“Yes, sir, we promised you a great main event…” The WWE video leads us into the show.
They show some highlights from last week’s Number One Contender’s Battle Royal. Mark Henry pretty much dominated the match. It came down to Wade Barrett, Sin Cara, Sheamus, and Mark Henry. Henry easily eliminated Sin Cara and confronted World Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton at ringside. Henry said he could smell Orton’s fear.
The Smackdown video plays and we’re brought into the arena with some fireworks. Josh Mathews, Booker T, and Michael Cole welcome us to the show. Tonight’s main event will be a Summerslam rematch. Sheamus and Mark Henry will go one-on-one.
Bret “Hitman” Hart’s music hits and his hometown crowd goes absolutely NUTS! Hart greets the Calgary faithful and they erupt. Hart says that due to unforeseen circumstances, Teddy Long isn’t going to be able to make it tonight. COO Triple H thought it would be a good idea to appoint him as the Special Guest General Manager of Smackdown tonight. Another first is going to take place this Tuesday, live, with Super Smackdown. Superstars from Raw will be there also. The best part is the main event. Hart says that the number one contender Mark Henry will take on Randy Orton for the World Heavyweight Championship.
Christian’s music hits and he’s making his first appearance since getting destroyed at Summerslam. Christian says he wants to make one thing very clear to Hart and the entire world. Christian says it wasn’t his fault that he lost at Summerslam. Christian blames one person, and it’s Hart’s friend Edge. Hart sarcastically agrees. Christian says he couldn’t concentrate after the things Edge said to him. He couldn’t concentrate and it cost him the World Heavyweight Championship. Christian gets in the ring and says everyone is excited that Hart is the General Manager of Smackdown tonight. Christian says he’s entitled to an immediate rematch as the former World Heavyweight Champion. Christian says he’s entitled to one more match and he wants it on Tuesday.
Hart says Christian doesn’t listen to his friends. Hart says Edge gave Christian the best advice he could give him at Summerslam. Edge told him to stop being a crybaby because it’s embarrassing. Hart says Christian is starting to become an embarrassment to his friends, family, the WWE Universe, the World Title, and, worst of all, an embarrassment to Canada. Hart asks Christian to do everyone and himself a favor – grow a set of gennies, be a man, start at the bottom and work your way back to the top like a man. Christian says they’ll talk about embarrassment. Embarrassing is guys like Hart and Edge not being able to cope with the fact that when their career is over, it’s really over. Christian says Hart is in his leather jacket and greasy hair like he’s twenty-five years old. Christian tells him to let it go. Christian hopes Edge is listening because he’s the only Canadian that’s relevant anymore.
Christian says he figured Hart had the same business acumen as Teddy Long, so he brought something with him. Christian produces a letter and Hart mentions it has some big words. Christian says it’s a legal document that clearly states that no WWE superstar shall receive a World Heavyweight Championship match before he does first. Hart says he can’t fight the law so he makes the rematch for next week. Hart says the kind of match is the question. What kind of match do you give a guy that has nothing but excuses? Hart says that Christian deserves a Steel Cage Match. On Super Smackdown, it will be Christian taking on Randy Orton for the World Heavyweight Championship in a Steel Cage Match!
Mark Henry’s music hits and he makes his way to the ring. Henry walks up to Hart and says he’s been with the company for fifteen years yet he still has to deal with blatant disrespect. Henry says he earned his title opportunity last week and if he doesn’t get it then somebody is going to get hurt. Hart goes to speak but Henry tells him not to speak until he’s spoken to. Henry says he wants the winner of next week’s cage match. Henry promises that as much as he respects what Hart has done for this business and industry, he can’t be held responsible for what he does when he gets angry. Hart asks if Henry is trying to intimidate him and Henry says he doesn’t have to intimidate anybody.
Sheamus’s music hits and he makes his way to the ring. Sheamus has a story. A long time ago, his uncle had a milk farm somewhere in Ireland. His uncle had a big, mean, ugly, black bull that used to chase all the farm animals away. Sheamus said his uncle had the bull castrated. Sheamus tells him not to make him do that to him. Sheamus gets in the ring and they brawl for a few seconds. Sheamus knocks Henry out of the ring and taunts him. Henry walks off.
Tonight we’ll see Randy Orton take on Ted DiBiase.
