“Yes, sir, we promised you a great main event…” The WWE video leads us into the show.
A video recaps the final segment of last week’s Smackdown. Kane showed that he is in full control of the powers of the dark side. Kane said that he would destroy the Undertaker at Night of Champions.
The Smackdown video plays and we’re brought into the arena with some fireworks. Todd Grisham and Matt Striker welcome us to the show. They hype up tonight as the in ring return of the Undertaker. The Phenom will take on the Straight Edge Superstar CM Punk. They wonder about the condition of Undertaker.
GONG! The lights go out and once they come back on Undertaker is in the ring! Fireballs erupt from the stage and the crowd is loving it (I am too). Undertaker says his brother Kane has always been a disturbed freak of nature. There has been too many times where he’s had to protect him, not just from others but himself. Undertaker says he’ll have no regrets as he does what he must do at Night of Champions.
Kane attacked him like a coward. He left him beaten, battered, and unconscious. That gives him a false sense of confidence. He thinks that he has the power of the darkness. Undertaker warns to make no mistake about it: that power is his and he’s still in control of it. At Night of Champions he’ll give Kane some memories. They won’t be pleasant ones as he’ll always remember that night as the night his older, wiser brother put an end to his reign of terror. He’ll also remember that night as the night that his more evil, dominant brother took back his World Heavyweight Championship.
That brings him to why he’s here. Undertaker will talk directly to Kane. When the time comes that they finally face, he knows that they will open the gates of hell and unleash everything they have on one another. Undertaker smiles sadistically and says he can’t wait. To fight a fight of that magnitude there are no rules that can contain them. There are no rules that can stop them. So when they fight, and it will be a fight, at Night of Champions it must be No Holds Barred! Undertaker looks into the camera and asks if Kane is in and confident. Undertaker says they’ll find out.
CM Punk’s music hits and he comes out to the stage alone, clapping for the Deadman. Punk tells the crowd to stand up and give the legend the respect and admiration he deserves. Punk gets the crowd to give Taker a standing ovation. If any of us have considered ourselves a Creature of the Night then we should bask in his glory now. Punk says this is Undertaker’s moment and he’s earned it. Punk knows that after Night of Champions, none of these people will ever see the Undertaker again. Punk enjoys a good sibling rivalry so he’s really been enjoying their story unfolding.
Nothing brings a smile to his face like seeing Undertaker on a downward spiral. Punk says he sees nothing phenomenal whatsoever. What he sees is a beat up, broken down man who has had one too many fights. He sees a man who has bitten off more than he can chew. He sees someone who’s way more delusional than the drunks in the audience. Undertaker cuts him off and says he sees his next victim! Punk doesn’t think so. Chilling threats like that don’t have the same panache anymore because for the first time there’s doubt in his voice. Once he beats Undertaker tonight he’ll send a message to the WWE Universe, his opponent at NOC Big Show, and to Undertaker. That message is the power of the WWE Universe, the Big Show, and the Dark Side simply cannot compare to the power of Straight Edge.
Undertaker tells him he can come down and try but the results will be the same. He will fail. Punk says he seems to remember when he was 100% making Undertaker tap out. Punk asks what Undertaker thinks he’ll do to him in his weakened condition. Undertaker says he knows exactly what he’ll do. Punk will Rest in Peace!
Jack Swagger vs. MVP
They show footage from last week when Jack Swagger hosted the VIP Lounge. MVP interrupted the show and Jack Swagger, Sr. took the 305 as Swagger, Jr. watched angrily.
The bell rings and Swagger gets a quick waist lock takedown. Swagger hits some crossfaces and the referee backs him up. Swagger takes MVP down again with a straight right hand. Swagger sends him to the corner but MVP slingshots over and hits a clothesline. MVP hits some kicks and a nice suplex. MVP punches away before kicking him in the head, sending him out of the ring. MVP retrieves him from the outside and hits two German Suplexes. Swagger elbows out of a third but takes a drop-toe-hold. MVP hits a running knee to the back of the head for a near fall.
MVP goes for a Drive By Kick but Swagger explodes out of the corner with a clothesline. Swagger sends him into the corner sternum first and clotheslines him a few times for a two count. Swagger applies a double chicken wing submission as we go to commercial.
