WWE SmackDown! Report
By Steve Khan
Air Date: February 24, 2005
Taped from the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Big News: Theodore Long will remain as the Smackdown General Manager.
Turns/Title Changes: Chavo didn’t turn heel, but he’s playing
Best Match: Eddie & Rey vs. Bashams
Worst Match: Chavo vs. Funaki
Line of the Night: None.
BSP: I was one of many people who were very critical of the company for
taking the title off of Eddie Guerrero months ago. We learned one reason why
the title was taken off of Guerrero, so I guess that gives me my answer.
That still doesn’t excuse them for putting the title on Bradshaw at
the time, and the handling of Guerrero since.
Show Details: A purposely cheesy JBL video started the show from the
friends and supporters of JBL. It mentioned that JBL is the longest reigning
WWE Champion in nearly ten years. The video ended by inviting all the fans
to a JBL Celebration for tonight. I can almost feel the ratings drop. A
recap of the Batista/HHH angle from RAW followed. Tazz said tonight could be
one of the biggest Smackdowns ever, after announcing an Undertaker versus
Jindrak/Reigns match for tonight.
Eddie Guerrero & Rey Mysterio vs. Basham Brothers
In a lackluster attempt to give these guys some character, the Bashams were
wearing some sort of black coats which totally clashed with their bronze
tights. Strong “Eddie” chants broke out twice in the opening
part of the match. The Bashams double teamed Eddie and Doug hit a spine
buster jumping off the middle rope. Mysterio broke up the count. After the
commercial break, Eddie came back with a swinging neck breaker. Guerrero
tried to tag Mysterio, but he was no where to be found. They decided to show
that, during the break, Danny Basham attacked Rey and threw him into the
steal steps. As Eddie’s back was turned while looking for Rey, the
crowd screamed for Eddie’s attention as Doug Basham attacked him from
behind. Guerrero had another chance to tag Rey, but Mysterio was still out.
Doug Basham applied a single leg Boston crab on Guerrero. Eddie crawled to
his corner and almost tagged Rey, but Doug let go and knocked Rey off the
apron. Guerrero made his comeback and nailed a dropkick to Doug before
tagging in Mysterio. Mysterio hit a sitting senton and both Rey and Eddie
nailed ten punches in the corner. Mysterio and Doug were the legal men left
in the ring. Mysterio was selling the injuries from being attacked earlier.
Rey hit a spring board moonsault but couldn’t capitalize so Doug hit a
face plant. Guerrero knocked Danny back to the outside of the ring and
nailed the three verticals on Doug. Eddie dropped him on the second rope for
Rey to do the 619, but Danny pulled Doug out of harms way, and Mysterio
knocked Eddie out of the ring. The Bashams combined for a powerslam and
headbutt in the ring, but Guerrero broke up the near fall. Mysterio was able
to hit the 619 and Eddie followed with a Frog Splash. Rey made the cover for
the win. Good match. It almost seemed like the Bashams were going to win.
They showed still photos from the Cena/Angle match at No Way Out. They
pushed Cena’s comeback from the Ankle Lock. They also plugged Cena
versus JBL at Mania. I like the match graphic they’re using for Mania.
Orlando Jordan approached the Smackdown women and invited them to the
Celebration tonight. I rag on Torrie Wilson a lot, and I will continue to,
but these other faceless women are much worse. Dawn Marie was no where to be
found in this segment. I guess that’s a good thing, because she has
definitely separated herself from the rest of the pack.
Kurt Angle vs. Matt Martel
Angle came out and snatched the microphone away from Tony Chimmel in the
middle of his introduction. Kurt told the crowd he wasn’t in the mood
to hear the “You Suck” chants, and called out the homeboy. Matt
Martel came out and asked what it felt like to lose a number one
contender’s match to John Cena. Kurt snapped. Angle nailed a suplex
but pulled Martel up before the three count. “You suck” chants
broke out in the middle of the match. Angle nailed a German suplex and
pulled Martel up again before the three count. Kurt nailed the Angle Slam
but again pulled Martel’s shoulders off the mat. Angle finally applied
the Ankle Lock for the win. Tazz went in the ring and asked Angle what he
felt about the challenge from Shawn Michaels on RAW. The crowd started
chanting for HBK. Angle grabbed the mic but dropped it before saying a word
and left. The crowd booed him hard.
Heidenreich was backstage writing a poem. Josh Matthews asked him why he
used a steel chair on Booker T. Heidenreich explained why in a poem. This
wasn’t really poetry. It actually sounded more like one of
Cena’s raps. They showed still photos from the title match at No Way
Out plus photos of Batista and John Cena getting involved at the end. JBL
was shown backstage and received no heat. JBL was in immense of pain.
