Mega Powers Running Wild!

The legendary 'Macho man' Randy Savage teams up with 'The Immortal' Hulk Hogan to take on Ted Dibiase and Andre The Giant in the first ever WWF Summerslam!

Shawn Micahels vs. Mankind

The Heartbreak Kid defends the WWF Championship against Mankind in a thrilling main event at WWF In Your House: Mind Games.

The Birth of the nWo

From Hulk Hogan's shocking turn at WCW Bash at the Beach 1996 to the addition of Ted Dibiase, THe Giant Syxx and more, relive the very beginning of the New World Order.

Austin 3:16 Says I Just Kicked Your Ass

It's one of the most famous promos of all time; Stone Cold Steve Austin wins the 1996 King of The Ring and serves notice on all the WWF superstars. Check it out in our complete review

Wrestlemania 12 Review

The boyhood dream comes true as Shawn Michaels battles champion Bret 'The Hitman' Hart in a classic 1-hour iron man match. Plus, Diesel vs. Undertaker and more.

WCW Fall Brawl 1996 Review

Was Sting in cahoots with the New World Order? Would Lex Luger be able to get along with the Four Horsemen as they faced the nWo in War Games? Find out in this review

Showing posts with label Kat. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kat. Show all posts

Thursday, 10 September 2020

PPV REVIEW: WWF No Way Out 2001

WWE / WWF No Way Out 2001 - Event Poster
February 25, 2001
Thomas & Mack Center, Paradise, Nevada

I'm not sure if this is the first time I've said this, but it certainly won't be the last:

Until the Invasion came along and made a big mess of everything, the World Wrestling Federation were enjoying one of the best periods in their history, at least from a creative standpoint if not a commercial one.

By the time No Way Out 2001 came around, they were just weeks away from hammering the final nail in World Championship Wrestling's coffin and winning the Monday Night Wars once and for all.

Meanwhile, their stacked roster was churning top quality show after top quality show, all leading up to what would eventually become the show widely regarded as one of the greatest Wrestlemanias of all time, Wrestlemania XVII.

Before that, however, there was this, another in a long series of awesome events from the WWF.







Don't believe me? Lets head down to the wonderfully named Paradise, Nevada and see what went down at No Way Out 2001.

Two Men, Three Stages of Hell

WWE / WWF No Way Out 2001 - Jerry Lawler called his last PPV with Jim Ross before leaving the company for a few months
Tonight's opening video was nothing particularly special. It focussed on the show's two marquee matchups:
  • The Rock challenging Kurt Angle for the WWF title
  • Stone Cold Steve Austin taking on sworn enemy Triple H in the first-ever Three Stages of Hell match.
After the usual fireworks and hoopla, we got a greeting from our announcers Jim Ross and Jerry 'The King' Lawler, then headed down to ringside for our opening match.

World Wrestling Federation Hardcore ChampionshipWWF Hardcore Champion Raven vs. The Big Show

Two years ago to the month, Big Show had debuted WWF St. Valentine's Day Massacre and went straight into the main event scene. Now he was floundering in the hardcore division which nobody ever really took seriously.
WWE / WWF No Way Out 2001 - The Big Show beat Raven for the WWF Hardcore Championship
As he made his way to the ring, Show was attacked by a mysterious masked ninja woman who would later be revealed to be Tori.
Show disposed of her and then marched straight into a decent though uninspired garbage brawl with Raven.
Things got better towards the end when Crash Holly (disguised as a popcorn vendor), Bob Holly, Steve Blackman and Billy Gunn all ran in to get them some.
Gunn was temporarily our hardcore champion but then Raven won it back and lost it to Big Show.
Though the first part of the match wasn’t all that brilliant, the final few chaotic minutes were enjoyable.
Your Winner and NEW Hardcore Champion: The Big Show


WWE / WWF No Way Out 2001 - Kevin Kelly interviews The Rock
Earlier in the day, WWF Champion Kurt Angle arrived in a limousine and was interviewed by Kevin Kelly. Responding to Kelly’s question about how he was feeling, The Olympic Gold Medalist insisted he wasn’t at all worried about facing The Rock later on tonight.
Back live in the arena, Lillian Garcia interviewed Chris Benoit and Eddie Guerrero.
The two Radicalz would be competing in a fatal-four-way along with X-Pac and Chris Jericho for Y2J’s Intercontinental Championship. In a solid promo both men insisted that although they knew it was every man for himself, it would be one of the two of them taking home the gold tonight.

World Wrestling Federation Intercontinental Championship WWF Intercontinental Champion Chris Jericho vs. X-Pac vs. Eddie Guerrero vs. Chris Benoit

WWE / WWF No Way Out 2001 - Chris Jericho puts Chris Benoit in the Walls of Jericho
Although we might have had a better match had Jericho defended the title in a straight singles match against any one of these challengers, it was still a solid and compelling match.

Everyone got their chance to shine and everyone looked impressive. Yes, that includes X-Pac.
Speaking of Pac, he was helped out towards the end by his buddy Justin Credible, who was last seen on WWF PPV as Aldo Montoya back at the 1996 Royal Rumble.
After a very good match, Y2J rolled up X-Pac to escape with his title in tact.
Your Winner and Still Intercontinental Champion: Chris Jericho
Backstage, Triple H was busy getting his wrists taped while his father in law tried hinting to Commissioner William Regal that he should prevent the match between Stephanie McMahon and Trish Stratus.
Regal, of course, didn’t get the hint and had no idea what to do.

Who’s The Biggest Trash Bag Ho?

WWE / WWF No Way Out 2001 - William Regal confronts Trish Stratus backstage
Cutting to WWF New York, Test was on stage and was the perfect person to ask for their thoughts on a match between his ex-fiancé and former manager.
Test was looking forward to seeing both women beat the hell out of each other to determine who was -in his words- the biggest trash bag ho.
Back in the arena, William Regal tried to stop Trish and her boobs from going to the ring but had no luck.
Killing time, we got adverts for Raw is War and the new WWF The Music Volume 5 CD.
Finally, it was back to the ring.

Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley vs. Trish Stratus

WWE / WWF No Way Out 2001 -  Trish Stratus ready for her match with Stephanie McMahon
This was surprisingly pretty good.
Ok, so it was never going to be a great match, but Trish was improving as a wrestler and Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley was...
...Well, she put a lot of effort into it let’s put it that way.
Though the whole thing felt like it was building up to the spot where Steph pulled down Trish’s pants and gave her a spanking (to the obvious delight of the crowd), it was still pretty fun.
The end came when William Regal got involved and, after umming and ahhing about who to help, dropped Trish so that Steph could get the fall.
Your Winner: Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley
After a sentimental commercial for Wrestlemania X-Seven, a furious Vince McMahon scolded William Regal backstage and booked the two of them in a tag match. The following night on Raw it would Vince & Trish vs. Regal & Steph.
A video package aired next to promote the HHH vs. Austin match. Michael Cole then asked Stone Cold if he was ready to enter hell, but Austin just looked at Cole as if he’d asked him if he liked beer.
He then walked off, ready for battle.

