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WWE Smackdown Report
PARKS'S WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT 7/11: Ongoing "virtual time" coverage of Friday show, including Chris Jericho vs. Randy Orton, Roman Reigns vs. Rusev

Jul 11, 2014 - 9:00:29 PM
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WWE Smackdown review
July 11, 2014
Taped 7/8/14 in Ottawa, Ont., Canada
Aired on SyFy
By Greg Parks, PWTorch Columnist (Twitter: @gregmparks)



- WWE Open.

- In the opening video package, Seth Rollins and John Cena’s backstage confrontation from Raw was shown, along with footage of their match and the post-match. Something tells me the image of Reigns raising Cena’s arm at the end will be replayed somewhere down the line.

- Rusev and Lana came out. Michael Cole announced Rusev vs. Roman Reigns would be the main event tonight. JBL butchered a Gorilla Monsoon quote, even after giving credit to him for it. Lana involved Canada as well as the United States in her comments on this week. She said the fans are unworthy to exist in the same era as Vladimir Putin. Right after Lana vowed Rusev would crush Reigns, The Shield music played and Reigns entered the picture from high atop the arena. A loud “Roman Reigns” chant broke out as soon as his music stopped. Reigns addressed Rusev, saying it’s his ring, not Rusev’s. Reigns threatened Rusev if Rusev were to make a move to attack him. Lana called it “crass behavior” from “an American swine.” She told Reigns to be careful.

Reigns found that somewhat amusing. Reigns said he assess and attacks, and all they need is a ref. He said he’ll put Rusev on his “Putin-kissing ass.” Charles Robinson came out to get between them. Lana said this wouldn’t happen on Reigns’ terms, so she had Rusev back away from the confrontation. The “asses and attack” catchphrase feels a little too robotic for Reigns. I don’t think fans want to get behind someone who feels like he’s being churned out of the WWE Machine, and I don’t know that the catchphrase helps. Roman’s music played as the segment ended.

- JBL and Cole hyped the WWE Network on commentary, emphasizing the 90% satisfaction rate of subscribers.

- Randy Orton takes on Chris Jericho tonight.

- A.J. Lee was skipping backstage. She’s in action next.

[Commercial Break]

1 – CAMERON vs. A.J. LEE

Cameron was already in the ring, appearing more concerned with how she looked than the upcoming match. After A.J. came to the ring, they replayed Paige’s promo that brought out the returning A.J, and how A.J. won the title from her. Cole broke the news that A.J. would defend the Divas Championship against Paige at Battleground (the graphics for the PPV look like they are leftover from the days of Cyber Sunday). Cameron mounted A.J. and tried to put lip gloss on her. She then moved to choking Lee in the ropes, as JBL wondered if the use of lip gloss on an opponent constituted a foreign object worthy of disqualification. Cameron stretched the arms and shoulders of A.J. Cameron pie-faced A.J. a few times and A.J. just smiled in response. Corner splash from A.J, followed by a swinging neck-breaker. Spinning back heel kick for two at 2:34. Cameron was ticked that A.J. touched her hair so Cameron left the ring. She was going to take a count-out loss when Naomi ran out and put Cameron back in the ring. Shining Wizard connected for the win.

WINNER: A.J., at 3:11. This wasn’t exactly how they booked matches with Paige as champion, but similar. The one difference was A.J. could get over with her personality during the match; Paige struggled with that.

- Renee Young was backstage with Randy Orton. She wanted a reaction from him about Kane’s comments on Raw in which he said he hated Orton. Orton only said he’s concentrating on doing what’s best for business, that being him walking out of Battleground as champion. As for Chris Jericho, he said some would say Jericho is a legend. So he figured it was time to introduce Jericho to the Legend Killer. I like that callback. It was certainly a better character than…whatever character he’s playing now.

- Reigns vs. Rusev in the main event is still to come.

[Commercial Break]

2 – FANDANGO vs. ADAM ROSE

With Layla coming out alongside Fandango, Summer Rae joined the Exotic Express this week. So, those hoping for a Dolph Ziggler/Summer pairing may end up disappointed. After Fandango was slapped on the butt, he went to work with right hands on Rose. Summer Rae ran over and attacked Layla about 40 seconds into the match. Fandango tried to break it up and ended up getting popped in the nose during the skirmish. In the end, he was counted out.

WINNER: Rose, via count-out, at 1:05. Rose took a backseat to the epic Layla vs. Summer Rae feud here, which should tell you all you need to know about his standing at this point.

After the match, Rose hit the Party Foul on Fandango.

