The April 27 edition of SmackDown was a show surprisingly not headlined by a great match or Daniel Bryan.
This week on SmackDown, the sympathy angle with John Laurinaitis harassing a sensitive Teddy Long continued.
After Laurinaitis and Eve Torres harassed Long, Aksana's music hit backstage and the typical flirting angle with the supposed couple continued. Their relationship status was at question, but Long still believed they were together.
After Long thanked Aksana for being there for him, Laurinaitis eventually interrupted and announced that Aksana's suspicious friend, Antonio Cesaro, would be wrestling in a tryout match.
When Cesaro defeated Tyson Kidd in an impressive debut, Aksana had no problem making out with Cesaro right in front of her supposed boyfriend, Teddy Long. Long broke down crying in the ring.
WWE's really executing this sympathy angle well. It's a rare occasion that I'm emotionally invested in an angle, but Long's superb acting really has me feeling sorry for him.
Obviously, Long will get his revenge somewhere down the line considering WWE's putting so much focus on this angle. I've thought of two scenarios I could envision happening:
1. Long gets some authoritative power from the Board of Directors and gets his revenge on Laurinaitis while finding another Diva to do his dirty deeds for Aksana.
2. Long screws somebody Laurinaitis is feuding with. Long then attains some authority from his new-found friend in Laurinaitis—turning heel in the process. His reasoning is that he needed to think of himself and his own well-being.
Now onto the rest of the show:
Daniel Bryan, Alberto Del Rio and Big Show had an entertaining confrontation to open the show. It actually seemed like Bryan had a lot of heat with the crowd—which is good. The whole "YES vs. SI" shtick was a nice touch.
A.J. brutally slapped her best friend Kaitlyn after Kaitlyn belittled Bryan behind his back. Obviously, WWE's establishing A.J. as someone too psycho to get over Bryan. I'm telling you, she's going to screw Sheamus this Sunday to win back Bryan.
Sheamus defeated Mark Henry in a decent match followed with Bryan smirking at the ramp. It was a good match, but a pretty underwhelming way to end the go-home show to Extreme Rules.
The Great Khali defeated Cody Rhodes. Why? I would also like to see Big Show vs. Alberto Del Rio end in something other than Cody Rhodes looking weak.
Randy Orton and Michael Cole had a pretty darn entertaining segment. Orton's absence from the title picture has been long enough; he's recharged his batteries and he could really solidify SmackDown as a top heel.
Nikki Bella beat Alicia Fox with the typical "Twin Magic" technique. Hopefully, Kharma can come back this Sunday and squash Nikki, Brie and the whole Diva roster.
I really like these Damien Sandow vignettes because I get the chance of getting to know the mute button on my remote.
The WWE production team not only produced a great promo for Randy Orton vs. Kane, but they also acquired Antonio Cesaro—former ROH Tag Team Champion—a full entrance and Titantron. Props to them.
Quote of the Week
Daniel Bryan: "Now, it's question and answer time with Daniel Bryan. Did Mark Henry beat Sheamus this past Monday? Yes! Did I make Sheamus tap out in front of the entire WWE Universe? Yes! Is Sheamus' entire world title run a fluke because of a confused and, quite frankly, not very intelligent woman? Yes! Will I regain my World Heavyweight Championship at Extreme Rules? Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes!"