San Diego Sports Arena
San Diego, California
June 1, 2008
results thanks to pwtorch.com
-Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler introduced the show from the last arena of its size in the world without a corporate sponsor. At first glance, the set brought back bad memories of WCW Uncensored.
1 -- JEFF HARDY vs. UMAGA - Falls Count Anywhere
This is a good match to open the show. Lawler said if Umaga's circle of friends was any smaller, it'd be a dot. What a strange mind it is that remembers one-liners like that. When Lawler asked Ross what Umaga said, Ross said: "I have to brush up on my Samoan. I have a hard enough time with English." Umaga got the better of Hardy in the ring, but Hardy dove onto Umaga on the floor and went for a pin at 2:00. They brawled to the ancient looking unsponsored hockey boards. What is this, the 1970s? They worked their way to the cheesy looking "hardcore" set-up with construction aparataus and tractors. Hardy's attempt to use a construction cone backfired as it bounced off of Umaga (duh) and then Umaga kicked him in the face. If I'm in a street fight, I'm not going to pick up a flimsy piece of plastic and toss it at my foe. Umaga dove at Hardy, but Hardy moved and Umaga hit a production crate hard. Then Hardy was going to spray Umaga with a fire extinguisher, but it took Hardy a minute to figure it out so Umaga just had to stand there and breath hard. Hardy eventually did spray Umaga. Umaga swung a chair at Hardy's head in the back staircase. Hardy did a skateboarder slide down the armrail and dove onto Umaga leading to a two count. The railing had little rectangular raised bumps, probably to prevent that very thing, yet Hardy pulled it off anyway. He might be sore tomorrow for that. Umaga scored a two count after being thrown at a plastic garbage can. This is just embarrassingly bad. A lot of things about pro wrestling look really fake outside of the context of a wrestling ring. They brawled past a concession stand as fans smiled at the uncontrollable Umaga. Outside the arena, Umaga threw Hardy at the back of a truck. Hardy reversed Umaga into the door of a truck, then scored a two count. Lawler asked Ross if he can imagine what the fans all over the world are thinking watching this. I can think of a few things. Hardy knocked Umaga off of a ladder on the back of a WWE truck. He then leaped off the top of the semi and flipped mid-air "onto Umaga." Lawler asked, "Did he hit him. The ref counted to three. The camera moved in on Umaga lying back-first over Umaga. He was very slow in trying to get up.
WINNER: Jeff Hardy in 9:00.
STAR RATING: neg. * - This would have been rated lower, but the armbar slide was something new. The finish taking place totally off-camera was ultra-lame, but it fit the tone of the rest of the match.
-They went to Michael Cole and Mick Foley at ringside. They talked about the stretcher match, then went to a video filmed earlier in the day of Foley explaining how a stretcher match works. He said the stretcher can be used as a weapon, not just a traveling device. Okay feature.
-They showed Shawne Merriman sitting in the front row. When they show just one NFL player in the crowd, what it tells me is this poor guy couldn't find even one other teammate who wanted to go to the show with him.
-Mike Adamle and Tazz were shown at ringside next. Adamle, as only he can say it, uttered the following: "Not so long ago, Singapore Cane matches were a staple of the ECW. Now they become a thing of the past. But tonight we bring back the past." He called Tazz "The Tazz" again. We ever have any idea now if Adamle is in on the joke or not.
2 -- C.M. PUNK vs. CHAVO GUERRERO vs. TOMMY DREAMER vs. THE BIG SHOW vs. JOHN MORRISON
Dreamer should not wear white pants. Big Show was teamed up against by the other four. There were tall posts in each corner with canes hanging from each. All at once, Show's four opponents climbed a corner and came down with a cane. Punk and Dreamer clotheslined Show over the top rope to the floor with a cane. Tazz said he can't explain with words what that bamboo stick does to one's skin. Chavo swung at Punk, but Punk moved and Chavo hit Merriman. He stood up clutching his arm. He then asked Punk to give him the cane. Punk did. Merriman bashed Chavo with it. Punk slapped his hand in congratulations. Show threw Miz into the ringside security wall, then Morrison hit Show from behind. Show fell onto the edge of the steel steps. Back in the ring, Dreamer gave Morrison an overhead suplex using the cane as a pump handle. Dreamer lifted Punk, but Punk reversed and went for the GTS. Dreamer blocked that and applied a Texas Cloverleaf. Morrison hit Dreamer before Punk tapped. They showed a close-up of a gash on Show's face from the collision with the steps. He was slow to get up. In the ring, Punk leaped off of Morrison's back and gave Chavo a kneelift. Morrison got up and powerbombed Punk as Punk suplexed Chavo, who landed on Dreamer. Show finally stood up at ringside and looked mad. Show bashed Miz with a cane; there was a trash can full of dozens of them at ringside. He set the canes on the ring apron and then smacked everyone in the ring with them. Show finished off Dreamer with a cane shot to his head. They showed Kane laughing at the match while watching on a monitor backstage. Tazz said that sets up Show facing Kane for the ECW Title at the Night of the Champions PPV.
