Smackdown – March 24, 2005

Date: March 24, 2005
Location: FedEx Forum, Memphis, Tennessee
Attendance: 7,300
Commentators: Michael Cole, Tazz

We have two Smackdowns left before Wrestlemania and it seems that they’re running out of ways to hide the fact that John Cena is becoming WWE Champion. You can only go so long before it’s the most obvious result in the world (other than Batista beating HHH that is) and we’ve been there for a few weeks now. It would be a good idea to focus on some other things this week so hopefully WWE gets the idea. Let’s get to it.

Opening sequence.

Tonight: a debate between Cena and JBL. Well JBL is better at talking than he is wrestling.

Tazz brings Big Show to the ring for a chat. After recapping what is going on (a sumo wrestler challenged Show and Show accepted), Tazz hypes up next week’s weigh-in with Akebono. Show doesn’t care if Akebono weighs more than he does because he’s still bigger. Cue Luther Reigns in a jeep to interrupt and this isn’t going to end well.

Reigns talks about how Show is in over his head and has no chance of winning because he’s smaller and inexperienced (the man has a point). That’s going to embarrass Theodore Long, Smackdown and the whole locker room, including Reigns himself. It should be Reigns facing Akebono, but he has an idea. This jeep weighs 4,400 pounds and Reigns is going to flip it over with his bare hands.

That is as much of a failure as you can imagine so Reigns hits the ring for the brawl. Show doesn’t have time for this and chokeslams him in short order. Before leaving though, he (eventually) turns over the jeep as expected (with a last second camera switch). This was as much of an effort as you could get to make a sumo match interesting and it didn’t work, mainly because it’s an attempt to hype up a sumo match.

Eddie Guerrero tells Chavo to leave but Chavo says they’re family. Eddie: “Sometimes I like it, sometimes I don’t.” Chavo asks Eddie what happened last week, with Eddie saying Rey got the pin because he was the legal man. Chavo wants to know what legal has to do with the Guerreros but Eddie doesn’t want to hear it. Maybe he should listen to himself though, because Chavo knows Eddie needs to know who the better man is. That gets Eddie thinking.

Classic Hulk Hogan Moment: Wrestlemania IX. Still one of the all time dumb moments.

Sylvester Stallone will be inducting Hogan into the Hall of Fame. And make sure to watch his new show the Contender.

Orlando Jordan vs. Scotty 2 Hotty

Non-title. Hold on though as JBL takes Scotty out but Scotty fights back and hits the Worm on JBL. That’s too far for JBL and we have a change.

John Bradshaw Layfield vs. Scotty 2 Hotty

Non-title again and the beating is on in a hurry, including the fall away slam. The Clothesline finishes Scotty in about a minute.

Kurt Angle has a special surprise.

Here’s Theodore Long to talk about how much fun we’ve been having tonight. He has another idea though and brings out Elvis, as played by Carlito. He comes out to what sounds like Cool Cocky Bad in Spanish and promises to prove that he’s a better singer than this Elvis guy. Carlito speaks the opening words to Jailhouse Rock and then storms off when the fans aren’t happy.

Eddie has an idea for Mysterio at Wrestlemania: Eddie Guerrero vs. Rey Mysterio. Rey likes the idea and then realizes that Eddie is serious. Eddie wants him to think about it but they’ve got a title defense tonight.

Tag Team Titles: Eddie Guerrero/Rey Mysterio vs. Hardcore Holly/Charlie Haas

Holly and Haas are challenging…..and we have a gong. Undertaker appears on screen to say that many dragons have laid siege to his kingdom over the years. Randy Orton has tried to use him to make a point and has sealed his own destiny. All Orton has done is wake him up and tonight, there will be a sacrifice. And now, for the title match.

Eddie and Holly start things off with Guerrero taking him to the mat and grabbing a headlock. With that not working, Haas and Mysterio come in….and we have more thunder and lightning. We take a break and come back with Mysterio being snapmared into a double arm crank. Rey gets out of the corner and hits the springboard seated senton for a breather.

Eddie comes back in to pick up the pace with the headscissors and the Three Amigos to Haas. It’s too early for the full nelson though and Holly grabs a full nelson slam for two. A whip knocks Rey off the apron and Charlie busts out the Haas of Pain (I miss that one). It’s Rey coming back in with the springboard save so Eddie pops Rey up into a super hurricanrana to Haas. Now the frog splash can retain the time.

Rating: C. This was about the storytelling more than the wrestling, which was kind of clear when it was Holly and Haas getting the title shot. Eddie gets to feel a little better as he got the pin for a change but something like this never ends well for either partner involved. The match is going to be awesome but it’s probably going to mean new champions and given this level of competition, I don’t know who could take them.

Post match, Rey accepts the challenge for Wrestlemania and Eddie is happy.

Classic Steve Austin Moment: Austin Meets Mike Tyson.