Three Stages of Hell Two-out-of-Three Falls MatchTriple H vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin

WWE / WWF No Way Out 2001 -  Steve Austin battled HHH in a Three-Stages of Hell Match
This was billed as two-out-of-three falls with each fall having a different stipulation, but it was also presented as if we would definitely see a cage match for the third stage of hell, so that pretty much spoiled the fact that we would see Austin and HHH score one fall apiece in the first two stages.

Fall 1: Standard Wrestling Match

The first fall was your usual one-on-one encounter. For Austin, that would typically mean a brawl through the crowd and all kinds of outside-the-ring shenanigans, but since they had to make this feel different from the upcoming street fight, it was kept mostly in the ring.
The fact that it proved to be a solid chunk of pro wrestling proved that Austin was still capable of having a very good wrestling match without resorting to all of his usual tricks.
Speaking of Stone Cold, he capped off the first fall by destroying HHH with a stunner for the three count.
First Fall Winner: Steve Austin

Fall 2: Street Fight

The second fall was even better.
A brutal, bloody and violent war of a match, this may have been a carbon copy of just about every main event from around this time period, but it was still exceptional stuff.
Predictably, The Game scored the three count thanks to the pedigree after a thoroughly gripping battle.
Second fall winner: Triple H

Fall 3: Steel cage match

WWE / WWF No Way Out 2001 -  A Bloody Triple H prepares to drill Steve Austin with Sledgehammer
Though the street fight was arguably the best chapter of this story, the cage match was still an engrossing affair with a heck of a lot to enjoy.
After beating each other to within an inch of their lives, both men struck each other at the same time, HHH using his sledgehammer and Austin with a Foley-inspired barbed-wire-wrapped board. They collapsed to the mat, with a dead Triple H collapsing like a sack of crap onto Austin.
One three count later, and I’m pretty sure Austin became the first Royal Rumble winner to lose at the February PPV before still headlining Wrestlemania.
Please correct me if I’m wrong on that one.
Your Winner: Triple H
Afterwards, both men did an excellent job of selling the war they’d been through by playing dead for a really long time. Austin still managed to get one last stunner in there for good measure.

The Kat Wants to be Naked

Up next, we were told that Jerry Lawler would be facing Steven Richards. This all started because Ivory was feuding with The Kat, who hadn’t been seen on PPV since she faced Terri in a Thong Stinkface Match at Summerslam 2000.
According to JR, The Kat just wanted to be naked and was fighting for her right to do so against Right to Censor. This got Lawler involved and here we were.
Backstage, Richards led Right to Censor in prayer.

Be the Ultimate Fanatic

A commercial then aired for a competition in which you could fly to New York and appear with Mick Foley on something called Ultimate Fanatic. I’ve never heard of that and obviously trying to Google it just brings up Ultimate Warrior stuff, so who knows what that was.
With that done, Tazz came down to join JR on commentary. Neither man mentioned the fact that they were feuding six months earlier.

Steven Richards (w/ WWF Women’s Champion Ivory) vs. Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler (w/ The Kat)

WWE / WWF No Way Out 2001 -  The Kat wanted to get nekkidIf King wins, Kat gets naked. If Richards wins, Kat joins RTC.

This was an Ok match but there really went much to it. It was obviously just there to cool down the crowd after the incredible Three Stages of Hell and to that end it was at least highly effective.
After a few short minutes of inoffensive action, Kat accidentally blasted King with Ivory’s title belt.
Richards got the three count, denying the world of the Kat nekidness.
Your Winner: Steven Richards
Post-match, RTC kidnapped Kat. She would be forced to join the group the following night on Raw but would then be fired for real the next day, with Jerry Lawler also quitting the company in protest.

We’re Going to Put Those Boys Through Hell

Up next, a video package aired which showed Edge & Christian stirring things to get The Dudleyz beaten up by The Undertaker so that E&C could isolate Kane and destroy him with chairs.
Back live in the arena, The Undertaker told Michael Cole that tonight’s tag team title triple threat tables match wasn’t about the gold but about pain.
“We’re not just going to put those boys through tables,” said Kane. “We’re going to put them through hell.”

World Wrestling Federation World Tag Team Championship Triple Threat Tables Match WWF Tag Team Champions The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray & D’Von Dudley) vs. Edge & Christian vs. The Undertaker & Kane

WWE / WWF No Way Out 2001 -  Kane wore a rare all-black attire for his tag team match with The Undertaker versus Edge & Christian
Showing solidarity with his brother, Kane wore a rare all-black version of usual attire with only a hint of red on the mask. It looked pretty awesome, but wasn’t enough to help the Brothers of Destruction win the match even though they came pretty close.
Though it was messy in parts, it was also a lot of fun. Edge and Christian bumped like crazy, the champs got all of their spots in to the delight of the crowd, and Kane & ‘Taker did almost everything in unison, creating a kind of synchronised pro wrestling that worked for them.
Just when they looked to have the match won, however, the recently formed team of Rikishi and Haku came down to attack them.
That left The Dudleyz to put Christian through a table and retain their titles.
Your Winners and Still Tag Team Champions: The Dudley Boyz
Afterward, Undertaker dropped a very obvious F-Bomb and was clearly upset about losing the match despite claiming that he didn’t care about the titles just ten minutes earlier.
Before the main event we saw the exact same Wrestlemania commercial aired that we’d seen earlier.
Out in the back, Kurt Angle walked, ready to defend his title.

Finally, The Rock Has Come Back... To Las Vegas

Backstage, The Rock warned Kurt Angle that his time as WWF champion was over. The Great One gave us none of his usual catchphrases, but was still as charismatic as ever.

World Wrestling Federation Championship WWF Champion Kurt Angle vs. The Rock

WWE / WWF No Way Out 2001 -  Kurt Angle threatens to break The Rock's f'n Ankle
Damn, this was so insanely good.
It had a completely different vibe to it than the HHH/Austin match but it was still an absolutely riveting match with non-stop excitement from bell to bell.
At one point, The Big Show inexplicably came out and killed both competitors and the referee with chokeslams but that achieved nothing more than Mike Chioda being replaced with Earl Hebner.
Hebner and Tim White were carrying Chioda out of the ring when The Rock made a cover. Deciding that was more important than helping his colleague, Hebner hilariously dropped Chioda like a sack of crap. In the midst of all the drama it was a hysterically funny moment.
A little while later, Angle recovered from his chokeslam and cranked the ankle lock on his opponent.
“Come on, tap you son of a bitch!” Yelled Angle. “I’ll break your f**king ankle!”
Even more so than any of the actual wrestling moves, it was this intensity, this passion and emotion that match that made the match so amazing.
Eventually, the challenger made a comeback and hit two rock bottoms to regain the WWF Championship.
Your Winner and NEW WWF Champion: The Rock
Post-match, Angle ran off crying while The Rock celebrated, his third straight Wrestlemania main event now secure.