WINNER: Big Show in 7:00.
STAR RATING: *
-A video aired on Vince McMahon announcing on Raw last week he's giving away a million dollars. Grisham then interviewed McMahon backstage. Grisham asked about his "extraordinary announcement" on Raw last week. McMahon said it's not just him who's excited, but everywhere he goes people are asking him if it's true that he's giving a million dollars of his own money away "each and every week on Raw." He said it's true, and he's given it a name: "McMahon's Million Dollar Mania." (McMahon is starting to resemble Alec Baldwin's character on "30 Rock" these days.) McMahon told Grisham that he is not eligible. Ron Simmons walked in and said, "Damn!" That bit really has run out of steam. Now, instead of being funny, it just screams: We have no new ideas!
3 -- JOHN CENA vs. JBL -- First Blood Match
Ross said this match was JBL's idea. Lawler pointed out a fan sign that said, "JBL: Just Bleed, Loser." JBL ripped off a turnbuckle pad. Cena ripped one off, also. They started with a slugfest mid-ring. JBL got the better of it after some kicks and stomps. They brawled to the floor at 1:00 briefly, then Cena pounded on JBL's head back in the ring. The crowd booed his offense. A "Cena" chant started afterward. They brawled at ringside for several minutes. Cena showed signs of life with a comeback at 7:00 including two flying shoulder tackles. He followed with the You Can't See Me routine to a mixed crowd reaction. JBL blocked the FU attempt and dropped to the ring apron and snapped Cena's neck over the top rope. The brawl continued on the floor again, including JBL throwing the ring steps at Cena. JBL went for a DDT on the ring steps, but Cena blocked it and JBL fell back-first onto the steps. The ref checked to see if the back of his head was bleeding. Cena hit JBL with a wireless mic. He rubbed JBL's face against the steps. The ref checked for blood again. Back in the ring JBL threw Cena into the exposed turnbuckle. Cena ducked a clothesline and then rammed JBL head-first into a chair on the mat. JBL pulled a chain out from under his towel in the corner. He hit Cena in the gut. Cena coughed. Cena surprised JBL with an FU at 13:00, but kept coughing from the shot to the gut with the chain. Lawler said a couple of times Cena may be bleeding internally. JBL nailed Cena in the face with a big boot. Cena arms got caught up between the middle and top rope. JBL hit him with a bull whip, but when he moved in, Cena kicked him in the gut, broke free, and then applied an STFU with a chain wrapped around JBL's throat. JBL bled from the mouth afterward to end the match. Ross said those two won't be the same for a long, long time.
WINNER: Cena in 15:00.
STAR RATING: **3/4
-A commercial aired for the Night of Champions PPV.
-They showed Batista sitting backstage. Randy Orton walked up to him and wished him luck. He said Shawn Michaels deserves everything he dishes out for lying to him the way he did. Orton sensed hostility and asked why. He asked him if he remembered about back in the day. He said they've made it to the top and have a chance to take out Triple H and Shawn Michaels. Batista said, "I know you could care less about Shawn Michaels." (He meant "couldn't care less.") Orton proposed they get the band back together again, but this time as leaders, not followers. He said they are better than DX ever way. Orton asked, "So what do you say." Batista stared at him, then turned and walked away. He didn't exactly turn him down.
-Cole announced text voting for who would win between Michaels and Batista.
4 -- "GLAMAZON" BETH PHOENIX vs. MELINA -- I Quit Match
Glamazon walked up to Melina and backed her against the ropes. Melina surprised Glamazon with a guillotine choke. Glamazon powered out and gave Melina a backbreaker. At 3:00 Glamazon gave Melina an inverted body vice. Melina applied one submission hold after another. Melina applied an MMA-style armbar extension. The bad thing about applying all of these submission holds, especially that one, is rather than make the victim look tough, it makes the person on offense seem like they're misapplying holds because she can't get a tapout. Glamazon finally got Melina to quit with a back arching move from sitting position.
WINNER: Glamazon in 8:00.
