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Re: WWE: A Strong Response


Friday Night Smackdown ‘Live!’
Friday 12th December 2008
Verizon Wireless Arena
Manchester, New Hampshire




We were shown footage from last week’s show, starting with CM Punk interrupting Tazz in the ring at the top of the show. Punk told Tazz he’s turned out to be nothing but another corporate puppet who’s given up everything he’s ever believed in before saying that the man who brought him (Punk) to the WWE, Paul Heyman, would be ashamed of how he’s turned out. The fans were booing and Tazz took exception to that, telling Punk in no uncertain terms he didn’t care what he thinks of him and that it’s irrelevant what Heyman thinks despite the respect he has for him. He then let Punk know that as far as Stephanie goes, it’s not his business since it was Punk who put his hands on her and he should’ve known better than to mess around with a McMahon, making it clear that there were bound to be consequences.

Tazz then tried to move on and told Punk that he shouldn’t concern himself with Steph for the night at least as he has a big match with Batista, as well as letting him know Stephanie wasn’t there. Punk’s response was that it was a pity she wouldn’t be there to see him beat Batista but teased Tazz that he must’ve been happy to have his balls back for the evening. Tazz let some frustration out and accused Punk of trying to deflect the attention away from himself for being a coward, bringing up how Edge helped him beat Team Cena at Survivor Series as well as the attack on Cena last week by Alberto Del Rio-Ramirez, ending his mini rant by telling Punk that he was the one with no balls.

The World Champion remained somewhat calm but spoke with purpose as he told Tazz that he was wrong on so many levels and how he takes on any challenge thrown at him with everything he has. He said that he’s talented & smart enough to overcome any obstacle like he did at Survivor Series, stating that he didn’t ask Edge to do what he did but he wasn’t going to apologise for that, just like he won’t when he beats Batista later on and goes onto retain the world title at Night of Champions, and when he does, he’ll take great pleasure in sticking it to him, Stephanie and the fans who don’t appreciate him as the athlete & champion that he is. He then defiantly stated that he won’t let him, Cena or Stephanie take his title from him like how Stephanie took his (Tazz’s) balls.

The main event was shown next and The Animal was well & truly unleashed following a spinebuster as he kicked the chair away from a fallen Punk before retreating to the corner, stalking him for another spear, and this time he hit it. Punk though showed some serious resilience and kicked out at two, but Batista knew he had him on the brink and pulled him right back up, into position for the Batista Bomb. The Animal stared scarily into the crowd, all set to put Punk away when “The Game” blasted out through the speakers and into the arena.

The fans booed like mad as Batista pushed Punk aside and went to the ropes, waiting for Triple H to walk out on out. Batista was calling for him to bring his ass down, but he never came as Punk crawled across to pick up the chair. As the World Champion then stood up with the chair in hand, Batista saw him sizing him up on the tron. He turned round and ran at Punk, right into a chair shot to the gut. The music stopped and Punk then tossed the chair at Batista, and he grabbed it, holding it up close to his face, only for Punk to blast him with a roundhouse kick onto the steel that flew back into The Animal’s face.

It put the big man down and Punk was right on him to make the cover, getting a three count to pick up a very impressive notch for his résumé. “This Fire Burns” hit and The Straight-Edge Superstar slowly stood up to get his arm raised with his world title being passed to him, but the crowd were pissed. He then tapped his head with one finger, seemingly pointing out he used his head, possibly being behind Triple H’s music playing moments earlier. He was loving it and posed with his title, throwing it up into the air alongside a huge smug look of satisfaction as Smackdown drew to a close with Batista also coming round, not knowing where he was with Punk standing tall.


Michael Cole & Matt Striker talked up the night’s show, letting everyone know if they didn’t already that the number one contender for CM Punk’s World Heavyweight Championship at Night of Champions would be crowned in the main event. Cole reminded us that the tournament started with 32 superstars, leaving just four to battle it out in an elimination match, with those four being John Cena, Bryan Danielson, Dolph Ziggler & Edge. They both mentioned that there was a lot more they could look forward to with the makeshift tag team champions, Paul Burchill & TJ Wilson teaming up for the first time to take on Petey Williams & Johnny Devine. The Divas Champion, Beth Phoenix was also brought up as it was announced she’d be in action against the undefeated O.D.B., and we also learned that the King of the Ring & United States Champion, Matt Sydal would team up with the Cruiserweight Champion, J-Red to take on the Mexican duo of Chavo Guerrero & Alberto Del Rio-Ramirez.

