You are here: Home // Posts Tagged With wrestling

My last RAW recap for the foreseeable future starts with CM Punk in the middle of the ring in front of a cheering Chicago crowd. Punk toys with the crowd for a bit before making them hate him. Punk doesn’t care about the New Nexus or the Chicago crowd. Punk stole Orton’s family’s respect from him. And he will end this sick and twisted story at Wrestlemania. But Orton is here, limping at tortoise speed, with a heavily taped knee. Orton still manages to fight and hits his rope assisted DDT. Orton tries for the punt but his bad leg gives out. That leaves Orton at Punk’s mercy and he delivers the Go To Sleep to look strong going into thebig show.

Edge and Christian are teaming up again. Apparently the RAW GM has no problem with Edge laying hands on Alberto Del Rio. The opponents are the rather obvious Alberto Del Rio and Brodus Clay. Clay starts and Edge and Christian end up double teaming him. Then a commercial before Del Rio is even in the match. Back from commercial Edge and Del Rio have not been legal at the same time yet. Christian takes the face in peril role. When he finally does tag out Clay comes in. Christian and Del Rio mix it up on the outside which allows Edge to Spear Clay for the win. Del Rio has the Cross Armbreaker on Christian but runs when Edge nears. When Edge turns back Del Rio comes back and ambushes him. Del Rio again hit Edge with his finisher and we won’t know who comes out ahead until Friday.

Cole has an iPad, which looks more like a netbook, so he can read the GM’s emails without leaving his Cole Mine. GM wants to see if Jerry Lawler is ready so tonight he will face Jack Swagger. Yet another great HHH versus Undertaker promo that continues to ignore that HHH already lost to Undertaker at Wrestlemania. Kane and Big Show are at ringside as Justin Gabriel (accompanied by The Corre) faces Santino Marella (accompanied by Vladimir Kozlov) and they finally announce a Wrestlemania match for these people. It will be an eight-man tag with The Corre facing Big Show, Kane, Kozlov and Marella. Sucks to be Kofi Kingston right now. Also means neither the tag belts nor the IC title will be defended at the biggest show of the year. The faces keep order at ringside, Santino hits the Cobra and a very short match ends happily. Have Kozlov and Tamina been doing Santino’s trombone motion for a while? Big Show doing it is funny. Kane doing it is even funnier.

Here’s Undertaker. Here’s Trips. Taker steals HHH’s thunder this time around by interrupting his water spit with a peal of the gong and the lights going out. I have some cable problems as they stare each other down. Neither has a microphone. Then HBK shows up. HBK plays to the crowd for ages before actually getting a microphone. HBK has a ghost of a beard and he is in dire need of Just For Men. HBK recaps the whole situation before asking his best friend what makes him he think he can do what Shawn couldn’t? HHH tells him he went soft. Cared more about being the Showstopper than winning. HHH turns to Taker and rhymes off how amazing he was when Hunter started out. But now HHH has to respectfully tell him it’s time to go. He can’t do it anymore. And if he can’t accept it then it’s Hunter’s job to take him out. He even steals “Rest in Peace.” Now Taker grabs the microphone. Taker respect Hunter and if it were time to put him down he’d want Hunter to do it. But it ain’t that time. The streak will live. Ask HBK. Taker runs down Michaels until he tries a Superkick, which is caught. Hunter pushes Shawn out of the way and stares down Taker before asking Shawn to tell him why he’ll beat Taker at Mania. But Shawn has nothing to say. Oh great a “One more match” chant. Shawn retreats to the entrance ramp before admitting he thinks Hunter won’t win. Taker just tips his hat triumphantly and heads off to the sound of Johnny Cash. Top notch segment from three of the best of all time.

Swagger versus Lawler leaves only Josh Matthews to call the match as Cole is at ringside. Let’s see if Matthews can do what Joey Matthews did for years. It spills to the outside right away and Lawler just grabs a chair and wails on Swagger getting DQed. Josh Matthews sits silently. Lawler threatens Cole with the chair and Cole retreats to the Cole Mine. Lawler beats on it with the chair as Josh tries to warn him he’ll be fired. Lawler does what seems most people should have thought of and climbs over the top. But with security holding him back he can’t reach Cole who throws what looks like ginger ale in his eyes.

Vickie Guererro makes fun of John Morrison then Snooki. Dolph Ziggler joins her to wrestle a tag team match. His partner is Sheamus. Let me guess: John Morrison and Daniel Bryan will be the opponents. Yep. This close to any PPV the match-ups are fairly predictable. We get a commercial early in the match. Daniel Bryan gets a La Bell lock on Ziggler but Sheamus breaks it up. Fast forward a bit and he almost gets it on Sheamus but the Celtic King is able to escape and hit a Brogue Kick to win the match. Since Morrison is probably winning at Mania and Bryan is probably losing I would have gone with a different finish. Sheamus pinning Morrison would work better.