STAR RATING: *1/2
-Backstage, Mickie James walked up to Cena who told a doc backstage he's doing fine after watching a "girl on girl submission match." Cena asked the doc for some "private time" (I guess the camera six feet from his face doesn't count.) Mickie said maybe they could practice some submissions tonight. Adamle came out of a bathroom backstage with the toilet flushing backstage. Adamle said, "When mother nature calls, you have to listen." He said they are an amazing looking couple. Adamle asked what they were doing after the show. Adamle said he's going out with an old Gladiator buddy, Gemini. He said they were heading to Tijuana. Cena said he wants to stay with Mickie and have a couple cold ones. Adamle gave him a bottle of JBL's magic potion. Cena asked Mickie if she's heard of a rear naked choke. She suggested a leg scissors.
-Michaels was picked by a 59-41 margin in by fans in text voting. A video package aired on their feud.
5 -- SHAWN MICHAELS vs. BATISTA
Batista went on early offense including a clothesline to the floor and a drop over the stretcher. Foley said Batista hates Michaels. Cole disagreed, saying it's passion. Foley said he talked to Batista earlier in the day and he sensed hatred. Michaels went on offense for a while, but he couldn't keep Batista on the stretcher. Back in the ring Batista took over. He hit a clothesline and Cole said he "turned Michaels literally inside and out." I didn't see that, but maybe I blinked. Cole's language suggested Batista was being cast as the heel here, with Batista being called "temperamental" and Michaels "courageous and gutsy." At 8:00 Michaels hit a top rope elbow on target, but sold his lower back afterward. Michaels got up and went for Sweet Chin Music. Batista sidestepped it and hit a clunky looking clothesline. He played to the crowd and received some boos. Batista lifted Michaels for a Batista Bomb over the top rope onto the stretcher. Michaels slipped out and superkicked Batista, who tumbled out of the ring and onto the stretcher. A "Ba-ti-sta" chant rang out as Michaels slowly made his way to ringside and began to drag the stretcher up the ramp. Michaels broke Batista's grip on the ring apron. Batista changed momentum by ramming the stretcher into Michaels's chin. In the ring Batista hit a spear and a Batista Bomb. Batista dragged Michaels by one arm to the stretcher. Chris Jericho showed up and began giving Michaels a pep talk, telling him he had more inside of him. Two referees ordered Jericho away. Cole said Jericho was inspiring Michaels. Michaels held onto the ring apron and dragged himself back into the ring. Batista stared at Michaels as he tried to get back on his feet. Michaels threw a weak superkick, collapsing mid-move. Batista had some words for Michaels - "I don't love you and I am not sorry" - then gave him a second Batista Bomb. Batista put Michaels on the stretcher and wheeled him toward the white line. Jericho blocked the stretcher. He told Michaels to show him what he's got. He dumped him off of the stretcher. Foley said that just gives Batista the opportunity to inflict more punishment. Batista just watched with his hands on his hips and let Jericho dump Michaels. He then grabbed part of the steel steps and slammed Michaels back-first onto them. Foley said it was overkill. Batista rolled Michaels across the white line. Foley said Batista deserves credit in that he said he'd hurt Michaels and he did.
WINNER: Batista in 18:00.
STAR RATING: ***1/4 -- Good match. The involvement of Jericho was cleverly ambiguous; was he on Michaels's side or not? Batista is showing signs of being a strong heel, and if he does turn, they're setting it up slowly and deliberately, so when it happens, fans may not like it, but they'll see what drove him to it.
-A commercial aired for "The Legacy of Stone Cold Steve Austin" on PPV available all month.
6 -- TRIPLE vs. RANDY ORTON --
Ross said tearing a quadriceps muscle ends some careers, but Triple H came back to be the best at what he does after tearing that muscle twice. Lawler pointed out that Orton beat Triple H in this type of match to win the WWE Title. They fought at ringside early. Hunter threw Orton into the announcers' table. Hunter went for a Pedigree on the table, but Orton blocked it and then DDT'd Hunter off the table onto the floor at 6:00. Orton tore up the padding at ringside. Orton went for an RKO, but Hunter instead threw Orton into the ringpost. Orton went on sustained offense back in the ring. He bashed Hunter with the (ever-popular) ring steps, then choked him with an electrical cord he grabbed from under the ring. He settled into the closest thing he come up with to resemble a headlock in this match. Then he went for an RKO, but Hunter lifted him and threw him over the top rope to the floor. Orton grabbed at his left arm after that fall. The ref nearly counted him down. Lawler wondered if he had a broken collarbone. Triple H pulled out his sledgehammer. Hunter rammed it into the side of Orton's head. He extended his arms in victory in the ring. Indeed, he won, as Orton was counted down for the full ten. Orton clutched his left collar bone afterward. Medics were down checking on him after the match. They replayed Orton's fall from a couple angles and it sure looked like it could have legitimately broken a collarbone. He took the bump after the sledgehammer shot to the head gingerly enough that he may have been protecting his collarbone. It could have been a dislocation, too. Or just great selling on everyone's part. Triple H looked concerned during his celebration, and that may have even been a premature finish to the match.
