Smackdown – July 7, 2005

Smackdown
Date: July 7, 2005
Location: ARCO Arena, Sacramento, California
Attendance: 10,000
Commentators: Michael Cole, Tazz

We’re coming up on the Great American Bash but more importantly we are finally set as far as the roster moves go. The roster may not look as strong as it did before but Smackdown has Batista now and that is the only logical followup to losing John Cena over to Raw. Now we get to see where things go. Let’s get to it.

We open with a recap of Cena moving over to Monday, meaning a champion was needed. That looked to be JBL but Batista showed up instead. That’s a rather cruel way to treat JBL actually, as he won that match on his own last week.

Here’s a sneering JBL to open things up. Last week’s screwjob makes what happened to Bret Hart in Montreal look like a parking ticket. He should be Smackdown Champion but now we have Batista on Smackdown instead. JBL is #1 contender though and he isn’t scared of the Animal, because tick tock. The time is ticking on Batista’s time as World Heavyweight Champion and it’s time for the man who looks like Tarzan to fight like Jane.

JBL’s music starts and here’s the limo….containing the Blue World Order, with Stevie Richards as Orlando Jordan, the Blue Meanie as JBL and Nova as the combined forces of the Bashams. Richards introduces us to JBL: John Blue Lamefield, and Ash Me (Ash Me?). Richards dubs himself Bluewheat to some rather weak responses. JBL is really not impressed and orders them out of here before they embarrass him.

Richards says JBL embarrassed himself at One Night Stand because he disrespected ECW and everything they stood for. JBL rants about how Richards wasn’t good enough to flip burgers and Meanie took the beating he deserved. Meanie wants JBL in a match tonight and that’s agreed to in a hurry. We’re not done yet though as the BWO spray paint the limo. That happens a lot around here.

Chris Benoit vs. Booker T.

For the #1 contendership to the US Title. They go technical to start as you might have expected with Benoit shrugging off a hammerlock and grabbing a hiptoss. That’s good for a standoff so Benoit starts in with the chops to take over. Booker manages to snap him throat first across the top rope, followed by a superkick for two. The armbar goes on, followed by a quick ax kick for two.

That means more armbarring, as it certainly seems to be working so far. This time it’s Benoit fighting back and snapping off the German suplexes but the Swan Dive is blocked. Booker nails a superplex for a very delayed two before trying a cross armbreaker of all things, sending Benoit to the ropes. The arm is fine enough to slap on the Crossface and make Booker tap.

Rating: C+. These two could have a passable match in their sleep and that is more or less what they did here. Benoit is going to be fine going into the US Title match at the Bash, even if it is going to take something incredible to make a match with Jordan work. I’m not sure where this leaves Booker, but he’s going to do well enough against anyone, which is a good way to build up someone new.

Sharmell is disappointed at the loss but Jordan scares her off and takes her place in front of the monitor.

We recap Eddie Guerrero going nuts last week and making Rey Mysterio beg him not to tell Rey’s son Dominick the truth. The emotion in this stuff is rather awesome and they’re both selling it incredibly well.

Mysterio comes up to Eddie in the back and asks him to rethink things. Eddie feigns ignorance so Rey lays it out for him. He begs Eddie not to do this, but Eddie needs a partner tonight to face MNM. That’s a no, but Eddie’s feelings are hurt. Instead, he’ll just go to the ring by himself and tell everyone the truth about their little secret. Rey: “Wait…Eddie.” Eddie: “We having a change of heart here or something?” Eddie says he loves Rey and the only thing he wants is the best for Rey and Dominick. See you out there, partner.

Muhammad Hassan and Daivari rant about the six man match last week. Hassan was never eliminated and should be the #1 contender to Batista. Instead, Theodore Long puts him in a #1 contenders match with the Undertaker. Oh dear it’s time to get here. As for tonight, it’s Daivari vs. Undertaker.

John Bradshaw Layfield vs. Blue Meanie

No DQ. During the intros, we hear about JBL and Meanie’s issues, including at One Night Stand, but without any specifics as to what JBL did. JBL boots him in the face before the bell and stomps away in the corner before taking him outside to continue the beating. Meanie goes into various hard objects and his comeback attempt goes as well as you would expect.

JBL beats up the rest of the BWO and it’s time for a chair, plus Richards for a bonus. Richards gets in a scary chair shot to the head and Meanie adds a DDT. The Meaniesault gets two and here’s Jordan to distract Meanie. The Clothesline From JBL connects but Batista comes in and gives JBL the spinebuster so Meanie can steal the pin.

Rating: D-. This has been Avoiding Lawsuits With WWE as the BWO guys were just some annoyances to JBL who stole a win to help advance Batista vs. JBL. They kept it short and Meanie got in almost no offense without major help so it’s not like this hurts JBL or anything. Just get it over with and move on so Meanie won’t sue. I get why it had to happen and it wasn’t the worst thing ever or even close. Just a quick thing that we had to get through.