We come back from the break to see Swagger run into a back elbow. MVP hits some punches but runs into a big boot. Swagger takes his time before going for a Vader Bomb but MVP lifts the knees. Swagger runs into a belly to belly overhead throw. MVP hits the Drive By Kick in the corner and gets a near fall! MVP hits some jukes and jabs before sending him into the ropes for a flapjack. MVP hits a pair of clotheslines, a throat thrust, and a face buster. MVP hits the ropes and hits the BALLIN’ Elbow Drop. MVP goes for the 305 but Swagger quickly escapes the ring.
MVP follows him out and Swagger dropkicks the stairs into his knees! Swagger smashes his ankle against the ring post and puts him in the middle of the ring. Swagger applies the Ankle Lock from there and MVP quickly taps out.
Winner by Submission: Jack Swagger
Match Rating: * 3/4
Lay-Cool is backstage with NXT Season Two winner Kaval. McCool says it’s funny that Teddy Long thinks Layla can only face Melina at NOC. They talk about the secret clause Vickie Guerrero put in so they can pick who faces Melina. They then argue over who will face Melina. Kaval asks them to just get along because it’s his first night on Smackdown and all he hears is their bickering. They make fun of Kaval and say he wouldn’t be there if not for them. Kaval says he has a match to prepare for so he’ll see them later.
The history of the Brothers of Destruction is next. Hopefully they’ll make a DVD set of their entire rivalry. It’s been amazing over the past thirteen years.
A tremendous video package recaps the entire history of the Brothers of Destruction. It covers 1997 to now. It was a great look back to a time when wrestling was the cool thing to watch. If you went to school the day after Raw and didn’t see Stone Cold’s latest exploits on Raw then you just weren’t cool.
Matt Hardy is walking backstage. He’ll face Alberto Del Rio next.
Ricardo Rodriguez is in the ring. Alberto Del Rio drives into the arena in a beautiful white Bentley. Rodriguez gives him a great introduction. I love Alberto Del Rio. They show Christian calling him out about Rey Mysterio last week. Del Rio said another time and place.
Alberto Del Rio vs. Matt Hardy
The Goose, Mr. V’s favorite referee, is in the ring for this match. They lock up and tussle to the corner. Hardy gives a clean break and Del Rio gets a quick kick. Del Rio hits a snapmare and a kick to the back. Del Rio has a whip to the corner reversed. Hardy hits a clothesline/bulldog combo for a near fall. Hardy has a whip to the ropes reversed but he holds on. Del Rio charges but Hardy sidesteps him, sending him flying out of the ring. Hardy hits a slingshot baseball slide and taunts.
Hardy clubs him and bounces him off the apron. Hardy gets on the apron and Del Rio hits an enzuigiri out of nowhere, causing him to crash to the floor! That was a nice move.
We come back from the break to see Hardy trapped in a chin lock. Hardy fights up but Del Rio powers him down. Del Rio kicks him in the head and chokes him on the rope. Del Rio sends him to the ropes and hits a nice spinebuster for a two count. Del Rio goes back to the chin lock, wearing Hardy down. Hardy again fights up and punches out this time. Hardy gets a sunset flip for a two count. Del Rio quickly gets to his feet and hits a punt kick to the head for a near fall!
Del Rio kicks and chokes him on the ropes again. Del Rio hits a nice body slam for a near fall. Del Rio again puts the chin lock on. Hardy fights up and punches out once again. Del Rio pulls the hair but takes some right hands. Del Rio kicks him down eventually and goes into the ropes but Hardy hits a clothesline. Hardy hits another clothesline and the Side Effect for a near fall. Hardy hits some corner clotheslines and goes for a bulldog but Del Rio pushes him off. Del Rio kicks him in the midsection but gets a suplex reversed into a neckbreaker, giving Hardy a near fall.
Hardy hits a slam and goes to the top rope. Hardy hits a moonsault for a near fall! Del Rio is sent to the corner and he slingshots over Hardy. Del Rio reverses a Twist of Fate, pushing him to the corner. Del Rio climbs the ropes but Hardy stops him. Hardy goes for a superplex but Del Rio head-butts. They then push each other, crashing and burning! Del Rio hits the apron hard and Hardy gets hung up on the top rope! Del Rio recovers first and sends him into the post shoulder first, making a SICK thud! Del Rio applies the Cross Arm Bar for the win!
Winner by Submission: Alberto Del Rio
Match Rating: * 3/4
Del Rio goes to apply the Arm Bar again but Christian runs down to break it up. Del Rio quickly escapes the ring and backs up the ramp smiling. Del Rio says Christian will pay for this at another place and time.
