Reviewing the 3/18/11 episode of Friday Night Smackdown…
1. Brodus Clay looks like the result of a Mantaur and Bill DeMott love child.
2. One of the problems with brand separation is that when you have a visitor from another show, in this case Sheamus, and he comes in as the other show’s secondary champion and defeats the Smackdown brand secondary champion, Kofi Kingston, it makes you wonder how that benefits the home brand. Is Sheamus coming back to Smackdown next week? Will Kofi be getting a rematch on Raw where he will pick up a win to show how credible of a champion he is to the Raw fans?
3. I like the Cody Rhodes metamorphosis into a bitter more serious competitor complete with attitude, attire(wrestling in a suit after coming down to the ring with a towel over his head in shame) and new music. Although all I can think of when Rhodes does that headbutt with the mask is Woody Woodpecker.
4. The videos with Shawn Michaels analyzing the Undertaker and his streak continue to be top notch. It is funny how the Undertaker’s victory over Triple H from Wrestlemania XVII has been completely erased from these videos and any acknowledgement of it in any form stricken from any WWE broadcast.
5. WWE jazzed up the Sin Cara debut vignette this week surrounding his signature moves in fire. The money match up will definitely be Sin Cara vs. Rey Mysterio. A clash between the two at next year’s Wrestlemania would indeed be an epic encounter.
6. Watching all that carnage The Corre unleashed on The Big Show and Kane just drew more attention to me that someone will be going through that Cole Mine at Wrestlemania. Maybe not in theÂ match with The Corre, but without a doubt somewhere. Speaking of The Corre vs. Show/Kane feud, that botched table flap jack on Show was painful to watch. If WWE is smart, they’ll reintroduce Diesel again next week to save Show & Kane from a subsequent beatdown from the wild pack of hyenas. A Big Show/Kane/Diesel team would be very cool to see at Mania.
7. Rey Mysterio impressed me again. For a while, his matches had become too formulaic, but I can see him adapting to every opponent. Not to mention, like Rey or not, you can not deny the fan reaction and the intensity of the match ups that is raised from such reactions every time out. Rey defeated Ted Dibiase in a rather short, but solid contest this week. Can Ted Dibiase and Maryse have any less chemistry? Ted, who had loads of potential has been surpassed by Cody Rhodes, which at this time last year, I would not have thought possible. And Maryse, who is always fun to watch in action has been relegated to nice to look at, but rather useless eye candy at ringside. Maybe teaming Ted with his brother Brett can reinvigorate his career. And if WWE ever wants to resurrect the REAL Rated R superstar, Edge, then Maryse would be the perfect partner for him. I wish they would have went that route instead of “marrying” Edge to Vickie years ago. Even Maryse herself agreed with me.
8.Â Lines Of the Night:
a. Kane to Big Show when they tried to chokeslam each other in the back
Kane– “You complete me.”
b. Josh Matthews to Booker T at the beginning of the Jack Swagger vs. Chris Masters match
Josh– “Don’t even try to get in a word edgewise here Booker.”
c. Michael Cole talking about his rechristened Swagger taught finishing move
Cole– “And of course what I like to call the An-Cole-Lock.”
9. Match of the Night:
Steel Cage Match
Christian vs. Alberto Del Rio
Intense match up between the two feuding superstars. Christian while a stepping stone of sorts and filler between now and Wrestlemania to keep Del Rio busy before his huge match with Edge, is showing that he can continue to play at a main event level as he did before when he was a World Champion for TNA. Del Rio kicking out of Christian’s finisher while a bit of a big time blow to the Christian character’s reputation in this match up was not as huge of a factor when Christian picked up the big win by winning the cage match itself. Edge saved Christian from a post match attack via distraction, but Alberto finally came out of Smackdown looking strong with his con-chair-to on Edge’s arm after Brodus Clay prevented Edge from destroying Alberto’s car. Clay proved his worth as Del Rio’s man beast this week.
10. Final Show Thoughts:
Does Snooki really need to be wrestling in that 6 person mixed tag? With Vickie Guerrero at ringside, Snooki just as easily could have been appearing in the corner of Trish, John Morrison and Kelly Kelly. Kelly has upped her game as evident by her intensity in her match with Layla this week, which was entertaining for the length it was given. Michael Cole and Michelle McCool had a fun love fest at ringside during that match as well. Speaking of Cole, his chemistry with Jack Swagger continues to be a highlight here on Smackdown. As goofy as Cole looks either trying to act tough or dance around with Swagger, I have to give him credit for embracing his role as a heel and giving a very over the top, but entertaining performance every week. When you want to see him get his clocked cleaned as the late great Gorilla Monsoon used to say, then the man is doing his job. Kudos also to WWE for really hammering home the point to the WWE universe of fans to not try this at home.Â WWE definitely must know the responsibility they have as a PG product to warn their younger and intellectually challenged viewers that this is not a sport anybody should be doing at home since they are not going to be trained stuntmen and athletes as the WWE performers are. From wrestling on the independent level myself, even with hours upon hours of practice and training, injuries are inevitable. But more importantly, this was another solid show. I was worried on paper that this wouldn’t translate to an entertaining edition and while maybe not as good as last week, the Road to Wrestlemania editions of WWE programming always raise the bar in terms of hype and excitement.
Alberto Del Rio
Came out of the show looking the strongest, as he really needed to be after falling into the background a bit in recent weeks.
That is all.
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Tags: 10 Thoughts, alberto del rio, Cage match, christian, Cody Rhodes, edge, Friday Night Smackdown, rey mysterio, shawn michaels, sin cara, Smackdown, WWE