May 20, 2011
Corpus Christi, TX
Report by: Mike Tedesco of Wrestleview.com
The following recap is dedicated to the memory of one of my favorite professional wrestlers of all time: “Macho Man” Randy Savage. RIP Macho Man! OHHH YEAAHHH!!!
“Yes, sir, we promised you a great main event…” The WWE video leads us into the show.
The Smackdown video plays and we’re brought into the arena. No fireworks tonight as Josh Mathews, Booker T, and Michael Cole welcome us to the show. Our main event will be Randy Orton taking on Mark Henry in a non-title match.
Christian vs. Sheamus
As Sheamus came to the ring they aired a pre-taped promo. Sheamus said it took Christian seventeen years to win the World Title while it only took him two months. Sheamus says Christian’s star is going down and his is going up.
They lock up and Sheamus powers him to the corner. Christian ducks a right hand and backs up. Christian gets a waist lock so Sheamus elbows him in the face and drops some knees. Sheamus puts him in the corner and continues punching away. Sheamus sends him to the ropes but Christian slides through the legs and punches him. Sheamus charges into a drop-toe-hold into the ropes. Christian catapults over the top rope and uppercuts him. Sheamus is stunned but is able to bring Christian into the ring the hard way. Sheamus hits a running kick to the face for a near fall.
Sheamus hits a body shot before sending him into the ropes for a back elbow. Sheamus chokes him on the ropes before being backed up by the referee. Sheamus charges but Christian pulls the top rope down. Christian charges but Sheamus shoulders him in the midsection. Sheamus goes to suplex him to the outside but Christian blocks it, uppercuts him, slides through the legs, and pulls him off the apron hard. Christian throws him into the ring and goes for a tornado DDT. Sheamus blocks it and shoves him off the top rope! Christian crashes to the outside as we go to commercial!
We come back from the break to see Sheamus send Christian to the ropes. Christian ducks a clothesline but can’t avoid a powerslam for a near fall. Sheamus bends him over the ropes and clubs the chest a la Greg “The Hammer”. Sheamus stands over Christian before dropping a knee for a near fall. Sheamus continues working the back by dropping a knee and pulling back on the neck. Christian fights up and punches out. Christian uppercuts him and counters a powerslam into a reverse DDT for a near fall.
Sheamus charges Christian in the corner but he gets caught with a pendulum kick. Christian hits a top rope cross-body for a near fall. Sheamus elbows him in the stomach and hits a Million Dollar Knee Lift. Christian ducks a short-arm clothesline and hits a springboard sunset flip for a near fall. Sheamus immediately capitalizes with a clothesline and gets momentum back in his favor. Sheamus signals for the end and the crowd isn’t happy. Sheamus goes for the Pale Justice but Christian counters with a back body drop. Christian comes off the second rope with a back elbow. Christian goes for the Kill Switch but Sheamus counters out. Sheamus catches him with an Irish Curse for a near fall.
Sheamus kicks away at Christian and sets him up on the top rope. Christian fights him away and hits a tornado DDT for a near fall. Sheamus fights back and knees him in the face from the apron. Sheamus then catapults into him with a shoulder block for a near fall. Sheamus goes for the Pale Justice but Christian gets out and gets a small package for the win!
Winner by Pinfall: Christian
Match Rating: **
Mark Henry runs to the ring and viciously assaults Christian. Sheamus and Henry double-team Christian. Randy Orton slowly comes out to the stage and watches them as they attack. Orton then makes his way to the ring and punches away at Sheamus. Orton then tosses Mark Henry out of the ring. Orton helps Christian up and they shake hands. Christian doesn’t realize Orton took his sweet time coming out to help him.
Randy Orton will take on Mark Henry later tonight in a non-title match.
They play a video for the WWE Championship “I Quit” Match at Over The Limit. The announcers then run down the card. They just announced that Brie Bella will defend the Diva’s Championship against Kelly Kelly.
Todd Grisham is backstage with The Bella Twins. They show footage of Kharma attacking them. Todd asks why Brie left her sister to be attacked on Raw. Brie said she attacked Kharma first. They argued a bit before agreeing that they both would have left each other. Brie says she’s facing Kelly Kelly on Sunday and has to face the “wench” Natalya. They say they’re on the same page and leave.
