Zack Ryder def. Drew McIntyre
Originally, Christian was set to be a member of Team Johnny at WrestleMania 28 that Sunday, but due to suffering from an injury, he was replaced on the go-home show for the pay-per-view by McIntyre. It was cool for McIntyre to get a WrestleMania moment (especially since his team would win), but the guy had been irrelevant for close to two years, so his addition to the team was a letdown. Meanwhile, Ryder, despite being on the downswing in his failed feud with Kane, remained popular with the fans, so they were solidly behind him here. I'm actually surprised this match lasted as long as it did, but it was well-wrestled, nevertheless.
Big Show Addressed Intercontinental Champion Cody Rhodes
The story heading into WrestleMania 28 was that Big Show was determined to get his WrestleMania moment by beating Rhodes for the Intercontinental Championship, which he would, and that's what he talked about here. Granted, it wasn't anything fans hadn't heard before and was mostly just a retread of past material, but it was straightforward and a fine final sell for his upcoming championship clash with Rhodes.
Chris Jericho def. Kofi Kingston
Although the ending outcome was never in doubt with Jericho challenging for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania 28 and Kingston taking part in a throwaway 10-man tag team match, these two have always had strong chemistry together, so I wasn't surprised they produced yet another entertaining encounter here. It was an effective warm-up for Jericho before his WWE title match at 'Mania, Kingston was able to score some offense over him, and the wrestling was solid, so I have no complaints whatsoever. Jericho locking in the Lion Tamer on Kingston for the victory was a nice touch, too.
As with any other SmackDown go-home show right before WrestleMania, this episode largely consisted of video packages and footage from WrestleMania Axxess. That said, the show was light on in-ring action, but what we did receive was good. Ryder vs. McIntyre was better than I thought it would be and Jericho and Kingston contested a quality match per usual, but obviously it isn't enough for me to justify recommending you watch this edition of SmackDown in its entirety.
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