I’m flying solo for this edition of Friday Night Smackdown on account of Kelly Floyd having some business to attend to, and by “business” I most certainly do not mean spending the remainder of her years locked in my sub-basement.
Not even remotely.
I love how the WWE Signature starts off with, “Yes sir, we promised you a great main event,” and then the show most certainly does not deliver. I long for the days when Paul Heyman was the lead writer for Smackdown. Anyway, enough bitching. We start with a recap of last Monday night’s tag team match between Sheamus/Orton and Jericho/del Rio which has now been credited as the reason for a Fatal Four-way at Over The Limit, and not at all because the ‘E has no faith in del Rio delivering the goods on his own.
Sheamus and Randy Orton vs Alberto del Rio and Chris Jericho
Sheamus gets the jobber entrance tonight as he’s already in the ring when the show starts…and Randy Orton gets his full entrance. I think we know who has more pull here. It’s apparently a rematch from Monday, which translates to “all hell breaks loose and the match ends within three minutes.” Orton and Jericho start the match and Orton reverses a whip into the corner into a stiff clothesline. Sheamus angrily gets tagged in by the Viper and knocks Y2J around before returning the favor to Randy. Del Rio gets the tag and goes to work on Orton’s shoulder. Randy escapes and tags in Sheamus, who unloads with his rollover senton on del Rio. Jericho drops the rope as Sheamus bounds off it, forcing him to the outside. Y2J gets tagged in and attacks Sheamu’s shoulder. A running axe handle frees Sheamus up to make the tag so Orton can drop Jericho with his second rope DDT! Orton goes for an RKO but it’s reversed, so he nails a dropkick instead! Del Rio stops a pin attempt, Sheamus makes the save, and the ref calls the match a No Contest as all four men brawl in the ring. Well, that lasted longer than I thought, but still ended with all hell breaking loose. Point for me!
Something to be happy about: Fringe and Community get a reprieve. Something to be sad about: Alcatraz does not.
AJ vs Kaitlyn
As we return from break, we are notified via Eve’s Twitter that Orton will face del Rio tonight and Sheamus will face Jericho. We get a recap of AJ slapping the highlights out of Kaitlyn’s hair last week and it looks like she’s still in her depressed state. Don’t worry, girl; I’ll comfort you. AJ delivers a Thesz Press to Kaitlyn at the bell, nails her with a kick to the temple, and pins Kaitlyn for the win. Wow. Kaitlyn is clearly larger and stronger, so that was a bit unexpected. After the match, AJ continues her attack until….Daniel Bryan heads to the ring?! Interesting. He says he is impressed with her new-found ruthlessness. He draws her in close. He says that after his title match against CM Punk, he’s looking forward to moving on….to Kaitlyn. AJ leaves the ring in a huff as we head to commercial.
Hot damn. That was probably the meanest thing he could have said to AJ. Kudos, Daniel Bryan.
Daniel Bryan vs Big Show
Back from break, we segue right into yet another match. I call a DB victory thanks to Johnny Ace. DB goes right at the big man, but it’s to no avail as Show chops him down. Bryan attacks Show from the top rope and gets him down to one knee, but Big Show continues to fight it. DB manages to take Show off his feet completely and applies the Yes Lock. Suddenly, the bell rings and John Laurinaitis announces from the crowd that Daniel Bryan has won by Submission. Ace threatens Show’s career and tells him to apologize again this coming Monday night the RIGHT way…or else. Laurinaitis leaves the ring and announces at the ramp that he will destroy John Cena at the PPV.
I suspect that Cena will lose at Over The Limit so he can get his shit together following the announcement of his divorce. Of course, it’s also just as likely that he’ll continue to stick around and engross himself in work to avoid his problems at home.
Ryback vs Heath Slater
It’s a Nexus reunion as Slater talks shit about the former Skip Sheffield before the big man heads to the ring. In 60 seconds it’s all over. Feed him more, yada yada yada.
Like most hosses who come in and get pushed to the moon, I’d actually like to see if Ryback can “go” for more than two minutes before passing judgment on him.
Antonio Cesaro w/ Aksana vs Alex Riley
Continuing Laurinaitis’s embarrassment of Teddy Long, the former GM is forced to announce the entrances of both men and wax poetic about Cesaro’s abilities on a cue card as Aksana accompanies the Artist Formerly Known As Claudio to the ring. Cesaro starts with a take down before nailing a running boot to the corner for a two-count. Antonio hits what Booker T called a gutwrench suplex, but it looked like he fucked up the move as Riley is dropped on his leg. Riley fights back and hits a running clothesline, but Cesaro pulls on Alex’s ear to stop his momentum before nailing his pancake driver for the win. Aksana tells Teddy they’re just friends, but she and Cesaro are lovers.
Before we head to commercial, we get a promo for the Make-A-Wish Foundation and John Cena’s article in USA Today. Say what you want about him in the ring, but I still think Cena’s a stand-up guy.
