Date: October 28, 2004
Location: Qwest Center, Omaha, Nebraska
Commentators: Michael Cole, Tazz
We have a new hero around here as Booker T. pinned JBL in a six man tag last week, setting himself up as the likely next challenger. That makes perfect sense and is a good way to set up someone fresh on top. You would think Raw might be able to learn a little something from that but at the moment, it’s unique to Smackdown. Let’s get to it.
The Tough Enough finalists are here with Al Snow and ready for their first challenge. They go into the locker room but Big Show and a few others aren’t pleased. These rookies can go dress in the hallway instead, with Show shoving Daniel Puder around. Snow is fine with these developments and tells them to leave their stuff in the hall.
They come to the ring (with John Meyer missing, having quit before even getting this far) and it’s already time for a challenge. Well first it’s time for the introductions because we need to know these names before we forget about them. Big Show just embarrassed all of them and now it’s time for them to talk back, meaning they have twenty seconds to cut a quick promo on Show.
Chris, in a kind of stoner Hulk Hogan voice, talks about how he’ll be ready to be in the same locker room in about a month.
Mike sucks up to the Oklahoma crowd (Tazz points out the problem) and says he’ll be ready to wrestle after a year of training with Snow.
Ryan is fired up and talks about being the vanilla gorilla and if Show had this chance, he would have taken it too.
Dan Rodimer gives a weird cocky promo about how he’s not going anymore.
Nick says he’s big time and dances before crawling across the ring.
Justice wants Show to come out and play because Show went after the smallest of all the finalists.
Daniel Puder says he’ll break Show’s arms and legs because he’s an Ultimate Fighter.
Snow says that was really good, despite saying they were digging a grave a few times. And now here’s Big Show so they can say these things to his face. Show tells Rodimer to tell us why he’s so tough and takes a swing at him. Rodimer ducks and now we get to the second part of the challenge: a slam for each of them.
Ryan walks right at him, gets slammed, and has to roll away.
Mike pops up with a grimace on his face.
Mitchell gets slapped in the face and can barely move, as is the case with Puder.
Chris goes up awkwardly and lands just the same.
Justice gets slammed slowly (he’s got some size to him) but Show drops an elbow on him for good measure.
Rodimer gets in Show’s face, goes up awkwardly as well, and gets kneed in the chest. This is miles ahead of watching the Divas eat pie, but egads how annoyed must the paying fans be to watch a fifteen minute reality competition?
We look back at Booker T.’s annoyances with being in a six man last week and the ensuing victory over JBL in a pretty solid face turn.
Chavo Guerrero vs. Nunzio
This is Chavo’s first match in about two months after taking a shooting star to the head. Hang on though as here’s Billy Kidman to do commentary. The distraction lets Nunzio jump him from behind but a clothesline gets Chavo out of trouble. A belly to back gets two on Nunzio but he knees Chavo in the face and works on the arm. Back up and a running headscissors takes Nunzio down to a rather strong reaction. A right hand puts Chavo down and Nunzio rams him head first into the mat.
The announcers continue to grill Kidman over his weaponizing the shooting star press as Chavo makes another comeback. Chavo’s spinebuster gets two but a double clothesline sends Nunzio outside. With Chavo down, Kidman comes in and misses a shooting star. The crash lets Chavo hit a Gory Bomb for the pin.
Rating: C-. They need to go with the momentum Chavo has as fast as they can because the fact that he’s Chavo Guerrero is going to catch up with him in a hurry. He’s a very good hand in the ring but he’s not the most thrilling personality and that has been his problem for most of his career. There’s nothing wrong with going with this story though and they would be dumb not to try something.
JBL talks about not losing a singles match in months and brushes off last week’s loss because it was a tag match. Booker isn’t in his league but here’s Booker for a rather intimidating stare. They argue with Booker saying he’ll take the title but Orlando Jordan gets in his face. Booker: “Go make me a sandwich or something.” Theodore Long comes in to make Jordan vs. Booker for tonight and if Booker wins, he gets a title shot at Survivor Series.
Heidenreich is on the phone with Paul Heyman and begs him to get the match with Undertaker. He needs the match so Heyman has to get Undertaker to sign a contract.
Smackdown Your Vote campaign rally video.
Paul Heyman is in a dark room and talks to the unseen Undertaker, rather fearfully asking if he will sign the contract. Heidenreich needs this match but Heyman says everything was his idea over the last few months. Undertaker reaches over and signs the contract, then grabs Heyman by the throat. We see him for the first time with Undertaker saying that he hasn’t forgotten what Heyman did to him earlier this year. That contract was for Heidenreich’s execution.
Kurt Angle vs. Rey Mysterio
Everyone is barred from ringside. Angle easily powers Rey (in American flag pants) onto the corner to start before taking him down into a headlock takeover. Rey almost looks confused and comes up holding his shoulder. He’s fine enough for a headlock of his own and the jawing starts until Rey actually starts a chase around the ring to send Angle outside.
