag Team Match
Charlotte Flair, Mandy Rose & Dana Brooke vs. Shayna Baszler, Nia Jax & Lacey Evans
Lacey Evans starts against Mandy Rose. Evans mocks Flair, but Rose fights back and hits a headlock takeover. Evans gets out with a head-scissor hold and points at Flair. Rose applies a side headlock, but Evans whips her off. Evans drops down, so Rose kicks her in the ribs and reapplies the headlock. Dana Brooke tags in, and they hit a double-team suplex on Evans. Brooke covers for a two count. Brooke whips Evans into the ropes and connects with a shoulder block. Brooke flexes her arms before covering for a two count. Brooke connects with a hip toss, does a cartwheel, and kicks her in the face for a two count. Flair tags in, so Evans scurries away and tags Baszler in.
Flair blocks a kick and sidesteps her. Baszler sidesteps an avalanche and punches away at Flair. Flair avoids a knee to the head and chops away at her. Flair hits a fallaway slam and goes after Evans, but she escapes. Brooke tags in as Flair hits a snapmare. Rose tags in. Rose and Brooke go for a stereo cartwheel into a kick, but it’s comically mistimed… and not on purpose. Brooke tags back in and chops Baszler. Flair tags in, and Baszler forearms away at her. Flair clubs her down, but she has a whip to the corner reversed on her. Flair rolls up the turnbuckle and lands on the apron. Flair knees Baszler in the face and pulls her out of the ring. Baszler takes a bad tumble to the floor. They waste a lot of time getting back in the ring and the referee seemingly legitimately counts Baszler out. Everyone looks super confused. Horrible.
The match was restarted by WWE Official Adam Pearce during the commercial.
We join the match in progress to see Dana Brooke hit Nia Jax with a slow motion head-scissor into the corner. Evans tags in and takes Brooke down. Baszler tags in and attacks Brooke before stomping the elbow. Jax tags in and takes Brooke down. Brooke eventually gets away and tags Mandy Rose in. Rose runs wild on Evans and hits a facebuster. Rose powers her to the corner and forearms away at her. Rose connects with a pump knee to the head, but Baszler breaks up the pin. Flair spears Baszler down. Jax avalanches Flair before dragging Evans to the corner and tagging herself in.
Evans pulls Flair out of the ring, but Flair lands on her feet. Evans runs away while Flair chases her. Brooke tags in and avoids a shoulder from Jax. Brooke hits a flipping neckbreaker for a two count. Brooke goes to the top rope, but Jax slams her off. Jax hits a super stiff chokeslam before hitting a leg drop for the win.
Winners by Pinfall: Shayna Baszler, Nia Jax, and Lacey Evans
Slapjack vs. Xavier Woods
Woods quickly dropkicks him down, chops the chest, sends him to the corner, and hits a back body drop. Slapjack pulls him to the apron, but Woods fights him back. Slapjack punches him back, goes to the apron, and hits a slingshot back in while connecting with a bulldog for a two count. Slapjack stomps Woods’ back, but Woods soon fights back and chops the chest. Woods connects with an Honor Roll for a near fall. T-Bar distracts Woods, but Woods thwarts the distraction and hits Slapjack with a shining wizard for the win.
Winner by Pinfall: Xavier Woods
T-Bar quickly attacks Woods from behind. T-Bar and Mace hit a delayed double chokeslam. Mustafa Ali orders Slapjack to grab a steel chair. Ali teases hitting Woods with it, but he instead sits on it. Ali says Kofi Kingston won’t be in the Royal Rumble, so he’ll be taking his spot.
Backstage: Riddle, R-Truth
Riddle is walking backstage when he sees WWE 24/7 Champion R-Truth. R-Truth thinks The Hurt Business bought him 24 karat carrots… or something like that.
In-Ring: The Hurt Business, R-Truth, Riddle
The Hurt Business are in the ring for another edition of the VIP Lounge. They talk about how they’re dripping in gold, but WWE 24/7 Champion R-Truth comes out. R-Truth thinks he’s the guest of honor and is looking for his 24 golden carrots. Bobby Lashley sarcastically says he forgot it was R-Truth’s birthday. His gift is in the ring. The Hurt Business catches on and goads him into the ring.
The 24/7 losers chase R-Truth. Tucker rolls R-Truth up, but Humberto Carrillo breaks it up.
Riddle then gets in the ring and hits MVP with a Final Flash knee. Riddle celebrates while the entire crowd of 24/7 Title chasers disappears.
