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Falls Count Anywhere


The Devlin Made Me Do It.
Welcome to Falls Count Anywhere! My name is Chris and Devlin is the Greatest Stuntman Who Ever Lived!

If ever there was a show that showcased the fact that a PPV was going to fail, it was SmackDown! It was so sad because they had some good stuff going leading into No Mercy, but they bungled it.

Palmer Cannon and Theodore R. Long were in the ring and said that the Six Man match that was supposed to be on RAW will be the Main Event. The Ortons came out and said they were gonna beat up the Undertaker at No Mercy and Piper later in the show. Piper came out and clocked them with a lead pipe. Not a good segment and it really did not build towards the PPV.

In a strange match set-up, Booker T pinned Orlando Jordan after Sharmell pulled Jordan’s leg out from under him when Booker was up in the Suplex. This match hurt Booker's credibility. He barely got any offense in against a guy that Benoit has been regularly destroying in less than a minute.

Ken Kennedy came out and did guest commentary for the Sylvan Grenier vs. Bob Holly match since he had to face Holly at the PPV. Kennedy was great on the mic and at one point, Holly faced off with him and pushed him down.

After the match, Kennedy announced Hardcore Holly as the loser. Kennedy is such a great talker that this segment was the only one that really had me interested in what would come out of it at No Mercy. He has a great future, especially if his work in the ring comes along as fast as I’m thinking it will. He’s a good wrestler, and if he can pick up Main Event style, he’ll be unstoppable.

The New LoD took on Paul Burchill and William Regal. This was a bad idea, as Burchill and Regal could really be something. This was bad, and the ending was MNM running in and Melina ordered a Snapshot on Christy, which was delivered. I will give Hemme credit for really trying to learn and for being willing to do what the WWE asks of her. This didn’t build any interest for me in their match at No Mercy, since the only thing I care about in that feud is that I want MNM to get the Tag Team Titles back so that they can make a run at getting their heat back.

An awkward moment
between friends.
Eddie Guerrero did an interview saying that he was Batista’s friend. It was an OK interview, and Guerrero is still way over, but it didn’t build any interest because they’ve so muddled the match and any reason for it.

The Ortons' match with Roddy Piper was pretty much what I expected. They wrestled very little and Randy was in control. A nice bit was Randy was about to give Piper the RKO, but Ace Cowboy Bob stopped him and said that he wanted to finish him off himself. The Undertaker’s call went off and the crowd popped. Piper used the distraction to pin the Cowboy. The Undertaker came on screen as a coffin was rolled out. When it was opened, they had one of those dolls that looked just like the Ortons. Not good.

There was a strange bit on the Bob Lashley vs. Simon Dean feud that worked during Bob’s match with Eddie Craven. Simon said that Lashley broke his hand, thereby taking away his power advantage, meaning that he’d have to rely on his superior conditioning. That lead him to doing a number of squats at ringside. Lashley then had Craven on his shoulders and did some squats. I loved that! A nice suplex and Simon tried to grab Lashley’s leg, but he stomped on Simon’s broken hand and hit the Dominator for the win. Nice touch segment for a match that no one cared about.

The main event six man match was pretty solid. Guerrero was on the heel side with JBL and Christian against Rey Mysterio, Batista and Chris Benoit. After they joined the match in progress, which is one thing I didn’t miss about 1980s wrestling, Christian and Benoit were going at it in the ring with Benoit in control. He went for the crossface, but Christian got out and tagged Eddie. Eddie and Benoit went at it with Eddie on top. Batista tagged in and Eddie tried a leglock and ended up having Big Dave power out of it. He Press Slammed Eddie, who appreciated the move and then tagged JBL. Batista tagged Rey and he took a hard kick when he came in.

The commercial break happened and when we came back, Christian was working over Rey with a GutBuster. Christian looks good working with Rey in a way that most guys don’t. I’m not sure what it is. Rey eventually cameback with a Bulldog and tagged in Batista, but in a strange piece of booking, Eddie pulled the rope down when JBL went for a Clothesline From Hell on Batista.

Huh? JBL was shocked at what happened and gave a look of What the Hell? At Eddie. Christian went up top, but Batista caught him and gave him a Spinebuster for the win.

To say this was utterly unsatisfying would be an understatement.

Brock Lesnar, fresh off of his win over the WWE, became the IWGP champion at the Tokyo Dome show. It was supposed to be a decent match. He’s now the Monster of New Japan, which really needs a big new star. They’ve renamed his finisher The Verdict.

