A video package hyping the World Heavyweight Title match plays. Tonight Undertaker will defend his title against CM Punk in a Submissions Match with Scott Armstrong as the referee and Teddy Long at ringside. Will the Undertaker be screwed again?
The Smackdown video plays and we?re brought into the arena to a great pyro display. Michael Cole and Jerry ?The King? Lawler welcome us to the show. This is the original Smackdown team for years. A bit of nostalgia here! They?re covering for Todd Grisham, who got married, and Jim Ross. Get well soon JR! Our Main Event will be Batista and Rey Mysterio taking on Chris Jericho and Kane.
Chris Jericho’s music hits and the Unified Tag Team Champion makes his way to the ring. He?ll co-captain Team Smackdown with Kane. A replay from Raw plays where it looked like Team Smackdown was going to take out Shawn Michaels but instead Team Raw joined him and a huge brawl broke out.
Jericho says this Sunday will further cement his legendary status as not only one half of the Unified Tag Team Champions and the face of Smackdown but as the man who led Smackdown to a crushing victory over Team Raw. Jericho claims every time he steps in the ring he wins. His greatness is omnipotent. Jericho knows the only way to shut DX’s mouth is to tweak his team and tune it up a little more. Jericho needs to know if the men on his team are worthy to stand in the same ring as him. Jericho says they?ll prove their dominance at Bragging Rights just as he and Kane will do tonight against Rey Mysterio and Batista tonight.
Cryme Tyme’s music hits and JTG comes out to the ring alone. JTG says he?ll pass on Jericho’s offer to show some manhandling. Jericho asks where his partner is and wonders if he’s locked up in jail before laughing to himself. That was pretty funny. JTG says Shad has the flu. Jericho doesn?t believe him and says what makes him sick is being on the same team as him. Shad may have picked up the flu from us parasites and germ incubators but he doesn?t care. Jericho asks if JTG knows what an honor it is to be in the same ring as him.
EXCUSE ME! Vickie Guerrero makes her way out to the stage to big heat. She says she’s the official consultant of Team Smackdown and introduces her boyfriend Eric Escobar. They come out to the ring and Escobar takes the microphone. Escobar says he heard a lot of talk from DX on Raw saying they don?t know who he is. Escobar says after he leads his team to victory at Bragging Rights they?ll never forget the name of Eric Escobar.
Dolph Ziggler comes out, clearly upset at this gimmick infringement. Ziggler says it’s time to get down to business. Ziggler says he?ll be the one responsible for the win at Bragging Rights and he won?t let them screw that up for him. JTG asks what he knows about winning, having lost his four Intercontinental Championship Matches and breaking up with Maria. JTG says he should be Dolph Loser. Yikes?
Drew McIntyre comes out and says they shouldn?t be concerned about losing at Bragging Rights because Jericho’s ace is McIntyre. He’s handpicked by Vince McMahon to be a future champion. McIntyre says he should be the captain and?
Kane’s music hits. He’s the co-captain of Team Smackdown. Kane says as far as he’s concerned none of them are worthy to be competing alongside him. Jericho chimes in with ?Or Me!? That was funny. Kane says since he and Jericho are busy with Mysterio and Batista they should be busy too. Kane asks if they really want to be on the team. Jericho says that’s the question they want to know. Since one of the members is sick they doubt it. Originally they planned a ten man tag match since anything Raw can do, they can do better. Since there are only four of them there will be a four on five tag team match. The caveat is that if they lose they?ll be replaced at Bragging Rights by the five men who beat them tonight. Jericho says the match starts next and Kane laughs.
4 on 5 Handicap Tag Team Match
JTG, Eric Escobar, Dolph Ziggler & Drew McIntyre vs. The Hart Dynasty, Finlay, Matt Hardy & R-Truth
JTG will start this out against Tyson Kidd. They lock up and JTG gets a side headlock. Kidd whips him off but gets shoulder blocked. JTG kicks him, goes into the ropes, and hits a fame-ass-er for a one count. Kidd rolls to his corner and tags in Finlay. Finlay gets a quick headlock, gets whipped off, and shoulder blocks JTG. Finlay wrenches the arm and takes him down for a no count. Finlay hits some hard uppercuts and a short-arm clothesline. Finlay drops a knee on the face before being driven into JTG’s corner. Dolph Ziggler gets the tag.
