6/1 Shore's WWE Smackdown Live Coverage: Sin Cara returns, Sheamus vs. an opponent of Alberto Del Rio's choosing, and CM Punk vs. Kane for the WWE Championship
By Chris Shore
WWE Smackdown on SyFy
Taped on 5/29 in Baton Rogue, La.
[Q1] A video hyped the first WWE Championship match in four years on Smackdown between Kane and CM Punk... The opening video aired, followed by the pyro, and Josh Matthews, Michael Cole, and Booker T welcomed us to Smackdown.
Lilian Garcia introduced Sheamus who made his ring entrance while the announce team hyped his title match at No Way Out. Sheamus said after Alberto Del Rio became the number on contender last week, he came out and congratulated Del Rio the best way he could think of. The video of Del Rio winning, followed by the Sheamus attacked, played.
Sheamus said people have questioned him on his actions, but he wanted to let Del Rio know that he wouldn't be kissing Del Rio's behind like he always gets, because he would be kicking it. He said money could buy you a lot of things, but it could not buy you the World Championship.
David Otunga made his ring entrance and Sheamus asked him how his head was after he kicked it off two weeks ago. Otunga said he wasn't there for jokes, he was there for John Laurinaitis. Otunga played video of Sheamus hitting Big Johnny when running to the ring on Raw from two weeks ago. Otunga said Eve came out last week and asked for an apology and Sheamus refused. He said he was out there to order Sheamus to apologize.
Sheamus said this wasn't Starbucks and he can;t order Sheamus to do anything like he orders his coffee. He said if Otunga tried to order him around Otunga would be picking his coffee cup out of his ass for two weeks. He said if Ace wanted an apology he should come out and ask for one himself.
Del Rio's music hit and he drove out in the car. He said Otunga was wasting his time looking for an apology from a peasant like Sheamus. He said people like Sheamus end up working for people like he and Otunga. He told Otunga not to worry, that Sheamus would be very sorry soon because after No Way Out, he would no longer be the world champion.
Otunga said that was nice, but Sheamus needed a more immediate punishment. He said Ace gave him permission to allow Sheamus's opponent to be picked by Del Rio. He and Del Rio shook hands and looked at Sheamus. Sheamus apologized, but said it wasn't for what he did to Ace. He hit the Brogue Kick on Otunga, who fell into Del Rio, and Del Rio rolled from the ring and ran up the ramp. Sheamus said the apology was for that kick and told Del Rio to never trust a hooligan...
The return of Sin Cara was hyped for next...[C]
Shore's Slant: This wasn't terrible work from these guys, but why can't this feud be between Del Rio and Sheamus? Why do they have to drag in John Laurinaitis? Or even more so, if Johnny Ace is in this feud, can we get him instead of his lackeys? We can argue about whether or not Del Rio should be in the main event. But if you put him there, then let him sink or swim on his own. It's this kind of booking that prevents him from earning any type of sustaining heat.
[Q2] Sin Cara made his ring entrance wearing new red, yellow, and white gear. No trampoline this time. Heath Slater was on the floor letting him finish his entrance. Booker T said if this is your first time seeing Sin Cara then you've been under a rock. I guess Booker knows that WWE hasn't gained any new fans on the past seven months...
1. Sin Cara vs. Heath Slater. Sin Cara started fast and dumped Slater tot he floor. He hit a top rope clothesline on the floor and rolled Slater back in. Slater hit a kick as Cara slid back in and stomped him. Cara came right back and hit several spots before winning with a tilt-a-whirl face buster type move...
Sin Cara defeated Heath Slater at 2:24.
A video recapped the Kane vs. CM Punk match that Daniel Bryan interfered on two weeks ago. The announce team hyped the WWE Title main event...[C]
Shore's Slant: I just realized what it is I don;t like about Sin Cara matches. The guy is a great athlete, and he had no visible botches here. But his matches are so formulaic and the spots are so setup. There's no flow to his matches. It's the true definition of a "spotfest." He's going to have to improve on that before he can have a meaningful feud with someone.
[Q3] Back from commercial, Ezekiel Jackson was in the ring. Damien Sandow made his ring entrance...
2. Ezekiel Jackson vs. Damien Sandow. The bell rang and Sandow took a mic. He said he was confronted again with another ignoramus and would not be participating. He did the "You're welcome" bit and tried to leave. Zeke dragged him back into the ring and clubbed him in the corner. He lifted for the torture rack, but Sandow slipped out and hit several vicious knee lifts. He followed with his side Russian leg sweep and elbow drop. Zeke tried to fight back, but Sandow hit his neck breaker finisher for the win. He did a cartwheel to celebrate...
Damien Sandow defeated Ezekiel Jackson at 1:37.
