The Summerslam Countdown: Day Ten

September 15th, 2011 by |

Man, between juggling the This Week in Panels stuff, the New 52 DC stuff and a full-time job, this is getting done less and less as time goes on. Ridiculous, isn’t it? Well, at least we’re almost there and in one more installment, I’ll be able to put this all to rest.

One thing did inspire me to finish this update. See, before I get to the finale, there’s something else I have to review. A reader showed me a certain thing that’s so mind-bending that I have no choice but to cover it ASAP.

Is it wrestling related? Yes.

Is it comic book related? Yes.

Will it make you go cross-eyed? You betcha! Though… um… apologies if you already are. Sorry, that was insensitive.

Anyway, we’re down to the final five. Let’s get cracking!


Date: August 20, 2006
Era: Cena Era
Location: TD Banknorth Garden in Boston, Massachusetts
Known as: That one where Orton tries to kill the legend of Hulkamania

WWE had started an awesome feud between John Cena and Edge that proceeded to bump up the ratings, but Triple H really wanted that Wrestlemania main event, so Edge got shoved into the background for the sake of Cena vs. Triple H. The two rekindled their feud shortly after as part of the creation of WWE’s ECW. Edge helped Rob Van Dam defeat Cena for the belt at One Night Stand and then defeated RVD in a Triple Threat to win it back. Now he has to defend it against Cena in what’s pretty close to Cena’s hometown. Meanwhile, Triple H has gone face to reunite with his old friend Shawn Michaels to bring back D-Generation X with their sights set on the McMahons. Also, Randy Orton’s obsession with proving himself superior to Hulk Hogan while showing some interest in his daughter Brooke had led to the greatest RKO in history.

The Atmosphere

The intro has no real coherent theme to it. It’s just a bunch of separate video packages taped together. They don’t even give any lip service to Orton/Hogan, strangely enough. The worst thing about the backstage segments – and pretty much the show in general – is a bit where the new Diva Search winner Layla is treated like dirt by the Divas, then they reveal it to be an initiation and all shower with their clothes on. It’s uncomfortably stupid. Mick Foley hurts his awesome feud with Ric Flair by adding Melina into the mix, whose role in the pre-match conversation is pretty badly acted. Other than that, we get some great moments. King Booker and Edge meet up and interact, leading to a wager where if one retains their title and the other does not, then the loser becomes the other’s butler. The McMahons hang out with the criminally underused Armando Alejandro Estrada, as they discuss the possibilities of using Umaga in their match. Later on, DX are shown in someone else’s locker room, discussing how Vince thinks Umaga is the biggest, baddest monster in the company. As they leave, their unseen cohort begins to cause a rampage.

The Matches

Our opener is Rey Mysterio vs. Chavo Guerrero. Wait, didn’t I already cover that one? Huh. Only now do I realize that they’ve done Rey vs. Chavo twice at Summerslam. This one isn’t quite as good as the follow-up, but it’s still a damn good start. Fists fly at the ringing of the bell and Rey armdrags Chavo out of the ring. Rey misses a splash to the outside and Chavo hits his own splash. Rey takes a lot of damage and tries to get back into it, but is powerbombed into the corner. Chavo does the late Eddie Guerrero’s taunt (the angle is about how Rey got to reap the benefits of Eddie’s death instead of Chavo) and the crowd gives him back HUGE heat. Rey responds to this by having his mask fall off like it always does and takes a break to fix it. Chavo goes for a piledriver off the top rope, but Rey counters it enough that the two fall face-first onto the mat. From here it begins to go back and forth with some tense chemistry. Rey ends up on Chavo’s shoulders, twists into a hurricanrana, then does the 619. During the follow-up splash, Chavo moves, but Rey overshoots it and lands fine. He delivers another hurricanrana and the two both fall out of the ring. Vickie Guerrero shows up to yell at Chavo for going too far in this feud and slaps him. Rey dives out onto Chavo before he can get his hands on Vickie.

