World Wrestling Entertainment presents Smackdown
From: Laredo, TX
A video hyping up the main event between WWE World Heavyweight Champion Daniel Bryan and the Big Show. The title will be on the line in a no disqualification, no count-out match.
WWE World Heavyweight Champion Daniel Bryan makes his way out to kick off the program. He is starting to get a clear heel reaction from the fans. Bryan wants to set the record straight. He says winning the championship has been a dream come true and he has lived for this. Bryan realizes that Big Show deserved a rematch considering how short he was he champion. But, Bryan is a fighting champion. He thinks it is sickening that the match ended in a disqualification. Bryan assures us that the people are wrong to think that he purposely went to Mark Henry to cause the disqualification. He thinks the no disqualification, no count-out stipulation is a little excessive. Bryan thinks that Mark Henry should be suspended for what he did. That brings out Mark Henry. Henry asks if he heard Bryan correctly. Henry says he would have made it worth his time to get suspended. Henry announces that Teddy Long has been banned from ringside. Henry believes the title match has everything involved with him. Henry reveals that if he keeps out of the match this week, then next week he will get a title shot against the winner. Bryan doesn't have a problem with that.
Opening Contest: Justin Gabriel vs. Heath Slater
Gabriel opens the bout with an arm drag but Slater stops him with a right hand. Slater drops Gabriel with a clothesline but Gabriel connects with a head scissors. Slater stomps away on Gabriel and delivers several strikes. Slater gets a two count after a neck breaker. Gabriel drops Slater with a spin kick but Slater drives Gabriel down to the mat with a spine buster for a two count. Slater goes to the top rope but Hornswoggle appears in the ring and that allows Gabriel to kick Slater off the top. Gabriel comes off the top rope and hits the 450 splash for the win.
Your Winner: Justin Gabriel via pin fall
Match Rating: **
Backstage, AJ meets up with Daniel Bryan and tells him that she is proud of him. She tells him that she loves him. She leaves and Bryan says thanks.
A video promoting AJ is aired next.
WWE Intercontinental Champion Cody Rhodes comes out to cut a promo. Rhodes knows that a lot of people in Laredo speak Spanish. He says a lot of people are well aware of the INS and hints that most of the people are not actually legal citizens. Rhodes notes that he has been the champion for five months. He is the longest reigning champion in the WWE. He goes on to list the guys he has surpassed such as Pedro Morales, Goldust and Booker T. Rhodes is going to pull an Ultimate Warrior. He is going to win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship after he wins the Royal Rumble.
Second Contest: WWE Intercontinental Champion Cody Rhodes vs. Ezekiel Jackson
Jackson attempts a suplex from the apron early but Rhodes avoids it and plants Jackson with a DDT for a two count. Jackson battles back with a shoulder block and a clothesline in the corner. Jackson scoop slams Rhodes and looks for the Torture Rack but Rhodes break free. Rhodes misses a spring board kick but drop toe holds Jackson into the corner. Rhodes hits the springboard kick and connects with the Cross Rhodes to win the match.
Your Winner: WWE Intercontinental Champion Cody Rhodes via pin fall
Match Rating: *
Backstage, Santino Marella is talking to Teddy Long. Marella has several match ideas for Teddy. He wants to have a steel cage with several steel cages inside one another. Marella wants Long to overturn the ruling by Jack Tunney to allow animals at ringside! David Otunga enters the room and wants to talk to Long about the Royal Rumble. Otunga says that Johnny Ace wants to know which Smackdown guys should be allowed in the match. Long books a match between Marella and Otunga. Drew McIntyre enters the room and Long tells him he is getting closer and closer to getting fired. His match is up next.
Third Contest: Drew McIntyre vs. Ted DiBiase
Hunico comes out before the match to allow McIntyre to get the cheap advantage early on. Drew nearly won after a running big boot but couldn't put DiBiase away. DiBiase sends Drew to the floor but is dropped face first onto the apron. Drew keeps control by driving DiBiase into the apron back first and gets a two count back in the ring. Drew runs into a big boot in the corner and DiBiase delivers a clothesline for a two count. DiBiase leaps off the middle rope but is punches in midair. DiBiase elbows Drew off the top rope and crotches him on the top rope. DiBiase hits the Dream Street and wins the match!
Your Winner: Ted DiBiase via pin fall
Match Rating: **
A video promoting Wade Barrett is aired.
Before the next match, Jinder Mahal says that he is most dangerous when least expected. So, he thinks he is going win the Royal Rumble.
Fourth Contest: Sheamus vs. Jinder Mahal
Sheamus opens the match with several clubbing blows to Mahal's back. He delivers a clothesline as well and blocks a hip toss with a short arm clothesline. Sheamus goes for the power bomb, but Mahal bails to the floor. Sheamus runs to the floor and clotheslines Mahal again. Sheamus hits a slingshot shoulder block from the apron. Mahal drops Sheamus throat first across the top rope and hits a running high knee, twice. Mahal goes for a cover but isn't able to get a three. Mahal connects with a swinging neck breaker for another near fall. Sheamus hits a back drop to make his comeback. Sheamus clubs away on Mahal's chest on the apron. Sheamus brings Mahal back into the ring with a suplex before hitting a top rope shoulder block. Sheamus nails Mahal with the Brogue Kick and gets the three count.
