What up wrestling fans, I'm the WrestlingNerd bringing you another written review. Today, we take a look at WWE Smackdown on 11/25/11. With Raw and Impact being very lacking in the quality department this week, would SD be able to do better again? Well, let's find out and start the review.
We open up the show with Mark Henry. He is walking out on a crutch and has a brace over the injured ankle. He talks about how the audience is selfish since they are cheering for someone who is hurt. He says that he didn't kick Show in the groin at Survivor Series and Show sold the hell out of it. He brings up that he isn't medically cleared to compete tonight. Big Show interrupts the segment and gives his side of the story. He says it was just revenge for taking him out for 4 months and says this isn't over yet. Henry says he is done with Show and claims he is a loser. After lots of epic stare down between the giants, Show hits the KO punch on Henry and leaves. You think the segment is over, but then you hear Daniel Bryan's entrance music. Bryan is running towards the ring and cashes in the MITB. The bell rings and Bryan turns over Henry and pins him. It appears we have a new world champion. The audience is eating this up while Bryan is celebrating with the WHC. He even shoved it in the face of Michael Cole. Who would've thought we would see a new champion being crowned....
Teddy Long arrives and has something to say. He says that Henry wasn't medically cleared to compete, so the MITB cash in has been waived off. The fans are booing while Bryan is very angry and disappointed by hearing this news. Teddy demands he give the WHC back to him since it still belongs to Henry. Bryan reluctantly gives the WHC back. Teddy does the right thing and says since the MITB cash-in never happened, Bryan still keeps the MITB briefcase. Teddy tries to make it up to Bryan (You just took away the world title from him. I don't think anything you can do will make it up to him.....just saying) by putting him in a Fatal 4 Way match to determine who will get the next world title match. It will be Bryan vs Randy Orton vs Wade Barrett vs Cody Rhodes, where the winner will get their world title match on next week's Smackdown, which just happens to be live next Tuesday. So, a lot of activity to open up this week's SD. I have been saying for a while they need to try something with Bryan since he has the MITB and they should be using that to build him up. Well, it looks like they are trying something with him. I think they teased Bryan being the new world champion to see how well the crowd was able to respond to his cash-in. I like Bryan, and the audience was in full support for Bryan, but he isn't ready to become the world champion at this moment. It's too soon and he still needs more time to develop his character. Yeah, the cash in will be an amazing spot for Bryan, but how will Bryan be looked at on the next week's show and moving forward if we was the world champion? Yeah, it makes the most sense to have Henry still be world champ. Now, I can already see people bitching about how MITB means you cash in anyplace, anytime, so how can they waive it off? Well.....the easiest answer to that is wrestling logic. You know, where you can bend the rules at any given place and time to benefit your show/storyline. Keep in mind that the false cash-in has finally given something meaningful for Daniel Bryan. Now he is apart of a storyline that is actually interesting, so I don't mind the false advertising. Again, pro wrestling is about telling a story, so no need to throw a hissy fit because your guy didn't get what he wanted. I swear, the IWC takes everything way too seriously. I guess Bryan isn't moving up the Booker T Fave Five? Noooooooooooooo!!!
Match #1: Justin Gabriel vs Hunico
Gabriel still works here? They should use him a little more often, mainly for tag team wrestling. Anyway, this was a pretty decent back and forth match. Not an overly amazing match, but a good match to get you interested in watching the rest of the show. Then again, I think the opening did a good enough job to keep you invested. The finish comes when Hunico did an eye gouge behind the referee's back. This allows for Hunico to hit the Swanton Bomb from off the top rope and gets the victory. One of the things I heard was Josh Matthews saying how the world title match would be a Steel Cage Match, while it would be announced later on in the show by Teddy. Wouldn't be surprised if Matthews did a slight spoiler here. Not sure what happens to Hunico since his main rival is now on the shelf. Noticed how Primo and Epico haven't been showing up near Hunico lately. Maybe WWE already canned the idea? Then again, they can use that group for tag team wrestling.
Winner via pinfall: Hunico
Match #2: Beth Phoenix and Natalya vs AJ and Kaitlyn
Alicia Fox was on commentary for this match. This was an odd match. AJ was the only one from her team involved in this match, while Kaitlyn seemed upset with her partner (at least after the match). The match was very short and it was over with Natalya locked in Sharpshooter. Not a great match, but unlike this week's KO match on TNA, this was kept short and simple. Seriously, if you want to see half naked women, just watch Cinemax. After the match, Kaitlyn argues with AJ and leaves her behind. Beth and Natalya continue to punish AJ and want to see her cry. After about a whole minute of this, Alicia finally gets the bright idea to actually go save her. Alicia's brain must have needed a jolt of lightening. The heels run away as Alicia checks up on AJ. It's about time a second diva storyline started taking place. You kinda get tired of the same one being shoved in your face since SummerSlam.
Winner via submission: Natalya and Beth Phoenix
WWE re-aired the Kane video. I don't think there was any mention of the other cryptic video that appeared in a link on Raw this past week...
No, not that link. After more robbing the cradle by Teddy in regards to Aksana, Henry shows up. He complains about his title defense for next week's live SD. Teddy says the doctors told him Henry should be cleared to compete by then. These doctors already know when he will be better? Who are they, Jesus Christ? After a medical version of wrestling logic, there was another backstage scene between Sheamus and Zack Ryder. As Ryder is continuing to act like a goof, Sheamus is trying to be serious.....but not really as he is joking around. I wouldn't be surprised if Ryder s*** his pants during this bit. They talk about their tag team match with Dolph Ziggler and Jack Swagger, which is next.