And now, here’s Kurt Angle to Shawn Michaels music in Shawn style gear (though the HBK shirt is crossed out) but he waves someone out. That would be Sensational Sherri and Cole sounds terrified. Angle even strikes Shawn’s pose (though he leans in the wrong direction) and promises to show how he’s a bigger star than Shawn. That’s why he’s brought out Shawn’s first manager, even though Angle didn’t need a manager when he won a gold medal. Every time you hear Shawn’s music you hear Sherri’s voice. Well Angle thinks that song sucks so he’s going to do it better.

Angle then belts out his own version of Sexy Boy, saying he has the moves, including the ankle lock and declaring his sexiness (“I’m just a sexy Kurt. I’ll make your ankle hurt!”). Shawn cuts him off from the screen and says he isn’t surprised by this and we get a Shawn highlight package. Back in the arena, Angle thinks Sherri is laughing and puts her in the ankle lock. She could probably take him in a good fight so he might want to break both ankles.

This was hilarious and some of the best proof of how outstanding Kurt can be with comedy. He sold the heck out of this and the dancing made it even better. I’ve always remembered this one and it more than holds up. Oh and Shawn’s highlight package is outstanding because he’s Shawn Michaels and has more great matches than almost anyone ever.

Dawn Marie vs. Michelle McCool

Dawn jumps her to start and goes straight to the middle turnbuckle pad. Michelle takes her down to start the cat fighting portion and Dawn’s top comes off before the first two count. A headbutt puts Michelle down and Undertaker makes the lights flicker again. Dawn sends her into the buckle and grabs a rollup with feet on the ropes for the pin. I’m glad that is settled.

Carlito is leaving and threatens to beat up Funaki if he tells Long about it.

Taxi Driver Wrestlemania trailer. Still a good one.

You can vote for the Movie Trailer Awards!

Booker T. vs. Rene Dupree

Booker gets in an early kick to the face for two but Rene stomps him down in the corner. We hit the French Tickler but there’s the gong again. This time Undertaker is actually here to destroy Dupree as Booker walks off. The Tombstone onto the steps destroyed Dupree.

It’s time for the possibly above average debate between JBL and John Cena. As Cena wraps the chain around his hand, JBL wants Long to reinforce the rules from last week. That’s fine with Long, but if JBL physically provokes Cena, he can fight back. The first question goes to JBL, who is asked why he’s the better choice to be WWE Champion. JBL sucks up to the Memphis fans and talks about how great he is. Yeah HHH is a ten time champion but that means he’s lost nine times. JBL is the only champion in history to never lose his title (uh…..) and has held the title longer than anyone in ten years.

Cena asks why a rich and successful man like JBL is driving around in a broken down limo. JBL doesn’t understand so Cena goes to the floor and stabs a tire. With Long insisting that there is nothing wrong with this as Cena isn’t touching JBL, Cena busts out some spray paint and writes JBL SUCKS on the side. Cena: “I see a limo that says JBL sucks! YOU DROVE OUT HERE IN A LIMO THAT SAYS JBL SUCKS!”

Cena gets back in the ring and tells JBL to do something about it but JBL is ready for the next question. That would be “how important is one’s social and economic upbringing in being champion”. JBL rants about the rich being better for America and the only way Cena will have that kind of money is winning the lottery or turning to crime. Cena knows JBL doesn’t think much of how he dresses so maybe it’s time for a suit and tie. Since his pants have no limits, Cena busts out a big pair of scissors and cuts off JBL’s tie, which he puts into his chain. That’s not going to work either as he feels too much like a banker.

JBL’s jacket comes off and Cena sticks out his jaw but JBL turns him down. Back to the podiums with Cena cutting off Long’s question by asking what he has to do to get JBL to hit him. This time Cena steals JBL’s ten gallon hat (JBL: “I hate you.”) and wants to know if it holds ten gallons. Cena takes the pitchers of water from the table and pours it in the hat, which holds less than a gallon. With JBL’s lying confirmed, Cena puts the hat full of water back on his head.

The fight is nearly on with Cena saying JBL looks ridiculous. Cena busts out more spray paint and puts a yellow streak up the back of JBL’s shirt. A red FU (the third color of paint Cena has had) on the front of the shirt is Cena’s preview for Wrestlemania to end the show. This was WAY too long at nearly twenty minutes and Cena isn’t ready to do that kind of talking just yet. It wasn’t terrible at all and helped reinforce the story but they’ve established everything already and this didn’t add anything new.

Overall Rating: D+. This is absolutely not a wrestling show and that’s ok in a case like this. Other than Rey vs. Eddie finally being established, this was a lot of building up matches that were already set, making this a pretty skippable show (classic Angle segment aside). We’re wading through that weird period where the card is ready and there is nothing left to do but get to Wrestlemania, but we’re not all the way there just yet. This is a great example of a show where you could get by on the highlights and while it flew by, there isn’t much to see.

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