WWE Friday Night Smackdown
November 11th, 2005

I know, I know, this one's pretty late. But I have a valid excuse this time, for once, and it's much better than "I didn't have time to watch the show". Well, not really, because I really DIDN'T have time to watch the show. But it was because I was the head man at a Boy Scout Lock-In all Friday night, starting at 7pm and not ending until 7am. 12 hours of playing basketball, hide-and-seek (through a 4-story darkened church, no less), dodge ball, video game tournaments, et cetera. Is it any wonder that I slept through most of Saturday?

Anyhow, I finally watched my DVR version of Smackdown a few hours ago, before coming into work. So what was on tap? Well, I knew that there was going to be a Street Fight between Batista & Edge, and I knew there would be more announcements about who would be on the Smackdown Surivor Series Elimination Squad (say that 5 times fast!). But what else is going to go down? Let's get to it.

- We start out in the Smackdown locker room, with Teddy Long firing up the troops. He wants to know who made Raw the "A" show? Well, Teddy, I believe that would be Vince McMahon, who created Raw first. Long then announces that Batista is the first man on the Smackdown elimination squad, and that there will be a series of matches tonight to determine who the other members of the team will be. *small mark-out moment* Ok, so I love "tournament-style" shows. It always gives a show some flair, to have a running angle throughout all the matches.

- Match #1: Rey Mysterio earns a spot at Survivor Series, winning, via DQ, over Randy Orton. Pretty good match to start the show, as Randy used his dad, "Cowboy Bob", as much as possible to help him. Unfortunately, at the end, it backfired. Mysterio managed to get the 619, sending Orton to the mat, then prepared one of his leaps over the ropes. "Cowboy Bob", with no other options, grabbed Mysterio's leg on the way up and sent him to the outside. However, the ref saw it, calling for the DQ. I loved "Cowboy Bob's" smile melting away as they made the announcement, as if he really didn't realize what was happening until then.

- After the match, "Cowboy Bob" beat down the hurting Mysterio and sent him into the ring, where Randy was waiting. As the beatdown continued, though, Matt Hardy ran out (to a huge explosion from the crowd) and attacked, dispatching with Bob, then joining Mysterio in taking down Randy. Mysterio gave Randy a twisting headscissors, then Hardy scored with the Twist of Fate, knocking Orton out. I really like the teaming of Hardy & Mysterio; they kind of feed off of each other's crowd reactions. This might have been the best way remaining to get Hardy hot again, after the dreadful Edge series, and he's making the most of it.

- Backstage, Josh Mathews tried to interview Randy & "Cowboy Bob", but Orton just wanted to rant about destroying Matt Hardy. He said that Hardy has guaranteed an RKO. I guess this is to explain why Orton/Hardy aren't in the big match; they're going to be going at it in a singles duel. Sure, I'll watch it.

- M-N-M came out to celebrate their recent fortunes, even showing a clip of them winning the Tag Titles from LoD '05. Melina, though, was unhappy with the boos of the crowd, and made an obscure reference, saying that the crowd was just like Tyra Banks. Huh? Sorry, I don't watch Top Model. This was actually a set-up line, as Melina brought down a Top Model contestant, Michelle. Once again, I don't watch the show, so I have no clue who this is. Melina calls her a B or C-List celebrity, saying that she can now hang out with Gary Coleman. The insults cause Michelle to slap Melina, leading to M-N-M threatening to beat her down. The Mexicools made the save (on their ultra-quick lawn mowers), then danced away with Michelle. On the plus side, we have a tag division again. On the negative side, I was badly bored here. On no side whatsoever, I want to see M-N-M vs. the Mexicools for the titles, so keep it going!

- A video package ran, displaying all of Bobby Lashley's credentials. I'd like to say that Smackdown stole this idea from TNA, but WWE has been doing video packages for a long time (see the Undertaker ones running every week). Still, this one kind of had the TNA feel, with the announcers giving the points about Lashley (ex-soldier, powerhouse, etc) and video clips showing him destroying wrestlers.