Rey yells at Vickie to get out of there and Chavo takes advantage of the diversion by delivering the Three Amigos. Midway in, Rey slips out, shoves him into the ropes and gives another hurricanrana. Rey does his own version of the Three Amigos and the crowd DOES NOT LIKE THIS AT ALL. Even JBL on commentary has to point out how Rey isn’t getting the reaction he’s been hoping for here. Vickie sees Rey climb to the top and begs him to stop this madness, but Rey won’t listen. Vickie climbs up, accidentally on purpose grabs the top rope and causes Rey to fall. Chavo delivers a Brainbuster, follows with a Frog Splash and wins the match. Vickie acts like she’s made a huge mistake and shouts angrily at Chavo, which is for some reason or another replayed in slow motion. I laughed.

Next is Big Show defending the ECW Championship against Sabu. This is during the brief period where Vince is behind the idea of ECW, so they actually get to have a match that lasts longer than half a minute! It’s got a seriously great dynamic to it as we have the unstoppable monster villain up against a guy who will do whatever it takes to take him down, especially at the expense of his own body. Sabu immediately throws a chair into Big Show’s face and uses that chair to assault him heavily. He sets up a moonsault off the chair, but Big Show trips him, gets up and stomps the ladder into useless, twisted metal. He puts Sabu in a bearhug until Sabu escapes with a bite to the nose. Sabu tries a crossbody off the second rope and is not only caught, but gets thrown across the entire ring with a Fallaway Slam. Sabu goes back to the chair strategy by doing a couple more chair tosses into Big Show’s head, does a dropkick off the top while holding a chair over his feet and takes a second to set up a table in the corner. This little break allows Big Show to get up and grab Sabu for a chokeslam. Sabu escapes by thumbing him in the eye. Then he bulldogs Big Show off a chair and through a table, getting a massive “ECW!” chant from the crowd.

Sabu ends up on Show’s shoulders and Show falls onto his back. Big Show puts Sabu in the corner and hits a Vaderbomb, to which we hear Sabu weakly announce, “holy shit…” Show begins to toss a bunch of stuff into the ring, which is really an excuse for Sabu to try and use weapons against Big Show. Sabu completely botches a DDT through a table, which is a shame, since the whole match has been completely amazing so far. Luckily, it ends strong. Sabu jumps off a table, is caught and gets chokeslammed through it. Big Show pins him and we’re done.

Only three matches in and we’re already getting Hulk Hogan vs. Randy Orton. Orton loses his patience at the continuous Hogan chants. They lockup, Hogan throws him across the ring and he keeps overpowering the challenger. Orton gets a cheapshot kick in there and takes control, albeit briefly. When Hogan’s holding his own, Orton sells like crazy. Hogan angrily works over Orton until Orton escapes the ring, grabs Hogan’s leg and attacks it relentlessly. He circles him with the Garvin Stomp, then misses a top-rope crossbody. Hogan pounds on Orton, sets up for the boot, misses and then eats a dropkick. Orton stalks Hogan, hits an RKO and goes for the pin, only Hogan’s leg is on the rope. The ref has to point this out after the fact and the match is restarted. Hogan Hulks Up, delivers the boot, taunts for far, far too long and hits a legdrop. The match is decent until the ending where Hogan buries the everliving fuck out of Orton. Rather short, too, at only ten minutes. Really, though, Orton should have been put over.

Mick Foley takes on Ric Flair in an I Quit Match. Foley starts it out railing on Flair with punches in the corner, followed by his running knee attack. He takes a garbage can and runs it into Flair in the corner, gives him the Mandible Claw (with Mr. Socko on his hand) and lets go in order to see if Flair quits. Nope! He puts barbed wire over Socko, but Flair saves himself by grabbing Foley by the crotch. Flair puts the wired Mr. Socko over his hand and chops into Foley’s chest. Foley gets his hands on a big platform of wood with barbed wire on one side and hits Flair with it. Flair’s busted open and gets hit with it again. Foley puts barbed wire over his arm and drops the elbow. Foley demands Flair quits, Flair tells him to kiss his ass and Foley smacks him with the microphone. He litters the mat with thumbtacks and bodyslams Flair onto the pile, which is extra gross for all the tacks sticking out of Flair’s ass. Foley scrapes a barbed wire bat against Flair’s head until Flair frees himself by kicking Foley in the nuts. He throws Foley into the corner, grabs the baseball bat and proclaims, “You quit or I’ll kill you right here!” He rushes Foley and knocks him off the apron. Melina comes out from the back and sees to Foley as the ref ends the match. Flair refuses this ending as it isn’t a “kick my ass” match. He rolls Foley into the tacks, cuts his eye with the barbed wire and then drives the baseball bat into the wound. Melina quits on Foley’s behalf, but Flair still refuses the win under those circumstances. He prepares to use the bat on Melina, who is guarding Foley’s body, which is enough for Foley to quit so as to protect his friend. Crazy-ass match. There was even a part where Flair rolls around in the tacks and is too crazy to even care.

