January 27th SmackDown! | Bi-Lo Center; Greenville, South Carolina
We open up Friday Night SmackDown! with the usual video montage while SmackDown! theme ‘Rise Up’ plays in the background. Once the video comes to a close we cut into the arena to see pyro exploding at the top of the stage, getting the already pumped up crowd up to a fever pitch. The camera zooms around to show that excited crowd once the pyro stops, showing fans jumping around, holding their signs up and just being generally excited to see Friday Night SmackDown! After doing a circle around half of the crowd we come to a halt in front of the announce table, seeing our announcers Michael Cole and Tazz.
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Friday Night SmackDown!, live to you here from the Bi-Lo Center, right here in Greenville, South Carolina! The road to the Rumble is almost complete, with tonight’s show being the final stop as we head right along going towards the ultimate destination of WrestleMania 22. Joining me here tonight for this huge show is my broadcast partner as always, Tazz!
Man, Cole, I am excited to be here as we are just forty-eight hours from the Royal Rumble! The crowd here’s hyped up, you’re hyped up, I’m hyped up, everyone’s hyped up for a night of exciting action that only Friday Night SmackDown! can bring you!
That’s right, partner, tonight is set to be huge. We have both men competing in the World Heavyweight Championship match this Sunday in action here tonight as the challenger, Mark Henry goes one-on-one with Shannon Moore, while the champion, Batista wrestles the United States Champion Booker T’s protégé, Orlando Jordan!
Not only will those matches be fine tunin’ matches for Batista and Henry, Cole, but they also give Shannon Moore and Orlando Jordan a huge chance to prove themselves!
That’s not all folks, because here at SmackDown! we’ll prove that anything RAW can do, well, we can do it better. That’s right, our main event is a little SmackDown! Royal Rumble preview as we have our very own ten man Battle Royal. Who can come at on top heading to the Rumble?
This is a big chance for these men to show they have what it takes headed for the Rumble, Cole! Here’s hopin’ it’ll help our guys get ready, ‘cause the winner this Sunday needs to be from the blue brand to show who the true ‘A Brand’ is!
We’ll also find out just who that mystery man who attacked The Boogeyman for JBL last week is, as well as so much more here tonight.
“Miiisssttteeerrr Ken-nah-day... Kennedy!”
*Turn Up The Trouble*
The crowd erupts into a decent reaction of mainly heat as the Green Bay loudmouth, Mr Kennedy
confidently walks out to the top of the stage, chewing his gum obnoxiously. Wearing a Mr Kennedy tee and blue jeans, Kennedy takes his time before walking on down the ramp, ignoring the fans at ringside.
Here’s the man who this Sunday makes his return to action, Mr Kennedy, and boy are we in for a treat as we see the debut of his new show, the Open Mic!
Man, I love Kennedy. He may be a lil’ brash, he may be a lil’ cocky, but that’s what gives you the edge here in the WWE. You don’t have the confidence and you end up a loser, Cole. Kennedy has what it takes.
Kennedy now climbs up into the ring and does his signature pose, the spotlight on him as a microphone drops into his hand. Backing up, Kennedy stands in front of a couple of rather snazzy leather chairs, the spotlight following him as the rest of the arena remains dark. Kennedy smiles, loving the reaction he’s getting as he ever so slowly raises his signature microphone up to his mouth.
Ladies, gentlemen and people watching all around the world, please allow me to welcome you to not just Friday Night SmackDown!, but also the single biggest premiere in the history
of television. Every now and then we see an event that changes our lives ... a landmark event, if you will. For example, in 1492, this great country we call home, the US of A was discovered by Christopher Columbus. Or how about July 4, 1776, America becomes its own man, its own country when it signs away from the United Kingdom by creating the Declaration of Independence? And who could forget that in 1969 the very first space shuttle took man where they never thought they would go. They took man to the moon! Now that ... that’s all pretty impressive ... isn’t it? Those are all what you’d call ‘landmark events’ ... aren’t they? But y’see all of that – all of that is NOTHING
... nothing ... compared to what is in store for you tonight. Some of you may call this a landmark event, but heck, I think even that
... well that’d be sellin’ this baby short. This is bigger than Columbus, this is bigger than independence, and this is bigger than man reachin’ the moon. This is the beginning, the debut, the premiere of the hottest thing to hit this planet since yours truly was born ... this is The Open, Mic, and I – I am your esteemed host. Forget about Conan O’Brian, forget about David Letterman and Jay Leno? Yeah, you can forget about him too. I – I am the new generation of talk show hosts. I am THE
... breath of fresh air that you people, you want, you need... you desire
. I am the most charismatic man on the face ... of this planet and I – I am the man to take you to a new era of greatness. The only name you need to remember now ... Kennedy
Kennedy pauses for a moment, chewing his gum, allowing the fans a moment to react.
And y’know, I’m gonna’ level with you Greenville. I’m gonna’ let you in on a lil’ secret. A couple a’ weeks ago, I was nervous about this. Dare I say it, I was scared. I had come up with a genius
, idea. A talk show with me, the fastest rising sta on SmackDown! as the host! But, y’see, there was a problem. I didn’t know what I wanted to do. I didn’t know what I should be doin’ to start this little deal off with a bang. Should I, should I have gotten myself a few apples, throw a palm tree or two up and take a nap in a little hammock? Should I come out here wearin’ a dress? Should I, dare I say it, call all of you people Kennedy-holics? (Shaking head)
No, I shouldn’t do any of those things, firstly because I want nothin’ to do with you disgusting people ...
Heat as Kennedy smiles.
And secondly because that’s not me. That’s not who I am. So then I thought to myself, should I maybe just come out and give myself air time? Talk about myself? I mean, I’m sure all of you wanna’ hear that, right?
Heat from the crowd as Kennedy continues to chew his gum obnoxiously, smiling away.
I mean, in case you forgot, I could just use this time to remind you, that y’know, (shrugs)
ever since I made my debut last September, I’ve defeated four – count ‘em, (lifting his hand to count along)
one, two, three, four ... former ... world, champions. I could remind you that in the four short months I’ve been here on SmackDown!, I’ve not only raised the bar here on Friday nights, but I’ve raised the bar throughout the entire
W ... W ... E. I could remind you that I am indeed
, the man who is changing Friday nights, and that I am a sure-fire future, world, champion. Or I could just point out that I am simply the greatest thing since sliced bread. But y’know, I’m not gonna’ do that. Nope.
Shrugging again with an innocent look on his face the crowd gives some heat, knowing Kennedy’s just trying to be a tool at this stage.
I could also talk about the little event we’ve got comin’ up this Sunday. Y’know... the Royal Rumble? You may have heard of it. But – but if I were to talk about that, it would just lead right back to where we were before, for this is year’s Rumble is featuring the single greatest return in the HISTORY
of the WWE. The return that everybody – whether you’re at the bus stop, sittin’ behind your desk, sittin’ on your coach or sittin’ on the street – everyone has been anticipating. But again, I’m not gonna’ do that. I don’t need to tell you people how great I am again ... you already know.
Kennedy pauses again, looking down at his shoes.
So y’know, I found myself stuck, I found myself runnin’ out of ideas. I was in a rut. I coulda’ just gone with the normal formula ... y’know, ask a guest to join me on the show, set up a whole buncha’ questions and ask away. I could just imitate those who came before me. Or instead, much like how I wrestle, I could raise the bar ... I could set the standards, higher
, than ever before. But what is there that I could do differently? What could I do to set me apart from the pack? What could make the premiere of The Open Mic BIGGER
than any before it? For days on end, as I rehabbed from my injury, I pondered, what could I do? Then seemingly, when I thought I’d lost all hope for an idea, like bolt out of the blue, it hit me. Y’see, this lil’ talk show, it’s called The Open Mic for a reason. The title gives all away as tonight, The Open Mic, it is exa - ctly that ... an open ... mic.
Kennedy smiles smugly.
I know, clever, right? So without further ado, allow me to extend an invitation to the guys in the back. Y’see this – this is the opportunity of a life – time – a once in a lifetime opportunity, if you will. This is a lone chance, so if anyone
in the back wants to come out and discuss anything
– and I mean anything – well folks, it’s your lucky day. So to whoever – whoever has the guts in the back, come on down, join one of the greats right here in the ring ... and let your voice ... be heard.
Kennedy pauses for a moment, taking the microphone away from his mouth and waiting, still chewing away at that gum. Soon enough Kennedy is forced to look to the stage due to hearing the sound of ...
The crowd pops big as the music of the man from the 619 hits, with Kennedy being seen with a smile on his face in the ring. As the beat picks up Rey Mysterio
jumps up onto the SmackDown! stage, pyro shooting out from under him with the crowd’s reaction for the little man only growing bigger. As he walks down the ramp Mysterio salutes his fans, slapping hands with the ones in the front row before embracing those who have bought his merchandise. Now climbing up into the ring, Mysterio salutes his fans and grabs a mic, Kennedy meanwhile clapping him on.
Ladies and gentlemen, Rey, Mysterio!
The crowd of course pops.
Rey, lemme’ start off by saying it is an honour – an honour to have you have, my very first guest on The Open Mic.
And y’know, Rey, here on The Open Mic, I’m tryna’ give it a nice, welcoming feel. I know I said this wasn’t gonna’ be just me askin’ questions, but I’ve gotta’ make you feel welcome, so I’m just gonna’ ask a few questions, y’know, make you feel like you’re at home. I guess I should start off by askin’ how your family are goin’.
Good man. They’re all feelin’ good.
That’s good to hear. How about you yourself?
Yeah, I’m feelin’ pretty good too right now.
That’s great, Rey, just great. And y’know, I ask because I was a little worried about you. Yeah, a little worried. I mean, just two weeks ago Mark Henry treated you like his own personal crash test dummy ...
And I was just wonderin’ how you were feelin’. But it’s good to hear you’re goin’ alright, Rey. It really is.
That’s cute, Kennedy, but y’know, I’m not the one who got my ass kicked so bad I had to take a couple of months off on the sidelines.
The crowd pops as Kennedy looks a pissed, a more serious expression crossing his face than usual.
Oh, I’m sorry; did I strike a nerve there? Are you a little offended by that? Really man, I didn’t mean it. If that hurt you, I apologise.
The crowd laughs as Kennedy gives Mysterio a dark look.
But Kennedy, as surprising as it may sound to you, I didn’t come out here to talk about you. Las’ week – las’ week I heard you declare this as an open mic, and just before I heard you say the very same thing, so I guess – I guess now I get to talk about what I wanted to talk about. That would be right, wouldn’t it? Because as I said, I sure as hell didn’t come out here to talk about you, or even to you. No, I came out here to talk to my fans in the arena ...
Pop from the crowd.
And all of the people supportin’ me ‘round the world! Because really, after holdin’ somethin’ in for so long, I think now ... now is finally
the time to get somethin’ off my chest.
Mysterio pauses, looking out at the crowd rather emotionally.
Now these past few months have been hard for me. I’m not gonna’ lie about that. Last November ... las’ November I lost my best friend ... I lost my esse, my vato ... I lost a man who was practically my brother. Eddie, I know you’re up there, and I know you’re lookin’ down at me right now, probably with a smile on your face. These past few months though, I haven’t been smilin’ man. I just lost it – I lost my smile. Ever since I lost Eddie, I’ve felt like I’ve lost it all. Travellin’ on the road just hasn’t felt the same. And y’know, it’s hard a life. Bein’ a wrestler is a very hard life. I spend 300 days a year away from my family – my wife and three children – and every single day, it hurts. Missin’ anniversaries, Christmases, and hell, even the birth of my children, I’ve been through it all. But y’know, that pain, it was always ... always
subsided by the fact that I had my brother from another mother, my vato, Eddie Guerrero travellin’ with me! These past few months, that hasn’t happened, has it?
