Ruthless Aggression #20. Vengeance: Night of Champions (June 24, 2007)

On the Card: Ruthless Aggression #20 Vengeance: Night of Champions – June 24, 2007

The Ruthless Aggression Era was a time when the WWE roster was so huge and so varied that they had no way of continuing storylines each week on their two main shows – RAW and Smackdown – and so they created the draft where wrestlers and announcers would be drafted onto either one of the two shows. Smackdown wrestlers would not (usually) be able to appear on Raw or interact with Raw wrestlers and vice versa.

Ten years ago, on June 24, 2007, Vengeance: Night of Champions 2007 aired. It was a WWE PPV, as WWE had dropped Brand-named PPVs after No Way Out in February. This one was tri-branded and had Raw, Smackdown and ECW matches on the card. It is noticeable for taking place on June 24th, 2007, which was the date that Chris Benoit hung himself after murdering his wife and son. He no-showed this PPV and was replaced by Johnny Nitro in the CM Punk ECW Heavyweight Championship match. I will go into more detail about this horrific crime and the effect it had on the wrestling business as well as myself in the conclusion to this review. For now, I will state that personally, the PPV came at a time where I had grown weary with professional wrestling, confused by the sheer number of wrestlers and unwilling to spend so much time per week watching hours of footage and trawling through shows, replays, promos and matches. I simply watched the PPVs. Over the next few weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after a decade as well as my original thoughts as a younger man watching it at the time.

WWE Vengeance: Night of Champions 2007

Night of Champions

Did it just use its own name as a tagline? My God.

The promo package tells us that everyone wants to win the gold, which is true, and that this PPV has a gimmick where every belt is on the line! Whaaat? I’m sure this has happened before.

Batista and Edge in a Last Chance Match. Yeo. Will Batista win? Probably.

Bobbo Lasher and Mick Foley and Randy Orton and Booker T and John Cena for the WWE Championship. Mentalnuts.

There’s a shot of an altar with… wrought iron? Tentacles? Who knows? We are welcomed into the Toyota Centre in Houston, Texas by Jumpin’ Jim Ross and Jerry “the King” Lawler. But first, Justin Roberts introduces Barry Windham and Mike Rotundo! That’s right, old Blackjack Winham and IRS, brothers-in-law and members of the US Express. They won the belts twice in 1985 and held them for a total of 137 days. Not too shabby. Cut to some lovely footage of the lads with Captain Lou Albano.

No time! No time to talk! Old Jeff and Fat Matt Hardy are rocking to the ring, beltless. They lost the belts to Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch on the June 4th RAW, one day after beating the World’s Greatest Tag Team in a ladder match at One Night Stand. Some facts there for you.

(Note: Before the PPV began, there was a dark match that featured Super Crazy and Carlito. At least one of them should not have been there.)

Finally, JR and King introduce us to the announce team alongside 15,000 roaring fans in the arena and 247,000 at home (a drop, once again, from the 337,000 the year previous). JR and King represent RAW and… there are other announcers, too, apparently, but we will get to them soon enough. JR states that Cade and Murdoch are opportunistic for taking the belts one day after a big ol’ ladder match. The crowd bay for the Hardys.

Tag Team Match for the World Tag Team Championship: Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch (c) vs. Matt and Jeff Hardy.

Champs never come out first but always get first billing. Them’s the rules.

We have nine matches on the card. Almost all of them will be sub-ten-minutes. Fat Matt to start off against Cade. JR gives off about Cade and Murdoch for a while. Despite their match at Judgment Day, Cade and Murdoch are the nasty heels. Cade holds out his hand, shit eating grin upon his face, and Matt takes advantage, making the audience cheer for him. Lovely running of the ropes and Jeff hits a cross-body to knock Cade down. Jeff is in and they botch a leg-drop-senton double team. Murdoch comes in and a botched swinging neckbreaker. Murdoch gets a kick in the face and lovely enziguri before Matt comes in with an axe-handle nothing. Lovely Poetry in Motion and slingshot baseball slide. Matt comes in and both Hardys clean house. Matt and Jeff stand in the ring as Cade and Murdoch say, “fuck it!” and walk off. Hardys roll out and beat on them for being cowards.

Both Cade and Murdoch rock in and Matt takes pity on Murdoch, who begs for his life. Murdoch tags in Cade sneakily and as Matt squares up to Murdoch, Cade Pearl Harbours him. Crowd bay for Jeff and the hot tag is built up. Murdoch’s eye is hurt from an injury at Smackdown, I think. Cade pops in and works on Matt’s left knee. Murdoch comes in and does the same. Matt fights back but Murdoch takes over with a single legged Boston Crab. Matt crawls away to the ropes and fails to reach them. More pressure applied to Matt’s knee. Matt might tap out. Jeff is desperate to get in and Matt kicks Murdoch on the face, runs up the hot tag, Jeff bounces in and botches his way through a clearing of the house.

Cade gets pinned but kicks out. Jeff retaliates, hits a lovely twisting moonsault, fails another pin. Sit-out vertical suplex and Jeff goes to the top rope and twice does Murdoch knock him off. Lovely sit-out spinebuster by Cade and they retain by pin.

Lance Cade has pinned Matt Hardy. Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch retain the World Tag Team Championship in 08:55.

2017 comments:

Good opener. Both teams are very good, though have distinctly different styles. Although the Hardys were not as high-speed as they usually are, it was a clean win and both teams go over. Well, it wasn’t totally clean and the champions are obviously cheaters, but that’s that.

2007 comments:

No Swanton? No Twist of Fate? No wonder they lost.

Grade: B.

Matt looks on in horror as Lance and Trevor leave. Trevor has a wee word with the US Express there. Neither look impressed. Matt sits near Jeff as replays the closing moments, including the seemingly botched interruption. The champs say, “All by the rules!”

Cut to Booker and his mental with Sharmell. It’s been a while since we’ve seen Booker – since Wrestlemania 23, in fact. Booker – in an English accent, no less – states all of his championships and gives his Queen a resume that proves that he should be a champion tonight.

Cut to Cowardly Cole and Cunt JBL. They talk about Eddie and JBL talks about his Eddie’s career will be intertwined with his own. Yes, but not because you’re a good wrassler, JBL, but because Eddit accidentally cut himself badly in a fight. We see a match betwixt our boy Eddie and Bork Lensar, who is a shaved gorilla, but otherwise a lovely bloke.

Crowd chant for Eddie as his less-interesting nephew Chavo comes out.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: Chavo was one of the gentlemen who Benoit got in contact with regarding his suicide. Chavo had spoken to Benoit on Saturday and Benoit had told Chavo that he loved him, which Chavo later said sounded “off” to him. Chavo was also a recipient of a text from Benoit and his wife’s phone giving their address. Spooky.

Chavo is the Cruiserweight champion… and comes down first, apparently. God dammit, Fed. Is it just me? Am I wrong. No. No, it is the Federation who is wrong.

Cut to Dean Malenko, the man of 1000 holds, which would be interesting, of course, if not for Jericho, who knows one more.

Jimmy Wang Yang turns up, the resident redneck. What a lad. I love this boy. He’s brilliant. He’s a real lad. Look at him, with his moustache and the whole wife-beater-and-jeans thing going on. He’s like Dean Ambrose, only with talent.

WWE Cruiserweight Championship match: Chavo Guerrero (c) vs. Jimmy Wang Yang.

Referee Charles “Little Naitch” Robinson there as Cole tells us that the first Cruiserweight Champ was Brian Pillman. That was back in WCW, but they don’t tell you that. Jimmy hits a lovely hip toss and a roll-up but fails. Chavo’s father, Chavo Classic was also Cruiserweight Champ. Chavo calls the ref over, takes advantage of the situation and attacks Jimmy before tossing him into the corner. Jimmy takes over, hits a lovely dropkick and an amazing suplex. Pin and fail.

Jimmy does a sweet run up Chavo’s body and backflips. Chavo baseball slides Jimmy on the apron and tosses him back in, going top rope but getting an enziguri from Jimmy to knock him to the outside. Jimmy goes top rope and hits a cross-body. Jimmy rolls Chavo back in and hits the pin but fails. Fantastic hip-toss from Chavo into the corner, by Christ. Nice side-suplex from Chavo and a pin but fail. Chavo gets Jimmy in a hold and he fights back, tosses Chavo, gets reversed, falls, and Chavo hits the senton. Very confident Guerrero. The crowd chant, “We want Wang!”

Jimmy fights back and hits a wonderful backdrop followed by an Atomic drop onto Chavo’s balls. Jimmy hits an odd cartwheel attack, another cross-body from the top rope and almost a pin-fall. Chavo hits the Three Amigos and gets boos. Jimmy escapes, goes for a pin but Chavo has the bottom rope. Chavo rolls out of the way of a moonsault and hits a Gory Special attempt. Roll-up and Chavo kicks out. The crowd boo. Jimmy is lifted onto the turnbuckle, is knocked onto the ground and Chavo hits the frog splash for the win.

Chavo Guerrero has pinned Jimmy Wang Yang and retains the WWE Cruiserweight Championship in 10:16.

2017 comments:

Good old match. Not as flippy as we expect from Jimmy, but he was so over, it didn’t matter.

2007 comments:

Man, fuck Chavo.

Grade: B.

JR uses the Owen Voice to tell us about Vince McMahon’s alleged death by limo explosion.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: This is infamous because the Raw following Vengeance was due to be a tribute to our man Vince, but it was changed, obviously, to a tribute to Benoit before the news was revealed hours later about the truth of Benoit’s actions. At the ECW the following night, Vince took back the Benoit reference and began the long, arduous process of bleaching him from the WWE.

JR introduces a look into Vince’s “mindset”, showing his last moments and the premonition he had about a dark cloud that then was revealed to be his upcoming death. Twice, Vince looks behind himself and then he hesitates before opening the door to his limo, he steps in, steps out and blows up. The footage was made from spliced footage filmed the Sunday before Raw and an outside agency – Zenith Pyrotechnology – was called in to make it look as effective as possible. Crowd sing, “Na na na na! Waaaay, goodbye.”

Then there’s an opinion piece as to who was responsible for Vince dying. Cut to Bobby Lashley being asked if he had anything to do with the death. He says he wishes Vince was alive to see the look on his face when he wins the belt tonight.

Cut to Tazz and Joey Styles wanking off about Tazz being the greatest ECW Champion of all time.

CM Punk comes down. This is a match to determine who should be the ECW Champion. As mentioned, his opponent in this match was going to be Benoit. Punk half-heartedly throws his t-shirt into the crowd.

For some reason, Justin Roberts introduces Johnny Nitro before he enters the Titantron. No Melina or paparazzi or Joey Mercury tonight so it’s clear that Johnny was added as an afterthought. But Melina is actually on the card tonight, so I don’t see why they couldn’t have her walk him to the ring?

Match for the vacant ECW World Championship: CM Punk vs. Johnny Nitro.

Johnny takes the time to get out of the corner as the crowd chant, “We want Benoit!” Gulp.

The two circle one another and Johnny actually checks the chants before CM Punk kicks the shite out of Nitro, who rolls out of the ring, steps on the apron, slaps Punk and is chased about the ring. Punk slaps the face off Nitro and he gets a lovely springboard kick to the head from Nitro. Punk shakes off the cobwebs as Nitro gets him into a rest hold for a bit as they decide on the next spot. Punk fights out, gets a clothesline to the face and then a boot from Nitro.

Lovely armbar. The crowd want Benoit and he shouts, “You got Johnny Nitro!” The announcers discuss the late change and what that means for Johnny in Kayfabe. Backbreaker and another sleeper hold. Punk fights out of it, gives a lovely enziguri to Nitro and both men take their time getting up. Punk takes over, booting Nitro all about the place and attempting a pin. Nitro reverses a knee lift and Nitro gets a pin with his feet on the ropes but the ref sees it. Punk goes for the GTS but Nitro escapes into a sunset flip which Punk refuses to Aloha Arn. A bulldog from Punk and he pops up to the top rope, attempts a springboard which Johnny escapes from. He then hits a swinging elevated neckbreaker and get the pin.

Johnny Nitro has pinned CM Punk to win the ECW World Championship in 8:00.

2017 comments:

Going through the motions. Neither of the men had a chance to put on a great match and you could see Punk was Grumps McGraw in this match.

2007 comments:

Where was Benoit?

Grade: C.

So, it turns out that Punk was going to fail anyways. That’s a kick in the teeth, isn’t it?

Cut to WrestleMania XII where Bret and Shawn squared off in an Iron Man match for the championship. Shawn refused to submit at the end of the match and it continued under Sudden Death, which is a nice way of saying that now it is a normal match, I guess. Shawn got the pin after a Sweet Chin Music.

Cut to Mick Foley in the locker room, wrapping his knuckles. Randy is there and threatens Mick saying that he has ended careers. Mick reminds Randy that he’s an absolute headcase. Randy says that he won the last match they had. He won it. He won that match.

Cut to Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat and his Intercontinental Championship win. He then pops out himself, waves to the crowd and gets more than the US Express earlier.

Out comes the current Intercontinental Champion, Santino Marella, who was apparently just a fan until he beat Umaga in Milan.

Out comes Umaga, who was an absolute murderer until Cena destroyed him. Now he’s back to just being another wrestler. He shouts at the ring steps for being a mean old set of steps.

WWE Intercontinental Championship match: Santino Marella (c) vs. Umaga.

Umaga screams and Santino dodges out of the way of his charge, attempts a roll-up and fails. Santino is on Umaga’s back and the Samoan drops backwards, squashing Marella. Umaga goes for a splash and Santino gets the knees up but no joy. The crowd chant, “Umaga’s gonna kill you!” and the Samoan gets the Vulcan Nerve Pinch on Santino. Marella fights back, attempts to run away and he sells his hand being paralysed. Umaga lifts him up, beats him in the corner and after the shortest five count in history, the ref calls for a DQ.