New interviewer guy asks Orton if he’ll make Wrestlemania. Orton has anger management issues and he despises CM Punk more than anyone else. It’s not if he will make it to Wrestlemania; it’s if CM Punk will make it out. The final Hall of Fame inductee of the year is, actually are, the Road Warriors. Snooki has been training with Trish. Not to speak proper English though. They’re live via satellite at a bar so Lay-Cool can attack them in a new and interesting location. They manage to fight them off only to have their calls of “bitches” bleeped by USA Network.

Time for a main event promo. The three-way faceoff between The Rock, John Cena and The Miz. This show is going to go way over time, I can tell. Rock is out first. He long-windedly, and catch-phrase heavily, calls out Cena. And yeah, of course he shows up. All Cena wants to say is Rock is still awesome and this is where he belongs. But Cena actually fights back by pointing out that Rock has been making fun of Cena for colors, music and appealing to kids. Who the Hell is he? And a potential fight is cut off, finally, by the arrival of The Miz. He’s sick of being overshadowed by Overhyped and Overrated. But at least Cena will go down fighting. Rock’s a movie star too scared to risk Miz hurting him. Miz has flipped the W on his microphone again. It takes Alex Riley and The Miz together to even give The Rock pause but he beats them off and delivers a People’s Elbow to The Miz. Cue John Cena to return to camera range and hit The Rock with an Attitude Adjustment, or FU if you prefer the original name. Cena gets to play his music at the end of the show and the last RAW on the road to Wrestlemania.

See you Friday for one last Smackdown!

Posted on March 31st, 2011 by Lucian | Comments Off on Wrestling Recap: WWE Raw (3/28/11)
Filed Under Entertainment

Hard to believe but we’re into my final four columns. Or maybe I’ll do an epilogue after my Mania live recap. We’ll see. I will miss doing this but I need to spend more time at the office.

So Teddy Long steps in and says Edge and Del Rio can’t touch each other before Mania or they are both off the card. Edge is pissed because Del Rio already hurt him and he can’t retaliate. Meanwhile, in the arena itself, CM Punk arrives and we get a quick recap of his set-up and ambush on Randy Orton from RAW. He’s facing Rey Mysterio, who he robbed of the chance to beat Randy Orton clean. It’s a very good match and given some time but Cody Rhodes runs in for yet another non-finish. Rhodes delivers repeated Headbutts with his mask the lifts his pant leg to reveal a knee brace. He delivers running knee strike directly to Rey’s face.

Not only is Edge planning to face Drew McIntyre tonight he also plans to be in Christian’s corner when he faces Alberto Del Rio. Oh Edge’s match is now? His left elbow is heavily taped. You know if a guy has an injured left arm why not target the right one so he has no arms left at all? Edge still wins with a submission hold based entirely in the right arm. And he can follow up with a Spear too.

Repeat a HHH/Undertaker video from RAW (and NXT) then Kelly Kelly and Rosa Mendez are set to lose to Lay-Cool. Lay-Cool come out mocking Snooki with their hairstyles and footwear. This might be hilarious if I watched Jersey Shore. The faces ambush on the antics. Some matches you are glad are short. Subsequent promo highlights include Trash Stratus and John Snorrison.

Surprise Intercontinental title match as Wade Barrett, accompanied by his stablemates from The Corre, faces Kofi Kingston. Ok match. Kofi has Barrett where he wants him until Gabriel distracts the ref. Slater tries to interfere so Kofi hits him with Trouble in Paradise. But when he tries it again on Barrett the Brit has recovered enough to reverse the move into Wasteland. 1…2…3! We have a new Intercontinental Champion and Kofi has to be disappointed with his reign. A 450 Splash lets Kofi know he’s beign depushed. Maybe, just maybe, he gets a rematch at Wrestlemania. More likely he ends up on a four-man team with Big Show, Kane and someone else to face The Corre.

Time to continue the war of words between The Undertaker and HHH. How is it Undertaker can say Armageddon with ease but says “prolific” instead of “prophetic”? He’s going to be on RAW Monday to go face to face with HHH. Does everything big have to happen on RAW? Is Smackdown truly the B-show now?

Michael Cole is in full on booster mode as Jack Swagger faces R-Truth. Truth does an ugly looking rolling flip to the outside. He clearly lands on his shoulder but sells a hurt leg so Swagger can go for the Ankle Lock and Truth taps out.

Whole segments go by with no new material.