Undertaker will take on CM Punk tonight in his in ring return to Smackdown.
Drew McIntyre vs. Kaval
This is Kaval’s first match on Smackdown. I’m happy they put him on the blue team.
They lock up and McIntyre powers him to the corner. McIntyre talks a little trash before releasing the hold. Kaval hits a stiff kick before getting powered to the corner. McIntyre clubs him and sends him to the corner but Kaval double kicks him. Kaval hits a running wheel kick for a near fall. McIntyre suplexes him to the apron but Kaval lands on his feet. Kaval kicks McIntyre in the head and goes for a springboard move but McIntyre knocks him off to the outside.
McIntyre goes outside and suplexes him onto the apron! It doesn’t sound impressive but it sure looked it. McIntyre puts him back in the ring and covers for a near fall. McIntyre applies a submission but Kaval fights up. McIntyre knees him to cut off any comeback and goes for a suplex. Kaval knees him in the head during the lift. Kaval hits a spin kick to the midsection and kicks him in the back of the head. Kaval charges but McIntyre lifts him up. Kaval lands on the top rope and hits a roundhouse to the head for a near fall!
Kaval goes to the top rope for the Warrior’s Way but McIntyre gets out of the ring. Kaval goes to the apron and kicks him square in the face! That was nasty! Kaval goes for a hurricanrana but McIntyre basically powerbombs him on the floor! That was nastier! McIntyre puts him in the ring and hits the Future Shock for the win.
Winner by Pinfall: Drew McIntyre
Match Rating: **
Lay-Cool runs down to the ring to check on their buddy Kaval. They don’t seem to want to touch him because he’s sweaty but at least they want to help out…
“Dashing” Cody Rhodes checks in with us this week to talk about the importance of facials (heh heh).
EXCUSE ME! Vickie Guerrero comes out with her NXT Rookie Kaitlyn. Vickie tells her to make an introduction but quickly cuts her off because Kaitlyn didn’t do it right. Vickie shows her how to do it by making everyone stand up to welcome Dolph Ziggler. Ziggler comes out with Chavo Guerrero, who is sporting shorter tights.
Dolph Ziggler & Chavo Guerrero vs. Kofi Kingston & Chris Masters
Chris Masters starts it out against Dolph Ziggler. Ziggler tries for a takedown but Masters is too strong and sturdy for that. Masters powers him down and hits a clothesline. Master hits a gorilla press front slam for a near fall. Ziggler knees him in the midsection and quickly tags in Chavo. Chavo almost gets trapped in a Masterlock but gets the rope. Ziggler distracts and Chavo chop blocks him. Ziggler is tagged back in and he hammers away at Masters. Masters eventually gets to his corner and makes the hot tag.
Kingston springboards into the ring with a clothesline on Ziggler! Kingston hits some chops and a nice dropkick. Kingston vaults up to his shoulders and punches him in the corner. Ziggler kicks him away and they double clothesline one another. Ziggler tags Chavo but the referee didn’t see that. The referee yells at Chavo, distracting Ziggler enough to walk right into Trouble In Paradise for the loss!
Winners by Pinfall: Kofi Kingston & Chris Masters
Match Rating: *
The announcers run down the Night of Champions card.
Big Show is backstage doing a self promo, acting as himself and Josh Mathews. This was pretty funny. Kelly Kelly comes up and starts laughing at him. Big Show then hides the microphone under his stank armpit as Josh Mathews looks for it. Big Show gives it back and warns him of the smell.
CM Punk comes out to the ring with the S.E.S. but he quickly sends them to the back, worried that they will screw the match up for him.
CM Punk vs. Undertaker
The bell rings and Punk smiles at Undertaker. Punk ducks the punches and walks away. Undertaker tries to corner him but Punk ducks a right hand and kicks him. Punk kicks away at Undertaker’s legs before being taken out by a straight right hand. Undertaker elbows him in the corner and stomps him down. Undertaker uses the bottom rope to stretch out Punk’s arm. Undertaker works on the shoulder and drops a leg on it for a one count. Undertaker gets him in a hammerlock and drives him into the corner. Undertaker goes for Old School but Punk pulls him back. Undertaker cuts him off and goes for it again but he gets crotched on the top rope! Punk quickly goes into the ropes and dropkicks him to the floor!