All in all, No Way Out 2001 was an awesome show from beginning to end. The IC title match, the outstanding HHH/Austin match and that incredible main event all make this a must-see show.
In between those matches, everything else served a purpose and was entertaining in its own right.
After a wonderful start to the year with a very entertaining Royal Rumble, the WWF were on a roll in early 2001.




Other reviews of 2001 pro wrestling events: 
    More WWF No Way Out Reviews
    Be the first to catch the latest Retro Pro Wrestling reviews by following on Facebook or Twitter @RetroPWrestling.

    Thursday, 30 January 2020

    PPV REVIEW: WWF Insurrexion 2000

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - Event Poster
    May 6, 2000
    Earls Court Exhibition Centre, London, England

    From the night The British Bulldog beat Bret 'The Hitman' Hart for the Intercontinental Championship (whether he wanted to or not) in front of a sold out crowd at Wembley Arena to the night he rather unceremoniously dropped the European Championship to Shawn Michaels in front of a Birmingham crowd which happened to include this writer, the World Wrestling Federation had always been able to rely on Davey Boy Smith to help them sell-out shows on English soil.  

    Yet over the last few years, the Wigan-born wrestler's star had greatly diminished without any negative impact on the company's British box office numbers.

    UK fans were still more than happy to sell out arenas to see headline acts like The Rock and Triple, leaving Bulldog to play a bit-part cameo on shows which, once upon a time, would have been built entirely around him.


    Tonight, Davey Boy would put in not only his final UK PPV appearance but his final PPV appearance ever, adding a somewhat somber note to an otherwise enjoyable show.

    Here's what went down when the first Insurrexion event came to us live from the Earls Court Exhibition Centre in London, England.


    Three Men, One Gold

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - Jim Ross & Jerry 'The King' Lawler
    Our event this evening began with the standard WWF video package, complete with a brooding, dramatic voice-over which told us that tonight we'd see WWF Champion The Rock taking on Triple H and Shane McMahon in a triple threat match.

    This was a logical development given what happened between the three men a week earlier at Backlash 2000, and the ever-impressive video package did a good job of making this match seem like the biggest deal ever.

    As was the norm, the video was followed by a scan of the rabid Attitude Era crowd and a welcome from Jim Ross and Jerry 'The King' Lawler, after which we went straight into our opening contest.

    Too Cool (Scotty 2 Hotty & Grandmaster Sexay) vs. The Radicalz (WWF Light Heavyweight Champion Dean Malenko & Perry Saturn)

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - Dean Malenko covers Scotty 2 Hotty
    This was a fun, if not necessarily spectacular, opener.

    Though nowhere near on the same level as the Scotty 2 Hotty/Dean Malenko clash from Backlash, it did at least deliver everything you could ask from competitors whose only job was to get the crowd pumped up for the rest of the show.

    Too Cool were super over in England, while Malenko and Perry Saturn were having issues which, according to JR, stemmed from Saturn being the only member of The Radicalz not to have a WWF title.

    At one point, the two got into a shoving contest and were never quite able to get back on the same page, resulting in Saturn inadvertently clotheslining the Light Heavyweight Champion and tha always-fun spot where one guy falls to the mat and accidentally headbutts the other guy's testicles.

    Obviously, this all led to a win for the good guys courtesy of Grandmaster Sexay's Hip Hop Drop.
    Your Winners: Too Cool

    Post-match, Saturn and Malenko came to blows until they were separated by a gaggle of referees.

    Meanwhile, back in the dressing room, Mae Young and The Kat talked about how they were going to work together in their upcoming match. A spooky promo for Judgement Day followed, then it was back out into the arena for a word from The Chairman.

    Nothing Ever Happens in England

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - Vince McMahon cut a scathing promo
    Proving himself to be one of the best heels of all time, Vince McMahon was absolutely loathed by the London crowd as he stepped out onto the stage to cut a scathing promo against The Rock, the people of London, and the UK as a whole.

    According to Vince, nothing of any consequence ever happened in England, and that, he claimed, was exactly what The Rock was counting on, knowing that when he lost the title here tonight, nobody would know about it.

    Eliciting a loud 'ASSHOLE' chant from the Earls Court faithful, McMahon guaranteed that not only would a McMahon family member become the new champion tonight, but that he would make sure the whole world new about it.

    This was awesome stuff from the boss.

    Bull Buchanan vs. Kane (w/ Paul Bearer)

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - Paul Bearer appeared with Kane
    Up next, we were reminded that Bull Buchanan had helped The Big Boss Man attack Kane on Raw a month before tonight's show. That was as good enough a reason as any to have a match tonight.

    Watching this short, explosive contest, I can't help but think that it's a shame WWE didn't do more with Buchanan. He was very athletic for his size and looked pretty decent in his offense. Unfortunately for him, simply looking good wasn't enough to win him a match.

    After a brief period of being on the defense, Kane anihilated Buchanan and picked up a quick win.
    Your Winner: Kane

    Out in the back, Triple H fawned over Stephanie McMahon and said, almost bashfully, how happy he was that Vince McMahon had referred to him as a 'family member' when talking about our next WWF Champion.

    Bursting her husband's bubble, Steph wasn't entirely sure that the 'McMahon family member' Vince had been referring to was actually The Game.

    Road Dogg (w/ Tori) vs. Bradshaw (w/ Farooq)

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - Tori accompanied Road Dogg to the ring
    Back in the arena, Hunter's DX buddy Road Dogg made his way to the ring with Tori in tow. I said this in last week's Backlash 2000 review, but it's kind of funny that DX members Road Dogg and X-Pac weren't featured in their own titantron but HHH and Run-DMC were.

    As the D-O-Double-G did his usually pre-match schtick, Tori kind of flailed about the place, trying to get in on the act. Poor girl, she looked so awkward and out of place that it was hard not to feel bad for her.

    The same could be said for Roadie's opponent, Bradshaw who, taking The Acolytes' new APA gimmick to a whole new level, had clearly been spending a lot more time sitting around drinking beer than he had in the gym.

    Not that it really mattered when it came to the action.

    Farooq got sent to the back early on after helping Bradshaw beat down Road Dogg, leaving the two legal competitors to give us a fun, five-minute effort in which Bradshaw mostly battered his opponent. A Torri distraction allowed Roadie to get a near-fall off a roll-up and then blast Bradshaw with a match-winning pump handle slam which was a little hard to believe when you consider the size difference between the two men.

