?Yes, sir, we promised you a great main event?? The WWE video leads us into the show.
A video package recaps last week’s Batista vs. Rey Mysterio match that ended in a no contest after repeated interference from the Undertaker, who never made an appearance. That was a bit of a lame ending I must say. I try to look at the good of everything but I simply couldn?t here.
The Smackdown video plays and we?re brought into the arena with a huge fireworks display. Todd Grisham and Matt Striker welcome us to the show and announce our main event will be a Steel Cage Match featuring Rey Mysterio and Batista. The winner will become the number one contender for Undertaker’s World Heavyweight Championship. Speaking of the Undertaker he?ll make his first appearance of 2010 tonight.
Chris Jericho’s music hits and he makes his way to the ring with a humungous bruise on his mouth from Mike Tyson’s right hand. We see a replay of that. Jericho tells the fans to wipe the smiles off their faces because he is not a broken man despite what happened. Just because DX pulled a fast one on him he won?t crawl away. Just because a ?punch drunk, unsavory, mentally unstable, former baddest man on the planet? got a lucky punch on him and knocked him down doesn?t change the fact that he’s the best in the world at what he does. Jericho is the baddest man on the planet. That’s funny. More importantly he’s the face of Smackdown.
The crowd chants that he sucks and he just smiles. Jericho says they?re wrong because he?ll continue his stellar career by adding yet another accolade to his already impressive list of accomplishments by beating twenty-nine other men in the Royal Rumble in two weeks and that’s a fact. Then he?ll go on to WrestleMania 26, the biggest show in the history of the business, and win the main event to become the World Champion for the sixth time. Then Chris Jericho will have a smug look on his face and all us tapeworms will be the broken ones.
John Morrison’s music hits and he?ll square off with Chris Jericho right now. Morrison pulls a Bret Hart and gives his sunglasses to a kid at ringside.
Chris Jericho vs. John Morrison
The match begins and they stand toe to toe. Jericho talks trash and pushes Morrison. Morrison slaps him in his injured mouth and Jericho is in pain. Morrison then clotheslines him over the top rope. Morrison goes to the top rope and Drew McIntyre’s music hits. The Intercontinental Champion makes his way to the ring and he?ll watch this match from ringside.
We come back from the break to see Chris Jericho run into a clothesline. Morrison stomps Jericho in the corner as McIntyre is seen watching from ringside. Jericho comes back with some forearms and lays him out with a right hand. Jericho sends him into the ropes but lowers his head and eats a kick. Morrison hits a leg sweep backbreaker into a Russian Leg Sweep for a two count. Morrison whips Jericho sternum first into the corner and goes for the Chuck Kick but Jericho pushes him over the top rope. Morrison is in pain at ringside as Jericho taunts the crowd.
Jericho goes outside and kicks Morrison in the head. Jericho sends him back into the ring and hits a slingshot body splash for a two count. That’s a new move for him. Jericho hits a snapmare and cinches on an arm trap sleeper hold. Morrison fights up and punches out. Morrison sends Jericho to the corner but runs into a kick in the face. Jericho goes to the second rope and jumps into a punch to the midsection, turning Jericho inside out. Morrison hits a clothesline, ducks on, and hits a dropsault. Morrison goes into the ropes and kicks him in the face for a near fall.
Morrison tries to punch Jericho in the face but he blocks it. Morrison instead punches him in the midsection. Morrison goes into the ropes but Jericho kicks him and hits a face buster. Jericho taunts and goes for a Lionsault but lands on his feet after Morrison moves. Morrison then lays him out with a Flying Chuck and covers for a near fall. Morrison kicks Jericho but Jericho blocks and goes for the Walls. Morrison counters out and avoids Jericho charging in the corner, sending him into the ring post. Morrison goes for Starship Pain but Jericho moves and Morrison lands on his feet. Jericho sweeps the legs and goes for the Walls of Jericho again but Morrison counters into a roll up for a near fall.
Morrison hits some punches and goes into the ropes but Jericho hits a flapjack for a near fall. Jericho punches and talks trash before sending him to the ropes. Jericho lowers his head and Morrison attempts the Moonlight Drive but Jericho counters into the Walls of Jericho. Drew McIntyre gets up and holds the Intercontinental Championship up to taunt Morrison. Morrison viciously crawls to the ropes and gets a rope break. Morrison punches Jericho in the mouth and talks trash to McIntyre. Morrison turns around and eats the Codebreaker for the win!
