Though the “Hounds of Justice” journeyed to SmackDown to expand their dominance in an impressive trifecta of individual showdowns, it would ultimately be WWE’s submission specialist – desperate to prove to himself that he was not the “weak link” of Team Hell No – who would dispense final justice.
SmackDown opened with a fevered clash pitting Kane against Seth Rollins, the first of two scheduled singles matches between WWE Tag Team Champions, The Shield, and their title-holding predecessors, Team Hell No.
In the final moments of battle, a distraction by Roman Reigns paved the way for Rollins to hit The Big Red Monster with a fierce kick to the head. However, when Rollins attempted to follow up his attack from the top rope, Daniel Bryan took advantage of the distracted referee to throw his partner’s unsuspecting opponent to the canvas. The Devil’s Favorite Demon then hit the chokeslam for the victory.
Moments after Kane’s huge win, Daniel Bryan took on Roman Reigns. In the height of the action, the former World Champion trapped his opponent in the “No!” Lock and appeared as if he might score the second triumph of the night over the “Hounds of Justice.”
However, with Seth Rollins’ help, Bryan’s black-clad adversary grabbed the ropes. While The Big Red Monster instantly took down the interfering Rollins, Reigns delivered a cheap shot to The Devil’s Favorite Demon from inside the ring – just as the occupied referee was getting Bryan to break his finishing maneuver. When Kane punched back, though, the official saw it and was left with no choice but to promptly disqualify Bryan!
When the dust settled, an outraged Bryan and Kane argued once again, as Bryan continued to fight his fear that he was the “weak link” of the tremendous tag team.
After relentlessly belittling the Edmonton crowd, Damien Sandow introduced his latest game of wits to the WWE Universe – a contest that the ancient Greeks may have called “Thimblerig,” but pretty much everyone else would call the Shell Game. And as Sandow explained how it worked, Sheamus decided to join him in the ring.
While The Celtic Warrior appeared to fall short in the unique challenge, he soon discovered that Sandow had, in fact, cheated. This inspired the fighting Irishman to “educate” The Intellectual Savior of the Masses by “braining him” with the Brogue Kick.
With the help of Paul Heyman, Curtis Axel pontificated on his huge victories over Triple H and WWE Champion John Cena in recent weeks – summing it all up by saying that “for a ‘Paul Heyman Guy,’ life is perfect.”
In the match that followed against Sin Cara, the impressive up-and-coming Superstar played on those very words, overcoming his opponent’s high-octane offense with a devastating combination of his grandfather’s Axe maneuver and the Perfect Plex, courtesy of his WWE Hall of Fame father, Mr. Perfect.
After AJ Lee accidently cost Big E Langston his match against Alberto Del Rio on Raw, the powerful competitor returned to SmackDown to go head-to-head with World Heavyweight Champion Dolph Ziggler’s No. 1 contender for the fourth time.
Eager to make up for her Monday mistake, AJ engaged Del Rio outside the ring while the referee was distracted, shaking things up enough for Langston to hurl the Mexican Superstar into the unforgiving steel post. Moments later, Big E executed the “Big Ending” on Del Rio for the three-count, evening the recent matches between them at two wins apiece.
Perhaps in anticipation of the possible third stage of his upcoming Three Stages of Hell Match against WWE Champion John Cena at the Payback pay-per-view, Ryback rolled into SmackDown in an ambulance to face off against Kofi Kingston.
From the opening bell, Kofi set out to show the “Human Wrecking Ball” that looking past him was a big mistake. Still, despite The Wildcat’s explosive offense, the No. 1 contender to the WWE Title roared back, taking out the high-flier with Shell Shocked for the victory.
The carnage didn’t stop with the bell, though. In an apparent effort to send a message to The Champ, Ryback proceeded to put Kingston through three separate tables – leaving him injured amidst a wasteland of broken wood!
In the final moments of Chris Jericho’s match against Cody Rhodes, Y2J prevented the Disaster Kick by the crafty grandson of a plumber, making him tap out to the Walls of Jericho.
Will the six-time World Champion have the same luck when he takes on CM Punk at WWE Payback on June 16?
In an electrifying SmackDown main event, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns brought the furious action to a screeching halt, attacking Randy Orton to bring about a disqualification in The Viper’s favor.
But an even more electrifying moment trumped their efforts just seconds later. While both members of Team Hell No rushed to the ring to help even the odds for WWE’s Apex Predator, it was Daniel Bryan who – furious and desperate to prove to himself that he is not the “weak link” of Team Hell No – sent all three Shield members packing!
- Numbers in parentheses indicate the length of the match.
- (c) refers to the champion(s) heading into the match.
- Kane defeated Seth Rollins (9:46)
- Roman Reigns defeated Daniel Bryan by DQ (9:14)
- Curtis Axel defeated Sin Cara (2:01)
- Big E. Langston (w/ AJ Lee ) defeated Alberto Del Rio (4:55)
- Ryback defeated Kofi Kingston (2:27)
- Chris Jericho defeated Cody Rhodes (4:52)
- Randy Orton defeated Dean Ambrose by DQ (12:45)
- Dark match: Team Hell No (Daniel Bryan & Kane) & Randy Orton defeated The Shield (Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns & Seth Rollins) by DQ
Other on-screen talent
Kane v Seth Rollins
Roman Reigns v Daniel Bryan
Damien Sandow’s Thimblerig Challenge
Ryback v Kofi Kingston
Big E. Langston v Alberto Del Rio
Curtis Axel v Sin Cara
Chris Jericho v Cody Rhodes
Randy Orton v Dean Ambrose
- WWE Smackdown #719 at CAGEMATCH.net
- [Smackdown #719 on WWE Network]