Christian vs. Daniel Bryan
Bret Hart set this match up during the commercial break. Before the match begins, they play a Daniel Bryan hype video. They circle the ring and lock up. They tussle around until Christian gets a side headlock applied. They crisscross in the ropes. Christian holds on to the ropes and kicks Bryan. Christian chops him and sends him to the corner. Christian goes for a monkey flip but Bryan lands on his feet. Bryan executes a dragon screw and dropkicks him in the corner. Bryan picks up a near fall. Christian quickly punches him and goes for his over the top rope punch, but Bryan blocks it. Bryan baseball slides him and hits a suicide dive.
Bryan puts him in the ring and applies a beautiful Mexican Surfboard. Bryan tries to get a pin out of it but Christian gets a shoulder up. Bryan sends him to the corner and runs into the boots. Christian stomps away at Bryan and taunts the crowd. Bryan comes back with some kicks. Christian catches him with a pendulum kick and back body drops him over the top rope.
We come back from the break to see Christian hit a snapmare and apply a neck vice. Bryan fights up and elbows out. Bryan goes into the ropes and eats a back elbow for a two count. Christian steps on his face and taunts the crowd. Bryan punches but Christian quickly cuts him off. Christian throws him over the top rope but Bryan lands on the apron. Bryan goes to the top rope, fights Christian off, and hits a nice missile dropkick. Bryan crawls over and picks up a near fall. Bryan punches away at Christian, ducks a clothesline, and hits a running elbow. Bryan kicks away at Christian’s chest. Christian ducks a head kick and tries to catch him napping with a pendulum kick, but Bryan catches it. Bryan kicks him and drops a knee as Christian is hung up in the ropes. Bryan picks up a near fall.
Bryan goes for the LeBell Lock but Christian gets out of it. Christian hits a drop-toe-hold that puts Bryan into the ropes. Christian stands on him before catapulting over the top rope. Christian uppercuts him and hits a diving back elbow. Christian taunts and goes for a Spear but Bryan kicks him in the face. Bryan back flips over him, takes a back elbow, and is able to roll through a sunset flip. Bryan kicks him in the head and picks up a near fall. Bryan puts Christian on the top rope and goes for a hurricanrana, but Christian hangs on. Christian follows up with a tornado DDT for a near fall. Christian can’t believe it. Christian talks some trash to Bryan and goes for the Kill Switch, but Bryan counters into the LeBell Lock! Christian quickly gets his foot on the bottom rope and gets out of it. Bryan goes for a running dropkick but Christian sidesteps him. Christian hits the Kill Switch for the win!
Winner by Pinfall: Christian
Match Rating: * 3/4
Later tonight, we’ll see Randy Orton take on Ted DiBiase. We’ll also see Sheamus take on Mark Henry in a Summerslam Rematch.
Aksana is backstage and they quickly cue up the cheesy saxophone. She invites us to “turn her on” to Super Smackdown live this Tuesday.
Wade Barrett is in the ring with a jobber when we come back from the break. Barrett takes the microphone and says he’s orchestrated attacks on everybody from John Cena to the Chairman of this company to living legends. He’s shaken the WWE to its very foundations on more than one occasion. He takes this as a direct insult to himself personally. He sees it beneath him to have to face a dreg such as the man across the ring from him. Barrett puts the microphone down and leaves the ring. The jobber watches on.
They play the Raw Rebound. It’s so nice to hear JR’s voice featured prominently in this package.
We’ll see Mark Henry take on Sheamus later tonight.
They show footage of Sin Cara running down to the ring to save Daniel Bryan from a post-match assault from Alberto Del Rio.
Sin Cara vs. Heath Slater
Before the match begins, they announce that Alberto Del Rio will go one-on-one with Sin Cara on Super Smackdown this Tuesday! I’ll have live coverage of that show on Tuesday!
Slater quickly attacks Sin Cara and body slams him. Cara avoids a knee drop and hits a nice head-scissor takeover. Cara dropkicks him into the corner and hits a rolling senton. Cara springboards off the top rope with a flying head-butt for a near fall. Slater punches Cara down and sends him to the ropes. Cara holds on and drops Slater to the apron. Cara punches and dropkicks him off. Cara goes to the top rope and hits a beautiful cross-body block. Cara throws him back into the ring and hits a springboard senton. Cara immediately follows up with a springboard moonsault for the win. That was really quick.
Winner by Pinfall: Sin Cara
Match Rating: *
They show a recap of what happened last week when Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase interrupted Randy Orton during a promo. DiBiase got RKO’d and Rhodes backed away. We see Randy Orton walking backstage. He’ll be in action against Ted DiBiase next.
As Randy Orton comes to the ring, they promote Randy Orton’s first title defense next Tuesday against Christian in a Steel Cage Match. That’ll happen live on Super Smackdown. Did I mention I’ll be providing live coverage of that show on Tuesday?
