Full Credit: F4WOnline.com
WWE Smackdown- The Early Report
by: Michael C. Grimaldi
The show starts with the tribute picture of Killer Kowalski then we cut to the WWE open
-A video recaps the Vickie/Undertaker feud and finally reminds fans that Vickie stripped the Undertaker of the World Heavyweight Championship and then banished him. It focuses on the promo from wo weeks ago where Vickie tried to apologise and ends with the lights getting turned out while she was locked in her office last week and screaming.
-Smackdown intro (which features THE Brian Kendrick a few times now).
-Jim Ross welcomes us and announces a Lumber Jack match tonight between Triple H and The Great Khali, with the other 4 participants in the WWE Championship Scramble match at Unforgiven as the lumber jacks.
-Triple H makes his way out to the “King of Kings” theme. He says he will be in the first ever Scramble match this Sunday (really? I kind of think by the time his match takes place there will have been at least one scramble match that already took place that night) and it could be his most difficult challenge. HHH says that Joey Styles and the “nerds” at WWE.com have informed him he has an 80% chance of losing and as he is about to deduce how much of a chance he has at winning, Shelton Benjamin interrupts him. Shelton says to win the Scramble it will take luck and talent, and he has the talent. He mentions how he was the one who “dropped” Jeff Hardy, MVP and Triple H last week and shows a video to back that up. Triple H tells him he’s a good cheap-shot artist, but if he wants to drop something, “drop that microphone” and come down to the ring and try him. Shelton seems to accept the challenge but MVP comes out to interrupt. MVP states “the King of Bling is better than the King of Kings” and is better than everyone else in the Scramble. MVP and Benjamin argue about altercations over the past two weeks and HHH gets tired of this. HHH then does his “insider” promo about how he’s the champ and the week before a PPV he comes out to talk about how he will defend the title, then they (Shelton and MVP) come out and HHH insults them and maybe their families until the get angry enough to storm the ring; then HHH will beat them up and throw them out of the ring “on their butts” and tuck their tails between their legs back to the locker room and not be seen for the rest of the night. When Shelton and MVP look confused, Triple H asks them if they still don’t get it; he rolls his eyes and says, “I’ll be champion for the next century.”
People will moan and groan about the insider term usage here and it’s justified. There’s no way to judge if the crowd even got the references because the crowd is “enhanced” so much on taped show, but I’m pretty sure no one cared about it. HHH does this stuff because it gets a rise out of the internet smart marks and on that level, I don’t have an issue with it; but I’m not a fan of when TNA constantly has the Dudley’s using insider terms and I don’t think at this point, where wrestling is, that it helps at all and it certainly doesn’t sell any PPVs.
Back to the “promo.” Shelton and MVP finally look to make a move into the ring but THE Brian Kendrick and Ezekiel run in from the crown and ambush The Game. Eventually it turns into a 4-on-1 until Jeff Hardy comes down to make the save. Hardy clotheslines Kendrick out of the ring then hits a mule kick on MVP before nailing Shelton with the Twist of Fate. Hardy climbs the ropes to hit the Swanton but Big Zeke cuts him off and crotches him. Triple H is back in with a chair and hits Zeke over the back with it and Zeke no sells and is about to stand off against HHH but Kendrick pulls him away and Ross is left to wonder what will happen when all the combustible elements are back out for the Lumber Jack match.
-Justin Roberts introduces R-Truth who comes from the lower bowl section of the arena rapping to his “What’s Up” theme…again, with the canned crowd noise, it’s hard to tell if he was over.
-R-Truth vs. Bam Neely w/ Chavo Guerrero- Match starts out with Truth using a few athletic moves to avoid his larger opponent. Bam gets the upperhand with a few punches from the port side before laying him out with a clothesline. After Bam applies a neck vice, Truth fights his way to his feet and goes back on the offense hitting his running corkscrew forearm. Bam sends Truth ass first into the corner but truth skins the cat in the corner and comes off with a missile dropkick. Bam gets to his feet hunched over and Truth capitalizes with the Axe Kick and gets the 3 count.
Another okay showing from Truth; it will be interesting to see what kind of style he works when put in longer matches. Will he show more overall skill or be more like a babyface in constant peril who fights back with flashy looking athletic spots.
-Tazz informs us that Vickie will not be at the show tonight because the Undertaker will. Tazz and JR also tell us that later on we will see Jeff Hardy against The Brian Kendrick and up next, Shelton Benjamin one-on-one with MVP.
-Well, I guess we won’t be seeing Benjamin/MVP right now, because when we come back from break, Undertaker is in the ring.
