WWE Smackdown was at the Giant Center in Hershey, Pennsylvania this week. The Giant Center hosted WWE Unforgiven in 2003. Smackdown begins with John Laurinaitis. On RAW this week, the WWE Board of Directors told Laurinaitis via a letter that his match versus John Cena at the Over The Limit Pay-Per-View will be one on one with no special guest referee and no one at ringside. Also the match can only end by pinfall or submission, any superstar who interferes will be fired, and Johnny will be fired if he loses. Johnny says he asked the Board of Directors to reconsider their decision and they said no. Johnny asks the crowd to say a prayer for him. Johnny takes a moment of silence and CM Punk’s music plays.

CM Punk enters the ring and talks to Johnny Laurinaitis. Punk says everyone has been praying and their prayers have been answered. CM Punk reminds Johnny of the stipulations for his Over The Limit match. CM Punk says there is going to be a party after Johnny loses to John Cena. Punk talks about Johnny forcing Big Show to beg for his job on RAW this week and Johnny belittling Teddy Long. Punk asks Johnny how it feels to be on the other end of the stick for once. Johnny says he is not there yet and he announces Punk vs. Kane for later tonight. Punk says he is not going to pretend that he is not concerned that he is facing Kane, but he is not going to ask the Board of Directors to cancel the match because CM Punk is a man. Punk respects Kane which is more than he can say for Johnny. Punk says that this time next week, Punk will still be the WWE Champion and John Laurinaitis will be in the unemployment line. That was an average CM Punk and John Laurinaitis segment. They have had better segments in the past and this one felt too similar to the one they had on RAW less than two weeks ago. After CM Punk leaves, Johnny cuts a heel promo against the fans and tells them to go to Hell. It felt like one of those in-ring promos that WWE Superstars cut during commercial breaks of WWE tapings, but it was televised. If you are watching Smackdown on DVR, just start fast-forwarding after CM Punk leaves the ring. Johnny’s promo to the crowd is something you can skip.

Smackdown shows the John Cena/Make A Wish video. I think they showed the same video on Smackdown last week and RAW this week. How many times are they going to show this video? I wonder if they are going to show it as many times as they showed the Brock Lesnar “I’m an asskicker” video.

Kofi Kingston and R-Truth vs. Darren Young and Titus O’Neil

R-Truth won this match after hitting Darren Young with the Little Jimmy. This match was only three minutes, but they did a lot in those three minutes. Good match. I hope the loss doesn’t hurt Darren Young and Titus O’Neil. I would like to see them compete for the tag team titles in the near future.

Winners: Kofi Kingston and R-Truth

Rating: **

Smackdown showed a B.A. Star video. After the video, Zack Ryder is backstage and Damien Sandow walks past him on his way to the ring.

Before his match, Damien Sandow cuts a promo with Yoshi Tatsu in the ring. Damien talks about enlightenment and calls Yoshi an unworthy opponent. Damien walks away from the ring and Yoshi picks up a microphone. Yoshi says Damien is a chicken. Damien takes off his robe and runs into the ring. Damien hits Yoshi from behind and starts attacking Yoshi. The referee tells Damien that this isn’t a match. Damien leaves the ring and there is no official match.

In the locker room, Matt Striker interviews Randy Orton and Sheamus. Orton and Sheamus talk about their World Heavyweight Championship match at Over The Limit.

Zack Ryder vs. Daniel Bryan

Zack Ryder won with the Yes Lock. The match was less than three minutes long, but I enjoyed the match. Daniel Bryan rarely has a bad match and Zack Ryder is a good opponent for him.

Winner: Daniel Bryan

Rating: **         

After the match, Daniel Bryan joins the announcers at the announce table. Kane vs. CM Punk is the next match.

Kane vs.CM Punk

Kane won this match via disqualification after Daniel Bryan hit Kane with a chair. Kane thought CM Punk hit him with the chair so Kane attacked CM Punk after the match. This was a very good match. I liked the story of this match. Kane was getting in a lot of offense for most of the match and CM Punk had to work very hard to stay in the match. CM Punk is one of the best in the WWE at selling injuries and having a match that looks real. Kane is supposed to be a monster who can destroy anyone including the WWE Champion and CM Punk did a good job making Kane look like the monster he is. The DQ finish makes sense, but it would have been interesting to see who would have won the match. This would have been a good PPV mid-card match and Daniel Bryan’s commentary made the match more enjoyable. If CM Punk can have a very good match with Kane, he should have a great match with Daniel Bryan at Over The Limit.

Winner: Kane

Rating: ***1/2

Santino Marella vs. Cody Rhodes

Santino won with the Cobra. This match was only two minutes, but I enjoyed some of the spots in this match. I would have liked to see a longer match, but it wasn’t a bad match. It’s hard to have a good match in only two minutes and they did the best they could.

Winner: Santino

Rating: *3/4

Smackdown shows John Laurinaitis firing Big Show on RAW last Monday night. It is the entire ten minute RAW segment so you can skip it if you watched all of RAW this week. I had not seen it yet and I thought it was a good segment. Why did it take so long for Big Show to get on his knees? If he really cared about his job, Big Show should have been willing to do anything Johnny asked him to do and getting on his knees doesn’t sound that bad. Johnny could have thought of something more embarrassing than Big Show getting on his knees, but I guess his options were limited on a TV-PG show.

Randy Orton vs. Sheamus

Sheamus won this match by avoiding the RKO and executing a roll-up pin on Orton. This was a good match that had over 15 minutes of televised wrestling, but it wasn’t as good as I was expecting. It was a back-and-forth match with neither man taking full control of the match, but the match was a little bit too slow. I think this match would have been a lot more interesting if the World Heavyweight Championship was on the line. It wasn’t a great match, but good enough to convince me that the World Heavyweight Championship match at Over The Limit should be worth watching.

Winner: Sheamus

Rating: ***

After the match, Orton shook Sheamus’s hand and then hit him with the RKO. Smackdown ends with Orton standing over Sheamus’s unconscious body.

Matches to Watch: Kofi Kingston and R-Truth vs. Darren Young and Titus O’Neil, Daniel Bryan vs. Zack Ryder, CM Punk vs. Kane, Santino vs. Cody Rhodes, Randy Orton vs. Sheamus

Matches to Skip: NONE

Best Superstar of Smackdown: CM Punk

CM Punk had a great performance during his match on Smackdown. Punk should be on Smackdown more often.

Best Moment of Smackdown: CM Punk vs. Kane

I think no one told CM Punk and Kane that Smackdown is the “B” show of the WWE because they delivered PPV quality performances during their match. The fans at home were given a very good match for free.

I thought this was a good Smackdown. There wasn’t much focus on the storylines (where was AJ?), but Smackdown is supposed to have more wrestling than storytelling. The wrestling on this show was good. There were two good matches . The other three matches were too short, but those matches were still enjoyable. There were no matches this week that I would encourage fans to avoid. I don’t think it was a great Smackdown, but it was very good and I wish every Smackdown was as enjoyable as this week’s Smackdown.

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