Umaga has been disqualified by failing to move away from the corner after a five count. Santino Marella retains the WWE Intercontinental Championship by default in 02:34.

2017 comments:

Ugh. If you’re going for a short match, make it believable. Have Umaga fight the referee, maybe, toss him, refuse to let go, bloody Santino up. It just looks like Umaga has been unfairly treated. Shit. Who is the heel here?

2007 comments:

This Santino might be the best champion ever.

Grade: C.

Umaga chases the referee, goes top-rope and splashes Santino. Why? He should be mad at the ref. The crowd chant for “U-Mah-Gah!” and he leaves. He’s clearly not a heel. He rolls back in, shots the thumb and hits the Samoan Spike into Marella’s throat. The crowd chant, “One more time!” but he does not hit it one more time. Maria rocks down the ramp and rolls into the ring to look after Santino. Replays of the ref giving a five count and instantly calling DQ. As Daniel Bryan would say, “He has until five, referee.”

Cut to an ad for Summerslam, featuring Jackass.

Cut to Coward Moustache Michael Cole and Cunt JBL as they talk for some time about the limo explosion. Daniel Beck, the lead federal investigator for the incident. He tells us that forensics have confirmed DNA evidence for Vince, the limo driver and another third party, who is a “well-known personality”.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: Cunt President Donal Trump legitimately thought that Vince was dead. I would normally take the time to point out how imbecilic this was… if not for the fact that stocks dropped because of the storyline, showing that money doesn’t necessarily equate to common sense.

Reminder that tomorrow is a three-hour celebration of Vince. Eep.

Cut to Magnum TA, former US Champ, who survived a car crash that left him in the wreck for two hours before ambulance arrived. This car crash ended his career and it was feared that damage to his vertebrae would leave him paralysed for life, but he was able to walk again with the aid of a cane.

MVP appears, ready to kick arse in his onesie. Farty pyro fires off. He squares off to Magnum TA who is standing beside Sign Guy, who has a sign that says, “A Horseman vs A Horse’s Ass”. Brilliant. The jerk beside Magnum TA is doing the Cena, “U Can’t C Me” sign.

Big woo as walking leather handbag Ric Flair walks to the ring. His entrance is cut short as MVP dives out of the ring to jaw off to Flair. Flair has been drafted to SmackDown at the grand old age of 58. Oy vey.

WWE United States Championship match: Montel Vontavious Porter (c) vs. Ric Flair.

Bell rings and MVP jaws off to Flair before the two lock up. MVP gets Flair in a corner, shouts shit in his face and the two argue before Flair woos and gives MVP a slap. Flair struts in the centre of the ring, MVP takes his time on the outside before rolling back in. The two bucks shout at each other and taunt. Flair gets cheers and MVP gets booed. Flair gets MVP into a leg lock and there’s a lovely wee rest hold. MVP gets to the ropes and Flair attempts a leg snap. Rake of the eyes and Flair is lifted onto the apron before being booted off. The champ goes out, picks up Flair and hammers his head off the apron. Pin in the ring followed by another and some punches before another pin and rest hold. Flair has bladed.

Flair gets to the ropes to break the hold and MVP stomps him. Flair is in the corner, takes some shots but survives. Some Flair chops and punches before a big back drop from MVP. He checks his chest and zips back up his top. Yeo. Rest hold city over here. A lone fan in the crowd woos. Flair fights back and knocks the champ back. Lovely fireman’s carry into gorilla press and a pin but still no win. The announcers talk about other champs and how they would feel about MVP. Flair hits a jawbreaker and slaps MVP on the ropes. Dodgy botched choke into backdrop and Flair chops away at MVP, runs the ropes and hits the high elbow. Back body drop and Flair is still in control, going for the ten punch in the corner but only getting five before MVP escapes.

MVP goes for another boot in the corner but misses. Flair attacks the knee, struts and attacks the knee again. Figure Four is locked in and MVP is reaching for the ropes before reaching it easily. Flair takes a thumb to the eye, hits the Playmaker for the win.

MVP has pinned Ric Flair and retains the WWE United States Championship in 8:43.

2017 comments:

Nice of them to unwrap Flair and feed him the Lazarus Solution to resurrect him once again.

2007 comments:

Did we really think Flair could ever win?

Grade: C.

Maggle tells us that Flair was in control. We see the ref pull Flair away – not DQing him like they did to Umaga – and MVP leaves, still the champ.

Backstage, Todd Grisham speaks to John Cena, who hits Todd and gives the big thumbs up to the camera. Edge appears and the pair waste time talking about the failed Vince McMahon Whodunnit. Cena tells Edge that he’s too soft to kill Vince. Edge basically implicates himself and the FBI guys appears to ask Edge some serious questions about a death that never actually happens.

By the side of the crowd is Rick Martel and Tony Garea, who were Tag Team champs back in the day. A different tag team, of course, to the World Tag Team Champions earlier… Confused much?

Deuce ‘n Domino come out, all shoo-bopping and doo-wopping with Cherry on her roller blades. I like this gimmick. It’s silly. Deuce lifts up Cherry and walks her three steps. They won the tag team belts from Paul London and Brian Kendrick. Deuce and Domino make fun of Martel and Garea, saying that the place stinks and that they thought the old champs were dead. Stay classy.

Sgt. Slaughter’s music hits and out he rocks, saluting to everyone, pointing and shouting. Then out comes legit murderer, Jimmy Snuka. This is the second match in a row with ancient wrestlers fighting new wrestlers. Cunt JBL talks about calling Ron Simmons and starting up the APA. Cole tries to be his friend. JBL turns him down.

Tag Team Match for the World Tag Team Championship: Deuce ‘n Domino (c) (w/ Cherry) vs. Sgt. Slaughter and Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka.

Deuce starts off and Cole tells us that it’s a bit odd that Snuka and Slaughter are tagging together as they feuded back in the day. Botched running of the ropes and jumping as Domino jumps too early and lands on Snuka’s neck. He hits Domino a bunch and tags in Slaughter, who hits a pump-handle gutbuster and snapmare for a pin. Big fail. Slaughter tosses Domino about and gives him a back body drop. Another pin. Another fail.

Slaughter hits the Cobra Clutch and finds the rope pretty quickly. Big elbow shots and Domino takes a big old clothesline. Another Cobra Clutch and Deuce walks back. Deuce hits Slaughter, why he doesn’t tag in is beyond me. Finally, he does and a ref distraction causes the choke from Domino. Domino tags Deuce in.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: Deuce is, of course, the son of Jimmy Snuka.

Deuce is beating on Slaughter, looks at his dad, goes to the top rope, hits a taunt on Superfly, does a big splash but fails. Slaughter goes for the tepid tag and the dad whups his son for a while. Snuka pins his son and Domino jumps in to break it up. Slaughter pulls him out and Superfly hits his son with a ribbreaker. He goes to the top rope and Cole fucks up the naming of the splash. Domino fails to knock him off – probably a botch – and Snuka hits the splash, rolls through and Deuce gets the pin.

Deuce has pinned Superfly Jimmy Snuka to retain the WWE Tag Team Championship in 6:34.

2017 comments:

Jesus, boys, at least do a bit of training before getting into the ring.

2007 comments:

Did we really think that Deuce ‘n Domino won by accident?

Grade: C.

The heel champs beat on the losers and Martel and Garea run in to save them. Big cheer as the winners run off. Then Superfly’s music hits as the old men are awkward mid-ring. Replays of the “win” and subsequent beat-down.

Coming up next, it’s the last chance match for the World Heavyweight Championship, Edge vs. Batista. Replays of their last few matches and we’re all very impressed with Edge’s thong.

Cole talks about Harley Race, an eight-time NWA champion and King of the Ring winner.

The champ, Edge comes out first once again. Because why wouldn’t he? Edge lists his belt for the farty pyro. He is called the “Ultimate Opportunist”, which is not really true, is it? If it were, he’d be taking every opportunity he could, including DQing himself in order to retain quickly.

Batista rocks out with his new haircut, hits his gatling gun pyro and strolls to the ring, rocking on his toes. Cole tells us that he asked Batista, “What are you gonna do tonight? It’s your last chance,” which is almost as stupid as when he asked Austin, “Are you ready to enter hell?” back in 2001, the fucking ghoul.

Batista rolls out, chases Edge off and hugs Harley Race. Real babyface.

Edge kisses the belt and the bell is rung.

Last Chance Match for the World Heavyweight Championship: Edge (c) vs. Batista.

Batista cannot wait to get his hands on Edge, going for his legs almost instantly. The pair hammer on each other and Batista hits the pin pretty early on but fails to keep him down. A wee rest hold from the two men and Batista stalks his enemy, constantly holding onto rest holds. Edge fights back and gets the Animal in the corner, but is limping from the damage pretty early on. Lovely Bossman Slam from Batista followed by a pin that fails. Annoying whistling person in the crowd. Batista gets thrown out of the ring and lies there for a while. Edge rocks out, hitting the axe-handle-nothing from the apron. Batista lifts Edge up but he escapes and reverses it into a lovely push into the steel ring post.

Batista reenters the ring and Edge is on him, hammering him on the back of the neck. Edge runs Batista’s shoulder into the steel post and we stand around for a while. Very slow pace here. Batista goes to the apron and gets hit with a baseball slide. Edge hot-dogs and grandstands for the crowd as Batista really sells the baseball slide. Batista rocks back into the ring and he have… armbar city. Both men are either gassed or purposely bringing the pace down. I can’t wee why. Batista hits an arm drag, is thrown – once again – into the corner, shoulder first, and follows it up with a short, sharp tug. Batista falls back, has trouble getting to his feet and does so, fighting back before a drop-toe-hold moves straight into an armbar. Armbar city.

Batista lifts Edge into a fireman’s carry into a Samoan Drop but Edge holds on, holding as tight as he can. Batista battles to his feet, punches Edge, lifts him into the corner and gets a boot to the face for his effort. Batista’s veins are all twisted and gross. Edge drives at Batista, but the Animal hits a murderous clothesline. Ten count starts.

Both men are up and Batista hits a looooovely back body drop. It is beautiful. Batista then hits a swinging Rock Bottom on Edge but fails to hit the pinfall. He sets up the Batista Bomb but Edge escapes and hits the DDT. Edge is amazed that it means nothing. He rocks out, grabs his belt and the ref shouts at him. Roll-up from Batista. Roll-up from Edge. Dominator attempt by Batista, Edge-O-Matic from Edge. Both men are down, both men are up and a spear from Batista knocks the champ down. Edge whups his arm right up to hit the Animal with a low blow.

Edge has disqualified himself by an illegal action. Batista is the winner of this match but Edge still retains World Heavyweight Championship in… 16:50?

Something fucky’s going on here. Same thing happened ten years ago at In Your House 14: Revenge of the ‘Taker with Owen Hart and British Bulldog being illegally pinned by the Legion of Doom.

Teddy Long rocks out and restarts the match. He adds the stipulation that a further DQ will cause Edge to lose his championship. Edge bounces back in and the bell goes despite the fact that Batista is not ready. Edge prepares for the Spear, hits it and almost gets the pin! Almost! Edge runs out, gets a chair, remembers that it will mean he loses and rolls in only for Batista to attempt the Batista Bomb and throw Edge over the top rope. Batista gets thrown into the steel steps and then hits Edge with the Batista Bomb. However, he took so long that Batista gets counted out.

Batista has gotten himself counted out. Edge is the winner of this match and retains World Heavyweight Championship in 16:50.

2017 comments:

Have a screwy ending, only to restart the match… and have another screwy ending. Nice, guys. Very nice.

2007 comments:

Disappointed.

Grade: C.

No good storyline in this match. Batista has lost his chance to win the championship. He’s furious. He picks up the champ and hits a second Batista Bomb, his music plays and he leaves the ring. Batista punches the ring a bunch of times and the replays of his loss play. Distraught, he walks up the tron.

Cut to JR and Jerry, who talk about Fabulous Moolah, the madam. They have a wee laugh and show the original screwjob where Moolah was the “Spider Lady”, completely revising history, the bastards.

Melina appears with her paparazzi, smiling as she rocks down and splits to enter the ring. Bless her, she tries awful hard.

Candice Michelle appears, slapping hands and wearing… a garter belt to hold up her trousers? Weird. So weird.

WWE Women’s Championship: Melina (c) vs. Candice Michelle.

Right, everyone, take a knee. This is the piss break match, I guess.

Melina raises her hand for a test of strength, kicks Candice right between the legs and is thrown into the corner, hitting Melina with a head-scissors submission, moving into a tarantula before being kicked outside. Melina sits on the apron and tries a head scissors of her own, rolls into the ring and attempts a pin. Melina pops Candice into the corner, hits the double knees and gets another head-scissors on her before attempting a takedown. The announcers call Melina a “playboy wannabe”, reducing her to a glamour model. Bow and arrow submission followed by a pin attempt. Melina goes over the top rope and Candice hits a weak powerslam, shakes her hips and hits an elbow. Pin attempt and fail.

Bulldog by Candice and another pin attempt. Melina hits a Neckbreaker and fails again on the pin. Both women run the ropes and Candice wins by a pin after an embarrassing roundhouse kick. Her top also falls down.

Candice Michelle has pinned Melina to win the WWE Women’s Championship in 4:07.

2017 comments:

Embarrassing.

2007 comments:

She’s crying because she knows how shit it is.

Grade: Not a match.

Awful, just awful. Women wrestlers deserve better than this.