Main event time. I have nothing against Brodus Clay but do both The Miz and Alberto Del Rio need an NXT dropout hanging around them? It makes them seem too similar. The Del Rio characters is so incredibly different from Dos Caras Jr. and yet the performer behind both of them can excel in both roles. Wresters who can excel as both faces and heels are not a dime a dozen. Christian has looked great in the match. He nearly gets a pin but Rodriguez puts Del Rio’s foot on the rope. The leads Edge to attack him and Brodus Clay to go after Edge. Edge manages to Spear Clay, taking the focus totally off the match, then follows up with a chair. This is enough to distract Del Rio for the Kill Switch and Christian beats Del Rio again! Edge really wants to waffle Del Rio with the chair but Christian stops him. So Christian decides he can hit Del Rio and not get fired.

This was a good show and it did what it was supposed to do, focus on Wrestlemania. Swagger’s win was the closest thing to a clean finish on the whole show, but this close to Mania every win seems to need an asterisk next to it.  But too much of the really good stuff is being saved for RAW. Smackdown has good matches on the WM card. We have Cody Rhodes versus Rey Mysterio which has been really well booked and has featured Rhodes’ best work ever. We have Edge/Del Rio which got some great emotion tonight. Something still has to be booked  involving The Corre, Big Show, Kane and maybe Kofi Kingston. If it were up to me I’d book a 4-on-3 Handicap match but if the faces win they get the titles. Undertaker versus HHH transcends both shows and, unless Taker is in much worse shape than they are letting on, I assume it will be the main event. One week left then it’s curtains for me. I hope you’ll stick around for the big finish.

Posted on March 26th, 2011 by Lucian | Comments Off on Wrestling Recap: WWE Smackdown (3/25/11)
Filed Under Entertainment

I’m sorry one of the last RAWs I’ll be recapping starts with Michael Cole dressed up as JR. But HHH showing up improves the situation. The streak may be bigger than all HHH’s championships combined. Hunter wants Undertaker on RAW next week so he can look him in the eye and tell him the streak will end. Ted Dibiase interrupts HHH because he’s sick of being overlooked. Dibiase looks to make a name for himself at Trip’s expense but it doesn’t come close to working out that way. Dibiase gets Pedigreed through the announce desk before this is over. They’re wrecking the announce desk in the opening segment? I bet Cole is glad for his Cole Mine.

We get a rematch of the Sheamus/Evan Bourne match from a few weeks back. Don’t expect Bourne to get another win here. This is non-title. Bourne misses a 450 early then immediately eats a Brogue Kick to end the ridiculously short match. Daniel Bryan comes back to set up the Wrestlemania rematch. Sheamus throws the title at him then kicks him in the head.

Eve faces Maryse in another non-title match. Having seen Maryse be something of a face on NXT it’s clear she’s a natural heel. That’s on display tonight. Once again Cole has no patience for the Divas and runs down the match. Not liking Eve I actually feel the same way. Eve wins and security has to keep her from going after Cole.

Santino Marella and Vladimir Kozlov get their rematch with The Corre. It’s another match that isn’t given enough time to develop and a simple distraction by Wade Barrett gets The Corre the win. The beatdown afterward is interrupted by Kane and The Big Show. Then the proper beatdown commences as Show and Kane, with a little help from Santino just destroy The Corre. Show and Kane tandem Chokeslamming Ezekial Jackson is a high point.

John Cena is at home on satellite. The Rock will be on RAW next week, live, and Cena promises to settle any problem with The Rock then. Lawler asks if Cena has underestimated The Miz and John says a flat “yes.” He gives honest and fair praise to The Miz. But tonight The Miz wants to rewrite history. At Wrestlemania John plans to make history.

Just what I didn’t need, more Cole. He and his trainer Jack Swagger are in the ring. Lawler family photos are not entertaining. Neither is Michael Cole. When Cole calls Lawler’s whole family losers Jerry actually gets the jump on Swagger. But Cole runs away until Swagger can recover then it’s all about the ankle.

It’s good to be Dolph Ziggler as he is accompanied to the ring by two beautiful women… and Vickie Guerrero. John Morrison gets to come in with Trish Stratus so he’s not exactly in bad shape either. Let’s just hope this is a real match. It isn’t as it’s stopped and restarted as a handicap mixed tag match. I think the E-GM called it an intergender match. Were that true the men and women could fight each other. Trish looks a lot better in sensible shoes. Vickie is even in the match. Josh Matthews gets the intergender term correct. Props to Josh. He’s the future of WWE. Turns out it is an intergender match as Vickie scores the pin over John Morrison.

