What is up wrestling fans, I am the WrestlingNerd bringing you another written review. Today, we take a look at WWE Smackdown on 7/15/11. I wasn't planning on reviewing this week's SD, but after witnessing TNA s***pact, I think I need to have a little bit of motivation and remember that pro wrestling can be a fun and entertaining place. So, let's begin.
We open the show with Josh Matthews ready to conduct an interview with Randy Orton. Orton talks about how he won't lose this Sunday and continues to give the audience that smug look whenever he talks. Christian interrupts the interview on the titantron. Christian talks about how the lawyers "forced" him to put the stipulation in if Orton gets a DQ or there is a ref screw up, Christian becomes champ and claims he wants a classic match. He does show Orton a photo of himself laid out while Christian is standing over him victorious and says Orton should use this as motivation and realize his title reign will end this Sunday. Orton says that is a lame comeback to set him off, so Christian one ups him by saying how his entire family is pathetic and that goes double for his father. He says "Cowboy" Bob Orton was nothing more than a sidekick and he is in the mockery part of the HOF with Bob Uecker and Drew Carey (hey, that's an insult to Bob and Uecker, but fits well with Carey. Plus, Cowboy was basically a sidekick for the majority of his career). Orton says what you would expect him to say and tells Christian to get in the ring. Christian says no and he will become champion at MITB. That pretty much ends the opening segment. Orton continues to not really get me interested at times because he is so bland on the mic. He is also pretty predictable on the mic as well. He will always talk about killing someone, play to the crowd and tries to act like a bad ass and tells his opponents to get in the ring and fight. Christian delivered a pretty decent promo to open up the show and I kinda liked it since I can at least buy his character a lot more than Orton.
Match #1: Ezekiel Jackson vs Ted DiBiase for the IC Championship
It was revealed by the commentators that because of DiBiase's win last week, he got a title match. That's kinda strange considering Cody Rhodes actually beat Zeke as well and also managed to do it in a singles match while Ted won in a tag team match. Anyway, Booker's Fave Five gets more confusing every week because it almost seems anyone gets on the list. Book said it changes every week, but it honestly feels like it changes every five minutes. It also feels like Booker is off in his own world when he is doing commentary because Michael Cole and Matthews ask him questions, but he completely answers another question. I like Booker, but he seems like he is out of his comfort zone with doing commentary. I guess working with Cole can drive a person insane? Anyway, the matchup was nothing special and kinda boring. I think the commentary was more interesting than this match. Once Zeke does the Scoop Slams of Doom, he locks in the Torture Rack and wins via submission. It just seems like Zeke isn't really getting over with the crowd because he is pulling in the basic face pop. It's like the WWE is saying "Zeke has muscles.....please like him". Rhodes was watching this match in the back and seemed to be disappointed.
Winner via submission and still IC Champ: Ezekiel Jackson
Backstage where Rhodes runs into DiBiase. Rhodes wants DiBiase to put on the paper bag because he is a loser while Ted is pleading his case that he tried his hardest. Rhodes decides to give DiBlandness one more chance, but if he loses again, he will get the Paper Bag of Embarrassment. Some random guy was walking by (who looked like D'Lo Brown on a diet. Yes, I am aware Brown works in TNA) ends up getting the paper bag treatment and scene ends with the guy just standing there. It was kinda odd how this guy didn't even fight the paper bag treatment and just decided to stand there in humiliation. It's like he told himself "My life is over......might as well give up....". Eitherway, I thought it was kinda funny. I think this angle might have taken an interesting turn because it could lead towards a DiBiase mean streak or a DiBiase face turn. At the same time, I don't know how well it would go for him because Rhodes is the more complete talent and it seems he is making strides every week to get a main event shot while DiBiase is just trying to climb back to the midcard rankings. I am a little invest in this deal.
Match #2: Cody Rhodes vs Daniel Bryan
I am starting to think Cole is a fan of Team Fourstar with his constant nerd jokes...