Backstage: R-Truth, AJ Styles, Adam Pearce
— WWE (@WWE) January 26, 2021
R-Truth is hiding backstage when WWE Official Adam Pearce comes up to him. R-Truth wants to prove he can be in the Money in the Bank Ladder Match (Royal Rumble). AJ Styles and Omos walk up and challenge him. If R-Truth can win, he’ll go in the Royal Rumble.
Sheamus vs. John Morrison
Sheamus starts the match by powering him into the ropes. Sheamus clubs him and cinches in a hammerlock. Morrison fights up, and Sheamus keeps him locking in a headlock. Sheamus knocks him down and goes to the top rope. Sheamus leaps, but Morrison connects with a dropkick to the knee out of midair. Morrison starts to viciously work on the knee. Morrison works on the knee for a bit, but Sheamus fights back. Sheamus catches Morrison trying a springboard and hits a slingshot slam for a two count. Sheamus goes for a Cloverleaf, but Morrison fights it. Sheamus kicks him in the spine and turns him over to apply the Cloverleaf. Morrison gets a hand on the bottom rope. Morrison goes to the apron and snaps him off the ropes. Sheamus quickly comes back with a knee to the face and hits White Noise for the win.
Winner by Pinfall: Sheamus
The Miz says if Sheamus wants to win the Royal Rumble, his head has to be on a swivel. Miz challenges Sheamus to a handicap match. Sheamus accepts.
Sheamus vs. John Morrison & The Miz
The first portion of this match sees The Miz and John Morrison absolutely laying some nasty shots in on Sheamus. Sheamus then fights them off and starts his comeback. Sheamus hits Miz with a rolling fireman’s carry on Morrison. Sheamus hits Miz with the 10 Beats of the Bodhrán before Morrison cuts him off. Morrison then gets caught in some vicious 10 Beats of the Bodhrán. Sheamus goes to the top rope and wipes out Miz and Morrison with a diving clothesline to the floor. Sheamus gets Miz in the ring and signals for the end. Morrison grabs the leg. Sheamus fights back and hits Morrison with a Brogue Kick. Miz then grabs Sheamus and hits the Skull Crushing Finale for the win.
Winners by Pinfall: John Morrison and The Miz
Backstage: Ric Flair, Lacey Evans, Charlotte Flair
Ric Flair is helping Lacey Evans practice wrestling moves in the locker room when Charlotte Flair walks in. Evans runs off. Ric says just because Charlotte is a big star doesn’t mean there’s not a place for him in the dressing room. He’s got to be himself. Charlotte says he has to be the guy that spends all his money on everyone but his family. This isn’t cute. Ric is going from legend to old man. She has no problem saying that to his face. She’s not the bad guy. Ric angrily stares back at her. Charlotte backs up, and Evans blindsides her from behind. Ric goes to check on her, but Evans pulls him away. They walk off.
R-Truth vs. AJ Styles
Early in the match, AJ Styles attacks R-Truth, but R-Truth manages to send him over the top rope. That would be an elimination in the Royal Rumble match. R-Truth is then intimidated by Omos. R-Truth avoids the Phenomenal Forearm and hits a back suplex powerbomb a la John Cena. R-Truth follows up with the 5 Knuckle Shuffle for a near fall. Styles quickly taps him out soon after with the Calf Crusher.
Winner by Submission: AJ Styles
Backstage: Alexa Bliss
Alexa Bliss is swinging on her swingset. She’s happy about what “they” did to Randy Orton’s face. As for tonight, she’ll get a shot at a shiny new toy.
Riddle vs. The Hurt Business
Riddle vs. Shelton Benjamin
If Riddle can win this Gauntlet Match, also involving MVP and Cedric Alexander, he’ll face Bobby Lashley for the WWE United States Championship.
Riddle sidesteps him and flips through a German Suplex to start. Riddle follows up with a dropdown kick to the head. Benjamin ducks a kick and a knee. Benjamin then powers him up and connects with a slam for a near fall. Benjamin attacks him in the corner and knees him out of the ring. Riddle gets in the ring before being counted out. Benjamin punches away at him and goes for a suplex, but Riddle drops down to block it. Benjamin knees him in the midsection before hitting a knee to the face for a near fall. Benjamin applies a rear chin lock before going to a grounded bearhug. Riddle counters into a guillotine and really cinches it in. Benjamin powers him up and goes for a suplex, but Riddle knees him in the head. Cedric Alexander gets on the apron to distract Riddle. Benjamin rolls Riddle up, but the referee is still dealing with Alexander. Benjamin is furious because he had him. MVP yells at Alexander to do nothing. Riddle then rolls Benjamin up to eliminate him from the match.