A small “Eddie!” chant can be heard as Rey looks into the crowd, almost crying.
These past few months, my life, it’s been a living hell. I’ve been lost, I’ve been confused, and yeah, I’ve had my ass kicked. Kane and the Big Show, they kicked my ass at Armageddon. A few weeks ago Mark Henry, he kicked my ass too. And y’know after that happened, despite everything I did, after that happened, I broke down. I thought I could no longer take it. I thought my career ... I thought it was as good as done. I was just about ready to hang up the boots ... to take off the mask.
Mysterio again pauses, looking almost overcome with emotion.
But y’know, when I came out last week and I teamed with Matt Hardy and Bobby Lashley, somethin’ inside of me clicked. Suddenly, standin’ in the ring with those two men I found myself to be smiling ... I was enjoying myself. And y’know, at first, I wasn’t sure why, but now I realise ... SmackDown! ... it’s my home, and the young guys in the locker-room like Bobby Lashley, like Matt Hardy and heck, (pointing at Kennedy)
even like you, Kennedy, they’re not just the future of this show, but they ... they’re my new family! I realised that guys like Matt and like Bobby, they mean a lot to me. They’re my new brothers here on Friday Night SmackDown! And now ... now that I feel reinvigorated ... now that I’m a new man, it’s onto the Rumble for me! And while I would dedicate this Royal Rumble to the memory of the late, great Eddie Guerrero ...
A huge “Eddie~!” chant starts up, as Rey waits.
... It’s no longer about the past. This is now about the future, which is why I’m dedicating this Sunday to the future of Friday Night SmackDown! Bobby, Matt and the others, they may all be in this match too, but t...t me when I say that just because you’re my brothers, that doesn’t mean I won’t throw you guys over the top rope too, because I promise that I – not anyone else – I will be the man o lead Friday Night SmackDown! into a new era!
The crowd gives a big pop as Rey nods his head. He’s suddenly snapped out of his little trance though as he turns around to hear clapping from behind him.
Mr Kennedy: (Clapping)
Bravo, Rey, brave. A touching tale, and lemme’ tell ya’, it got to me. It really did. And as generous as it is to dedicate your effort at the Royal Rumble solely to me, Rey, y’see, it simply, isn’t, necessary. I don’t need some LOSER
dedicatin’ his effort to me, when I am already gonna’ win the match all, for, my-self.
Kennedy smirks as the crowd gives off some very nice heat.
Rey, I’m gonna’ make this very simple. You say – you say you’ve been ‘reinvigorated’ by the youth of Friday Night SmackDown!. You – you say that you’re ‘back on top of ya’ game’. Rey, lemme’ let you in on a lil’ secret ... it doesn’t matter. Y’see, regardless of how good you’re feelin’ about yourself or yout abilities, Rey, you’re not gonna’ win this Sunday, and it’s not just because of yours truly. Those people you mentioned before – Kane, the Big Show, Mark Henry ... do ya’ know what they all have in common, Rey? Huh, do ya’? They’re all bigger than you, and because of that, Rey, they’re all better than you. You’re too short, Rey ... you just don’t, measure, up.
Kennedy stares at Rey now, his mouth open, almost as if to say “What are you gonna’ do about that?”
I don’t measure up, eh, Kennedy? Is that what it is? Well last I recall, I could kick your ass anytime I wanted!
Kennedy looks slightly agitated at Rey’s response.
Is that so?
With that, Kennedy pie-faces Rey, sending him stumbling back. Rey doesn’t back down though, showing his fighting spirit as he gets right back into the face of Kennedy.
Yeah ... that’s so.
Kennedy pie-faces Rey again, before smirking at the pissed off little man. Before Kennedy knows it, Rey charges at him, ducking under a panicking swing from Kennedy to hit the ropes, then come back and hit a HUGE running hurricanrana ... sending Kennedy down throat-first across the second rope! Rey looks around as the crowd pops big, before charging off to the opposite ropes and coming back --- 619 --- NO! KENNEDY NARROWLY ESCAPES, ROLLING UNDER THE BOTTOM ROPE! Retreating back up the ramp, Kennedy feels at his face, making sure he’s okay.
Mysterio climbs up to the second rope in the corner and looks down at Kennedy, telling him to get back in the ring if he has any guts. Kennedy however continues to retreat back up the ramp, as we head off to a break.
We come from the break to hear ...
*Some Bodies Gonna Get It*
The crowd gives some pretty damn decent heat as the man who will be challenging for the World Heavyweight Championship in just two short days, ‘The World’s Strongest Man’, Mark Henry
makes his way out, beating his chest and just making a whole lot of sound. Ignoring the taunts from the fans at ringside, Henry makes his way down to the ring looking as aggressive as ever before climbing up into the ring and beating his chest, water bouncing off.
Ever since returning almost a month ago, this man, ‘The World’s Strongest Man’ Mark Henry has been on a rampage, destroying everyone and everything in his way. In just two days he will challenge Batista for the World Heavyweight Championship in what should be an absolutely massive match, however, first here tonight he finds himself up against Shannon Moore in what Henry must be treating as a warm-up match for the Rumble.
And that leaves Shannon Moore in a very bad position. This Sunday Mark Henry is gonna’ wanna’ do anything and everything to hurt Batista, so Shannon Moore may become the proverbial crash-test dummy to see what works here tonight, if ya’ know what I mean.
The following contest is scheduled for one fall! Introducing first, from Silsbee, Texas, weighing 387 lbs, he is ‘The World’s Strongest Man’, Mark Henry!
Surprisingly, we now see that Mark Henry has a microphone, as he paces around the ring.
Batista! I know you’re sittin’ there backstage watchin’ this, so listen up and listen up good.
Ever since I made my return here to SmackDown! about a month ago, there’s been one place that I’ve had my target set. There’s been one place I’ve been aimin’ at, and there’s been one place that I’ve fired at, and this Sunday – this Sunday that all comes to a head ... this Sunday, I FINALLY
... finally get what I want. This Sunday, I finally get the World, Heavyweight, Championship.
Henry closes his eyes and takes in the moment as the crowd boos.
That’s right, Dave, I don’t get you ... I don’t get the ‘almighty’ Dave Batista ... no, I get the title. Y’see, you Dave, you seem to have been hit in the head one too many times. You’ve been under some kinda disillusion. Somewhere – somewhere along the lines there’s been a misunderstandin’. Y’see, you – you actually believed that this thing between you an’ me ... you believed that it was personal. You believed that all o’ this time, I’ve been comin’ after you for the sake of it, to prove that I’m the ‘bigger man’. Dave, lemme’ assure you of two things. Firstly, I KNOW
that I’m the bigger man. Secondly – an’ this is the important one – this thing ... this ain’t nothin’ personal. This stuff between you an’ me ... it’s just business, Dave. I mean, sure, I don’t like you, but I don’t hate you. What I hate – what I hate is the fact that YOU
walk around, masqueradin’ as the best wrestler in the company, as the World Heavyweight Champion when everyone knows that that person is ME!
You ain’t the best at nothin’ Dave, and you certainly ain’t the best wrestler in this company. You ain’t top dog ... you ain’t king of the SmackDown! jungle ... I AM
. An’ y’see, the fact – the fact that I don’t have the title to prove that ... it bugs me ... it annoys me ... it pisses, me, off. I hate all o’ that. But this Sunday – this Sunday I put that all to rest when I FINALLY
become the NEW
World ... Heavyweight ... Champion.
Henry pauses, grinning from ear to ear as the crowd again react with heat.
As of right here, right now, I am DONE
with playin’ games with you, Dave. I am done with toyin’ with you. I am now dead ... serious. I ain’t muckin’ around anymore. Y’see Dave, I – I have your career
... your livelihood
... and your life
... I have THEM ALL
in my hands this Sunday ... and IF
I have to end it ALL
– if I have to end it all to become the World Heavyweight Champion, then that is EXACTLY
what I’m gonna’ do! If I have to end it all to prove that I
should be the World Heavyweight Champion, then that is EXACTLY
what I’m gonna’ do.
Dave, the games are over ... now – now we’re playin’ for keeps.
*I’ll Do Anything*
The crowd gives a decent pop as Shannon Moore
jogs out onto the stage, fist pumped, looking reasonably excited. Slapping hands with fans at ringside, Moore makes his way to the ring swiftly, not wasting any time as he climbs up into the ring and poses for the fans.
Shannon Moore has been on quite a roll lately, picking up a win last week against one half of the WWE Tag Team Champions in Johnny Nitro. Tonight, however, brings about a whole new challenge, as from what we just heard, Mark Henry is done with the games and he’s headed straight for the World Heavyweight Champion. It’s not a good night to be Shannon Moore tonight, is it partner?
Hey, most people would trade places with Shannon Moore every day of the week, ‘cause the kid’s livin’ his dream. Tonight though, I don’t think anyone envies young Shannon. He’s gonna’ have to do a heck of a job if he wants to beat Henry tonight, let alone survive.
His opponent, from Raleigh, North Carolina, weighing 202 lbs, ‘The Prince of Punk’, Shannon Moore!
Match One ~ Mark Henry vs. Shannon Moore
Moore, obviously being the underdog here, has the crowd firmly behind him as he tries to go with a hit and run approach early, ducking away from Henry. Unfortunately, he only seems to grasp the hit part of hit and run fully, as he’s only able to land a few right hands before Henry shows his dominance by pushing Moore back into corner and begins to assert himself. Landing heavy strikes early, Henry wears Moore down before beginning to throw him around, showing how strong he is with a military press that he looks to execute on Moore with ease. Finally growing f...trated at not being able to put Moore away, Henry scoop slams Moore, then runs off to the ropes and leaves his feet, jumping up for an elbow, only for Moore to roll out of the way at the last moment, leaving Henry to c...h the mat with his girth. Thinking quick, Moore gets right back up to see a groggy Henry sitting up, prompting Moore to quickly dash off to the ropes and come back with a beautiful dropkick right into the jaw of Henry, sending him down. Staying on the offense, Moore stomps away on Henry for a bit, then takes it up a notch, hitting some leg drops before going for a cover and only getting two.
Despite this, Moore thinks he’s in a reasonably comfortable position as he kicks away on Henry while he gets up. Gaining a vertical base, Henry receives a dropkick immediately, though it’s unable to take him down. Two dropkicks later and Moore heads off to the ropes and nails a quite simply amazing spinning heel kick, knocking a groggy Henry back against the ropes. Thinking he’s got a real chance, Moore charges at Henry, only for his aspirations to be squashed in one foul swoop from Henry, as the big man comes out of nowhere with a burst of energy, simply running through Moore, sending him out of things. Finishing the job, Henry lifts Moore back up ... WORLD’S STRONGEST SLAM!
With the match done, Henry hooks the leg and gets the inevitable three.
Winner: Mark Henry via pinfall @ 4:38
*Some Bodies Gonna Get It*
Here is your winner, ‘The World’s Strongest Man’, Mark Henry!
Getting back to his feet, Henry has his hand raised by the referee, though he soon enough throws it down, knowing his job is not yet done. The finishing touches of course come for Henry at the Rumble.
