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   December 18, 2014



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Smackdown!: Story time with The Rock in Chocolatetown
By DALE PLUMMER -- SLAM! Wrestling


With Wrestlemania only nine days away there aren't many unanswered question going into the biggest show of the year. Except, why isn't a regular tag team competing for the belts, but maybe that's just me. Anyway, tonight's Smackdown! is coming to us from my backyard of Hershey, Pennsylvania, (and yes sometimes it does smell like chocolate,) where The Rock is making his triumphant return in front of a sold out crowd.

In fact, the Rock kicks off the show, giving the people what they want. The Rock holds story time in the ring, telling the crowd that it was in Hershey where he came up with one of his catch phrases. It was because of Whatchamacallit Bar is when he came up with, "I'm gonna whip your candy ***!" (I'm not buying that story Rock.) After Rock gets to the moral of the story, Big John Laurenitis interrupts the Champ. Big Johnny wants to be in The Rock's corner at Wrestlemania to help take down Cena and get revenge. The Rock answers the request with the People's Elbow, so I'll take that as a no.

Yea, so Chris Jericho versus Fandango is happening at Wrestlemania. (Say what you will about Fandango, but he saved me $4 on my tickets to GI Joe: Retaliation. Thanks to @QuietStorm187 for the joke. Follow him on Twitter. )

Match #1 Chris Jericho vs. Wade Barrett

The Miz joins Cole and the crew and a very crowded announce table to scout his WM opponent. Wade Barrett gets in The Miz's face on the outside and nearly gets counted out, but the IC Champ is distracted enough to allow Jericho to hit the Code Breaker and get the win.

Winner via pinfall: Chris Jericho

After the bell, Jericho calls out Fandango. I can't believe Jericho is going to job to this guy in nine days. Jericho invites the dancing machine, who is getting pelted with "You can't wrestle!" chants, but Fandango decides to dance his way to the back, instead.

If you missed RAW, or haven't read Nick Tylwalk's RAW report, (go do it now! I'll wait.) we get a recap of build up to Triple H versus Lesnar.

Josh Matthews got a chance to sit down with Paul Heyman, who starts the interview by berating Matthews. Heyman says Hunter is in a must lose situation, and when Lesnar crushes Triple H physically, he will also crush his spirit. Hunter will resent the wrestlers that work under him, because he will never be able to get in the ring again. Heyman says the entire roster will eventually rise up against Triple H.

Match #2 Ryback versus Mark Henry - Bench Press Challenge

Booker T explains that they are using the same test that is used by the NFL. Each competitor will try to bench press 250 pounds as many times as they can. Booker T reminds the two superstars that they cannot touch each other. Mark Henry steps up first, and proceeds to break the World Record with 53 reps. (Yea, I don't think this is official.)

Ryback takes his turn, matching Mark Henry rep for rep, until he gets to 53. Henry pushes the weight back onto Ryback, trying to choke him with the bar. Ryback is able to fight free, but the damage is done.

Draw

Match #3 Dolph Ziggler and AJ Lee w/ Big E Langston vs. Daniel Bryan and Kaitlyn w/ Kane - Mixed Tag Team Match

Kaitlyn make a blind tag, which means AJ also has to tag it. AJ hits two neck breaker, but only nets a two count. Kaitlyn explodes with a shoulder block, and tags in Bryan.

Bryan drop kicks Dolph in the corner, but AJ distracts the ref, allowing Big E to trip up Bryan. Kane runs over to take out Big E. Kaitlyn tags in, but Bryan continues to attack Ziggler on outside. AJ leaps onto Bryan's back, but when she returns to the ring, Kaitlyn hits a spear. Kaitlyn covers and gets the win.

Winner via pinfall: Daniel Bryan and Kaitlyn

The Shield cuts a promo saying that the strength of their purpose is stronger than anything. They believe the team of Orton, Sheamus and Show will implode before Wrestlemania.

Match #4 The Great Khali w/ Natalya and Hornswoggle vs. Jack Swagger w/ Zeb Colter

Swagger looks in the ring and says what we are seeing is everything that is wrong with this country.

Swagger applies an Ankle Lock to Khali on the outside, and both men get counted out. Hornswoggle tries to help, but gets tossed into the security barrier for his trouble.

Double Count Out

Ricardo Rodriguez hobbles out on stage and wants Swagger to attack him again. Swagger attention is held long enough for Del Rio to attack from behind and lock in the cross arm breaker. Colter tries to make the save, but is clobbered by Ricardo with a crutch. Swagger ducks under a crutch shot from Del Rio and is able to retreat to the back.

Now it's time for the official RAW recap. (Just read Nick's report, instead!)

Michael Cole introduces the newest member of the Smackdown! team, Renee Young, who is with Orton, Sheamus and Show backstage. Sheamus and Show start to bicker, and once again, Randy Orton is the voice of reason.

Match #5 Sheamus, Randy Orton and Big Show vs. The Rhodes Scholars and Antonio Cesaro

We all know this match is just filler, until The Shield shows up. Big Show allows Rhodes to take the first shot. Rhodes is ineffective and Show chops him into the corner. We go to commercial.

After the break, Orton is pummeling Sandow in the corner. Sandow fights back and Orton is in trouble stuck in the heel corner. The Viper fights all three men, but Sandow gains the upper hand. Cesaro tags in, picking Orton up and dropping him with a gut wrench slam. The heels quickly rotate with tags, Sandow drops the Elbow of Disdain. Orton kicks out. Sheamus gets the hot tag and catches Rhodes on the apron. Sheamus chops away at his chest and then follow suit with Sandow. Sheamus drops White Noise on Rhodes, but is then jumped by Cesaro and Sandow. Big Show knocks outs Cesaro and then tosses Sandow into an RKO. Rhodes gets back to his feet only to run right into a Brogue Kick. Sheamus covers to get the win.

Winner via pinfall: Sheamus, Orton and Big Show

After the match, The Shield starts to make their way out of the crowd. Show, Orton and Sheamus don't wait in the ring, though. The trio takes the fight to The Shield, brawling in the stands. All six men fight on the club level, when The Shield makes a hasty retreat. Sheamus, Orton and Show stand victorious among the crowd as the show ends.

Dale Plummer has been writing for SLAM! Wrestling since 2003. Dale chuckles at the thought of a young Rock riding roller coasters at Hershey Park. Follow Dale on Twitter @Dplummer627.