    Though it was too short to really mean anything, this was nonetheless another decent bout.
    Your Winner: Road Dogg

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - Teri Runnels eating a bananaOut in the back, Michael Cole interviewed Terri Runnels and The Fabulous Moolah. Apparently, the former Marlena had trained for her upcoming arm-wrestling match with The Kat by sucking off a banana.

    I'm not kidding.

    Arm Wrestling Match
    The Kat (w/ Mae Young) vs. Terri Runnels (w/ The Fabulous Moolah)

    Perhaps the best thing anyone could say about this is that it happened.

    Going down pretty much the same way that every arm wrestling match ever went down in pro wrestling history, this 'contest' saw Terri, the heel, stalling as much as possible.

    First, she complained that The Kat's hands were greasy, then she stopped to drink some water, then she stopped to pull her hot pants off and do some stretches in a pink swimsuit which rode up her ass.

    Eventually, the two got things underway, only for Terri to spit water in The Kat's face. Retaliating, Mae Young poured a whole bottle of water over Terri's head, allowing Kat to pick up the win.

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - Teri Runnels faced The Kat in an arm-wrestling contest
    I mean, I won't lie, Terri Runnels was always smoking hot, but yeah, this was more embarassing than sexy.
    Your Winner: The Kat

    Post-match, Terri yanked off The Kat's top. Unphased, Kat flashed her puppies to the entire Earls Court Arena.

    Clever camera work would prevent the WWE Network from having to do any editing years later.

    #WomensRevolution

    Whatcha gonna do with all that ass

    Backstage, The Big Show and Rikishi were seen wearing matching show-as-much-ass-as-possible gear. This was during the phase when the WWF thought that the best way to use a 7ft former world champion monster was to make him "a guy who just likes to have fun."

    As he and 'Kishi waddled towards the curtain, Hardcore Champion Crash Holly was seen pointing at them and laughing his butt off.

    Elsewhere, The Rock arrived at the venue.

    The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray & Devon Dudley) vs. Showkishi & Rikishi

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - Bubba Ray Dudley with Rikishi's glasses
    Though this was never going to be a five-star classic, this could at least have been a fun and entertaining tag match.

    It wasn't.

    OK, so it wasn't exactly terrible or anything, but it just wasn't very interesting.

    I think part of the problem was that everyone -this writer included- was just waiting for the inevitable moment when Rikishi and Showkishi both hit simultaneous stinkfaces on their opponents.

    Even when it happened, it was just kind of "meh, yep, there it is."

    Towards the finish, Edge and Christian ran in. Edge speared Bubba Ray Dudley, Big Show landed a chokeslam and this one was over.
    Your Winners: Rikishi and Showkishi

    Afterwards, Too Cool returned to the ring and invited The Dudleyz to dance with them.

    In a cool moment, Bubba Ray and Devon Dudley only accepted Too Cool's trademark yellow dancing shades if Too Cool accepted *their* trademark Dudley glasses. You know, the ECW-style ones.

    This whole bit was far more entertaining than anything that happened in the ring.

    Angle Does London

    Up next, we were shown an entertaining video package of Kurt Angle wandering around London, introducing himself to bemused onlookers as their Olympic hero. Angle would take on Chris Benoit tonight, and The Crippler was in a foul mood.

    Sporting a black eye after a brutal match with Chris Jericho on Smackdown which saw Y2J capture the Intercontinental title, Benoit cut a menacing promo in which he stated that Angle was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

    Kurt Angle vs. Chris Benoit

    Making his way to the ring, Angle took to the microphone to insult the good people of England, insisting that our children were weak and uneducated, and that we would all be better off ditching the English language and learning American instead.

    Benoit was out next, but before the two could lock up, Crash Holly stormed to ringside to do commentary. This was distracting. The Hardcore Champion forced Ross and Lawler to focus their attentions on him and his quest to 'fight an Englishman,' rather than on the match at hand.

    This was a shame, because, as you'd well expect, Angle and Benoit delivered the goods here. Certainly, this wasn't the best match the two would ever have. Angle was still relatively new into his career here and lacked the big-match experience that would make his future bouts with The Crippler such classics.

    Still, it was a fun, hard-hitting contest that saw The Olympic Gold Medalist pick up the win with an Angle Slam.

    One small, little detail that really made this more enjoyable was the way Angle pinned Benoit. Earlier in the bout, he'd gone for two cover attempts, only for Benoit to grab the ropes each time. After the Angle Slam, however, Kurt made sure to not only hook the leg but also hold Benoit's arm in place, preventing him from getting the ropes.
    Your Winner: Kurt Angle

    Out in the back, Shane McMahon told Michael Cole that yes, Vince was supporting him in tonight's main event.

    Another creepy Judgement Day promo followed, after which Crash Holly got his wish of fighting an Englishman when Wigan's own Davey Boy Smith made an unexpected return to the World Wrestling Federation.

    World Wrestling Federation Hardcore Championship
    WWF Hardcore Champion Crash Holly vs. The British Bulldog

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - The British Bulldog won the Hardcore title in his last PPV appearance
    The match itself was fine. Like almost everything on the undercard so far, it was short and inoffensive with very little of note happening.

    What was noteworthy was this would prove to be The British Bulldog's last ever PPV appearance.

    After beating Crash with his trademark powerslam to win the Hardcore title, Davey Boy would meander around on Smackdown and Sunday Night heat for about a week before leaving the company altogether and ultimately passing away two years later.

    What makes it sad is just how far Smith's stock had fallen. This is the guy who main evented Summerslam 1992 with Bret Hart and who, at the height of the Hart Foundation's popularity, also headlined One Night Only back in 1997 as Britain's returning hero.

    Now he was involved in a throw-away spot on a card in London with zero fanfare, treated like just another run-of-the-mill midcarder.

    I know not everybody will care or have the same sentimental attachment to this as I do, but I share a hometown with the Bulldog so he's always been one of my favourites.

    Thanks for the memories, Davey Boy.
    Your Winner and NEW WWF Hardcore Champion: The British Bulldog

    Earlier in the day, WWF Tag Team Champions Edge & Christian were seen charging fans a fiver for autographs. Michael Cole turned up just as the two were asked for a photograph by a fan.

    Cole held the camera as the tag champs posed with the fan, but at the last possible moment they both blocked the fan out of the shot so that it was just a picture of the two of them.

    Trust me, it was funnier than I just made it sound.

    World Wrestling Federation Tag Team Championship
    WWF Tag Team Champions Edge & Christian vs. The Hardy Boyz (Matt & Jeff Hardy)

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - Christian puts a hurting on Jeff Hardy
    Though both teams would go onto have better matches with one another, this was still nonetheless a good match that saw all four men work hard.