“This Fire Burns” hit and the World Heavyweight Champion, CM Punk entered the arena to a largely negative reception from the New Hampshire crowd, not that he was bothered by their reaction for a second. After picking up a microphone off the apron, Punk shrugged off the heat without a care in the world to talk about how they were all just a couple of hours away from finding out who he’d be facing at Night of Champions. That brought a cheer from the fans but he told them he didn’t want to disappoint them but that it was all irrelevant anyway even though it’s given the majority of the locker room an opportunity they wouldn’t usually get because it didn’t matter who becomes the number one contender because he’s going into 2009, still the World Heavyweight Champion.

The majority of the crowd didn’t like the sound of that but The Straight Edge-Superstar was emphatic in talking up his chances, saying how he’s risen to every challenge, how resilient he is and how much of a fighting champion he is. He then said that he showed how intelligent he is, referring to last week in his match with Batista, doing what he needed to do to win, stating that’s what makes him World Champion and why he’ll still be World Champion after Night of Champions. Again the fans didn’t like what he said and he moved onto say that despite how he’s going to retain the title, he was happy to see the likes of Bryan Danielson & Dolph Ziggler in with a chance of getting a shot at the world title, even wishing them luck and hoped one of them would win to, and although it would all end in disappointment initially for them, he said they could use it as a launch pad to make the breakthrough that he has.

Punk was then interrupted by Edge as “Metalingus” blasted out to a ton of heat. The Rated-R Superstar walked down to the ring with purpose, not looking too happy with Punk, and the World Champion seemed slightly confused by Edge’s mood as he entered the ring and walked straight past him to get a microphone of his own. The Toronto native didn’t hang around and told Punk that he respected him for what he’s done as far as John Cena is concerned, so much so that he went out of his way to help Punk because he felt the same way, but he quickly shifted gear and said that didn’t matter right now. He said that the only thing that did matter right now is the World Heavyweight Championship and beating three other men later on to make sure that he’s the one who’ll go to Night of Champions to face Punk.

The World Champion then cut in and told Edge he knew all this, then asked him what his point was, getting a frosty response from The Rated-R Superstar. Edge told Punk he was glad he brought it up because he went out there for a reason, bringing up Punk’s apparent lack of respect to him last week when he said he’d beat Punk at Night of Champions to take his title, resulting in Punk laughing at him. He then let Punk know in no uncertain terms that he’s a multi-time World Champion, King of the Ring and a grand slam winner, then taunted him by saying how most recently he saved Punk’s ass at Survivor Series and how Punk should take him more seriously. Punk was surprised by Edge’s comments and told him he respected him and all he’s achieved, then apologised for laughing at him, claiming he couldn’t even remember doing it.

He then told Edge that he believed he was the favourite for the match later on, but he then said that if Edge did win, it wouldn’t change anything as he stated he has the confidence in himself to beat anybody at Night of Champions or on any given night. He told Edge it wasn’t personal against him, it’s just the way it is, and if it was Edge who he meets in nine nights, he’ll leave Night of Champions empty handed. Edge told him he disagreed, and as they stared intently at each other, “I Am Perfection” hit and Dolph Ziggler strutted confidently out to the stage in his ring gear and headed down to the ring, taking Punk & Edge by surprise. Ziggler too collected a microphone of his own and let Punk know he disagreed with his claim of how he’ll retain his world title at Night of Champions.

He also said that Punk was right to laugh at Edge because there’s no way Edge will be leaving Night of Champions as World Champion for one simple reason, he won’t even be there. More boos met Ziggler’s statement with some cheers from the anti-Edge section, and Ziggler assuredly told Edge that the reason why Edge wouldn’t be getting the shot at Punk’s title is because he will. He then turned to Punk and told him once he’s officially the number one contender, he’ll make sure Punk’s the one who leaves Night of Champions empty handed. Punk & Edge didn’t seem too concerned by the cocky Ziggler, and Edge got him under the collar by jokingly asking Dolph just who he was. Ziggler said it was cute but told Edge that after he’s done kicking his ass later on, he’ll know exactly who he is, the next World Heavyweight Champion.

They then squared up with Punk enjoying seeing his two rivals going face-to-face, but they were quickly joined by Smackdown’s General Manager, Tazz. He hit the stage with a microphone and told Edge & Ziggler to wait for the match before turning his attention to Punk, bringing up last week’s win over Batista and calling it smart like Punk claimed. He then made sure Punk was crystal clear about how he better not try anything smart later on in the main event and getting involved, because if he did, Tazz stated that he’d strip Punk of the title on the spot and he could forget about going into 2009 as the World Champion. He quickly wished Edge & Ziggler luck for the match before leaving the stage having said his piece with tension aplenty inside the ring with so much at stake later on when the number one contender would be crowned.