We come back from the break to see Punk working on Undertaker’s shoulder in the same manner Undertaker did early in the match. During the break Punk kicked Taker in the head a few times. Punk applies a grapevine to the neck and elbows him in the face a few times. Punk punches him down and Taker falls to the outside in a broken heap. They’re playing up the fact that his powers aren’t what they used to be. Punk drives him into the barricade and punches him a few times. Undertaker eventually makes a little comeback, knocking Punk down. Undertaker puts him on the apron and hits the patented leg drop!
Undertaker takes some time to get into the ring. He’s struggling at the moment. Undertaker goes for a running big boot but Punk avoids it. Punk hits a dropkick from a near fall. Punk applies a key lock and elbows him in the face a few times. Punk gets a near fall for that. Punk applies a chin lock but Undertaker eventually fights up. Undertaker escapes the move with a belly to back suplex.
Undertaker is the first up and he misses an elbow drop. Punk hits a running knee in the corner and connects with a bulldog for a near fall! Punk chops and punches Undertaker which only fires him up as he responds with right hands. They go back and forth with Undertaker coming out on top. Undertaker head-butts him a few times before hitting snake eyes. Undertaker goes for the big boot but Punk counters with a jumping calf kick! Punk goes for a springboard clothesline but Undertaker catches him with a Chokeslam for a near fall!
Undertaker signals for the Tombstone Piledriver. Punk counters and hits the GTS! Punk is too injured so he takes some time before going for the cover. Punk goes to cover and Undertaker gets the Hells Gate applied out of nowhere! Punk is trapped in the center of the ring so he has no choice but to tap out!
Winner by Submission: Undertaker
Match Rating: ** 1/4
Undertaker looks like he’s been through a war. The effects of that beat down early in the summer from Kane are still showing. Undertaker struggles to his feet and goes to do his taunt but all of a sudden Kane’s pyro explodes from the posts! Kane’s music starts and his pyro engulfs the stage. The sound of Kane’s maniacal laughter fills the arena as Smackdown ends.
Quick Match Results
Jack Swagger def. MVP via Submission
Alberto Del Rio def. Matt Hardy via Submission
Drew McIntyre def. Kaval
Kofi Kingston* & Chris Masters def. Dolph Ziggler* & Chavo Guerrero
Undertaker def. CM Punk via Submission
Bump of the Night: McIntyre POWERBOMBING Kaval on the floor!
Match of the Night: Undertaker vs. CM Punk ** 1/4
I’d be remiss if I didn’t start this recap out by mentioning September 11. I’m only twenty miles away from New York City so that tragedy directly affected me and those around me. It’s a day I’ll never forget. God bless the USA and those that were lost on that day as well as those who have gone overseas to make the ultimate sacrifice protecting our freedom. Always count your blessings.
I don’t know why but I keep thinking that Night of Champions is this Sunday instead of next. Because of that this felt like a go home show to me. If this was their go home show then it’d be a damn good one. The episode next week has some living up to do.
I’m absolutely in love with the Undertaker vs. Kane rivalry. It just keeps getting better. Sure, Undertaker looked old and broken down these past few weeks but tonight he performed that way. Yes he’s old but he’s not broken down. It’s amazing that in his mid-40s this guy is at the peak of his wrestling ability. He keeps getting better at the storytelling as the years go on. Of course you’re only as good as your partner and CM Punk played his role tonight to perfection. He made Undertaker look weak and strong all at the same time and he looked great in defeat. All in all it was a successful main event. They hit on all the points they needed to make.
I’m really enjoying watching Alberto Del Rio every week. I used to roll my eyes when his vignettes came on but I realize that this guy was truly worth the wait. From the time he comes to the ring to the time he leaves it I am absolutely captivated by his act. I can’t wait for Rey Mysterio to come back so those two can tear the house down again. Del Rio is a star. A guy like him doesn’t come around often so WWE better protect him and not waste his talent. This guy will be main eventing before you know it.
I’m glad to see Kaval on Smackdown. It was the logical place for him to go. Raw is overloaded with talent and Smackdown is slim on talent. I hope they start beefing up the roster a little bit for the move to SyFy in October. Let’s root for Evan Bourne to make the switch. Evan Bourne vs. Kaval? Sounds good to me!
Final Rating: ***
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Be sure to check out Tuesday’s NXT Season Three Premiere recap.
Thanks for reading!