WWE SmackDown Rebound: That Which Does Not Kill You...

Ron JohnsonSenior Writer IJanuary 17, 2009

I don't know what the story is with the WWE pushing Jeff Hardy the way they have been as of late. But since Survivor Series, Hardy has been in constant accidents. Is there a hit out on the WWE Champion? You be the judge.

Here's the recap of last night's SmackDown.

SmackDown opens with a quick look at the Hit and Run Accident involving WWE Champion Jeff Hardy and his girlfriend Beth. As the show goes live, it is confirmed that tonight’s Cutting Edge will have special guest Jeff Hardy.

SmackDown GM Vickie Guerrero comes out to demand disrespect and shows what happens if she doesn’t get respect. She shows the footage of last week’s Triple Jeopardy Matches involving Triple H. Vickie continues to gloat about her actions and insult The Game. But as she continues to laugh about her actions, guess who comes down to confront his illustrious GM?

Triple H comes out and apologizes to Vickie about his part in the actions. He then manages to get his hands on the nude photos that were once owned by The Great Khali and Joey Styles. She accepts the apology, but then she puts him in a Royal Rumble Match involving The Big Show in a Last Man Standing Match…and if he loses, he’s out of The Rumble.

So after getting screwed again, Triple H decides that he’ll get even…by putting the photos on the SmackTron. So her best way of getting even is putting Big Show against MVP…but if MVP loses to Big Show, Triple H is out of The Royal Rumble. And also, he’s banned from ringside during this match.


First Bout: Jack Swagger & Mark Henry vs. Finlay & Matt Hardy

In case you didn’t know yet, Teddy Long wasted no time in granting Hardy a rematch with Swagger. So at The Royal Rumble, Hardy and Swagger will battle once again for the ECW Championship. All four men get their chances in the ring, but Swagger and Henry seem to have control despite not having the best communication in the world.

Henry and Swagger manage to isolate Finlay from his partner. Swagger has control until a missed splash allows Finlay to tag in the former ECW Champion. Hardy comes with fire until Tony Atlas tosses in Hornswoggle. As the ref gets Horns out of there, Henry nails a clothesline on Hardy, Finlay drops the shillelagh on Henry, Swagger nails the big boot, but Hardy recovers and nails the Twist of Fate to hand Swagger his first pinfall loss.

In the back, La Familia is making their plans for tonight’s Big Show-MVP match. Big Show tells Edge that he intends to win the Rumble, go to Wrestlemania…and maybe knock Edge out in Houston. Also, R-Truth gets confronted by Brian Kendrick and Ezekial Jackson about his laid back attitude.

Then Josh Grisham interviews Michelle McCool about her actions over the past few weeks. As McCool brags about herself, Victoria tells her that she can’t bully her like she does the younger girls on SmackDown…and she’ll find out why tonight.


Second Bout: R-Truth vs. The Brian Kendrick w/Ezekial Jackson

Truth has control to start the match, but Kendrick doesn’t take long to use a distraction to get control of the match. Kendrick locks in a Single Leg Boston Crab, but switches to a Camel Clutch to try to get the submission. But R-Truth battles back with a Power Slam and the Spinning Elbow. Truth hits the Truth Kick to win the match, but Zeke comes in afterwards and hits Zeke Bomb.

A smiling Kendrick walks away, but it’s only a matter of time before Zeke goes solo. In the back, MVP says that he hopes to end his streak tonight, while Triple H gives him a little incentive to get the victory tonight…Win or my special friend will make you famous.


Third Bout: MVP vs. Big Show (Last Man Standing Match- If MVP loses, Triple H is out of The Rumble)

MVP starts off the physicality by sprinting down and slamming a steel chair on Big Show before he even gets to the ring. He has control until Big Show starts shaking off the cobwebs. Porter gets flat out overpowered for the duration of the match. Big Show takes control on the outside, and MVP does his best to keep away from the World’s Largest Athlete.

