The SmackDown Report

Cool note: the Shane McMahon leap of faith (or was it leap of death, I forget?) from SummerSlam 2000 is now in the beginning video montage. I don’t know how long it’s been there, but I only just noticed it.

Sadly, the spoilers are true, and the show starts off with Edge having to relinquish the title. Well that sucks. Edge asks for appropriate lighting (nice touch), and talks about his road to the championship. Edge runs through his injuries and says he came back for the people and to prove that he could do it. Then, the thing takes a storyline turn, and Edge begins talking about the horrid Mardi Gras segment from last week. His left pectoral muscle has been torn off the bone and he’ll be out for four months. Edge runs a tribute video; Simply The Best, a remake of Tina Turner, is nicely the music for the video. If they don’t use this as his return hype package, then they’d better come up with something unbelievably awesome. Theodore Long tells him to look on the bright side; he’ll be back healthy and with a few wins, he’ll be right back with the belt, before Long announces a Twenty Man Battle Royal. Edge says he can’t hand over the belt, asking Long and everyone how they can be moving on so quickly, before telling Long to wait a full thirty days to make him to vacate the belt. Long says it will be the right thing for Edge to give up the title – Edge runs through some victories, and he says he’ll be champion for a fourth time when he returns. Edge takes a few moments and hands the belt over to Long. I don’t know just how much of this segment was acting on Edge’s part, but except for the very few Mardi Gras mentions, this was absolutely perfect in my book – it felt like a great mix of in character acting and actual emotion.

Commercials.

Moments ago clip of Edge handing the title back over. I already can’t wait for those video montages hyping his return. Hopefully, they turn this into some great momentum for Kane. They won’t, but we could always hope they do. At least until Edge’s return and probable feud with Kane. And I have Simply The Best stuck in my head now, too, if you wanted to know.

Backstage, guys are getting ready for the battle royal.

Opening Contest: Torrie Wilson vs. Victoria
The series of matches that the world was beginning for. Wilson gets a one count school boy over Victoria early on. Wilson with forearms before sending Victoria into the corner. Victoria goes outside and Wilson hit’s the Lou Thesz off the apron again. Back in the ring, Wilson kicks Victoria outside again and nails a baseball slide. Victoria with clubs to Wilson, Wilson gets some shots to the gut of Victoria but Victoria knocks her down. Victoria goes for a suplex but Wilson turns it into a small package attempt. Victoria goes for her TKO but Wilson turns it into a sunset flip for a two count. Victoria with a rear naked choke on Wilson. Hair toss by Victoria. Wilson with a swinging neck breaker for another two count. Wilson runs into a high knee by Victoria, and a Widow’s Peak puts Wilson away.
Winner: Victoria

Three out of Ten. SmackDown needs some heel divas quickly if they expect Torrie Wilson to reclaim the position of top SmackDown blonde; they can’t seriously expect her to get back up there through an uninspired feud with Victoria? Valet extraordinaire is always the safe route, constant matches with Victoria are not.

Everyone’s celebrating the fact that they’ll be World Champion by the time the night is over.

Up Next: 20 Man Battle Royal

Commercials.

Another video of Edge giving up the belt. I miss him already.

Second Contest: World Heavy Weight Championship: Twenty Men
Entrants: The Majors Brothers, Jamie Noble, Chavo Guerrero, Dave Taylor, Matt Hardy, Mark Henry, Deuce and Domino, Jimmy Wang Yang, Funaki, Eugene, Montel Vontavious Porter, Batista, Shannon Moore, Kenny Dykstra, Finlay, The Great Khali, Chris Masters, Kane
The usual big brawl starts us off. Since I’m heaps tired, I’ll be waiting until there’s a few guys in the ring – as opposed to the entire locker room. I remember the days where I would’ve tried to recap ever move though. Meanwhile, I think you can figure out the guys who get eliminated pretty early on: the Major Brothers, Shannon Moore. There’s a nice little stare down by Khali and Henry before the majority of the roster gang up on Henry and eliminate him; surprisingly early. Noble gets in between the middle of a stare down between Kane and Batista; they eliminate him, so Eugene congratulates them which of course leads to his elimination. Nice to see a little bit of comedy, I suppose. Hardy eliminates Porter, and the final eight surprisingly includes Masters, Yang, and Guerrero. Guerrero and Yang work together to eliminate Masters, only for Yang to eliminate Guerrero shortly after.

Far too long after this match began, Batista and Kane begin working together to eliminate Khali. But being the idiots that they are, they don’t eliminate him. Finlay tries to eliminate Yang, placing him on the apron, but Hornswoggle trips Yang and Yang is eliminated. Khali kicks Hardy over the top rope and to the floor, and we’re down to Kane, Batista, and Khali. Apparently Finlay is still in there. Khali with chops to Kane and Batista, but Finlay from behind with shillelagh shots to Khali! Kane goes for a Chokeslam on Finlay but Batista spears Kane and eliminates Finlay! Kane chokes Batista but Batista knocks Kane off and goes for an elimination, but Khali comes from behind and eliminates them both!
Winner and New World Heavy Weight Champion: The Great Khali

Batista is not happy about losing, and kicks the stairs to death. The fact that Hornswoggle eliminated someone makes this match tolerable in my books. I hope Finlay using the shillelagh is a sign of things to come for Khali: Finlay / Khali would be interesting, especially if the other heavy weights are thrown in (Henry, Batista, Kane). Three out of Ten. Now I see why most people don’t rate battle royals.

Commercials.

Kristal Marshall interviews Khali over his title win: Khali apparently says that Indian fans are celebrating the first Indian Champion in history.

