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The Curse: A story of the Smackdown! brand.


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The Curse: A story of the Smackdown! Brand

Because, you know, if things couldn't get worse...

Remember when Smackdown! use to be the dominant brand in the WWE?

Yep, you probably don't.

To the casual World Wrestling Entertainment fan that tunes into Smackdown! every Friday night at 8pm on UPN, it's been nothing but a disappointment and a waste of two hours of wrestling for the past two years. Smackdown! had been so ridiculed by Vince McMahon and the higher ups in the WWE that everyone has been wondering why they even bother with booking it (if that's what you want to call them doing). Many have stated that it would be in the best interest of the WWE to effective immediately end this roster split and combine the RAW and Smackdown! rosters for months now, letting ECW stand on its own while RAW & Smackdown! becomes the WWE once again.

Well, I guess you all are wondering how exactly the Smackdown! brand went from complete and utter dominance to the B-Show of the WWE. Let's start from the 'death' blow (no pun or disrespect intended) that marked the beginning of the end for the once dominant brand in the WWE known as Smackdown!.

On what seemed to be a regular Sunday morning on November 13th, 2005, turned out to be a nightmare for not only the WWE, but the wrestling world in general, as well as for his family and friends.

Eddie Guerrero passed away, found dead in his hotel room in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

It was like a dark cloud formed over the wrestling community. Eddie was not only one of the most popular guys on and off-screen in the WWE, but also with guys in NWA: TNA as well as Ring of Honor and other indy & international promotions. The WWE held a press conference regarding Guerrero's death that same day, with people close to Eddie such as his nephew Chavo Guerrero and the chairman of the WWE, Vince McMahon, speaking on the matter. It had also been rumored (and confirmed later on) that Eddie was to win the World Heavyweight championship in a triple threat match with challenger Randy Orton & then champion Batista (who was going to take time off to heal injuries) that night at a Smackdown! taping that would air on November 18th, 2005. TNA even dedicated their pay-per-view the night of his passing to Eddie Guerrero. It was truly one of the saddest days in wrestling history.

The following night, the WWE's flagship show, RAW, was a tribute of sorts to the life of Eddie Guerrero. Many wrestlers on the WWE roster spoke on Eddie Guerrero and how good of a role model, friend and father he was, as well as how he personally affected their lives. A couple matches went on, dedicated in the memory of Eddie Guerrero, including a tremendous emotional Rey Mysterio/Shawn Michaels encounter that in any other circumstances, would have been a dream match waiting to happen. Guys closer to Guerrero, like Chris Benoit, Paul "The Big Show" Wight, Rey Misterio Jr., all broke down in tears during the show, showing how much Guerrero truly meant to them.

A few nights later, WWE Smackdown! aired, also paying respects to the late great Eddie Guerrero, highlighted by a Chris Benoit vs Triple H match deticated to the memory of Guerrero. Benoit picked up the victory with a roll-up after fifteen minutes of back-and-forth competitive action. Afterwards, Benoit and HHH shared an emotional hug, and Dean Malenko, another personal friend of Guerrero's, raised Benoit's hand after the match Even though it would be hard, it was time for the workers in the WWE to go back to work and began to move on.

The following months saw Smackdown! in a major slump. It was completely evident that Eddie Guerrero's death left a big void in the Smackdown! roster, as well as the Smackdown! family. Most of the focus was on The Undertaker/Randy Orton program, which overshadowed Smackdown!'s Survivor Series victory against RAW when Taker returned and destroyed mostly the entire roster. Rey Mysterio seemed to be in line for a push, which many rebelled against because he was only getting so due to Guerrero's death (although rumors had it that he was going to get a decent push towards the United States title in the near future). Batista seemed to be waiting for the Orton/Taker program to be over with so the WWE could move onto the money program with Batista & Orton for WrestleMania 22. Everything seemed ready to pick up with the new year just around the corner.

And then... it began.

The Curse

By the time Smackdown!'s Great American Bash in July of 2006 came around, a couple things were evident regarding the Smackdown! brand.

The main thing indeed was the injuries that plagued the roster. Batista was forced to relinquish the World Heavyweight championship after suffering from various injuries that desperately needed surgery to repair. Batista worked through the injuries for awhile, mainly due to the large void that Eddie Guerrero's death left for the Smackdown! brand. However, after continuous pain from his nagging injuries, Batista decided it was time for him to let them heal so he could come back stronger then ever. And so, the animal bowed out, with his return time set in four to six months.

After Batista opted to take time off for his injuries, other Smackdown! wrestlers began dropping like flies. Chris Benoit decided to take a sabbatical, as he claimed he was both physically and emotionally and worn out, and needed time to take off. Rumors had it that Benoit had been working too hard since Guerrero's death, and finally decided he needed time away from the business like Chris Jericho to think about his future in professional wrestling. The WWE wrote this off as Mark Henry destroying Benoit in his so-called "Path of Destruction". It's not telling when the Crippler will return to the Smackdown! ring, if ever.

Speaking of Mark Henry, who was currently amongst the biggest push of his career, was injured... again. This was no surprise, but it certainly put a damper on the Batista/Henry feud they had built for months once Batista returned to the ring. Henry tore his patella tendon right off the bone, and also split his patella right in half. How he did so, after a simple charge attempting to squash World Heavyweight champion Rey Mysterio in the corner at WWE's Saturday Night Main Event, is not known, but it is known that he will be out of action for the next eight months and will not compete at the Great American Bash. Infact, many believe that once Henry's famous ten-year contract runs out soon, he will either be released from the WWE, or re-signed for a lower amount then he was originally making.

The Boogeyman, one of Smackdown!'s fastest rising stars and a personal favorite of Vince McMahon, had been injured since WrestleMania 22. The undefeated monster tore his left bicep in a house show match with Booker T close to WrestleMania. He worked through the WrestleMania match, underwent surgery a couple days later, and will be out for the next four to six months.

John "Bradshaw" Layfield, one of Smackdown!'s premiere faces, was also plagued with injuries. The big Texan decided to take time off from the ring due to a serious back injury that may keep JBL out of the ring for good. JBL gracefully bowed out of competition by losing the United States championship to Bobby Lashley on the Smackdown! after Judgment Day, as well as losing a shot at the World Heavyweight title to Rey Mysterio later on that night. In storyline sense, JBL had said that if he lost to Mysterio that night, he would retire. However, he later stated that he did not have a formal contract with Smackdown! General Manager Theodore Long, and never intended to leave Smackdown!. He would honor his commitments of retirement, and joined Smackdown!'s announcing team with Michael Cole after Tazz left to re-join ECW.

ECW. Ah, those thieving bastards. With the impending return of ECW just a couple weeks away, Vince McMahon allowed Paul Heyman two draft picks for his new vision of ECW - one from RAW, one from Smackdown!. And so on the May 29th edition of RAW, Heyman announced his two picks. His first, former ECW mainstay and the longest ECW Television champion in the history of the promotion, "Mr. Money In The Bank" Rob Van Dam. Van Dam was an obvious choice, as he was planning on cashing in his Money in The Bank shot on his self-proclaimed "home turf", challenging former WWE Champion John Cena for the WWE championship at ECW's One Night Stand Pay-Per-View. However, nobody expected who Heyman's pick from Smackdown! would be.

Heyman had a vision for the new ECW - to bring the most dominant athletes in the world and let them experience the phenomenon, the new breed that is Extreme Championship Wrestling. And so, Heyman selected Kurt Angle, former World Heavyweight champion as his pick for ECW. This was a huge loss for the Smackdown! brand, as Angle was one of the few credible main eventers on the show. Infact, he had been sent from RAW back to Smackdown! to fill the void left by Batista's absence. Angle, was personally not pleased with being sent to ECW, but tried to make the best of his venture there. In a related note, Nunzio (now known once again as Little Guido), Al Snow, Stevie Richards, Simon Dean (going back to his Super Nova origins) and Doug Basham both left the Smackdown! brand to join Heyman's ECW as well.

Former United States champion Bobby Lashley was also off of the Smackdown! roster. He was discovered to have elevated enzymes of the liver on the eve of the Great American Bash, and would be out until further evaluation. Lashley was scheduled to face United States champion Finlay and William Regal in a triple threat match for the belt at the Great American Bash, but was forced out of the match due to this medical condition. Many have speculated what this could be from, and looking at Lashley, steroids were the first obvious choice. Hepatitis C, which is easily transmittable and incurable, and alcohol abuse could be reasons for this sudden illness as well. However, it has been undetermined what the cause of this is from, and will not be known until after further testing.

The Great Khali also was suffering from some sort of liver disease, and would be out until further evaluation as well. His case was not deemed to be that serious, and it's possible that he could return in the upcoming weeks. However, he too would not be able to compete at the Great American Bash after weeks of being billed as the opponent of The Undertaker in a Punjabi Prison match.

Super Crazy also tested for the same liver disease, and was pulled off of the road effective immediately. Crazy was originally penciled in as being Gregory Helms opponent for the Cruiserweight championship at the Great American Bash, but those plans have since been changed. Mark Henry, Super Crazy, Bobby Lashley & The Great Khali - four superstars scheduled for matches for the Great American Bash that had to be pulled from the card.

Hey, whatever happened to 'Pirate' Paul? Well, he too was injured, a knee injury that would keep him out for an unknown period of time. He was also a victim of Mark Henry's famed "Path of Destruction". During this time off, the WWE will be developing a new gimmick for him upon his return to replace his pirate one that failed to catch on.

Hardcore Holly & Matt Hardy have both been suffering from staph infections for awhile now. Hardy's was not as serious as Holly's, but the case developed once again during the Great American Bash weekend that will keep him off the road for a couple of weeks. Holly has been out of action since November of 2005, but is said to be close to returning to the ring.

Oh yeah, and the drugs. Joey Mercury, once known for his MNM fame and his tag team run in ECW, was in rehab for drug abuse, and was out indefinitely as well. It has been rumored that he will shipped over to ECW when he returns, resulting in another loss for the Smackdown! brand.

You know what's as bad as drug abuse? A temper. Apparently, something either happened after the Great American Bash pay-per-view or prior to it, as the WWE has decided to take Kid Kash (and possibly Jamie Noble) off the road as well for thirty days for what seems to be a personal issue

Hell, even WWE diva Kristal was sent to the hospital after her match at The Great American Bash! A bra & panties match at that, mind you.

And so, how do you compensate for losing four guys being billed in high profile matches on your upcoming pay-per-view, as well as your already thin roster getting thinner and thinner with the WWE seemingly refusing to add or make up for the lost talent of the dying brand?

Go on with the show, I guess.

Smackdown! Presents: The Great American Bash

Held on Sunday, July 23rd, 2006

Live from the Conseco Field House in Indianapolis, IN

- The opening of the show began with some cruiserweight tag team action. It had been made clearly that a tag team division was no longer necessary in the day and age of the WWE, but that didn't stop WWE Tag Team champions Paul London & Brian Kendrick, and challengers The Pitbulls (Jamie Noble & Kid Kash) from going all out to open the show. After thirteen and a half minutes of back-and-forth old school tag team action with a little new school mixed into it, Kendrick nailed a sunset flip on Noble with a dropsault followed by London to keep the tag team titles around the waste of the champions. This was a great opener to warm up the crowd, and showed that maybe there was some promise for this pay-per-view after all.

- In our first backstage segment of the night, The Great Khali wanted The Undertaker right then and there. However, Daivari forced Khali to wait. Khali wasn't pleased, and lifted Daivari off of his feet to scare him.