- JBL and Cole talked on-camera about what happened with Chris Jericho on Raw. We saw Jericho beat The Miz, then get interrupted by a Bray Wyatt promo.

- Renee Young was joined by Chris Jericho backstage. She asked him about facing Wyatt at Battleground. Jericho said it has potential to be a classic. He put over Wyatt and said there’s no saving Bray – he’s too far gone. Jericho also put over Orton, “one of the greatest performers in the business today,” and one of his favorite opponents. Boy, this Jericho guy just loves everyone. He threatened to squash the head of the Viper tonight.

- The Usos were walking backstage. They’re in action next.

[Commercial Break]

- Later tonight, Summer Rae vs. Layla with Fandango as guest referee, a Money in the Bank rematch.

3 – TITUS O’NEIL & HEATH SLATER vs. THE USOS

Apparently on the App, Slater and O’Neil talked about dropping their respective inferior tag team partners. At Battleground, The Usos face Harper & Rowan in a 2-out-of-3 Falls Tag Title Match. JBL called the heel tag team “Slater and The Gator” (for O’Neil’s alma mater). Heel kick by Slater for a two-count. Titus broke up a pin attempt on Slater, but Slater came off the second rope right into a superkick. Tag was made, and The Usos picked up the win following a top-rope splash.

WINNERS: The Usos, at 1:59. Fine enhancement match for The Usos. Slater and O’Neil don’t seem to have much in common, but I’m all for pairing two lower-card guys who have nothing else going on.

Byron Saxton interviewed The Usos in the ring, post-match. One of the Usos spoke, saying he’s loving the rivalry between the two teams. First Jericho, now The Usos. We need more Dean Rollins vs. Seth Rollins feuds and fewer “I hope we can have a great match” feuds. The other Uso pretended to do play-by-play for what the match against The Wyatts will be like on Sunday. That was pretty unique, and it seemed to work well enough.

- Reigns vs. Rusev is still to come

- In a split-screen, Randy Orton and Chris Jericho were walking backstage. Their match is coming up next.

[Commercial Break]

4 – CHRIS JERICHO vs. RANDY ORTON

After Jericho came to the ring, Wyatt came on the TitanTron singing “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands” and told Jericho to “save yourself.” Jericho knocked Orton off the apron and to ringside once the match started, signaling a break 1:04 into the match.

[Commercial Break]

Back at 4:10 of the match with Jericho still holding serve. Orton took over by avoiding a Jericho charge, in which Jericho’s own momentum took him over the turnbuckle and to ringside. Still outside the ring, Orton dropped Jericho back-first across the top of the barricade. Jericho kicked out of an ensuing pin attempt at two. Orton applied a rear chinlock, but Jericho got to his feet. After he was knocked back down, Orton posed to draw heat. Another rear chinlock. The announcers spent this part of the match plugging the WWE Network. Jericho made his comeback and came off the top with the point of his elbow meeting the top of Orton’s head. Orton responded with a powerslam for two at 9:39. Enziguiri by Jericho for two. He tried to go to the top again, but Orton crotched him. A superplex attempt was blocked, then Jericho headbutted Orton down. Jericho came down onto Orton and registered another near-fall. An application of the Walls of Jericho led to Orton reaching the ropes for a break. A select few in the crowd were chanting Adam Rose’s theme. Rope-assisted DDT by Orton. Orton set up for the RKO. Jericho countered and hit the Lionsault. The lights then went out and the Wyatts’ signature played. They were nowhere to be found, but Jericho walked into an Orton RKO for the win.

WINNER: Orton, at 13:59. Yet another use of the“babyface gets distracted by music/lights and loses” trope. Appropriate, given Scott Keith’s recent Sporting News column on the subject.

- Rusev vs. Reigns is the main event tonight.

[Commercial Break]

5 – LAYLA vs. SUMMER RAE – FANDANGO AS SPECIAL GUEST REFEREE

No entrance for Layla and Fandango. As Summer came to the ring, they replayed what happened earlier in the evening to lead to this match (“we’re going to show it again, believe it or not,” said Cole). Layla made out with Fandango before the bell rang. So Summer did the same. Layla tried to go after Summer, but Fandango caught her and stopped her. He did the same with Summer. “Best job ever” chanted a few fans. Fandango curiously chose this time to dance in between the two women. Both ladies looked at Fandango questioningly…then attacked him. Fandango escaped their flying fists and left the ring. He sat on the ramp as his music played and the women looked at him from the ring.

WINNER: No contest (no bell), let’s call it 1:00.