Shelton Benjamin has been eliminated from the match.
Riddle vs. MVP
Alexander and Benjamin are arguing at ringside. MVP tries to help, but the bell rings. Riddle takes MVP down and applies a knee bar for the immediate submission.
MVP has been eliminated from the match.
Riddle vs. Cedric Alexander
We come back from the break to see Alexander dominating Riddle. Riddle tries to fight back, but Alexander quickly cuts him off and applies a grounded abdominal stretch. Riddle fights up and hits some kicks. Riddle hits a running forearm and goes for a second, but Alexander hits a big dropkick for a near fall. Alexander continues to attack him. Riddle tries to fight back, but Alexander DDTs him for a near fall. Riddle again soon tries to fight back, but Alexander gets the knees up to counter a Broton. Riddle fights through it and goes for a German Suplex. Alexander was supposed to flip through it, but he doesn’t rotate all the way. Alexander, after taking a German Suplex, pops back up and hits a brainbuster for a two count. Riddle surprises Alexander with a triangle choke. Alexander powers him up and slams him, but Riddle holds on. Riddle then rolls him up for the win.
Winner by Pinfall: Riddle
Riddle will face Bobby Lashley for the WWE United States Championship sometime in the future. Bobby Lashley’s music hits, and Riddle doesn’t realize that means he’ll be running out. Lashley runs halfway down the ramp and “blindsides” him. Lashley then wipes him out with a Hurt Lock.
The WWE Network will exclusively be on NBC’s Peacock streaming service in America starting March 18.
WWE Hall of Famer Edge says if 2020 taught us anything it’s that you can’t sleep on tomorrow. Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed. Sometimes you find yourself in a place where you need to pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and keep walking forward. 10 years ago after WrestleMania 27, he went to bed as the reigning World Heavyweight Champion. Within a week, he had to forfeit his championship and his career… the only career he’s ever wanted… his dream. He’ll never forget when he told his mom that he was going to be a wrestler. She told him to just go do it. Simple words, but they were the jet fuel that lit the fire in his gut to make him fight for 9 years to get his career and dream back. Then at Backlash, Randy Orton tore his triceps and gave him another reminder that everything you hold dear can be torn away just like that. You can’t live in that space… you gotta fight. Edge knows what his mom would say. She’d say, “Adam, you gotta just go and do it.” So with that in mind, Edge is entering the Royal Rumble. It won’t be like last year. The stakes are higher. The window closes for him more and more every day. He needs to win the Royal Rumble, main event WrestleMania, and take back what’s his… what he never lost. If you have a dream, fight to make it a reality. At the Royal Rumble, he’ll fight with every breath in his body to make this far fetched dream come true.
If you’ve been on the ride with him from The Brood to now, you know the world without dreams is a less magical place. Henry Ford said if you think you can or you think you can’t, try. Edge thinks he can. Edge says, “I’ll see you at the Rumble.”
Raw Women’s Championship
Asuka (c) vs. Alexa Bliss
They circle the ring, and Asuka cautiously approaches her. Asuka elbows her back and kicks her before throwing her down. Asuka throws her down again and stomps her in the corner. Asuka applies an arm bar, but Bliss smiles through the pain. Asuka goes to the middle rope and hits a missile dropkick. Bliss quickly pulls Asuka out of the ring. When the camera cuts back to her, she’s sitting on a rocking horse with creepy music playing.
We come back from the break to see Asuka taking it to Bliss. The rocking horse has vanished. Bliss takes Asuka down and hits double knees for a two count. Bliss stomps Asuka down in the corner before applying a chin lock. Asuka eventually fights up and kicks her in the head to take her down. Asuka shoulder blocks her down and knocks her to the corner. Asuka hits a hip attack and follows up with a German Suplex. Asuka connects with a kick to the face for a near fall.
Alexa Bliss’ music hits, and she all of a sudden appears in her Goddess attire. Ugh. Bliss is crying. Bliss sidesteps Asuka and drives her into the corner. The lights go out. When they come back on, Bliss is arced in the corner like Bray Wyatt in her dark attire. Asuka is scared and tries to fight her, but Bliss blocks everything. Asuka goes for an Asuka Lock, but Bliss quickly powers out and applies the Mandible Claw.
Randy Orton appears behind Bliss and drops her with an RKO to end the show.