- Smackdown! General Manager Theodore Long then came out, and revealed on-screen and to the fans in the live attendance that former United States champion would not be competing tonight. Lashley wanted to fight, and didn't care what the doctors say, but Long (despite the "Let Him Fight!" chants from the crowd) said he couldn't allow that. United States champion Finlay & William Regal both came out, ignoring Lashley as he made his exit. Finlay mocked Long, and said that Lashley was just afraid to fight the two. Finlay told Long, that Regal agreed that Long should just raise Finlay's arm and announce that he was the winner by forfeit, and thus retained the title. Long said that he promised a United States title match, and that the fans were indeed going to get a United States title match, with Finlay defending against Regal.

- And so, two members of the King's Court battled over the United States championship. The match was filled with brutal, stiff wrestling that you normally don't see everyday on WWE television. The fans weren't really into the match, as they had no one to cheer and simply didn't care for the match being put on right in front of them. However, that didn't stop internet smarks all around the world from enjoying this contest of stiffness. Some comedy spots resulted as well, with hilarious moments between Regal and The Little Bastard. In the end, both men tried to cheat, but the LB gave Finlay Regal's boot that he ripped off earlier, and that was all Finlay needed to ensure him the win (along with leverage from the ropes) to retain the United States title after fourteen minutes of real wrestling. While the average WWE mark in attendance probably didn't enjoy this match, many on the internet hoped this was the first of many matches between the two to come.

- In another backstage segment, Chavo Guerrero planted the seeds for his heel turn by telling Rey how they were family and all that sentimental bullshit, and "World Heavyweight champion" Rey Mysterio was incredibly stupid enough to believe it. That's all I gotta say about that.

- Up next, Gregory Helms defended the WWE Cruiserweight championship. That was pretty surprising. What was even more surprising was that Matt Hardy was the challenger. Not so much that, but the fact that Matt freakin' Hardy was going to have a match on PPV! That right there folks is something you don't see every day... err, month. Anyway, Hardy made the challenge (despite Cole saying that he was clearly overweight compared to the weight limits for the cruiserweight division, but hey, if your World HEAVYWEIGHT champion weighs less then your Cruiserweight champion, what does limits matter?), but came up short as after nearly twelve minutes of action, Helms rolled up Hardy and hooked the tights to win the match, and keep his reign as the longest WWE Cruiserweight champion ever going.

- And again, The Great Khali wanted The Undertaker. Daivari tells him to take his time, but the Deadman appeared anyway, attacking Daivari. Khali, along with help from the ECW Heavyweight champion The Big Show, attacked Taker. Referees and GM Teddy Long stopped the carnage.

- Shortly after, Daivari thanked Show for his help, as the alliance between Khali and Show continued. Long emerged, and says plain and simple that this was bullshit. He then announces since this isn't ECW and since Show decided to come to Smackdown!, that he'll face Taker instead!

- Now, the Punjabi Prison match. The "prison" looked a lot like Hell in a Kennel, only with bamboo instead. The structure did, however, look pretty cool and unique. The rules were that the inner cage has four doors, and can only be opened by a referee upon request. Once that door was open, it would remain open for sixty seconds. If the participant was or was not able to get out of the door, the door would close and couldn't be open again. On the outer cage, there was no door, so the only way to win was by escape. Along with the cage was a table with weapons on it. While the idea was fresh and interesting, the match turned out to be nothing more then another Taker/Show brawl with a lame finish, as Taker dived onto Show and the two fell through the cage with Taker being announced as the man who hit the floor first. Another new match by the WWE, and another bad pay-off to the debut of a new match. Afterwards, Khali & Daivari climbed the cell and stared down Taker.

- Backstage, Queen Sharmell gave some inspiring words to King Booker, including that tonight, once he defeated Rey Mysterio to become the six-time World champion, he would be the King of the World.

- Bra & Panties... Ashley won. Next.

- Mr. Kennedy was then interviewed by The Miz~!. Kennedy explained his reason for challenging Batista once he heard that Mark Henry had been injured - because he can and will defeat him. He claimed that once the dust had settled, the announcer would cry out his name as the winner of the match... MISTEEEEEEEEEEEER... KENNEDYYYYYY..... Kennedy.

- What was suppose to be Batista battling Mark Henry with the winner becoming the #1 contender for the World championship, turned out to be Batista destroying Mr. Kennedy. Early in the match, Batista slammed Kennedy into the ring steps, and Kennedy appeared to be bleeding hard way. However, the match continued, and Kennedy actually was booked strongly... sort of. In the end, Batista continued the brutal assault on Kennedy. After all, he had been on the sidelines for month and wanted to take out his anger on someone, and since Henry wasn't there, why not Kennedy? Batista absolutely went crazy, and choked Kennedy. When he didn't relinquish the hold, the referee was forced to call the bell and award Kennedy the match by disqualification. The Animal didn't care, and nailed three spinebusters and a Batista Bomb on Kennedy before wiping the blood from Kennedy’s face onto his chest and celebrating. While he didn't pick up the win, it was certainly clear that The Animal was indeed back and unleashed once again.

- Finally, it was time for the main event. After battling on Smackdown! in a non-title match, the champion and the challenger engaged in a pretty decent affair over the World championship. The match was paced well, and resulted in a better match then their effort two days ago. In the end, a ref bump occurred, and Mysterio had the match won after a 6-1-9 and a Frog Splash, in tribute to the late great Eddie Guerrero. After realizing that there was no referee, Book took advantage, nailing a low blow and a Book End. The king grabbed a chair from the outside, but missed the chair shot, which allowed Mysterio to dropkick it into Booker's face. With the momentum swinging Rey's way as the ref began to recover, Chavo Guerrero came out and... you guessed it... turned on Mysterio with a chair shot. Book was shocked, but went for the cover anyway. After three slaps of the ref's hand on the match, King Booker was the new World Heavyweight champion. Chavo walked off, as the King and the Queen celebrated. All Hail King Booker was all you heard, as the Great American Bash came to an end.

Quick Match Results

Paul London & Brian Kendrick© def. The Pitbulls to retain the WWE Tag Team titles at 13:29

Finlay© def. William Regal to retain the United States title at 13:49 with a boot to the face and leverage with the ropes

Gregory Helms© def. Matt Hardy to retain the WWE Cruiserweight title at 11:44 with a roll-up while hooking the tights

The Undertaker def. The Big Show (substituting for The Great Khali) in a Punjabi Prison match at 21:35 after both men fell through the cage, and Taker was declared the winner as he hit the floor first

Ashley Massaro def. Kristal Marshall, Jillian Hall & Michelle McCool in a four-way Bra & Panties match at 5:18 after stripping Kristal

Mr. Kennedy def. Batista via disqualification at 8:37 after Batista refused to relinquish his choke hold on Kennedy, forcing the referee to ring the bell

King Booker def. Rey Mysterio© to win the World Heavyweight title at 16:48 after Chavo Guerrero's interference

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Wow. Fucking great backstory, lets hope you can save Smackdown! from going extinct, can't wait to see what you do, i'll be reading (Y)

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The Meeting That Changed Everything (7/24/06)

It was one day after Smackdown!’s Great American Bash pay-per-view. How it was somehow a success, I do not know. It seemed that even though Bobby Lashley, The Great Khali, Super Crazy & Mark Henry were all out of action, thus unable to compete on the show, the matches they were suppose to compete in actually turned out better then if said talent had been in them. Well, that’s what the internet said. Doubt any of the marks bought into it, as they want their guys like Lashley and Khali and Henry and… nevemind. They still can appreciate quality wrestling like anyone, however, so this isn’t meant to be a knock to wrestling fans that don’t have as much knowledge as us internet geeks.

However, under such short notice, the pay-per-view was viewed as a success, and showed that Smackdown!, despite their injury plagued roster, were still moving forward with the intent on proving that they were the number one dominant brand in the Sports Entertainment business, far superior to what the WWE puts on as RAW.

That is, of course, unless your Vince McMahon.

And so, a meeting was called, hours prior to RAW going live. Normally, Smackdown! superstars weren’t required to attend RAW, as they weren’t doing anything on the show (barring super cards with a Smackdown! taping before hand and an angle involving Smackdown!, of course). However, Vinnie Mac personally made the call for all Smackdown! superstars to be at the Gund Arena in Cleveland, OH, six o’ clock sharp.

And when Vinnie Mac comes calling, you know it’s going to be trouble.

A lot of the Smackdown! guys were excited to be there, however. It wasn’t every day that they were backstage at RAW, plus the fact that they would be able to see old friends that they hardly ever saw except for on those super card shows and the select pay-per-views. But, many feared that this would finally be in the end of the brand split, as McMahon finally decided to pull the plug on the Smackdown! brand while it continued on life support, and merge the two brands back together. While that wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing, seeing as the WWE’s roster is far smaller then it was in 2002 when the brand split first began, the Smackdown! superstars feared losing their jobs. Most of the RAW guys would have their futures secured already, and a lot of the Smackdown! guys (mainly lower card workers and cruiserweights) just knew that they would lose their job.

And so, every active WWE Smackdown! superstar was piled into a locker room specially dubbed “The Smackdown! Locker Room”. It had its own name tag on the front door and everything! I guess most of the guys on the B-Show weren’t use to this. A lot of chatter was going on, as everyone wondered what all this was about.

Booker T: “Hey Teddy, do you know what’s going on man? I ain’t got time to be waitin’ here just for Vince to tell me that most of us gonna get fired, or that I’mma lose the World Heavyweight title to Edge or John Cena and go back to losin’ to the damn Boogeyman.”

Theodore Long: “What the hell you askin’ me for Booker? Mr. MacMahon called me here just like the rest of you all. I don’t get no special privileges playa. I’m wondering what we all here for just like the rest of yall.”

Batista: “Well, it doesn’t matter to me. I already know that I have my slot secured. I don’t know about the rest of these guys.”

Around the room, the littler guys that Dave was talking about looked like they just received the worst news of their life. Well, that’s until Vince gave them the word, anyway. Paul London & Brian Kendrick clutched on to their WWE Tag Team championships, fearing that it would be the last time they held them. Mike “The Miz” Mizanin was sitting in a chair in the back of the room, writing notes on a piece of paper. He was probably trying to memorize his lines days in advance before he had to say them, incase he was going to be canned because of that. Even WWE mainstays like Scotty 2 Hotty & Funaki were looking pretty nervous. Hell, Rey Mysterio was even sweating under his mask!

Long tried to calm the crew down. Even though he was an on-air character, he somehow felt like the leader, as if he really was the general manager of the brand.

Long: “Relax guys. I’m sure Mr. MacMahon ain’t gonna fire yall. Just probably wants to talk to yall, that’s all playas. Relax!”

Hell, even Long didn’t believe it. He felt that this was the end of the brand split just like the rest of the guys, and that he indeed would have no position in the WWE anymore. With Vince McMahon & Shane McMahon on RAW as their authority figures every week attempting to fight off the ego-fucks that were Triple H & Shawn Michaels, why would he be needed as general manager of the whole WWE? He didn’t let the other guys know what he was thinking, though.

Just then, the chairmen himself burst into the locker room. Everyone straightened up in their seats, folding their hands in their lap and paying attention to whatever the boss had to say.

Paul London & Brian Kendrick: “Hello Mr. McMahon, sir!”

Scotty 2 Hotty: “Anything I can do for you, sir?”

Ashley Massaro: “Anything I can do for you, you handsome stud?”

Vince laughed. Somehow, that brought even more nervousness to the already depressed locker room.