Cut to a promo for… WrestleMania? Oh, on DVD. Three discs, or so I’m told. Five hours of extras. Four hours of actual WrassleMania. Cunt Trump gets top billing.

Justin Roberts introduces Cunt JBL, who used to be a WWE Champ. He gets the grip to hand a piece of paper to Roberts and says that he must read from the paper, exactly. It wanks JBL off for a while. Fuck JBL.

Promo for the Five-Pack Challenge, which JR says is… “So unique.” It’s not. We see Mick, Booker, Cena, Randy and Bobbo Lasher as champions as they say what it means to be a champion. The five men tell the camera who they are. We see their “best moments”, which involves mostly Mankind.

Justin Roberts describes the chaos that will unfold: all five men will fight and the first to get a pinfall or submission will win. No eliminations.

Bobbo Lasher comes out first with his golden shower.

Micker Foley comes out next, facing it up.

Booker comes out with Queen Sharmell, the best queen. He has an odd animal fur cloak on. Weird dude. JR calls Sharmell beautiful. She is, she’s great looking. Long bloody entrance, mind.

Then Randy comes down with his great entrance theme tune, taking half an hour to get to the ring, jogging for a bit like the smelly jobber that he is. He hits the legend killer pose mid-ring and that’s him.

Cena keeps us waiting, you know, all four men await him and the crowd goes ballistic the second that his music hits.

Five-Pack Challenge for the WWE Championship: John Cena (c) vs. Bobby Lashley vs. Mick Foley vs. King Booker (with Queen Sharmell) vs. Randy Orton.

All five lads are in the ring, finally, and the match begins. Booker leaves and Sharmell gives him a lovely massage. Cena bops Randy, who gets a back-body drop from Lasher and is tossed over the rope by Mick. Booker comes in, tosses Cena out and hammers Lasher. Lashley hits a thunderous clothesline and tosses him out, hitting a very dangerous looking suicide dive onto all four men, picks up Booker and rolls him back in. Mid-ring, Lasher hits the Rack Attack and Cena breaks up the pin to big boos. Both big men face off and trade punches mid-ring. Lasher hits a great spinebuster and both men roll to the outside. Cena takes a bomp to the head from the steel steps and Lasher begins to prepare an announcer’s table for a bump.

Randy and Foley interrupts it as Booker and Foley fight by ringside. All the other men have a wee lie down, waiting for their own personal spot. Foley takes a real bad looking steel ring step bump and it’s Randy and Lasher’s turn to fight. Lasher counters an RKO, walks straight into an FU and is clobbered through the ECW announce table. Booker and Cena have a scrap in the ring mit Flair chops. Booker cracks Cena in the face with a boot and some lovely knees and Irish whip. Cena fights back and clobbers Booker before taking a Scissors kick to the back of the neck. Randy breaks up the pin and gets a punch to the face before Cena – no selling the Scissors kick – knocks him out, hits the sit-out powerbomb, attempts a Five Knuckle Shuffle but eats an RKO. Randy attempts the pin and Foley breaks it up, cracking Orton with elbows and a knee to the head before turning on Booker for a boot and hitting the double underhook DDT.

Foley whups Mr. Socko out of his jocks, eats a superkick from Booker and both he and Randy fall with a double clothesline. Foley throws the sock into the crowd and takes a steel chair into the ring. Cactus bops Bobby with the chair followed by Booker. Cena gets to his feet and eats a chair before Randy stops the carnage. The Viper stalks Foley, gives him the punt kick. And Cena gets ready for the FU with Booker, tosses him out and hits Mick with one instead for the pin.

John Cena has pinned Mick Foley to retain the WWE Championship in 18:08.

2017 comments:

Spotfest, but a fun spotfest.

2007 comments:

Mick was in it. Match of the Year.

Grade: A.

The DVD I was watching had the match at maybe 10 minutes, they must have cut out some rest holds. Cena celebrates and the WWE moves into a new and terrifying era.

The Go Home Stats.

Man of the Matches: No big stand-out winners but I’d say the final match was fast-paced and fun and put the onus on John Cena’s shoulders.

Woman of the Matches: Am I to choose between Melina, Candice Michelle and Sharmell? I choose Sharmell.

Montel Vontavious Porter Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence: John Cena

Best Spot: The parade of specials at the end of the Five-pack challenge.

Hatches: Jimmy Superfly Snuka.

Matches: Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch retain their World Tag Team Championship; Chavo Guerrero retains his WWE Cruiserweight Championship; Santino Marella retains his WWE Intercontinental Championship; Montel Vontavious Porter retains his WWE United States Championship; Deuce ‘n Domino retain their WWE Tag Team Championship; Edge retains his World Heavyweight Championship belt; Candice Michelle has the only title change of the evening, winning the WWE Women’s Championship from Melina for her first reign; and Cena retains his WWE Championship.

Dispatches: We say goodbye to everyone: Batista, Bobby Lashley, Booker T, Candice Michelle, Carlito, Chavo Guerrero, Cherry, CM Punk, Deuce, Domino, Edge, Jeff and Matt Hardy, Jimmy Superfly Snuka, Jimmy Wang Yang, John Cena, Johnny Nitro, Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch, Mick Foley, Melina, MVP, Randy Orton, Ric Flair, Santino Marella, Sgt. Slaughter, Sharmell, Super Crazy and Umaga.

On The Card Hall Of Fame

Every “Big Four” PPV (Wrestlemania, Summerslam, Survivor Series, Royal Rumble) I will choose a man and woman to be inducted into the hall of fame. I have done another one today because this is the final PPV in the Ruthless Aggression section of this blog. A man and woman must have been named either a Man of the Matches or Woman of the Matches in the previous months since the last “Big Four” PPV (since WrestleMania 23). Once a man or woman is inducted, they may not be inducted again but can still win Man of the Matches or Woman of the Matches. Through this, we can course the dizzying highs and savage lows of the wrestling landscape throughout the years. If no one new has been given the title of Man or Woman of the Matches, then a candidate will be chosen from the highest-rated matches since the last “Big Four” PPV – WrassleMania 23. If no one is to be found there, then we go to the next highest-rated matches and so on. If we (unlikely) get to the bottom of the pile, then the Hall of Fame will remain empty to show the excellent calibre of the wrestlers and shallow roster.

Previous Men of the Matches: Shawn Michaels (Summerslam 06), [REDACTED] Benoit (Survivor Series ’06), Joey Mercury (Royal Rumble 07), Stone Cold Steve Austin (WrestleMania 23).

Nominated for Man of the Matches: John Cena, Randy Orton, Edge and Shawn Michaels (Backlash 07), CM Punk and Elijah (Judgment Day 07), Batista and Edge (One Night Stand 07), John Cena (Vengeance: Night of Champions 07).

The Winner and Entrant to the Hall of Fame is… CM Punk and Elijah Burke!

Previous Women of the Matches: Queen Sharmell (Summerslam 06), Trish Stratus (Survivor Series 06), Victoria (Royal Rumble 07), N/A (WrestleMania 23).

Nominated for Woman of the Matches: Mickie James (Backlash 07), N/A (Judgement Day 07), N/A (One Night Stand 07), Queen Sharmell (Vengeance: Night of Champions

The Winner and Entrant to the Hall of Fame is… Mickie James because Queen Sharmell cannot win twice!

In Memoriam

Each WrestleMania (and the final PPV in this case), I will go through the people who we have seen wrassle and lament for their passing. This list is a bit shorter due to the fact that the shows have been so recent.

  • Andrew James Robert Patrick Martin AKA Test, March 17 1975 – March 13 2009; accidental overdose of oxycodone.
  • Christopher Michael Benoit, May 21 1967 – June 29 2009; hanging.
  • Edward Smith Fatu AKA Umaga, March 28 1973 – December 4 2009; heart attack caused by acute toxicity.
  • Harry Fujiwara AKA Mr. Fuji, May 4 1934 – August 28 2016; old age. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2007 by Don “The Rock” Muraco.
  • James Reiher Snuka AKA Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka, May 18 1943 – January 15 2017; unidentified terminal illness. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1996 by Don Muraco, though his profile is no longer available due to his alleged murder of Nancy Argentino in 1983.
  • Jonathan “Jon” Rechner AKA Balls Mahoney, April 11 1972 – April 12 2016; heart attack.
  • Lance Kurtis McNaught AKA Lance Cade, March 2 1981 – August 13 2010; heart failure caused by intoxication from mixed drugs.
  • Nelson Lee Frazier Jr AKA Viscera AKA Mabel AKA Big Daddy V, February 14 1971 – February 18 2014; heart attack.
  • Roderick George Toombs AKA Rowdy Roddy Piper, April 17 1954 – July 31 2015; cardiopulmonary arrest caused by hypertension. Inducted into the Hall of Fame by Ric Flair in 2005.
  • Virgil Riley Runnels Jr AKA Dusty Rhodes, October 12 1945 – June 11 2015; a bad fall. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2007 by his sons, Cody (Stardust) and Dustin (Goldust).

Closing Statements: I think that it’s only fair that I explain why I have decided to end this section of the blog at this PPV and it will come as no surprise that it is because of Chris Benoit. At the time of his death, professional wrestling had been an interest that had dwindled for me to a once-a-month event, more frequently if a match on Raw or Smackdown was highly gimmicked or was heard to be amazing. The only thing keeping me watching was – as I’m sure other fans were – the anticipation that if I stopped watching, I would somehow miss something amazing. Chris Benoit’s murder/suicide (although completely unrelated to storyline professional wrestling) stopped me watching for a while. As the details about the weekend of murders came to light, I realised that I could not watch a sport that allowed its employees to take such a punishment that would cause them to have brains in such disrepair that they could be brought to kill their son and wife. I still sometimes feel conflicted about it. The WWE, in fairness to them, took precautions to ensure that their employees are healthier today than they were back then. I feel that the wrestling now is better than it was in 2007 and even during the Attitude Era. Now, the wrestling is the best in the world and that is because the wrestlers are healthier and not taking chair shots every night. It’s a shame three people had to die for that to happen.

Ruthless Aggression #18. Judgment Day (May 20, 2007) Part 2

Previously on On the Card: CM Punk and Elijah Burke show everyone else up.

Backstage, it’s Kirstal interviewing the Rated-R Superstar, Edge. He taunts Kristal, lists off his achievements, slags our boy Batista and leaves Kristal with a foul look upon her mug.

Cut to the ring and Randy Orton arrives with his brilliant music, lack of golden shower on the ramp and the crowd – despite it being his hometown – couldn’t give a damn. He hits his legend killer pose mid-ring and gets no golden showers. Big boos. He speaks to the announcers and it is revealed that the winner, by forfeit is-

OH SNAP SHAWN MICHAELS MUSIC HITS.

Down he comes to the ring after some time. He’s stumbling. He looks in a bad way. Jaysus, Shawn, have you been on those funny pills again? He’s just a woozy boy, wooooozy boooooy. The ref is telling Shawn that he doesn’t have to do it! But he’s doing it. The bell rings.

Singles Match: Randy Orton vs. Shawn Michaels.

Randy hits Shawn right in the head. First second, first shot, knocks the sexy boy on his arse. Randy hits the hanging DDT. JR really sells it. “For the love of God!”

Randy attempts a pin attempt and fails. Randy kicks Shawn in the old head a handful of times. Orton lifts Michaels for the RKO, but HBK can’t stand on his own and topples. He lifts Shawn up onto the turnbuckle, attempts to super-RKO him, pushes Randy to the floor, goes for the elbow and hits it. Shawn is still wobbly, though. How Randy is able to not just kick the shite from this boy is beyond me. Shawn stomps his feet. The crowd count along as he tunes up the band but topples before Orton can take the shot. Randy looks over him, confused and saddened by the legend’s condition. The ref ends the match.

The match had to be cancelled due to referee stoppage. Randy Orton wins the match by default in 4:32.

2017 comments:

I see the point in a storyline match like this. It makes Shawn look amazing and Randy look like a real piece of shit. But at least put on a show of some sort, like have Shawn maybe fight for a bit, gather himself and take an unlucky spill before failing the Sweet Chin Music. Otherwise it just looks sloppy and sad.

2007 comments:

No Kayfabe, Shawn is really hurt. Legit.

Grade: Not a match.

Big boos from the crowd. A little cheer when Orton is told he is the winner. His music pops for a second, Orton looks over his opponent. The crowd bays for an RKO and when Michaels gets to his feet, he gives him one. Rebecca, Shawn Michael’s wife, slides into the ring to cradle her husband’s head. JR calls Orton a bastard. Probably the highlight of the match, if I’m being honest. Crowd cheer for HBK and Rebecca chews the scenery with her caterwauling. Orton has become Conan. He now hears the lamentations of his enemy’s women. HBK is popped onto a stretcher and no one believes that he is truly hurt, obviously. Waste of airtime.

Replay of Shawn getting hit by Orton earlier in the night followed by all the head shots in the match and Michael’s eventual collapse after attempting the Sweet Chin Music.

Backstage, it’s Khali. No one gives a fuck. His interpreter asks a question and Khali answers. The crowd asks, “What?” constantly. The interpreter translates Khali’s gibberish. That’s disrespectful of me, I suppose, he could be speaking Punjabi.

Hardy’s music hits and out the two headcases come, dancing like the fucking Bushwhackers.

Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch rock out with their generic country music playing. JBL jabbers on for a while, the big idiot.

World Tag Team Championship Match: The Hardy Boys (c) vs. Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch.

Why are the champions out first? For real, guys, c’mon.

Fat Matt starts off versus Lance Cade. Lovely tie-up in the corner and hip toss followed by both men slapping hands mid-ring. JBL talks about himself, saying that the APA were equal to the Hardys. Noooooooope.