    At one point, Jeff Hardy played face in peril which required some dubious officiating from referee Jimmy Korderas. Comically, King & JR decided to rag on Jimmy, not for his questionable refereeing, but for being 'follically challenged.'

    After a solid outing, all hell broke loose, disintegrating into a four-man brawl which only ended when Edge ran in with the ring bell and killed his opponents.
    Your Winners via Disqualification: The Hardy Boyz

    Post-match, The Dudley Boyz ran down and destroyed the tag champs, even putting Edge through a table.

    The European Champion Hates His Title

    Before the next contest, Eddie Guerrero and Chyna came to the ring to generate as much heel heat as possible for Guerrero.

    Foreshadowing Brexit by almost 20 years, Latino Heat talked about how Britons didn't really like being a part of Europe. That was fine by him, he said because he didn't like being the champion of Europe anyway.

    Guerrero was the consummate heel here and played his role to perfection, riling the crowd up so much that there was practically a frenzy when his opponent, Y2J arrived on the scene and told them -in his best British accent- that they could "bloody well piss off."

    Before locking up, referee Tim White flipped a coin to determine whether Jericho's IC title or Eddie's European belt would be on the line. Yes, this the exact same thing the WWF did seven months earlier at Rebellion 1999 when European Champion D'Lo Brown faced Intercontinental Champion Jeff Jarrett.

    Back then, the company made the curious decision not to have the European title defended in Europe. This time, however, they got it right, with Guerrero putting his gold on the line.

    World Wrestling Federation European Championship
    WWF European Champion Eddie Guerrero (w/ Chyna) vs. WWF Intercontinental Champion Chris Jericho

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - Chris Jericho faced Eddie Guerrero
    A lot had changed since these two last met on PPV back at WCW Fall Brawl 1997.

    Though neither man was quite at the zenith of their careers, they were certainly much bigger stars than they'd been during their time in WCW's cruiserweight division. Take their heightened star power, a few years of extra experience, and add it to the already stellar ring-work the two had displayed at Fall Brawl, and you had the recipie for another fantastic performance from two all-time greats.

    A really good showing that delivered everything you'd expect from a Jericho/Guerrero encounter, this tremendous match ended when Chyna kept the referee and got a flying dropkick to the mush for her troubles courtesy of Y2J. The distraction allowed Eddie to blast his rival with the title belt -a finish that had really been overplayed as of late- and retain his title.
    Your Winner and Still WWF European Champion: Eddie Guerrero

    In the build-up to our main event, we got a flashback to Backlash 2000 and The Rock's big world title win, followed by another compelling video package hyping tonight's three-way main event.

    Naturally, all of this led to a backstage promo from the champion himself.

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - Finally, The Rock...Has come back to LondonFinally, The Rock has Come Back...to London

    Shushing Michael Cole, The Great One was his usual ultra-charismatic self, cutting a captivating promo in which he claimed that the McMahons were all in-bred and didn't really trust each other.

    Tonight, The People's Champion would overcome the odds and leave London still our WWF Champion, if our nostrils sensed what he was preparing for dinner.

    World Wrestling Federation Championship
    WWF Champion The Rock vs. Shane McMahon (w/ Vince McMahon) vs. Triple H (w/ WWF Women's Champion Stephanie McMahon)

    Well, this was awesome.

    WWF Insurrexion 2000 - The Rock vs. Triple H vs. Shane McMahon
    Up until the inevitable moment when the two heels miscommunicated and turned on each other, it was essentially a handicap match, albeit a very entertaining one.

    At one point, Shane O' Mac did his trademark, Ali-style shuffle. Not to be outdone, Triple H also floated like a butterfly and stung like a bee.

    It was uncharacteristic of The Game, but it was sure was funny. Later, when things broke down, McMahon went for a moonsault on Triple H, missed, and landed on his feet. While that might not sound like much by today's standards, this was non-wrestler Shane McMahon, and it looked pretty cool.

    Eventually, as most WWF main events did at the time, this one broke down into an overbooked mass of joyfully entertaining chaos. Referee Mike Chioda got squashed by Shane in the corner, Hunter hit the Pedigree on Rock, and Gerald Brisco ran in to make the count.

    Before we got a new champion, however, The Rock made a last-minute kick out that sent the crowd into a frenzy. Irate, The Game drew back his fist and laid out Brisco before smashing the champion with Pedigree number two. Fraught, Vince McMahon himself hit the ring and struggled to squeeze his jacked-up frame into the referee shirt belonging to a much smaller Gerald Briscoe.

    This is one humerous thing I've always loved about the WWF rulebook. Apparently the only thing you need to be a match official is the right attire. You could be ringside for an entire match and have no authority to count a fall, but as soon as you slip into the zebra stripes, you suddenly get Super Referee Powers.

    Sadly for Vince, he wouldn't get to use his powers as Earl Hebner rushed to the ring and yanked Vince out of it. Vinny Mac went to punch Hebner, but the plucky official moved and The Chairman struck the ring post in what looked like a legitimatley painful spot.

    Back in the ring, The People's Champion made the comeback we'd all been waiting for and destroyed Shane O' Mac with The People's Elbow. Hebner counted the three, and that was all she wrote.
    Your Winner and Still WWF Champion: The Rock

    With the show at an end, The Great One celebrated with the people of London while a ticked off Triple H stormed angrily backstage with Stephanie in tow.






    There was a point, about an hour into Insurrexion 2000 when I thought this was going to go the way of most WWF UK shows, being nothing more than a glorified house show with better production values. From One Night Only to Capital Carnage and Rebellion, most events of this type featured throw-away bouts which, while not terrible, didn't exactly give you much to get excited about.

    Everything about the first hour of this show seemed as though it was going the same way. Then, Benoit and Angle came out and things got better from there on in. OK, so the Bulldog/Crash Holly bout which was sandwiched in there wasn't exactly a show-stealer, but apart from that, everything from Benoit/Angle more than delivered.

    The Eddie/Jericho bout and main event, in particular, were a lot of fun to watch. Those matches, along with The Hardyz contest and erm, a nice shot of Terri Runnels' bum, all contributed to what was the best WWF UK event since Summerslam 1992.




    For other year 2000 pro wrestling reviews see:
    Other WWE UK events
      Be the first to catch the latest Retro Pro Wrestling reviews by following on Facebook or Twitter @RetroPWrestling.

      Thursday, 26 December 2019

      PPV Review: WWF Wrestlemania 2000

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - Event poster
      April 2, 2000
      Arrowhead Pond of Anaheim, Anaheim, California.

      One of the main reasons why WWE's current product lacks appeal is that very little seems to change from one year to the next.

      For the past few years, you could pretty much bank on there being some form of universal title match featuring Brock Lesnar, on seeing Roman Reigns in a prominent position and on having an undercard full of guys who would enjoy zero career development from one year to the next.

