WWE Smackdown packs punches at BMO Harris Bradley Center

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The WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) Smackdown exceeded all expectations Tuesday night at the sold-out BMO Harris Bradley Center. The show came fully prepared with cheesy banter, high energy and of course, plenty of body slams, as the WWE continues on the road to WrestleMania XXX.

The WWE Smackdown stopped at the BMO Harris Bradley Center Tuesday night. Photo by Kevin Ward / kevin.ward@marquette.edu

The WWE Smackdown stopped at the BMO Harris Bradley Center Tuesday night. Photo by Kevin Ward / kevin.ward@marquette.edu

The night started off with good energy and excitement with matches between lesser-known wrestlers before the actual Smackdown event.

The most interesting of these preliminary matches was the three-on-three tag-team match between wrestling trio 3MB and the Los Matadores, accompanied by their loyal companion, dwarf wrestler El Torito. El Torito, who sports a fully masked face and bullhorns, single-handedly took on each opponent individually and came out victorious.

In between matches, wrestlers would often take the microphone and share their thoughts on life, society and how much they hated their opponents. For example, wrestler Bad News Barrett shared his thoughts on college students’ spring break. He said it causes youth to “sever their livers” and eventually amounts to nothing, which is why he believes one day we will be “the United States of China.” Fans responded with a “USA” chant and booed him off the stage.

Another speech came from wrestling trio The Wyatt Family, where leader Bray Wyatt shared his opinions on the ugliness of today’s society and that of wrestler John Cena. The Wyatt Family apparently injured Cena, the face of WWE, last Monday on WWE Raw. Cena did not make an appearance at Tuesday’s Smackdown. However, WWE released a statement saying Cena isn’t actually that hurt and that this is part of the script leading into WrestleMania XXX, which airs April 6.

“The banter and conversations before the fight are easily the most entertaining,” said Shane Rooney, a sophomore in the College of Business Administration. “If it was me out there in the ring, I would not be able to stop laughing.”

The banter only improved throughout the show, but unfortunately, the wrestling matches did not as they started to lose excitement toward the middle of the show. Then, the stadium went black. Fireworks erupted, fans suddenly jumped to their feet and the real show began.

Matches between better-known WWE wrestlers began as wrestlers including Sheamus, Roman Reigns and Triple H did what they do best – smack down.

They even brought along a few surprises throughout the night. At one point, retired WWE wrestler and now announcer Christian ran from his table and into the ring during a match between wrestlers Sheamus and Alberto Del Rio to join the fight. Del Rio was disqualified for having enlisted help from Christian during the fight, making Sheamus the winner.

Dolph Ziggler and wrestling veteran Batista brought another entertaining fight to the ring. Earlier in the show, Ziggler kicked Batista in the face and called him a “dinosaur that needs to be extinct.” Even though this was Batista’s first match in four years, he quickly showed veteran dominance by tapping out Ziggler and winning the fight.

Nothing compared to the final event of the night, a six-man tag-team wrestling match. Daniel Bryan, Sheamus and The Big Show faced off against Bray Wyatt, Kane and Del Rio.

“Truthfully, the show was dragging on a bit,” said Ryan McDonald, a sophomore in the College of Business Administration, “but when Daniel Bryan came out, he saved the show.”

Daniel Bryan, also called the “American Dragon,” has been a fan favorite in WWE ever since he joined in 2009. Some fans even shouted, “Daniel Bryan is the next face of WWE.” When Bryan entered the stadium, fans erupted in cheers, belted out his famous tag line, “YES!” and continued the chant throughout the fight.

“You can give anyone that chant, and they are automatically going to be a fan favorite,” said Mac Samuelson, a sophomore in the College of Nursing.

The six-man tag-team was an exceptional fight full of chokeholds, scuffles outside the perimeters of the ring and drama. Toward the end of the show, Kane had Daniel Bryan trapped in a pin, but when chants of “YES!” rang throughout the crowd, Bryan found the strength to kick out of the hold. Bryan eventually pinned Kane and won the match for his trio. They emerged as WWE Smackdown champions.

The WWE Smackdown is a high-energy event, where wrestlers are just as loyal to their fans as fans are to them. Even though some people share the same belief that, as one fan commented, “It looks even more fake in person,” WWE has unequaled adrenaline and excitement that must be experienced.

“I am so amped right now,” said Matt Brune, a sophomore in the College of Nursing, after the show. “This has got to be the best show I’ve ever been to.”

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