4/25 Barnett's WWE Smackdown on SyFy Live Coverage: The Road to Extreme Rules continues with The Shield, The Wyatt Family, Wade Barrett and more
By Jake Barnett
WWE Smackdown on SyFy Live Coverage
Taped 4/22 in Hershey, Pennsylvania
[Q1] The show opened dark with Vickie Guerrero in the ring, The lights came on after Vickie said excuse me a few times. She said the authority wouldn't be there tonight, and were taking some deserved time off. She said she wanted to address The Shield, and said they would be facing eleven superstars, and mentioned Alberto Del Rio, Ryback, and Curtis Axel among them. She then said it was time for the great debate, and lecterns were setup to her left and right with Paul Heyman and Zeb Colter standing behind them. Swagger and Cesaro stood next to their respective managers.
Colter opened and said a few pleasantries. He then said they were there to debate what happened at WrestleMania and the following night on Monday's Raw. Colter claimed they blindsided him with the manager change. Colter said he took in Cesaro when no one knew his name, and fostered his talent until he became who he is today. Time was up, and then Colter asked them why they did what they did after the buzzer.
Heyman started and said he was glad to avoid court appearances over this, and then went on a rant about Brock Lesnar defeating The Streak at WrestleMania. Colter answered back and said that Heyman owes money in 47 states and 8 foreign countries, and would rather climb a tree to tell a like than stand on the ground to tell the truth. He asked them again why they did why they conspired against him and stole Cesaro away from The Real Americans.
Heyman asked him when the last time Zeb Colter guy won was at WrestleMania, and he was already a Paul Heyman guy. Heyman continued to filibuster until the buzzer went off about Cesaro being a Paul Heyman guy and winning the WrestleMania Battle Royal. Colter grabbed his mic and pushed his lectern over. He said he knew it was going to be a sham when he went out there, and he wouldn't get any answers, and he was right. He walked towards Heyman and told him to look at him like a man. Heyman said he would, but they were one man short. Colter said Heyman was just jealous because he had more hair on his back than Heyman had on his head.
Colter then pushed Heyman, and their guys pulled them apart. Cole said Swagger vs. Cesaro was next...[c]
My Take: A fun segment that showed off that Heyman and Zeb are two great talkers. Both guys came across really well here, especially Zeb, who was much sharper when taking a confrontational tone than he had been doing the Patriot schtick.
[Q2] 1. Cesaro vs. Jack Swagger: Swagger and Colter went back and forth early on, trading strikes. Swagger settled in on offense, hitting strikes and mixing in a few holds. Cesaro exploded off the ropes with a springboard european uppercut and looked very impressive. Swagger hit a Swagger Bomb a moment later for a near fall. Cesaro ducked a clothesline and hit one of his own that dumped both men out to the floor...[c]
Swagger walked into a big forearm and then Cesaro hit a spinning european uppercut from the top rope. Swagger got a boot up to stop another running uppercut, and hit a clothesline for a near fall. He went for another Swagger Bomb, but Ceasro got a foot up. Swagger caught the foot and applied a Patriot Lock for a few seconds before Cesaro could spin out. Swagger fired up and played to the crowd, but got caught for a double underhook powerbomb. Swagger followed up with a Neutralizer a moment later for the clean win.
Cesaro defeated Jack Swagger at 8:47.
After the bell, The Shied's music hit and they surrounded the ring. Reigns hit a Superman Punch, and then they a Triple Powerbomb. Rollins said that Swagger didn't apapt. Reigns said they were just getting started. Believe that. Cole showed some footage of Daniel Bryan being stretchered out. Cole said Bryan had a stinger and was ungoing therapy, and is expected to recover. He mentioned that Bryan would be at Raw on Monday. JBL said that Stephanie McMahon was sickened by what happened...[c]
My Take: A very entertaining match from Swagger and Cesaro that was helped immensely by the promo that took place before it. Cesaro picking up the win makes sense and I think he and Zeb have a future if they can keep them involved in the Intercontinental Title Scene. It would be nice if Cesaro would be able to get a few words in once and a while so crowds can get used to hearing him speak for himself, but that just isn't in the cards at the moment.