Vince McMahon: “Relax everybody, relax. There’s not going to be any merger of RAW & Smackdown!. No one is going to get fired. That is, unless you cross the boss…”

The whole locker room went silent. Vince let out another laugh, prompting everyone in the locker room to laugh their hardest, as if they had heard the funniest joke in the world. Vince stopped and cleared his throat, which cut everyone off. The room was filled with silence once again.

Vince: “However, we DO need to talk about where this brand is headed. But first, I guess you notice that some guys aren’t here. Namely, Ken Kennedy, Matt Hardy & Kid Kash. Well guys, Ken has been injured once again.”

Batista: “Awww man, I didn’t even mean to Vince. Honestly, I didn’t mean to bust him open. It just…”

Vince: “Relax Dave, it’s not your fault. Infact, it’s Ken’s fault for not protecting himself, and when he gets back in a week or two, he won’t be pushed nearly how he was before. Anyway, Matthew is injured as well, but he’ll be back in a couple weeks. As for Kash… well… he’s suspended.”

Everyone looked at Jamie Noble, his tag team partner. Noble looked away, obviously knowing why Kash was suspended before hand, but not wanting to reveal it. Finally, someone spoke up.

Psicosis: “Why?”

Vince: “Why what?”

Psicosis: “Well, you said Kash was suspended. I guess everyone here wants to know why.”

The room goes silent once again, as the superstars wait for McMahon’s response. Before he can speak, the new World Heavyweight champion interrupts him.

Booker T: “Excuse me Vince, but let me field this one for you.”

Book clears his throat, as he turns in his seat to look at Psicosis. He stares at him for a moment, before answering his question.

Booker T: “Shutup fool, and don’t question the boss!”

Most of the guys in the locker room laugh, as the Mexican cruiserweight slumps in his chair. Batista, however, wasn’t laughing at all.

Batista: “Why don’t you shutup Booker? He was just asking a question – a question that you know good and well all of us were wondering. Just keep your comments to yourself.”

Book seems taken back by Batista’s comment, but gets up and looks down at him.

Booker T: “Why don’t you MAKE me shutup, man?”

Batista stands up, and gets in Booker’s face. He smiles at him, and looks at him up and down.

Batista: “Gladly.”

The two began bumping their chest against each other, but Vince and Long get between them.

Vince: “Why don’t you BOTH shutup before I suspended both of you without pay?”

Booker T: “But I’m the World Heavyweight champion.”

Batista: “And I’m… Batista.”

They always did say the big men in the WWE were kind of slow… and not just in the ring.

Vince: “Well Booker, you could very well be the former World Heavyweight champion if you don’t keep your mouth shut. And Batista… oh, nevermind! My point is, both of you need to sit down and stop behaving like children.”

Both men obliged, and the room was quiet once again. Vince cleared his throat, and began to speak.

Vince: “Now, I’m going to make this short because I’m running late to help with RAW. First, as you know, the ratings for Smackdown! are at their lowest point ever. Because of this, the CW Network is beginning to hound me and is considering not picking up Smackdown! after our thirteen trial episodes. All of our writers are busy with RAW and getting ECW off the ground, so… Teddy… you are now the head booker of Smackdown!. Anything you want goes, as long as it is run by me before it goes on the air.”

Everyone let out a quick yell, before being silenced at the wrath of Vince McMahon’s glare. He looked at Long, and smiled. Teddy wasn’t as amused.

Long: “Mr. MacMahon, it’ll be an honor to book Smackdown!, but with all due respect, I don’t know how to book a wrestling show. I just play the General Manager on-air.”

Vince: “Good. Now you can use that experience to play General Manager off-air.”

Long: “Well… do I get any writers?”

Vince: “They’re all busy with helping me with RAW & ECW. You can hire someone if you’d like.”

And ladies in gentlemen – THAT’S where I come into play.

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I loved the backstory and the meeting was okay. I don't like at all that Kennedy won't get pushed as much. He has skill and charisma. I am not going to like that, but I will keep my eye on this. I will just have to wait and see for your first show.

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Love it, a great way to bring yourself into the diary, be a friend of someone who is close to McMahon, when he gets pushed to head booker, that's when you get drafted in. I love it. It's creative, probably not original, but it's much more believable than anything else I've read. I'm kinda wondering about Kash, I think you might be leaning towards drugs there, but it doesn't seem plausible for the Notorious K-I-D. Anyway, great read, this is going to be a great read, you're a good writer :)

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You've written a really enjoyable backstory so far Aztec. The rundown of the curse so far was a nice recap for those of us (like myself) who don't know the full extent of how it's crippled Smackdown so far. The roster meeting was also a good way of getting across how the feelings backstage are. It was cool to see you play off the real confrontations between Booker and Batista, as it's something I could see happening in this kind of situation.

Over all it's a great start, and I'm looking forward to see how you push this mess forward and try to make it work.

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Guest Preston

good start but you need to learn how to write dialogue. some of that was pathetic (sorry :()... in a WWE meeting why are people talking in character? the actual writing elsewhere is good, just not the dialogue

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Guest H Effect

Hey, i have to say i really like this backstory. Its believeable (except the wrestlers seem to carry themselves as their characters backstage which i found wierd, but interesting at the same time) which is important. And it is extremely well written... theres just one problem

Hey, whatever happened to 'Pirate' Paul? Well, he too was injured, a knee injury that would keep him out for an unknown period of time. He was also a victim of Mark Henry's famed "Path of Destruction". During this time off, the WWE will be developing a new gimmick for him upon his return to replace his pirate one that failed to catch on.

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Guest smidger

Hey, i have to say i really like this backstory. Its believeable (except the wrestlers seem to carry themselves as their characters backstage which i found wierd, but interesting at the same time) which is important. And it is extremely well written... theres just one problem

Hey, whatever happened to 'Pirate' Paul? Well, he too was injured, a knee injury that would keep him out for an unknown period of time. He was also a victim of Mark Henry's famed "Path of Destruction". During this time off, the WWE will be developing a new gimmick for him upon his return to replace his pirate one that failed to catch on.

Pirate Paul was catching on...he was pretty damn over!!!

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Guest ellived

dood ur diary if fuckin awesome lol...the writing is really good.....but like the others the wrestlers being in character backstage is weird. If the person really does have an attitude problem then yea thats cool, but it seemed a little weird. But its also interesting tho lol. I like it man. keep it up

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Thanks for the feedback guys. I don't usually address feedback in my diary unless I think it's vitale to, and this one was:

good start but you need to learn how to write dialogue. some of that was pathetic (sorry )... in a WWE meeting why are people talking in character? the actual writing elsewhere is good, just not the dialogue
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Another great segment there, Aztec Warrior, and I'm certainly looking forward to the actual shows. As for the dialogue, I thought it was absolutely spot on, it was a perfect hybrid between your average person and their on-screen character, which, without knowing the people personally, is the best way to go about it.

Nonetheless, keep up the good work, but I do have one request, and that is that you don't bring in anyone from Raw/ECW, unless it's some forgotten about undercard guy like say Danny Basham (or whichever Basham is on Raw). If you need to bring people up, I'd hope you'll do it from OVW/DSW, but ideally I'd like to see you do this without any outside wrestlers.

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Guest Preston

i like you hating vince, will add some cool things to the story. a good newsletter there, you basically just said what happened this week IRL, and added some cooler things and explained things in a bit more detail. just cant wait to see how the shows are. sorry about my earlier comment with the dialogue, i didnt wanna make it seem like i was a bitch :P

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Here's some feedback:

It's a really good backstory but I am kinda confused as to how you'll do Summerslam.

The newswire is a good idea

I have to agree with what everyone said about the backstage dialouges. I did like the Batista/Booker confrontation however, since they recently got into a fight.

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UPN Presents: WWE Friday Night Smackdown!

Taped on July 25th, 2006 – to be aired on July 28th, 2006

From the Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, MI

-Video Recap Of The Great American Bash-

The opening credits begin to roll, ensuring us that within the WWE that indeed, “The Power Is Back!”. A video package starts off UPN’s weekly primetime Friday night broadcast, with highlights from Smackdown!’s latest pay-per-view, The Great American Bash. We see cruiserweight tag team action opening up the show, with London & Kendrick successfully defending the WWE Tag Team titles against the new Pitbulls. Next, the brutally stiff encounter between the King’s Court members, the United States champion Finlay and the challenger William Regal. With a little help from his Little Bastard, Finlay would be the second person to successfully defend his championship on the show.

Gregory Helms made the championship retaining a three-peat, as he managed to get the victory of surprise challenger Matt Hardy to remain the longest reigning Cruiserweight champion in WWE history. After the cruiserweight match, The Undertaker and ECW’s Big Show threw everything they had at each other in a blood brawl inside of the Punjabi Prison. In the end, Taker resorted to desperate measures, launching himself into Show as both men fell out of the cage. Taker was announced as the victory, and the winner of the first ever Punjabi Prison match.

Bra & Panties was shown in almost its entirety, as Ashley Massaro stripped Kristal Marshall of her shirt and pants to win the match. Afterwards, Ashley & Jillian stripped each other to give the fans a little treat. But, the REAL match was up next, as a returning Batista bloodied and destroyed Mr. Kennedy, losing the match by disqualification but still looking like he came out a winner.

The video then shows the main event, a battle over the World Heavyweight championship as King Booker challenged Rey Mysterio. It appeared that Mysterio would keep his dream alive as World champion, but Chavo Guerrero interfered, turning on Mysterio with a sickening chair shot that allowed the King to become a six-time World Heavyweight champion. The video fades out, with King Booker and Queen Sharmell celebrating the King’s victory and crowning as the new champion.

-Welcome to Friday Night Smackdown!-

[The scene fades from the video package, as the cameras cut to the upper area of the arena. They zoom in, to show Mike “The Miz” Mizanin with a microphone among the rabid fans in their seats.]


[The crowd responds with a loud “Hoo-rah!” of their own. Miz smiles, before speaking into the mic.]

The Miz: “That’s right folks, it’s now officially the summer for the WWE, and we’re kicking it off with Smackdown! as we begin the road to Summerslam. And tonight…”

[A graphic shows on the screens of the millions of viewers at home. We see Finlay posing with his United States championship, along with the Little Bastard below him. William Regal is then shown, holding up his fists as if he’s ready to fight. We then see Paul London & Brian Kendrick jumping up and down with their tag title belts around their waist. Finally, the graphic shows all four men in their respective poses, with the words “WWE Tag Team championship match – tonight!”.]

The Miz: “Tonight, we’re gonna see the man who loves to fight and our reigning United States champion Finlay teaming up with fellow King’s Court member William Regal, as they take on WWE Tag Team champions Paul London & Brian Kendrick, fresh off a victory against the Pitbulls at The Great American Bash!”

[Miz smiles again, and gives a thumbs up to the crowd.]

The Miz: “Speaking of The Great American Bash, Batista returned and showed that the Animal was indeed unleashed. Batista will be in the house...”

[A huge ovation is heard at the mention of the Animal’s name.]

The Miz: “As well as Mr. Kennedy!”

[Loud boos are heard for the arrogant young superstar.]

The Miz: “Who knows what these two, coming off of their match at the Great American Bash, will have to say to each other! Also…”

[Another graphic appears, this time showing Chavo Guerrero folding his arms and smiling. The crowd begins to jeer ferociously, and a small “We Want Rey!” chant breaks out on the other side of the arena.]

