-Filling in for Dustin Nichols for one night, so expect less petty insults and jokes, and more….well, petty insults and jokes, I suppose. I have little clue what the angles are on SmackDown, so feel free to correct any mistakes by leaving a comment that I won’t read.
-Taped from Houston. I wonder if Booker’s doing the honors tonight?
-Dedicating this one to AW who, while he made a gross error in judgment, didn’t mock Jim Ross’ Bells’ Palsy. Good to be the boss.
Opening Segment: Booker T
Booker’s gone back to the Busta Rhymes spider-tail, which classes up his tuxedo even moreso. Getting down to business, Booker wants to discuss the incident where Sheamus stole (“borrowed”) Alberto Del Rio’s car. And he wants Sheamus to apologize to Del Rio. He’d better; wouldn’t want another $500,000 fine. Sheamus admits that he messed up (See, Lawler? SEE?!?!). Del Rio refuses to let bygones be bygones, and wants to file for legal action, which Booker claims will result in the title being held up. Wouldn’t Del Rio contend for it anyway? Sheamus offers to defend the title tonight, and Del Rio accepts. Booker’s happy about it, which means he prefers Ratings over buyrates. Way to learn from Bischoff.
Segment Rating: 4/10. As generic as you can get, and having not read the spoilers, I don’t know if they’d actually waste the match tonight.
Match 1: Sin Cara vs. Cody Rhodes
WINNER: Sin Cara via modified small package.
Rating: 4/10. Disjointed but had some fun moments. Sin Cara just seems to lack chemistry with anyone but Hunico (barring Rey, or a longer match with Del Rio).
-Bryan no’s a lot.
-Barrett talks about Fight Club
Talk Segment: Daniel Bryan
No and Yes arguments with the crowd ensue. Bryan’s upset about having to face Kane instead of getting a World Title match. His spiel brings Kane out, and the two circle, and AJ makes her way out. Wait, she isn’t the GM of this show. Ahh, she’s Booker’s special guest tonight. *Carvey Voice* How conveeeeeeenient. AJ tries to get the two to hold off the aggression, and then she thanks Kane for his kindness. One guy screaming Daniel Bryan fills the silence. AJ asks Bryan to prove he’s not insane, and is a good sportsman, by shaking Kane’s hand. Good lord, this like a Choose Your Own Adventure book with the page numbers mixed up. Bryan offers his hand under duress, and AJ bats her eyes at Kane, who attacks him. Bryan fights back, and Kane takes him to the floor with a boot to the face. AJ laughs it up, and Kane seems confused. Aren’t we all.
Rating: 2/10. There’ll be a payoff, right?
-Booker chats up with Teddy Long, and he has a run-in with Reks n Effeks. They want a title shot, and Booker wants them to prove themselves. Well, alright, they have about 2 or 3 teams to choose from in order to make their case. If that.
Match 2: Jinder Mahal vs. 2 Jobbers
Mahal wants to prove he can outdo Ryback. Hey, a story for Ryback! Hell, a story for Mahal! Mahal kills jobber one while mocking the head slap taunt. Camel Clutch (Blog) finishes fast, and then he makes a Camel Clutch (Blog) sandwich out of both jobbers. Ryback makes his way out, and Mahal bails. Ryback gets a double Shell Shock on the jobber duo.
WINNER: Jinder Mahal via Camel Clutch (Blog)
Rating: 2/10. It was a match.
Highlight Reel: Chris Jericho
Vickie interrupts Jericho’s opening remarks, saying Ziggler will not be interviewed. So Jericho interviews her instead, making age jokes. Well, they’re better than the fat jokes Lawler offers up. Vickie threatens to leave if Jericho insults her again, so he just throws her out. We get to the Tout references, which even manages to befoul the upgraded Jeritron 6000. Jericho manages to call Alex Riley ‘the future’ with a straight face, so he’s still a good actor, at least. Vickie promises Ziggler will win at Summerslam, and Jericho gets serious, saying how Ziggler brought “Y2J’ back out of Jericho. Ziggler tries to attack from the crowd, but is summarily taken down. Vickie slaps him, distracting him long enough for Dolph to get the Zig Zag. MITB briefcase shot ends for good measure.
