WWE SmackDown comes waltzing back into our lives tonight (March 29, 2013) from Hershey, PA, with a taped show on the SyFy channel; featuring the continued build to "WrestleMania 29", The Rock, John Laurinaitis, John Cena, Ryback, Mark Henry, mixed-tag action & more!
Be sure to come back here to hang out during the show at 8 p.m. ET/7c for the complete play-by-play in our SmackDown live blog.
WWE SMACKDOWN RESULTS AND LIVE BLOG FOR MARCH 29:
C.J. here to end the week right!
Video hyping The Rock's return.
Recap of Jack Swagger attacking Alberto Del Rio and Ricardo Rodriguez on Monday Night Raw.
Recap of Randy Orton, Sheamus, and The Big Show fighting off The Shield.
We are "live!"
IF YOU SMELL! WHAT THE ROCK! IS COOKING!
The Rock is out to open SmackDown!
The Rock remembers a few weeks ago when he did "Story Time With The Rock." He thinks it should continue because when he was a teenager he moved to a little town named Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.
It should be noted this is in Hershey, Pennsylvania. Cheap pop is cheap.
The Rock shows us a picture when he was fifteen.
He was an awkward looking child.
The Rock tells us one of the benefits of living in Bethlehem was that it was close to a certain town. And a certain park. One where he ate as much chocolate as he could.
It was a special place for The Rock, and he is proud to say...
FINALLY! THE ROCK! HAS COME BACK! TO HERSHEY!
Cheap pop is cheap. But effective.
The Rock tells us that he loved coming to Hershey. One weekend, he wanted only one thing.
A Hershey Whatchamacallit.
His friends were annoyed at The Rock's quest. They wanted to go out and buy beer.
But The Rock wanted his Whatchamacallit.
He finally found one! But when he reached for it, someone stepped in and grabbed it from him.
Something special happen that night, though. The Rock said something that would change the course of history of WWE.
"If you don't put down that candy, I'm gonna kick your candy ass."
The old lady put the candy down and ran out of the store.
And now we know the story behind that infamous line.
The Rock goes on to say that men will go through great lengths to get what they want, be it a Whatchamacallit.
Or beating John Cena at WrestleMania.
That was a long path to travel, but we finally got there.
Last Monday on Raw, Cena got in The Rock's face.
So he kicked his candy ass.
The Rock knows that Cena will came at him with more passion and anger at WrestleMania.
But The Rock will keep kicking his candy ass.
Cena will come at The Rock with his jean shorts.
Kick his candy ass.
Cean will come at The Rock with his fruity pebbles.
Kick his candy ass.
The Rock will do it in front of the millions...
AND HERE COMES JOHN LAURINAITIS TO THE RING!
It's always an exciting day when Mr. Excitement shows up.
Crowd: "You suck!"
The Rock wants to know who in the blue hell Laurinaitis is.
Laurinaitis laughs. The Rock knows who he is. The entire WWE Universe knows who he is.
He is John Laurinaitis. And he is the former Executive Vice President of Talent Relations. And the former General Manager of Raw and SmackDown.
Rock: "Well you clearly have me confused with someone who gives a crap."
The Rock is not happy "Story Time with The Rock" was interrupted.
Laurinaitis tells The Rock that Teddy Long allowed him to come out here. He knows that everyone thinks he will talk to long and end up getting a Rock Bottom.
That would have been my guess.
Laurinaitis assures us that will not happen. Because he and The Rock are a lot alike. Almost like two peas in the pod. The Rock is The People's Champion.
Laurinaitis created People Power!
He was the greatest General Manager WWE had ever seen.
Until John Cena got in the way.
Cena was the reason he was fired, and Cena is the reason he's back.
The Rock tells Laurinaitis Cena will be the reason he gets his monkey ass kicked all over this arena.
Laurinaitis gets at his point. Cena will do whatever he needs to do to beat The Rock. So Laurinaitis has a proposition.
Big Johnny in the corner of The Rock!
I love it!
The crowd does not.
Laurinaitis asks The Rock if he wants to be popular, or if he wants to win.
Laurinaitis: "That is why, with me in your corner, there is no way...
"AND BIG JOHNNY SAYS NO WAY!
John Cena will beat you at WrestleMania"
Laurinaitis says the he and The Rock are like the Reese's peanut butter cup.
Two great tastes that taste great together.
The Rock thinks about it. Because he is The People's Champion, he feels it right to involve the people.
He asks the crowd if they would like to see this stale, old, indigestible, stick to the roof of your mouth until you want to vomit piece of peanut butter team up with the most electrifying piece of chocolate the world has ever seen!