WINNER: Triple H in 14:00.
STAR RATING: *** -- Can we move on now? Please.
-After another commercial for Night of the Champions, they went back live to Orton getting up and walking around, but not moving his left arm at all. Lawler said his bone structure looks different on his back on the left than the right. Orton paced angrily and actually began to cry from the intense pain he appeared to be in. As the fans applauded him, he turned and yelled, "Shut the f--- up!" Security practically knocked over a man and a kid when Orton got in their face and they raised their arms.
-They went to Foley and Cole. Foley said he hopes Orton isn't seriously hurt as he's brought so much to WWE over the years.
[Find out what happened during tonight's WEC event on Versus featuring the highly anticipated Urijah Faber vs. Jens Pulver match at our sister site, MMATorch.com, with new site editor Jamie Penick covering the event live as it happens. MMATorch is in the midst of being amped up in June with Penick taking over as editor and adding daily news updates and coordinating our excellent group of contributors.]
7 -- UNDERTAKER vs. EDGE -- TLC Match with Undertaker's Career at Stake
Foley said Undertaker has meant so much to WWE, he dreads to think what it would be like without him. He said this isn't a case of Taker losing and leaving Smackdown, only to show up on another show. He said it's do or die. Taker controlled early with a methodical attack including the top rope walk. Taker rammed Edge with a ladder at ringside twice. At 4:00 Edge climbed the ladder. Taker yanked him down and tipped the ladder over. There were props everywhere with two stacks of ladders side-by-side at ringside and two ladders set on the top turnbuckle in opposite corners. At 6:00 Taker set up a ladder and climbed it. Edge met him at the top. Taker threw him off and onto a ladder in one corner. It flipped over and knocked into Taker. Edge knocked Taker over and he landed on the other ladder in the other corner. It felt a little contrived or overly convenient.
Taker beat up Edge at ringside, using a chair as the main weapon. When he went for a guillotine legdrop on the ring apron, Edge lifted a chair to block it. Edge then set up a ladder over the ring apron and security railing. Taker set up a powerbomb, but Edge blocked it with a low blow. Edge swung and nailed Taker in the head with a chair as soon as Taker recovered enough to stand up. Edge then placed Taker on a table at ringside and then leaped off of the announce table onto Taker. Edge set up a ladder mid-ring and climbed it.
Taker got back into the ring just in time to knock Edge to the mat. Edge quickly speared Taker. Edge went to work on Taker's knee, bashing it as it was sandwiched in the ladder. Edge worked over Taker's leg with a chair. Taker returned Edge's favor with a low blow of his own. Taker struggled to his feet and favored his right leg. Taker chokeslammed Edge off the ring apron and onto the ladder bridged at ringside. Taker then climbed a ladder in mid-ring, but Curt Hawkins and Zach Ryder charged into the ring. Foley said Taker had the match won. They stomped Taker, and then went to ringside and slid two tables into the ring. They set Taker on one table and then set another table over him. Hawkins climbed to the top rope. Taker broke free and threw Hawkins off the top rope through a table on the floor. Then he chokeslammed Ryder off the ring apron through another table. Edge had recovered enough to spear Taker off of the ring apron to the floor at 19:00. Edge climbed a ladder toward a title belt. Taker rolled back into the ring and grabbed Edge's boots. He then gave Edge a Last Ride off the ladder through table stacked tables.
Taker then climbed the ladder. He had trouble pushing up with his injured knee. Chavo Guerrero and Bam Neely ran out and knocked Taker off the ladder with force. Foley said the match should be over and we should be celebrating. Chavo and Neely swung chairs at Taker, but Taker ducked and they hit each other. Taker then gave a stiff skull shot to Neely, then swung at Chavo (who at least lifted his hands to blunt the impact). Taker then climbed the ladder, which was off-center a tad - a sign of something coming up. Neely tipped the ladder over and Taker flew off the ladder and through the four tables stacked in pairs at ringside. The crowd fell silent, as if for the first time they thought they might be watching the end of Taker's career. Edge climbed the ladder slowly in center ring as Taker showed no signed of getting up. He pulled down the title belt as Taker lie on the floor amidst table debris. Cole called it a stunning, startling moment. Foley said the impossible has happened. Foley said Undertaker has seen his last moment inside a WWE ring.
WINNER: Edge at 24:00 to win the WWE Title.
STAR RATING: **** -- Good match of that type for sure. Stunning finish.
-The crowd was almost dead silent as Taker began to make his way to his feet. They applauded when he stood up. He was quite emotional as he pulled his hair away from his face and walked toward the back. Cole said Undertaker's legacy will live on forever.