Sin Cara is getting awesome video promos. We also get a great video of superstars and legends reacting to the HHH and Undertaker feud. Jericho! Apparently he was middle of the pack on Dancing With The Stars. But that’s better than that singing show where he went night 1. It’s time for a Wrestlemania Rewind match as Randy Orton faces Rey Mysterio. I wonder who is going to interfere? Anyway, this finally feels like a real match. Then CM Punk shows up on the TitanTron and goes after Orton’s wife in Orton’s tour bus. Orton abandons the match, natch, but Punk ambushes him with a monkey wrench to the leg. Punk expects Orton won’t be kicking anybody in the head at Wrestlemania. Orton’s wife is hot.

Why is Alex Riley still here? Miz rehired him as Vice President of Corporate Communication. Miz’s suit must be seen to be believed yet he totally owns it. Miz once again sings his own praises. He even claims to be more physically dominant than Andre. Miz flips the W on his microphone over to make it an M. Then he reveals a custom belt with the same design. They really want us to believe he might win at Mania, don’t they? At least the title doesn’t spin.

Cena is back on video. He killed the radio star. He’s cutting his promo as guys suddenly show up and take away the props and backdrop to reveal that Cena is in the building. Clever, I like it. Miz throws a seriously heavy table over the ropes at Cena. Risky. Once Cena fights off both guys Miz throws Riley to the wolves. An STF makes him tap out but Cena just keeps going. Miz starts coming back so Cena breaks. Miz retreats, Cena puts the hold back on. Three refs can’t pull Cena off. Finally Riley is out cold and Cena

Come on guys. Give me a decent match to say nice things about. I’m sick of just praising the promos. I want to see some decent wrestling on my road to retirement.

Posted on March 22nd, 2011 by Lucian | Comments Off on Wrestling Recap: WWE Raw (3/21/11)
Filed Under Entertainment

Welcome to Daylight Savings Time. It was light when I got home. Pitch black on the way to the subway in the morning though. Wrestlemania is 20 days away as RAW begins. Tonight Sheamus puts his job on the line to try to win the US title. We have The Rock via satellite and we get to watch him have a fake phone conversation then diss a child Cena impersonator. This is weak sauce. Rock has to be nice to the kid and that’s not what I want to see from him right now. It’s when he turns his attention to The Miz that Rock gets serious and it’s far better. Rock promises he’ll be on a live RAW before Wrestlemania.

Snooki is the guest host. Most of what I know about her comes from SNL.

They have Cole in a plexiglass cell now. Sadly, there are air holes. He calls it his Cole Mine and it’s for his protection. Now we get The Miz out to respond. Rock’s dad and grandaddy were never WWE champion. And generally Rock sucks. The E-GM pipes up book Miz and Cena against opponents they have never faced before. Later tonight, Cena gets Del Rio. Miz gets… The Great Khali. Being as big as he is Khali is given a lot of offence against The Miz. Alex Reilly, who was supposed to have been fired, attacks Khali for the DQ but Miz absolutely brutalizes Khali with a steel chair after the match. Multiple shots to the back, one of which opens a small cut and we see some blood on WWE TV the only way we can, by accident.

We get a lengthy Triple H promo and still nobody is mentioning Trips already lost to Taker at Mania. Annoying interchange between Snooki and Vickie Guererro. These may be the two people I least want to see on WWE programming. Charlie Sheen would be a step up from this.

US Title Match time. This is a good match and it goes two segments. I’m really not sure where they are going with this so the outcome is unpredictable. When Bryan comes off the top rope straight into a Brogue Kick Sheamus becomes the new United States Champion. That was a completely clean win as well. No cheating of consequence in the entire match.

Cole takes to the ring promising his guest will reveal Lawler for what he really is. The guest is Brian Christopher, aka Brian Lawler aka Grand Master Sexay. Yes, Lawler son gets another WWE paycheck despite being a long time screw-up who blew all his other chances. I do love hearing “Bangin’ It” again but it’s on my MP3 player so it’s not like I rely on this rare guest appearance to hear it. Brian plays the neglectful dad card but he’s not exactly on fire on the microphone. Lawler calls him a bigger screw-up than Charlie Sheen. These two are showing no hint of insincerity in running each other down. Brian points out he wrestled at Mania before his daddy. Brian starts slapping and shoving his dad as Jerry just eyes him up from his chair. Cole continues to run down King when BOOMER SOONER it’s good ol’ JR! JR (Aka Jim Ross, long-time RAW announcer) tries to be the voice of reason and get Cole to back off. Apparently you can say “rat bastard” on TV. I actually am a rat bastard. My teenage biological mother was not married and I was born in 1972, during the Chinese year of the rat. JR starts taking off his coat and tie fixing to fight Cole. But Jack Swagger shows up, takes out Lawler and heads for JR. It’s an easy matter to beat down JR and he taps immediately in the Ankle Lock. Lawler recovers enough to try to make the save but the Ankle Lock does it again. Even Cole locks an Ankle Lock on JR. Dear lord that was long.

