SLAM! Sports SLAM! Wrestling
   Fri, July 4, 2008



News & Rumours
Bios
Obits
Canadian Hall of Fame
WrestleMania 30
WrestleMania 30 photos
Video
Movie Database
Minority Mat Report
Columnists
Features
Results Archive
PPV Reviews
SLAM! Wrestling store
On Facebook
On Twitter
Send Feedback




Photo Galleries

SHIMMER tapings


Alexia Nicole


Ox Baker


BCW Excellence


WWE in Montreal


ROH Unauthorized


Smackdown in Philadelphia







SCOREBOARD
PHOTO GALLERY
VIDEO GALLERY
COMMENT





Smackdown: Butterfly goodness for the Divas
By JON WALDMAN -- SLAM! Wrestling


Normally on a Friday night in July, I'd be watching the CFL, but when it's 21-0 for Montreal over Winnipeg at 7pm central, I'm flipping over to Smackdown.

Just as a bit of trivia, the ropes tonight are the red, white and blue scheme that we had in the '80s and early '90s. I'm pretty sure this is the first time we've seen them since the post-9/11 broadcast (outside of the Tribute to the Troops shows), but I could be wrong.

We kick off tonight's broadcast with Triple H in the VIP Lounge. Porter makes nicey nicey by congratulating him on his victory at Night of Champions and welcoming him to Smackdown. HHH then gives the respect back, well until he calls him a Power Ranger and makes a couple inside jokes. The two go back and forth until HHH calls to roll some special footage. MVP says that he is the only one who can call footage to roll, which he then does, revealing the Edge loss on Monday to CM Punk (and for some reason the extended footage involving JBL, John Cena et al).

Following, the two have a fun exchange at Edge's expense until Vickie Guerrero rolls out. HHH goes deeper inside saying that it's genius to marry the boss. Hey, at least he can laugh at himself, that's a thumbs up in my book. The fun stuff continues until Vickie announces HHH vs. Edge for the WWE Championship at the Great American Bash.

Back from the break, we get a look at the Divas title belt. It looks absolutely horrid with a butterfly on it.

Match 1 - Michelle McCool vs. Victoria vs. Cherry vs. Maryse vs. Kelly Kelly (star on a pole match)

Before the match begins, Natalya comes out sporing new music and red hair. Nice touch Nattie!

While I hate XXX on a pole matches, the consistency does work, and actually does well to showcase the talent that Smackdown has. It's a bit disappointing that, despite being moved in the Supplemental Draft, Maria is not in the bout. As one would expect, Michelle McCool wins the bout.

Winner: Michelle McCool

Backstage Alicia Fox and Vickie are chatting, until Zack Ryder and Kurt Hawkins come in. The two get a tongue-lashing from Guerrero then announce that they will face Jesse and Festus.

Outside the locker room, Edge takes a long walk down the hall as everyone stares at him.

After a break, we get a video about the "Moscow Mauler", Vladimir Koslov.

Match 2 - Jesse/Festus vs. Ryder/Hawkins

The big man comes out dressed as Uncle Sam. How festive of...Festus. I don't think I need to tell you who wins this one.

Winners: Jesse/Festus

Post-match, Edge, Hawkins and Ryder attack, with Festus unable to do a damn thing with the bell having rung to stop the match. Festus is absolutely destroyed by the former champ. Smart use of the character, finally!

Backstage, Edge and Guerrero chat about the title loss and Vickie says it was stupid that Edge did what he did without her permission on Monday. The two have a heated debate.

Match 3 - Jeff Hardy vs. John Morrison

As one would expect, the match starts out with a good mix of aerials and sudden impact moves and continues at a hot pace through a strong match which, while won by Hardy with the Swanton, gave Morrison enough time to look strong. Find this one on YouTube if you missed it.

Winner: Jeff Hardy

Before the next match, we get a promo video for Maria. No ring action is shown though. Hmmm...

Match 4 - Umaga vs. Funaki

Blah.

Winner: Umaga

Backstage we go and Edge, Ryder and Hawkins are having a fun little chat before a red-headed attendant calls Mr. Copeland into Vickie's office. Fox is still in there. The lovers have a quarrel, which ends with Edge on the outside of the office.

Match 5 - Matt Hardy vs. Ken Kennedy vs. Shelton Benjamin vs. Chavo Guerrero

This is quite the quartet for tonight's bout, which unfortunately is one fall to a finish. The match, like the earlier Hardy bout, is extremely fast paced and is a fantastic watch given the talent in the ring. The transitions between two, three and four men in the ring at once are smooth and far from contrived. Eventually, we go to the standard finishing move exchange between Guerrero and Hardy, with Benjamin and Kennedy interfering. Benjamin eventually eats a Twist of Fate by Hardy, crashing the Gold Standard down on Chavito for the duke in a nice, innovative spot.

Winner: Matt Hardy

I'll mention that the next "segment" is a Just for Men replay spot, only because we see the same footage that was shown in the VIP Lounge of Edge's loss on Monday. Waste of time to me.

Edge then comes out sans music to make a statement about what happened on Raw. Edge claims that the match with Punk should not have happened and he was a victim. He then goes on to the match against Triple H, then turns to saying he has been disrespected by everyone including Ryder, Hawkins and Vickie. He then rags on Guerrero more, until she comes out, sans wheelchair. Wow, they're both really intense tonight. Vickie starts shrieking worse than Stephanie in her prime (which is an effective way to keep her heel). Edge meets her on the stage and tells her the wedding is off, getting a HUGE face reaction as a result. We fade to black with Vickie crying and hollering after chucking away her engagement (enragement?) ring.

Well, we had two matches that are worth going out of your way to see, a big angle to end the show and decent stuff in the rest of the two hours, save for the tag and Umaga matches. Not a bad night of entertainment; can't say the same about the CFL match, can I?

Jon Waldman has been with SLAM! since 2000.