      Yet back in the 1990s and early 2000s, things were very different.

      Consider the fact that, at Wrestlemania 14, Triple H was wrestling Owen Hart for the European title. At Wrestlemania 15, he was turning heel so that he could begin his ascent to the top of the mountain and here, at Wrestlemania 2000, he was heading into the show as our WWF Champion.

      Meanwhile, Stone Cold Steve Austin had headlined the last two Wrestlemanias but was out of action due to an injury, and a whole bunch of wrestlers who weren't even with the World Wrestling Federation back at Wrestlemania 15 were now booked in high profile matches.






      Yes, it's fair to say that things moved much, much quicker back in the day and, if you ask this long-time fan, they were much more exciting because of it.

      On that note, let's head to California for Wrestlemania 16.

      Lilian Sings the National Anthem

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - Lillian Garcia sang the American national anthem
      After a brief shot showed us the outside of the arena on a bright and sunny Californian evening, Howard Finkle introduced us to the WWF's own Lilian Garcia.

      Microphone in hand, Lilian got the show underway by singing a stirring rendition of the American National Anthem.

      For those of you still having nightmares of the time Rockin' Robin tried to sing it back at Wrestlemania V, let me assure you, this was nothing like that.

      Garcia belted out a truly stunning rendition in what was easily the best singing performance ever seen on a pro wrestling show. The crowd, quite rightly, loved it.

      Her performance was followed by the obligatory opening video which quickly looked back at the 15 preceding Wrestlemanias before telling us all about tonight's main event - a fatal-four-way elimination match in which Triple H would defend his WWF title against The Rock, The Big Show, andMick Foley  .

      Pimpin' Ain't Easy, B*tches

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - Ice T performed The Godfather's theme from WWF Aggression album
      Next, Finkle introduced us to rapper Ice T.

      Having performed a remixed version of the Godfather's theme on the recent WWF Aggression album, T accompanied Godfather and a pimped-up D'Lo Brown to the ring, all while performing that theme and taking any opportunity he could to yell "B*TCHES!" at the top of his lungs.

      It was an interesting performance, and one that was finished off by Godfather taking to the mic to do his own 'Pimpin' Ain't Easy' speech without uttering The B-Word.

      The Godfather & D'Lo Brown (w/ The Hos) vs. The Big Boss Man & Bull Buchanan

      It was only a few weeks ago, at No Way Out 2000, that The Big Boss Man had been paired up with Prince Albert. Now, apparently, Albert was out of the picture and newcomer Bull Buchanan was in.

      Buchanan (formerly Recon of The Truth Commission) looked impressive here as he and Boss Man isolated D'Lo from his partner and took control of what proved to be a decent yet unspectacular match.

      Despite mounting a comeback in the dying moments, D'Lo and Godfather were bested by Boss Man and Buchanan in the first Wrestlemania match of the new millennium.
      Your Winners: The Big Boss Man & Bull Buchanan

      Post-match, Boss Man and Buchanan chased off The Godfather's hos.

      The McMahon-Helmsley Era is in Charge

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - Ice T performed The Godfather's theme from WWF Aggression album
      Backstage, WWF Champion Triple H and his wife, WWF Women's Champion Stephanie McMahon were seen enjoying some cuddle time with their respective title belts.

      Hunter boasted about how good it was that The McMahon-Helmsley Era were in control of Wrestlemania tonight, leading Jim Ross to question whether The Game should have really been so relaxed considering what was at stake.

      The Rules of Hardcore

      From there, Ross and Lawler took us back to that night's episode of Sunday Night Heat. On that show, we saw wrestlers such as Hardcore Holly, Bradshaw, Taka Michinoku and Tazz gathered together in a room with WWF Hardcore Champion Crash Holly and referees Tim White and Jimmy Korderas.

      With Crash standing front and centre, White went over the rules of tonight's hardcore title battle royal. Essentially, this was a pre-cursor to the Championship Scramble matches. There would be a 15-minute time limit during which the title could change hands many times. The person left holding the title at the end wins the match.

      World Wrestling Federation Hardcore Championship Battle Royal~
      Featuring WWF Hardcore Champion Crash Holly, Tazz, Viscera, Pete Gas, Joey Abs, Rodney, Hardcore Holly, Taka Michinoku, Funaki, Mosh, Thrasher, Farooq, Bradshaw

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - Hardcore Holly won a Hardcore Battle Royal
      For the first five minutes, this hardcore battle royal looked to be a total washout. All the competitors merely hung around ringside waffling each other with trashcan lids and giant baking trays. It was a cluttered mess that gave no opportunity for anything meaningful to happen.

      Even when the title went from Crash to Tazz to Viscera, none of it was very interesting. Then, Big Vis decided to climb to the top rope and The Acolytes through him off in what was genuinely a cool spot. They took out the interim champion and dumped Kai En Tai on top of him. A three count later, and Sho Funaki was the man to beat.

      He ran backstage with the championship with only a few men giving chase. From there, things picked up slightly with highlights including:
      • Pete Gas bleeding like a stuck pig
      • Thrasher blindsiding interim champion Joey Abs by slamming a cart into his ribs
      • And erm, OK, that's it.
      Towards the finish, Tazz won the title again but forgot how the rules worked so kept trying to pin people even though doing so wouldn't benefit him in any way.

      It was confusing, but not as confusing as the finish.

      Tazz dropped the title to Crash Holly but then slapped him in the Tazmission as the clock ran down. In the final few seconds, Bob Holly hit the ring, blasted Tazz with something and pinned his cousin Crash. Clearly, the idea was that Holly would make the cover and the time would run out just before Tim White could count to three, but somebody's timing was slightly off.

      White didn't count to three even though he had time to and Crash didn't kick out. Then the bell rang and despite Crash walking away with the belt, his cousin Bob was declared the winner.
      Your Winner and NEW WWF Hardcore Champion: Hardcore Holly

      Even Howard Finkle seemed confused and reluctant to declare Hardcore the winner.

      Man, that was not a good match.

      Head Cheese in the Bathroom

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - Al Snow and Steve Blackman in the mens toilets
      After a look back at the weekend's Axxess fan convention, we went to a bathroom where Al Snow was seen talking to some unknown person hidden in a toilet cubical.

      At that point, Snow's tag team partner, Steve Blackman arrived on the scene and warned him not to try anything stupid because this was, after all, Wrestlemania.

      From there, we cut to an extreme close-up of Trish Stratus' boobs as she led her men, Test and Albert, through the arena.

      Those two teams would meet next.

      Steve Blackman & Al Snow vs. T&A (Test & Albert w/ Trish Stratus)

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - Trish Stratus made her Wrestlemania debut managing T&A
      Before the bell, Al Snow kept up his attempts to get him and Blackman over as a team by introducing their new mascot, Chester McCheese..or something like that. Basically, it was a little guy dressed up like an actual block of cheese.

