SmackDown traveled over the pond this week where more than 15,000 WWE fans packed the Manchester Evening News Arena. The energy of the capacity crowd proved once again that the popularity of WWE action is a truly an international phenomenon.
The main event pitted Batista and Lashley against World Heavyweight Champion King Booker and Finlay. The match marked Lashley's final bout at SmackDown before he leaves to join ECW. The future extremist went out with a bang as he helped the Animal take on some formidable competition. Less than a year after Batista was forced to surrender his title due to surgery, he continued his push for the gold by pinning the only man standing in his way: King Booker. The Animal seems almost unstoppable as he bulldozes his way towards Survivor Series.
Proudly displaying his microphone still caked with the Phenom's blood from last week, Mr. Kennedy spoke out about his upcoming First Blood Match against Undertaker: "The second that I caused the blood to spill from your head, I knew it symbolized a changing of the guard. Last week, these hands -- my hands -- spilled your blood and I'm going to do it again." Will Kennedy be able to handle the Deadman when Survivor Series rolls into Philadelphia?
MVP got just what he asked for as he took on Kane in a Street Fight. The two competitors battled in the ring, outside the ring, and even in a telephone booth. The newcomer MVP proved he was worthy of the title Superstar, putting up a valiant effort against the Big Red Machine. Just when it looked like Kane's use of some steel steps would spell end game for MVP, Mr. Kennedy dealt a crushing blow to Kane's skull with the same microphone he had used on Undertaker. After MVP picked up the win, the Deadman entered the arena. Mr. Kennedy tossed MVP to the dogs and looked on as the Brothers of Destruction pummeled the talented newcomer. Later, Theodore Long announced that MVP would meet Kane again next week -- in a steel cage.
United States Champion Chris Benoit defeated Tatanka in a non-title match only to be viciously attacked by Chavo Guerrero at the end. Chavo's actions closely mirrored his attacks against Rey Mysterio only weeks ago. Chavo continuously screamed, "Stay out of my business!" as he landed blow after blow on The Rabid Wolverine.
In other SmackDown action, The Miz took on current rival, the Boogeyman. The match ended in a no contest leaving The Miz covered in worms, but still undefeated. William Regal triumphed in his home country as he overpowered Paul London for the pin. In a match up between childhood rivals, Matt Hardy defeated Cruiserweight Champion Gregory Helms in a non-title match