Date: April 29, 2011
Location: Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, North Carolina
Commentators: Michael Cole, Booker T, Josh Matthews
It’s the final night with the Smackdown roster as it had been for months. It’s also the final night before Extreme Rules where we’re guaranteed a new World Heavyweight Champion in the form of Christian or Del Rio. Orton is here tonight I’m assuming and it’s Rey’s last night here. This should be good as there will be a lot of farewell matches. Let’s get to it.
Naturally we open up with a recap of the Draft and Cena going from Friday to Monday, which really isn’t as big a deal as it’s being made out to be. Of course Orton would wind up being the superstar brought in to replace Edge. Also Smackdown lost Del Rio and Mysterio so they didn’t do perfectly. Still though, Smackdown won on Monday. In the supplemental….that’s up for debate I guess.
Do you know your enemy? Mine would be IWC idiots that still say WWE is dying when it got 1 million buys for Wrestlemania which everyone said was impossible. WWE is dying my foot.
The World Heavyweight Championship is above the ring again.
Kane/Show vs. Corre for the titles and Henry vs. Mysterio tonight.
Here’s Orton in the Smackdown shirt to open the show. He introduces himself to the crowd, because no one here has ever watched Raw right? Orton talks about how he’s looking forward to the challenges that await him but this Sunday he has some unfinished business. It’s good that they’re not messing with the PPV matches at least. Orton gets interrupted by….Drew McIntyre?
Drew says he’s moving up to Raw and the WWE Universe has to wait a bit longer on Orton vs. McIntyre. Clearly a match the world is waiting for. Drew tries to jump him with the Futureshock but walks into an RKO. Orton tries to keep talking and here’s Alex Riley with generic rock theme #857, not to be confused with generic rock theme #856. He doesn’t even get a word out before he gets taken down by an RKO.
He tries to talk again and this time it’s Del Rio to interrupt him. Alberto is smart enough to talk on his way to the ring. Orton apparently knows how to make a first impression but Alberto knows how to make a lasting one. The three guys in Alberto’s crew surround Orton until Christian runs out to even the odds a bit. Teddy comes out to make the tag team main event. Clay gets knocked down and Orton and Christian stand tall.
Kofi is on his way to the ring for a match but Sheamus jumps him. Apparently this is the match. I can’t wait for Monday when those stupid shirts go away. Total assault before the match starts (I think) with Kofi getting sent into the railing and steps. That’s one thing I like about Sheamus: he isn’t a coward. He’ll go straight at you and can be a monster fighter when he wants to be.
Into the ring now as I guess the match has officially started when Sheamus jumped him. We’ll go with that for lack of anything official. Into the ring and there’s the Brogue Kick and Sheamus holds up the belt and leaves. I’m assuming this wasn’t an official match. I’d bet on a match between them at the PPV to put a midcard title on Raw.
Here’s Cole to introduce Jack Swagger. Cole implies JR is a pig.
Jack Swagger vs. Sin Cara
Cara NAILS the entrance. I can’t believe I’ve read people complaining about how stupid the trampoline is. Yes, of course he uses one. It looks awesome too but hey, I guess since they think it’s stupid, it must be stupid. Who cares that it looks cool or pops the crowd right? Booker says he’s noticed Sin Cara can fly. You can’t buy analysis like this people!!!
Swagger takes him to the mat easily and hammers away. What looks like a powerslam is reversed and Cara fires off some kicks and an INSANE armdrag off the top. The lighting is kind of a blue haze here. It’s almost like Kane’s back in the day although not red and nowhere near as dark. Cara is sent into the corner chest first but the Vader Bomb is blocked with knees.
More kicks follow and a Tajiri handspring elbow. Headscissors puts Swagger down but Cara walks into a big boot after a missed springboard move. Cole slips Swagger a leather belt and Cara grabs a victory roll to get the pin at 3:17. I’m hoping that’s a sign of how they have tension between Swagger and Cole for the tag match Sunday.
Rating: C+. This was easily Cara’s best match so far in the company. He kept things a bit slower paced and the result was far fewer botches, far fewer times where he looked shaky and a more interesting match. He had enough high spots to pop the crowd too and the whole thing worked. Fun stuff.
Swagger goes after him again post match but is sent to the floor where Cara hits a big plancha to take Jack down.
Kharma ad. That face is terrifying.
Tag Titles: Heath Slater/Justin Gabriel vs. Big Show/Kane
I still don’t get the point in having Show go to Raw when the champions can be on both shows. Show vs. Slater to start us off. The punch is now known as the WMD. Slater and Gabriel use some nice teamwork and a missile dropkick to put Show down. That gets one as Show launches Gabriel to the floor as we take a break.
Back with Slater getting two on Show. Gabriel pops in and manages to counter the chokeslam with a DDT for two as well. Sleeper/choke by Gabriel gets him nowhere on Show of course. A sideslam allows the hot tag to the Big Fried Freak (who isn’t as fried as you would expect). Another sideslam, this one from Kane, gets two. Top rope clothesline sets up the chokeslam as the crowd is DEAD. Gabriel saves for a bit but the double chokeslam ends them as Kane pins Slater at 3:40 shown of 7:10 total.
Rating: D+. Just a step above a squash here as there was nothing going on at all. Corre needs to advance on to splitting or whatever else they’re going to do. Not much going on here but at least it’s done now. I was thinking they would shift the belts back now but apparently the giants get to keep them for awhile. Works for me.
