The following report was originally published five years ago this week here at PWTorch.com…
WWE Smackdown review
December 6, 2013
Taped 12/3/13 in Tulsa, Okla.
Aired on SyFy
By Greg Parks, PWTorch Columnist (Twitter: @gregmparks)
– WWE Open.
– The show opened with WWE Champion Randy Orton coming to the ring. Michael Cole began pushing the Slammy Awards almost immediately. Orton said at TLC, he’ll prove to be the champion of champions. He called what happened Monday night during the contract signing an “atrocity,” and they showed a clip of that brawl. Orton talked about the injuries he suffered during that incident, but said he’d never whine about such maladies. He said he’s not the most likeable of characters, but he doesn’t like the fans or the wrestlers in the back, either. The light in the arena was dimmed for this interview, for what it’s worth. Orton said he liked and even revered The Authority. He said sometimes he doesn’t appreciate them and takes what they do for him for granted. He publicly apologized to The Authority. What a heel! As he was about to leave the ring, Daniel Bryan’s music played and he walked out.
Bryan claimed Orton never beat him legitimately, and he hasn’t forgotten about those times Orton screwed him over. He said he wasn’t done with Orton. And, he said, he wasn’t done with the WWE Title chase, either. He wanted to put a knee into Orton’s face, for old time’s sake. He proposed a match between the two for tonight. Orton declined. Tulsa sided with Bryan. Bryan got the “Yes!” chant going. The segment ended with Bryan’s music playing and Orton slithering out of the ring.
– Much to Orton’s chagrin, Orton vs. Bryan will take place tonight.
1 – FANDANGO vs. BIG E. LANGSTON
Damien Sandow was at the announce desk to help call this match. As Langston came to the ring, they showed Sandow beating Dolph Ziggler on Raw to become the #1 contender to the Intercontinental Title. Langston and Sandow will battle over the IC Title at TLC. Langston was the aggressor to start, working over Fandango in the corner then just shoving him out of the ring. Fandango took over control with a hard clothesline on the outside. In the ring, Fandango lost control and Langston gave him a belly-to-belly. Big splash by Langston, but Fandango caught him with a kick to the jaw. Langston slammed Fandango off the top and gave him the Big Ending for three.
WINNER: Langston, at 2:45. This clearly delineates Fandango’s place in the WWE hierarchy. He’s a one-note character, but I thought WWE would’ve gotten a little more out of that one note.
Langston and Sandow faced off in the ring after the match, with Langston holding the title over his head. No physicality took place.
– Cole and JBL talked about Cyber Monday and WWE 2K14. Cole showed a video from YouTube of the Smackdown opening, but using the video game characters. That was pretty cool.
– C.M. Punk goes one-on-one with a yet-to-be-determined member of The Shield. That’s later tonight.
– Cole and JBL plugged that Shawn Michaels would present the Superstar of the Year at the Slammy Awards next Monday on Raw.
2 – GOLDUST & CODY RHODES vs. CURTIS AXEL & RYBACK
They showed a clip of Axel and Rhodes getting involved in the Goldust vs. Ryback singles match from Main Event. Cody took Ryback to his knees and immediately tagged in his brother. Ryback pressed Goldust over his head and dropped him chest-first across the top rope. The heels worked over Goldust in their corner. Goldust turned the tide and flipped axel into a jackknife cover for two. Rhodes made the tag, but he missed the Disaster Kick. He rolled up Axel out of the corner for two. Moonsault by Cody for a near-fall, broken up by Ryback. Goldust took Ryback for a ride over the top rope. Cody used the announce table for a Disaster Kick on Ryback. On the way back into the ring, Axel small-packaged him for the win.
WINNERS: Ryback and Axel, at 4:14. Boy does that finish make Cody look dumb. He went to help Goldust when he had the legal man prone in the ring.
– Daniel Bryan vs. Randy Orton is the main event tonight.
– The Slammy for “This is Awesome” moment of the year will be presented by Christian Monday night.
