Edge brings in the clones to win at Armageddon
By BOB KAPUR - SLAM! Wrestling
Armageddon is defined as the final battle between the forces of good and evil, or more generally, any great and crucial conflict. On Sunday, WWE presented its annual Armageddon pay-per-view, and it was filled with a series of great conflicts, capping off the company's PPV year with a battle that saw evil come out on top in the form of a new Heavyweight champion.
Indeed, the final conflict of the night was the Triple Threat match for the World Heavyweight championship between Edge, the Undertaker and Batista. At the beginning of the match, commentators Michael Cole and Tazz did a good job of reminding everyone of the history between the three competitors.
The story here was Edge doing everything he could to avoid facing the wrath of either man. He would hide outside the ring and only attack when either one was in a vulnerable spot. When they finally did catch him, Taker and Big Dave took turns delivering some punishment on the villain, but both would prevent the other from getting the pin. At one point, Taker went for the Last Ride on Edge, but before he could bomb him down, Batista speared him. Batista then went to cover a prone Taker who locked on a triangle choke. Great creative moment here, as Edge went out to the floor and rang the bell, causing Taker to release the hold. Shaking off the momentary confusion, Batista and Taker began to slug it out in the ring.
As they were, unbeknownst to them, a pair of Edge lookalikes emerged from underneath the ring. One of the imposters got involved in the match and was easily dispatched, so it appeared to Edge's opponents that he was out of commission and therefore no longer a factor in the match. Focusing all of his attention on Batista, Taker hit a tombstone. As he was going for the pin, the real Edge came in and leveled him with a couple of chairshots, knocking him silly. Edge then scrambled on to the fallen Batista for the pinfall and the shocking win. The show ended with Edge, accompanied by his clones, celebrating his title win on the rampway, while Undertaker glared at them from the ring.
WWE Armageddon Results
From the Mellon Arena in Pittsburgh, PA
Match 1: For the United States Championship
Rey Misterio vs. MVP (champion)
During the preview package for this match, Rey was touted as the best high-flyer of all time in the WWE. He demonstrated some of those skills early with a big springboard somersault dive onto MVP on the floor. MVP ultimately grounded Rey, though, and took control with some effective offense, like a big running kick to the head. Rey fought back, surprising MVP with a hurancarana and some more aerials to regain some momentum. Things picked up with the two exchanging finishing moves, but neither were able to hold the other's shoulders down for three. Eventually, MVP was dumped to the floor and sensing that his title reign was in jeopardy, he chose to flee rather than fight.
Winner by countout (therefore, NOT the new U.S. champion): Rey Misterio
Match Rating: 7/10
Backstage, Jeff Hardy said that he would beat Triple H.
Match 2: Kane and CM Punk vs. Big Daddy V and Mark Henry w/ Matt Striker
Time to change channels. Over on Survivor, the effeminate fellow and the pretty girl were eating pizza, so I guess they won the reward challenge. Meanwhile, the lunch lady was swimming and apparently the only thing stronger than Mark Henry is the cloth of her bikini bottom in order to hold in her Big-Daddy-V-sized behind. That's even uglier than the match. Speaking of which, it was pretty much an extended beatdown by the big men. At one point, BDV seemed to be mounting Kane from behind, reminiscent of when he was the World's Biggest Love Machine. About this time, I was praying for Terry Funk to come in brandishing a flaming branding iron and show all four what extreme is all about. The closing sequence saw a fired-up Punk go airborne, but he got caught by BDV who hit a Samoan Drop and pinned the ECW champ cleanly.
Winners: Big Daddy V and Mark Henry
Match Rating: 3/10
Backstage, Vicki Guerrero and Edge shared a tender moment. I can't tell if this storyline is gross, creepy, unsettling, or all of the above.
Match 3: Kennedy vs. Shawn Michaels
Before the match, Kennedy says the only thing that matters is that he beats HBK. Great storytelling in this one. The match started with Kennedy injuring Shawn's back, and Shawn delivering a lot of punishment to Ken's arm and hand. Both attacked their opponent's weakened body part aggressively throughout the match, with Kennedy in particular showing a lot of ferocity in delivering multiple backbreakers. Shawn fought through the pain and things really started to pick up. A few close calls on both sides, with Kennedy coming very close to the upset after hitting the Lambeau Leap. Tying things back neatly, Kennedy's weakened arm proved to be his undoing -- after hitting Shawn with a big punch, he had to take a second to shake off the pain. The moment of hesitation allowed Shawn to surprise him with Sweet Chin Music out of nowhere and cover him for the win.