The Miz: “Chavo Guerrero will address us from WWE Studios in Stamford, Connecticut. Plus…”

[A final graphic appears, this time a still photo of Booker T holding the World Heavyweight championship up at The Great American Bash, with tears running down his face. Sharmell is right behind him, applauding him. A few cheers are heard, but mostly a loud round of jeers for the new World Heavyweight champion.]

The Miz: “A new champion emerged from the Great American Bash, and tonight, Smackdown! General Manager Theodore Long will crown King Booker as the new World Heavyweight champion! All this and much more, here on Friday night Smackdown! Hoo-rah!”

[Another “Hoo-rah!” is heard from the crowd, as we now go to the opening Smackdown! video that features such superstars as King Booker, Rey Mysterio, The Undertaker, Batista, The Great Khali, Bobby Lashley, Finlay & Theodore Long. The cameras cut back to the arena, immediately over to the announcer’s table where Michael Cole & John “Bradshaw” Layfield are sitting.]

Michael Cole: “Welcome to Friday night Smackdown! folks, and what a huge show we have in store for you. As you’ve seen, the United States champion Finlay & William Regal will challenge Paul London & Brian Kendrick for the WWE Tag Team titles. And-“

John “Bradshaw” Layfield (interrupting Cole): “That’s right Michael, the man who loves to fight Finlay and the toughest wrestler to ever come out of Blackpool England, William Regal, will be facing the young talented team of the WWE Tag Team champions London & Kendrick. And think about it Michael – if Finlay & Regal win the titles tonight, the King’s Court will feature almost all of the champions on Smackdown!.”

Cole: “That’s very possible indeed. Speaking of champions, WWE Cruiserweight champion Gregory Helms will be in action tonight, and Smackdown! General Manager Theodore Long will crown King Booker as the World Heavyweight champion.”

JBL: “Michael, I was the first one to congratulate the King on becoming World Heavyweight champion, as someone had FINALLY taken the belt off that ingrate known as Rey Mysterio – sorry, FORMER World champion Rey Mysterio. Tonight, a man of prestige, a man of honor, a man of dignity will be recognized as our World Heavyweight champion – the champion of the number one syndicated television show on Friday nights. Ha ha Michael, I love it! I absolutely love it!”

Cole: “Well you may love it JBL, but I have to think that if Chavo Guerrero didn’t decide to interfere in that match, then Rey Mysterio would still be the World champion of Smackdown!.”

JBL: “Would’ve, could’ve, should’ve Michael, but he DIDN’T, and he IS NOT the champion anymore. The King has finally returned to his thrown, and I’m proud to say that he is our new World Heavyweight champion. Good riddance to that Mexican jumping bean as champion.”

Cole: “Be that as it may, ladies and gentlemen – I will be interviewing Chavo Guerrero, who will be in WWE Studios at Stamford, Connecticut tonight. Plus, Batista and Mr. Kennedy will be in the house for this jammed packed full of action edition of Smackdown!. But right now, let’s go to ringside as I’ve just been informed that Smackdown! General Manager will be making a special announcement.”

-The GM Has An Announcement… And So Does Someone Else-

[The scene cuts to the ring quickly, as the GM of Smackdown! is already in the ring, sporting a new suit and a smile on his face. He dances around in the ring a bit, much to delight of the fans (well, some of them). “Mack Militant” (already playing in the background), begins to fade, as Long proceeds to speak.]

Theodore Long: “Ladies ‘n’ gentlemen, I’ve noticed somethin’. Smackdown! ain’t the same no mo’, is it?”

[Most of the fans remain silent, not really knowing or caring about what the GM has to say.]

Long: “Well, all that is gonna change, ‘n’ it’s startin’ right here tonight on Friday night Smackdown!”

[some cheers, but mostly silence and quiet chatter among the couple thousands or so of people in attendance.]

Long: “We’re gonna have new matches. We’re gonna have new feuds. We’re gonna have new everythin’! And folks, I guarantee that yall gonna like every damn minute of it! Now-“

[Long tries to continue speaking, but it’s interrupted by sort of a familiar music. A man walks out, in a black suit, with a huge smile on his face. Longs mouth drops, as the man makes his way in the ring.]

JBL: “What the hell?”

Cole: “JBL… that’s Palmer Cannon! What the hell is Palmer Cannon doing here?!”

JBL: “Who?”

[indeed, it is the representative for UPN, Palmer Cannon. Cannon offers his hand to Long, who reluctantly accepts. Long is still puzzled, as Cannon asks for the microphone. Teddy confusingly hands it to him.]

Palmer Cannon: “Hello Smackdown! fans from all over the world! I’m sure you all remember me as the representative for the UPN network…”

[Palmer waits for a reaction to the crowd, but none is given, as most of the people don’t remember him from his previous stint in the company, nor care that he’s returned.]

Cannon: “Yeah, I knew you all did! Anyway Teddy, as you know, Smackdown! will have its season premiere on its debut on the new CW Network on September 22nd. Now, the network… well… they really haven’t been pleased with how Smackdown! is being portrayed to younger audiences. As a result of this, they have sent me back to kind of… monitor over Smackdown! as we prepare for the season premiere. So in other words, I’m back!”

[Loud boos are heard, as the fans grow restless. They obviously want Cannon out of the ring and out of the WWE in general. A loud and very obvious “Shut The Fuck Up!” chant begins, but sounds more like “Shut (pause pause) Up!”. Obviously SOMEONE has been doing some minor editing.]

Cannon: “So Teddy, I’ll be around here for awhile, and I’m very eager and looking forward to working with you once again. May we be the best of partners.”

[Cannon’s music hits again, as he places an arm over Longs’ shoulders, and begins half-excitedly chatting with him. The reason I say this is because Long doesn’t seem interested at all. The two walk out of the ring and up the ramp, as the cameras cut back to the announcer’s table.]

Cole: “Well JBL, looks like Palmer Cannon is back with us here on Smackdown!.”

JBL: “Yippety-damn-doo.”

Cole: “My sentiments exactly. Anyway folks, up next we have some cruiserweight action – the only cruiserweight action you will see here in the WWE, as one-half of the Pitbulls Jamie Noble will be in action after this commercial breaks.”

[The show quickly goes to commercial, as I’m sure about a third of the audience have already left their seats.]

Segment Rating: 72% (Palmer Cannon gained overness)

My Thoughts: A boring segment to open up the show. The promise for ‘a new change of direction’ in the WWE has been overdone to death, and hasn’t really resulted in anything promising. Smackdown! does need a make-over with all of the injuries and suspensions to the roster, so hopefully this time they will deliver. The reason this segment didn’t really do much for the fans is because most of the crowd didn’t really recognize Palmer Cannon from his previous stint in the WWE, nor really cared that he had returned, as he’s another one in the line of characters that have failed to catch on, whether being face or heel. It’s always cool making fun of “The Network”, however.

-WWE Summerslam Commercial-

The two minute long spot for the commercial featured RAW, Smackdown! & ECW (as well as WWE Legends) superstars in front of a backdrop that has a park on a sunny day filled with kids playing, and mothers watching on with smiles on their face. The superstars (and extremists) share to the world what they like to do during their summer days.

RAW’s Triple H: “During my summer days, I personally, along with fellow D-Generation-X member Shawn Michaels…”

RAW’s Shawn Michaels: “Hello fellas!”

RAW’s Triple H: “Like to make Vincent Kennedy McMahon Jr.’s life a complete living hell.”

RAW’s Shawn Michaels: “Since you know, he’s the devil and all.”

RAW’s Triple H: “And this summer will be no different, as we continue to make Vinnie Mac…”

RAW’s Shawn Michaels: “And Shane O’Brat…”

RAW’s Triple H: “As well as those Spirit cheerleaders regret the day that they decided to mess with D-Generation-X. And if you ain’t down with that, we got two words for ya…”

RAW’s Shawn Michaels: “Aren’t you the father of Stephanie’s new daughter, Hunter?”

RAW’s Triple H: “Hey, that’s nine words!”

[The two walk off from in front of the backdrop, arguing over the question that Michaels just asked HHH. WWE Champion Edge and Lita walk in front of the backdrop now, with Edge holding Lita in one arm, and the championship belt in the other. He seems more interested in the belt, however.]

RAW’s Edge: “During my summer days, I like to remind you all of how much better I am then you, and that I am indeed, the Rated-R Superstar. I also like to watch my title belt spin and spin and spin…”

[Edge lets go of Lita, and begins spinning the middle piece of the belt over and over again…]

RAW’s Lita: “What about me?”

RAW’s Edge (still looking at the belt): “Huh? Oh yeah, you. I also like to have live sex celebrations with the hottest woman in sports entertainment, as I continue to be the most watched WWE champion in the past fi-“

[Edge is interrupted, as former WWE champion John Cena comes into the scene.]

RAW’s John Cena: “You know what I like to do during my summer days Edge? I like to re-use rematch clauses to gain back what’s mine, and that’s the WWE championship! I also like to remind the so-called “hottest woman in sports entertainment” that she’s nothing but a big ol’…”

[Just then, “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan appears in front of Lita.]

WWE Legend Jim Duggan: “Hoooooooo!”

[Edge & Lita look at each other in puzzlement, then at the camera. The screen flashes to the next scene, featuring the ECW Heavyweight champion Big Show & Paul Heyman.]

ECW’s Paul Heyman: “During my summer days, I use to have visions for ECW. And now that my vision is turning into a reality, I now have the most dominant man in show business… ha ha… get it? ‘Show’, business? I’m a friggin’ genius!”

ECW’s The Big Show: “Paul, can I talk?”

ECW’s Paul Heyman: “In a minute Show. Anyway, where was I? Oh, yeah. These upcoming summer days will see the evil genius creative ideas being pushed to the limit as I-“

ECW’s The Big Show: “Paul, if I could please-“

ECW’s Paul Heyman: “Not now, big guy. This summer, I will take the WWE to a whole new level, as I-“


[Heyman looks as Show, who looks back at Heyman. Vito appears in front of the two now, and grabs Show’s hand.]

Smackdown!’s Vito: “Come on Show, I just saw this dress at the mall to die for!”

[show smiles, and shoves Heyman out of the way, as the two walk off. Heyman looks on in disbelief, as the scene cuts to the World Heavyweight champion King Booker & Queen Sharmell.]

Smackdown!’s King Booker: “During my summer days, I like to reign in all of my glory as the only REAL king in the WWE, and the reigning World Heavyweight champion. There have been great kings in the past. King Henry. King… uh… Sharmell, what’s that suckas name?”

Smackdown!’s Queen Sharmell: “King James?”

Smackdown!’s King Booker: “Yeah, that’s the sucka! Anyway, I promise complete and utter dominance over the WWE this summer. Long live the-“

[King Booker is interrupted, as former World Heavyweight champion Batista walks in front of the camera. He brushes his hair back, and licks his lips.]

Smackdown!’s King Booker: “What the hell you doin’, you peasant!”

Smackdown!’s Batista: “Sorry Booker, it’ll only take a second. Is the camera on?”

Smackdown!’s King Booker: “Uh… yeah?”

Smackdown!’s Batista: “Okay…”

[batista pauses, and looks at the camera. Booker and Sharmell stare at him, as he finally speaks.]

Smackdown!’s Batista: “You talkin’ to me?”

[book and Sharmell look at the camera, both of their eyes wide.]

RAW, Smackdown! & ECW Presents: WWE Summerslam, live from the TD Banknorth Garden in Boston, Massachusetts on August 20th, live on pay-per-view!

[The show returns from the commercial break, with Michael Cole laughing about this year’s Summerslam commercial.]