Orlando Jordan tried to postpone the celebration because of JBL’s
condition, but Bradshaw wanted to go through with it because it sends home
his name for the Hall of Fame. That got a good laugh out of me.
The JBL Celebration got under way. They pulled out all the stops for this.
Everything from the stage through the aisle and to the ring was dressed up.
The ropes were draped in white, and there were longhorns on the top rope.
There were cowboy hat ice sculptures too. The Cabinet was in the ring.
Orlando Jordan introduced JBL as the greatest WWE Champion of all time. Cole
said JBL didn’t earn his win on Sunday because he crawled out of the
ring. Of all the times Bradshaw retained the title, this win was the most
clean, I guess. Orlando Jordan said Philly lacked class and champions. An
opera singer paid tribute to JBL. I couldn’t understand what she was
singing. “Cena” chants broke out. They unveiled a painting of
JBL, which was actually pretty good. The most heat came in this segment came
when OJ said politely to the crowd, Now, would you all please be
quiet. JBL said none of Philly’s sports teams are champions.
Didn’t Jordan just say that? JBL went on a longwinded promo. Big Show
interrupted the speech and destroyed everyone in sight. He went after JBL
but was attacked by the Cabinet. Cena’s music hit and the crowd
irrupted. Cena cleaned house and smashed the painting over Bradshaw’s
head. Teddy Long came out and made JBL/OJ versus Show/Cena.
Chavo Guerrero vs. Funaki – Cruiserweight Championship
Guerrero attacked Funaki as soon as he entered the ring, and played to the
crowd as a heel. Chavo applied a top wrist lock followed by a hammerlock.
Funaki reversed and tried to fire up the crowd, but that was about to happen
in this match. Funaki nailed a bulldog for a two count. Funaki held Chavo
backwards and drove Guerrero back first into the turnbuckle. Chavo flipped
over using the ropes and hit the Gory Bomb for the win. Paul London, wearing
his new outfit, attacked Chavo after the match. London looks stupid. Cole
said the Cruiserweight division was heating up. Not likely.
Reigns & Jindrak vs. Undertaker – Double Jeopardy Match
They called this a Double Jeopardy match to make it seem slightly more
intriguing than the ever exciting handicap match. Luther refused to tag in.
Jindrak nailed a power slam, but Taker countered the cover into a triangle
choke and Jindrak tapped out. Luther blamed Jindrak for the loss. Reigns
paced around the ring before coming back and pushing Jindrak to the mat.
Jindrak punched Luther and they brawled from there. Officials came out to
break up the fight.
Teddy Long cane to the ring and said tonight might be his final night as GM.
The crowd wasn’t happy about that. Carlito entered saying he’s
been waiting for this day for a long time. Linda McMahon appeared on the
screen and said Long has been retained as Smackdown GM. She told Carlito to
stop calling. Long celebrated. The crowd was into Long huge, and started a
“Teddy” chant. Theodore Long made sure Carlito knew who was boss
and said Carlito’s life being a living hell has only just begun. As
simple as this segment was, I found it very entertaining. However, I’m
not sure what the whole point of this angle was, other than an eventual
punishment to be given to Carlito.
John Cena & Big Show vs. JBL & Orlando Jordan
This match started during the commercial break. Big Show was picking apart
Orlando Jordan. Show threw Jordan into JBL’s corner and told Bradshaw
to tag in Jordan. JBL wouldn’t bite. Cena tagged in to a good pop.
Cena was in control but JBL tripped him to the outside, and threw Cena into
the steel steps. Big Show stalked JBL, but couldn’t catch up to the
limber champion. Jordan smacked Cena into the steel steps and tagged in JBL.
Cena gave one right hand to the ribs of JBL and Bradshaw ran to make the tag
to OJ. JBL and OJ double teamed Cena illegally, so Big Show came in
illegally and took control. Show squashed JBL and OJ in the corner, and
nailed Jordan with a flying shoulder block. Cena hit the FU on
Jordan, and followed with his shoulder shuffle punch for the win.
Final Thoughts: Smackdown was so boring. This felt like two of the longest
hours of my life. It feels like there’s very little reason for fans to
even watch Smackdown each week. I don’t receive nearly as many emails
as I used to about Smackdown. It’s not that people are angry with the
product, they just don’t care. Months ago people were angry with the
product. The WWE didn’t have to worry about those fans necessarily,
because the angry fan will still return to the product (unless you
don’t do anything to improve it, which is arguably the case). The fans
the WWE has to worry about are the fans that don’t care, the fans that
didn’t even realize there was a PPV this past Sunday, because those
fans aren’t going to return very easily.
Apathy is worse than anger.
Rey Mysterio & Eddie Guerrero over Basham Brothers
Kurt Angle over Matt Martel
Chavo Guerrero over Funaki
Undertaker over Jindrak & Reigns
John Cena & Big Show over Orlando Jordan & JBL