~Friday Night SmackDown~
May 18th, 2007
US Airways Center
”No estoy escuchando más! Enough is enough!"
We open with a highlights package from last week, where during the contract signing for their Triple Threat Match at Judgment Day, Batista, Edge and Mr. Kennedy all trade words, until Edge and Batista storm to their feet, with Teddy Long urging them not to fight, while Kennedy does all he can to get his two rivals going at it… until Batista snaps and strikes Kennedy instead! An all-out brawl now commences, the three trading shots with each other, until suddenly, Chris Benoit makes a triumphant return, sprinting down to the ring to get involved in the fight, and once he and Batista clear the ring, Teddy Long reveals that Benoit has been added to the match to make it a Fatal Four Way for the World Heavyweight Championship, the video giving us tense images of all four men before it fades to black.
From the video we head straight into the arena, and after a few second silence we hear…
A tremendous cheer as Chris Benoit
strides into the arena, looking as intense as ever as he makes his way down the aisle, but even Benoit has to stop halfway to the ring and take a look around, savouring the response of the fans and even giving them a toothy grin in appreciation before he heads for the ring...
Ladies and gentlemen, last week we saw the return of that man, Chris Benoit, one month after he suffered severe head injuries at the hands of Edge. Tonight, Benoit faces Edge one on one, just 48 hours away from Judgment Day! Hello everyone, I'm Michael Cole, alongside me at ringside as always are Tazz and 'JBL', and guys, it's great to see Chris Benoit back in a WWE ring!
You ain't kiddin', Cole! We all heard the rumours that maybe that was it for Chris Benoit when Edge hit 'im with that con-chair-to. Benoit was thinkin' about windin' 'is career down this summer, and maybe Edge has put 'im into an early retirement. But Benoit's back, and he's out for revenge tonight, baby!
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Yeah and you'd love to see that, wouldn't ya'? How the hell is that fair? Batista, Edge and Kennedy, they all signed a contract last week that had been changed without them knowin' about it! And then, Edge's gotta face Benoit just two nights before Judgment Day!? Gimme a break! That's a damn disgrace, and I'm blame Teddy Long! This show's been a damn joke ever since he came back!
Well I think a lotta that mess is down to what Jonathan Coachman left behind! But nonetheless, tonight not only do we have Edge and Benoit one on one, but we're also gonna wrap up the King of the Ring Round of 32, as the last two spots to advance to the next round will be decided. We've also got two Judgment Day preview matches, as the United States Champion Matt Hardy teams up with Kane to take on their respective Judgment Day opponents, Miz and Finlay, while Mark Henry and The Sandman are set to go at it ahead of the match this Sunday between The Extremists and The Coachman Coalition.
Yeah but not only that, Cole, I got an exclusive for ya' right here! Earlier tonight we found out that Rey Mysterio will
be here tonight on SmackDown ahead of his return to the ring at Judgment Day against Chavo Guerrero. Man, I can't wait to see Rey back!
It's gonna be a huge night, and we're kickin' it all off with 'The Rabid Wolverine', Chris Benoit, making his return to SmackDown against Edge!
In the ring, Benoit paces back and forth, eager to get the action started, patiently awaiting the arrival of…
”YOU THINK YOU KNOW ME…”
A ton of heat welcomes the sound of Edge’s music, but as we wait… there’s no sign of Edge. Benoit continues to pace the ring, cracking his neck from side to side, but right now, Edge has yet to enter the arena…
It was one month ago when Edge delivered a devastating one man con-chair-to to Chris Benoit, a move that many, including Edge, thought had put an end to Benoit’s career. Edge has ran his mouth ever since WrestleMania, and if ya’ ask me, tonight’s the night it finally gets shut at the hands of Chris Benoit.
Yeah, but… where the hell is he? I mean, I don’t… I don’t see Edge anywhere.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
He’s just makin’ Benoit sweat a little bit. He knows it’s Benoit’s first night back, he’s just playin’ a few mind games before-
Cole shouts out, and the crowd do the same… as Edge is in the ring! Edge has come through the crowd and sneaked up behind Benoit… and he’s got a steel chair in his hands! Benoit doesn’t have a clue… and Edge lines him up… and SMACKS THE STEEL CHAIR OFF THE BACK OF BENOIT’S SKULL!!
Edge has come out of nowhere and he’s levelled Benoit! Benoit is down, crumpled in a heap, grabbing his neck in pain, while a wild, crazed look is in Edge’s eyes as he stands over Benoit, slamming the chair down on the canvas, tearing at his hair, an evil smirk on his face as he surveys the damage he’s caused. Edge looks like a man possessed as he peers down on Benoit, screaming “WHY D’YA COME BACK, CHRIS?! HUH? WHY D’YA COME BACK!?”, before he lays in with a few stomps to the back of the neck.
The crowd shits all over Edge and his actions, but Edge doesn’t give a damn, and now he moves quickly to slide back under the bottom rope, wildly shoving Tony Chimel aside… and picking up the chair he once sat on. The crowd gasp in fear, knowing exactly what Edge has in mind as he slides back into the ring… places Benoit’s head on the chair he just nailed him with… then he raises the second chair high in the air…
”NO! NO! NOT AGAIN!”
ONE MAN CON-CHAIR-
*I WALK ALONE…*
Edge stops dead in his tracks… it’s Batista
! Batista is here, and ‘The Animal’ is sprinting down the aisle! Seeing Batista coming, Edge is caught like a deer in the headlights, frozen to the spot, debating with himself whether or not to run or fight… and as Batista slides under the bottom rope… Edge hightails it out of the ring! Rolling from the ring to safety, Edge now stands on the outside, Batista peering down on him, yelling for Edge to get back in the ring, ‘The Animal’ dying to get his hands on Edge, the crowd going wild, urging Batista to give chase… but there cheers soon turn to screams once again, as from the other side of the ring…
BATISTA IS SMACKED FROM BEHIND WITH A STEEL CHAIR… BY MR. KENNEDY!!
”Where the hell did he come from!?”
Kennedy has just laid out the World Heavyweight Champion! And now Edge is back in the ring, he and Kennedy laying in with stomps as Batista tries to struggle back to his feet. It’s an absolute mugging as Batista takes a beating from the combined forces of Edge and Kennedy… but then all of sudden… Edge rears back with his chair… just as Kennedy draws back with his… and both men turn on each other… but then both put on the breaks at the last second! It’s going to be every man for himself this Sunday, and that’s how it’s looking right now, as Edge and Kennedy were just seconds away from nailing each other with chairs!
A standoff ensues, neither man quite sure of how to proceed, until the trash talking starts to fly, and Kennedy and Edge now both shout at each other to swing first! Kennedy yells “I DARE YA!”, while Edge screams “C’MON! C’MON, DO IT!”, and the tension builds… until the crowd start to cheer… as Batista is back on his feet… and he runs through both Edge and Kennedy with a DOUBLE CLOTHESLINE! Almost on instinct, Edge and Kennedy hit the canvas and both roll from the ring, Batista enraged, an animal unleashed, baying for blood, but just as he makes a move to step through the ropes and give chase…
The SmackDown General Manager Teddy Long
rushes out, microphone already in hand, a worried look on his face as he sees his show slowly spiralling out of control…
Now wait a minute! Hold on just a minute here!
Paying no attention, Batista again moves to step through the ropes…
Hey, Batista! Just hold on there a second, playa. This ain’t goin’ down like this! Not tonight.
’The Animal’ fumes, before he comes to his senses of sorts and crouches down to take a look at Chris Benoit, who is still writhing on the canvas in pain…
Now, first things first, can we get some help out here for Chris Benoit? We need some help out here!
Suddenly, trainers and EMTs rush out from the back, sprinting straight past Teddy and then down to the ring, where they scramble under the bottom rope to check on the condition of ‘The Rabid Wolverine’…
Now Edge, Kennedy… I bet’cha think ya’ pulled a fast one me, didn’t ya’ playas? Well lemme make myself clear. If I see one more chair involved tonight, neither of ya’ is goin’ to Judgment Day, ya’ hear me?
Pop from the crowd, with the medics continuing to help Benoit, running concussion and neck trauma tests on him, although Benoit shakes the trainers away, cracking his head from side to side, signalling he’s OK…
And Edge… just ‘cause they’re tryin’ to help Chris Benoit outta this ring just now, that don’t mean you’re gettin’ away wit’ it. I’m gonna give Chris Benoit every chance to recover, and if he makes it, then later tonight, the match between you two WILL take place!
Another pop from the crowd, although Edge shrugs and laughs it off, clearly feeling the damage he’s done is enough to hand him an easy victory tonight…
And Kennedy… you ain’t getting’ away wit’ it either. ‘Cause you gonna be in action tonight… and we’re gonna finish what you started a few weeks ago. It’s gonna be Mr. Kennedy, one on one… with the World Heavyweight Champion, Batista!
Slowly Batista turns his head to look at Kennedy, but instead of fear, Kennedy licks his lips and nods his head, realising that he’s got a huge opportunity to set a marker ahead of this Sunday…
And that match… is happenin’ right now!
But now Kennedy’s jaw nearly hits the floor, with the crowd cheering loudly for the unannounced match. Kennedy stands at the foot of the aisle, looking up at Teddy, yelling “What d’ya mean now?”… and that means he doesn’t see Batista step through the ropes… spin Kennedy around… and hammer him with a massive right hand! The match isn’t even underway yet, but already the two are going at it at ringside!
God, what a wild way to kick off SmackDown! Batista and Kennedy, we’re not even officially underway, but already they’re goin’ at it! We’ll try get some order here, join us when we return!
In the ring, the medics now try to help Benoit back to his feet, while on the outside, Edge slowly backs up the ramp, watching Batista and Kennedy hammer each other against the barricade, a smug smirk on his face as we head to the commercial.
Match 1: Non-Title Match
World Heavyweight Champion Batista
vs. Mr. Kennedy
We’re back with the match already underway, Batista having Kennedy trapped in the corner, driving shoulder into the midsection, before he goes for a hard Irish whip across the ring… Kennedy hits the turnbuckle hard… then stumbles out into a huge back body drop! Kennedy is reeling as he staggers to the ropes… and then a clothesline sends him over the top rope to the floor! Kennedy goes sprawling to the floor, and despite the best efforts of the referee, Batista isn’t interested in letting Kennedy recover as he follows him out. Grabbing Kennedy, Batista yanks him to his feet… then smashes Kennedy face first off the steel steps! Kennedy smacks the steel with a thud, but Batista’s not finished yet… as he then smashes Kennedy off the announce desk! The rivalry between these two comes to the fore as Batista is relentless in his attack, pummelling Kennedy against the barricade, before he finally takes the match back into the ring. After a near fall, Batista rocks Kennedy with right hands in the corner, then he fires Kennedy across the ring… and follows in with a corner clothesline! Shoulderthrusts land to the midsection, before ‘The Animal’ shoves Kennedy against the ropes then sends him for the ride… but Batista lowers his head… and Kennedy puts on the breaks… allowing him to nail a swinging neckbreaker! A chance for Kennedy to mount some offence now, and he starts with a few stomps to the body, before some knees to the head drive Batista to the corner. With his head on the bottom turnbuckle, Batista is in trouble as Kennedy backs up… then races in… facewash… no! Batista rolls to safety… and Kennedy winds up kicking the ropes! Limping from the corner, Kennedy tries to shake some life back into his left leg, but this leaves him open to the attack of ‘The Animal’, who drills him with rights, then sends Kennedy for the ride… into a massive clothesline!
Kennedy is turned inside out by the force of Batista, ‘The Animal’ again going on the attack with stiff shots to the face, before he drives Kennedy into the corner. Yet more shoulders to the midsection, before ‘Tista climbs to the second rope and starts hammering down on Kennedy with right hands, the crowd counting along with him… but ‘The Animal’ only makes it to seven, as Kennedy then grabs the legs, walks forward… and flapjacks Batista face first off the top turnbuckle! A painful landing for Batista, and Kennedy looks to take advantage as he lands kicks to the head and then forearms to the back of the neck. Kennedy then takes Batista down with a neckbreaker for a near fall, before he locks on an early chinlock, trying to apply pressure to the neck. Clearly there’s not been enough damage done yet, as ‘The Animal’ makes it back to his feet… and takes Kennedy up and down with a side suplex! Back to his feet first, ‘Tista lands clubbing rights to the face, but Kennedy strikes back with a thumb to the eye, then a boot to the gut… which Batista catches, then spins Kennedy around… and nails an atomic drop! Kennedy stumbles to the ropes, where Batista sends him for the ride… but again he lowers his head… and this time Kennedy answers with a snap DDT! Kennedy hooks a leg… 1... 2… ‘Tista kicks out! Annoyed, Kennedy uses his boot to drive Batista under the bottom rope, taking the fight outside again as he places Batista’s head against the barricade. A few stomps keep ‘Tista in place, before Kennedy backs up… and drills a knee into the face, squashing Batista’s head against the barricade! A sick smirk crosses Kennedy’s face as he connects, and it appears that Kennedy is willing to take the easy win as he rolls back into the ring and yells at the ref to start the count. The ref obligies, and the crowd do their best to will Batista back into the ring, but the ref’s already at five before we see any signs of life from ‘The Animal’… six… seven… Batista starts to crawl for the ring… eight… nine… and at the last second he makes it back in!