[Q3] A video package was shown for Paige, and it showed some footage of her emotional backstage interview following her title win. It also showed some of the interview she did with Michael Cole on Wednesday on WWE.com. It focused mostly on how excited she was to be Champion, and also a few comments on Tamina and how imposing she is.
Tamina was shown in the ring with Natalya.
2. Tamina vs. Natalya: They traded blows early, and then Tamina rolled outside. She then pulled Nattie to the floor and then quickly tossed her back in the ring. Tamina then stomped on Natalya and followed it up with a Samoan drop. She climbed up top for the Superfly Splash, but Natalya got out of the way and Tamina jumped down.
Nattie went for a sharpshooter out of a sunset flip, but Tamina powered out. She followed up with a discus clothesline, but just got a near fall. Tamina hit a superkick a moment later to get the clean pin.
Tamina defeated Natalya at 3:49.
After the match, Cole introduced a video package that hyped Evolution and The Shield. 3MB was shown backstage, when they were approached by Seth Rollins. They asked if he was crazy coming up by himself, and Ambrose quickly joined him. Reigns finally appeared, and they mopped the floor with 3MB backstage...[c]
My Take: A solid divas match, but Tamina just has no personality, so it's hard to get into her even as a monster heel. All the announcers could talk about regarding Natalya during the match was her sexual "issues" that were covered on Total Divas.
[Q4] Vickie was shown backstage talking to Triple H on the phone. She mumbled about Brad Maddox and said she would take the night off. Maddox then walked up and said The Shied only respond to real authority. He then sent her out of the GM's office.
3. Jay Uso vs. Curtis Axel: Axel dominated the early going. They went back and forth for a few moments, without anybody breaking out with any strings of offense. Jay tried to climb the turnbuckle, but Axel pulled him back into the ring. He then hit his finisher for a clean victory in the middle of the ring.
Curtis Axel defeated Jay Uso at 3:34.
My Take: Meh. I just don't care. The is exactly zero life in the tag division right now.
[Q5] The Wyatt Family made their way to the ring as footage from their win over John Cena on Raw was shown. They stood inside of a steel cage. Wyatt said the word love a few times. He said it cannot be defined. You have to live it, and you have to feel it. Get them to love you, John, and they'll do anything for you. He asked Cena how it feels to know you've lost their love? Wyatt said it was high time John Cena stopped underestimating him. He said he is everywhere, and he is everything. Wyatt said his words are not just his words, they are razor blades that cut deep, and they are working.
He then said at Extreme Rules they have a date with destiny inside a steel cage. Just like a couple of modern day gladiators fighting for the respect for their people. All of the years you spent earning the fans respect has landed you in a cage, like a rat trapped in a box with a snake. Cena's nightmares have become his dreams, and all of Cena's people will become his, one by one. Wyatt sang to close the segment, and a large segment of the crowd joined a long with him.
My Take: A very solid and engaging promo from Wyatt. He has struck a groove with the idea that he's stealing John Cena's fans, and the crowds singing a long with him are a good indicator that the angle is working. It doesn't sound like he's captured many of the younger fans, but this feud has allowed people who are naturally anti-Cena join in on the fun and sing along with WWE's resident cult leader.
[Q6] The Rhodes Brothers made their ring entrance.
4. The Wyatt Family vs. The Rhodes Brothers: Wyatt grabbed a mic early in the match and said something that made non sense. Harper and Rowan made quick tags and beat down Cody Rhodes. Harper gator rolled Cody as Bray Wyatt whispered in Rowan's ear on the apron. Cody fired back with a disaster kick that allowed him to tag in Goldust, who hit a cross body on both Rowan and Harper. He then hit a nice power slam on Harper, but the pin was broken up. Cody hit a clothesline that sent Rowan to the outside. He then tried to climb the top rope, but Harper threw Goldust into him and sent him crashing to the barricade on the outside. Harper then hit a big clothesline for the win.
