Smackdown!: Tourney to face Brock
DALE PLUMMER -- SLAM! Wrestling
The WWE continues the Pacific Northwest swing as Smackdown! comes to us from Spokane, Washington.With debate raging on the Internet over the recent signings in the WWE, I\'d thought I\'d play a little game of GOOD IDEA/BAD IDEA tonight, where I deem it appropriate, mind you. In another words, I\'ll do it when I can think of something funny to say.
General manager of Smackdown!, Stephanie McMahon opens the show tonight with a major announcement. First, though, she informs the crowd and the home audience that Kurt Angle and Brock Lesnar will not be joining us tonight. They are recovering from injuries suffered during their match at WrestleMania. Angle will be out for as long as two months due to hamstring and neck injuries while Lesnar should be back next week. He is still shaking off the effects of the concussion he suffered. This is the price that all Smackdown! performers must pay, Steph tells us, if they want to win a WWE championship. She then hits us with the big news. There will be an eight-man, single elimination tournament to decide who will face WWE champion Brock Lesnar at Backlash. And this tournament starts -- now! GOOD IDEA: A tournament to decide the number one contender. BAD IDEA: Including Big Show and A-Train in said tournament.
Match #1: Undertaker vs. Rey Misterio
Tonight and last week Misterio sported a Spiderman inspired mask, and at WrestleMania his ring attire drew inspiration from Daredevil. Where\'s the love for the Incredible Hulk? Misterio really needs to draw some power from the Hulk, after drawing Undertaker in the first round of the tournament. I may have been a little hasty in my judgment, though, as Misterio takes the big man down early, kicking him outside the ring. Undertaker recovers quickly and takes control. He sets Misterio up for a chokeslam, but Misterio deftly reverses it into a DDT. With Undertaker stunned and near the ropes, Misterio hits the 619 and closes in for the win with the West Coast Pop. Except Taker\'s catches Misterio and he takes the last ride and doesn\'t get up. Undertaker wins the right to move on in the tournament. After the match Undertaker shows Misterio some respect by picking him off the mat with a solid handshake a pat on the head.
Vince McMahon is in the building! He\'s looking for Hulk Hogan and wants to see him as soon as he arrives.
Match #2 : Brian Kendrick vs. Jamie Noble with Nidia
Matt Hardy (V 1.0) and Shannon Moore join Michael Cole and Tazz at the announce table to add some insight into this match. Actually it was so Matt could promote his new book, a biography about, well, Matt Hardy. I think he mentions something about a brother, too.
First off, this match is not part of the tournament. Kendrick actually gets in some good offensive moves, as Hardy was running his mouth. Noble is knocked outside the ring. With Noble back in, Kendrick shrugs off the interference from Nidia , landing a flying cross-body on Noble. Noble does fight back, though, reversing a hurricanrana off the top rope into a near-pin fall. Noble gets greedy, trying a baseball slide on Kendrick, who is outside the ring. Noble misses his target and takes out his girlfriend instead. Kendrick takes advantage of a distracted Noble with a bulldog of the rope. Kendrick gets the 1-2-3 for victory. His celebration is short lived. Hardy and Moore storm the ring, sending Kendrick flying. Hardy gets on the mike to challenge Brock Lesnar to a champion vs. champion next week. Kendrick interrupts Hardy, getting a twist of fate for being rude. GOOD IDEA: Challenging Brock Lesnar when he isn\'t 100%. BAD IDEA: Challenging Brock Lesnar at all.
A Full Blooded Italians vignette airs. What is this? The Sopranos?
We get a still photo and video recap of the Brock Lesnar/Kurt Angle title match from WrestleMania. We see the video of Lesnar botching the Shooting Star Press, suffering a concussion. Lesnar was totally out of it after the match. Michael Cole and Tazz stress that Lesnar narrowly avoided a career ending injury. I won\'t even joke about this, as I suffered numerous concussions when I played ice hockey in high school. Here\'s to a fast recovery for Brock Lesnar.