Cody Rhodes comes to the ring with Ted DiBiase. Rhodes says the World Heavyweight Championship means you’re the best in the world at what you do. However, what Orton does is not what he does. What he does is he performs miracles. Rhodes says he’s resurrecting the status of the Intercontinental Championship and resurrecting the career of his dear friend Ted DiBiase. Rhodes says he hopes Orton believes in miracles because he does.
Randy Orton vs. Ted DiBiase w/ Cody Rhodes
They circle the ring and lock up. Orton quickly puts him in a hammerlock and turns it to a side headlock. Orton takes him down and gets a one count. DiBiase comes back with a head-scissor but Orton gets out. DiBiase gets a side headlock and takes him down. Orton fights up and whips him off. DiBiase shoulder blocks him down for a one count. DiBiase goes back to the side headlock. Orton gets one of his own applied. DiBiase whips him off but gets shoulder blocked down. They go into the ropes. DiBiase kicks, goes into the ropes, and eats a dropkick for a one count. Orton smiles at DiBiase.
They circle the ring and DiBiase gets a side headlock applied. Orton quickly wrenches the arm and goes to the headlock. DiBiase backs him to the corner and kicks him down. The referee backs him up so Orton kicks away. DiBiase reverses a whip into the corner but Orton is able to explode out with a clothesline. Orton picks DiBiase’s legs up and kicks him in the midsection. Orton applies a chin lock. DiBiase elbows out but Orton quickly takes him down. Orton goes into the ropes but DiBiase follows and clotheslines him down. DiBiase punches away, hits a snapmare, and hits a running kick to the head for a near fall.
DiBiase picks him up and goes for a dropkick, but Orton counters. Orton catapults him to the corner and hits some clotheslines. Orton hits a Thesz Press and punches away. Orton goes for a draping DDT but Rhodes gets on the apron. Orton punches him off and brings DiBiase into the ring the hard way. Orton quickly goes outside to RKO Rhodes but DiBiase saves him with a baseball slide!
We come back from the break to see Orton trapped in a chin lock. Orton quickly fights up and punches out. DiBiase just as quickly hits a backbreaker and a dropkick for a near fall. During the commercial, DiBiase drove Orton into the ring apron. DiBiase goes to the top rope but gets cut off by Orton. Orton punches away and goes up with him. Orton hits a nice superplex and picks up a near fall.
They are both slow to get up. DiBiase runs into a boot and Orton hits a pair of clotheslines. DiBiase ducks one but quickly gets sucked up in a powerslam. Orton goes for his patented backbreaker but DiBiase rolls him up for a near fall. DiBiase quickly follows up with a sit-out spinebuster for another near fall. DiBiase goes for Dream Street but Orton gets out and punches him down. Orton hits a draping DDT and looks at Rhodes. Orton milks the crowd’s reaction before dropping down. Orton stalks DiBiase and goes for an RKO. DiBiase counters into a Dream Street attempt but Orton rolls him off. DiBiase ducks a clothesline, Orton ducks a clothesline, and Orton drops him with an RKO for the win!
Winner by Pinfall: Randy Orton
Match Rating: **
Cody Rhodes does not look happy and angrily watches Randy Orton leaving the ring. Rhodes looks down at DiBiase and helps him up. Rhodes asks how he feels and then drops him with the Cross Rhodes! Rhodes looks conflicted after hitting that. Rhodes grabs a paper bag mask and puts it over DiBiase’s face.
Later tonight we’ll see Sheamus and Mark Henry square off in a Summerslam rematch.
JOBBER ALERT: Tamina is in the ring with no TV entrance.
Tamina vs. Kelly Kelly
As Kelly Kelly makes her way to the ring, they show a pre-taped interview with Natalya in the corner of the screen. Natalya says Kelly is WWE’s Barbie Doll and she means that literally. Natalya says that she doesn’t play with dolls.
They lock up and Tamina powers her to the corner. Kelly ducks a clothesline and punches away. Kelly is pushed away but she quickly comes back with a Thesz Press. Kelly slaps her on the butt, ducks a clothesline, and hits the head-scissor takeover. Tamina has trouble falling out of the ring. Kelly does a handstand and chokes Tamina. Tamina comes back by snapping her off the top rope. Tamina kicks her in the ribs and body slams her down. Tamina applies a chin lock but Kelly whips her off. Kelly kicks her in the knee and bounces her face off the mat. Kelly hits a bulldog and puts her in the corner. Kelly hits a handspring back elbow and a stinkface. Kelly goes for a cross-body but Tamina catches her. Kelly slides off and hits the K2 for the win.
