PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Just two days before WWE Hell in a Cell, World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus and his No. 1 contender Big Show hurled SmackDown into chaos, WWE’s Apex Predator went head-to-head with The Barrett Barrage and the WWE Tag Team Champions Team Hell No exchanged victories with their devious pay-per-view challengers, Team Rhodes Scholars.
Randy Orton opened SmackDown, setting the record straight that he doesn’t dislike Alberto Del Rio because he attacked him several weeks ago, but because of why he attacked him — to make people forget how “disappointing” he was for failing to overcome World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus in several World Title Matches. The Viper claimed that Del Rio was not only “dishonest,” but also had picked the wrong Superstar to make an example of. The nine-time World Champion promised to give his adversary the “most brutal beating of his life” at Hell in a Cell.
The Mexican Aristocrat interrupted, characterizing his pay-per-view opponent, not as a Viper, but as a “garden snake that he could crush with his boot whenever he wanted.” He also insisted that he was the “the new Apex Predator of WWE.”
While Orton insinuated that Del Rio was afraid of him, the affluent competitor chose not to get in the ring with his adversary two days before their Hell in a Cell clash. However, as the furious Viper watched him go, Wade Barrett suddenly launched a sneak attack, taking down Orton form behind.
Moments later in the back, Barrett asked Del Rio if that was what he was looking for, indicating that he had attacked Orton at The Mexican Aristocrat’s direction. Teddy Long, the Senior Adviser to the SmackDown General Manager, then informed the English Superstar that Booker T had called him to go one-on-one with The Viper later on SmackDown.
WWE Tag Team Champion Kane def. Cody Rhodes
With their partners Daniel Bryan and Damien Sandow flanking the action as part of the SmackDown announce team, Cody Rhodes took on Kane in a tough battle for momentum. This happened just two days before Team Rhodes Scholars would challenge the dysfunctional WWE Tag Team Champions Team Hell No at Sunday’s Hell in a Cell pay-per-view.
In the height of the fevered conflict, after catching Rhodes in the midst of his shrewd opponent’s attack, The Big Red Monster overcame the grandson of a plumber with a vicious Chokeslam.
During the action, Sandow once again claimed that he and his partner were the most “Intellectually Compatible Tag Team in WWE.” But whether the plan of Team Rhodes Scholars will be effective enough to capture the titles from Team Hell No this Sunday remains to be seen.
The Miz def. Yoshi Tatsu
There is no doubt that The Miz has had a really tough time in recent weeks. This Sunday, however, he will attempt to get it all back when he faces Intercontinental Champion Kofi Kingston in a rematch for the coveted title — the very title he lost to the highflier last Wednesday on WWE Main Event.
In preparation for his pay-per-view showdown, The Awesome One locked horns with Yoshi Tatsu on Friday night, overcoming the Japanese warrior with the Skull-Crushing Finale.
Will The Miz get back “his” Intercontinental Title from Kofi Kingston at Hell in a Cell?
Wade Barrett def. Randy Orton
Following a sneak attack by Wade Barrett earlier in the show, Randy Orton took on The Barrett Barrage in a fierce back-and-forth battle that stretched both inside and outside the ring. But thanks to a key distraction from Orton’s Hell in a Cell opponent, Alberto Del Rio, in the climactic final moments of the match, Barrett unleashed the Souvenir Elbow on The Viper from behind for the victory.
As the smoke cleared, Del Rio looked to once again prove himself the “new WWE Apex Predator” by attacking his fallen Hell in a Cell opponent. But when he tried for the Cross Armbreaker, Orton countered, nearly hitting the RKO before Del Rio escaped out of the ring.
The exchange served as one more example of the personal nature of the coming fight between Orton and Del Rio at Hell in a Cell and served as a definitive warning that the WWE Universe had better brace themselves for an all-out war this Sunday.