      If you think that was bad, you should have seen the actual match.

      I kid you not, this was one of the dirt worst things you've ever seen. I don't just mean it was bad by Wrestlemania standards, I mean it was so bad that even WCW wouldn't have allowed it on their shows.

      It just seemed like the two teams had no chemistry together nor any plan of what they were actually trying to do. At various points, guys just kind of stood around looking at each other as if to say "what the heck are we doing?"

      I mean, it was so bad, Jim Ross spent most of the match talking about how terrible it was.

      Eventually, T&A won and put us all out of our misery.
      Your Winners: T&A

      Post-match, Snow and Blackman took out their frustrations by beating up on the guy in the cheese costume.

      The Kat is Naked

      Out in the back, The Kat was shown getting ready for whatever it was she was doing tonight, all while talking to her buddy, Mae Young. The twist here was that she was completely naked, but strategically placed objects, camera angles and movements prevented us from seeing any bum, boobs, or erm, you know...

      Thou Shalt Not F*** With The Dudleys

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - Michael Cole interviewed The Dudleys
      Meanwhile, Michael Cole was standing by for an interview with The Dudley Boys. Addressing their upcoming three-way ladder match with Edge, Christian, and The Hardys, D-Von Dudley claimed that he didn't like ladders. In fact, he was even scared of heights, but that wasn't going to stop he and his partner from making history in tonight's match.

      D-Von then invited Bubba Ray to testify, and testify he did with gusto. Speaking with a certain sense of passion, Bubba vowed that tonight, the two would take violence to a whole new level because thou shalt not F- with The Dudley Boys.

      World Wrestling Federation Tag Team Championship Three-Way Ladder Match
      WWF Tag Team Champions The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray & D-Von Dudley) vs. Edge & Christian vs. The Hardy Boyz (Matt & Jeff Hardy)

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - Bubba Ray Dudley with a ladder
      There's no other way to say this:

      This match was incredible.

      It was creative, it was chaotic, it was brutal and it was brilliant.

      All six men worked hard to deliver an absolute masterpiece, destroying each other -and a whole bunch of furniture- in the process.

      The match was packed with big, jaw-dropping spots that had you convinced it would all soon be over, but then a wrestler or two would get pushed off the ladder or hit with another's finishing move and the drama would continue.

      What made it all the more captivating was Jim Ross' announcing. Every call was full of passion and emotion and it made the match itself feel like an epic.

      Finally, after the better part of half an hour, everybody died except for Edge and Christian, who scaled a makeshift platform comprised of a table set atop two ladders and grabbed their first of many tag team titles.
      Your Winners an NEW WWF Tag Team Champions: Edge & Christian

      Backstage, Kevin Kelly stood by with Linda McMahon and Mick Foley. If you recall, Foley had lost a retirement match only a few weeks ago at No Way Out 2000, but Linda McMahon had brought him back so that he could face The Rock, Triple H and Big Show in a main event that was being sold more on the fact that it featured 'a McMahon in every corner' rather than on the action itself.

      Anyway, Mrs Personality Linda McMahon insisted that she was happy for Mick, who responded with a decent promo in which he promised that fairytales would come true for him tonight.

      This wasn't Foley's finest hour on the mic, but as one of the best ever, even his worst was still pretty good.

      Cat Fight
      Terri (w/ The Fabulous Moolah) vs. The Kat (w/ Mae Young)

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - The Kat faced Terri in a cat fight
      Special guest referee: Val Venis

      Apparently, Moolah and Mae Young had fallen out and were now leading Teri and The Kat into battle against one another in a Cat Fight.

      The rules here were simple:

      You had to throw your opponent to the outside of the ring.

      Anticipating just how bad it was going to be, Jim Ross warned us not to expect any actual wrestling and told us that if were planning to judge this "on a star system" then we shouldn't bother.

      Ross was right. This 'match' had no redeeming qualities outside of The Kat wearing an outfit that showed off her bum. The two ladies both tried to get special referee Val Venis on their side by snogging him, then went after one another with basic hair drags and erm, you know, cat fighting.

      Speaking of Val Venis, he wore a T-shirt which, on the front, just said: "I'm cocked."

      On the back, it said "Locked and ready to unload." The whole thing was written in a font that was clearly meant to be a man's love milk. Please tell me nobody on earth actually bought that.

      And if they did, please tell me nobody actually wore it in public.

      Back to the match, Kat threw Terri to the outside twice but each time, Venis was distracted by Kat's own corner woman, Mae Young. The first time, Val had to stop her getting her puppies out, and the second time, she was eating his face in the corner of the ring.

      Eventually, Terri got Kat out, Val turned around and this one was over.
      Your Winner: Terri

      Except it wasn't. Afterwards, Kat ripped Terri's pants off while Mae Young set up Fabulous Moolah in the corner for a bronco buster. Yuck.

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - The Radicalz backstage Latino Heat

      Backstage, Eddie Guerrero was all excited by how much he thought Chyna wanted his 'Latino Heat.' His teammates Perry Saturn and Light Heavyweight Champion Dean Malenko warned him to stay focused on the upcoming match.

      Elsewhere in the arena, Chyna and Too Cool had just watched that segment. Chyna thought Eddie was disgusting, but Too Cool warned her not to worry, they'd take care of it in the ring next.

      Six-Person Tag Team Match
      The Radicalz (WWF Light Heavyweight Champion Dean Malenko, Eddie Guerrero and Perry Saturn) vs. Chyna and Too Cool (Scotty Too Hotty & Grandmaster Sexay)

      Though this was a six-person match, it was clear from the outset that it was designed to make just one person -Eddie Guerrero- look like a star.

      And if it wasn't designed that way, then it was a happy accident that Guerrero shone brighter than anyone else here and looked legitimately like a top player both in terms of his charismatic personality and his actual wrestling.

      The whole story was Guerrero simultaneously flirting with Chyna and yet trying to avoid getting beaten up by her when she chased after him. So, it was a fitting end that -after a short yet very enjoyable contest- The Ninth Wonder of the World finally got her hands on Latino Heat and powerbombed him into oblivion.

      So far, the radicals were 0-2 on WWF PPV.
      Your Winners: Chyna and Too Cool

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - Shane McMahon and The Big Show
      Out in the back, Shane McMahon declared that The Big Show's size and strength were the reason he'd be taking home the WWF title tonight. Agreeing with Shane O' Mac, Show swore to unplug The Most Electrifying Man in Sports Entertainment, retire Mick Foley, and declare 'game over' for Triple H.

      Sometimes, I wonder if Hunter didn't call himself The Game just so that all of his opponents could use the 'Game Over' line for years to come.