Cade has Matt in an armlock and it is reversed pretty quickly. Cade tosses Matt, lovely Irish Whip combo and Murdoch rocks in with his big old sideburns. He does little and is tagged out. Cade takes a forearm to the head, Jeff rocks in and almost instantly botches a kick. Murdoch is in and Jeff claps to get the crowd going. Lock-up mid ring and a lovely wristlock combination before Murdoch hits back with a hip toss. Hand slap mid-ring and a wee headlock to Irish whip to hip toss. In comes Fat Matt and a Poetry in Motion. Matt works on the left arm of Murdoch for a bit, bopping Murdoch on the back of the neck with a lovely Bret’s rope elbow. Cade is tagged in sneakily and gives Matt a punch to the face.

JBL talks about himself some more, saying Cade reminds him of a young Bradshaw. No. Cade already looks like less of a cunt and is certainly in better shape than JBL ever was. Murdoch rocks in and attempts a turnbuckle splash but Matt reverses. JBL is pissed, “Just when I start putting him over…”

Jeff rocks in and cleans the house, attempts a pin and fails because he hasn’t hit his Swanton yet. Lovely twisting moonsault in the corner and Matt pops in, sending the challengers out. They both consider leaving and the Ref starts a ten count. It gets to seven and Murdoch pops back in, starts making demands to the Hardys. JBL talks about the APA some more. Jeff attempts a flip over the top rope, Murdoch side-steps it and rolls Jeff back in for the pin. Cade is in and beats on Jeff for a while. It’s building up to the hot tag and it’s Jeff’s turn to be a punching bag. Lovely double-team atomic leg drop from the challengers. Jeff escapes a headlock but gets a kick to the face for his effort.

Lovely Irish Whip double team. Pin attempt. Cade tags in Murdoch. Murdoch hits a lovely sunset flip and Matt jumps in to break the pin. Jeff hits the jawbreaker and Matt is building to the hot tag but Murdoch gets there first. Matt is in, though, and he’s leaning house, hitting a bulldog-clothesline on both challengers. Side Effect and pin attempt. Matt tosses Murdoch out but Cade hits a sit-out spinebuster. Matt escapes the pin and fights back with a lovely Twist of Fate. Jeff is tagged in, hits the Swanton, gets the pin.

Jeff Hardy has pinned Lance Cade. The Hardy Boys retain the World Tag Team Championship in 15:02.

2017 comments:

Very good match. Paint-by-numbers match, but a good one. Hardys are damned fine entertainers and Cade and Murdoch are pretty steady.

2007 comments:

No ladders.

Grade: B.

Jeff holds out his hand to the challengers and Matt does the same. Hands are shaken. No faces, no heels, just good wrasslin’. I love that. Some lovely replays where JBL talks about himself.

Back to JR who reminds us that there was a Shawn Michaels match earlier. He’s on his way to the hospital.

The announcer tells us to watch the ‘Tron where the following video is courtesy of Edge. We see him winning the Money in the Bank from Mr. Kennedy. We see him cash it in on The Undertaker. We see him win the World Heavyweight Championship. Then there’s a montage of his best moments. Batista comes out in a suit, does the Cunt Trump handshake and there’s lots of shots of Edge and Batista kicking arse.

Christ a-mighty. Once again, Edge comes out first. He’s the fucking champion! They should never come out first! It’s 2007, boys, c’mon. Big pyro for the Rated-R Superstar but it like ashes in my mouth. Never should the champ walk out first. It doesn’t matter how big a pop the challenger gets. For shame.

JBL cunts it up on commentary. Cole fights back.

There’s enough time passing before our boy Batista comes out to a murderous pop. He runs to one side, he runs to t’other, he jogs on the spot, spins and hits his pyro. Edge dives out of the ring as Batista enters, slaps his chest and flexes for the crowd. He makes sure that he hits all four corners, Austin-style, but with a bit more showboating than Stone Cold ever had.

Edge has a bit of a bruise on his right collarbone. The ref tells the wrestlers the rules. Batista snatches for the belt. Edge holds it close.

World Heavyweight Championship Match: Edge (c) vs. Batista.

Batista has a wee cough as he chases Edge about the ring. Batista has a bandaged leg and JBL bigs it up. Neither men has an advantage just now. They lock up and Batista easily lifts Edge onto the corner turnbuckle. Fear lives in his eyes. Terror. Surprise. Yet he dives towards Batista and is knocked down. Batista batters Edge’s head off three of the corners, beats on him, Irish whips and knocks him down with a high elbow. Edge fights back and is tossed to the outside.

Batista slowly, laboriously leaves the ring, lifts Edge up and tosses him into the steel steps, knee first. Edge rolls in and out to break up the ten count. No idea why. Keep Batista outside. Make him lose by countout. C’mon. It’s not rocket science. Batista goes to his knees, gets a shoulder into the corner by Edge, time is really slowing down for these men. Batista’s limitations are showing here. Cole wonders what fans around the world think about Edge’s antics. Cunt JBL shills himself some more.

Overly vocal ref asks for Batista to give up and tap out during a bad armlock. Both men are super sweaty just now. Batista fights out of the lock and the Animal has Edge in the corner, setting him up for a superplex. Batista falls backwards like a big child and Edge goes for an axe handle nothing that ends in a clothesline. Both men bore the crowd by exchanging punches. Big back body drop from Batista and he follows it up with a lovely sidewalk slam. Edge escapes a body slow and there is a pin attempt… for a body slam reversal. Good god. Why ware these guys so tired? Edge goes for the spear but Batista hits the spear instead. Pin attempt and fail.

Edge escapes an Irish whip but gets a Dominator for his effort. He goes for the Batista Bomb, Edge escapes and gives Edge a spinebuster but wins via roll-up.

Edge has pinned Batista to retain the World Heavyweight Championship in 10:37.

2017 comments:

Real let down. No memorable spots, both men were gassed seconds in.

2007 comments:

Is that it over?

Grade: C.

Not a good match from either men. I expect better.

Ad for Ozzy, who sings the theme song.

Tony Chimel fucks up his intro by saying, “The following is, uh, a… match. Two out of three falls.” He explains the rules, even though it’s a two-out-of-three falls match. It’s very obvious what the rules are.

My boy MVP appears from his inflatable house, hitting big pyro and rocking to the ring like an absolute thug. Cunt JBL says that MVP has joined, “this Federation… Federation brand. I’m still getting over that Divas section.”

There was no Divas section on the DVD I watched. According to other blogs, however, there was a bit with Kristal asking the Divas to choose a winner between Khali and Cena. I’m sorry I missed it.

Out comes the Rabid Wolverine, [REDACTED] Benoit, who is, at this point, only a month and two days away from being a murderer. He looks huge and scary because he is huge and scary.

Two-out-of-three falls match for the WWE United States Championship: [REDACTED] Benoit (c) vs. MVP.

Good. The champ comes out last. This is nice.

Lovely long lock-up that ends with both men rolling out, staring at each other, rolling in and sharing some slaps. Lovely arm drags and hip tosses from Benoit. He tries to lock on the crossface and MVP gets to the ropes. Crowd are dead. It’s a shame because this match is far superior, already, the Edge/Batista match, but it’s the piss-break match before the main event, so the crowd can’t be bothered. The announcers big up MVP and fair play because he’s actually fantastic. Benoit gets a lovely arm lock on MVP and he gets to the ropes to break the hold. Great chest shops and Benoit goes flying. MVP works Benoit’s knee and we’re constantly told that it is sore.

Sadly, JBL calls Benoit a “hall of fame guy”. That is not so and it breaks my heart. MVP beats on Benoit in the corner and he fights back with some swift chops before hitting the triple Germans. The last one is a bit dodgy and MVP pops to his feet. Benoit hits the crossface but MVP gets to the ropes just in time. Very good. MVP boots Benoit for that. Ohhhh, he’s ticked. Benoit dodges a kick and Benoit attempts the Sharpshooter. MVP breaks the hold with the rope again. Benoit hits an enziguri and Little Naitch gives off to MVP. Benoit goes for the Electric Chair but MVP counters it to a Playmaker and gets the pin.

MVP has pinned Benoit to gain one pinfall. The score is currently:

MVP… 1

Benoit… 0

The crowd boo. They’re not happy at all. Replay of the Playmaker as the men take the “traditional 60 second rest period between falls.” I don’t think that it’s a tradition. I rarely see it happen.

Benoit hits hard on MVP, breathing like a maniac and looking like a sweaty man. Little Naitch gives off to MVP for not getting into the goddamn ring. Pin attempt and Benoit survives. MVP attacks Benoit’s face, sets him up in a tree of woe and kicks him in the injured knee that the announcers won’t shut the fuck up about. MVP works the knee some more because why not. Crowd are chanting, “This is boring!” and, thankfully, the announcers don’t check it. Chops from Benoit that Cunt JBL likens to being shot.

Submission move on Benoit as his injured knee is hooked around MVP’s head. Benoit rocks over to the bottom rope, breaks the hold and MVP batters him with knees to the head. Another attempt at a Playmaker but he reverses it into a crossface. MVP escapes! He getst to his feet, he rolls Benoit up and the Wolverine escapes. Another roll-up and the win.

MVP has pinned Benoit to gain one pinfall. The score is currently:

MVP… 2

Benoit… 0

MVP has defeated Benoit two out of three falls to win WWE United States Championship in 12:46.

2017 comments:

Strong start, got slow, got boring.

2007 comments:

I expect better.

Grade: C.

It started off as an A-grade match and finished no better than the match previous. Damn shame. Benoit is sitting by the side of the ring. Poor guy. Masterful acting though.

Cut to JR and King as they shill One Night Stand, which was originally an ECW PPV and is not tri-branded. They talk about the upcoming match – Cena against Khali.

Cut to a promo where someone is talking out the biggest stars – HBK, Orton, Edge. That man is… Khali. It’s a nice gimmick, if we just cut to the damage caused by a mystery assailant but never actually saw the attack. If this went on for weeks, that’s brilliant. Who is it? Who is attacking? The promo puts over Michaels being hurt by Khali. They put over our Lord and Saviour, Jesus (who is the Christ), even though Khali is Hindi. Khali steals Cena’s WWE Championship belt and Cena gets beat up trying to steal it back.

Some stats on screen: Cena is 6’1”, Khali is 7’3”, reputedly, with over a foot’s height difference betwixt them. Cena weights 248lbs, Khali 420lbs, blazing it with almost 172lbs difference, which is one of me. Cena’s reach is 32inches and Khali’s is 41inches. Cena has size 13 shoes, Khali has the made-up-sounding 18EEEE. That’s four E’s! Cena’s moves tell us to fuck up – FU and STFU – whereas Khali’s are just normal moves with the word Giant before them – Giant Chop and Giant Chokeslam. However, there is one vital difference between them: Khali is a filthy foreigner who don’t speak no ‘Murican as he is from Punjab in India, with Osama and all them terr’rists. John Felix Anthony Cena? He’s from West Newbury, Massachusetts. You know who else was from Massachusetts? Freedom.

Fuck sake. Once again, the Fed send out their champ first. This is disgusting. It’s like a snuff film. It should be illegal. The crowd go bananas for our man Cena. What a guy. He’s brushing your mouth like Colgate.

Big wait for Khali. Why? He’s the drizzling shits. Big boos, big X-Pac heat for this man when he comes out. JR tells us not to adjust our sets as he walks out. Very nice touch, there, JR. He reminds us that Khali has never been pinned or made to submit. Why are there so many undefeated streaks happening at once?

Crowd boo Khali. Crowd cheer Cena. Let’s go Cena.

WWE Championship match: John Cena (c) vs. The Great Khali.

This is going to be an awful match. Cena is looking up at Khali, who lifts his hands and roars. Cena sells the clothesline like he’s done dead. Brilliant. Khali punches Cena and he rolls out of the ring. Khali lifts Cena up, tosses him into the steel ring steps and rolls him back into the ring. Pin attempt with big boot on Cena’s chest. Kick out and a body slam for his effort. Big leg drop and a cover that is broken by a foot on the rope.

Irish whip and Cena bounces off the floor like the poor son of a bitch that he is. Cena hits a sunset flip cutter and Khali fails to sell. Cena is building up a big old head of steam but Khali roundhouse kicks him on his arse. Cena and Khali roll to the outside where Khali batters the champ’s head off the announcer’s table.

Rest hold. Klingon Nerve Grip City.

Cena fights out and hits the shoulder barges. Khali is caught in an Andre arm-guillotine on the ropes. He escapes and knocks Cena down to a big boo. Cena is up to his feet and catches Khali’s big chop. Both men roll out again and Cena dropkicks the ringsteps, throwing them into Khali’s knee. Both men are back in the ring. Cena goes top rope, leg drops the back of Khali’s neck, latches on the STFU but he refuses to tap out… until he does.

John Cena has defeated The Great Khali by submission to retain WWE Championship in 8:15.

2017 comments:

Guff.

2007 comments:

Guff.

Grade: C.

Not a good match, but we expect nothing better from Khali.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: Khali should have broken the hold with his legs underneath the ropes, but the ref didn’t because Khali is so big that his legs are always beneath the ropes.

Replay of Cena getting his arse kicked. The Judgement Day graphic at the bottom left of the screen is too high off the bottom. Don’t know if it’s been like that all night or not. Cena shouts offscreen and the PPV is done.

The Go Home Stats.

Man of the Matches: Once again, no outstanding matches here. I’m going to give it to both CM Punk and Elijah Burke for their great match, clearly the best of the card.

Woman of the Matches: No one.

Montel Vontavious Porter Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence: CM Punk and Elijah Burke.

