411’s WWE Heat Report 04.13.08
Hey guys and gals, I’m Scott, and this is 411’s ALL-NEW, ALL-DIFFERENT WWE Heat Report.
I’ve always prided myself on writing the Best Damn Heat Report on the Net, and part of being the best is continually striving to improve. So recently I was proud to debut a completely new format for the Heat Report. The most dramatic change was a drastic reduction in the length of the play-by-play. I loved writing in-depth, detailed reports of each match, but I completely understand that most readers would rather just get right to the highlights. So from now on I’m going to be presenting a more condensed Overview of each match in order to give you a clear view of the main events while skipping over some of the more minor details. However, in order to compensate for the abbreviated length of the Overview, I’m also going to be adding a Background, Analysis, and Rating for each match. The Background will provide a brief review of the recent events in the careers of each of the wrestlers involved in the match while the Analysis and Rating will allow me to give you my opinion on the quality and future implications of the match. Finally, I’ll still include the Result, Length, and Best Spot in order to continue to provide the most complete coverage possible. Okay, enough with the boring stuff. Let’s get to the wrestling.
Match 1: Cryme Tyme vs. The Logan Brothers
Background: Cryme Tyme returned to WWE with a victory over Lance Cade & Trevor Murdoch last week on Raw. This week they make their return to Heat and look to continue to reestablish themselves in the tag team division. The Logan Brothers are jobbers. You may remember Matt Logan as the unfortunate young man who was obliterated by Vladimir Kozlov’s this week on Smackdown. Seriously, you remember Apollo Creed vs. Ivan Drago? Yeah, it was a lot like that, except that Logan didn’t even get a snazzy entrance before his beating. Oh, and if Matt’s brother Brian is thinking about getting some revenge and going all Rocky on Kozlov next week on Smackdown… um, I’d advise against it, kid. Seriously, there’s no way that ends well. You guys just need to bid your time and wait for Randy Orton to realize he needs some backup…
Overview: JTG and, um, one of the Logan Brothers start the match. We’ll call this one Brian, but he very well could be Matt. Seriously, those guys look WAY too much alike. Anyway, JTG takes control early with a standing side head lock before ducking a clothesline and countering into a modified neck breaker. JTG lands a standing drop kick, traps Brian in the corner, and tags Shad into the match. Shad catapults JTG into Brian and then literally tosses Brian all the way across the ring with an absolutely EPIC butterfly suplex. Matt valiantly tags himself into the match, but Shad immediately catches him with a pair of clotheslines and a gorilla press into a front powerslam. Shad hits Matt with snake eyes, makes the tag to JTG, and together Cryme Tyme hits a second rope G9 (i.e., a Samoan Drop from Shad coupled with a second rope front flip neck breaker from JTG) for the three count.
Analysis: Cryme Tyme looked good in their return to Heat, and I’m glad to have them back. JTG and Shad truly seem to enjoy every moment that they’re in the ring, and it’s great to watch two guys who find such joy in wrestling. WWE seems to be trying to resuscitate Raw’s floundering tag team division, so let’s hope we’ll be seeing more and more of Cryme Tyme in the coming weeks and months.
Result: JTG defeats Matt Logan with a second rope G9.
Best Spot: Shad’s EPIC butterfly suplex
Match 2: “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan vs. Charlie Haas
Background: “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan and Charlie Haas have both had mixed luck on Heat as of late. Last week on Heat he lost to “The Canadian Bulldog” DH Smith, so he would certainly like to get back on the winning track here. On the other side of the ring, Charlie Haas defeated Super Crazy last week, so he’ll be going for two in a row in this match.