Randy Orton faces Mason Ryan to see if Punk will have anyone in his corner at Wrestlemania. My money is on Ryan. Ryan has an ugly new haircut. I’m wrong. Ryan loses to an RKO out of nowhere. The punt to the head looks terrible since it clearly hits the shoulder. Who knew The Corre would fare better than the New Nexus?

Flashback to the fun moment when Drew Carey entered the Royal Rumble. But that’s a pretty weak reason to induct him into the celebrity wing of the Hall of Fame. Snooki approves of Zack Ryder so I can’t totally hate her. But she’s connected to Vickie Guererro wrestling again so that’s a big strike. It’s a No-DQ match. So Lay-Cool run in and hand Vickie the match and a job. Is Trish going to wrestle at Mania or something? Then Snooki ends up in the fight and she and Trish get the upperhand. And remember kids, it takes years of training to do these moves. John Morrison is also involved, as is Dolph Ziggler and, yep, six-person mixed tag match at Wrestlemania. I bet both John and Dolph wish they still had a Money in the Bank match.

Main event: Alberto Del Rio (with Brodus Clay) faces John Cena. I would love to see Del Rio win, although it would have to be because of Miz-terference, but I’m not going to hold my breath. Del Rio is a great heel because the crowd is actually solidly behind Cena. It’s a good match and it’s competitive. But when Cena gets Del Rio set-up for the Attitude Adjustment Brodus Clay attacks him and we get an inconclusive DQ finish. The heels try to beat down Cena but The Rock’s music plays and The Miz comes out in a bald skullcap. Cena can’t fight off the other two and Miz hits him with a Rock Bottom. A brief three-way beatdown segues into Miz alone doing a solo assault. Miz uses a microphone as a weapon, When he rips his shirt off I’m reminded Miz has gotten into much better physical condition since he started out. He’s intimidate me if I met him. We tease a Cena recovery on the stage but a Skull Crushing Finale end that. Miz slamming Cena into the giant spinning W prop then another SCF on its base caps the show with Miz looking better and better every week. I’m sure he’s going to lose the title but he may be able to remain a star.

I’m invested in Wrestlemania but I did not need Snookie.

Posted on March 15th, 2011 by Lucian | Comments Off on Wrestling Recap: WWE Raw Week Ending 3/19/11
Filed Under Entertainment

HHH, theoretically a RAW Superstar, will be on Smackdown tonight to respond to The Undertaker, a Smackdown Superstar, made on RAW. It’s definitely Wrestlemania time. But it’s Edge, the champion, who opens the show and we get a long recap of Christian coming to Edge’s rescue last week. Edge reminds us he went through a lot to get here. A little bloody nose is not going to stop him. He wants Del Rio for a fight. Del Rio shows with Brodus Clay. Del Rio has one epic line “I’m the man who’s going to replace your legacy, with my destiny.” The two-on-one assault again draws Christian and I smell a tag match coming. But Brodus and Del Rio are too much for Christian as well. And here’s Teddy Long. Tag match, Edge and Christian reunite for the first time in ten years.

Kane is here and Wade Barrett runs him down before their one-on-one match. No other members of The Corre in sight. That lasts less than a minute before the rest of The Corre run in and blatantly attack Kane for the DQ. Ezekial Jackson is able to bring down Kane but Big Show lumbers in with a steel chair and drives them off. At least that was brief.

I spoke too soon. Kane and Big Show are now mid-match with Barrett and Heath Slater. We get some unremarkable wrestling then Jackson and Gabriel run in again for a DQ again. The Corre beat down Kane again and Show gets a steel chair again. Gabriel takes yet another chair shot but the real payoff is Show swatting the downed Kane with the chair to show they are not bosom buddies just yet. If you’re from my generation you just pictured Kane and Big Show in dresses and wigs. No mention that these two are former tag team champions.

Insanely long recap of Cole/JBL/Austin from RAW. Let me clear something up before I end this column. I hate Michael Cole the character. I think Michael Cole the performer is doing a good job doing what he’s told to do. His “why me?” routine after Austin showed up with well acted. Cody Rhodes returns to action and makes short work of JTG. He is able to Headbutt JTG with the mask, which has been cleared as legal apparel. He still hates people looking at him and no longer wants to be called “dashing.”

