Vintage Vault Pre-Viewing: Saturday Night’s Main Event 34

Batista and Chris Benoit vs. Edge and Montel Vontavious Porter

As we come out of the spring and into the summer of 2007, we have the return of Saturday Night’s Main Event which was a nice surprise as I thought it was only going to have the two shows in 2006, but instead we have this one with one more later in the summer. What was even crazier is that this show was the night before One Night Stand which I believe was a first as previous SNMEs were nowhere near any PPVs, much less the night before. One of the big matches set for this show was this tag match from Smackdown as Batista was set to face Edge at One Night Stand in a Cage match, and while the feud between Benoit and MVP was essentially over at Judgment Day it was good to see them face off one more time and get a showcase since neither of them were set for a match at the PPV. This was about as typical for an SNME that you can get where you get a big tag match like this to build for the PPV and you just hoped the match would be a solid one.

Following Judgment Day on the 5/25 Smackdown, Edge cut a promo on his victory and GM Teddy Long told him that he would face the winner of a Fatal-4 Way in a steel cage match at One Night Stand, and later that night Batista defeated Mark Henry, Finlay, and Kane to earn the title shot. That same night, MVP held a celebration for his title win and invited Benoit to the ring as he asked him to shake his hand which Benoit did and then raise his hand which Benoit did, but then MVP tried to sucker punch him only for Benoit to clear him from the ring. The night before on Smackdown, this match was announced as Benoit defeated MVP in a tag match and at the end of the show, Batista was on the Cutting Edge and the two men brawled to close out the show. Again, with the PPV the next night, the focus was going to be on Batista and Edge with Benoit and MVP filling out the teams though again you figured it would lead to a good match.

Batista and Benoit get a big pop from the crowd while Edge and MVP were red hot as heels, and an interesting note is all the Divas serve as guest ring announcers as we have Torrie Wilson as the ring announcer for this match. We get a quick commercial break right before the match starts and back from the break, MVP pounds on Benoit in the corner as Benoit battles back and he gets a knee in before pounding on MVP in the corner. He hits a drop toehold and hooks the Crossface on as MVP grabs the rope to force a break and Benoit kicks at him, and MVP gets a kick in and pounds on Benoit as he hooks a front facelock and tags Edge who kicks at Benoit. He pounds on Benoit and taunts Batista as Benoit battles back and hits a snap suplex before dropping an elbow on Edge for a two count, and he rams the knee into Edge and pounds on him as he hits a pair of clotheslines and tags Batista though Edge quickly tags MVP. Batista grabs MVP and slings him into the ring as he pounds on him and rams the shoulder into him repeatedly in the corner, and he hoists MVP up and rams him into the corner before hitting a suplex for a two count as Edge breaks the pin up. MVP gets a shot in and pounds on Batista in the corner as he hooks a front facelock only for Batista to reverse a whip and he catches him with a knee to the ribs, and he kicks at MVP for a two count and tags Benoit who kicks at MVP and he pounds on him. MVP tries to battle back only for Benoit to pound on him and MVP reverses a whip into the other corner only to miss a running boot, and Benoit hits a trio of German suplexes on MVP and goes up top as he knocks Edge to the floor only to miss the diving headbutt. MVP drags Benoit to the corner and stomps on him before dropping an elbow on him for a two count, and Edge tags in and pounds on Benoit as he kicks at him and hits a gutbuster for a two count. MVP tags in and pounds on Benoit as he hits a gutwrench suplex and drops an elbow on him for a two count, and he stomps on Benoit and drops a knee on him before hooking a submission on as Benoit reaches the ropes to force a break. Edge tags in and stomps on Benoit before hitting a snapmare and he hooks another submission on Benoit, and Benoit fights to his feet and breaks the hold as he hits a headbutt on Edge and he hits an enzurgiri. MVP tags in and drops an elbow on Benoit as he grabs the leg and avoids the enzurgiri only for Benoit to kick him to the mat and Batista gets the hot tag, and he fires up on MVP and hits a clothesline before splashing him in the corner as he hoists him up and hits a running powerslam. Edge rolls into the ring only for Batista to scare him back out of the ring as he grabs his belt and heads up the ramp, and Batista hits the spinebuster on MVP and tags Benoit who goes up top and hits the diving headbutt on MVP which gets the three and they win the match.

The match itself was pretty good as both teams worked hard and put on a solid tag match which is pretty common for these Saturday Night’s Main Event shows. Given that the main feud going into this match was Batista and Edge, they did a good job keeping them apart for the whole match as Edge avoids Batista for the entire time and MVP and Benoit are able to get some good shine. While the match was about as basic of a formula as you could get, it still works well as Benoit does a good job as the face in peril and they built well to the hot tag to Batista. It was a bit interesting that Benoit got the pin on MVP after MVP got put over really strong at Judgment Day, but it wasn’t that big of a deal even though it would’ve made more sense for Batista to get the pin to build momentum to One Night Stand. The crowd was into the match and popped big for Benoit and Batista when they won. Batista and Benoit get the win over Edge and MVP as both teams move on.

Final Grade: **3/4