|Date: October 5, 2008
|Venue: Rose Garden |City: Portland, Oregon
|Attendance: 9527 |Buys: 261,000
|Brands: Raw, Smackdown & ECW
|tweet me: @BastionBlogger
No Mercy is scheduled from top to bottom tonight as the top stars of the company prepare to do battle. Tonight’s card is full of experienced talent, most of which were around in the attitude era a decade ago. This is not a show that builds for the future but more of a celebration of the top stars in the company over the past ten years. The WWE Championship is set to be defended as Triple H defends against the winner of a fatal four way number one contenders match Jeff Hardy. Hardy defeated Shelton Benjamin, MVP and The Brian Kendrick to get the shot at Triple H and since then Triple H has constant jibed at Hardy telling him that he has all the tools but he has never put it all together to grab the brass ring. Tonight Hardy gets the chance to live his dream and become WWE Champion.
The world Heavyweight Championship is also set to be defended. Chris Jericho was hoping for the night off tonight but Mike Adamle announced that he had an offer from a superstar too good go turn down. He then announced that Shawn Michaels would be the man to challenge Jericho and it would be in a ladder match. Jericho and Michaels rivalry is well documented and tonight they meet in the match that Shawn Michaels revolutionised. Michaels and Jericho will also be paying close attention to Batista and John “Bradshaw” Layfields match as they are competing for number one contendership to the World Heavyweight title. Also from Raw, Kane will go one on one with Rey Mysterio and if Kane wins then Mysterio will have to unmask.
The ECW Championship will be defended tonight as Matt Hardy puts the title on the line against the man that he defeated for the belt without defeating (in the Championship Scramble match at Unforgiven) Mark Henry. Henry has a good case for a rematch as he was never defeated for the belt. The WWE Women’s Championship is also set to be defended as Beth Phoenix puts the belt up against Candice Michelle who Phoenix injured and put out of action for nearly a year. Also tonight, The Big Show goes one on one with The Undertaker after Big Show attacked The Undertaker at Unforgiven and has spent the last few weeks goading the dead man who has taken out Chavo Guerrero.
In a dark match prior to the event Carlito and Primo defeated John Morrison and The Miz.
A video package kicks off the show, first showing a black and white “perfect” family relaxing but there’s the record scratch and the hype video begins. Lots of focus on Chris Jericho and Shawn Michaels, The Undertaker and Big Show, Triple H and Jeff Hardy and Rey Mysterio and Kane.
Todd Grisham is the man to welcome us to No Mercy. And that’s because we’re kicking things off with the ECW Championship match. Jerry Lawler is filling in for Matt Striker in the opener.
Matt Hardy (c) vs. Mark Henry – ECW Championship match
This is a second PPV match between these two men. They met at Summerslam a couple of months ago in a very brief match where Hardy beat Henry by disqualification. Matt Hardy is 2-2 at No Mercy PPV’s and bizarrely this is Mark Henry’s No Mercy debut. Henry is joined by his bag carrier Tony Atlas. This is Hardy’s first PPV defence of the ECW Championship since winning the title at Unforgiven last month. This is the second consecutive year the ECW title has been defended at No Mercy, last year CM Punk successfully defended against Big Daddy V albeit by disqualification. Hardy attempts to lock on a headlock in the early going but Mark Henry powers out of it. Henry clubs away at Hardy as Tony Atlas shouts on from the outside. Lots of support for Hardy tonight. Matt uses some kicks but then runs into a clothesline. Nobody has fought has many PPV matches without main eventing a PPV as Matt Hardy.