Cole: “JBL, I’ve honestly got to say that every year the WWE creates a commercial for Summerslam, and each year it gets funnier and funnier.”

JBL: “Nothing’s funny about how the King of Smackdown! likes to spend his summer days, you ingrateful peasant!”

Cole: ‘If you say so partner. What do YOU like to do during your summer days?”

JBL: “None of your damn business. Just stick to what you do best: shutup and listen to an ANNOUNCING GAWD call this next match.”

[JBL snickers, as the screen goes over to the entrance way. The Pitbull’s theme plays over the speaker, as Jamie Noble, along with a spiked dog collar wrapped around his neck, makes his way to the ring.]

Tony Chimel: “The following contest is scheduled for one-fall. Introducing first, from Hanover, West Virginia, weighing in at 202lbs, he is one-half of the Pitbulls – JAMIEEEE NOOOOBLEEEE!!

[There’s hardly any reaction for Noble, as he rolls into the ring and raises his arms in the air. He takes the time to jaw at a few fans at ringside, before standing in the middle of the ring, awaiting for his opponent. His music cuts off, as he still looks on. Finally, his temper gets to him, as he walks over to Chimel and demands who his opponent is. Chimel shrugs, resulting in Noble snatching the microphone away from him and standing in the middle of the ring.]

Jamie Noble: “Dammit, whoeva ma opponent is tonight, you come on out boy and feel the bite of a pitbull!”

[After a moment of silence, a familiar theme hits the speakers. Infact, the theme is called “You Can Run” as an apparently returning Billy Kidman walks out!]

Cole: “WHOA!! Billy Kidman is back on Smackdown! This has to be on the promises that Long made about the new Smackdown!”

JBL: “It’s not that big of a deal. Kidman’s good yeah, but he’s not capable enough of beating a pitbull.”

Cole: “Well, we’ll see. These two have battled numerous times before, once over the WWE Cruiserweight championship at Survivor Series in 2003, with Kidman getting the big win for his first reign as Cruiserweight champion here on Smackdown!”

JBL: “Learn your facts Michael before you speak. It was Survivor Series 2002, and it was Kidman’s SECOND reign with the belt. Sheesh!”

Chimel: “And his opponent, from Allentown, Pennsylvania, weighing in at 195lbs, please welcome back – BILLYYYYY KIIIIDMAAAAN!!

[The announcement of Kidman’s return results in more cheers then expected. He slaps hands with a few fans at ringside – a huge smile on his face. He then slides in the ring, and climbs on the turnbuckle. He points to the crowd smiling, drawing more cheers.]

Cole: “Well folks, looks like we’re gonna see Jamie Noble facing the returning Billy Kidman tonight here on Smackdown!.”

Jamie Noble vs. Billy Kidman

The bell rings, as the two begin to circle around each other. Kidman takes the time to raise his arms in the air, resulting in a pretty decent reaction. Noble yells for him to “Come on!”, and the two lock up. The test of strength begins, as Noble puts Kidman in a side headlock. Kidman tries to escape, but Noble tightens his arm around his head, and yells out to the crowd. Kidman elbows the Pitbull in the stomach a few times, before pushing him into the ropes. Noble comes off, and returns with a shoulder block, flooring Kidman to the mat. Noble shouts at Kidman, and runs against the ropes. Billy swiftly flips on his stomach, which causes Noble to jump over his back. Noble goes into the ring, as Kidman jumps up. Kidman goes for a clothesline, but at the last second, Noble manages to duck. Noble goes against the opposite ropes and comes back, as Kidman does a leap-frog over him. Noble goes against the ropes again, and comes back to be met with an arm drag. Noble gets up rather quickly, resulting in another arm drag. Noble gets up again, and charges at Kidman. He runs right into a dropkick, flooring the Pitbull. Kidman lifts him up, and irish whips him into the ropes. Noble, this time thinking before he acts, hooks onto the ropes, and in a quick motion slides himself out of the ring.

Cole: “Noble got himself out of there quickly, as I don’t think he could take much more of Kidman’s wrath!”

JBL: “What the hell are you talkin’ about Michael? It’s obvious that Jamie Noble decided to give Kidman a little break before he went back to annihilating him and send him packing once again! We must not be seeing the same thing.”

Cole: “Evidently not. We’re… wait a minute, look at Kidman!”

Noble is seen arguing with some fans in the front row, as they start a “Kid-man! Kid-man!” chant. Noble turns around… as Kidman catapults himself over the top rope and lands on Noble with a plancha! The crowd cheers, as the two crash to the arena floor.

Cole: “What a move by Billy Kidman!”

JBL: “What the hell is going on here?! He clearly blindsided Noble when he was interacting with the fans at ringside! And these people have the NERVE to actually cheer this man?”

Cole just shakes his head, as Kidman nails Noble with some right hands on the floor. He lifts Noble up, and whips Noble into the ring apron. Well, attempts to, as Noble reverses, sending Kidman crashing spine-first into the apron. Noble nails him with a couple chops to the chest, before grabbing him by his upper body and rolling him back into the ring.

Cole: “Vicious chops by Jamie Noble, and thank goodness that this match is going back into the ring.”

JBL: “And it’s about damn time you recognize the greatness of what is indeed a pitbull, Michael.”

Noble shows why he is indeed labeled a pitbull, as he immediately attacks Kidman with stomps and elbow drops. He pins him, pushing his forearm into Kidman’s face. 1… 2… Kidman kicks out. Noble yells at the ref to count faster, before grabbing Kidman by the head and pulling him up. He kicks Kidman in the gut, before delivering a snap suplex! Another cover, and Noble gets another two count. Noble, now frustrated, kicks Kidman in his back a few times as he sits up. He grabs him around his throat, and locks in a rear naked choke hold.

Cole: “Jamie Noble has that choke hold locked in on Billy Kidman, and this may very well be the end of the match.”

JBL: “It may be? This IS the end of the match right here. There’s no getting out of this for Kidman. Welcome back Billy, and enjoy your lost at the hands of the Pitbull Jamie Noble!”

Kidman struggles to get out of the hold, only causing Noble to re-apply the hold, tightening it as he yells out to Kidman to quit. Kidman’s body begins to go limp, as Noble keeps yelling at him. Finally, the referee begins to intervene, grabbing Kidman’s arm. He raises it once…

… And the arm drops to the mat.

Cole: “Billy Kidman’s in a heap of trouble here. If his arm drops to the mat two more times, Jamie Noble will be awarded the match.”

JBL: “ONE!!”

He raises it a second time…

… And the arm drops to the mat again.

JBL: “TWO!!”

Noble, sensing he has the victory in the palm of his hand, tightens the hold even more. The ref grabs Kidman’s arm one more time and lets it drop…

No! Kidman’s arm stays in the air, just inches away from the mat this time. His arm begins trembling, as he begins to lift up off of the mat, pulling Noble up with him.

Cole: “No! Kidman will not quit!”

JBL: “That referee is blind! Kidman’s arm dropped to the mat, dammit!”

The referee stands by his decision, however. Kidman and Noble are both up, with Noble losing grip of his hold on Kidman. Kidman elbows him in the gut a few times, before running into the ropes. He charges… and is floored with a brutal clothesline!

Cole: “What a clothesline! Billy Kidman may be out of it!”

JBL: “While it’s not as good as my infamous Clothesline from Hell, that one was a vicious clothesline from a vicious pitbull! Cover him Jamie!”

Noble obliges (sort of) to JBL’s cry, and covers Kidman. 1…… 2….. Kidman gets the shoulder up!

Cole: “Kidman once again has gotten the shoulder up, as he refuses to quit.”

Noble gets up, and yells at the ref some more. The ref explains to him that it was only a two count, but it doesn’t matter as Noble shoves him anyway. The ref recovers from the shove… and shoves Noble back… right into a roll-up by Kidman!


One……… Two……… Thr-NO! Noble rolls out of the pinning predicament. He quickly gets up, and is floored with a clothesline by Kidman. He gets up again, and once again is sent to the mat by Kidman. Kidman is on a roll now, as Noble gets up. Kidman sends him crashing to the mat with a scoop slam, and makes his way through the ropes onto the ring apron. He signals to the fans, resulting in some cheers, as he climbs to the top rope.

Cole: “Kidman is on FIRE heading to the top rope, and we all know what may be coming here!”

Kidman positions himself on the top turnbuckle, but Noble is up and climbs up as well. He nails Kidman with a few forearm shots to the mid-section, causing Kidman to bend over. Noble hooks him up for a suplex, but Kidman wraps his feet around the turnbuckle so he won’t move. Noble tries again, but this time Kidman uses his strength, lifting Noble up in the air and sending him crashing face-first to the canvas!

Cole: “Ouch! Kidman just send Jamie Noble tumbling to the canvas!”


Noble slowly gets up, clutching his mid-section, as Kidman positions himself. Noble looks up, and Kidman comes off with a crossbody! He connects, and lands on top of Noble, hooking the leg at the same time. 1… 2… Noble rolls through, hooking the leg and putting his foot on the middle rope for leverage. One……. Two…… Th-Kidman kicks out!

Cole: “Kidman kicked out! Goodness, what a match we’re being treated to here to kick off Friday Night Smackdown!”

JBL: “Come on ref, that was a three count! Kidman CHEATED!”

Cole: “What the hell do you call Noble putting his foot on the rope for leverage then?”

No response from JBL (for once), as both men get up. The two begin exchanging right hands, with Kidman getting the advantage. He goes for a short-armed clothesline, but Noble ducks. He spins Kidman around, and kicks him in the gut. Kidman doubles over, as Noble positions him for a powerbomb! But we all know that there’s no powerbombing Kidman, so once Noble hoists him onto his shoulders… Kidman comes down with a face crusher! The cover… One…. Two…. Thr-Noble gets the shoulder up!

Cole: “Noble just BARELY got the shoulder up!”

JBL: “I knew he was going to kick out Michael. That’s the instinct of a pitbull right there!”

Both men get up, and Noble charges towards Kidman. Kidman lifts him in the air by his chest… and slams him to the mat with the BK Bomb! The crowd pops, recognizing the move, as Kidman grabs Noble’s arm and leg and drags him towards the turnbuckle. He begins climbing up, as the first couple of rows in the audience rise to their feet in anticipation.


ONE…….. TWO…….. THREE!


The crowd applauds, as Kidman lets go of Noble, and slowly gets up. The ref helps him, and raises his arm in the air, as Kidman raises his other in triumph.

Chimel: “Here’s your winner of the match – BILLYYYY KIIIIDMAAAAN!!

He crumples to the mat, and rolls out of the ring, still holding his mid-section from the impact of the Shooting Star Press.

Cole: “Billy Kidman gets the big win in his first match back on Smackdown!”

JBL: “He got lucky Cole. He got lucky, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Noble took this up with Smackdown! General Manager Teddy Long for Kidman’s blatant cheating!”

Kidman makes his way up the ramp, raising his arm again as a sign of victory, before making his way to the back.

Cole: “Well, whatever, but the only thing that matters is that Billy Kidman is back on Friday Night Smackdown! and has made an IMMEDIATE impact upon is return.”

Match Result: Billy Kidman def. Jamie Noble (7:24) via pinfall with the Shooting Star Press

Segment Ratings: OR: 69%, CR: 59% (Crowd wasn’t really into the match until the end), MQ: 80% (Jamie Noble lost overness, Billy Kidman gained overness)

My Thoughts: Pretty decent opener, about on-par with all the string of matches that they’ve had in previous years. The match surprisingly got a decent amount of time for cruiserweights, but the crowd wasn’t really into it, only popping for Kidman’s entrance, his gestures to the crowd, his plancha over the top rope, and the Shooting Star Press. At least they were into something. Nevertheless, a decent match that sadly wasn’t able to warm the crowd up. **1/4.