Randy Orton vs Alberto del Rio
We return with both Orton and del Rio in the ring for their one-on-one encounter. Del Rio traps Randy in the corner but the Viper fights back. Alberto stomps away at Orton in the corner until Randy escapes and guillotines del Rio under the ropes. It’s not enough, though, as del Rio regains control and goes to work on Orton’s arm. Ricardo Rodriguez takes a pot shot at Orton as del Rio distracts the referee. Ricardo deals with a heckler at ringside as del Rio traps Orton in the center of the ring. Orton uses the crowd’s support to escape and hit his snap power slam, but his arm is hurting. Del Rio sends Orton to the ring apron and nails a side kick to the back of the head for a two count. Del Rio survives a backbreaker to continue damaging Orton’s arm, but is met with a second rope DDT! Orton calls for the RKO but Ricardo jumps at the Viper from the top rope…….and eats an RKO instead! The ref calls for the bell as Orton wins via Disqualification. Del Rio traps Randy in the Cross Arm Breaker to send a message.
It bothers me that I keep hearing about Christian returning to Smackdown every week…..and yet I still haven’t seen him. I suppose we’ll see him after Over The Limit.
R-Truth w/ Kofi Kingston vs Jack Swagger w/ Dolph Ziggler and Vickie Guerrero
Apparently Ziggler and Swagger get a title shot next Sunday. Swagger goes all “white supremacist” on Truth in the corner but the Tag Team Champion knocks Swagger to the mat as Abraham Washington and his crew watch from backstage. Swagger charges at R-Truth in the corner but he misses and Truth drops him with a clothesline. He hits the corkscrew elbow for two, but Dolph Ziggler interferes on the outside. Kofi Kingston takes Ziggler out of the equation as Swagger runs over Truth and sends him back into the ring. As Swagger climbs in after his opponent, Kofi nails Trouble in Paradise and Jack staggers (see what I did there?) into the Lie Detector to give Truth the win.
Coming soon from the makers of Battleship: The Movie…….Risk: The Musical.
Zack Ryder and Santino Marella vs Darren Young and Titus O’Neil
Santino humorously compares Titus’s height to his lack-thereof before attempting a headlock. O’Neil powers out and tags in Young, who puts the hurting on Marella before tagging Titus right back in. The heels continue to trade tags as Santino plays face-in-peril. Marella tags in Ryder, who nails the Broski Boot to Young! Darren Young kicks out at two as Titus distracts Zack. Santino and o’Neil get taken out by their respective partners on the outside but the brash young heels pick up the victory with their backbreaker/elbow drop off the top combo on Ryder.
Matt Striker is backstage with Damien Sandow, asking him why he decided not to compete last week. Sandow dodges the question by saying that Striker misinterpreted his messages and that he intends to enlighten everyone soon enough.
Primo and Epico; Zack Ryder and Santino Marella; R-Truth and Kofi Kingston; Titus O’Neil and Darren Young; and Ziggler and Swagger. I think we finally have a tag team division. You know, until the company decides to prematurely break these teams up.
Hunico w/Camacho vs Brodus Clay w/ Funkadactyls
Both Hunico and Camacho attack Clay before the bell rings. He no-sells the beating and takes both men out before finishing Hunico with a big splash.
This Laurinaitis/Cena match is not selling me on the PPV. You could make all the cool video packages you want, WWE. I’m not buying.
A recap of Paul Heyman’s return and Lesnar’s “statement” is shown shortly before the main event.
Sheamus vs Chris Jericho
Jericho stops a running charge from Sheamus in the corner but his attacks don’t phase the Great White. Sheamus hits his clubbing blows on the ring apron and knocks Jericho into the barricade as we take our final commercial break.
I just realized the company seems to have quietly disavowed Sheamus’s Emerald Fusion finisher, given how he hasn’t attempted that move since March.
As we return, Sheamus launches himself over the top rope with his shoulder block for a count of two on Y2J. Jericho smells blood, though, and he goes for Sheamus’s injured shoulder. On the outside, Sheamus is whipped into the steel post. He gets back in by a count of six and Jericho goes right back to the arm. Sheamus fights back with axe handles and a spear in the corner, but Jericho goes for the Walls of Jericho after tripping up the World Heavyweight Champion! The Walls are locked in and Sheamus crawls to the ropes to break the hold. Jericho argues with the ref and runs at Sheamus, but gets back body dropped over the top rope! Suddenly, del Rio throws Jericho into the steel steps and the ref calls for the bell. Del Rio locks in the Cross Arm Breaker on Sheamus as Orton runs in for the save! Just as I’m about to call for a finisher sequence, Jericho nails a Codebreaker on del Rio and escapes the ring! Orton RKOs del Rio and Alberto eats a Brogue Kick after that! The show ends with Orton and Sheamus having a stare down, reminding us all that they’ll eventually have a one-on-one at No Way Out after they get del Rio and Jericho out of the title picture.
I can’t say I’m surprised with how that all turned out. All four men looked strong even though we the fans suffered from bullshit finishes as a result. Overall, a better show than I’ve been getting for the last few weeks.
Kelly will be back next week, and boy do we have a surprise for you guys (courtesy of Penny Sautereau-Fife). Until then, enjoy Mother’s Day!
So long, and thanks for all the fish.
Tags: abraham washington, aj lee, aksana, alberto del rio, Alex Riley, Antonio Cesaro, big show, Booker T, brodus clay, Camacho, chris jericho, Daniel Bryan, Darren Young, Dolph Ziggler, Heath Slater, hunico, jack swagger, john cena, John Laurinaitis, Kaitlyn, Mike Gojira, Over the Limit, Paul Heyman, randy orton, Ricardo Rodriguez, ryback, Santino Marella, sheamus, Smackdown, Teddy Long, titus o'neil, Vickie Guerrero, WWE, WWE Tag Team Championship, zack ryder