Brie Bella w/ Nikki Bella vs. Natalya
Nunzio is the referee. Brie slides out of a powerslam attempt. Natalya takes her down with a headlock and Brie gets out. Natalya ducks a clothesline and grabs her so Brie grabs the ropes. Natalya does a kip up and goes for a Sharpshooter but Brie snaps her off the ropes. Brie takes her down with an arm breaker and applies an arm bar. Natalya gets her up and falls back on her. Natalya slaps her in the face, ducks a clothesline, and hits one of her own. Brie gets kicked in the face and eats a spinning clothesline for a near fall. Natalya hits a delayed vertical suplex and a snapmare. Natalya dropkicks her in the head for a near fall. Brie puts herself through the ropes and the referee backs her up. Brie shoves her into the ring post before hitting an X-Factor for the win.
Winner by Pinfall: Brie Bella
Match Rating: 3/4 *
We’ll hear from Ezekiel Jackson next.
Ezekiel Jackson makes his way to the ring to a positive reception. Jackson says his goal when he first came to Smackdown was to write a new chapter in the Book of Ezekiel. It was supposed to be an epic tale of domination. That’s why he joined The Corre. The first night they came to Smackdown they took over because of him. That same night he slammed a 500-pound giant. That made him think – does he need The Corre or do they need him? That’s why he left but they just wouldn’t let him walk away. He’s taken a beating the last two weeks but they cannot break him. He’s not a man that can be broken. They’ve unleashed a force that will not be stopped. He will not rest or sleep until they’ve all suffered. Wade Barrett will be the first to suffer. It is written in the Book of Ezekiel that the reign of his championship will come to an end. He is the personification of domination.
The Corre comes to the ring (Heath Slater has new tights, thank God) and they surround Jackson in the ring. Teddy Long’s music quickly hits and he comes out to the ring. Long says this is not the way it’s going to go down tonight. If The Corre wants action then he’ll make this a six-man tag team match. The Corre will face Ezekiel Jackson with Big Show and Kane.
Ezekiel Jackson, Big Show & Kane vs. The Corre
Big Show starts the match out against Justin Gabriel. Big Show quickly throws him and punches him in the corner. Big Show head-butts him down and chops him in the corner. Kane is tagged in and he hits Gabriel with an uppercut. Kane takes him down with a back elbow and drops an elbow for a two count. Gabriel kicks him and tags in Slater. Slater runs into a right hand and bounces him in the corner. Kane punches him and catches him catapulting. Slater slides off and tags in a reluctant Wade Barrett. Barrett comes in so Kane tags in Ezekiel Jackson. Barrett kicks him and punches him down to a knee. Barrett goes for a suplex but Jackson blocks it and breaks his grip. Jackson then clotheslines him over the top rope. The rest of The Corre is too scared to get into the ring so they regroup at ringside.
We come back from the break to see Jackson lay out Gabriel with a shoulder block. Big Show is tagged in and he hits a body shot on Gabriel. Big Show hits a hog drop but Slater breaks up the pin. Gabriel kicks away at Big Show and goes into the ropes only to eat a nice crescent kick to the face. Big Show chops him on the chest and tags Jackson in. Jackson clubs him down. Gabriel kicks him in the knee a few times and tags Barrett in. Barrett punches at him but Jackson pushes him away. Slater is tagged in. Slater punches and tries for a whip but Jackson doesn’t budge. Jackson sends him into the ropes and shoulder blocks him.
Kane is tagged in and he comes off the top rope with a lariat. Kane hits him with a sidewalk slam and covers for a near fall. Kane hits a snapmare and goes into the ropes but Barrett pulls the top rope down. Barrett drives Kane into the apron and throws him into the ring for a one count. Slater is tagged in and he drops some elbows and knees before applying a chin lock to Kane. The crowd is hot as Kane fights up and hits a back suplex. Slater tags Barrett in before Kane can make a tag. Barrett punches but has a whip reversed on him. They both hit each other with a big boot but once again Barrett makes a tag to Slater before Kane can make a tag. Slater punches Kane in the corner but he gets pushed away. Kane catches him with a goozle but Slater gets out of it. Slater then runs into an uppercut.
