Date: September 12, 2014
Location: Mohegan Sun Arena, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania
Commentators: Michael Cole, John Bradshaw Layfield, Tom Phillips
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
We're coming off a good Raw for the first time in far too long and the main story is Reigns getting taken out to end the show. It looks like we're heading for Reigns vs. Rollins and Jericho vs. Orton, though they would likely be better off with just having a tag match instead. Let's get to it.
We open with a recap of the end of Raw and Reigns taking a Curb Stomp onto a chair.
Usos/Big Show/Mark Henry vs. Wyatt Family/Goldust/Stardust
This is just Harper and Rowan and not a handicap match if that isn't clear. Jimmy chops on Goldust in the corner to start before doing the same to Stardust. Jey comes in to choke on the ropes a bit and start in on the arm. Back to Jimmy to face Harper with Luke missing a clothesline and getting dropkicked down. Mark gets the tag for a splash in the corner but Luke clotheslines him down for two. Bray comes down to ringside but Big Show stands in his way as we take a break.
Back with Jimmy superkicking Harper and nailing him with an enziguri. Bray is nowhere in sight. Luke backdrops him to the apron and Jimmy slips off, injuring his own knee. Stardust likes what he sees and sends Jimmy into the announcers' table before handing it off to Goldust. A clothesline to the back of the head gets two and it's back to Harper with a dropkick for two. Rowan comes in for a knee drop to give us a complete set of heels not going after the injured limb.
Not that it matters though as Jimmy is able to Samoan drop Rowan on the bad knee. Goldust comes in and gets superkicked, allowing for the hot tag to Big Show for some house cleaning. Stardust takes the worst of it but the Dusts are actually able to suplex Big Show down. The Wyatts take Henry to the floor, allowing Jimmy to dive onto everyone. The Disaster Kick staggers Show but he comes back with the KO Punch and a Superfly Splash from Jey pins Stardust at 11:04.
Rating: C-. What was the point in having Jimmy hurt his knee if they were just going to forget about it thirty seconds later? At least have someone kick the leg a few times after it. That being said, I'd definitely prefer not to have two members of a team both having leg injuries as the injured limb is being overused as it is. The match wasn't bad but just kind of there.
We recap Heyman and Cena from Raw.
Kane praises Reigns and Rollins for their actions on Raw. Rollins says he knew he could get inside Reigns' head and promises to take him out tonight. It's Reigns/Jericho vs. Orton/Rollins later.
Bo Dallas vs. Justin Gabriel
Colter and Swagger are at ringside. After the bell, Dallas says most of the fans are destined to be failures for their entire lives, but they could be just like him if they just Bolieve! Dallas calls himself America's Sweetheart and asks everyone to put their hand over their heart, but Zeb interrupts. He says if Dallas is America's Sweetheart, then he's “Arianna freaking Grande. And I don't even know who that is!”
After a minute and a half of talking, Gabriel starts firing off kicks and rolls Dallas up for two. A hard whip sends Gabriel into the buckle and we hit the chinlock. Gabriel comes back with a springboard cross body and an STO but the moonsault misses, setting up the Bodog for the pin at 4:10.
Rating: D+. It's almost not fair to rate this as they only fought for about two minutes after all the talking. The match was every Bo Dallas match you've seen yet but that's fine in this case as he finally has something to do. I'm glad he didn't get the “Vince is bored with you” treatment that so many others have suffered through as Dallas has potential to be a good pest.
Dallas runs from Swagger post match.
Paige vs. Summer Rae
Non-title. AJ is on commentary of course. Summer stomps away in the corner to start and puts on a full nelson leg lock. Paige fights out with a headbutt and some clotheslines followed by a series of knees to the ribs. A Black Widow makes Summer tap at 1:46.
AJ comes in and lays out Summer with the Paige Turner before skipping away. Paige freaks out again.