-The Undertaker informs us that “anticipation of death is far worse than the death itself” and he’s going to let Vickie decide for herself, because at Unforgiven he is coming for her soul. He wants her to think about what she will feel like when he wraps his hand around her throat and squeezes the life from her and how she will feel when her cold body is placed inside a “coffin” (I didn’t think WWE liked that word) as he sets it ablaze and she smells her burning flesh. Sounds pleasant to me. He says she will descend to the “fiery bowels of Hades” where she can rejoin Edge. He promises her “endless agony and an eternity in hell.” The lights go out, the bell tolls and Taker is gone.
-MVP’s music hits and now we’re going to get the match. MVP looks apprehensive looking over his shoulder for the Undertaker.
-We get another faux titan tron promo from Shelton about being “The Gold Standard.”
-MVP vs. WWE United States Champion Shelton Benjamin- Ross informs us that this is a non-tilte match up…maybe he can tell Michael Cole how to do that on RAW. To start out, Shelton tries some amateur take downs and gets some riding time on MVP before just paintbrushing him in the back of the head. MVP takes umbrage to this and slaps Benjamin across the face and Shelton fires back with a double-leg take down as they start to brawl. Benjamin winds up getting the better of this exchange as well and MVP bails to the outside. Benjamin comes out to get him but is caught by a right hand to the jaw. MVP pitches him back into the ring for a two count and then applies a cravate. MVP nails Shelton with some knees to the head while still in the cravate and then releases the hold and applies a modified camel clutch. With MVP on his back, Shelton shows great leg strength by deadlifting MVP on his shoulders and tosses him off and then pulls MVP down onto his knee for a backbreaker type move. Shelton pounces to the top by MVP has moved, so he gets down but is met by a yakuza kick and gets a 2 count. MVP pulls Shelton up but is shoved back and Shelton surprises him hitting Pay Dirt and gets the pinfall.
-Backstage Maria is getting some final touch ups in make up when Maryse bumps into her. Some piss poor exchanges between the two about clothing and Mayrse saying she’s going to take it easy on Maria so there isn’t a wardrobe malfunction. Wow, that line is only like 6 years old.
-Maryse makes her way to the ring and JR tell us that she has a shot at the Divas Championship against Michelle McCool at Unforgiven. I predict awfulness.
-Maryse vs. Maria- Maria comes out quickly with a spear…sort of and some cat fighting begins. The match was very sloppy early with even the basics like a clothesline looking like crap. Maryse eventually gets the advantage and does a double-leg from behind and a weird roll up Maria’s back to apply the camel clutch to which Tazz says that the Iron Sheik might be jealous and JR says “The Iron Sheik never looked like Maryse…that we know of.” Too many jokes there to pick just one. Maria makes a fiery come back but misses a move off the middle rope and Maryse hits a DDT for the 1, 2, 3. Maryse walks back up the ramp and is met by Michelle McCool. They stare lovingly into each other’s eyes until Maryse flips her hair and walks off. You just got served Michelle…or something like that.
-Jeff Hardy makes his way to the ring and we get a recap of the opening segment’s brawl where Kendrick and Ezekiel jumped HHH and Hardy made the save.
-Jeff Hardy vs. The Brian Kendrick w/ Ezekiel Jackson- Hardy gets the jump on Kendrick and hits some fast paced offense (duh). Hardy goes for his mule kick spot but Kendrick moves out of the way and the follows up on Hardy with a leaping enzugiri. The Brian then catches him with a leg lariat and applies the 3rd camel clutch in 4 matches. Kendrick actually used a few different variations with the arm trapped and without. After not being successful with the submissions, Kendrick wen for a running splash in the corner but Hardy moved. Hardy came back with the tip up dropkick in the corner and got a 2 count. Hardy went for a jawbreaker but was blocked and Kendrick brought Jeff’s face to his knee. Kendrick was looking to follow up but Hardy caught him with a hooking lariat and followed that up with a sit-out gordbuster and then lifted Kendrick up for a powerbomb but just released him over his head for a throw. Hardy was looking for the Twist of Fate but Kendrick was too close to the ropes and pulled himself outside. Hardy hit a dropkick on Kendrick and then a pescado to the outside. As he went to get back in the ring, Ezekiel grabbed Hardy by his pants and pulled him hard straight back into the barricade. Hardy stumbled into the ring where Kendrick hit The Kendrick for the win.
It will be really interesting at the PPV to see Kendrick in a more competitive environment against much bigger guys and what kind of offense he is allowed to use. So far the gimmick is clicking, but it’s a fine line (as he said last week) to have an undersized heel and not have him do too many high spots to prevent him from getting cheered.
