Smackdown – August 31, 2012

Smackdown
Date:
August 31, 2012
Location:
Resch Center Arena, Green Bay, Wisconsin
Commentators:
Michael Cole, Josh Matthews
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
After
last week’s huge mess, hopefully Smackdown can turn things around
tonight. Last week was one of the worst shows I can remember in a
long time, which is a shame as I used to love Smackdown. Anyway,
we’re getting very close to Night of Champions now and unfortunately,
Del Rio hasn’t been hit by a bus or anything like that to keep us
from having to sit through another title shot for him. Let’s get to
it.

Do
You Know Your Enemy? Mine at the moment is Del Rio vs. Sheamus. I
can’t stand this feud and about 80% of that is on Del Rio.
Orton
vs. Ziggler later. Gee I wonder how that’s going to end.
Here’s
Sheamus to open the show. First up, he needs to praise HHH. Sheamus
isn’t sure what HHH’s future holds but he has Sheamus’ respect. HHH
is the embodiment of a champion, which is everything Del Rio isn’t.
This brings out Damien Sandow of all people. He talks about how
Sheamus is as ignorant as he is enormous because of his praise of
HHH.
He
goes on about Sheamus and HHH promotes a stereotype to the WWE
Universe but Sheamus cuts him off. The champ doesn’t want to hear
Sandow yap for twenty minutes so why not come into the ring right now
and have a fight. Sandow says Sheamus isn’t worth his time but
here’s Booker with a dissenting opinion. He makes Sandow vs. Sheamus
for later, which is already more exciting than anything else from
last week.
Rey
Mysterio vs. Cody Rhodes
Cody
talks about how Rey is just like Sin Cara, hiding behind a mask.
Rhodes uses his power advantage to start but he ducks his head,
letting Rey get in a kick to the face. Cody sends him out to the
floor and we take a break. Back with Cody hitting a spinning suplex
for two. A release gordbuster gets two followed by some knees to the
back and a chinlock.
Cody
goes for the mask but gets sent face first into the buckle. Rey
speeds things up and hits a seated senton followed by a big kick to
the head for two. A knee to Rey’s head gets two but Mysterio kicks
Cody into 619 position. Cody catches Rey’s legs but Rey counters the
counter into a sunset flip for the pin at 5:31 shown of 9:01.
Rating:
C. This was fine. It’s nice to
see Cody having an actual story on Smackdown instead of doing nothing
on Superstars every other week. I didn’t catch anything being
mentioned about Rey and Cody’s history, although at least we’re
hearing about how Cody used to be obsessed with his looks to give a
reason to the Sin Cara feud.
Cody
beats up Rey post match until Cara makes the save and puts a Sin Cara
mask on Cody.
We
get the first anger management segment from Monday.
Kaitlyn
vs. Natalya
Eve
is on commentary. Nattie takes her down with a headlock to start and
the place is eerily quiet. Kaitlyn shoulder blocks her down and they
head to the floor where Kaitlyn gets her head slammed into the floor.
Natalya hooks an abdominal stretch and slaps Kaitlyn’s side which
has to hurt bad. Kaitlyn comes back with some armdrags but Natalya
clotheslines her down. The Canadian runs her mouth and gets small
packaged for the pin at 2:45. Getting extra time is helping the
Divas a tiny bit but this was more about Eve, who spent the whole
match being the corporate suckup, which does nothing for me at all.
Booker
is worried about the pressure of being Raw GM is getting to AJ. He
says the match between Jericho and Ziggler never should have been
made. Vickie comes up and says this is more proof that AJ needs to
go. Sweet Christmas enough with the power struggle storylines
already.
Raw
ReBound talks about Punk/Lawler/Cena from Monday.
Anger
management segment #2.
Sheamus
vs. Damien Sandow
Sandow
is taken into the ropes to start and requests that the referee does
his job. Sandow tries to take it into the corner but Sheamus grabs
his beard. To avoid getting punched in the face, Damien drops to the
floor and things slow down again. The champ starts running him over
with shoulders and Sandow heads to the floor again. This time
Sheamus is tired of waiting so he goes out after Damien, only to have
his knees sent into the steps by Sandow.
That
gets an eight count and Sandow stomps away back inside. Off to a
chinlock which Sheamus breaks pretty quickly. A regular neckbreaker
(as opposed to the double arm version) gets two for Sandow and it’s
back to the chinlock. This one is broken even faster and Sheamus
starts his hard hitting offense.
Damien
bails to the floor for the third time but Sheamus throws him right
back in and hits the ten forearms. A slingshot shoulder block to the
back gets two and Damien heads to the floor for I think the fourth
time. White Noise is escaped and the Brogue Kick is ducked. Sandow
rolls to the floor and sprints up the ramp for the countout at 6:51.
