Date: September 14, 2007
Location: Target Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Commentators: John Bradshaw Layfield, Michael Cole
It is the go home show for Unforgiven and we are now set for a triple threat World Title match. Great Khali will be defending against Rey Mysterio and now Batista, which sounds like a way to keep Batista vs. Great Khali from wrecking a show. Hopefully we can get some more good stuff going this week because Unforgiven could use the hype. Let’s get to it.
We open with a look back at Rey Mysterio defeating Chavo Guerrero last week, only to get wrecked by Great Khali after. Batista came in for the save, with Teddy Long adding him to the Unforgiven title match to end the show.
Michelle McCool vs. Victoria
Chuck Palumbo, with his motorcycle, and Kenny Dykstra are here too. Victoria drives her into the corner to start but gets caught in a headlock. With that not working for Victoria, she slams Michelle face first into the match and grabs something close to a Muta Lock. A trip to the floor goes badly for Michelle but they come back inside to chop it out. Some dropkicks have Victoria in trouble but Dykstra goes after McCool. That means Palumbo goes in after her and we take a break. I think you know what that means.
Rating: C-. This was a slight step above the usual catfight stuff that you might see but it wasn’t exactly good. What matters is that they are trying and I’ll take this as a bit better of a story than what we usually get. That being said, there is no particular endgame for all of these people and that has been a problem for a long time now. With no title around here, what is the point of all of these fights?
Chuck Palumbo/Michelle McCool vs. Kenny Dykstra/Victoria
Joined in progress with Palumbo knocking Dykstra into the corner and hitting a delayed vertical suplex for two. Dykstra gets driven into another corner but he gets a boot up to cut off a charging Palumbo. It’s off to work on Palumbo’s leg, with Dykstra cranking away. Palumbo fights out without much trouble and punches him down, setting up the tag to Victoria. Michelle comes in to kick Victoria down for the pin as Palumbo takes care of Dykstra.
Rating: C-. Adding the men didn’t help much and the match wasn’t all that great in the first place. Palumbo is doing what he can but there is a limit to what he is capable of doing. Throw in Dykstra not being all that interesting either and this was only going to be so good. The women were barely involved, making the mixed tag a bit of a wasted stipulation.
Jesse and Festus come in to see Teddy Long, who is glad they’re here but tonight is his bachelor party. Some women come in to dance with Teddy, plus his son and some wrestlers, including Butch Reed. Dancing ensues.
A rather large druid is in the ring and he unmasks as Mark Henry. This proves that Undertaker isn’t the only one who can do hocus pocus, but his power is even greater. We see a video of Henry wrecking Undertaker, sending him away a few months ago. That is real power….and then the Undertaker video takes over the feed again. He’s back at Unforgiven, as we have known for about a month now. Back in the arena, Undertaker’s symbol lights on fire and Undertaker’s voice says Henry will rest in peace on Sunday.
The Diva Search is coming back, complete with the same video from Raw. There is even a beach volleyball competition up on WWE.com.
Matt Hardy has MVP beaten at chess but MVP sneezes and breaks up the board. That’s ok too, as Matt has gotten MVP a match, which happens to be next.
Shannon Moore vs. Jamie Noble
Fallout from Noble losing his mind over Hornswoggle. Moore slugs away in the corner to start before sending Noble’s hand into the buckle. The armbar keeps Noble in trouble as the fans think that something sucks. Noble slips out and hits him in the face, setting up a double underhook pull. Moore rolls his way to freedom and hits a basement dropkick for a breather, only to get backdropped to the apron. That’s fine with Moore, who sends him outside for a bit flip dive off the top. Back in and a Rock Bottom backbreaker gives Noble two but Moore thinks he sees Hornswoggle. The distracted Noble gets rolled up for the pin.
Rating: C. The action was good because these two are that good at what they do, but at the same time, there is only so much that you can do when the main story is all about one of them chasing a leprechaun. I’m not sure I can picture the feud lasting that much longer, but this Noble vs. Hornswoggle deal has been a rough watch for a long time now.
Kristal is worried about the wedding but Vickie Guerrero convinces her to go into a locker room…where her bachelorette party is waiting on her. Wedding night attire is given.
MVP doesn’t want to have his match but is told he has to.