King Booker defends the World Heavyweight Championship against Batista. They grapple into the corner, Booker slaps Batista and gets shoved into the mat. A Booker spin kick is caught and turned into a powerslam. Already feeling like he’s outclassed, Sharmell drags Booker out of the ring and tries to lead him to the back, but Batista attacks him. Once back in the ring, Batista evades another spin kick and spinebusters the King. Booker escapes the Batista Bomb and starts to take control of the match, including a nice use of the Stun Gun. Batista gets a surprise belly-to-belly suplex in and Booker escapes to the outside. As Sharmell distracts the ref, Booker nails Batista with his scepter. He spends a few moments putting Batista in a chinlock as the crowd chants “SHE’S GOT HERPES!” Sharmell is seen cracking up despite her best efforts to stay in character.

Batista gets out of the hold, but eats a superkick. Still, he fights back and goes as far as crotching Booker on the top rope. Then he clotheslines him off the rope and to the outside. Again, Sharmell distracts Batista and Booker uses the diversion to throw Batista into a post. He follows with a Missile Dropkick, a Bookend and then a Scissor Kick. The last of which is reversed into a Jackhammer by Batista, though with Booker kicking out. It goes back and forth some more and Batista drops him with a full nelson slam. Once again, he sets up for the Batista Bomb, but Sharmell runs into the ring and attacks him. A lousy DQ ending to what’s been an otherwise decent title match. Booker attacks Batista until Batista grabs him, drives him down with a spinebuster and finishes him off with a Batista Bomb.

D-Generation X (“The Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels and Triple H) take on Vince McMahon and Shane McMahon next. As Hogan/Orton ended with a major burial, this match begins with one. The McMahons summon the Spirit Squad to soften up DX first. The five young ones run in and are immediately destroyed by DX. Then the McMahons bring out Mr. Kennedy, William Regal and Finlay. The three of them are also buried by DX. Finally, Big Show comes out and attacks Michaels while the other three go for Triple H. This is when the tide turns. Big Show does his fucking awesome Cobra Clutch-backbreaker-fling-him-across-the-ring move that I love so very much. Then he chokeslams Triple H through a table. With the faces finally destroyed, the heels leave, the McMahons step in and the bell rings.

The McMahons take turns beating on Michaels as Triple H struggles to even stand. Once he starts to stir a bit, Shane knocks him back down with a Baseball Slide. The McMahons have fun by doing all the classic tag team finishers to Michaels: the Demolition Decapitation, the Hart Attack and even the Doomsday Device. Michaels barely kicks out. Michaels is able to get some momentum, chops Shane and clotheslines both opponents. He makes a hot tag and Triple H takes control. He gives Shane a spinebuster and Michaels drops the top-rope elbow on Vince. Michaels and Shane tumble to the outside and Umaga arrives. He attacks Michaels and while the ref is distracted, Umaga gives Triple H the Samoan Spike. He prepares to do the same move to a half-dead Michaels, but then Kane arrives, having been convinced to counteract Umaga earlier in the night. The two brawl to the back. Vince tries for a pin on Triple H, but it’s a kickout. Vince punches out the referee and sets it up so Shane can do Coast-to-Coast on Triple H. In midair, Michaels intercepts him with Sweet Chin Music, which looks more than a little bit awkward. Then again, it came off better than it should have. He hits Vince with a garbage can, delivers Sweet Chin Music, Triple H follows with a Pedigree and the faces win.

