June 23, 2008
Raw: Draft goes Smackdown's way
By DALE PLUMMER -- SLAM! Wrestling
It’s that time of the year, again, the WWE Draft, although if the brand split was dissolved, we could avoid all this. Oh, and Vince is still giving money away, this time from San Antonio, Texas. All three announce teams are at ringside for this three hour event. All interpromotional matches will determine which brand gets a pick.
Match #1 – Triple H vs. Mark Henry
Hunter locks up with Henry, and Henry picks him up and slams him to the mat. Henry with a head butt to Trips in the corner, Hunter is able to get a boot up. Mark drops an elbow, and drags HHH to the corner. Henry climbs the middle turnbuckle, hitting a Vader bomb. Henry locks in a head vice. Triple H fights his way out, and then drops out of a military press. Hunter presses his advantage with right hands, and then a face buster. A high knee finally knocks Henry to the mat. Hunter looks for the Pedigree, but Henry reverses into a back breaker. Hunter kicks out of the pin, and then connects with the Pedigree.
Winner via pinfall: Triple H
WWE Number One Draft Pick goes to RAW
RAW drafts Rey Mysterio
Rey walks to the ring and shakes hands with Triple H.
Vince walks out on stage to hand out the first cash prize of the night. Let’s see if after two weeks if Vince can make this a lot less awkward. Tonight there will only be six winners. Five will win $100,000, while one lucky person will take home $500,000. Vince brings out Kelly Kelly to award the night’s first cash prize. Vince can’t understand the women’s accent and almost doesn’t award the prize.
Triple H welcomes Rey, and so does John Cena. Rey excuses himself, so the two can talk. Hunter says he doesn’t need or want Cena’s help, and now this is personal. Hunter knows he is better and has never gotten over losing to Cena. John points out he won, and says that he doesn’t care if he respects him or not, but to be the man you have to be the man.
Match #2 – Finlay and Hornswoggle vs. Santino Marella and Carlito
Winner via pinfall: Finlay and Hornswoggle
The second Draft Pick goes to Smackdown
Smackdown drafts Jeff Hardy
Randy Orton watches from the back as Jeff Hardy celebrates his selection.
Orton then walks and tells the crowd he was forced to be here because of the draft. Orton wants to tell Cena and Triple H that he doesn’t care who is champion, and they better hope he gets drafted to Smackdown, because he will be WWE champion, again. Orton then tells Vince he isn’t in the mood to give away $100,000. Vince also wants to give away a great main event. John Cena will take on Edge tonight. Vince then picks up the phone and dials the next winner.
Match #3 – Hardcore Holly and Cody Rhodes vs. Chavo Guerrero and Bam Neely
Neely takes it to Rhodes in the corner. Chavo tags in and distracts the ref as Neely gets in a cheap shot. Rhodes hits a standing drop kick. Holly tags in and kicks Chavo in abdomen. Rhodes tosses Chavo over the top rope, but Chavo catches him in a head scissors and tosses him to the floor. Holly grabs Chavo off the ropes and hits the Alabama Slam.
Winner via pinfall: Hardcore Holly and Cody Rhodes
The third Draft Pick goes to RAW
RAW drafts CM Punk
Chris Jericho walks out to address the crowd. Jericho says we have been brainwashed into thinking Shawn Michaels is a decent human being. Jericho says HBK will turn on all of us. Jericho runs down the list of people HBK turned on; first Marty Jannetty, then Diesel, then Hulk Hogan, then Batista, and finally Jericho himself. The fans start an HBK chant, Jericho says that is fine, because he doesn’t want them chanting his name. Jericho calls upon the one man who helped him out last week, Lance Cade. Jericho thanks Cade for his words, and then says he still doesn’t have an opponent for Night of Champions. Jericho then shows the footage of HBK being rammed into the television. Jericho tells Shawn the worst is yet to come, when HBK’s music hits, and Michaels walks out on stage. HBK charges Jericho and lays into him in the ring. The fight spills to the floor, where HBK is rammed into an announce table. Michaels grabs his face, and is down in pain. Jericho laughs and walks away.
