By NICK TYLWALK AND DALE PLUMMER
Eight months ago at the Royal Rumble WWE sacrificed Edge’s title run to keep the Cena-Triple H match-up intact for Wrestlemania. Will history repeat itself? Or will Edge finally put the “interim champion” tag behind him? We found out Sunday night as the 19th annual SummerSlam emanated from Boston, Mass.
Edge complained about the deck being stacked against him at the Royal Rumble, but tonight’s match was even less kind to the champion. Not only was Cena in his backyard, but the stipulation was also in the challenger’s favor: if Edge was disqualified, he would still lose the WWE Title. As it turned out, the unusual stipulation did come into play in the midst of a head-scratching conclusion.
Early on Edge nearly ran into the ref. Cena did run into a spinning heel kick, but came back with a suplex to Edge. The champion dodged a cross body block, responding with a chin lock on Cena.
Cena fought his way out of the hold, but caught a boot from Edge after shooting off the ropes. Edge blocked a superplex with a head butt, and then hit a flying clothesline. Edge then locked in a camel clutch. Cena fought out, pulling the Throwback out of the closet and confusing Jim Ross in the process.
Lita, sensing the title was slipping away, slipped a chair to Edge. An irate Edge tossed the chair from the ring. Cena took advantage of the opening and hit a flurry of clotheslines. A side slam set up the Five Knuckle Shuffle. The champion countered the F-U with an impaler DDT. Edge climbed to the top, but was met by Cena, who tried to F-U him off the turnbuckle. Edge countered again, but Cena nearly stole the title with a victory roll. Edge was able to hit a flying body press, but Cena rolled through. He picked up Edge and threw him up for an F-U, but Edge floated over. Cena sidestepped a charge from Edge, who instead knocked Lita from the apron. Edge hit Cena with a reverse facebuster and sized up the challenger for the Spear. Cena countered with a drop toe hold into the STFU. Lita grabbed the belt, but Edge begged her not use it, instead breaking the hold by grabbing the ropes.
Lita quickly slipped a pair of brass knuckles to her man as the ref looked away. Cena ducked a punch and set up Edge for the F-U. At this point Lita ran in, jumping on Edge. The ref chose not to call for the DQ, so Cena F-U’ed Lita off Edge. As the ref checked on Lita, Edge nailed Cena with the brass knucks. The ref turned back around in time to count the three as Edge covered Cena to retain his WWE Title.
As is the case more often than not, the World Heavyweight Title match between King Booker and Batista almost seemed like an afterthought in the middle of the SummerSlam card. The Animal showcased his power in the opening minutes, but Booker was able to turn the table as the Smackdown announcers put over the challenger’s lengthy absence due to injury.
A shot from the royal scepter knocked Batista woozy while Queen Sharmell distracted the ref, but Batista was able to kick out at two. The world champ missed with a sidekick and got crotched and clotheslined, but he bounced back quickly to score with a missile dropkick and the Bookend.
King Booker set up for a match-ending scissor kick, but Batista stepped aside and borrowed a page from the Bill Goldberg playbook, hitting a jackhammer. With the threat of a Batista Bomb looming, Sharmell decided she had seen enough and jumped into the ring, earning Batista a victory but keeping the gold in the hands of her man. A frustrated Batista could only sit and ponder asking for the same stipulation that Cena got for the next Smackdown pay-per-view, though he did get to take some of his frustration out by hitting his finisher after the bell.
The next WWE pay-per-view is the Raw-only Unforgiven on September 17.
The SLAM! Wrestling oracle has made the following decree: Nick’s comments will be in plain type with Dale’s remarks in italics.
It’s got two theme songs, including one suggestively called Cobra Style. It’s billed as the biggest party of the summer. But it has no bra and panties match, no lingerie pillow fight, and no Divas matches of any sort on the card. Alright, maybe that’s not all bad.