‘Tista stays in the match, but now Kennedy is firmly in control, continuing to target the neck as he drops several knees across it, then with Batista’s head under the bottom rope, Kennedy grabs the feet… and catapults the champion throat first off the bottom rope! ‘The Animal’ coughs and splutters, but Kennedy goes for the win… 1… 2… Batista sticks a foot on the bottom rope! Kennedy now embarks on a sustained period of dominance, continuing to wear Batista down with more stomps and knees to the neck, clubbing forearms to the side of the head, and he again comes close to victory with a Russian legsweep for a two count. Kennedy shows impressive strength as he takes ‘Tista up and down with a backbreaker, before he climbs to the second rope and waits for Batista to rise… then goes for a double axe handle to the head… no! Batista catches Kennedy, swings him onto his shoulder… and looks for a running powerslam… no! Kennedy drops down the back… and hits an inverted DDT! Kennedy crawls over and hooks the leg… 1… 2... Batista rolls a shoulder! Kennedy yells “C’mon!” in annoyance, but he goes right back on the attack, quickly rolling ‘Tista over so he can apply a camel clutch. Applying pressure to the neck, Kennedy wrenches back on the head, even releasing his grip for a few seconds to smash more forearms to the side of the head, before re-clasping his hands under the chin. Kennedy has the hold locked on tight, desperately trying to make Batista submit, shouting at the ref “Ask him!”, but every time it’s meet with a defiant “No!” from the champion. Kennedy leans back with all he’s got, but the crowd are on their feet, cheering, doing their best to get Batista back to his feet, but each time Batista claws at Kennedy’s hands, he can’t break the grip… so instead, Batista makes it back to his knees… then manages to stand up… before he falls backwards into the corner, crushing Kennedy and breaking the hold!
From the corner, Batista swings wild back elbows, each one smacking off Kennedy’s skull, before he then turns and fires Kennedy to the opposite corner… and charges in for a corner clothesline! Kennedy staggers forward, allowing Batista to take him up and down with a suplex for a near fall. ‘The Animal’ now looks to build momentum, drilling more right hands before he sends Kennedy off the ropes… right into a swinging side slam! Another cover… another Kennedy kickout at two. Feeding off the crowd, Batista bowls Kennedy over with a shoulderblock, then does it again, but on the third time Kennedy stumbles back up, Batista is waiting… to nail the spinebuster! Kennedy is emphatically planted, and ‘The Animal’ bursts back to his feet… thumbs up… thumbs down! Batista grabs Kennedy… yanks him in… then takes him up… BATISTA BOMB… NO!
Kennedy desperately fights it, landing rights to the head that allow him to drop down, then out of nowhere he hooks Batista up… MIC CHECK… NO!
‘Tista shoves Kennedy to the ropes, where Kennedy hangs on, prompting ‘The Animal’ to charge… clothesline… SENDS BOTH MEN TUMBLING TO THE FLOOR! The duo land with a thud, but once they untangle themselves, the heavy hitting starts again, with Batista getting the upperhand as he rattles off three rights in a row, then he goes for an Irish whip… that sends Kennedy crashing into the barricade! Kennedy groans in pain, but it gets worse… as Batista clotheslines him over the barricade into the crowd! ‘The Animal’ has lost it, following Kennedy into the fans, and it seems like he and Kennedy could fight all night, the two trading wild shots next to the barricade… and it seems like the referee has had enough as he heads back into the ring and starts to count! The ref gets all the way to six before either man notices… seven… and now they both try to scramble back over the barricade… eight… but Kennedy clubs Batista from behind… nine… ‘The Animal’ fights back… ten! The ref calls for the bell, he’s counted both men out!
Winner: Double Countout @ 09.32
The crowd is deflated as Batista and Kennedy let their rivalry get the better of them, neither man letting up despite the bell ringing for the end of the match. The ref again heads to the outside and pleads with Batista and Kennedy to break it up, but neither man is interested, the pair of them just wanting to tear each other apart. Security and agents now rush into the arena, trying to pry the pair apart, but the battle rages on against the barricade, both men throwing wild, crazy shots at each other, a brawl that has no end in sight as we head to a commercial.
A black screen fills the frame, as the opening chords of ‘Booyaka 619’ begin to play. As the music starts to grow, we fade into a match from the July 8th, 1996 episode of Monday Nitro, where Rey Mysterio hits a hurricanrana on Dean Malenko, hanging on tightly for the three count, with Tony Schiavone making the call...
”WE’VE GOT A NEW CHAMPION!”
Narrator: For years he has defied the laws of gravity…
We now fade in on Halloween Havoc ’97, where Mysterio soars through the air, over the top rope, crashing down on Eddie Guerrero with a hurricanrana onto the concrete, with Bobby Heenan shouting...
”I’VE NEVER SEEN ANYTHIN’ LIKE THIS IN MY ENTIRE LIFE!”
Narrator: Fans across the world have marvelled at his feats of athleticism…
The June 5th, 2003 episode of Friday Night SmackDown, where Mysterio counters Matt Hardy’s Twist of Fate into a bridging pin, becoming Cruiserweight Champion once more before we see Rey celebrate with his family as Michael Cole screams…
”MYSTERIO’S THE CHAMPION! MYSTERIO WON THE CHAMPIONSHIP!”
Narrator: He was always the ultimate underdog…
SummerSlam 2005, where Mysterio and Guerrero battle once more, this time in a Ladder Match, with Rey emerging victorious as Tazz yells…
”THE FIGHT IN THIS GUY IS UNBELIEVABLE!”
Narrator: Until he climbed to the very pinnacle of sports entertainment…
And finally WrestleMania XXII, where Rey hits the 619 then hits the West Coast Pop on Randy Orton, winning the World Heavyweight Championship and paying tribute to his late friend, Eddie Guerrero, with Cole again making the call…
”DREAMS REALLY DO COME TRUE!”
Narrator: And now, Rey Mysterio…
We cut to a darkened wrestling ring, where Mysterio stands, his back to us, his shaved head glistening in the light as he holds his mask in his hands, raising it above his head…
Narrator: Is returning to…
Mysterio slips on the mask, the camera rapidly zooming in for a close up just as Mysterio turns…
Narrator: Friday Night SmackDown!
And we see Mysterio staring into the camera, his eyes as green as the mask adorning his face, before we fade into the following graphic…
"REY MYSTERIO – RETURNING TO FRIDAY NIGHT SMACKDOWN - TONIGHT!"
*End Video Package*
We’re back, and it’s to the relative calm of a seriously pissed off Edge storming along a backstage corridor, clearly still annoyed with how the show opened tonight. Edge pounds a fierce pace, barely even acknowledging the various backstage workers he passes, but soon we see Kristal Marshall step into the shot, trying to conduct an interview, although Edge is clearly in no mood to stop and chat…
Uh, Edge? Edge! Edge, if I could just have a moment of your time!
Ignoring her, Edge presses on, both Kristal and the camera struggling to keep up with him…
Having heard enough, Edge comes to a sudden stop, turning to glare at Kristal, before he lets out a very audible sigh…
Make it quick…
I was just wanting a comment from you regarding what you did earlier to Chris Benoit. I mean, you attacked him before your match, and… why
Shaking his head, Edge can’t help but smirk…
Why? You wanna know why? How ‘bout the fact that Chris Benoit just walked back into the building last week, and just like that, he’s got a shot at the World Heavyweight Championship? How ‘bout the fact that a guy who’s done nothin’ but talk about retirement these last few months, is all of a sudden gettin’ a title match?
Running a hand across his mouth, Edge snarls and flares his nostrils…
And not only that, he’s got my
title shot? The shot I deserve, the rematch I’m entitled to, and if it not’s bad enough I’ve gotta share it with Kennedy, now Benoit’s in it too!? What the hell is that!? What the hell does Teddy Long think he’s doin’!? What the HELL… is he THINKING!?
Edge wildly runs a hand through his hair…
I am seriously startin’ to get pissed off with this whole situation. Chris Benoit… he doesn’t belong in my title match at Judgment Day, and tonight, I was gonna make sure of that, I was gonna put him on the shelf permanently, and I was just seconds away from makin’ it happen… ‘til Batista stuck his nose in my business. But y’know what? That’s fine. If Teddy Long’s that desperate for the match between me and Chris to go ahead… then I can wait.
Calming down, Edge thinks for a few seconds, nodding his head, before he continues…
But anythin’ that happens to Chris Benoit later tonight… then you can run and ask Teddy Long… why?
Another smirk, this time of a more sarcastic nature…
Why’d you risk Chris Benoit’s health? Why’d you put ‘im in the ring with Edge? And why… did you bring his career to a premature end? ‘Cause when I’m through with Chris tonight…
With a cold chill in his eyes, Edge turns to the camera, and through gritted teeth says…
That’s exactly what’s gonna happen.
Edge stares into the camera for a few seconds, then he turns and glares at Kristal, before he storms off, leaving a rather shaken interviewer behind, with Kristal puffing out her cheeks, watching Edge go, while we head back into the arena.
And we hear…
A pretty loud level of heat as the Cruiserweight Champion, Gregory Helms
enters the arena. With a confident smirk on his face, Helms paces down the aisle, brushing off the boos of the crowd, and when he hits the ring, he immediately heads to the ropes and points down at ‘JBL’…
Well there you just saw a nod from the Cruiserweight Champion, Gregory Helms, towards you ‘JBL’, and I’m sure that’s to do with the number you and Helms did on Bryan Danielson last week.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
It’s a nod of appreciation from one great champion to another. I was the greatest WWE Champion in history, and that man right there is the greatest Cruiserweight Champion in history. And he’s gonna prove that once and for all this Sunday.
Yeah right. That was nothin’ more than a set up by you two last week. I’ll give it to ya’, you and Helms, you got Danielson good last week, but this Sunday at Judgment Day, your ass ain’t leavin’ that chair ‘JBL’, and it’s gonna be just Helms and Danielson for the gold.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
You better not be threatenin’ me. You don’t want what happened to Danielson last week to happen to you.
You get involved in the match this Sunday, you’re gettin’ choked out. I’m warning ya’ now.
*I’LL DO ANYTHING…*
A decent enough cheer as Shannon Moore
jogs into the arena, slapping hands with the ringside fans, before he slings into the ring and then heads to the corner…
This Sunday it’s about the Cruiserweight Championship, but tonight, it’s all about the King of the Ring tournament. The penultimate match of the Round of 32, it’s Helms and this man, Shannon Moore, one on one.
And Shannon Moore, he might not have won the Battle Royal a couple o’ weeks ago that saw Danielson named the number one contender, but Moore looked pretty impressive durin’ the match. The guy’s always been a great competitor, and he’s beaten Helms in the past, and it could happen again right here.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
He looked impressive? And what, that’s suddenly enough to get the job done against the greatest cruiserweight that ever lived? Gimme a break! Moore might as well not even bother showin’ up for this one, he ain’t got a chance. Helms is gonna use this match to send a message to Bryan Danielson, to let ‘im know exactly what he’s in for this Sunday, and I’m gonna enjoy every second of it!
Match 2: King of the Ring Qualifying Match – Round of 32
Cruiserweight Champion Gregory Helms vs. Shannon Moore
As we get this underway, there’s an initial period of stalling from Helms, who turns up his nose and shakes his head at Moore, clearly not impressed with the level of competition on offer. Finlay the two come together for a tie up, with Helms working into a standing headlock, until Moore shoves him off the ropes… and Helms runs Moore over with a shoulderblock. Quickening the pace, Helms comes off the ropes again… but Moore avoids him with a leapfrog… then sends Helms down with an armdrag! Helms is right back up… another armdrag sends him scrambling towards the corner. Moore stays on the attack, landing three right hands, before he goes for the Irish whip across… but Helms reverses and follow in… Moore uses the ropes to elevate himself over Helms… then he catches him from behind with a rollup! 1… 2… Helms kicks out, but the kickout sends Moore back towards the corner, where he jumps to the second rope… springboard crossbody! Moore stays on for the cover… 1… 2… Helms kicks out, and he quickly rolls outside to regroup. Annoyed, Helms kicks the steel steps as he paces back and forth on the outside, wanting to take his time… but eventually Moore decides he doesn’t want to wait anymore… as he flies with a plancha! Moore takes Helms down and starts hammering him with right hands, before he bursts back to his feet and roars to the crowd. Rolling Helms back in, Moore jumps up onto the apron… then comes back in with a springboard legdrop! Another cover… another near fall. Helms is dazed as he crawls to the corner, with Moore attacking with kicks to the head, then he yanks Helms up and fires him off the ropes… but Moore lowers his head… Helms snaps it up with a kick, then goes for a clothesline… but Moore ducks underneath… and goes for a backslide! 1… 2… Helms kicks out and bursts back to his feet… and levels Moore with a big time clothesline!
Helms didn’t miss that time, and after regaining his composure, he goes to work on Moore, stomping down on him, then he mounts Moore and hammers him with well-placed right hands. Showing a real aggressive nature, Moore now starts to drop knees into the midsection, before Helms yanks Moore up… then sends him hurtling towards the corner… shoulder first into the ringpost! Moore cries out in pain as he smacks off the steel, and when he stumbles backwards, Helms is waiting… to nail a single arm DDT! Helms goes for the cover… 1… 2… Moore kicks out. Now Helms looks to take control of the match, targeting Moore’s left arm with more stomps and knees, before he gets another near fall from a shoulderbreaker. With Moore down near the corner, Helms now drags him towards the ringpost, pulling Moore’s shoulder against the post, and he then yells “This is what I’m gonna do Danielson!”, before he puts a foot against the post… and with all his strength, yanks Moore’s shoulder against the ringpost! Helms’s is trying to pull the arm right out its socket, and he takes every second of the ref’s five count before he finally releases the hold and gets back into the ring. With Moore hurt, Helms isn’t interested in going for pinfalls, instead he wants to do as much damage as possible, rocking Moore with a hammerlock Russian legsweep, then he wrings Moore’s arm over the ropes, stretching and twisting, causing as much pain as possible. Helms even goes as far as to call out to ‘JBL’ by saying “Watch this, John!”, right before he drops Moore with a gutbuster. Determined to cause even more damage, Moore goes for an armbar, applying pressure as he forces the arm across his knee. Moore groans in pain, and the crowd try to encourage him back into the match, but it’s no good as Helms has him grounded. Eventually though, Moore does make a comeback, forcing himself back up, throwing tired right hands in an attempt to break the hold, only for Helms to end the momentum with a shot right to the shoulder.