Theodore Long tells Vickie Guerrero that tonight has been crazy; and Guerrero asks who Khali will face at the Great American Bash. They settle on Batista against Kane later on in the show to see who will challenge Khali.

Commercials.

Third Contest: Matt Hardy vs. Kenny Dykstra
Lock up and Dykstra forces Hardy into the corner. Hardy with a one count school boy over Dykstra. Dykstra with a small package for a pinfall attempt. Headlock takedown by Hardy. Hardy with a sunset flip for a two count. Dykstra with a scoop slam over Hardy; Hardy rolls out of the elbow drop attempts. Hardy tosses Dykstra outside and gets a baseball slide. Dykstra flapjacks Hardy on the top turnbuckle. Hardy runs into a dropkick by Dykstra for a two count. Short arm clotheslines by Dykstra for a two count. Dykstra with a sleeper hold on Hardy, but Hardy turns it into a backdrop. Dykstra with a drop tope hold to Hardy, dropping him throat first into the rope. Hardy pushes Dykstra off a neck breaker attempt and hits him with a clothesline. The two exchange shots with Hardy getting the better with the clothesline bulldog combo for a two count. Scoop slam by Hardy is followed by the yodel elbow. Hardy runs into a high elbow in the corner; Dykstra climbs but Hardy trips him up and nails a Twist of Fate from the turnbuckles for the victory.
Winner: Matt Hardy

Four out of Ten. Just a filler match to put Hardy over leading into the Bash.

Commercials.

Montel Vontavious Porter says that he has seen things and done things that some interview guy has only seen in movies. Porter says he’s better than the interview guy, the fans, and Matt Hardy.

Up next: Batista vs. Kane

Commercials.

Main Event: Number One Contenders Match: Kane vs. Batista
Kane with a headlock on Batista; Kane off the ropes with a shoulder for a one count. Another headlock by Kane this time leads into a clothesline by Batista, getting Batista a one count over Kane. Scoop slam gets Kane a two count. Back drop by Batista. Batista with spears in the corner. Batista gets a body scissors and rear naked choke variation over Kane, but Kane gets to his feet and takes Batista down with an elbow. Kane hits Batista with a big boot, sending him outside of the ring. Kane follows outside and the pair both hit clotheslines.

Commercials.

We’re back and the two are exchanging shots in the middle or so of the ring. Batista goes for an early Batista Bomb but Kane stops it. Kane goes for the ten count punches in the corner, Batista tries to turn it into a Batista Bomb but Kane escapes and hits Batista with a sideslam slam for a pinfall attempt. Flying Clothesline by Kane misses, and Spinebuster by Batista connects. Batista goes for the spear but Kane kicks Batista away, Chokeslam gets Kane a two count. Kane looks to go for the Tombstone but Batista falls behind, only to be clotheslined outside by Kane. Batista sends Kane into the steel steps. Back in the ring, Batista hit’s the flying shoulder block but Khali makes his way down to the ring. Khali attacks Batista, attacks Kane, before the challengers clothesline Khali outside. Bah. Long makes his way out and says that Khali will now be defending against both Kane and Batista.
Winner: No Contest

Well now that was just a trailer park full of crap, but after how long they where wrestling in the battle royal I suppose I can‘t expect too much. That three way “brawl” at the end of the match was not pretty, and neither was the match. One out of Ten. I was kind of intrigued by the possibility of Kane, Batista, and Khali at the Bash – if Kane and Batista had their working boots on and kept it fast paced and short, then it could’ve been surprisingly entertaining. I still am, to a degree, but I certainly won’t be buying the show.

The Inside Pulse
Victoria defeats Torrie Wilson by pinfall: 3/10
The Great Khali wins Battle Royal: 3/10
Matt Hardy defeats Kenny Dykstra by pinfall: 4/10
Batista and Kane draw through Great Khali interference: 1/10
SmackDown 20/07/07: 11/40

This episode was weird. Very weird. And very bad as well. Obviously, it was pretty much just an entire show to hype up the title match at Great American Bash, but the way they organized / structured it – it would have made perfect sense for the World Heavy Weight Championship (if they even needed a title match here) to open or close the show, but it just felt odd to have it be the second match. And from there on in, the wrestlers are just tired and it really shows. This show just did not work at all.

No reason to even have the battle royal, either – you could simply have had Khali demand the belt, Batista ask for a title shot, and Kane want the belt since he‘s the number one contender, Long could simply throw them in a triple threat without needing them to wrestle a lot or at all. Or; Long puts both Khali and Batista in a tag match, with the winning team going on to face Kane at Great American Bash in a triple threat for the belt. Don’t need a big over filled match like a Battle Royal or Gauntlet (which I thought would be the better of the two if they wanted a big multi-man match situation). None the less, the way that they went ahead with this show seems to be the worst scenario outside of a one night eight man tournament. Go ahead, think of ways that this triple threat could have been set up – should fill a few hours of your spare time.

A bad show this week for Smack Down; stay far, far away from this episode. It was hard to watch (I constantly found myself pausing the show to listen to music instead). The structure of this episode reveals just how stupid the creative team thinks we are, or how lazy they are (both even?) since we’re supposed to believe that there was to be no main event and that Theodore Long had forgotten about the Great American Bash until AFTER he talked to Vickie Guerrero, and that he was also stupid enough to let Kristal Marshall, his future bride, interview the Great Khali – who recently threatened his Assistant GM and attacks his workers? Idiots I get a bit rambling and my attitude gets pissy when I’m tired, and I should probably stop now. Until next week, everyone!

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