NOTE: This report was done exclusively by Mark Neeley of IP.
Okay, so I was at the SmackDown live special + 2 hour Friday night tapins last night at US Bank Arena here in Cincinnati Ohio. If you need further proof, I was in row J seat 1 on the floor, 9 rows behind Tazz & Cole. I’m going to be posting my report, but first lets cover a few things:
– Big Show DID indeed spit on Eddie’s low rider. There are rumors fluttering around the Internet that it may or may not of happened, but it did. Of course they edited it out, so maybe Show is going to take a small cut in the old paycheck, or at least internet abuse.
– There were only 2 Velocity matches, and I don’t know if they were taped or not. The first took place before the live special, and the second before the Friday Night tapings. I don’t think Velocity got taped because I don’t recall seeing Matthews and Romero come out, but I’m not certain.
– The Boogeyman had his debut match.
Arriving at US Bank Arena
This was my fourth WWE event at US Bank Arena, the first was a SmackDown house show a few years back when Brock was champ, 2nd was the SmackDown where Big Show chokeslammed Eddie through the windshield of the low rider. (Kind of ironic that he would spit on it this time, eh?) And third, the RAW on Valentine’s Day when Christian fought Orton in a good match. This makes my fourth.
We had to wait in line outside a bit to get in since we got there early, but the gates opened an hour early, at 6:30, and we easily made it to our seats. 9 rows behind Cole & Tazz, the 1st and 2nd seats. At this point there weren’t that many people on the floor yet, and the workers were still on a ladder setting up the stage. There were 3 girls in front of us though, and we noticed one had a “Happy Birthday JBL” sign. Didn’t know it was his birthday, but hey. Teddy Long was near ringside taking pictures with fans for a brief time, as was Tony Chimmel.
Without getting into much detail, the place filled up quick and it wasn’t long before an “Eddie” chant broke out. The show opened with:
– Opening Contest of the night
– Velocity match #1
Orlando Jordan def. Local Cincinnati Guy
Pretty quick squash here, Jordan took a lot of abuse from the crowd. I think the Cincinnati kid got in maybe 2 punches of offense, that was it. Just a few minutes in the “you tapped out” chant started, poor OJ just doesn’t get along with a crowd.
After that at about roughly 8 the video rolled and pyro hit for the live special, so it wasn’t really “live” per se on television. This gave them a chance to edit, which ended up being a smart idea since Big Slow hacked a lugie on Eddie’s low rider.
Special LIVE SmackDown
– Opening Contest
Booker T def. Chris Benoit – 2nd best of 7 series match
It ended up being a solid match. A hell of a lot better than the Survivor Series one, that’s for sure. Crowd was really into Benoit and against Booker, I think Booker probably got one of the loudest boos on the night. Match as I expected went pretty long to waste time in the live special. Pretty dissapointing finish for the fans, but oh well. Some spots included Benoit hitting a hat trick of belly to bellys, Benoit missing a suicide dive to the outside, and Benoit attempting a german from the apron but getting pushed off.
The main event was of course the David v. Goliath, which of course Kane was the first to interfere. The pyro and music was enough to make the crowd jump out of their seats, but went insane when the Taker appeared in the ring. Then of course Orton landed the RKO on Taker and put him on the low rider. I don’t know if it got edited or not, but it took Orton a couple minutes to get the car going, afterwards someone told us he flooded the engine. Anyway, the car going through the set was a neat feature to see live, to say the least.
Before the Friday Night tapings started we got a 2nd Velocity match.
-Velocity Match # 2
Mr. Kennedey def. Kis Kash
Not a bad match for Velocity, and let me tell you that you HAVE to see Kennedey live. One of my favorite parts of the show. The microphone hanging from the rafters is a great effect. Kenndey told us that he is the man who is changing friday nights and did the usual MR. KENNEDEYYYYYY (pause) KENNEDEYYYY! The crowd loved it, and you heard people immitating it all night and even in the parking lot afterwards.
The Friday Night SmackDown tapings
Show started with Randy Orton and Cowboy Bob Olton coming out, which was weird because he was the last one out at the special. Of course he was heavily booed by the crowd because of the Taker stunt, but there were also a lot of Orton supporters there. I mean, most of the people were just sighing like “oh, Taker died again.” He did a pretty good heel promo, starting out saying that Undertaker is dead and he killed him. Then he went on to say that he is the 3 time Survivor Series survivor, youngest champion, ect. He ended it by saying that he deserves a title shot. It was later announced that he would fight Matt Hardy.
