This week’s WWE Friday Night SmackDown opens up with general manager Teddy Long and executive vice president of talent relations and newly appointed Raw general manager John Laurinitis announcing that this episode of SmackDown now places the show as the number longest running episodic program in television history behind only it’s Monday night counterpart Raw and as result the show will feature the largest battle royal in WWE history. The winner of the battle royal will receive a WWE title shot at a champion of their choosing in the main event of tonight’s show.
Largest battle royal in WWE history
One by one superstars from both brands make their way to the ring until the ring is full with 41 superstars!!!! Little by little superstars are eliminated as Sheamus looks to be the early favorite and is tossing wrestlers out left and right. Slowly but surely the ring begins to empty as Orton is handing out RKO after RKO and the final two superstars left are The Miz and Randy Orton. Cue controversial finish as only a good battle royal can and you have both superstars on the apron and Orton hits an RKO on Miz and both men fall off the apron. The multiple replays clearly show that Miz’s back foot landed outside of the ring just a split second before Orton’s does. Your winner of the largest battle royal in WWE history, “The Viper” Randy Orton. Orton then takes the mic and makes it known that his title shot tonight will be against current champ Mark Henry.
Next we have Kelly Kelly looking to gain back the Diva’s title from the “Glamazon” Beth Phoenix. Her attempts were short lived as Phoenix proved to be too much and retained her Divas title.
We cut to backstage where the black masked Sin Cara is attacking the original Sin Cara. The black masked Sin Cara actually removes the original Sin Cara’s mask and takes his off and wears the blue mask. He then makes his way to the ring to take on Justin Gabriel. The match was short as Gabriel takes to the top turnbuckle but Sin Cara counters by knocking him off and hits his swanton bomb finisher.
WWE Champion Alberto Del Rio vs. “The Celtic Warrior” Sheamus
We return to the action and find Alberto Del Rio personal ring announcer Ricardo Rodriguez introducing the champion Del Rio and he is set to take on “The Celtic Warrior” Sheamus. Power moves hit by both men and Sheamus takes to the top rope only to be knocked off by Christian who apparently was hiding under the ring all match long. Del Rio hits a nice running enzugiri and kick to the skull of Sheamus and picks up the win. Christian then enters the ring to prey on the fallen Sheamus and hits one spear and then leaves the ring but isn’t happy by what he sees because Sheamus is back to his feet so Christian delivers spear #2 and heads up the ramp.
Backstage we see Teddy Long talking to current tag champs “Air Boom” Kofi Kingston and Evan Bourne. Bourne is in street clothes and injured and won’t be wrestling tonight. Vicki Guerrero demands that the tag champs defend their belts against her team of Dolph Ziggler and Jack Swagger. Long says it isn’t happening but wait here comes Zack Ryder who wants in and tonight it will be Kingston and Ryder against Ziggler and Swagger.
Kofi Kingston & Zack Ryder vs. Dolph Ziggler & Jack Swagger
This match featured plenty of action between both teams and Ryder gets the hot tag and cleans house only to end up in Ziggler’s sleeper hold but counters nicely and throws Ziggler into the turnbuckle. Swagger interferes illegally and looks have turned the momentum but Kingston comes to and delivers his “Trouble in Paradise” kick and “Long Island Ice Z” Zack Ryder gets the pin!!!! This is two weeks in a row that Ryder has pinned the current US champion Dolph Ziggler. I really feel that Ziggler and Ryder could have an exciting feud and give a much needed shot in the arm to the US title.
Cut to Raw Recap from this week highlighting the firing of Triple H.
Time for our main event of the evening. Randy Orton vs. the champion Mark Henry. Henry hits power move after power move and doesn’t disappoint by taking the action to the outside and seems to have Orton right where he wants him. But as we saw last week the returning Big Show has his sights set on Henry and he interferes in the match and is joined by Cody Rhodes who has his own issues with Orton but it’s the Big Show who single-handily takes care of both by catching Rhodes off the top rope and choke slamming him and then choke slamming the world’s strongest man and the show closes with Orton and Show standing over the fallen Rhodes and Henry.
I think they could really do something with the Rhodes/Orton feud and I think that Show could work well with Henry. I also really like the angle with Ryder and Ziggler and would look forward to a series of matches for the US title between these two young superstars.