Smackdown – May 14, 2015

Date: May 14, 2015
Location: Ford Center,
Evansville, Indiana
Commentators: Jerry
Lawler, Byron Saxton, Michael Cole
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
It’s the final show
before Payback and we’re pretty much all set up. Raw ended with Seth
Ambrose standing tall over his three opponents, meaning tonight is
likely going to end with one of the other three doing the same,
albeit not over the other three people in the match. Raw has been
good lately so Smackdown has a lot to live up to. Let’s get to it.

Opening sequence.
We open with Bray Wyatt
talking about Ryback coming face to face with him on Monday. Ryback
is a very strong man, but he has an Achilles heel. Bray is going to
prove that the Garden of Eden does exist and tonight he’ll scratch an
itch. Ryback’s dreams will be turned into nightmares. Resist the
itch and run. Why are these two even fighting?
Here’s Dean Ambrose to
get things going. Dean says he works best alone, fights alone and
drinks alone. It felt good on Monday to stand alone because this
Sunday it’s every man for himself. You have Seth Rollins and his
Lollipop Guild Goon Squad. Randy Orton was last seen eating a spear.
That leaves Roman Reigns, who is Dean’s only friend in the world.
Dean has one thing to say to Roman, but he’ll get to say it to his
face as here comes Reigns.
Dean isn’t going to
apologize but Reigns wasn’t expecting one. This past Monday, Dean
hit him with Dirty Deeds and that’s all he’s going to get. There’s
no grudge between them because they’re brothers but this Sunday,
Reigns is bringing the big guns. They’re about to shake hands when
Kane comes out.
Dean should be less
concerned with winning the Slammy Award for Bromance of the Year and
be worried about what he has to do. Ambrose brings up HHH’s decree
that Kane is out of a job if Rollins doesn’t win on Monday. This
might be the last night we see Corporate Kane. That’s not cool with
Kane, who makes Ambrose vs. Sheamus RIGHT NOW. Ambrose: “Is that
the only time you know?”
Sheamus vs. Dean
This match starts after
a break. They fight up against the ropes with neither getting an
advantage so it’s time to go basic. Ambrose grabs a top wristlock
but gets taken down with a headlock. Dean ties his legs up though
and grabs the mohawk for a kick to the back. Sheamus gets a boot up
in the corner but Dean bulldogs him down to take over again. The
running dropkick against the ropes is countered and Sheamus knees him
out to the floor.
We take a break and
come back with Dean slugging away but getting caught in the
Cloverleaf. Dean makes the ropes like any good rebellious hero
should do, only to charge into White Noise. To be fair he deserves
that after not selling the hold. The threat of the Brogue Kick sends
Dean to the floor and he nails a hard clothesline to take over again.
Back in and it’s a
missed Brogue Kick, a clothesline to the floor and a suicide dive to
take Sheamus out again. Back in again and Sheamus’ tilt-a-whirl
backbreaker gets two. He takes too long to follow up though and eats
a clothesline, sending Dean to the top. Sheamus tries what looks to
be a top rope powerslam (facing the floor instead of the ring though)
but Dean slips out to avoid the whole broken back thing and sends
Sheamus face first onto the post, followed by a rollup to give Dean
the pin at 12:42.
Rating: B.
This was the fun power brawl
that you would expect between these two. Ambrose is one of those
guys that can work well against anyone regardless of their size or
style. Unfortunately it came at the expense of Sheamus, who has lost
almost all of his momentum since returning with the really good bully
character. Therefore, he’s likely getting the title in the Chamber.
Rollins channels his
inner Stephanie by repeating the stipulations of Sunday’s match to
Kane in a way that no normal person would ever actually speak. Kane
says he’s set for life and doesn’t need the Authority’s money. Oh
and Rollins gets Ryback tonight.
