-Live, from Uniondale, NY. Our hosts are Jerry Lawler, Michael Cole, and Matt Striker.
-One championship, four contenders. That is the “innovative” theme of tonight’s show. The opening montage highlight’s Kane’s quest to find out who injured his brother, The Undertaker.
-The show kicks off with Mr. McMahon on the stage. He is “sad” to inform us that Bret Hart will not be here, as a result of the attack he suffered at the hands of the Nexus. Well, actually, the Nexus repeatedly crashed Bret’s limo while Bret was trapped in the backseat. Keep in mind, this is in the aftermath of Daniel Bryan being fired for CHOKING SOMEONE WITH A TIE. Vince brings out his current pet project, Drew McIntyre and puts him over by shaking his hand.
-We are treated to a montage of Drew McIntyre putting the hurt onto Teddy Long, Kofi Kingston, and Matt Hardy on Smackdown. Mr. McMahon leaves the arena in his limo (which I keep waiting to explode again). Drew calls out Teddy and throws some more insults his way. Long is ordered to sit and watch the match, and will be forced to hand Drew the IC title when it’s over.
Kofi Kingston © vs. Drew McIntyre
Back and forth action to start. Suicide dive by Kofi! Drew trips Kofi off the apron to take control. Drew spends several minutes attacking Kofi’s arm. Kingston counters with a flowing DDT! Kofi builds some steam with his controlled frenzy offense. Drew hits a knee to the head but Kofi rebounds with a side Russian legsweep. Drew comes out on top after a series of reversals. Kofi blocks the Futureshock and nails a springboard tornado DDT. Kofi mounts on the corner but Drew counters with a power bomb! Drew kicks out of S.O.S. Drew counters a head scissor by driving Kofi into the referee. Futureshock DDT by Drew, but there’s no official. Drew pulls Long into the ring and forces him to wear the referee shirt. Long starts counting but can’t bring himself to get to 3. Drew threatens Long and sets up another DDT when Matt Hardy runs in and delivers the Twist of Fate! Kofi nails Trouble in Paradise and Long counts to 3 at 16:25. I’m surprised by how much time this got. They were able to tell a strong story and build to a satisfying finish, with Long, Kingston, and Hardy getting their retribution, ***½..
Winner and still Intercontinental Champion: Kofi Kingston
-Savannah interviews the Hart Dynasty backstage. Natalya says it’s been a hard week for their family, but they are used to adversity. Tyson Kidd says they will make a name for themselves in the ring. David Hart Smith says that Bret has been like a father to him and they will continue to fight.
Eve Torres © vs. Maryse vs. Gail Kim vs. Alicia Fox
Gail jumps Alicia and Eve and Maryse collide. Gail springboards into Alicia’s boot. Eve breaks Alicia’s cover, leaving her vulnerable to Maryse. Tirt-a-whirl backbreaker on Gail by Alicia is impressive. Maryse and Alicia double team Eve. They take turns showing off their submission holds. The crowd entertains themselves with a “Daniel Bryan” chant. Maryse and Alicia clear the ring and turn their aggression towards each other. Eve breaks it up. Gail returns and shows off her aerial prowess. Alicia dispatches Gail at ringside. Moonsault on Maryse by Eve! Alicia tosses Eve to ringside and pins Maryse herself to win the title at 5:41. Not bad, the women put on a suitable spot fest and didn’t botch anything, **.
Winner and new Divas Champion: Alicia Fox
-Big Show pays Rey Mysterio a visit in the locker room. Big Show promises not to hesitate to knock out anyone, Rey included, to win the World title. Rey claims his heart is bigger than Show’s fist and storms off.
-Special thanks to Toby Mac. His song “Showstopper” is tonight’s official theme.
-Chris Jericho comes to the ring, ready to wrestle. Jericho says that anyone under the age 25 is watching because of him. If you’re still watching over the age of 25, it’s because he hooked you. That’s kind of true in my case (I’m 26). It was an uphill battle to the top of the mountain, but now that he’s there, everyone is trying to knock him off. Jericho accuses Evan Bourne of trying to make a name for himself as his expense. Bourne hit Jericho with a Shooting Star Press on Raw, even though the match was over. As an honest man, Jericho is granting Bourne a rematch tonight.
Chris Jericho vs. Evan Bourne
Jericho is aggressive in the early going. Hurricanrana by Bourne! Bourne dives onto Jericho at ringside! Springboard drop-kick by Jericho puts him in control. Heel kick by Bourne and a running kick in the corner. Jericho ducks a quick kick and nails a German suplex. Jericho perches on the turnbuckles and Bourne leaps up for a head scissors takedown! Jericho counters with the Walls! Bourne escapes and counters, sending Jericho head first into the ring steps. Flying knees by Bourne! Lionsault misses and Bourne slowly climbs and misses the Shooting Star Press! Codebreaker! Jericho covers but Bourne gets another rope break! Bourne counters the Walls with a guillotine DDT! Bourne blocks two superplex attempts and nails the SSP! Bourne wins at 12:00! You don’t see matches like this too often in WWE. They packed a lot of action into this, with shades of Jericho’s 90’s WCW work and Bourne’s Dragon Gate days, ***¾.
Winner: Evan Bourne
-Recap video from Smackdown. Kane revealed that he found The Undertaker in a vegetative state. Kane vows to “personally prosecute” anyone who had something to do with this. Kane accuses CM Punk, Rey Mysterio, Jack Swagger, and Big Show of being behind it. Basically, he’s promising to get involved in their fatal 4-way match.