I caught some of TNA and I have to say I liked what I saw. The Chris Daniels Threeway with Austin Aries and some other guy was really good. The Angel Wings got Daniels the win in a fast-paced match that was very much what TNA has that the WWE doesn’t. Some good dives and a lot of good work. I think Daniels is pushing 40 by now, which is amazing since he gives so much in every match.

The promise of a good PPV goes up in flames...
No Mercy
I’m not going to go into detail on it, since it was just so bad. They built to a stupid main event and they delivered a weird ending that makes little to no sense.

MNM lost out to LoD and Christy Hemme when Hemme came off the ropes and gave Melina the Doomsday Device. They need to rebuild MNM and fast. They have talent, they have a great manager and they went from something that was hot and a sure-fire hit to a failure because they wanted to highlight Animal after his DVD was such a hit.

They did a dumb thing with Lashley vs. Simon. Simon had said that he’d eat 20 cheeseburgers if he lost and after two long hard minutes, he got Dominated for the loss. Lashley actually lost hold of Simon the first time they tried the finish. They then did a thing where Lashley made him eat the burgers and Simon ended up puking. Lame, and not funny. The set-up was pretty good. This isn’t going to help or hurt Lashley, but they need to do something fast to make him a star.

Benoit vs. Booker vs. Orlando Jordan vs. Christian was an OK match, but it wasn’t anything special. Sharmell is basically turning heel and they’ve done too much to pull back, but it’s not working. They should really find something better to do with all of them. Benoit got the win with the Sharpshooter.

Ken Kennedy and Bob Holly had a really good match, I’d say even better than the Four-Way. Kennedy is going to be big and he’s got charisma to spare. After Kennedy hit The Steamroller, they acted like Holly had broken ribs. Very smart for once and this was the only time during the entire show that I felt like they had a clear vision of the future for any of the characters. They had Sylvan attack Holly after the match, which was weak.

JBL beat Rey Mysterio. Totally bad booking as they could be pushing Rey towards becoming a contender by over-coming the odds. Sadly, no.

The Ortons vs. Undertaker match was long, and had some moments, but really, it ended up insulting much of the audience. Randy took the Last Ride and then UT opened the casket to put Randy in. Bob sprayed him with the fire extinguisher to stop that from happening, which allowed Randy to hit the RKO. Undertaker recovered and stopped the casket lid from being shut. Undertaker and Randy ended in the casket and the lid shut. They opened the lid and Taker was set to choke slam Randy when Bob distracted him and Randy clocked Undertaker with a chair, allowing the lid to close and the Ortons to get the win. After that, they poured gasoline all over the casket and lit it on fire. No one bought that he was in there. It’s a shame they went that stupid, because this would have otherwise been an OK match.

In the fastest match of the night when it came to the style of work, Juventud, who really hasn’t been around much, beat Nunzio to win the Cruiserweight title. This match actually worked and it’s what I wish they’d do more of in the future.

The main event was lame. Eddie teased using weapons and he never did. They did a clean match and it was weak as Batista can't go in those situations. The crowd went more and more to Eddie as the match went on. They ended it with Batista getting a clean pin with a Spinebuster. Eddie had a chance to use the chair and people booed when he didn’t.

The only way they should have done this match with that ending was if RAW was going to run in, but they didn’t. Here’s my guess: they are only going to do the SmackDown! feud on RAW because they need to grow the numbers there more than on SD!, which is likely going away. They blew a big PPV here and I don’t see how they’ll rebound in the short term. Even the things they set up, like Holly vs. Sylvan, are lame. Kennedy is the one bright spot, and Lashley might end up being one too. Here’s hopin’.

The first regular RAW on USA turned out to be the return of The McMahon Show. It wasn’t a bad show overall, but they had some really weak moments.

It opened with Stephanie McMahon in the ring. She complained about Steve Austin ruining what should have been their big night and then when the cue guy was signaling to wrap it up, she went all Zsa-Zsa on him. She then slapped Lillian Garcia and pushed the cameraman down. It was not at all a bad segment, but it was just a sign of what’s important now.

I'm so ...happy.
Doink the Clown was back! Rob Conway’s new gimmick is that he wants to kill legends. It’s called Randy Orton; look into him. Doink was on the offensive for a while, but he was dropped with the Ego Trip. Conway then ran down the legends and started beating on Doink until Eugene ran out and made the save. Remember when Eugene was a hot property?