{Commercial Break}

*The Opening Match*
Paul London & Brian Kendrick
vs. The Pitbulls

London & Kendrick sure looked like they’d put all their problems behind them, getting close to being the team they used to be, but they didn’t have it easy against Noble & Kash. The fan favourites got their fans behind them and toughed it out, coming strong in the final stages to gain the ascendency. London turned the tables in his favour, and after a leapfrog that caught Kash by surprise, he took his head off with a ferocious super kick. That gave him the chance to crawl across to his corner and tag in the fired-up Kendrick, and he stormed the ring to a big roar from the Manchester crowd. Kash was reeling, only just getting up himself, and he was circling the drain.

Kendrick was all over him, not letting up, and after a cyclone DDT, it looked like it was all over. Noble though had other ideas and charged into the ring to stop Kendrick making a count, but Kendrick saw him coming and ducked his head, pulling the ropes down to send Noble falling down to the floor to a big pop. Kash was clawing his way back up, and with Kendrick glaring down at Noble, it gave Kash the chance to take advantage, but Kendrick didn’t let him and managed to catch him with the Sliced Bread to get the win for him & London. They got a great reception again from the fans and celebrated like it was the good old days, looking like they’re getting back on track.

Winners: Paul London & Brian Kendrick by pinfall.


Josh Matthews was standing by backstage and introduced John Cena to the fans. Cena had his game face on and was asked about how he was feeling about being just one match away from challenging CM Punk for the world title at Night of Champions. Josh also brought up the tension shown between Edge & Dolph Ziggler earlier on, and Cena said that it shows how much a shot at the world title means to everyone. He said he was no different but he told Josh that there’s one big step left to take and he wasn’t taking it for granted, saying he knew it was going to be tough with three other superstars who are giving to fight like their lives depended on it too. He was emphatic in saying that he was ready for the fight, bringing up Survivor Series and how close he was in getting a shot at Punk then, talking this up as his second chance, also saying it could be his last chance and how he’s not going to pass it up.

Cena clearly meant business and said that after everything Punk’s said about him since he came back to Smackdown and being screwed over at Survivor Series, he’s going to do what everyone’s wanted him to do all along and earn the shot at the World Heavyweight Championship by being the last man standing later on. The majority of the fans inside the arena were behind him, and he then said that when he’s victorious, no one will be able to run their mouth anymore, Punk especially. Cena turned to the camera and directed a message to the World Champion, letting him know that he wants the world title and he wants nothing more to get his hands on him at Night of Champions, and after tonight, he told Punk he wants him & his title and to get ready because he’s coming to get some.


{Commercial Break}

Followed by the rest of The Empire, Wade Barrett headed down the ramp to a chorus of boos in his ring gear. Drew McIntyre, William Regal and Katie Lee (carrying a Union Jack) joined him in the ring, standing behind him as he grabbed a microphone to announce that in just a matter of minutes he was going to take care of an old rival of theirs but how later on, along with the entire world, they would get to see their opponents at Night of Champions team up for he first time. He carried on by saying it was absolutely ridiculous that the tag team champions haven’t ever teamed up before, but he stated that it didn’t matter as he & McIntyre would beat any team put in front of them, not just because they’re the best tag team in the world today but they’re a tight unit, something he said Paul Burchill & TJ Wilson aren’t or would ever be, which is why he can confidently say that in just over a week The Empire will be the new WWE Tag Team Champions, also saying they would be champions for a long, long time, getting a lot of heat from the fans. “I’m Comin’” played and M.V.P. made his way out to the stage to a decent pop, looking bang up for his match with Barrett. The Empire looked on calmly as M.V.P. walked intently down to the ring, getting another good reaction from the fans.

*Match 2*
M.V.P.
vs. Wade Barrett w/Drew McIntyre, William Regal & Katie Lee

Barrett may have been a bit too cocky for his own good, and it nearly bit him in the ass when he took his time running into the corner, allowing M.V.P. time to lift his boot up into his face. It sent the Englishman staggering away from the corner and M.V.P. didn’t waste a second, rolling him up in a flash, only getting a two count for his troubles. Barrett was teetering with M.V.P. feeling the momentum oozing through his veins, and after connecting with the Playa’s Boot, Barrett fell forward and flat on his face. He looked out for the count and M.V.P. had him in his sights for the Drive By, causing great concern for the rest of The Empire on the outside.

They tried to encourage Barrett as he slowly lifted his head up off the mat, not having a clue where he was in the slightest. M.V.P. got the fans going even more, urging them to make some noise as he got ready to explode out of his corner, and as he watched Barrett try to sit up, he ran at him for the deadly kick. Barrett though saw him coming and pulled his head back and helped shove M.V.P. into the pads chest first. He immediately crawled up behind him and tried for a roll up, holding onto the tights behind the ref’s back, but M.V.P. kicked out at two to the relief of the crowd.

