On SmackDown, Roman Reigns blamed authority figure Adam Pearce for whatever happened to Kevin Owens, stating that he actually liked the latter. Roman Reigns got into a tense confrontation with Adam Pearce, eventually leading to the former NWA World Champion entering the main event gauntlet match.
Roman Reigns and Jey Uso ensured that Adam Pearce walked out as the #1 contender for the Universal Championship. Why did this happen and how? Let's look at a few possible reasons:
#5 Adam Pearce's win will give way to Shinsuke Nakamura at the Royal Rumble
Adam Pearce may have walked out of SmackDown as the No.1 contender for the Universal Championship at the Royal Rumble, but everyone watching knows that Shinsuke Nakamura was ultimately the biggest star of the night.
Every time when there's a gauntlet match, one Superstar always emerges as the star of the show. On the January 8th episode of SmackDown, Shinsuke Nakamura went through Rey Mysterio, King Corbin, and Daniel Bryan before getting beaten down by Jey Uso and Roman Reigns and was pinned by Adam Pearce.
It was so interesting because Shinsuke Nakamura went through Daniel Bryan clean. After shaking hands with his dream opponent, he would get a beatdown, effectively turning babyface in the process. It was interesting the way it played out, and Adam Pearce may give up his spot to the man who legitimately won the Gauntlet Match.
With that said, we understand why WWE may not see the appeal in Roman Reigns vs Shinsuke Nakamura. It wouldn't be as hot a match as it would a few years ago unless the Japanese Superstar once again comes up with a magical performance.
This could be a way for WWE to get Adam Pearce to promote Shinsuke Nakamura to that spot, although we imagine that it wouldn't be so easy. If Shinsuke Nakamura is to emerge to World title contention again, he would have to go through some obstacles.