WWE Intercontinental Champion Wade Barrett defends one more time against Kofi Kingston. Also, Randy Orton teams with Sheamus to take on WWE World Heavyweight Champion Big Show and WWE United States Champion Antonio Cesaro in the main event!
World Wrestling Entertainment presents Smackdown
From: Richmond, VA
Randy Orton makes his way down to the ring to kick off the first Smackdown of 2013. Orton wants to be WWE World Heavyweight Champion. Orton says not so long ago Smackdown was his show, and that’s not the case anymore. Orton announces that he is part of the Royal Rumble. This brings out Sheamus. Sheamus tells Orton that he isn’t out here to steal his thunder. So, Sheamus decides to steal his thunder anyway by announcing he is entering the Royal Rumble. Orton tells Sheamus he didn’t come out to save Sheamus on RAW from the Shield. He did that because the Shield attacked him. Sheamus notes that he won the Rumble last year. Orton chimes back that he will eliminate Sheamus. Sheamus asks if he kicks Orton’s head out of the ring if that counts as an elimination. WWE World Heavyweight Champion Big Show makes his way out. Show says either man will only get a shot of his fist if they win the Rumble. Show is going to knock Sheamus out and Show is happy to step on the snake. He is the most dominate WWE World Champion that the WWE has ever seen. WWE United States Champion Antonio Cesaro comes out! Cesaro thinks this is typical America talking about who the best is. Cesaro says his people take action. Orton suggests he RKO’s both of them right now. Smackdown General Manager Booker T makes his way out. Booker knows that these four men don’t like each other. So, Booker books a tag team match for later tonight.
Opening Contest: The Miz vs, Heath Slater
Miz opens the bout with a dropkick to control Slater in the early moments. Miz gets tripped by McIntyre from the floor, but Miz dropkicks Drew to the floor and knocks Jinder off the apron. That allows Slater to drop Miz with a punch but his 3MB buddies are ejected from ringside. Miz nearly rolls Slater up for a three count. Back from a commercial, Slater is working over Miz with several stomps in the corner. Miz quickly rights back with left hands of his own. Miz clotheslines Slater on the floor. Slater is dropped gut first across the guard railing. Slater tosses Miz shoulder first into the ring post and works over his left shoulder. Miz avoids Slater in the corner minutes later and hits a clothesline. Miz comes off the top to hit a double axe handle. Miz puts Slater away with the Skull Crushing Finale.
Your Winner: The Miz
Match Rating: **1/4. A decent match to kick off the show, but it wasn’t anything special. Miz as a babyface may be more annoying than he was a heel.
Backstage, Matt Striker is with the WWE Intercontinental Champion Wade Barrett. Barrett says he is the new champion but that isn’t good enough for the media. He thinks the media is trying to tear him down. Barrett says that Kofi attacked him from behind on Main Event and Kingston will not win tonight. When he does that, Kingston will be out of chances.
Second Contest: Primo, Epico & Rosa Mendes vs. The Great Khali, Hornswoggle & Natalya
Oh brother, a six man tag involving several people I don’t find entertaining. So, this will get a long story short treatment. Khali simply nails Primo with a overhand chop and wins the match in under two minutes. Yes, I even cut a minute of the stuff out. This is just not interesting.
Backstage, Matt Striker is with Kofi Kingston. Kofi says this has nothing to do with momentum. He admits that Wade got the better of him but Kofi knows this could be his last shot. Kingston is going to fight to become the champion one more time. Kofi thinks Wade will be running into Trouble In Paradise.
Third Contest: WWE Intercontinental Champion Wade Barrett vs. Kofi Kingston
Kofi gets the first clear cut advantage with a series of kicks to bring the champ down to the canvas. Kingston sends the champ to the floor with a dropkick. On the floor. Kofi sends Barrett into the ring steps face first and hits a springboard clothesline back into the ring. Barrett sends Kingston hard back first into the corner to regain control of the contest. Wade focuses his attack on Kofi’s ribs with several punches to the area. Kingston nearly wins with a backslide and a roll up. Kingston sends Wade over the top to the floor and takes Barrett out with a slingshot cross body on the floor! Kofi goes to the floor and brings Barrett back into the ring to avoid a count-out. We go to commercial, but when we come back Barrett nails Kofi right on the jaw with a strike. Barrett gets a near fall after a middle rope elbow drop. Wade delivers a few knee shots to Kingston’s ribs before kicking Kingston through the middle rope to the floor.