Best Spot: No real spots here either but the reversalfest in the Punk/Burke match was nice.

Hatches: None.

Matches: Bobby Lashley wins back his ECW World Championship… but is denied it and so Vince McMahon retains; The Hardys retain their World Tag Team Championship; Edge retains his World Heavyweight Championship belt; Montel Vontavious Porter wins the WWE United States Championship for the first time and Cena retains his WWE Championship.

Dispatches: For the final time in the Ruthless Aggression portion of this blog, we say goodbye to [REDACTED] Benoit, Dave Taylor, Shawn Michaels and William Regal.

Closing Statements: A real let down in the second half though there were two fantastic matches on the card.

On the Card will return on June 3 2017 with One Night Stand 2007.

Ruthless Aggression #17. Backlash (April 29, 2007) Part 1

On the Card: Ruthless Aggression #17 Backlash – April 29, 2007

The Ruthless Aggression Era was a time when the WWE roster was so huge and so varied that they had no way of continuing storylines each week on their two main shows – RAW and Smackdown – and so they created the draft where wrestlers and announcers would be drafted onto either one of the two shows. Smackdown wrestlers would not (usually) be able to appear on Raw or interact with Raw wrestlers and vice versa.

Ten years ago, on April 29, 2007, Backlash 2007 aired. It was a WWE PPV, as WWE had dropped Brand-named PPVs after No Way Out in February. Personally, the PPV came at a time where I had grown weary with professional wrestling, confused by the sheer number of wrestlers and unwilling to spend so much time per week watching hours of footage and trawling through shows, replays, promos and matches. I simply watched the PPVs. Over the next few weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after a decade as well as my original thoughts as a younger man watching it at the time.

WWE Backlash 2007

No tagline this time, but the posted is a brilliant parody of The Shining, with Edge looking through a smashed door with an evil grin on his face.

The PPV starts off with a video package showing us what happened at WrestleMania: Undertaker won, Vince got his head shaved and Cena beat Michaels. Vince gets his revenge against Bobby by putting his title on the line after beating him down.

Batista threatens Undertaker and Taker replies by wanting to steal Batista’s soul. Shawn and Cena fought, Cena won and Edge and Randy want a title as well. Three championships are on the line tonight… but also the women’s championship.

Raw, Smackdown and ECW present WWE Backlash! Big pyro hits as we are welcomed to the soled out Philips Arena, Atlanta, Georgia where 14,500 people are crammed in to see the ninth annual Backlash. 194,000 bought it at home, a pathetic drop from the 220,000 the year previous and the worst ratings in a PPV so far this year. Only ECW One Night Stand in June would have lower PPV buys. Our announce team are Jumpin’ Jim Ross, Jerry “The King” Lawler, Joey Styles, Tazz, Maggle Cole and Cunt JBL.

Jerking the curtain for the fifth PPV in a row are the Hardys.

 (Note: Before the PPV began, there was a dark match that featured Carlito and Johnny Nitro. What? Why? Put… actually, there’s no one really you can put on the preshow because the rest of the matches are money.!)

Team Extreme rock down to the ring, tag team belts around their waists after winning it from Cena and Michaels the day after WrestleMania. Obviously their amazing match caused… dissention!

Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch rock down, looking like a pair of hillbillies. Great. Remind me of the gosh-darned Godwinns.

World Tag Team Championship match: The Hardy Boyz (Matt and Jeff) (c) vs. Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch.

I’ve changed up the titles of the matches. Putting champion first or in order of appearance.

Wait, why did the challengers appear second? This doesn’t make any sense!

Fat Matt starts off and our boy Lance Cade is ready in his red pants. Lance shoves Matt into the corner. Both men are put over by the announcers. Headlock into a pin and Lance tips Matt over for a pin attempt of his own. Irish whip, elbow to the face and the heel Cade hits Matt with a clenched fist, the bastard. Murdoch pops in and gets punched in the face. Matt has Lance in a headlock but the big man powers through and shoves Matt into the corner to tag in Murdoch. Lovely body slam and Jeff comes in to a big pop, but he tags out quickly.

Lovely double team on Murdoch and Jeff hits a Whispers in the Wind pin, causing Cade to pop in and Matt to throw him out. Matt gets on all fours and we see a lovely Poetry in Motion over the top rope and out of the ring. Very safe catch from the challengers. Matt goes to Bret’s rope and hits the axe-handle nothing, bulldog attempt from the corner and Lance comes back in. Big “Let’s go, Hardys!” chant rises. Matt is in the beat down portion of the match, but escapes after a Russian Leg Sweep and Jeff comes in to clear house. Good man, Jeff. Lance attempts a baseball slide but Lance drags him out. Cade attempts the pin but finds nothing. Lovely spinebuster-powerbomb and Matt helps out the pin. Lance does a lovely atomic-drop-leg-drop Murdoch holds Jeff while Lance hits him. Lovely clothesline and pin attempt.

Murdoch is in, attempts a suplex, rolls it up into a pin, Murdoch gives the big boot and Lance is back in. I just realised that the hard cam is in the wrong position, with the entrance to the right of the screen. I wonder why. Snapmare, lovely headlock and the crowd is building to the hot tag after Jeff hits the jawbreaker. Murdoch is in, though, hitting Jeff with a backdrop and there’s a revolving door of beating up Jeff until the hot tag builds. Jeff hits a reverse enziguri, Matt is knocked off the apron to big boos and Murdoch attempts a lovely axe-handle smash. Jeff counters it, goes for the hot tag and Matt is in, clearing house. Bulldog to Murdoch and pin attempt. A Poetry in Motion attempt but Lance pulls Murdoch to safety. Matt goes to hit the Twist of Fate, fails, hits a Side Effect and in the pin, Lance dives out of nowhere. Murdoch attempts a pin but Matt kicks out and JR says, “A damaged Matt Hardy,” a good decade before it’s popular.

Murdoch hits a lovely sunset flip pin and then has a tantrum when Matt kicks out. Jeff and Land are getting ready. Matt escapes a suplex, hits the Twist of Fate and as Lance pulls Matt out to hit him, Jeff hits the Swanton. Matt escapes Lance’s clutches and gets the pin.

Matt Hardy has pinned Trevor Murdoch to retain the World Tag Team titles in 14:18

2017 comments:

Good opener, once again. I didn’t expect much from Trevor Murdoch or Lance Cade, but they did a good job. Match was slower paced and leading towards a huge spot that never really came. Enjoyable but forgettable.

2007 comments:

I wish Matt and Jeff could go back to just hitting lads with tables and ladders and chairs.

Grade: B.

Matt and Jeff celebrate. A sign in the crowd says, “Jeff, please Swonton [sic] Bomb me.” Replay of the ending. Almost a heelish move by the faces. Very cheeky. We actually get to hear the ending riff of the Hardy’s theme. The announcers put over the “huge rock concert” crowd for the Hardys.

Backstage, Umaga breathes heavily. Shane bigs him up. Shane does tell him, however, to listen to both Shane and Vince. Vince has a do-rag on to cover his bald head. Shane says, “Cool.” Vince is telling Shane that one of the two of them could be ECW champion. Vince says it should be Shane and then looks a bit annoyed. Shane returns and says that Vince deserves to be Champ considering Bobby shaved his head bald. Vince accepts this and Shane looks a bit miffed.

Back in the arena, Melina’s music hits. Jerry says, “Let me put my phone down… and grab my binoculars!” Once again, the champ is coming out first. What is with that? Melina is wearing a weird leopard print affair. She leg drops the apron.

Mickie James’ music hits and out she comes, waving to the crowd and getting little response.

WWE Women’s Championship match: Melina (c) vs. Mickie James.

Normally, the women’s match would be the piss-break match – and has been until quite recently when talented young women have been brought up – and here we have Mickie, who is quite good and passionate against Melina, who is a Diva and has not impressed in the ring recently.

Nice fireman’s carry from Mickie. JR says that this match might get out of order quickly due to their tempers and King says that we might see an actual wrestling match. JR says that he loves a wrestling match but also loves him a good catfight. The crowd chant for Mickie and she locks Melina up in a head scissors. Side headlock. Mickie checks her tits as Melina checks her eyes. She actually takes her contact out and then sucker punches Mickie. Great stuff. Mickie has Melina in the corner, lovely monkey flip, pin and nothing. Mickie goes top rope and Melina tosses her out. Ref starts the ten count and rolls in before the ref can count her out. Ref is very nice about making sure that the shoulders are down. Melina hits a tarantula on the ropes and JR says that it doesn’t matter if there’s a DQ – Melina keeps the championship either way. Melina goes top-rope and basically hangs Mickie from the turnbuckle. God damn.

Mickie fights back and the crowd pops. Melina sentons Mickie and JR quips: “That’s that you call ‘using all your assets’.” Mickie gives Melina a kick and both women get they gets kicked out to make a lovely double-split spot. Mickie dropkicks Melina twice. Long two-count. Mickie hits a great clothesline followed by another followed by a hair-pull and a fantastic sit-out neckbreaker. Close three count. Crowd are into this match now. Mickie hits a lovely crossbody and Melina replies with a reverse DDT for the pin.

Melina has pinned Mickie James to retain the Women’s title in 9:02.

2017 comments:

Great women’s match. Great match regardless of gender.

2007 comments:

Women can wrassle?!

Grade: A.

On the Card will return on May 6 2017 with the second part of Backlash 2007.

Ruthless Aggression #16. WrestleMania 23 (April 1, 2007) Part 1

On the Card: Ruthless Aggression #16 WrestleMania 23 – April 1, 2007

The Ruthless Aggression Era was a time when the WWE roster was so huge and so varied that they had no way of continuing storylines each week on their two main shows – RAW and Smackdown – and so they created the draft where wrestlers and announcers would be drafted onto either one of the two shows. Smackdown wrestlers would not (usually) be able to appear on Raw or interact with Raw wrestlers and vice versa.

Ten years ago, on April 1, 2007, WrestleMania 23 aired. It was a WWE PPV, the first one since Royal Rumble back in January. Personally, the PPV came at a time where I had grown weary with professional wrestling, confused by the sheer number of wrestlers and unwilling to spend so much time per week watching hours of footage and trawling through shows, replays, promos and matches. I simply watched the PPVs. Over the next few weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after a decade as well as my original thoughts as a younger man watching it at the time.

WWE WrestleMania 23

All Grown Up.

Ha ha! All grown up. Because, you see, it’s the old blood versus the new blood. Cena and Michaels. Batista and Undertaker.

If there is one thing I love about each year being a wrestling fan, it’s the Royal Rumble. If there’s one thing I hate, it’s WrestleMania. Yep, there, I said it. WrestleMania has so much hype surrounding it that it cannot help but disappoint. The best thing about Mania is normally the entrances and the crazy spots. The matches are sub-par, normally, and half of it is aimed at the people who don’t watch wrestling but want to see celebrities. I would hate, hate, hate to go to WrestleMania and be anywhere but the front row. I’ve seen pictures of the ring from the nose-bleed seats. It is no way to spend your money.

WrestleMania 23 was at a time when wrestling ratings were low but spending was high. Trying to recoup losses, WWE made ‘Mania as crazy as possible and called in some old friends and crazy matches to intrigue and entertain fans. Let’s see if it’s just a full undercard!

Old promo package showing the titles of the last twenty-two WrassleManias. We see Hogan, Andre, Warrior, Stone Cold, Shawn Michaels, Undertaker, Rock, Shane McMahon, Triple H, Eddit, Cena etc. There’s a big pop for the fact that WrassleMania is all grown up. Hey! That’s the tagline!

Here we are in Ford Field, Detroit, Michigan, the city that never stops stabbing, we join 80,103 people in attendance with 1,188,000 at home (higher than the 930,000 from the year before) as the Queen of Soul, Miss Aretha Franklin sings America The Beautiful with a whole fucking choir and a piano and shit. Lovely promo package showing some soldiers, bombers, mountains, a woman in a sea of soldiers, firemen, the statue of Liberty, Shawn Michaels, more soldiers on parade, John Cena, Maria, a bald eagle, Abraham Lincoln’s statue, more bombers and big pyro. USA! USA! USA!

Fucking jingoistic bollocks.

Cut to everyone in a corridor, being kids, saying one line each and looking into the camera. It’s actually a fucking brilliant promo package. It looks amazing. Except for the laughable bits with the women. You’re not champions, ladies.

Raw, Smackdown and ECW present WrestleMania 23! Big pyro hits and we are officially welcomed in by Jim JR Ross and Jerry “The King” Lawler. The other announcers are Cunt JBL and Maggle Cole. ECW is here as well: Joey Styles and Tazz.

(Note: Before the PPV began, there was a dark match that featured Ric Flair and Carlito teaming up to defeat Gregory Helms and Chavo Guerrero. It was a lumberjack match and an excuse for some lads to get a WresleMania payday without doing much. They included: Viscera, Shad Gaspard and JTG of Cryme Tyme, Chris Masters, Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas of the world’s greatest tag team, Robbie and Rory McAllister of the Highlanders, Val Venis, Super Crazy, Johnny Nitro, Jim Duggan and Eugene, Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch, Kenny Dykstra, Daivari, Shannon Moore, Sylvain Grenier, Deuce n’ Domino, Paul London and Brian Kendrick who should really have been on the fucking show, The Miz, Vito, Scotty 2 Hotty, William Regal, Dave Taylor, Jimmy Wang Yang, Jamie Noble, Sho Funaki, Balls Mahoney, Stevie Richards, Little Guido, Cunt Bob Holly and Snitsky. Phew!)

The opening contest, as Lillian and her plunging neckline tell us, is for a contract to allow the winner to have a championship match at any time.