Michael Cole is about to interview John Cena. Cena does us all a favor and just grabs Cole’s mic. Miz should have stayed under the radar. If Miz is the face of the WWE then Cena will break the face of the WWE. Cena makes the mistake of giving Cole the microphone back before he leaves and that lets Cole go off with loaded pro-Miz questions. Cena grabs Cole by the lapel and Jack Swagger comes to his pupil’s rescue. Cena sells for a bit before the comeback. We tease an Attitude Adjustment on Cole but Swagger throws himself under the bus and he’s the one who eats it.

The Sin Cara promo is awesome. Lay-Cool are here as Layla is set for one-on-one action. And the claim is they have made up yet again. Kaitlyn is her opponent if any of you remember the NXT winner. This is a complete squash. They beat her down for good measure.

Rey Mysterio returns and faces Drew McIntyre. Rey actually makes Drew look good and this is the best match I’ve seen in a while now. Rey does get the win but Drew has nothing to be ashamed of. Cody Rhodes comes to the ramp to ask for his answer. Rey wore, wears and will wear his mask with pride when he beats Cody at Wrestlemania.

HHH has realized why HBK couldn’t beat The Undertaker. Emotion was his Achilles Heel. That won’t stop Hunter.

Christian cuts a cool little promo rhyming off things that have arrived since the last time Edge and Christian tagged together like iEverything, YouTube, Survivor and Jersey Shore. The match itself is fine. Christian gets beaten on for a while then finally tags Edge just as Del Rio tags Brodus. That avoids having Edge ever face Del Rio. They let Brodus stop a Spear with a Big Clothesline which shows they must have faith in Clay. It breaks down. Christian manages to throw Del Rio to the outside then hit a Tornado DDT on Brodus Clay. That sets up Edge for a Flying Elbow to pick up the pin. Del Rio is not pleased at this hitch in his destiny.

I don’t know if there are a lot of people in the US who watch just one of the two shows but do we need huge recaps of RAW every Smackdown. How about we trim Cole and JBL a little and give Kofi Kingston some screen time? Still I finally got to see some decent wrestling with the Mysterio match and the main event so I’ll just sign off while Im ahead.

Posted on March 13th, 2011 by Lucian | Comments Off on Wrestling Recap: WWE Smackdown Week Ending 3/13/11
Filed Under Entertainment

Wrestlemania draws ever closer. Stone Cold Steve Austin is in the house tonight. I’ll try to be nice. A HHH promo video leads off but it’s the gong of The Undertaker that kicks us off live. Taker’s heard the word on the street. Some people think HHH will be the one to beat him. But someone else thought they could do that and we get a promo of Undertaker and HBK’s battles over the past two Wrestlemanias in case we missed it. Undertaker does have a reveal though. The Wrestlemania match will be No Holds Barred.

Backstage Randy Orton tries to fight off Nexus but ends up going to sleep. Nexus drag him to the ring. They continue a mild beat down here and now the referees finally show up to end it. Otunga wants his match now and Orton manages to get to his feet only with the ropes. Otunga isn’t even entertaining fighting a man who isn’t fighting back. But Orton does his trademark RKO out of nowhere and beats Otunga. Mason Ryan tries for a beat down but yet another RKO ends his threat. Orton is able to keep Punk out of the ring. Punk tries to run to the side so Orton punts Otunga in the head.

Lawler is not on commentary tonight. Miz is boycotting the show tonight. But Christian is here. I guess the brand split is just out the window these days, eh? Christian is set to face Alberto Del Rio, who still has Brodus Clay with him. And Del Rio is demanding Christian beat Clay before he will agree to face him personally. Clay looks powerful here but loses to Christian’s Tornado DDT. But Del Rio immediately attacks and, as usual, the Cross Armbreaker does a lot of damage.

Nice Sin Cara promo, very minimalist. Sunny is going into the Hall of Fame? Awesome. Eve faces Nikki Bella tonight. At least it’s not at Mania. Eve has Gail Kim in her corner. Nice to know the best wrestler is just watching. Even Michael Cole doesn’t want to see this match; but only because he wants to introduce his referee. The ref actually catches the twin switch this time. That lets Eve hit some kind of Spinning Neckbreaker and retain her title. There was no good outcome here.

And now we have more Michael Cole. Michael Cole is not cowbell. Cole give hints to his ref and I manage to guess before they reveal it’s… JBL. For new fans, John “Bradshaw” Layfield was a long-term champion on Smackdown at a point when the cupboard was a bit bare. He spent time on color commentary as well. He’s a real life investment advisor and, last I heard, a Fox News commentator. I do not pay attention to Fox News. He is a pretty decent speaker, he has a style that he speaks sincerely and actually espouses decency. But it’s usually BS and delivered with smug superiority. And he runs down Lawler nicely.