The Wyatt Family defeated Goldust and Cody Rhodes at 2:58.
Backstage, Brad Maddox was on the phone as The Shield walked up. He tried to talk his way out of a beating, but they threw him into the wall behind the couch and stomped the hell out of him.
My Take: Entertaining match with the little time they had. The Shield beating on Maddox was ok, but the bump into the wall looked nasty for no reason.
Emma and Santino raced to the ring, and then competed for who got to stand on the ropes and celebrate. Fandango started to make his entrance with Layla, but The Shield walked up and beat the crap out of him. They then powerbombed him off the stage through a table that was conveniently set up next to it. Cole said footage from Kane and Daniel Bryan was next...
My Take: Well, that beats another Santino and Fandango match.\
[Q7] Cole introduced a recap of the Powerbomb off the stage that just happened, and then a clip was introduced of Kane as he destroyed Daniel Bryan on Monday. Cole said that on Monday, Stephanie McMahon will publicly apologize to Daniel Bryan. He then plugged the finals of the WWE Intercontinental Championship Number One Contenders Tournament between Rob Van Dam and Wade Barrett. The Shield made their entrance, and Cole announced that Curtis Axel was found decimated backstage...[c]
My Take: Oh no! Not Curtis Axel!
Titus O'Neil, Bad News Barrett, Alberto Del Rio, Ryback, and Damien Sandow made their way to the ring. Everyone else had been taken out.
5. The Shield vs. Team Cannon Fodder: Ryback started out against Rollins, and ate a drop kick. Ambrose tagged in and brawled with Ryback a bit, and then tagged Rollins back in. Ryback hit a powerslam and tagged in Titus O'Neill.
[Q8] More quick tags from The Shield, as Ambrose and Reings both tagged in and out to take shots at Titus. Barrett tagged in after Titus backed Ambrose into the heel corner. The Shield hit a double team suplex on Barrett and then the match broke down a bit. The Shield cleared the heels from the ring...[c]
Barrett hit a big boot on Ambrose and covered for a near fall. Del Rio tagged in a hit a series of kicks for a two count of his own. Del Rio applied a chin lock and then tossed Ambrose to the outside. Ryback dropped down to the floor for a cheap shot. Del Rio then tagged Ryback into the match. He hit a big slam on Del Rio and a big splash center ring for another near fall. Ryback grabbed a chin lock of his own, but Ambrose escaped by pulling him into the second turn buckle.
Ryback hit a spine buster, but Rollins broke up the pin fall. He got tossed out of the ring, and Del Rio tagged in. Reings finally made the hot tag, and hit signature offense on all the heels. Sando was the legal man for the heels as the match broke down and everybody but Rollins ended up on the outside. Ambrose tossed Titus into the steps on the outside, and Reings hit a superman punch on Sandow. Del Rio and Barrett walked away from the match and up the ramp. Reigns hit a Superman Punch on Del Rio as he tried to escape up the ramp. Ambrose and Rollins splashed Sandow and Titus on the outside.
After all the carnage, Reigns hit a spear on Sandow and pinned him for the victory.
The Shield defeated Team Cannon Fodder at 14:31.
After the match, everbody got spears and Ryback took a Triple Powerbomb. The Shield stood strong to close the show.
My Take: Well, you could see that coming all the way from orbit, but it was a fun match that was really more of an extension of The Shield destroying most of the heel roster throughout the show. Overall, this show went by pretty briskly, and it was a better than average Smackdown. Good stuff from The Wyatt's, The Shield, and Heyman and Colter throughout the show made it feel like more attention was paid to this weeks show than any in recent memory. I'll have more to say with Chris Shore on the All Access Smackdown Podcast tomorrow.
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