Like always, Shannon Moore gave it his all, and in a surprising effort against ‘The World’s Strongest Man’, actually showed some remarkable fight, however in the end the inevitable occurred, Tazz.
You gotta’ respect Moore for that performance, but the fact is that he’s in there with the man who could well be World Heavyweight Champion after this Sunday. That’s a scary thought, Cole.
That it is, Tazz, and after what Mark Henry said before the match, it seems more likely than ever that come this Sunday, Mark Henry could be our new World Heavyweight Champion. However, moving on from that, last week on Friday Night SmackDown! we saw what I personally believe, was one of the most reprehensible attacks in the history of Friday Night SmackDown! when Kid Kash assaulted Juventud, prior to Juventud becoming the number one contender to the Cruiserweight Champion. Ladies and gentlemen, we’re going to take you back to last week, however, before we do, I will warn you that the following footage is very graphic, and if you have young children in the room you may want to remove them.
The video begins with a few quick highlights of Josh Matthews interviewing Kid Kash last week, Kash saying he respects both Jamie Noble and Juventud, saying he’d love to face either of them. We then cut to see Jamie Noble and Juventud enter, Tony Chimel saying the winner would face Kash for the Cruiserweight Championship at the Rumble in the background. After seeing Kash enter, signalling he just wants to watch, we see a few snippets of the fast paced action, finishing with Juventud hitting a Juvi Driver to pick up the victory. As Juvi celebrates, Kash enters the ring, Michael Cole questioning why. Kash, still pretending to have good intentions, extends his hand, Juvi eventually accepting as the two shake hands, only for Kash to pull Juventud in after he looked to turn and drill him with the gold. As the crowd boos (and Cole cries about how he was right about Kash), the champ looks down at Juvi, before dropping the belt, kicking Juventud in the temple, then going right into a Dead Level on top of the hardware, leaving Juventud looking completely out of it. Seeing a few replays of the kick/Dead Level combo complete with dramatic music, we see EMTs, Super Crazy, Psichosis and other backstage workers ...h out to tend to Juvi, with Kash just walking away coldly, looking back at the carnage with a smirk as the video ends.
Back live, we now see Cruiserweight Champion, Kid Kash with the gold over his shoulder, walking down a hallway. Kash stops, looks at a door labelled ‘General Manager’, and of course enters, where we seeSmackDown! General Manager, Theodore Long sitting at a desk.
Kid Kash, just the man I wanted to see.
Long has a very serious demeanour here, not his usual happy, fun loving self. Kash, apparently oblivious to the change of attitude from Teddy, approaches him looking rather happy with himself.
I’d wipe that grin of mah’ face right now if I were you.
Realising that’s probably a good idea, Kash does just that.
Now I’m sure you know why you’re here, so there’s no real reason to beat ‘round the bush. Last week, your actions were unacceptable. As a champion you are a leader of the locker-room, and last week, your actions were nothin’ short of despicable. For a week now, I’ve wracked mah’ brain, thinkin’ just how I should punish you. I considered strippin’ you of your Cruiserweight Title, but then I went back on that. I considered SUSPENDIN’
you, but that wouldn’t be fair on the rest of the cruiserweights; you’re the champ, after all, and after what you did, not only do they wanna’ get their hands on your belt, but they also wanna’ get their hands on YOU
. And y’know, Kash, that’s exactly where I got my idea from. I’m gonna’ lay this down for ya’, Kash: I ain’t gonna’ punish you. At least not directly. Y’see, the way I see things is that you’re now an outcast, and any time you’re jumped from behind, any time you’re attacked, I’m not responsible; you are. Now as far as the Royal Rumble goes, Juventud will not
be fit to compete ...
Kid Kash: (Smugly)
Which means, no defence for me, right? Good to see ya’, Teddy, but that’s all I needed to hear. I’ll see ya’ ‘round ...
Not so fast, champ. I said I wasn’t gonna’ directly gonna’ punish you, but your match at the Rumble – that’s right, you will be in action – well, you’re gonna’ get punished ... just not by me.
Instead, I’m gonna’ leave it up to the cruiserweights of SmackDown! to do the punishin’, because at the Royal Rumble, you, Kid Kash, will be defendin’ your Cruiserweight Championship ... against ALL
the cruiserweights of SmackDown! in a Cruiserweight Open!
Kid Kash: WHAT?
You can’t do that, that’s unfair! I’ll go to the Board of Directors, I’ll do anything! I ain’t defendin’ my belt against tall o’ them!
I think you’ll find I can
do that. And as far as the Board of Directors go, I’ve already had a meetin’ with them, and they actually liked – no, LOVED
the idea. So as far as I, and the Board of Directors are concerned, the match stands!
Kash looks at Long looking pissed off, almost like he’s going to bite back. Instead he thinks better of it, instead walking out of view as we see Teddy one last time before heading off to a break.
We come back from the break to see Shannon Moore with a trainer, presumably in the trainer’s room. Moore, sitting up on a bench, is getting a bag of ice handed to him by the trainer.
Just hold that up to your forehead for the next ten minutes and you should be alright.
The trainer then leaves Moore with the bag of ice and goes off into the next room, leaving Moore to nurse his head with the bag of ice. We don’t have to watch Moore just sitting there for too long though, as soon enough a voice is heard from out of view.
Aww, poor little Shannon.
MNM now walk into view, drawing some heat, with Melina being the one revealed to be talking. Flanked by her boys (who have the WWE Tag Team Titles hanging from their crotches), Melina seems rather confident.
What happened, Shannon? Did a big boy beat you up? Well that’s just too bad, isn’t it?
Melina smiles away while Mercury and Nitro sblack to themselves. Suddenly the trio stop smiling, with Melina snapping into a dead serious stare.
Shannon, last week you embarrassed us. Here on SmackDown! we are the top stars, we are the ‘A-Listers’ and we are the ones everybody wants to see. You? You’re just some freak reject. So while my boys are in the main event tonight, we’ve got ourselves a little match set up for next week. Y’see, once my boys have won the Rumble this Sunday, you’re our next little target. That’s why next week on SmackDown!, it’s going to be Mercury vs... you.
Small pop for the match.
We already went and got the match cleared with Teddy Long, so consider it as good as done. And as far as you embarrassing us again goes, well, let’s just say if you do, we’ll make you pay.
Going back to smiling, Melina now bends down and looks right into the eyes of Moore.
So make sure you rest up real good, Shannon, because t...t me when I say, (Turning serious again)
you’re going to need to.
Stepping back, Melina once again looks happy, rather than bitchy.
We now cut off elsewhere backstage, to see the beautiful Kristal Marshall standing by.
Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome my guest at this time, Finlay!
Some decent heat as Finlay walks into view, brandishing his signature shillelagh.
Finlay, you arrived here on SmackDown! just two weeks ago, and you’ve already made an impact, blasting Bobby Lashley with your shillelagh on your debut and attempting to do it again last week. Now both you and Lashley are entered in both the Royal Rumble Match and the Battle Royal main event tonight. Your thoughts on all of this?
Woman, ever since I was a boy, growin’ up on the mean streets of Belfast, Northern Ireland, all I’ve been lookin’ for is a fight. Whether it be on the streets or in a ring, I love to fight, and that is exactly why I came here to Friday Night SmackDown!. I came to hit, to punch, to kick, to throw and to fight anyone on the roster who was ready to fight. And if I’ve found that no one has been ready to fight ... well, (holding up his shillelagh)
I’ve just used me shillelagh and found me’-self a fight.
Finlay smiles his signature gap-toothed grin.
Lashley? He was just the lucky one who happened to find himself in the ring with me at the time. Y’see, between me an’ Lashley, it’s nothin’ personal ... I was just doin’ what I always do ... I was lookin’ for a fight. An’ like I said, it was nothin’ personal, but if he’s got a problem wit’ me, then that’s fine too, because I’ll be waitin’. I’ll be lookin’ for a fight tonight, and I’ll certainly be lookin’ for a fight this Sunday if Lashley’s ready. It’s all up to Lashley if he wants to take the plunge an’ go after me, because I’m not picky, I’ll take on anyone. I don’t care.
Finlay now points his shillelagh at the camera.
It’s your move, big man. Come after me, if ya’ have the guts.
Finlay smiles again, then walks off, with the camera following him, only for him to stop ... as he walks right into the big chest of Bobby Lashley! The big man stares Finlay down, the intensity burning a hole through the eyes of the Irishman, prompting him to take a step back, then go around the hulking figure. Lashley merely watches Finlay, his expression unchanging, the intensity everlasting. After seeing this, we cut back to ringside to hear ...
The crowd gives a pretty nice pop as the tandem of Paul London & Brian Kendrick
stomp out onto the top of the stage and nod at each other before sprinting down the ramp and sliding into the ring. Climbing up to the second rope in perpendicular corners, both London & Kendrick play it up to the crowd before showcasing their athleticism by backflipping off the second rope into the centre of the ring.
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to Friday Night SmackDown!, where right now we’re about to see six of the fastest men on the roster all involved in one match.
Cruiserweight action, exclusive to SmackDown!, Cole, and this one is set to be big. Two of the best tag teams goin’ ‘round right now on SmackDown!, with ALL
of these men set to challenge Kid Kash for the Cruiserweight Title this Sunday at the Rumble.
The following contest is a six man tag team match, and it is scheduled for one fall! Introducing first, weighing a combined weight of 387 lbs, the tag team of Paul London & Brian Kendrick!
The crowd gives a pretty lukewarm response for the aggressive Jamie Noble
as he makes his way out to the top of the ramp and raises his arms, before walking on down to the ring quickly, jumping up into it and slapping hands with his partners to indicate he’s on the same page as them.
One man I’d certainly be worried about this Sunday if I were Kid Kash would be Jamie Noble. He’s certainly one of, if not the, most aggressive cruiserweights we’ve ever seen on Friday Night SmackDown!.
That’s right, Cole. Noble’s just straight up smashmouth, and I love it.
Their partner, from Hannover, West Virginia, weighing 202 lbs, Jamie Noble!
*No Sleep ‘Till Brooklyn*
Another lukewarm response as the former Cruiserweight Champion Nunzio
makes his way out, playing it up to the crowd at the top of the ramp before quickly walking down it and waiting on the outside of the ring for his partners.
Nunzio and Juventud had a short rivalry last year in which Nunzio won the Cruiserweight Championship from Juvi, only for Juvi to capture it back. While the two of them aren’t best friends, they do respect one another, and that spells bad news for Kid Kash this Sunday.
Nunzio may be small, but believe me, I know the man well, he is a fighter and he’ll give Kash everything he’s got.
Their opponents, first, from Little Italy, New York City, weighing 170 lbs, Nunzio!
The crowd gives another nice pop for the sound of engines revving before The Mexicools, Super Crazy & Psichosis ride out onto the top of the stage in their Juan Deeres, yelling out in Spanish. The two men who will be challenging Kid Kash in just two days ride down the ring enthusiastically, continuing to talk to the crowd and one another, before circling around the ring at ringside in their lawnmowers and climbing up into the ring with their partner Nunzio, really playing it up to the fans as they do so.
And here are the two men that obviously want revenge against Kid Kash, following his attack on their buddy last week. Kash is certainly going to have a tough time this Sunday, especially when you know these two will be working together to do everything in their power to take it all away from Kash.