Rey Mysterio vs. Chavo Guerrero
Potentially a good way to kick things off in front of a live Boston crowd. The usual fast-paced action causes Rey to lose his mask for a second — I think that’s why it has a chin strap — but he’s able to retrieve it quickly before we all flashback to his later WCW days. Chavo strikes with a bulldog off the top rope that leaves both men down, but Rey rallies with a 619 and a hurracanrana that hurls his foe to the outside. Things take a turn for the worse when Vicky Guerrero gets involved, slapping Chavo and crotching Rey on the top rope. Always one to sieze an opportunity, Chavo scores with a brainbuster and follows up with a Frog Splash to get the pinfall, settling (for now, anyway) the question of who is Eddie’s true heir.
Winner … Chavo Guerrero at 11 minutes and 58 seconds.
Match Rating: 6.5/10
King Booker tells Queen Sharmell that he has to beat the peasant Batista so the two of them can return to Smackdown as the most powerful couple in sports entertainment. Two people who can protest that claim show up right on cue — and no, it’s not Triple H and Stephanie McMahon, it’s Edge and Lita. The usual trash talking ensues, and a wager is made. If Edge loses his match and Booker wins, Edge has to show up on Smackdown. And if that’s not enough, he has to kiss Booker’s feet. But if Booker falls and Edge retains, the King has to come to Raw to be Edge’s royal servant.
Big Show (Champion) vs. Sabu (challenger) – ECW World Title Match
I got to cover this match since the removal of the Undertaker-Khali match left the Smackdown side of the card pretty bare. Brian Whorl, close friend of SLAM! Wrestling’s Pennsylvania branch, comments that even though it’s painful to say, Sabu has lost a step. That’s especially evident against someone like Show, and this match is chock full of partially missed spots. There are some decent ones though, like when Sabu comes off a chair to bulldog the champ through a table set up in the corner. Sabu eventually goes to the well one too many times trying moves through tables, and Big Show plants him through one with a chokeslam to keep his belt.
Winner … and still ECW Champion… Big Show at 8 minutes and 55 seconds.
Match Rating: 5/10
Newest WWE Diva Layla is hazed by the other Divas. They throw her in the shower. Oooooohhhhhh……
I think Dale is trying to say that he enjoys Diva rookie hazing more than he would like covering another WWE women’s title match. So it’s all good. J.R. has a good line when he tells Jerry Lawler he’s probably “just hoping the water’s cold.”
Randy Orton vs. Hulk Hogan
Hogan pushes Orton into the corner. Orton slows things down with a side head lock. Hogan breaks the hold, but Orton responds with a series of punches. Hogan mounts Orton in the corner and bites him. Orton pulls Hogan from the ring, slamming his knee into the apron. A chop block sends Hogan to the mat. Hogan ducks a flying body press, giving Hogan the opening he needs. The Hulkster whips Orotn to the ropes, but Orton ducks the Big Boot and drop kicks Hogan in the back. Orton nails the RKO and thinks he gets a three count. But wouldn’t you know it, Hogan’s foot was on the rope, and the match continues. Hogan hulks up, and Orton runs into a Big Boot. Hogan hits the leg drop and gets the win.
Readers of Dale’s Raw reports, please e-mail him to let him know how much you enjoyed the Hulkster’s big win. Just know that the blood is on your hands if his head explodes.
Winner … Hulk Hogan at 10 minutes and 56 seconds.
Match Rating: 6/10 (Nick), 4/10 (Dale)
Melina tells Foley that maybe this match isn’t a good idea. She doesn’t think Mick can win, and she doesn’t associate herself with losers. Foley says he won’t say I Q-U-I-T.