– Bad News Barrett was at ringside for his latest announcement. Barrett said people would like to hear that they’re beloved and valued. But instead, he has bad news: They’re cowardly, gullible sheep who will follow one another to the slaughter. Is that supposed to mean something?
– Alberto Del Rio came out for a match. They showed a clip of Sin Cara beating Del Rio on Monday night. Kofi Kingston came out as his opponent. Before the match could begin, Del Rio attacked Kingston as he posed on the top rope. Del Rio threw Kofi into the barricade and continued thes assault. Kingston was thrown back into the ring as the ref tried to admonish ADR. Superkick to Kingston. Del Rio applied the cross arm-breaker as another official came out to break the hold. Del Rio then exited the ring as they replayed parts of the assault.
– JBL and Cole were shown on-camera. They talked about Punk vs. The Shield at TLC, and showed The Shield attacking him two weeks ago on Raw.
– The Shield cut a promo in the belly of the arena. Roman Reigns had to be calmed down by Seth Rollins, who said they don’t want to hurt Punk too much tonight, as they want to finish him at TLC. He said they want to make sure the WWE Universe understands what happens when they don’t believe in The Shield. Reigns said it’ll take the baddest man on the Shield to take out Punk. “So in other words…me,” said Dean Ambrose. He walked away as the segment ended. Tension continues to build.
– The Double-Cross of the Year Slammy will be presented by The Shield Monday night. I don’t know that I’d want to accept if I won.
3 – C.M. PUNK vs. DEAN AMBROSE
The other Shield members were not at ringside. Ambrose held onto the ropes on a Punk kick attempt. A couple short leg-drops by Ambrose as JBL echoed my thoughts on not wanting to accept an award from The Shield. Ambrose put Punk in a rear chin-lock, and the fans got behind Punk enough to help him work out of it. Heel kick by Punk felled Ambrose. Ambrose again dodged a Punk kick and took a break at ringside. The show went to a break of its own at 3:01 of the match.
Smackdown returned 6:09 into the match. Ambrose was in control of Punk, who was really struggling at this point. Ambrose went to the top rope, but missed a…back splash? That’s what it turned into. Perhaps he had something else in mind, then altered his trajectory when Punk moved. Top-rope clothesline from Punk from two. He continued to favor his injured ribs. Punk signaled for a top-rope elbowdrop. Instead, Ambrose backslid Punk for two. An arm-bar caused Punk to scream in agony. Sleeper reversed by Punk and the Anaconda Vice was applied. Ambrose slid to the ropes and put his foot under the bottom rope. Punk retaliated with a bodyslam. Ambrose met Punk at the top and Ambrose brought him down with a double-underhook suplex. Punk kicked out of a pin at 10:28. Ambrose went back to an arm-bar. Punk got to the ropes and Ambrose broke the hold at the count of four. Big roundhouse kick to Ambrose for two. Both men’s finishers were reversed, and Ambrose sent Punk shoulder-first into the ring post. Roll-up with the tights held for two. Punk connected on the Go To Sleep. He was slow to cover, but got the pin anyway.
WINNER: Punk, at 12:54. Just a professional match between two professionals who know what they’re doing in the ring.
A few key moments in the match were replayed.
– Cole and JBL talked about the TLC main event, with Cole saying the titles would be unified at the show.
– Renee Young was backstage with Rey Mysterio. He talked about what it would mean to hold both the WWE and World Title at the same time, since he has held both belts separately. Zeb Colter interrupted and demanded a citizenship test for Rey. He asked why Rey wears the mask. Mysterio reassured Colter that he was born and raised in San Diego. Zeb challenged Rey to a tag match: The Real Americans vs. Mysterio and a partner of his choosing.
– Bryan vs. Orton is the main event tonight.
– Eve Torres will return Monday night to present the Diva of the Year Slammy.
