-We get a cold open as Edge makes his way to the ring for “The Cutting Edge.” He takes a few moments to reflect on Mr. McMahon and who may have done it. He segues that into introducing his guest, Torrie Wilson. Hmm, okay. Torrie wants to know what Edge meant by saying sometimes, it’s the person you least suspect. Edge points to Flair and Torrie’s heated confrontation with Mr. McMahon a few weeks ago, and that Torrie felt scorned when her relationship with Mr. McMahon (the one at the beginning of her WWE tenure) ended. Edge goes all NYPD Blue on Torrie until M.V.P’s music hits. Porter says Edge shouldn’t be throwing out accusations, then apologizes to Torrie. He then turns, saying she should have to go through a lie-detector test. The U.S. champ continues to berate her until Ric Flair comes out. Flair lets his fists do the talking, going after Edge and M.V.P once he gets into the ring. The heels use the strength in numbers to get the advantage until Batista comes to Flair’s aid.
-Moments ago, Teddy Long and Vickie Guerrero made a match after what just happened, as Batista and Ric Flair will take on M.V.P and Edge.
1- SHANNON MOORE & JIMMY WANG YANG VS. JAMIE NOBLE & CHAVO GUERRERO Moore and Noble start things off with a bit of chain wrestling. Noble with a take-down, but is reversed into a rear hammerlock by Moore. Hip-toss by Moore but a knee to the gut swings the momentum. Chavo is in and gets taken down. Dropkick by Moore catches Chavo coming off the ropes, then an arm-drag. Yang tags in and Chavo immediately tags out, much to the crowd’s chagrin. Yang nails Noble with a hurricanrana, but Yang gets distracted by Chavo and Noble hits a facebuster. Chavo is in now and he hits a nice side suplex. Chavo with an arm-bar, then tags out to Noble. Smackdown’s resident redneck continues to work the left arm of Sunday’s challenger. Reverse chin-lock now by Noble, but he gets snap-mared over. Noble gets a tag though before Yang can work him over and Chavo is in. Yang misses a charge in the corner and rams his shoulder into the post. Noble tags in and comes off the top, but Yang crotches him then dropkicks him. Chavo tags in but Yang flips out of a suplex and tags out to Moore. High back-body drop on Chavo and Noble gets taken out for good measure. Crossbody by Moore and then he hits a corkscrew moonsault, but Noble breaks up the pin. Yang flips onto Noble on the outside. Moore rolls up Chavo for a near-fall. Chavo rolls through and hits the Gory special for the win.
WINNERS: Chavo and Noble at 6:14. Strange match in that Moore made the hot tag, not Yang. Still, a quality cruiserweight tag match.
-The podium is set up for Daniel Beck to make an announcement regarding the McMahon limo investigation, tonight.
-Maryse welcomes us back to Smackdown. Where’s she been?
2- FUNKAI VS. MARK HENRY Wasn’t this Henry’s comeback match, like, three weeks ago? Anyway, Funaki gets no entrance. Why yes, Cole even mentions that Henry beat up Funaki a few weeks back. Face-buster by Mark Henry on Funaki. Punches have no effect on Henry. He lifts Funaki over his head and fakes tossing him over the ropes. Funaki starts kicking away at his leg, and Henry bats him away. Bodyslam by Henry is followed up with another. He violently lifts Funaki up into the bearhug, and that’ll do it.
WINNER: Henry at 2:15. Not much too it. Lots of walking around by Henry, but Funaki sure can sell!
-Michael Cole and John Bradshaw Layfield review for us what has happened in the past few weeks, regarding Mr. McMahon. The end quote of the video package?: “The show will go on.”
-Coming up, Flair and Batista face Edge and M.V.P.
-Teddy and Vickie are backstage. Teddy looks a bit nervous, talking about an announcement he’s going to make after the next match. He asks Kristal to accompany him to the ring.
