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Smackdown Recap – “Christian Vengeance”

February 21, 2014
Taped February 18, 2014
World Arena
Colorado Springs, CO

Ring
Right after the intro we are welcomed by Daniel Bryan’s music accompanied by a chorus of “Yes” chants! Lilian is in the ring so it looks like we’re starting of with a match. Nice. Cole informs us that “Yes!” is spreading to mainstream sports. Of course it is. We are also treated to Kane injuring Bryan on RAW Monday. Bryan’s shoulder is taped and he is selling it well. Swagger’s music hits and all three Real Americans step onto the stage as we get set for…

Match 1
Singles Match
Daniel Bryan vs. Jack Swagger
Swagger goes for Bryan but is met with a kick. He goes in again but Bryan backs him off with kicks to the thigh. Swagger pushes Bryan down but he gets right back up and sends Swagger down face first with a drop toe hold. Bryan applies a side headlock but Swagger gets free. Off the ropes, Bryan sends Swagger tumbling head over heels with a knee to the gut. Bryan is hurting already, but he manages to land kicks to Swagger and whips him towards the opposite corner. Swagger reverses but Bryan climbs the rope and backflips over Swagger leading to his running lariat! Bryan lands a couple of single leg dropkicks in the corner but Swagger leaves the ring before he can land a third.

Bryan staggers Swagger with a kick and goes for a dive off the apron but Swagger catches him and drops him onto the barricade! He then sends Bryan shoulder first into the barricade before tossing him from a fireman’s carry directly into the ring post. He pushes Bryan back into the ring and gets a 2 count!

Swagger continues to work over Bryan’s arm and lands a nice belly to belly suplex with the bad arm hammer locked! He does it again and gets a 2 count! He sets Bryan up on the second rope but Bryan gets out, runs across the ring, and hits a running knee! 3 count!
Result
Daniel Bryan wins via pinfall after a running knee

Match Thoughts
Okay match. Swagger dominated and hurt Bryan even more which was expected, but the out of nowhere finish didn’t do the All American American any favors going into his IC Title match Sunday at the Elimination Chamber. I would’ve preferred to see Swagger win. Still, a good match for what it had to be.

Ring
Before Bryan can celebrate Vickie and Kane hit the stage. Vickie congratulates Bryan and says he has earned another match. Against Cesaro. Right now. Kane smiles.

-Commercial-

Match 2
Singles Match
Daniel Bryan vs. Antonio Cesaro
The bell rings as we come back from the break and Cesaro rushes Bryan. He repeatedly assaults him in the corner and Bryan tries to escape to the apron to grab a break. Cesaro drives his foot into the injured arm of Bryan wedging his shoulder against the ring post. Cesaro then rams the shoulder across the post doing even more damage. Cesaro continues to focus on the arm until Bryan lands a drop toe hold which sends Cesaro face first into the corner.

Bryan fights back with some kicks to Cesaro, but Cesaro drives his knee into Bryan’s arm from the second rope to the mat! 2 count! Cesaro lands a body slam with the arm hammer locked and follows up with a double stomp. 2 count.

Cesaro slams and kicks Bryan’s arm and wrenches it as he throws him to the mat. Bryan tries a dive of the second rope but Cesaro catches him, hammer locks the arm while on his shoulder, and drives Bryan down into a shoulder breaker! 2 count!

Back on their feet, Cesaro charges Bryan but is sent to the floor as Bryan pulls down the top rope. Bryan lands a running dive that drives Cesaro into the announce table! Bryan is entering the ring when Zeb climbs the ring steps and distracts him. Cesaro takes advantage by landing a big boot that sends Bryan to the floor! Swagger now has a chair in hand and approaches a downed Bryan. The ref, Chad Patton, spots him and promptly tosses Swagger away from ringside. Zeb is complaining on the apron and Patton tosses Zeb as well. The ref is mad with power! Zeb is just mad.

-Commercial-

Cesaro is still in control and dominates Bryan in the corner. Kane is now at ringside and looks on. Cesaro sets up for a top rope superplex but is sent to the mat by a headbutt from Bryan. Bryan lets Cesaro get to his feet and leaps from the top rope with a missile dropkick! Bryan clutches his arm in pain but still gets to his feet first. He hits a series of kicks to the chest but Cesaro stops the last one and hits the Cesaro Swing! Wisely, Bryan rolls out of the ring.

