ThunderStruck: Smackdown! Analysis 05/11/12

Sheamus and Randy Orton team up against Alberto Del Rio and Chris Jericho to open Smackdown. The match gets stopped shortly into it when the ref loses control and the four men brawl. Orton is booked into a match with ADR tonight and Sheamus is booked into a match with Jericho.

^So Smackdown opens for a second week in a row with a match that doesn’t have a finish? I smell a lack of creative thinking here. That’s okay though; sometimes it’s better to have singles matches as opposed to always seeing tag matches when four guys are involved in a rivalry. Also, since the Royal Rumble, I never get tired of watching Sheamus and Jericho in the same ring.

AJ destroys Kaitlyn in a short match and pins her after a knee to the temple. Daniel Bryan comes to the ring after the match. Bryan tells AJ he’s never seen her so ruthless. He tells her he’s looking forward to moving on to Kaitlyn after he wins the WWE Title at Over the Limit. She gets angry and looks like she might slap him, but she walks away instead. Bryan laughs and leads the crowd in yes chants as she walks away.

^Anybody else think AJ might be involved in Bryan’s match this Sunday? But, I expected AJ to become involved at Extreme Rules and she didn’t, so I’m not sure if she will play a factor or not. I wish her match with Kaitlyn was allowed to be longer than a minute, but I see the purpose of the storyline to put over the psycho angle further.

Daniel Bryan goes one on one with the Big Show. John Laurinaitis rings the bell when Bryan applies the yes-lock on Show. Show never tapped out. JL gets in the ring and confronts Big Show about making fun of him on Raw. JL tells Show he doesn’t believe his apology. He tells Show that he will apologize again on Raw, and it better be a damn good apology. JL stops at the top of the stage and says he is going to shake the WWE to its foundation when he defeats John Cena.

^More bullying from Laurinaitis to Show. Anybody want to gamble that Laurinaitis will start to treat Show like a robot under his control?

Heath Slater cuts a promo before being destroyed by Ryback in a short match.

^The one man southern rock band found the Smackdown script once again, and he managed to be used in that jobber role yet again. I think it’s safe to say it’s official that Slater is the modern day Brooklyn Brawler. Ryback looked good, but he only did the usual moveset. Anybody else want to see more from this gimmick?

Teddy Long plays the role of guest ring announcer for Alex Riley’s match with Antonio Cesaro(accompanied by Aksana). Cesaro is referred to as the Swiss Sensation, Rugby Baller, and Aksana’s delight by Teddy. Cesaro wins the match very quickly with the front body slam that he’s been using. Aksana tells Teddy that they are just friends and that Antonio is now her lover. She kisses Antonio in front of Teddy.

^If Vince’s idea of entertaining television is cruel treatment of specific characters, he succeeds on a regular basis. I definitely had sympathy for Teddy when this storyline started, but not it’s just sickening. Cesaro looked good in the ring as usual, but I’d like to see him wrestle a longer match(like what he does on FCW) so the fans can get a good idea of what he’s really capable of.

Randy Orton goes one on one with Alberto Del Rio. Ricardo Rodriguez causes the DQ finish when he launches himself off the ropes at Orton when he calls for the RKO. Orton lands the RKO on Ricardo instead and the ref calls for the bell. Del Rio applies a cross armbreaker on Orton after the match and refuses to break the hold.

^These two were supposed to have a match at WrestleMania according to rumors, but I’m glad Orton feuded with Kane instead. These two in the ring don’t do a whole lot to impress me together. Del Rio is just very bland. The storyline of him applying the cross armbreaker to weaken all of his opponents is interesting to to me; I wonder how it will affect the match at Over the Limit.

R-Truth defeats Jack Swagger in just under four minutes with both men’s partners at ringside for the match. Kofi hits Swagger with trouble in paradise from the outside and its followed up by the Truth’s finisher.

^This was a short little match to promote the tag team match that’s been signed for Over the Limit. I like the booking move, and maybe this will lead to Ziggler and Swagger capturing the titles or at least be a match to remind WWE of just how great Dolph Ziggler is in the ring.

Santino Marella and Zack Ryder team up and face off against Darren Young and Titus O’Neil. O’Neil pins Ryder after a “get ’em blaster” double team backbreaker into an elbow drop from Young. O’Neil makes Lillian Garcia repeat the announcement that they won the match and they cut a ridiculous promo on themselves talking about being the future tag team champions and then do a money dance.

^Michael Cole is right about a few things: O’Neil and Young are fresh and full of charisma. They’re also a very solid tag team in the ring. I can see these two carrying the tag team gold and becoming one of the better tag teams in this century. This was a solid tag team match all around.

Damien Sandow is interviewed by Matt Striker. Sandow apologizes for confusing Striker last week with his vernacular. He talks about the false prophets in WWE that he will expose for not being true to enlighten the audience. He ends the interview and says your welcome before Striker can say anything else.

^Sandow is going to become a star. I have a feeling we might be waiting awhile for him to wrestle an actual matchup with this gimmick. I’d love to know if he’s writing his promos himself or if someone is writing them for him.

Hunico and Camacho attack Brodus Clay and beat him to the mat. Hunico then goes one on one with Clay and gets squashed again. Brodus wins the match after the modified tbone and then a splash.

^Vince’s love for the big guys just needs to stop. When is he going to wake up and realize that this is just awful booking? You have three guys that are booked to squash their opponents in quick fashion. Two are faces and the other, a heel. One moves his arms up and down like an idiot robot, the heel looks like he’s gained a hundred pounds since he last appeared in WWE, and the third dances and mocks being a dinosaur. The sad part here? The guy who was squashed in this match, Hunico…yeah. He has more talent in the ring than all three of the previous mentioned performers combined.

Chris Jericho goes one on one with Sheamus in the main event of the night. ADR comes down and tosses Jericho into the steel steps, causing a DQ. Del Rio jumps on Sheamus and applies the cross armbreaker. Orton makes the save. Orton and Sheamus argue over who is going to hurt Del Rio. Jericho slips in the ring and hits the codebreaker on ADR before sliding to the outside. Orton follows up on ADR with an RKO, and then Sheamus finishes the trio of attacks with a brogue kick to the man of destiny. Orton and Sheamus stare at one another to close the show.

^I hope Jericho and Sheamus are put into a one on one rival over the World Title down the road. These two in the ring together are just great to watch. They have a natural in ring chemistry where they work very well and one guy doesn’t need to carry the match. They both work equally as hard at putting on a good show when facing off. As for ADR, it was a lot of fun watching him fall victim to his three opponent’s finishers to close the show.

This felt more like I was watching Raw than Smackdown in the sense that the matches were very short, but on the plus side we got to see a lot of talent in the ring tonight. Between Daniel Bryan, the team of O’Neil and Young, and the Swagger/Truth match, we saw some decent wrestling tonight for sure. I’ll give the show a thumbs up, and it’s mostly because we weren’t beaten to death with many promos and interviews. Make sure you check out my ROH Border Wars predictions and my Sacrifice predictions that will be up tomorrow. Until next time, you’ve been ThunderStruck! – add me