Both men hurried back up to their feet as quickly they could with M.V.P. up first to stomp the Englishman in the gut, almost putting him down onto one knee. The American turned back and ran the ropes, but as he came back, Barrett greeted him with a massive boot, ramming it right down M.V.P’s throat. Sighs came from the crowd and things got worse for them as they watched Barrett drag him right back up, determined to end it there & then, and he did with The Wasteland to pick up a hard fought victory going into Night of Champions in nine nights, and he was one smug son of a bitch at the bell, smirking into the stands with his team-mates joining him in the ring.

Winner: Wade Barrett by pinfall.


The Empire’s opponents, the WWE Tag Team Champions, Paul Burchill & TJ Wilson were watching on a TV screen in their locker room, both in their casual gear for now with Harry Smith (with a crutch) & Natalya Neidhart with them. They all turned away from the screen as Smith talked about the situation they’ve found themselves in, admitting it’s not easy for any of them after all that’s happened between themselves as well as with The Empire. He then spoke about how they’ve all resolved any problems they’ve had with each other and that they all have one common enemy in The Empire.

Smith said that he didn’t need to tell them that they’ve got a battle on their hands at Night of Champions when they defend the titles against Wade Barrett & Drew McIntyre, and then told them that all they can do is go there ready, saying that’s what they need to focus on. He told them that they need to be as strong as they can as a team going into that match and their match later on is so important to get them ready, and he let Burchill & Wilson know that he believed in them and that he knows they can get the job done next weekend, also telling them that he’ll be there every step of the way to support them.

TJ rested his hand on his friend’s shoulder and told him that he appreciates all the support he’s had since joining Smackdown and that he’s going to do everything he can to make sure he & Burchill hold onto the titles at Night of Champions, and that when they do, nothing will make him happier than to hand Harry the title back when he’s ready to compete again. Burchill nodded and told his makeshift partner that was the spirit they needed before asking him if he was ready to go later on, getting an emphatic response from the Canadian as they all stood there in a positive manner with their match against Petey Williams & Johnny Devine up later on in the evening.


{Commercial Break}

A serious looking Bryan Danielson was strapping up his wrists in his locker room, getting ready for the number one contender elimination match later on when his former trainer, ‘The Heartbreak Kid’ Shawn Michaels walked in and sat alongside him on the bench. H.B.K. told him that he didn’t want to disturb him knowing he had a big match later on but told his protégé that he knows some people would be fazed by coming such a long way in short space of time, but he said that he believed Danielson could get the job done and go all the way to Night of Champions and become the World Heavyweight Champion. Danielson smiled gratefully at Shawn who told him to keep his cool, believe in himself, forget what he’s fighting for and just focus on getting through the match, also telling him that he’s as good as anyone else in the match and to remember that.

Danielson thanked him and told Shawn how much he appreciated him for bringing him into the WWE as well as everything he’s ever done for him, mentioning the training for a long time ago. He then told Michaels that if he does go all the way and win the world title, he’ll dedicate the victory to Shawn and let him know if it was up to him, Shawn’d be the first person he’d defend it against. That brought a smile out of H.B.K. and he said it’d be an honour to get in the ring with him but to remember what he said, just focus on the match in hand before he thinks about anything else. Danielson said he’d do just that and Michaels stood up to wish him luck before leaving and getting a guy hug from Danielson who went back to getting ready for his massive match later on.


A recap from last week was shown, reminding us of the altercation in the back between Matt Sydal, Mickie James & Alberto Del Rio Ramirez where Matt & Mickie were laughing together, getting all close when the frustrated figure of Del Rio-Ramirez walked towards them, and he didn’t look at all happy to see them laughing at him. The Mexican was livid and asked them what it was they were laughing at, and Sydal let him know that they felt he got what he deserved for jumping John Cena last week, calling him a coward and saying how cowards always get what they deserve. Del Rio-Ramirez tried to fight his inner rage, seemingly managing to do so as he turned to walk away, but he then turned back in a flash to sucker punch the United States Champion, putting him on the floor.

He then knelt down and got in Sydal’s face, but Mickie grabbed his arm to get him up, and Del Rio-Ramirez instinctively swung his arm back, knocking Mickie back and she hit the floor too. She was clutching her face and the Mexican looked stunned as he turned round to see her there, even sorry for what he did. He stood up and looked like he wanted to apologise, but he didn’t get the chance as Sydal picked himself back up and shoved him hard in the chest, furiously yelling at him, calling him a coward again for hitting a woman. Mickie sat up and said she was okay, but her boyfriend was steaming and had to be pulled away from Del Rio-Ramirez by a group of officials as he continued screaming at him, goading him into a fight, not getting one though from an unusually restrained Del Rio-Ramirez.