Ziggler comes in and punches Finlay. McIntyre gets a cheap shot in. Ziggler continues the assault before being pulled away by the referee. Finlay blocks a kick and takes him out with a clothesline. Finlay whips him to the corner and delivers a shoulder block. Finlay goes for the Rolling Hills but Ziggler slides off and clubs him. Ziggler sends him to the corner and dives at him but Finlay moves and he hits the ring post skull first! Ziggler falls to the outside of the ring! We?ll take a commercial here.
We come back from the break to see Finlay locked in a chin lock from Eric Escobar. Finlay has a small cut on his forehead. No blood ? sorry bloodhounds. Finlay fights up and arm drags him off. Escobar hits a poorly timed clothesline and McIntyre tags in. McIntyre clubs Finlay and kicks away at him. McIntyre assaults him on the ground and stomps his head. McIntyre gets Finlay in the corner and Ziggler tags in, rolling up Finlay for a one count. Jericho and Kane are seen watching backstage. Ziggler drops a big elbow for a one count. Ziggler locks on a chin lock. Finlay nearly gets to his corner but Ziggler clubs him away. Ziggler tags McIntyre back in. McIntyre prevents Finlay from getting to his corner and elbows him in the face for a two count. Ziggler is tagged back in and gets a chin lock on. Finlay fights up but gets kneed down. Ziggler gets a cheap shot on R-Truth. Finlay quickly tags in Matt Hardy.
Matt Hardy comes in and clotheslines Ziggler down twice. Hardy hits a one man flapjack and covers for a two count. Hardy hits a body slam and goes to the second rope for an elbow, which gets a two count. Ziggler hits some punches but Hardy hits him with a Side Effect for a near fall broken up by Eric Escobar. Finlay runs in and clotheslines him over the top rope, going over along with him. JTG tags in and hits the Shout Out for a near fall broken up by David Hart Smith. McIntyre runs in and throws him out of the ring. Tyson Kidd runs at him and McIntyre back drops him over the top rope onto Smith! R-Truth then clotheslines McIntyre over the top rope, taking himself out as well. Escobar bounces Hardy off the turnbuckle but Finlay hits JTG in the knee with the shillelagh! Hardy takes advantage of the situation and hits the Twist of Fate on JTG for the win! Team Smackdown has drastically changed!
Winners by Pinfall: The Hart Dynasty, Finlay, Matt Hardy & R-Truth
Match Rating: ** ?
The winners celebrate big time in the ring. It’s weird to see the Hart Dynasty hug R-Truth. This is a bizarre change to happen two days before the PPV. It?ll now be Jericho, Kane, the Hart Dynasty, Finlay, Matt Hardy, and R-Truth taking on Team Raw.
Backstage CM Punk is talking with Scott Armstrong. Punk says he doesn?t understand the severity of the situation and he says he does. All he can think about since he rung the bell at Breaking Point is what he’s done to his and his family’s reputation. Punk says that’s selfish thinking and says it’s not about Armstrong ? it’s about him. Long says he’s still on probation. He can lose his job and his life if he’s not careful. Punk asks how they understood what needed to be done in Montreal and now they?re second guessing themselves. Armstrong says his dad taught him that you?re nothing without your good name. Armstrong says if he’s on the chopping block because of this than so be it and walks away. Armstrong opens the door to see a smiling Vince McMahon. McMahon says they need to talk.
John Morrison is walking backstage with his Intercontinental Championship. He?ll be in action next.
Still to come tonight is Batista and Rey Mysterio taking on Chris Jericho and Kane.
John Morrison vs. Mike Knox
This is a non-title match. As Mike Knox comes out they air a prerecorded promo. Knox says that blunt abdominal trauma is the most severe pain the human body can experience. Despite the muscle mass of John Morrison the result is the same. The liver collapses, releasing bile into the blood stream, causing internal shock. Knox smiles and asks isn?t that something.
Morrison ducks a clothesline and gets a side headlock on. Knox pushes him off but Morrison slides through his legs and hits some punches. Morrison gets whipped into the ropes but Knox bends and gets kicked in the face. Morrison goes back into the ropes and gets destroyed by a cross-body for a near fall. Knox hits a gut buster for a two count. Knox sends him sternum first into the corner before locking on an abdominal stretch. Morrison elbows out and rolls Knox up for a two count. Knox misses a punch and Morrison punches before hitting a chop block. Morrison goes into the ropes and hits a back heel kick. Morrison hits a running knee to the face and covers for a near fall. Morrison attempts the Moonlight Drive but gets pushed off. Morrison runs right into a bicycle kick. Knox tries for another cross-body but Morrison moves. Knox crashes into the ropes throat first. Morrison then hits Starship Pain and it’s academic from there.