The Rock hears that the people have spoken. He has a business proposition for Laurinaitis. Together, they can send Cena a message.
Laurinaitis likes this idea very much.
The Rock asks for a handshake. Laurinaitis obliges.
The Rock holds it.
And holds it.
And holds it.
And The Rock hits the spine buster! Off the ropes he goes to deliver The People's Elbow!
Technically not a Rock Bottom.
Rock: "Cena, come WrestleMania, your candy ass is going down again."
IF YOU SMELL! WHAT THE ROCK! IS COOKING!
BREAK THE WALLS DOWN!
Chris Jericho makes his way to the ring, sporting a black eye.
Recap of Fandango costing Jericho a match against Jack Swagger, and assaulting him afterwards.
The Miz sitting at ringside.
Out swaggers Wade Barrett.
Chris Jericho vs. Wade Barrett
Both men lock up. Wade gains control with a side headlock. Jericho sends him off the ropes, but Wade comes back with a shoulder block.
Up pops Jericho, though, and delivers a series of chops. Off the ropes goes Wade, and back he comes into Jericho's elbow. Big drop kick from Jericho. Wade staggers to the ropes, and Jericho is right there with a clothesline to send him over.
Jericho quick with a baseball slide to send Wade reeling. Jericho slams Wade's head into the apron.
Wade tries to flee, but Jericho rolls him back in the ring. He lets off a few stomps and kicks.
Wade makes it back to his feet and lets off a few body shots. He follows with a head butt as Jericho stumbles to the corner. He gives Jericho a few stomps before the ref pulls him off.
Post to post whip is reversed. Jericho tries to follow, but Wade flips him over the ropes. Jericho lands on the apron, and delivers a right to Wade's mug.
Jericho tries to climb into the ring, but Wade is right there with a big boot.
We come back from commercial with Wade in control with a head lock. Jericho makes it to his feet and lands a chop. Off the ropes he goes for a shoulder block. Again off the ropes, and again he lands a shoulder block. Off the ropes again, but this time Wade sends him over the top.
Jericho lands on the apron, though, and scurries up the turnbuckle. Down he goes with a flying clothesline to drop Wade.
Jericho goes for the Lionsault!
But Wade rolls out of the way.
Jericho lands on his feet, but Wade is right there to hit Winds of Change.
Only gets a two count.
Jericho crawls to the corner. Wade is right there to land a body blow. Jericho is whipped across the ring. Wade tries to follow, but Jericho gets the boot up. To the top rope Jericho goes...
And he hits the lateral press!
Only good for two.
Jericho lands a pair of kicks and runs the ropes. Wade is there to lift him into a fireman's carry.
Jericho wiggles free and tries to set up for the Walls.
Wade lands a few rights to the dome to escape. He tries to charge, but Jericho pulls down the top rope to send Wade tumbling.
Up on the apron Wade goes. Jericho launches himself off the ropes...
And Wade ducks underneath as Jericho hurtles to the outside.
Wade rolls Jericho back in and mean mugs The Miz. "The Awesome One" gets out of his chair as the pair exchange words.
Wade gets back into the ring to beat the ten count.
And Jericho is right there with a Codebreaker! That gets the three count and the victory.
Jericho grabs a mic post match. He wishes he could savior this victory over the Intercontinental Champion with every single Jerichoholic in the arena tonight. But it looks like the man he will be facing at WrestleMania will be making his grandiose entrance.
He points to the ramp. Fandango's archway of ribbons is all set up. That must be a pain in the ass to get up and down.
Jericho adds that he cannot pronounce his name properly.
But he will try again.
Jericho: "Fan...dingbat! Fan...doodle! Fan...nakki! Fan...fancy pants! Fan...Danny DeVito! Fan...tom of the opera! Fan...boongo boongo! Fan...I see a little silhouetto of a man! Scaramouche, Scaramouche, will you do the Fandango? Go! Gooooooooo!"
Oh Jericho. Never change my good man.
The trumpets hit, and out comes Fandango himself!
He makes his way down to the ring, with Jericho encouraging him to come down.
Crowd: "You can't wrestle!"
Fandango instead spins his lady friend around, and heads back up the ramp.
Recap of the past few weeks of Triple H and Brock Lesnar's feud.
Video of an interview between Josh Mathews and Paul Heyman. Mathews starts to go on a spiel, but Heyman interrupts and wonders if Mathews is going to ask a question. Something relevant, perhaps even intelligent.
Mathews says that on Monday Triple H made an announcement to the WWE Universe.
Heyman wonders if he is supposed to respond to what Triple H had to say. As if he is here for a rebuttal.
