WWE Friday Night Smackdown- March 11, 2011
-Triple H is in the house tonight! He’s going to talk about The Undertaker. Joy.
-From Houston, TX. Our hosts are Josh Matthews, Booker T, and Michael Cole.
-The show kicks off with the World Heavyweight Champion, Edge, coming to the ring for a promo. Edge is fired up and is looking to fight Alberto Del Rio. Del Rio comes out (without a car so you know he means business) and he’s accompanied by his NXT rookie, Brodus Clay. Del Rio promises to replace Edge’s legacy with his destiny. Edge responds by attacking both men but quickly becomes overwhelmed. Christian runs in for the save but sadly also ends up on the receiving end of a beating. Theodore Long joins the fray, making Del Rio and Clay vs. Edge and Christian official for tonight. Sweet!
-Michael Cole claims to be a pop icon but tonight he’s going back to his journalist roots. Cole interviews John Cena later tonight.
-Kane makes his way to the ring. Wade Barrett shows up on the stage and informs Kane that he’s made some monumental mistakes. Kane didn’t appreciate what the Corre did for him and he attacked Justin Gabriel. Barrett calls Kane a “chemical mistake.”
Kane vs. Wade Barrett
Barrett is aggressive in the early going but the more experienced Kane returns the favor. It doesn’t take long for the Corre to run in for the DQ at 0:42. Big Show runs in with a chair and saves Kane. This was all angle, no match.
Winner via DQ: Kane
Kane and Big Show vs. Heath Slater and Wade Barrett
The match started during a commercial break. Big Show is in charge, dishing out punishment to both Slater and Barrett. Barrett blocks a choke slam and attacks the knee of Big Show. The Corre is now in control and isolate Show. Kane gets the hot tag and delivers the flying clothesline to Slater. Kane cleans house until the rest of the Corre runs in for another DQ at 3:17 (shown). Big Show yet again cleans the ring with the help of a steel chair, before nailing Kane as well, perhaps payback for last week. Again, this was all angle.
Winners via DQ: Kane and Big Show
-Booker T teases Cole about what happened to him on Raw, regarding the special referee for his match at Wrestlemania. The referee was supposed to be JBL, but Stone Cold Steve Austin showed up, raised hell, and signed the contract himself. They replay the segment. Why even have a Smackdown brand if this is how you’re going to use it?
-Cody Rhodes, an actual Smackdown superstar, is here tonight! He’s in action next!
Dashing Cody Rhodes vs. JTG
Rhodes is wrestling in his protective mask and a suit. JTG is hapless against Cody, who is behaving like a mad man. Cross Rhodes finishes it at 0:50. Way to put Rhodes over.
Winner: Dashing Cody Rhodes
-Shawn Michaels talks about his history with Triple H. Sheesh, it’s one thing for Smackdown to be the “B show” but it’s another thing for it to turn into the weekend recap show.
-Michael Cole interviews John Cena in the ring. Hey, at least this isn’t another pretaped segment. I spoke too soon as Cole rolls footage from Raw, when Cena got beaten up by The Miz. Cena looks about as depressed as I am. Cena swipes the microphone and orders Cole out of the ring. If Miz is the face of the WWE, Cena’s new goal is breaking that face. Cena starts to leave but Cole has more questions. Cena threatens Cole but Jack Swagger runs in and attacks. Cena blocks the ankle lock. Swagger saves Cole again but eats the Attitude Adjustment. Decent segment, though I find it worrisome that WWE has positioned Michael Cole as a bigger star than Jack Swagger.
-Sin Cara hype video! He moves like Rey Mysterio circa 1996.
Layla (with Michelle McCool) vs. Kaitlyn
Kaitlyn is the NXT Season 3 winner and this the first time I’ve seen her. She wrestles about as well as any other random diva call-up, which is to say not very well. At least she’s muscular, one of the problems with most WWE divas is they don’t look like fighters. Anyhoo, Michelle assists in Layla getting the win at 0:56. Next!
-LayCool isn’t finished and they set Kaitlyn up against the turnbuckles. Michelle delivers a hard kick to the back. Side note, what happened to Kelly Kelly? It seemed like she got put over pretty well a few weeks ago when she was teaming with Edge, and now she’s vanished.
Rey Mysterio vs. Drew McIntyre
Drew kicks Rey in the head to set the tone for the contest. Nice tirt-a-whirl backbreaker by McIntyre, which leads to a surfboard stretch. Rey bounces back but Drew dodges 619. Rey drop-toe-holds Drew into the apron. McIntyre shoves Rey into the ring post and slams him on the apron! Cue the commercial. After the break, Drew is stretching the life out of Mysterio. This has basically turned into your typical Mysterio formula match, though Drew is being refreshingly violent in his offense. Rey delivers a modified 619 and the frog splash for the win at 4:33 (shown). Rey is complacent and Drew needs some direction.
Winner: Rey Mysterio
-Rey is celebrating when Cody Rhodes appears on the stage. Cody wants Rey to answer his Wrestlemania challenge. Rey accepts! Rhodes/Mysterio could be the dark horse hit of Wrestlemania, if Rey brings his working boots.
-Raw Superstar Triple H comes to the ring for a promo. He’s feuding with Smackdown’s Undertaker, so I guess it’s okay. We are treated to a video package covering Triple H’s long history of hurting people and flexing his muscles. Triple H explains that Shawn Michaels couldn’t beat Undertaker because of his emotions. However, Triple H is a horrible person and has no emotions, so beating Undertaker won’t be a problem for him. They are still tip-toeing around the fact that Triple H already lost to Taker at Wrestlemania X7. Triple H wraps it up by thanking Undertaker for making the match No Holds Barred. Good promo.
-Christian is interviewed backstage. He talks about everything that’s changed since in the world of pop culture since he and Edge were regular partners (they are tip-toeing around Edge and Christian’s brief reunions over the years).
Edge and Christian vs. Alberto Del Rio and Brodus Clay (with Ricardo Rodriguez)
Christian starts off against Clay and holds up well against the big man. Del Rio distracts, allowing Clay to nail a fall away slam. Del Rio drives Christian into the barricade and Edge chases him into the crowd. Clay and Del Rio have Christian isolated and wear him down. Christian fights back with a flying elbow shot. Edge gets a hot tag but runs into a power slam by Clay. Edge trips Clay and knocks Del Rio off the apron. Clay counters the spear! Clay misses a corner splash but Del Rio jumps Edge. Christian dumps Alberto to the floor and hits a tornado DDT on Clay! Flying elbow drop by Edge finishes it at 5:48! Perfectly good television match.
Winners: Edge and Christian
Final Thoughts: Smackdown is back in another holding pattern of sorts. Most of the roster doesn’t have any real direction. The Corre/Big Show feud has become eye rollingly tedious. Mysterio/Rhodes still has my interest and Alberto Del Rio’s chase after Edge has become an exciting storyline. Everything else is just pretty shippable. Thumbs in the middle, I suppose.
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