With Moore grimacing in the corner in pain, Helms fires him across the ring and follows in… but Moore gets a boot up! Helms stumbles back, but charges again… another boot to the face! Now Moore starts to fight from the corner, backing Helms all the way across the ring with right hands, before he goes for the Irish whip back across… then follows in… but Helms elevates Moore over the top rope… Moore lands on the apron! A trio of rights sends Helms stumbling to the middle of the ring, allowing Moore to slingshot to the top rope… springboard dropkick! Moore gets all of it, and he crawls into a lateral press… 1… 2... Helms kicks out! Moore now tries to build on this, throwing tired right hands to the face, before he goes for a boot to the midsection… Helms grabs the foot… only for Moore to smack an enzuigiri! Another cover… 1… 2… Helms barely rolls a shoulder! Dejected, it takes Moore a while to get back on his feet, but when he does, he yanks Helms up, plants him with a scoop slam, then he heads outside and climbs upstairs. Moore readies himself on the top rope… then he flies… FLYING CROSSBODY… but Helms rolls through into the cover! 1… 2… no! Moore kicks out! Helms can’t believe it, and again that aggressive streak comes out as he once again mounts Moore and lays in with shots to the shoulder. Helms drags Moore to his feet, fires him off the ropes… but Moore avoids the contact with a baseball slide, nips up… and takes Helms down with a schoolboy! 1… 2… Helms kicks out… and the force of the kickout sends Moore flying to the corner again… and once again shoulder first into the ringpost! It’s agony for Moore as he stumbles back to the middle of the ring, Helms doesn’t waste any time… kick to the knee drops Moore down, then it’s off the ropes… SHINING WIZARD!! Helms absolutely crushes Moore’s head, and he doesn’t even bother to hook the leg to get the 1… 2… 3.
Winner: Gregory Helms @ 05.22
Helms picks up the win, but the crowd quickly let him know their feelings on it by delivering a round of boos in Helms’ direction. Ignoring the fans, Helms quickly snatches his title away from the referee, then he heads to the corner and demands a microphone…
Get this piece o’ crap outta my ring!
Adding insult to injury, as Moore crawls on his hands and knees towards the ropes, Helms gives him a boot to the midsection, causing Moore to fall to the floor with a thud…
The greatest cruiserweight in wrestlin’ history, and the future King of the Ring don’t wanna share his spotlight with a nobody like him. And Bryan Danielson, I think last week proved once and for all that that’s exactly what you are too… a nobody.
Heat from the crowd, which Helms just snarls at…
For all the hype, for all your talk… you just can’t back it up. Every time you step into a ring with me, it’s always the same outcome. You’re left layin’ on your back, lookin’ up at the lights, and I’m walkin’ out with this title.
And with an extremely serious look on his face, Helms points at the camera and says…
And that’s exactly what’s gonna happen this Sunday at Judgment Day.
A very arrogant smirk from Helms once he’s finished…
I’m gonna show the world that when Teddy Long signed you to that contract, you ain’t worth a single dime that you’re bein’ paid. You… are a nothin’. You’re not even a has-been… you’re a never-was. You don’t belong in the WWE… and you don’t belong in a ring with me.
So you make the most of this Sunday, Bryan… you enjoy your last night of stardom here in the WWE. ‘Cause when I’m finished with ya’, you’re gonna be just like Shannon there. Just another name who tried and failed to take this title away from me… and just another piece o’ crap to get kicked outta my ring.
Helms points and has a quick laugh at Moore’s expense, before he turns back to face the camera…
get the respect I deserve. ‘Cause I’m Gregory Helms, the greatest Cruiserweight Champion in WWE history… and the next King o’ the Ring!
With a thud, Helms slams his microphone to the canvas, then he quickly nips to the outside, where he stands over Shannon Moore, who is still struggling to pull himself back to his feet. Helms looks down on Moore and can’t help but laugh, before he shakes his head in disgust and walks off, and it’s on the sight of the Cruiserweight Champion that we head to a commercial.
And we’re back, and we see Josh Matthews
is standing by, ready to conduct an interview…
Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome my guests at this time, they are the WWE Tag Team Champions… Paul London and Brian Kendrick… The Hooligans!
From either side of the camera, The Hooligans enter the frame, with Paul London and Ashley Massaro giving Josh a welcoming smile, while Brian Kendrick has an annoyed, almost offended look on his face as he runs a hand across his jaw…
And Paul, Brian, this Sunday you-
Uh, wait, wait, stop. Sorry. I… I hate to interrupt but… why’s it always Paul’s name first?
It’s confusion for Josh who fumbles his words…
I… uh… what?
When you or anybody else introduces us, it’s always Paul’s name first. It’s always London ‘n’ Kendrick, never Kendrick ‘n’ London. I mean, it’s not alphabetically, so I was just wonderin’, y’know… why?
Matthews struggles for an answer, stammering, while London rolls his eyes…
Brian… what difference does it make?
Yeah, it really doesn’t matter, dude. We’re a team. Nobody cares what way our names are said.
Realising that’s the only answer he’s going to get, Kendrick shrugs his shoulders and turns away…
Yeah, alright. Whatever.
Exasperated, London and Ashley both shake their heads, almost in disbelief, while a confused looking Josh tries to get back to the interview…
Uh, well… Brian and Paul-
This Sunday at Judgment Day you two defend your titles against The New Breed. But lately it seems like there’s been several disagreements between the two of you… and I guess what just happened proves my point. The question is, Brian, Paul… are The Hooligans on the same page right now?
Matthews turns the mic towards Kendrick initially, who simply looks back at the interviewer, the silence prompting Matthews to point the mic at London instead…
Uh, well… I think in any team in any kinda sport, you’re not always gonna agree on everything 100%. But we’re still the champions, and we’re still together, and we’ve still got the same common goal in mind… to keep these titles as long as we can.
For a brief moment, Kendrick and London lock eyes, until London looks away with a sense of regret…
And yeah, we’ve not had the best of runs lately. I mean, I had a bad knee, and that cost us back at WrestleMania. And then we were unlucky to be paired against each other in the King of the Ring. And credit to Brian, he did an awesome job and he won that match fair and square.
With a smug look on his face, Kendrick can’t help but nod in agreement…
But if there’s one thing we can always agree on, it’s that Brian Kendrick and Paul London, are always better united as one. It’s not about photoshoots, or who’s name gets said first, it’s about us, it’s about the team, and it’s about these titles. And that’s somethin’ we’re not ready to give up on, right Brian?
London looks towards Kendrick, who smiles, seemingly in agreement…
Look Josh, here’s all you need to know. This Sunday, The Hooligans are walkin’ into Judgment Day the WWE Tag Team Champions… and we’re walkin’ out exactly the same way. And there’s nothin’ The New Breed can do about it.
Maybe not exactly the answer London was looking for, but it’ll do for now as upon finishing, Kendrick turns and walks off, exiting the scene. London seems convinced as he too makes his exit in the opposite direction, but as Ashley looks off camera, it’s a look of worry on her face, clearly knowing that things aren’t perfect between the champions, and it’s on her concerned face that we linger for a few moments before cutting elsewhere.
We head to the trainer’s room where we see Chris Benoit sat on a table, a doctor running his hands across Benoit’s head and neck, performing some sort of examination. As the doc twists and turns Benoit’s head to check his movement, Benoit can’t help but wince and grimace in pain…
How’s he doin’, doc?
The camera pans towards the doorway, and a big pop breaks out inside the arena as Batista has entered the room. Dressed in a t-shirt and sweatpants, ‘The Animal’ is still in cool-down mode from his match earlier, but he’s clearly concerned enough about Benoit’s condition to check on him so soon after a match of his own…
Well, to be honest… not good. I mean, in my opinion, Chris, you shouldn’t really be goin’ out there tonight. I don’t think this match with Edge is a good idea. Infact, I don’t think competing this Sunday is a good idea either.
Boos from inside the arena, with Benoit flaring his nostrils in disappointment…
I mean, you can barely move your head without causing pain in your neck. If you’re wanting my honest medical opinion… I don’t think you should be going anywhere near a wrestling ring right now.
A quick laugh from Benoit, clearly ignoring the doctor’s advice…
I’m makin’ this Sunday, doc. And I’m makin’ tonight too.
Benoit shakes away the attention of the doctor, grabbing a nearby t-shirt and moving to stand up…
Hey, whoa, Chris… you think tonight’s a good idea. I mean, why not just save yourself for Sunday?
And now Benoit does stand up, again laughing to himself, that toothy grin of his breaking through…
Listen, Dave, I don’t need your concern. This Sunday might be the last title shot I get.I’m not lettin’ Edge take that away from me. And I’m not letttin’ him get away with what he did to me a month ago. I owe him, big time.
Pop from inside the arena…
You and me, we might be friends… but don’t come in here askin’ me if I’m OK. And don’t listen to what the doctors or the medical staff have to say. I don’t want anybody takin’ it easy on me in there… especially not you. I’m back, I’m 100%, and I’m ready to take that title away from you.
And now Benoit rather forcibly squares up to Batista, momentarily catching the champion off guard…
Don’t treat me like I’m your buddy, ‘cause this Sunday at Judgment Day, it’s every man for himself. You treat me like any other opponent, you treat me like Edge or Kennedy. You treat me… like a threat. ‘Cause that’s exactly what I am.
An intense moment as the two stare each other down, both men looking confident and focused, the fans again cheering, clearly revelling in the sight of the two fan favourites standing toe-to-toe…
Y’know, if I didn’t have so much respect for you… I’d kick your ass right here, right now.
Another big pop, with Benoit again flashing that toothy grin…
I wouldn’t have it any other way.
In a clear show of respect for each other, the pair exchange smirks, with Batista nodding, fully aware of how intense and focused Benoit is right now. Bringing the standoff to an end, Batista turns and heads for the exit, but just before he reaches for the handle, he turns over his shoulder and says…
Good luck tonight.
And with that, Batista opens the door and makes his exit, Benoit watching him go, breathing deeply, focused, ready for action despite the pain he’s suffering. After a few seconds, the doctor moves back in, trying to usher Benoit back down onto his table, with Benoit rolling his eyes in frustration, and as he sits back down, we head back into the arena.
Where we hear…
*SOME BODIES GONNA GET IT…*
For the first time we see a united entrance from The Coachman Coalition
, with Jonathan Coachman
leading out the man scheduled to compete tonight, Mark Henry
, and his fellow coalition members, Montel Vontavious Porter
, King Booker
and Queen Sharmell
. After a big of posing under the SmackDown fist, the impressive looking quintet then head down the aisle, Henry leading the way, looking as intimidating and imposing as ever after his return from injury…
Last week, we were all shocked by the return of that man, Mark Henry, after ten months on the shelf due to injury. Henry is back, and not only that, but he’s the man that Jonathan Coachman has been talking to on the phone these past few weeks.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
And now the final member of The Coachman Coalition is in place, and what a damn impressive group it is. King Booker, ‘MVP’, Mark Henry, ‘Coach’ has done a helluva job bringin’ these three together, and I think startin’ this Sunday at Judgment Day, they could be about to take over SmackDown.
I dunno about that, ‘JBL’. I mean, Booker and ‘MVP’, they ain’t exactly been winnin’ a lotta matches lately, Henry’s just spent nearly a year on the shelf, and ‘Coach’ ain’t exactly a winner in life. They might look impressive, but that don’t mean they’re the real deal.
The music breaks out, but as the camera points at the entrance way, there’s no sign of anybody coming out. It’s not until the camera starts to scan the crowd that we see all three of The Extremists
high in the stands, with The Sandman
thrusting his cane high in the air, Sabu
pointing to the heavens, while Tommy Dreamer
lets out a roar, before Sandman leads the trio through the masses to the ring…
They may not have the size, the may not have the quickness, the may not have the championship pedigree of The Coalition, but I don’t think anybody can deny the fight and the heart of The Extremists. The question is though, will that be enough for them to beat The Coachman Coalition this Sunday at Judgment Day?
Heart, passion, desire, that ECW spirit, that’s what these three have got, and lemme tell ya’, those are the kinda things that can make the difference between winnin’ and losin’. ‘Coach’ mighta sweet talked three guys into a team, but there’s not a chance they’re gonna be as committed to each other as The Extremists are.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Aw who gives a damn about all that crap? The bottom line is, that unless there’s chairs and canes and tables involved, these three don’t have a chance this Sunday. Mark Henry’s gonna squash Sandman right here, and that’s gonna set the tone for Judgment Day, just you wait and see.
