Welcome to the 11/11/11 edition of Friday Night SmackDown! We’re in Liverpool, UK for tonight’s episode. The show automatically starts off on a sour note as Randy Orton makes his way down to the ring for promo time. When Randy Orton was told he was captaining a Survivor Series team by Teddy Long, he said he usually not a team player. He always winds up doing something terrible to his friends. He’s not a leader, but he’s also not a follower, so he has no problem being a team captain at Survivor Series. He has no problem giving Cody Rhodes the beating of his life again, and shutting up Christian’s mouth once and for all. He doesn’t know Jack Swagger or Hunico, but he has no problem doing to them what he must simply because they are in his way. He obviously doesn’t recall losing to Swagger last year on PPV.
Wade Barrett comes out to the ring, just as Orton was about to address him. Barrett gets booed pretty heavily by his countrymen. Barrett asks Orton what he doesn’t have a problem with. Barrett says Orton has a huge problem with him. They’ve had big problems in the past, but they will pale in comparison to the problems Barrett will give him at the PPV. Barrett’s been in a lot of groups. He never started as leaders of those groups, but because he’s a natural-born leader, people have always gravitated to him. Orton’s a natural-born predator, the kind of man no one is ever going to trust. The Barrett Barrage is going to continue at Survivor Series. He’s achieved a lot in his WWE career, but the one thing he has yet to achieve is to win the World title. First, he needs Orton out of the picture. He needs to show the world he’s the in-ring superior, and that’s why his team is going to win at Survivor Series. Orton says he wasn’t listening, and was instead imagining how high Barrett’s head would bounce off an RKO. Great comeback, Orton. Barrett’s owning your ass in the promo department.
Long comes out. He says that, now that Christian’s clearly recovered from the neck injury last week, he’s going to face Sheamus this week, like he should have last week. Also, the main event will be Randy Orton vs. Wade Barrett.
MATCH 1: Christian vs. Sheamus
Match starts as the show comes back from commercial. They trade blows and a crisscross series before Sheamus takes the advantage with a shoulder block. Christian slaps Sheamus, so Sheamus decks him. He ties Christian up in the ropes and hits the forearms to the chest, which gets a 2-count. Christian comes back with an uppercut, which just pisses Sheamus off. He back body drops Christian, then lays in some corner punches. Sheamus with a pair of corner whips before picking up Christian and dropping him with the Warrior gorilla press. Christian slides out and back in, but Sheamus stays on offense with punches. Christian gets a punch of his own off an apron suplex attempt, but Sheamus comes back with a slingshot shoulder block. Christian slides to the floor. Sheamus picks Christian up and tries to ram him into the corner post, but Christian slides out and slams Sheamus into the post. Back in the ring, Christian hits a missile dropkick for 2. Sheamus fights back with a punch, but Christian low bridges him to the floor. Christian tries for a plancha on Sheamus outside, but Sheamus catches him and hits a fall-away slam into the barricade. Commercial.
Back from the break, Christian is in control as he lays in some elbows to Sheamus’ head. Christian goes for a sleeperhold, but Sheamus fights out. Christian puts Sheamus on the ropes and hits his uppercut from the floor. Back in the ring, Sheamus fights back. He throws Christian out, but Christian lands on his feet on the apron. He hits Sheamus with a reverse hotshot before going up top. Christian goes for a double axe handle, but Sheamus hits a shot to the stomach. Christian comes back with an uppercut, but Sheamus shakes it off and throws Sheamus sternum-first into the turnbuckle. Sheamus with a pair of clotheslines and now some clubbering in the corner. Short-arm clothesline and a tilt-a-whirl powerslam by Sheamus gets 2. Christian goes to the middle rope for the reverse-direction sunset flip, but Sheamus pulls Christian back up. Christian goes to the ropes again, but jumps off right into the Irish Curse for 2. Sheamus sets up for the Celtic Cross, but Christian slides out and hits a right hand. Christian goes for a middle rope cross body, but Sheamus catches him and hits another fall-away. Sheamus hits a clothesline in the corner and a knee lift. He starts to go up, but Christian pulls him back into the ring. Christian kicks Sheamus in the knee and hits a dropkick. He then goes up top, but Sheamus cuts him off. Sheamus climbs up for a superplex, but Christian punches him down. Christian slides out of a charge and hits the pendulum kick, followed by a tornado DDT for 2. Sheamus has got a nice bruise above his eye. Sheamus is in the corner on the mat, but quickly rolls himself up to the top rope and hits the flying shoulder block for 2. Sheamus misses the Brogue Kick. Christian goes for the Killswitch, but Sheamus escapes and throws Christian shoulder-first into the ring post. Sheamus drops Christian with a Celtic Cross, and gets the 3.