Backstage, Ricardo Rodriguez was talking to Del Rio in Spanish. Del Rio told him to be quiet and let him think. Dolph Ziggler came in and made his case for being Sheamus's opponent. Del Rio agreed and they shook hands... A Ryback video teased him for next...[C]
Shore's Slant: Sandow looks very good in the ring. His moves fit his gimmick very well, and his gimmick is flat working. That said, I had hoped they would change them and I could avoid saying this, but his pink tights have to go. I don't mind the purple knee pads like some, but the punk tights scream "Genius" to me. Not saying Lanny Poffo wore pink, just that it seems like they could make this a stupid character any second with those pink trunks. It's not a huge deal, but little things matter.
Ryan Shelton and Chris Ryans were introduced in the ring from Alabama. They did a "Roll Tide, roll," chant to get cheap heat from the Louisiana crowd. Ryback made his entrance...
3. Ryback vs. Ryan Shelton and Chris Ryans in a handicap match. Ryback slammed both guys around while the announce team laughed. He hit his finisher on both guys at the same time for the win...
Ryback killed two jobbers at 1:59.
The Raw Rebound video was Big Show killing half the roster at the end of Raw.
[Q4] After the video, Matthews announced that Brodus Clay had a concussion and other injuries... Vickie Guerrero cut him off with her "Excuse me," bit and started to introduce Dolph Ziggler. Ziggler walked out and grabbed the mic from her hand without stopping. He said, "Tonight, I beat the World Heavyweight Champion." He finished his ring entrance as Vickie tried to recover...[C]
Shore's Slant: So here is the question of the night: Who looks more impressive, Damien Sandow for beating Ezekiel Jackson, or Ryback for beating two guys who combined weight less than Zeke's left leg? This is the problem with the way they are building Ryback. He's beating guys we have never heard of while guys like Sandow and Antonio Cesaro are beating guys we have, That's going to catch up to them eventually.
4. Dolph Ziggler (w/Vickie Guerrero) vs. Sheamus. The match started fast with both guys getting in moves. Ziggler charged at Sheamus who stepped aside and tossed Ziggler over the top...[C]
Back from commercial, Ziggler hit a double axe handle and setup for the Celtic Cross. Ziggler escaped and crawled to the apron. Sheamus tried to grab him but Ziggler held the rope and the ref pushed him away. Sheamus went to the floor to get Ziggler, and Ziggler hit a drop kick that drove Sheamus into the announce table.
[Q5] Ziggler did his hand stand headlock. Sheamus stood up with Ziggler on his shoulders, but Ziggler slipped out and hit a DDT for two and went back to a rest hold. Sheamus fought out and hit his forearms over the ropes, followed by a drop kick for two. Ziggler botched the lift, but Sheamus recovered for an Irish Curse backbreaker for two.
Sheamus climbed the buckle, but Ziggler hit the ropes and hit a face buster off the top for a great near fall. Ziggler went for the Zig Zag, but Sheamus shrugged him off and hit White Noise. Sheamus set up for the Brogue kick. Jack Swagger ran out and Sheamus hit him. Ziggler kicked Sheamus and went for the Fameassor. Sheamus shoved him into Swagger, and followed with the Brogue kick for the win...
Sheamus defeated Dolph Ziggler at 13:03.
Shore's Slant: That was every bit the match I had hoped. As stupid as it is that White Noise wasn't the finish, the fan in me wanted to see Ziggler take a Brogue kick just to see him sell it. He did not disappoint. Don't get me wrong, this wasn't a five star classic, but go out of your way to see this match.
Matt Striker asked CM Punk about defending the title against Kane. Punk said "Little Johnny" was making him face Kane because Ace didn't want the title on Punk. Punk said he represented everything Ace hated in the world and that was fine with him because Ace represented everything he hated in the world. He put over Kane as tough and having cool nicknamed. He said he had one too, best in the world. He said tonight, the best in the world makes the devil's favorite demon go to sleep...
The slam of the week was Darren Young and Titus O'Neal defeating the Usos last week. Young and O'Neal stood in the ring while a cut in video had them saying they had already beaten their opponents in prime time, and that you could now refer to their team as the "Prime Time Players." Santino and Ryder were out next...
[Q6] 5. Darren Young and Titus O'Neal vs. Santino Marella and Zack Ryder. Young and Santino started. The heels worked Santino in the corner. Ryder tried to make a save, but Young took him out. Out of nowhere, Santino scored a rollup victory on Young.
Santino Marella and Zack Ryder defeated Darren Young and Titus O'Neal at 1:16.
Post-match, Santino and Ryder celebrated up the ramp. Big Show came out and attacked them from behind. Show slammed Santino into the WWE sign on the ramp, and then kicked Ryder's ass down the ramp. He took the bottom part of the stairs and slammed Ryder on them. He dragged the stairs to the stage and slammed Santino on them before locking in the camel clutch on the stairs. He followed with a WMD on a helpless Santino and yelled at the crowd to "Smile now." He walked off and the announcers laid out while the carnage spoke for itself...