Winner by Pinfall: John Morrison
Match Rating: * ?
John Morrison grabs a microphone and says he?ll face his former tag team partner the Miz at Bragging Rights. While he’s busy proving that he’s Shawn Michaels and not Marty Jannetty, he knows who he is. He’s the Friday Night Delight, the Intercontinental Champion John Morrison. Morrison raises his title in the air.
Tonight’s Main Event will be the World Heavyweight Title Submission Match between Undertaker and CM Punk. Scott Armstrong is the referee and Teddy Long is at ringside.
Did you know last month, over 100 million photos of WWE ringside action were viewed on WWE.com?
The new Team Smackdown is talking backstage and Chris Jericho walks up with Kane. Jericho says they?ve earned the right to stand next to him at Bragging Rights. As co-captain he expects? and Kane puts his hand on Jericho’s shoulder, reiterating ?WE.? Jericho says they expect for them to follow their lead. R-Truth says to save the General Patton speech. They may not like him but they respect him. Finlay says they don?t have to question where there loyalty lies. Natalya says they?re on the same page. Hardy says he wants to embarrass and humiliate Raw. R-Truth says that’s the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Jericho tells them to watch he and Kane destroy Batista and Mysterio, the same way they?ll destroy Team Raw. Jericho leaves and Kane looks at them menacingly before saying, ?Good talk.?
Elsewhere backstage Mickie James is talking to Mae Young. Michelle McCool walks up and says hi to Mae. McCool says it’s a shame Mickie didn?t make the Smackdown Divas team at Bragging Rights but there’s always next year. Mickie says she knows why she didn?t make the team. McCool says because Natalya and Beth Phoenix are a lot more talented than her. Mickie says it’s because McCool is scared she?ll show her up and because she’s her biggest threat. Most importantly she knows she?ll take the Women’s title from her. McCool says to keep dreaming. Mickie tells her to break a leg on Sunday before leaving. Beth Phoenix walks up and says hi to Mae and McCool. Phoenix tells McCool not to get used to having the title much longer. Phoenix walks away and Mae Young says, ?She told you.? McCool tells her to shut up and Mae Young slaps her!
Michael Cole takes us back to what happened last week on Smackdown between Batista and Rey Mysterio. Mysterio pinned Batista but his shoulder was up. The referee didn?t see it.
Backstage Batista and Mysterio were laughing about who beat who. Mysterio says he and his family watched Batista’s DVD. Mysterio says he learned something new about him. Batista says he wishes they put him winning the title for the sixth time at Bragging Rights on the DVD. Mysterio says that?d be hard because he’s going to win. They laugh and Mysterio says they?ll see what happens but tonight they?re going to win. Mysterio walks away and Batista follows.
Still to come tonight is a Submission Match for the World Heavyweight Title. Will Undertaker be screwed again?
Rey Mysterio & Batista vs. Chris Jericho & Kane
It?ll be Batista starting out against Chris Jericho. Jericho approaches him and slaps him. Batista responds with a clothesline. Batista sends him into the ropes, hits a back elbow, and gets a two count. Batista sends him hard into the corner and tags in Rey Mysterio. Batista whips Mysterio into a baseball slide to Jericho’s groin. Mysterio hits a snapmare and goes to the ropes for a leg drop, getting a two count. Mysterio stops Jericho from making a tag. Mysterio has a whip reversed on him so he slides through Jericho’s legs. Jericho charges into a drop-toe-hold on the ropes. Mysterio goes for the 619 but Kane pulls him out of the ring by his legs hard.
We come back from the break to see Mysterio stretched across the knee of Kane. Mysterio gets out but Kane floors him with an uppercut. Kane tags Jericho in and hits a backbreaker. Jericho kicks Mysterio in the head. Jericho talks trash and slaps him around. Jericho gets him up and punches him back. Jericho whips Mysterio into the ropes and Mysterio hits him with a wheelbarrow bulldog. Jericho tags Kane before Mysterio gets Batista and Kane gets Batista off the apron. The referee is distracted as Jericho attacks Mysterio. Kane hits a snapmare and a running low dropkick to the face for a near fall. Kane clubs at Mysterio’s chest before tagging Jericho back in. Jericho steps on Mysterio’s head and bounces him off the turnbuckle. Jericho hits a BEAUTIFUL delayed vertical suplex for a near fall. Jericho traps the arm and locks on a chin lock. Mysterio tries to fight out but can?t. Jericho goes for a powerbomb but Mysterio is able to counter with a hurricanrana over the top rope! Mysterio slowly crawls to Batista and makes the tag!