Mark Henry w/ Jonathan Coachman, King Booker, Montel Vontavious Porter and Queen Sharmell vs. The Sandman w/ Sabu and Tommy Dreamer
As the bell rings, both men snarl at each other from across the ring, before they come together for a tie up… only for Henry to shove Sandman hard into the corner! After composing himself, Sandman moves in for another tie up… and again Henry shoves him hard into the corner! This time Sandman grabs his back and stays against the turnbuckle, prompting Henry to charge… corner splash… but Sandman sidesteps it! Henry smacks chest first off the turnbuckle, and now Sandman attacks, landing a string of right hands before he comes off the ropes… clothesline… but Henry barely moves! Again Sandman hits the ropes… but again the clothesline only causes Henry to stagger. A third clothesline attempt… but this time Henry levels Sandman with a massive body block! Sandman smacks off the canvas, and now Henry looks to exert his control, laying in with stomps, before he drags Sandman to the corner to land huge shots to the head and body. A pair of big headbutts also land, before Henry goes for an Irish whip across the ring… and again follows in… this time into a boot to the face! Sandman quickly pushes himself onto the second rope… but before he can fly, ‘MVP’ nips up onto the apron… Sandman drills a boot to the face… but then Henry charges and sends Sandman flying to the floor below! A tough landing for Sandman, and to make matter worse, Booker and ‘MVP’ now stand over him, but Sabu and Dreamer are quickly over there, tensions running high between the two teams. Henry heads outside and tells Sabu and Dreamer to “Watch this!” as he scoops Sandman up… then drives him spine first into the ringpost! Sandman crumples to the floor in agony, with Henry getting involved in a staredown with Dreamer, before he rolls Sandman back into the ring and follows in for a near fall.
Henry now looks to punish Sandman, doing damage to the spine with a backbreaker, then a sidewalk slam, before he comes close to victory with a legdrop that gets a long two count. Henry continues to attack the spine, aiming clubbing forearms to the small of the back, before he fires Sandman off the ropes… into a BEARHUG! Henry wraps his massive arms around Sandman, trying to squeeze the life out of him, with the ECW veteran trapped in the centre of the ring. Henry ragdolls Sandman, and slowly but surely, he starts to squeeze the life out of him, Sandman’s head starting to sag, and the ref moves in to check, lifting the arm once… it drops. Again the arm is lifted… again it drops. The arm goes up for a third time… but this time it stays up! The crowd pop as Sandman stays in the match, and with Sabu and Dreamer rallying the fans, Sandman looks to make an escape, drilling Henry with headbutt after headbutt until finally he breaks free. Now it’s Sandman who goes on the attack, landing rights to the face before he goes for an Irish whip… Henry reverses, but then lowers his head… DDT! Sandman plants him, rolls Henry over… 1… 2… Henry powers out! It takes an age for Henry to finally get back to his feet, but when he does, Sandman is ready to move in… and he looks for a RUSSIAN LEGSWEEP… but Henry blocks it, then he shoves Sandman to the ropes. Henry charges… but Sandman low bridges… and Henry tumbles all the way to the floor! Landing right infront of Sabu and Dreamer, Henry is back on his feet and immediately gets in Dreamer’s face, threatening him. Dreamer plays it cool, but now Booker and ‘MVP’ are over as well… but in the ring, Sandman has climbed to the top rope… and flies down with a crossbody… ONTO ALL FIVE MEN BELOW! Just like that, all six men are down around ringside, but when they start to pick themselves back up, a six man brawl breaks out! Rights and lefts are being flung all over the place, and even though Sandman manages to roll Henry back into the ring, there’s too much going on at ringside… and the REF THROWS THE MATCH OUT!
Winner: No Contest @ 04.12
It didn’t take long, but the match has quickly escalated into a brawl, and there’s chaos all over ringside, as Dreamer and Booker trade show, while ‘MVP’ and Sabu go at it. Booker manages to land a few good rights to Dreamer, then he shoves him into the steel steps, allowing Booker to slip inside the ring and tackle Sandman to the canvas. Booker lays in with stomps and boots, and he’s soon joined in the assault by Henry, who also lays in with massive stomps to the chest. ‘Coach’ now too slides into the ring, encouraging his troops, but what neither he nor Booker or Henry see is that on the outside, Sabu has clotheslined ‘MVP’ into the crowd!
Sabu now heads under the ring… and you all know what he’s looking for… as he brings out three chairs! The crowd are on their feet as Sabu slides the chairs into the ring, then follows inside, just in time for Henry to turn… SABU THROWS A CHAIR INTO HENRY’S FACE! The impact causes Henry to stagger, but it also prompts Booker to turn and charge… SABU TOSSES A CHAIR SMACK OFF BOOKER’S SKULL!! The shot causes Booker to collapse to the canvas and roll outside, but Henry is still on his feet… until Sandman grabs his cane… and SMACKS HENRY RIGHT BETWEEN THE EYES!! Somehow Henry is still on his feet, but now Dreamer is back in the ring, steel chair in hand… a THUNDEROUS STEEL CHAIR SHOT FINALLY PUTS HENRY DOWN!!
The crowd is going wild, while on the outside, Booker and ‘MVP’ scramble to join Sharmell at the foot of the aisle… but in the ring, with Henry down… and his colleagues on the outside… there’s nobody left to save ‘Coach’! Realising how grave the situation is, ‘Coach’ pleads with The Extremists, almost begging for mercy, with the crowd baying for blood, on their feet, screaming for ‘Coach’ to suffer. With his cane in his hands, Sandman turns to the fans, almost asking for their permission… and when the crowd roar their approval… SANDMAN SMACKS ‘COACH’ ACROSS THE TOP OF THE HEAD WITH THE SINGNAPORE CANE!!!
It’s a truly massive pop as ‘Coach’ is laid out with one shot, his Coalition decimated by the weapon wielding Extremists! ‘Coach’ is down, Henry is down, and on the outside, Booker and ‘MVP’ look too damn scared to do anything about it, as back in the ring, Dreamer, Sabu and Sandman stand tall, the crowd breaking into a loud “ECW! ECW! ECW!” chant, The Extremists revelling in their destruction, calling for Booker and ‘MVP’ to get back in the ring, but the fight will have to wait until Sunday as we cut away to a commercial.
We’re back, and we see the man we were introduced to last week, Doug Williams
, talking to some random backstage worker. It’s a conversation we can’t really make out, but the two seem quite into it… until suddenly both come to a stop, and the camera pans to reveal why… The Bluebloods
have entered the frame to a round of boos from inside the arena. An intimidating glare from Paul Burchill
chases the worker away, allowing a smug looking William Regal
to step forward, while Dave Taylor
brings up the rear…
Well, well, well… Douglas Williams. I never thought I’d see the day. How nice to finally see you here in the WWE, and on SmackDown no less. It’s always a pleasure to see a fellow countryman walking the halls and corridors of the blue brand.
Despite the welcome, there’s a clear feeling of uneasiness between the two…
Regal. I had a feeling I’d run into you and the boys eventually. How are you?
Oh, all the better for seeing you, my old friend. It’s been a long time since our paths have crossed, hasn’t it?
A slight nod in response from Williams…
You’ve had plenty of success back home and in Europe, I hear. That’s very commendable. But I’m sure I don’t have to tell you about how big a step up it is to compete here in the WWE. Many have tried to make the move from England to the WWE… and many have failed. It’d be a shame if that happened to you, wouldn’t it Douglas?
There’s smirks in the background from Burchill and Taylor, which cause Williams to shake his head in annoyance…
It would be a shame. But I don’t plan on letting that happen.
Oh, of course not, no. But… you could always use, a helping hand. A friend that knows the ropes, someone who can take you under their wing and help you settle in to your new surroundings.
Williams has a quick smirk to himself, running a hand across his mouth to hide his smile…
I’ve always respected and admired you as a competitor, Douglas. And of course, I’m always looking to expand the talent of my little group here. That’s why there’s a place in The Bluebloods… with your name on it. We’d more than welcome a true gentleman, like yourself.
Regal smirks, fully expecting a grateful response from Williams…
Look Regal, you know I’ve got a lot of respect for you. As far as British wrestling goes, you’re probably the biggest name we’ve got around the world. You’ve wrestled in America a long time, you’ve won a lot of titles, and I respect that.
Regal nods smugly…
But this is a huge opportunity for me, and I don’t intend on following Burchill and Taylor’s path by being one of your lackeys. I’m here to make my own name, I’m here to stand on
my own two feet. And I don’t need you, or anybody else for that matter, to take me under their wing.
Offended, Regal turns up his nose at Williams…
So thank you, but no thanks. I’m not interested.
And ever so slowly, Williams squares up to Regal and says…
And before I forget… just ‘cause I come from England… doesn’t mean I’m some pompous twat like you.
A loud “Oooh!” from inside the arena, the comment leaving Regal fuming as he snarls at Doug, who simply smiles and turns to walk away. Burchill and Taylor now move back into the frame, they both looking as offended as Regal, and as the trio watch Williams leave, all Regal can do is mutter…
And on that, we head back into the arena.
And the silence is broken by…
*LIVE FOR THE MOMENT…*
A rousing cheer from the fans as Matt Hardy
bursts into the arena, firing up the crowd, the United States Champion full of energy and enthusiasm as he heads down the aisle…
It’s time for eight man tag team action, and here comes the United States Champion, Matt Hardy. Hardy has been on the run of his life so far in 2007, but it could all come to a stop this Sunday at Judgment Day when he defends the US Title against The Miz.
It’s been a great year for Matt no doubt, but I don’t think it’s gonna be over this Sunday. I think Miz is a threat, he’s got a legit shot at takin’ home the gold, but for me, Matt’s just too hot right now to lose.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
I’ll give it to ‘im, he’s had a helluva year so far. But if ya’ ask me, he’s the luckiest guy alive right now. How many breaks can a guy catch in a year? His luck’s gonna run out this Sunday, and we’re gonna have a new United States Champion.
Despite the earlier interview, The Hooligans
look like a pretty solid unit as they step out, with Paul London
and Brian Kendrick
energising the crowd, with the pair stopping under the SmackDown fist. London holds out his hand, although there’s a slight pause, as Kendrick is too busy playing up to the crowd, but he quickly gets back into the routine, slapping hands with his partner, before Ashley Massaro
sends the champs sprinting down to the ring…
We heard Josh Matthews ask the question earlier, are these two on the same page? I don’t know about you two, but I wasn’t exactly convinced. It almost seems to me like Brian Kendrick, like he’s jealous or something right now.
I dunno ‘bout that, Cole. I mean, it’s like London said, a team ain’t gonna agree with each other every second of every day, but as long as you step in the ring and get the job done, then what’s it matter? And The Hooligans keep gettin’ the job done.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Like they got the job done at WrestleMania? Let’s face it, when Kendrick beat London a couple o’ weeks ago to advance in the King of the Ring, I think that showed Kendrick that London’s just holdin’ him back. Kendrick’s right, they’re the tag team champions, they deserve better, and Kendrick’s doin’ ‘is best to get it for ‘em, and all London wants to do is live in the status quo. Losin’ this Sunday might not be the worst thing for Kendrick’s career if it means he finally ditches London.
The explosion heralds a strong pop from the fans as Kane
strides into the arena, heading straight down the aisle, a sinister look on his face as he tugs on his elbow pad...
I talked about Matt Hardy bein' on a roll in 2007, Kane's been on quite a roll since WrestleMania. He's picked up plenty of victories, including one over his opponent this Sunday, Finlay, just a couple of weeks ago in a King of the Ring qualifier.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Yeah but why don't you tell the full story there, Michael? Why not mention the fact that Kane beat Finlay just one week after Finlay had to go through a Belfast Brawl? Finlay had a shot to go all the way, and he got robbed!
It was just bad luck that that's when the draw had Finlay and Kane scheduled to compete. But there ain't gonna be no excuses this Sunday, both guys are healthy, both guys are fired up, pardon the pun, and Kane's rollin' into Judgment Day with a ton o' momentum behind 'im.
Week on week, the level of heat continues to rise whenever The Miz
makes his entrance. Strutting out into the arena, Miz and Michelle McCool
point up at the ring and share a laugh at Matt Hardy’s expense, before Miz starts to motion around his waist that this Sunday, the United States Championship is his…
Last week Matt Hardy came through a pretty gruelling King of the Ring qualifier against William Regal, only to be then jumped by The Miz after the bell. Guys, we've talked about the improvement of Miz as an in-ring competitor, but if you ask me, it's the guy's attitude that really needs to improve.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Why? 'Cause he's developed a mean streak? 'Cause he's focused on provin' everybody wrong? He wants to show he belongs, he's scratched and clawed for his big break, and this Sunday he's gonna get it.
I'm gonna with ya', Michael. Credit where it's due, Miz has really came on these last few months, and he won that Battle Royal before WrestleMania, that made a lotta people sit up and take notice. But I don’t know if he’s at Hardy’s level yet, but you never know, he might just prove me wrong. This match right here would be a great place to start…
*DON’T WASTE MY TIME…*
Some pretty decent heat as The New Breed
make their entrance, with Layla
confidently leading Elijah Burke
and Monty Brown
down the aisle, the trio joining Miz and McCool outside the ring, joining in with the gesturing at their Judgment Day opponents…
We’ve talked about wether or not London and Kendrick are on the same page, and guys, I don’t think Layla’s really helped that situation over the last couple of weeks. She’s been tryin’ to stir the pot, she’s been flirting with Brian Kendrick, and I think she’s tryin’ to drive a wedge between the champions.
And I guess London and Kendrick ain’t gonna agree about that either, huh? To be honest with ya’, Burke and Brown are a big enough threat without all this talk about The Holligans. These two guys make a great team, that real combination of speed and power, and they don’t need any help from the champs to win the gold.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Sounds like pretty good strategy from Layla for me. And let’s be honest, I doubt they’d be the first pair o’ friends to fight over her. She’s so hot she could probably split up Batman and Robin if she wanted to.