WINNER: Sheamus. Really good match, but it’s time to move on. Remember what I said last week about Sheamus totally dominating this feud? That didn’t change this week. Get Sheamus back in a main event program already. After the match, Christian picks up his neckbrace and puts it back on.
Backstage, we see Kaitlyn and AJ hitting on Daniel Bryan. Kaitlyn asked Bryan about waiting until Wrestlemania to cash in MITB. Bryan says he was going to, but when he saw an opportunity, he tried to go for it. Mark Henry walks in and says it isn’t that easy to be champ. He starts to talk, but Bryan says he doesn’t care. He’s won the MITB briefcase, and he doesn’t care how long it took Henry to win the title. If Henry’s still champion at ‘Mania, Bryan’s going to beat him. Henry says Bryan’s got guts; it’s too bad he’s going to splatter them all over the ring.
We’re now getting a video package for Ezekiel Jackson. Wait, he still works there? Last I recall, he was getting squashed weekly by Cody Rhodes. I guess this is WWE’s attempt to try and push him once again. Hasn’t worked yet.
In Teddy Long’s office, he’s complimenting Charles Robinson on being a good referee. Aksana walks in and says she had fun with him on Halloween. She says she can’t wait to compete on SmackDown! Long says he wants her first time to be special. He wants her to observe someone with more seasoning and experience, so he wants her to be in the corner of…Alicia Fox? Good god. Aksana tells Alicia maybe she can teach her some positions. Teddy Long just made the sh*t list.
MATCH 2: Ted DiBiase vs. Jinder Mahal
Mahal gets no entrance, so once again, guess who’s losing here. I can’t wait for WWE to can Mahal’s ass. Mahal starts off with a kick. DiBiase comes back with one of his own. Mahal with a high knee gets 2. Jumping kneedrop by Mahal. Mahal misses a clothesline, allowing DiBiase to hit a running knee. DiBiase hits an inverted atomic drop and the misdirection clothesline. DiBiase goes for Dream Street, but Mahal slides out and goes for the full-nelson slam. DiBiase reverses this, locks on Dream Street. This one’s over.
WINNER: Ted DiBiase. Total squash match. Like I said a while ago, I expect Mahal to get canned in the annual firing spree after Wrestlemania. Getting squashed by DiBiase isn’t helping his cause any.
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MATCH 3: World Champion Mark Henry vs. Daniel Bryan (non-title)
Once again, Daniel Bryan has new entrance music. This time, it’s a rock remix of “Ride of the Valkyries”. Good. His last 3 or 4 themes were completely generic. Bryan starts with a kick to the leg. Henry with some clubbing forearms to the back. Henry throws Bryan to the floor, then throws him into the barricade. He’s now pushing Bryan’s face into the steps. Henry throws Bryan back into the ring and nails a kick to the ribs. Henry holds onto the ropes and stands on Bryan’s ribs. Henry throws Bryan up on the top rope and tries a running avalanche, but Bryan slides off, climbs up and hits a seated missile dropkick. Bryan lays in a series of kicks then goes for the LeBell Lock. Henry powers out of it and turns it into a modified electric chair drop. Henry picks Bryan up, throws him in the corner and lays in some headbutts. Henry whips Bryan to the mat by his leg, then hits a running splash for 2. Bryan gets up and is begging for more. Henry then hits the World’s Strongest Slam to get the 3.
WINNER: Mark Henry. After the match, Henry goes to ringside and gets a folding chair. He starts to go after Bryan, but Bryan kicks Henry away and cracks Henry over the back with the chair. Henry no-sells it, hits another World’s Strongest Slam, then follows up with a jumping elbow drop. Henry hits another WSS. Henry sets Bryan up for the Pillmanizer, but Big Show’s music hits and he runs to the ring before that can happen. Henry holds Show off by swinging the chair in his direction. As the referees are helping Bryan up, Henry cracks him over the back with the chair. He turns around towards Show, who just punches the chair away. Big Show asks Henry if he thinks it’s impressive, beating up someone half his size. Show says to get in the ring, and he’ll show Henry something impressive.
Back from the break, we’ve got a match.
MATCH 4-Handicap Match: Big Show vs. 3 local jobbers
The three jobbers get Show down to one knee, but he comes back with some chops and headbutts. He chokeslams two of them as jobber #3 tries to walk from the match. Jobber #3 looks like a scrawny Tyler Reks. Show goes after him and throws him back in the ring over the top rope. A WMD later, and this one’s over.