Mick Foley vs. Ric Flair – I Quit Match
Foley takes it to Flair early, crushing him with a trash can in the corner. Foley gets the mic early to ask Flair to quit. Flair grabs Foley by the jewels. Flair steals Mr. Socko and goes after Foley with a Mr. Socko wrapped in barbed wire. Foley pulls the barbed wire board out from under the ring. Foley asks a bloody Flair to quit, and when he doesn’t, Foley breaks out the thumbtacks. Flair is slammed back first onto the thumbtacks. Flair counters the bat with a mule kick, then tosses Foley into the ringpost. With the crimson mask in full effect, Flair nails Foley with the bat. A low blow sends Mick to the apron, and Flair sends him to the floor with a bat shot. The ref calls for paramedics as Melina runs to ringside. Flair throws Foley back in the ring, working him over with barbed wire. Flair tries to gauge Mick’s eyes out, as Melina throws in the towel on Mick’s behalf. The ref calls for the bell, but Flair won’t accept it, and the match continues. Melina puts herself in harm’s way, with Flair almost hitting her with the bat, and Foley finally quits.
If you would have told me two or three years ago that at SummerSlam 2006, we’d see Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair notch victories and the original DX members reunited, I would have laughed until Mountain Dew shot out my nose. And I’d feel pretty dumb tonight.
Winner … Ric Flair at 13 minutes and 14 seconds.
Match Rating: 8.5/10
Armando Alejandro Estrada assures Vince and Shane McMahon that the Samoan Bulldozer, Umaga, is at their disposal tonight. As if there was any doubt about that.
King Booker (champion) vs. Batista (Challenger) – World Heavyweight Championship Match
Winner via DQ … Batista at 10 minutes and 26 seconds … and still World Heavyweight Champion… King Booker.
Match Rating: 5/10
DX is talking with someone in the locker room. They tell him Mr. McMahon has been calling Umaga a monster. This upsets the mystery figure, as DX leaves the locker room.
DX vs. Vince and Shane McMahon
Vince and Shane hang out at the ramp, sending the Spirit Squad to the ring. DX makes short work of the group. Vince holds up Shane, and they send out Ken Kennedy, William Regal and Finlay. The Smackdown guys get in some offense, but DX takes care of the trio in little time. Big Show is next, as Triple H is pulled from the ring. Show decimates HBK in the ring as Trips is worked over on the outside. Show takes the act to the outside, slamming The Game into the ring post, then choke slamming him through the ECW announce table. Vince and Shane call off the attack and head to the ring. The bell finally rings, and Vince slams HBK. Michaels is double-teamed by the McMahons. Hunter rises, but is kicked back down by Shane. The McMahons hit the doomsday device, but HBK kicks out. Vince cuts short Michaels’ rally, but HBK fights back with a dual clothesline. Triple H gets the hot tag and cleans house. Vince is clotheslined into the turnbuckle, and Trips lays out Shane with a spinebuster. HBK drives an elbow into Vince, then takes Shane out over the top rope. Umaga walks to the ramp, and Estrada distracts the ref so his charge can hit the Samoan spike. The fire explodes, and Kane fights Umaga to the back. Back in the ring, Trips kicks out of a pinfall. Vince takes out the ref, and HHH is set up in the corner. Shane goes for the Van Terminator but is kicked out of mid-air with Sweet Chin Music. Triple H nails Vince with the Pedigree and covers for the win.
I was really hoping we’d get some new members of DX tonight, but that ending was pretty cool, so I’ll take what I can get.
Winner … DX at 13 minutes and one second.
Match Rating: 7/10
Edge w/ Lita (Champion) vs. John Cena (challenger)- WWE Title Match – Belt Changes on DQ
Winner … and still WWE Champion… Edge at 15 minutes and 41 seconds.
Match Rating: 5/10 (points docked for confusing ending)
Isn’t SummerSlam supposed to be the second-biggest pay-per-view of the year?
Our list of complaints: only seven matches (only two for Smackdown), no tag team action, only three titles were defended, unsatisfying endings to both main title matches and the two biggest wins were by wrestlers over 50. It’s a pretty legit list.
Total Event Time: 2 hours and 47 minutes
Event Rating: 5.5/10
Dale Plummer and Nick Tylwalk hate to admit it, but they were more excited about the announcement that WWE 24/7 is coming to their cable system than they were about the SummerSlam card. Please send PayPal donations to help them pay for vintage wrestling action to [email protected] and [email protected].