Scott’s Smackdown Recap 5/31/13

smackdown531
Ryback and Kofi Kingston (courtesy wwe.com)

Friday Night Smackdown
May 31, 2013
Edmonton, Alberta

We begin with the obligatory video package, and then WWE’s crown jewels, The Shield. I feel like WWE listened to me after Impact, because they are opening the show with a match, and not a promo. Well I know this is taped, but hey I want to feel important. Looks like they’re reshuffling the announcers, and now Josh is gone (thank god) and it’s just Cole and JBL.

MATCH: Seth Rollins vs. Kane
Interesting how they are going to mismatch the teams tonight, with big guy vs. little guy. Later on Daniel Bryan will face Roman Reigns. Here is a true test of how much WWE thinks of the Shield. Well let’s put it this way. Rollins and Reigns could win their matches against Team Hell No. But if they were facing Sheamus and John Cena? Well that’s a different story because those guys never lose. We’ll see later if Ambrose gets a win against Orton later. This match has been pretty basic so far, with Rollins trying to ground Kane and take his legs out. Rollins hits a nice DDT while jumping off the second rope. Rollins goes for his flying knee drop but Daniel Bryan throws him off the turnbuckle, which give Kane the chance for a chokeslam and the victory. I won’t say “I told you so…” but we’ll see how the rest of the night goes.

Wow, so we’re going back to back. Fun way to format it.

MATCH: Daniel Bryan vs. Roman Reigns
Reigns is pissed that his boy got screwed and he wants to take it out on Goat Face. I can’t believe that poor Dolph Ziggler, the World Champion, hasn’t been on in weeks. I wonder if he’ll be ready by Payback. No World Title match has been booked yet. I know they’re hesitant on stripping him of the title and risk killing his character permanently. Reigns is working the little guy over. This is (I believe) Reigns first singles match. Bryan rebounds and hits his crazy kicks and drop kicks. Bryan hooks the No Lock, but Rollins pushes the rope to Reigns. Kane knocks Rollins down, but the ref catches Kane decking Reigns in the face, and Bryan gets DQ’ed.

After the match, Bryan and Kane are arguing about what happened. They yell up to the back.

Back from break and the great Damien Sandow is in the ring. He has a clip mike, that’s how important he is. He goes over last week’s shenanigans with Sheamus. He says physical acumen isn’t better than mental acumen. We then get the obligatory Wayne Gretzky trade dig. He says he is “The Great One”. SILENCE! Sandow decides this week we will do “The Shell Game”. Yes, this is…a….ball. Sandow is awesome. Well here comes the “Irish Brute” himself. Maybe this is leading to a feud that, Sheamus will win every match. I think he’s beaten Sandow about 6 times already. Sheamus decides to play, so Sandow moves the cups around. Sheamus picks the wrong cup. Congratulations, your idiot license is good for another year. Sandow does decide to “dimwitify” the game and let Sheamus pick from the remaining two cups. He picked the other wrong cup. Sheamus thinks something’s fishy and wants to see the ball in the other cup. Sandow complains but Sheamus says SILENCE! Not as good. Looks like none of the cups had the ball in them. He’s a magician! Sheamus wonders how he got caught cheating. Sheamus pushes the table and Brogue Kicks him. What happened to Sheamus? He used to be cool, now he’s the 2013 Diesel.

MATCH: Sin Cara vs. Curtis Axel
I hope this is the beginning of a long C.A. winning streak. Maybe by Survivor Series we’ll have a Team Heyman in a match. We’ll need two more awesome guys to make it five. I love the hybrid version of Mr. Perfect’s theme. Paul Heyman puts himself over and his guy, then Axel says Triple H and John Cena have 26 Championships, and they are 0-2. He says Triple H submitted and John Cena ran away from a fight. Yet when you’re a Paul Heyman guy, you are….”perfect”. Excellent. Shame dad isn’t here to see (and help) here. Axel wins with the Perfect-plex. Yeah I love it. Use that as your finisher.

