Smackdown Thoughts & Review [8. 19. 11]


Alberto Del Rio comes back to Smackdown to face Daniel Bryan in a match of awesomeness! A Tyson Kidd sighting! Mark Henry smells fear from Randy Orton!

Bakersfield, CA

Teddy Long introduces Randy Orton.

Tons of CM Punk Best in the World t-shirts are in the crowd.

  • Orton says he isn’t Christian and introduces himself. He discusses his Summerslam match with Christian and recaps his feelings about their feud. He asks Teddy about his next opponent.
  • Teddy says his number one contender will be decided with a 20-man Battle Royal.

Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase come out.

  • Cody says ‘looky looky’ and says that the Legacy is reunited in the ring. Cody says he’s going to take that World Title. He tells Ted DiBiase that he has a voice, so he should use it.
  • Ted says they know Orton’s strengths and his weaknesses.

Orton drops Ted with a quick-fast RKO. Nice.

  • Cody demands that Teddy Long do something about it. Teddy Long clowns him and says that Cody is taking Ted’s place against Ezekial Jackson with the IC Title on the line.

~ Nice segment. Orton doesn’t need to talk much and I think he’s over for his finisher and in-ring work alone. Hopefully, they keep this version of Orton going and not allow him to be long-winded on the mic like his other main event peers.

They show a commercial for a Smackdown Live! Special on Tuesday, August 30th. Cool.

The ‘Warrior’ trailer airs. Hell yes I’m plan on seeing that.

Cody Rhodes pins Ezekial Jackson

  • Big Zeke dominates early with power moves and his strength.
  • Cody hits a textbook Bulldog for two.
  • Beautiful Disaster Kick, Cross Rhodes and it’s over.

~ Good short match. I liked how Cody slapped Zeke’s head right before the Beautiful Disaster. It’s sort of funny and disrespectful but I hope he does that to everybody.

They cut to Zack Ryder and Teddy Long in the back.

  • Zack calls Smackdown ‘Zackdown.’ Nice.
  • Aksana visits Teddy and asks why Teddy’s last name is ‘Long.’ She asks if Teddy would like to watch the Battle Royal with her. Teddy opts out.

They replay the “Please like Justin Gabriel” video where they showed highlights of Gabriel returning to South Africa on a recent tour.

~ Nice video package. I just wish they’d do the same for Tyson Kidd or Yoshi Tatsu.

Justin Gabriel pins Tyson Kidd

  • Nice take down by Kidd at the start.
  • Discus forearm by Justin for two. Nice.
  • Justin with a Springboard high cross body that got countered and rolled into a Single Leg Crab by Kidd. Gabriel rolled out and turned it into a pin attempt for two. Loved that.
  • Justin pushes Kidd off the top rope and crashes down on him with the 450 for the W.

~ Excellent match by these two. My only complaint is that I wish Kidd was getting the push right now.

They cut to a Great Khali & Jinder Mahal interview.

  • Great Khali says that he’s going to win the battle royal. Jinder objects and says that he’s going to win the battle royal himself and that Great Khali serves him.

Albert Del Rio submits Daniel Bryan

  • Ricardo Rodriguez introduces ADR. ADR comes into the ring with a mic and says he’s the Undisputed WWE Champion. He then says that destiny is real and recaps his run for the title. He then talks about how he dominated Rey Mysterio. He calls himself “El Patron” and challenges anybody in the locker room to face him.
  • Daniel Bryan comes out and wonders why he cashed in like everybody else. Bryan says it was ordinary, predictable and pathetic.
  • Nice Daniel Bryan chant from the Bako crowd.
  • Bryan kills ADR with forearms and kicks to his chest in the corner.
  • ADR does a sick arm breaker across his knees from the top rope.
  • They show Ricardo applauding like a maniac for ADR. LOL. I love that shit!
  • ADR works Bryan’s left arm over.
  • Bryan fights back and does his corner flip back sequence but favors his arm heavily.
  • Bryan with a brutal Flying Knee from the ring apron!
  • Beautiful Bridging German Suplex by ADR for two!
  • Bryan counters a Super Belly to Back suplex from the top by turning into a high cross body.
  • Bryan blasts ADR with a running drop kick to the face in the corner.
  • They show Ricardo freaking out on the outside. That kid just brings it for his character.
  • Missile Dropkick by Bryan for two!
  • In a what the fuck moment Bryan counters what looks to be a tilt-a-whirl to end up in the Guillotine!
  • ADR is hangs on and rams Bryan into he corner to break the hold. Perfection.
  • Modified Northern Lights Suplex by ADR into the Cross Arm Breaker and it’s over.
  • After the match ADR tries to further damage Bryan’s arm. Sin Cara comes out for the save.