Heyman is here to get Brock Lesnar's take on the record. They have put Triple H, not in a no win situation but a must lose situation. When Heyman says Triple H's career is on the line, he didn't mean his in ring career.
He meant his entire career.
Lesnar is going to crush Triple H at WrestleMania. Then what will happen?
Triple H will be forced to sit behind a desk and live vicariously through his employees. He will have to watch as two men enter a ring and compete the way Triple H can fantasize about, but cannot do because the option was taken away from him.
And Triple H will grow to resent the WWE locker room.
How can one lead the next generation of superstars into prominence when you hold them in such contempt when ultimately...
You are jealous of them.
Eventually the locker room will be poisoned against Triple H and they will rebel. And the entire WWE roster will rise up against Triple H.
After all these years, behind the scenes and in the ring, Triple H made the two biggest mistakes not just of his career but of his life.
First, Triple H thought he could compete with Paul Heyman intellectually. But Triple H is no match for him.
And then, Triple H thought he could compete with Heyman's client physically, and, Heyman assures us, Triple H is no match for Brock Lesnar.
Booker T and Teddy Long standing on top of the ramp. Booker reminds us that we are less than two weeks away from WrestleMania.
But tonight, two of the most powerful men in WWE will prove who is the strongest.
And we will be using the bench press contest. 225 pounds. As many reps as you can.
FEED! ME! MORE!
Ryback comes out first.
Booker starts to introduce Mark Henry, but Teddy steps right up and interrupts him and does it himself.
Not cool Teddy.
SOMEONE GONNA GET THEIR ASS KICKED!
Ryback and Henry immediately start jawing at each other. Booker steps between them and reminds them about the no-contact clause.
They flipped a coin in the back, and Henry will go first.
Henry chalks up. He gets in position.
Booker lets us know the world record is fifty one reps.
Henry lifts, and the crowd counts off. He hits forty pretty quickly, but starts to slow down. He struggles through the next ten.
Just gets fifty up.
He makes it to fifty three.
He has fifty four on the way up, but the ref does not count it.
Ryback turns. He starts a "Feed! Me! More!" chant before channeling his inner-Goldberg and smacking his head.
He gets into position. Ryback starts off strong, but hits a wall at forty five. He is slowly able to get the next few up.
Fifty three. Things are all tied up.
He goes for fifty four...
But Henry shoves the ref out of the way and pushes down on the bar. Ryback struggles to keep it off his neck. Henry pushes down on Ryback's throat. He's struggling under the weight.
Ryback finally is able to wiggle so the weights slide off the bar. He falls off the bench press, choking.
Henry looks down at his efforts before walking to the back. He technically never touched Ryback.
Ryback is choking and having a hard time catching his breath. He's down on one knee as personal surround him.
Daniel Bryan & Kaitlyn vs. Dolph Ziggler & AJ Lee
Bryan and Ziggler starting things off. They circle before locking up. Ziggler gains the side headlock. Bryan sends him off the rope, but he comes back with a shoulder block.
Ziggler gyrates to show he is impressed with himself.
Off the ropes Ziggler goes. Bryan is waiting with an arm drag. He holds onto the arm.
Ziggler makes it back to his feet and lands a right to the dome. Bryan stumbles to the corner, and Kaitlyn tags herself in.
Divas Champion and her former friend are up. AJ gives mischievous look.
Then she runs and hugs onto the ropes like a baby as Kaitlyn charges. Ref pulls Kaitlyn off. AJ takes advantage with a kick to the leg and head.
Only gets a two count.
AJ slams Kaitlyn's head into the mat before delivering a wicked neck breaker. Back to her feet, and AJ lands a second.
Only good for two.
Both women to their feet. AJ lands a back kick before running the ropes.
And Kaitlyn is waiting with a flying shoulder block.
Hot tag to Bryan! Which means Ziggler sort of gets a hot tag, because he has to come into the match.
Ziggler swings wildly and misses. Both men off the ropes, and Bryan hits the clothesline.
Ziggler crawls to the corner. Bryan delivers the flying dropkick.
To the top rope both men go...
And Bryan with a top rope hurricanrana!
But Ziggler rolls through and gets the roll up!
Bryan kicks out at two.
Bryan with the smart kicks to a kneeling Ziggler. AJ tries to run into the ring, but the ref stops her.
Off the ropes Bryan goes, but Big E is right there to trip him up. Bryan looks back, then focuses on Ziggler...
And meets a sweet dropkick.
Only gets two.
Kane with a big boot to Big E! Ziggler with a baseball slide to Kane!
Bryan goes for the NO! Lock!