First down is Jeff Hardy, first appearance in five years. He hardly gets halfway down the ramp before Booker T comes down with his King gimmick and his mental wife Sharmell. What a guy. Thankfully, she does not hail him.

Fucking Finlay is next, shaming all Irish people with his bollocks.

CM Punk comes down with his electric guitar entrance. No Cult of Personality to be heard.

Kennedy! Fuck right off. The camera can’t have him at all. His mic actually falls from the roof. That’s quite cool, actually.

Ooooooh yeaaaah! It’s fat Matt Hardy. Jeff! Matt! Hardys! Hardyz! Team Extreme! Same match!

What? Randy Orton! Hey! There’s nothing in my way! Nothing gonna change what you done to me! Brilliant. It’s a great matchup already.

The other member of Rated-RKO turns up. Big Edgey. Down he comes, face on him. He’s desperate to kick the shite out of everyone tonight. The announcers put over tag team dissension.

Money in the Bank Ladder Match: Mr Kennedy def. CM Punk, Randy Orton, Finlay, Matt Hardy, Jeff Hardy and King Booker (w/ Queen Sharmell) via ascension to the heavens in 19:10.

Referees on the outside. All the men stare at the ceiling and then leave the ring. Kennedy and Randy pair off. Finlay takes his damn time, goes top rope and has a bowling ball spot, knocking everyone off. Edge gets a ladder, sets it up mid-ring and Matt pulls him down from it. Randy and Finlay take their place, punching atop the ladder until it falls over. Jeff goes up, damn near gets the briefcase until Kennedy takes him down. Outside, Booker goes for a ladder and finds a tiny stepladder. It is used by CM Punk as a weapon until Edge tosses it at his face and busts him wide open. Blood already.

The ladder is set up against the barricade like a bridge and CM Punk reverses a suplex to avoid being put through it. Booker cleans house in the ring and does a spinneroony before the Hardys knock him down. Matt hits a Side Effect on Edge and set up the ladder in a repeat of the Joey Mercury spot that opened it up but escapes and suplexes Matt onto it instead.

It’s Kennedy’s turn to be in the ring and sets Matt up for the Kenton bomb, bopping the back of his head off the edge of the ladder. Jeff hits the Swanton and both Hardys use the ladder to clear house. They both climb the ladder and fight each other on top. Finlay tosses the ladder over and batters everyone, clearing the house and lifting up the ladder before Edge spear him followed by Randy, Booker, Finlay, Matt, Jeff and attempts to spear CM Punk but he leapfrogs. Then we have a Three Stooges spot with CM Punk putting the ladder on his head and knocking the shit out of everyone.

Edge is alone and getting big boos when he leaves to get the biggest ladder. The announcers make penis jokes.

Edge lifts up the ladder and sets it near the briefcase. Randy is up and pushes the ladder – and Edge! – over, out onto the concrete. Jeff knocks Randy down, sets the ladder up and moves the ladder about. Matt sets up Edge on the ladder-bridge and Jeff decides not to climb the ladder to get the briefcase (it’s miles away anyways) and hits a dumb leg drop onto Edge. Lots of time spent focussing on these two men. Edge looks legit hurt and Matt looks worried.

Randy RKOs Matt then Finlay and Kennedy. He sets up a ladder – very small ladder – and slowly ascends it. CM Punk is up, hits Orton and sets the two ladders next to each other. Both men climb the ladders and the video cuts to Edge being “eliminated” by being sent out on a stretcher. Randy and Punk have a lovely RKO off the top rope but Randy is up to beat on Booker and sets up another RKO but booker reverses into a Book End and goes back up the ladder. Matt Hardy enters and so does Sharmell. He threatens to give the Twist of Fate to Booker’s wife if he doesn’t descend the ladder. Booker, to his credit, does, and gets a Twist of Fate for his effort. Finlay comes in, lifts the ladder, sending Matt flying. Finlay is bust open. He gives Matt the Celtic Cross on the ladder and sells it like it hurt him. It did not.

Finlay is bust badly, having difficulty getting up. And then Hornswoggle comes in. Oh God. He goes up the ladder himself to help Finlay. He’s nearly there and Kennedy is in, up the ladder and shouting at Hornswoggle. Little Bastard slaps Kennedy and gives him a lovely rolling senton from the ladder. Finlay throws the ladder straight at Kennedy’s face. Finlay is climbing, inches away when Punk dropkicks the ladder and sends him off. Punk sets up the ladder, he could win this, there are no others in the ring… until Kennedy comes in and the pair exchange blows. Punk kicks Kennedy and the blonde bastard picks up a ladder, throws it, repositions the ladder mid-ring and gets the briefcase to win the Money in the Bank in 19:10.

2017 comments:

Good opener. High-octane, lovely spots, setting the scene and getting a little blood in already. Only downside is that not everyone in the match was equally used, especially Finlay (apart from the end), Punk (who seemed to just fill in when no one was available), Edge (in, out, shake it all about) and Jeff Hardy (who did one spot and left).

2007 comments:

Fucking Kennedy. Why did it have to be Kennedy?

Grade: B

Kennedy runs out of the ring and up the aisle, away from the ring, happy to be shot of the place. Some great replays of the last few minutes. Hornswoggle took a great hot on the ribs, boy.

Cut to the theatrical release of The Condemned with Stone Cold Steve Austin. The release was basically like a wrasslin’ match. Lots of cheering and that.

Backstage, Todd Grisham is speaking to Mr. Kennedy, who is inspecting his briefcase as if to ask, “How does this open?” and, “Where are the sweets? I was promised that sweets would be inside.”

Oh, Kennedy,

He interrupts Todd, congratulates himself and sends a message to the lads in the back with gold because Kennedy has a contract to kill any of them… with a referee and ring permitting, of course. He is, after all, Mr. Money in the Bank… Bank.

Cut to Baby Batista promo where our boy Dave talks about his childhood. Is it legit? Is it kayfabe? We may never know. He says he has a focus – wrasslin’ – and it’s his passion. That and going to space.

It’s time for the piss break match as Khali enters to a silence. Fuck off. You’re no good and you’re pushed to be better than Taker. Nonsense. He’s fighting Kane and not even Jobber to the Stars can help this nonsense.

Big pyro and down he comes, walking with a purpose and big chubby belly on him. He gets into the ring, smiles creepily and the bell rings.

The Great Khali def. Kane via pin in 5:31.

Khali pushes Kane to the ground and the Big Red Machine sells it like a shotgun blast. Kane boots him in the nuts, runs the ropes and Khali says no. Chop attempts from the Punjabi Playboy and Kane goes flying. Kane gives Khali a wee guillotine, gets a clothesline for his efforts. JR and King are trying to put over this match and failing. Khali hits the Vulcan Nerve Pinch and Kane fights to his feet. The crowd are dead. No interaction with them. Khali has Kane in the corner and chokes him for a bit. Kane fights back, gives Khali big right hands and is tossed back. Kane goes top rope, attempts a clothesline and a boot. Khali gets stuck in the ropes, tied up like Andre. Kane goes under the ring, gets a hook and chain – like the ones used in See No Evil! – and it hooks onto the ropes. Khali rips off the turnbuckle pad and Kane uses the chain to hit the low blow. Big body slam from Kane and there’s a huge pop! WrestleMania 3 callback! Andre! Hogan! Kane! Khali! Kane and Khali shake chokes for a bit until Khali chokeslams Kane, puts a foot on his chest and gets the pin in 5:31.

2017 comments:

I love Kane and this was guff. Other than the body slam and the pop, this was a waste of time.

2007 comments:

Oh Kane, how far have you fallen?

Grade: F

Khali chokes Kane, gets some extra heat and leaves.

On the Card will return on April 8 2017 with the second part of WrestleMania 23.

Ruthless Aggression #14. Royal Rumble (Jan 28, 2007) Part 1

Ruthless Aggression #14: Royal Rumble – January 28, 2007.

The Ruthless Aggression Era was a time when the WWE roster was so huge and so varied that they had no way of continuing storylines each week on their two main shows – RAW and Smackdown – and so they created the draft where wrestlers and announcers would be drafted onto either one of the two shows. Smackdown wrestlers would not (usually) be able to appear on Raw or interact with Raw wrestlers and vice versa.

Ten years ago, on January 28, 2007, twentieth Royal Rumble aired. It was a WWE PPV with superstars from its Raw, Smackdown and ECW brands, the first of its kind since Survivor Series in November 2006. Personally, the PPV came at a time where I had grown weary with professional wrestling, confused by the sheer number of wrestlers and unwilling to spend so much time per week watching hours of footage and trawling through shows, replays, promos and matches. I simply watched the PPVs. Over the next four weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after a decade as well as my original thoughts as a younger man watching it at the time.

Royal Rumble 2007

No tagline this time either, though the poster did show lots of WWE superstars photoshopped in doing all their different finishing manoeuvres and hulking up for the camera.

The opening shows a bit of a flashback of the last twenty years of Rumbles, with big winners like Rock, Stone Cold, Shawn Michaels and Trrrrriple H. The announcers remind us that the winner of the Rumble goes to headline Wrasslemania. We see all the competitors having a bit of a fight. Kennedy vs Batista is involved, as well as… Bobby Lashley vs. Test? In what universe would anyone want to watch that? And Cena vs. Umaga for a Last Man Standing match? Didn’t Cena just beat Umaga at New Year’s Revolution? Where could this feud possibly go from here? And who cares? Oh, we saw Umaga beatdown Cena with the help of two other men. So that’s why it’s happening, because Umaga mercilessly hit Cena when he was down.

(Note: Before the PPV began, there was a dark match featuring JTG (with his Cryme Tyme ally, Shad Gaspard defeat Lance Cade (who was with his partner, Trevor Murdoch). Very exciting.)

Bad CGI’d road to show that it is the Road to Wrasslemania. Big pyro goes off and the arena fills with smoke and signs. Jumpin’ Jim Ross and Jerry “The King” Lawler invite us to the AT&T Centre in San Antonio, Texas. Ten years previous, the Royal Rumble was in the Alamodome for Rumble ’96 (and they will return there this year – tomorrow night, in fact – for the Royal Rumble 2017. We have 13,500 people in attendance tonight (less than the 16,000 the year previous) and 491,000 PPV buys at home (less than the 550,000 the year previous). Jerry can’t wait but I can because Moustache Michael Cole and Cunt JBL are infroduced as the announcers for Smackdown and Tazz and Joey Styles announce for ECW. Tazz says, “Notwithstanding that,” and wears sunglasses inside because he is an idiot. We don’t get introduced to any foreign announcers because fuck ‘em.

The red carpet! The fur coats! The exposed cleavage! It’s MNM, showing Joey Mercury’s face from the attack at Armageddon, back in December 2006. Melina enters and shows her bottom. They reshow the attack that bust open Joey’s face in super sexy slow motion and-

Wait. Is Joey wearing a tongue piercing? You idiot! Keep all the things that can hurt your face away from your face!

Matt and Jeff enter and we see that Johnny Nitro took down Matt Hardy after he won a match against Joey. Absolute bastards, the lot of them. JR tells us that this match is unique because Matt and Joey are on Smackdown while Jeff and Johnny are on Raw so this is an inter-brand tag team match.

The Hardy Boyz def MNM (w/ Melina) via pin in 15:27.

No titles on the line here and both teams aren’t even in the ring before the bell goes. Woah woah woah, WWE, calm the beans, brother. The crowd bay for the Hardys and Matt and Joey attempt to enter but Johnny jumps in first before tagging in Joey. Matt apparently dislocated his jaw back at the attack on Smackdown, which is dumb of him to come into the ring then, huh? But then again, the Hardys aren’t the smartest boys. MNM work over Matt for a bit but he takes over for a second and tags in Jeffrey who does a little dropkick and attempts a pin from it. Joey knocks him into the corner and Johnny tags in. Jeff does an atomic drop followed by a double leg drop and attempts another pin. Calm down. Jeff tags in Matt.

Double clothesline and JR gets Jeff and Matt mixed up. Matt hits a lovely suplex to Joey and Johnny gets his head bounced off the turnbuckle followed by a swinging neckbreaker from Matthew. Johnny escapes, punches Matt who sells the jaw and tags in Joey. Joey looks great in that mask, better than normal anyways. Joey punches Matt, hurts his hand, tags himself out and Johnny works over Matt with weak and safe offence. Johnny attempts the pin and gets only a two. Johnny and Matt have a chat for a moment as we see a replay of Joey kicking Matt in the head. Joey is tagged back in and hit a double knee-shot as Melina screeches. Another pin attempt, another fail followed by a second of each. Joey beats mercilessly on Matt and follows it up with a clothesline that Joey sells as Matt’s jaw actually hurt him. I like that. Chinlock city for a while. Melina is squinting and needs glasses.

Mercury goes for a Bret’s rope elbow but fails and Jeff jumps in as Nitro follows and the pace speeds up. Hardy hits a lovely top-rope Whisper in the Wind and Joey breaks it up. Matt pops in, hitting a lovely suplex on Joey and a double suplex on Johnny. Both men go for the stereo top-rope attack with Johnny lifting his knees to foil Jeff’s splash, but takes Matt’s leg drop on the throat. Joey is tagged in and Jeff is hurt. A pin attempt fails mid-ring as Joey elbows him and JR gets Nitro and Mercury mixed up! C’mon, bro, get your names right!