MATCH: Alberto Del Rio vs. Big E. Langston
So we’re gonna keep burying Big E, for no apparent reason? Sure AJ screwed up Monday but still. The match is pretty much the same as their other matches, pretty solid for TV. They’re wrestling near the ropes and Del Rio goes for the arm breaker over the ropes. That was pretty cool. AJ gets involved and Big E chucks Del Rio into the post. Langston hits the “Big Ending” and get the pinfall victory. Wow, I’m surprised. Great victory. The 50-50 booking continues which sucks, but at least the young heels are getting some cache.

We go back to Monday night, when John Cena ramped up the rematch at Payback, making it Three Stages of Hell. I’d like to think Cena can channel his 2007 against Umaga. The problem is the three stipulations suck. Lumberjack? Ugh.

Out of that we get the Scott Steiner fake-out, meaning the ambulance comes out.

MATCH: Ryback vs. Kofi Kingston
This must be the match where Kofi gets injured. Kofi actually dominated the match early on. Ryback reverses a kick to take over. Now to show the disparity of the two titles, the #1 contender for the World Title lost earlier tonight. Should Ryback lose here? HAHA of course not. We get the Meat Hook and Shell Shock and it’s over.

After the match, Ryback grabs a table from under the ring. He powerbombs Kofi through it. Then he grabs another table, and powerbombs him through that one. Even JBL is showing sympathy. What? That’s terrible. Where’s the old JBL? WWE is neutering everybody. Ryback finds a third table, and Kofi is powerbombed through that one. This is trememdous. Ryback walks back up the ramp. He should throw his ass in the ambulance. I guess this is how to get Kofi off TV to heal his injury. He’s out 6-8 weeks.

We go back to Raw where Chris Jericho challenged CM Punk to a match at Payback, instantly spiking the buyrate.

Renee is with Jericho, who uses dog references to make fun of Heyman and he will spay and neuter Punk at Payback.

MATCH: Chris Jericho vs. Cody Rhodes
I like this match-up. Cole says we’ll have updates on Kofi next week. When anyone says there’s “updates” coming, that means they’re gone for a while. Jericho pretty much dominates until Cody hits the Alabama Slam for 2. Cody goes for Cross Rhodes, but Jericho goes for the Walls, then Cody reverses into a small package for 2. Jericho then gets the Walls in and Cody taps out. Good warm up match for Jericho, but he’s in the Lion’s Den (no pun) at Payback…in Chicago.

Another vignette for the awesome Wyatt Family.

MATCH: Randy Orton vs. Dean Ambrose
Ambrose’s intro is taken out by the break. Disrespect! This will be a pretty stiff war here. Ambrose dominates early with kicks and strikes. This is looking like the typical Randy Orton match. Beaten up outside and then worn down with a head lock. With his movie out does that mean he’s not going to lose for 6 months or something? Well here comes the “vintage Orton”. Power slam and clotheslines. Ambrose clotheslines Orton to gain the advantage back, then both men head to the top rope. Orton is knocked off. Ambrose goes for a double ax handle but Orton hits a drop kick in mid-air. Ambrose gets caught and Orton hits the rope DDT. Orton gets in Viper mode but Ambrose bails and the expected Shield run-in ends the match in a DQ. Fine, at least Ambrose didn’t get pinned. I’m sure we’ll see Team Hell No and we do. Next Friday will be a six-man tag? Bryan takes on the Shield on his own. I feel an Ambrose/Bryan US Title match at Payback. Perhaps. The crowd loves Goat Face and we’re out.

SCOTT’S TAKE: Not a bad show, with good storyline advancement and decent enough matches.

Scott’s Smackdown Top 5:
1) Dolph Ziggler
2) Alberto Del Rio
3) Dean Ambrose
4) Reigns/Rollins
5) Randy Orton/Sheamus (TIE)

Author: Scott Criscuolo

Scott Criscuolo is a co-founder of the Place to Be, co-host of the Place to Be Podcast, and was in the radio business for 10 years. He loves all things pop culture, and someday he will be the ghost writer for Triple H's autobiography. Send Scott an email