5/25 Kester’s WWE Smackdown Live Coverage Review: Randy Orton vs. Alberto Del Rio vs. Kane, Sheamus vs. Jack Swagger, Christian vs. Hunico, and more
By Ryan Kester
Smackdown on WWE.com
Taped earlier in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.
[Q1] The show opened with a video recap of the John Cena, John Laurinaitis, and Big Show storyline…
Eve kicked off the show by making her way to the ring. Eve boasted about Laurinaitis’ victory over Cena before going on to say that Laurinaitis wasn’t present this evening, so tonight she’s in charge of the show.
Eve turned her attention to Sheamus and said she was going to name his opponent for No Way Out. Alberto del Rio’s music hit instantly and he made his way to the ring with a mic. Del Rio tried to flatter Eve for a bit before making his case for why he deserved a shot at the championship.
Before Eve could answer, Orton’s music hit and he quickly joined the party. Orton put himself over briefly and the crowd went crazy. Orton turned to the crowd and asked for their opinion, and they cheered even louder for him. Orton said that Eve had her answer.
Boom goes the Kane pyro, and he joined the others in the ring. Kane said that he was the most qualified out of the three and referred to himself as the Devil’s favorite Demon. Kane said tonight’s Smackdown was episode 666, so he should get the shot. That made me chuckle.
Eve did the only logical thing by booking a triple threat main event between the three challengers with the winner going on to face Sheamus at No Way Out.
[Q2] The announcers transitioned into Christian’s return and Christian made his entrance…
Ryan's Reaction: Every plaid their parts well, but this was a pretty paint-by-numbers Smackdown opener. It does the job of establishing a main event well enough, but it takes a great deal of time and isn’t entertaining week after week.
[C] 1. Christian vs. Hunico. Christian had control until Camacho caused a distraction, and Hunico was able to capitalize. Hunico hit a brief series but Christian quickly regained control and ran through his move set.
Hunico attempted to hit his finisher, but Christian transitioned into the Killswitch before following with the Frog Splash for the pinfall victory.
Christian defeated Hunico in 2:52.
After the match, Cody Rhodes made his entrance. Rhodes said he restored the Intercontinental Championship back to its original prominence, but all that was going away because of Christian. Rhodes said that when he gets his rematch, it will only take him three seconds to regain his title.
Ryan's Reaction: That match existed solely as a way of reintroducing Christian to viewers. I like seeing Christian utilize a different finisher than the Killswitch as that maneuver never really looked like it could put someone away. I’m looking forward to the matches we will get from Rhodes and Christian over the IC Title, but this feud feels like a step back for both men.
[C] Titus O’Neill and Darren Young argued with The Uso brothers over who had the more ridiculous dance.
[Q3] 2. The Uso Brothers vs. Titus O’Neill and Darren Young. The Usos were in control until Young interfered and O’Neill gained the advantage. The heels went to work on Jimmy Uso and hit a series of quick tags.
The finish came when O’Neill and Young hit their backbreaker/elbow drop combo.
Titus O’Neill and Darren Young defeated The Uso Brothers in 3:09.
Ryan's Reaction: That match was good enough, but there simply wasn’t much of a match there. It’s nice seeing young wrestlers get airtime, but I wish they were given some more time to do more.
[C] A Sin Cara vignette aired, hyping Sin Cara’s return next Friday…
Some jobbers tried to cut a promo, but Ryback didn’t let them finish.
3. Ryback vs. Brian Edwards and Kevin Bindle. Ryback hit both men with lifting powerbombs and he nearly took off Bindle’s head with a clothesline.
Ryback lifted both men into his Fisherman’s Muscle Buster finisher for the 1-2-3.
Ryback squashed Brian Edwards and Kevin Bindle in 1:38.
Ryan's Reaction: I was getting a little more interested in the act when it looked like Ryback was going to slowly climb the roster, but the return to jobbers this week tells me that WWE really has no idea where they are wanting to go with Goldberg-lite.
[Q4] [C] 4. Santino Marella vs. Ricardo Rodrigues. The two men did some comedy spots for a bit and Rodriguez winded himself by running the ropes.
Marella did an Airplane Spin that sent both men to the floor. Santino hid under the ring snuck up on Rodriguez from behind, and hit the Cobra for the win…
Santino Marella defeated Ricardo Rodriguez in 1:50.
Ryan's Reaction: The crazy thing is, both of these men can actually wrestle if they were given the opportunity. The match was entertaining for the live crowd, but a comedy segment on a night filled with short matches is a bit much.
[C] Sheamus made his entrance and he denied the need to apologize for bumping into Laurinaitis on Monday. He apologized for Laurinaitis being a massive arse. He then said if you looked at that arse, you could likely find his assistants, Eve and David Otunga, and Big Show shove dup there.