Mark Henry headbutts Matt Hardy and then attempts snake eyes but Hardy counters it and goes back to work on the left leg of his challenger but again Henry drops Hardy with a clothesline. Hardy hits a chopblock and continues to work the left leg of Mark Henry. Only Batista and Triple H have fought on more PPV’s consecutively than Mark Henry and Matt Hardy at the moment. Henry kicks Hardy into the corner and then drops the champion with a big boot for the first near fall of the night. Henry hits a banzai drop for another near fall and then applies a chinlock. Hardy gets out of the chinlock but Mark Henry then locks on a bearhug. Hardy gets out of the bearhug and attempts a bulldog but Henry pushes him away. Hardy hits a couple of elbows off the middle rope and then the side affect for a near fall. Matt motions for the twist of fate but Henry counters it and hits a splash but Henry sells his leg.
Mark Henry is slow to make a cover and only gets a near fall. Henry counters a twist of fate and attempts the world’s strongest slam but Hardy counters that and hits the twist of fate for the three! Matt Hardy wins the match and retains the ECW Championship! Bit of an upset if you ask me! Decent psychology in this match.
Tazz and Jim Ross are present for Smackdown and give us our poll for tonight. Who are you backing for the WWE Championship match, Triple H or Jeff Hardy?
Eve is backstage with both Triple H and Jeff Hardy. Triple H said the only thing that Jeff Hardy might win is the mobile vote. Triple H tells Jeff that he respects him and that he has all the talent in the world but he needs to put it all together. Hardy says he will take pride in taking Triple H’s title.
Beth Phoenix (c) vs. Candice Michelle – WWE Women’s Championship match
This is the third PPV match between these two girls, they are currently tied at 1 win a piece. Their only previous No Mercy match was against one another where Beth beat Candice at last years event. Santino joins Beth Phoenix at ringside. Candice starts well, hitting a low dropkick, a drop toe hold and a pinfall for a one count. Candice hits another dropkick for another pinfall and then an enzeguri. Candice continues to take it to Phoenix with rights, lefts and clotheslines but Phoenix soon takes the advantage, smashing Candice into the corner and then kicking Candice’s previously injured arm. Beth throws Candice into the corner, shoulder first and then hits a snapmare for a one count. Beth applies an armbar, continuing to target the left shoulder of Candice Michelle. Candice is definitely a lot better than I remember her to be. She gets out of the arm bar and hits some kicks and a jawbreaker.
Candice hits a couple of clotheslines and a dropkick before taking Beth down with a spinning heel kick for a two count. Beth hits a face first armbar takedown and then heads to the top but Candice dives into the ropes, crotching Beth. Candice hits a dropkick to the back of the head and pins Beth but Santino drags Phoenix out of the ring! Candice hits a dropkick on Santino but Beth then takes Candice down with a clothesline. Beth seems to get her foot tangled up with Santino’s arm as she gets back into the ring which distracts Beth and allows Candice to roll her up for a near fall. Both girls get up and Candice attempts the unprettier but Beth hits her with a face first inverted powerbomb type move for the three. Beth Phoenix retains her Women’s Championship tonight!
Kane is backstage telling Rey Mysterio that tonight he will be destroyed. He’s looking forward to unmasking Rey Mysterio.
Rey Mysterio vs. Kane – If Rey loses then he must unmask
This is actually a first PPV match between these two men. Rey is 1-4-1 at No Mercy PPV’s, Kane is 1-3 at the event, his only ever win came at the very first No Mercy event when he beat Mideon. Rey uses his speed in the early going and dropkicks Kane out of the ring. Kane gets back into the ring and hits a big boot before trying to rip Mysterio’s mask off but Rey exits the ring. Back in the ring and Rey hits a springboard dropkick which sets Kane up for a 619 but Kane knocks Mysterio down with a clothesline. Rey hits a jawbreaker and then a hurricanrana, sending Kane out of the ring. Rey then attempts to fly out at Kane but Kane catches him and throws him over the barricade. Kane then smashes Rey Mysterio into the ring post before rolling him into the ring. Kane kicks and punches away at Rey and then applies a chinlock before breaking the hold and getting a near fall.
