One again, I couldn't do it.
I couldn't avoid this week's Friday Night SmackDown spoilers, so I figured I might as well write about them.
This Friday's episode will be the first SmackDown show since Over the Limit, so it will be the next step as we head to No Way Out, which is already less than a month away.
The WWE is in a down period right now, and even though the last couple of pay-per-views have been good wrestling-wise, the WWE product as a whole hasn't been all that great.
But let's see if the creative team can turn that around with a sold SmackDown show tomorrow night.
Here is my SPOILER-included analysis of the May 25th edition of Friday Night SmackDown.
As always, I'll provide you guys with the full set of spoilers and then offer my thoughts on three dislikes and likes about it.
Here is the full set of SmackDown spoilers for this Friday's episode, courtesy of PWTorch.com:
- Eve came out to a nice "Hoesky" chant. She said Big Johnny won't be here tonight. She said she is making Sheamus apologize and will announce the new No. 1 contender to Sheamus's World Title. Alberto Del Rio came out and talked about how she should make him No. 1 contender. Cue up the Viper. Randy Orton came out to a huge pop (by far the biggest of the night). He said Eve should leave it to the people. Kane came out (more loud pyro) and said it should be him. Eve made a three-way match.
- Christian came out to a nice pop, and Lilian announced his opponent will be Hunico.
(1) IC champion Christian beat Hunico in a non-title match. Back and forth, good action. These two work well together. Christian won with the Killswitch and splash finish. Cody Rhodes came out as Christian stood in the ring. He cut a promo about the Intercontinental Title being his title.
(2) Darren Young & Titus O'Neil beat The Usos. Kind of a no-reason match. On the big screen before the match, they show a video of earlier where the two teams were in the back. The match wasn't bad; the Usos showed nice offense before going down to the Demolition finisher.
(3) Ryback squashed two jobbers. Ryback came out to "Goldberg" chants. He sure made people think about Wellness, too. Two-minute squash. Blah.
On the big screen, Santino and Ricardo were shown.
(4) U.S. champion Santino beat Ricardo Rodriguez in a non-title match. I was thinking I was so glad I didn't buy floor seats at this point. Santino got a huge pop. The match was quite funny—Santino went under the ring, Ricardo waited for him, Santino snuck up behind Ricardo and he won with the Cobra.
Next, Sheamus came out to apologize to a huge pop. He cut a decent promo before Vickie Guerrero interrupted and was booed heavily. Lots of "Excuse Me!" and booing. She said Sheamus has a match right now against Jack Swagger.
(5) World Hvt. champion Sheamus beat Jack Swagger in a non-title match. Sheamus and Swagger put on a great match. WWE needs to start using guys like Swagger and Ziggler in a more important role. The match went back and forth. After missed finishes, Sheamus hit the Brogue Kick for the win.
Big Show was advertised on the Titantron.
(6) Damien Sandow squashed Yoshi Tatsu. No reaction for Sandow. The match ended quickly with a Sandow Splash. The guy reminds me of Waylon Mercy.
Big Show came out, sat in the ring, and cut a promo. Lots of Cena chants.
Next was the three-way main event. Kane was out first (more pyro). Daniel Bryan attacked him and delivered several chair shots. "Yes!" chants for every shot. There were "Yes!" chants all night. Orton and Del Rio came out after a break.
(7) Alberto Del Rio beat Kane and Randy Orton in a three-way match to become No. 1 contender to the World Title. Fast-paced, a good 12 or 13 minutes and everyone hit signature moves. Kane chokeslammed Del Rio, but then Bryan got involved again. Orton RKO'ed Kane, Del Rio kicked Orton from the ring, and Del Rio stole the win to face Sheamus at No Way Out.
Jack Swagger is a favorite of mine, so I love when he's actually an important part of Raw and/or SmackDown.
He's still a glorified jobber at this point, but it's nice to see him getting his third chance to shine in just a six-day span.