Your Winner: Sheamus via pin fall
Match Rating: **1/4
Backstage, Jack Doan is chatting with Big Show about the title match. Show doesn't need to know about the rules. AJ walks over and wants to talk about Daniel Bryan. She doesn't want to see him get hurt. AJ says he has a good heart and is a decent guy. Show tells her that his intention is to get his title back and not to hurt Bryan. Daniel Bryan walks over and says Show isn't going to take his girl and isn't going to take his championship tonight. Bryan suggests Show leave right now. Show thinks that Bryan has changed for the worst since winning the title. Show is going to take the title off his hands tonight. Bryan assures AJ that he is going to protect her. Bryan asks her how much does she love him. They walk off to talk.
Fifth Contest: David Otunga vs. Santino Marella
Otunga works on Marella with shoulder rams in the corner and connects with a clothesline. Marella gets out of a power slam with a roll up but is stopped with another clothesline. Otunga springboards off the middle rope to deliver a few elbow drops but only gets a two count. Marella fights back with several jabs a hip toss. Marella hits a falling head butt and goes for the Cobra! Otunga blocks it and hits a over the shoulder back to belly pile driver for the win.
Your Winner: David Otunga via pin fall
Match Rating: *1/2
A recap of what happened on RAW involving Kane last Monday is shown.
Sixth Contest: Brodus Clay vs. Tyson Kidd
Clay knocks Kidd down with his head off the bat and hits a leaping cross body to win the match in less than ten seconds.
Your Winner: Brodus Clay via pin fall
Backstage, Teddy Long is dancing and singing to Brodus Clay's theme song until Aksana enters the room. Aksana flirts with Long and says she wants to play roulette because she always hits on black. Long nearly chokes on his drink.
Seventh Contest: Natalya vs. Tamina
Natalya slaps Tamina and follows up with a vertical suplex for a two count. Tamina stops Natalya with a Samoan Drop and heads to the top rope. Tamina hits a big splash and wins the match in less than a minute.
Your Winner: Tamina via pin fall
Wade Barrett makes his way out to the top of the ramp way to cut a promo. Barrett says he isn't impressed by Sheamus. He is a man of class unlike Sheamus. Barrett is convinced that he will win the 2012 Royal Rumble. Barrett issues a challenge to Sheamus for next weeks episode of Smackdown.
Main Event: WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match, No Disqualification, No Count-Out
(champion) Daniel Bryan vs. Big Show
Show shakes Bryan's hand but lifts the champ up and hits a gorilla press slam. AJ is at ringside for this match, by the way. Show chops Bryan several times in the corner and tosses Bryan across the ring. Show runs into a double boot from the champ in the corner but Show spears Bryan when he leaps off the middle rope! Bryan rolls to the floor as we go to commercial.
Show has Bryan on the announcers table and chops him. Bryan grabs a chair and hits Bryan several times with it. Bryan is really working on Show with the chair until Show knocks the chair out of his hands. Bryan rolls back into the ring and is begging off as Show enters with the chair in hand. Bryan drop kicks Show off the apron and continues to work on Show with chair shots to his back. Show big boots Bryan to stop the onslaught. Back in the ring, Bryan kicks Show several times before being chopped down to the mat. Bryan dropkicks Show and continues to kick away on the challenger. Bryan plants Show with a DDT on the chair but Show powers out at two on the cover attempt.
Bryan misses a kick and is chopped. Show splashes into the champ in the corner and drops Bryan with a shoulder block. Bryan avoids a choke slam and chop blocks Show. He grabs the chair but Show punches the chair. Show looks to choke slam Bryan through the announcers table but Bryan avoids it and uses the chair some more. Show cops Bryan as he leaps off the apron. Bryan runs away from show and Show accidentally runs over AJ on the floor! Show is very upset over what happened and Bryan checks on AJ as well. They get a stretcher for her as Show looks to be on the verge of tears. The fans are chanting “She's okay.” Bryan is yelling at Show for what he did to her. Bryan is telling Show that he is reckless. Bryan tells Show that he is bastard. Show is really upset at what happened and is crying to end the show. The match ends in a no contest.
Well, this weeks Smackdown had eight total matches in a two hour program. That was rather refreshing, if I'm honest. I thought it was a solid episode this week. Sure, there were a few squashes but I don't mind that. It's an effective way to get talent over. The Sheamus/Mahal and Gabriel/Slater matches really surprised me with the quality of action. I thought those two matches were fine television matches. Heck, McIntyre/DiBiase put on a fun little match.
I'm glad that Daniel Bryan is starting to get over as a heel. He was bland as a face, but he is doing a great job with the heel role. His match with Big Show was probably the best they could've done considering the size difference. The angle they have done with AJ was an interesting way to end the show as well. Sure, we didn't get a finish, but it adds to the issues between Bryan and Show. I had no problem with it.
Overall, this weeks Smackdown gets a thumbs up from me. It was a quality all around show this week.
Thanks for reading.