Jackson and Gabriel are tagged in. Jackson clotheslines him down and knocks the rest of The Corre off the apron. Jackson body slams Gabriel four times and goes for a Torture Rack but The Corre runs in. Big Show and Kane clear the ring with Kane hitting Slater with a Chokeslam. Jackson hits a fifth body slam on Gabriel and applies the Torture Rack for the win.
Winners by Submission: Ezekiel Jackson, Big Show & Kane
Match Rating: * 3/4
Christian is backstage with Matt Striker. Striker asks what he thought of Randy Orton’s actions earlier tonight. Christian says he appreciates Randy Orton coming out but he took his sweet time getting out there. They then show a replay of how slow he was. Christian says winning the World Title was the greatest moment of his life and it took him seventeen long years to get it and it took just five days for Randy Orton to take it away from him. Christian says he’s not mad at Randy Orton and he hopes Orton won’t be mad at him when he beats him on Sunday and takes back what is his. Orton says he wanted Christian at 100% and, even though he has a funny way of showing it, regardless of what happened earlier, he will be 100% on Sunday.
The video of the week is Sin Cara’s victory over Daniel Bryan. Of course, the victory came with an unwanted assist from Chavo Guerrero, who Sin Cara shoved after the match to show his anger.
Chavo Guerrero makes his way to the ring. Chavo says last week Sin Cara embarrassed him. The truth is that Chavo brought Sin Cara to Smackdown. He taught Sin Cara everything he knows and he repays him by disrespecting him. The truth is he couldn’t even beat Daniel Bryan without his help. Chavo doesn’t need his help, though. It taught him fifteen minutes to do it last week. It’s going to take him just five minutes to beat Daniel Bryan this week. Five minutes is a lot less time than he’ll need to beat Sin Cara at Over The Limit on Sunday.
Chavo Guerrero vs. Daniel Bryan
They lock up and Chavo quickly takes him down with an arm drag. They circle the ring and lock up again. Chavo pushes him against the ropes and they roll to the corner. Bryan ducks a cheap shot and they back up from one another. They circle the ring again and Bryan gets him in a hammerlock. Chavo elbows out and goes into the ropes to eat a dropkick. Chavo gets frustrated and runs into a drop-toe-hold with 3:40 left. Bryan works the arm and sends him to the corner. Bryan charges into some boots and Chavo gets a one count.
Chavo uppercuts him and hits a nice back suplex with 3:11 left for a near fall. Chavo applies a chin lock and we have less than three minutes left. Chavo applies a Camel Clutch (Sheiky baby!) but Bryan fights out of it. Bryan goes for a sunset flip but Chavo rolls through for a near fall. Bryan turns to a pin of his own for another near fall. Chavo clotheslines him down. Bryan comes back but Chavo knees him with 2:15 left. Bryan back flips over him and hits a running elbow to the face. Bryan starts kicking him hard and lays him out with a nasty kick to the head for a near fall. Chavo shoves him into the corner and goes for the Gory Special but Bryan gets him in a LeBell Lock attempt. Chavo fights to the ropes and gets there with 1:10 left.
Chavo gets out of the ring and looks at the clock. Bryan dropkicks him down and hits a suicide dive. We’ve got 52 seconds left. Bryan throws him into the ring and Chavo sidesteps a missile dropkick for a near fall. 30 seconds remain as Chavo hits the three amigos. I can’t remember the last time he successfully did that. Chavo hits a Frog Splash with 9 seconds left but Bryan kicks out! The time expires and Chavo can’t believe it!
Match Rating: * 1/4
Chavo shoves him shoulder first into the ring post. Sin Cara’s music hits and he runs out to the ring in a new t-shirt. Sin Cara ducks a clothesline and hits a nice hurricanrana that takes Chavo out of the ring.
Randy Orton will take on Mark Henry in the main event.