The opening bit leaves a bad taste in my mouth, but I rather enjoy the story of the match. Unlike your usual Cena match, there’s a feeling of actual heel dominance in this match. It’s played off that if it hadn’t been for Kane, DX would have lost due to Umaga’s interference. It’s impressive to make a match where the heels are the underdog, give them an immense advantage and then have the faces convincingly fight their way back.

Finally, there’s the main event of Edge defending the WWE Championship against John Cena where if Edge gets himself disqualified, he loses the title. Cena outclasses Edge to start by grappling him into the corner, pounding on him and giving a belly-to-belly suplex after Edge stops himself from running straight into the ref. Cena dives at Edge, misses and hits his shoulder into the corner. Cena falls out and spends the next few minutes being thrown back out again and again while the crowd is split over the so-called hometown hero. Cena fails at making a comeback again and again, including breaking out of a chinlock only to run directly into a boot. Edge puts him in a Camel Clutch, Cena stands up and falls back so both are down and out. Cena finally gets some offense in. Lita passes in a chair, but Edge refuses to use it, as it’ll lose him the belt. Cena bombards him with shoulder tackles and does the Five Knuckle Shuffle, but the FU is reversed into an Impaler DDT. Cena kicks out.

Edge climbs to the top rope and Cena tries to use it to do a top-rope FU. Edge escapes, Cena turns it into a Victory Roll and fails to get the 3-count. Edge attacks with a second-rope crossbody, Cena rolls with it, stands up, puts Edge on his shoulders for the FU and… Lita distracts him. In the confusion, Edge makes the mistake of running into Lita and gets rolled up, but he escapes the pin. He surprises Cena with the Edge-O-Matic, slowly makes the cover and still fails to put Cena away. The Spear misses and gets turned into the STFU. Edge grabs the ropes and Cena has to break the hold. During this, Lita passes Edge some brass knuckles. Unfortunately for Edge, he walks right into an FU. Lita runs into the ring and jumps onto Cena. He responds by FUing her as well. Edge has recovered by this point and nails Cena in the back of the skull with the brass knucks. He shockingly pins Cena and leaves what seemed to be a sure Cena victory as champion. I have to say, I like how they destroy the expectations of the ending, especially with that wager between Booker and Edge from earlier. Not a bad Cena match too.

The show has a lot of matches I thought were merely okay, but nothing in there that I thought was terrible. Even Hogan vs. Orton wasn’t so bad outside of the ending.


Date: August 15, 2004
Era: Cena Era (very beginning)
Location: Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario
Known as: Randy Orton fights… somebody… for the title!

Months earlier, Chris Benoit had succeeded where many never thought he would. He actually became World Heavyweight Champion by making Triple H tap in the middle of the ring at Wrestlemania 20. He proceeded to defeat Triple H and Kane repeatedly with a new challenger standing before him in the form of Triple H’s protégé Randy Orton. But we’re not meant to care about that. More emphasis is on Triple H’s feud with a mentally challenged newcomer named Eugene, whose fandom of the Game has led to realization of what a terrible person he really is. Yeah, Triple H vs. a midcarder gets more press than the actual main event. Go figure!

The Atmosphere

The intro is done in the style of Olympic parodies with different wrestlers taking part in various events. The DVD, by the way, has some of the worst replacement music due to the company deciding not to pony up for whichever theme they had originally. Backstage, we get a couple notable moments such as an Orton promo where John Cena steps in and interrupts, hinting that these two will clash at one point in the future and it will be a big deal. Haha, what a concept. Eric Bischoff meets the new Smackdown GM Teddy Long and acts like a dick to him, suggesting that he won’t last long in his position. Yeah, not one of his best calls.

There are two things hurting the show in the non-wrestling context. One, the two title matches have absolutely zero lead-up. Benoit vs. Orton and JBL vs. Undertaker are our two big matches and yet other than Cena messing with Orton, there’s nothing to indicate that these matches are going to happen. Even worse is the Diva Dodgeball game where the established Divas take on the Diva Search competitors. The crowd hates it, I hate it and it goes on for far too long.

