WWE Week In Review XVI
August 17, 2008- August 23, 2008
Welcome to the sweet sixteenth edition of the WWE Week In Review. Feel free to contact me on TWO or Wrestling 101 anytime with comments, questions, and anything in between. Also, check out my blog on Wrestling101.com.
This week in the WWE started off with The Biggest Blockbuster of the Summer- The 21’st Annual SummerSlam from the Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, IN.
The summer tradition kicked off with a very heated and very personal grudge match between The Ballin’ Superstar MVP and The Rainbow-Haired Warrior Jeff Hardy. As he has done in the past several weeks, MVP would utilize great opportunity and his signature Drive-By Kick to stick it to Jeff Hardy. After the United States Champion Shelton Benjamin distracted Jeff, Jeff took flight from the top rope and took out the U.S. Champion. This delay gave MVP enough time to flatten Jeff with the Drive-By Kick to secure the win.
Next up was the Winners Take All Intergender Tag Team Match for both the Intercontinental & Women’s Championship that saw Intercontinental Champion Kofi Kingston team up with four-time Women’s Champion Mickie James to defend both their titles against Santino Marella & Beth Phoenix. With all the confusion in this "Adamle Original" match, Beth Phoenix was able to hit the Glam Slam on Mickie James to win the Women’s Title for herself and the Intercontinental Title for Santino Marella.
The Heartbreak Kid Shawn Michaels was out next with his wife, Rebecca. Shawn Michaels explained to the fans that his doctors informed him on Friday that he should walk away from the WWE. With his wife by his side, HBK held true to his promise and said he would listen to the doctors and walk away. Michaels said that he was going to be something that he has never been- a full-time husband and father. The one man that Michaels did not want to see interrupted his emotional speech- Chris Jericho. Jericho told The Showstopper that Michaels could not walk away without admitting to the fans, his family, his wife, and Jericho that Chris Jericho was the reason that Michaels is walking away because of what Jericho did to Michaels at The Great American Bash last month. Shawn Michaels called Jericho a "vile" and "worthless" human being. Shawn told Jericho to go home and tell his kids that he will never be Shawn Michaels. At the coaxing of his wife, Michaels started to exit the ring, but Jericho attempted to hit Michaels with a right hand. Unfortunately, it was an errant one, as Jericho inadvertently struck Rebecca in the mouth, knocking her to the mat. A mix of rage and concern overtook Michaels’ face as Jericho backed away from the ring.
The ECW Championship was the next championship to be up for grabs as champion Mark Henry took on Matt Hardy for the gold. This match would be a quick one, as Matt Hardy wasted no time and hit the Twist of Fate on the World’s Strongest Champion, but when Matt went for the pin, Mark Henry’s manager Tony Atlas pulled Matt Hardy out of the ring, ending the match on a disqualification and ensuring that Henry kept his title. After the match ended, Tony Atlas continued to assault Matt Hardy until help arrived in the form of Matt’s younger brother, Jeff Hardy. The duo took care of Atlas and then managed to pull off a double suplex to the World’s Strongest Champion on the outside. As Henry & Atlas backed away with the ECW Title still in Henry’s grasp, The Hardys stood tall in the middle of the ring.
CM Punk was out to prove himself worthy of being World Heavyweight Champion as he defended his title against John "Bradshaw" Layfield. In the end, it was CM Punk and his GTS that proved JBL wrong and proved CM Punk to be anything but a transitional champion.
In his biggest challenge since winning the WWE Title, Triple H was set to defend his title against The Punjabi Punisher The Great Khali. Khali dominated most of the match, but Triple H was able to use his cunning and strength to put down the seven-footer with the Pedigree to retain his gold.
Next up was the first time meeting of John Cena and Batista one-on-one, both of them gave it all they had and exchanged multiple counters, but in the end, it was an enraged Batista laying out Cena with the Batista Bomb to pick up the win.
It was then time for the match that everyone had been waiting for- Hell in a Cell between Edge and The Undertaker. The mentally unstable Rated-R Superstar was able to take it to The Deadman by using his favorite "toys"- tables, ladders, and chairs. Edge even speared Undertaker through the side of the Cell and speared him again through the ECW Announce Table. Undertaker would get his revenge and much more over Edge as he chokeslammed Edge through two tables on the outside, smashed a camera over Edge’s head, cracked Edge’s head with a Con-chair-to and sealed the deal with the Tombstone Piledriver in the middle of the ring. As The Undertaker exited the arena, he spotted Edge still moving in the ring. The Deadman promised to send Edge to hell and did just that. Undertaker set up a ladder and chokeslammed Edge off of the ladder all the way through the ring and all the way to hell. It was vindication for The Undertaker as the flames of hell burned for all to see from under the ring.