Barrett puts Kingston on the top rope gut first before attempting a superplex but Kingston fights him off and knocks Wade to the canvas. Kingston hits a top rope cross body but can’t keep Barrett down long enough! Kingston kicks Barrett in the corner and hits the SOS but can’t get a three count! Kingston just straight kicks Barrett in the face and delivers the Boom Drop. Wade ducks the Trouble in Paradise but is nearly rolled up. Wade plants Kofi with a swinging side slam for a two count. Kingston hits the Trouble In Paradise but Barrett rolls out of the ring! Wade gets his hand on the bottom rope to break the count. Barrett hits the Bull Hammer on Kofi as Kingston jumped off the middle rope. That’s good enough for the three.
Your Winner and STILL WWE Intercontinental Champion: Wade Barrett
Match Rating: ***. A good match between two of the better talents in WWE. I feel like I say that every time they wrestle. Barrett is ready for a main event run and they are doing a great job of promoting his finisher as a legit threat moving forward. A good television bout here.
Fourth Contest: Layla vs. Tamina Snuka
Long story short, Snuka scares Layla out of the ring early on. Layla tried to fight back but Snuka just wasn’t going to let that happen. Snuka wins following a top rope splash after hitting a Samoan Drop.
Main Event: WWE World Heavyweight Champion Big Show & WWE United States Champion Antonio Cesaro vs. Sheamus & Randy Orton
Sheamus and Cesaro start off the main event with Cesaro working over Sheamus with a side headlock. Cesaro gets knocked down a few times via a shoulder block by Sheamus. Orton tags in to hit a vertical suplex. Orton comes out of the corner to clothesline Cesaro. Sheamus enters to deliver a clothesline of his own as well. Show enters to work over Sheamus in the corner with several strikes. Orton avoids being decked by Show on the apron. Sheamus and Orton clothesline Show over the top to the floor as we go to commercial.
Sheamus has Cesaro on the apron and delivers several overhand blows to his chest. Sheamus brings Cesaro back in with a vertical suplex for a near fall. Cesaro delivers a jaw breaker to stop the offense and Show tags in to spear Sheamus! Show sends Sheamus back first into the corners a few times. Show scoop slams Sheamus and hits an elbow drop coming off the ropes for a two count. Show misses a splash in the corner and Sheamus tries to knock Show down but instead runs into a choke slam but Show only gets a near fall! Show signals for the Knockout Punch but Sheamus ducks and hits the Brogue Kick! Cesaro and Orton get the tags with Orton cleaning house with clotheslines and a snap powerslam. Orton hooks Cesaro and nearly hits an elevated DDT but instead drops Cesaro over the top rope. Sheamus tags himself in and works on Cesaro. Sheamus hits the White Noise while Orton is on the floor angry. Sheamus goes for the Brogue Kick but Orton slides in to hit the RKO on Cesaro! Sheamus covers Cesaro and wins the match but he didn’t want to.
Your Winners: Sheamus & Randy Orton
Match Rating: ***. A good main event to close the show. It’s obvious they are setting up Orton vs. Sheamus for Mania and Orton should be turning heel shortly. Nothing to complain about here.
An okay show for Smackdown to kick off the New Year. Barrett/Kofi and the tag team main event matches were both good and really there wasn’t a segment other than the six man tag that was awful. So, a fine job by Smackdown this week.
Thanks for reading.
31-year old currently living in Syracuse, New York. Longtime fan of the New York Mets, Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Vikings. Avid fan of professional wrestling and write reviews/articles on the product. Usually focusing on the old school wrestling.