”MY NAME IS FINLAY… AND I LOVE TA’ FIGHT…”
And the final member of the match Finlay
steps out, trusty shillelagh in his hand, and as has become the norm in recent weeks, The Little Bastard
is by his side. As Finlay nears the ring, the camera cuts to Kane, a wicked smirk on his face, almost a laugh, no doubt at his scare tactics towards Finlay last week, something that causes the Irishman to growl as he and Kane lock eyes…
I don’t know about you two, but I think Kane really had Finlay spooked last week. Kane made the lights go out, he brought chills to the air, and then he went on a rampage, causing Finlay to scramble for his chair and get outta dodge in a hurry.
And for all Finlay’s toughness, for all the times we’ve seen him smash that shillelagh over some poor guy’s skull, he can’t compete with Kane when it comes to mind games. Heck, Kane scares the hell outta me in broad daylight, never mind when he’s turnin’ out the lights.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Yeah but at Judgment Day, it ain’t gonna be about mind games, it’s gonna be a straight up brawl, and all that’s gonna matter is who’s the toughest. And if ya’ ask me, Kane might have supernatural powers, but Finlay’s the toughest S.O.B. I’ve ever seen in the squared circle, and that’s what’s gonna get the win this Sunday.
Match 4: Six Man Tag Team Match
United States Champion Matt Hardy, WWE Tag Team Champions The Hooligans and Kane w/ Ashley Massaro vs. Finlay, The Miz and The New Breed w/ Layla, The Little Bastard and Michelle McCool
Matt Hardy and Finlay are the two men set to kick this one off, restarting their rivalry of the past few months, the two engaging in a hard tie up that sees Matt work into a headlock. Finlay shoves Matt into the ropes, then looks for a clothesline… Hardy ducks underneath, keeps on running… then knocks Finlay down with a running forearm smash. Finlay is right back up, only for a scoop slam to put him down, which allows Matt to come off the ropes with a snap legdrop for an early two count. Finlay scrambles to the corner, where Hardy smacks a few rights, then goes for the Irish whip across… and follows in… into a boot to the face! Hardy drops to a knee, and Finlay quickly tags in Monty Brown, who rings on the arm and drives his shoulder a few times… only for Hardy to twist into a hammerlock. Brown uses a pair of elbows to escape, then he sends Hardy off the ropes… only for Matt to bowl him over with a shoulderblock! Brown is back up… armdrag sends him down! Again Brown is up… another armdrag, and this time Hardy hangs on, drags Brown to his corner and tags in Kane. With Hardy holding Brown in place, Kane is able to land a few easy shots to the throat, then he sends Brown off the ropes… big boot to the face! Another early cover… another kick out at two. Kane now tags in London, who enters the ring by coming off the top rope with a double axe handle, then after a few rights to the face, he makes a quick tag to Kendrick. The champs fire Brown off the ropes… into a double hitposs, then Kendrick comes off the ropes… and London hiptosses him onto Brown! Kendrick hooks the leg… 1… 2… Brown rolls a shoulder.
The Hooligans seems to be working well together, as after Kendrick rattles Brown with a running leg lariat, he tags London back in, the two again looking for a double team move as they use the double Irish whip… into a double dropkick! London hooks the leg… but again Brown kicks out at two. London wrenches on the arm once again, but this time Brown grabs a handful of hair and backs London into the heels’ corner. The ref steps in and calls for the break, which Brown provides, but sensing he’s in trouble, London tries to battle from the corner… as he rocks Finlay, then Miz, then Burke with big right hands knocking them from the apron… but this allows Brown the chance to grab him from behind… belly to back suplex! Brown drives London to the mat, and now finally Brown can tag out as he brings Miz into things. Miz lays in with a string of stomps to the body and face, before he shoves London to the corner and hammers him with right hands, driving London down to a seated position. Miz then distracts the ref, allowing Burke to choke London against the post, but when he releases, London uses the ropes to drag himself up… just in time for Miz to nail the swinging corner clothesline! London flops down to the mat, and Miz hooks the leg… 1… 2… London kicks out. The heels now do a good job of isolating London, making plenty of quick tags, and Finlay and Brown do a power of damage with a seated senton and a pumphandle slam, before Burke comes close to victory with the outer limitz elbow. Miz is back in, but he’s caught by a right hand from London, who now tries to rally with a trio of rights, until Miz drills a stiff knee to the midsection that doubles London over… allowing Miz to nail a snap DDT! Miz goes for the cover… 1… 2… London barely kicks out!
Finlay is brought back in, and he unloads with shots to the body and face, before he puts London down with a scoop slam, then locks on a nerve hold. Trying to wear London out, Finlay applies pressure, keeping London grounded, but with his teammates encouraging him, eventually London is able to work back to his feet, feeding off the energy of the crowd, drilling elbows to the gut in an attempt to break the hold… only for Finlay to grab a handful of hair… and yank London head first down onto the mat! The crowd groan in disappointment as yet another rally comes to an end, and it could get worse as Burke tags back in. After driving London to the corner with kicks and punches, Burke then fires him across the ring… and charges… ELIJAH EXPRESS… NO! London dives to safety… and Burke crashes into the turnbuckle! Both men are down, and now London makes a desperate attempt to crawl to his corner… Burke tags in Miz… but here comes Matt Hardy! Hardy explodes into the ring and runs through Miz with a clothesline, then he sends Miz off the ropes… into a huge back body drop! The US Champion rattles Miz with rights in the corner, then sends him for the ride… and follows in with the corner clothesline… before he explodes from the corner with a bulldog! It’s too much for Finlay, who storms the ring, clubbing Hardy from behind… but that only draws Kane into the ring, who smacks Finlay with a big boot to the face! Burke charges at Kane, but Kane sees him coming… and counters with a tilt-a-whirl slam! Kane is back on his feet, but here comes London… running shooting star press! The impact causes Burke to roll under the bottom ropes, but now Brown steps in, clubbing London from behind… but here comes Kendrick with a flying forearm to knock Brown through the ropes!
It’s mayhem as all eight men are in the ring, brawling with their respective Judgment Day opponents, but a sense of order is restored as Brown and Burke come together on the outside… but that means they don’t see London and Kendrick charge off the ropes… DUELLING SOMERSAULT PLANCHAS!! Burke and Brown are taken down, but in the ring, Finlay and Kane trade massive right hands, until Kane lands three shots in a row that back Finlay to the ropes… and then Kane nails a running clothesline… that takes both men down to the floor! We’re left with Matt and Miz in the ring, and Miz lands a few right hands… until Matt ducks underneath one… and nails the SIDE EFFECT! Hardy hooks the leg… 1… 2… Miz rolls a shoulder! Determined to put Miz away, Hardy climbs to the second rope and waits for Miz to rise… diving elbow to the back of the head! Another cover… 1… 2… again Miz barely hangs in there! While this is going on inside the ring, on the outside, Kane and Finlay battle near the barricade, with Finlay gaining the upperhand, and now he goes for an Irish whip… that sends Kane crashing into the steel steps! At the foot of the aisle, London and Kendrick continue to battle Burke and Brown, with Kendrick dropping Burke with a stiff right hand… until he sees Layla out the corner of his eye! Layla again tries to flirt with Kendrick, winking at him and running a finger suggestively down his chest… until Ashley tackles Layla to the floor! A catfight breaks out, but Kendrick quickly tries to break it up as he drags Ashley away. The two shout at each other, with Ashley yelling at Kendrick for allowing himself to be distracted… and here comes Brown from behind… clubbing Kendrick… and knocking him into Ashley! Ashley hits the floor, but Brown now grabs Kendrick, and looks for a gutwrench suplex… but here comes London… saving his partner with a dropsault that smacks Brown square in the jaw! The argument breaks out now between London and Kendrick, but in the ring, Hardy has Miz lined up… kick… TWIST OF FATE… NO! Miz shoves Hardy into the ropes… where he’s clocked from behind with a hard forearm to the back of the head by Finlay! Hardy stumbles forward… kick by Miz… then the REALITY CHECK!! Miz nails it, hooks both legs… 1… 2… 3!
Winner: Finlay, The Miz and The New Breed @ 08.37
Miz has won it for his team! A stunned silence from the crowd as Miz quickly rolls from the ring and joins up with McCool, the two celebrating at the foot of the aisle, slowly backing their way up the aisle with smirks on the faces. In the ring, Kane, Kendrick and London slide back in, a seriously annoyed look on Kendrick’s face, but as he tries to look towards London, London is more interested in doing his best to help Hardy back to his feet. On the aisle, the heels have now grouped together, the quartet backing up the aisle, pointing back at the ring at their respective Judgment Day opponents, but the big story coming out of the match is that The Miz has just pinned Matt Hardy… and that Hardy’s United States Championship could be in bigger jeopardy this Sunday than anyone ever imagined.
We return to see Mr. Kennedy
sat on a steel chair in the communal locker room, by himself. Still dressed in his wrestling gear with a t-shirt covering his torso, Kennedy has his head bowed, eyes on the floor, although we can see a hint of a smirk on his face as the camera zoom in…
I bet uh… I bet that neck’s pretty sore right now, huh Chris?
Now bringing his head up, Kennedy cockily grins into the camera…
And I bet, that despite that tough exterior, deep down inside… you’re worried, aren’t ya’? Worried about your neck, worried about your career, worried that your last chance at the gold might just pass – you – by.
Kennedy leans forward, narrowing his eyes...
And Batista… ‘Big Dave’… I bet you’re worried too, aren’t ya’ ‘champ’?
Nodding to himself, Kennedy has another smile on his face...
Worried ‘cause you know that this Sunday, you’re pathetic excuse for a title reign… is over. And there’s not a damn thing you can do about it.
Boos from inside the arena, which Kennedy hears, turning to sneer and shake his head...
And Edge… you’ve gotta be pretty worried right now too. I mean, God, one more missed opportunity, one more title match screwed up, you’re gonna go freakin’ nuts, aren’t ya’!? And Jesus, the whinin’ and complainin’, it’s gonna reach a new low next Friday night. I can’t wait to see that!
With a loud, sarcastic laugh, Kennedy pauses, rubbing his jaw, before he continues...
You three, you’re all worried, but you don’t like to show it. You keep your fears locked up inside, but this Sunday, they’re all gonna be on display for the world to see.
Looking back down for a second, Kennedy then brings his head back up...
But for all those fears, for all those doubts, the one thing nobody is worryin’ about… is me
. But forget broken necks, forget past failures, forget the controversy that follows you around, guys. That’s not important. That’s not what you should be worryin’ about.
Kennedy shakes a head and wags a finger...
But me? I’m a huge
worry. ‘Cause I’m the biggest threat to each and every one of ya’. I’m the guy you oughta be seein’ in your nightmares. And if I’m not?
No smirk or grin, instead an intense look as Kennedy stares into the camera and says...
Then I’m damn sure gonna be on Sunday night.
More jeers from inside the arena...
This Sunday, Judgment Day, Batista, Edge… and especially you, Benoit… you three are just an afterthought. ‘Cause y’see this Sunday… that’s my
night. Not yours, not anybody else’s, mine
Jamming a finger into his chest, Kennedy pauses again, then turns his eyes upwards...
I was born
to be a champion, I was made
for the spotlight. The people need a new leader, a new hope, a brighter tomorrow, and I'm the guy to give it to 'em!
So that's why this Sunday, I'm gonna put all those fears to bed in three – simple – steps.
Kennedy counts along with his fingers as he speaks...
Batista? I'm gonna remove the pressure of knowing your title reigns been a sham, by just takin' that title away from you. Edge? I'm gonna dry your tears, and I'm gonna stop that lip tremblin' by kickin' your teeth right down your throat!
And with a dry, almost creepy looking smile, Kennedy leans forward again...
And Chris? I'm gonna put all that retirement talk to bed... when I end your career. I am headed straight for the top, I am dyin'
for my shot to run with the ball, and I'll do whatever it takes to get it. I beat Ric Flair... I beat 'The Man'... now I'm gonna be 'The Man'. And the whole world are gonna hear... “Your NEW World Heavyweight Champion... MMMIIISSSTTTEEERRRRRR... KKKEEENNNEEEDDDYYYYYYY!
And ever so slowly, Kennedy stands up, closes his eyes, then snaps them open to say...
KEN – NAH – DAY!!
And with that, Kennedy kicks the steel chair he sat on to the floor and storms out of the room, the camera staying trained on the space in which he once sat, but only briefly as we quickly cut back to the ring.
And having already made their entrance, The Full Blooded Italians stand by, with their boss Santino Marella already with mic in one hand and Trinity in the other, while Big Vito, Nunzio and Tony Mamaluke stand nearby. As the music comes to an end, Santino has to wait for the boos to die down before he can finally speak…
So, it is-ah finally time for-ah ‘de great, Santino Marella, to enter ‘de King of ‘de Ring tournament! And ‘dat-ah means ‘dis is ‘de time for The Full Blooded Italians to-ah finally
get-ah ‘de respect we deserve!
Nodding heads all round from the rest of the group...
For-ah just like Rocky Balboa who became-ah king of ‘de boxing world, it is-ah time for me to-ah become king of ‘de wrestling world!
This time it's applause for Marella from his cohorts...
And to-ah do ‘dis, I must defeat-ah ‘dis Daniel Bryanson
A few groans of laughter from the crowd, with Santino confused as to why...
‘Dis is-ah ‘de guy who last week-ah was beat up by ‘De Hamburglar and ‘De Lone Ranger.
”Did he just call me The Lone Ranger?”...
I guess-ah ‘dat means Tazz is Tonto? But-ah anyway, Daniel Bryanson, he is-ah no match for Santino! And tonight, when we are-ah through with him, his hopes of-ah becomin’ ‘de King of the Ring will be-ah just like his career after-ah Judgment Day… sleepin’ with-ah ‘de fishes!