3- MATT HARDY VS. FINLAY Hardy is another hometown favorite in North Cackalacky tonight. The two lock up a couple of times with some contested breaks. Hardy finally gets the advantage with an arm wringer but is caught in the jaw with a Finlay forearm. The Irishman shoulderblocks Hardy down for a near fall. Side-headlock is applied with both men on their feet. Finlay runs his shoulder into the gut of Hardy, but a single-leg take-down puts Finlay on his back. Head-lock take-down by Hardy. Finlay hits a belly-to-back suplex for a one-count. Fit gets right back on him with a rear chinlock. Hardy pounds out but goes back down after a hard clothesline. Elbowdrop by Finlay and back into the chinlock. Hardy pushes him into the corner, hits a clothesline, then a bulldog for two. Matt goes back to working the left arm. J.B.L. suggests that Beck may announce that the case is solved. Hey, that’s an announcement to save for Raw. Finlay kicks Hardy in the abdomen but Hardy reverses and slams Finlay’s head into the turnbuckle, then kicks the old man right out of the ring. Baseball slide misses, but Hardy throws Finlay face-first into the apron. Hornswaggle grabs Hardy by the foot, and he gets nailed by Finlay. Break time.
We rejoin the action with Hardy in a rear chinlock. Hardy works out with a jawbreker though. Rights and lefts rock Finlay and the big man runs into an elbow. Hardy goes for a cover and gets two. Finlay back on the advantage, but not for long. Hardy punches out but Finlay slams him. Hardy finds an opening with knees to the gut, but he gets pulled off the middle rope by Finlay. He comes up grabbing his left knee. Modified half-crab applied by Finlay. Matt reaches the ropes after about a minute. Kicks to the mid-section do little damage to Finlay, as he puts on the half-crab again. Hardy breaks again and gets the ropes. Finlay goes right back to the knee again, working in a unique submission hold, almost a standing figure-four. Hardy is then thrown out of the ring by Finlay. Fit goes out after him, and pushes him into the steel steps. Matt is tossed back into the ring and catches Finlay with a surprise clothesline. Finlay is so well-rested that it doesn’t effect him much and he now goes for the knee brace of Hardy, trying to expose the knee. He does, and Finlay continues to go after the knee. He works in the Indian Death-Lock as Hardy tries to fight out. He does, and Hardy hits a dropkick to take Finlay off balance. Side-Effect by Hardy after a blocked punch. Finlay kicks out at two. Twist of Fate is set up but Fit backs him into the corner. Hardy catches Finlay with an elbow, and Hardy goes to the middle rope to hit an elbow to the back of the head. Hornswaggle enters the ring to distract the ref, while Finlay hits Hardy with the Shillaleigh, but he walks right into a Twist of Fate for three.
WINNER: Hardy at 19:35. Quite a match, but I thought Finlay would/should go over. Interesting to see how this’ll effect the match with the Hardys on Sunday.
-Highlights of Stephanie McMahon’s screechy appearance from Raw are shown. Cole then plugs the WWE.com poll of “who blew up Mr. McMahon?”
-Theodore Long is up next. What’s his announcement?
-A video package hyping The Major Brothers coming to Smackdown airs.
-Theodore Long and Kristal come down to the ring. Teddy talks about the suddenness of Vince’s passing, and it taught him that life is precious. Teddy gets down on one knee as the crowd, surprisingly, cheers. He asks Kristal to marry him. She starts to cry but it doesn’t look like a happy cry. She backs away and leaves the ring without saying anything.
-We see what happened moments ago when Teddy Long asked Kristal to marry him.
-Tonight, Batista teams with Ric Flair to take on Edge and M.V.P.
4- CHRIS MASTERS VS. DANNY SHANLEY Masters hammers away with forearms to the back of Shanley. Clothesline by Masters, then he lays in some boots. Elbow to the back of the head by Masters. Standing choke on the bottom rope by Masters as referee Mickie Henson audibly admonishes him. Punches to the chest by Masters, followed by a bit of clawing at the face of the poor jobber. Masters picks Shanley up and slams him down. Shanley elbows out of a headlock, but Masters whips him into the buckle. Shanley gets a boot up, but runs out and gets spinebustered. Masters lines up Shanley and puts on the Masterlock. Good night, Irene.