It's time for some good old fashioned arm wrestling between Rusev and Mark Henry. Before the match, Lana offers Henry a chance to get out of the match by forfeiting. She brings up Henry leaving the Olympics with an injury but Henry will have none of it. He never thought he would have the chance to represent his country again and there's the USA chant. Henry easily wins in a few seconds. Rusev wants a rematch left handed and Lana throws powder in Henry's face so Rusev can beat him down.
Jericho talks about losing the cage match on his own terms. He can live with that, but he can't live with Orton attacking him to make a statement. Jericho calls himself the Snake Shredder and the Copperhead Crusher and promises to take care of Orton. We get a hiss to cap things off.
Miz/Damien Mizdow vs. Dolph Ziggler/R-Truth
Ziggler says Truth (R-Ziggler) is his stunt double tonight and we get Truth in Dolph attire, complete with the hip swivel on the stage. JBL and Cole are nice enough to play up the joke. Mizdow vs. Ziggler to start but it's quickly off to Truth for Dolph's big elbow and two. Off to a front facelock from Ziggler before the good guys try to do a twin switch in a funny bit. A pair of hiptosses and clotheslines put Miz and Mizdow on the floor as we take a break.
Back with Ziggler crawling over to tag in Truth who is still wrestling like Dolph. Mizdow takes a right hand for his boss, allowing Miz to kick Truth in the face. The Reality Check gets two for Miz but Truth escapes the same thing from Mizdow. Back to Miz who walks into a DDT, allowing for the hot tag to Dolph. Everything breaks down and the good guys use each others' signature moves, capped off by Truth hitting a Zig Zag on Mizdow to give Dolph the pin at 11:04.
Rating: C+. The wrestling wasn't great but this was at least a funny idea and the announcers played up the joke really well. Dolph did say that this was one night only, which is for the best as it would get old fast. For a one off joke though, it advances the story and keeps us from having Miz vs. Ziggler one on one again.
We look at the Bellas and Springer segment from Raw.
Nikki talks about how she's been the victim for years when AJ comes in and says Nikki got into the title match by being Stephanie's lap dog. Paige comes in and says she'll beat AJ one last time so they can be best friends. Nikki thinks this could be easy.
Chris Jericho/Roman Reigns vs. Seth Rollins/Randy Orton
The brawl quickly heads to the floor and Reigns wants to get his hands on Orton. Reigns gets sent face first into the announcers' table though and we take a break. Back with Orton hitting a running clothesline in the corner and putting on the chinlock. Roman fights up and slams Orton down to make the tag off to Jericho.
Chris cleans house and sends Rollins into the buckle before putting on the Walls. He has to let go to take care of Orton but comes right back with a bulldog. Orton breaks up the Lionsault though and the Authority takes over again. Randy hammers away and gets two off the powerslam. Rollins comes back in and gets backdropped to the floor, only to circle around and break up the tag to Reigns.
Jericho fights up and dropkicks Randy, allowing the hot tag to Roman. The big man cleans house and sends Rollins to the floor before tagging in Jericho for a high cross body on Orton. The former Shield members head into the crowd as Orton loads up the Elevated DDT, only to have Jericho counter into a rollup for the pin at 12:09.
Rating: C-. This was short, energetic and set up the matches at Night of Champions. It's fine to have Jericho win here as losing to a former World Champion on a quick rollup is hardly going to crush Orton. Reigns and Rollins weren't really a factor in this but their story is already set up.
Overall Rating: C. Tonight was a by the book episode of Smackdown: advance everything but the main event, have some tag matches and recap stuff from Raw. It's just a supplement to Raw but I'll take that over a lot of boring episodes that we so often get. There's nothing to see here but it could have been far worse.
Usos/Big Show/Mark Henry b. Wyatt Family/Goldust/Stardust – Superfly Splash to Stardust
Bo Dallas b. Justin Gabriel – Bodog
Paige b. Summer Rae – Black Widow
Dolph Ziggler/R-Truth b. Damien Mizdow/Miz – Ziggler pinned Mizdow after a Zig Zag from R-Truth
Chris Jericho/Randy Orton b. Seth Rollins/Randy Orton – Rollup to Orton
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