Awful. And the crowd let Santino know about it as the boos start, but they don't last long as...
A sense of seriousness returns to proceedings as the intense Bryan Danielson
marches out into the arena, a fierce look of focus and determination on his face as he quickly paces down the aisle...
Well thank God we don't have to listen to Santino anymore! Folks, this is the final match in the round of 32 of the King of the Ring, and either Santino Marella or that man, Bryan Danielson, will become the final man to make it through to the round of 16.
And I'm pretty sure Danielson's gonna be focused on this match with Santino right now, but he's gotta have that huge match this Sunday with Gregory Helms in the back of his mind too. Helms made it through earlier tonight, let's see if Bryan can follow 'im into the next round.
And of course last week, 'JBL' you and Helms, you sure did a number on Danielson. The two of you attacking Danielson in the ring.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
What are you talkin' about, Michael? It was Danielson who started it all! I was just sayin' what was on my mind, I was expressin' my right to free speech, and that punk sucker punched me!
As he hits the ring, Danielson immediately heads to the ropes nearest to the announce desk, staring down on 'JBL' with fire in his eyes...
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Don't you look at me like that you piece o' crap! I'll come up there and kick the taste outta your mouth again, son.
Y'know one of these days that mouth of yours is gonna get you in some real trouble...
Match 5: King of the Ring Qualifying Match – Round of 32
Bryan Danielson vs. Santino Marella w/ Big Vito, Nunzio, Tony Mamaluke and Trinity
As the bell rings, Santino approaches the centre of the ring in his usual goofy fashion, throwing up the fists, warning Danielson not to get too close before he tastes a big left hand from the Italian. The crowd can’t help but laugh, but Danielson clearly isn’t impressed, as he decides he’s had enough of Santino’s antics… so he clocks him with a massive forearm to the jaw! The impact causes Marella to stumble to the ropes, where Danielson goes on the attack, unloading with kick after kicks to the thighs and body, before he lands another trio of forearms to the face and then fires Santino off the opposite side… right into a running forearm! Santino has rubber legs as he staggers back to his feet, and Danielson again looks to attack with the boots… but this time Santino catches it! “Ah ha!” yells the Italian as he has Danielson in a precarious situation, but before Marella can take advantage… Danielson rattles him with an enziguiri! Marella slumps to the canvas, looking old cold, but before Danielson can move in for the kill, Vito reaches under the bottom rope and drags Santino to the outside. The crowd boo heavily as the rest of The F.B.I. huddle around their boss, trying to help him regroup, but Danielson decides he doesn’t want to wait anymore as he barges past the ref, comes off the far away ropes… the flies with a SUICIDE DIVE… THAT WIPES OUT THE ENTIRE F.B.I.! The crowd roar with delight as Danielson’s risk pays off, but now he’s fighting his way through the wreckage, throwing wild rights and lefts at anybody who moves, allowing him to grab Santino and roll him back into the ring. Danielson then nips back up onto the apron and looks to slingshot himself back into the ring… but Vito reaches out and grabs him by the ankle… and yanks Danielson down, face first off the apron!
The referee was distracted by Santino, and now The F.B.I. look to take advantage, laying into Bryan on the outside with a flurry of stomps to the body, before Vito finally rolls Bryan back in and Santino scrambles to make the cover… 1… 2… Danielson rolls a shoulder. With Danielson down and hury, Santino looks to take control as in rather comical fashion he drops a few knees across the chest, then with Bryan on his knees, Santino nails a headbutt… but the move seems to do more damage to Santino as he wobbles back and forth, again drawing laughs from the crowd. Regaining his composure, Marella lands three left jabs to the jaw, then winds up for a big uppercut… but Bryan avoids it, Marella swings right through… then Bryan catches him from behind… then takes him down… CROSSFACE CHICKENWING! Danielson locks on a submission move, wrapping the legs for a grapevine, leaving Santino with no escape… but Trinity is up on the apron… and that allows Vito and crew to storm the ring! Once again Santino’s cronies comes to his rescue, laying in with more boots, before Nunzio and Mamaluke hold Danielson in position as Vito lines up… for a BIG BOOT TO THE FACE… but Danielson pulls Nunzio into the line of fire… and Nunzio eats the boot to the face! Mamaluke is stunned… until a jumping roundhouse sends him flying from the ring! Vito charges again… right into a release German suplex! Danielson is taking them all on… but here comes Santino from behind… looking for a COBRA CLUTCH… NO! Danielson grabs the wrist, twists, traps the arm… LEBELL LOCK!! Bryan has his deadly submission cinched in tight and with the ref now turning… he sees Santino tapping out!!
Winner: Via Submission, Bryan Danielson @ 03.17
Despite the numbers game working against him, Danielson makes quick work of Santino, and he became the final man to advance to the round of 16. Releasing his grip, Danielson bursts back to his feet, surveying the bodies at ringside before he has his hand raised in victory. As Santino rolls from the ring and is comforted by his posse, Danielson heads to the corner and calls for a mic...
I just uh... I just wanna say a thing or two to Gregory Helms... and to you too, John.
Danielson firmly points a finger in the direction of 'JBL', causing the commentator to sit up sharply...
Last week, you two... you did a real number on me. I mean, I got smacked with a clothesline from hell, then Greg nearly kicked my head clean off my shoulders. If the plan all along was to get me in the ring for more than just an interview, then... way to go. You got me.
”Damn right we did!”...
But this Sunday at Judgment Day... it's gonna be different. At Judgment Day, you're buddy Layfield is gonna be stuck behind the desk.
Once again Danielson and 'JBL' lock eyes, the camera seeing a seething Layfield ever so slowly shaking his head...
And that means there's gonna be nothin' left for you to do Greg but... tap – or – snap. Tap – or – snap. Tap or snap. Tap or snap!
”Tap or snap!”
“TAP OR SNAP!”
“TAP OR SNAP!!”
And as the chant continues to echo out around the arena, we quickly cut backstage, where we see Gregory Helms stood infront of a monitor, having seen everything that just happened, the look of confidence from earlier replaced with a look of fear and trepidation. As the chant grows ever louder, Helms looks more worried than ever before, clutching his title tight to his chest, looking like a desperate man who realises there's no escape, all the while we continue to hear...
“TAP OR SNAP!!
TAP OR SNAP!!”
Our video opens at the King of the Ring ’96, where ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin stands victorious, delivering the interview that launched his main event career…
Narrator: It’s a night where future legends make their mark...
“AUSTIN 3:16 SAYS I JUST WHIPPED YOUR ASS!”
We now head back to King of the Ring ’93, where Bret Hart puts Bam Bam Bigelow away with the winning victory roll...
Narrator: A night where icons are created…
“I’M THE BEST THERE IS, THE BEST THERE WAS, AND THE BEST THERE EVER WILL BE!”
King of the Ring ’01, where Edge puts Kurt Angle down with the Edgecution then crawls into the pin to get an emotional victory…
Narrator: A night when the stars of tomorrow shine bright...
“WELCOME TO THE ERA OF AWESOMENESS!”
And we now go to last year’s tournament final, where Booker T grabs the win over Bobby Lashley…
Narrator: A night to crown… a new king.
“BOW DOWN BEFORE YOUR KING!”
We now see flashing images of some of this year’s contenders, starting with Jeff Hardy, Montel Vontavious Porter, CM Punk and Matt Hardy…
Narrator: And this year, live on NBC, the WWE King of the Ring returns! It’s the one night Saturday Night’s Main Event spectacular where one man’s career is set to skyrocket!
More flashing images, this time it’s Bryan Danielson, Kenny Dykstra, Johnny Nitro and Mr. Kennedy…
Narrator: Eight men will battle to join the most exclusive of WWE clubs. Who will take King Booker’s crown and become the 2007 King of the Ring!?
Another round of flashing images, this time of former winners such as Steve Austin, Owen Hart, Edge, Bret Hart and King Booker…
Narrator: The King is dead…
More clips from last year, this time from Booker’s coronation ceremony, then a quick shot of him close to tears after his victory to clinch the World Heavyweight Championship…
“ALL HAIL KING BOO-KAH!”
”Long live… the King.”
"SATURDAY NIGHT’S MAIN EVENT – THREE HOUR KING OF THE RING SPECIAL – JUNE 2ND - LIVE ON NBC!"
*End Video Package*
Cut straight to the announce desk to see our commentary team…
We are getting closer and close to Saturday Night’s Main Event and the 2007 King of the Ring tournament. We’re just two weeks away from crowning a new King, and we now know the final sixteen men who will battle it out to secure their place in the final eight.
Tommy Dreamer vs. Mr. Kennedy
Matt Hardy vs. Kane
Gregory Helms vs. Brian Kendrick
Bryan Danielson vs. Montel Vontavious Porter
Well there ya’ have it guys, some really interesting matchups comin’ up over the next couple o’ weeks, perhaps none more so than the one between Matt Hardy and Kane.
No doubt about it, Michael. Hardy and Kane, two guys rollin’ into Judgment Day with a ton o’ momentum, but will either of ‘em still be on that kinda roll after this Sunday? And how could that effect their chances in the King of the Ring?
Elsewhere, the man who pulled off without doubt the biggest upset of the first round, Tommy Dreamer, he beat King Booker to make it this far, but now he’s got Mr. Kennedy, a guy who could easily be World Heavyweight Champion by the time they meet!
John Bradshaw Layfield:
And I think what Kennedy said last week could easily come true. He could become champion at Judgment Day, then the King of the Ring would be the crowning achievement for the fastest risin’ star in WWE history.
We’ve also got a pair of champions in the Cruiserweight Champion Gregory Helms takin’ on one half of the WWE Tag Team Champions, Brian Kendrick, although will either man still be a champion this time next week? And I guess no prizes for guessin’ who you’re gonna be rootin’ for when Bryan Danielson and ‘MVP’ meet, right ‘JBL’? Folks, it’s shapin’ up to be a great tournament, some real exciting matches to come over the next few weeks here on Friday Night SmackDown!
And after a few seconds of silence, the arena erupts…
As we hear…
The arena goes absolutely nuts as for the first time in over six months, Rey Mysterio
has returned to Friday Night SmackDown…
Listen to this crowd! What an ovation! For the first time in over six months, Rey Mysterio is in a WWE arena, and he… wait… wait just a second here.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
That… that’s not
Granted, there is a man in the aisle wearing one of Mysterio’s mask, and dressed in a Rey t-shirt, but anybody with half a brain can see that this man is far too tall to be the real Mysterio…
John Bradshaw Layfield:
What the hell are ya’ talkin’ about? That’s Rey Mysterio! And look at ‘im, he looks great! That injury might be the best thing that ever happened to ‘im!
Are you kiddin’ me?
John Bradshaw Layfield:
No, look at ‘im! He’s about a foot taller, he’s got more hair on his head, he’s looks fantastic!
This is ridiculous…
Clearly it doesn’t take a genius to figure this out, but as our masked imposter enters the ring, he quickly heads to the corner and grabs a mic. As the music comes to a stop, it’s relentless heat, prompting the man to reach up, rip off the mask… and of course, it’s Chavo Guerrero who’s hiding beneath! Thinking he’s pulled the greatest prank in history, Chavo laughs his ass off in the ring, doubled over as he hams it up…
Ha ha! I fooled you! I fooled all of you!
John Bradshaw Layfield:
He sure fooled me! And that ain’t easy to do!
Oh my god…
Still laughing his head off, Chavo is soon joined by his aunt Vickie Guerrero who shares in the laughter and gives her nephew a round of applause for his antics…
I got you all! That video earlier, that said Rey Mysterio was coming back tonight, I paid a guy in the truck to change the graphic! Those reports on wwe.com sayin’ Rey would be here tonight, that was me too! Rey’s not here! I fooled each and every one of you!
More laughs from the Guerreros…
I got you all! And I bet you’re all feelin’ pretty embarrassed right now, huh?
The camera cuts to a teenager in the front row who simply shakes his head and buries his head in his hands…
But’s that’s nothing compared to the embarrassment and the shame I’m gonna make Rey Mysterio feel this Sunday.
In the background, Vickie nods and shouts “That’s right!”…
‘Cause I’m gonna embarrass him, and I’m gonna hurt him so badly that he can’t even stand. I’m gonna embarrass him… by keeping him down for a ten count.
Again Vickie plays her part, this time holding up ten fingers…
Last – Man – Standing. You people wanna know the reason why I challenged Rey to that kinda match? I’ll tell you. Y'see, six months ago, I embarrassed Rey when I smacked a steel chair off his leg and made him scream “I quit!”. And you should've listened to those words, Rey. You should've taken your own advice and not only quit that match... but you should have quit SmackDown, you should have quit the WWE... and you should have quit wrestling all together.
A real sneer into the camera as Chavo says that…
You should have quit then and there and stayed at home, and never even thought
about getting back in the ring. Especially not against me
Heat from the crowd…
Y'know Rey, I honestly can't believe it. I mean, you're a luchadore. You should know that for a luchadore, saying “I quit!” is the biggest embarrassment there is. Hundreds of men have said those words and have never even set foot inside an arena again, such is the shame they felt.
Becoming animated, Chavo shakes his head and rubs his jaw…
And yet here you are, returning to SmackDown like nothing happened. Lemme tell ya' esse
, you would never... and I mean never
hear a Guerrero say I quit.
Chavo turns to Vickie, who shakes her head as a sign of agreement…
And that's just it. For all the years you exploited my family, for all the years you used us to advance yourself, you were never truly... one of us.
