The Undertaker Vs Mr Kennedy – WWE Smackdown 20/04/2007
Mr Kennedy and The Undertaker had a pretty great series of matches in late 2006, and while they were no longer feuding by 2007, they still had a handful of matches on Smackdown, both singles and tag matches. At this point in time The Undertaker was the WHC and in a feud with Batista, while Mr Kennedy was the MITB briefcase holder who could cash in at any time. Seemed like a natural fit to put Undertaker and Kennedy in the ring again during this time period. The previous week Batista and The Undertaker had teamed up together to take on Finlay and Mr Kennedy, and earlier in the night on this 400th episode of Smackdown, Batista took on Finlay in a singles match. So now it’s time for the other half of the tag teams to face off!
Remember when Mr Kennedy was set to be a World Champion? And he was actually, you know, good? Well, unfortunately for Kennedy, he would only actually be good and considered the next World Champ for about… 3 weeks? Basically, in a couple of weeks time, Undertaker and Batista would have a cage match on SD, which would end in a draw, and Mr Kennedy would come out to cash in his title shot and become the World Heavyweight Champion. As you will already know, Edge took Kennedy’s place, as Kennedy was misdiagnosed with an injury (was made out to be worse than it actually was). So, no title for Kennedy, and for whatever reason, during his time off to heal from the injury he actually had (and not the OMG serious one he was originally told he had)… he forgot how to be good. Seriously. From 2006 (when he returned from his first injury while being on the main roster) to 2007 (when he got injured again), around a full year, Mr Kennedy was awesome. Don’t believe me? Keep checking out my Smackdown 2006 project as I will be getting to a ton of Kennedy matches that made ME a fan of the guy (I only really remembered him from his late WWE run and his current, and awful, TNA run).
Lol, this is supposed to be a review for Undertaker Month, and I’m talking about Kennedy. So, best not piss of the Dead Man and start talking about him too. 2006 and 2007 was very good to The Undertaker too. Not in the same way it was for Kennedy (I already knew Undertaker was a fantastic worker), but it was during these years that Undertaker really stepped up his game and imo looked better than he EVER had (even in 1997 which was a fantastic year for him). I’d even call him Wrestler of the Year for 2007, despite being injured for a couple of months. That’s just how awesome his work was when he was in the ring.
What was I doing again? Oh yeah, reviewing this MATCH :p. Both men know each other really well thanks to their feud in 2006, so they don’t waste too much time feeling each other out. Hell, Undertaker goes for a Chokeslam in the first minute, but Kennedy knows all too well what that feels like and makes damn sure he avoids it, even if it means getting a boot to the face instead. Kennedy again scouts a signature Undertaker move (Old School this time) and manages to counter it, but The Undertaker, ever since winning the Royal Rumble a couple of months ago, has been on such a roll that nothing Kennedy can do in the early going is able to slow him down.
A missed boot in the corner finally gives Kennedy an opportunity to get back into the match, and gives him something to focus on (the knee) in hopes of keeping The Undertaker down long enough to win the match. One of the things I loved about Kennedy from watching his 2006 run was how well he sells, and even though he is controlling the match, he still does little things to show that his arm isn’t 100% after The Undertaker worked it over earlier in the match.
As much as Kennedy tries to keep The Undertaker down, the World Heavyweight Champion is too strong and has too much experience, and he uses everything he knows to create an opening for himself to get back into the match. Funny, normally with Kennedy matches it was Kennedy who would be the guy to create openings for himself (and it’s another of the many things that made me love his 06 run lol). From here on out, aside from a few shots by Kennedy, this is all Undertaker until Finlay shows up and the double team begins! It happened to Batista earlier in the night, and now it’s happening to The Undertaker.
This match only goes around 11 minutes, but they pack in a hell of a lot. Great selling from both men when it called for it (Kennedy with the arm, Undertaker with the leg), Kennedy looked good on offence, and Undertaker really looked like a veteran with the things he would do to keep himself in the match when Kennedy was in control. Finish was obviously done to help set up Kennedy’s big title win in a couple of weeks, but it never happened, thus making The Undertaker look a little weak when I look back on the match. Since I know what the original reason was, I can look at it in the way it was intended to be, so it doesn’t make me thing any less of the match :).