Swagger performed really well in the WWE Tag Team Championship match at Over the Limit, did a good job in Raw's main event and now will apparently have a solid match against Sheamus on SmackDown.
Wrestling fans often ask me why I like Swagger so much. This is why.
The dude can flat-out work, and he can do it better than a big chunk of the WWE roster, including guys who are in a much better position on the WWE totem pole than he is.
I still think Swagger's the most underrated talent in the company, and if he keeps performing well in high-profile matches, perhaps it will lead to his first real push since early 2010.
I always complain about the WWE's lack of long-term planning, and Antonio Cesaro is already being hurt by it.
It wasn't that along that Cesaro debuted on SmackDown in a storyline with Aksana, but here we are not even two months later and he's now been completely left off of two straight SmackDowns.
Cesaro is going to appear on tonight's Superstars episode in a show-stealing match against Tyson Kidd that is getting rave reviews, but how many people are gonna actually see it?
Not nearly the amount of fans that would see it if it took place on SmackDown, that's for sure.
While I get that not everyone can appear on every SmackDown, it makes Cesaro look like a total afterthought when creative can't find so much as two minutes to get him on at least one of the last two SmackDown episodes.
I think it's clear that creative has no idea what to do with Cesaro, and it's a shame to see him get lost in the shuffle so early on.
John Laurinaitis has been at the center of a number of storylines lately, and outside of maybe John Cena, he gets more TV time than anyone in the WWE.
Yes, the 48-year-old authority figure is taking up 30 minutes, if not more, of TV time on each Raw and a big chunk of SmackDown's time as well.
I hate that the WWE feels the need to do that, but of course, I'm not even remotely surprised by it.
However, I am pretty pleased to say that Laurinaitis will make no in-person appearance on this week's SmackDown episode.
I'm sure he'll be shown about 158 times during Raw replays, but hey, I'll take what I can get.
It's nice to see the focus where it should be for a change: on the superstars.
It seems as if the WWE has one philosophy to try to get new superstars over and one philosophy only: give them squash matches.
That's how Lord Tensai started out, and up until this point, it's just about all we've seen from Brodus Clay, Ryback and Antonio Cesaro.
So, now the WWE is going to do the exact same thing for Damien Sandow, too?
It makes no sense for the WWE to try to get new superstars over by booking all of them to do the exact same thing—beat jobbers that no one cares about.
Here's a change: How about actually giving these guys storylines?
Although all these newcomers have different gimmicks, they don't really stand out from each other because all they do is squash nobodies.
We get it, these guys are going to be hard to beat. But we're not really going to take them seriously until we see them in a match with another mid-carder or even a main-eventer.
Judging by the PWTorch.com report, we're going to get some quality wrestling on tomorrow's SmackDown.
Hunico vs. Christian was apparently pretty good, so was Jack Swagger vs. Sheamus, and the main event Triple Threat match to determine the new No. 1 contender for the World Heavyweight title should be a solid match as well.
Three good matches on one SmackDown? I'm all for it.
Like many, I've always felt like SmackDown is the better show in terms of wrestling quality, so I expect to get at least two or three good matches on each episode.
While I don't think Hunico vs. Christian will go that long, the other two matches should be a lot of fun, especially given all the wrestlers involved.
SmackDown: where wrestling matters.
Kane's involvement in the feud between Daniel Bryan and CM Punk has actually been pretty well done so far because it's been fun to watch Bryan and Punk use Kane as a means of getting to each other.
The problem, though, is that Kane is becoming so involved in this feud that I fear that he's going to be thrust into it again and again...and wind up ruining it.
I don't have a problem with Kane, but his two major feuds since his return (against John Cena and Randy Orton) have been absolutely awful, and I really, really don't want to see him at the center of Punk vs. Bryan.
The rivalry between Bryan and Punk has a good enough story and great enough wrestling without Kane having to be involved.
I hope that the creative team realizes that and doesn't screw up this feud by using it as a means to transition either Punk or Bryan into a feud with Kane.
The Big Red Monster's time has passed. Let Bryan and Punk have the spotlight.