Rating:
C. This wasn’t a great match,
but it was a logical one. The idea of Sandow not being able to hang
in a fight with Sheamus makes perfect sense and having him constantly
trying to run and clear his head was a nice touch. This is exactly
what Sandow needs: to be able to rub elbows with bigger names. He
didn’t need to win here and certainly shouldn’t have, but having him
in there is a good step in the right direction.
Prime
Time Players vs. Justin Gabriel/Tyson Kidd
Kidd
and Gabriel have matching yellow shirts which look like dresses on
them. Kidd and Titus get things going as the Usos Tout about how
they should be #1 contenders. Off to Young vs. Gabriel after the
starters do nothing of note. Justin takes Young to the mat after
making a blind tag, allowing Kidd to kick Darren in the face.
Off
to Titus who powers Tyson down and brings Darren back in. The
Players are very good about tagging in and out quickly. Tyson sends
Young into the corner and tags out to Justin. An STO puts Darren
down and Justin loads up the 450, only for Titus to distract him.
Darren crotches Gabriel and hits the fireman’s carry gutbuster for
the pin at 3:13. This one looked better as he launched Gabriel into
the air and Justin was in free fall when he hit the knees.
Rating:
C. I know I’ve used that rating
a lot tonight but this was exactly what the rating implies: it was ok
and right in the middle. I do like that the guys in the tag division
are actually getting a little time every week. If nothing else it
lets a lot more guys get on TV as opposed to showing up every other
PPV and have a title defense that means nothing. These matches don’t
exactly equal the Harts vs. the Bulldogs but they’re an improvement
over what we’ve been getting the last few years.
The
final anger management segment airs. Kane’s explanation of his
history is still hilarious.
Here’s
Del Rio with something to say. Alberto brags about beating Orton
last week but doesn’t care to be reminded that Sheamus has beaten him
every time. Del Rio threatens Josh but here’s Kane for protection I
guess. Kane says he’s here to apologize for attacking Josh at
Summerslam. Teddy comes out and makes Kane vs. Alberto.
Alberto
Del Rio vs. Kane
This
is joined in progress after a break but it doesn’t look like we
missed much. Kane pounds on Del Rio in the corner but Alberto comes
back with some kicks to the legs. Kane comes back with a low
dropkick to the head for two and an uppercut that sends Del Rio to
the apron. Del Rio rams Kane’s arm into the buckle and follows it up
with a kick to the shoulder. Kane will have none of that and hits a
sidewalk slam to set up the top rope clothesline for no cover. Kane
loads up the chokeslam but Ricardo pulls Kane’s leg. The distraction
lets Del Rio hit a Backstabber for the pin at 2:46.
Post
match Kane snaps and chokeslams Josh, but he apologizes while he does
it.
HHH
video from Raw.
Randy
Orton vs. Dolph Ziggler
Ziggler
dropkicks Randy down to start and struts a bit. Dolph shows off a
bit so Randy dropkicks him down as well in a nice touch. A slingshot
suplex gets two on Dolph but Ziggler comes back with a neckbreaker
and some elbow drops. Orton wins a slugout and fires off his
clotheslines. The powerslam sets up the elevated DDT but Ziggler
counters. Ziggler doesn’t get back inside though and Orton pulls him
to the top rope for a superplex.
That
only gets two and Ziggler comes back with a jumping DDT for another
near fall. The crowd is starting to get into this. Dolph charges at
Randy but gets caught in the Elevated DDT for another two. Orton was
laughing while he hit that which was kind of a nice touch. They head
to the floor with Ziggler being thrown over the announce table. Back
inside and Ziggler misses the Zig Zag, allowing the RKO to pin him at
7:10.
Rating:
C+. This was a fast paced main
event style match, but man alive did they have to have Ziggler lose
AGAIN? Orton is leaving for a few months to film whatever the next
WWE movie is. Ziggler is indeed Mr. MITB and probably will win the
title before the year is over, but as always in WWE, the idea seems
to be to have him lose time after time so he can surprise everyone
and win it all back at once. You know, because no heel can look
strong in WWE and they all have to be cowards that steal every win
they get.
Vickie
immediately announces that Dolph is still Mr. MITB and says he did a
good job. Yes, make sure you hammer in that the guy who is going to
get a title match is such a loser.
Overall
Rating:
C+. This wasn’t a great
show at all but man alive was it better than last week. It’s amazing
how much better things are when you don’t have Alberto and Sheamus
interacting. Seeing Sandow getting a match against the champ, even
when he was mostly dominated and lost, was a good sign that there are
big things in his future. This show toned down the stupid stuff and
they got a better show out of it.
Results
Rey
Mysterio b. Cody Rhodes – Sunset Flip
Kaitlyn
b. Natalya – Small Package
Sheamus
b. Damien Sandow via countout
Prime
Time Players b. Justin Gabriel/Tyson Kidd – Fireman’s carry
gutbuster to Gabriel
Alberto
Del Rio b. Kane – Backstabber
Randy
Orton b. Dolph Ziggler – RKO
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