It is Friday night and this is the recap of the last episode of WWE Smackdown before this Sundayâ€™s pay-per-view Night of Champions. Tonightâ€™s show features two ppv level matches with Jeff Hardy vs Chris Jericho opening the action and Rey Mysterio vs CM Punk in the main event.
Jeff Hardy begins the festivities in the ring with a promo to open the show vowing to win the title at Night of Champions. He even calls himself the â€œCharismatic Enigmaâ€ which really no one should say out loud with a straight face. Hardy then tells us he wants payback for last weekâ€™s post match treatment by Chris Jericho. This brings Jericho down and we have our first match of the evening.
Jeff Hardy vs Chris Jericho: Jericho continues to not wear or bring the tag belts to the ring and that continues to disappointment me. We get some back and forth action to start and eventually this leads to Jericho being dumped outside. Jeff poses for the fans before following up and this allows Chris to floor him on his dropkick attempt to the outside and we go to our first commercial break.
Back from break we are told Jericho has been in control while we were gone. Todd and JR discuss who Jerichoâ€™s partner will be this Sunday as he continues his dominance of the match. The crowd is firmly behind Hardy as Jericho continues to control the action while scoring a few two counts. Jeff has a nice comeback sequence that leads to a missed Swanton attempt that Jericho follows with a Lionsault for a 2.87 count. Jericho attempts to the Walls of Jericho a couple of times but cannot get the hold locked for more than a few moments each time. Jericho reverses the Twist of Fate into the Codebreaker but Jeffâ€™s momentum carries him outside of the ring. Chris tries to drag Hardy back into the ring to gain the pin but he has recovered enough in the 8 seconds that takes to kick out. Twist of Fate finally connects for Hardy and he slowly goes up top. Jericho meets him and they fight over position with Jeff eventually gaining the advantage and follows him down with a Swanton Bomb for the pinfall victory.
We eavesdrop on Michelle McCool from the make-up chair with the line of the night â€œI donâ€™t think people understand how great I really amâ€; as she runs down as many former WWE Divas that she can remember. Since Melina was also hanging out in the area, she letâ€™s us know that she is using her rematch clause for a Womenâ€™s Title match at Night of Champions. Melina throws make-up in Michelleâ€™s face to end the segment and thankfully send us to commercial.
When we return we are treated to a video package for the â€œFriday Night Delightâ€ John Morrison in what will be his only appearance on the show. But I am sure you can all cope with that since Iâ€™m sure you watched the match he had with Kane last night on WWE Superstars.
The Great Khali vs Mike Knox: In the immortal words of the Rock, â€œwho is booking this crapâ€? JR and Todd debate where Knox has been recently and if he has ever been in a match where he is the smaller man. Kane joins us to watch the â€œactionâ€ from the entrance ramp. Knox briefly uses the ensuing distraction to gain an advantage but Khali hits him with the Punjabi Plunge and gets the victory. Kane teases getting into the ring afterwards but thinks better of it and we head to another commercial.
Cryme Tyme and Eve join us to explain to us what being 6:30 means as well as an explanation of what GOAT means. And both serve as a segue for a brief commercial for the new tag-team DVD. This leads to a timely and topical interruption by the Hart Dynasty. Before things get too testy Jessie jumps in for his usual interruption and as usual things grind to a halt.
Dolph Ziggler is accompanied to the ring by Maria as it seems their relationship is now more than just awkward backstage segments. Dolph letâ€™s us know heâ€™ll be the Intercontinental Champion after Night of Champions before and getting Maria settled in a comfy announcerâ€™s chair at ringside as we hit another break.
Dolph Ziggler vs Finlay: The action is back and forth with Finlay eventually gaining a bit of an advantage in the match. But Ziggler sends Finlay into the ringpost shoulder first and takes control by working the Irishmanâ€™s left arm. Fit makes the comeback with a series of clotheslines from his non-injured arm. Ziggler is sent outside but before Finlay can follow up, he backs away when Maria goes to check on Dolph. Ziggler uses the distraction to hit his finisher on Finlay and duck back into the ring just in time to beat the 10 count. Short but I guess it accomplished all they need it to. We get a look (but no audio) of Kane and Jericho talking backstage to tease the mystery partner angle for the PPV as we head to commercial.