Cody Rhodes makes his way to the ring with his assistants and Ted DiBiase. Cody tells them to stop gawking and start wearing the bags. The assistants hand out the bags. Cody asks for a bag and orders DiBiase to put it on his head. Cody asks what his name is and DiBiase says (in a Spanish accent) that he is Corpus Christi. Cody says Corpus Christi has wisely taken one of his paper bags. Cody asks what he’s hiding and he says he’s hideous. Cody says Corpus Christi is hideous. Cody asks where he wears the bag. DiBiase says (as Corpus Christi) that everyone is hideous. Cody says he’s sorry he feels that way but he’s only trying to offer some levity to the evening. Cody says the only real reason a man would wear a paper bag in the ring (he stops to tell the crowd to shut up) is because what once was a blooming flower is now a wilted scrub. DiBiase takes the bag off and says to bring out his opponent.
Ted DiBiase w/ Cody Rhodes vs. Trent Barreta
They lock up and DiBiase shoves him to the corner. DiBiase kicks and punches away at him. Barreta comes back with some punches but DiBiase lays him out with a clothesline for a near fall. DiBiase punches him down but soon gets kneed in the face. Barreta hits Whisper in the Wind for a near fall. Barreta hits an enzuigiri and goes for a tornado DDT but DiBiase lays him out with a spinebuster. DiBiase hits Dream Street for the win.
Winner by Pinfall: Ted DiBiase
Match Rating: 1/4 *
Cody Rhodes gets in the ring and has DiBiase put a paper bag over Barreta’s face.
Matt Striker is outsider Randy Orton’s locker room and says we’ll hear from him immediately following the next match.
JOBBER ALERT: Jey Uso is in the ring with no TV entrance.
Jey Uso w/ Jimmy Uso vs. The Great Khali
They show a replay of Jinder Mahal slapping Khali in the head twice. Khali slowly approaches Jey. Jey kicks and runs before clubbing him. Khali catches him and shoves him to the corner. Khali hits a back elbow and dances a bit. Jey dropkicks him into the corner as he dances.
Jinder Mahal comes to the ring talking in Hindi on the microphone. Khali gets out of the ring and Jinder approaches him. Jinder slaps him hard in the face and Khali gets in the ring. Khali hits Jey with a Brain Chop and hits the Punjabi Plunge for the win.
Winner by Pinfall: The Great Khali
Match Rating: N/A
After the match Khali grabs Jimmy Uso and hits a Brain Chop on him as well. Jinder Mahal looks pleased as he starts walking to the back. Interesting to note that Ranjin Singh was not ringside tonight.
Matt Striker asks Randy Orton on his thoughts on Over The Limit. Orton says he has to face the World’s Strongest Man who is extremely dangerous. Orton says Christian is lying when he says he’s 100%. 99% is enough, just not enough to beat him.
Randy Orton vs. Mark Henry
Charles Robinson, my favorite referee of all time, is the official for this bout. They circle the ring and lock up. Henry shoves him to the corner and pushes him hard. Orton kicks and punches at Henry before running into an avalanche. Henry stands on Orton’s chest and clubs him. Henry shoves him out of the ring and follows. Henry clubs him at ringside before shoving him back in. Orton kicks and clubs at Henry before taking him down with a nice dropkick. Henry gets out of the ring to regroup.
We come back from the break to see Orton dropkick Henry off the apron. Orton gets the crowd into it as Henry slowly gets to his feet. Orton puts him back in the ring and walks into a battering ram head-butt. Henry gets to his feet and powerslams Orton. Henry smiles and wipes his sweat on Orton as he picks up a two count. Orton punches back but Henry head-butts him. Henry head-butts him a few more times and Orton is out of it. Henry clubs Orton and wrenches the arm. Henry kicks him in the ribs and clubs before applying a nerve hold. Orton eventually fights up and takes Henry out with a big forearm.
Orton drops some knees and gets the crowd into it again. Orton stomps at all the limbs before stomping the face. Orton stalks Henry and sets up for an RKO. Henry sees it and quickly gets out of the ring. Orton catches him with a draping DDT attempt and Sheamus takes him out.
Winner by Disqualification: Randy Orton
Match Rating: * 1/2
Sheamus drops a bunch of knees and double-teams Orton with Henry. Christian slowly makes his way out to the stage and observes for a good while before finally running to the ring to help. Christian helps clear the ring of Henry and Sheamus. Orton yells at Christian because it took too long for him to come down. Christian pretty much says that’s what Orton did to him.