Here are Rusev and Lana
with something to say. The fans chant USA but Rusev says the woman
wants to talk. Lana reads a prepared statement, apologizing for
Fandangoing on Raw last week. It should all be about Rusev, who
shows us a clip from Raw where Rusev interrupted Neville vs. Cena and
beat John up post match. I can’t wait for this feud to be over
already so the writers have to wake their lazy brains up for a
Rusev knows Cena was
quitting in his head when he passed out, but this Sunday everyone
will hear him quit. We get a loop of Cena saying he quits (out of
context) from Raw and no big followup line to end this. Lawler
however does think that video was doctored because Cena never gives
Ryback says he’s no
meat head. He saw fear in Wyatt’s eyes on Monday but tonight, he’s
Tough Enough videos,
including one from Gabriel Iglesias.
Here’s Rollins with
something to say before his match with Ryback. He continues the
trend of showing clips from Raw by giving us his big beatdown, but
promises that’s the last time anything like that will happen.
Ryback vs. Seth
Non-title but that
might not matter as Wyatt jumps Ryback on his way to the ring. Back
from a break and Ryback says he can go because he’s tough that way
and the idea of calling a DQ for someone attacking before the match
is unheard of in this company. Ryback tries a suplex to start but
Seth knees him in the head to escape and knocks Ryback out to the
floor. He dives back in at nine and eats a DDT for two. We see a
clip of Bray’s attack, which was just a shoulder block. Ryback is
that banged up off a single shoulder?
A neckbreaker gets two
for Seth and he slaps on a front facelock. Ryback counters exactly
how you would expect him to and plants Seth with a tilt-a-whirl
powerslam to put both guys down. The big guy gets all fired up and
nails a not great spinebuster for two. The Meat Hook connects but
Rollins rakes the eyes (a rare sight these days) to break up the
Shell Shock. Seth hits the top rope knee to the head and the a pair
of low superkicks for the pin at 8:23.
Rating: C.
So to recap, a shoulder block is enough to knock Ryback silly and
give him a huge disadvantage? I love the idea of not having Ryback
lose clean, but couldn’t they have had Bray send him into the steps
or give him a big beatdown or something more than a simple shoulder?
The match was fine and actually had a story to it of Rollins focusing
on the head with the low superkicks getting the pin. It’s not as
good as the curb stomp but I’ll take a high impact move over that
lame falling DDT.
what you missed on the WWE Network this week. So the news broke this
week that the classic content wasn’t getting a lot of views. Now I’m
just thinking out loud but maybe people might watch it if it was
advertised, say, once. That’s just nutty though as WWE thinks eight
minute interviews with the stars of a movie that is bombing or Wiz
Khalifa is what really draws in the viewers.
the Bellas vs. Naomi/Tamina on Sunday. That makes sense but can we
please stop finding ways to keep the title on Nikki? It’s just not
going to be seen as epic no matter how WWE tries to spin it.
brags about how strong Tamina is and says they’re tired of walking
around empty handed. The
Bellas get all the opportunities around here, even though Nikki is
overrated and Brie is more worthless than her quitting husband.
Kidd vs. Kofi Kingston
the match, Woods informs us that Cesaro/Kidd are cheaters but the New
Day is giving them one more title shot on Payback. Big E. tells us
just how bad Cesaro/Kidd are: they don’t recycle, the double dip and
they buy one ticket at the movies and go see two! The
New Day is the change you need to see in this world and the fans
should sing with them. Instead
it’s a siren and we’re ready to go.
kicks him in the ribs to start as Woods is cheering even harder than
usual this week. Tyson fights back and knocks Kofi to the floor for
a big flip dive (Woods: “KOFI MOVE!”). The
New Day distraction prevents the Sharpshooter but Tyson gets it on a
few seconds later for the submission at 2:06.
Chamber preview.
see Bryan’s speech from Raw as he vacates the title. This
seems to be the promised health update.
