Judgment Day 2006
Date: May 21, 2006
Location: US Airways Center, Phoenix, Arizona
Commentators: Michael Cole, Tazz
It’s time for what feels like the most B level pay per view in a good while. The main event is the loser of a World Champion in Rey Mysterio defending against perennial challenger JBL, who has been racist against Mysterio while accurately pointing out how terrible of a champion he is. Other than that, it’s time for Great Khali to destroy the Undertaker again. Let’s get to it.
The opening video talks about how everything leads here and all of your decisions will determine your fate.
Tag Team Titles: MNM vs. Brian Kendrick/Paul London
MNM is defending and has Melina with them. London and Nitro start things off but the champs have to pause for posing. Nitro runs the ropes but gets tripped down, allowing Kendrick to come in and crank on the arms. A double clothesline gets two on Nitro but he takes Kendrick into the corner for the tag off to Mercury. That means a double hiptoss from Kendrick and London into a double elbow, followed by a big dive from Kendrick.
Back in and Mercury takes out London’s leg and a double gutbuster gets two. Melina adds a headscissors on the apron and Tazz is rather jealous. We hit the chinlock for a bit but the fans help bring London to his feet. The hot tag brings in Kendrick but he’s cut off in a quick Snapshot for two, sending Melina into freaking out mode. The chinlock goes on again, followed by a double legdrop from the champs. Kendrick gets sent outside for a cheap shot from Melina and it’s right back to the chinlock.
Back up and the champs are sent into each other for the breather and the hot tag brings London back in to clean house. The Dropsault takes the champs down for two but Melina screams at the referee for the save. Kendrick misses a slingshot dive to the floor but Mercury hits Nitro by mistake, knocking him into Melina. A rollup with a bridge gives London the pin and the titles.
Rating: B-. This was a very good choice for an opener with a mostly fast paced match and someone as evil as Melina getting what was coming to her. London and Kendrick have been ready to win the titles for months now so it was the right call to finally give them the belts. MNM had lost so many times lately that it was long overdue for them to lose, which is kind of shame given how good the act really is.
Post match Melina slaps Mercury so he grabs her arm, causing Nitro to jump him. Melina slaps Mercury in the face and tries to leave with Nitro, but Mercury is back up to start the fight again. Referees and Teddy Long come in for the save but Long is shoved down in the melee.
Video on the King of the Ring.
Chris Benoit vs. Finlay
They had a good match a few weeks ago so this should work. Finlay takes him into the corner to start and we actually get a clean break. The lockup goes all the way to the floor and against the barricade before they finally break up. Back in and they go nose to nose until Benoit grabs the legs for a failed Sharpshooter attempt. The chinlock goes on Finlay instead before Benoit switches over to a headlock. Finlay accuses Benoit of an eye poke though and then jumps him when the referee stops to check on things.
It’s a chinlock on Benoit this time but he isn’t sitting in that for very long. Instead it’s Benoit getting up and unloading in the corner, setting up another chinlock. Benoit tries to switch into the Crossface before turning Finlay over for two. Finlay hits him in the face and then pulls on the arm while putting his foot on Benoit’s head for some pulling. The chinlock is countered and Benoit snaps off another German suplex, followed by the Swan Dive for two.
Finlay is right back with a knockdown of his own into a running seated senton and it’s off to a chinlock with a knee in the back. A hammerlock/dragon sleeper combination (that’s a new one) keeps Benoit down and Finlay just pounds him in the back. Finlay says get up so he can show Benoit how tough he is. That means a clothesline to drop Benoit again but he’s right back up with a German suplex.
They head outside with Benoit hitting another German suplex on the floor, followed by Three Amigos back inside. The threat of another Swan Dive makes Finlay knock him off the top, with Benoit’s head hitting the barricade. Back in and Benoit’s shoulder goes into the post but he’s fine enough to snap on the Crossface for the tap.
Rating: B+. Oh like these two getting twenty minutes wasn’t going to be really good. They had an awesome match a few weeks back and now they did it again on the bigger stage. These two compliment each other really well and it felt like a fight with wrestling moves instead of a match, which worked very well. I could go for it again and it’s the kind of match where you could see it going either way.
We recap Jillian Hall vs. Melina, which started over makeup, as many feuds do.
Melina vs. Jillian Hall
Johnny Nitro gets ejected before the bell so Jillian attacks in a hurry. Jillian hammers on the mat and hits a Hennig necksnap. Melina tries to bail to the floor but gets sent into various things. Back in and Melina stomps her down and grabs a choke, followed by a bodyscissors. Some knees to the ribs in the corner have Jillian down again but she sends Melina face first into the buckle. A sunset flip gets the fast pin on Melina, though she had her hand on the rope.