Orton looks upset and Sheamus takes Christian down. Henry attacks Orton as well. Christian back body drops Sheamus out of the ring and kicks Henry as he’s gorilla-pressing Orton. Orton hits an RKO and does, perhaps, the most insane celebration I’ve ever seen him do. Christian and Orton shake hands to end the show.
Quick Match Results
Christian def. Sheamus
Brie Bella def. Natalya (non-title)
Ezekiel Jackson, Big Show & Kane def. The Corre via Submission
5-Minute Challenge: Chavo Guerrero NC Daniel Bryan
Ted DiBiase def. Trent Barreta
The Great Khali def. Jey Uso
Randy Orton def. Mark Henry (non-title)
Bump of the Night: Sheamus shoving Christian off the top rope!
Match of the Night: Christian vs. Sheamus **
This was a fairly decent episode of Friday Night Smackdown. We opened up with a really nice match between Sheamus and Christian. Both guys are pretty snug workers and they put together a nice, physical match. It got a little slow in the middle with some standing around by Sheamus but it was still good. There was some fun stuff that happened after the match where it took Randy Orton a few seconds before running down to help. They’re playing up on the “respect” angle so that was fine. It at least added a little intrigue. I’m still hoping for a bigger angle at some point.
The Bella Twins cut a poorly delivered promo before a poorly put together match. I’m sorry but there are just no more words I can use to describe the horror that is the Diva’s division. They couldn’t even have Kharma come out tonight to save this. I hope they do a good job with Kharma (not that they aren’t right now) but who is she actually going to work with? There’s like two decent workers in that division.
Ezekiel Jackson cut a promo before his match that I didn’t particularly care for. There was nothing wrong with it content wise. To me it’s just the fact that they turned him face. There’s no question that Smackdown is in dire need of faces but I don’t think Ezekiel Jackson is the answer. I don’t find him to be overly entertaining and he’s very limited in what he can actually do. The six-man tag that Teddy Long made was fairly decent as far as multi-man tags go but it was striking how much I could care less about Jackson and Barrett going head to head this Sunday. They did such a poor job with The Corre that I don’t care about their self-implosion. For that matter the crowd went silent when they locked horns, too.
There was nothing wrong with the Chavo Guerrero/Daniel Bryan match. I’m actually looking forward to Chavo vs. Sin Cara at the PPV. Chavo can work and he’ll have a really nice match with Sin Cara.
Cody Rhodes came out with his assistants and Ted DiBiase and proceeded cut the same promo we’ve been hearing for months now. This time he used DiBiase for a little more cheap heat. I’ve been on the Cody Rhodes bandwagon for a while but I’m scared that he peaked during the Rey Mysterio angle (his only angle) and now he feels lost. The promos are all the same and it’s getting very banal. Hopefully something good comes out of this for DiBiase. They definitely made it a point to talk about how his career has been stalled for a while.
The Great Khali squashed Jey Uso (and his brother for that matter). Jinder Mahal is still peaking my interest but I know this just means Khali is turning heel again. Hopefully they’ll put them in the tag division (they do seem to be forming some new tag teams) and not put Khali in the main event scene.
Randy Orton had a pretty good match against Mark Henry. Henry has been opening my eyes up a bit with his quality of work since coming to Smackdown. He looks really good. He’s moving well and seems almost agile. I’m happy for him. He’s been working for years and been clicking on and off for a while. Hopefully he stays injury free and does some good stuff.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that, um, dance Randy Orton did at the end of the match. Orton did a full jumping split and pumped his fists a bunch of times in one of the most insane celebrations I’ve ever seen him do. Hell, it may be one of the strangest I’ve ever seen. If you get a chance you should find the video. You’ll get a good chuckle out of it.
Final Rating: ** 1/2
34-year-old currently living in Syracuse, New York. Long-time fan of the New York Mets, Chicago Bulls, and Minnesota Vikings. An avid fan of professional wrestling and write reviews/articles on the product. Usually focusing on old-school wrestling.