WWE ‘SmackDown’ Preview – [5/4/12]
This week has seen some pretty mighty fine WWE product hit the airwaves, including the awesome ‘Extreme Rules’ pay-per-view and a perfectly entertaining ‘Monday Night Raw’ the night afterward. While you won’t be seeing guys like Brock Lesnar, John Cena or CM Punk on this week's 'SmackDown,' all signs (meaning dirt sheet show reports) point to this being a solid two hours of rasslin entertainment.
For a full preview of this week’s ‘Friday Night SmackDown,’ keep reading below, but please keep in mind that SPOILER WARNINGS are in full effect. Then, tell us what you’re looking forward to about the show in the comments and share the article on all your social networks. Finally, follow me on Twitter – it’ll make us that much closer to one another, I promise.
First Tag Team Title defense
This past Monday saw the team of Kofi Kingston & R-Truth win the WWE Tag Team Championships from Primo & Epico, and in keeping with WWE’s apparent initiative to form all tag teams along racial lines, the two’s first title defense is against Hunico & Camacho. (Or, perceived racial lines, at least. Despite the Hispanic name and cholo gear, Camacho is actually the son of Tongan wrestler Haku/Meng.)
If you’re eager to see a rematch between Kingston & Truth and the two Colon boys, you might be a little disappointed this week. But, you shouldn’t have to wait too long to see the four get back in the ring together, as Epico & Primo observe this week’s title defense from ringside, along with their rapidly expanding managerial team of Rosa Mendes and Abraham Washington.
Funkasaurus vs. Swagger x2
Proving that a complete and utter lack of any kind of storyline or even characterization beyond “Loves dancing and headbutting!” can’t keep a good Funkasaurus down, this Friday will see Brodus Clay take on Jack Swagger. Fittingly, Swagger’s partner in the managerial services of Vickie Guerrero, Dolph Ziggler, gets involved, causing Clay to win by DQ, and prompting a joint beatdown on the Funkasaurus. Naturally, however, Clay gets his sealegs and chases his assailants off.
BUT, there may well be a totally different finish to this particular match! See, later in the night, WWE retaped part of this contest, and instead of having Clay lose by DQ, they redid things to have him win by count out. This was likely done in order to keep Clay looking strong, seeing as he’s been largely undefeated since his repackaging, but it will be interesting to see which finish WWE goes with, and whether they retain any of the post-match beatdown from Ziggler & Swagger.
Sandow walks and Ryback squashes
This week’s ‘SmackDown’ was meant to feature a contest between new addition to the roster Damien Sandow and Derrick “Do I really still work here?” Bateman. But instead of simply coming out and beating the guy up like everyone expected, Sandow instead cut a promo on both Bateman and the Toledo, Ohio crowd, and then refused to wrestle.
Fortunately, there was someone else in the back capable of coming out and pummeling Bateman: Ryback. While it’s somewhat of a comedown from Sunday night, when Ryback steamrolled through not one, but two nameless jobbers, it should still be a fun time watching the former Skip Sheffield batter his opponent. Hopefully the Buckeyes in attendance will get the “GOLD-BERG!” chants going again.
Who were the Bellas again?
As of Monday night, Brie and Nikki Bella are apparently no longer with WWE, following a short and largely pointless run with the Divas Title. But all that’s in the past, because we now have a new Divas Champion: Layla! She won the title on Sunday at ‘Extreme Rules,’ and first defended it on Monday against both Bellas simultaneously, but she’ll be stepping into the ring again on Friday against Natalya.
Seemingly everyone on the internet is aware, but it bears repeating: Natalya is really good at actually wrestling. Her and Beth Phoenix are easily the most talented female wrestlers on the roster (Kharma isn’t included in this impromptu ranking as she’s still out of action), and though not quite on the same level, Layla is no slouch either. It’s not terribly often that I look forward to a Divas match, but this should be one to watch.
Sheamus vs. Daniel Bryan x2
This week’s ‘SmackDown’ opens with a rematch between World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus and his ‘Extreme Rules’ opponent Daniel Bryan. However, the match wasn’t able to come to its appropriate conclusion due to interference from No. 1 contender Alberto Del Rio, which caused Sheamus to pick up the win by disqualification. Afterward, ADR locked his signature armbar onto the Celtic Warrior.
Thankfully, those who missed this past weekend’s ‘Extreme Rules’ won’t leave ‘SmackDown’ feeling cheated out of a Sheamus/Bryan match-up, as the two square off again in the evening’s main event. It’s not exactly a completely fair contest, as Del Rio also interferes here, but Sheamus still picks up the win, making it a good consolation prize for people who didn’t tune in this past Sunday night.