Did anyone notice the wrestling logic with Rhodes' mask? His face should have healed by now and thus shouldn't wear it, but he still does. I guess it is the Bob Orton effect where its just there for show and his character. Plus, did anyone notice the video package in which Rhodes says he dislikes Bryan because he is a common man? I wonder how Dusty Rhodes feels about that? In fact, I can almost imagine a conservation between father and son. Cody: "I dislike the common man". Dusty: "Oh yeah, well this "common man" put food on the damn table you ungrateful little bastard". Rhodes is still doing the Organization 13 deal with the hood. I wonder which member he would be? He would either be Marluxia or Zexion, what do you think? Joking aside, this matchup was pretty good and was giving a fair amount of time. Still, the commentary was very distracting since Booker, Cole and Matthews did nothing but bitch and moan and were worried more about paper bags and drum majors than the match. Something about the chemistry of all three of these guys just doesn't go over very well and its distracting. Anyway, I actually enjoyed this matchup and I found it entertaining. The finish comes when Rhodes gets Bryan's legs between the top rope. Rhodes would then follow up with a Shining Wizard from the top turnbuckle and pins Bryan for the clean win. I thought the finish was pretty creative. This should end things between Rhodes and Danielson and maybe Rhodes ends up winning the MITB briefcase. I think he has a good chance of winning the briefcase as of right now. I just hope Danielson doesn't fall too far off the radar and the WWE still uses him for something.
Winner via pinfall: Cody Rhodes
Backstage where Teddy Long is talking to someone on the phone and a ref walks in. He tells the ref about keeping Mark Henry and Big Show in check for their face off later in the evening. Once he leaves, Long is still talking on the phone about gambling (is this racial stereotyping?) until Kane walks in. Kane thanks him for giving him a match against Orton later tonight, but he senses something is off about himself. He says he doesn't feel like a monster anymore and feels more human, and he doesn't like it. I love the line Long delivered next in saying "If it makes you feel any better Kane, your scaring the hell out of me". It was the way he delivered the line that made it funny. This could be a storyline in the works for Kane. Not sure how I feel about it, but it might make for an interesting twist. Then again, what would this be, Kane push #659? WWE aired an old video of a match between CM Punk and Rey Mysterio while Chris Jericho was on commentary. Punk is so powerful that the WWE wants to showcase him for everything. Plus, I like Jericho's commentary during all of this. Punk and Jericho really are some of the greatest talents during our generation. There was a backstage photo shoot with Jinder Mahal and Great Khali. The cameraman is focusing on Khali and Mahal gets angry and tells him HE is the star and HE should get the attention. This Mahal does nothing for me like I have been saying for the past couple of weeks. He just seems really green at the moment. And another backstage/on location scene with Christian. Damn, SD sure did have a lot of backstage scenes tonight, but it was 1/10th to the amount of backstage scenes that happen in TNA. Again, wresting matters? Anyway, Christian comes across Orton's private bus and says this is a nice ride. He finds that it is defaced and says he will "find" the culprit. It is strange since this part was never addressed again, but we know Christian did the artwork since the defacing said how Long is a moron and how Orton is a joke.
Match #3: Sheamus vs Sin Cara
Wade Barrett was on commentary. FINALLY, someone I can actually stand to listen to on the headset. Wade is actually pretty decent on commentary, but he actually did some commentary while working in FCW in case you didn't know that. Wade needs to talk more because its his voice/mic skills that are going to get him back on track and get him in the main event. Sin is now doing a smoke style entrance at the ramp, which reminds me of Goldberg for some reason. Well, at least he wasn't breathing in the smoke like Goldberg. Anyway, the matchup didn't last too long, which was a bit of a disappointment because this sounds like a good match on paper. The finish comes when Sheamus attempts High Cross, but Sin rolls through and manages to get Sheamus' shoulders down for the quick three count. I think this was about the best way to book the match since you want both guys to have positive stock. It doesn't make Sheamus look weak because it was a quick win, but it doesn't make Sin look too shabby since they are putting a lot of time in getting the WWE Universe behind Sin. I would like to see another matchup between these two down the road because it would be interesting.
Winner via pinfall: Sin Cara
After the match, Barrett attacks Sheamus from behind. He hits Wasteland and gets his revenge from last week where Sheamus attacked him with a chair. I know it is kinda odd a heel would attack another heel, but I wouldn't make too much out of it. Then again, this is a chance to maybe turn one of them face and get a character change? I have been talking about how Barrett's stock has fallen, so this might be the change he is looking for? Then again, I am more than likely over analyzing it and it was just buildup for the MITB match. On location where Christian is now in a casino and claims he has Orton's wallet. Damn, where did he get a hold of that, and how dumb is Orton to leave his wallet laying around? To make Orton look even more stupid, Christian pulls out $1000 out of the wallet and looses it all in a game of roulette and says he is "sorry" for losing Orton's money. Who the hell walks around with that much cash in their wallet outside of a credit card? That is like the calling card for a mugger if you ask me. Anyway, identity theft for the freakin win by Christian. Oh, and it would have been hilarious if Christian actually won and to see what Christian would have done next? After a commercial, Long is in the ring and calls out Show and Henry. Show is in the ring while Henry is on the ramp. Henry says he doesn't want to get in the ring because he will beat him up while Show says otherwise. They were basically exchanging insults at each other and they almost started the fight early, but Long warned him he would call off the match and fine them if they exchanged blows tonight. Pretty boring sequence of events, but I suppose it did its job in hyping up the PPV match. I'm pretty sure some people are interested in this match, but I am not one of those guys.