Divas Champion Eve & Aksana def Layla & Kaitlyn
Earlier in the evening, allegations against Assistant to the SmackDown General Manager Divas Champion Eve flew freely over the issue of whether she had anything to do with the attack on Kaitlyn at Night of Champions. This prompted SmackDown GM Booker T to establish a Triple Threat Title Divas Championship Match between Eve, Layla and Kaitlyn at Hell in a Cell to attempt to solve the problem.
The head of the blue brand also decreed that Eve would join forces with Aksana against Layla & Kaitlyn on SmackDown. In the extremely intense contest that followed, the first English-born Divas Champion accidently kicked her own partner, Kaitlyn, allowing the quick-thinking Eve to ultimately push Layla out of the ring and picked up the pin.
Will this mistake by Layla affect the dynamic of the Triple Threat Divas Title showdown at Hell in a Cell this Sunday?
Damien Sandow def. WWE Tag Team Champion Daniel Bryan
In the second singles match of the night between the reigning WWE Tag Team Title holders and their No. 1 contenders, Damien Sandow took on Daniel Bryan.
Prior to the start of the match, Sandow admonished the WWE Universe for their admiration of the word “Yes!” as he journeyed to the ring. He pontificated on a series of alternatives to further belittle the fans and to make the point as to why Team Rhodes Scholars would walk out of Hell in a Cell the new WWE Tag Team Champions.
And while Cody Rhodes actively voiced his own opinions about this Sunday when he joined the SmackDown announce team for the contest, Kane sat in as a completely silent participant.
Just as the intensity of the match reached a fever pitch and order completely broke down, The Big Red Monster pursued a retreating Sandow around the ring. This caused a distraction that allowed Rhodes to hurl Bryan into the steel ring post from behind, paving the way for “The Intellectual Savior of the Masses” to overcome Bryan with the Terminus.
Will the same outcome occur when WWE Tag Team Champions Team Hell No battles Team Road Scholars this Sunday?
Bedlam ensued when World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus and Big Show came face to face, two days before Hell in a Cell
With a 12-man security team dividing them in the ring, World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus and Big Show came face to face, just two days before their epic clash at Sunday’s Hell in a Cell pay-per-view.
While Josh Mathews introduced Big Show as the “self-professed possessor of the most lethal move in WWE, the KO Punch,” The World’s Largest Athlete wasted no time assuring the SmackDown announcer, Sheamus and the WWE Universe that there was nothing self-professed about it.
While making the bold statement that his devastating finisher was stronger that The Rock’s Rock Bottom, “Stone Cold’s” Stunner, John Cena’s “Attitude Adjustment” and The Celtic Warrior’s Brogue Kick, the giant promised that at Hell in a Cell, Sheamus would fail at hitting his own finisher the same way he did on Raw three weeks prior. Claiming that physics itself made a Brogue Kick on him impossible, the giant dismissed any hopes Sheamus has of executed the maneuver, or beating him for that matter, as “stupid or delusional.”
For his part, The Celtic Warrior described the challenge of facing Big Show as mouth-watering — that while he has beaten everybody since winning the World Title at WrestleMania, the challenge of The World Largest Athlete is like none other and that he has been counting the days.
While acknowledging his Hell in a Cell opponent as a “mountain,” it was a “mountain [he] will conquer.” Though Big Show said the titleholder was scared, Sheamus promised that he was ready to do whatever he had to do to win — whether that meant cutting the giant down or hitting him with as many Brogue Kicks as it took.
Revving himself and the WWE Universe up with the repeated statement “The time for talking is over. The time for fighting is now,” The World Heavyweight Champion suddenly charged Big Show, lighting the fuse on absolute mayhem.
After the two Superstars proceeded to lay siege to every security personnel in the ring, The Celtic Warrior attempted to Brogue Kick his Hell in a Cell opponent. But before he could, Big Show ducked out of the ring, opting to wait for their pay-per-view clash.
Mike Tedesco will be back with a complete Smackdown recap mid-afternoon eastern time