Super Crazy and Psichosis are exactly as their name suggests, and they will do damn near anything to Kash this Sunday, believe me, Cole.
His partners, weighing a combined weight of 405 lbs, Super Crazy and Psichosis, they are The Mexicools!
Match Two ~ Paul London, Brian Kendrick & Jamie Noble vs. The Mexicools & Nunzio
With six of the most exciting wrestlers on Friday Night SmackDown!, we look certain to get a captivating match, with the two men starting the action off in Paul London and Psichosis looking to deliver on that promise early, showcasing speed and agility in a showcase of chain wrestling, starting the match off with a bang. Getting the first slight advantage of the match, Paul London is able to jump off the second rope and land behind a charging Psichosis, before Psichosis doubles back after London, only for the former Cruiserweight Champion to take Psichosis down with an arm drag and lock the arm up, keeping hold of Psichosis. London then drags Psichosis across to his corner by the arm and makes the tag in to his partner Brian Kendrick, who climbs up to the top rope and comes down with a double axe handle across the arm of Psichosis. Kendrick keeps the focus on the arm going, controlling it for a few moments before tagging London back in, with London doing the same thing as Kendrick, nailing a double axe handle across the arm of Psichosis. The focus continues until London tags in Noble and calls for him to go for the same double team, only for Noble to come in and blast Psichosis with a straight up right hand. Noble continues his smashmouth offense for a short while, using kicks, punches, and a scoop slam/elbow drop combination to not only control Psichosis, but garner a two count.
He then looks to follow up on that as he Irish whips Psichosis into the corner and follows him right in, only for Psichosis to grab onto the top rope and jump right over him, before scooting back and tagging in Super Crazy. Noble comes charging at Psichosis before he can climb out of harm’s way, however Psichosis is up to the task as he boots Noble in the midsection, with his partner now joining him in the ring as The Mexicools push Noble against the ropes and send him off with a double Irish whip, before scoring with a double Japanese arm drag on the rebound, taking Noble down for a two count. From here the pace of the match slows down for the moment, with The Mexicools & Nunzio combining surprisingly well to keep Jamie Noble in the ring as the isolated man until Noble begins to fight back right before the commercial break, shocking Super Crazy with some right hands, sending him staggering back to the ropes. Noble sees an opening and charges at Super Crazy, looking to launch some kind of attack, only for Crazy to avoid the attack by ducking down and pulling the top rope with him, sending Noble over the top and out to the floor. Crazy then waits as Noble slowly pulls himself up, before grabbing the top rope and jumping over the top ... LOOKING FOR A PLANCHA --- WHICH NOBLE DODGES BY SLIDING BACK INTO THE RING!
Super Crazy lands on his feet and turns around, although it’s all too slowly as Noble has already charged across the ring and bounced off the opposite ropes ... BEFORE COMING BACK WITH A HUGE SUICIDE DIVE THAT TAKES SUPER CRAZY DOWN!
With both men down on the outside, we head off to a break.
Returning from the break, we now see that Noble’s team has kept the momentum going, as Brian Kendrick is now working Super Crazy over with some forearm shots in the corner. He then Irish whips Super Crazy off into the corner, before following Crazy in and hitting a big corner dropkick, sending Super Crazy down and gaining a two count for Kendrick. From there Kendrick drags Super Crazy across to the corner and tags in Paul London, before the duo send Super Crazy off with a double Irish whip, before Kendrick catches Crazy with a drop toe hold on the rebound and London comes off the ropes to nail a big low dropkick to the side of Crazy’s head, getting another two count. After working Super Crazy over with some forearms London pushes him back into the corner again and this time tags in Jamie Noble, who comes in and continues on with the striking offense, hitting some big right hands in the corner, before charging in and hitting a big elbow in the corner, leaving Super Crazy to stagger out into the waiting arms of Noble, who takes him over with a snap suplex for yet another two count. Noble immediately looks up with a look of f...tration, before going right back after Crazy and locking in a dragon sleeper, looking to wear The Mexicool down. After some encouragement from his teammates on the apron, the crowd begins to rally behind Super Crazy, clapping him on, bringing some energy into him and giving him the fight to get back to his feet. Slowly, Crazy is able to turn around the hold, turning it into a regular front face lock, before hitting some left and right body shots, causing Noble some discomfort, before charging him back into the corner, driving the spine of Noble into the turnbuckle. Noble fights back, clubbing Crazy’s back to wear him down, before turning the tables and pushing Super Crazy into the corner, then sending him off to the opposite corner with an Irish whip. However, Crazy has other ideas, as instead of going into the turnbuckle he elects to jump up to the second rope and come back with a turning cross body block ... which connects, sending both men down!
With both men down hurting, the crowd again begins to clap, encouraging them to crawl to their corners and look to make tags to one of their partners. Slowly they do just that, with Noble tagging in Paul London, while Super Crazy tags Psichosis. London gets into the ring first and charges across the ring at Psichosis before he can enter the ring, only for Psichosis to block a right hand attempt from London and hit one of his own, before springboarding off the top rope and hitting a big cross body block on London, rolling off him and knocking Kendrick off the apron with a right hand. Psichosis continues to keep the pace up, scoring with some spin kicks and dropkicks until he turns into a running single leg dropkick from Jamie Noble. Noble then tries to get right back to his feet ... only for Nunzio to come flying through the air --- SICILLIAN SLICE!
Nunzio gets back to his feet, then turns right into a kick to the midsection from Kendrick ... three quarter face lock --- SLICED BREAD #2 CONNECTS!
Kendrick gets back to his feet and sees Super Crazy charging at him, giving him enough time to duck under the clothesline attempt from Crazy and run over to the corner, going up to the second rope. London meanwhile kicks a surprised Crazy in the midsection, having being behind Kendrick, then grabs him in a front face lock --- BEFORE KENDRICK JUMPS OFF THE TOP ROPE AND HITS A DOUBLE STOMP TO THE BACK OF SUPER CRAZY, MOVING STRAIGHT INTO A SNAP DDT FROM LONDON!
London gets up and shows his excitement, playing it up to the crowd, while Kendrick sees Nunzio pulling himself up with the ropes, running across and taking him over the top rope with a cross body block that sends both men over the top rope and down to the floor.
This move inadvertently distracts London, who is then grabbed from behind in an inverted face lock from behind by Psichosis, then lifted up ... although London manages to float over and land behind Psichosis, then grab him in a waistlock, run him into the ropes and roll through into a cover ... and get a quick three count!
Winners: Paul London, Brian Kendrick & Jamie Noble via pinfall @ 9:22
Here are your winners, Paul London, Brian Kendrick & Jamie Noble!
London quickly gets back to his feet and is soon joined in the ring by his partners, while Super Crazy & Nunzio join Psichosis in the corner, standing over him as he crouches down. Slowly all three men get up and head towards London, Kendrick & Noble in the centre of the ring ... and then shake hands with them? The six men all stand together in the middle of the ring together, with the camera cutting away backstage for a moment to show Cruiserweight Champion, Kid Kash watching six of the men who will be gunning for him Sunday on a monitor, shaking his head. He soon turns and puts his tail between his legs though as he runs for his life because ALL of the cruiserweights have climbed for the ring and HEADED STRAIGHT FOR HIM!
Kid Kash, running for his life right there! Kash can run all he wants now, but this Sunday he’ll have to climb in the ring with ALL of those men if he wants to retain his title.
And Kash certainly isn’t happy about that, as we saw earlier tonight.
Kash made his own bed, and now he’s gotta’ sleep in it. All of these six men will be wanting to get their hands on Kash, and to be honest, I can’t wait to see ‘em do it.
Hey, Cole, I know what ya’ mean, but you gotta’ at least try to stay objective here!
We return from the break to see the outside of the Bi-Lo Center.
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to Friday Night SmackDown! where we are just two short days away from the Royal Rumble, and what a show we’ve got left with our own Royal Rumble preview yet to come. Ten of SmackDown!’s superstars, all of whom will be competing in the Royal Rumble this Sunday, competing in an over the top rope battle royal to tune up for this Sunday, as well as the World Heavyweight Champion Batista taking on Orlando Jordan in singles action!
We now cut away to see Josh Matthews standing by backstage.
Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome my guest at this time, the protégé of Booker T, Orlando Jordan!
OJ gets some decent heat as he walks into view.
Orlando, just a week ago we learnt you had joined forces with Booker. This week you already have a chance to prove yourself worthy of being Booker’s protégé as you go one-on-one with the World Heavyweight Champion, Batista tonight. Your thoughts?
First of all, Josh, lemme’ make it clear that I don’t have to prove myself as worthy to Booker. Booker selected me over anyone in the SmackDown! locker-room to be his personal protégé because he saw the potential in my skills and my hunger and my eyes and deemed me worthy. Now, with that said, tonight is a big match for me, and y’know, it’s a big match for Batista too. Y’see, he’s not in there with just any man ... nah, Batista is in the ring tonight with the single greatest prodigy here on Friday Night SmackDown!. He’s in the ring with the future of Friday nights, and y’know, he’s not even thinkin’ about that. He’s not even thinkin’ about the fact that tonight, he could find himself knocked out.
Y’see, Mark Henry, he’s in Batista’s head. Batista’s scared of Henry and what he’s gonna’ do to him this Sunday at the Royal Rumble ... and so he should be after what Henry said earlier tonight. Heck, I might even be a tiny bit scared if Henry had said that to me too. But y’see, before Batista has to deal with Mark Henry, he has to deal with ME!
Jordan pauses, looking right at the camera.
Dave, I want you to listen up and listen up good. Tonight, I go in with nothin’ to lose. You? You go into a match y’need to win. People think I need to prove myself? Big man, it’s the other way ‘round. And lemme’ tell ya’, I’m not goin’ to be a pushover. Those days ... those days are over for me. I ain’t no pushover now, and I ain’t no loser. Tonight, I show why Booker chose me as his protégé and why I
am the future of Friday Night SmackDown!. Tonight, Batista, you’ve got a lot to prove. I’m not gonna’ prove anything. I’m just gonna’ be backin’ up what everybody already knows, and that is that I am destined for greatness. Then, when I’m done with you tonight, who knows, maybe I’ll see you again at WrestleMania. All I know is that both tonight and in just two days time, it’s OJ’s time to shine. Y’all gonna’ see there’s a reason they call me ‘The Diamond in the Rough’.
OJ shows us those pearly whites before walking off as we cut back to ringside to hear ...
The crowd reacts in extremely negative action as the sound of bells ringing echoes throughout the arena, with the familiar limousine soon joining the occupants of the Bi-Lo Center. The limo drives out to midway up the ramp before stopping, the chauffeur climbing immediately out and opening the back door for Jillian Hall
and John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield
to climb out. Jillian, carrying her clipboard, and JBL, wearing an expensive looking suit and his cowboy hat, walk down to the ring after climbing from the limo, before getting up into it and grabbing a microphone each, as both the crowd reaction and music begin to die down.
John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield:
Dontcha’ just love it when a plan comes together?
Smiling, Layfield looks out at the crowd cockily, receiving a fair amount of heat.