World Heavyweight Champion CM Punk comes out with a promo and challenge to the WWE Universe. The challenge is to see things his way and to â€œjust say noâ€. Punk feels bad for the fans and calls them slaves for living in the moment. The awesome thing about these promos from Punk is that he isnâ€™t saying anything outlandish or untrue yet heâ€™ll still be booed for them. Jeff Hardy interrupts to say that Punk has a lot of nerve and has forgotten what it was like to be human. Punk refuses to enable Jeff and to even stand in the same ring as him. So he says what Hardy should have said a long time ago. â€œNo.â€ Punk walks away from the ring and Hardy as we walk to commercials. Great delivery on another solid promo from Punk.
Eve Torres vs Natalya Neidhart: Shad and JTG accompany Eve to the ring and of course Kidd and Smith are with Miss Neidhart. JR tells us that Nat played with WWE action figures instead of Barbies. Early on in the match-up Natalya catches a crossbody attempt by Eve and turns it into a powerslam to take control. Nat continues to control Eve with a nice surfboard submission. This gives me the opportunity to say that I wish more of the divas would learn and use submission moves instead of some of the more dangerous and difficult â€œflashyâ€ maneuvers you often see them try.
And speaking of that, Natalya puts Eve on the top rope for an attempt at some high impact offense but is elbowed off and down onto the mat. Eve very delicately stands up on the turnbuckle and eventually (sort of) hits a moonsault for the pinfall victory. I would have thought theyâ€™d have learned their lesson about having the inexperienced divas performing moves like that. Nothing against Eve, but if the crowd is on the edge of their seat when someone like her goes to the top rope, it probably isnâ€™t in excitement for the move but fear of someone getting hurt.
Chris Jericho is in the locker room for a chat with the Great Khali to talk about the tag team situation. Runjin Singh translates that the Great Khali would love to be part of the unified tag champions, but not if his partner had to be Jericho.
Charlie Haas vs R-Truth: Truth enters the conventional way again this week and of course would like someone to tell him whatâ€™s up. Truth appears to hurt his knee early in the match after an acrobatic reversal and Haas quickly takes advantage. Grisham is being particularly annoying on commentary tonight as Haas takes control with a half-crab but Truth reaches the ropes. Haas continues to ground Truth and work the leg in old school fashion. No â€œPretty Rickyâ€ segment this week but after some prompting from Todd, JR tells us how much he enjoys them. Haas foolishly rushes Truth while he is propped up in the corner and R-Truth hits the scissors kick out of nowhere for the three count and the win.
Jim Ross and Todd Grisham are in the ring to rundown the card and give us the hard-sell of the Night of Champions PPV. If you canâ€™t (or wonâ€™t) be watching join us here at the Pulse for complete coverage of the event.
Intercontinental Champion Rey Mysterio vs World Heavyweight Champion C.M. Punk: I would not have given this away as a free match, but thatâ€™s just me. We start off with some mat work and a bevy of reversals but things quickly get testy and the kicking starts. Punk takes the early advantage by sending Rey shoulder first into the ring post. Mysterio tries to walk up the turnbuckle to escape ad arm hold but gets dumped outside by Punk as we head to our final commercial break of the night.
Punk is in control as we return. He has Rey grounded and is continuing to work on the left arm with a variety of submission moves. Todd is playing the babyface announcer when discussing Punkâ€™s latest promos but JR is playing devilâ€™s advocate for both sides of the story which I find interesting but you might not care about. Dolph Ziggler joins us at ringside as Mysterio starts to make the comeback. 619 is teased but Punk escapes. Rey knocks Dolph from the ring apron and eats a kick thanks to the distraction. 619 is set-up for again, but again Punk is ready for it and escapes again. Punk gets Rey on his shoulders for a GTS attempt but Mysterio fights out and sets up the 619 for the third time finally hitting it.
But our buddy Dolph Ziggler hits the ring (and Mysterio) before the pinfall can take place and Rey will win this match by DQ. As Ziggler starts to lay a beating on the IC Champ, Hardy shoves his way past Punk on the entrance ramp and breaks it up. But as Jeff poses for the fans, Punk reenters the ring and nails him with the GTS before heading back up the ramp to pose with the title as the show ends. Really strong show this week with 2 great matches and the top stars and top matches from Smackdown getting the spotlight before the PPV.
Tags: chris jericho, cm punk, Jeff Hardy, rey mysterio, Smackdown, WWE