7/30 Smackdown: “What We Have Learned”

These are some of the things- good, bad, and ugly- that the Smackdown universe learned this past Friday from the show:

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E.V.2 on your TV, too!: TNA Impact 7/29/10

In case you were wondering when WWE’s legal crew would smack down TNA for spouting off their trademarked ECW name, you have found your answer.  So instead, the leaders of Extreme started off Impact by talking about lawyers and changing their name to E. Version 2. And the group started the night off by sweeping away nearly three months of build by having Brother Ray getting over being a dick and joining up.  And back tracking to revert to the status quo would be the ultimate message of the night.

So at the least appropriate moment possible, when E.v2.0 was united in the ring (minus Rob Van Dam), out came Hulk Hogan and all ECW enthusiasts became nauseous as he sang their praises and they nodded approvingly.  This brought out Abyss, who warned that “they” did not like this ECW reunion and he would have to stop it.  Tommy Dreamer took the opportunity to challenge Abyss to a match.

After a brief Rob Van Dam attack on Abyss to save Eric Bischoff (more on that later), out came Tommy and they had their EXTREME match in which neither man bled (shocking) and Tommy resumed his duties of getting pinned by everyone.  As Abyss prepared to use his nail board on the fallen Dreamer, E.v2.0 member Raven entered to make the save. And just as I began questioning the logic of Raven saving Dreamer (if you’re familiar with their history, you would have too) Raven Evenflow DDT’d Dreamer into a chair. That part was awesome. Raven licking the face of the fallen Dreamer? Not so much.

Rest of the show after the jump.

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Another One Bites The Dust – NXT 7/27/10

I missed the first 12 minutes but it was apparently an Open Mic segment for the Rookies to make their last plea to the WWE Universe (or at least those who hadn’t voted) to keep them in the competition in one minute.

I assume Alex Riley, Percy Watson and Michael McGuillicutty did great. While Husky Harris and Lucky Cannon made their respective overly heel and face promos. Eli Cottonwood and Kaval are toss ups but I from Michael Cole’s reactions later in the night it sounded like it was bad. Also Matt Striker probably cut one of them off for going too long. It’s kinda his thing on this show.

As for the elimination at the end of the night, Eli Cottonwood was sent packing. After a moment to soak up what had happened he went crazy and attacked all the other Rookies. They fought him back and on his way out shoved his Pro John Morrison.

After some Rookie reactions to the new poll, Riley and McG got into a scuffle and Cottonwood return to finish what he started minutes earlier. Mustache!

As for the rest of the show...

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Dissent in the Ranks: Raw 7/26/10

The major focus of this week’s episode of Raw was the 7-on-7, Raw versus Nexus match at Summerslam.  The problem’s for Team Raw started immediately, as Chris Jericho was upset that Cena was referring to them as his team.  Cena gets frustrated and tells Jericho that he can claim the team if he wants to.  He doesn’t care, he just wants to beat Nexus.  Jericho informs Cena that he doesn’t consider Nexus to be the only threat to WWE.  Jericho has seen Cena have his way with the company, and plans to do something about it after dealing with the Nexus.  The GM sends a message saying that they will tag together tonight.

More dissension occurred backstage as Edge was talking to Ted DiBiase, about how he, instead of The Great Khali should be on the team.  Edge insults Khali, and is over heard by Khali’s manager.  Later on, Khali confronts Edge and challenges him to a match.  The match doesn’t last very long before Nexus interferes.  Edge abandons Khali, but Nexus doesn’t attack him, instead lets him leave.  During the John Morrison/ DiBiase match, R-Truth was at ringside, offering his support.  After initially saving Morrison by disrupting an illegal pin attempt by DiBiase, Morrison runs into R-Truth, allowing DiBiase to get the win.  Morrison and Truth argue after the match.

In the main event, it was Cena and Jericho versus Sheamus and the Miz.  Sheamus and Miz were paired up because Miz had once again tried to cash in on an unconscious Sheamus, only to be interrupted by Randy Orton.  Both teams were working fairly well together, until Jericho hit Cena with a Codebreaker, allowing Miz to get the pinfall.  After the match, Jericho tried to put Cena into the Wall of Jericho, but Cena countered and got Jericho into the STF.  Khali comes out and tries to separate the two.  Eventually, the entire team, minus Bret Hart, are in the ring, arguing with each other, while still trying to separate other arguments.

Rest of the show

  • Randy Orton def. Jey Uso by pinfall. Pretty much a squash.  Sheamus was at ringside, and tried to attack Orton, but missed.  Orton hit Sheamus with an RKO, leading to The Miz’s arrival mentioned earlier.
  • The Nexus def. Mark Henry, Evan Bourne, Hart Dynasty, Yoshi Tatsu, Jerry Lawler & Goldust. This was an elimination squash match.  Essentially, this match was to show how unified The Nexus is.
  • Alicia Fox def. Brie Bella by pinfall. Another squash match.  After the match, Fox took out Jillian Hall to stop her from singing any more.

Closing Thoughts

I like the arguing amongst Team Raw, but the ending of the show was a bit lame and forced.  Everyone was arguing with everyone, but also trying to break up the arguments.  It just didn’t make much sense.  Have them brawl a bit, have one person that’s not arguing with anyone and is trying to break up all of the arguments, or have Nexus come in, and just destroy the arguing people.  I expect Hart to come back next week, and be the voice that unifies Team Raw.

  • I also wonder how long they’re going to keep up the “Miz cashes in every week” thing going.  Soon, they’ll run out of reasons for him to change his mind, and it’s going to get stale.
  • Alicia Fox taking out Jillian to keep her from signing isn’t really a heel thing to do.  It was a favor to the fans.