The sizzle from SummerSlam was still felt as Monday Night RAW emanated from the Allstate Arena in Chicago, IL. The show opened with Chris Jericho, who came out and said that he was not on RAW to apologize for what he did to Shawn Michaels’ wife, Rebecca the night before at SummerSlam. Jericho stated that it was Shawn Michaels’ fault that his wife got hurt and that The Heartbreak Kid has tarnished his legendary career.
The opening contest of the night saw The Animal Batista take on The Ripper Paul Burchill. Even with a bad knee, The Animal made quick work of the UK Grappler with the Batista Bomb.
Backstage, RAW General Manager Mike Adamle introduces the WWE Universe to RAW’s newest superstar- Primo Colon; the brother of SmackDown Superstar Carlito. Before Primo could introduce himself, the GM broke away and pursued an arriving John Cena, Adamle tried to inform Cena of his match on RAW, but Cena was distracted by The Animal Batista, who was coming off a win over Paul Burchill. Cena shook the hand of Batista and told The Animal that he was the better man in their match at SummerSlam, but Cena added, "that was last night".
In Divas Tag Team action, former Women’s Champion Mickie James teamed up with Kelly Kelly to take on Katie Lea Burchill and Jillian. Katie Lea & Jillian would dominate most of the match by isolating Kelly Kelly, but when the former Women’s Champion got the hot tag, Mickie was able to plant Katie Lea Burchill with the Mickie-T for the win.
After losing for the second time to CM Punk and not being able to win the World Heavyweight Title, an enraged JBL was in action against The Pitbull Jamie Noble. The Vicious Millionaire put The Pittbull down with the Clothesline From Hell and two hard lariats. The referee deemed that Jamie was unable to continue and the winner was John "Bradshaw" Layfield.
RAW General Manager Mike Adamle was out next with a "blockbuster announcement". Adamle first announced that Chicago’s own CM Punk would be facing Chris Jericho in non-title action in the main event. Adamle then announced another "Adamle Original" for Unforgiven called the "World Heavyweight Championship Scramble" that would see CM Punk defend his World Heavyweight Title against four other men- John Cena, JBL, Batista, & Kane. The GM explained that it would be a match that will have a 20 Minute Time Limit and whoever gets the pinfall or submission in the 20 minutes would temporarily be the World Heavyweight Champion, but whoever is champion when the time expires would be the World Heavyweight Champion. The match will start off with the champion and one of his challengers and every five minutes, another challenger will enter the match.
John Cena would also be in action on RAW, as he faced the World Tag Team Champions Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase in a 2-on-1 Handicap Match. Before Cena arrived on the scene, Cena’s running buddies- Cryme Tyme made their way to the ring and with Shad distracting the tag team champions, JTG stole the World Tag Team Title belts from the duo. Rhodes & DiBiase were still livid as Cena made his way to the ring. Cena would be able to overcome the challenge of the young champions and force Cody Rhodes to tap out to pick up the win.
In an exclusive post-SummerSlam interview with Shawn Michaels, The Heartbreak Kid announced that he was going to go home and comfort his wife, Rebecca and his children. Michaels then inconclusively added, "and then…"
Another Chicago native- D-Lo Brown was in action, as well, taking on the new Intercontinental Champion Santino Marella in a non-title bout. Former champion Kofi Kingston would join Michael Cole & Jerry Lawler for commentary at ringside. As D-Lo was set to defeat the new champion, Beth Phoenix intervened and slapped D-Lo giving Brown the DQ win over Marella. D-Lo Brown cleaned house of The Unibrowed Italian and gave Kofi Kingston the opportunity to bounce Marella’s head off of the RAW Announce Table.
The Demented Big Red Machine was out next to explain what had happened to Rey Mysterio one week after revealing that Kane has been in possession of Rey Mysterio’s mask for the past several weeks. Kane revealed that Rey has not appeared on RAW in six weeks and that Kane is responsible for that. Kane calls Rey a "fungus in the marshes of psyches" and stated that he did not like Rey Mysterio and did not like people who did. Kane stated that he assaulted The Master of the 619 in the parking lot six weeks ago, but let Rey live. Kane revealed that Rey was alive, but his soul was dead. Before Kane could go on, The Animal Batista came to the ring to avenge his friend, Rey. Batista brawled with Kane, but Batista’s bad knee would prove to cost him as Kane planted The Animal with a chokeslam.