The show features one of my all-time favorite video packages, setting up Eddie Guerrero vs. Kurt Angle. Check this out, especially for the badass final line.

The Matches

Our opener is Rey Mysterio, Paul London and Billy Kidman vs. the Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray, D-Von and Spike Dudley) from back when Spike was revealed to be the true, evil brains behind the Dudleys. Despite being the big, hot opener for the show with Mysterio in there, the face team gets absolutely zero reaction. London and Kidman show some awesome teamwork and get a lot of cool offense in against D-Von until Bubba Ray pulls London by the hair from the apron and pulls him off his game. Bubba gets brought in and tries to pin London, but the ref is too busy yelling at Kidman to get out of the ring. London eventually hot tags to Rey, who tears into Spike and proceeds to singlehandedly fight off all three Dudleys. Kidman is tagged in and the ring fills up. Bubba is thrown from the ring, London jumps off Kidman’s back and flips out onto Bubba. Rey and Spike counter each other until Spike eats a 619 and Kidman follows up with the Shooting Star Press. Bubba pulls him out of the ring, everything gets chaotic, Bubba and D-Von land a Dudley Death Drop on Kidman and they let Spike make the pin. Fun opener.

Kane faces Matt Hardy in a ‘Till Death Do Us Part Match where the winner gets to marry Lita. Matt goads Kane to start and tricks him into taking a Side-Effect off the bottom rope. Matt beats on Kane until Kane lets loose with a sudden uppercut. Kane proceeds to dominate until Lita distracts him. Matt takes advantage by throwing Kane out and then jumping out onto him. While outside, he hits the Twist of Fate and tries to let Kane get counted out. Kane instead sits up and enters before time runs out. Lita sneaks in the ring bell, Kane gets clobbered and he’s still able to put his foot on the rope during the pin. Matt jumps off the top and is caught with a choke before fighting his way out of it. Kane goes to the top and gets crotched. Matt goes for a superplex, but Kane instead chokeslams him off the top. Kane gets the pin and the right to marry Lita against her will. The match is excruciatingly slow, but at the same time, the booking is really well done.

John Cena and Booker T compete in the first match for a best of seven series for the United States Championship. If that means we’re getting a bunch more matches like this, count me glad that I don’t remember this angle. They slug it out and we get some really good back and forth work to start. Cena gets crotched on the top rope and knocked out of the ring. Booker does this awful jumping punch to the outside. Booker dominates for a while, misses the Scissor Kick and we get a little more back and forth between the two. Both end up laying on the mat and Booker is up first. He does the Spineroonie, walks into the FU and gets pinned just like that. Comes off as too quick and too pointless.

Edge defends the Intercontinental Championship against Batista and Chris Jericho in a Triple Threat Match. While the crowd has been pretty dead throughout the show, they do wake up briefly when Edge is announced as “Toronto’s own”. When Edge is doing his pre-match pose on the ropes, Batista attacks him and throws him from the ring, making it all Batista vs. Jericho. Crowd is wild for Jericho, but he doesn’t fare too well. Batista gives a running powerslam and then sets up for the Batista Bomb. Edge prevents that by clipping Batista’s knee. Batista is pretty sloppy around this time and can’t even fall out of the ring right. The crowd picks up on that and boos him for it. Jericho knocks him into the steps, making it Jericho vs. Edge for a bit. It’s a fun pairing with some good chemistry between the two. The Walls of Jericho is reversed into a Small Package and Jericho kicks out. Edge tries to cheat via pinning Jericho while putting his feet on the ropes, but Jericho kicks out and finally gets Edge in the Walls of Jericho. Batista makes the save, throws Jericho from the ring and Edge nails Batista with an Impaler DDT. He sets up a Spear and would have hit it had it not been for Jericho intercepting it. Batista thanks Jericho by giving him a spinebuster. I should point out that while the Canadian crowd absolutely loves Jericho, they cannot STAND Edge. Anyway, Jericho goes for the Lionsault, but sees that Batista’s going to roll away, so he lands on his feet and merely kicks Batista. Edge Spears Jericho and pins him to retain. Pretty awesome match outside of Batista’s greenness showing through.