Winner: Shawn Michaels
Match Rating: 8/10
A Royal Rumble preview video aired. It's actually pretty funny.
Backstage, Randy Orton said something boring.
Match 4: Jeff Hardy vs. Triple H
WHAT YOU THINK
What did you think of WWE Armageddon?
It was great - 14%
It was okay - 23%
It sucked - 18%
Didn't see it - 45%
Hardy's attempt at a sportsmanlike handshake before the match wasn't entirely rebuffed, but HHH still made it clear that tonight he wanted Hardy to forget they're friends. Good sequence where Hardy deposited Trips to the floor, went to run the railing, stumbled and landed standing in front of HHH who hit a huge clothesline. In the ring, HHH yelled at Hardy to fight. this seemed to motivate the Intercontinental champ but it wasn't too long before The Game started to dominate. Hardy attempted a number of comebacks, but each one got thwarted before he could deliver the killing blow. HHH went to put Hardy away with a Pedigree, but Jeff fought out of it and rolled up HHH for the pin. HHH seemed bemused by the loss but didn't otherwise react.
Winner, and number one contender for the WWE Championship: Intercontinental champion Jeff Hardy
Backstage, the Great Khali threatened Finlay and Hornswoggle. That's what Ranjan Singh said, anyway. Apparently, he speaks Khalibberish.
Match 5: Great Khali vs. Finlay
Khali destroyed Finlay for a while but then made the mistake of turning his back. Hornswoggle came in with the shillelagh and crotched the giant. Finlay delivered a wallop of his own and pinned Khali.
Match Rating: 3/10
Match 6: WWF Championship match
Chris Jericho vs. Randy Orton (champion)
WHAT YOU THINK
What match has you most excited about Armageddon?
Orton vs Jericho - 34%
Batista vs Edge vs Undertaker - 21%
Jeff Hardy vs HHH - 21%
Mickie James vs Beth Phoenix - 7%
MVP vs Mysterio - 7%
CM Punk & Kane vs Big Daddy V & Mark Henry - 3%
Michaels vs Kennedy - 5%
Finlay vs Khali - 3%
They did full in-ring introductions for this match -- I like that touch for title matches, it adds to the significance of the match, in my view. JR reminded us that it was six years ago that Y2J won the undisputed championship, beating both Steve Austin and the Rock in a single night. Orton tried to stop history from repeating itself -- and early on managed to ensure that would be the case, since both of those men were exciting to watch and he's anything but. Though, to be fair, he didn't overuse the headlock tonight like he often does. Rather, he hit a number of high-impact moves, including his father's patented superplex. On the outside, Jericho got whipped onto the Smackdown announce table and he landed hard right on top of JBL who looked none too pleased -- especially when Jericho pushed him aside to get at Orton. Back in the ring, Jericho eventually turned the tides, getting the crowd excited with a near-fall after the Lionsault. Jericho went for the Code Breaker, but Orton countered, catching him and heaving him into the turnbuckle. Jericho sidestepped the running head kick and locked on the Walls of Jericho in the centre of the ring. With nowhere to go, it looked like Orton would tap, but then JBL ran in and kicked Jericho, resulting in the disqualification. After the match, Orton hit Y2J with the RKO, while JR criticized JBL for his despicable interference.
Winner by DQ (therefore not the new WWE Champion): Chris Jericho
Match Rating: 7/10
Before Lillian could make the ring introductions for the next match, Jillian Hall came out to ‘entertain' the crowd with a song from her Christmas album.
Match 7: WWE Women's Championship
Mickie James vs. Beth Phoenix (champion)
Beth overpowered Mickie from the get-go, but after some time, Mickie recovered, nearly beating the Glamazon with a missile dropkick. In the end, Phoenix proved to be just too much, pinning James after the small package suplex. Here's a new drinking game for you -- during a Beth Phoenix match, take a drink anytime one of the commentators say ‘Glamazon'. They say that a lot.
Winner and still Women's Champion: Beth Phoenix
Match Rating: 6/10
Match 8: Triple Threat Match for the World Heavyweight Championship
Edge vs. the Undertaker vs. Batista (champion)
Winner and new World Heavyweight champion: Edge
Match Rating: 6/10
Overall show rating: 7/10
Bob Kapur would like to wish all readers the best over the holiday season and a very happy new year. He can be e-mailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.