John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield:
Haha, Teddy Long, last week – last week, Teddy Long, you thought you had me beat. Last week, you actually thought that by puttin’ me in the ring with The Boogeyman, that you had me beat. Teddy, for two years now, you’ve been goin’ after me, tryin’ time and time again to break me, but you just can’t do it, can ya’ Teddy? You just can’t beat me. Y’see, for those of you who missed it, two weeks ago – two weeks ago, Teddy Long, he gave me an ultimatum. He said that either I wrestle – and beat – The Boogeyman, or else I forfeit any chance of competing in the Royal Rumble and goin’ on to take my rightful spot, headlinin’ WrestleMania 22. And while Teddy thought the match between me and Boogeyman would end in a massacre of worms, I’ll be damned if I didn’t come through smellin’ like salt ... as for Boogeyman ... well, he needed smellin’ salts just to wake back up.
Layfield smirks away, while the crowd gives off some heat.
John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield:
Ya’ haven’t learnt, have ya’ Teddy? Ever since you took over SmackDown! two years ago, you have been tryin’ to screw me at every turn. You were the reason that the longest reign in SmackDown! history, that the greatest reign in SmackDown! history ended unceremoniously when I was SCREWED
out of my title at WrestleMania 21 by that hooligan, John Cena.
Pop for the mention of Cena.
John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield:
You, Teddy Long, you were the reason that last year, your buddy Batista, somehow defied fate and managed to SCREW
me out of becomin’ World Heavyweight Champion. And Teddy, you again, you were the reason that my Cabinet, that my Cabinet was blown off the face of the earth when you drafted my Secretaries of Defence across to Monday Night RAW. Teddy, at every turn, you’ve been there, screwin’ me out of takin’ back my rightful spot on top of the SmackDown! kingdom. You’ve been screwin’ the Gods; you’ve been screwin’ a WRESTLING ... GOD!
John ‘Bradshaw Layfield:
And yet, despite all of that, here I stand, still better than not just all of these morons in the crowd ...
John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield:
But also all of the guys in the back who WISH
that they were good enough to tie my BOOTLACES
. And better than all, still, I stand here, through all obscurity on my home, on the show that I took to new heights, the ‘A show’, MY SHOW
, Friday, Night, SmackDown!. Teddy, as hard as you try, as much as ya’ want to ... you just, can’t, break me. Teddy Long, what you have yet to realise is that you don’t mess with greatness. What you have yet to learn is that when you play with fire you get burned, and boy do I smell like smoke for a reason. And now – now, Teddy, you got burned better than ever before.
Layfield comes out with the toothy grin as the crowd continue to shower him with heat, with only Jillian beside him applauding him.
John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield:
Y’see, Teddy, last week when you put me in the ring you were tryin’ to screw me, but what you did ... haha, what you did was the complete opposite. What you did, Teddy, was pull the trigger on your own worst nightmare ... what you did, Teddy, was pull the trigger on the rebirth of ... a DYNASTY
. Y’see, I mentioned earlier about how you tried to screw over my Cabinet by breakin’ us apart, but what you’ve done now Teddy is put a whole new one together. I’m not gonna’ lie, Teddy, goin’ in to last week, I was worried about what that worm eating FREAK
was gonna’ do to me, but y’see, that’s when Jillian over here (motioning to Jillian)
that’s when she pulled out the ace in the hole. That’s when she pulled a man out of obscurity who has all of the talent in the world, and boy does he know how to make a good deal. Jillian, why don’t you introduce to everyone just who it is that you found?
With pleasure, JBL. Ladies and gentlemen, I bring to you the man – no, the prodigy who has brought about the rebirth of the greatest stable in professional wrestling history in The Cabinet. He is the new human suplex machine, ‘The Hired Gun’, Brent Albright!
*Blood, Sugar, Sex, Magick*
The crowd gives off some small heat as the man who attacked The Boogeyman last week, Brent Albright
, walks out to the top of the ramp wearing a nice shirt to go along with suit pants, as well as a beanie, oddly enough. Smirking confidently, Albright pauses to take it all in, before marching down to the ring swiftly and climbing up into it to join JBL and Jillian, whom he shakes hands with on his way to grabbing a microphone of his own.
Some decent heat as Albright nods.
Thank you, JBL and thank you, Jillian.
Albright nods to both before turning to the crowd.
And to all o’ you, allow me to formally introduce myself ... I am Brent ... Albright.
Albright smiles as the crowd boos, seemingly taking Albright off guard.
Boo me all ya’ want, but the fact of the matter is that each and every one of you people are jealous that I – not you – but I am the one standin’ in the ring, rubbin’ shoulders with the greats like JBL.
The crowd again boos, with Albright expecting it this time.
But y’know, two weeks ago, dare I say it, but I was actually like all of you pigs in the audience. Two weeks ago, I had no idea that I’d be standin’ here. But the fact of the matter is that unlike any of you people, I am a winner. I am a trendsetter and I am someone who succeeds – no, excels in not just the area in which not just the area that I specialise, but in life. That’s why two weeks ago, my old friend Jillian over here, she rang me and she told me her and JBL, they had a lil’ problem that they needed taking care of. And last week – last week that’s exactly what I did. I took care of their little problem ... I took care ... of business
, and believe me when I say The Boogeyman was just that ... business
Albright pauses, letting the last line sink in.
And y’see, that’s why me and JBL, that’s why we match up so well: we’re both smart businessmen. But while JBL takes care of his business in New York with the stock exchange, I – I’m a little different. My business isn’t about things like investments, no ... my business is shootin’ down those little annoyances that people just can’t shake. The Boogeyman?
Albright smirks and pauses, before holding his hand up in a gun position.
Brent Albright: Bang.
Albright blows the ‘smoke’ from his ‘gun’, causing the crowd to react with some heat.
Last week, what I did to The Boogeyman, for me, it was nothing personal. It was nothing to do with me and him at all ... it was just ... business
. For years, in this business, I’ve done exactly that ... I’ve taken care of business, and because of that, I built up my own little reputation as ‘The Hired Gun’. Well now, now that little moniker, it isn’t exactly accurate any more. Y’see, now – now I’m not just ‘The Hired Gun’. No, because as I said before, JBL’s a smart businessman just like me, and just like he does on the stock market, he’s made himself the greatest investment he’s ever made. Forget JBL becoming a self-made millionaire, because believe me when I say that this investment, it doesn’t just top that, but it TOWERS
over that. Why is that? Because the name of JBL’s investment is JBL’s very own personal ‘Hired Gun’ ... Brent, Albright.
Albright smirks to heat again.
And now that JBL has me and The Cabinet, it’s back up and running, believe me when I say that if anyone – and I mean anyone – has even a little problem with JBL, you are now officially a sitting, duck, waiting to be shot down, just like The Boogeyman.
Albright smirks again, as JBL and Jillian applaud him in the background. The sound of the crowd booing is initially heard, however that is soon drowned out by ...
*I’m The Boogeyman*
The crowd pops big as smoke begins to cover the top of the ramp and the lights dim to a dark red. The Cabinet brace themselves in the ring, looking to the top of the ramp in wait for their foe, however, after awhile it becomes apparent no one is coming out, causing The Cabinet to blow a collective sigh of a relief. However, that sigh soon turns into a gasp of horror, as the trio turn around to see The Boogeyman
up on the apron behind him ... ALREADY HOLDING A HANDFUL OF WORMS! JBL and Jillian immediately hightail it, sliding from the ring ... although Brent Albright stands his ground and even DARES The Boogeyman to climb into the ring with him. Soon enough The Boogeyman does exactly that, climbing into the ring ... only for Albright to RUN FOR HIS LIFE!
As The Cabinet joins up at the foot of the ramp, The Boogeyman dances around the ring, holding his signature stick which is emitting its usual red smog, along with his hand of worms which he then shoves down his gullet, much to the disgust of The Cabinet at ringside. The trio continue to retreat up the ramp, leaving The Boogeyman to enjoy his slivering snack, while we head off to a commercial break.
We return from the break to see Josh Matthews standing by in the backstage area.
Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome my guest at this time, Matt Hardy!
The crowd gives a very nice pop as Matt Hardy walks into view, wearing a ‘V1’ singlet.
Matt, I know you’re set for competition both in tonight’s main event and this Sunday at the Royal Rumble, but first I wanted to ask you what you thought about what Rey Mysterio said earlier, calling you the future of Friday Night SmackDown! at the beginning of the show.
Y’know Josh, I did, I did hear that. I was in my locker-room, gettin’ my gear on, and I heard exactly what Rey said. What do I have to say to that? Well, what can I say? I mean ... wow ... wow. Y’know, for someone – for someone like Rey Mysterio to call you the future of Friday Night SmackDown!, the future of the WWE, and the reason – the reason that he loves to wrestle ... wow. I mean, this is Rey Mysterio, a guy in the 1990s, who – who revolutionised professional wrestling in America as we know it. He brought about the cruiserweight sensation, and he put lucha libre on the map here in America, so for a guy like that to say that, about a guy like me, a guy who just tries to do his best week in, week out to entertain the fans ... wow. And you just know, you just know that Rey means it, because he’s like that. He doesn’t talk crap, he doesn’t bullshit you, no ... what Rey says, he means, so for Rey to say that about me ... man, is that ever a compliment. But y’know, even though that’s a great, great compliment to hear, I can’t just be happy with that, can I now? I can’t just settle for bein’ someone with potential to good, with potential to be great.
Hardy shakes his head, pausing as he does so.
No, y’see Josh, I need to continue to grow, I need to continue to improve. I need to take these comments from Rey, and I need to use them as motivation. I need to use them as motivation to continue to get better, to continue to improve and to continue to rise up the ladder here on SmackSown!. Y’see this roster, Josh? It is FULL of hungry superstars, all of who will pounce if I show the slightest sign of weakness. So after hearin’ this from Rey, do you think I’m gonna’ take it easy? Do you think I’m gonna’ take my foot off the pedal? No. I am gonna’ continue to get better, I’m gonna’ continue to improve, and I am gonna’ continue on in my quest to one day become the World, Heavyweight, Champion.
Hardy pauses for a moment, seemingly digesting it all, prompting Josh to come out with his second question.
Well that brings me to my next question, as I was wondering if I could get your thoughts on not just tonight’s over the top rope battle royal, but also the match it’s giving a preview for this Sunday, the Royal Rumble Match, all of which you’re competing in, and if you can win the Rumble, you will take a big step to getting that World Heavyweight Title match that you desire.
Y’know, this Sunday – this Sunday is big. I know – I know that A LOT
of people say this many, many times throughout their career, but this Sunday could quite possibly be the BIGGEST
night, the biggest match in my ENTIRE
career. Y’see, for months now, since comin’ to Friday Night SmackDown!, I’ve been chippin’ away, I’ve been doin’ the best that I can to make an impact here on Friday Night SmackDown!. I’ve had some wins, and I’ve had some losses, but since I’ve come here to SmackDown!, I think I’ve become better than I have EVER
been, and this Sunday ... this Sunday is the chance for me to make it all count. This Sunday is the chance for me to capitalise, and do what I’ve dreamt I’ve doin’ since I was just a little boy growin’ up in Cameron, North Carolina, and that is to win the Royal Rumble and go on to the main event of WrestleMania.
Hardy pauses, smiling away as he thinks about it.
Y’see, main eventin’ WrestleMania, that – that has been my dream for twenty-five years now, and this year, 2006, is the year to make it count. This is the year, this is the weekend, this is the night right now, Josh ... I can feel it in the air. This is the night that Matt Hardy says that he has arrived. Y’see, tonight – tonight is gonna’ be a preview of what you can expect this Sunday, and what you can expect to see is Matt Hardy standin’ tall at the end, because as long as there is a dream in my mind and a pulse in my body, I WILL NOT
be thrown over the top rope, I WILL NOT
be beaten and I WILL NOT
be broken. To the nine other guys tonight and the twenty-nine this Sunday, to eliminate me, you’re not just gonna’ have beat me, you’re not just gonna’ have to break me, but you’re gonna’ have to damn near KILL
me and throw my lifeless body over the top rope. And while, while some o’ you may just think you can do that, think again, because believe me when I say that I will ... not ... die!