We were then reminded of Chavo Guerrero’s victory over Yoshi Tatsu, picking up the win after a Frog Splash. Chavo looked extremely pleased with himself initially and then went after a microphone to talk about how earlier on the fans found out that J-Red isn’t as amazing as they all think and say he is. He then said that the huge run of luck he’s been on is coming to an end and that he wants to be the one to end it. Tazz then walked out to the stage to a pop and told Chavo he was going to give him the chance to do just that, making one last match between the former mentor & rookie at Night Of Champions for the Cruiserweight Championship in a Falls Count Anywhere match. Chavo was nodding emphatically, looking very excited at the prospect of that match as Tazz turned round and headed back through the curtain with the fans booing the smug Chavo.


After Alberto Del Rio-Ramirez, Chavo Guerrero & the Cruiserweight Champion, J-Red made their entrances, the United States Champion & King of the Ring, Matt Sydal hit the stage to a big pop along with his girlfriend, Mickie James. Sydal had a microphone and said that there was something he had to say, stating that in just over a week every title in the WWE will be defended at Night of Champions and how he didn’t yet have an opponent or a challenger for his United States Championship. With everyone looking on with intrigue from the ring, Sydal announced that he’d just spoken with Tazz and asked for a match with Del Rio-Ramirez after he hit Mickie last week.

Sydal & Mickie stared down at the Mexican who was still showing some sign of regret for what he did, and Sydal let him know that he wasn’t going to let him get away with what he did, saying that no one puts his hands on his girlfriend. He called Del Rio-Ramirez a coward for hitting a woman before confirming that Tazz agreed to the proposal of a match between them at Night of Champions where the United States title would be on the line. It went down well with the crowd and the focused King of the Ring dropped his microphone before heading down the ramp with his mean-faced girlfriend, all eyes still on the Mexican he’ll defend his title against in nine nights.


*Match 3*
Matt Sydal w/Layla & J-Red
vs. Alberto Del Rio-Ramirez & Chavo Guerrero

All four men were up for this one with Night of Champions in mind, but it was the champions who were firing on all cylinders going into the final stages. Sydal looked to have it in the bag for them when he went all the way up to the top rope for the Shooting Star Press with Chavo down & out below him. Del Rio-Ramirez put up a roadblock by shifting along the apron, briefly distracting the United States Champion before the referee intervened and got the Mexican back in his corner.

However it gave Chavo enough recovery time to get his knees up when Sydal leapt up into the skies and came down with his stomach crashing into the extended knees. Chavo then rolled to his corner to tag in his fellow Mexican team-mate, and he went after Sydal, locking him in body-scissors. The resilient United States Champion toughed it out and turned the tables back in his favour, coming back off the ropes after an irish whip to slide through his rival’s legs. Del Rio-Ramirez turned round in a flash, right into a spinning wheel kick as Sydal jumped up to his feet.

Sydal hit the corner again as the Mexican pulled himself back up, turning round into a jumping double knee takedown. It was only enough for a two count, but Sydal could smell the victory around the corner, and as they both stood back up, Del Rio-Ramirez blocked a Cyclorama attempt, slipped away and exploded out of nowhere to take him down with the deadly rolling cross armbar. The fans were shocked, as were Mickie & Red, both doing all they could to encourage Sydal. The fans did the same, and after a brave fight he made it to the ropes, pissing Del Rio-Ramirez no end. Mickie was delighted and that made him even angrier.

They started taunting each other as Matt slowly started to sit up, and as he made it back up, he saw Del Rio-Ramirez yelling at his girlfriend. Sydal was livid and charged right at him, but the Mexican turned his head at the right time, side stepped and then rolled Sydal up, holding onto his tights and resting his feet on the ropes for more leverage, picking up a dirty yet significant victory. He quickly slipped out of the ring to join Chavo on the outside with the ref following to raise their arms with a pissed off Sydal staring back at them with Red doing the same having joined him in the ring as well as Mickie, all glaring in the direction of the smug yet victorious Mexican duo.

Winners: Alberto Del Rio-Ramirez & Chavo Guerrero by pinfall.


{Commercial Break}



>Monday Night – A Live 3 Hour Special From Madison Square Garden!<


We got a recap from last week where Michelle McCool was bragging about how she’s beaten Beth Phoenix two weeks in a row, quickly changing gear to say how much of a joke it is that she’s not standing there as the Divas Champion. The fans clearly disagreed with her but she continued to state her case, how because of a technicality two weeks ago, despite beating Beth, albeit by count out, she wasn’t awarded the divas title. The number one contender for Beth’s title then said that she proved she can beat Beth last week by pinning her 1-2-3 in the middle of the ring, and that when she gets her second chance in two weeks at Night of Champions, she will do so again, and this time she will be the Divas Champion.