Ziggler wiggles free and makes the flying tag to AJ.
She does not seem pleased.
Ziggler rolls outside the ring, but Bryan is quick to follow and attack.
But AJ is quick to jump on Bryan's back! Ziggler lands a kick to Bryan's gut. He stumbles to the barricade. Ziggler tries to follow, but meets a back body drop into the time keeper's area.
AJ being dragged by the hair into the ring. AJ drops Kaitlyn's neck on the top. AJ takes her time getting back into the ring...
And eats a SPEAR! from Kaitlyn!
That gets the three count!
Bryan and Kane mouthing off to Ziggler and Big E.
Shaky cam promo from The Shield. WrestleMania is upon us. The grandest stage of all. The showcase of the immortals. All those cliches you hear this time of year. But the worst cliche of all came from Orton, Sheamus, and Show when they said they can put aside their differences and work together to fight a common enemy.
At WrestleMania, they will choke on their cliches. And fail like everybody else.
The strength of their purpose is stronger than anyone of them. Orton, Sheamus, and Show don't stand a chance.
A "Giant," a "Viper," a "Celtic Warrior." These things don't mix, they are too combustable.
This is not a game. This is a story about Justice, and the final chapter will be written at WrestleMania.
Believe in The Shield!
Jack Swagger vs. The Great Khali
The pair lock up, with Khali sending Swagger into the corner. They lock up again, and again Khali pushes the #1 Contender back. He sets up for the giant chop...
But Swagger is able to roll out of the way. He throws a few punches before landing a shoulder to the midsection. Off the ropes he goes...
Right into a Khali chop.
Khali slams Swagger's head into the turnbuckle. Again he sets up for the giant chop, and this time he hits it.
Swagger staggers to another corner. Khali is right there, though, and again delivers the giant chop.
Swagger stumbling around the ring. Khali sets up for the Punjabi Plunge...
But Swagger knocks the giant's arms off. He pushes Khali into the corner and lands a series of knees to the gut. Khali manages to push him off.
Swagger charges, but is met with a shoulder. Again Swagger charges, and this time he eats a big boot.
Clothesline after clothesline from Khali. He is calling for the big chop...
But Swagger rolls out of the ring to get a breather.
Khali tries exit the ring. Swagger is right there to drive the "Punjabi Nightmares" into the top rope.
The giant stumbles into the corner. Swagger charges. Khali gets the boot up, but Swagger aims for the other leg. Khali is down.
That did not look clean at all.
Khali rolls out of the ring. Swagger is right behind him. He sets up for the Patriot Lock, but Khali manages to kick him off. Again Swagger goes for the ankle, and again Khali holds him off.
Swagger lands a boot to the dome.
Swagger goes back to the Patriot Lock, and this time he gets it. Ref reaches a ten count, but Swagger don't care. He continues to torque the ankle.
Hornswaggle decides now would be a good time to help his friend. He smacks Swagger. The #1 Contender releases Khali and turns his attention onto the little fella.
Hornswaggle tries to flee, but Zeb is right there to stop him.
Swagger slams Hornswaggle into the barricade. He is out.
Swagger places his hands over his heart before stomping on Hornswaggle.
Out comes Ricardo Rodriguez with a crutch and a mic. He wants Swagger to take out his other leg.
Swagger rolls into the ring and draws a line with his foot. He wants Ricardo to come down.
Ricardo slowly makes his way down the ramp...
But it was a set up! Alberto Del Rio rolls into the ring from the opposite side! He lands a flurry of punches before locking in the Cross Arm Breaker!
Zeb reaches into the ring to claw at Del Rio's face. Del Rio has to break the hold.
But Ricardo is right there to whack Zeb across the back with his crutch!
Ricardo tosses it inside the ring to Del Rio, who takes a mighty swing at Swagger. He rolls under it and flees up the ramp with Zeb.
Raw Rebound of Punk getting run out of the ring by The Undertaker.
Backstage with Sheamus, Randy Orton, The Big Show, and Renee Young. She says most people are surprised they could all join together as a team.
Recap of the trio taking out The Shield on Raw.
Young asks Orton how they have been "gelling" as a group. Orton response that they have a common enemy, and that has brought them together.
Young asks Sheamus and Show if they have put aside their differences. Sheamus answers they absolutely have gotten over their problems.
Show says he never had any problems to begin with, and that it was Sheamus who had problems.
Sheamus responds the only reason he had any issues was because they didn't know they could trust Show.
Show doesn't see how that is his problem.
Orton jumps in and tells them they have to focus for their match.
Sheamus and Show reluctantly agree.