-The Former World Champion Arrives… And Says Of Nothing Of Note. Actually, Nothing At All.-

[The cameras go from showing Billy Kidman walking into the backstage area, to the arena’s parking lot. After the camera hangs around for a moment, a black car pulls up. It parks in an available space, and the engine shuts off. The door opens, and out steps…

The former World Champion, REY MYSTERIO!

A HUGE pop is heard for the former champion back inside the arena, as we see him (dressed in his black and white wrestling attire and a new black “You’re Just One Move Away From The 6-1-9!” t-shirt) close the door. Suddenly, Smackdown! interview Todd Grisham runs up to the car.]

Todd Grisham: “Rey! Hey… Rey? Rey, you there?”

[Mysterio just stares at Grisham, as Grisham holds the mic, smiling at the opportunity of being the first person to interview the former World champion following his lost to King Booker at The Great American Bash.]

Grisham: “Rey, I think the question that everyone wants to know is: How are you feeling after you LOST the World title to King Booker at The Great American Bash, courtesy at the hands of a man you called your familia, a man you’ve stated was one of your best friends and like a brother to you, Chavo Guerrero?”

[The camera zooms up to Mysterio’s face… as he says nothing. Nothing at all. Mysterio just looks into the camera, before walking to the back of his car. He opens the back door, and pulls out a bag.]

Grisham: “Rey? Are you okay?”

[Mysterio looks at Grisham again, but still says nothing. He hoists the duffle bag over his shoulder, and begins walking towards the backdoor entrance. The crowd in the arena is pretty silent, as the cameras show Mysterio walking into the door before heading to another commercial break.]

Segment Rating: 79%

My Thoughts: Hmmm. Pretty interesting thing they’ve got going here. Normally, Mysterio not saying anything usually is a good thing, but they’ve seem to silence him for now, as he’s obviously still in shock from what happened at The Great American Bash. Strong segment to put an edge that we’ve never seen before on a tiring Mysterio.

-Commercial Break-

-Tell Me He Didn’t Just Disrespect The King!-

[The show returns from the second commercial break of the evening, with the cameras immediately in the backstage area once again. This time, we are in the locker room of the NEW World Heavyweight champion, King Booker. We see King Booker, along with Queen Sharmell, who is putting on his crown. The crowd attacks the King with a tremendous amount of boos, and even a “Booker Sucks!” chant. King Booker, however, is all smiles.]

King Booker: “Baby, the time has finally come. The King of the World is finally the World champion of the land full of peasants… Smackdown!”

Queen Sharmell: “I’m so proud of you baby. I knew you could always do it!”

King Booker: “And thank you for the support, my queen.”

[The two hug and kiss, as a knock on the door is heard. Both giggle, until another knock is heard.]

King Booker: “Come in!”

[The door opens, and in comes the United States champion Finlay, and William Regal. A chorus of boos are heard, as the two shake the King’s hand. Regal even bows down on one knee and kisses Queen Sharmell’s hand.]

William Regal: “You’ve summoned us, King Booker?”

King Booker: “Yes. Yes I have. Gentlemen, tonight is a very important night for the King’s crowning as the new World Heavyweight champion. That’s why I have summoned the King’s court. I want to make sure that EVERYTHING goes well for me and my beautiful queen here. So, I would like you two to accompany me to the ring for my celebration as THE KING OF THE WORLD!!”

[Regal, ever the ass kisser, claps his hands, praising the King once again.]

Finlay: “No problem Booker.”

King Booker: “Thank you, kind sir. I want everything to be perfect. So tonight, I want you two to bring the WWE Tag Team titles to my kingdom. I want you to bring more gold to the King’s court, so we can reign as the most dominant force here on Smackdown!”

[Finlay and Regal both shout “Yeah!”. And then, Regal segues into his usual chant…]


[Regal’s chant is interrupted, as another knock on the door is heard. All four look puzzled, as Booker stares at the door reluctantly.]

King Booker: “Come in.”

[The door opens, and to the surprise of many…


The crowd lets out a DEATHDEFYING pop, as the Animal (sporting another expensive suit – that man has TASTE) walks in. A very loud “Ba-tis-ta!” chant erupts through out the arena, as he walks right up to the King. Finlay and Regal immediately approach Batista, as the Animal stares right into the face of the World Heavyweight champion.]

Batista: “Well, well, well! If it isn’t the new World Heavyweight champion, the King of Smackdown!, Booker T. All hail King Booker! Right?”

[Regal and Finlay ball their hands into fist, but the King laughs.]

King Booker: “Relax, my good men. He’s fine. Go prepare for your upcoming match. And remember – bring the gold back to the kingdom.”

[The Irish & English men both eye Batista, before finally walking off. Batista looks at them and lets out a small chuckle, as they close the door behind him. He turns his attention back to the King. Both men stare into each others eyes, as the crowd laps it up. Finally, Booker breaks the silence with a laugh. Batista laughs in response, which prompts Booker to cut his laugh short.]

King Booker: “What do you want, peasant?”

Batista: “What do I want? Funny you ask that Booker, as you DO have something I want.”

King Booker: “Really? And what might that be?”

[batista chuckles again, and puts a hand on Booker’s shoulder. The King laughs as well, but this time Batista is the one to cut his laugh short. The crowd pops again for the Animal.]

Batista: “The World Heavyweight championship. You see Booker, I spent about six months at home on my ass, waiting to reclaim what’s rightfully mine. Yeah Booker, I watched you. I watched everything you did here on Smackdown! during the time I was recovering. I watched you become the King of the Ring. I watched you and your court beat down Bobby Lashley week after week. I watched you defeat Rey Mysterio for the World Heavyweight title. I watched EVERY single thing you did Booker, and to be honest… I’m not impressed.”

[booker’s attitude takes a turn, as he slaps Batista’s hand off his shoulder. He has an angry expression on his face, as he gets into the face of Batista.]

King Booker: “What the hell you talkin’ bout man? I done everythin’ here on Smackdown! I’m the WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION. Somethin’ that YOU had to give up because of yo lil’ injury.”

Batista: “That’s right Booker. I DID have to give it up. And you’re right – you HAVE done everything here on Smackdown!. But there’s one thing that you haven’t done Booker.”

King Booker: “And what the hell is that, Batista?”

Batista: “You haven’t beaten ME!”

[The crowd lets out another huge cheer, as Batista now gets directly in Booker’s face.]

Batista: “You’ve NEVER beaten the Animal! So, I wanted to tell you face-to-face, man-to-man, that I plan on coming for you Booker. And when I do come for you, I promise you that I will regain what I never lost. I will regain the – no, correction. I will regain MY World Heavyweight championship! And when I do Booker, I promise you that it ain’t gonna be pretty. I took out Mark Henry. I took out Mr. Kennedy. And when I get my hands on you Booker, I’m taking you out and taking what’s mine in the process!”

[Yep, you guessed it. The fans go absolutely CRAZY for the Animal’s comments. Booker backs up a little, as Batista brushes off his suit.

King Booker: “Who the hell do you think you are peasant?! I’mma tell you one thing right now – you NEED to ease up outta my face and get off my back. Now let me let you somethin’, BA-TIS-TA. I ain’t no joke. I waited five years to become the SIX-TIME… SIX-TIME… SIX-TIME… SIX-TIME… SIX-TIME…”

Batista: “I can count Booker. What’s your point?”

King Booker: “My point is, right now, I’M the World Heavyweight champion. If you want a shot at my belt, you gonna have to earn it sucka! Matta fact man, I ain’t got time for this. I sure as hell ain’t worried bout a peasant like you!”

[batista lets a sly smile play on his face. He rubs his chin, as if he’s in thought.]

King Booker: “What?”

Batista: “You’re right. You shouldn’t be worried about me. Infact, you should be worried about Rey Mysterio. After what he told me about what he has planned for you tonight, I’m the least of your worries champ.”

[batista pats the King on his shoulder again, as Booker winces in pain. He walks out laugh, and closes the door behind him. Booker looks at Sharmell with an expression mixed with anger and worry.]

King Booker: “What the hell did he mean by that?!”

Queen Sharmell: “I don’t know baby.”

[booker looks at the door of the locker room, as we go back to ringside.]

Segment Rating: 78%

My Thoughts: GREAT promo between the two. Batista & King Booker have shown that they have great chemistry, and we can only hope that the two will mix it up more on-screen and mix it up in the ring as well in the near future. Batista was on fire, Booker was gold as usual, and this resulted in one of the best promos on Smackdown! in a LONG time. Good job.

Cole: “Whoa! Batista sure made a hell of a statement to the King! Did you hear that JBL?”

JBL: “Yes, I did Michael Cole. And all I have to say is… the nerve of the man!”

Cole: “What do you mean?”

JBL: “Did you hear what he said?! Did you hear him disrespect the finest World Heavyweight champion we’ve ever had here on Smackdown?! Huh? Michael, that was COMPLETELY uncalled for, and I hope the King gives Batista what’s coming to him!”

Cole: “Well, regardless of if Batista disrespected the man or not, we do know that Batista plans on coming with full force to reclaim what he thinks is rightfully his.”

JBL: “It’s NOT rightfully his Michael Cole, and I’ll tell you why. Batista’s been on the shelf for what, six, seven months? The man needs to EARN his title shots. Do you think that I was just AWARDED World title shots when I was wrestling here on Smackdown?. No, I went out and bust my ass each and every single night and earned every single title shot that I was awarded for my hard work. That’s why I was the longest reigning champion in the history of Smackdown! Michael Cole.”

Cole: “I know a few people that might object to you “earning” your title shots, partner.”

[The scene now cuts to ringside, with the bell ringing. Tony Chimel is once again in the ring.]

Chimel: “Ladies and gentlemen, the following contest will be the Gregory Helms ‘Cruiserweight Title Invitational’!”

[The music of the Cruiserweight champion begins to play, as Gregory Helms makes his way out to the ring, with the Cruiserweight title wrapped around his waist. He of course takes time to argue with some fans as he makes his way to ringside.]

Chimel: “Introducing first, from Raleigh, North Carolina, weighing in at 215lbs, he is the Cruiserweight champion of the world – GREGORYYYY HELLLLMS!!

[No reaction is really heard, as Helms rolls into the ring and unhooks the belt from around his waist. He raises it high in the air.]

Cole: “Even though you may not like his tactics during his matches, Gregory Helms has been on quite a roll since coming to Smackdown! back at the Royal Rumble.”

JBL: “A roll? This man has single handily DOMINATED the entire cruiserweight division here on Smackdown! Michael. Infact, he’s knocked off every single challenger that was potentially a threat to his belt that he needs to provide hometown losers a chance to claim it. There’s nobody in the WWE that can stop him.”

Cole: “And speaking of hometown, let’s explain the rules for you for Gregory Helms invitational. Each week, Helms has declared that he will be defending the belt against any hometown cruiserweight that chooses to challenge him for the title. The person has five minutes to last with Helms in the ring. If that person can go five minutes, they will win the Cruiserweight title. So, the challenger does not have to pin or make Helms submit to win the title – they just have to last five minutes in the ring with him. However, if Helms wins by pinfall, submission, count-out or disqualification within that time limit, he retains the title.”

[The cameras go back to the ring. Chimel is standing next to a wrestler, presumably a hometown cruiserweight challenger.]