- Match #2: To no one's surprise, Bobby Lashley earned the 3rd spot on the Elimination Team, beating Orlando Jordan with the Dominator. It wasn't much more than a squash match, as OJ continues to fall from glory. I have trouble ever seeing him get repackaged for a run in WWE again (or TNA for that matter), but I've been wrong before. Meanwhile, that Lashley? One scary fella.

- Backstage, Edge & Lita come into Teddy Long's office with security to ask about canceling the Street Fight tonight. Long mentions that the entire Smackdown locker room wants a piece of Edge (more on that later). Edge sends away the security to talk mano-a-mano with Teddy, saying that he had no problem with Raw, and that his attack on Mysterio a few weeks back was under orders from Bischoff. Long relents a little, saying that he has no problem cancelling the match, as long as Edge can get Batista to agree to it. Way to pass the buck, Teddy!

- Match #3: Eddie Guerrero earns the 4th spot on the Smackdown team, winning, via DQ, over Mr. Ken Kennedy. Two out of the 3 matches have now been DQs. Hmph. It was classic "lying, cheating, & stealing" Eddie, as he went for a steel chair after the ref got bumped. When the ref, little 'Natch (old WCW reference there, who gets it?), was about to get up, Eddie slammed the chair on the ground, then tossed it to Kennedy. The ref saw Eddie go down, then called for the DQ on Kennedy, ending Kennedy's singles winning streak (although they'll probably continue it ala-Hassan). After the match, a livid Kennedy DID use the chair, smashing Guerrero in the head, knocking him out, then yelling at it to "Disqualify This!". I liked that part of it. Why should someone who was just DQ'ed for using a chair not actually use it? Kennedy's heat is better than ever.

- Batista checked on the concussed Guerrero in the medical room. Eddie, though dazed, said he had Batista's back. He looked pretty well out of it, though. Funny note: remember when guys like Mick Foley would take 20-30 chair shots and get up for more? Good to see one chair shot actually doing a lot of damage now (Cena on Raw, Guerrero on SD).

- Match #3 1/2: ... ok, Match #4: Pierrothito defeated Todd Stone in the Juniors Division match. I guess I shouldn't hate on guys who are just doing their best with what they got, but I just can't see anyone enjoying these little guys leaping around the ring like they do. Does that make me like Vince McMahon? *shudders* Anyway, Pierrothito won with a flying elbowdrop from the top rope that wasn't terrible.

- While Edge goes off to meet Batista, Lita gets scared by the Boogeyman. Not much else to say there.

- Another Undertaker promo ran. (Paraphrase from memory) "If the eyes are the windows to the soul, you may not like what you're going to see. It's the beginning of the end." Coolness.

- Edge asks Batista to cancel the Street Fight, since they have no much in common. Batista names one thing that they don't have in common: that Batista won't quit on a match that the fans are expecting (as Edge did at Taboo Tuesday).

- Steve Romero interviewed the Dicks. Sigh. I was really REALLY hoping that that name was just a joke on the Internet. They made a bunch of bad puns, saying that they were 'rock hard' and that "No one can beat the Dicks!" I think Cole said it for everyone when he said he was glad that Romero had done the interview and not him.

- Match #5: John Bradshaw Layfield won the 5th and final spot on the Smackdown team, beating Chris Benoit with the Clothesline From Hell, after distractions from Booker T. At one point in the match, Benoit was going for the Flying Headbutt, but Booker T & Sharmell's arrival (with his music) distracted him, keeping the match going. Booker T & Sharmell (wearing tiara, which they called a crown) went to the announce table. Booker T claimed to be unbiased about the match, since he wasn't going to be on the team, but he later repeatedly cheered JBL. In the end, as Benoit got JBL in the Sharpshooter, Booker T got up on the ring apron, causing Benoit to grab him. After Booker escaped, Benoit turned right into the Clothesline From Hell, losing the match.