WINNER: The Big Show. Mark Henry, who was on the stage the whole time, says he’s not impressed. He impressed Show last week, when he gave him the WSS last week, he impressed Show when he put him on vacation with an injury, and he impressed Show when he won the title. It will happen again at Survivor Series. What he’s going to give Show at the PPV is a lasting impression.
MATCH 5: Tamina (w/Rosa Mendes) vs. Alicia Fox (w/Aksana)
Natalya is on commentary this week. Alicia Fox appears to have raided Barbarian’s closet. Not sure the point of having Rosa out here. Tamina starts off with kicks to the gut and a headbutt. Hair-mare by Tamina, followed by a knee to the temple. Another hair-mare. Tamina locks in a double chicken wing submission, but Fox headbutts out and hits a low back body drop. A pair of back elbows by Fox and a pair of terrible single-leg dropkicks. Tamina comes back with a forearm and a bodyslam, but misses a running headbutt. Fox kicks her in the head and hits the flipping legdrop to get the 3.
WINNER: Alicia Fox. The highlight of this match was Natalya telling Josh Mathews to shut up, calling Fox a muskrat and saying Aksana isn’t playing with a full deck. Yes, none of the highlights actually took place in the ring.
We see a video of Sheamus at the MTV Europe Awards, as he was a presenter. This leads to an interview with Sheamus and Matt Striker. Striker asks Sheamus about being a hothead before cutting back to the brawl between Sheamus and Wade Barrett last week. Sheamus says he doesn’t know what Striker’s talking about, fella. He’s generally a nice guy. He can either present awards at MTV or hang out with his cousin Beaker. He doesn’t have a temper problem. Matt Striker asks him about how short he gets with people who cross him. Sheamus says he’s just spirited.
Just before we go to commercial, we see Hunico make his way to the ring, being flanked by Epico and Primo. Does this mean Primo’s actually going to get some TV time now? Again, I had almost thought he no longer worked here.
Back from the break, and we see what happened with Hunico, Epico and Sin Cara last week.
MATCH 6: Epico and Hunico (w/Primo) vs. The Usos
Epico and one of the Usos start off. Uso stomps Epico in the corner and tags in the other Uso. Other Uso hits an uppercut for 2. Uso with a whip, but Epico boots off. Hunico makes the blind tag. Uso hits a back elbow on Epico as Hunico comes in and clotheslines Uso. Epico tags back in and hits a dropkick for 2. Epico with some corner punches and stomps. Hunico tags back in and hits a slingshot dropkick in the corner for 2. This is apparently Jimmy Uso in the ring. Jimmy goes for the tag, back drops Hunico off and makes it. Jey tags in, hits a clothesline, elbow, kick, uppercut and corkscrew forearm. Jey hits the hip bump in the corner, but Hunico kicks out. Primo tries a distraction. Jey superkicks Epico. Hunico hits a fireman’s carry slam and the swanton bomb to get the 3.
WINNERS: Epico and Hunico. Oh, and in case you couldn’t tell by looking at them, Primo and Epico are cousins in real life. After the match, Primo attacks Jimmy from behind, and all three of the heels proceed to stomp him. They throw Jimmy out of the ring as Jey gets back to his feet. Epico hits a double-knee facebuster (I smell a Jericho complaint), followed immediately by a lungblower by Primo, followed immediately by another swanton by Hunico.
We see Orton making his way to the ring as we go to commercial.
MATCH 6: Randy Orton vs. Wade Barrett
Barrett comes out minus dapper jacket this week. Booo, Wade. Booo. Tie-up to start. Orton eventually backs Barrett into the corner, but gives a clean break. Another tie-up. This time, Barrett backs Orton into the corner. Barrett gives a clean break, but then hits a boot to the gut, followed by a hip throw into a side headlock. Orton gets back to his feet, throws Barrett off and hits a dropkick off the ropes for 2. Orton goes to the side headlock because he’s pissed Barrett stole his best move. Barrett gets back up and backs Orton into a corner. Orton fights out with punches. Barrett corner whips him, but Orton comes back with a clothesline. Orton starts his version of the Garvin Stomp before hitting the jumping knee drop for 2. Barrett tries to fight back with punches, but Orton comes back with a European uppercut. Barrett gets a boot up off a corner charge, then follows up with a middle rope elbow drop for 2. Orton slides out to the floor, and Barrett follows. Orton gets a boot up, hits a forearm, then slams Barrett into the barricade. Orton tries to whip Barrett into the steps, but Barrett jumps them and mule kicks the steps into Orton’s knee. Barrett then throws Orton shoulder-first into the steps as we go to commercial.
WINNER: Wade Barrett. Amazingly, Barrett won the match, as he should have. The ending alone gives this match higher praise than I would normally give an Orton match.
End of show.
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