The Great American Bash (2005) - Background


The Great American Bash event featured a card, which contained matches that involved different wrestlers from pre-existing scripted feuds, plots and storylines. Wrestlers portrayed either a villainous or fan favorite gimmick as they followed a series of events which generally built tension, leading to a wrestling match. The name of a wrestler's character was not always the person's birth name, as wrestlers often use a stage name to portray their character.

The main event at The Great American Bash was a standard wrestling match for the World Heavyweight Championship, in which Batista defended the championship against John "Bradshaw" Layfield (JBL). The buildup to the match began when WWE Champion John Cena was drafted to the Raw brand, taking the title with him and leaving SmackDown! without a top-tier championship for the heavyweight division. General Manager Theodore Long, a portrayed match maker and rules enforcer, announced a match between six wrestlers for a new top-tier SmackDown! championship. On the June 30 episode of the SmackDown! television program, the match took place between JBL, Chris Benoit, Christian, Booker T, Muhammad Hassan, and The Undertaker. JBL was victorious in the match, but Long announced that he was still not the champion. Instead he had won the right to a match against the World Heavyweight Champion, Batista, who was SmackDown!'s final 2005 draft pick, making the World Heavyweight Championship exclusive to SmackDown!.

On the July 14 episode of SmackDown!, Batista defeated Orlando Jordan in a standard match after performing a Batista Bomb. After the match, JBL successfully attacked Batista by executing a clothesline. The following week on SmackDown!, JBL, who was accompanied by Jordan, threw himself a celebration party with the belief that he had already won the World Heavyweight Championship. Batista appeared, and as JBL fled the scene, performed a spinebuster on Jordan.

The event also featured a feud between Rey Mysterio and Eddie Guerrero. At the No Way Out event, Guerrero and Mysterio won the WWE Tag Team Championships from the Basham Brothers. After Guerrero and Mysterio lost the championships, Guerrero then began to portray a villainous character, turning on Mysterio in the process. At WrestleMania, Mysterio defeated Guerrero in a standard match. On the April 21 episode of SmackDown!, MNM (Johnny Nitro and Joey Mercury) defeated Mysterio and Guerrero to win the tag team championship. On the April 28 episode of SmackDown!, Guerrero and Mysterio faced MNM in a rematch for the title, but MNM retained them after pinning Mysterio for the win. At the Judgment Day event, Mysterio defeated Guerrero by disqualification, and on the June 30 episode of SmackDown!, the rivalry between Guerrero and Mysterio continued when Guerrero threatened to reveal a secret concerning Mysterio's son Dominick. Both the Mysterio and Guerrero families continued to beg Guerrero to not reveal the secret. A match was made between Mysterio and Guerrero for The Great American Bash, where if Mysterio won, Guerrero could not reveal the secret, but if Guerrero won, he would be able to reveal the secret on live television.

The third predominant feud prior to the event was between Chris Benoit and Orlando Jordan for the WWE United States Championship. On the July 7 edition of SmackDown!, Benoit defeated Booker T in a match to become the new Number One contender for the title. As a result of his winning the match and becoming the number-one contender, Long granted Benoit a match against Jordan for The Great American Bash.

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