Winner by Pinfall: Chris Jericho
Match Rating: ** ?
Drew McIntyre enters the ring after Jericho leaves and talks some trash to Morrison before stepping on his face. That must?ve hurt. Drew McIntyre proudly walks to the back as John Morrison looks on angrily.
The steel cage is shown hanging over the ring and we?re reminded that Batista and Rey Mysterio will fight inside there tonight. Coming up next CM Punk will save another member of the WWE Universe.
The statue of Vince Lombardi is shown standing outside the arena in Green Bay. It’s cold in New Jersey ? I can?t imagine how cold it is there.
CM Punk and Luke Gallows make their way to the ring with a chair and the Slammy. Footage is shown from last week when CM Punk saved James and shaved his head. CM Punk says last week he showed the WWE Universe that it’s possible. He took one of the millions that was just like us (lost, confused, and lonely) and saved him. Punk says he shed him of all his past transgressions. Punk says he’s the leader of the straightedge society and he’s not going to stop until all of us make the pledge to stand on his side ?one nation, under Punk, indivisible, with integrity and sobriety for all!?
Punk says he remembers fondly the first time he laid eyes on Luke. He looked and acted a lot like we do today ? half comatose from prescription medication. Punk tells us to look at him now because that can be us. Gallows takes the microphone and says he know change can be hard, like climbing a mountain. But when you wake up in the morning needing a pill to start the day it seems like we need an external power just to live life. Gallows says we don?t ? all we need is straightedge and CM Punk.
Punk takes the microphone back and says he vows to continue right now to enlighten us. Punk says the Royal Rumble match will be our first step in salvation. When he wins the Royal Rumble and becomes the first ever straightedge winner, it?ll be quite an accomplishment for not just him but society ? a straightedge society. The crowd chants that he sucks and Punk says what sucks is that we?re not smart enough to be saved. That’s just got to happen one person at a time. Punk asks who wants to be saved and he selects some guy from the crowd. Gallows goes and gets him, bringing him to the ring.
The guy sits in the chair and says his name is Trevor. Punk tells Trevor not to be afraid because he is amongst friends, meaning he and Luke. The people represent the people he grew up with ? quick to shove a beer in his face and force him to succumb to peer pressure. Now he’s with friends who care. Punk asks if he’s ready to make a pledge and Trevor says yes. Punk says this is the rest of his life and tells him he?ll be reborn. Punk asks how many drinks he’s had this year and he says he doesn?t know. Punk asks the crowd how much rat poison he’s ingested and the answer is none because it’s poison. Punk tells them not to cheer about alcohol. Punk asks if Trevor is ready to take responsibility for his actions and tells him to raise his right hand. Punk is acting like a Baptist minister asking if he’s ready to accept straightedge. Trevor says he is. Punk asks if he’s ready to show his devotion and he says he is. I think the crowd is chanting ?Trevor’s dumb? as CM Punk shaves his really bad hairdo. That was pretty funny.
Punk says he wants him to know that this is the only good decision he’s ever made. It wasn?t just hair that was shed ? it was a lifetime of depravity and weakness. That’s no more as he is now the newest member of the straightedge society. Punk and Gallows raise Trevor’s arms and his fifteen minutes of fame are now over with. The Great Khali’s music hits and he makes his way to the ring with Matt Hardy and Ranjin Singh. They?re a tag team now? Jesus Christ?
Did you know that in the last ten years, 70% of all Royal Rumble winners have gone on to capture the Championship at WrestleMania?
Fatal Four Way Tag Team Match
CM Punk & Luke Gallows vs. The Great Khali & Matt Hardy vs. The Hart Dynasty vs. Cryme Tyme
The winners of the match will get an opportunity at DX’s Unified Tag Team Titles. It’s Matt Hardy starting off against David Hart Smith. Smith lays in a kick and some right hands. Smith smashes his face off Tyson Kidd’s boot and continues the assault with his fists. Smith goes for a powerslam but Hardy counters into a neckbreaker. Great Khali is tagged in and Hardy hits a second rope elbow to the back of Smith’s head. Khali hits a big boot and clotheslines him over the top rope. Khali goes outside to get him and Natalya stands in his way. We?ll continue the match after the break.