Match #4: Kelly Kelly vs Rosa Mendes
Boring match with Kelly continuing her fan service. She wins with the Infamassour. Alicia Fox was at ringside and they did this little staredown between the two....why? It went nowhere afterwords and it just seemed pointless. It could mean Fox might play a roll in the diva matchup at the PPV or she will be the new #1 Contender, but here's a better question. Why do I give a s***?
Winner via pinfall: Kelly Kelly
Backstage with Johnny Curtis who says he will pull the cat out of the bag. Instead, he pulls a stuffed elephant. Curtis flips out at the old man from last week and ask him where is the cat? He says he lost the cat and this was the best solution. Curtis says "elephant in a room" is next week's pun. He rips off the head of the elephant and the old man cries again. Ok, so I kinda liked this particular Curtis segment because he actually showed some personality. Still, I feel bad for the old man and the elephant. Curtis killed Babar the Elephant? NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!
Match #5: Justin Gabriel vs Heath Slater
Gabriel came out to some boy band entrance music. It just sucked and I hope he changes that because it makes DiBiase's theme sound bad ass. Slater cut a promo in saying how Gabirel dropped the ball and how he is holding him back. The match was average and it ended when Gabriel hit the 450 Splash for the clean win. I think the purpose of this match was to show the tag team is dead and they are now going for their singles career. This also established Gabriel as a possible face. I honestly felt from the beginning that Gabriel was better suited to play face rather than a heel. It will be interesting to see what they do with both guys. There was also a Raw Rebound which featured Punk. I normally don't talk about these parts, but I brought it up because of one of Punk's lines. He talked about how lethal he is on the mic and I would have to agree.
Winner via pinfall: Justin Gabriel
Match #6: Randy Orton vs Kane
Oh great, time for the cliche SD ending. Christian was watching this match on the entrance ramp. The finish comes when Orton is about to be counted out, but Christian distracts him and throws water on him and he looses the match via countout. What is it with WWE and water being the weapon of doom? After the match, Kane and Christian attack Orton, but they argue for a bit. Orton hits an RKO on Kane while Christian follows up with a Spear. Christian is about to use a chair on Orton, but Orton is already back up (grade A job of selling, Orton...) and attacks Christian and he retreats. He uses the chair on Kane and the show ends with Orton standing tall....again. Why does it seem like every episode of SD ends with Orton standing tall? I thought the show was ok, but the ending was ridiculous since WWE wants Orton to look invincible and it would have looked a lot better if Christian ended the show standing tall and not Orton dominating like usual.
Winner via countout: Kane
Maybe it was because of the abomination that Impact aired this week, but I found SD this week to be much better than last week's show and it was pretty decent. They built up the current storylines going into the PPV while they established some new things like a possible Gabriel face turn and more development between Rhodes and DiBiase. Still, the ending to the show was very cliche and it does kinda ruin the show, but everything prior to that was ok. Pretty much an average showing of SD and it does get you a little more pumped for the MITB PPV, but I think Raw took care of that with the Punk storyline. Still, I thought this was an entertaining show for what it was worth. I think the SD announce team needs to change because the team of Cole, Booker, and Matthews isn't working since all they do is bitch and complain. Ok, time to rank the shows. In terms of in ring quality, I would rank it SD, Raw, and Impact. The Rhodes/Bryan match stood out as one of the better matchups for the week. In terms of promos/segments, I would rank it Raw, SD, and Impact. Punk once again steals the show with how well he is doing things, but Vince McMahon and John Cena deserve some credit as well. SD had some ok segments while Impact should be ashamed of themselves for even going through with the bulls*** they aired. Moment of the Week goes to the ending segment of Raw. MVP of the Week.....I have to give it to Punk again because he is the guy we are talking about the most this week. Yeah, I hate giving the award to the same guy within a short period of time, but Punk is just on another playing field and doing things we haven't seen in a long time and I think he has earned it. Ok, that's going to do it for the review and I hope you enjoyed it. As always, tell me what you thought of my review and tonight's show. MITB Rundown is already up, so please check it out if your wondering what I think of the PPV and my predictions. The TNA Impact review is also up since I released both at a different time in case you missed it. I will see you guys and girls on the next WrestlingNerd show, see you next time and we won't forget you Babar.....you will be avenged.