7/10 WWE Smackdown/ECW in Manilla: C.M. Punk vs. Jeff Hardy for the World Hvt. Championship, Rey Mysterio vs. Chris Jericho for the IC Title with Ricky Steamboat as special referee, Tommy Dreamer makes a fan's night
WWE Smackdown/ECW house show
Report by Dot Net reader Ramon Miguel Cervantes
The crowd was hot all night. Only about 60 percent of the arena was filled (maybe 7,000 - 8,000, I assume) which was kinda disappointing. All of us were very respectful though. We cheered for whoever we wanted but in the end, we clapped for whoever lost. We were pretty loud but after seeing how many people showed up, I doubt they'd come back any time in the near future. I hope I'm wrong, though, because we loved every moment of the show.
1. John Morrison defeated Shelton Benjamin. A solid opener. It was similar to the matches they had on Smackdown with Benjamin using a lot of holds and Morrison hitting some high impact moves. Finish: Morrison hit a Tilt-A-Whirl DDT followed by the Starship Pain to a nice pop.
2. Mark Henry beat Evan Bourne. Evan came out wearing a "Pilipinas" basketball jersey. I saw him at EDSA Shang (the hotel they're staying in) but a bodyguard stopped us from approaching him. He's a lot bigger than he looks on TV. Finish: Henry countered a top rope move into a World's Strongest Slam for the pin. We were all very disappointed that Evan didn't hit the Air Bourne Shooting Star Press.
3. Gail Kim and Melina defeated Michelle McCool and Alicia Fox (w/Maria) as the special guest ref. Maria came out to a nice pop but Melina was really over. I guess it's because she's said to have some Filipino blood in her. I loudly made a TNA related comment which some fans laughed about. Michelle did a good job of being a coward and tagging out when Melina would get in the ring. The match had the same spots their tag match on Smackdown had. Finish: Gail Kim hit her Inverted Stomp Facebreaker finisher on Fox for the pin.
4. The Great Khali over Dolph Ziggler. Ziggler grabbed the mic and tried to introduce himself but was drowned out by all the boos. He couldn't even take his vest off without being booed. Khali got a HUGE pop to match his huge body. Ziggler did a lot of stalling to start the match. Khali dominated most of the match with Ziggler getting bits of offense in. Finish: Khali hits the Punjabi Plunge for the win.
After the intermission, Justin Roberts came back out to announce that the ring announcer for the next match would be the current ECW general manager Tiffany. She looked smoking hot and announced the following contest would be a triple threat for the ECW Title which led to...
5. Tommy Dreamer defeated Jack Swagger and Christian to retain the ECW Championship. Christian came out to an okay pop. Swagger came out in American themed tights. I don't know if he wears that on all his overseas tours but it got a good response. Dreamer came out to a nice response which I'm proud to say was startled by me chanting E-C-Dub. Dreamer was out for most of the match. They hit the Tower of Doom spot which got one of the best reactions of the night. Finish: Swagger countered Killswith only to get Dreamer DDT'd and pinned. Dreamer saw a fan with a sign that read "Innovator of Violence" in the front row. He asked the fan to come in, gave him his shirt, let him carry the belt and hugged him. It was one of the coolest things that could ever happen to a fan. That was really nice of Dreamer.
6. Rey Mysterio defeated Chris Jericho to retain the Intercontinental Championship with Ricky Steamboat as the special guest referee. Jericho came out to a great pop. Seriously, there were so many fans that love him here. I brought a sign that said "SD! is Jericho" and he smirked when he saw it. There were Y2J chants that were very loud. He tried to cut a heel promo (the same "You can _____ all you want because you're all hypocrites, I'm the best in the world at what I do, I guarantee you won't see the 619 and I will unmask him" stuff) but we were still cheering for him. A lot of signs that read, "Hypocrite," with an arrow pointing to themselves were in the arena. You could see it in his face, he was genuinely surprised to be so over. Rey got a nice response too. He said hi to a few masked fans. Steamboat was well respected as well.
This match was match of the night in my eyes. Both guys were so over and they put on a great performance. Just like on TV and on PPV, put Jericho and Mysterio together and nothing can go wrong. Jericho tried to unmask Rey a couple of times. They hit all their signature spots. Great moments include Rey hitting the senton to the outside, Jericho countering a 619 into the Walls of Jericho, Jericho hitting the spinning torture rack backbreaker counter and a solid Codebreaker which he protected by taking bout half a minute to follow up with a cover.
Finish: Jericho goes outside to get a chair only to have Steamboat take it away. While arguing with Steamboat with his head in between the ropes (Steamboat just returned the chair), Rey hit the 619 and Splash combo for the win. After the match, Jericho beat down Steamboat for a minute. As soon as Steamboat made a comeback, Jericho ran up the ramp.
7. C.M. Punk defeated Jeff Hardy to retain the World Heavyweight Title. I had my wrists taped a la CM Punk (I'm the only fan I know that's smart enough to know that was stupid and still did it) and looked like an idiot for most of the show. I also had a sign that said, "Jeff Hardy? More like Jeff Junkie!" which pretty much establishes me as the biggest jerk there. Hardy, who came out to a good pop, saw this and smirked at me. When Punk came out and saw me with my taped fists and my brother with a "Straight Edge means better than you!" sign. He smiled and pointed right at us. Biggest mark out moment right there.
They had a good back and forth contest. Punk played a face for the most part but started to use heel tactics like attacking Jeff while opening the ropes or hitting Jeff when the ref would back him up. A lot of counters in the match. They teased both men hitting one of their finishers. Jeff was in the GTS position twice but he countered. Hardy hit the Whisper in the Wind, almost got the Twist of Fate and missed a Swanton. Finish: Punk goes for the GTS once again, Hardy counters into a sunset flip attempt only to have Punk block the attempt and pin him to retain.
Notes: Overall, anyone who watched the show felt they got their money's worth. Many were disappointed because they didn't see certain finishers (Air Bourne, a Swanton Bomb that hit and the GTS) but it was all good in the end. I really hope they come back soon because I blame the lack of promotion on the mediocre attendance. Great show by the Smackdown/ECW crew.
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