Nitro and Jeff are in now, and Joey is tagged in as they do a double leg drop on Jeff. Melina tries to get them going and the crowd chant to raise Jeff to his knees and he goes for a lovely inside cradle, getting only a two but Mercury is angry about it and you wouldn’t like him when he’s angry. MNM hit the double gut-buster and Matt jumps in for some reason. Nitro and Jeff have some rest mid-ring as Johnny hits the scissors on Jeff to allow both men to relax and take some air in. The pair get into a scrum as Jeff aims for Matt, building up to the hot tag. Jeff gives Johnny a back body drop and tags Matt in but the ref doesn’t see it. MNM jump in when the ref is distracted and beat on him in their corner. JR reminds us of the rules, “Break on four, disqualified on five.”

Tag has been made but Jeff fights back, causing MNM to hit each other. Hot tag to Fat Matt who cleans house, lovely back body drop on Nitro and Matt bulldog-clotheslines the pair of them. Close pin attempt and Matt goes to Bret’s rope for a weak elbow. Two count. Jeff intervenes and the pair his Poetry in Motion twice. The second time, Nitro escapes and rolls up Matt for a close two-count. Matt hits the Side Effect, Twist of Fate on Nitro, Mercury runs Matt out but on the way through the ropes, he tags Jeff who hits the Swanton Bomb and gets the win by pin in 15:27.

2017 comments:

Once again, a fantastic curtain jerker by MNM and the Hardys.

2007 comments:

Not enough blood this time around, boys. Also, Nitro looks like Batman.

Grade: A

Cut to Teddy Long and The Coach as they pick numbers for the Rumble. Edge comes in, meets Kelly Kelly who tries to rock her way through her six lines. Edge slags her off, asking if her parents named her twice so she wouldn’t forget. Randy Orton comes in, Edge’s Rated-RKO teammate, who says he will not hesitate to toss Edge over the top rope. They draw their numbers and Edge says he will show Randy his if Randy will show Edge his. Booker T comes in and asks if they actually said that. No laughs.

Tazz and Styles introduce the next match: Test versus Bobby.

Cut to promo for the match where Test looks like every inch the Roidy Magoo that he is. He struts about with his big roidy belly and kicks people in the face for a bit and says he’s better than Lashley and RVD and all the rest. He see Lashley his arse and win a match, winning a title, though Test steals the belt because apparently that’s how championships are won in ECW. Fuck the rules, wha?

Back in the Arena, Test comes out, looking awful. C’mon, man. At least try to hide your illegal drugs. Even Jeff did a better job than that.

Bobby’s music hits and here is a man who hides his anabolics. Big pyro hits with Bobby in the middle of it. Isn’t that cute? He thinks that he’s the Undertaker. He is not. And he does a vertical jump. Christ, he thinks that he’s the Brock Lesnar too. Very cute. Big dude with an afro in the front row on the hard cam, by the way. Looks great, big man. Fair play.

ECW World Championship match: Bobby Lashley (c) def Test via pin in 7:18.

Test and Bobby lock up and go for a wee walk around the ring. Test pins bobby into the corner, slaps at him and Bobby spears him in return. Test grabs the ropes and drops Bobby, laying into him and dealing elbows in the corner. Bobby hits Test with a great T-bone suplex and follows it up with a stalling suplex, throwing Test down so hard he needs to have a wee lie down outside the ring. Tazz tells us that, “It is well documented that Test always has something underneath his sleeve,” and that “something” is “throwing Bobby into the turnbuckle from the apron.” Pin attempt and fail.

Test and Bobby have a wee sit down and Test is super gassed. He tells Bobby to shut up. Lashley is fighting to his feet and gets Test in the shoulder but Roidy Magoo fights back and stunners Bobby’s arm in response. Tazz says, “rotator cuff,” like a dope. Test works the shoulder. More sitting. Armbar City over here. Lashley finally breaks out, charges Test, gets an elbow, gives the Canuch a huge back-body drop and charges him in the corner over and over. Lashley gives Test a gorilla press but drops him because of damage to his arm. Test hits the big boot, fails to get a pin and huffs. Test lifts Lashley up for the Fireman Slam but is tossed out. Test then takes the countout to big boos, walking away from Lashley. The bell rings.

2017 comments:

Awful.

2007 comments:

Poor Test. He’s not long for this world.

Grade: D

The crowd chant “ECW!” as Bobby pulls Test back in, beats him up and raises his hands in the air. Boo, the pair of yis.

We see a replay of what caused the countout – a clothesline. Depressing. Sign Guy is there, though, so that’s nice, I suppose. Bobby is pissing with sweat.

On the Card will return on February 4 2017 with the second part of Royal Rumble 2007.

Ruthless Aggression #13: New Year’s Revolution (Jan 7 2007) Part 1

Ruthless Aggression #13: New Year’s Revolution – January 7, 2007.

The Ruthless Aggression Era was a time when the WWE roster was so huge and so varied that they had no way of continuing storylines each week on their two main shows – RAW and Smackdown – and so they created the draft where wrestlers and announcers would be drafted onto either one of the two shows. Smackdown wrestlers would not (usually) be able to appear on Raw or interact with Raw wrestlers and vice versa.

Ten years ago, on January 7, 2007, the third and final New Year’s Revolution aired. It was a RAW PPV, the first of its kind since Cyber Sunday in November 2006. Personally, the PPV came at a time where I had grown weary with professional wrestling, confused by the sheer number of wrestlers and unwilling to spend so much time per week watching hours of footage and trawling through shows, replays, promos and matches. I simply watched the PPVs. Over the next four weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after a decade as well as my original thoughts as a younger man watching it at the time.

Armageddon 2006

The Revolution Continues…

Aww yiss. The poster shows Trrrrrriple H and Shawn Michaels in period garb, dressed like the Founding Fathers. They are holding a badly photoshopped DX-claration of Independence with their signatures at the bottom and DX sprayed over it in green. The tagline suggests that their feud against Vince isn’t over.

There are fucking CGI dragons at the start! And they’re breathing right into your face! WWE Raw presents New Year’s Revolution, as a real metal dragon bursts out pyro and JR reminds us that it is 2007, but has no time to introduce himself or Jerry “The King” Lawler before the Intercontinental championship begins…

But wait, a promo hits, showing Randy Orton and Edge kicking seven shades out of DX, busting them both open. Triple H welcomes Rated-RKO to “The Other Side”, which is a bunch of comics about cows.

We cut to Umaga, destroying everyone in his path, facing John Cena later for the WWE Championship.

(Note: Before the PPV began, there was a dark match featuring Vladimir Kozlov and Eugene, Which Kozlov won. This is his second dark match in a row, one being on Armageddon 2006.)

Back in the arena, the Steel Cage has dropped and Lillian Garcia reveals the rules: the only way to win is by pinfall, submission or leaving the cage.

MNM’s music hits and out comes Johnny Nitro with Melina. The lads botch the red carpet at the start and the cameras attempt to introduce JR and Jerry, but keep knocking back to the ramp, where Nitro and Melina are walking down. Jerry mentions that Johnny Nitro’s name is up there with K-Fed. Really? He also mentions that there was a K-Fed vs. Cena match on New Year’s day, which would have been RAW Monday 1st January 2007, obviously.

Hardy’s music hits and down comes Jeff, the Intercontinental champion. What a lad. What a high, high lad. Hardy is right in the cage, jumping up to the top of the cage, sitting there and jumping down.

The match is about to begin, but we haven’t yet been introduced to our broadcast colleagues, or to the Spanish announcers. It takes place in the Kemper Memorial Arena in Kansas City, Missouri, with a total of 10,000 in attendance (the maximum attendance for the arena is actually 18,344, but that was lowered for this PPV, probably because they couldn’t sell all of the tickets) and 220,000 PPV buys at home, much less than the 294,000 from the previous year. Still, the money made from the event was more than last year with $107 million rather than the $95 million from 2006.

Steel Cage Match for the WWE Intercontinental Championship: Jeff Hardy (c) def Johnny Nitro via leaving a cage in 14:49.

The crowd bays for Hardy instantly and the two men circle each other. Hardy makes the crowd clap and Johnny starts taking control, working on Hardy’s lower back. Hardy fights back, stomping Nitro into one corner and Irish whipping him into the other. Hardy goes for a ten punch and reaches all ten before Nitro collapses. Hardy goes for the cover but Nitro escapes. Nitro then reverse-flapjacks Hardy. Melina screams as Hardy gives the facebuster suplex but Nitro replies with a springboard kick to the face. Lots of covers in this match, almost like they think that a steel cage match will end by either pinfall or submission.

Lovely lariat and mother men are on the ground. Hardy crawls toward the cage door but is dragged back by Nitro. Hardy goes to climb out and Nitro grabs him before dropkicking Hardy’s legs. Melina screams again, the loud bitch. Hardy is caught between the cage wall and the ring ropes and Nitro is really going to town on him. Nitro goes to escape, but Hardy catches him and the two men fall as Hardy dropkicks Nitro off. Hardy landed on his hip but reverses an Irish whip into a sprint up the cage wall. Nitro reverses this into a botched super backdrop where he lands on his feet before falling back. Looks a bit guff, being honest. Hardy flapjacks Nitro into the steel cage and tries to climb it.

Both men are on the top rope and Hardy Russian leg sweeps Nitro off. Hardy climbs onto the turnbuckle and Nitro climbs on Hardy to help himself up. From the top of the cage, Nitro sunset flips Hardy, turning it into a powerbomb where Jeff’s head bounces off the canvas. Johnny starts to climb and makes it to the top before Jeff is on his feet. Johnny’s legs get caught in the cage, sending him into a tree of woe, which legit looks like it really fucking hurts. I cringe just looking at it. Melina takes her belt off and whips at Jeff by the cage side. Nitro takes advantage and dropkicks Jeff. Both men down.

We have a wee lie down as one red hat jerk in the crowd jaws off to Melina. It’s real to him, dammit. Nitro goes for a lariat and Jeff turns it into a cross body before hitting the Swanton Bomb from the top rope. Jeff goes for the cover yet Nitro’s leg is on the rope. Didn’t think that rope-breaks counted in a cage match as it is no-DQ… but maybe that only works with the submissions? Jeff hits the back body drop and Nitro once again makes his way to the top of the cage. Nitro is on the edge and about to fall off when Hardy attempts a super Twist of Fate and botches it. Nitro does not know what to do and begins a climb to the top again. Jeff is crawling towards the door but Melina is blocking it. Nitro’s foot is on the door when Jeff kicks the door open, wishboning Nitro on the top of the door, allowing Hardy to leave and retain the championship in 14:49.

2016 comments:

Great curtain jerker again by these two fantastic lads, despite the fuckups.

2006 comments:

It’s rare to start a PPV with a steel cage match but I’m glad it did.

Grade: A-

Todd Grisham is backstage and speaking to Randy Orton and Edge, the World Tag Team Champions of Rated-RKO. Todd asks them why this feud with DX is so personal. Edge tells him that DX reformed to have fun and Rated-RKO formed to take them down. Randy agrees, telling Todd that Rated-RKO are fighting for their future, which is funny because Edge doesn’t have many years left in his future as he would retire four years later in 2011 after WrestleMania XXVII.

Back in the arena, Lilian introduces a special bonus match: Tag Team Turmoil! I hate TTT. It’s a shitty Royal Rumble for tags. The winner becomes number one contenders for the tag team belts.

First out is our boys, the Highlanders!

Then, the World’s Greatest Tag Team: Charlie Haas and Shelton Benjamin. Both have dragons on their backs, obviously loving the dragons here at New Year’s Revolution.

Tag Team Turmoil Match for the number one contender for the WWE Tag Team Championship: Cryme Tyme def Lance Cade and Trevor Murdock, The Highlanders, The World’s Greatest Tag Team (Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas) and Hacksaw Jim Duggan and Super Crazy via elimination in 19:03.

Hoo-boy, this is going to be… a match.

Charlie Haas and Robbie start off. Charlie is thrown into the corner and both Highlanders double suplex him before having a lovely Irish whip dodge ending with a weak drop toe hold. JR takes the time to describe the difference between the Highlanders: Rory is older and bald, Robbie is younger and hairy. Shelton Benjamin jumps over Charlie’s back to land on Rory’s arse. Shelton is tagged in and delivers a knee to Rory. A lot of green glow sticks in the crowd making the DX symbol. Rory is in a chinlock but soon fights out of it. Shelton attempts a bodyslam but Rory falls on him and the two men struggle for a moment before Robbie gets the hot tag, clearing house. Robbie gives Charlie a lovely back suplex and is aout to be thrown into the right when Charlie rolls out. As Rory gets Robbie back, Shelton sneaks up, hits a lovely superplex on Robbie and gets the pin.

The Highlanders have been eliminated by The World’s Greatest Tag Team in 5:10.

A Challenger Appears: Hacksaw Jim Duggan and Super Crazy.

Hacksaw is gassed already. He delivers mental punches to Shelton and shouts his damn “Hoooooo!” every five seconds. Hacksaw gets beat on by Charlie as the crowd bay for Super Crazy. Shelton chokes Duggan with the ring ropes and eventually he fights back, hits the tepid tag and Super Crazy is in, hitting dropkicks, snapmares and a standing moonsault, which is impressive considering his size. He goes to jump top rope but Shelton knocks him out with a punch and Charlie pins him.

Hacksaw Jim Duggan and Super Crazy have been eliminated by The World’s Greatest Tag Team in 3:57.

A Challenger Appears: Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch.

And now we see the two teams that people came to see. Cade takes over, beating on Benjamin and easily lifting up Shelton and slamming him down. Murdoch looks like a Hillbilly. Maybe that’s his gimmick. Shelton is getting beat on and Murdoch gives him the big boot over Cade’s head. Then we have a lovely rest hold. As Murdoch moves to face the hard cam. Cade gives Shelton the neckbreaker and gets only two-counts, sadly. Cade gives Murdoch a lovely Atomic-Drop-into-Leg-Drop onto Shelton Benjamin. Shelton goes for the hot tag and Haas is in, cleaning house. Murdoch hits a lovely T-Bone suplex where he doesn’t even drop. Haas goes for a submission move and Cade jumps off the top rope with an axe-handle-nothing and Murdoch pins him for the elimination.