– Opening Contest
Tag Team Battle Royal: Mexicools (Psicosis & Super Crazy) def. The Dicks (eliminated last), Brian Kendrick & Paul London, LOD, Funaki & Scotty 2 Hotty, & Nunzio & Vito (elimiated first)
I would guess the match lasted 5 minutes total, as it was mainly just a big brawl until it came down to The Dicks and Mexicools. MNM did guest commentary on the match, and that makes Melina the only woman we saw all night.
Chris Benoit def. William Regal
Booker came out and did guest commentary for this, which got a lot of boos, I think mainly because the crowd thought they had to sit through the 3rd Benoit-Booker match. The match itself sucked, there was some bleeding by Regal. It was worse than the Velocity match they had previously this year. In the finish Regal immediately tapped to the Crossface, and Benoit went straight after Booker who was at the announce table. They brawled to ringside where Benoit locked Booker into the Crossface on the floor. Sharmell went to get a chair and break it up, but Benoit broke it and got in her face to stop it.
Randy Orton def. Matt Hardy
Pretty solid match, Orton won with the RKO. Afterwards was a segment where Taker was talking on a speaker to Randy with Randy looking around for him and looking worried. Taker said that Orton was going to hell, Hell In A Cell. Orton went through the isle and found a casket. He then, in the moment of the night, RAN THROUGH my isle. (so you’ll see me on TV) We knew he was going to because a bunch of WWE workers lined up in our isle and we heard them talking about how “the fans in the isle needed to clear out.” So he ran through ours, fans going balistic, and then a pyro went off where he went. He ran back and was touching people trying to get back to ringside, and he shoved my shoulder out of the way of the isle, which was really cool. I was able to snap a lot of close pictures. Really cool segment setting up the HIAC.
I don’t remember if this happened right after the commercial break following Orton’s match or later, but Orton was in Teddy’s office complaining about the HIAC and saying that Taker was did. Teddy said “you’re goin’ to hell playa, and I ain’t goin wit ya.”
In a set up for the following match, Simon Dean was interviewed by the diva search loser Crystal about his upcoming match with The Boogeyman, his debut. Simon showed off some new Simon System products and said he had nothing to fear. When he went to unvail his new product on a table, it was Boogeyman’s head. Dean got scared and security had to drag him to the ring for:
The Boogeyman (his debut) def. Simon Dean
Crowd really dug Boogeyman. In the match, Boogeyman got out a box of worms and ate them. Yes, it was real too as we saw the replay on the titantron, and after the match we saw a closeup of the live worms squirming in the ring.
JBL did an interview saying that he will defend his show tonight, partnering with Rey to beat RAW’s Kane and Big Slow. The idea was to get him over as a face for tonight, but the crowd didn’t buy it.
Bobby Lashley def. Sylvain
Crowd REALLY dug Lashley, and a “Lashley” chant started up. Sylvain came out and said “Bobby Bobby Bobby” on the microphone like he did in the segment with Bob Holly, and then bragged about his good looks until Lashley pounded on him. Wasn’t a complete squash but pretty much. Lashley won with his finisher.
– Main Event
RAW tag champs Kane & Big Slow def. JBL & Rey Mysterio
Nothing really special here. JBL left about half way into the match after Rey blind tagged himself in. This left Rey against the giants and they double chokeslammed him for the win. DAVE made the save for without a doubt the biggest pop of the night.
Overall it was an enjoyable show. Hell, for the price of one SD ticket you can’t beat that we got SD and an hour live special. Makes you wonder why they put it here in Cincinnati.
Highlights of the night for me
– Getting shoved by Orton, of course
– Meeting Teddy Long before the show
– Seeing Mr. Kennedey live
– And, in the saddest and funniest part of the night, during the show when the crowd was chanting Eddie, an old arena worker came up to me and said “Eddie Guerrero’s dead! All these people are chanting his name, he isn’t going to be here!” True story, and he was dead serious.
DAVE – For the save, and the last big appearence of the night
Eddie – Chants were flowing all night
Undertaker – For obvious reasons
Bobby Lashley – Crowd really dug him
Orlando Jordan – Mostly for the heat of beating a Cincinnati local
Big Slow – Spitting on Eddie’s low rider, and for just being Big Slow
Kane – Representing RAW with Big Slow
Thanks for reading this special report!