Smackdown focuses on fatal fourway, crazy AJ

World Wrestling Entertainment Inc.WrestleMania

Alberto Del Rio, Chris Jericho, Randy Orton and World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus will all battle in a Fatal 4-Way for the gold at the Over The Limit pay-per-view.

On Smackdown, a tag match between Orton/Sheamus and Jericho/Del Rio disintegrated into singles matchups later in the night – Orton defeated Del Rio by disqualification and Sheamus and Jericho got interrupted by Del Rio.

The show had these four as a focal point as a push for the upcoming pay-per-view. I personally wasn’t thoroughly entertained by their interaction on Smackdown. It might have to do with the fact that I’m not too keen on a Fatal 4-Way and would prefer two singles matches.

Meanwhile, AJ continues to shine on Friday nights, showing equal parts crazy ex-girlfriend and hopeless romantic. After defeating Kaitlyn, Daniel Bryan made his intentions known that he will now pursue Kaitlyn, which led to AJ storming off. Bryan is a talent who can do no wrong right now, both with his razor-sharp mic work and the hottest catchphrase in pro wrestling today.

Bryan stayed in the ring and faced Big Show in a match that had a Montreal Screwjob-esque finish with John Laurinaitis calling for the bell early to teach Big Show a lesson. “Ace” then demanded Show apologize for making fun of his voice ... on Monday. This was, in my opinion, an unnecessary and awkward cliff hanger.

Hath Slater cut a promo while everyone watching thought in the back of their minds, “Ryback is coming out, isn’t he”. He did, and squashed Heath Slater in seconds. Is it time for Ryback to have a step up in competition? Magic eight-ball says: “All signs point to yes.”

Antonio Cesaro defeated Alex Riley and showed some fabulous offense in this match, including an old school, rugby influenced grabbing of the ear followed by his trademark perfectly executed European uppercut. If I sound biased, it’s because I am – I couldn’t be happier that the former “King of Wrestling” member Claudio Castagnoli is on the WWE main roster, as I feel the “Supremely Swiss” one has an abundance to provide. Shout out to Michael Cole in this match for saying what many of us were thinking regarding the love triangle between Cesaro, Aksana and Teddy Long – “Teddy Long is a grandfather, he’s over twice their age. It’s creepy.” (I’m paraphrasing).

R-Truth pinned Jack Swagger with help from his tag-team championship partner Kofi Kingston. I liked that Kofi let Truth take the spotlight during his entrance, not doing his own “BOOM!” theatrics – it was Truth’s match after all (the little things matter folks!). It was announced that Swagger and Dolph Ziggler will challenge for the tag-team titles on pay per view. No, not the pre show. ON PAY PER VIEW! The tag titles haven’t been defended on WWE PPV since TLC in December of 2011. The tag gold was defended at seven WWE PPV events in 2011, and only one in 2012. We are on pace for two by December. I consider this a fail, and I hope this changes.

Santino Marella and Zack Ryder, after bickering over their name (my vote is on Co-Bro), lost to a team I’m highly entertained by, Titus O'Neil and Darren Young. Thank you guys for buying matching attire (again, the little things). Their post-match antics crack me up, I’ll admit, I like the song and dance. It’s unique and they can creatively take it many directions. If anything, it shows an investment in the tag-team division and I’m in full support of that. (WrestleMania 5 in 1990 had five tag-team matches -- think about that!)

Brodus Clay continued his winning ways by beating Hunico, who ambushed Clay with Camacho to start the match. Different start, same finish. The reason I don’t throw Brodus into the “Ryback” pile is because Brodus Clay, like JR blogged about, is an “experience,” a novelty so to speak. It’s still a segment that you don’t necessarily change the channel for just yet, but if you’re already watching, you won’t change the channel because it’s entertaining enough to get you by for five minutes.

Don’t forget to check out my column this week on Paul Heyman’s return to WWE and why everyone wins: http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/pro-wrestling/ring-posts-blog/bal-paul-heyman-s-return-is-great-for-wwe-20120509,0,6627128.story

Also, my sit down video interview with Jerry “The King” Lawler: http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/pro-wrestling/ring-posts-blog/bal-video-jerry-the-king-lawler-talks-commentary-vs-wrestling-and-much-more-20120508,0,3283825.story

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