Overview: Haas takes control early with a couple of shots to Duggan, but Duggan fights back with a hip toss and a pair of running clotheslines. Duggan goes to work with a volley of forearm shots, but Haas retaliates with a kick to Duggan’s face before choking Duggan across the second rope. Haas drops Duggan with a punch to the face and then goes to work with mounted punches before choking Duggan against the mat. Haas locks in a rear sleeper hold, but Duggan fights back to his feet and breaks the hold. Duggan hits the ropes and charges at Haas, but Haas turns Duggan inside out with a knee shot to the gut. Haas drops a knee onto Duggan’s throat for a two count and then goes back to the rear sleeper hold. Duggan again fights back to his feet, breaks the hold, and lays into Haas with a volley of punches. Duggan whips Haas to the corner and charges after him, but Haas just manages to slide out of the way. Duggan slams shoulder-first into the top turnbuckle and bounces all the way back to the middle of the ring. Haas stomps on Duggan and then chokes him against the mat for another two count.
Haas once again returns to the rear sleeper hold and Duggan begins to fade, but Duggan finally does fight back to his feet. Haas flings Duggan back to the mat, rakes his boot across Duggan’s face, and again chokes Duggan across the second rope. Haas tries to slam Duggan’s head into the top turnbuckle, but Duggan blocks and instead slams Haas’ head into the top turnbuckle. Duggan whips Haas to the opposite corner and goes for the Three Point Stance Running Clothesline, but Haas wisely slides out of the ring to avoid contact. Haas kneels down at ringside and dons the mask to become Lucha Haas, but Duggan immediately reaches over the top rope the strips the mast back off of Haas. Haas slides back into the ring to retrieve the mask, but Duggan catches him with the Three Point Stance Running Clothesline for the three count.
Analysis: This match never really seemed to get on track and seemed to drag because of it. A big part of the problem was that we’ve come to expect Charlie Haas to don the mask at some point in the match, and in most cases the most interesting parts of the match have come after Haas’ transformation. The result is that we’ve been conditioned to wait until Haas puts on the mask before we become truly interested in the match, but that plan backfires when Haas only wears the mask for an instant at the end of the match as he did in this case. The other problem with the finish of this match was that Haas was out-smarted by Jim Duggan. Look, it’s one thing if you get out-powered by Jim Duggan. He’s an ox, at least in kayfabe. But getting out-smarted by Jim Duggan is like having Larry the Cable Guy correct your table manners. This was not a productive outing for Charlie Haas, and at this point you have to wonder if the whole Lucha gimmick is doing more harm than good.
Result: “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan defeats Charlie Haas with the Three Point Stance Running Clothesline.
Best Spot: Duggan’s Three Point Stance Running Clothesline
Match 3: Super Crazy vs. Snitsky
Background: Super Crazy has recently been on a downward spiral on Heat. Two weeks ago he lost to Paul Burchill, and last week he was defeated by Charlie Haas. He’ll be hard pressed to fare any better against Snitsky, who has been dominant on Heat in recent weeks.
Overview: Snitsky shoves Crazy to the corner and goes for a Big Boot, but Crazy just manages to slide out of the way. Crazy goes for a cross body, but Snitsky catches him in mid-air and slams him back-first into the top turnbuckle. Snitsky ties Crazy in the Tree of Woe and stomps away at him. Snitsky flings Crazy into the corner again and damn near tosses him all the way out of the ring. Snitsky hits a scoop slam, drops an elbow down onto Crazy’s chest and another elbow down onto Crazy’s back, and locks in a cross-face. Snitsky switches to a front chancery, drags Crazy back to his feet, and transitions to a double underhook. Snitsky hits a Sidewalk Slam and goes for a leg drop, but Crazy just manages to roll out of the way. Crazy hits a pair of basement drop kicks to Snitsky’s knee, connects with a basement drop kick to Snitsky’s chest, and finds a top rope missile drop kick for a two count. Snitsky whips Crazy to the corner and Crazy tries to float over, but Snitsky catches Crazy on his shoulder. Snitsky goes for a power slam, but Crazy slides out and lands on his feet behind Snitsky. Crazy hits the ropes and charges at Snitsky, but Snitsky damn near decapitates him with a Big Boot. Snitsky drags Crazy back to his feet and hits him with a pump-handle slam for the three count.