But the tide turns quickly as Big Show runs into the steel steps, and MVP dropkicks him into the steel post. Big Show recovers and delivers a vicious chop to send MVP off the apron and to the ground. Back in the ring, Big show continues the punishment with another vicious chop and a clothesline that almost takes his head off. As MVP tries to fight back, Big Show just picks him up and launches him to the other side of the ring.

But MVP continues to fight back and locks in a sleeper hold on the Big Show, but BS manages to fight out of it and launches MVP over the top rope. But MVP is shocked by MVP continuing to get up. MVP slaps the Big Show, and Big Show comes back and suplexes MVP on the entrance way. The fight continues at the entrance way with Show tossing him on the ramp.

As Show prepares to choke slam MVP, Triple H comes out and nails Show with a sledgehammer and implores Porter to get up. And after months of coming up on the short end of the stick, MVP can officially hear these words: “The winner of the match…Montel Vontavious Porter, MVP!” Porter gets the win (thanks to Triple H’s special friend) and secures The Game’s spot in the Royal Rumble. Even better for Porter, he finally gets a victory…and it couldn’t have been against a bigger athlete.


Intermission: The Deadman’s Edict

The Undertaker talks about the Royal Rumble, and says that there will be a dark reckoning to anyone who gets in the way of his destiny to be at Wrestlemania. He goes on to say that their suffering will be infinite and he intends to bury them all at The Royal Rumble. It’s clear that the Immortal Phenom intends to win his second Rumble match and go on to Wrestlemania to fight for the gold.


Fourth Bout: Victoria vs. Michelle McCool (Victoria’s Final WWE Match)

Victoria goes on the assault following a slap from McCool. She continues the pressure in the corner with a series of shoulder shots and a standing moonsault. But Michelle starts to fight back on the outside, only to get caught on the top rope and in a superplex.

Unfortunately, Victoria misses the flying moonsault off the top rope and gets dropkicked by Michelle. McCool goes on the assault and focuses her attention on Victoria’s left knee. She then locks in a single leg Boston Crab, but Victoria begins to fight back until she gets caught in The Coolness Leg Lock. Victoria starts fighting back with a series of shots, but McCool delivers The Fatebreaker to pick up the win in Victoria’s final match with the WWE.

In the back, Vickie gloats about Triple H being out of the Royal Rumble, but Triple H quickly corrects her that he was at the stage and nowhere near ringside, which Vickie said he was banned from. So to save face, Vickie puts him in a match next week against Vladimir Kozlov.


Intermission: The First Inductee of the WWE Hall of Fame Class of 2009 Announced

In case you missed it on Monday night, RAW had the honor of announcing the first man to be inducted in the 2009 WWE Hall of Fame in April, the night before Wrestlemania. And in case you missed it, JR had no problem showing how jubilant he was about the announcement that one of his best friends would finally get what he deserves.

Having said that, allow me to announce the first member of the WWE Hall of Fame Class of 2009: STONE COLD STEVE AUSTIN!!

As Tazz and JR give the rundown of the card for this year’s Royal Rumble, Edge makes his way down for The Cutting Edge and his special guest: WWE Champion Jeff Hardy. Before Edge takes center stage, Vladimir Kozlov says that Triple H is not even close to competition and that he will still be undefeated heading into The Royal Rumble.


Conclusion: The Cutting Edge with WWE Champion Jeff Hardy

Edge comes out and says that he has tried to stay focus on his ultimate goal: To regain the WWE Championship at The Royal Rumble. He then says that he’s happy that Jeff and Beth are okay…because his moment of glory at The Rumble will not be taken away from him. He goes even further to make a movie-like preview of Jeff Hardy’s run from Armageddon to right now.

With that, the WWE Champion makes his way out to the ring to confront his Royal Rumble opponent, but a miscue with the fireworks sends a huge flame into the face of Hardy. Hardy jerks his head back as sparks fly directly into his face followed by huge ball of fire that sends him to the ground holding his face in pain.

As several of Hardy’s friends come out to his aid, Vickie Guerrero comes to the entranceway to find out the status of the WWE Champion.