But… as Cole put it, whoever signs the contract is the guest referee and here comes the breaking glass. Stone Cold Steve Austin has arrived. Austin hits his finisher, the Stone Cold Stunner, on JBL and steals his hat. Then he guzzles some beers. Cole is back on the announce desk complaining that his night has been ruined. He makes a big show about it but eventually he signs the contracts and takes the ref job at Mania. Man, they are really loading Mania with retired stars, aren’t they? Austin is the ref and that’s the bottom line, cuz Stone Cold said so. To cap it off he gives Cole a beer bath and wishes him luck in his match. JBL recovers enough for Austin to fake sharing a beer with him then hits a second Stunner. The problem with Austin is, to this day, he still has to put himself over everyone else. And I don’t mind Austin going over Cole, or JBL and possibly even Lawler. But if people think Jack Swagger will benefit by being Stunnered by Austin just because he shares the ring with him, I can’t say I share that opinion. Swagger tries to pep up Cole by promising to take out Austin. Yeah, right.

Lawler shows up so we can have a two-person announce team again. Does everyone remember we have a United States Champion? I wouldn’t blame you for forgetting. He’s facing Sheamus and God forbid it be for the title. It’s a non-match. Sheamus gets thrown out of the ring and lands on his ankle badly. He can’t beat the count and this went less than a minute. Here I was hoping we’d see a good match on RAW. Sheamus challenges Bryan for the title, next week, with his career on the line. Is Sheamus about to get the title or wind up back in the minors?

CM Punk has a match. We’ll see how short this is. The opponent is R-Truth who won a shot at the tag titles when his rookie won NXT. It’s short, but not offensively so, and the action is decent. Punk wins with his original finisher, the Anaconda Vice submission hold. I’m sure this will be match of the night; we may not even have another.

HBK speaks more on HHH. The video that goes with us gives us an actual shot of Shelton Benjamin, who is now in Ring of Honor. Just to annoy me more, Vickie Guererro shows up. Why are both TNA and WWE courting Jersey Shore guests? Aside from the fact that Jersey Shore beats them both in the ratings. Vickie is here to announce that Dolph Ziggler figured out there were two brands and got a job on RAW. I foresee a Ziggler/Cena feud in the near future. After Mania of course. Vickie joins color and reveals she and Dolph now have a purely business relationship. John Morrison gets fed to Ziggler in his debut. Vickie herself screws up and forget they are not together any more. This is about as good as the Punk/Truth match and a little longer. The anonymous RAW GM sends the first e-mail of the night and Lawler has to field it. The GM hired Dolph, not Vickie. Vickie has to fight for a job, next week, in a match against Trish Stratus.

We’ve gone into the overrun now and John Cena still has to deliver his “knockout blow” in response to The Rock. Maybe he should drink tiger blood. Cena’s blathering fake profanity is kind of cool. Cena accuses Rock of using a teleprompter. But his ragging on Rock for not showing up is becoming one note. Cena calls Rock a disgrace and says calling Cena out is bringing a knife to a gunfight. It’s been a very vocal crowd all night and they are quite split on Cena. Remember how Miz was boycotting? Well he smashes Cena in the face with his title belt to lay him out. Then he cuts an awesome promo about how the disrespect ends here and how he keeps laying out Cena and will do the same to The Rock if he actually has the guts to show up. He has to interrupt his catchphrase to hit a Skull Crushing Finale on Cena. Then he has the audacity to steal The Rock’s People’s Elbow maneuver before he finally finishes.

A couple of barely half-decent matches does not make for a great show. Cramming in all these legends is making the promos take over the show. After all, they can’t wrestle anymore so the focus has to be on them talking. Could we at least see Taker or HHH face somebody?

Posted on March 9th, 2011 by Lucian | Comments Off on Wrestling Recap: WWE Raw Week Ending 3/12/11
Filed Under Entertainment

I want some wrestling. RAW did not deliver on that front. Yet our opening recap is about Vickie Guererro. The fact that Vickie Guererro and Michael Cole are not only in major storylines but in matches says something about the sports entertainment sub-genre of professional wrestling. At least it’s the champion himself who opens the show. That’s Edge, Canada’s own Adam Copeland, for any new readers who know nothing about wrestling. I can throw you a bone once in a while but, honestly, you’re going to be pretty lost here. ?

Tonight: contract signing. That’s a tried and true wrestling segment and busting it out for Wrestlemania makes perfect sense. But Edge quickly stops talking about Del Rio attacking him and starts talking about Vickie. I’ve never been this happy to see Drew McIntyre as he runs in and lays out Edge. General Manager Teddy Long (Bald, African American, middle aged man with a vaguely 70s vibe that include phrases like “Holla!”) interrupts and tells McIntyre it’s his fault Vickie got fired and if he doesn’t face Edge right now: he’s fired too!