In the main event of the evening, hometown boy World Heavyweight Champion CM Punk faced Chris Jericho in a non-title match. In front of his family and friends, Punk took it to Jericho, but it was Lance Cade getting involved and distracting the champion long enough for Jericho to hit the Codebreaker and pin the champion in his own hometown. Can CM Punk recover enough momentum to be able to retain his title in just a few weeks at Unforgiven in the World Heavyweight Championship Scramble? What about Chris Jericho? What will the unforgiving Jericho do next and will Shawn Michaels do anything to avenge his wife?
Two nights after a controversial ECW Title Match at SummerSlam, ECW felt the fallout of the Summer Spectacular in the I Wireless Center in Moline, IL.
The night started off with a big time 6-Man Tag Match that saw Chavo Guerrero team up with The Miz & John Morrison to take on the team of Tommy Dreamer, Evan Bourne, & Super Crazy. The Miz & John Morrison were able to double team Dreamer and allow The Miz to pick up the win for his team.
The Undefeated Ricky Ortiz was also in action as he faced off against ECW’s newest Superstar- Gavin Spears. Spears held his own in his debut match, but Ricky O. was able to hit the Big O to remain undefeated at 4-0.
Finlay & Hornswoggle also made an appearance. Finlay called out Mike Knox and Knox responded by telling Finlay that he will face him when he wants to. Finlay then darted out of the ring and started brawling with the hard-hitting Knox. ECW Officials had to separate these two tough men. These two will get their chance to get their hands on one another on next week’s ECW.
In the main event, Matt Hardy would challenge Mark Henry for the ECW Title in a SummerSlam Rematch. Much like at SummerSlam, Matt Hardy would have to fight both Mark Henry and his manager, Tony Atlas. Atlas would foil Matt Hardy’s plans at every turn, even pulling Matt out of the ring without the referee noticing. With a big assist by Atlas, Henry was able to pin Matt Hardy to retain his title. Was this Matt Hardy’s last chance at the ECW gold? Who will challenge The World’s Strongest Champion next and who can defeat Henry with Tony Atlas by his side? Will Matt Hardy seek revenge on the power lifting duo?
Friday’s SmackDown was all about the WWE Championship Scramble at Unforgiven that would see Triple H defend his WWE Title against four to-be-decided challengers in a match that will have a 20 Minute Time Limit and whoever gets the pinfall or submission in the 20 minutes would temporarily be the WWE Champion, but whoever is champion when the time expires would be the WWE Champion. The match will start off with the champion and one of his challengers and every five minutes, another challenger will enter the match.
SmackDown General Manager Vickie Guerrero and informed the public that the Vickie Guerrero that everyone has seen for the past several months is not the "real Vickie", but a monster created by husband, Edge to satisfy his wants and needs on SmackDown. Vickie then announced the WWE Championship Scramble for Unforgiven, as first revealed on WWE.com earlier in the week. Vickie announced that there would be four qualifying matches on SmackDown to determine who will participate for the WWE Title at Unforgiven on September 7.
Before the qualifying for the Scramble could begin, the Divas were in action as Natalya took on Maria. Maria would hold her own against the first third-generation diva, but in the end, it was Maryse attacking Maria that gave Maria the win via disqualification. The evil duo assaulted Maria until Divas Champion Michelle McCool made the save.
Vickie Guerrero & The Family are confronted backstage by Big Show. Big Show tells the GM how excited he is about the Championship Scramble at Unforgiven and asks Vickie who his opponent will be in his qualifier. The GM informs the World’s Largest Athlete that he was not a part of the proceedings for Unforgiven. Vickie called it a "oversight", the seven foot "oversight" walked away, disappointed.