Shore's Slant: I was going to gripe about Young and O'Neal losing here, but that beat down was so long and brutal I don't think anybody is going to remember it. Big Show looking at his hand and making the fist always annoys me, but other than that this was very effective at giving him heat. If we have to get Big Show in a major program, this is the Big Show I like.
A video recapped Big Show's assault... Backstage, AJ was dressed in CM Punk garb. Daniel Bryan walked up and asked her what she was doing. He said Punk was just using AJ, and that Punk thought AJ was crazy like everybody did. AJ asked him why he cared what she did. He laughed and said he didn't, but he did once, which was more than he could say for Punk...
Christian had joined the announce team and a video recapped his winning the Intercontinental Championship. Cody Rhodes made his ring entrance. Tyson Kidd was already in the ring...
[Q7] 6. Cody Rhodes vs. Tyson Kidd. Kidd hit a unique arm drag, but Cody came right back with Cross Rhodes for the win. Post-match, Cody and Christian stared off before Cody left the ring area...[C]
Cody Rhodes defeated Tyson Kidd at 1:21.
Shore's Slant: I got nothing. That entire IC segment didn't move me one way or the other. What a shame. AJ looked good though, like always. And Bryan was very good again as well. That story continues to be the best thing on WWE television each and every week. Even in little spurts like this.
CM Punk made his ring entrance. Kane was out next. Lilian Garcia did old school ring introductions. Then, back to commercial...[C]
7. Kane vs. CM Punk for the WWE Championship. Kane charged at Punk and Punk pulled the ropes down to send Kane to the floor. Punk hit a drop kick through the ropes and a double axe handle off the top rope. Kane came back with strikes, but Punk hit a low drop kick and stayed in control.
[Q8] Punk locked on a rest hold, working on the arm, but Kane shoved him over the top rope and Punk stared at him...[C]
Back from commercial, a video showed Punk working Kane's arm on the steps during the break. Punk climbed to the top rope, but Kane punched him down to the floor. AJ came to the ring to watch as Kane dropped Punk on the railing on the outside, and rolled him into the ring for two.
Kane slammed Punk and hit a elbow drop for two. He wrenched the neck while AJ looked on, but didn't cheer or really do anything but watch. Punk tried to escape. Kane grabbed his throat and lifted. Punk hit a DDT, and then the high knee in the corner when Kane stood. Punk hit another and dragged Kane out for the bulldog. Kane lifted Punk instead and they traded reversals until Punk hit a roundhouse for two.
Punk hit a bulldog by jumping off the second rope and covered for a great near fall. Punk lifted Kane for the GTS, but Punk collapsed under the weight. Kane capitalized and hit a low drop kick for two. Kane went for his top rope punch, but Punk kicked him out of the air.
Punk went to the top. Suddenly AJ jumped on the apron and pointed to the ramp. Daniel Bryan ran out and Punk dove on him instead. He hit Bryan a few times and climbed back on the apron. Kane grabbed his throat, but Punk hit the roundhouse kick and then the top rope elbow for two. Punk tried for a springboard move, but Kane punched him and grabbed for the chokeslam. Daniel Bryan hit a missile drop kick on both men to cause the DQ.
Kane fought CM Punk to a no contest at 15:48.
Post-match, Kane rolled to the floor while Bryan kicked Punk and screamed "Yes!" He whipped Punk and charged, but Punk hit a clothesline. Punk lifted Bryan for the GTS, but Kane was back in the ring, and hit a double choke slam on both men. He popped his pyro and started to leave. John Laurinaitis's music hit and he rode out in his scooter with Eve. He said, "At No Way Out, the WWE Championship match is now a triple threat. People Power!" Punk stared at AJ who had climbed in the ring and knelt between he and Bryan to end the show...
Shore's Slant: First of all, good match. It wasn't as good as the one from a few weeks ago, but still pretty god. Second. I'm surprisingly OK with the ending. Cheap finishes have their place, and this was one of those places. The "Kane as unwitting third party" story has been well done, and it's not a normal triple threat storyline.
All that said, could they have found a worse way to announce the triple threat? I mean, Ace looked like he was high out there delivering his lines, and there was zero response from the crowd. That was absolutely terrible. Overall, a fair Smackdown with a few high spots, and way too many one minute matches. I'll have more tomorrow in the Smackdown hitlist and the All Access audio review with Jake Barnett. Thanks for watching along with me tonight.
Questions? Comments? Anyone, anyone? Let me hear from you. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet me @TheShoreSlant with whatever is on your mind.
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