The World’s Greatest Tag Team have been eliminated by Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch in 4:39.

A Challenger Appears: Cryme Tyme.

Yo yo yo yo! It’s Cryme Tyme! Brooklyn Brooklyn!

Shad and JTC turn up and Shad clears house before tagging in JTG, who gets thrown onto Cade. Mudoch is tagged in and JTC his knocked out of the ring. Cade calls him back in, goes for the pin, fails, and argues with the ref. Cade gives JTG another few punches and throws him against the turnbuckle. Murdoch gives JTG a bunch of chokes and another toss into the turnbuckle. Cade covers for Murdoch, who is choked by the tag ropes. Cade gives JTG a lovely punch and he goes down like a sack of spuds. Murdoch is in, taking over and punching JTG until there’s a lovely roll-up and the ref’s back is turned. Typical refs. Never watching.

Murdoch is taking over and JTG has been on the receiving end of his punishment for a while. Murdoch goes from Bret’s rope and gets countered, leading to an almost-hot tag that never comes as Cade knocks Shad off the apron. JTG escapes a double suplex and Shad is tagged in, clearing house for ten seconds before being knocked down. Shad lifts Cade up for a Samoan Drop after escaping a double team and the pain double-neckbreaker Cade for the pin in 19:03.

Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch have been eliminated by Cryme Tyme in 6:51.

Cryme Tyme are the new Number One Contenders for the Tag Team Championship!

Cryme Tyme celebrate and JR takes away from the win by saying that they had an advantage because they were the last team in the match.

On the Card will return on January 14 2017 with the second part of New Year’s Revolution 2007.

Ruthless Aggression #9. Cyber Sunday (Nov 5, 2006) Part 1

The Ruthless Aggression Era was a time when the WWE roster was so huge and so varied that they had no way of continuing storylines each week on their two main shows – RAW and Smackdown – and so they created the draft where wrestlers and announcers would be drafted onto either one of the two shows. Smackdown wrestlers would not (usually) be able to appear on Raw or interact with Raw wrestlers and vice versa.

Ten years ago, on November 5, 2006, the PPV Cyber Sunday aired. It was a Raw PPV, and the first Raw PPV since Unforgiven way back in September. Personally, the PPV came at a time where I had grown weary with professional wrestling, confused by the sheer number of wrestlers and unwilling to spend so much time per week watching hours of footage and trawling through shows, replays, promos and matches. I simply watched the PPVs. Over the next four weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after a decade as well as my original thoughts as a younger man watching it at the time.

Cyber Sunday 2006

Log On. Take Over.

Alright! Now we’re talking! Now that is a tagline worth fighting for! And the poster featured the diminutive Maria stepping into an old CRT monitor over what looks to be a keyboard without symbols. The gimmick of Cyber Sunday was that fans could vote online for different stipulations to each match, which was moderately exciting.

Let’s jump right into it. The DVD has mouse icons to select your match. Great stuff. Bit disappointed that they are pointing in the wrong direction, however, but I can let that slide today, WWE. The opening video informs us that over 10 million fans voted online during Cyber Sunday. We get to choose the partner, adversary, rules, challenger, special guest referee, which title is on the line. It ends with the line, “Come see what you’ve created!”

That’s passing the buck a little there, Mister World Wrestling Entertainment. If the card is shite, don’t blame me. I don’t even think I voted.

Raw presents WWE Cyber Sunday and the big pyro tells us that it has begun! Loads of signs out there today as Jumping Jim Ross and Jerry “The King” Lawler invite us to the US Bank Arena, Cincinnati, Ohio for the very first, most interactive PPV of all time, ever, so far. 7,000 in attendance, which is a low number, but with 228,000 PPV buys, I don’t think many people will be weeping. Jerry is actually on the laptop when JR tells us that 14.5 million people have voted. Christ alive. If only even ten percent of that number bought tickets, it would be a great day. Unfortunately, little over 1.5% seemed to buy tickets. My maths might be off on that because I’m not a huge nerd.

The camera pans to my legit favourite Spanish Announcers (I know that’s a bit of a controversial statement in this day and age, but I stand by it) Hugo Savinovich and Carlos Cabrera. If you just watch Savinovich when Cabrera is speaking, it is hilarious. He looks like a man who knows little Spanish outside of what he learnt in school and he is trying to piece what Cabrera is saying together from simple sentences… and then he just explodes with wonderful, fluent dialogue AND THEY AREN’T EVEN CUT OFF THIS TIME. PRAISE BE.

(Note: Before the PPV began, there was a dark match featuring Super Crazy and Rob Conway. It lasted about three minutes.)

First match is featuring Umaga. The crowd cannot care less. They boo, they roar, they bellow. Umaga is the “host” of the match and his “guest” is to be chosen and voted by the audience… from a list of three. So, basically, the result will never change because the challenger (or “guest”, if you prefer) will always win or always lose. This is just deciding who gets a payday and who doesn’t. It would be interesting if all three wrestlers backstage get the payday as they would have to turn up, get into gear, warm up, run over a match with Umaga and then one would do it… unless the voting was rigged and these people were told in advance whether or not to come in either because the people in charge of the voting pulled the results early or didn’t give a shit about the results and just pulled the choice from their asses. Either way, you’d be furious if you travelled for hours, sat around backstage, got suited and booted and then ended up having to go home empty handed… let’s watch and find out.

Todd Grisham and Maria are up by the Titantron to announce the results of the votes. Maria, fresh from her adventure into Cyberspace, has no idea how to dress. He tells us nearly 15 million votes were cast. Maria rocks through her lines as best she can despite her obvious brain injury. Backstage, we see the three lads up for it. We have Kane, my one-time favourite wrestler, at this moment in time just a big bald baby; Chris [REDACTED] Benoit, the US Champ, standing there and planning his eventual fall into WWE-imposed obscurity; and Sandman, who is a cunt.

They ask for a drumroll. They get one. The results are in, over 14,300,054 votes worldwide (which means the total number of votes has to have been 14,300,055) and the winner is Kane with 49%! Well done K-

Wait, what the fuck? Let me look at those results more clearly. Sandman got 28%? And [REDACTED] got 23%? What the fuck? Who wouldn’t want to see my boy, Canuck Crossface himself?

Wrestling makes no sense sometimes.

Kane does an evil wee smile and moves from backstage towards the ring. The pyro goes off as our boy, the Undertaker’s evil demon brother makes his way to the ring for some more pyro. Double pyro.

Umaga (w/ Armanda Alejandro Estrada) def. Kane via pin in 8:39.

Kane goes after Estrada on the apron and Umaga takes the time to run and attack Kane like the coward he is. Kane and Umaga smack and slap each other senseless and Kane hits a few great right hands there followed by a choke on the turnbuckle. The ref tries to break it up and Kane goes after him. Umaga headbutts Kane and JR points out that Umaga, as a Samoan, must have a very hard cranium. Good old fashioned hard-headed foreigners. Umaga hits Kane with a great belly-to-belly suplex and Kane does his brother’s sit-up but Umaga kicks him back down. As Kane is getting up, he hits a few right hands and runs the ropes only for Umaga to hit a spinning heel kick on him.

The crowd chant for Kane and he rallies, hitting the Irish whip and Big Boot but getting a facebuster for his effort. Great “Remember, Remember, the fifth of November” sign in the crowd (V for Vendetta came out earlier in the year, so I doubt we have some British history buffs in Cincinnati tonight) as JR mentioned that Umaga cannot really wrestle: “he can brawl, but can’t wrestle.” Big words, JR. Wait til the Samoan Bulldozer gets wind of that. You’re fucked. JR points out that he knows Umaga likes to hurt people and King says that Estrada likes to watch. Kinky.

Lovely body slam from Umaga and the big lad goes to Bret’s rope to hit the flying headbutt but Kane kicks out. Umaga berates the referee for not counting quickly enough. JR mentions the thickness of Umaga’s thighs and Jerry says, “ain’t seen legs like that since the Brontosaurus died out.” Umaga hits a Rikishi-like arse-attack. On the outside, Umaga attempts the Samoan Spike but Kane dodges and the thumb hits only a ringpost. Kane takes over with some lovely offence including a throw into the steel steps, neck shots, a ten-punch in the corner that goes over and above. Kane then headbutts Umaga and hits the clothesline. Umaga looks fucked and a second clothesline puts him onto the ropes but Umaga reverses an Irish whip, hits the Samoan drop and as he is celebrating, Kane sits up, gets ready for the chokeslam but Umaga rakes the eyes. Backdrop and Kane calls for… wait… is he going top-rope? You know that’s bad news. Estrada goes to push him off, but is thrown off himself. Kane goes airborne with a double-axe-handle-nothing and Umage spikes him once in mid-air and once again for the pin in 8:39.

2016 comments:

Probably one of the better Umaga matches I’ve seen. Kane has a habit of putting on average matches and his gimmick is far better than his skill as a wrestler, but he had a great match here. Good opener.

2006 comments:

How do they let the cheating manager by the ring each and every time? Don’t they ever learn?

Grade: B

Umaga celebrates by looking at the crowd and then going to Spike Kane again but he escapes before that is possible. Estrada’s hair is mental. Umaga’s winning streak is impressive considering his stupid gimmick and even worse finishing move.

Cut to the Big Show backstage. He bumps into Queen Sharmell who tells him that being the Champion of Champions isn’t the best thing… it’s keeping the status quo. She suggests that if Show’s title is on the line or Booker’s title is on the line, he and Booker should unite to ensure that it does not change hands… but if John Cena’s title is on the line… well, it’s just everybody for himself then, isn’t it? Big Show says that Sharmell is the most beautiful queen he has ever seen (and she is lovely) but he does not trust either Sharmell or Booker. He is about to copy Rock’s “take that x, shine it up real nice and stick it-“ but Sharmell walks off.

Cryme Tyme come out. Wasn’t a huge fan of Cryme Tyme because they seemed like what a white person thought black people were like, but apparently the guys, JTG and Shad Gaspard, were down with it because they were actually parodying what a white person thinks black people are like. This is very meta. I can’t really think too hard about this.

Then out comes the World’s Biggest Love Machine, Viscera and Charlie Haas. Of course, Viscera is also the world’s biggest botch machine. Wasn’t Mark “Sexual Chocolate” Henry supposed to be using this gimmick? Didn’t he get Mae Young pregnant and she gave birth to a hand? So many questions, none of them involving Big Daddy V. I always had a soft spot for Viscera.

The Highlanders are here! Jerry attempts a Scottish accent and JR uses the term “referendum”, which is due to cause tears amongst the Scots.

Droning guitar and out come Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch. There isn’t much to say about them other than the fact that they’re from Texas… maybe? They’re a cheap Smoking Gunns, that’s all I have to say.

Cut to Maria and Todd. Todd reminds us of the match that happened seconds ago and that he doesn’t even know what type of match this is going to be. Maria does. It’s a tag team match. Well done, love. She is excited, though, so excited! So excited that Todd needs to remind her how excited she is. Why is she excited? Because the options are… Fatal Four way… Tag Team Turmoil… or Texas Tornado.

What are the differences? Fatal 4-Way is an elimination match. Tag Team Turmoil is that two tag teams start and when one is defeated, another takes its place until three teams have been eliminated. Texas Tornado is a schmoz.

The results are in… 50% to a Texas Tornado. And the schmoz begins instantly.

Texas Tornado Match: Cryme Tyme def. The Highlanders, Charlie Hass and Viscera, and Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch via pin in 4:28.

And what a schmoz it is. I used to love matches like this when I were kinder because they were so hectic and it looked like an actual fight. As I grew older and wearier, however, I stopped enjoying them as much and such is the case today, I assume. Cryme Tyme and Charlie Haas/Vicera are mid-ring while Highlanders and Lance Cade/Trevor Murdoch are outside. Shad and Viscera (“Big Vis,” as JR calls him) are mid-ring and Shad rolls away from a big Senton Splash from Viscera. JTG and Shad do a strange catapult job. Cade and Murdoch roll Cryme Tyme out after a sweet neckbreaker combo and The Highlanders come in, throw each other about for a while and take over the shift.

Very fast paced as both Cade and Murdoch are removed. Stereo suicide dives to the outside from the Highlanders. Haas and JTG are in the ring. Haas boots JTG in the head and the Cryme Tymer fights back with a lovely jumping dropkick. Charlie replies with a wonderful German Suplex. Shad is in with a Big Boot and Viscera defends his teammate. Shad has him beaten until Viscera Bossman Slams him. He then gyrates mid-ring. Sexy. Viscera barges both Haas and Shad in the corner and his booted out of the ring by stereo dropkicks from The Highlanders. Cade and Murdoch are in and beat Robbie with a pair of double team moves but Cryme Tyme slither in and both pin Robbie for the win in 4:28.

2016 comments:

Spotfest as all wrestlers roll through their team-ups. Not a lot of variation here other than Highlanders and Lance/Cade with Cryme Tyme and Haas/Viscera.

2006 comments:

Match of the year if they’d only had weapons.

Grade: C

Cryme Tyme wave to JR and Jerry. Sychophants. They then jump on the announcer’s desk and try to dance with the announcers. It is embarrassing. Jerry and JR fist bump and JR points out that Jerry’s laptop is missing BECAUSE CRYME TYME STOLE IT BECAUSE RACISM.

On the Card will return on November 12th with the second part of Cyber Sunday 2006.