Don’t think I forgot about you, Wolf man. Only one of us is senile here.
Solid start to things with the little segments featuring all of the competitors talking their chances up. Lawler coming down to add to the announce team in his hometown is a nice little touch too.
Haas/London is a good match to start with, getting two guys in there who can go, especially an over guy like London, in there to get the crowd fired up. The match was pretty simple, and while I thought you could have maybe started with some nearfall roll ups due to both men wanting a short match to conserve energy for later, this worked just fine in putting on a nice little match that meshed the two styles. Not going all out is wise too, because London obviously has more to do tonight. Good start.
SummerSlam soon? Yes please.
A pretty nice little promo from Kennedy just to show off his attitude. A clever little segment to interview the previous King of the Ring too.
Surprised you went with such a fast-paced match early in the tournament, but it wasn’t too long so it certainly works in the context of it being an endurance tournament. Some very good nearfalls, building things up well, before the surprise ending, which certainly caught me off guard. Interesting little segment afterwards, perhaps making for an Albright/Carlito feud? I certainly wouldn’t mind seeing it.
Get to WrestleMania 24 and I’ll love you. Not sure if anyone’s said anything, but in your text for WrestleMania 24, you have it as WrestleMania XVII (or 17).
I like the little touch of the throne being used again already during Shelton’s entrance, showing the arrogance of The Brotherhood. Hardy going to attack him during the entrance was a nice way to kick things off with a bang too, showing the fire in this feud. The little spot with Shelton almost costing himself the advantage in the match due to a lack of Long at ringside was nice, as was the transition into the work on the injured leg of Matt, perhaps starting something up that can be used all of the way through the night. The ending was certainly a surprise, but I thought it was still built really well at the same time. Giving Hardy a shock win there allows him to be strong enough to fight all of the way through the final, should he make it, while you’ve also given us an exciting match. Good stuff.
I like the post-match attack here, as not only does it allow for a story to continue to be told here tonight, but you’ve also got the Shelton/Hardy feud to continue.
The start to this match was certainly interesting, playing on both Regal’s experience and the fact that Umaga has no one to control him at ringside. The match itself told an interesting tale itself, again reinforcing how hard it is to keep ‘Mags down, while also getting the DQ finish done that I thought you’d go for. A little surprised that you had Regal get beaten up so badly, as it makes Hardy’s road to the final a lot easier (and more predictable), but I guess you didn’t want him taking such a beating that it would be unrealistic for him to make it.
Simple Albright promo to put over his confidence in winning and keeping in mind his issue with London. Very nice line to finish on too there.
London going with the talk is cheap angle is fine, because he’s really not much of a talker. The confrontation between Kendrick and London was very interesting, although it just seems odd that Kendrick continues to talk about how the US Title has been neglected when we’re barely seeing anything from the Cruiserweight Champion on his title. I guess that’s intentional though.
Looking forward to The Bash, which has quite a nice little card coming together.
Very nice start to this match with some good mat wrestling, plus the little bit of added excitement in the Crowbar attempt. The way the action picked up with London coming back was very nice, taking things up a notch before the big moves from Albright sets the gauntlet down that it will be high impact, even if nothing Albright did was that fancy. The attempted comeback from London was nice, keeping the fans interested before the big belly to belly to the outside from Albright, again, keeping the high impact moves coming. The transition from the forearm exchange into the finishing sequence with the Crowbar counter was really nicely done, with the Albright win coming somewhat surprisingly. A nice match to follow up on their Judgment Day encounter, letting them put on a great shoe, despite Albright still having another match to come now.
The post-match attack from Kendrick wasn’t exactly surprising after what we saw earlier, although having him leave with both belts is a nice way to add a little something else to this feud.
The exchange between Estrada and Christian was very nice, keeping Mr. MITB and the champion connected, with the warning that Umaga will be cashing in soon ominous (my early money is on after a successful title defence from Christian at SummerSlam). Christian retorting by mocking AAE and standing up for himself was nicely done, while Angle getting in on the action, seemingly ahead of a world title match against Christian at SummerSlam is clever too. Having Christian walk out on Angle and Estrada, looking like the bigger man was a good way to end a good segment.