I’m so starved for good wrestling Drew McIntyre looks good. It’s back and forth and technical until Edge hits a Spear but breaks his own pin to go for a submission hold instead. I think he’s used this one before but I don’t know what they’re calling it now. It gets a quick win and apparently he’s “sending a message to Del Rio.”

Cody Rhodes in Rey’s mask coming out to Rey’s music is an awesome tease and swerve. The crowd hates him. He takes off the mask to reveal he is still wearing his clear protective mask. Recap of Rhodes and his father, Hall of Famer Dusty Rhodes, setting up Rey Mysterio and Cody stealing Rey’s mask in the first place. Cody orders the crowd not to look at him. Cody wanted the crowd to share his feeling of disappointment after he missed the Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber Pay Per Views thanks to Rey Mysterio. Cody cuts a decent promo and vows to expose Rey’s face at Wrestlemania.

Kane paces in the parking garage. The Corre (a four-man stable, or gang, of wrestlers consisting of Wade Barrett, Heath Slater, Justin Gabriel and Ezekiel Jackson) reminds him they helped him against Undertaker. He didn’t want their help. The Corre just want him to neat Big Show tonight. But now the tag titles are on the line as the former champs, comedy duo Santino Marella and Vladimir Kozlov, have invoked their rematch clause. Nothing special wrestlers means nothing special match. Santino looks to set up his comedy finishing move The Cobra, but the other members of The Corre interfere and The Cobra ends up striking Wade Barrett instead. That leaves him open to the champs and they retain.

We get recap from RAW of Triple H addressing The Undertaker. That means Taker is about to show up. Yep. The gong sounds as soon as the video ends. They’re using the Johnny Cash music as his entrance theme. Undertaker looks like he’s walking slowly by choice, not out of need. Taker maintains his usual position: the streak is unbreakable. But Taker is happy to agree Triple H is impressive. But when he loses at Wrestlemania he will become nothing more than a statistic. Another name on a long list who have tried and failed.

Divas tag action as Beth Phoenix and Rosa Mendez face Lay-Cool aka Layla El and Michelle McCool. McCool is wearing an ankle brace and her ankle gets targeted heavily. She gets Layla in but Beth comes in fresh at the same time. McCool has to break up a pin. Then Beth falls victim to the brace and Layla scores a pin. They constantly tease dissention in the pair then have them make up right away. I actually like that. Someday one of them will actually turn on the other and, if they can pull it off, it could be amazing. I just hope something stupid like an injury derails it.

I’m not excited for Kane versus Big Show and I’m justified. It’s a very short match before The Corre arrive and throw Kane a chair. Kane uses it and gets disqualified. But when The Corre try to beat down Show Kane waffles Justin Gabriel with the chair and sends The Corre running.

Michael Cole takes center stage to introduce Jack Swagger, his trainer for Cole’s match against Jerry Lawler at Wrestlemania. He will reveal the referee on Monday but teases it’s The Miz. The Swagger squashes JTG who seems to be the Zack Ryder of Smackdown. Then a long recap of The Rock and John Cena’s feud. Production has added a few interesting clips and sound effects to make it less repetitive. Kudos. Alberto Del Rio’s personal portrait painter get ambushed by Edge who sabotages the painting.

Time for the contract signing. Del Rio has his ring announcer sing the Mexican national anthem. He gets farther than I’d like before Edge interrupts. Edge’s arm is taped thanks to Del Rio’s Cross-Armbreaker. Teddy Long hints at the elephant in the ring when Long asks if this can be the first contract signing that doesn’t end in chaos? The crowd is chanting “USA!” while a Canadian faces off with a Mexican. Sigh. Del Rio plays the destiny card but Edge tells him destiny can change in the blink of an eye. They sign. The crowd now seems to be chanting “Triple H” What a weird crowd. Violence does break out with Edge starting it and gets the early jump. Then he trashes the set. But when he sets up for a Spear the ring announcer gets involved again and Del Rio make a quick recovery. Del Rio gets to apply his finisher on the injured arm yet again. But he varies the beatdown a bit and somehow Edge ends up bleeding from the nose. Then he tries to use a chair on the arm but Christian makes the save. Edge is marred with crimson as Christian helps him up.

Well, my hopes for good wrestling were pretty much dashed. Is the road to Wrestlemania going to be long on talk and short on action? Couldn’t they trim the recaps and let the Intercontinental Champion defend the title? Do I have to YouTube Superstars to see wrestling?

Posted on March 5th, 2011 by Lucian | Comments Off on Wrestling Recap: WWE Smackdown Week Ending 3/5/11
Filed Under Entertainment
Page 3 of 1512345...10...Last »