Tazz “Don’t call me Mel Kiper” offers his insights on the draft.
Match #4 – The Miz and Morrison vs. Hawkins and Ryder
Before the match, Vicki Guerrero says Hawkins and Ryder will not be competing as things have changed due to recent events. Their new opponents are The Hardyz!
Match #4 – The Miz and Morrison vs. The Hardyz
Matt starts off with a shoulder block on The Miz. Hardy blocks an attempted turnbuckle smash, and then hits a clothesline. Jeff tags in and hits Poetry in Motion. Jeff knocks Morrison off the apron, but only gets a two count on Miz. Morrison makes a blind tag and punches Jeff as he comes out of a catapult from Miz. Morrison counters a jaw breaker with a kick. Hardy is on the receiving end of a dual knee drop. The Miz then locks in a rear chin lock. Hardy elbows out, but is forced into the corner. Miz hits a clothesline in the corner. Hardy connects with a Whisper in the Wind, and both men are down. Matt and Morrison get tags. Hardy hits a double clothesline, and then a move off the turnbuckle. Hardy hits the Side Effect, but Miz breaks up the pin. Hardy fights Morrison off the turnbuckle, and then hits a leg drop. The Miz distracts the ref, so there is no pin. Morrison rolls up Hardy from behind and grabs the tights for the win.
Winner via pinfall: The Miz and Morrison
The fourth Draft Pick goes to ECW
ECW drafts United States Champion Matt Hardy
Vince is back to give away more money, and brings out the Nature Boy Ric Flair. Vince gives away $100,000 while Flair gives away a WOOOOOOOO!
Match #5 – Melina and Mickie James vs. Natalya and Victoria – Announcers only draft pick Match
Natalya picks up Melina and then nails her with a power slam. Victoria tags in, but Melina hits a Thesz press. Melina goes to the top, and Victoria pushes her to the floor. Mickie protects Melina on the floor, and helps her partner up. Victoria and Natalya attack the vulnerable pair, and the ref calls for the bell. Referee rule a double DQ, so RAW and Smackdown both get a pick.
Match Result: Double DQ
The fifth Draft Pick goes to Smackdown
Smackdown drafts Jim Ross
The sixth Draft Pick goes to RAW
RAW drafts Michael Cole
Vince is back with more money and The Great Khali. What?!? Khali tries to explain his role in Get Smart; unfortunately he doesn’t explain it in English. When Vince calls the dude hangs up, saying wrong number. Vince tries another number and the kid’s dad answers and puts Vince on hold. Khali yells at the kid.
Edge cuts off Vince as he heads to the ring.
Match #6 – Edge vs. John Cena
Edge punches Cena out of the corner, and then smashes him into the turnbuckle. Edge is whipped into the corner, and then hits a bulldog. Edge fights back with a kick to the head. Edge connects with a powerslam, and then Edge beats on Cena in the corner. Edge connects with a clothesline. Cena responds with a shoulder block. Both men trade punches and then lay each other out with a double clothesline. Cena hits another shoulder block and then a side slam. Cena connects with the five knuckle shuffle. Edge drops out of the F-U, and then counters a second F-U with an impaler DDT. Edge nearly gets the pin, but Cena kicks out. Edge looks for the spear, but Cena counters with a drop toe hold. Cena locks in the STF-U. Edge is able to grab the ropes to break the hold. Edge climbs the turnbuckle, and Cena meets him up there. Edge drops out of another F-U, as Cena is sent crashing to the floor. Edge gets caught in a flying cross body, and Cena sets him up for the F-U. Edge blocks it on the steps, but is instead rammed into the ring post. Edge is counted out as he refuses to get back in the ring.
Winner via countout: John Cena
After the bell, Batista attacks Edge on the ramp.