Cesaro follows and rolls Bryan back in. As Cesaro approaches Bryan he is rolled up for a 2 count! Cesaro quickly reacts with a huge European uppercut! 2 count! Cesaro pummels Bryan in the corner, but Bryan explodes with a running knee to Cesaro! Kane has seen enough and enters the ring, choke slamming Daniel Bryan.
Result
Daniel Bryan wins via DQ after Kane interferes with a choke slam on Bryan

Match Thoughts
Another okay match. It was longer than the opener but just as one sided. It was really just there to injure Bryan more, but it did help Cesaro’s momentum. Cesaro is hot right now and I think he’ll have a great showing in the Chamber.

Ring
Kane gets on the mic after laying out Bryan and announces the winner of the match. He smirks and leaves. Cesaro takes advantage of the situation and gives an injured Bryan The Neutralizer.

Backstage
Renee Young has Christian in the back. He’s still sporting a bit of a shiner and says that he’s desperate. His window of opportunity is closing and he has to figure things out before Sunday. He calls the WWE Universe sloths and says they can’t do anything for him. He says he’s going to beat Sheamus tonight and win the title at the Chamber on Sunday. He’s a little upset. Renee watches as he walks off in a huff, leading us to a…

-Commercial-

Video
Back from commercial we get a commercial for the WWE Network where the Bellas explain how to download things.

Ring
Cole and JBL talk about and show some clips from the confrontation on RAW between The Shield and The Wyatt Family. Suddenly a sheep face breaks in and the Wyatt’s are here. Out of the darkness, Bray Wyatt cuts a short rocking chair promo about The Shield. How will anyone believe in The Shield when they are crawling? Cut to…

-Commercial-

Match 3
Six Man Tag Team Match
The Wyatt Family vs. Goldust & Cody Rhodes & Rey Mysterio
Harper and Rey start off the match. Harper quickly overpowers Rey, but Cody gets a blind tag and he and Rey drop Harper with a double team dropkick. Harper regains control with some powerful blows but Cody bounces off the ropes and downs Harper with a jumping clothesline. Cody goes for a cover but barely gets a 1 count. Harper drives Cody into the corner and tags Rowan.

Rowan continues the domination with powerful shots, but Cody lands a dropkick to Rowan’s leg and tags in Goldust. Goldust lands a series of punches before being sent into the corner by Rowan. Rowan charges but Goldust sidesteps and goes for a cross body. Rowan catches him and performs a fall away slam that sends Goldust into the Wyatt corner. Bray gets the tag and hits a big running clothesline. Bray drops an elbow and gets a 2 count.

Rowan is tagged back in and keeps Goldust off his feet. 2 count and Harper tags himself in. After a series of elbow drops Harper puts Goldust in a rear chin lock. Goldust gets to his feet and fights out but is floored by a big back elbow! Harper does a gator roll into a side head lock that Goldust tries to fight. Harper applies a front face lock into another gator roll and side head lock. Goldust is back to his feet but backed into the Wyatt corner again. He elbows Bray and Rowan and hits a nice sunset flip power bomb on Harper!

Both men are down and looking for a tag! Cody gets it first and enters the ring with a springboard dropkick to Harper! He lands some blows and hits a moonsault to a standing Harper for a 2 count! Cody is pushed into the ropes and Rey makes a blind tag. Harper charges Cody but is sent to the floor with a low bridge.

Rey enters the ring, bounces off the ropes, and hits a sliding splash to the floor on Harper with a momentum boost from Cody! He then performs a flying head scissors on Harper which sends him chest first into the side of the ring! Another flying head scissors in the ring sets Harper up on the second rope! Rey goes for 619 but Harper is already up and lands a big boot that folds Rey in half as he hits the mat! Devastating move! Bray gets the tag and immediately goes for the cover! 2 count! That could have been a finish!