Kane hits some uppercuts on Mysterio and then a backbreaker. Rey hits an tilt-a-whirl inverted DDT but Kane goes back to clubbing away at Mysterio. Kane then puts Mysterio on the top rope and tries to rip his mask off but Mysterio fights him off and its him with a moonsault. Rey hits a low dropkick, a kick to the face and a springboard legdrop for a near fall. Kane takes the advantage with a sidewalk slam for a near fall. Kane motions for a chokeslam but Mysterio escapes and hits a springboard botch. Not sure what that was. Rey hits a springboard splash for a near fall. Rey looks like he might have hurt himself on that botch. He goes to the top but Kane sees him coming and hits him with an uppercut for a near fall. Kane then attempts a running boot but Rey gets out of the way and hits a 619 to the back of his legs.
Mysterio hits a baseball slide and then dives to the outside but Kane sees him coming and smashes him with a chair! The referee calls for the bell, this is a DQ win for Rey Mysterio. Rey definitely seems to be hurt.
MVP is backstage on the phone to his agent, not happy about not being booked tonight. He bangs on Vickie Guerrero’s door and Big Show answers. MVP wants to talk to Vickie but Big Show tells him to go away, slamming the door in his face. MVP doesn’t look like he’s finished.
Michael Cole is ready to announce the JBL vs. Batista match but MVP’s music hits and out comes the highest paid athlete on Smackdown. Not in wrestling gear. MVP is not happy about not being booked tonight, he compares himself to various top athletes who are never dropped. Randy Orton’s music then hits and out comes The Viper. Randy comes out and says that everything MVP is claiming to be, Orton is. Orton says that last time he saw MVP wrestle was Wrestlemania where MVP lost. MVP says there is nothing stopping him from knocking Randy Orton out. The Priceless music then hits and out walk Ted DiBiase, Cody Rhodes and Manu. Cody says that he has figured out who Randy Orton is (as a “boring” chant breaks out) and then tells Randy that he is the older kid who hangs out trying to be cool. Orton argues with the youngsters as to who should get the credit for taking out CM Punk. Orton says they have to accomplish half of what he has for him to take them seriously. MVP gets back on the mic and tells the Legacy boys that he likes them and should he get drafted to Raw then he’d like to….DiBiase interrupts him and says MVP doesn’t have a famous enough dad to hang out with them. DiBiase then tells MVP to get out of their ring and he does. CM Punk’s music then hits and out comes Punk and Kofi Kingston. Punk says MVP should join them to take on Rhodes, DiBiase and Manu. They rush the ring but Punk and Kingston double cross MVP and let him take the beating. Kofi and Punk then get involved and they take out the World Tag Team Champions and Manu. Nice segment involving some of the top stars not involved in tonights show.
Shawn Michaels and Chris Jericho are shown get ready backstage.
Batista vs. John “Bradshaw” Layfield – World Heavyweight Championship number one contenders match
This is the third PPV singles match between these two men. They have both won one match each in the past. Batista is 2-1 at No Mercy events, JBL is 3-2-1 at the event. Layfield hits some big right hands in the early going but Batista fires back with some of his own and then a clothesline. Batista hits a reverse elbow and a stomp to the head for a two count. JBL hits a big boot and then attempts the clothesline from hell but Batista drops him with a spear! Batista then fires up but JBL rolls out of the ring. Outside the ring Batista drives Bradshaw into the apron before rolling him back into the ring. Layfield makes sure Batista doesn’t get back into the ring and then hammers away at him. JBL gets a near fall and then hits a fallaway slam and an elbow drop for another near fall. JBL applies a chinlock but Batista gets out of it with a side suplex. Batista hits a clothesline and then an Irish whip and a clothesline in the corner.
Batista hits a powerslam but then runs into a big boot. JBL bounces off the ropes but Batista drops him with a spinebuster. Batista motions for a Batista bomb and he hits it! Batista wins the match and becomes number one contender. This was a poor match.
