Matt’s Smackdown Recap 5/23/14

From across the pond, Batista and Dolph ZIggler tear it up in a no-DQ match. [Photo courtesy of]
From across the pond, Batista and Dolph Ziggler tear it up in a no-disqualification match. [Photo courtesy of]
WWE: Smackdown
May 23, 2014
London, England
The O2 Arena

The current WWE champs are as follows:
WWE World Heavyweight Champion: Daniel Bryan (4/6/2014)
WWE Intercontinental Champion: Bad News Barrett (5/4/2014)
WWE U.S. Champion: Sheamus (5/5/2014)
WWE Divas Champion: Paige (4/7/2014)
WWE Tag Team Champions: The Usos (3/3/2014)

Your hosts are Michael Cole & JBL.

To start the show, Jimmy Hart is in the ring to introduce Hulk Hogan to all the Hulkamaniacs in London, brother. Jimmy is introduced as *the* star of “Legends House”, which seems odd. After he sucks up to the British people a little bit, Hulk announces that England will soon be getting the WWE Network. The proper role for Hogan, no doubt. Even if he didn’t give them a timetable or any specifics, HULK HOGAN just told you what you wanted to hear.

–      No-DQ Match: Batista vs. Dolph Ziggler

This is exactly why Batista should be WWE champion if the plans for Bryan are completely falling through. Have Evolution keep putting over the Shield while Bats is the WWE champion – the most hated man in the company right now. Well, besides maybe Brock Lesnar, who isn’t long term enough to have the WWE title. Anyways, I would love to see a summer of Ziggler chasing the title every now and then with Batista as the WWE champ. Just my two cents. Ziggler punches down and puts the boots to Bats to start. Bats fires back with a spinebuster for two. A chair gets involved, but never gets used as Batista changes plans and smashes Ziggler’s face onto the announce table. Ziggler gets slammed into the ringpost and dropped on the barricade, but then he sidesteps a charge from Bats and clotheslines him into the timekeeper’s area! Let’s take a break! When we return, Bats misses a chairshot up against the post. Ziggler picks up the chair and beats Bats like he owes him money. He puts Bats back inside, but Batista rolls out to the floor on the other side. Batista seeking solace and can’t find any as Ziggler whips him into the steps! Inside the ring, Ziggler pounces on Bats in the corner for the ten-count punch and follows up with a neckbreaker. Jumping DDT gets 1-2-NO! Famouser gets blocked, but Ziggler breaks free with a sunset flip. Bats rolls through, but then Ziggler jumps on him with the Famouser after all for a nearfall. Batista rolls out to the floor, but Ziggler baseball slides him onto the announce table. Ziggler leaps onto Bats and punches the crap out of him while Cole lies there in the fetal position. Over to the steps, Batista reverses a whip and sends Ziggler crashing instead. JBL shouts to Cole to get up. Dock that announcer a day’s pay for napping on the job. Bats drags half of the steps over to Ziggler and threatens a Demon Bomb, but Ziggler goes low! With Batista doubled over on the steps, Ziggler tries a Flying Famouser off the apron and misses – thus twisting his knee really bad! Bats seizes the moment and drags Ziggler into the ring for the Spear (obvs sending a message to Roman Reigns) to get the win. (9:30 shown) I really liked this one. It reminded me of the old Pillman/Windham matches in WCW as they made the underdog look like he might upset the establishment. Afterwards, Bats leaves Ziggler laying with a Demon Bomb. ***¼

–      Special Referee: Summer Rae – Funkadactyls vs. Eva Marie & Nikki Bella

Summer Rae returns to Smackdown! ICYMI, the showdown between Summer Rae and Layla finally took place in her WWE return this past week on Raw. Cole thinks this is interesting because everybody hates Summer Rae on “Total Divas”. Well the match isn’t interesting, but Summer Rae refuses to get down and count when Nikki and Eva attempt a pinfall. When Cameron sneaks a small package on Eva Marie, Summer Rae gives her a Teddy Long fast count. (2:00) Maybe this is extremely sexist, but don’t all women hate each other? ½*

–      Bo Dallas vs. Sin Cara

Finally, Bo Dallas has made it to the main roster. Probably not the best debut opponent though if you’re looking for a flawless showing. They do a very basic wrestling sequence and Bo rejoices every time he gets the best of an exchange. Sin Cara starts flying around until Dallas cuts him off with a clothesline. Dallas busts out Stratusfaction for the win. (3:30) Dallas does a victory lap after getting his hand raised. He then gets back in the ring, shakes Sin Cara’s hand, and tells him “don’t stop bo-lieving”. Am I a BO-LIEVER? This wasn’t bad. Time will tell though. *½

We get some footage of Paige. It feels like the same video every week though.