Orton tells Young they are all on the same page, which will be really bad news for their opponents tonight.
But even worse for The Shield.
Team Rhodes Scholars & Antonio Cesaro make their way down to the ring, with Sandow on the mic. He says unlike the dysfunctional and motley crue they will be facing, the trio of himself, Cody, and Cesaro are the quintessential six man team. Not only do they posses superior intelligence, but they share a disdain for ignorance.
Cody takes the mic. He says their opponents have nothing in common, except that they are common. Cody goes on to say himself, Sandow, and Cesaro will be the instruments of their downfall.
Cesaro gets the mic.
And he yodels. Because he's Swiss, you see.
Sandow: "You're welcome!"
JBL: "Everytime [Cesaro] yodels, Daniel Bryan comes running out of the locker room."
Randy Orton, Sheamus, & The Big Show vs. Team Rhodes Scholars & Antonio Cesaro
Orton and Cesaro starting things off. They lock up, and Cesaro gains the side head lock. Randy sends him off the ropes, where be bounces a few times before meeting a back elbow.
Orton hits an uppercut, sending Cesaro into the faces' corner.
Tag to Sheamus, who lands a series of clubbing blows. Ref finally pulls him off.
Sheamus tries to go back to work, but Cesaro gets the leg up. He lands an uppercut and a forearm. He sends Sheamus off the ropes and tries the hip toss.
Sheamus stands tall, though, and hits a clothesline.
Tag to Show and Cody.
Cody does not like this matchup.
Cody is hesitant to engage. He finally throws a punch, but Show shrugs it off and lands a body blow. Cody is sent into the corner. Show begins a chop fest on Cody.
Cesaro runs on the apron, but Show sends him flying. He feints towards Sandow, who jumps off the ring screaming, "No, no no!"
Delayed body slam by Show.
We come back from commercial with Sheamus holding Sandow by the beard and tagging in Orton.
Orton lands a kick to the midsection before sending Sandow to the corner. He climbs to the second rope, unleashing a flurry of rights to the head. He jumps off the turnbuckle and lands an uppercut.
Sandow is able to push him back into the heel corner and delivers a series of shoulder tackles. Ref pulls him off.
Cody and Cesaro try to use the traditional heel tactic, but Orton sends them flying off the apron. Sandow comes in with a forearm and a series of stomps. Ref pulls him off, and this time Cody and Cesaro are more successful with their attacks.
Tag to Cody, who stomps Orton in the midsection.
Tag to Cesaro, who lands a double stomp on Orton's chest.
Only good for the two count.
Orton tries to crawl away, but Cesaro is right there with the gut wrench suplex.
Only gets two.
Tag to Cody. Cesaro holds Orton while Cody stomps away. Cody locks what seems like a crossface on kneeling Orton.
Orton makes his way to his feet. A head butt breaks the hold. Orton runs the ropes...
And meets Cody's high knee.
Tag to Sandow, who immediately goes for the cover.
Orton kicks out at two.
Sandow going crazy with the big knees before hitting the leg sweep. He follows up with the Elbow of Disdain -- still not going to attempt the Latin name.
Only gets two.
Sandow with the headlock. Orton makes his way to a standing base. Couple of body shots break the hold. Sandow comes back with a few punches of his own.
Orton hits the backbreaker. Both men are down. They crawl to their corners...
Cesaro jumps on the neutral turnbuckle! Show rushes over to send him flying outside the ring!
Hot tag to Cody! Hot tag to Sheamus! Everyone gets a hot tag!
Sheamus gets his shine with a pair of double axe handles. He flies off the ropes and hits a big knee. He goes for a clothesline, but Cody ducks under. Sheamus sends him over the top rope. Cody catches his footing on the apron, but this only allows Sheamus to tie him up for some Irish Hand Grenades.
Sandow hops onto the apron to help his friend.
And he ends up getting some Hand Grenades to call his own.
Sheamus goes back to Cody, who hangs his neck on the top rope. Cody charges. Sheams is ready, though, and lands White Noise.
Sandow and Cesaro rush into the ring to double team Sheamus.
Show in to hit the WMD on Cesaro! He sends Sandow to Orton who hits the RKO!
Show and Orton cheering on their teammate. Sheamus is calling for it!
That is good for the three count.
The trio stand in the ring to celebrate.
SIERRA HOTEL INDIA ECHO LIMA DELTA THE SHIELD!
The trio of "faces" charge into the audience to meet The Shield. They are in control, beating the crap out of the NXT Trio.
The Shield finally escape, and Randy Orton, Sheamus, and The Big Show stand tall to close SmackDown.
Fade to black.