Enough being serious, \"Rowdy\" Roddy Piper is back in WWE; bringing back Piper\'s Pit. This was before my time, so I don\'t know if I should be excited or not. GOOD IDEA or BAD IDEA: The jury is still out on this one.
Match #3: Chris Benoit vs. A-Train
Before the second match of the contenders tournaments starts, we a reminded that Smackdown will be in Chicago next week. Which means one thing, plenty of goods seats still available, kids! Benoit tries to take the hairy one down early, but A-Train dominates the early part of this match, with a variety of submission hold and power moves. A-Train slips up though, by not keeping the pressure on Benoit. The rabid wolverine is able to build some momentum, eventually finding a spot to slap the rolling-German suplex on A-Train. Benoit keeps things going with a head-butt off the top rope, but only gets a two count. A-Train recovers almost too quickly and nails Benoit with a bicycle kick. The big man has Benoit set-up for the Derailer, but Benoit goes up and over, slapping on the cross face crippler in the process. A-Train tries to power out, but the hold is too much. A-Train taps and Benoit moves on.
We find Vince backstage on the phone. Steph interrupts to find out how her dad is feeling after the brutal match at WrestleMania. Vince says he is fine and tells his daughter that he is going to do something he should have done a long time ago.
Torrie Wilson is backstage getting ready for her \"Playboy coming out party\". I\'m not touching this one.
Match #4: John Cena vs. Eddie Guerrero
The winner of this match has the honour of facing Undertaker in the second round of the tournament. Cena comes to ring sporting a throwback Washington Bullets Michael Jordan jersey. This sparks much jealousy from my partner in crime, Nick Tylwalk. Cena is fired up for a chance to meet Lesnar at Backlash, and attacks Guerrero before he is even finished getting into the ring. Cena is hot early, but cannot score a quick pinfall. Eddie fights back with a series of head-butts, setting up Cena for a series of rolling-vertical suplexes. Cena kicks out of a pin after a missle drop kick from Guerrero. He then grabs his chain and tries to knock out Guerrero, Guerrero ducks counters with a chair. The ref regains control of the match and throws the chair outside the wing before it can be used. Cena side steps a corner charge by Guerrero. This gives Cena enough time to hit his new finisher, a Death Valley Driver. Cena picks up the win and will face Guerrero next week in the Windy City.
In the back a limo pulls up. I wonder who it is? It\'s Hogan with his son and Jimmy Hart in tow, again. Hogan looks at the arena and calls it \"Hulkamania\'s house.\"
Now it\'s the moment you\'ve all been waiting for, Torrie Wilson\'s \"Playboy coming out party\"! Torrie teases us with a real life sneak preview, but the magazine has been out for over a week, so what\'s the preview? Torrie also can\'t believe that people want to see her naked. Right. Torrie is interrupted by the sound of a whip cracking and someone\'s entrance music. It can\'t be, can it? Say it ain\'t so! It\'s Sable! Yes, that Sable! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! I don\'t believe what I am seeing. How did this woman get her job back? She\'s damn near 40, is the WWE going to start a seniors\' tour like the PGA? Okay, I\'m calm; my ranting is over. Sable tells Torrie that some people think they won\'t be room enough for the both of them in WWE. Not to worry though, Sable goes on to say she wants to be Torrie\'s friend. The she proceeds to give Torrie a quick kiss on the lips. Sable leaves a stunned Torrie Wilson in the ring. BAD IDEA: Bringing back Sable WORSE IDEA: Getting her involved in a HLA (think RAW) angle with Torrie. No good can come from this, mark my words, no good at all.
Match #5 Team Angle vs. Funaki and Tajiri
I\'m so stunned from the return of Sable that I all I can say about this match is that it was your basic tag-team match. Funaki taps out to the Haas of Pain delivered by Charlie Haas, of course. Jump around guys, you retain your tag team gold. What? This was a non-title match, oh, never mind then.