Bray gives Rey some punches on the mat and drives him back into the corner. Rey is down as Bray tags in Rowan. A big body slam and forearm to the back from Rowan has Rey in serious trouble. Rowan picks Rey up and applies a bear hug. He swings Rey around like a rag doll (or a Wrestling Buddy as JBL calls. Nice.). With a few elbows Rey is out, but a sidewalk slam kills any hope of a comeback. 2 count!

Rowan tags Harper who punishes Rey with a series of blows. After a nice vertical suplex Bray is tagged back in. Bray sends Rey into the corner and hits a huge running avalanche! He goes for it again but Rey hits him with a drop toe hold that sends Bray into the second turnbuckle face first! Bray tags in Rowan who stops Rey from getting a tag out. As he approaches Rey n the corner though, Rey hits Rowan in the face and crawls through his legs to make the tag to Goldust!

Goldust takes control and puts Rowan to the mat with a spinebuster! Goldust hits a top rope cross body on Rowan and tosses Bray over the top rope as he tries to enter the ring! Rowan tries to take advantage of the distraction but Goldust sets him up on the second rope with a kneeling punch. 619 to Rowan! A power slam from Goldust leads to a 2 count as Harper drags Goldust to the floor from the outside!

Rey tries hurricanrana from the apron but Harper holds on to him and swings him shoulder first into the barricade! Rey is taking a beating! Cody surprises Harper with a double jump plancha from the top rope to the floor! Back in the ring, Bray Wyatt tags himself in. Goldust didn’t notice the tag and bulldogs Rowan. He continues to go after Rowan and sets him up in the corner for Shattered Dreams.

Charles Robinson is trying to let Goldust know that a tag was made but he isn’t paying attention. Goldust bounces off the ropes but Bray comes out of nowhere with a jumping back elbow! He goes upside down in the corner, hits Sister Abigail, and puns Goldust for the 3 count.
Result
The Wyatt Family wins via pinfall (Bray Wyatt on Goldust after Sister Abigail)

Match Thoughts
Good match. It was expected that The Wyatt’s would win, but that didn’t stop this match from being exciting. Good back and forth. Good speed and flying by the good guys and great power and destruction by Harper. I expected The Shield to make some noise but they didn’t. Still, good match.

Backstage
Sheamus tells Byron Saxton says he couldn’t be happier that Christian is worked up. He Brogue kicked Christian by accident last week. It will be no accident this week.

Backstage
Emma and Summer Rae, accompanied by their male counterparts, are walking in the back towards the next segment which leads us to a…

-Commercial-

Ring
Emma and Santino Marella are on their way to the ring as we emerge from the break. Renee Young announces a dance off between Emma and Summer Rae who is already in the ring.

Summer starts off the dance off with a short round with some awkward moves that look like a strange mix of ballroom and disco. She gets a mild reaction. Emma answers with the “Advanced Shopping Trolly”. She gets a good reaction.

Summer says she wasn’t ready and performs round two to Fandango’s music. Emma answers to her own music with her awkward air chop dance. Santino gets into it too and the crowd approves. JBL does not. Renee asks for audience reaction and Emma is the clear winner! Fun!

Summer tries to dump Emma out of the ring but Emma reverses and dumps Summer instead. Fandango attacks Santino and shakes his hips at Emma. She is less than impressed and pushes him over Santino for a school boy trip. He falls out of the ring and the ballroom dancers leave in an embarrassed huff. Santino can’t get his cobra to go down and he and Emma are pleased.

Video
WWE honors Ron Simmons for Black History Month.

-Commercial-

Backstage
Lana tells us that Alexander Rusev with achieve greatness by any means necessary because he knows nothing of entitlement. Will he have a Wrestlemania debut like Fandango did last year? (Yes, I know he was in the Royal Rumble, but it’s still a valid question.)

Ring
Ziggler is in the ring and Darren Young is at ringside as we get ready for…

Match 4
Singles Match (Darren Young on commentary)
Dolph Ziggler vs. Titus O’Neil
Ziggler goes behind with a waist lock which O’Neil brushes off. Ziggler doesn’t care as he wiggles his hips and flings his hair water in O’Neil’s general direction. This draws in O’Neil who is met with a kick to the knee and a beautiful dropkick. He goes for a cross body but O’Neil catches Ziggler and drops him in a rib breaker before tossing him to the side. O’Neil barks and then stalks Ziggler as he mouths off to Young at ringside.