Khali and Singh say good luck on Raw to Rey. An Indian man comes up whose name is apparently Jinder Mahal and he’s from FCW. They treat him like a big deal and that’s about it.
Here’s Rey to say goodbye to Smackdown. He thanks the fans for everything, including their world title win last week. The journey isn’t done yet as this Sunday they have a match with Cody Rhodes. Everyone will be part of the 619. Is he going to buy them all houses in San Diego?
Rey Mysterio vs. Mark Henry
Mark is freshly heel for no apparent reason other than we needed a midcard heel monster on Fridays. Henry says Rey’s farewell is his debut which is unfortunate. Rey goes straight at him as Cole makes fun of Rey’s nicknames. Henry sends him to the floor and Rey stalls for a bit. Back in and Rey tries to speed things up. This goes about as well as Goldberg as a heel in WCW as Henry steps on him a lot.
Henry throws him to the floor as this is a very slow moving match. Rey goes into the steps but moves to send Henry knee first into them as we thankfully take a break. Back with them in the ring and Rey hitting a seated dropkick. This is rather boring to say the least. Henry knocks him off the top and splashes him in the corner. About ¾ of this match has been Henry running into Rey in some form or another.
We continue to go so slowly that I think I have horrible lag. Henry tries a drop onto the chest but Rey manages to move. I’m not sure what caused Rey to move but it was either Mark screaming or standing there for ten seconds. Little from column A, little from column B I guess. Rey fires back and hits the 619. He sets for the seated senton but Cody runs in for the DQ at 5:30 shown of 9:00.
Rating: D. This was terribly boring. I mean they had nearly ten minutes and it felt like about 40. Henry isn’t interesting in the slightest as he fights like a 1980s monster heel. That sounds good in theory, but when did Bundy or Gang EVER go more than 5 minutes without it sucking? The answer would be when Hogan was there and Rey is no Hogan as far as fighting monsters. At least it’s over.
Cody beats Rey up in the crowd for a bit and throws him in to Henry for the World’s Strongest Slam. Rey gets the paper bag treatment also.
Michelle McCool vs. Layla
Layla can make a Smackdown t-shirt look good. That’s impressive. They come out to the same music which is pretty rare. Doesn’t mean anything but it’s rare. Layla goes straight at her and Michelle shoves her off with ease. Total catfight and they brawl to the floor. The fight continues and it’s a double countout at 57 seconds. Intense if nothing else.
Layla grabs the mic and challenges Michelle to a no DQ and no countout (street fight) match at Extreme Rules. Michelle says Layla is nothing without her so it’s on. Michelle insists on loser leaves (overdubbed) WWE.
Video on the European tour. Hard to argue with those as apparently they’re almost pure profit. Edge was there too.
Christian says he hears Alberto talking about destiny all the time. He talks about Alberto injuring him and how it gave him time to reflect. Christian talks about how this was Edge’s spot but now he’s in it. He wants to know if this is his time or if he got lucky. It’s his destiny and he’s going to not only touch the title Sunday but earn the right to keep it. Good promo.
We run down the card for Sunday.
Brodus Clay/Alberto Del Rio vs. Christian/Randy Orton
Entrances take forever of course. Can’t tell if it’s a BMW or a Ferrari tonight. Ferrari apparently which looks awesome. Christian vs. Del Rio to start us off. And never mind as here’s Brodus about 4 seconds in. Standard monster vs. regular sized guy at the moment as we talk about Christian needing a win to validate his career which is a kind of interesting debate.
Off to Alberto as we talk about what his moving to Raw means for Clay. Clay could be a solid midcard monster if pushed right. Let the psychology begin as Alberto works on the arm of Christian. Off to Orton who stares a lot. Knee drop gets two but Del Rio gets a Codebreaker to the arm and it’s off to Clay as we take a break. Back with more tagging by the heels and Alberto throwing on a chinlock.
Christian comes in as does Clay. The Canadian speeds things up and takes the fight to Clay, but Del Rio cheats (that villain!) and Clay gets a t-bone suplex for two. More standard beating by both heels kills some time. Christian sends Del Rio to the floor but can’t make the tag. Brodus works on the back and brings in Alberto for a backsplash off the top for two. Christian takes him down eventually and it’s hot tag to Orton. Orton fires off his standard moveset on Del Rio as I’m begging ANYTHING interesting to happen. RKO doesn’t hit Del Rio but Clay walks into it for the pin at 11:42 shown of 15:12.
Rating: D+. WOW this was boring. From a wrestling standpoint it was fine but there was nothing to this at all that was going to make this interesting. It was very paint by numbers for a main event tag match. This felt like something you would see at a house show which really isn’t what I wanted to see here. Not a terrible match but really boring overall for the most part.
Overall Rating: D+. I really wasn’t that impressed with this show. They tried but I really wasn’t all that pleased. The stuff they did was all about the new people on Smackdown and the old guys leaving which is ok but that doesn’t mean it’s an interesting match. They kind of built to Extreme Rules but the new World Heavyweight Champion candidates were totally on the back burner tonight to Orton, which really doesn’t make me feel strong about the next title reign. Weak show.
Sin Cara b. Jack Swagger – Victory Roll
Big Show/Kane b. Justin Gabriel/Heath Slater – Chokeslam to Slater
Rey Mysterio b. Mark Henry via DQ when Cody Rhodes interfered
Layla vs. Michelle McCool went to a double countout
Randy Orton/Christian b. Alberto Del Rio/Brodus Clay