Linus Report: WWE Smackdown, 04/06/2015

Hey, it’s WWE Smackdown! It’s a bit of an odd show sometimes!

The show started with Seth Rollins coming down to the ring, alone for once. In moody lighting, he took a chair and sat in the middle of the ring and cut a talky.

Rollins talked about his heel turn, breaking up The Shield, almost a year ago to the day. He said his goal was to be the best in the business and that he was tired of sharing the spotlight with those beneath him. He re-capped the last year, ending with his title victory at Wrestlemania, and declared himself the greatest champion of all time.

He said he didn’t need the title belt to validate who he was and, while he appreciated The Authority for all they’d done for him, he didn’t need any of them to destroy Dean Ambrose. He got a bit riled, talking about his match with Ambrose at Money In The Bank, and then Ambrose appeared on the big screen.

Ambrose was standing underneath a ladder, holding the WWE World Heavyweight title. He said that Rollins either had a bad memory or was a liar, because he needed help from everyone. He said the lie he hated the most was Rollins calling himself World Champion when everyone saw Ambrose pin him at Elimination Chamber.

Ambrose said that the support Rollins had gotten from The Authority in the last year had made him weak, while he had only gotten stronger. He said he was the rightful WWE champion, and he’ll walk into Money In The Bank with the title and walk out of it still champion… or die trying.

This was a great opening. Rollins and Ambrose did good work here, with Rollins all emotional and Ambrose calm, almost reversing their usual roles. Top $hilling.

Hey, it’s The Prime Time Players! They came out for the opening match – a tag-team three-way against The Ascension and The Lucha Dragons.

This was for the number one contendership for the WWE Tag-Team titles and it mostly sucked. That wasn’t really the fault of The Ascension and The Lucha Dragons, who work well, but mostly because Titus O’Neil and Darren Young really aren’t very good.

So, of course, The Prime Time Players got the win, when O’Neil hit Viktor with a pump-handle slam. This push is apparently because O’Neil won MegaDad of the Year on some website, ahead of Vin Diesel and Stephen Amell, both of whom I’d rather see in the ring.

Backstage Renee spoke to The New Day, who had been watching on a monitor. They said that The Prime Time Players were corrupt, because all they wanted was money. They also said that Kofi Kingston would win the Money In The Bank match and Kane walked up and informed them that Kingston would face fellow Money In The Bank entrant Neville later in the show. They shouted that he deserved a rest as Kane wished them a good day.

The announcers trailed some more shitty commercials for Sonic Shakes, this time featuring The Prime Time Players, The Miz & The Big Show. Very poor.

Hey, it’s The Ryback! He came down to the ring to fight Stardust, who did not get an entrance. The Ryback won in two minutes with the Shell Shock. You missed nothing here.

Paige was shown walking down a corridor backstage. She’s out next, I guess.

Yup, after a break and after they’d shown footage from Raw of Nikki Bella beating her with Twin Magic, Paige came out to the top of the ramp to be interviewed by Backstage Renee.

Paige said it felt like nothing ever changed in the Divas division – ain’t that the truth! – and that she’s sick of The Bella Twins’ magic. She said the Bellas were holding the Divas division back, and that they were more consumed with the celebrity lifestyle than what happens in the ring. She said if you don’t like the world you live in, you have the power to change it. Paige said she’s going to have to change it. She sounded drunk the whole time.

Backstage, Luke Harper was holding Erick Rowan’s sheep mask and cut a talky on someone, saying it was time for them to pay for their sins. Rowan was also there, leering.

Hey, it’s Kevin Owens! He came down to the ring for the NXT Title Open Challenge, even though he said on last week’s NXT that he wasn’t insecure enough to do this kind of thing. Go with it.

He said that everybody knew who he was now, the guy who beat John Cena in his very first match in WWE, and that he’d do the same at Money In The Bank. He said that Cena seemed to think Owens was a kid that hung on his every word, like Owens’s own son. But Owens’s son was only a kid and didn’t know any better.

He said he realised on Raw that Cena was delusional, that he actually believes what he is saying, and that he can’t let his son be influenced by someone so out of touch with reality. He said he’d gladly step up to shut Cena up at Money In The Bank.

The recipient of the NXT Title Open Challenge was… Zack Ryder. Really? That’s what they came up with? Okay. Ryder got some offense in early but Owens powered back and won with the pop-up powerbomb in a little over a minute.

After the match, Owens cannonballed Ryder in the corner and then hit another pop-up powerbomb, just to drive home how nasty he is. I like Kevin Owens, he’s good heelin’.

Backstage Renee spoke to Sheamus, and she said that many people thought Roman Reigns – who Sheamus was facing in tonight’s main event – was the favourite for the Money In The Bank match. Sheamus said he didn’t have much else to say other than that he’d become world champion after winning Money In The Bank, and then told Renee she could “believe that”.

Hey, it’s Neville! He cut an inset promo while he made his entrance and told people not to blink or they’d miss him winning the contract at Money In The Bank. Is he The Flash now?

The New Day came out, though sadly did not cut a cheap heat promo on Houston. Then Neville and Kofi Kingston had a match, with judicious interference from Big E & Xavier Woods. Neville got the win, though, with a roll-up reversal, and hit the high spot of the match with a moonsault off the top turnbuckle onto Big E & Woods on the outside. Not a bad match, and I’d like to see these two go at it again.

They showed The Miz in the make-up chair backstage, preparing for Miz TV, which was next. The Miz was interviewing Lana, and he asked how she could desert him in his hour of need. She said that Rusev he did not respect her so he did not deserve her. The Miz accused her of dumping Rusev after he’d lost to Cena, and that it was a smart business decision.

Lana said it wasn’t business, and that she really did care for Rusev but he lost her trust. She said that if The Miz continued his line of questioning she’d either leave or slap him. He said he was just trying to get her side of the story because there are always two sides. He then introduced the other side – Rusev.

Rusev hobbled out on crutches. He called her his “dear Lana” and said he wasn’t there to start trouble. He said it was like Lana’s favourite American song – “until it’s gone, you don’t know what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone.” He said America was about second chances, which was all he was asking for. He put his crutches aside and asked Lana to be his crutch.

Lana stood up and grabbed the crutches. She told him, “I’ll show you where to put your crutch,” and then shoved them at him. Rusev exploded, calling her a “stupid woman cow!” and then ranted in Bulgarian. Dolph Ziggler came out, collected Lana from the ring, and they left together. Still with Team Rusev on this one.

Hey, it’s our main event! It’s Roman Reigns versus Sheamus! These two are both in the Money In The Bank match at the PPV, and the briefcase was suspended over the ring.

So they had a match, with Sheamus the aggressor and Reigns favouring the ribs that Mark Henry injured on Raw. Reigns got back on top and was about to hit the Superman Punch when Kane’s music played, and he came out with J&J Security.

Reigns was distracted and Sheamus got a nearfall with a roll-up, and then another with a backbreaker. He looked for the Brogue Kick but Reigns dodged and hit the Superman Punch. He was ready to hit the spear and win the match but Kane came in and kicked him for the DQ.

Kane tried to chokeslam Reigns but Reigns escaped, straight into a Brogue Kick from Sheamus. Kane then grabbed Sheamus and chokeslammed him, as J&J Security looked at him like he’d lost his mind. Kane then grabbed a mic’ and announced that the final participant in the Money In The Bank match was… Kane.

He chokeslammed Reigns and then ended the show staring up at the briefcase above the ring…

This was a Good Show. It started and ended strongly, and the Owens and MizTV segments were good. The rest was disposable but what else can you expect from a B show?

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