After the match Layfield asks for a microphone. He says that this has been the most unbelievable week of his life. He thought he was going to win tonight. JBL says that his heart wasn’t in it tonight. He says that he is the happiest and most blessed man alive because he is rich. Cryme Tyme’s music hits and they appear in the tron. They’ve stolen JBL’s limo and they’re taking the divas with them. And Sgt Slaughter.
Video package up next showing the recent history between The Undertaker and The Big Show.
The Undertaker vs. The Big Show
This is the only the third PPV match between these two men, Undertaker won the first two at No Way Out 2003 and The Great American Bash 2006. Undertaker is 1-6 at No Mercy events so not a great event for him whilst The Big Show is 2-1. The bell rings and Undertaker goes right to work with jabs but Big Show hits a big right hand of his own and then clotheslines Undertaker out onto the apron. The two men continue to slug it out and Undertaker drops Big Show on the top rope. Big Show shoves Undertaker to the outside and then goes out with him, hitting him with right hands and then throwing the dead man into the barricade. Undertaker pushes Big Show into the ringpost and then hits the leg drop on the apron. Back in the ring and Undertaker hits a couple of splashes on Big Show in the corner. Undertaker then bounces off the ropes but Big Show takes him down with a clothesline.
Big Show hits some right hands and then a powerslam and an elbow drop for a near fall. Big Show then hits some lefts and rights and a side Russian leg sweep for a near fall. Undertaker tries to fight back but Big Show forces him into the corner and then knocks him down with a headbutt. Big Show then attempts a Vader bomb but Undertaker gets out of the way. Undertaker hits some rights, a big boot and then a flying clothesline.Undertaker hits a legdrop for another near fall. Undertaker attempts old school but Big Show catches him and takes him down with a chokeslam for a near fall. Big Show looks to hit a big right hand but Undertaker ducks it and sets up for a chokeslam just for Big Show to counters by wrapping his hand around Undertakers throat. Big Show looks to hit a chokeslam but Undertaker counters it with a DDT for a near fall.
Big Show pulls off a turnbuckle pad and then smashes Undertakers face into the exposed steel. Big Show then hits a huge right hand. Undertaker gets up to his feet and Big Show knocks him down with another big right hand. Big Show then pulls up Undertakers head and hits him with a third right hand and the referee calls for the bell! The Big Show wins the match by knock out! Decent enough match from these two.
The results from the poll are that 72% are rooting for Jeff Hardy to beat Triple H. There’s a VT showing the recent history between Triple H and Jeff Hardy.
Triple H (c) vs. Jeff Hardy – WWE Championship match
This is the second PPV match between these two men, Jeff Hardy won the previous match at Armageddon last year. Triple H is 5-2 at No Mercy PPV’s, Jeff Hardy is 2-2. The two men shake hands as the bell rings and Triple H takes a cheap shot and rolls Jeff up for a two count. Triple H applies a wristlock which Hardy counters into a headlock takedown. Triple H attempts a counter and the two men jump up to their feet. Triple H takes Hardy down with a shoulder charge and then a hiptoss but it’s Hardy with another headlock takedown. Triple H gets out of the headlock and hits a reverse elbow but Hardy hits a spinning head scissors and then clotheslines Triple H out of the ring. Jeff dives off the apron with a clothesline and then rolls Triple H back into the ring before hitting the champion with a legdrop for a near fall. Jeff then goes back to the headlock takedown. This is a 7th PPV title defence for Triple H, only four men have had 7 successful PPV title defences before, one of which was Triple H.
Triple H attempts a pedigree but Hardy back body drops him over the top. Jeff then flies to the outside but Triple H gets out of the way. Triple H rolls Hardy back into the ring and gets a near fall. Triple H hits a backbreaker and then drops a couple of elbows as he starts to work the lower back of the challenger. Triple H hits a facebuster for a near fall and hits a kneedrop for another near fall. Triple H hits some big shoulder blocks in the corner and then applies an abdominal stretch. Jeff gets out of it and takes Triple H down with a slingblade. Hardy hits a mule kick and a legdrop for a two count and then hits a low dropkick for another near fall. Jeff hits an Irish whip which sends Triple H out of the ring and then dives out with a plancha taking out the champion. Back in the ring and Jeff Hardy comes off the top with a clothesline for a near fall. Triple H gets back into the match with a clothesline of his own for a near fall.
