John Laurinaitus returned to WWE television during Friday’s airing of Smackdown, offering to be in The Rock’s corner at WrestleMania, before falling for the old handshake trick and promptly receiving a spinebuster and People’s Elbow for this troubles.
Friday night’s Smackdown was another good program, giving us three more Money in the Bank participants and planting the seeds for another WrestleMania matchup. Here are a few quick thoughts as you get prepared for tonight’s Raw.
– Dolph Ziggler defeated John Morrison and R-Truth to claim a spot in the Money in the Bank match at WrestleMania. I’m happy to see Ziggler getting the spot instead of Morrison or Truth. Morrison doesn’t need the rub and may wind up on the ‘Mania card anyway and R-Truth is climbing the ladder on his own as well. Ziggler, on the other hand, has lost a lot of momentum since he was in line to claim the Intercontinental title last year. This will give him a chance to shine.
– Kane beat Drew McIntyre to gain a spot in the Money in the Bank contest. This one had me a little confused. I agree with not putting McIntyre in the MITB match since he’s the Intercontinental champion and they’ll perhaps book him in a title defense at the pay-per-view. But why have him end his undefeated streak at the hands of Kane? Why not let a younger star who needs the rub take down McIntyre?
I’m not as upset as most of the IWC that Kane will be in the match at ‘Mania. He is one of the better big men and big guys always add an intriguing element to the match, by either delivering or taking nice bumps. And as a veteran he deserves a spot on the card and the extra pay day that comes with it.
– Shelton Benjamin defeated CM Punk to gain the fourth spot in the Money in the Bank match after Rey Mysterio interfered and cost Punk the match. It looks like the rumored Punk v. Mysterio WrestleMania match will be happening, which is a very good thing. And how could WWE have a Money in the Bank match without Benjamin in it?
– The Miz and Edge had a good match to end the show. Hopefully Miz gets a singles match at WrestleMania if he isn’t one of the Money in the Bank entrants because he certainly deserves it. After his one-on-one match with Edge, it looks like WWE might be ready to push him.
Smackdown continues to be the wrestling show between it and Raw, providing great in-ring action with the traditional promos to put on the far superior product. Raw, on the other hand, is the “variety show” of the two. Although I can’t think of a variety show as poorly written as some of the more recent episodes of Raw.
*CM Punk is perhaps one of the best heels in the business today. His in-ring work has always been great but turning him heel was the best thing that could have ever happened to the straight-edge superstar. I could see where some would think his “holier than thou” promos are getting old, but he keeps finding new ways to make them interesting. Pouring the bottle of liquor into the garbage can was a nice touch on Smackdown and led to the inevitable when R-Truth cut the promo short and then dumped out the garbage can on Punk.
*While many think that CM Punk has taken a step back since dropping out of the World Championship scene, I think it may be a case of using him to elevate R-Truth. I think Truth’s gimmick could get old, but so far he’s won over the crowd and certainly has the ring style to become a big star.
*On that same track, Finley is one of the best there is a putting guys over, which makes him a great worker. He’s doing that right now with Drew McIntyre.
*It’s been said a thousand times but Batista is much, much better as a heel. His boring ring style fits perfectly with his heel, bully persona. As a face, he was just a boring big guy.
*I thought we’d finally see Dolph Ziggler capture the Intercontinental Title in the 2-out-of-3 falls match against John Morrison, but alas it wasn’t meant to be. That leaves me wondering where this angle is going or if it’s over all together.