Rating: D+. I’ve liked this feud since the beginning and all things considered, this was a near miracle. They aren’t exactly great in the ring and yes a lot of this is about eye candy, but they have been putting in the effort and intensity to make it a pretty fun little feud. I don’t need to see it again, but for what it was, it worked out rather well.
Melina yells a lot post match and Kristal to ask if Melina got what she deserved. The fight is on and broken up in a hurry.
JBL promises to beat Rey Mysterio to take the title tonight because it’s what he does when the lights are on bright. Chavo Guerrero comes in and says JBL needs to stop living in the past. Oh and VIVA LA RAZA.
We look at Steve Austin winning the King of the Ring.
Cruiserweight Title: Gregory Helms vs. Super Crazy
Crazy is challenging. They circle each other to start until Crazy grabs a backslide for two. Crazy hangs on instead of being sent outside and it’s a clothesline to put Helms on the floor. A big dive over the referee takes Helms down again and it’s all Crazy to start. A swinging neckbreaker gives Helms two and a regular version is good for the same. It’s off to something close two a Crossface but Crazy is back up, only to get elbowed back down. We hit the seated abdominal stretch, followed by a chinlock to keep Crazy down.
Helms’ sleeper is countered into a rollup for two and the comeback with on with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. Crazy gets two off a middle rope dropkick but misses the moonsault. The Shining Wizard misses as well though and Crazy hits a spinwheel kick for two more. Helms gets a boot up in the corner to slow him down and a middle rope Blockbuster gets another near fall. Crazy tosses him into the corner but Helms grabs a rollup with feet on the ropes to retain.
Rating: C. This could have been on any given television show and that’s not a terrible thing. They weren’t likely to steal the show here as the Cruiserweight Title hasn’t meant anything in a long time. The wrestling was fine as Helms can wrestle with anyone, but was anyone buying Super Crazy as having a real chance at winning here?
Melina and Johnny Nitro come in and yell at Teddy Long about what has happened tonight so Melina slaps him in the face. Long fires both of them.
We look at Kurt Angle winning the King of the Ring.
Mark Henry vs. Kurt Angle
Henry has injured Angle’s ribs in recent weeks and clears off the announcers’ table before Angle comes out. Mark grabs the mic and says he hurts people but here’s Angle to swing away. Angle can’t get in a whip to the corner so he settles for a middle rope flip dive to drop Henry. A front facelock goes on so Henry backdrops him over. The sitdown splash misses though and Angle hits a basement dropkick.
They head outside with Angle not being able to German suplex him through the announcers’ table. Back in and Angle takes the monster down by the leg and cranks away but Henry fights up with pure power. A kick to the chest drops Angle in a hurry and it’s time for a reverse chinlock to stay on the back. Angle fights up again and has to counter the World’s Strongest Slam into a tornado DDT for the double knockdown.
They slug it out and Angle snaps off the German suplex into the Angle Slam for two. Angle is all fired up so Henry cools him down with a clothesline. The World’s Strongest Slam (which connected during a split screen) gets two and it’s Henry’s turn to be frustrated. The yelling takes too long so Angle pulls him into the ankle lock, which is countered with a whip out to the floor. Henry teases the splash through the announcers’ table but does splash Angle against the post for the countout win.
Rating: C-. Henry was doing what he could here and can make the power stuff work rather well at times. On the other hand, Angle was doing a lot of the work here and that’s probably the best format for everyone involved. It was certainly miles ahead of their Royal Rumble match, though that isn’t exactly the biggest surprise.
Post match Henry loads up Angle for the World’s Strongest Slam but Angle fights up and destroys Henry with a chair. The Angle Slam over the table has Henry mostly done and a chair shot through the table ends him for good.
Sharmell says tonight Booker is going to show that he’s better than King Tut, Don King, Martin Luther King Jr. and King James. Maniacal laughter ensues.
We recap the King of the Ring tournament and the paths to the finals.
King of the Ring Tournament Finals: Booker T. vs. Bobby Lashley
Lashley shoves him down and the bell rings, followed by Lashley taking it into the corner with pure power. The running clothesline gives Lashley two and it’s time to start on the arm. Back up and Lashley throws him down again, followed by a running clothesline out of the corner. Booker finally avoids a charge though and Lashley goes shoulder first into the post.
The banged up arm is wrapped around the rope, followed by the armbar to keep it in trouble. Booker loads up the ax kick but Lashley is right back up with a forearm to knock him silly. Sharmell’s distraction doesn’t work as Lashley suplexes him down, only to have Sharmell grab the leg to block the spear.