Now back to the O2 Arena. The lights are out and the Wyatt family are in the ring. Bray Wyatt starts preaching about how we are all prisoners of society. Once we start to realize this, someone like John Cena is paraded around and tells us lies like how we should believe and do the right thing. Highlights from this past week on Raw are shown where the Wyatt family once again beat the crap out of John Cena. For all the details, check out Scott’s Raw Recap. Back to the Wyatts, Bray continues to tell us that everything the Cenation stands for needs to be eradicated. This can happen with a simple ten count. Bray tries to add some poison to the Usos and John Cena relationship saying that Cena only has the Usos around so that his crown doesn’t get too dirty. Cena is just scared. When John Cena falls, Bray Wyatt declares he will be standing. Umm, why is he speaking in tongues? He’s got the whole world in his hands…

–      Non-title match: WWE U.S. Champion Sheamus vs. Alberto Del Rio

Paul Heyman and Cesaro join us at the commentary table. Cesaro calls out to Sheamus that he’ll shake his hand now (alluding to the aftermath of their match on Raw) to cause a distraction and Del Rio to attack. We get a back and forth beat-em-up from there. Sheamus hits a Finlay Roll and clotheslines Del Rio to the floor. He goes out after ADR, but receives an enziguri kick to the skull. Commercials! When we come back, Sheamus beats on Del Rio’s chest while he’s on the apron. ADR avoids White Noise and quickly applies the Cross Armbreaker. Sheamus reaches the ropes and hits the powerslam. As Sheamus backs up for the Brogue Kick, Cesaro yanks him out and drives Sheamus into the steps for the DQ. (4:00 shown) To make things worse, Cesaro gives Sheamus the Neutralizer on the floor! With Sheamus out cold, Cesaro is nice enough to now shake his hand. What a guy. I think my copy of Smackdown is missing about three minutes off this match. **

Smackdown GM Vickie Guerrero introduces us to Adam Rose. Let me just say that Russell Brand is NOT why I became a wrestling fan. I really want to see him take multiple Stone Cold Stunners. Not even joking. Rose establishes the fact that Vickie is a lemon before she falls off the apron onto the mosh pit to be carried away.

Renee Young interviews the Usos. They put over the Adam Rose nonsense and then talk about how serious they are – unlike those Wyatt family people – about family. John Cena appears, imitates Road Warrior Hawk, Hulk Hogan, says some things, and then starts doing the chest-pounding bit from “Wolf of Wall Street”. The Usos don’t seem committed though. Somehow it doesn’t seem as cool now. Probably needed more cocaine.

–      Non-title match: WWE Tag Team Champions The Usos (w/John Cena) vs. Erick Rowan & Luke Harper (w/Bray Wyatt)

Usos send Rowan and Harper running to start. Commercials! When we come back, Jimmy is stomping a mudhole in Rowan. All it takes is one right hand and the Wyatt family are back in business. Tag to Harper, he sidesteps a charge and sends Jimmy crashing into the second rope creating a NASTY whiplash effect. Rowan tags in and channels the Sgt. Slaughter knuckles to the cranium. Back to Harper, he works over Jimmy until they head to the corner where Jimmy fights back and delivers the Corkscrew Moonsault. Hot tag to Jey, he is rocking and rolling all over Rowan. Buttalanche to Rowan, Superkick to Harper. To the floor, Jey takes out Harper with a suicide dive. Meanwhile, Rowan misses a corner charge and falls out to the floor to allow Jimmy to go flying as well with a plancha of his own. Back inside the ring, Jey gets shoved off the top rope by Bray Wyatt to signal the DQ. (7:45 shown) Afterwards, Cena takes care of Rowan with an Attitude Adjustment before daring Bray Wyatt to come get some. Of course, Cena gets none. Pretty typical stuff. **

Although it could just be because they are in London this week, I’m glad they went back to the longer match formula that works so much better for Smackdown. Check out Bats-Ziggler! You won’t be disappointed. Until next week, so long for now!