Tag Team Titles: MNM vs. Rey Mysterio/Eddie Guerrero

MNM is defending and Eddie forces Rey to smile in a funny moment. Eddie takes over on Mercury’s arm to start and demands a tag for the sake of Dominick. Rey reluctantly comes in and hits a basement dropkick for two on Mercury. It’s back to Eddie for Three Amigos but Eddie stops to throw Nitro to the floor instead of covering. The frog splash connects for two anyway, with Eddie pulling off of the pin.

Rey comes in for two instead and Eddie blasts him from behind. Eddie goes to sit down at ringside as Rey takes a double gutbuster to set up the chinlock. Rey fights up and hurricanranas Nitro into the 619 as the comeback is on. The springboard legdrop gets two….as Eddie jumps Rey and beats him up. Eddie chills on the top rope as Rey takes the Snapshot to retain the titles.

Rating: C. It’s a hard one to grade as this was an angle instead of a match. That makes things more interesting too, as we’ve done the Eddie/Rey Tag Team Titles run before. Eddie is completely out there at this point and that makes things a lot different. I’ve loved this story so far and this is a rather nice new twist on things.

Post match Eddie asks Rey if he wants to hit him, but it would cost Rey their little secret. Rey wants to leave but Eddie shoves him in the face and makes Rey hold the ropes open for him. Eddie: “Dominick would LOVE to open the ropes for Uncle Eddie.” Rey reluctantly agrees as the mind games continue.

Raw Rebound.

Christian talks about how awesome he is and how he’s ready for Batista tonight. That’s how he rolls.

Matt Morgan vs. William Regal

This is Regal’s Smackdown debut, or at least it would be if the Mexicools didn’t come out and jump Morgan. Regal looks impressed as the beatdown goes on. Juvy talks about how they’re going to keep making an impact week after week. Psicosis: “Your a** is grass and we are the lawnmowers!”

And that’s it for Matt Morgan, because WWE saw no value in someone who looks like that with that kind of size and felt the need to give him a bad stutter as his only gimmick. Instead, we’re getting the continuing adventures of three guys riding a lawnmower and talking about being cool. Wrestling can be a stupid place at times.

Daivari panics about facing Undertaker but Hassan says that the sacrifice has a reward. He has a plan.

Daivari vs. Undertaker

Daivari bails to the floor before the smoke clears from around ringside but Hassan throws him back in. The chokeslam and Tombstone finish Daivari in a hurry.

And then it happens. Hassan drops to his knees and begins to pray. Five men in ski masks and camo pants, one with a club, run in and beat Undertaker down. One of them pull out a steel wire and choke him out, allowing Hassan to put on the camel clutch. The masked men carry Daivari out like a martyr as Hassan glares at Undertaker.

The announcers do their serious talk about what they just saw.

I’m not sure what to say about this other than I still feel sorry for what happened to Hassan here. The angle itself was always going to be controversial. Now that’s fine on its own and I could see how something like this could have worked if WWE had been capable of pulling it off. However, the problem was this show aired the night of the London Underground bombings. WWE aired a statement saying that the segment would be controversial, but they really needed to just cut the segment entirely. It was a situation where real life was more important than wrestling and there was no way this would go over.

This was more or less it for Hassan, as UPN decided they didn’t want him on their network anymore (the character, not the person) and there was nothing WWE could do. Hassan would wrestle one more time, as the Great American Bash, and then never be seen again. Hence why I’ve always felt sorry for Hassan, whose career was basically ended because of an angle that took place and aired the day of a horrible incident.

WWE could have done something else (air an interview, a clip from Raw or SOMETHING else, even something from last week) but instead they put a disclaimer on there and let Hassan’s career be ended. WWE didn’t know how bad it could have gone, but I would have hoped they would know better than to let this air the day of something that bad. Hassan was going to be a big deal (apparently taking the title from Batista at Summerslam) and while I’m not sure how well he would have done, he never got the chance because of something that wasn’t his fault, and that isn’t fair.

Christian vs. Batista

Non-title. Batista throws him around to start and Christian isn’t sure what to do. A hard running shoulder puts Christian on the floor and we take a break. Back with Christian getting punched out of the air and it’s time to head outside. Christian posts him and then sends him face first into the steps for the first breather he’s had.

Back in and Christian gets two each off a DDT and neckbreaker, followed by the required chinlock. A middle dropkick and some ax handles to the back set up another chinlock to keep Batista down. Batista powers up into an electric chair drop and there’s a World’s Strongest Slam. The spinebuster and Batista Bomb finish Christian.

Rating: C-. Christian was little more than a sacrificial lamb here and that’s all well and good. Batista is going on to bigger things on Smackdown so throwing Christian out there was a fine way to give him a first win. The match went as it should have and Batista looked dominant in a watchable match with little drama.

Post match JBL and Orlando Jordan run in to go after Batista, meaning it’s a beating for Jordan to end the show.

Overall Rating: C. Well it was certainly eventful. This was as all over the place of a show as you could ask for with the JBL/Meanie shenanigans, a build to the Great American Bash main event, another direction in Eddie vs. Rey and that whole controversy deal which ended Hassan’s career. It was one of the most eventful shows I’ve ever seen but there is one thing that anyone is going to talk about coming out of this show. That’s understandable as well, but dang it’s a shame when so much else happened here.

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