The seventh Draft Pick goes to RAW
RAW drafts Batista
Edge and Vicki gloat over losing Batista, when Vince walks in. Vince reminds the two that all Night of Champions matches are still intact. Vicki tries to protest, when Vince proposes, “What if Edge was drafted?”
Match #7 – MVP vs. Tommy Dreamer w/ Colin Delaney
MVP beats on Dreamer and then shoots him off the ropes. MVP hits a suplex and then kicks Dreamer in the back. MVP slams Dreamer into the turnbuckle. MVP misses an elbow in the corner, and then Dreamer connects with a bulldog. MVP stalks Dreamer and connects with a big boot in the corner. MVP covers for the win.
Winner via pinfall: MVP
The eighth Draft Pick goes to Smackdown
Smackdown drafts Umaga
Umaga comes to the ring, and hits Dreamer with a Samoan Drop and then splashes Delaney in the corner. Umaga then hits the butt splash on Dreamer in the corner and abuses Delaney with a sidewalk slam.
Match #8 – JBL vs. Kofi Kingston
JBL doesn’t quite know what to make of Kofi, so he just beats him into the corner. JBL slaps on a headlock, and then slams Kofi to the mat. Kofi recovers to hit a spinning heel kick, and then a flying forearm. Kingston hits a standing leg drop. JBL shoots Kingston off the ropes and into a big boot. JBL locks in a modified sleeper. JBL taunts Kofi, but Kingston breaks free. Kofi gets caught in a cross body, and JBL delivers a fall away slam. Bradshaw locks in a bear hug. Kofi elbows free and then connects with a drop kick. Kingston goes up top, but JBL sidesteps the move and then dials up a clothesline from Hell. JBL covers for the win.
Winner via pinfall: JBL
The ninth Draft Pick goes to RAW
RAW drafts Kane
Kane walks out of stage and makes fire shoot from the ring.
Time for mo’ money, mo’ money, mo’ money! The next caller is in the arena! She gives the password and wins the money.
Match #9 – Triple H, John Cena, Batista, CM Punk, Kane (Team RAW) vs. Matt Hardy, John Morrison, The Miz, Shelton Benjamin, Chavo (Team ECW) vs. Big Show, The Great Khali, Jeff Hardy, Edge, MVP (Team Smackdown) – 15-Man Battle Royal – Winner gets two draft picks
The Great Khali is first out, eliminated by Team RAW. Big Show fends off Team RAW and ECW. Shelton Benjamin gets knocked out next. The Miz and Morrison hit the floor together. During the break, CM Punk was eliminated by Big Show. Chavo is kicked over the top rope by Jeff Hardy. MVP hits the floor courtesy of Matt Hardy. Matt and Jeff square off, with Jeff getting the better of the match-up, and ECW is out. Jeff is finally knocked out by Triple H. A woozy Batista tries to take Show out with him, but is unsuccessful, and Batista hits the floor alone. Kane is then knocked out by Show. Cena and Hunter grab one leg each and eliminate Big Show. Edge pushes Cena into Triple H, who spills over the top, and then eliminates Cena to win the Battle Royal for Smackdown.
The tenth Draft Pick goes to Smackdown
Smackdown drafts Mr. Kennedy
The eleventh Draft Pick goes to Smackdown
Smackdown drafts Triple H
Vince comes out to cap off the show with a half million dollar give away. Things finally go smoothly, until a light falls and the stage starts to fall apart. Vince crashes to the floor. Vince is okay, until the million dollar signs falls on him. All the superstars race to Vince’s aid, trying to lift the sign up. Paramedics extract Vince from underneath the sign, placing him on a body board and in a neck brace. The show then fades to black.
2008 WWE Draft Recap
As of Monday June 23, 2008
To RAW: Rey Mysterio, Batista, Kane, CM Punk, Michael Cole
To Smackdown: Umaga, Jeff Hardy, Triple H, Kennedy, Jim Ross
To ECW: Matt Hardy
Dale Plummer has been writing for SLAM! Wrestling since 2003.