4 – TAMINA SNUKA vs. NATALYA
No entrance for Nattie. A.J. Lee came to the ring with Tamina and joined the announcers. Natalya clotheslined Tamina, though Tamina rammed her head-first into the turnbuckle with Nattie on the ring apron. Tamina missed a corner splash and connected on a low dropkick. Tamina kicked away Nattie on a Sharpshooter try. Samoan Drop on Tamina. A.J. was spittin’ truth on commentary. Tamina missed a splash off the top and was pinned.
WINNER: Natalya, at 3:00. With Natalya challenging for the Diva’s Title at TLC, the result was expected. A.J. didn’t seem to have much of a connection to Tamina as she spoke on commentary.
– The Funkadactyls were pushing merchandise in this week’s WWE Shop segment. Promo code “Funk,” free shipping on the order, tonight only.
– Zeb Colter and the Real Americans were walking backstage. They take on Rey and a mystery partner, next.
5 – THE REAL AMERICANS vs. REY MYSTERIO & THE BIG SHOW
Thought for sure Sin Cara was going to be Rey’s partner. At least it’s better than Great Khali. Mysterio quickly became a victim of the heel offense. Rey fought away from Swagger and Cesaro, but Swagger tossed Rey outside under the bottom rope. DDT by Rey planted Swagger. Show tagged in at 3:14 of the match, and he did a number on Cesaro. He took the punishment to both Real Americans, then speared Cesaro. Swagger broke up a pin, but Rey took him out with a 619. Chokeslam to Cesaro , then Rey climbed on Show’s shoulders and splashed Cesaro for the win.
WINNERS: Show and Mysterio, at 4:20. Was Big Show’s loss to Orton at the last PPV really the blow-off for as much time as they spent on Show’s legal issues in the storyline?
A few replays of the match aired.
– The main event of Orton vs. Bryan is coming up.
– The exterior of the BOK Center in Tulsa was shown.
– A special video package aired on former WWE Champions and World Champions. Legends like Ric Flair, Dusty Rhodes, Shawn Michaels, Booker T., and Steve Austin spoke about what it was like to hold said title(s).
– Parts of Michael Cole’s weekly interview with Triple H on WWE.com aired, specifically the part with Hunter talking about the unification of the titles.
– More Bad News Barrett: He teased good news, saying after TLC, it is guaranteed there will be only one champion. But, for the winner, there will be bad news. A target will be on his chest and he will be an envy of the locker room. Therefore, he is doomed to destruction.
– Daniel Bryan made his entrance for the main event, which takes place next.
– The Match of the Year Slammy will be presented by Bret Hart on Monday night.
6 – DANIEL BRYAN vs. RANDY ORTON
Cole claimed Cena vs. Orton will be the biggest match in Sports Entertainment history. Bryan got the advantage early on, kicking and punching away at Orton until Orton retaliated with a headbutt. More kicks to the torso of Orton, followed by Bryan bringing Orton’s arm down over his shoulder. A jumping knee-drop from Orton missed. Kicks and kicks from Bryan, including a dropkick that sent Orton over the top and to the outside. Orton avoided a suicide dive, with Bryan stopping short before performing the move. They cut to break 2:55 into the match.
Back at 6:23 of the match with Orton this time hitting his jumping knee-drop, good for a two-count. Suplex by Orton, again for two. Cole and JBL were selling the World Title’s lineage as dating back to 1905. Bryan built some momentum and hit a few dropkicks to Orton in the corner. Hurricanrana off the top rope on Orton for two. Suicide dive by Bryan found the mark. Top-rope missile dropkick by Bryan. After a missed kick, Orton powerslammed Bryan for two. Rope-assisted DDT by Orton. Bryan came back with a kick to the head, then, as he ascended the top rope, the Wyatt Family video interrupted and the lights went out. Erick Rowan and Luke Harper appeared in the aisle when the lights came back on. Orton took advantage of the distraction to hit the RKO for the win.
WINNER: Orton, at 12:13.
A replay of the finish was shown. The lights went out again after the match and Bray Wyatt appeared on the big screen. He said he didn’t mean to keep haunting Bryan, but needed to remind him that he doesn’t have to fight “this war” alone. Wyatt asked Bryan to join them, then laughed maniacally as the show ended.