Chimel: “And his opponent, from DETROIT, MICHIGAN (even that fails to get a pop), weighing in at 203lbs – PETE THOMAS!!

[Thomas raises his arms, as Helms gets in his face. Helms smiles, and offers him a handshake. Don’t shake his hand… don’t shake his hand… don’t shake his hand! But of course, being the idiot babyface, Thomas shakes his hand, only for Helms to NAIL Thomas with the belt! Helms begins stomping him, as the match begins.]

Gregory Helms ‘Open Invitational Match’ for the WWE Cruiserweight Title

Gregory Helms© vs. Pete Thomas

A graphic comes on the screen, showing the Cruiserweight title, and under it says “Gregory Helms Open Invitational”. A clock then appears on the upper right hand corner of the screen, showing 5:00. Helms continues to stomp the challenger, as the match gets underway. He lifts him up, and nails him with a vicious forearm shot to the throat. Thomas stumbles into the ropes, and Helms nails some hard-hitting chops right to the chest of the challenger.

Cole: “What a forearm by the Cruiserweight champion, and now the chops to the chest.”

Helms whips Thomas into the ropes. Thomas comes back, and Helms nails him with a clothesline! He picks up the limp body of the challenger, and sets him up for a sidewalk slam. Instead, Helms comes down with a backbreaker! The cover… 1… 2… Thomas gets the shoulder up.

Cole: “Thomas barely gets the shoulder up.”

JBL: “This kid needs to quit while he’s ahead and needs to realize that this man right here is the most dominant Cruiserweight champion in the history of the WWE, and the most dominant Cruiserweight in the world!”

Helms slaps around Thomas, as the clock reads 4:00 now. Helms cockiness perhaps gets the best of him, as it allows Thomas to grab Helms and roll him up with a small package! 1… 2… Helms rolls out!

Cole: “Helms nearly lost the title there!”

JBL: “Relax Michael. This match will be over in a matter of seconds. Helms is just letting him get his fifteen seconds of fame before he puts him away once and for all.”

Helms gets up, obviously angered at the thought of nearly losing the title. He takes out his frustrations on the young Thomas with a running knee to the gut. The clock ticks down to 3:30, as Helms stomps away on Thomas again. He picks up Thomas,

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Helms gets up, obviously angered at the thought of nearly losing the title. He takes out his frustrations on the young Thomas with a running knee to the gut. The clock ticks down to 3:30, as Helms stomps away on Thomas again. He picks up Thomas, and nails a snap suplex! Thomas clutches his back in pain, as Helm raises his arms in the air. Helms then begins to stalk his prey, as Thomas slowly gets to his knees. He turns around, still on his knees as Helms charged… and nails the Shining Wizard!

Cole: “Shining Wizard! That’s gotta be all.”

JBL: “It is Michael. Believe me, it is.”

Helms takes his time, taunting the crowd as they begin to boo him. A loud “Boring!” chant begins, as Helms simply places a foot on the chest of Thomas. The referee counts… 1… 2…. 3! The clock reads 2:56 left, as Helms raises his arms in victory.

Cole: “What an arrogant young man!”

JBL: “He deserves to be arrogant Michael. He’s the most dominant cruiserweight here on Smackdown!, and he just proved exactly why he’s the longest reigning Cruiserweight champion ever.”

The referee hands Helms the title, as he snatches it away. He raises it in the air, with a cocky smile on his face.

Chimel: “Here’s your winner of the match… and STILL the Cruiserweight champion of the world - GREGORYYYY HELLLLMS!!

Helms goes up the turnbuckle, and raises the title in the air as the crowd boos him away. He says a few select words to the fans at ringside, as he rolls out of the ring and heads towards the back.

Match Result: Gregory Helms© def. Pete Thomas (2:04) via pinfall with a Shining Wizard to retain the WWE Cruiserweight title

Segment Ratings: OR: 56%, CR: 50%, MQ: 62%

My Thoughts: A squash for Gregory Helms. You know, these invitationals have never really made anyone look good (except for Brian Kendrick, of course). This one is no different. I don’t see these being anything more then a bunch of squashes for Helms with maybe a couple teases of a challenger winning the belt until whoever they have in mind to beat Helms for the belt ends up winning it. ½*.

Cole: “Gregory Helms has just picked up another win to retain the Cruiserweight title. But up next folks, is another title match. The man who loves to fight and our United States champion Finlay teams up with William Regal to face the tag champions, Brian Kendrick & Paul London, next!”

[We see the graphic aired in the beginning of the program for the match, only with the word “Next” on it. Smackdown! then goes to another commercial break.

- Commercial Break-

[smackdown! once again returns from a commercial break. Tony Chimel is once again in the ring.]

Chimel: “Ladies and gentlemen, the following contest is schedule for one-fall, and is for the WWE Tag Team championships!”

-My name is Finlay… and I love to fight!-

[The Irish horns and drums of Finlay’s theme are heard throughout the arena, as the crowd begin slightly booing. I say slightly, because the fans never really seem to boo Finlay, but don’t quite cheer for him either (unless the Little Bastard comes out, of course). The United States champion Finlay and his partner William Regal walk out. Regal does draw a bit of boos for the two, however.]

Chimel: “Introducing first, weighing in at a combined weight of 480lbs - the United States champion FINLAY and his partner… WILLIAMMMM REEEEGAAAAL!!

[some more boos are heard at the mention of their names, as Finlay and Regal slide into the ring. Finlay raises his United States title and his shillelagh, and William Regal waves to the crowd. This draws even more boos for the duo.]

Cole: “JBL, going into this match, you have to think that Finlay & Regal have some pressure on them from King Booker. He wants them to bring back the titles to his kingdom, his court so they can have all the gold.”

JBL: “There’s no pressure at all for these two. These two have battled each other in the past, and have battled many opponents that were as tough as they were. Paul London & Brian Kendrick are great champions and a talented tag team here on Smackdown!, but they’re no match for the man who loves to fight and the toughest wrestler to ever come out of Blackpool England.”

[The music of the champions interrupts Finlay & Regal’s posing, as the WWE Tag Team champions run out to the stage. They look at each other, slap hands, and then run into the ring. They hop on the turnbuckles, and take off their mask before doing back-flips off of the turnbuckle. The ref gets between the two teams, as they stare each other down.]

Chimel: “And their opponents, weighing in at a combined weight of 380lbs - they are the WWE Tag Team champions, BRIAAAAN KENDRIIIICK AND PAAAUL LOOOONDOOOON!!

[The champions hand the belts to the referee, as the camera zooms to the back of the arena.]

Cole: “Folks, Friday Night Smackdown! is brought to you by Stacker 2. If you want to stay fit, try Stacker 2!”

JBL: “And Subway. If you want to stay lean, trim and cut like me, eat Subway, eat fresh!”

Cole: “And Skittles. Eat skittles, and taste the rainbow!”

[The camera zooms back to ringside, where the bell rings. A graphic appears, showing the WWE Tag Team titles on the screen. The two teams continue to stare down each other, before Finlay & London leave the ring.]

WWE Tag Team Championship Match

Paul London & Brian Kendrick© vs. Finlay & William Regal

Cole: “Well, looks like Paul London and Finlay will start what promises to be a great match off.”

The two begin circling each other, their eyes locked. Finlay puts his hand in the air, and offers to lock up with London. London accepts, at the two lock their hands within each others. London offers the other hand in the air, and Finlay obliges. With both hands locked up, the struggle of power behinds. Finlay, obviously being the stronger of the two, immediately pushes London down to the mat. The two hands are still locked, as Finlay yells at London that he’s no match for him. London surprises by placing his feet on Finlay’s stomach, and pulling the man who loves to fight towards him. London manages to lift Finlay in the air with their hands still locked and his feet managing to support Finlay’s weight. Finlay uses his weight advantage to land back down on his feet, prompting London to fly up. London places his feet on Finlay’s stomach again, pulling with all his might, as he flips Finlay over him. The two both fall to the mat on their backs as a result, with their hands still locked. Both men try to kick up as a result, but their feet crash into each others, causing the lock to finally break. London is the first to his feet, and raises his arms, much to the delight of the crowd. Finlay kneels on one knee, looking on at the man with strength and quickness that he underestimated.

Cole: “I think that the United States champion may have underestimated one half of the WWE Tag Team champions.”

JBL: “While I love Finlay, I have to admit that he may have underestimated London’s ability maybe a tad bit. Just a tad, though. Nothing more.”

Finlay seems quite impressed, and actually applauds London. He gets up, and offers another lock up. The sequence begins again, but this time Finlay immediately interrupts it with a stiff kick to the sternum followed by clubbing blows to the back of London.

Cole: “Ouch! What a kick by Finlay!”

JBL: “And London just underestimated Finlay’s nature of being the tough Irish bastard that he is. Ha ha ha!”

Finlay continues pounding away on London’s back with blows, before lifting him back up. He nails a forearm shot to the jaw of London, followed by another! London falls into the middle rope, as Finlay grabs London by the head and shoves him under it. He begins choking London away under the rope, as the referee tells Finlay to let go. Finlay of course ignores him, resulting in the referee beginning his count. 1… 2… 3… 4… Finlay lets go. The referee yells at Finlay some more, as he stomps away on London, who’s gasping for air.

Cole: “What a cheap maneuver by the United States champion!”

JBL: “How’s it cheap Michael? The man takes advantage of every opportunity that he is given. That is EXACTLY why our World Heavyweight champion recruited him into his court.”

Finlay lets London breathe for a minute, before shoving his knee on his throat. London is under the ropes, as the referee begins to count again. This time, Finlay lets go before the count of three. He drags London over to his corner, and tags in William Regal. Finlay holds London on the ground, as Regal drops a knee over his face. Finlay leaves the ring, as Regal goes into the cover, placing his forearm across the face of London. 1… 2… London gets the shoulder up.

Regal kicks London in the gut a few times, before lifting him up. He nails a couple forearm shots to London’s face, before irish whipping him across the ring. As London bounces back, Regal charges and lifts a knee up, completing the kitchen sink. Regal goes into the cover, again placing the forearm across London’s face. 1… 2… London gets the shoulder up again!

Cole: “Regal trying to put London away earlier, but I don’t think the tag team champions are giving up that easily.”

Regal, displeased with the referee’s count, picks up London. He grabs him by the waist, and executes a gutwrench suplex. Another cover, and again London gets the shoulder up. Regal now seems annoyed, as he drags London over by his foot and tags in Finlay. Regal drags London back to the middle of the ring, Regal holds him down, as Finlay runs against the ropes. He comes back, and jumps on London’s chest, driving his rear end (or arse, whatever you want to call it with Regal & Finlay in the ring) into him! The referee yells at Regal for him to get out of the ring, as Finlay makes the cover. 1…. 2….. kickout!

Cole: “Another cover, and another kick out by Paul London! I’ve got to say JBL; Regal & Finlay make a magnificent tag team.”

JBL: “That’s right Michael. These two grew up in the same type of environments, the same backgrounds, and they both love to fight and bash their opponents brains in. No disrespect to London & Kendrick, but Finlay & Regal IS the most dominant tag team here on Smackdown! bare none.”

Cole: “Weren’t you just saying that the Pitbulls were the most dominant tag team on Smackdown! just this Sunday?”

JBL: “No, I clearly said that they have the POTENTIAL to be. Learn to listen, Michael.”