Hardy smiles, before exiting stage right as we cut back into the arena to hear ...
The crowd gives some decent heat as Paul Burchill & William Regal, The Bluebloods make their way out to the ring, ignoring the fans at ringside as they briskly walk down the ramp before climbing up into the ring, where Regal grabs a microphone.
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to Friday Night SmackDown!, where still to come we have the World Heavyweight Champion, ‘The Animal’ Batista taking on Orlando Jordan, as well as a preview for the Royal Rumble with a ten man over the top rope battle royal. However, before all of that we have two of your favourites set for action right now, Tazz.
No kiddin’ these two are two of my favourites. Both William Regal & Paul Burchill are straight up nasty, and boy does that make ‘em fun to watch in the ring. Before that though, it looks like Regal has somethin’ to say, so listen up, Cole.
The music of The Bluebloods now dies down as the duo stand in the middle of the ring, awaiting their cue.
Ahem. Before Paul & I dismantle these two miserable toerags (motioning to the two jobbers at ringside)
, I have something which I wish to bring up. You see, despite Paul & I being not just the most deadly tandem in all of the WWE, Theodore Long does not seem to think that we are worthy of competing in the over the top rope battle royal main event later tonight, even though we punched our very own tickets to the Rumble weeks ago. So for all of you who are watching in the back, let this serve as your warning. While we will not be able to personally make an impression upon you later tonight, this right here will be OUR
little preview of what you can expect come this Sunday. So watch carefully, and learn how REAL
wrestlers take care of their business.
Regal now disposes of the mic as the two jobbers climb up onto the apron.
Match Three ~ The Bluebloods vs. Chad Collyer & Ace Steel
While Collyer is well versed in European wrestling and would actually provide some pretty good entertainment with either of The Bluebloods should he be given the chance, this is neither the time, nor the place as The Bluebloods run straight through both Collyer and Steel, allowing Collyer to make the tag near the end of the match just so they can simultaneously beat down both jobbers. The end of the match comes when Regal throws Collyer from the ring and hits a big running knee on Steel, before tagging Burchill in and allowing him to nail the vicious Curb Stomp, gaining a three count.
Winners: The Bluebloods via pinfall @ 2:08
Here are your winners, The Bluebloods!
The Bluebloods immediately have their hand raised by the referee following their victory, with Regal especially smirking, knowing he and his buddy have sent a message.
The Bluebloods, impressive as ever there, Tazz, although will this form translate to a good showing in the Royal Rumble, and can either of these two men win it?
Of course they can win it, Cole. The Rumble is a brawl, and when ya’ think brawlers, ya’ think The Bluebloods. Regal & Burchill will be in there in their element, and I actually believe that they are two of the favourites headin’ into this Sunday.
We now cut off backstage to see Orlando Jordan walking down a corridor, being flanked by United States Champion, Booker T, and Booker’s lovely wife, Sharmell.
Well two more men who will be in action come this Sunday are Orlando Jordan, and the World Heavyweight Champion, Batista. But, before then the two face one another, and that match is next.
Following those words from Cole, we head off to yet another break.
We return from the commercial to see Michael Cole and Tazz sitting at ringside.
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to Friday Night SmackDown!, where momentarily we will see Orlando Jordan going one-on-one with the World Heavyweight Champion, Batista. However, before then, Tazz let’s talk about this Sunday and first of all, the man who will be in action next, ‘The Animal’ Batista, who this Sunday defends his World Heavyweight Champion against ‘The World’s Strongest Man’, Mark Henry.
Cole, I honestly believe that Batista is in for his toughest challenge yet in ‘The World’s Strongest Man’. I mean, you heard Henry earlier, and boy, you better believe that he is primed for this match. Henry’s been showin’ his strength for weeks now, and now that he’s not muckin’ ‘round anymore, I dunno’, Batista’s time may have come this Sunday.
RAW also has a world title match, as the new WWE Champion, Edge makes his second ever defence of the title against the man who some say he stole the title from, in John Cena. Cena’s been gunning for Edge ever since Edge cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase three weeks ago, but the question is, can Cena win back the gold which he never lost in a fair fight?
I, for one, believe that Edge has copped a lotta’ unneeded criticism since he cashed in Money in the Bank, myself. I mean, Edge earned the opportunity to cash in that briefcase ANY TIME he wanted when he won it back at WrestleMania 21. Is he good enough to beat Cena when Cena’s at his best? I dunno’, but what I do know is that Edge certainly didn’t steal the title three weeks ago.
Also on RAW, Women’s Champion Trish Stratus defends her title against long-time foe, Victoria. These two have had problems dating back to 2002, however Stratus’ focus must surely be a problem since her two best friends, Ashley and Mickie James can’t seem to keep their hands off one another. With Stratus somewhat distracted, can Victoria take advantage?
Victoria’s had Stratus’ number for a number of years now, Cole. If Stratus isn’t careful, she could find herself without that title after this Sunday. She needs to block out all the distractions and concentrate solely on her match with Victoria if she wants to retain the gold.
Back here on SmackDown!, Cruiserweight Champion Kid Kash was ORIGINALLY scheduled to defend his title against rival Juventud, however after his heinous attack on Juvi’ last week, that match WON’T be taking place. However, as we learnt earlier tonight, SmackDown! General Manager has made sure that there will be a Cruiserweight Title match at the Rumble, and what a match it will be as Kid Kash doesn’t just defend his title against one man, nor two men, but rather the WHOLE of the cruiserweight division! It is the Cruiserweight Open, and this Sunday it might just mean the end of the reign of Kid Kash.
Y’know, for a long time I was friends with Kid Kash, but even I’ve gotta’ say that Kash deserved this. After what he did to Juventud last week, Kash had this comin’, and if he loses the gold this Sunday, then good riddance is all I have to say.
And then there’s the big one: thirty men, thirty dreams, one realisation! Last year that realisation was that of our current World Heavyweight Champion, Batista, but who will it be this year? Fifteen men from RAW, fifteen men from SmackDown!, one man to stand victorious, headed to a main event spot at WrestleMania!
I dunno’, Cole, but I hope it’s a SmackDown! superstars. You’ve gotta’ feel we have the inside runnin’. I mean, The Bluebloods, Matt Hardy, Bobby Lashley, JBL, Randy Orton, Chris Benoit, Finlay ... one o’ these men has gotta’ be the one to win it all!
Well we’ll find out this Sunday, however before then ...
*Can You Dig It, Sucka?*
The crowd reacts with some pretty decent heat as Orlando Jordan makes his way out, flanked with his mentor on crutches, the United States Champion, Booker T, and Booker’s lovely wife, Sharmell. The trio march halfway down the ramp, before pausing so that Booker can hold his gold aloft while Jordan raises his arms, triggering Booker’s usual pyro to go off. The three then continue their way down the ramp to the ring, Booker hobbling up into it with assistance from Sharmell while OJ poses on the second rope in the corner.
This man Orlando Jordan is another to add to your list of SmackDown! hopefuls this Sunday, Tazz, however, before then he faces his toughest test to date as he goes one-on-one with the World Heavyweight Champion, ‘The Animal’ Batista.
No doubt about it, if Orlando Jordan can put in an impressive effort here against Batista he may just get some guys in the back to sit up and take notice before this Sunday. It’s not gonna’ be easy, but if our United States Champion Booker T has faith in Orlando, then hey, so do I!
The following contest is scheduled for one fall! Introducing first, from Miami, Florida, weighing 255 lbs, Orlando Jordan!
Jordan bounces on the spot and waits in anticipations with the rest of the crowd before ...
*I Walk Alone*
The crowd EXPLODES into a phenomenal reaction as soon as the music hits, with the cheer only becoming louder once the World Heavyweight Champion, Batista steps out onto the stage for the first time tonight. Playing it up to the crowd, Batista is clearly loving it, as he walks around before stopping at the top of the ramp and setting off his pyro which almost manages to drown the sound of the crowd out. With the pyro having stopped Batista smiles and points at the ring, telling OJ he’s toast as he walks down the ramp, before quickly making his way up the steps and climbing into the ring, leaving OJ and co to vacate. Climbing up onto the second rope in the corner, Batista unstraps the gold from around his waist and raises it high into the air, getting a very big pop before again pointing down at Jordan.
Batista looks happy and full of confidence tonight, however, this Sunday Tazz, Batista faces what you said was his ‘biggest test yet’, as he goes one-on-one with ‘The World’s Strongest Man’, Mark Henry, with Batista’s World Heavyweight Title on the line.
And y’know, Cole, I stand by those comments. Batista is in for the fight of his life this Sunday, and if he retains his title, you know that he’s earned it. However, after what Mark Henry said earlier tonight, I wouldn’t be plannin’ on doin’ any celebrating if I were Batista.
His opponent, from Washington D.C, weighing 295 lbs, he is the World Heavyweight Champion, ‘The Animal’ Batista!
Match Four ~ Orlando Jordan w/ United States Champion Booker T & Sharmell vs. World Heavyweight Champion Batista
Batista’s greatest challenge may be this Sunday, however Orlando Jordan’s was right here and right now, as he faced ‘The Animal’ Batista. Full of confidence, ‘The Animal’ flexed his muscles and smiled, while OJ, who seemed full of confidence earlier, was dead serious as the two men prepared to engage in battle. Slowly moving together, the two locked up for the first time in the match to predictable results, as Batista pushed Jordan back into the corner with EASE, showing his strength and power early. After allowing for a clean break, the two moved into a second lockup, with the same result coming about before happening YET AGAIN a third time. After coming out of the corner Jordan smiles and looks to lockup for a fourth time ... only to cheap shot Batista with a knee lift to the midsection. Jordan hits a second knee lift, then hits some right hands which stun Batista before running off to the ropes and bouncing back to be ran through by Batista with a big shoulder block. Jordan’s eyes almost pop out of his head as he looks up at ‘Tista, before scurrying out to the apron as Batista comes after him. Jordan quickly climbs to his feet and goes for a right hand, only for Batista to catch it, shake his head then THROW Jordan back into the ring, sending him down hard. Batista then manhandles Jordan back into the corner and hits shoulder th...t after shoulder th...t until the referee forces the break, at which point Batista sends Jordan into the opposite corner with an Irish whip. Before he can follow up Booker distracts Batista, shouting out to him and drawing his ire. Batista then turns back to the action and charges across at Jordan, only for Sharmell to help him from harm’s way, leaving the big man to crash into the turnbuckle chest-first. Jordan meanwhile bounces off the opposite ropes, then meets a turning Batista with a big STO, taking the larger man down to the mat.
Hardly believing his luck, Jordan takes awhile to make the counter off that move and get a two count, before going to work on Batista. Jordan’s offence is mostly simple kicks, punches or choking, with assistance from the outside coming in the form of Sharmell while Jordan chokes away at Batista, sometimes even with assistance from Booker from the outside, who even scores with a right hand on Batista when draped across the ropes, sending him falling back into the middle of the ring. Jordan starts to get f...trated at being unable to put ‘The Animal’ away though and starts to get more aggressive, leading Batista to retaliate with some rights of his own. Jordan comes back with a thumb to the eye though, before pushing Batista back against the ropes and sending him off with an Irish whip, only for Batista to duck the clothesline on the rebound, THEN COME BACK WITH A HUGE SPEAR!