Domino vs. MVP
Cherry, Deuce and Matt Hardy are here too. MVP is in street clothes and strikes away to start before hitting a facebuster. Domino knocks him down though and hits a legdrop for an early two. We hit the neck crank so Matt tries to start an MVP chant but gets SUCKS as a response. The chant does start a comeback but Domino blasts him with a clothesline to cut him off again. A knee and an elbow get two and a butterfly suplex sets up a chinlock. Another MVP/SUCKS chant off brings MVP back up but Deuce offers a distraction. Matt takes care of him but the distraction lets Domino grab a small package for the pin.
Rating: C. This was a weird one but it is nice to see MVP getting back in the ring for a slightly more physical match. It felt like he was wrestling a regular match here, with the time getting extended a little more than last time. At the same time, it was cool to see the Matt vs. MVP story continuing, as it is starting to get more interesting week by week.
Post match Matt says he and MVP will retain the titles at Unforgiven, so let’s have that chant one more time!
We see the opening video again.
Back to the bachelorette party, where Kristal, now in her wedding night clothes, gets a delivery. You know it’s Big Dick Johnson before I even say it, so we’ll just move on with the visuals you are probably expecting.
Great Khali, through Runjin Singh, promises to retain the title with a double Vice Grip. That’s pretty specific.
Kane vs. Finlay
Belfast Brawl, meaning street fight. Finlay jumps him from behind to start and the fight is on outside. Kane gets sent into the barricade but punches Finlay back down and takes it inside. An exchange of elbows to the head goes to Finlay and he stakes the leg out to put Kane down for…well zero actually. Kane pulls him away from the ropes for a crash and knocks Finlay outside for a big crash.
Finlay isn’t about to have that and dropkicks him through the ropes on the way back in. A clothesline on the floor puts Kane down again and Finlay sends him arm first into the steps. Kane gets in a shot of his own though and we take a break. Back with Finlay staying on the arm, which is the kind of logic that you don’t get often enough. The bad arm is slammed onto the apron and a chair shot to said arm makes it even worse.
Some kicks to the arm have Kane down in the corner and it’s time to take a turnbuckle pad off. Kane slips behind him though, only to miss a charge into the buckle. The armbar goes on again before the shoulder goes into the post as this has been almost one sided. Kane manages a big boot to knock him outside though and that’s good for a needed breather. It’s time to rip off some of the barricade pad, allowing Kane to drop Finlay face first.
Finlay gets sent into the announcers’ table as well but comes back with a thumb to the eye. Back in and Kane hits the corner clothesline, setting up the side slam. There’s the top rope clothesline (Cole: “It’s like getting hit by a jumbo jet!” No Cole, it isn’t.) and they head back to the floor for a bit boot to Finlay’s jaw. The steps are brought inside but Finlay hits him in the ribs with a chair. The Celtic Cross is enough to give Finlay the pin.
Rating: B. This is the kind of match that works so well for the two of them as they are both great at this style. It was all about hitting each other really hard and that works well for a pair of brawlers. It’s rare enough to see Kane take a clean loss and on top of that, it is nice for Finlay to get one of the bigger wins of his career.
Teddy Long and Kristal, both in various states of undress, realize that they are both up to various things. Glares are exchanged but everyone shows up, allowing Ron Simmons to hit the catchphrase. Dancing ensues to end a funny bit.
Batista vs. Great Khali
Non-title. Batista slugs away to start but gets shoved down. There’s the big chop to put Batista down again and it’s time to stomp away in the corner. A clothesline looks to set up the Vice Grip but Batista blocks it with straight power. They head outside with Batista driving him into the post before heading back inside for a spinebuster. The threat of a Batista Bomb is countered with a backdrop though and the Vice Grip goes on. Batista goes straight to the ropes but Khali won’t let him go and that’s a DQ.
Rating: C-. Given that we ware less than two days away from these two having another bad match at Unforgiven, this was about the only way they could have gone. They could only do so much here as Khali is still that limited, just in case you needed more proof that it is time to move on. We get the concept already, so have Batista slay the dragon and get the title back.
Post match the hold stays on until Khali finally lets go to end the show (albeit after a great shot of a terrified fan) with Batista vibrating on the mat.
Overall Rating: B-. The Belfast Brawl carried this thing and was one of the better TV matches in a long time. What mattered was making me care about the Smackdown half of the pay per view though and this show only kind of made that happen. The main event isn’t interesting as it is either someone finally stopping Khali or the reign continuing, neither of which is all that exciting. It will be a relief if he loses the title, but it is a beginning rather than the big moment. That’s for Sunday though, and at least we had a good TV show to get us there.
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