They aired a great Flair-HHH video package. I really wanna see that feud and I want it now. I never thought I’d say that about a HHH feud.

Carlito’s Cabana featured Angle and Shawn Michaels at first, jawing at each other about their match. Shawn said that Kurt didn’t care about the title because he walked at the end of regulation in the Iron Man match. Good point. Big Show came out and said he wanted the shot. Edge came out and said that he had the briefcase and the guaranteed shot and that until he took his shot, all Title Matches are frozen. Carlito pointed out that Edge didn’t run out during the SmackDown! invasion and that he did, so he should get the shot.

Of course, when you’ve got a bunch of guys talking about who’s gonna get the shot, you have to have the champ come out. Cena then busted a rap on all of them, which was really good. Nice segment and I hope they don’t just automatically put them in The Elimination Chamber.

Tajiri got beat by Chris Masters, but he got an OK match out of him. Tajiri jumped Masters during his entrance and beat him up to the ring. Tajiri controlled a lot of the match and ended up having to endure the MasterLock and tapping out.

HHH did one of his walking backstage segments. He ran into Michaels who said that H had gone too far. Then the big deal happened. HHH and John Cena faced off. They traded barbs and H said that the only reason Cena was champion is that he didn’t care about that right now. Way close to home. Cena actually came out of this looking good. Trips then took to the ring and cut a good promo on Flair, saying that he was happy when he first came, but now Flair isn’t the dirtiest player in the game, or even on the playing field. Really good promo, and H is a great talker, but he gets easily over-exposed.

Trish and Victoria had a fast match that was really enjoyable. Trish looked hot. Victoria looked hot. Trish did her backbend early, but Victoria took over on her. Trish went for the Bulldog, but Victoria turned it into one of the most brutal looking BackBreakers I’ve ever seen. It was hard to look at. Victoria controlled, and Trish did some offense that looked a little too stagey. Trish went for Stratusfaction, but Victoria jumped down into the Boston Crab in a nice spot. Trish escaped after a bit, went for the Chick Kick, but Victoria caught her leg. Trish managed to get under Victoria and bridge back into a pin kinda like a Northern Lights Suplex.

You like me! You really like me!
After the match, Ashley tried to make the save, but Victoria handed it to her, too. This led a new girl to make the save. She’s Juggtastic! She fought off Victoria and got a little reaction at the end of it all. She did a Single White Female segment where she said that she was Trish’s biggest fan and had sent hundreds of letters. They called her Mickie James, but she’s played by Alexis Laree. Good stuff.

Kurt Angle, Carlito and Edge took on Shawn Michaels, John Cena and The Big Show. This was another solid six man that moved forward with storylines. They mostly worked over Cena in the start, but he managed a tag to Michaels and he took over on Carlito, including hitting a Flying Elbow. He set-up for the Sweet Chin Music, but Angle blocked him. After a while, Michaels made a tag to The Big Show and he just ran through everyone. They did all sorts of typical spots, like the one where He has two guys ready to Double Chokeslam and he kicks the other guy. The two guys off the ropes and the Big Show clotheslines both. IT was very Andre of them booking-wise. The finish was great, as Michaels, Show, Carlito and Edge were brawling, allowing Kurt and Cena to work. Kurt got the Ankle Lock on, but Cena twisted out and put one on Kurt! Kurt then rolled around and got a pin on Cena. This was a good match and very well done and the finish made it special.

Vince McMahon hired the entire audience and then fired us. Mike Flores has already added his time with the WWE to his resume. He then complained that the announcers hadn’t done anything to save the McMahons when Steve Austin attacked. The rumors had been floating around all week that UFC’s announcer Goldberg had been hired, so we all knew that JR was going to be getting the boot. He asked the guys to apologize, and Coach did, kissing up to Vince a ton in the process. The King said that he knew what it was like to take a stunner and apologized, too. JR said that he was sorry that Linda got Stunnered. They had Steph come out and slap him and then when he called for Shane; Linda came out, turned heel, fired Ross and kicked him low. Way too much McMahon. I’m worried that this is the direction that we’re going now.

Good show, though uneven. HHH was good, the Main Event was strong and I liked the Women’s stuff.

That’s all for this week. I’ll have more for ya next!

Talk about today's column in the forums!

Chris Garcia

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