O’Neil has Ziggler in the corner and lets him have it with an overhand chop that sends Ziggler to the mat. O’Neil mouths off to the crowd and stretches Ziggler’s right arm as Young says we will see a more driven and hungrier DM. He’s going to get turned up.

O’Neil picks up Ziggler and applies a rear chinlock. Ziggler drops down and hits a chinbreaker on O’Neil to get some space. O’Neil charges Ziggler in the corner but he misses as Ziggler sidesteps him. O’Neil misses a clothesline and Ziggler bounces off the ropes with a high cross body block! As they land Ziggler gets in a few punches to O’Neil’s head. Ziggler hits a series of punches in the corner and grounds O’Neil with a neckbreaker. He goes for the Fame-Asser but misses and O’Neil answers with a big boot.

O’Neil is about to go for Ziggler when Young grabs O’Neil’s whistle from ringside and signals for a time out. The distraction of Young standing on the announce table blowing the whistle allows Ziggler to sneak up from behind and pin O’Neil with a school boy rollup.
Result
Dolph Ziggler wins via pinfall with a school boy roll up

Match Thoughts
Not much of a match. It was too short to develop into anything but what was there was pretty good. It helped build a little interest in the Titus versus Darren match this Sunday, but not much unfortunately. Ziggler was an afterthought and he pretty much disappeared after the match with the camera focusing on Young as he continued to blow the whistle. It makes sense for the PPV, I know, but I like Ziggler too much to see him in a role like this.

-Commercial-

Did You Know?
John Cena is the #1 wish granter for Make-A-Wish with his 400th wish granted last week. That’s pretty freaking awesome.

Ring
The New Age Outlaws are in the ring as The Usos perform Siva Tau in preparation for the next match.

Match 5
Singles Match
Road Dogg (Tag Team Champ) vs. Jimmy Uso
Road Dogg looks hesitant to lock up as the match starts. Rightfully so as Jimmy quickly drives him into the corner. Jimmy break the hold and kicks at the ropes towards a distracting Billy Gunn. Dogg gives Jimmy a kick and follows up with a punch and a head to the turnbuckle. Off the ropes Dogg blocks a hip toss a a kick to the side of the head sends Jimmy to the mat. 1 count.

Dogg keeps Jimmy down with a rear chinlock and a knee in the back. After a few kicks Jimmy is backed into the corner and takes another punch. 1 count and Dogg goes back to the chinlock. Jey gets the crowd into the match as Jimmy tries to stand. He is sent back down to the mat but as Dogg bounces off the ropes Jimmy manages to land a nice samoan drop. Jimmy follows with a kick to the stomach but Dogg comes right back with a series of left jabs. He goes for the right hand punch but Jimmy reverses into a Bubba Bomb!

Jimmy sets up for a running butt slam but Dogg slips out of the ring and punches Jimmy on his way back in. He goes for a pump handle slam but Jimmy escapes and lands a super kick for the win!
Result
Jimmy Uso wins via pinfall after a super kick

Match Thoughts
Decent match. Short but pretty good. I think the fact that both Usos won in singles matches means they won’t win at the Chamber though.

Video
Next up we get a video package of the Elimination Chamber. How dangerous it is and how it works.

Ring
Sheamus’ music blares and theĀ  Celtic Warrior makes his way to the ring which leads us to a…

-Commercial-

Match 6
Singles Match
Sheamus vs. Christian
Sheamus drives Christian into the corner in a lockup and gives a clean break. They tie up again and again Sheamus drives Christian back. He gives a clean break again but calls for Christian to be aggressive. Christian goes behind into a side headlock but is floored by a shoulder block. The two men stare at each other as Sheamus lets Christian get back to his feet.

Christian gets a waist lock from behind but Sheamus powers out and hits a back elbow. Another shoulder block sends Christian to the mat and he escapes to the apron. A “Sheamus” chant starts up as the men lockup and quickly release. Christian ducks a clothesline and lands a few slaps which gets Sheamus worked up. He tosses Christian into the corner and pummels him with punches and kicks.