We come back from the break to see Khali and Luke Gallows square off. Gallows slaps Khali and runs right into a clothesline. Khali hits a Brain Chop and signals for the Punjabi Plunge but JTG makes a blind tag on Khali and covers Gallows for a two count. JTG goes into the ropes and Gallows gives him a sidewalk slam. CM Punk is tagged in and he hits some kicks and punches. Punk sends him to the ropes but JTG ducks a clothesline and hits a flipping shoulder block. JTG hits a clothesline and a dropkick. JTG hits the Mug Shot for a one count broken up by Gallows and Tyson Kidd.
Khali runs in and throws them both over the top rope. Smith and Shad come in and throw him over the top rope. Smith throws Shad out of the ring and Khali pulls Smith out. They all fight until Matt Hardy dives off the top rope into them all. David Hart Smith noticeably gets drilled in the face by a forearm and is quickly in pain. I bet he won?t be eating solid food for a week. In the ring Punk goes for the GTS but JTG gets out. Gallows makes a blind tag as JTG hits the Shout Out. JTG doesn?t realize that Gallows is tagged in until he gets kicked in the face. Gallows hits the Gallows Pole (or the 12 Step) to win the match and become number one contenders for DX’s Unified Tag Team Titles.
Winners by Pinfall: CM Punk & Luke Gallows
Match Rating: * ?
Trevor comes into the ring after the match and raises their arms.
Josh Mathews is backstage and knocks a few times on Batista’s door. Mathews asks him about Rey Mysterio and Batista says he has nothing to say. Mathews mentions he?ll face Undertaker at Royal Rumble if he wins tonight and Batista has no comment on that. Batista says the interview is over and threatens violence if Mathews asks anymore questions or knocks on the door.
The Undertaker will speak next.
The GONG hits and Undertaker, the World Heavyweight Champion, makes his legendary entrance to the ring. The crowd cheers as he takes the microphone. ?The dawning of a new decade brings new hopes and new dreams to superstars of the WWE Universe but make no mistake about it ? the darkness of the Undertaker will continue to dominate and collect souls just like I have for the last TWO decades. Last week Batista and Mysterio felt his presence. They experienced a warning ? a warning they will only get once. I guess what it is that I?m trying to say is that it doesn?t really matter who wins tonight because I am hell bent on destruction. Whoever survives the cage will not survive me at the Royal Rumble.
?Now, speaking of destruction, there is an event on the horizon ? an event that the legend of the Undertaker has reached immortality: WrestleMania. Seventeen men have stepped up and seventeen men have been set down. All of the fallen warriors ? all but one have tested my fate and theirs and asked for no more. But there is one who has shined brightly in defeat and that is Shawn Michaels. Shawn Michaels, you have come closer than all of those who have come before you. You almost broke the streak but you failed. But this Monday you had the audacity to challenge me to a rematch at this year’s WrestleMania. So Shawn, this is what I?ve decided. I have decided to come to Raw this Monday night and give you my answer personally. And regardless of my decision, you will REST IN PEACE!?
Still to come is the Steel Cage Match to determine the man who Undertaker will face at the Royal Rumble. Will it be Batista or Rey Mysterio?
Mickie James vs. Beth Phoenix
Before the match begins the referee has to separate them. The match begins and Mickie gets a waist lock. Phoenix elbows her in the face and hits a head-butt. They trade shots until Phoenix blocks a kick and takes her down. Phoenix gets a chin lock and hits some crossfaces. Phoenix continues the assault by smashing her face in the corner and hitting a Samoan Wrecking Ball. Phoenix pulls her hard out of the corner and covers for a two count. Phoenix continues with a chin lock but Mickie fights up and punches out. Mickie runs into a backbreaker and gets covered for another two count.
Mickie comes back with some punches and dropkicks her in the knee. Mickie kicks her in the face and runs into a Stun Gun. Phoenix slams her upside down in the corner and hits some shoulders as she’s in the Tree of Woe. The referee has to back her up but she continues assaulting her and the referee ends it in disqualification.