Triple H goes up to the middle rope but Jeff Hardy sees him coming, kicks The Game and hits him with a facebuster suplex for a near fall. Triple H hits a spinebuster and then sets up for the pedigree but Hardy counters it and catapults Triple H into the ring post before taking him down with whisper in the wind for a near fall. Jeff hits a pendulum dropkick and heads to the top for the swanton bomb but Triple H gets out of the way! Triple H then looks to hit the pedigree but Hardy counters it with a twist of fate! Hardy heads to the top and hits the swanton bomb! The crowd are on their feet but Triple H counters the pin and gets the three! Triple H wins the match and retains the WWE Championship! Great match between these two men. They shake hands after the bell.
Arn Anderson congratulates Triple H on his win backstage. Vladimir Kozlov then walks up to Triple H and speaks to him in Russian before congratulating him.
Chris Jericho (c) vs. Shawn Michaels – Ladder match for the World Heavyweight Championship
This is the fifth PPV match between these two men. Shawn Michaels is 3-1 up on victories. Chris Jericho is 3-0 at No Mercy events whilst Shawn Michaels actually makes his No Mercy debut tonight! Shawn Michaels hits the first knockdown of the match and then attempts sweet chin music but Jericho backtracks. Michaels attempts a shoulder charge in the corner but Jericho moves out of the way and Michaels hits the ringpost. Jericho ducks a clothesline and knocks down Michaels with a right hand before clotheslining him onto the apron. Jericho hits a springboard shoulderblock knocking Michaels off the apron and then rams him into the ring apron. Jericho throws Michaels into a ladder but Michaels climbs up it and then dives down at Jericho. Jericho reverses an Irish whip to send Michaels into the ringpost and then grabs a ladder and runs at Michaels who counters with a drop toe hold. Michaels grabs a smaller ladder but Jericho takes him down and locks the walls of Jericho on outside the ring.
Jericho pulls a huge ladder into the ring but Michaels blasts it into Jericho’s face. Michaels then sets up the ladder in the middle of the ring and climbs it but Jericho pulls him down and looks to lock on the walls of Jericho but Michaels escapes and climbs the ladder again inly for Jericho to push over the ladder. Jericho then smashes the ladder into the ribs of Michaels before setting the ladder up in the corner of the ring. Jericho looks to hit a bulldog but Michaels pushes him into the ladder before throwing the ladder onto the floor with Jericho tied up in it. Jericho manages to fight back, kicking a ladder into Michaels face and then slingshotting Michaels into the ladder. Jericho then sandwiches Michaels head between the ladder before climbing the ladder but Michaels stops him. Jericho sets up a ladder in the corner again before attempting to throw Michaels face first into it but Shawn counters, sending Jericho into it! Jericho falls out of the ring and Michaels throws a ladder at him.
Shawn Michaels sets up another ladder outside the ring and then clears the Smackdown announce table. He lays Jericho down on the desk and then climbs up the ladder but Jericho gets up and follows Shawn up the ladder. Jericho then hits a side suplex on Michaels through the announce desk below! Michaels may have countered that but both men are down. Both men slowly get up and Jericho rolls into the ring. Michaels climbs up to the top with a ladder but Jericho dropkicks him. Jericho then looks to hit a superplex off the top but Michaels hammers Jericho down to the mat and then flies off with an elbow drop! Michaels then looks to hit sweet chin music but Jericho blocks it with a ladder. Jericho lays a ladder on top of Michaels and then hits him with a lionsault. Jericho sets up a ladder over Michaels neck and climbs up the ladder but Michaels manages to lift the ladder up and send Jericho all the way out of the ring. That was a long fall and Jericho sells the knee.