[Q5]Sheamus said if he had his way he’d face Randy Orton at No Way Out. Vickie Guererro’s voice screeched through the arena and she had to scream to introduce Jack Swagger over the roar of boos from the live crowd.
5. Sheamus vs. Jack Swagger. Swagger out-wrestled Sheamus in the early going, but Sheamus wasted no time in flooring Swagger and hitting his Battering ram flying shoulder.
Vickie distracted Sheamus long enough for Swagger to hit a chop block on Sheamus’ ankle. Sheamus sold on the floor as the show went to break…
[C] Back from commercial, Swagger continued to target Sheamus’ ankle. Sheamus made his comeback off of a neckbreaker.
Sheamus ran through his move set, but Swagger was able to break his momentum with another chop block and a Swagger Bomb for a near fall. Swagger went for a Gutwrench Powerbomb, but Sheamus rolled through and nailed the Brogue Kick for the win.
Sheamus defeated Jack swagger in 10:31.
Ryan's Reaction: That’s more like it. Swagger looked really good here and it reminded me how great of a wrestler he can be when he’s allowed to have a long match. Great way to kick off the second hour.
[Q6] [C] Damien Sandow made his entrance and cut another promo about how he is out to help all of us become enlightened. He explained his actions from last week and he insulted Tatsu again before declaring that he would beat Tatsu for his benefit and for the common good of the fans. He told the crowd they were welcome before getting in the ring.
6. Damien Sandow vs. Yoshi Tatsu. Sandow knees Tatsu into oblivion before hitting a side Russian legsweep.
Sandow followed with his arm-cradle neckbreaker for the pinfall victory…
Damien Sandow defeated Yoshi Tatsu in 0:43.
Ryan's Reaction: I’m loving everything about the Sandow character to date. I’m just waiting to see what he can do in an actual match.
[Q7] [C] Big Show made his entrance, grabbed a mic, and sat on a stool in the middle of the ring. Show explained why he decided to work with Laurinaitis. Show said he felt betrayed by everyone as no one, fan, wrestler, or staff, stood up for him.
The fans chanted that Show sold out, which Show denied. Show said he realized he has no friends and he has to look out for himself. Show said he got the call and he made a deal. Show said he got his life back with a new contract and a big bonus.
Show narrated the events of Over the Limit and he said at No Way Out he was going to knock Cena out again. Show said the fans never cared about him and now he damn sure doesn’t care about them. Show stood up and looked disgusted by the crowd.
Kane’s pyro lit for the second time of the night and he crossed paths with Show on the way to the ring. Kane went to raise his hands for his pyro when Daniel Bryan appeared out of nowhere and obliterated Kane with a steel chair. Kane writhed in pain as Bryan celebrated up the ramp…
Ryan's Reaction: Show’s promo was done well enough, but the story behind it is so poor that it prevents me from caring. It’s good to see Bryan show up and get some of his heat back from Monday night, but it would have been preferable if he never had to regain his heat in the first place.
[C] The show returned with Kane sitting in the corner trying to recover from the attack from Daniel Bryan.
[Q8] 7. Randy Orton vs. Alberto Del Rio vs. Kane to determine the number one contender for the World Heavyweight Championship. Del Rio and Kane went right after Orton and Kane went for a pin in the opening minute.
Orton hit an over-the-shoulder backbreaker and went for a cover, but Del Rio broke the pin. The match spilled to the floor and Orton threw both of his opponents into the barricade. Orton went for his hanging DDT on Kane but Del Rio hit him with a springboard enziguri. All three men sold as the show went to commercial…
[C] Back from the break, Kane was cleaning house. Del Rio gained control after hitting Kane injured arm with a kick. Orton dumped Del Rio to the floor and Kane hit Orton with a sidewalk slam. Kane went up top but Del Rio jumped up and hit another enziguri, this one dumping Kane to the floor.
Orton fired up and ran through his move set on Del Rio. Kane dragged Orton out of the ring and threw him into the steps. Kane hit Del Rio with a chokeslam, but Daniel Bryan ran down with a chair and distracted Kane.
Orton hit Kane with an RKO, but Dal Rio punted Orton as he made the cover. Del Rio covered Kane for the 1-2-3.
Alberto Del Rio defeated Randy Orton and Kane in 10:14.
After the match, Sheamus floored Del Rio from behind with a double-axe handle.
Ryan's Reaction: Decent main event, but the whole mess with Daniel Bryan at the end was odd. Bryan is feuding with CM Punk, so I’m not sure why they have him antagonizing Kane so fervently. Getting some licks in after Raw is one thing, the interference makes it look like they’re having him feud with two people at once. Overall, this show was fairly entertaining, but it is easy to tire of brief match after brief match. Personally, there is enough there for me because I love seeing some new talent getting a chance to shine, but I can understand if a casual fan would lose interest quickly.
If you have any questions or comments or just wish to chat with a fellow wrestling fan about whatever, then feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow me on Twitter at @TheRyanKester.
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