The Book End gives Booker two and Lashley’s powerslam gets the same. Lashley charges into a boot in the corner and the ax kick connects for another near fall. There’s the spear to cut Booker down but Sharmell offers a distraction, allowing Finlay to come in with the Shillelagh to the head for the pin and the crown.
Rating: B-. They were working fast here and they might have had one too many near falls. Finlay coming in was a little annoying but I’ll take that over Lashley getting pinned clean or even with feet on the ropes or something like that. Booker is a better choice for the King though as Lashley hasn’t exactly shown an in-depth personality.
Post match Booker goes to sit on the throne but Lashley knocks it over like a sore loser.
Video on Great Khali vs. Undertaker, with the latest new monster taking Undertaker out with no issue. Undertaker hasn’t been seen since but has issued the challenge.
Undertaker vs. Great Khali
Daivari is here with Khali. Undertaker strikes away to start and is quickly sent outside, leaving him looking rather confused. Back in and Undertaker fires off right hands, only to get tossed to the floor again. A Stunner over the top rope staggers Khali a bit but Old School is slammed off the top with ease. There’s a clothesline to drop Undertaker again and Khali kicks him to the floor.
Khali whips him knees first into the steps and it’s mostly one sided so far. Back in and a slugout gives Undertaker the slightest glimmer of hope but Old School only staggers Khali. The jumping clothesline gets Khali’s arms tied in the ropes but Daivari breaks him free in a hurry. A big boot into the chop to the head drops Undertaker and another big boot lets Khali put his foot on the chest for the pin.
Rating: D+. As you might have guessed, this made me think of Jillian vs. Melina earlier. They weren’t going to have some kind of a classic because Khali can barely move, but he did a good enough job with what he could do. Khali uses a limited offense because it’s all he needs to do. Why should he do anything besides big boots, chops and the like? Undertaker sold them like death and that is the kind of thing that makes Khali look as good as possible. This could have been much worse, but it did what it was supposed to do by making Khali look like a destroyer.
We recap JBL vs. Rey Mysterio. Rey won the World Title at Wrestlemania and has promptly been destroyed by almost everyone since then. JBL doesn’t like Rey because he’s from Mexico (at least in JBL’s mind) and because people cheer for Eddie Guerrero instead of Rey. Now it’s time for Rey to get the win back, but he has taken so much damage over the last few weeks that another JBL reign doesn’t sound too bad.
Smackdown World Title: Rey Mysterio vs. John Bradshaw Layfield
Only Rey is defending as I had completely forgotten JBL was US Champion. The EDDIE chants begin and Rey slugs away, with JBL looking a little surprised. Some strikes to the leg set up a quickly broken headlock so Rey slaps him in the face. The threat of the 619 sends JBL outside and it’s a seated senton off the apron to take him down again. Back in and a basement dropkick gives Rey two and he hammers away in the corner.
The referee gets distracted for a second and Rey gets in a low blow, only to have JBL come back with a big boot. They head outside with Rey being whipped into the steps and it’s already time to go back in. A right hand puts Rey on the floor again, with JBL sending him into the steps a second time. JBL hits Three Amigos before dropping him ribs first into the top rope as Rey is busted open.
That means another trip to the floor with JBL making Rey’s wife look at the blood. Some short arm clotheslines put Rey down again and JBL gets two, with the kicking making him panic. We hit the chinlock to squeeze some blood out of the head but JBL lets him go at two arm drops to cover instead. Rey breaks up the belly to back superplex and gets his own two off a moonsault press, followed by a kick to the head for the same.
JBL is back up with a powerbomb attempt but it’s a hurricanrana to set up the 619 instead. The referee gets pulled in the way of the West Coast Pop though, meaning the Clothesline From JBL gets a very delayed two. JBL grabs the chair but it gets kicked back into his face, setting up the frog splash to retain the title.
Rating: C+. This felt like it should have been for the Intercontinental Title in a featured match on Smackdown rather than headlining a pay per view. They have done a horrible job of devaluing the World Title in the last few weeks. Rey retaining here felt a bit like what would happen if MNM retaining in the opener. That’s not exactly the best way to present the main event of a pay per view, but the match itself was fairly good.
Chavo Guerrero comes out to celebrate and get us through the required tribute to Eddie to end the show.
Overall Rating: C+. The show was actually pretty good for a two hour and forty five minute pay per view that isn’t going to mean anything in a few days, even with such a lame main event. Most of the matches were either good or fairly short, much like how Smackdown feels most of the time. They have to do something different with Rey though because this title reign is bringing everything else down.
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