Eddie Guerrero takes on Kurt Angle in what’s just as good as you’d expect. Maybe even better. They start off with mat wrestling and although it’s Angle’s specialty, Eddie is able to put Angle in an ankle lock. Angle escapes with a thumb to the eye. Early on, he hits the Angle Slam, pulls the straps down, puts Eddie in the Angle Lock and Eddie grabs the ropes. Angle’s bodyguard Luther Reigns kicks Eddie in the head and Angle puts the submission hold on again. Eddie gets out of it and Angle spends the next few minutes working on the ankle as Eddie tries to fight back. So as not to be fooled by the same trick that allowed Eddie to win their last match (Eddie unlaced his boot so he could escape the Angle Lock and pin Angle during the confusion), Angle begins to unlace Eddie’s boot. Eddie surprises him with a jawbreaker, then delivers an Angle Slam of his own. He hits the Three Amigos, climbs to the top rope, Angle springs up, runs up the ropes and suplexes him.

An Angle Slam is reversed into a DDT. Eddie climbs back up to the top, but misses a Frog Splash. Angle follows with the Angle Slam and Eddie kicks out. Angle tears off Eddie’s boot, puts him in the Angle Lock and Eddie escapes by grabbing the ref and pulling him forward into Angle. Eddie uses his boot as a weapon on Angle and Luther, then plays possum for when the ref wakes up. He finally lands the Frog Splash, but Angle kicks out. Eddie desperately argues with the ref, Angle gets him in the Angle Lock yet again and this time there’s no escape. Eddie has no choice but to tap. Definite match of the night.

Triple H vs. Eugene is many times better than it has any right to be. It’s funny, as Eugene starts out on top and the Toronto crowd absolutely hates his guts. Triple H saves himself from the onslaught by using Lillian Garcia as a human shield. He tosses her away for a distraction, lays into Eugene and tries to suplex him through a table. Eugene instead reverses it and throws Triple H into the ring. Eugene stands over Triple H in the corner and punches him as the crowd counts to ten, but he stops in order to count with his fingers. Triple H fakes a knee injury, which the ref sells by making the X gesture with his arms, which is how they usually indicate real injuries. The plan doesn’t work out and Eugene continues to kick his ass. “EUGENE SUCKS!” is by far the loudest chant of the night. It’s crazy. A distressed Triple H tries to shake Eugene’s hand and he’s pulled in for a Rock Bottom. Eugene does the setup for the People’s Elbow, Triple H pops up and crushes him with a spinebuster. The crowd is now chanting for him.

He puts Eugene in the sleeper and the crowd loves him for it. When slamming Eugene’s head into the corner, Eugene starts to Hulk Up. Triple H kicks at him, Eugene catches the foot, flips him off, delivers a Stunner (which gets a pop) and starts to slam Triple H into the outside steps. Ric Flair walks out just as Eugene delivers the boot and legdrop to Triple H. He kicks out and Eugene takes a second to punch Flair. A top-rope axe-handle is countered with a kick to the stomach and he’s pulled in for the Pedigree. Eugene reverses the Pedigree into a Slingshot and catapults him into the corner. Eugene gives Triple H his own Pedigree, but Flair sneaks Triple H’s foot on the rope. When Flair trips Eugene, the ref decides to eject him from ringside. Eugene’s buddy William Regal arrives and knocks Flair out with some brass knuckles. Eugene celebrates this comeuppance, but turns around into a Pedigree. Triple H wins by the skin of his teeth and drags Flair away by his leg. He won, but he certainly did a good job trying to put Eugene over. Great match all around.

John “Bradshaw” Layfield defends the WWE Championship against the Undertaker. They lockup and JBL gets thrown out of the ring. Orlando Jordan tries to distract Undertaker to help his boss, but it’s ineffective. Undertaker decides that he’s going to target JBL’s clotheslining arm, so he works it over by slamming it into the steps. JBL gets the advantage when he prevents Undertaker from completing Old School. He follows up with a shoulder tackle from the top rope, but soon after Undertaker gets him with Old School anyway. Orlando takes a boot meant for JBL and then proceeds to distract the ref as JBL whacks Undertaker in the knee with a chair. JBL works on the leg and the crowd shows its interest by… starting the wave. Wow, I didn’t know that was still a thing back in 2004.