~ Excellent match that you can expect from ADR and Daniel Bryan. The tilt-a-whirl counter into the Guillotine should be the first thing to see when you head to youtube or play your DVRs.

I’m not sure what they’re doing with Daniel Bryan. He lost two big matches in a row. He lost to Wade at Summerslam and now to ADR. I understand that they can’t have the new WWE champ lose to him but I suppose this was to show that Bryan can hang with the best of the main event wrestlers. Perhaps they’re going to have Bryan go on a winning streak closer to Wrestlemania when he’s planning to cash in. I hope I’m right and they don’t flush this angle down the toilet and have him lose the briefcase somehow.

They cut to Matt Striker interviewing Mark Henry.

  • Henry feels like he should already be the number one contender and that this is a sign of disrespect. He sees the battle royal as a boat. He says that 19 of the men are gonna sink.

~ Love it. Henry is at the top of his game right now and he’s only getting better. To watch someone like Henry develop over a decade or more is such a joy. I really was down on Henry about a year ago. His character had no direction and he bounced back and forth between being a likeable face stuck in the midcard and a stepping stool for every up and coming wrestler in the company. Henry is as complete as he ever will be right now as a wrestler and a promo guy. Give him a run with title? Why not? Another legit big man in the same league as Big Show and Kane couldn’t hurt.

Kelly Kelly & A.J. def. Natalya & Alicia Fox via pinfall

  • Natalya tells Foxx to go in the corner.
  • Natalya blasts AJ early with power moves.
  • AJ gets Natalya down with a very interesting headscissors takedown.
  • Natalya tags Foxx in begrudgingly.
  • Kelly is tagged in and she spanks Foxx. Yes please.
  • Kelly with a Stink face and a ‘rana for two. K-2 Legdrop and it’s over.
  • After the match, Natalya puts Alicia Foxx in a Sharpshooter outside of the ring.

~ Decent match and Divas matches are now must see wrestling. I really do want to know what Beth and Natalya are going to do next which I think is awesome.

Mark Henry wins the 20-Man No. 1 Contender’s Battle Royal

  • Orton comes down to watch at ringside.
  • Most of the wrestlers surround Henry in the ring.
  • Sheamus comes in last.
  • Everybody attacks Henry and Henry blasts them off.
  • Khali just guards Jinder Mahal in the corner.
  • Sin Cara eliminates Zack Ryder.
  • Ezekial Jackson eliminates Cody Rhodes.
  • Great Khali eliminates Ezekial.
  • Mark Henry stares Khali down and slaps his face.
  • Mark Henry PICKS Khali up and throws him out.
  • Sheamus Polish Hammers Henry through the bottom rope to the outside. Henry is still technically in the match.
  • Sheamus with a sick Brogue Kick that sends Slater to the outside.
  • Henry drops Slater on the steel steps outside.
  • Sin Cara eliminates Justin Gabriel.
  • Mark Henry Biel Tosses Gabriel over the guard barrier.
  • Henry destroys the Usos. He tossed one of them through the announce table.
  • Henry goes back into the ring and throws out Jinder and Ted DiBiase.
  • The last four are Sheamus, Sin Cara, Wade Barrett and Mark Henry.
  • Sheamus Brogue Kicks Wade off the apron to eliminate him.
  • Sheamus and Sin Cara go at it.
  • Henry throws Sheamus out.
  • Sin Cara attacks Henry with a High Cross Body from the top rope.
  • Henry catches Sin Cara off a Springboard High Cross Body and follows with the World’s Strongest Slam.
  • Huge Sin Cara chant.
  • Henry picks Sin Cara up and throws him out for the victory.

After the Battle Royal, Mark Henry faces off with Randy Orton and says he can smell fear from Randy Orton as the episode ends.

~ This was a formality and an awesome showcase for Mark Henry. I’ll be more than happy if Henry faces Orton at the Night of Champions pay per view. Henry doesn’t necessarily have to win at Night of Champions to keep his momentum but it would be a nice reward for his resurgence.

I don’t expect the Henry vs. Orton matches to be of the same four-star caliber matches Orton had against Christian. But I do expect these to be good matches that showcase both Henry and Orton’s strengths.

We have four more pay per views until Survivor Series. Can Orton and Henry maintain an interesting feud for that long period of time? Perhaps this would be a good time to put the title on Henry for a brief title run so that Orton or a returning Big Show can win it back around the Survivor Series.

*Picture courtesy of

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