Winner by Pinfall: Kelly Kelly
Match Rating: 3/4 *
Matt Striker interviews Jinder Mahal and The Great Khali. Striker asks Mahal about not winning the Battle Royal despite guaranteeing a win. Mahal says last week was a clear case of the servant disobeying his orders. Khali listened to his ego. Mahal says Khali has been reeducated. His only mission is to serve him. Tonight’s mission is to dominate Ezekiel Jackson.
Sheamus will take on Mark Henry in tonight’s main event.
The Great Khali w/ Jinder Mahal vs. Ezekiel Jackson
They lock up and Khali powers Jackson down. Khali taunts the crowd. Jackson punches and goes into the ropes only to eat a clothesline. Khali chops Jackson’s chest and clotheslines him down. Khali applies a nerve hold but Jackson elbows out. Jackson stuns him with a pair of clotheslines in the corner. Khali punches back and hits a big boot. Khali signals for his Vice Grip. Khali applies it but Jackson soon breaks the grip. Jackson gets to the ropes and Khali still applies it. The referee admonishes him so Mahal goes for a cheap shot. Jackson stares at him and grabs him. Khali goes for a Brain Chop but Jackson ducks it. Mahal takes it and falls to the floor. Jackson then scoops Khali up in the Torture Rack for the submission win! That was an impressive visual!
Winner by Submission: Ezekiel Jackson
Match Rating: * 1/2
They promote Randy Orton defending his World Heavyweight Championship against former champion Christian in a Steel Cage Match on next week’s live Super Smackdown.
Todd Grisham, in his last appearance on WWE television, has an interview with Randy Orton. Grisham asks about Bret Hart changing his championship opponent for Tuesday. Orton says Christian is like a reoccurring nightmare. Just when the thinks it’s gone, it comes back. Christian in a cage with himself does pose a few special challenges, but it’s nothing he can’t handle. He’s already taken his title back. All Christian has left is his pride. After he takes that, it’s on to Mark Henry. Orton says he doesn’t underestimate Mark Henry just like his opponents should never underestimate him.
They show an awesome video package highlighting Mark Henry’s rage and his path of destruction.
Mark Henry and Sheamus are seen walking backstage. They’ll face each other next.
Mark Henry vs. Sheamus
They circle the ring and stare coldly at each other. They lock up and Henry immediately powers Sheamus down. They lock up and Henry powers him down again. Henry taunts Sheamus as he gets up. Sheamus clubs away at Henry and goes for a whip, but Henry doesn’t budge. Henry sends him to the corner and runs into a boot. Sheamus chop blocks Henry down and clubs away at him. Sheamus kicks him down in the corner and hits a running knee to the face. Sheamus covers for a near fall. Henry pushes him off but lowers his head and eats a kick. Sheamus goes into the ropes and eats a big boot. Henry splashes him in the corner and hits a backbreaker for a two count.
Henry sends Sheamus sternum first into the corner. Henry stands on Sheamus’s chest and uses the ropes for balance. Henry yells at the referee and taunts Sheamus. Sheamus punches but Henry quickly comes back with a head-butt. Henry stands on his hand before picking him up and applying a bear hug. Sheamus fights to break the hold and head-butts Henry a few times. Henry pushes him to the corner and runs into a back elbow. Sheamus goes to the second rope and Henry catches him. Henry goes for a military press slam but Sheamus counters into a DDT in mid-air!
They get to their feet at the same time and Sheamus hits some Irish hammers. Henry ducks one and Sheamus takes him off his feet with a clothesline. Sheamus ties Henry up in the ropes and viciously clubs away at his chest. Sheamus gets on the apron and hits a trio of running knees to the face. Sheamus stuns him and goes to the top rope. Sheamus hits a flying shoulder block and picks up a near fall. Henry rolls out of the ring to recover.
Sheamus tries to bring Henry into the ring but Henry rips him out! Sheamus took a NASTY bump on the outside! Henry sends him into the barricade and rips the top of the announcer’s table off. Henry goes for the World’s Strongest Slam through the table, but Sheamus slides off! Sheamus hits a Brogue Kick that sends Henry over the announcer’s table! Sheamus throws a chair onto Henry and gets in the ring. The referee reaches ten and counts out Mark Henry!
Winner by Count-Out: Sheamus
Match Rating: **
Mark Henry tips the announcer’s table over and walks around ringside. Henry then gets a vicious look on his face and gets on the apron. Henry fights Sheamus off and tries to get in but Sheamus knees him off the apron. Sheamus leaps off the apron and Henry catches him. Henry drives him into the apron and goes to catapult him into the ring post, but Sheamus slides off, sending him into the ring post and stairs. Sheamus grabs the steel steps and throws them, but Henry ducks it. Henry clotheslines him down and hits the World’s Strongest Slam on the steel steps! That was absolutely nasty! Henry stands over Sheamus and screams.