WINNER: Masters at 3:45.
-“In Memory of Sensational Sherri: 1958-2007.”
-Teddy Long tries to break down Kristal’s door, but she won’t let him in. She finally opens the door and is still bawling. Long is taking this quite well. Kristal wants to se the ring. She puts it on and says she’ll marry him.
-Cole and J.B.L. run down Vengeance. Um, did they not announce who Deuce ‘N Domino would face?
-Daniel Beck press conference time. He says they’re in the process of interviewing everyone. He also says that DNA was found at the scene of Mr. McMahon, the limo driver and one other “well-known personality.” Well, he didn’t say it was a wrestler (sorry, “sports-entertainer”), so the Jackass theory lives.
-Flair/Batista vs. Edge/M.V.P is coming up!
-Michelle McCool plays (and discusses) tennis. Apparently, she’s loving life.
5- RIC FLAIR & BATISTA VS. M.V.P & EDGE Flair chops away at Edge to start things off. Batista quickly tags in, and Edge flees to his own corner to tag Porter. Batista just picks up M.V.P and slams him into the corner. Snap-mare take-down followed by a boot to the back and then front by Big Dave. Bodyslam and a tag to Flair. Flair drops the exposed knee. Chops in the corner by Flair. Arm-bar and tag to Batista. Off the ropes goes Porter, and he’s put down with a shoulderblock. Suplex by Batista gets a one-count. Chop by Batista and another tag. Flair drops an elbow this time and gets a near-fall. Off the ropes goes M.V.P, who catches Batista with a boot to the head. Time for a break.
-Edge dominated Batista during the break says Cole, and he’s doing just that now too. M.V.P tags in and puts the knees to the head of Batista. He misses a clothesline, and Batista hits a side slam. Flair gets the tag and punches away at Porter. He catches M.V.P coming off the ropes with an elbow. Back-body drop by Flair, who then goes to work on the knee. But as he goes for the figure-four, Edge spears him. Cover by M.V.P gets two as Batista breaks it up. Edge comes in quickly then goes back out as M.V.P works over Flair. Naitch, though, starts chopping away. That doesn’t last long, as Porter gets back on top. Tag out to Edge. The two hammer away at each other in the corner, then Edge lands a back-body drop on Flair. M.V.P comes in and misses his running boot in the corner. Flair takes out his knee and both men are down. Tag made to Batista, who goes to town on Edge, whipping him from pillar to post. Big slam on Edge, then he brings M.V.P in. Edge hops over an attempted spear by Batista, and Batista catches Edge’s spear and turns it into a spinebuster. Batista Bomb ends it and chalk one up for the good guys.
WINNERS: Batista and Flair at 16:54. Good match and good preview for Sunday.
(edited by geemoney on 22.6.07 2202) My intense Stanley Cup final thoughts and more!: Experience It
That may have been the first time I actually watched an entire episode of Smackdown in years! That Matt Hardy/Finlay match was really good, and it was just a fun show to watch. JBL really shines as a color man.
Yeah, Hardy/Finlay was awesome. And it wasn't just JBL on commentary, either. He and Michael Cole were on fire for that match, absolutely the best commentary I've heard on any match in some time. Explaining the psychology, the ramifications of every move, and keeping up with the in-ring action without stepping all over each other or themselves. Just perfect.
It's good to see the crowd signs evolving from "Hardys!" to "Matt Hardy for Champ!" as well. This has to be one of the most well executed pushes the E has put out in some time. Plus, with the knee brace and the tweaking of the Twist of Fate into more of a sudden Stunner-type move, the allusion to Stone Cold isn't hurting either.
I've liked Mark Henry for years now! There's no shame in it! He's huge and scary looking and his moves look like they hurt. Plus, first-hand accounts from other wrestlers say that he is a genuinely nice guy.
The Talk the Talk challenge certainly went better this season than last. Even the two worst promos (Cannon & Cottonwood) had a decent direction and probably could have come up with something tolerable if they'd had 5 minutes to prepare.