Surprisingly, the two work really well together. Then again, they are good buddies backstage. JBL goes to the top again, but this time is countered into a superplex. He kicks out of the pin. Undertaker tries for the Last Ride, but he can’t complete that nor his usual trademarks due to his busted knee. He gets his act together eventually by hitting Snake Eyes, a running boot and a chokeslam. JBL kicks out. He sets up the Tombstone, but stops so he can punch Orlando. JBL decapitates him with the Clothesline from Hell, but Undertaker kicks out. JBL gets knocked into the ref and the two wrestlers boot each other to the mat. JBL gets up and hits Undertaker’s knee with the title belt, but nobody can make the count. Orlando tries to puppet the ref’s arm, but Undertaker gets up, throws Orlando from the ring and eats another clothesline. JBL punches Undertaker in the corner, but Undertaker picks him up and sinks him with the Last Ride. JBL kicks out. Again, Undertaker stops a Tombstone attempt so he can go kick Orlando. Orlando had the belt on him, so Undertaker uses it on JBL out of frustration. JBL wins by disqualification and Undertaker loses his shit.

He drags JBL to the limo set up on the ramp and slams him into the hood of the car. It seems pretty tame, but there’s more. He decides he isn’t finished yet, so he grabs JBL and climbs to the top of the limo. He slams him through the roof to a massive “HOLY SHIT!” chant and proceeds to rub JBL’s blood onto his own chest like war paint. JBL is carted off in a stretcher, but hugs the belt as he’s still champion despite the beating. Pretty good, even with the DQ.

Now for the main event of Chris Benoit defending the World Heavyweight Championship against Randy Orton. The two stare each other down as the crowd chants “YOU SCREWED BRET!” at referee Earl Hebner. Orton plays it like he knows his limits and is reluctant to mat wrestle. They do a test of strength with Benoit coming out on top. Orton gets a quick moment of spotlight when he suckerpunches Benoit, hits a shoulderblock and poses. He then walks right into an armdrag and is held in an armbar. Benoit tries for a Sharpshooter, but it’s rolled into Orton’s own Sharpshooter. Benoit reverses it back into his Sharpshooter, turns it into a Crippler Crossface and the two end up rolling out of the ring.

The two duke it out on the apron, but Benoit DDTs Orton, which looks sick as hell. He follows with a Baseball Slide and then goes for a dive out onto Orton. He misses and it’s really nasty looking. Kind of hard to watch knowing what we know. Orton works over the neck for a bit and the two hit each other with a double crossbody. They get up at the same time and go back to trading fists. Orton hits a top-rope crossbody, grabs the tights and Benoit kicks out. He sets up the RKO, gets shoved off and eats a clothesline. Benoit forces the Sharpshooter onto Orton and almost has him. The ref lifts Orton arm three times and it stays up on the last. Benoit softens him up some more with three German suplexes, ducks a clothesline and delivers three more! A diving headbutt is met with a boot to the head. Orton slowly goes for the pin, but gets caught in the Crippler Crossface. He rolls out of it. The two have a weird little exchange where they lock arms, Benoit is spun around and Orton gets him with a surprise RKO. Orton wins and is shocked that he did it. Benoit stands before him and puts out his hand, demanding he shake it. “Be a man!” he says. Orton shakes his hand, the crowd cheers for it and Orton gets teary on the spot while showing respect to the man he just beat.

Fantastic match, but the best part is how WWE would treat it years later. WWE.com once did a list of the biggest Summerslam moments and one of the entries was about Randy Orton winning his first world title. Very lengthy article but, wouldn’t you know it, there’s no mention of who his opponent was!

Next time we finish this off with the top three.

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One comment to “The Summerslam Countdown: Day Ten”

  1. The Olympic-themed vignettes for Summerslam 2004 are amaaaaazing.

    Breakdance Batista!