Another sneer into the hard camera…
You proved that six months ago, but I don't see that in your little video. I see all the highlights, but where's the footage of me smashing a steel chair of your leg, you hanging upside down, screaming, begging for mercy, saying over and over again, “I quit!”, where's that footage, huh? Why is that not in your video? I mean... have you no shame, Rey?
Again Chavo turns to his aunt, shrugging his shoulders…
I've you had any pride left in yourself, you'd have known not to come back. But you made your decision, Rey. And now? Now I'm gonna make you pay.
At Judgment Day, every member of ma familia is gonna be back home watching, and they're gonna see me punish you for the crimes you committed against Los Guerreros. For every time you exploited my family name to get to the top, you're gonna pay for it. And I'm gonna take it out... of that surgically repaired knee of yours.
There’s a real glint in the eye as Guerrero delivers that last line…
For years, you took advantage of my family. I mean, my Uncle Eddie, he wasn’t always the smartest guy, and you knew that. You used to elevate your career, you used that to get ahead. This Sunday, I know Eddie is gonna be in heaven watching our match… and I know he’s gonna be very
happy with what he sees. So I hope you people have all been paying close attention during the little history lesson I’ve been giving you over these last few weeks.
Pacing the ring, Chavo makes sure to address every fan he can…
I hope you’ve all enjoyed hearing the stories about Rey’s past from Dean Malenko. I hope you enjoyed seeing me beat some of the more important guys from Rey’s past, guys like Psicosis and Billy Kidman. And I hope you all savoured that little entrance I just did. ‘Cause I promise you, that’s the last time you’ll ever see anybody in this mask walk down that aisle.
Chavo raises the Mysterio mask above his head…
I’ve done all I can to try and educate you people, I’ve done all I can to show you the real
Rey Mysterio, to show the real man behind this mask. I can’t do anymore. If you missed it, if you still don’t feel like you’ve had your fix of Rey… then too bad. ‘Cause this Sunday, it’s all over. The last… ever… appearance… of Rey Mysterio in a WWE ring. ‘Cause I’m not just gonna break Rey’s leg so bad that he can’t answer a ten count…
And now Chavo tosses the mask down on the canvas…
I’m gonna shatter his spirit into a thousand tiny, little pieces.
And in a total show of disrespect, Chavo wipes his feet on the mask then kicks it aside…
And I’m gonna avenge the legacy of the great Mexican warrior… Eddie Guerrero. Viva la ra-
What the…? It’s… it’s him! He’s here! It’s Rey Mysterio
! Mysterio is here after all, and he’s heard enough of Chavo! The crowd are going wild, while Chavo and Vickie are in shock in the ring, with Chavo furiously shaking his head, shouting “No! He’s not supposed to be here!”, while Vickie screams and stomps her feet. Mysterio sprints out from the back and makes a beeline for the ring, running straight down the aisle and sliding under the bottom rope… where Chavo gets the jump on him!
Pouncing, Chavo dives down and tries to keep Mysterio grounded with a string of forearms to the back, absolutely pounding him, desperately trying to gain the upperhand… but as both men battle back to their feet, Chavo goes for an Irish whip… but Rey ducks underneath his clothesline… leaps up… and nails a HURRICANRANA… THAT SENDS CHAVO INTO THE ROPES! With Guerrero in perfect position, the crowd goes nuts once again, as for the first time in over six months, Mysterio starts to dial it up… 619… NO!!
At the last second, from the outside, Vickie pulls Chavo to safety, saving her nephew and quickly helping him hightail it up the aisle. The crowd boo with disappointment, but they soon perk up again as Mysterio picks up the microphone Chavo dropped…
HEY! HEY, CHAVO!
Scrambling to his feet, Chavo looks like he’s seen a ghost as he and Vickie converge under the SmackDown fist…
I think me and all these people have heard enough outta you, holmes.
Big pop from the crowd for that statement…
You’ve been runnin’ your mouth about me, about Eddie, about your family… No estoy escuchando más! Enough is enough!
Another pop, at which Vickie yells “Shut up!” into the crowd…
I’m back in the WWE, I’m back en mi casa, SmackDown! And I back for one reason…
And with more seriousness than you’ve ever seen from the fan favourite, Rey points a finger at Chavo and says…
. And when I get it... I’m gonna be the last… man… standing!
A huge statement of intent by Rey Mysterio on his return to SmackDown. As he leans against the ropes, Rey stares a whole straight through Chavo, who has now picked himself back up, seething as he watches from the entrance way. Mysterio now turns to thank the fans who have been so loyal to him during his recovery, heading to each corner to salute the masses, with the camera switching back and forth between the triumphant Rey and the enraged Chavo as we head to a commercial.
We open to a dismal, rainy scene, a solemn church bell ringing loudly in the background. We slowly see peasants trudging through the rain and mud of what appears to be an eighteenth century town, everybody dressed like pilgrims of the time. As the camera pans, we see a rather portly town crier, who rings a handbell to a much faster beat than the previous church bell...
Town Crier: Hear ye! Hear ye! Thy day of reckoning is upon us!
We hear the clang of a nearby blacksmith hammering down on a piece of raw metal, with the close up revealing the blacksmith to be none other than SmackDown’s own Matt Hardy, dressed in the traditional garb...
Town Crier: Just as the weeds are collected and burned up with fire, so shall it be at the end of the age!
Hardy tosses his hammer aside and slowly trudges off camera, passing the town reverend, who just so happens to be Mr. Kennedy, with Kennedy also dressed in the church fashion of the time...
Town Crier: I tell thee my friends, do not fear thee who kill the body, and after that can do no more!
Kennedy glances down at the bible in his hands, then tosses it down into the mud, before he follows Hardy off camera...
Town Crier: But I will warn you whom to fear! Fear him who, after he has killed, has authority to cast thee into hell!
A man in a horse slowly approaches, the man being revealed as Batista. ‘The Animal’ quickly drops down off the horse, the buckle on his boots clunking heavily as he lands before he too walks off camera...
Town Crier: I tell thee, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak!
We now see Edge chopping wood, aggressively swinging an axe into a log set up on a stump, but he soon wipes the wet hair from his face, tosses the axe aside and exits the scene...
Town Crier: So speak and so act as those who are to be judged under the law of liberty. For judgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy!
King Booker and Queen Sharmell sit on thrones like a Mayor and Mayorness, with Booker soon standing up out of his chair, leaving Sharmell behind as he heads out of the frame...
Town Crier: For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.
The town magistrate is played by Chris Benoit, complete with wig, who suddenly sits upright from behind the bench of his courtroom and storms out of the building mid trial, leaving behind a full courtroom of confused people...
Town Crier: And when they have finished their testimony, the beast that rises from the bottomless pit will make war on them and conquer them and kill them!
We now see practically the entire SmackDown roster, all dressed for the time, stood surrounding the Town Crier, who now has a petrified look on his face…
Town Crier: Oh death, where is your victory? Oh death, where is your sting?
Suddenly, out of nowhere, the Town Crier is clobbered by Umaga, who is dressed as he normally would be. Umaga now stands with one foot on the chest of the crier, the camera looking down on him in pain, but he manages to get in the last word as he shouts...
”Judgment Day... is upon us!”
"WWE JUDGMENT DAY – MAY 20TH - LIVE ON PAY-PER-VIEW!"
*End Video Package*
From the video, we head back to the announce desk…
That right folks, Judgment Day is just 48 hours away! SmackDown’s first single brand pay per view since WrestleMania, and it’s looking like an absolute classic. What an incredible card we’ve got lined up, and it just took a huge shot in the arm with the return of Rey Mysterio!
Damn skippy, Cole! Chavo Guerrero’s been runnin’ his mouth, he’s been runnin’ down Rey, sayin’ Mysterio exploited the Guerrero family to make it to the top, sayin’ he’s disrespected the legacy of the late, great Eddie Guerrero. Well this Sunday, Chavo’s gonna have to live with those comments he made, ‘cause Rey’s out for blood man, and it’s gonna be Last Man Standin’! I can’t wait!
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Let’s just remember one thing. Six months ago, Chavo put Rey on the shelf when he smashed Mysterio knee with a steel chair. Rey might be back, but he’s gonna wish he stayed at home and lived off the retirement fund when Chavo’s done with ‘im. Ya’ shoulda took Chavo’s advice, ya’ shoulda stayed away, and now Chavo’s gonna make sure it happens once and for all.
it promises to be a very violent, very personal feud between Mysterio and Guerrero. And talkin’ about violent, what about the matchup between Kane and Finlay? A match that came about after a vicious assault of Kane by Finlay with that damn shillelagh, only for Kane to smash a car window in an effort to get his hands on the veteran Irishman. Kane’ll get his wish this Sunday at Judgment Day.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Be careful what you wish for, Michael. Finlay’s one pissed off guy right now, in the twenty-somethin’ years I’ve known ‘im, I’ve never seen ‘im this angry before. You think Kane’s a scary guy? You ain’t seen nothin’ yet outta Finlay.
The United States Championship is gonna be on the line too, as the champion Matt Hardy defends his title against The Miz. 2007 has definitely been Hardy’s year so far, but Miz has improved each and every time we see him in a SmackDown ring, and earlier tonight, he stunned us all by pinnin’ Hardy in a tag team match.
Yeah, that one shocked the hell outta me. Listen, there’s no doubt Miz is a huge
threat, he’s definitely a star of the future around here. But Matt’s been chasin’ his chance at the big time way too long to let it slip now. I’m goin’ for a Hardy win, and for him to stay US Champ.
Another man looking to hang onto gold is of course the Cruiserweight Champion, Gregory Helms. Helms has cheated twice in the past, back at No Way Out and WrestleMania to save his title and rob his opponent this Sunday, Bryan Danielson. But at Judgment Day, it seems like there’s no escape for Helms, and we’re gonna have a new champion.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
How the hell d’ya figure that, Cole? Gregory Helms, the longest reigning Cruiserweight Champion in history, the greatest cruiserweight to ever live, he’s gonna prove all you naysayers wrong, he’s gonna prove that this is the WWE, and all that crap in the indies means squat. I can’t wait to see Helms shove it right back in both your faces, I got the champagne already on ice, I’m ready to part this Sunday!
I wouldn’t be poppin’ the corks quite yet, John. Another title match, the third of four, sees the WWE Tag Team Champions, The Hooligans, defend their titles against the challengers, The New Breed. But the question remains, are London and Kendrick on the same page? Are they still united, and can they pull it off this Sunday and retain their gold?
I honestly don’t know, Michael. I mean, we heard that interview earlier tonight, Kendrick don’t sound like all that much of a team player to me. But then again, we know how determined both these guys are to keep those titles. But you can’t deny they’re havin’ some personal problems right now, and no team wants that ahead of a huge title match.
Absolutely not, no. We’ve got more tag team action, this time of the six man variety as The Extremists, Tommy Dreamer, Sabu and The Sandman, take on the new combination of King Booker, ‘MVP’ and Mark Henry, the aptly titled, Coachman Coalition.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Ya’ gotta hand it to ‘im, ‘Coach’ has done one helluva job puttin’ that team together. He’s taken Booker and ‘MVP’, two guys who were spinnin’ their wheels, he’s teamed ‘em up with Henry, and I don’t think there’s a trio alive who can stop ‘em. I hope they crush those Extremists, and we never
see ‘em again. Especially The Sandman!
And of course, finally, the World Heavyweight Championship is on the line in a Fatal Four Way Match. The champion, Batista, doesn’t even have to be pinned to lose the gold to either Edge, Mr. Kennedy, or of course, Chris Benoit.
It’s gonna be one helluva match, so many stories goin’ into it, all four guys wantin’ to win for their own personal reasons. For Batista, he wants to put any controversy from WrestleMania to bed once and for all. Edge? He feels he’s been robbed in the past and he ain’t gonna let it happen again. Ya’ Kennedy, the young up and comer, determined to build on his great WrestleMania win by becomin’ champion. And then there’s Chris Benoit, his body’s close to breakin’ point, he knows he ain’t got much time left, but he’s determined to go out with one last title run.
And I’m gonna ask both of you right now, who’ve ya’ got winnin’ this one? Who’s gonna be the World Heavyweight Champion when Judgment Day goes off the air?
John Bradshaw Layfield:
I think Batista is a sham, I think the guy gets by on luck, and I think his luck’s about to run out. And I don’t believe in fairytales, I don’t believe in last gasp heroics, I don’t believe Chris Benoit has it in ‘in anymore. And between Edge and Kennedy? I’m takin’ Kennedy. His time has come, he’s the fastest risin’ star in SmackDown history, he’s goin’ straight to the top, and he’s gonna be champion this Sunday night.
Well I’m goin’ the other way. I think Batista is the favourite, and rightly so. He’s been such a dominant champion for nearly six months now, if anybody can survive a Fatal Four Way, it’s him. But then… I just got this sneakin’ feelin’ that it could be Benoit. What can I say, I’m a sucker for a good story, and I do
believe that fairytales can come true. My heart says Benoit… but my head says ‘The Animal’.
It’s gonna be an unbelievable night, don’t miss SmackDown’s return to pay per view. Judgment Day, live this Sunday night, you don’t wanna miss this one folks.
A pause to catch our breath, then…
The crowd are on their feet once again as Chris Benoit
steps out, although he’s rather noticeably favouring his neck. As he strides for the ring, Benoit does his trademark crack of the neck, although he winces in pain as he does so, clearly not at 100% after the vicious attack from Edge earlier…
He doesn’t look at his best, but no matter what condition he might be in, Chris Benoit is without doubt one of the toughest, most courageous men to ever step foot in a WWE ring. Benoit has battled back from injury, he’s survived the assaults from Edge, and right now, he has a chance at a big measure of revenge.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
But at what price, Michael? You heard that doctor earlier tonight, Benoit’s a doubt for Judgment Day, he sure as hell ain’t cleared to wrestle here tonight. What if this idiot lets his emotions get the better of ‘im and he winds up puttin’ ‘imself outta action again?