Shawn Michaels climbs the ladder in the middle of the ring and has he hands on the belt but Jericho gets in the ring and tips over the ladder. It looked like Michaels tried to get his feet caught in the ropes but couldn’t which probably means this is the end of the match and Michaels blew his spot. Maybe not! Jericho climbs the ladder slowly and Michaels follows up the other side. The two men slug it out and Jericho slips down and gets caught upside down in the ladder. Lance Cade then shows up and Michaels dives down at him. Michaels then hits sweet chin music on Cade and Jericho nearly gets the title but Michaels darts up the ladder and the two men slug it out. They manage to unhook the belt between them and there’s a tug of war at the top of the ladder! Michaels pulls the belt towards him, bringing Jericho with it who headbutts Michaels! Michaels falls off the ladder and Jericho pulls down the title to win! Chris Jericho wins the match and retains the World Heavyweight Championship tonight!
And that was No Mercy 2008. It was a show that gradually got better throughout the night but for the most part it was a forgettable pay per view. I” definitely think it needed more focus on newer stars because a lot of it felt like the same old matches that we had seen before. Matt Hardy and Mark Henry started off the show and it was the usual explosive opener we have become accustom to. It does add some prestige to the ECW title division as these are two experienced, top stars. I was surprised to see Matt Hardy win clean after building Mark Henry up for months as an unstoppable beast. It’s a big win for Hardy though who will move on to somebody else in ECW but right now I have no idea who. Beth Phoenix then beat Candice Michelle in a predictable enough match. Candice is good, much improved but Beth has a great thing going at the moment and it’s best to stick with her for the time being. There’s plenty of competition for Phoenix including Kelly Kelly, Mickie James and even the likes of Melina, Katie Lea Burchill and Layla.
Rey Mysterio then defeated Kane by DQ. This was probably the right finish. I think this feud is just getting started and I would like to see a mask vs. mask match in the future with Kane having to wear his mask if he lost. There is a lot of potential in this feud and this match was good but it could get better. Batista beat JBL in a poor match. I don’t know if JBL got injured and they cut the match short or what but this just wasn’t great. Batista won which would lead you to believe that Chris Jericho will win later. The result is fine, Batista is still very popular and JBL can be moved to the midcard to put younger guys like Kofi Kingston over. The Big Show beat The Undertaker by knock out. This was as clean as you like really, it was not a good match for Undertaker. It’s a big result for Big Show though and I do see this feud continuing into Survivor Series. Maybe a casket match based on last months activities at Unforgiven.
Triple H defeated Jeff Hardy to retain the WWE Championship. A lot of people wanted to see Jeff Hardy win but Triple H was still popular. Triple H won with a roll-up out of nowhere which should mean that the feud continues. These are arguably two of the most popular heels in the company at the moment so I can’t see either turning heel. This was a good match which was expected as both men put good matches on 90% of the time. Hopefully this feud continues. Unless Big Show is transitioned into the feud either in a singles war with Triple H or as a heel foil in a triple threat. Chris Jericho then beat Shawn Michaels in the closing match. This was a brilliant match and Jericho won in what was probably the closest finish to a ladder match ever. Jericho will go on to feud with Batista but I’m not sure where it leaves Shawn Michaels. Jericho, Michaels and Batista have been intertwined all year so maybe a triple threat is on the card? We’ll find out soon.
Overall Rating: 53.9/100 (ranked joint 164th out of 230)
Match Of The Night: Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho
Worst Match Of The Night: Batista vs. John “Bradshaw” Layfield
Surprise Of The Night: Matt Hardy beats Mark Henry clean
Worst Booking Of The Night: Matt Hardy beats Mark Henry clean
Superstar Of The Night: Chris Jericho
No Mercy 2008 Will Be Remembered For: The epic ladder match