Cyber Sunday (2008)
|Cyber Sunday (2008)|
Promotional poster featuring CM Punk
|"Propane Nightmares" by Pendulum|
|Promotion||World Wrestling Entertainment|
|Date||October 26, 2008|
|Venue||US Airways Center|
|Cyber Sunday chronology|
Cyber Sunday (2008) was the fifth and final Cyber Sunday (the third under this name) professional wrestling pay-per-view event produced by World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). It took place on October 26, 2008, at the US Airways Center in Phoenix, Arizona. It featured wrestlers from the Raw, ECW, and SmackDown brands. Eight professional wrestling matches and one miscellaneous segment were featured on the event's card. The event received 153,000 pay-per-view buys, less than the previous year's event.
Unlike other WWE events where the stipulations were determined by WWE's creative staff, stipulations for matches were determined by votes from WWE fans conducted on WWE's website and by text messaging. The event was scheduled to feature eight professional wrestling matches and one miscellaneous segment. Although the stipulations resulted from votes by WWE fans, different wrestlers were involved in pre-existing scripted feuds, plots and storylines, which led to scheduled matches in which WWE fans could vote upon stipulations. Wrestlers were portrayed as either villains or fan favorites as they followed a series of tension-building events. All wrestlers were from either the ECW, Raw, or SmackDown brands – a storyline division in which WWE assigned its employees to a different television program.
The main feud from the Raw brand was over the World Heavyweight Championship. On the October 6, 2008 episode of Raw, General Manager Mike Adamle announced that World Heavyweight Champion Chris Jericho would defend his title against Batista in a standard wrestling match, also known as a singles match, in which a guest referee would be voted for by WWE fans; the candidates for the position were Randy Orton, Shawn Michaels, and Steve Austin. Earlier that night, it was also announced that Santino Marella would defend his WWE Intercontinental Championship against a former Intercontinental Champion voted for by the WWE fans; the candidates were Roddy Piper, Goldust, or The Honky Tonk Man.
The main rivalry from the SmackDown brand was over the WWE Championship. It was announced on the October 10, 2008 episode of Friday Night SmackDown that WWE Champion Triple H would defend his title against either Jeff Hardy or Vladimir Kozlov in a singles match, or in a triple-threat match, a standard match involving both Hardy and Kozlov. Later that night it was also announced that The Big Show would face The Undertaker in a fans choice of match, which included a Knockout match, "I Quit" match, or a Last Man Standing match.
The only rivalry from the ECW brand was over the ECW Championship. It was announced on the October 14, 2008 episode of ECW that ECW Champion Matt Hardy would defend the title against the fans' choice of an opponent, with Mark Henry, Evan Bourne, or Finlay as the options from which to choose.
Before the event aired live on pay-per-view, Shelton Benjamin defended the WWE United States Championship against a superstar of the fans' choice in a match that was streamed exclusively on WWE.com. The candidates to be voted in were R-Truth, Montel Vontavious Porter and Festus. R-Truth won the poll by 59% over MVP and Festus, and hence faced Benjamin for the title. The match went back and forth, but ultimately Benjamin performed the Paydirt on R-Truth and pinned him to retain his title.
The first match to be aired live was a No Holds Barred match between Kane and Rey Mysterio. The No Holds Barred match stipulation was voted by the fans over a Falls Count Anywhere match and a Two out of three falls match. Early on in the match, Mysterio used his quickness and agility against Kane, along with some weapons like a Kendo stick and a STOP sign. Soon, Kane overpowered Mysterio and dominated the later part of the match. Near the end, Mysterio drop-toe held Kane and drove him face-first into the steel ring-steps kept in the corner of the ring. Then he hit Kane with a steel chair multiple times, before delivering a 619 and springboard splash and pinning him to win the match.
The next match featured Matt Hardy defending the ECW Championship against Evan Bourne, who was voted as the challenger by the fans over Mark Henry and Finlay. Early in the match, Bourne surprised Hardy with his agility, but Hardy eventually got control of the match. Nevertheless, Bourne hit several high-flying moves on Hardy, like a standing moonsault, a hurricanrana countering Hardy's Splash Mountain Bomb, and a diving knee drop from the top rope. In the end, Bourne missed the Air Bourne, and hence capitalizing, Hardy delivered a Twist of Fate to Bourne and pinned him to retain his title.
The third match aired was a tag team match with John Morrison and The Miz taking on Cryme Tyme (Shad Gaspard and JTG). This tag team match was chosen over an intergender tag team match having William Regal and Layla taking on Jamie Noble and Mickie James, and a World Tag Team Championship match between the champions Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase and the team of CM Punk and Kofi Kingston. The match featured numerous tag team moves from both the teams. At one point, Shad threw JTG over the ropes onto Morrison and Miz outside the ring. Back in the ring, Morrison and Miz controlled the latter part of the match. In the end, Miz, who was not the legal man in the ring, kicked Shad's knee behind the referee's back and Morrison delivered the Moonlight Drive to Shad for the pinfall.
