Smackdown starts offf this week with Teddy Long introducing the NEW World Heavyweight Champion: Randy Orton. Orton takes the mic. He talks about how he used to respect Christian, then how he began to annoy him, and finally he began to despise him. But he says all of that is over now, and he’s ready for his next challenger. Teddy says he’s glad to hear that, because tonight, there will be a a 20 man Battle Royal to determine the new No. 1 contender. NEW Intercontinental Champion Cody Rhodes comes out with Ted DiBiase in tow. He says: “Looky looky, we have a Legacy reunion”. He asked Randy if he remembered Legacy, where he and Ted were considered lesser sons of a greater sire. How times have changed because like Randy, Cody is a Champion too. He says that unlike Orton, he didn’t have to result to common barbarism to win his championship, and please the masses, because he could care less about these hideous people. He says that Randy knows him, and he knows that Cody is not satisfied with just being the Intercontinental Champion. He wants what Randy has, which is why he will be competing in the 20 man Battle Royal later tonight, and that he is going to take that title from him, sooner or later. He says Ted has a voice, now he should use it. Ted says that nobody knows Randy better than Cody and Ted. They know his strengths and, more importantly, his weaknesses. He says that they haven’t forgot about the times Orton used them and…BAM! RKO out of nowhere to Ted. Orton slithers out the ring and walks up to the back. Cody demands Teddy do something about this. Teddy makes some jokes before demanding that Cody defend his Intercontinental Championship against the former champ: Ezekiel Jackson. That match is next.
Decent opening promo to start off Smackdown. Cody was clearly the star. His mic skills have always been good, but he was exceptionally good here. Expect big things from Cody Rhodes, folks.
Intercontinental Champion Cody Rhodes d. Ezekiel Jackson.
It was basically the same story here as last week. Cody made Jackson look as good as he possibly could. The end of the match saw Cody slap Zeke on the head, nail the the Beautiful Disaster and successfully hit CrossRhodes on the big man for the three. Cody looked pretty dominant in this match. He is one of Smackdown’s better workers. Love his gimmick too. I’m just glad that they aren’t pushing him too much because that can ruin a Superstar. Baby steps is the key to success in WWE. That’s what they did with The Miz, and it’s what they are doing with Cody now. He’s going to go far. I predict him being World Heavyweight Champion by the end of next year. Cody and Jackson will also be in tonight’s Battle Royal.
Backstage, Teddy Long is with Zack Ryder. Ryder says he’ll win the Battle Royal tonight and become No. 1 contender. Aksana comes in and makes Long edgy again for the 3rd week running. I really don’t like these segments.
Justin Gabriel d. Tyson Kidd.
This was a great little match up. Very fast paced. Two of my favorites on Smackdown are Tyson Kidd and Justin Gabriel. Justin Gabriel can hit some neat kick combos. The end came when Justin Gabriel knocked Kidd off of the top rope, and hit the 450 Splash for the victory. This match, however, is missable. What is not missable, is their near 15 minute match from NXT last week. That was definitely Match of the Week last week, excluding Summerslam. If you include the PPV, I’d rank it as joint 3rd along with Bryan/Barrett. A must watch. I hope both of these young men get the pushes that they deserve. They will also be in the Battle Royal tonight.
Jinder Mahal and The Great Khali cut a promo backstage. Khali says that tonight, he will win the Battle Royal. Yeah, that’s right. I speak Indian. Mahal says that Khali’s job is to protect Mahal, and ensure that he wins tonight.
Ricardo Rodriguez is announced. He says: “Damas y Caballeros den le la bienvenida a un hombre que esta destinado a convertirse en una gran estrella, El es un Hombre Honesto no como ustedes mal agradecidos. El es su proximo campeon de la WWE, La Escencia de la Exelencia y El Orgullo de México! El es ¡ALBEEEEEEEEEEERTOOOOOOOOOOOOO DEEEEEEEEEEEEEEL RIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” – Something along those lines anyway. The new WWE Champion comes out in a beautiful car, and makes his way down to the ring. “My name is Alberto Del Rio…the Undisputed WWE Champion…but of course my friends…you already know that”. That was a good line. He says that everyone thought he was crazy, but he’s standing before them to prove that destiny is real. Alberto says that exactly 1 year ago, he maid his debut in this very same place: Bakersfield, CA. He beat Rey Mysterio. 1 year later, for his 1st title defense, he beat Rey Mysterio again. He asks who wants to face him. Who is man enough to face him? Out comes Daniel Bryan. Bryan says that if ADR thinks he’s so special, why did he cash i his MITB contract the same way as everyone else. He says that is ordinary, predictable and pathetic. He makes his way to the ring to face off against Alberto Del Rio.