After both men struggle back to their feet the match is all Batista’s as he runs through his arsenal, hitting corner clotheslines, sidewalk slams, back body drops, a delayed vertical suplex, a big spinebuster before knocking Booker T off the apron with a big right hand ... THEN SCORING WITH THE BATISTA BOMB ON JORDAN!
The three count is of course academic from there for ‘Tista, putting away a spirited Jordan in an impressive manner.
Winner: Batista via pinfall @ 5:02
*I Walk Alone*
Here is your winner, the World Heavyweight Champion, Batista!
Batista takes little time to celebrate after the match, having his hand raised by the referee for a brief moment before going over to the corner and receiving a microphone, triggering his music to cut out.
Batista: (Breathing heavily)
Y’know, earlier – earlier I was sitting backstage, and I actually managed to catch some of the rubbish that Mark Henry spewed earlier. So just like you said earlier, Mark, I know you’re listening to this, so I want you to listen up and listen up good.
Pausing for a moment, Batista takes a moment to recompose himself.
Now Mark, I did as you said, and I listened to what you had to say, and to be perfectly honest, while you thought you were getting some sort of psychological advantage, believe me when I say that it was NOTHING
that I haven’t heard before. Y’see, I – I have held THIS
belt for going on almost ten months now, and in that time you don’t think I’ve heard that the target of someone’s attack was the belt? You don’t think people haven’t just come after me for my title? Mark, Mark, Mark ... before you said that, I actually believed you were somethin’ different, but now – now I see you’re no different to the rest. Sure, you’re a bit bigger, stronger, more powerful, but ultimately Mark, you’re no better than ANYONE
who has laid claim to MY
belt, and in the end, they have ALL
fallen before me. Mark ... you’re no different. In the end, just like all before you, you WILL
fall, you will FAIL
, and I will REMAIN
World Heavyweight Champion! Oh yeah!
Oh and Mark – Mark, I almost forgot ... I’m glad that the games are over. I’m glad we’re playing for keeps Mark, because you may think – you may think that you can take my career, along with my title, Mark, but this Sunday, you’ll find out who the REAL
king of the jungle is.
Batista smiles as the crowd again pops.
I’ll see you this Sunday, Mark.
*I Walk Alone*
Batista drops the mic, then smiles and goes up to the second rope, posing with his World Heavyweight Championship for the crowd.
Batista with an emphatic statement to Mark Henry there, Tazz! Perhaps this Sunday, the hunter will become the hunted, as Batista seems to truly believe that he is indeed the king of the SmackDown! jungle.
Of course he does, Cole. Every superstar in the back truly believes deep down that they are the best at what they do, and that is why they compete. But if Batista is gonna’ retain his title this Sunday, he’s gonna’ have to do a little more than believe, because that ain’t gonna’ do against Mark Henry.
We now cut away to a graphic promoting the ten man over the top battle royal, which is soon to take place.
Well the winner of that match this Sunday could well face the winner of this match at WrestleMania, as the man who wins this ten man over the top battle royal will assert himself as a favourite, come this Sunday in the Royal Rumble match. Who will that man be? Find out as our main event battle royal is up next!
We return from the break to already see Hardcore Holly, Finlay and MNM already in the ring. As his music dies down, John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield also climbs into the ring, as we now await our next participant ...
*Hell Will Be Callin’ Your Name*
The crowd comes out with a very nice pop as ‘The Dominator’, ‘The Real Deal’ Bobby Lashley
walks out onto the stage and salutes the crowd, before pausing at the top of the ramp and posing as pyro explodes behind him. Walking down to the ring quickly, Lashley more than happily slaps the hands of the fans at ringside, before jumping up onto the apron and into the ring, eyeing off Finlay as he does so.
Welcome back to Friday Night SmackDown!, where we already see some of the participants who will take part in this battle royal in the ring. They are currently being joined by one of the young men who is taking SmackDown! to new heights, ‘The Real Deal’ Bobby Lashley.
Lashley could be destructive in this match. He’s a big guy, and he’s definitely gonna’ be hard to eliminate with all that power behind him. Lookin’ at Finlay starin’ him down though, you might just see someone try.
Another pretty nice pop from the crowd as the former United States Champion, ‘The Rabid Wolverine’ Chris Benoit
walks out onto the stage and looks out at the audience before cranking his neck and quickly making his way down to the ring.
This man, Chris Benoit, has won the Royal Rumble before, back in 2004 when he entered number one. While he doesn’t have the momentum he might like heading into the Rumble, you have to believe that if Benoit can win the Rumble from number one, he can win it from anywhere.
That’s right, Cole, and Chris Benoit, he’s a real competitor. Whether or not 2006 is his year is another question, although you know that with ‘The Rabid Wolverine’ you’re always gonna’ get him goin’ out at full throttle.
*Live For The Moment*
The crowd rise with another big pop as ‘Version 1’, Matt Hardy
energetically bounces out onto the stage and sends the ‘V1’ sign up, with many members of the crowd imitating him as he does so. Walking down the ring smiling, Hardy slaps hands with the fans before warning the people in the ring that he’ll be willing to do anything to win both tonight AND this Sunday.
Earlier tonight Matt Hardy declared that 2006 would be his breakout year, and that breakout would come courtesy of a win in the Royal Rumble. Tazz, do you think it’s possible that Hardy can indeed do it both tonight and this Sunday and become the breakout star of Friday nights?
Of course it’s possible. This kid, Matt Hardy, he has absolutely all the potential in the world, as Rey Mysterio pointed out earlier. Whether or not he can put that together this Sunday, well that’s another thing, but Hardy is certainly someone who is capable of winnin’ a Rumble sometime in the future.
The crowd again comes alive as the music of one of SmackDown!’s favourite sons starts to kick up for the second time tonight. Soon enough out from the side of the stage springs Rey Mysterio
, bringing out a very nice pop from the crowd. Playing it up to the crowd, Mysterio walks down the ring and slaps hands with the fans, while stopping to embrace anyone wearing Mysterio merchandise.
Earlier tonight Rey Mysterio declared that he had his mojo back, and that this Sunday his performance would be dedicated to both the future stars of Friday Night SmackDown! and the future itself of Friday nights. With this new energy, I have the feeling that Rey Mysterio might just be able to pull off an upset this Sunday as he has done so many times before.
While all o’ that was nice to hear from Rey earlier, the fact of the matter remains: the Royal Rumble favours bigger superstars, and Rey certainly doesn’t fit in with that demographic. If Mysterio wants to win this Sunday, in my opinion, he’s gonna’ have to rely on A LOT of luck.
*Burn In My Light*
The last competitor of this match to make his entrance, Randy Orton
confidently strides out onto the stage to some very nice heat, before pausing to raise his arms out to the side in his classic ‘Legend Killer’ pose. Smirking, Orton now makes his way down to the ring while pointing up to the heavens, exuding confidence from every pore on his body.
Going into this Sunday, Randy Orton has to be considered one of the favourites. Orton is born and bred for success, and he has proved that before by becoming the youngest World Heavyweight Champion in the history of the WWE at just 24 years of age. However, since then Orton has failed to raise the title, and this Sunday may just be his ticket back to the world title.
That’s exactly right, Cole. Orton has it all: he has the look, he has the strength, the speed, the power and all of the talent in the world. If he can put it all together this Sunday, he may just be my beat to go all the way and win this shindig.
Main Event ~ Over The Top Rope Battle Royal ~ Hardcore Holly vs. Finlay vs. WWE Tag Team Champion Joey Mercury vs. WWE Tag Team Champion Johnny Nitro vs. John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield vs. Bobby Lashley vs. Chris Benoit vs. Rey Mysterio vs. Matt Hardy vs. Randy Orton
With nine talented individuals (and Hardcore Holly) in this match, things were sure to turn out exciting in the end, despite a start in which people paired off to corners and slowly exchanged shots and attempting to elevate one another over the top rope. Continuing their little spat, Finlay and Bobby Lashley occupy one corner, while Rey Mysterio pairs off with Joey Mercury, JBL with former rival Matt Hardy, Chris Benoit with former rival Randy Orton, and Johnny Nitro pummels Hardcore Holly. The match continues to move at a sluggish pace for the first few minutes before Hardcore Holly breaks away from the trend and starts to dominate the action, beating up both Nitro and his partner Mercury who comes across to assist. Following a half-nelson slam, Holly attempts to pump the crowd up, SIGNALLING FOR THE ALABAMA SLAM --- ONLY TO BE RAN THROUGH BY FINLAY WITH A CLOTHESLINE!
Finlay then picks up the resident jobber and hurls Holly over the top rope, eliminating him from proceedings.
Elimination #1: Hardcore Holly by Finlay @ 2:02
So, now with one less man MNM are able to pair off, choosing to try to attack Bobby Lashley, which proves to be a big mistake, as he too gains some considerable momentum, beating the two members of MNM to the punch each and every time, before sending both into the same corner and sandwiching them with clotheslines. With both members of MNM falling to a seated position in front of one another, Rey Mysterio comes out of nowhere and pulls out the bronco buster, embarrassing MNM as Melina almost looks like hurling at ringside. Mysterio then gets back to his feet and turns right into a kick to the midsection from Finlay, who follows up by taking Rey over to a corner and attempting to get him over the top rope unsuccessfully. JBL and Matt Hardy meanwhile move into the centre of the ring as Hardy finally fights off JBL’s attempts to eliminate him, rocking him with some big right hands. From there Hardy sends Layfield off with an Irish whip, before ducking under a clothesline attempting [b]AND SCORING WITH THE SIDE EFFECT![b] The crowd comes alive as Hardy calls for the end, waiting as JBL gets up ... BEFORE GOING FOR THE TWIST OF FATE --- WHICH JBL COUNTERS BY PUSHING HARDY OFF RIGHT INTO AN RKO FROM RANDY ORTON!
Layfield smiles and walks over to Orton, looking to shake his hand ... RKO TO JBL!
Bobby Lashley then foolishly attempts to turn Orton around ... RKO TO LASHLEY!
Orton is on fire as he looks at Finlay, who is starting to move away from Mysterio, waiting for him to turn ... RKO – NO! FINLAY PUSHES ORTON OFF INTO THE ROPES!
Orton holds onto the ropes, and Finlay charges ... BUT ORTON DUCKS DOWN AND PULLS THE ROPE WITH HIM, SENDING FINLAY OVER AND OUT!
Elimination #2: Finlay by Randy Orton @ 4:23
Orton smirks as he looks down at Finlay on the outside, ONLY TO BE DROPKICKED SQUARE IN THE BACK BY REY MYSTERIO, SENDING ORTON DOWN ACROSS THE SECOND ROPE!
Mysterio looks to dash off to the opposite ropes, knowing what time it is ... ONLY FOR JOHNNY NITRO TO COME OUT OF NOWHERE WITH A SUPERKICK, SENDING THE LITTLE MAN DOWN!
As Nitro stands over Mysterio with a smile on his face we head off to our first commercial break of the match.
