WWE News WWE News: Smackdown & Superstars SPOILERS - Caldwell's full results from Tuesday's TV taping (UPDATED with more details)
Aug 7, 2012 - 11:08:35 PM
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WWE Smackdown TV taping report
August 7, 2012
Houston, Texas at Toyota Center
Report by James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor
Dark Match: Wade Barrett beat Zack Ryder at 4:08. Barrett made his in-ring return from injury sporting a full beard as shown in the Raw vignette Monday night. Barrett won with Wasteland, which the crowd still recognized months later. Ryder got in signature offense to excite the crowd and not make this a total squash.
(1) Tyson Kidd & Justin Gabriel beat Hawkins & Reks at 9:10. Lots of close nearfalls before Kidd and Gabriel combined for a Kidd springboard elbow on Reks, who was draped over Gabriel's knees. Kids and the general crowd were into the winning team. Strong showing.
U.S. champ Santino came out for commentary on the next match. Two kids wearing Cobra sock puppets on the next row nearly jumped out of their seats. Heath Slater was out next as the designated fall guy for Kofi Kingston, who got a big reaction.
(2) WWE tag champion Kofi Kingston beat Heath Slater at 6:57. Slater dominated and eyeballed Santino in-between moves. Kofi made his comeback and hit a complicated top-rope turnaround splash that Slater had to wait for Kofi to deliver for the pin. Good reaction for Kofi tonight.
Lilian Garcia introduced the show, sang the National Anthem, and said they are sold out tonight. The arena is more packed than the previous SD taping, but there were some empty seats in sections. Solid 10,000+.
New Smackdown GM Booker T was introduced first to a big hometown reaction. Booker, in a tuxedo, busted out a spin-a-rooni to a big reaction before staring things off noting he's in his hometown. Booker said there's a problem tonight, then rolled footage from Raw of Sheamus's joyride in Del Rio's car. Booker had a big laugh, but said Sheamus crossed the line. He called out Sheamus to come apologize. The World champ shook hands with Booker before accepting his $500,000 fine. No, no, no. Sheamus apologized for taking Del Rio's car, then Booker quickly tried to move things along, but Del Rio interrupted. He's not ready to move on. Del Rio said he filed a police report, which drew Booker's ire. Del Rio vowed to take matters into his own hands, but Sheamus had another idea. He wanted a World Title match right here tonight. Booker asked Del Rio what he thinks and the crowd responded with "Yes!" chants. Del Rio claimed he needed to train and prepare, etc., but then accepted the match to a big reaction. Booker made it official to close the segment.
Before the Rhodes-Sin Cara match, Cody noted he once wore mask and Sin Cara wears a mask because there's nothing special about him. Ouch.
(1) Sin Cara beat Cody Rhodes at 3:45. Rhodes's obsession with masks cost him the match, as Rhodes tried to rip off Cara's mask, but Cara rolled him up for a quick three count. Not much here except for a few high-flying moves. It also set the tone for a lot of short matches tonight.
"Very European" Antonio Cesaro talked about victory in five languages before "One More Shot" Christian came out to face him.
(2) Christian beat Cesaro at 4:45. Claudio pulled out a pop-up European Uppercut and Scott Hall-style overhead slam with a bridge pin attempt in one motion during the match, but Christian won with a spear. Afterward, Cesaro destroyed Christian ringside to sell anger over the loss.
Randy Orton was shown walking backstage to a Superstar reaction. He's up next. And, his victim is Jack Swagger, who was given a jobber entrance during the "commercial break."
(3) Randy Orton beat Jack Swagger at 2:14. Swagger had a bit of offense, but this was Orton dominating and re-establishing his offense with the second-rope DDT and clean RKO for the pin. Orton stayed in the ring for a while posing before doing a victory lap. Ref Armstrong hurried Orton along before Orton posed on-stage and blew kisses to the crowd.
Backstage, Hawkins and Reks interrupted Booker and Teddy Long having a chat. Booker told them that only A+ talent is allowed on Smackdown. Reks said he can't go back to his old job, then tried to talk to Booker again to no avail.
Raw plug: Brock Lesnar and Triple H final confrontation before Summerslam.
(4) Jinder Mahal beat two unidentified jobbers at 0:38. The fans were wondering about Ryback here. Mahal won an odd match, then went for a double Camel Clutch until Ryback interrupted to a reaction. Ryback chased off Mahal, apparently upset that he stole his handicap squash gimmick. So, Ryback delivered a double backpack drop to the jobbers. Afterward, Ryback led the crowd in a "Feed Me More" chant, which is slowly getting over.
As the WWE crew set up the Highlight Reel in the ring, WWE ran an ad for "The Day" WWE Studios movie.
Highlight Reel: Jericho started to introduce the segment, but Vickie interrupted. She said she is here to speak on Dolph's behalf tonight. Jericho said he's flexible and he can interview Dolph's mother. Vickie vowed to leave this show if he offers one more insult. Jericho comically told her to go ahead and leave, but then brought her back. Jericho rolled footage of Ziggler losing to Alex Riley on Raw, then tried to knock Ziggler for losing to Riley, but then tried to prop up Riley as a legit star. Vickie had enough and suggested Ziggler will face Jericho at Summerslam. Jericho got serious and said Ziggler got him thinking, so he's bringing back Y2J. He then accepted the PPV match. Suddenly, Ziggler came through the crowd to attack Jericho from behind and KO him with the MITB briefcase.