Out of the corner Sheamus gets Christian on his shoulder but Christian gets free and backs up to the ropes. A low bridge send Sheamus to the floor. Christian goes for a baseball slide but Sheamus gets out of the way. Christian escapes the shoulder of Sheamus again but can’t get out of a steamroller on the floor! Sheamus celebrates with a yell as we head to a…

-Commercial-

In the middle of the ring Sheamus has Christian down with a chin lock. Christian escapes and hang up Sheamus on the second rope with a drop toe hold. He hops over the ropes but his punch is blocked. Sheamus pulls Christian to the apron and tries to set him up for his series of forearms across the chest, but Christian lands a few back elbows and escapes. Outside the ring, Sheamus drives Christian back first into the barricade!

Sheamus charges Christian but is elevated into the time keepers area. Christian removes the padding from the barricade and pulls Sheamus chest first into the exposed steel a number of times! How this isn’t a disqualification I’m not sure, but regardless, Christian has taken the advantage!

Back in the ring, Christian lands a second rope dropkick to Sheamus’ left shoulder. 2 count. Christian stomps the left shoulder and Sheamus is hurting. Christian follows up by hammer locking the arm over the top rope as the ref gets to a four count. Sheamus tries to fight out of the corner but Christian stops his momentum and stomps the arm again elbow first. Sheamus is in serious pain as Christian applies a standing key lock. He drives Sheamus to the mat for a 1 count and follows up with a series of headbutts to the arm. 1 count.

Christian tries to control Sheamus’ arm but he starts a comeback with a few punches. Off the ropes, Christian kicks Sheamus in the arm. Christian sets up for the Kill Switch. Sheamus reverses into a belly to back suplex from which Christian lands on his feet. They exchange shots but Christian gets the advantage with a back elbow. He goes to the top but Sheamus grabs him and dumps him over to the mat from the top!

Sheamus gains momentum with a flurry of attacks culminating in a powerslam! 2 count! Out of corner, Christian gets a single arm tornado DDT! Close 2 count! With Sheamus on the second rope Christian hops to the outside and lands the punch he was looking for earlier. He looks like he’s going for Sheamus’ forearms to the chest but Sheamus turns the tables and lands the brutal series himself! A fireman’s carry brings Christian into the ring but he escapes to his feet and sends Sheamus into the post shoulder first! Christian performs a school boy roll up for a 2 count.

Christian goes for another second rope tornado DDT but Sheamus overpowers him and drives Christian down with an Irish Curse! He holds on and lands a second Irish Curse before retreating to the far corner. He calls for the Brogue Kick but Christian slides out of the ring. Sheamus gives chase but Christian gets back in first. He runs at Sheamus as he’s entering but Sheamus gets out of the way and lands a knee lift through the ropes! (Cole calls it a high knee, which it isn’t. Good job, you called like one move the whole match and got it wrong.)

Sheamus goes to the top rope but Christian pulls him off by the arm. Christian goes to the second rope and lands a diving European uppercut! (Cole calls it an elbow… sigh.) Christian looks like he might be looking for the Kill Switch but Sheamus quickly grabs him and lands White Noise! 3 count!
Result
Sheamus wins via pinfall after White Noise

Match Thoughts
Really good match! I like the vicious nature of Christian’s attack on Sheamus’ arm. I would’ve liked to have seen Christian win but it was a good match nonetheless!

Ring
After the match Sheamus starts to celebrate but is pushed off the ropes to the floor by Christian as the picture fades to black.

Impressions
A good show with some good wrestling. It didn’t really add much to the build up of Elimination Chamber and as the last show before the PPV I think it could have tried a little harder to pull in people that may be on the fence about buying it. Still, with the WWE Network going live the next day how much incentive is there to buy the show? I’m assuming it will be available like all of the other PPVs so why not wait a day? Anyway, this Smackdown was entertaining. It continued the momentum even though it didn’t build on it. If you had just watched RAW this week you would still have the same level of interest in Elimination Chamber as those of us that did watch Smackdown.

Match of the Night
Sheamus vs. Christian
The six man tag match was good, as every Rhodes Brothers match has been, but the emergence of the darker side of Christian this week was on better display on RAW than Smackdown. He controlled a good portion of the match and showed that he shouldn’t be overlooked as a top guy.

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