Layla and Summer seemed to have an unofficial dance-off in the ring, then Summer offered her hand. Layla accepted, and they both danced. That popped the crowd. After a storyline like this, I guess the women should both get the better of Fandango given how they were treated.

- Reigns vs. Rusev. Big match slated for later in the show.

[Commercial Break]

6 – CURTIS AXEL vs. GOLDUST

Axel was already in the ring out of break. Stardust came to the ring with Goldust. Ryback was at ringside with Axel. Quick pace by both men out of the chute. Axel ducked between the ropes in the corner in order to draw Goldust away from him. Stardust stood on the barricade and played to the crowd. Roll-up by Goldust for two. Dropkick by Axel led to Goldust rolling out of the ring. Stardust sat on the announce table, distracting Axel and allowing Goldust to take over. Stardust put on JBL’s hat. Powerslam by Goldust for two. The Final Cut by Goldust for the win.

WINNER: Goldust, at 2:20. At least this offered something different in the ongoing feud between the two teams.

Ryback ran in immediately and attacked Goldust. He tried to give Goldust Shell Shock, but Stardust blew glitter into Ryback’s face to stop the assault.

- Bo Dallas is next.

[Commercial Break]

7 – DIEGO & EL TORITO vs. BO DALLAS – HANDICAP MATCH

JBL said Fernando is out with an injury after being gored by El Torito’s uncle, Mantaur. They showed what happened in the Dallas vs. Torito match from Raw. When Bo came to the ring, he said this may be a handicap match, but he’s handi-capable. He said his fans are his tag team partners tonight. Some “We Bo-lieve” chants early on. Double leg-sweep by Diego, who then worked the arm. Dropkick felled Dallas. Bo dodged a charge and hit the Bo-Dog for the win.

WINNER: Dallas, at 1:16. El Torito didn’t even tag in.

After the match, Dallas grabbed Torito and brought him into the ring. Dallas seemed surprised at his actions. Dallas checked on Torito, feigning concern, then gave him the Bo-Dog. JBL claimed Torito could’ve been playing possum. Bo’s attack was replayed.

- Up next, Reigns vs. Rusev.

[Commercial Break]

- Cole and JBL talked about the special Steve Austin Wrestlemania Rewind, on the WWE Network a half-hour after Smackdown.

- On Raw this Monday night, The Authority returns from vacation.

- Also, in the main event Monday, John Cena & Roman Reigns & Dean Ambrose vs. Kane & Seth Rollins & Randy Orton.

8 – RUSEV vs. ROMAN REIGNS

This is a big test for both men. As Reigns descended the stairs for the second time tonight, a graphic showed the participants in the Battleground Fatal Four-Way title match. They also showed Roman Reigns getting in his verbal shots at Kane on Monday, followed by the brawl. A long collar-and-elbow tie-up went to a stalemate, though Rusev kicked away at the legs of Reigns. Reigns mounted Rusev in the corner and punched away. An angry Rusev regrouped with the help of Lana outside the ring as they went to break 1:11 into the match.

[Commercial Break]

Back at 4:37 of the match. Spinning heel kick sent Reigns to the mat. Rusev kept control for the next few minutes and even whipped Reigns hard into turnbuckle, causing Reigns to collapse to the mat. Two kicks to the mid-section from Rusev, with Reigns on all fours. Reigns eventually exploded out of the corner with a clothesline, then hit one of the flying variety to finally take Rusev off his feet. Jumping kick outside the ring by Reigns. He set up for the Superman punch and connected. At this point, Randy Orton ran in for the disqualification.

WINNER: Reigns, via DQ, at 9:50.

Reigns gave Orton the Superman punch, but Rusev surprised Reigns with the jumping side kick. Instead of the Accolade, Lana ordered a confused Rusev out of the ring. The two of them headed up the ramp, leaving Orton alone with Reigns. Orton took his time getting into the ring. The DQ was replayed as was Rusev’s kick. Orton was finally in the ring and setting up for the RKO. It found the mark. Orton knelt over the prone Reigns as the show drew to a close.


Did you watch Friday's Smackdown episode? Send your 0-10 score & Reax to pwtorch@gmail.com for our TV Reax feature.

Greg Parks has been covering WWE Smackdown for PWTorch.com since January of 2007. He is the host of “Moonlighting with Greg Parks,” a PWTorch VIP-exclusive audio show posted each weekend. Follow him on Twitter @gregmparks for live Tweeting during Raw, Impact, and PPVs, as well as other bits of wisdom. Comments, questions and feedback are welcome, and can be sent to g_man9784@yahoo.com.


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