Bo Dallas with something to say. He
saw Daniel Bryan vacate the title on Monday but he sees it as an
opportunity. There are five stages of grief and Dallas can help you
through them all. First up is denial, but there is no denying that
Bryan let all the fans down. Next is anger, which the fans should
feel towards Bryan for letting you down.
is bargaining. You’ll get one heck of a bargain on those Daniel
Bryan t-shirts now that he’s gone. Depression
is going to completely engulf Bryan when he realizes everyone has
forgotten him. Finally there’s acceptance and Dallas can help us all
accept that Daniel is gone. All you have to do to accept it is
Bo-lieve! Dallas will have
a job for years with promos like this.
vs. Bo Dallas
is joined in progress after a break with King Barrett on commentary
and Neville flipping forward out of the corner. Neville sends him to
the floor but gets pulled down onto the apron to give Bo an opening.
Back in and we hit the
chinlock for a bit but Neville fights back with those running kicks
to the head. A longer Red
Arrow than usual is good for the pin at 2:17. I
believe this is Neville’s first match against anyone who
has never held a WWE Title.
match Barrett mocks Neville for wearing a stupid costume every week.
This Sunday Neville is in for some corporal punishment in the form of
a royal Bull Hammer.
Rosebuds ask Adam Rose when they’re going to be paid. Rose doesn’t
take kindly to this and says they’re just like the Bunny. The hot
dog gets pushed down and the party is officially over. Rosa kisses
him and Kane walks by them on his way to the ring. So the Rosebuds
are officially gone. That’s probably for the best, but Rose really
needs to get away from Rosa as she’s possibly the most worthless Diva
in years.
Tough Enough hype.
vs. Roman Reigns
or submission only, making this a glorified street fight. Kane
goes after Reigns during the entrance again and they slug it out on
the floor before the bell. Neither guy can get the better of it
until Kane sends him into
the steps. We finally get a
bell and Kane punches Reigns back to the floor, only to miss a stairs
shot against the post.
kendo stick time (because there must be kendo sticks under the ring
at all times for reasons that aren’t entirely clear) but Kane takes
it away from Roman and pounds him down. A
kendo stick to the face gets two and we take a break. Back
with Reigns taking a big boot to the face for two more before Kane
throws him outside.
loads up the table but Reigns punches him down and nails a
clothesline off the table. It’s
time to bring the steps back in as Reigns drives them into Kane’s
head to put him down again. Roman throws in a pair
of tables but Kane takes his head off with a big boot for two. The
chokeslam through the table is blocked but Kane catches the Superman
Punch in a chokeslam through the table for two. Thanks
for coming Kane and if you would kindly stand in front of that table
in the corner for the spear please. A
Superman Punch puts Kane in perfect position and the spear through
the wood is good for the pin at 11:16.
Rating: C.
Decent enough brawl but it
felt like they were filling in time until the obvious ending. Kane
is still capable of having a power brawl but my limited interest in
him is killed by the long promos with HHH and Rollins, plus a story
that almost no one cares about. Good enough here though and Reigns
kicking out of a big finisher keeps up the idea that he never quits.
isn’t worried about Reigns but it’s going to take more than that to
get this belt off him on Sunday. That’s true for anyone that wants
to take the title off of him, including Ambrose…..who is behind the
Stooges. For some reason he has a plate of cookies to throw at them
but the numbers catch up with him. This brings in Roman Reigns for
the save and they stare each other down. The camera pans down to
show the belt on the ground. Roman extends his hand but Dean reaches
down and picks up the belt. He puts it on Reigns’ shoulder, saying
he’ll take it back on Sunday.
Overall Rating: C-.
How was this possibly a two
hour show? It feels like we should just be at the halfway mark and
somehow the whole thing is already done. This show did as well as it
could have with what it had though, as Payback just isn’t that
interesting. I don’t have much of a reason to care about seeing the
same stuff that’s been boring me for five hours a week for another
three hours this Sunday.
Passable episode this week but nothing past that.
Dean Ambrose b. Sheamus
– Rollup
Seth Rollins b. Ryback
– Low superkick
Tyson Kidd b. Kofi
Kingston – Sharpshooter
Neville b. Bo Dallas –
Red Arrow
Roman Reigns b. Kane –
Spear through a table
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