Welcome to the second review of WWE Sunday Night Heat by yours truly. After a mere week on the job I've already acquired a fan. Granted, the guy already knows me and (erroneously) considers me a friend. It is also the opinion of this same fellow that I should adopt a new wrasslin' moniker so henceforth (and just to shut him up) I shall be known as Pretty Boy Lycra. On with the show.
Matt Hardy vs. Steven Richards
I was happy to see a rematch between these two guys after they put on what was arguably the match of the night last week on Heat. It may have been another curtain jerker but it got the crowd pumped. Big pop for Matt with the hometown N.C. crowd and lots of heat for Steven. Matt dominates early in the match as the two start brawling. Steve gains the upper hand and begins working on Matt's lower back with a series of elbows, punches and a couple of strong suplexes. Steven gets Matt into a full nelson submission hold but Matt fights out as the crowd starts chanting his name. Couple of big reverse choke/slam/I'm-not-sure-what by Matt and a clothesline leads only to a two count on Steven. Matt pulls out a hip toss/neck breaker (thanks D'Lo) maneuver. Another pin on Steven yields only a second two count. Steven starts to fight back here and counters Matt's attempt at a Side Effect but Matt counters back, hits the Side Effect and tries for another pin. Guess what? Two count. The ref must have given these guys a time warning cause now it's all about pulling off the big moves. Steven counters out of a Twist of Fate attempt and almost tosses Matt out of the ring but Matt manages to land on the apron. Some more brief back and forth action sees a pin attempt by both men with Steven trying to use the ropes a la last week. However nobody believes that's going to happen again, particularly in North Carolina. Sure enough Matt fights back and beats Steven down enough to hit his big leg drop. Matt then picks Steven up and tries again for the Twist. but Steven counters and nails Matt with a big bulldog. Good enough for.you guessed it.a two count. But it all goes terribly wrong for Steven when he tries to finish off Matt by setting him up on the top turnbuckle. Matt fights back and hits a HUGE Twist of Fate from the "high rent district". 1, 2, 3. Helluvan effort kids.
Winner: Matt Hardy
Backstage we're treated (and I use the term loosely) to Terri interviewing William Regal concerning his scheduled match against Goldust. My man Regal actually brings up the fact that Terri and Goldust were married. Not surprising since it's been made clear for sometime that nobody on WWE television is exempt from having to share their private lives with the world. Personally, I think the contrast in characters and the respective talents of both these men mean a feud could make for some very entertaining vignettes if not wrestling matches.
We comeback to a recap of RAW featuring the arrival of the Un-Americans. One has to admit that their shtick is getting better and what better way to get heat from a crowd then to bring up embarrassing facts about American history? Also featured is the Un-Americans' interference in Undertaker's match against Chris Harvard. Thankfully, the under appreciated WWE editors took out the bad camera angle on the first Concerto shot which clearly shows Lance and Christian missed by a mile.
After commercial, Raven's music hits and Captain Unhappy himself makes his way to the announce table. He's using the "personal playground" angle that he swore to last week. I'll save my thoughts on this until we see what happens. What's lame at this point is that D'Lo is totally backing down.
Shelton Benjamin vs. Justin Credible
No doubt anybody that has been following OVW (or at least the Ross Report) has been looking forward to the debut of Shelton. The crowd doesn't know how to react to the rookie but sure knows to give Justin lots of boos. Shelton starts off by putting on a bit of a mat wrestling clinic and slowly starts quickening the pace.
Meanwhile, back at the announce table, Raven and D'Lo are bickering. Something about D'Lo cheating on his CPA's. Whatever, I'm watching the match.
Justin finally puts an end to Shelton's momentum when he hits a swinging DDT that was less than impressive in both Justin's delivery and how Shelton took it. Justin starts choking Shelton in the corner and follows through by pulling Shelton off the ropes and into a power bomb. More choking by Justin turns into some reversals by both combatants and Shelton getting the momentum back with a series of punches. Then the rookie nails Justin with a BIG overhead slam and a totally sweet northern lights suplex. But Justin is in denial and kicks out at the two count. Shelton tries to whip Justin but is reversed into corner and almost runs in to the ref. As Shelton turns around he gets clocked by Justin's super kick. Pin and a two count. Justin tries another two count but Shelton catches his foot and scores with a spinning heel kick of his own. The crowd cheers loudly as Justin Capableofwinningamatch gets pinned for three. Sorry Lewis but you had to see it coming.
Winner: Shelton Benjamin
Of course for almost the entire match, Raven and D'Lo continued to argue while The Coach tried to call the match. Basically Raven was on his "world against me trip" and D'Lo was on a "Stop being a whiny bitch" trip. Not all that interesting. Hopefully it will go somewhere.
Johnny Stamboli vs. Spike Dudley
I'm not even going to bother covering this match properly because we all know what the outcome will be. Raven and D'Lo continue to argue while Stamboli pretty much has his way with Spike in the ring. Lots of moves that must be fun to do on a guy Spike's size. Spike does hit a dropkick and rams his head into Johnny's midsection. The little guy also hits his signature jump off the turnbuckle and on to the opponent's stomach. Johnny tries a submission and even uses the ropes but the ref busts him and Spike counters with a hip toss. Then all is set right with the universe when Stamboli reverses a Dudley Dog attempt in to the Fagettaboutit (sp?) and scores the pin.
Winner: Johnny Stamboli
Back at the announce table things have reached the boiling point as both Raven and D'Lo have a staring contest. Raven tries a cheap shot but D'Lo blocks and sends Raven ass-over-teakettle (or literally the announce table). The crowd goes nuts as D'Lo's music pipes through my speakers. This bodes well in my book. D'Lo needs to get back in the ring and a feud with Raven could really work well.
Another recap of RAW, this time covering the HBK/HHH angle. Last week I called HHH's reason for hitting Shawn with the Pedigree was because of Shawn's threats towards HHH before Vengeance. A perfectly logical story development and I stand by it. Of course, however, WWE has to be contrary and turns it into a whole ego thing. Totally weak. I could see Dale Mills coming up with something this lame but who'd have thought paid professionals couldn't think of anything better (i.e. my idea). Then of course we see footage of a bloodied Shawn surrounded by other talent and the gaping hole in the car window. Oh my gosh! Who hurt HBK? How long can they milk this before actually giving the fans what they want.HBK back in the pheckin' ring already?
William Regal vs. Goldust
Last match of the night. Not surprisingly the crowd is totally behind Goldust and not showing any love for Regal. The two start working an old school style match with lots of reversals and groundwork. Regal manages to hang Goldust up on the top rope then takes advantage with much stomping once the "Bizarre One" topples to the mat. Regal gets a two count on Goldust. It's time for a momentum shift as punches are traded with Goldust gaining the upper hand. A couple of clotheslines on Regal followed up with Goldust coming off the ropes, dropping to the mat and slapping Regal upside the head as he bends over in preparation for a back body drop. Goldust goes for the Curtain Call but Regal fights out of it with a thumb to the eye (or something like that, it's hardly important). As Regal is reaching into his tights for the brass knuckles, Goldust scores a roll up and the pin.
Just in case Regal didn't have enough heat from the crowd, he decks Goldust with the brass knucks' anyway.
That's the show folks. Thanks for reading and feel free to email me at shedmanD@hotmail.com with any thoughts you care to share on this report, Heat, WWE or why the Big Dalebowski is a mid-carder for life. I do actually reply. Keep in mind that if you email me to complain that I insulted your favorite wrestler, I'm just going to insult you too. Cheers.