(5) Prime Time Players beat Primo & Epico via DQ at 1:23 in a #1 contender match. Kofi and Truth were on commentary for this while A.W. was mic'ed for sound. Ringside, A.W. threw water at the tag champs, so they stormed the ring and beat up the Prime Time Players and A.W. for the DQ. Afterward, Primo and Epico argued with the tag champs for costing them the match. Rosa Mendes was not present.
Raw Rebound on the WWE Title picture.
Backstage, Eve asked Booker for a job, but he turned her down again. Kaitlyn then asked for a job per Teddy Long and Booker accepted. Eve said that's not fair and threatened legal action, so Booker scheduled Eve vs. Kaitlyn for next week to determine his assistant.
(6) Rey Mysterio beat IC champ The Miz at 4:50 in a non-title match. This was pretty good and started to get better before Rey abruptly won with a roll-up countering the Skullcrushing Finale. This was probably the best match of the Smackdown portion of the taping.
Daniel Bryan was shown screaming "No!" at various people backstage. This was very over with the live crowd, which shouted "Yes!" back at him.
Wade Barrett vignette.
Miz was still in the ring after his loss to Mysterio. He demanded someone come right his wrong as IC champion. After a pause, Triple H's music played to bring out Hunter, who pointed to the top of the arena to survey the big crowd. Hunter continued to survey the arena, then asked Miz to take a look at the crowd with him once in the ring. Miz turned to look, then Hunter popped him with a Pedigree and promptly left without breaking a sweat in his COO suit.
Back to live Smackdown, Daniel Bryan came out to a huge reaction of Yes! chants in his face. Bryan's gimmick was way over and the most popular part of WWE programming during the night. Bryan, after being barraged by Yes! chants, squatted down in the ring to sell he was overwhelmed by the loud noises. Bryan called out A.J., but Kane interrupted to set up their Summerslam match. Suddenly, A.J. came out as Booker's special guest tonight. A.J. moved along to Kane and thanked him for treating her well. A.J. either forget her lines or was really stretching things out by twisting her head to the left and right, which lost the crowd. She then told Bryan to prove he doesn't have anger management issues and that he is a good sport. He can do that by shaking Kane's hand. Bryan shouted, "No!" A.J. then talked down to Bryan, who eventually extended his hand, but Kane blasted him. A fight broke out before Bryan ran away into the crowd. On-stage, A.J. knelt down and laughed like a crazy person before Kane shot off his pyro in the ring.
Before the main event, Lilian announced a return to Houston on January 14 for Raw, which hasn't come to Houston in years. The last time was Raw after Mania 25. A big crowd tonight for a standard Houston Smackdown taping must have helped.
Suddenly, A.J.'s music played again. She just skipped out, skipped around the ring, and disappeared to the back. Either a re-tape or they wanted to get across to the crowd that A.J. is still nuts.
Formal ring introductions took place for the Sheamus vs. Del Rio World Title main event. But, before the bell sounded, five "cops" emerged on-stage and slowly walked to the ring. Del Rio told them to stop because he didn't file the police report and wanted his title match. Sheamus then tried to fight off the cops, but they out-numbered him. The crowd didn't buy this at all. Del Rio then blasted Sheamus. No sign of Booker or babyface help. Del Rio continued the attack, then slapped on the cross arm-breaker. Still no help for Sheamus. Apparently that was the end...of...Smackdown? Weird angle that fell flat while teaching kids to hate cops, who were booed as they left the ring following Del Rio.
After Del Rio left, Sheamus was helped out of the ring by refs. Lilian then announced the non-TV main event. John Cena came out first, then Vickie excused herself on-stage. She said John Laurinaitis has been fired, so she found a replacement, Ziggler. Big Show then came out to join Ziggler in a handicap match.
Bonus Dark Match: John Cena beat Big Show & Dolph Ziggler at 10:23 in a handicap match. Methodical pacing and some comedy throughout. For the finish, Cena ducked a KO Punch, which hit Ziggler, who did a delayed face-first Flair flop. Cena then offered a Feat of Strength Attitude Adjustment on Show. Cena pinned Ziggler for the win.
Afterward, John Laurinaitis showed up, delivered a chair jab to Cena, went for a second shot, and Cena ducked before delivering an AA to close things out. Cena did a victory lap, then Lilian thanked the sold-out crowd for coming. WWE probably came close to outdrawing the LAstros down the street tonight.
OVERALL THOUGHTS: Smackdown had its moments (Highlight Reel, Bryan on the mic before the Kane and A.J. interruptions, and Miz vs. Rey), but there wasn't a really strong match or segment. It will be interesting to see what the commentary is on the false main event of Sheamus vs. Del Rio as WWE tries to sell whatever that ending was all about. But, the bottom line is Bryan's gimmick is so simple and effective that it's easy for a crowd of 10,000 casual and hardcore fans to follow along and participate, which continues to grow his star.
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