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WWE Friday Night Smackdown- March 18, 2011
From Kansas City. Our hosts are Booker T, Josh Matthews, and… Michael Cole. The show actually kicks off with Cole getting a televised entrance as his protective Cole Mine cage is set up by the announce table.
Edge vs. Brodus Clay (with Alberto Del Rio and Ricardo Rodriguez)
Clay is slow but still manages to catch Edge by surprise with a fall away slam. Clay goes to work on the arm and shoulder. Clay blocks a DDT and delivers a clothesline. Clay misses a splash, allowing Edge to mount a comeback. Clay counters a sunset flip but misses a corner splash. Top rope bulldog by Edge! Edge signals the spear but Rodriguez distracts the referee while Del Rio attacks Edge. Clay plants Edge and gets a close near fall. Christian runs in to attack Rodriguez and Edge spears Clay for the victory at 5:07. Not a bad way to start the show, Clay is one of the better big men to come along in recent years.
-Post match, Del Rio drop-kicks the shoulder of Edge! Christian tackles Del Rio and they brawl to ringside. Theodore Long shows up and books Christian vs. Del Rio in a steel cage for later tonight.
-Holy crap, they’re letting Intercontinental Champion Kofi Kingston back on Smackdown! He’s going to face Raw’s Sheamus, who just happens to be the new United States Champion.
King Sheamus vs. Kofi Kingston
Sheamus goes right to work on the arm of Kingston. Kofi answers by using his speed to hit some quick shots but Sheamus drops him on the turnbuckles. Sheamus appears to be enjoying himself as he dominates Kingston. Kofi rebounds with his bag of tricks, complete with the boom drop. Sheamus lures Kofi into the ropes but ends up eating a DDT. Sheamus retreats to ringside and Kofi leaps off the steps onto him. Sheamus kicks the steps into Kofi and delivers the bicycle kick for the win at 5:14. Good showing by both men.
-Kane and Big Show hang out backstage. Show gives a pep talk but Kane responds by grabbing the throat. They tease a brawl but Kane just laughs and states “You complete me.” That was actually pretty funny.
Trent Barreta vs. Dashing Cody Rhodes
Whoa, they let Barreta back on Smackdown! Rhodes has a menacing new remix of his entrance music. Rhodes is once again aggressive with his attack on the hapless Barreta. Rhodes is using his protective mask as a weapon, which is just gleefully evil. A couple of head butts are enough to put Barreta away at 0:48. Rhodes continues to be awesome.
Winner: Dashing Cody Rhodes
-More hype for Undertaker/Triple H at Wrestlemania. Fast-forward time!
Layla (with Michelle McCool) vs. Kelly Kelly
Holy cow, they let Kelly back on Smackdown! Amazing! The match is pretty much background entertainment for McCool to trash talk Snooki and Trish Stratus on commentary. Kelly basically squashes Layla until her somersault is countered. Kelly rebounds, but Michelle distracts her long enough for Layla to pull her off the top rope. Layla gets the win at 2:07. Mercifully short and to the point.
-Though the fire and flames, Sin Cara marches on!
WWE Tag Team Championship:
Heath Slater and Justin Gabriel © vs. Big Show and Kane
Gabriel reluctantly starts against Kane. Slater tags but runs into Kane’s fist. Kane misses a big boot, allowing Slater to attack his other leg. Gabriel and Slater smell blood and attempt to work over the leg, but Big Show makes a hot tag. Show hits the choke slam on Slater but Gabriel pulls the referee out of the ring. The ref calls for the DQ at 3:04. Good enough for what it was.
Winners by DQ: Big Show and Kane
-Post-match, Wade Barrett and Ezekiel Jackson run in for the attack. Barrett lifts Show up for his Wasteland finisher! Kane tries to fight back but also succumbs to the numbers game. Tragic, really. The Corre smashes Kane with both ring steps! Finally, some actual violence in this rivalry. They finish it up by flap jacking Big Show into the announce table!
-Todd Grisham interviews Alberto Del Rio backstage. Del Rio accuses Teddy Long and Christian of trying to interfere with his destiny. He resents being locked in a cage like an animal.
Jack Swagger vs. Chris Masters
Jeez Louise, they let Chris Masters back on Smackdown! Did they have a shortage of Raw segments worth replaying in their entirety tonight? How many Smackdown roster members are only worth keeping around to be the jobber of the week? Swagger is aggressive but Masters nails a Samoan drop. Masters goes for the Masterlock but it’s countered. The ankle lock is blocked but Swagger uses the ring post to weaken the ankle. Masters taps out at 1:56. Swagger looked like a killer here.
Winner: Jack Swagger
-Swagger invites Michael Cole into the ring to put the ankle lock on Masters as well. What incredible douche bags.
Rey Mysterio vs. Ted Dibiase (with Maryse)
As per usual, Mysterio is too quick for his larger opponent. Dibiase answers by countering a dive with a drop-kick. Dibiase cuts Mysterio off again with a clothesline. Cue the chinlock! Dibiase begins focusing on the spine. Rey counters with a DDT. Hurricanrana! Rey looks to repeat but Dibiase counters. Rey bounces back and delivers 619. The frog splash finishes at 3:34. These two had fun countering each other’s big moves.
Winner: Rey Mysterio
-Maryse storms off without Dibiase. Rey points at the Wrestlemania sign, surely hoping to send Cody Rhodes a message.
Steel Cage match:
Alberto Del Rio (with Ricardo Rodriguez) vs. Christian
The contest kicks off with some back and forth action. Del Rio tries to escape but Christian meets him for a fight on the ropes. Del Rio tries to suplex Christian off the ropes but it’s blocked. Del Rio settles for a big time Samoan drop! Cue the commercial! After the break, both men are back on their feet. Del Rio sends Christian crashing into the cage wall. Main event chinlock by Del Rio! Christian foils another escape attempt. Christian blocks a cage shot and delivers an inverted DDT. Del Rio leaps and kicks Christian off the ropes! Christian counters the cross-arm breaker with the Killswitch but can’t get the pin! Del Rio uses Christian to climb the cage, which is a brilliant heel moment. They trade shots on top of the cage. They make it over and Christian lands first for the win at 9:34(shown)! It looked like Del Rio had his arm stuck in the cage. Great action here, Del Rio really proved that he deserves his push, ***¼.
Winner: Alberto Del Rio
-Del Rio, being the sore loser that he is, attacks Christian. Del Rio is stopped when he hears someone honking the horn on his expensive car. Unsurprisingly, it’s Edge, and he’s threatening to do some serious damage to the vehicle. Sadly, Brodus Clay blindsides Edge. Del Rio finally succeeds with destroying the arm of Edge with a con-chair-to.
Final Thoughts: Holy crapola, great Smackdown this week! The main event was all kinds of awesome, with Christian and Del Rio having a creative and hard-hitting cage match. The Corre storyline didn’t suck and they finally managed to dish out a meaningful attack on Kane and Big Show. Also, the wrestling was generally good throughout the show and they managed to keep the commercial breaks during matches to a minimum. More of this please! Thumbs up.
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