The fourth match was between Santino Marella and The Honky Tonk Man for the Intercontinental Championship. Honky Tonk Man was voted as Marella's challenger by the fans over Roddy Piper and Goldust. Before the match started, Honky Tonk Man danced to his theme music and asked Marella to do the same, but he delivered a cheap shot to Honky Tonk Man to officially start the match. However, the match ended soon when Beth Phoenix, who was by Marella's side, tripped Honky Tonk Man as he preparing to hit Marella with his fist, and hence, the match ended in Honky Tonk Man's favor as he won via disqualification. Nevertheless, Marella remained the Intercontinental Champion as the title does not change hands via disqualification. After the match, Piper and Goldust made their way down to the ring to confront Marella. In the ring, Goldust hit the Final Cut on Marella, Piper hit him with a punch combination followed by an eye poke, and Honky Tonk Man delivered the Shake, Rattle and Roll to Marella.
The fifth match of the evening was a Last Man Standing match between The Undertaker and The Big Show. The Last Man Standing match stipulation was voted by the fans over a Knockout match and an "I Quit" match. In the beginning, Big Show threw Undertaker out of the ring, and after some time, Undertaker hit Big Show with a steel chair. The match continued with Big Show dominating Undertaker and striking him with punches. The match featured many other spots, like Undertaker thrusting Big Show's throat against a ringpost with a steel chair; Undertaker delivering a leg drop to Big Show on the ring apron, and then later countering Big Show's Chokeslam into a DDT; and, then Big Show hitting Undertaker with a TV monitor and even chokeslamming him from the Barricade through an announcer's table. In the end, Big Show hit Undertaker first with a chokeslam, followed by a knockout punch to the face and then with a steel chair, but Undertaker got to his feet each time before the ten count. Finally, Undertaker locked in Hell's Gate on Big Show causing Show to lose consciousness and allowing Undertaker to win the match.
Throughout the night, a costume contest was held featuring the WWE Divas. The winner was announced in the ring before the WWE Championship match. Mickie James, dressed as Lara Croft, won the contest.
The next match was a WWE Championship match where the fans voted who Triple H's opponent, who was Jeff Hardy, who won the poll over Vladimir Kozlov. During the beginning of the match both Hardy and Triple H countered each other's moves, then it was evenly matched. Hardy then hit the Swanton Bomb, then went up to the top rope for a second Swanton Bomb, but was unsuccessful in doing so. As Hardy was attempting the move, Triple H got up and countered the move into a Pedigree, and pinned Hardy for the win, and to retain his WWE title.
The main event featured Chris Jericho defending his World Heavyweight Championship against Batista. Steve Austin was voted by the fans to be the special guest referee. Upon hearing the voting results, Jericho attempted to walk away from the match and get counted out, but Austin explained that if Jericho got counted out or disqualified, then he would lose the title. So Jericho ran back in and proceeded with the match. It went back and forth between the two until Jericho hit a double knee facebuster, called the Codebreaker, on Austin, allowing Batista to take advantage of Jericho. Shawn Michaels came down to the ring and counted Batista's attempted pinfall, which Jericho kicked out at two. Michaels was about to hit a superkick to the face, called Sweet Chin Music, on Jericho, but instead faked Jericho out. John "Bradshaw" Layfield came down to the ring and attacked Michaels. Then Randy Orton came out and was appearing to take over as the special referee, but Austin got up and hit a Stunner on Orton. The match ended with Batista pinning Jericho after a Batista Bomb to become the new World Heavyweight Champion. After the match, Austin and Batista celebrated as they drank beer.
It was announced on the 800th episode celebration of Raw that the World Heavyweight Championship would be defended at Survivor Series against John Cena. Later that night, Chris Jericho defeated Batista to win back the title, resulting in a Jericho versus Cena match at Survivor Series. At Survivor Series, Cena defeated Jericho to win the World Heavyweight Championship.
The feud between Triple H, Jeff Hardy and Vladimir Kozlov continued. On the November 7 episode of SmackDown, Kozlov defeated the Undertaker via disqualification to win a title match against Triple H at Survivor Series. Hardy asked Vickie Guerrero for another chance at the title, which she refused. Then on the November 14 episode of SmackDown, Hardy defeated Undertaker in an Extreme Rules Match, which led to Guerrero announcing that if Hardy could beat Triple H the next week, the match at Survivor Series would be a triple threat match between Triple H, Kozlov and Hardy. The next week, Hardy defeated Triple H to gain entry into the match. On the morning of Survivor Series, however, the storyline called for Hardy to be found unconscious in his hotel. The WWE Championship was changed to a standard singles match between Kozlov and Triple H, but during the match, Guerrero announced that, as promised, there would be a triple threat match. The angle allowed the returning Edge to make his previously unannounced return in the match and win the WWE Championship.
