Date: February 1, 2008
Location: Sovereign Center, Reading, Pennsylvania
Commentators: Michael Cole, Jonathan Coachman
We’re done with the Royal Rumble and Edge is still the World Champion. Other than that, John Cena from Raw won the Royal Rumble so that means Edge is going to need another challenger for the title at Wrestlemania. That is what No Way Out, in just over two weeks, is for so let’s get to it.
Teddy Long is in the ring to start and since Vickie Guerrero was injured at the Royal Rumble, Vince McMahon has put him in charge tonight! Teddy throws us to a video on the Edge vs. Rey Mysterio title match on Sunday, with Rey hitting the 619 to Vickie, who jumped out of the wheelchair to save Edge.
That was enough to help Vickie retain the title so Teddy announces a #1 contenders match at No Way Out: the ELIMINATION CHAMBER (the second at No Way Out) so we see a video on the match’s history. The participants are Batista, Great Khali, Finlay, MVP, Big Daddy V and Undertaker. That’s not it though, as Teddy makes Edge vs. Rey Mysterio II for No Way Out. Cue Edge to protest, saying that he’ll fight ANYONE but Mysterio. Teddy doesn’t really care what happened to Vickie, so the match is still on.
MVP vs. Ric Flair
Again non-title and again Flair’s career is on the line. MVP charges into a hiptoss to start and the quick form strut is on. That’s enough to start some frustration, setting off the exchange of strikes in the corner. A running kick to the head drops Flair for two and it’s time to start in on the arm.
Flair gets caught in a backslide for two so the annoyed MVP suplexes him over for the same. Back up and Flair starts in on the leg as he is known to do but it’s too early for the Figure Four. Another attempt works but MVP turns it over IMMEDIATELY, sending them into the ropes. MVP refuses to break the hold though and that’s a DQ.
Rating: C. I was only so into the first match at the Royal Rumble and then this one was only so much better. That being said, it’s better to do this than to give Flair the title as there is no reason to keep having MVP get beaten over and over. Then again the ending would suggest the feud is continuing, even though MVP is off to the Chamber and Flair is ready for Mr. Kennedy. Either way, nothing but a basic match here.
Post match MVP stays on the leg and crushes it with the steps.
Post break, Flair’s leg is in trouble.
Here is Chuck Palumbo for a chat. Palumbo blames what happened to Michelle McCool last week on Jamie Noble, who got in the way and deserved that beating. We look at the clip of Michelle getting taken out, which Palumbo again calls an accident. Palumbo has been fined $10,000 but it was worth it to see Noble get taken out. As for Michelle, Palumbo wants to apologize to her in person. Cue Michelle, who doesn’t buy what Palumbo is saying and isn’t accepting the apology. She slaps him in the face so Palumbo blames her for all of his recent losses. Now he is going to beat up Noble and Michelle has to watch.
Rey Mysterio/CM Punk vs. Edge/Chavo Guerrero
Chavo takes Rey down to start but Rey is right back up with some flips into an armbar. It’s off to Edge, who misses a shot to Punk in the corner and gets headlock takeovered. That’s broken up so it’s back to Chavo, who avoids a running knee to send Punk outside. We take a break and come back with Edge faceplanting Punk and handing it back to Chavo for the abdominal stretch.
Punk fights out and enziguris his way to freedom, allowing the hot tag back to Rey. That means a high crossbody to drop Edge for two but a Chavo distraction lets Edge get in a cheap shot. A big boot gives Edge two but Rey hurricanranas Chavo down. The second hot tag brings in Rey and everything breaks down. The 619 hits Chavo and Rey dives onto Edge outside. That leaves Punk to GTS Chavo for the pin for quite the nice reaction from the crowd.
Rating: B-. They had the time here and the talent was certainly there so this was quite the fun match. Smackdown has a history of putting people out there and letting them have matches like this and that is quite the feature of any wrestling show. Rey was flying well and the fans wanted to see Punk get a big win. Good stuff.
Vince McMahon yells at Finlay for helping Hornswoggle and costing himself a chance at the Royal Rumble. Finlay calls it loyalty, which Vince says doesn’t exist so what Finlay did was stupid.
Finlay/Hornswoggle vs. Deuce N Domino
Cherry is here with Deuce N Domino. Finlay and Domino start things off but we pause for Hornswoggle to go after Cherry. That earns Cherry a trip to the floor and Finlay beats up Domino. The Celtic Cross sets up the Tadpole splash for the fast pin. Little more than a squash with the Cherry stuff thrown in.
Dancing ensues post match.
New interviewer Eve Torres brings out Batista for a chat. After calling Smackdown the biggest sports entertainment show in the world (Batista: “Yeah I said it.”), Batista says he came up short in the Royal Rumble. Now it is off to the Elimination Chamber though and he is the only entrant who has been in it before. Five men are eliminated and he won’t be one of them because he is going to Wrestlemania. End of another short Batista interview, which I’m kind of digging.
Jesse talks about how Festus has gotten some medical help and they’ll be back next week! Uh, great.
Edgeheads vs. Jimmy Wang Yang/Shannon Moore
Hawkins and Yang lock up to start with Hawkins being very pleased by an armdrag. Yang gets taken into the corner for some chopping and it’s Ryder coming in for a neck crank. The front facelock keeps Yang in trouble, at least until he backdrops his way to freedom. Ryder takes Moore out though, meaning Hawkins can come back in with a cravate to keep Yang down. Yang finally fights out of trouble and gets over to Moore for the hot tag as everything breaks down. Yang dives onto Ryder on the floor but Moore misses a Whisper In The Wind. That’s enough for Hawkins to hit a reverse implant DDT for the pin.
Rating: C. This felt a bit longer than it was and unfortunately it seems to be the end of the line for Moore and Yang as a team that mattered. Then again, I’m not sure how much value they really had when they already lost their Tag Team Title shot, but it was nice to see a team thrown together to give them something to do. Try that more often and see what you might find.
Brothers of Destruction vs. Mark Henry/Big Daddy V
Matt Striker is here with the villains. We’re joined in progress with Kane working over Henry’s leg in the corner before Kane goes up. The top rope clothesline is….almost caught but Kane turns it into a high crossbody, allowing the tag off to Undertaker. The driving shoulders have Henry rocked so it’s back to Kane. A Striker distraction lets Henry hit a running splash in the corner though and V comes in for the chops.
Kane gets over for the tag to Undertaker, who gets clotheslined down in a hurry. The slow power offense continues, including V hitting a running splash in the corner. Henry grabs a bearhug but Kane fights out of it and brings Undertaker back in to clean house. The running DDT hits Henry and it’s a double chokeslam to V. Undertaker chokeslams Henry and puts on the still to be named choke for the win.
Rating: D. A few weeks ago, we saw Undertaker beat Henry and V in a handicap match in about five minutes. Why in the world did the Brothers need almost fifteen minutes to beat them here? It didn’t help that there is only so much that you can get from Henry and V’s slow, plodding offense and it got old fast. Seeing Undertaker and Kane together is cool, but my goodness this was a dull match that lost me fast.
Overall Rating: C-. They flew threw the build to the Chamber here, which is one of the perks of having such a match. All you have to do is announce the participants and what they’re fighting for and everything is set. Throw in Edge vs. Rey II and the important parts of the Smackdown side of the card is ready. Kind of a weak show with a dreadful main event, but it got some stuff done for the pay per view.
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