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Smackdown: Batista takes a bite out of Legacy
By ANDY MCNAMARA -- SLAM! Wrestling


A slew of matches come to Smackdown tonight, including the first appearances of some of the show’s new draft picks. Batista makes his return to Friday nights in exciting fashion, and you don’t want to miss the intense showdown between Triple H and Randy Orton. From the University of Tennessee let's get to the report!

Match 1: The Big Show vs. Jeff Hardy

Well I guess the Draft already means nothing as Raw’s Big Show is still fighting on Smackdown. A typical underdog battle for Jeff where he keeps trying to avoid the power of the Big Show. The giant has been in control for the first seven minutes of the match until Hardy dodges a big boot and pummels Show with forearms. Following the commercial break Big Show has a neck nerve squeeze on Jeff. Show gambles and loses on a second rope attack, and out of nowhere Matt Hardy appears. Jeff uses Show as a spring board to deliver a plancha to the outside onto his brother. Jeff is caught in his foes arms in a whisper in the wind attempt and receives the big right hand. 1-2-3 this one is over. Matt stands over his fallen sibling delivers six consecutive leg drops.

WINNER: Big Show

The Great Khali and Ranjin Singh are out to the ring for you guessed it ... The Khali Kiss Cam! Singh reiterates that Khali will be kissing Santino’s "twin sister" Santina this week on Raw. Khali then has a woman out of the crowd and kisses her.

Match 2: Non-title- Gail Kim vs. Maryse (c)

Kim takes a nasty spill to the outside right off the bat when Maryse dodges a tackle. Not a bad match but nothing special. Kim wins with her foot to the face finisher.

WINNER: Gail Kim

Match 3: John Morrison vs. R-Truth

JR has the quote of the night when Todd Grisham asks him "what’s up?" he responds "my weight" -- classic! One of Smackdown’s new draft picks, John Morrison, is ready to kick start his singles career once again. The quick high flying pace of both Superstars meshes well, as I am continually impressed with Morrison’s overall athleticism. Morrison connects with a unique second rope leaping insiguri. Truth scores a near fall with a beautiful jump kick, but gets caught in the Moonlight Drive shortly after. A successful debut on Smackdown for Mr. Morrison.

WINNER: John Morrison

It’s time for the Triple H and Randy Orton ‘Face Off’. The Game is in the ring while Orton appears on the Titan Tron. This is to hype Randy and Triple H’s big match on Raw this upcoming Monday. The Legend Killer again shows clips of his attacks on the McMahons, including Stephanie. Orton also makes comments about Triple H’s kids, all the while the champion is smiling. The Game tells Randy that their non-title battle this Monday will be a No DQ Match! Should be a good one.

Matt Hardy is in GM Theodore Long’s office where he announces that Matt and Jeff will face each other in an I Quit Match at Backlash.

Match 4: Undertaker vs. Shelton Benjamin

Wow what a match up this was! Benjamin was in trouble until he hit a neckbreaker to the injured neck of The Undertaker. Terrific near falls for Benjamin as the commentating team was focusing on what a big deal it would be for The Gold Standard to win. In the end Benjamin tried an ill advised Tombstone that was reversed by The Dead Man. With the way JR was talking about Shelton, he might just be on his way to a nice push.

WINNER: Undertaker

Match 5: Non-title- MVP (c) vs. Dolph Ziggler

Dolph needs to make an adjustment from his early ‘90’s Lex Luger Narcissist gimmick or he’s going to find himself in jobberville very soon. He does work a hard fast style though. Ziggler turns the momentum to his favour by hurling MVP into the steel post and focusing on the left arm. The United States champion gets caught in a roll up after a brief comeback to lose in a surprising upset; in fairness Ziggler did have a handful of tights. Dolph gets on the mic following the bell and tells MVP that he finally got his attention, and then repeats his own name.

WINNER: Dolph Ziggler

Match 6: Main Event- Batista vs. Ted DiBiase Jr.

This is Batista’s first singles match since December of last year. Million Dollar Man Jr. is finally able to show off his impressive skill set in one on one action. The Animal is in full control with a series of power moves early on. DiBiase is technically sound and doing a good job of keeping Batista grounded via some left leg attacks. Ted Jr. has been in control for some time now and nails his foe with a couple of second rope double foot stomps. A spine buster out of nowhere turns the tide for The Animal and capitalizes on that with a spear and a Batista Bomb. A solid performance by DiBiase.

WINNER: Batista

Andy McNamara is a SLAM! Wrestling writer, and play-by-play broadcaster for Toronto Maple Leafs inter-county league baseball, along with hockey, basketball, and volleyball on Rogers Television in Toronto. He is also the Host of Oakville Blades hockey on TV Cogeco. Contact Andy at andymcnamara@hotmail.com.