Undisputed WWE Champion Alberto Del Rio d. Daniel Bryan.
What a fantastic match this was. It could have went either way. One of my favorite spots of the match was the Jumping Armbreaker off the top rope. That was sick! Another nice spot was the flying knee from Bryan to Del Rio on the outside. Del Rio was also able to hit a neat German suplex at some point in the match. It’s rare to see that move in WWE these days. Bryan also hit his missile dropkick. That move is so awesome. Del Rio scored the victory by cinching in the Cross Armbreaker. I’m telling you, a feud between these two, if they were on the same brand, would be amazing. Match of the night. Bryan showed once again why he is among the top workers in WWE,but ultimately, Alberto Del Rio showed everyone why HE is the Undisputed WWE Champion.
After the match, Del Rio continue the assault until “Sin Cara” made the save, taking out Del Rio. Not bad for a guy who only debuted last week.
Divas Champion Kelly Kelly and AJ Lee d. Natalya and Alicia Fox.
Isn’t it ironic that 3 out of the 4 divas in this match that can wrestle aren’t the Champion? To be fair, though, Kelly impressed me at Summerslam. I guess there has to be a 1st time for everything, right? Anyway, Natalya pretty much dominated until tagging Alicia, who pretty much jobbed to Kelly. The match just wasn’t all that good. I like Nattie, I like AJ and I don’t like Alicia or Kelly. Alicia has improved a lot, though. She actually can wrestle. K2 won the match by pinning Alicia following the K2.
Post match, My favorite diva Nattie beat down my brothers favorite diva Alicia Fox. I think it’s clear who has the better taste in women here. Nattie is the sexiest, most talented diva to ever walk the face of this planet. I hope I don’t sound too biased. It’s almost not fair to be another woman. Unless you’re Beth Phoenix. She’s my 2nd fave. Hope to see them wrestle each other at WrestleMania 28 for the Divas Championship.
Mark Henry won the 20 man over the top rope Battle Royal.
Congratulations Mark! After being a threat to win the Royal Rumble/OTTR Battle Royal’s for your entire career, you finally won one of them! Orton was at ringside to watch the match. These kind of matches are hard to keep up with, so I’ll just take you straight to the final four. We are down to Mark Henry, Sheamus, Wade Barrett and “Sin Cara”. Sheamus gets tossed over the top rope, but hangs on. He pulls Barrett over. They battle it out until Sheamus takes Barrett out with the Brogue Kick. Sheamus comes back in the ring and is about to hit “Sin Cara” with the Brogue until Henry picks him and dumps him over the rope. Sin Cara goes for a flying cross body but is caught in mid air. Henry hits the WSS and throws him out to pick up the win. Henry walks out of the ring and stares right through Randy Orton. Mark Henry mouths to Orton that he can smell his fear, as Smackdown goes off the air.
He was the right choice to win the match. Mark Henry has never been on a bigger role in his career than right now. It’s the best he has ever been booked, for sure. I think he only has a couple of years left in him, so don’t be surprised if he was to win the World Heavyweight Championship soon. I’m not sure Henry will face Orton at Night of Champions. It might be the week before, on Smackdown. I say that Christian gets his rematch at Night of Champions and wins the title back after interference from Mark Henry. Orton can then continue with feuding with Mark Henry while Christian would move onto Sheamus, which would be a better World Championship feud, in my opinion. Will it happen? Never say never in WWE, right? We’ll just have to wait and see. Overall, Smackdown wasn’t too great this week, but Alberto Del Rio vs Daniel Bryan was a fantastic match, Tyson Kidd vs Justin Gabriel was also exciting and the opening promo (especially Cody Rhodes’ performance) was good. Other than that, the rest was below average.