Winner by Disqualification: Mickie James
Match Rating: ? *
Team LayCool comes in the ring and Beth Phoenix leaves the ring. McCool and Layla assault Mickie James and talk trash. Mickie breaks out and beats them down until McCool hits her in the knee. Mickie again tries to fight back but McCool takes her down again. McCool hits the Faith Breaker and they leave the ring.
The Smack of the Night is from the Smackdown I was at when Dolph Ziggler and Kane fought to a No Contest and Ziggler hit a Zig-Zag. Then last week Ziggler defeated Kane by Count-Out.
Kane makes his entrance and Dolph Ziggler has an interview with Dolph Ziggler. Ziggler says two weeks ago he brought Kane down to his knees. Then last week he was close to making him tap out. Ziggler says he’s on a roll and after he defeats Kane tonight he?ll roll on to the Royal Rumble. He?ll win and go to the main event of WrestleMania.
Kane vs. Dolph Ziggler
My favorite referee Charles Robinson has this match. The match begins and Kane quickly gets Ziggler to the corner. Ziggler avoids the assault but Kane blocks a kick and hits an uppercut. Kane bashes his face off the corner and hits some back elbows. Kane hits a right hand and pushes him down. Kane hits a right hand and takes him down. Kane sends him to the ropes and hits a flapjack. Ziggler tries to fight back but Kane clubs him down. Kane hits a snapmare and a low dropkick to the face for a two count. Kane hits a body slam and an elbow drop. Kane drops another elbow and Ziggler tries to get out of the ring but Kane drags him in. Kane kicks him in the face and chokes him on the rope.
Kane sends Ziggler to the corner and runs into a kick. Ziggler then quickly locks on the sleeper hold. Kane runs to the ropes and sends Ziggler over the top rope. Ziggler took a NASTY spill to the outside. That looked like it hurt a lot. We?ll pick this up after the break.
We come back from the break to see Ziggler punching at Kane. Ziggler locks on the sleeper hold again. During the break Kane was going to send him into the ring post but Ziggler slid off and pushed him in instead. Then Ziggler sent him into the stairs. Back to live action Ziggler clubs Kane and hits a rolling neck snapper for a one count. Ziggler hits some punches in the corner until Charles Robinson backs him up. Ziggler hits a dropkick and covers for a one count. Ziggler locks the sleeper hold back on. Kane fights up and gets to the corner. Ziggler goes for the ten punches but Kane pushes him off.
Ziggler charges into Kane’s hand but Ziggler grabs the top rope. Kane runs into a back elbow and Ziggler runs into a big boot. Kane hits an uppercut and a big right hand. Kane sends him to the corner and delivers a clothesline. Kane backs up and hits another. Kane hits a powerslam for a near fall. Kane goes up top but Ziggler cuts him off. Ziggler goes for a superplex but Kane fights him off. Kane then sets up for the top rope clothesline but Ziggler gets out of the ring. Kane goes outside and smashes his face off the apron. Kane rolls him into the ring and eats a kick to the face as he tries to get in. Ziggler then dropkicks him off the apron.
Ziggler jumps off the apron and onto Kane’s back with a sleeper hold. Kane looks like he’s fading but he backs into the ring post to break the hold. Ziggler is in the ring but Kane slides in to break the count-out. Ziggler eats an uppercut and Kane goes up top. Kane goes for his flying lariat but Ziggler moves and hits a head-scissors bulldog (incorrectly called the Zig-Zag) for a near fall. Ziggler now backs up for the Zig-Zag but Kane counters into a sidewalk slam attempt. Ziggler flips out of that but runs right into a Chokeslam! Kane covers him to win the match!
Winner by Pinfall: Kane
Match Rating: ** ?
Still to come tonight is the Steel Cage Match between Rey Mysterio and Batista.
Matt Striker and Todd Grisham lead us into a video recap of John Cena at the Fiesta Bowl.
Backstage we see a very rare shot of Rey Mysterio without his mask. We don?t see his face though. He puts the mask on and walks down the hallway when Josh Mathews stops him. Mathews says he’s been an underdog in the past and asks him what his feelings are about the cage match. Mysterio says nightmares are dreams but dreams can also become good ones. He once had a dream of becoming World Champion and tonight the reality is he’s walking in with the dream of winning. It won?t be a nightmare ? it?ll be a dream come true.
The Steel Cage lowers over the ring. Our main event is next.