This match simply HAD to be kept short, considering the condition both men were in. It was far from exciting, but at least it was quick.
That Undertaker video package remains brilliant, and is a great segue into the actual JBL promo. A very nice start to things, using the typical JBL cheap heat to get under the skin of the fans. Having Layfield talk about why he believes The Undertaker is scared of him, explaining his logic is good, making sure that we know that, while it obviously isn’t true, at least there’s a reason that JBL believes it’s true in his head and he’s not just talking complete crap. Having Layfield react to the heat with the line about understanding why the fans don’t like that The Undertaker is a coward and talking up what he’s meant in the past is a great response, before trash talking The Undertaker a little more and putting himself over as their new hero in typical JBL fashion. Having him talk about how he won’t leave the fans, making himself seem better than The Undertaker, was really nice, before getting off the “Wrestling God” line that simply has to be done in a JBL promo. The response to The Undertaker not coming out initially with JBL declaring himself the new phenom was another good one, before the interruption then came with some good timing to interrupt JBL talking himself up again. I was surprised you had ‘Taker speak, because we don’t hear it often, but I guess by having him not do it in the flesh, you kind of keep the aura about him. I know that he can speak in front of people sometimes, but I only feel like he should when he’s either a champion or when he’s in a really big feud, which this obviously isn’t. I was surprised you didn’t have JBL back right down after ‘Taker spoke, but I guess he was still justified in his mind in standing up to ‘Taker. The ending of the promo was simple, with ‘The Phenom’ laying JBL out, then delivering the simple message to make for a big return for him at The Bash. While JBL/Undertaker isn’t the most awe-inspiring feud, the match at The Bash should be alright, especially with the Buried Alive gimmick giving it that extra aspect. As usual, a very good JBL dominated segment here.
At this stage, I’m quite liking the character for Nemeth. He should be a solid addition to the SmackDown! midcard, which, quite frankly, could maybe use a little extra life that he should provide.
Lesnar and Angle is a nice paring to start the match off, getting two old rivals in there together. A bit disappointed we didn’t get any amateur wrestling type stuff from the two, but I get that you wanted to get everyone involved early, and I thought you did that well. It was very sudden, but I liked that you brought the big moves on early, with no extended period of dominance from either team due to there not really being a face or heel team. The very finish to this was really good, with the little feuds rearing their heads, just as they should. I found it surprising that Cena took another fall, especially with Kennedy on the same team, although it seems like a storyline you’re going with here, handing him a few losses perhaps en route to a heel turn. SmackDown! getting the win is probably a positive due to them having a PPV coming up, meaning the momentum does their guys a lot of good. Nice match.
Again, a good short interview from Albright. The attack on ‘Lito from Haas was interesting, continuing to show a possible storyline between The Master Craftsmen and Carlito as well as possibly somebody else.
A feel good promo for Matt here too, giving him a real positive feel.
Matt starting the final with a bang to try to get things done quickly is clever, while Albright doing his all to go after Hardy’s injured leg was good psychology for him. Having Albright change his focus to the arm of Hardy due to being unable to get at his arm was a really smart way to go about things, setting up for the Crowbar well, while also giving a solid reason as to why he changed his focus. A couple of nice surprise counters into the finishers pick the pace of the match up nicely, picking things up. Albright’s frustration boiling over due to his inability to put Hardy away was beautifully done, setting up his false move well, before Hardy went for it all himself. A nice way to introduce the new finisher from Albright, with nothing else finishing Matt off, while also making him King of the Ring with a bang. Honestly, a move that has me very surprised as I can’t really see him meshing with too many people in the SmackDown! main event scene at this stage, but I guess he’ll linger in the midcard with Carlito for a moment longer. The promo afterwards sums up what Albright’s all about, but whether or not that gimmick can carry him to the main event scene without a bit of a tweak, I’m not sure. Still, for now he’s certainly looking good coming off this big win.
Nothing to really fault you with here, Wolfy – it was a great show. Everything was executed well, and you certainly pulled out a few surprises, especially with Albright, that I didn’t see coming. I know this probably isn’t the most helpful, but I had to show you some love at some stage, and with RAW coming up, I figured I had better finish this for you. Don’t worry about the lack of other feedback – you’re still the best going. Good stuff, my man.