Batista ducks Kane’s clothesline (he was also tagged in) and hits some punches. Batista whips Kane to the corner and clotheslines him. Kane gets Batista in the corner and charges into nothing. Batista goes into the ropes and hits a big shoulder block. Batista then scoops him up and hits a big Spinebuster. Batista shakes the ropes and goes for the Batista Bomb but Jericho blindsides him with an Enzuigiri. Jericho goes for the Codebreaker but gets a Spinebuster. Batista then turns into a big boot. Kane sends him shoulder first into the ring post. Kane signals for the Chokeslam but Mysterio stops him. Kane Chokeslams Mysterio and turns into a huge Spear from Batista for the win!
Winners by Pinfall: Rey Mysterio & Batista
Match Rating: * ?
Backstage McMahon is sitting with Scott Armstrong with CM Punk and Teddy Long in the background. McMahon says he’s excited about the championship match. McMahon says he’s proud of Punk’s accomplishments. McMahon says Teddy Long deserves a gold star for making this match (Vince made it last week?). McMahon says he can smell change in the air. What starts in the fall usually ends at WrestleMania. McMahon talks about all the events of WrestleMania weekend. McMahon tells Armstrong that Bullet Bob Armstrong (his Dad) could be a candidate for the Hall of Fame this year. McMahon says to keep that thought in the Championship Match tonight. Armstrong looks conflicted as he says he’s ready.
Mickie James vs. Layla
They lock up and Mickie gets a quick headlock. Layla elbows her off and gets shoulder blocked. Mickie cartwheels over her and dropkicks her for a two count. Layla throws her out of the ring but Mickie lands on her feet and sweeps Layla from the outside. Mickie gets to the top rope and kicks Layla in the face. Layla no sells it and throws Mickie off the top rope. Michelle McCool is seen watching the match. Layla gets a near fall. Layla kicks her a few times before pinning for a two count. Mickie rolls her up for a two count. They do a strange slow motion headlock before Layla hits a sidewalk slam for a no count. Huh?
Things are getting awkward now. Mickie gets the crowd back into it (sort of) with a slap before hitting some punches. Mickie hits a pair of clotheslines and a back elbow. Mickie hits a neckbreaker for a two count. Layla hits a knee to the midsection and misses a kick. Mickie hits a Thesz Press (I hate that). Mickie sends her into the corner and hits the Mick Kick for the win. I?m sorry but that was a waste of time.
Winner by Pinfall: Mickie James
Match Rating: ? *
That tremendous video package for Captain Lou Albano plays. Rest in peace, Captain Lou.
There’s a Punjabi Prison play set? I want that for Christmas!
Jerry Lawler thanks Maylene and the Sons of Disaster for the use of ?Step Up (I?m On It),? the official theme song of Bragging Rights.
We take a look at the John Cena vs. Randy Orton rivalry. THE rivalry, apparently. I guess they gave up on trying to convince us that Triple H vs. Randy Orton is the greatest of all time.
Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler are in the ring and they run down the Bragging Rights card. All in all I?m not a huge fan of this event. It just doesn?t feel like a big event to me.
CM Punk comes out to the stage with Teddy Long and Scott Armstrong. Punk says we don?t understand how great it is to walk into an arena and know that he can physically dissect everyone in it. It’s nice to know he can reduce those watching at home to tears. Nothing makes him feel more unstoppable than making the Undertaker tap out in a few short minutes for the second time. Punk says he knows how horrible our lives are and how we?re holding on to some false hope that Taker will be him but he can?t and he won?t. Punk’s Bragging Rights start right now when he once again becomes our Straightedge World Heavyweight Champion. The best part is there’s nothing we can do about it.
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Teddy Long is seated at ringside, Scott Armstrong is the referee, and CM Punk is in the ring.
World Heavyweight Championship Submission Match
CM Punk vs. Undertaker (c)
The match begins and Punk feigns kicking Taker a few times. Undertaker lays him out with a big right hand and Michael Cole wastes no time using his old ?Best Pure Striker? line. What does that mean? Undertaker bounces Punk off the turnbuckle and punches him in the corner. Undertaker bounces him off another turnbuckle and punches him. Undertaker wrenches the arm before hitting a body slam. Undertaker misses an elbow drop and Punk goes for the Anaconda Device but can?t get it. Undertaker looks at the conspirators as we go to commercial.