Segment Rating: 6/10. Jericho’s always good for a promo, and the promise of Jericho/Ziggler at Summerslam is satisfying.
Match 3: Prime Time Players vs. Colon Blow (#1 Contenders Match)
Ghana Get Got is at ringside on commentary. This is, of course, the final appearance for AW. Never forget. R-Truth waxes fearfully about spiders as the Players take Epico down. Epico manages to kick off of O’Neal, tagging Primo, who lays Young out with a clothesline. Swinging DDT by Primo gets 2, broken up by O’Neal. AW tosses a drink at GGG, who hit the ring and a brawl erupts with all three teams. Ah, but because the PTP got attacked, they win by DQ. Epico and Primo aren’t happy.
WINNERS: Prime Time Players via DQ (New #1 Contenders)
Rating: 3/10. It’s a bad time to be a manager of a WWE tag team.
Match 4: Antonio Cesaro vs. Christian
Cesario’s pre-match displayed of varied languages is as impressive as Aksana’s thighs. Christian dumps Cesaro to the floor quickly, but Cesaro sends him into the post in retaliation. Into the chinlock early, but Cesaro breaks to hit forearms and a dead-lift gutwrench suplex for 2. Cesaro’s fist drop off the middle rope eats feet, and Christian mounts the comeback, getting a springboard sunset flip for 2. Cesaro comes back with a bridging fallaway slam for 2. Killswitch is blocked, and the Neutralizer is botched, with Christian hitting a fallout DDT. Spear attempt is hit with an awesome VERY European uppercut for 2! Christian blocks another Neutralizer and comes back with the spear to win.
WINNER: Christian via Spear
Rating: 6/10. For a short match, that was rather exciting. A lot of action packed into just five minutes or so. Would love to see Cesaro on Raw more, provided they come up with an excuse to bring a SmackDown talent over for a night. *wink*
-Cesaro attacks afterward, ramming Christian backfirst into the rail in frustration. Good, they’re committed to him keeping his heat.
-Booker T informs Eve there are no jobs available, but then tells Kaitlyn she’s hired. Forget Aksana’s thighs; I’m on Kaitlyn’s side now. Is this show Kelly Kelly-free? Does Dustin want to switch? Eve will face Kaitlyn next week for the job.
Match 5: Rey Mysterio vs. The Miz (Non Title Match)
Kind of an odd choice for a 9:40 match. Of course, this means a schmozz for the mainer. This match actually has a story: Rey won the vote to face Punk on Monday over Miz, and Miz is angry. Didn’t say it was a GREAT story, but a story it is. Rey gets stomped down early, but Rey comes back with a headscissors. The comeback doesn’t last, as he catches Rey’s quebrada, lands his modified backbreaker, and then shoots Rey to the floor. Back inside, Miz gets 2, and then works in some knees and kicks. Rey mounts another comeback, but Miz clotheslines him, hurting his leg in the process. Miz-Line connects, but Rey dropkicks him as he descends on an axe handle. Seated senton off the top connects, and Rey lays Miz out with a kick to the head for 2. Miz traps Rey up top and goes for a superplex, but Rey goes for a sunset, which is blocked. Miz gets a hard boot for 2. Rey comes back with a spring-up headscissors, but Miz blocks the 619. Skull Crushing Finale is blocked, and Rey counters to a front cradle to win.
WINNER: Rey Mysterio via front cradle
Rating: 5/10. Another good match, second in a row with no BS finish either. This earns my approval.
Main Event: Sheamus vs. Alberto Del Rio (World Heavyweight Championship)
WINNER: No match
Rating: 3/10. Pretty elementary, but at least it’s better than Del Rio’s “destiny” speeches.
OVERALL: Pretty middling show, but at least there was more focus on action than what happened last week and the week before and what morons are saying on Tout. Nice change of pace.
Justin Henry is a freelance writer whose work appears on many websites. He provides wrestling, NFL, and other sports/pop culture columns for CamelClutchBlog.com, as well as several wrestling columns a week for Wrestlechat.net and WrestleCrap.com. Justin can be found here on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/notoriousjrh and Twitter- http://www.twitter.com/cynicjrh.