In the first WWE Championship Scramble Qualifying Match, 10 men would face off in a battle royal, with the last superstar standing heading to Unforgiven. Before the battle royal could begin, the omitted Big Show made his way to ringside to watch the 10-Man Battle Royal. The battle royal featured The Moscow Mauler Vladmir Kozlov, Funaki, ECW’s Insane Luchador Super Crazy, WWE Tag Team Champions Curt Hawkins & Zack Ryder, ECW’s Armando Estrada, new SmackDown talent Ryan Braddock and Scotty Goldman, The Brian Kendrick, & SmackDown’s Resident Redneck Jimmy Wang Yang. After several different competitors was able to eliminate the biggest threat in the match, Vladmir Kozlov, Curt Hawkins & Zack Ryder used their skill and experience as a team to dominate the battle royal. That was, until Big Show decided to get involved in the match. Big Show disposed of everyone in sight- Funaki, Armando Estrada, Ryan Braddock, & Scotty Goldman. The Angry Giant managed to eliminate Super Crazy and the WWE Tag Team Champions in one fail swoop. What Big Show did not notice was that when he attempted to eliminated The Brian Kendrick, Ezekiel Jackson caught his cocky client, keeping Kendrick’s feet from hitting the floor for the elimination. With Big Show getting illegally involved, he did all of The Brian Kendrick’s work for him, in a way. After Big Show exited the ring, Ezekiel threw Kendrick back into the ring and after some deliberation, the referees determined that The Brian Kendrick won the battle royal and will be heading to Cleveland to participate in the WWE Championship Scramble; his first opportunity at the WWE Title. Could The Brian Kendrick’s "Advisor" Ezekiel Jackson accompany his client to the WWE Title?
In the second of four qualifying matches, The Ballin’ Superstar MVP, fresh off a controversial win over Jeff Hardy, faced The Cornfed Colossus Festus. Festus dominated most of the match, but MVP used his Drive-By Kick on Jesse on the outside, distracting Festus long enough to give MVP the count-out victory and give Montel a one-way ticket to a chance at the WWE Title. As if dashing his dreams of challenging for the WWE Title wasn’t enough, MVP waited until after the bell had rung and rung a stoic Festus’ bell with the Drive-By Kick.
In the next qualifier, United States Champion Shelton Benjamin would attempt to put himself in line for more gold, as he took on ECW’s Fighting Irishman Finlay, with his son Hornswoggle in tow. Finlay’s intense rival, Mike Knox would get in Finlay’s business once again, putting his hands on Finlay’s son Hornswoggle, which would distract Father Finlay long enough for Benjamin to hit the Pay Dirt and head to Unforgiven. After the match, Mike Knox assaulted a downed Finlay. After being robbed of his shot at the WWE Title, Finlay will be out for revenge this Tuesday when he goes one-on-one with Mike Knox.
It was then time to decide Triple H’s final challenger for the WWE Title at Unforgiven as The Punjabi Nightmare faced The Charismatic Enigma Jeff Hardy. With a vested interest in this qualifier, WWE Champion Triple H sat ringside for commentary for this match against two men The Game is very familiar with. Triple H would do more than watch when Ranjin Singh distracted Jeff Hardy as Hardy was about to finish off Khali. Triple H laid out the translator and grabbed a steel chair. With the referee checking on a grounded Jeff Hardy, Triple H blasted The Great Khali with the steel chair, giving Jeff the opportunity to hit the Swanton to go on to Unforgiven.
With all four challengers set for Unforgiven, WWE Champion Triple H gave his thoughts on his unique challenge on September 7. Triple H ran down his challengers and admitted that the match was not in his favor, but informed the other four competitors in the Scramble that they are facing The Game. A confident Kenny Dykstra interrupted the champion, expressing his displeasure with being left out of the qualifying for the Championship Scramble. Triple H gave Kenny de ja vu, pedigreeing Dykstra for the second week in a row.
GM Vickie Guerrero, Chavo Guerrero, Bam Neely, Curt Hawkins, & Zack Ryder were out next. The Family backed up Vickie as she gave her apology to The Undertaker. She then introduced The Undertaker, who came into the ring to face Vickie & company. Vickie got on her knees and literally begged The Deadman to accept her apology. A man of few words, The Undertaker grabbed the mic and told the GM that he was not on SmackDown to accept an apology, that he was there to take Vickie’s soul. With this, The Family surrounded The Deadman and was able to beat down Undertaker, using the numbers game and a big assist from Bam Neely. Undertaker would be able to bounce back, laying out every member of The Family and staring down Vickie Guerrero. With The Undertaker setting his sights on Vickie, what will be the GM’s next action to try and protect herself from The Deadman? The Undertaker proved he is able to handle the rest of The Family, but will he hold true to his promise to take Vickie’s soul?
Superstar of the Week: The Undertaker
SmackDown: August 15- 2.4 Rating (Up From Last Week’s 2.0 Rating)
RAW: August 18- 3.3 Rating (Up From Last Week’s 3.1 Rating)
ECW: August 19- 1.5 Rating (Up From Last Week’s 1.2 Rating)