We come back from the break to see Undertaker grab Punk by the throat and throw him over the top rope. Undertaker throws him over the barricade. Undertaker bounces him off the announcer’s table and clubs him. Undertaker bounces him off the steel stairs and throws him back in the ring. Undertaker gets in and Punk gets on the apron. Undertaker charges with a big boot but Punk moves. Punk gets Undertaker on the outside and hits an enzuigiri that hardly hits. Punk bounces Undertaker off the steel steps and whips him into them. Punk kicks him in the head a few times before sending him in the ring.
Punk is laughing as he springboards off the top rope into a Chokeslam attempt. Punk gets out of it and punches him. Punk goes into the ropes and into a right hand. Punk comes back with punches and a head-butt. Undertaker head-butts him and they trade punches with Undertaker coming out on top. Undertaker sends him to the corner and clotheslines him. Undertaker hits snake eyes and a big boot followed by a leg drop, brother. Undertaker goes for Hell’s Gate but can?t get it.
Undertaker bounces Punk off the turnbuckles and goes for Old School. Teddy Long gets out of his chair and Punk pulls Taker off the top rope. Punk hits a high knee in the corner and hits a bulldog. Punk tells Long to give him a chair and Long gives it to Scott Armstrong. Punk rips it out of his hands and runs at Taker but Taker kicks it in his face. Undertaker looks menacingly at Scott Armstrong and Chokeslams him! Undertaker looks at Teddy Long now and Long backs away. Undertaker turns into a chair to the gut, back, and head! Punk yells at Long to get another referee. Punk locks on the Anaconda Vice and Mike Chioda runs down. Long wants the bell but Undertaker counters into Hell’s Gate and Punk taps!
Winner by Submission: Undertaker
Match Rating: * ?
Undertaker takes his World Heavyweight Championship and does his taunt. Punk backs up the ramp looking scared.
Quick Match Results
The Hart Dynasty, Finlay, Matt Hardy* & R-Truth def. JTG*, Eric Escobar, Dolph Ziggler & Drew McIntyre
John Morrison def. Mike Knox (non-title)
Rey Mysterio & Batista* def. Chris Jericho & Kane*
Mickie James def. Layla
Undertaker def. CM Punk in a Submission match to retain the World Heavyweight Championship
Bump of the Night: 4 on 3 Tag Match ** ?
Match of the Night: Kidd going over the top rope on Smith!
This show was a go home show for a Pay Per View on Sunday? Yikes! Smackdown was hot during the summer but has taken a fall in entertainment during the fall. I can only attribute this to the constant Pay Per Views of the fall. Since Summerslam we?ve had a Pay Per View every three weeks. How can any writing team come up with new and interesting storylines every three weeks that engage the audience? The answer is, obviously, they can?t. These Pay Per Views are killing the TV shows. Everything is rushed and overbooked and the bottom line is no one winds up caring. I desperately miss the days that you had feuds you could emotionally get into. There’s not one feud going right now that can get me excited. The only things I can look forward to are a foreshadowed Batista heel turn and the possibility of John Cena coming to Smackdown. I wish they?d go back to the one Pay Per View per month formula. That worked so much better. This multi PPV month thing could have worked in the Attitude Era when the roster wasn?t split. All the creative team has is three shows to make you care about a Pay Per View. It’s impossible to have a desire to shell out $40 every three weeks off the stuff they give you here.
Ok, rant over.
That being said I was surprised by the big change to a major match two days before the PPV. I?m talking about the Team Smackdown change. The match isn?t going to be a five star classic as it is so what was the harm of having those guys in the match? Why change it now? It was a poor decision. I guess they have no faith in their group of rookies. To be honest there’s too much too quickly for McIntyre and Escobar. They should have had them wrestling jobber matches for a few weeks before calling one a World Champion and making the other Vickie’s boyfriend. A slow build always works. Why rush them? Michael Hayes knows better than that. What a shame.
I?m not a fan of the Undertaker vs. CM Punk rivalry anymore and the entire screw-job angle. Why should Undertaker care that he got screwed when he won the title a mere three weeks later decisively? Why screw the Undertaker in the first place? This is a poor angle that makes no sense other than to get McMahon feuding with Undertaker heading into WrestleMania. I hope this storyline fades soon and gets cancelled because it’s embarrassingly bad at the moment. Punk was hot over the summer and this killed his momentum.
Final Rating: ** ?
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Be sure to check out yesterday’s Superstars recap.
Thanks for reading! Enjoy Bragging Rights!