WWE SmackDown (Airing Friday):
Lilian Garcia came out to polite applause. Michael Cole came out to nothing. JBL entered to a warm reception. This is the most packed I’ve seen the Coliseum in a while for wrestling. The lower section looks totally full, and there are even a few seats open up top, which is rare around here.
The main events were introduced via intro video to be Team Hell No and Randy Orton vs. The Shield, and Alberto Del Rio and Chris Jericho vs. Dolph Ziggler and Big E Langston. It should be great to see Ziggler back in the ring.
Daniel Bryan promo started off the taping. He said Team Hell No is one of the greatest teams in WWE history, and called Kane to the ring. Bryan says when he and Randy win the tag team titles, though, he and Kane won’t be able to tag anymore, which prompted Kane to ask, “Are you, like, breaking up with me?” Bryan called Kane the weak link. Kane grabbed Bryan for the chokeslam, which brought out Randy Orton. The three argued amongst themselves. The Shield cut a promo on the Tron stating they’ll win tonight, like they have in every other match.
Sheamus defeated Antonio Cesaro. Cesaro got the jobber entrance…sigh, not a good sign. Damien Sandow came out pre-match and put over Cesaro and his match with Sheamus at Payback Kickoff. Theaction went to the floor, where Sheamus hit Antonio with a nasty fallaway slam into the barricade. Cesaro rammed Sheamus into the stairs, which gave Sheamus a cut on his shoulder. After some moreaction, Sheamus suddenly hit the Brogue Kick out of the corner for the win. After the match, Sandow attacked Sheamus on the stage.
Teddy Long delivered a promo on the Tron. He put over Hardee’s burgers. Dolph Ziggler, Langston, and AJ showed up. Ziggler said it’s his triumphant return to Smackdown, and he should get more respect. They left, and Big E returned to eat Teddy’s burger.
Heath Slater defeated The Great Khali. What you would expect. Boring and typical. A 3MB distraction led to a Slater DDT and the victory.
Alberto Del Rio and Chris Jericho defeated Big E Langston and World Heavyweight Champion Dolph Ziggler. Lilian announced Ricardo in Spanish, so Ricardo announced Del Rio in English. From where I’m sitting, Ricardo’s pop was bigger than Del Rio’s. Jericho got a monster pop, though. Jericho’s jacket is awesome, AJ is smoking hot. Big E and Del Rio started after Ziggler ducked out. Back and forth action to start. Ziggler tagged in with Del Rio, and immediately jumped back out. “Y2J” and “We Want Ziggler” chants rang out. An AJ distraction and slap to Jericho led to the heels taking control. Del Rio got the hot tag, and soon after, he rolled up Ziggler for the win.
Jericho delivered a promo on the Tron and put over his match with CM Punk at Payback. Paul Heyman showed up to tell Jericho that he has no chance. Y2J ended up shoving the mic into Heyman’s mouth.
Divas Champion Kaitlyn vs. Aksana never got started. Kaitlyn, in a fit of rage and emotion over Monday’s angle with AJ, beat Aksana’s ass before it could happen, then beat the referee’s ass for trying to hold her back.
Curtis Axel defeated Intercontinental Champion Wade Barrett in a non-title match. Barrett grabbed a mic and told Heyman it would make more business sense to wait until Sunday, and skip the match tonight. Miz came out to egg them on, and the match began. At ringside, Barrett threw Axel into Miz. Axel pinned Barrett shortly after. Miz then jumped Axel and dropped him with the Skull Crushing Finale.
Daniel Bryan, Kane, and Randy Orton defeated The Shield. Yes, you read that right. The Shield actually got a pretty good pop. Orton got a HUGE pop. Bryan got lots of YES! chants. Bryan and Rollins started us off. The Shield alienated Bryan early. There was a fake hot tag to Orton, leading to the cut off and more Shield dominance for a while.
They took turns working him over. Kane got a hot tag, followed quickly by a Bryan tag. Bryan began cleaning house and the arena exploded. Kane threw Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose over the barricade, Seth Rollins ate a mid-air RKO, and Bryan slapped on the Yes! Lock for the win. In tribute to the late, great Gorilla Monsoon, this place has gone bananas!! There was a big celebration in the ring between Bryan, Kane, and Orton to end the show. There was no dark match main event.