-A dude is shown pushing a wheelchair the a limo that is pulling up. Vickie gets out and berates the guy saying she doesn’t need it and tells him to “get these cars out of here.” Apparently she is not familiar with the purpose of a parking garage.
-Ryan Braddock vs. Super Crazy- For whatever reason, this match took place and Crazy won quickly with a moonsault. I had no idea if Braddock stands any chance of getting over other than knowing he’s a pretty good big man who is a decent worker; but jobbing in 90 seconds to Super Crazy? I don’t get it. Also, we haven’t seen Scotty Goldman in a few weeks, and I hope that doesn’t mean they’re not going to give him a shot.
Vladimir Kozlov (with a picture of the Kremlin now on his video screen gimmick) comes out and kicks Crazy out of the ring and says that this is not competition. Great, so now we know Kozlov > Crazy > Braddock. Great job. Kozlov says no more games, he wants a challenge and the Big Show comes out to answer sed challenge. Show tells Kozlov that his demand for more competition not being met is probably just an oversight by the GM; but he wants fight too. Kozlov and Show square off but Vickie comes out and orders Kozlov out of the ring. Vickie then tells Show that he has interfered in her show for the last time and if he doesn’t leave she will fine and suspend him; Show angrily and reluctantly leaves.
Ol’ Chipmunk face says she has a message for the Undertaker. She said she tried to apologise for her sins, but he responded by threatening her life. She is the GM and says she will not be intimidated or scared and will not live in fear of him. She says being sent to hell doesn’t scare her because she has been places in her life that make hell look like a vacation. At Unforgiven, she claims she will get what she wants; The Undertaker will apologise to her.
–Victoria comes out looking none to please. We see a recap of her match against Brie Bella from last week.
-Victoria vs, Brie Bella- Even with the enhancement of the crowd they were dead for this. Victoria controlled early on and mostly throughout over powering Brie. Eventually Brie got tossed to the outside and Victoria went after her but Brie was under the ring. B. Brian Blair came out from the other side of the ring, Victoria charged her but got kicked in the gut, tossed in the ring and school-girled for the pinfall.
-A recap of the past few weeks of the Shawn Michaels/Chris Jericho feud leading to the non-sanctioned match at Unforgiven followed by a run down of the Unforgiven card by Tazz and JR.
-Eve was joined backstage by Triple H and she asked him what his greatest concern was. He said global warming and the economy, but in this case, it’s just another day at the office when you’re the WWE champion. Jeff Hardy came into the scene and Triple H wanted to know if anyone on the show could finish a sentence. Jeff apologised for interrupting his “promo” but wanted to let HHH know that at Unforgiven, he has a big problem, him (Jeff Hardy). Triple H said that Hardy knows a lot about problems and said Hardy has 2 strikes against him…3 strikes, and he’s out of the game.
-Back from commercial the lumber jacks are already out side the ring (Benjamin, Hardy MVP, Kendrick and Ezekiel).
-Triple H vs. The Great Khali (Lumber Jack Match)- Triple H tried to throw hands against Khali but is quickly over powered and Khali takes control. Some typical Khali offense and we fade out.
Back from commercial Khali has the nerve hold applied on The Game. HHH fought out, but every time he tried to get offense on Khali, he would quickly get cut off. Finally, HHH was pitched to the outside and the heel lumberjacks stomped away at him, but Hardy, like an idiot, attacked the other lumberjacks. MVP and Shelton then double teamed Hardy and threw him head and neck first into the wall. Back in the ring, Khali hit the Tree Slam and only got a two count. Triple H finally got on track with a facebuster and a tackle off the middle turnbuckle, but when he backed up near the ropes, MVP pulled him out of the ring. The heel lumber jacks again started to stomp away on him but Jeff Hardy came through the ring and over the tope rope with a tope suicida onto the heels. Kendrick survived the spot and went to take HHH into the steps but was reversed and went over them himself. Back in ring HHH hit a kind of spinebuster on Khali and went for the Pedigree but but backdropped. Khali applied the vice grip and Triple H went down to the mat. HHH got back to his feet but was headbutted after he broke the grip. Khali went for it again but Triple H maneuvered out and hit the Pedigree and got the fall.
Jeff Hardy joined HHH in the ring after the match and HHH nodded in approval to Hardy as he walked away. Hardy wasn’t having it though and spun The Game around and hit the twist of fate and then stood over the champ as JR pondered, “could we be seeing the next WWE Champion?”
Full Credit: F4WOnline.com