As the two continue to argue, Finlay hoists London on his shoulders. He spins him around for a bit, before finally charging and connecting with a steam roller! Finlay slams the forearm down on London’s face, as he goes for another cover. One…. Two…. Thr-No, London kicks out! Finlay stands up, and yells at the referee to count faster. The ref stands by his call, as Finlay grabs London by the hair and begins nailing him with right hands across the face. The ref tells Finlay to let go eventually, but the damage has already been done. Finlay goes over to Regal and tags him in, telling him to finish him off as he goes back to the ring apron. London begins crawling towards Kendrick, who’s leaning over the ropes, waiting to get tagged in. Regal immediately rushes over, and drops an elbow across the back of London’s head, stopping him in motion. Regal drags London to the middle of the ring, and bends his right leg back. He hooks his own leg around London’s leg, and pulls his arm and spine backwards, locking in the Regal Stretch!

Cole: “The Regal Stretch! London has already taken a hell of a beating – who knows how much damage this is doing to the young champion!”

JBL: “He’d be better off just tapping out right now Michael. They can have a rematch if he gives up now. Don’t do it to your career London!”

London cries out in pain, and reaches out for his partner. Regal pulls back, applying more pressure to the hold. Kendrick begins running up and down the ring apron, slapping the turnbuckle. The crowd responds by clapping their hands, hoping to motivate London. Regal yells at him to tap out, but London refuses. Slowly, he begins to inch his way towards the ropes. The crowd and Kendrick continue to clap, as London inches closer… closer… closer…


As if he heard Cole’s shouting, London attempts to grab the ropes. He misses the first attempt, and the second. He pulls himself closer to the ropes and makes a third attempt…


Cole: “He did it! London makes it to the ropes, forcing Regal to break the hold!”

JBL: “Now he has to make the tag. If he doesn’t this match is over. London needs to make the tag. Come on kid!”

The crowd goes nuts, as Regal is forced to break the hold. He yells at the referee, before kicking London in his back a couple times. He drags London to the middle of the ring again, before trying to lock in the Regal Stretch for the second time. This time, London rolls through, and stands up. He goes for a kick, but Regal catches his foot. Regal laughs, and wags his finger in front of London’s face, as if to say “Nice try”. Regal flips London, who somersaults and staggers back into the turnbuckle…

This was a mistake on Regal’s behalf, as London staggers right back into his own corner, and makes the tag to his partner!


The audience EXPLODES, as Brian Kendrick runs into the ring! He nails Regal with a clothesline, sending Regal crashing to the canvas. Finlay charges in, despite the referee’s order not to. All he gets for his disobedience is a dropkick that sends him to the mat as well. Regal and Finlay both get up, and are greeted with a double dropkick! Both men get up once again, as London is seen recovering in the corner. Kendrick lands a spinning wheel kick in the fact of Regal, knocking him into Finlay! Finlay falls to the mat, as Kendrick begins nailing Regal with forearm shots. After Regal stumbles a bit, Kendrick seizes the opportunity, and runs against the ropes. He returns, and is hit with a well-timed boot to the gut. Regal steps back, and runs forward, nailing Kendrick with a running knee-lift to the face!

Cole: “What a blow by William Regal, and just like that, Regal & Finlay are back in control of the match.”

Cole perhaps spoke to soon. As Regal lifts Kendrick up… Finlay shoves Regal! Regal asks what’s that all about, but Finlay has no time to respond, as a recovered London dropkicks Finlay. Finlay hits Regal inadvertently, and both men spill through the second rope to the arena floor!

Cole: “Finlay & Regal just got sent sailing out of the ring!”

JBL: “That damn London! He’s causing problems between the next WWE Tag Team champions!”

JBL is right, as both men get up on the outside. This time, Regal is the only to shove Finlay. The two begin to argue, and get into a little shoving match. They hear a yell, which catches their attention for a minute. Both men look back at the ring, as London and Kendrick are both on the top rope. They fly off…


Cole: “OH MY GOD!!”

All four men are sprawled out on the arena floor, as the crowd begins a “Holy Shit!” chant.


The cameras show all four men lying on the floor outside, as we fade to a commercial break.

-Commercial Break-

We return from the break, and we’re joined in progress. Brian Kendrick is in the ring with William Regal, exchanging punches. Both Finlay and Paul London are in their respective corners.

Cole: “Welcome back to Friday Night Smackdown! folks, and this battle for the WWE Tag Team championships is going on. Take a look at this impressive maneuver by the tag champions.”

A replay shows the stereo moonsaults to the outside, and the carnage left behind as a result of it. Back to the match, we see Kendrick getting the upper hand on a tired Regal. He goes against the ropes, and goes for a bulldog. Regal catches him in mid-air, and lands with a back suplex. Both men are down and out once again, as the crowd begins clapping for the tag to Paul London.

Cole: “As you can see, all four competitors are worn out, but they keep on fightin’, as they know only one team can leave out as tag champions.”

JBL: “This has been a helluva match Cole, but your right – only ONE team can leave as the WWE Tag Team champions, and I’m putting my money on Finlay & Regal.”

The two men begin inching their way to their partners. Finlay, seeing Kendrick is closer, enters the ring and distracts the ref. Kendrick gets closer… closers… AND MAKES THE TAG TO LONDON! Finlay leaves the ring as London storms in… only to be stopped by the referee?

Cole: “Awww, the referee didn’t see the tag! Our United States champion distracted the ref, and he didn’t see Kendrick tag London!”

JBL: “Smart strategy by a smart man. This is EXACTLY why I have so much respect for Finlay. He knows all the tricks in the book.”

London argues with the referee, allowing Finlay and Regal to choke Kendrick in their corner. The referee turns around, as Finlay gets out of the ring again. He warns Finlay, however, as Regal backs away from Kendrick. He waves at the crowd, resulting in a loud round of boos. Regal charges… and is met with a boot to the face by Kendrick! Kendrick, knowing where he is in the ring, nails a elbow to Finlay, and then a right hand to Regal. He charges at Regal, who back body drops him to the canvas.

Well, sort of.

Regal intended for a back body drop, but Kendrick tucks himself at the last moment, rolls, and leaps, making the tag to Paul London!

Cole: “What an amazing display of athleticism by Kendrick, and here comes London!”

The referee sees the tag this time, as London climbs to the top rope. Regal walks towards the center of the ring, and is met with a missile dropkick! Finlay steps in the ring, but gets dropkicked right back out by London! Regal gets up, and charges at London, only to be met by a spinning heel kick! Regal is out, as London begins dragging Regal towards the corner. Finlay hops on the ring apron, resulting in London pausing for a second to confront him. Kendrick takes care of the problem, however, with a baseball slide, knocking Finlay’s feet from under him and sending him crashing to the apron and then the floor!

Cole: “Kendrick saves London, and it looks like the tag champs are on their way to retaining the belts.”

JBL: “Don’t count these guys out yet Michael. COME ON FINLAY! COME ON REGAL!”

Kendrick grabs the top rope, and launches himself over for a plancha. Finlay, the slick veteran, moves out of the way just in time, and Kendrick crashes and burns on the outside. London drags Regal to the corner again, as Finlay looks in the ring, and back at Kendrick. Kendrick slowly begins to get up.

Cole: “Finlay doesn’t know whether to save his partner from London, or save himself from Kendrick!”

Finlay finally decides on something. What it is isn’t quite clear, until he lifts the ring apron…

Cole: “What the hell is Finlay doing?!”

JBL: “I think we both know what time it is Michael!”

Yep… The Little Bastard emerges from under the ring.

Cole: “It’s the leprechaun! Finlay has brought out his damn leprechaun!”

JBL: “Hahahahahahahaha! I love that little bastard!”

The Little Bastard runs around for a bit, before Finlay grabs him, and launches him on Kendrick! He attacks Kendrick, sending him back to the floor. Finlay grabs the leprechaun again, and sets him on the ring apron. The ref looks over, and tries to get the Little Bastard off of the ring apron.

Meanwhile, London is slowly ascending to the top rope. He stands on top, as Regal’s motionless body lies in front of him. He signals for the 450 Splash, as Finlay hops up to the ring apron. London sees him, and kicks him in the face, resulting in Finlay falling off the apron, but landing on his feet. He reaches on the crowd, as London sets up again. Just as London prepares to launch…



London crumples up, and falls to the mat. Regal stirs around, and places his arm on his chest. Finlay grabs the Little Bastard, and shoves him back under the ring. He points to Regal pinning London, and the referee turns around and begins the count. ONE……

Cole: “NO!! NOT THIS WAY!!”

JBL: “Ladies and gentlemen…”


Cole: “NO!! NO!!”

JBL: “We have…”



The crowd goes crazy with boos, as the bell rings. Finlay’s music plays again, as Finlay slides into the ring, and grabs Regal. He rolls him out, and begins carrying him towards the back.

Chimel: “Here’s your winner of the match… and NEEEEW WWE TAG TEAM CHAMPIONNNNS – the United States champion FINLAY and WILLIAMMMM REEEEGAAAAL!!

NOBODY in the arena (except maybe JBL and advocate Regal & Finlay fans) likes that decision, as the referee slides out with the WWE Tag Team title belts. He hands them to Finlay and Regal, who’s still very much out of it. He raises both of their hands, as Kendrick slides in the ring to check on London.


JBL: “He didn’t screw them Michael Cole, he seized the opportunity that he saw to win the belts, and now all the gold is in the King’s Court!”

Finlay & Regal raise their belts in the air, as Kendrick looks on angrily. The referee is attending to London, who’s out cold.

Cole: “Well ladies and gentlemen, like it or not, but Finlay & Regal are your new WWE Tag Team champions, and I’m pretty damn sure that the King is ecstatic!”

We get one more shot of Finlay & Regal with their new tag titles, as the show fades to another commercial break.

Match Result: Finlay & William Regal def. Paul London & Brian Kendrick© (18:12) via pinfall after Finlay’s shillelagh shot to London, and Regal getting the pin to become the NEW WWE Tag Team champions

Segment Ratings: OR: 80%, CR: 75%, MQ: 85%

My Thoughts: GREAT tag team match. The finish was pretty good, and made it so that Finlay & Regal didn’t go over too strong, and allows the former champs a plausible rematch down the road. This was a mixed of good technical wrestling along with some high flying with all four competitors, and surprisingly, all four worked really well together. This was (even though given slightly more time) on-par with the tag title match last Sunday. While it might have been a little better with pacing and from a technical standpoint, something about it just seemed a little off, as if these guys did get the amount of time needed to put on a ****+ match, but held back a little due to this being the first time that they worked with each other. Anyways, it stands at about ***1/4 and was a damn good tag team match considering what the WWE is usually putting on for tag team matches these days.

-Commercial Break-

WWE Magazine Presents: The RAW Rebound

This weekly edition of the RAW Rebound shows highlights from the July 24th edition of RAW. We see Shawn Michaels announcing that Stephanie McMahon was indeed in labor tonight, and then Jonathan Coachmen announcing that he was in charge of RAW. We see Shawn making Vince angry over the phone, and Vince telling Coach that he’ll be facing Michaels tonight. Michaels laughs as if it’s the funniest thing he ever heard.

We fast forward to see the Shawn Michaels/Jonathan Coachmen encounter. Michaels completely dominates the Coach, and sets up for the Sweet Chin Music. The Spirit Squad tried to interfere, but Michaels takes all of them out. Just after HBK hits the Sweet Chin Music… Umaga runs out, and attacks Michaels from behind. After a brief beatdown, we see Umaga nailing the Samoan Spike on Michaels, leaving him lying in the ring as Umaga and Estrada celebrate.

Edited by The Aztec Warrior
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