The fans continued to boo her, but the boos quickly turned to cheers when “Glamazon” hit and Beth Phoenix, the Divas Champion made her way into the arena, not in the best of moods. She walked down to the ring with purpose and explained that there was a reason she’s not the Divas Champion and why the fans don’t believe she can beat her fair & square, it’s because she can’t. The fans cheered and Beth went onto say that a count out isn’t a fair way to win a title and last week it took a handful of tights and the ropes to beat her.

The Glamazon then firmly told McCool that even she knows deep down she can’t beat her and that all she’s doing is trying to convince herself as well as the fans. McCool didn’t like what she heard, but Beth wasn’t done there. She told Michelle that at Night of Champions she’ll find out herself what everyone else already knows, that she (McCool) can’t beat her and there’s nothing she can do to change that as she (Beth) will still be the Divas Champion. “Glamazon” played again and Beth raised her title up in the air, something McCool didn’t appreciate.

As soon as Beth turned round to leave the ring, she clubbed the champion across the back. The fans booed as the music cut and McCool continued to put the boots to The Glamazon before grabbing the title. She took a long look at it and then took it with her as she headed back up the ramp with her music hitting one more time, and as Beth sat up, she saw McCool at the top of the ramp holding her title with a big smirk on her face, and Beth was absolutely livid, glaring back at her and gesturing at her rival that she’s going to get even, only amusing McCool even more.

*Match 4*
Non-Title Match
Beth Phoenix
vs. O.D.B.

The Glamazon was one angry diva as she walked out into the arena, and before the bell rung for the match to start, ”You’re Not Enough for Me” hit and Michelle McCool casually made her way out to the stage posing with Beth’s divas title that they’ll fight for at Night of Champions. McCool then joined Michael Cole & Matt Striker at the announce table, and she played a massive part in the outcome of the match. With Beth having fought her way into control in what was a very competitive match for, she was looking all set to go for the Grand Slam.

McCool though wasn’t too keen to see Beth get a win ahead of their collision in nine nights and jumped up from the announce table, flaunting the title she’d stolen from The Glamazon a week earlier. Beth was livid and went over to the ropes, threatening the incredibly relaxed number one contender, all while O.D.B. was making it back up to her feet. McCool kept her eye on O.D.B’s progress and told Beth to turn round at the perfect time for O.D.B. to stomp her in the gut and lift her up onto her shoulders.

With McCool watching with a big smile on her face, O.D.B. walked away from the ropes and nailed her finisher, a fireman’s carry cutter to continue her undefeated start to her career on Smackdown at the expense of the Divas Champion. McCool clapped as O.D.B. got her arm raised by the referee, and after she left the ring taunting the fans, McCool slipped inside with the divas title and laughed at Beth as she came round. The fans were all over McCool as she then walked towards Beth and held the title in her face, talking smack before getting a big shock when The Glamazon hammered her in the gut.

The crowd went mad for Beth as she shot up from her knees and knocked McCool down with a right hand. She wasn’t done there and tried to grab her for the Grand Slam, but McCool managed to slip away before she found herself in serious danger, leaving the title behind and back in the possession of its rightful owner. “Glamazon” hit and Beth picked her title back up, raising it high up in the air and letting McCool know just who it belonged to with the fans cheering, getting McCool even hotter under the collar.

Winner: O.D.B. by pinfall.


We were taken to the back where the Cruiserweight Champion, J-Red (showered & changed) was grudgingly walking through the hallway dragging his travel bag with his cruiserweight title still on his shoulder, but he had the misfortune of bumping into his former mentor and Night of Champions opponent, Chavo Guerrero. Chavo was still in his ring gear and had a big smile on his face after the victory earlier, and Red wasn’t in the mood to stick around. He tried to get past Chavo but the number one contender for Red’s title stepped in his way and gloated about the win, telling Red he would lose at Night of Champions like he did before, only there’ll be one difference, next time he’ll be the one holding the cruiserweight title, not Red.

With Red fairly subdued and just desperate to get away, Chavo rubbed it in and told him that when he’s the new champion, the fans won’t care about him anymore and will see him for what he truly is, one big fluke. Red didn’t take that well and dropped his bag and title, then called Chavo a joke and told him he could see right through him, unsettling him a fair bit. Chavo listened as the champion said that he’s taken everything Chavo’s said about him and at Night of Champions he can’t wait to beat his ass, pausing before saying “again” emphatically and getting right in Chavo’s face.