#1 Contender Steel Cage Match
Rey Mysterio vs. Batista
This match can be won by pinfall, submission, or escaping the cage. The bell rings and the match begins. Mysterio ducks a clothesline and hits some strikes but Batista shoves him to the corner. Batista charges but Mysterio moves and runs up the side of the cage but Batista catches him. Mysterio kicks Batista off and flies off the top rope with a cross-body but Batista avoids it. Batista slams Mysterio into the corner and hits some shoulder blocks. Batista sends him into the ropes and catches Mysterio’s cross-body attempt. Batista goes for a powerslam but Mysterio slides off and hits a chop block. Mysterio dropkicks him into 619 position but he can?t hit it. Batista knows it and smiles. Batista charges into a dropkick and he’s in position. Mysterio then runs and climbs up his back, up the cage. Batista catches him and pulls him back down.
Batista goes for a Batista Bomb but Mysterio attempts a sunset flip. Batista picks him up and throws him into the cage. Batista chokes him with his boot and talks some trash. Batista pushes his face against the cage with his foot as well. There are no disqualifications so he can?t get in trouble for that. Batista picks him up with a gorilla press and throws him like a javelin into the cage. Batista picks him up again in a gorilla press but Mysterio catches the cage and quickly climbs up but Batista catches him again.
Mysterio kicks him away and hits a springboard seated senton! Mysterio goes into the ropes and eats a big boot. Batista sets up and goes for a spear but Mysterio moves! Batista smashes his face against the cage! Mysterio hits some strikes and hits a clothesline! Mysterio hits a low dropkick to the face and a springboard leg drop for a near fall. Mysterio climbs to the top rope and jumps into Batista’s arms but he’s able to roll him up for a two count. Mysterio goes for a wheelbarrow bulldog but Batista slams him down face first. Batista sets up and kills him with a SPEAR!
Batista gloats around the ring and picks him up. Batista hits a Spinebuster and does some push-ups! Batista signals for the Batista Bomb but stops when he sees Mysterio crawling for the door. Batista pretends to allow him to leave before dragging him back into the ring. Batista goes for a Batista Bomb but Mysterio grabs the cage and kicks Batista away! Mysterio climbs up and Batista quickly yells for the door to open. Mysterio kicks the door in his face and drops to the floor to win the match!
Winner by Escape: Rey Mysterio
Match Rating: **
Rey Mysterio celebrates his huge win and he?ll go on to face Undertaker at the Royal Rumble! Batista can?t believe it!
Quick Match Results
Chris Jericho def. John Morrison
CM Punk & Luke Gallows def. Hardy & Khali, Hart Dynasty & Cryme Tyme
Mickie James def. Beth Phoenix via DQ
Kane def. Dolph Ziggler
Rey Mysterio def. Batista in a Steel Cage Match
Bump of the Night: Matt Hardy diving onto competitors
Match of the Night: Jericho vs. Morrison ** ?
Well, after three weeks, we finally have a number one contender for Undertaker’s title at Royal Rumble. It’s going to be interesting. I?m really interested in a Rey Mysterio vs. Undertaker match. They had a very good match on the Christmas Smackdown so I?m expecting that and even more at the Rumble. My only worry is that Batista will interfere and ruin the match? or worse ? be added to the match. I love Batista and his new character but I?d much rather see him dominate in the Royal Rumble this year.
I really enjoyed the opening match tonight. Chris Jericho is simply the best and John Morrison has the tools to be the best. I?m happy that they?re keeping him in the Intercontinental Title hunt coming off last week’s strong promo. Drew McIntyre looked good as the despicable heel this week as well. The young side of Smackdown is looking good.
Who the hell threw together the tag team of The Great Khali and Matt Hardy? How random can you get? Why wasn?t it just a tag team triple threat? At least the other three are established. Whatever, though. I?m interested to see CM Punk and Luke Gallows take on DX, who have had their share of past transgressions.
Kane and Dolph Ziggler had another good match tonight. I really like what they?ve been doing with Dolph Ziggler over the past few weeks. He’s finally getting some steam back. I don?t think the loss tonight will hurt him. Hopefully he?ll have a good Rumble. I?ll take ten minutes of solid time. They?ll probably embarrass him and throw him out in a minute but I hope they don?t.
Final Rating: ***
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Thanks for reading!