Canadian Online Explorer's professional wrestling section rated the entire event an 8 out of 10 stars and said that this PPV lived up to its hype. This rating was higher than the previous Cyber Sunday which was rated a 7.5 out of 10 stars. The Sun gave a positive review of the event, rating it an 8 out of 10, and praising the ECW Championship match as the match of the night.
|WWE.com||Shelton Benjamin (c) defeated R-Truth||Singles match for the WWE United States Championship||Unknown|
|1||Rey Mysterio defeated Kane||No Holds Barred match||10:17|
|2||Matt Hardy (c) defeated Evan Bourne||Singles match for the ECW Championship||11:01|
|3||John Morrison and The Miz defeated Cryme Tyme (JTG and Shad Gaspard)||Tag team match||10:22|
|4||The Honky Tonk Man defeated Santino Marella (c) by disqualification||Singles match for the WWE Intercontinental Championship||01:06|
|5||The Undertaker defeated Big Show||Last Man Standing match||19:23|
|6||Triple H (c) defeated Jeff Hardy||Singles match for the WWE Championship||15:37|
|7||Batista defeated Chris Jericho (c)||Singles match for the World Heavyweight Championship with Steve Austin as the special guest referee. Had Jericho been disqualified or counted out, he would have lost the title.||17:06|
(c) – refers to the champion(s) heading into the match
|Opponent for Shelton Benjamin|
|Stipulation for Kane vs. Rey Mysterio|
|Opponent for Matt Hardy|
|Tag team match selection|
|Opponent for Santino Marella|
|Stipulation for Big Show vs. The Undertaker|
|Winner of the Divas Halloween costume contest|
|Opponent for Triple H||
|Special guest referee for Chris Jericho vs. Batista|
- ^ – Before the event was broadcast live on pay-per-view, this match was shown live via a webcast on WWE.com, WWE's official website.
- ^ – A regulation in WWE is that championships cannot be won by disqualification; even though the champion lost the match, he retains the title.
- "Cyber Sunday website". World Wrestling Entertainment. Retrieved October 14, 2008.
- "Cyber Sunday 2008 results". Pro Wrestling History. Retrieved September 26, 2008.
- "Greatest Moments in Pay-Per-View History". WWE Magazine: 64–65. 2007.
- "WWE Reports 2008 Fourth Quarter and Full Year Results". World Wrestling Entertainment Corporate. Retrieved February 24, 2009.
- Sitterson, Aubrey (October 6, 2008). "Still No. 1". World Wrestling Entertainment. Retrieved October 25, 2008.
- Burdick, Michael (October 10, 2008). "Unchecked Contention". World Wrestling Entertainment. Retrieved October 25, 2008.
- "Extreme luck". World Wrestling Entertainment. October 14, 2008. Retrieved October 25, 2008.
- "Cyber Sunday Voting Results". World Wrestling Entertainment. Retrieved October 27, 2008.
- Passero, Mitch (October 26, 2008). "Deadman's revenge". World Wrestling Entertainment. Retrieved October 27, 2008.
- McNamara, Andy (October 26, 2008). "Cyber Sunday lives up to the hype". Canadian Online Explorer. Retrieved June 14, 2009.
- Sokol, Chris (October 29, 2007). "Cyber Sunday succeeds on many levels". Canadian Online Explorer. Retrieved June 14, 2009.
- McNichol, Rob (October 30, 2008). "Animal Magic still there for the WWE". The Sun (London). Retrieved January 30, 2010.
- McNamara, Andy. "Cyber Sunday lives up to the hype". Canoe: Slam Wrestling. Retrieved October 27, 2008.
- Dugan, Tracy (October 26, 2008). "Still the Gold Standard". World Wrestling Entertainment. Retrieved October 27, 2008.
- Vermillion, James (October 26, 2008). "The Big Red Monster mashed". World Wrestling Entertainment. Retrieved October 27, 2008.
- Rote, Andrew (October 26, 2008). "Hardy controls his own fate". World Wrestling Entertainment. Retrieved October 27, 2008.
- Sitterson, Aubrey (October 26, 2008). "WWE dot combat". World Wrestling Entertainment. Retrieved October 27, 2008.
- Adkins, Greg (October 26, 2008). "Combo Italiano". World Wrestling Entertainment. Retrieved October 27, 2008.
- DiFino, Lennie (October 26, 2008). "Cyber Sunday: Triple H marches on as champion". World Wrestling Entertainment. Retrieved October 27, 2008.
- Tello, Craig (October 26, 2008). ""Stunning" new champion". World Wrestling Entertainment. Retrieved October 27, 2008.