- Match #6... or not: The street fight between Batista and Edge didn't go down, as Teddy Long was attacked in the back by Chris Masters while trying to tell Eric Bischoff that he wasn't welcome. The rest of the Smackdown team chased after Bischoff & Masters in JBL's limo. Meanwhile, in the ring, Batista was surrounded by Raw's Tag Champs, Kane & the Big Show, who took down the champion despite him fighting back. Funaki, Scotty 2 Hotty, Paul London, Brian Kendrick, Hardcore Holly, and LoD '05 (coming in separately for some reason) all got beaten out of the ring, before Kane & the Big Show Double-Chokeslammed Batista and left him laying. Raw won this one.

Summary: Well, I don't want to get too picky, but:

1) Kane & Edge working together? I mean, I know, we've seen JBL & Mysterio put aside their anger to join together, but Kane & Edge? I mean, didn't Lita dump Kane for Edge, and rub it in his face for weeks? Didn't Kane vow to brutally take out Edge, breaking up Edge & Lita's wedding at one point? *scratching head* That's just an awful big feud to just put aside for no reason other than fed loyalty, isn't it?

2) Putting aside the 'insanity' of seeing JBL herd Mysterio, Lashley, and Hardy (since Guerrero was injured, I suppose) into JBL's limo to drive off, wasn't it JBL himself who talked on Raw a few weeks ago about "falling for the oldest trick in the book"? Yet JBL himself leads the charge away from protecting Batista? Unless this turns out to be a dastardly plan by JBL to get the belt vacated (which would actually be pretty cool), it's hard to believe.

3) Ok, we saw a few cruiserweights, along with Holly & LoD '05, rush the ring, and I realize that JBL, Mysterio, & Hardy were all gone. I'll even grant that Guerrero was hurt and that it looked like the Ortons might have left the building. But what about the rest of the roster? Quick run-down: Chris Benoit, Big Vito & Nunzio, Paul Birchall & William Regal, the Mexicools, Booker T, Simon Dean, Sylvain Grenier, Orlando Jordan, Ken Kennedy, M-N-M, and the Dicks, just to name a few. I can hear the argument now about how most of these guys are heels. Granted, yet they all also seemed excited in that big group meeting with Teddy at the beginning of the show. So where was that big group later on?

4) How stupid do you have to be, by the way, to rush the ring one at a time? I remember old movies where that would happen, where the guy was outnumbered, but beat everyone 1-on-1 until he was victorious. It shouldn't work that way in the real world, people! If the cruiserweights would have stopped and surrounded the ring like Kane & the Big Show did, rather than running into the ring to face 3 guys all larger then themselves, and waited for Holly & LoD '05 to reinforce them, it might have ended differently (or given Batista time to recover, at least).

5) My only non-main-event flaw to mention: How long do you suppose it'll be before the refs finally wise up about the "cheating" of Eddie Guerrero? I mean, he's used that spot of throwing the chair many times now; aren't the refs made to watch their mistakes later in the night. I can see warning the guy, but when the odds are that Guerrero threw him the chair (since it's happened before), I'd just make him get rid of the chair and keep wrestling, rather than calling for the DQ that quick on something that I didn't see.

I also want to see one of these times where a wrestler (Kennedy maybe) tells the ref beforehand to 'watch out' for that sort of thing, then ACTUALLY USE the chair on Guerrero and tell the ref that Guerrero was setting him up, allowing the match to continue. But that's just me.

So a few major plot holes, in my view, that I wanted to get off my chest. I didn't think it was a bad show (my meaningless prejudices against the Juniors Division aside), but this storyline is already getting very confusing. I'm really worried that we're headed towards Invasion, Part Deux, with a lot of convoluted endings ahead. Plus, of course, the story off wwe.com is that Batista's back is injured and that he might need surgery that'll put him out for 3 months. This seems confirmed by the announcement that Batista will defend the World Title next week against Eddie Guerrrero and Randy Orton, which looks almost like a set-up to get the belt on someone else.

I'm hoping it's all made up, though, to once again try to trick us Internet gurus. I don't believe anything until I see it with my own eyes (Christian on TNA this fast? It'd be nice, and there appears to be a lot of 'evidence', but I won't write about it until Christian Cage pops up at Genesis). But, if it is true, then get well soon, Batista, and wish Smackdown well, because it might not be here when you get back.

The Accelerator