Analysis: I can’t believe I’m about to say this, but Snitsky actually seems to be improving in the ring. I mean, sure he’s still basically just using the standard monster heel offense, but he’s throwing in a few new moves such as a front chancery or a cross-face here and there. I still don’t think Snitsky has the potential to move much farther up the card, but I give a lot of credit to him for nonetheless trying to improve himself and his matches. I’m not saying that I ever want to see Snitsky main event a pay-per-view, but I’ll be more than happy to continue covering his matches here in the Heat Report.
Result: Snitsky defeats Super Crazy with a pump-handle slam.
Best Spot: Snitsky’s Big Boot
Match 4: “The Canadian Bulldog” DH Smith vs. Paul Burchill w/ Katie Lea Burchill
Background: “The Canadian Bulldog” DH Smith and Paul Burchill are both rising stars in WWE who are trying to make their names here on Heat. Last week on Heat, both of these two relative newcomers picked up important wins over established Heat veterans as Smith defeated “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan while Burchill bested Val Venis. Both Smith and Burchill will be looking to make a statement in this clash of Heat’s new blood.
Overview: Smith seems to have returned to his plucky baby face persona after his brief foray as a heel last week. Smith takes control early with an arm drag takedown, but Burchill fires back with a headlock takedown. Burchill goes for a rear sleeper hold, but Smith counters into a modified key lock into a sweet modified arm drag takedown. Smith switches to a standing rear hammer lock, but Burchill retaliates with a volley of forearm shots to Smith’s back. Smith regains control with an arm bar into an arm breaker and then hits a swank hammer lock suplex for a two count. Burchill pounds away at Smith and goes for a vertical suplex, but Smith counters into an attempted vertical suplex of his own. Burchill counters and once again goes for a vertical suplex, but Smith again counters and this time successfully hits a delayed vertical suplex for a two count. Burchill rolls out of the ring to catch a breather, but Smith follows him out to press his advantage. Burchill tries to escape by sliding back into the ring and then kicks Smith right in the chest and sends him back-first into the ringside barrier. Burchill drags Smith back to his feet, slams his head into the ring apron, pounds away at him, and rolls him back into the ring before sliding back into the ring himself.
Burchill locks in a rear sleeper hold but then releases the hold and drops a knee onto Smith’s neck for a two count. Burchill goes back to the rear sleeper hold, but Smith fights back to his feet. Burchill flings Smith back down to the mat and lands a stomp to the head for another two count. Burchill locks in a straight jacket (i.e., a cross-armed choke), but Smith fights back to his feet and powers out of the hold with a modified snap mare takedown. Smith tries to drag Burchill back to his feet, but Burchill flings him face-first into the second turnbuckle. Burchill hits a back suplex, but Smith comes back with a Lou Thesz press followed by a volley of mounted punches, a big back body drop, and two standing drop kicks. Smith hits a power slam and prepares for his twisting belly-to-back suplex, but Katie Lea distracts him long enough for Burchill to land a chop block. Burchill drags Smith back to the middle of the ring, hits him with the Curb Stomp, and gets the three count.
Analysis: This was a good match for both Smith and Burchill. I’ll admit that working with veterans gives young wrestlers a chance to learn some of the valuable intangibles required to put on high quality matches, but allowing two young guns like Smith and Burchill to face off against each other gives them the chance to showcase some of their more exciting offense as they did in this match. The opening chain wrestling sequence was really sweet, and each wrestler’s closing attempts to hit his finish move were equally compelling. You can argue that Katie Lea’s role in the finish was an unnecessary addition to the match, but I think it nicely demonstrated how a young wrestler like Smith can easily succumb to tricks that might not work on a wily veteran. Overall, this was a nice little match that serves to showcase both Smith and Burchill and left me wanting to see them face off again in a more lengthy match sometime soon.
Result: Paul Burchill defeats “The Canadian Bulldog” DH Smith with the Curb Stomp.
Best Spot: Smith’s hammer lock suplex
Okay kids, that’s it for this edition of Heat. Hope you had fun. Feel free to email me with any comments or suggestions. I’ll see you back here next weekend.