Quick Match Results
Christian def. Daniel Bryan
Sin Cara def. Heath Slater
Randy Orton def. Ted DiBiase (non-title)
Kelly Kelly def. Tamina (non-title)
Ezekiel Jackson def. The Great Khali via Submission
Sheamus def. Mark Henry via CO
Bump of the Night: Mark Henry ripping Sheamus out of the ring and Henry giving him the World’s Strongest Slam on the steel steps! TWO Bumps of the Night!
Match of the Night: Mark Henry vs. Sheamus **
The show opened up with a crowd pleaser. WWE Hall of Famer Bret “Hitman” Hart came out and announced he was the Special Guest GM for the night. I was immediately happy and hopeful for this show. Teddy Long’s act, in my humble opinion, is terrible. Long is the longest running, tired, and not-over authority figure in WWE. Even if it’s just for a week, the absence of Teddy Long automatically made me feel good about this show. The fact that Bret Hart was on the show also made me feel good about it. Hart’s the first one to admit that he was never the most gifted promo cutter, but I thought he did a fine job tonight. He put over the Super Smackdown special coming on Tuesday and had some good banter with Christian. Mark Henry then came out and, dare I say, made this promo segment even better. Henry is so in tune with his character and it’s delivery. Henry came off sounding like a frustrated, killer monster. I absolutely loved it. Sheamus then ran out and they had a little interaction to whet your appetite for their main event later in the show. All in all, it was a very good opener to the show.
Christian saw his first televised action since Summerslam against Daniel Bryan afterwards. I saw them wrestle at a house show in June and it was a very good match. This match was good, but it felt like it was missing something. These are two guys that aren’t afraid to go hard, but it felt like they were just going through the motions. It was still well wrestled but not as good as I thought it was going to be. They needed Christian to pick up the win since our last memory of him was of him getting destroyed at Summerslam. They need Christian to look at least a little strong heading into Super Smackdown.
Wade Barrett was supposed to face a jobber, but he said that was beneath him. Barrett talked about his past accomplishments and walked off. That little segment stuck in the middle of the show could be the start of a return to prominence for Wade Barrett. Barrett’s bored with his spot so he’s going to try to insert himself into something big. That’s fine by me because he’s been one of the most underutilized talents on Smackdown since coming over in January. Don’t believe me? Look no further than his match against Daniel Bryan at Summerslam. The guy can talk and he can go in the ring. The Corre just weighed him down for the longest time.
Sin Cara beat Heath Slater in a very short match. It may have gone a minute and a half. There wasn’t much to the match so it surprised me that it had to be re-taped so many times, according to reports. Just from my observations, that wasn’t the original Sin Cara. That was still Hunico under the mask. That makes me wonder if they had the original out first, he botched everything, and they had Hunico on standby. Just purely my own musings – there’s no fact behind any of that.
Randy Orton and Ted DiBiase had a good match. DiBiase looked good in it and the defeat didn’t look bad. Cody Rhodes beat him up afterwards and it looks like we’ll be getting a program with DiBiase and Rhodes. DiBiase has been stagnant for so long that I wonder if he can get the crowd behind him during the feud. We’ll see.
I simply can’t bring myself to comment on the diva’s match. I can comment on how surprisingly good the Ezekiel Jackson/Great Khali match was. It wasn’t a technical masterpiece – just a good old-fashioned big man brawl. Jackson, despite not connecting with the audience, impressed me in this match with just his brute strength. It shouldn’t have come as a surprise since the guy is so jacked. Still, no matter how big you are, the ability to hoist Khali up on your shoulders is an impressive sight. It’s not something you see every week. Now if only they could drop the asinine story about Jinder Mahal divorcing Khali’s sister and sending the family back to poverty. Is Khali such a massive spender that he’s literally saved no money? Vince McMahon is many things, but cheap with his talent? Ditch the crap story!
Sheamus and Mark Henry was the main event and it was great. Their match was the surprise hit of Summerslam for me. These two just go out and beat the ever-loving crap out of one another. The brawl after the match was awesome. Henry really rocked Sheamus with a few bumps in this match. Sheamus is just awesome as a face. Earlier tonight he came out and told a story about his uncle castrating a bull and then in the main event he just hits and bumps hard. The series is even now with two count-outs and I can’t wait for the rubber match.
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.