Guerrero though meant business too, letting Red know how much he’s up for the fight, telling Red that it’s about time his luck changed, that it will in just over a week and how he can’t wait to teach him the lesson he should have the first time they met. They stared deep into each others’ eyes before Chavo smirked and walked out of the shot, smirking away still to leave Red pondering what could happen when they lock horns in nine nights in their Falls Count Anywhere match for the Cruiserweight Championship.


{Commercial Break}

*Match 5*
Non-Title Match
Paul Burchill & TJ Wilson w/Harry Smith & Natalya Neidhart
vs. Petey Williams & Johnny Devine

The Empire were watching every second of the tag champions’ first match in the back, and they saw Burchill & Wilson combine really well as a unit against their Canadian opponents. With Harry Smith watching closely from ringside, TJ proved he was a worthy replacement for him. The crowd thought the same, and they loved his high impact, hard hitting style, but Williams & Devine certainly didn’t. They did however use their experience to work their way into the contest to stall the champions’ progress when Williams was all set to be on the receiving end of a tornado DDT.

Devine though stepped through the ropes, getting the attention of both TJ and the referee, and when Wilson went back to Petey, he was on the wrong end of a swift stomp to the gut and a snap swinging neck-breaker. Petey was on a mission not to be outdone by his fellow Canadian cruiserweight, and he tried to rub salt into the wounds by applying the Sharpshooter. He didn’t get the chance though and Wilson pushed him away with the power in his legs when Petey tried to turn him over, and as both men made their way back up, TJ took him down with a drop toe hold and tried to apply the hold himself.

Petey escaped this time and kicked out, and when they raced up to their feet, TJ reversed an irish whip to the corner, firing Petey in hard to the pads, and Wilson charged in, nailing him with a thunderous high knee strike. Petey staggered out into his opponent’s clutches and a swinging cradle suplex, and Devine came to his partner’s rescue again to break up the count at two. Burchill was fuming and raced into the ring, planting the smug Devine as he turned round into a C4. The crowd were cheering as Burchill kicked Devine under the bottom rope and down to the floor before returning to the apron.

He watched as TJ & Petey clawed their way back up where TJ ducked a wild right and drilled him with a tornado DDT. With the fans, Burchill, Harry & Natalya encouraging him, TJ wasted no time in going to the apron, watching intently as Petey slowly made his way back up. Petey didn’t have a clue where he was and was helpless as TJ hit the springboard for the Code Blue, a front-flip neck-breaker to seal the deal and pick up an impressive win for the champions on their first outing. Even The Empire looked quite impressed in the back, still confident though as the champions were joined in the ring by Harry & Natalya, all fired-up and all set for their massive title defence at Night of Champions.

Winners: Paul Burchill & TJ Wilson by pinfall.


The World Heavyweight Champion, CM Punk was shown walking through the back, and as he turned a corner, he got a glimpse of Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley on her cell phone. He stopped and Steph saw him, wrapping up her call quickly with a wry smile on her face. They both casually walked towards each other and she clapped, congratulating him on his victory over Batista last week. Punk though jokingly said he couldn’t take all the credit before saying he could and then thanked her for giving him the opportunity to show just how resourceful he is and how he can overcome any challenge or obstacle thrown at him. Punk was so smug and he then told Steph how much he knows she wants him to lose the world title at Night of Champions whether it be on a professional or personal level or both, but he let her know that he wasn’t going to let that happen and she should better get used to it before she’s disappointed.

Steph though stayed fairly cool and told him not to get ahead of himself as there are four guys who all want a shot at him & his title and are going to beat the hell out of each other just for the chance to face him at Night of Champions, then whoever it is who gets the title shot will do everything in their power to walk out of Night of Champions with his title. Punk too wasn’t fazed and sarcastically told her that he appreciated her concern before reminding her that it’s his title for a reason and that no one, not even her or in fact any member of the McMahon family will take it from him, it’s his and it’s staying that way. He gave Steph another smirk before walking off without a care in the world, but Steph too was very composed as she watched him walk away.


{Commercial Break}



>9 Days!<

*The Main Event*
World Heavyweight Championship Number One Contender Tournament Final
Elimination Match
John Cena vs. Bryan Danielson
vs. Edge vs. Dolph Ziggler

The four wannabe challengers were joined by the man they were hoping to face at Night of Champions when CM Punk, the World Heavyweight Champion brought out a fold-out chair to watch from the stage just before the ref was going to call for the bell. He saw four men give it everything they could to meet him for his title in nine nights. The fans were so into it and split between Danielson & Cena with some even getting behind Edge, but despite giving it all he had and making a strong impression, Ziggler was the first to bite the bullet. It looked as if he was all set to put Danielson away, but when Shawn Michaels’ protégé dodged a leg drop bulldog, Ziggler was taken down in a flash and found himself tied up in the LeBell Lock.