The ‘C’ stands for ‘Crying’: TNA Impact 7/22/10

The brawl to end last week’s Impact was a much-talked about event. The former ECW guys finally did something and the show ended with Dixie Carter dropping the somewhat baffling news that she had invited them to Impact (despite the fact that four of them already worked there). This week, Impact closed its episode with a lengthy segment in which Dixie brought the four out and explained just what she was doing. And the whole thing went to hell.

If you’re going to try to do an ECW revival, you probably want some violence. Barbed wire, chairs, weapons, kendo sticks. After all, the group has the likes of Rhino, Mick Foley, Raven and Tommy Dreamer in it. You want fast-paced action that can outrun common sense in the spirit of entertainment. What you probably don’t want is a blubbering Tommy Dreamer begging Dixie to give ECW a chance to rebuild its legacy while choking back tears as the others stand by silently nodding.

Three guesses which one TNA gave. 

Explaining that their presence was not an invasion, but rather a chance to once more show what ECW had been, Tommy Dreamer got his request for one show, and then Impact went off the air with Dreamer hugging Dixie. Because nothing screams extreme quite like hugging. 

As for the rest of the show… 

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Obstacle Course V.2 – NXT 7/20/10

The night opened with MVP’s VIP Lounge with guest Percy Watson. The two hashed out their feelings about Watson trying to make an impact at MVP’s expense last week on the Showtime Percy Watson Show. After settling on mutual respect and a sincere apology from Watson the two squashed their differences.

Then out came “Dashing” Cody Rhodes and his Rookie Husky Harris. After Matt Striker asked each pairing to say why the WWE Universe should vote for them (Striker did this throughout the night with each pairing) he announced a tag match between the two teams.

At the close of the night we got the new NXT Obstacle Course. It wrapped around the ring only consisting of a tire section, 3 wall hurdles, 10 push-ups, a balance beam and cart push up the ramp across the finish line. Matt Striker was shown running it early in 41.5 seconds. Michael McGuillicutty won the challenge and immunity from next week’s elimination with I think 26.3 seconds. It should be noted McG won mostly because he went first and was the only one the refs didn’t stress running the course properly.

As for the rest of the show…

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Battle Lines: Raw 7/19/10

The show kicked off with a triple threat match between Randy Orton, Chris Jericho, and Edge.  In what was a surprisingly long match for Raw (20 minutes), Randy Orton was able to get the win after hitting both Jericho and Edge with RKOs.  After a commercial break, Jericho and Edge are arguing in the ring when The Nexus comes out.  To the delight of Jericho, they all gang up on Edge.  After The Nexus is done, Jericho jumps in and puts Edge into the Walls of Jericho, until he realizes that The Nexus is standing around him, menacingly.  They then attack Jericho and leave him unconscious in the ring.

After a pessimistic speech earlier in the show, at the end of the show, Cena comes out to the ring to speak with The Nexus.  He offers them truce, but they decline, saying that they don’t want their to be peace.  Instead, they want Cena to join them.  Cena can’t do that, and starts to leave.  He stops and says that he tried to let The Nexus off the hook, but he recommits to taking them down, and now has a team to do it at Summerslam.  That team consists of himself, Edge, Jericho, John Morrison, R-Truth, The Great Khali, and Bret Hart.  The 7 of them run down to the ring, and The Nexus runs out through the crowd.

Rest of the show.

  • Eve def. Maryse by pinfall. Maryse’s foot was on the bottom rope, but the ref did not see it as he counted the 3-count.  Ted DiBiase, who was at ringside, came into argue with the ref, but Morrison came out and attacked DiBiase.
  • Sheamus def. Evan Bourne by pinfall. Pre-match, Sheamus was gloating about how he had beaten Cena for a third time, and that he was going to be champion for a long time.  The Miz came out and reminded Sheamus of his Money in the Bank win.  The GM put Sheamus into a match with Bourne.  Eventually, Sheamus was able to pin Bourne.  Miz runs in and attacks Sheamus, hitting the Skull-crushing Finale onto the briefcase.  The Miz tries to cash in, but R-Truth runs out to attack The Miz before the match could officially start.
  • Santino Marella & Vladmir Koslov def. William Regal and Zach Ryder by pinfall. Again, Koslov causes most of the damage, and Santino gets the pin on Ryder.  Post-match, Santino dances around to the amusement of Koslov.
  • Wade Barrett def. Mark Henry by pinfall. This match was a back and forth brawl.  Mark Henry climbed to the middle rope, but Barrett was able to pick him off the ropes, and slam him with his finisher, before completely losing his balance.

Closing Thoughts

Wow, WWE certainly didn’t waste any time in setting up their main storylines for Summerslam.  We are going to get Orton versus Sheamus for the title, and Cena’s army going up against The Nexus.  The Sheamus/Orton feud doesn’t really interest me, but the Cena/Nexus one does.  I like that Cena has surrounded himself with people who have held a title at some point.  Yes, remember that Khali was a World Champion.  And sure, Hart can’t be much of a physical factor, but he adds some weight behind the feud.  His presence, along with Jericho and Edge, add importance to this feud.  The easiest way to build up a credible threat is to have the opposing group of guys take the threat seriously.

  • I don’t think they should have had Eve win by bad officiating.  It doesn’t look good for the face.
  • Still amused by the pairing of Koslov and Marella, but not sure how much longer that will last.
  • Last night was a good example of how nice a show can be when you don’t have to devote time to whatever the guest host is there to plug.
  • The Miz trying to cash in then getting interrupted was alright, but if they do that too many times, it’s just going to remind people of Punk’s attempts to cash in last year.