Welcome to this week's edition of things WWE subtly told us on SmackDown! This was the best episode of the blue brand in the last few weeks, and we're happy to say that there was some major progress for the Royal Rumble 2021 PPV.
Let's jump right into what happened on SmackDown:
#6 Adam Pearce's return to the ring on SmackDown and the meaning behind it
SmackDown was headlined by a Gauntlet Match starring Sami Zayn, Rey Mysterio, Shinsuke Nakamura, King Corbin, and Daniel Bryan. While that's a relatively straightforward list of competitors, Paul Heyman and Roman Reigns once again pulled the strings to get a favorable outcome.
For starters, Roman Reigns got into a tense face-off with authority figure Adam Pearce in the opening segment of SmackDown. It all began when Roman Reigns said that he actually liked Kevin Owens. As for what happened to him last week on SmackDown, he blamed "Scrap Daddy" Adam Pearce.
Accusing him of not doing his job, things got tense between Reigns and Pearce. Later on in the episode, Paul Heyman dropped a bombshell on the WWE official fter pulling the strings, Adam Pearce would be in the Gauntlet match.
This already began an interesting story, and the gauntlet match on SmackDown was a solid one. It's the type of match that WWE always tends to do right, and the way it played out was great as well.
Adam Pearce was reluctant the whole time, and after Shinsuke Nakamura cleared house (we'll get to that part later), Roman Reigns and Jey Uso came to beat him up. They threw Pearce in the match and attacked him as well, before placing him on top of Shinsuke Nakamura.
What does this mean? The Gauntlet Match on SmackDown resulted in Adam Pearce becoming the No.1 contender for the Universal Championship at Royal Rumble 2021. In doing so, 5-time NWA World Champion Adam Pearce made his in-ring return after six years
It's an interesting one, and we'll do a separate article about why he's in that spot.