SD Fusion: The Era Of People Power
The 6th April 2012 episode of Friday Night SmackDown! starts with an image in memory of the late Chief Jay Strongbow, followed by the announcers pointing out that “Team Johnny” won at WrestleMania (click here for our WrestleMania XXVIII report), thus meaning that John Laurinaitis is now also the General Manager of Friday Night SmackDown!.
David Otunga makes his way out onto the stage where he then introduces him, and then accompanies him to the ring. Laurinaitis welcomes us to SmackDown!, and says that he is sure that everyone is as excited as he is for the first SmackDown! with him in charge under the new regime.
He says that he will not abuse the power he has, but instead will use it for the benefit of the WWE Universe to give them what they want, as he says that this is the age of a new era, an era of “People Power”.
Laurinaitis turns his attention to Teddy Long, inviting him to come out to thank him for his years of service. Long does indeed come out, but he interrupts Laurinaitis and says that being out of a job gives him the benefit to tell him to go to hell.
Long says that he didn’t come out to whine and complain about what happened on Sunday, and that everyone in the back said that he had to be crazy to even show up at this show, and crazier still to come out to the ring, but he says that the fact is that he can not walk away from the best job he has ever had in his life without thanking the people who made it happen.
He thanks the crowd and asks for a “Holla Holla Holla!” which the crowd dutifully provide, but as he starts to leave, he is interrupted by John Laurinaitis. Laurinaitis tells Long that he had not finished what he had to say, continuing to say that he would like Long to take a job in his new administration.
Teddy Long admits that he does need a job, but says that he doesn’t need one working for John Laurinaitis, so he can take his job and shove it. Laurinaitis says that he knows that Long is a proud and noble man, but he thinks that he is forgetting something – something to do with his grandchildren and their college education.
With Laurinaitis turning to David Otunga for the explanation, Otunga explains that a number of years ago the WWE Board Of Directors established a college fund for Long’s grandchildren, but that after reviewing the paperwork, he found that technically the fund is controlled by whoever holds the title of SmackDown! General Manager.
Laurinaitis says that he didn’t want to do this in front of the WWE Universe, but that if Long takes the job with him, the college fund will be safe, and that Long can trust him as he gives his word, which is golden.
He says that there is one thing that he needs him to do first however – which is to tell the fans that he is better than Long. Long clearly isn’t happy to do so, but he says it – and says it again after Laurinaitis points out that he doesn’t think anyone heard him.
John Laurinaitis commends Teddy Long on making the right decision, and suggests to him that he go backstage and start working on his job, but when enquiring what his job is, Laurinaitis responds that he hasn’t quite figured that out yet, as there’s a lot of things that he needs.
Long leaves, and Laurinaitis points out to the fans that later on in the episode will see a WrestleMania rematch between Randy Orton and Kane in a No Disqualification match, and that his official match as part of the new era will be Long’s R-Truth against Laurinaitis’ Team Captain, David Otunga. He then continues to say that it will be a handicap match, and that Otunga’s partner will be the “World’s Strongest Man” Mark Henry, claiming that this is what the crowd wants.
Now, R-Truth takes on David Otunga and Mark Henry in a handicap match which sees Otunga get the victory for his team, when Henry hits Truth with the World’s Strongest Slam, and then tags Otunga in, who simply covers Truth for the 3-count.
Next, Kane is pitted against Randy Orton in a No Disqualification match which sees Orton get the victory, when he counters Kane’s chokeslam attempt by sending him into an exposed turnbuckle, followed by hitting him with an RKO for the 3-count.
After a video recapping the events on Monday Night Raw involving Sheamus and Alberto Del Rio (click here for our Raw report) and the announcers telling us that as a result of that, Sheamus will face Del Rio later on in this episode, Barry Stevens goes against Ryback (formerly known as Skip Sheffield) in a match which sees Ryback get the victory, when he hits Stevens a muscle buster for the 3-count.
Next up, Daniel Bryan makes his way to the ring accompanied by AJ, to many of the crowd chanting “YES! YES! YES!”. Bryan says that if there was one positive thing about this week, it is that he finally had a chance to think, about how everything was going so right – and then how it went so wrong.
He says that it hit him when it went all of the tracks and starts to say what the truth is, before stopping, looking dejected. AJ takes the microphone from him and tells him that he is a great wrestler and a great person, and she says that she is not the only one that thinks that.