World Heavyweight Championship:
Jack Swagger © vs. Big Show vs. CM Punk (with Serena and Luke Gallows) vs. Rey Mysterio
Punk and Swagger jump Rey, but Big Show breaks it up. Rey and Show clear the ring and square off. Show dominates but his covers get broken up. Rey counters Show with a DDT. Swagger removes Rey and Punk from Show and nails a Vader bomb. Punk and Rey briefly team up to remove Show, but Swagger takes them down. Swagger is alone with Rey and wears him down. Rey sets up 619, but Punk returns with a springboard clothesline. Punk snap mares Swagger over the ropes to retain dominance. Swagger German suplexes Swagger and Rey together! Big Show returns to catch Rey in mid-619 and drop him on the announce table! Show cleans house. Show is stopped by consecutive attacks from all three opponents. Everyone is down when Kane’s music hits. Kane wheels down a casket. Kane points at CM Punk and choke slams him into the casket. Luke Gallows makes the save and retreats with Punk. Meanwhile, Rey delivers the 619 and springboard frog splash to pin Swagger at 10:25. The crowd is pleasantly surprised by the outcome. This was a fun, overbooked spot-fest, ***.
Winner and new World Heavyweight Champion: Rey Mysterio
-Josh Matthews interviews John Cena backstage. Cena addresses the threat of the NXT rookies and is ready for them if they show up. Matthews asks Cena if he’s worried because both of the earlier fatal 4-way matches tonight resulted in title changes. Cena says he may not win, but he’s definitely not going to lose.
-Video recap of The Miz winning the United States Championship on Raw when he stole the victory from R-Truth.
United States Championship:
The Miz © vs. R-Truth
Miz has new lyrics for Truth’s theme song, which isn’t as amusing as I hoped it’d be. It doesn’t help that he forgot the lyrics. Truth seems to have Miz’s number in the early going. Miz takes control by attacking the stomach. Truth battles back but gets pushed off the apron. Miz refocuses on the midsection. Truth counters a body scissor but eats a big boot. Truth retaliates with a back suplex to no pop. Miz cuts off the comeback and delivers an overhead suplex. R-Truth slams Miz, but they’ve completely lost the crowd. Truth blocks a superplex and nails a missile drop-kick. Truth counters a suplex with a stunner. Miz comes back with the Skull Crushing Finale, but can’t get 3. Scissor kick in the corner by Truth, but Miz gets the ropes. Truth blocks another superplex but his flying cross body misses. Truth tries to get a quick cover, but Miz counters for the win at 13:13. Despite some neat tricks, this match did not click. They lost the crowd early and they just couldn’t win them back, *½. Winner and still United States Champion: The Miz
-Todd Grisham interviews Edge backstage. Edge talks about how Cena has had to watch the other champions lose their titles, Randy Orton hasn’t fully recovered from his recent injury, and Sheamus deep down knows that he doesn’t belong in the ring with three men who together have main evented numerous Wrestlemanias. The only thing going through Edge’s head is that he will become WWE Champion.
Tyson Kidd, David Hart Smith, and Natalya vs. Jimmy Uso, Jey Uso, and Tamina
Natayla squares off with Tamina. Natalya gets the upper hand so Tamina tags in Jey. Smith tags and goes to work on the arm. Belly to belly suplex by Smith. Jey gets caught in a tree of woe and eats a drop-kick from Kidd. Jimmy Uso tags himself in and goes to work on Kidd. Jimmy goes for a suicide dive but Kidd kicks the face. Kidd jumps off the apron but Jimmy counters with a Samoan drop into the barricade! Kidd is now the established face in peril. Kidd makes the hot tag to Natalya, forcing Tamina into the match. David Hart Smith saves Natalya from an Uso attack. Kidd springboards to the floor on both Usos! Natalya misses the Hart punch and eats a Samoan drop. Tamina goes high risk but misses the splash! Natalya connects with the punch and gets the victory at 9:26. This was pretty good for a popcorn match, **½.
Winners: The Hart Dynasty
John Cena © vs. Randy Orton vs. Sheamus vs. Edge
Orton goes after Edge, Cena attacks Sheamus. Orton and Cena find themselves alone to stare at each other. Sheamus and Edge return in time to cut their fight short. A dueling chant breaks out as Sheamus and Edge double team Cena. Orton trips Edge on the top rope. Sheamus attempts a power bomb. Edge’s flying cross body misses Orton but hits Sheamus. Orton clears the ring in time for Cena to return. Sheamus and battles Cena. Edge misses a spear but Orton DDTs Sheamus and Cena off the rope. All four men take turns cleaning house. There are several near falls along the way, though it’s worth noting that Sheamus is consistently on offense and Edge is surprisingly taking a lot of the abuse. Things are picking up when we see some Raw superstars watching the match. The NXT rookies jump them and destroy the area. The commentators get nervous and Cena stops to brace himself. The NXT crew storms to the ring and attacks Cena. Edge attacks and the NXT boys turn their attention to him. In the chaos, Sheamus sneaks in and pins Cena at 17:21! Solid main event here, though nothing truly memorable, ***.
Winner and new WWE Champion: Sheamus
-The NXT rookies aren’t finished with Cena and proceed to make him suffer their finishing maneuvers. Sheamus is celebrating on the stage but gets chased out by NXT. Orton, Edge, and Cena are all down and out. The crowd chants “Daniel Bryan” as the show goes off the air.
Final Thoughts: This was a surprisingly decent pay-per-view. Jericho/Bourne is worth seeing, as Bourne gets put over big time and Jericho gets to relive his cruiserweight glory. Otherwise, a lot of angles are advanced and the wrestling is consistently good. The only dead spot was a disappointing outing from R-Truth and The Miz. This show also got some criticism for running half an hour short, but honestly this was a case of quality over quantity.