I’m pretty sure that’s a chance Benoit’s willin’ to take right now. When you’ve just spent a month on the shelf, you’ll do whatever it takes to get back in the ring as soon as ya’ can. Benoit might not be 100%, but I’ll take a not perfect Benoit any night of the week.
”YOU THINK YOU KNOW ME…”
And now a barrage of boos breaks out as Edge
steps out, this time actually coming through the entrance way instead of the crowd. Posing under the SmackDown fist, Edge thrusts his hands up into the air to set off a burst of pyro, before he then heads for the ring, an angry scowl on his face as he stares down Benoit…
This is of course the match we expected to kick off the broadcast with, only for Edge to sneak through the crowd and attack Benoit from behind. I just don’t get what this guy’s problem is? I understand he’s upset that he lost at WrestleMania, but there’s no need for the continual attacks he’s subjected guys like Benoit and Batista to.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Aw, boo hoo! The guy was robbed
, he feels like he oughta be champion right now. I’d be pretty pissed off if that happened to me too! If guys like Benoit and Batista don’t like it, they oughta get the hell outta this business and find somethin’ else to do with their lives!
Y’know somethin’, ‘JBL’? Edge reminds me o’ you.
John Bradshaw Layfield:
In what way?
You do nothin’ but whine like a bitch too! Listen, the guy lost, end of story. What’s he gonna do tonight if he loses to Benoit, get his chairs out and start swingin’ ‘em again? It’s gettin’ beyond a joke, and I can’t wait to see somebody turn around and smack a chair off his skull. And he’ll deserve it too!
Chris Benoit vs. Edge
The bell rings, the crowd buzz in anticipation, and naturally it’s Benoit who is the aggressor, as from the first tie up he drives Edge into the corner, although quickly grabs the ropes, forcing Benoit to back away and give the break. The two tie up again, this time it’s Edge who backs Benoit to a corner, but again the ref calls for the break, which Edge provides… until he delivers a stiff slap to Benoit’s face! Benoit rubs his jaw as Edge smirks… until Benoit grabs Edge… and yanks him into the corner… then starts unloading with chops to the chest! Shot after shot sting Edge’s torso, until Benoit drags him to the ropes and goes for the Irish whip… straight into a back elbow which knocks Edge down! After landing a snap legdrop for a two count, Benoit yanks Edge up and again strikes with chops to the chest, before he takes Edge up and down with a backbreaker. Edge crawls to the corner to try and recover, but there’s no respite as Benoit lays in with stomps and more chops, then he drags Edge out for a suplex, floats over for the cover… but Edge kicks out at two, and then rolls to the outside to try and break the momentum. Dropping to his knees, Edge breathes heavily, shaking his head as he gets back to his feet, and Edge… he’s heading for the aisle. He’s walking out on the match! Waving Benoit off, Edge decides he’s had enough and he starts walking backstage… but here comes Benoit from behind… hammering Edge down to the concrete! Hungry for revenge, Benoit refuses to give Edge the easy way out, and after a few stomps, he has Edge hooked up… for a SUPLEX ON THE CONCRETE! It’s a move that takes it out of both men, but Edge groans in agony, and Benoit quickly has him back up and rolls him back into the ring.
Edge scurries to the corner, begging Benoit off, looking to ref for help, but there’s no let up as Benoit yanks him by the hair back to his feet… only for Edge to drill a cheap shot with a rake of the eyes. Now Edge looks to attack, mocking Benoit with chops of his own, before Edge goes for the Irish whip across… Benoit reverses… and the impact causes Edge to crash into the turnbuckle and flop to the mat! So much aggression on display from Benoit, so much anger towards Edge, and he follows it up with a pair of hard elbow drops to the spine, then goes for a cover… but again Edge kicks out at two. Benoit is in full control, and he looks to press this home as he lands a stiff backbreaker for another near fall, then strikes with more chops to the chest, before he fires Edge off the ropes… into a northern lights supex! 1… 2… Edge kicks out, and again he tries to roll to the outside, only for Benoit to grab a handful of hair on the apron. Edge is yanked to his feet, and now Benoit tries to suplex him back inside… but Edge blocks it. A few forearms keep Edge in place, allowing Benoit to head onto the apron… and now he hooks Edge up… GERMAN SUPLEX ONTO THE FLOOR… NO! Edge desperately hangs onto the ropes… then he swings wild elbows to the face, breaking Benoit’s grip. Edge quickly heads back inside, and now he looks to suplex Benoit in… but Benoit blocks it… and counters… BACK BODY DROP SENDS EDGE CRASHING TO THE FLOOR! Edge smacks the floor with a thud, and as we head into the final commercial of the night, Benoit is in control, while Edge is in a world of pain on the outside.
We’re back, both men back in the ring, Benoit in control as he hooks Edge up… for a suplex… but he hangs on, drags Edge back up… second suplex! Again Benoit hangs on, yanks Edge up… looking for a third to complete the THREE AMIGOS… NO! Edge blocks it and shoves Benoit away, but now Benoit charges… right into a flapjack… that drops him throat first across the top rope! Benoit splutters and coughs, and now it seems edge finally has an opening, and he immediately pounces, mounting Benoit and choking him with both hands, taking every second of the five count before finally releasing. With Benoit still struggling for breath, Edge drags him up in the centre of the ring… then fires Benoit to the corner… Benoit smacks off the top turnbuckle chest first, then staggers back… and Edge levels him with a stiff forearm to the back of the head! After a near fall, Edge now looks to punish Benoit, driving knees to the back of the head, then he lands a gutbuster, before a falling neckbreaker gains another near fall. In an attempt to wear Benoit down, Edge takes him up and down with a backbreaker, but keeps Benoit across his knee for the pendulum submission, applying pressure to the throat as he pushes downwards. Benoit grimaces in pain every time Edge ups the pressure, but with the crowd’s encouragement, he’s able to swing a trio of knees to the head that finally allows him to break free. Both men stumbles to their feet, with Edge landing a right hand… but Benoit hits a chop to the chest! Right hand… chop… right… chop… chop… and a third in a row, which lets Benoit go for an Irish whip… but Edge hangs on, spins… and takes Benoit down from behind with the EDGE-O-MATIC! Edge crawls into the cover… 1… 2… Benoit rolls a shoulder!
Edge slaps the canvas in anger, but he’s soon back on his feet, dragging Benoit up with him, more shots landing to the back of the head, before Edge sends Benoit to the corner and follows in… into a back elbow! Edge stumbles back, and now Benoit goes on the attack, more chops finding the mark, before Edge is sent off the ropes… but he rebounds with a spinning heel kick! Benoit is down again, and Edge hooks a leg… 1… 2… Benoit kicks out! This time Edge gets in the referee’s face, but after being told it was only two, he now heads to the corner, crouches down, starts tearing at his hair, urging Benoit to get up. Slowly but surely, Benoit makes it back to his feet… and here comes Edge… SPEAR… NO!
Benoit sidesteps… and Edge smacks off the turnbuckle! Dazed, Edge stumbles back… and Benoit hooks him up… GERMAN SUPLEX! Edge is planted, but Benoit hangs on, yanks Edge up… SECOND GERMAN SUPLEX! Again Benoit hangs on, drags a tired Edge to his feet… THIRD GERMAN SUPLEX COMPLETES THE HAT TRICK!! Edge is down and out, and now Benoit slowly draws a thumb across his throat before he heads to the outside and climbs to the top rope… looking for the DIVING HEADBUTT… NO!
Out of desperation, Edge shoves the referee into the ropes… causing Benoit to lose his balance… and crotch himself on the top turnbuckle! A painful landing for Benoit, and Edge wastes no time in looking to take advantage as he climbs to the second rope, hooks Benoit up… SUPERPLEX! Edge gets all of it, and he drapes an arm across Benoit’s chest… 1… 2… NO! Benoit kicks out, and Edge can’t believe it! Edge has a look of shock on his face as he sits up, holding three fingers up to the ref, adamant the match should be over, but it was only two.
Seething, Edge once again heads to the corner, crouching down, willing, almost begging Benoit to get back up. Benoit uses the ropes to drag himself up, then he staggers to the centre of the ring… and here comes Edge… SPEAR… NO!
Benoit sidesteps, grabs the arm… and counters… with the CRIPPLER CROSSFACE!!
Benoit has the crossface locked on in the centre of the ring! Edge scrambles, desperately trying to reach the ropes, scratching and clawing, trying to inch his way to safety. Edge does his best to fight, and slowly, he’s able to inch close and close to the ropes… and then he kicks out a foot… and reaches the bottom rope! The crowd are as dejected as Benoit, who was sure he had the match won, but instead he’s forced to release the hold. Back on his feet, Benoit now tries to drag Edge up, but Edge is like a dead weight… until he suddenly springs to life with a schoolboy… 1… 2… Edge kicks his feet out onto the ropes for leverage… no! Benoit kicks out! Edge is furious, mounting Benoit to hammer him with stiff right hands, and having twice tried the spear and failed, it looks like Edge is out of ideas… so of course he heads outside… and grabs a STEEL CHAIR! Trademark move from Edge as he shoves Tony Chimel aside, grabs the chair and heads back into the ring, not caring about the match anymore, just wanting to punish Benoit… but as he rears back to swing… the ref yanks the chair from Edge’s grasp! Edge can’t believe it, getting right in the ref’s face… but that means he doesn’t see Benoit sneak up from behind… GERMAN SUPLEX… but Benoit hangs on… SECOND GERMAN SUPLEX… still he hangs on… THIRD GERMAN SUPLEX COMPLETES THE HAT TRICK FOR THE SECOND TIME! And now Edge is down and out, and Benoit is heading to the top rope… DIVING HEADBUTT!! Going for the steel chair has ultimately cost Edge as Benoit crawls over and gets the 1… 2… 3!
Winner: Chris Benoit @ 14.28
A huge win for Benoit as he returns to SmackDown and sees off Edge! Rolling free of the pinfall, Benoit grabs his neck and remains on the mat in pain. Slowly Benoit manages to drag himself back up, and he has his hand raised by the referee, the crowd responding warmly to the sight of a victorious Benoit. The crowd continue their applause as Benoit celebrates, but then the volume rises up a notch, as in the entrance way, Batista has stepped out, standing under the SmackDown first, dressed in sharp suit now, sunglasses on, and the World Heavyweight Championship over his shoulder.
Benoit sees Batista, the two staring at each other from afar, and then they share a mutual nod of respect to each other. As the crowd again cheer and applaud, Batista smiles and holds the title high in the air, something that Benoit acknowledges as he points and motions around his waist that he wants the gold-
Out of nowhere, Batista is SMACKED WITH A STEEL CHAIR FROM BEHIND… BY MR. KENNEDY!!
For the second time tonight, Kennedy has snuck up behind and just levelled ‘The Animal’ with a steel chair, leaving Batista down and out on the concrete. The crowd quickly turn their cheers to jeers as Kennedy stands over Batista, smirking, but then… here comes Benoit! Benoit races up the aisle, coming to Batista’s aid, but Kennedy quickly tosses the chair aside and runs backstage, wanting no part of ‘The Crippler’. As Benoit realises he has no chance of catching Kennedy, he quickly drops down to check on Batista. The champion groans in pain, still down on the floor, grabbing the back of his head in pain, while Cole gives us a final send-off…
Dammit! Kennedy just nailed Batista with a steel chair! What the hell is he doin’!?
John Bradshaw Layfield:
Ha ha! That’s the second time tonight Kennedy’s nailed Batista from behind with a chair! I’m tellin’ ya’, that title is Kennedy’s to lose this Sunday!
Lemme tell ya’ somethin’, Kennedy and Edge are gonna pay for their actions these last few weeks.
Ba-Batista is down! What this gonna mean for this Sunday? Who’s gonna be World Heavyweight Champion!? JUDGMENT DAY IS UPON US FOLKS! JOIN US LIVE ON PAY PER VIEW FOR A NIGHT THAT COULD CHANGE SMACKDOWN FOREVER! JOIN US THIS SUNDAY FOR JUDGMENT DAY! GOODNIGHT!
We take onE last look down on the fallen champion, with Benoit standing over him, asking if Batista is alright, a role reversal from the start of the broadcast, and that’s the last image we see as we fade… to… black.
Current Card for WWE JUDGMENT DAY:
Date: May 20th, 2007
Location: iPayOne Center; San Diego, California
World Heavyweight Championship Fatal Four Way Match:
World Heavyweight Champion Batista vs. Chris Benoit vs. Edge vs. Mr. Kennedy
United States Championship Match:
United States Champion Matt Hardy vs. The Miz
WWE Tag Team Championships Match:
WWE Tag Team Champions The Hooligans vs. The New Breed
Cruiserweight Championship Match:
Cruiserweight Champion Gregory Helms vs. Bryan Danielson
Last Man Standing Match:
Chavo Guerrero vs. Rey Mysterio
Finlay vs. Kane
Six Man Tag Team Match:
The Extremists vs. The Coachman Coalition
Current Card for WWE SATURDAY NIGHT'S MAIN EVENT - KING OF THE RING SPECIAL:
Date: June 2nd, 2007
Location: TD Banknorth Garden; Boston, Massachusetts
The 2007 King of the Ring Tournament:
COMPETITORS TO BE DETERMINED