The FBI is backstage looking for Undertaker. This has BAD IDEA written all over it.
Josh Matthews catches up with John Cena, and asks him about next week\'s match with Taker. Cena tells Matthews that he will shock the world next week by beating Undertaker.
Hey, the FBI, found Undertaker and inform him they have a problem. The problem isn\'t with Taker himself, but with his boy Nathan Jones. The FBI wants to bury the hatchet. Undertaker wants no part of this saying the everyone must be held accountable for their actions. It was the FBI\'s fault he almost got his head kicked in at WrestleMania. In walks Nathan Jones, nothing goes down, but the FBI vows to deal with their problem (Nathan Jones) when they\'re ready. GOOD IDEA: Not letting Jones wrestles again the week. BAD IDEA: Picking a fight with Undertaker.
Match #6: Rhyno vs. The Big Show
This is the last match of the first round. The Big Show overpowers Rhyno early on. Rhyno battles back, only to have his momentum crushed by a big side slam from Show. The Big Show exposes a turnbuckle, but cannot capitalize on the under-handed move. It then totally backfires on Show, as Rhyno hits a gore. This knocks the big man into the exposed steel. A-Train runs to his tag team partner\'s aide, but Rhyno hits another gore and pins the giant. A-Train breaks up the pin, and leads a brutal assault on the man-beast. A-Train knocks Rhyno to the mat with a bicycle kick and yells at The Big Show to snap his neck. A-Train holds Rhyno down as Show drops his huge leg across his neck. Rhyno wins the match and moves on due to a DQ. Will Rhyno be in any shape to take on his tag team partner, Chris Benoit, next week though? That is the question.
Vince McMahon is on his way to ring! He has a surprise for us, or does he? Vince tells us the whole world knows the result of his match with Hogan at Wrestlemania. He lost. Hogan saves his job. I knew that, you knew that, everyone knows that. Vince says he underestimated the power of Hulkamania, and now he wants to set the record straight. Vince calls Hogan out, not to fight, but to apologize. Yes, I said apologize. Hogan\'s music hits and he makes his way to ring. Hogan enters cautiously, but Vince doesn\'t have any tricks, at least not yet. Vince admits defeat to Hogan. \"You beat the hell out of me,\" Vince tells him. It looks like McMahon wants to patch things up and offers his hand for Hogan to shake. Hogan doesn\'t buy it, and Vince doesn\'t blame him. Hogan wants to know if Vince is serious and offers his hand. Vince and Hogan shake, no tricks, nobody get hurt. As Vince is leaving, Hogan thanks him. Vince stops at the top of the ramp and has Hogan\'s music cut. No, thank you, replies Vince. Thank you for all the memories because that is all you and the fans have left. The other shoe is starting to drop, now. Vince tells Hogan he is done. He will never be in the ring again. Vince says he never loses. Even though Hogan won at WrestleMania, Vince is content to let Hogan rot at home, while he still gets paid. Vince then tells Hogan if he wants a piece of him, he\'ll be in the parking lot. Hogan chases Vince down outside. Vince is all alone outside, or is he? Hogan is about to get his hands on Vince when some of Spokane\'s finest stop him. We then hear Hogan\'s son and Jimmy Hart pleading for the Hulkster to get in the limo and leave. The police part like the Red Sea and Hogan is allowed to get in his limo, all the while Vince is yelling at him to \"Get out of my life.\" Vince is gracious enough to help Hogan with his bags, throwing them into the limo\'s trunk. The show ends as Vince slams the trunk shut and yells Stay out of my life, Hogan! Is Hogan really done? I doubt it, but one can dream. GOOD IDEA: Cutting a promo. BAD IDEA: Taking 15 minutes to do it.
GOOD IDEA: Writing a themed column.
BAD IDEA: Not quite thinking that theme through.
And on that note, see you next week!
Dale Plummer is a rookie on the SLAM! Wrestling team. Dale has yet to reveal to his Canadian friends that he is a die-hard New York Rangers fan. Oops!