The frustrated Angle grabs a chair but changes to an overhead belly to belly to send Rey outside in a nasty crash. We take a break and come back with Rey getting suplexed again as Angle is looking confident. Cole: “Ladies and gentlemen if you think this is a great match, later tonight it’s Booker T. vs. Orlando Jordan!” That’s just deflating. Angle grabs a waistlock to keep Rey down, setting up a heck of a German suplex.
Angle waistlocks him for a bit until Rey fights up for a tornado DDT in his first real offense. It’s weird seeing Rey get complete dominated like this. Rey’s sitout bulldog has Angle rocked but the springboard spinning crossbody hits the referee. The 619 is broken up by an invading Luther Reigns and Mark Jindrak, who draw out Rob Van Dam for the save. The Angle Slam hits Rey but here’s Eddie Guerrero to take Angle down. A frog splash is enough for the still out Rey to steal the pin.
Rating: C. This was a weird one with Rey almost getting squashed until the end when everything went nuts. Eddie vs. Angle is feeling tired now as Angle has pretty definitively won the feud, though they’re still going because there aren’t enough people for either of them to feud with on the show. They both need something fresh, though I’m not sure what they can do at the moment.
Torrie Wilson is getting ready for her Halloween costume contest when Kenzo Suzuki comes in to hit on her. The freaked out Torrie finally gets him to leave.
Eddie/Rey/RVD argue with Angle/Jindrak/Reigns in Long’s office. Long makes the Survivor Series elimination tag for Survivor Series with both of them needing another partner.
Cole: “We haven’t had an elimination tag match at Survivor Series in a number of years!” That number would be zero, as there were two of them last year. My goodness this man is bad at this job. Tazz brings up the intelligence a bit by saying that he’s talked to John Cena, who has been getting better.
Josh Matthews asks Carlito about rumors of him being in the club the night Cena was stabbed. A big man grabs Josh and holds him against a wall for asking the question. That would be Jesus, who holds Josh as Carlito says he was in the club that night, celebrating his title win. He left before anything happened though, because thugs like Cena aren’t cool. Josh gets the apple treatment.
Cole emcees the costume contest between Torrie Wilson and Dawn Marie. Torrie is a fairy (which surprises Tazz, even though we saw the costume earlier) and Dawn is a nurse, which she says she wears while nursing Charlie Haas back to health. This brings out Jackie for the fight with Dawn being stripped of her costume, because that’s how you hurt someone in wrestling.
Big Show comes up to Eddie and demands the fourth spot on the team. Eddie doesn’t like being told what to do and yells about how he’s already got a fourth man. It’s Big Show.
Team Angle is freaking out when the Dudleys come in. Spike offers Bubba or D-Von, but Angle says they can have the spot if they take out Big Show. Spike has a plan.
Long, long recap of the Tough Enough segment.
Booker T. vs. Orlando Jordan
If Booker wins, he gets JBL for the title at Survivor Series. Booker takes over with almost no effort, mainly because it’s Orlando Jordan. A poke to the eye lets Jordan hammer away in the corner so Booker clotheslines him into an armbar. That’s broken up and Jordan chokes on the rope but since that’s the extent of Jordan’s offense, Booker shrugs it off and knocks him outside. A drop onto the announcers’ table and a glare at JBL take us to an early break.
Back with Booker hitting a pair of suplexes and walking around. Is he supposed to be worried about Jordan? A JBL distraction lets Jordan send Booker into the steps a few times and we hit the chinlock back inside. Booker gets taken down again with a hot shot so Jordan goes up for a….I think a high crossbody but it looked more like a forearm.
Either way Booker rolls through but gets taken right back into a chinlock. Booker’s swinging neckbreaker gets him out of trouble for a bit and a flapjack does it for even longer. The spinwheel kick and spinebuster combine for two and, after kicking JBL down, the ax kick finishes Jordan to give Booker the title shot.
Rating: D-. Well what else were you expecting here? Who actually thought Orlando Jordan was going to be a threat to Booker T? Jordan was really bad here with nothing above a rookie level offense, which doesn’t quite work when you’re supposed to be some kind of an enforcer. Terrible match that went on far too long, and that’s all because of Jordan.
Overall Rating: D. This was a rough one and I don’t see it getting any better anytime soon. You have Undertaker vs. Heidenreich coming up, plus a lot more Tough Enough. It’s a better concept than the Diva Search as these people are being treated somewhat seriously, but it’s still going to take up a lot of time on the show and require years before the winner (or the several other people hired) are ready to do anything. Other than that, the stories are starting to wear thin and while Booker is a fine challenger for JBL, the match to get him there was a disaster. Pretty bad show here, and it doesn’t feel like a one off.
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