The fans were urging him to tap, and he held on for as long as he could before tapping out to a big pop. Danielson was on fire and the crowd went nuts when he was able to slip down from the F-U and pull Cena into the LeBell Lock. Edge was coming to on the outside as Cena fought for his life with a huge portion of the crowd screaming for him to tap. He wouldn’t though and hung on in as Danielson put him through the hell, doing all he could to make him tap, and eventually Cena managed to drag himself to the ropes to grab hold of the bottom rope. There were a ton of boos as Danielson was told to break the hold, reluctantly doing so as Edge slipped back into the ring, dragging himself back in behind Danielson’s back.

The Rated-R Superstar set his sights on him, devastated as he stood back up and backed away from the ropes. The crowd tried to warn him about what was lying in wait, but as he turned round, his fate was inevitable and Edge charged across the ring to take him down with the Spear. It was enough to get the three count, much to the disappointment of the crowd after a massive effort from the impressive Danielson. Even Punk looked impressed, applauding him back up the ramp, but Danielson was too disappointed to pay the World Champion much attention and headed backstage. It was left to the long-time rivals, Cena & Edge to battle it out for the right to face Punk for a shot at the world title at Night of Champions, and they both came close to securing that shot.

The fans were split on them and Edge was staring up intently at Punk, letting him know how much he wanted it, and he was milliseconds away when he landed on his feet after an F-U attempt and stomped Cena in the gut before drilling him with the Edgecution. The Rated-R Superstar couldn’t believe it and once again set his sights on Punk before stalking Cena for the Spear. Cena was slowly clawing his way back up and Punk stood up to watch with the fans going nuts. Edge was ready to explode out of his boots and he stormed across the ring to spear Cena out of his, but Cena caught him with a drop toe hold and locked in the STFU to a hugely mixed response from the capacity crowd.

Edge was shocked but quickly had to fight for his life and the chance to face Punk with Cena wrenching away at his face, the crowd still torn but blowing the roof off the joint with Punk’s eyes fixed firmly on Edge’s struggle to survive. He fought with everything he had, dragging himself closer to the ropes, inch by inch, but just as he was about to grab hold of them, Cena stood up and dragged him back to the centre of the ring to apply the hold again. The fans weren’t crazy about it and the fight was draining away bit by bit from Edge and he was left with no choice but to tap out.

The crowd erupted and Cena rose to his feet, getting his arm raised and walking over to the ropes, throwing both arms up into the air in front of the fans, and then he turned round to look up at the man he’ll face at Night of Champions for the World Heavyweight Championship. He walked across to stare directly up at Punk, and the World Champion was applauding the number one contender for his title with Cena staring right at him. Punk then lifted his title up into the air defiantly as the show drew to a close with them talking smack at each other, all set for quite the battle in nine nights at Night of Champions when they’ll finally lock horns one-on-one for the gold.

Winner: John Cena by submission.

{End of Show}

Quick Results

Paul London & Brian Kendrick df. The Pitbulls
Alberto Del Rio-Ramirez & Chavo Guerrero
df. Matt Sydal & J-Red
Wade Barrett
df. M.V.P.
O.D.B.
df. Beth Phoenix
Paul Burchill & TJ Wilson
df. Petey Williams & Johnny Devine
John Cena
df. Bryan Danielson, Edge & Dolph Ziggler

Superstars Tapings
Bobby Lashley & Charlie Haas df.Jimmy Yang & Sonjay Dutt

___________________

>Confirmed for Night of Champions<

Night of Champions Homepage

Date:
Sunday December 21st 2008 (9 Days)
Location: Quicken Loans Arena (Cleveland, Ohio)

World Heavyweight Championship
John Cena vs. CM Punk (c)

WWE Championship
3 Stages of Hell
Batista vs. Triple H (c)

WWE Intercontinental Championship
Kofi Kingston vs. Sheamus (c)

WWE United States Championship
Matt Sydal (c) vs. Alberto Del Rio-Ramirez

WWE Tag Team Championship
Paul Burchill & TJ Wilson (c) vs. The Empire

World Tag Team Championship
Rey Mysterio & Mystico (c) vs. The Epitome of Excellence

WWE Cruiserweight Championship
Falls Count Anywhere
J-Red (c) vs. Chavo Guerrero

WWE Women’s Championship
Melina (c) vs. Queen Kong

WWE Divas Championship
Beth Phoenix (c) vs. Michelle McCool


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