Returning from the break we see MNM now working over Matt Hardy as the main focus, with the pair peppering him with right hands as Hardy is caught in the ropes. Meanwhile Bobby Lashley and Chris Benoit try to eliminate one another in the corner, while Rey Mysterio holds on for dear life as JBL attempts to eliminate him, with the camera also catching Randy Orton taking a breather. Back with MNM and Hardy, MNM continues the assault as Hardy has now untangled himself from the ropes, but is pushed back across the bottom rope and both members kick away, with Melina also taking the chance to get a few slaps in. Backing away, MNM now move back in and pick Hardy back up, before sending him off to the opposite ropes with an Irish whip and scoring on the rebound with a double flap jack! Melina squeals with joy, as she knows her boys are firmly in control as they both signal for the end of Hardy. The duo get in position as Matt slowly gets up, BEFORE GOING FOR THE SNAPSHOT AS MERCURY STARTS TO LIFT HARDY --- ONLY FOR HARDY TO SLIP OFF IN FRONT OF MERCURY AFTER A FEW ELBOW SHOTS!
Mercury immediately looks for a clothesline which Hardy ducks, as Mercury bounces off the ropes Nitro then looks for the Superkick on Hardy, only for Hardy to duck ... LEAVING NITRO TO SUPERKICK HIS OWN PARTNER!
Nitro looks down at Mercury in shock as Hardy now grabs Nitro from behind AND THROWS HIM OVER THE TOP ROPE TO THE FLOOR!
Elimination #3: Johnny Nitro by Matt Hardy @ 7:18
Hardy now turns to see a groggy Joey Mercury getting up, so he grabs him around the skull and sends him over the top rope too, right down by his partner Nitro!
Elimination #4: Joey Mercury by Matt Hardy @ 7:23
Hardy waves bye-bye to MNM, before turning and receiving a kick to the stomach from Randy Orton, who takes him across to the corner. From there Orton looks to work on Hardy with punches, which Hardy is able to counter with some of his own, staggering Orton back. Orton looks to take the advantage right back as Hardy tries to capitalise with the side effect, only for Orton to elbow his way out and set up for the inverted backbreaker, which Hardy somehow spins out of ... THEN KICKS ORTON IN THE MIDSECTION AND SCORES WITH A SUDDEN TWIST OF FATE!
The crowd goes wild as Hardy gets back to his feet, THEN TURNS RIGHT INTO A SUPERKICK --- BY JOHNNY NITRO!
Nitro has climbed back into the ring with a smirk on his face, as Mercury comes in too and the tandem pick Hardy up, THEN SCORE WITH THE SNAPSHOT!
Smirking, the duo quickly back out of the ring as Rey Mysterio comes at them, only for JBL to pick up the scraps and hoist Hardy up, before throwing him out of the ring and the match thanks to interference from MNM.
Elimination #5: Matt Hardy by John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield @ 8:15
Layfield, happy with his handiwork, turns back around, only to see three angry men as Chris Benoit, Bobby Lashley and Rey Mysterio all stare back at him. Begging off, Layfield is unsure of what to do, before going for the strike on Lashley, only for the big man to rock him with a right hand. Layfield then stumbles into a kick from Rey Mysterio, before moving into a chop from Chris Benoit. The chain of strikes continue until Lashley eventually bounces off the ropes, then comes out with a big clothesline, sending Layfield down. At that point Benoit gets behind a staggering Layfield and takes him over with a German suplex, sending him rolling into position right across the second rope, prompting a big pop from the crowd as Rey Mysterio looks around. Mysterio runs at the ropes, then bounces off them and comes back ... SCORING WITH THE 619!
The crowd continues to cheer as Rey jumps up to the top rope and looks to springboard back into the ring ... ONLY TO BE PUSHED FROM BEHIND --- BY MR KENNEDY! KENNEDY GETS REVENGE FOR EARLIER AS HE BLINDSIDES MYSTERIO!
Mysterio crashes and burns, shocking Lashley and Benoit who shout out to Kennedy who is backing up the ramp, only for Layfield to take advantage of the situation, seeing Mysterio picking himself up with the ropes and charging across ... SENDING REY OVER THE TOP ROPE AND OUT TO THE FLOOR WITH A CLOTHESLINE!
Elimination #6: Rey Mysterio by John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield @ 9:03
Lashley and Benoit now realise what’s going on as Layfield backs across to the other side of the ring with a now standing Randy Orton, leaving the final four to stare off as we head off to our final commercial break.
Coming back, we see Randy Orton running across the ring, before being thrown into the air by Bobby Lashley with a back body drop. Lashley looks to have full control as all three of his foes are down, JBL the first to get up here as he walks right into a kick to the midsection, then gets hoisted up into the air and held up for a LONG, LONG time before finally being dropped with a beautiful suplex by the amazingly powerful Lashley. Seeing Orton stirring, Lashley now poises himself in the corner, before charging across the ring ... AND LOOKING FOR THE SPEAR --- ONLY FOR ORTON TO LEAPFROG IT, LEAVING LASHLEY TO CRASH FACE-FIRST INTO THE TURNBUCKLE!
Orton breathes a sigh of relief, then turns right into a MASSIVE chop from Chris Benoit. Benoit follows up with a kick to the midsection and a snap suplex, before seeing JBL getting up and giving him the same treatment, only with that snap suplex landing across Randy Orton. With the two heels piled up, Benoit looks around, then makes the famous throat slashing gesture, before heading up to the top rope, perching himself ... AND NAILING A BIG DIVING HEADBUTT ON BOTH OF HIS TARGETS!
The crowd pops as Benoit picks up JBL and carries his deadweight across to the ropes, looking to elevate him up over them, only to be caught in a struggle. Slowly, Benoit is able to get a leg of Layfield over, before looking to elevate the rest of the big man ... ONLY FOR RANDY ORTON TO SNEAK UP BEHIND BENOIT AND THROW HIM OVER THE TOP ROPE AND OUT TO THE FLOOR!
Elimination #7: Chris Benoit by Randy Orton @ 12:34
The crowd boos as Orton smiles, then turns and sees an oncoming Lashley, ducking a clothesline from him ... ONLY FOR LASHLEY TO SCORE ON LAYFIELD AND ELIMINATE HIM!
Elimination #8: John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield by Bobby Lashley @ 12:39
The crowd pops big as the young gun, Lashley is now left with the former world champion, Randy Orton. Turning to face Orton, Lashley stares a hole through the more experienced man, causing Orton to rethink his strategy, as it looked like he would attempt to strike a then-unsuspecting Lashley from behind. Now backing away, Orton stretches his arms out and bides time as the two remaining combatants circle the ring, slowly coming forward into a lockup. Lashley of course wins this, as he pushes the smaller Orton back into the corner, then unloads on him with a series of right hands. Looking out to the crowd, Lashley takes his time after the onslaught before moving back in on Orton, only to receive a thumb to the eye. Orton then moves around Lashley and attempts to Irish whip the big man into the opposite corner, only for Lashley to reverse. From here, Lashley follows Orton in and looks to launch an attack ... but the wily Orton dropkicks Lashley square in the knee, sending Lashley plummeting down face-first into the second turnbuckle! The pace of the match slows down now, as Orton starts to punish Lashley, using a basic offence of kicks, punches and knees to keep Lashley reeling until he locks in the sleeper, which Michael Cole notes is a very smart tactic because if Lashley is asleep, Orton can eliminate him with ease. Lashley isn’t ready to give up easily though, as the big man slowly fights back to his feet, only for Orton to halt his momentum with a kick to the back of the knee, then an inverted neckbreaker to take Lashley back down.
Orton then gets down to the mat and looks right at Lashley, telling him it’s all over as the big man slowly starts to get back to his feet ... WITH ORTON THE STRIKING WITH THE --- NO, LASHLEY PUSHES ORTON OFF TOWARDS THE CORNER!
Orton stops just before he hits the turnbuckle, then turns and charges at Lashley, only to get his head taken off with a big clothesline. Orton gets right back up, then cops a second and a third clothesline, with Lashley taking complete control. Getting back to his feet once again, Orton is this time bull ...hed back into the corner by a fired up Lashley, who strikes with a series of shoulder th...ts. Lashley then pulls Orton out of the corner and whips him across to the buckle in the other corner, before charging in and striking with a big corner clothesline. Staggering out, Orton is clearly in pain as Lashley lifts Orton up, then slams him down with a HUGE sidewalk slam! The crowd pops as Lashley gets back to his feet and points out to them, before pointing at Orton and squatting down in the corner. Slowly, Orton gets up, giving his back to Lashley, before turning ... SPEAR --- NO, ORTON JUMPS IT --- BUT LASHLEY STOPS HIMSELF FROM HITTING THE BUCKLE!
Lashley turns and Orton thinks he’s groggy, GOING FOR THE RKO, WHICH LASHLEY COUNTERS BY PUSHING ORTON AWAY!
Orton looks angered and comes right back at Lashley, ONLY FOR LASHLEY TO SCOOP HIM UP ONTO HIS SHOULDERS AND HEAD FOR THE ROPES --- BUT ORTON SLIPS OFF RIGHT WHEN LASHLEY LOOKS TO LAUNCH HIM --- AND PUSHES LASHLEY OVER THE TOP ROPE AND OUT TO THE FLOOR!
Elimination #9: Bobby Lashley by Randy Orton @ 15:59
Winner: Randy Orton via event @ 15:59
*Burn In My Light*
Here is your winner, Randy Orton!
Orton holds the back of his head as he raises his hand, clearly in pain after getting quite a shock from Bobby Lashley.
Randy Orton has done it! Randy Orton proves himself to be the favourite from Friday Night SmackDown!, as he puts away an impressive Bobby Lashley to cement himself as the man to beat this Sunday.
My man, Randy Orton, he’s goin’ to the Rumble full of confidence baby! What a performance.
That it was, Tazz, and ---
Randy Orton cuts his celebration shots in the ring and looks around in shock as the lights still remain on, despite the ominous gong.
What the ---
The lights are now out in the Bi-Lo Center and the crowd are eating it up, popping huge as the lights come back on ... TO REVEAL THE UNDERTAKER STANDING IN THE MIDDLE OF THE RING, ALONE!
‘Taker gets down on his knee, sticks his tongue out and rolls his eyes back in his head in classic ‘Taker fashion as the lights dim and the crowd are abuzz, looking on at the man who will return at the Royal Rumble this Sunday. We meanwhile, fade to black.
January 29th, 2006 | American Airlines Center; Miami, Florida
Royal Rumble Match
Big Show vs. Bobby Lashley vs. Carlito vs. Chavo Guerrero vs. Chris Benoit vs. Chris Masters vs. Finlay vs. Gene Snitsky vs. Goldust vs. Gregory Helms vs. Hardcore Holly vs. Joey Mercury vs. John Bradshaw Layfield vs. Johnny Nitro vs. Kane vs. Kurt Angle vs. Matt Hardy vs. Mr Kennedy vs. Orlando Jordan vs. Paul Burchill vs. Randy Orton vs. Rene Dupree vs. Rey Mysterio vs. Ric Flair vs. Rob Van Dam vs. Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker vs. Triple H vs. Tyson Tomko vs. William Regal
John Cena vs. Edge (c)
World Heavyweight Championship
Mark Henry vs. Batista (c)
Victoria vs. Trish Stratus (c)
Super Crazy vs. Psichosis vs. Paul London vs. Brian Kendrick vs. Shannon Moore vs. Jamie Noble vs. Nunzio vs. Scotty 2 Hotty vs. Funaki vs. Kid Kash (c)
***Do NOT post any predictions yet.***