This week's SmackDown Live was all about the previously vacant United States Championship. Both semi-finals happened in the first hour of the show and then a certain series of events prompted the final to take place later that same night. It had previously been booked in for the Royal Rumble and then on next week's SmackDown Live. Daniel Bryan clearly thought ?why wait?" Anyway, with that angle dominating most of the show, there wasn't a whole lot of room for much else. Here are five huge takeaways from the show, and shockingly a couple of them aren't US Title based.
5. Jinder Mahal Advances To The US Title Final
It's not very often that Raw or SmackDown Live opens with a match, but on Tuesday night, that's exactly what happened. Yes, we did have the New Day delivering a promo before the match, but we're still counting it. That match was the first of the two semi-finals in the tournament to crown a new United States Champion and featured Jinder Mahal and Xavier Woods. Most fans will have been hoping for Woods to pull off the upset in this one, especially after the campaigning the former Tag Team Champion has done via social media. Unfortunately, it wasn't to be. Despite a spirited fightback late on, The Maharajah picked up the win and booked his place in the final.
4. Careful What You Wish For Bobby
In the second of the two semi-finals, Bobby Roode found himself up against Mojo Rawley. The career of Rawley seems to run hot and cold, and on Tuesday night it was very much running cold. The former Hype Bro may have given a good account of himself, but he couldn't do enough to book his place in the final and complete a heel versus heel dynamic for the title. Right after Roode picked up the win, the Singhs rushed the ring and attacked The Glorious One. Adrenaline pumping, The Glorious One suggested having the US Title match later that very night. Mahal didn't like the idea, however, Daniel Bryan did and booked the final as the night's main event.
PREVIOUSLY: BOBBY ROODE WINS UNITED STATES CHAMPIONSHIP
3. The Riott Squad Really Needed A Win
The Riott Squad were quickly becoming three glorified enhancement talents. Losing on what felt like a weekly basis when they are supposed to be an unstoppable faction capable of running through the entire women's division. Well, this past Tuesday night they gained a little of their credibility back when they went up against Charlotte Flair, Naomi, and Becky Lynch. Picking up a win against the current SmackDown Women's Champion plus two former holders of the title was always going to be best for business for The Riott Squad, and they managed just that. With chaos going on in and around the ring Liv Morgan hit Naomi with her devastating double knees to the face and covered her to pick up the victory for her team.
2. What Was With All The Selfie Promos?
The majority of this week's SmackDown Live naturally revolved around the United States Title tournament. That meant there was precious little time for anything else, so WWE decided to fill a large chunk of that time with odd and awkward video promos filmed by various WWE Superstars on their cell phones. All of those who participated were men and women that have declared their entry into their respective Royal Rumble matches. It was the videos from the women that were particularly hard to watch as they were shown back to back to back and so on. Sarah Logan once again cut a promo that made her sound like she has never interacted with human beings before, and Ruby Riott wasn't even looking at the camera for hers!
1. Bobby Roode Is The New United States Champion
Bobby Roode suggested it earlier in the evening after being jumped by The Singh Brothers and General Manager Daniel Bryan made it so. The final of the United States Championship tournament took place in the main event of SmackDown Live. Jinder Mahal will be regretting having his cronies attack The Glorious One now as it was Roode who was crowned the new US Champion at the end of the show this past Tuesday. Mahal looked to hit his opponent with the Khallas but instead, Roode reversed it and planted The Maharajah with a Glorious DDT to become United States Champion. It seems like the descent of Jinder Mahal is not quite done yet, and the ascent of The Glorious Bobby Roode on SmackDown Live is just beginning.
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