5/21 WWE Smackdown taping spoilers: Detailed report on the taping for Friday's television show (spoilers)
WWE Smackdown taping
Report by Dot Net reader Ed Watkins
The show opened with Miz TV, but the odd thing is both times Miz made an appearance (he also sat in on commentary during Main Event) he did so without an entrance, during video recaps. After an interview with Fandango, Wade Barrett came out, and shortly after a brief exchange we got our first match between Miz and Barrett.
1. The Miz beat Wade Barrett by DQ. A solid, though uneventful affair between the two. The finish came when Fandango starting dancing, causing Miz to hit him with a running dropkick to the outside. This forced Fandango to retaliate causing the DQ. As Fandango gloated, Barrett caught him with the Bull Hammer to a mild pop. Are they planting seeds to a possible face turn? Perhaps a triple threat for the intercontinental title?
A backstage segment with Team Friendship was shown. Bryan was still hinting at a heel turn, with an intense promo insisting he was not the weak link of the team.
Next came Jack Swagger with Zeb Coulter. Zeb cut the same promo we’ve heard before, but the man does get some decent heat for Swagger. Bryan made his entrance to the first huge pop of the night. For what it’s worth, I think turning him would be a huge mistake. Bryan has reached a level where he is still massively over with the crowd, regardless of whether he holds a title.
2. Daniel Bryan (w/Kane) beat Jack Swagger. The match was as you’d expect, with Swagger using his size and strength while Bryan relied on his agility and speed. Swagger eventually tapped to the no lock, which Bryan held onto for some time after the bell. Even after letting go, Bryan would reapply it later, forcing Kane to pull him off and stare on in disbelief as Bryan stormed off to the back.
In a segment I highly doubt will make it to TV, a table was setup mid-ring, with Damien Sandow and Matt Striker standing beside it. Sandow launched into a tirade, trashing the idea of the common people cheering on such lowbrow contests like arm wrestling and truck pulling (and bad mouthing those examples of entertainment made him a face to me). He proposed an intellectual challenge – the Gordian knot, a knot so complex only the most intelligent among us could solve it. Sandow mentioned Striker’s past as a teacher, and asked if he was up to the challenge. Striker awkwardly fiddled with the knot before ceding.
Sandow then went on to trash the American education system which somehow brought out Sheamus, who claimed to be pretty good at Rubik’s cubes as a kid (yes, really). Unfortunately, Sheamus too could not untie the knot, leaving it to Sandow, who pulled a pair of bolt cutters out from the table and hacked away, thus “solving” the riddle. Sheamus attempted a brogue kick, which Sandow dodged by rolling to the outside. Sheamus then through Striker onto Sandow (who failed to catch him) and claimed to be fairly smart too, quoting Newton by saying what goes up must come down. It was a do nothing, filler segment, so if it does make TV, it would be a good time to go to the bathroom.
A promo was aired for Raw featuring the return of the Highlight Reel with Heyman as the guest. A wise move to advertise it, as there is potential for some interesting promos.
3. Chris Jericho beat Big Show by DQ. Again, the match played out as you’d expect, with Show proving to be too massive to apply the walls to. The finish saw Jericho wriggle from an attempt by Big Show to ram him into the post. Instead, Jericho rammed Show into it, hit a codebreaker on the outside which caused Show to tumble over the barricade, while Jericho scurried back in to beat the ten count. Jericho then used a chair to tag Show, forcing him backstage.
Paul Heyman and Curtis Axel made their entrance. Heyman mentioned Lesnar and Punk, to cheers from the crowd, before bringing up his next prodigy. He certainly has his work cut out for him, as Axel was met mostly with crickets. It is early though. Axel is a decent worker, and if anyone can get a guy over, it’s Paul E.
4. Curtis Axel beat Sin Cara. Cara got a decent pop, but it was mostly from the younger crowd. For some reason, even though the result was never in doubt as there is no way Axel would lose this early in his run, the kept Cara’s stupid mood lighting. The finish saw axel hit some form of running neck breaker, that hopefully looks better on TV than in person. Why not use the perfect plex, as my section (myself included) chanted for in vain.
An Extreme Rules recap showed off the Shield’s golden night.
5. Kofi Kingston beat Dean Ambrose by DQ. The match hardly got started before the other Shield members made the presence felt, beating down Kofi in the process. Randy Orton and Sheamus made the save prompting Teddy Long to make a six man match.
6. The Shield defeated Randy Orton, Sheamus, and Kofi Kingston. While it was cool to see all six men in action, I was a bit disappointed to not see the Shield work in a slightly separate setting. Instead it was more of the same, with the Shield using distractions to setup double team maneuvers. That being said, Rollins did perform a reverse Russian legs weep into the middle turnbuckle in a cool spot. Reigns also delivered a running forearm smash from the outside, but seemed to tweak his knee in the process. He seemed to pace on the apron, in an attempted to walk it off. Hopefully it was just a minor injury. Ambrose used his headlock DDT combo on Kingston for the pinfall to close the show.
After the taping, the Shield made their way to the back when Team Friendship forced them back ringside. Once there, they ate the finishers of the babyfaces to send the crowd home happy. The faces then slapped hands with the fans, as the Shield (Ambrose and Rollins) sold their beating, including a Flair face flop from Ambrose.
Noes: Overall, a solid event. While I was disappointed in the lack of Ziggler, or for that matter not even a simple update on his real concussion – despite getting an update on Triple H’s worked one, I was glad to see the WWE are still looking out for his best interests. And with solid work from The Shield and Daniel Bryan, I was left feeling pretty satisfied. I feel that Omaha provides a pretty energetic environment for WWE, and after one house show, one Raw and two Smackdown tapings all in a two year span, I think it’s time we got a PPV. Nothing major, but maybe something to get excited about.
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