Match #3: Dolph Ziggler and Jack Swagger vs Sheamus and Zack Ryder
This was a very good match. The match was given lots of time to show what all four guys are capable of doing. This might be just me talking, but is anyone thinking Mr. Perfect when looking at Dolph? With Dolph acting more and more like a show off, and with Mr. Perfect having naturally gifted skills, I just see some of the same comparisons. At least in regards to their heel characters...
Did Cole just say Sheamus is a vampire? You know what? Those stupid Twilight movies would be a 1000 times better if Sheamus was in them. Come on, you know you want to give a Brogue Kick to everyone involved with these movies. The finish comes when Ryder does a blind tag. As Sheamus counters the Zig Zag, Ryder jumps in the ring and hits Rough Ryder on Dolph to win the match. Ryder is getting closer and closer to that US title match. Slow build ups are often way better than fast ones. We need more of this in pro wrestling.
Winner via pinfall: Zack Ryder and Sheamus
Backstage where Bryan is talking to AJ. Bryan talks about holding onto the WHC and saying how it was a great feeling, but how it was taken away from him. AJ seems to have lots of faith in Bryan being able to become world champion. Wade Barrett interrupts and talks about how Bryan will never become world champion. Bryan says he isn't intimidated by Wade, Henry, or anyone. As Wade walks away, AJ gives Bryan a kiss on a cheek for good luck. It's gotta be the beard. It should be noted that everything going on with AJ and Kaitlyn connects to Bryan. Damn, Bryan and Teddy should open up their own business for hooking up with women.
Match #4: Ted DiBiase vs Heath Slater
Jinder Mahal was on the titantron and talks about how DiBiase isn't embracing his wealth and shouldn't associate himself with normal people. Yeah, cuz getting your advice from Jinder is no way going to hurt your stock. I guess Slater's suspension is finally over now that he is back. Yeah, like it freakin' matters. The match was very basic. The finish comes when DiBiase hits Dream Street for the clean victory. I heard Booker compare DiBiase to Tim Tebow. He might have to borrow a personality from Tebow, but it would be an improvement. It appears they may have started a true rivalry with Mahal. Things are looking up for DiBiase. Hey, it beats being a regular on Superstars.
Winner via pinfall: Ted DiBiase
After they re-aired the clip of Cody Rhodes splashing water in the face of Booker on Raw this past week, we have a backstage interview with Cody. He says Booker is a worthless commentator and realizes Booker doesn't like him, so he decided to do something about it. Cody isn't going to be showing up in Booker's Fave Five anytime soon.
Match #5: Daniel Bryan vs Randy Orton vs Wade Barrett vs Cody Rhodes; Winner is #1 Contender to WHC
It was also announced that the winner of the title match would face off against Big Show at TLC. It also appears Mick Foley would be the host for next week's SD. BANG BANG!!! A decently long match where all four competitors had a chance to show what they can do. I personally like the tag team match from earlier, but this one wasn't too bad. The finish comes when Bryan counters a pinfall attempt by Cody and locks in the Le Bell Lock. Cody taps out and Bryan will get the title match next week. After the match, Cody attacks Bryan out of frustration. Orton arrives and hits RKO on Cody. Randy gives a little nod of respect towards Bryan, and the show ends with Bryan playing to the crowd. I can see a lot of people complaining in the choice of Bryan winning this match. Then again, I think it makes the most sense. Cody is busy with Booker while Orton and Wade are starting a rivalry. On the other side of the coin, Bryan has been getting more and more time in regards to the world title picture, so I think it makes the most sense to give him the match. Not sure how they will book it. It will be in a steel cage and part of me is worried that they will massacre Bryan in that title match. A Bryan massacre doesn't do anything for him. I think what Bryan needs to do is really push Henry to the distance. I think that will turn a few heads and he will gain a few more supporters along the way. It is possible Bryan will win the title match, but with it already being announced the winner would face off against Big Show, I don't think that's very likely. What I see happening is either Henry wins the match and has some sort of gimmick match with Show, or they somehow make this a Triple Threat Match with Bryan sneaking in. I don't really like the Triple Threat idea. It's good they are exposing Bryan to bigger and better things, but he isn't ready to become the world champion at this moment. Plus, Show and Henry has been okay, but it should end at TLC. If Bryan is involved, it will only delay the conclusion to Henry/Show....maybe.
Winner via submission and NEW #1 Contender to WHC: Daniel Bryan
Once again, I found that SD was the best wrestling show for this week. While CM Punk made things interesting and fun on Raw, there was only so much he could do. As for TNA.....well, it was a unreviewable show (which is why nothing was posted for this week's TNA) and the less we talk about that, the better. SD had the best wrestling quality and also featured a better presentation of their storylines. I expected there to be lots of filler tonight, but they actually put forth a lot of new and interesting things tonight. Reckon they needed to build up next week's live SD, so that would explain it. I found Bryan's role tonight to be very interesting. They are trying things with Bryan and even though he shouldn't be world champion yet, they are building him up towards something and it's actually interesting. Many people say Ryder should be US Champion, but I like the slow build up. Most build ups go way too fast and don't go over very well, so I like they are taking their time with Ryder. This is one of the best things in the mid card division that has happened in a long time, so I like the fact they are taking their time with Ryder. I thought SD was very entertaining and a good show to end the Thanksgiving week in the world of pro wrestling. 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 or tonight's show. I will see you guys and girls on the next WrestlingNerd show, see you next time.