As the crowd chant “YES! YES! YES!” she says to listen to them, and reminds him of the fans with signs and chants at WrestleMania and on Raw, even when he wasn’t even in the ring. She pauses for a “Daniel Bryan” chant, and says that they and she are all there right now to support him.
Taking the microphone back, Bryan doesn’t seem to believe that the crowd are supporting him. He says that if feels like they are mocking him, and that if they were supporting him, then they wouldn’t have been chanting “YES!” for The Rock.
He says that even if they mean it, all of the chants from these sheep, it doesn’t make it better that AJ cost him his World Heavyweight Championship. Bryan yells at her that he defeated Mark Henry and The Big Show in a steel cage at the Royal Rumble, and overcame the Elimination Chamber at the Pay-Per-View of the same name, but that it was all flushed down the toilet when he was beaten in eighteen seconds at WrestleMania.
Bryan says that it is all because AJ had to have that kiss, and as for her saying that the kiss was a good luck charm, he says that it was the “kiss of death”. AJ pleads with him to stop, but he refuses, as he says that she does not get to rewrite this story and make him the bad guy, as it is her fault.
He says that he had everything going for him, his first WrestleMania and he was walking in as the World Heavyweight Champion, which he dreamed of ever since he was a little kid, but she ruined everything as she just had to steal the spotlight.
Daniel Bryan says that AJ’s unbelievable selfishness and clinginess cost him what should have been the greatest night of his life, so he hopes that she is happy with herself, as he will never let her ruin his life like that ever again.
He says that he has a rematch clause with Sheamus, and that when he gets that match he will be doing it the right way – by himself. Bryan tells her to leave as he is finally ready to get rid of all of this dead weight, and he is not talking to her backstage or anywhere.
Bryan says that he hopes that kiss at WrestleMania was worth it, as it is the last kiss that she will be getting from him, as he states that they are through, and tells her to get out of his ring, repeating it with a yell immediately afterwards.
He turns his back as she does leave, and the response of the crowd is to chant “na na na na, na na na na, hey hey hey, goodbye!” to AJ as she leaves.
As Cody Rhodes joins commentary, and after Show rolls takes a page out of Rhodes’ book by embarrassing him and showing images from Rhodes’ defeat at WrestleMania, The Big Show goes against Heath Slater in a match which sees Show get the victory, when he hits Slater with a chokeslam for the 3-count.
Afterwards, Rhodes heads to the ring, but quickly has second thoughts as Show rushes towards him. Show takes out Slater again, with the Weapon Of Mass Destruction, but as Rhodes tries to take advantage of that and attack The Big Show, it is to no avail as Show immediately turns towards him and rushes towards him, causing Cody Rhodes to bail back out of the ring and leave again.
After a video recapping the events of Raw involving CM Punk and Chris Jericho, an interaction backstage between The Bella Twins and John Laurinaitis in which he gives Nikki a match but Brie the night off, an interaction between Laurinaitis and Sheamus sees Laurinaitis tell Sheamus that he expects more professionalism out of him, so he has instructed the referee of the match later on to bring Alberto Del Rio and Sheamus into the middle of the ring before the match starts.
Back in the arena, Kelly Kelly watches on from ringside, as Beth Phoenix takes on Nikki Bella in a match which sees Nikki get the victory, when she takes advantage of the distraction provided by Kelly, avoids the shoulder thrust-attempt from Beth in the corner – causing Beth to go shoulder-first into the ring post – and hits Beth with a jumping facebuster for the 3-count.
After a video in memory of Chief Jay Strongbow, and a promo by Damien Sandow in which he states that he is here to save fans from ignorance, a video recaps the events of Raw involving John Cena and Brock Lesnar.
After the announcers hype that the stars of the upcoming movie “The Three Stooges” will be on the upcoming episode of Monday Night Raw and a video recapping the events on Raw involving Alberto Del Rio and Sheamus, Alberto Del Rio is pitted against Sheamus in a match which sees Del Rio get the victory as a result of a disqualification, when his acting skills cause the referee to think that Sheamus has hit Del Rio with the steel chair in his hand (instead of simply picking it up after avoiding being hit by it himself).
Del Rio and Ricardo Rodriguez celebrate the victory outside the ring, but when Sheamus attempts to exit the ring to take out his anger on them, he is stopped by the referee taking away the steel chair that is still in his hand.
Instead, Sheamus takes out his anger on the referee instead, because as soon as the referee has put the chair down and turned around, Sheamus hits him with a Brogue Kick.
Sheamus glares from the ring at the amused Del Rio and Rodriguez on the stage, as SmackDown! goes off the air.