Friday, April 6, 2012

4/6/12 Smackdown

Mark Henry & David Otunga vs. R-Truth: 1/2*

Randy Orton vs. Kane (No DQ): ***1/4

Ryback vs. Barry Stevens: N/A (squash)

Big Show vs. Heath Slater: 1/4*

Nikki Bella vs. Beth Phoenix: DUD

Sheamus vs. Alberto Del Rio: *3/4

We're in Orlando for Smackdown. I hope the Orlando fans are just as awesome as the Miami fans. Heck, the "YES YES YES" chants even broke out at a Miami Heat game!

Otunga introduces Laurinaitis as the new Smackdown GM. Such noble music playing for Johnny! I actually like it. Johnny calls out Teddy. Nice "farewell speech" from Long. Even better that Long told Johnny to go to hell. Nice low blow of sorts from Johnny to bring up Teddy's grandkids' college fund and to get good heel heat.

Handicap match with Henry and Otunga vs. R-Truth. Good job from Johnny to bring up the handicap match stipulation. At least Otunga and Henry must tag in and out. Abraham Washington is now "AW" for TV purposes. Henry does the damage, Otunga picks up the scraps and poses. Makes sense. Henry getting Otunga's attention while David posed made me laugh a bit.

Wow, Kane pyros go off out of nowhere! Kane and Orton already? Nice. I like back-to-back matches. WM rematch here, no DQ. Brawling on the stage. Fighting near the edge ends in a Kane DDT to Orton. Loved the physicality here. Fairly lengthy TV match as well. Kane rips the pad off the turnbuckle. It's raining chairs in the ring! Four, to be exact. Kane brings a fifth in, but Orton uses that one to fight back. Hangman's DDT on the chair! Very nice. Kane with several chair shots gets two. Orton pushes Kane into the exposed turnbuckle, and RKO gets three. Very nice. Each with a victory over the other now. Rubber match at Extreme Rules?

Some jobber (Barry Stevens) cuts a nervous heel promo as people in the back are doing their "who the hell is this guy?!" act. Yeah, they'll love this coming up. And they all break character to do so.

OOPS! It's the returning Skip Sheffield! Oh, I mean Ryback! They mention he was from NXT season 1 (as Skip), and an injury sidelined him (at a Honolulu house show in summer 2010). They don't even bring up the Skip Sheffield name. Glad they finally used the Ryback gimmick. It's not a Terminator spoof anymore, but it should be fine to get him a push. Good power finisher. Starts as a fisherman's suplex, into a fireman's carry, into a Samoan drop-like move.

Daniel Bryan promo with AJ. Crowd still going "YES YES YES" for DB, although it's muted a bunch. Thanks a lot, WWE. AJ grabs the mic and compliments DB -- and gets booed. Ha! Well, until she starts encouraging the "YES!" chants. There we go. Much better. Let the chants go!

But alas, seems they are keeping DB as a heel for now. To DB, it's all mocking. DB blames AJ for his title loss. Makes perfect sense. VINTAGE DB explosion! DB as a heel was the best move WWE made for Bryan Danielson. Look at those mic skills. Outstanding.

Amazing how some people in the crowd were still doing the "na na na hey goodbye" to AJ, backing Daniel. WWE seriously needs to book more shows in Florida.

Cody on commentary while Show nukes Slater. Show recognized as one of the few guys to hold all the active titles in WWE. One more time, Cody shown getting KTFO by Show. Whoa, a huge pounce-like move by Show! Show chokeslam gets the win. Squash.

Punk and Jericho segment from RAW. Good storyline here, fellas.

Brie loves Johnny's the new GM, much to Nikki's chagrin. Nikki's facing Beth Phoenix while Brie has the night off. Oops. Kelly Kelly comes out to watch. Vintage Kelly-ference leads to a Bella win.

Sheamus has really embraced his role as a lovable character. I just may like the increased tension between him and Johnny.

A video tribute to Chief Jay Strongbow, who passed away earlier in the week. Never got to see him perform, but may he rest in peace.

We see Damien Sandow's first vignette. He cuts a heel promo, seemingly with a scholarly, philosopher, and preaching gimmick.

(NOTE: Damien Sandow had a previous run in WWE as Idol Stevens, one of Michelle McCool's "Teachers Pets" from several years ago)

Finally, Cole and I agree on something. Miami crowd was incredible.

"Three Stooges" are guest stars next week. Yup, there's apparently a movie coming out soon. I loved the original Three Stooges. Can never replace them.

Alberto and Sheamus in the main event. First TV match for Alberto in a long time. Pretty typical match here. Nice counter into an Irish Curse backbreaker near the end of the match. ADR with the classic Eddie Guerrero lie, cheat, and steal method of winning. You know, the ol' bring the chair in the ring, see the ref is turning around, fake getting hit with a chair, and get opponent DQ'd.

ROFL at Ricardo grabbing the mic from Lilian and going "ALBERTO DEL RIO!" over and over.

OH, Brogue Kick to the ref! Yup, that'll cost Sheamus some money. I guess Laurinaitis will have more to talk about next week!

I'll be out of town for a few days starting next Friday. Ratings and reviews on those shows (which will include the TNA Lockdown PPV) will be delayed.

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