      Next, we were shown a video of a contest winner who won a private jet to California and front row tickets to Wrestlemania. After that, we went to the back, where Eurocontinental Champion Kurt Angle was seen trying to persuade a security guard to give him extra security for his post-match celebrations in exchange for a few autographs.

      We were also shown a segment from Heat in which Angle put Bob Backlund in a chicken wing as punishment for Backlund encouraging officials to make Angle defend both his titles tonight
      .

      Angle's match was next.

      Triple Threat Two Falls Match for the World Wrestling Federation Intercontinental and European Championships
      WWF European and Intercontinental Champion Kurt Angle vs. Chris Jericho vs. Chris Benoit

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - Chris Jericho hurts Chris Benoit
      The first fall decides the Intercontinental Championship, the second fall decides the European Championship

      When you look back at how good Kurt Angle became in his career, you have to imagine that competing in matches like this really helped him develop that main event level talent.

      Here, he went up against Chris Benoit and Chris Jericho in a match that was every bit as good as you thought it would be.

      After a solid battle, Benoit pinned The Olympic Gold Medalist to capture his first championship in the WWF.
      Your Winner and NEW WWF Intercontinental Champion: Chris Benoit

      Yet the match was far from over. Instead, it went on and got better and better with each passing minute.

      Towards the end, referee Tim White got knocked out. While White was taking a nap, Jericho tapped to Benoit's crossface but was able to get up and attack when The Crippler went over to demand the referee wake up. Y2J slapped on the Walls of Jericho but got a title belt to the face for his troubles courtesy of Kurt Angle.

      That got Angle a two count before Benoit made the save. Shortly after, Jericho took out Benoit to strip Angle of his second title.

      Man, that was a lot of fun.
      Your Winner and NEW WWF European Champion: Chris Jericho

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - Michael Cole interviews Vince McMahon
      Out in the back,  Vince McMahon told Michael Cole that despite being in The Rock's corner tonight, The Great One was focussed on winning the WWF Championship with or without McMahon's help. Wrapping up his promo, McMahon did leave us with the ominous warning that he would 'put things right' by the end of the night.

      Cutting to another part of the arena, we saw Triple H getting angry at McMahon's warning. No longer the cool, calm and collected champion he had been at the start of the show, The Game promised Stephanie that he would win tonight because he was that damn good then stormed off, leaving his wife all turned on.

      D-Generation-X (X-Pac & Road Dogg w/ Torri) vs. Rikishi Phatu & Kane (w/ Paul Bearer)

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - X-Pac
      I think this may have been the one and only PPV where the former Headshrinker was billed as Rikishi Phatu, but that's mostly by the by.

      Here, he teamed up with Kane to help The Big Red Machine settle his score with X-Pac and Torri once and for all. The Road Dogg was along for the ride too, and I'm assuming the lack of Billy Gunn meant that ol' Bad Ass was injured for some reason.

      The match itself was exactly what it should have been: Short and fun and ending with Kane finally tombstoning 'Pac to put the whole rivalry to rest once and for all, though not before the predictable stink face to Torri.
      Your Winners: Kane and Rikishi

      Post-match, Too Cool ran out to dance with Rikishi. The two were followed by a man in a chicken suit who everyone, including Kane and Paul Bearer, believed to be Pete Rose.

      The Big Red Machine stood by and allowed the chicken some time to dance with Rikishi and Too Cool, but then grabbed the chicken by the throat and pushed him into the corner.

      As if you couldn't have seen this coming from a mile away, Pete Rose then ran out with a baseball bat, revealing that he wasn't in the chicken suit after all.

      Not that the swerve did him any good. Kane got hold of him and, for the third Wrestlemania in a row, chokeslammed the baseball star straight to hell.

      Rose then got a stinkface for good measure.

      Finally, The Rock has Come Back to Wrestlemania

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - The Rock shuts up Kevin Kelly
      One year after dropping the WWF Championship to Stone Cold Steve Austin at Wrestlemania 15, The Rock had come back to Wrestlemania and told Kevin Kelly that tonight, he was going to lay the smackdown on everybody and take back the championship. Most of all, he was going to do it for the millions...

      ...and millions of The Rock's fans.

      Compelling stuff as always from The People's Champion

      By the way, I'm not saying the main event is going to be a long match or anything, but by the time The Rock was done with his promo, there were still 50 minutes remaining on the WWE Network version of this event with only that match to go.

      No Disqualification Fatal Four-Way Match for the World Wrestling Federation Championship
      WWF Champion Triple H (w/ Stephanie McMahon) vs. Mick Foley (w/ Linda McMahon) vs. The Big Show (w/ Shane McMahon) vs. The Rock (w/ Vince McMahon)

      WWE / WWF Wrestlemania 2000 - The Rock, Triple H and Mick Foley
      Some lengthy matches are so utterly captivating that they seem to fly by.

      This wasn't one of them.

      In a sense, it was like watching three-act play, and while all three acts were individually enjoyable, made for an exhausting experience when putting one after the other.

      In the first act, Hunter, Rock, and Foley all ganged up on The Big Show for a while before HHH and Foley spilled to the outside for a brawl. Mick got the upper hand, grabbed a chair and waffled Big Show from behind with it. The show stumbled into a Rock Bottom and his time was over in the space of about five minutes.

      In the second act, we got a long, weapon-filled three-way between Foley, HHH, and Rock which ended when The Game twice pedigreed Cactus onto a steel chair to send him into retirement for good.

      Not wanting his career to end on a down note, Foley returned to the ring and drilled Triple H with a barbwire-covered 2x4 then left the ring for our final act; a one-on-one showdown between long-time rivals Triple H and The Rock.

      The two battled around the ring, through the crowd and back again before taking each other out completely in the middle of the ring. While the two combatants took a nap, The McMahons took centre stage. Vince attacked Triple H, but Shane McMahon ran out and smashed his dad in the head with a TV monitor.

      It was enough to bust Vince open, but not enough for him to stay down for too long as he got up and took the fight back to Shane O' Mac.

      Seizing control, The Chairman hit the ring and turned on The Rock, hitting him twice with a chair. Seizing the advantage, Triple H got the pin to become not only the first heel to win in the Wrestlemania main event but also the first WWF Champion to successfully defend his championship in the Wrestlemania main event since Hulk Hogan beat Andre The Giant at Wrestlemania 3.

      Overall, this was a good match, but it did go on for far too long and got really tiring to watch at times.
      Your Winner and Still WWF Champion: Triple H

      Afterwards, Stephanie McMahon embraced her father. The way it played out, it wasn't as though the two had been in cahoots the whole time, but rather as though Stephanie was pleasantly surprised at her father's change of heart. Shane McMahon came into the ring, but before he and Vince could settle their issue, The Rock returned to the ring and hit all three of them with a Rock Bottom.

      "The entire McMahon family has been Rock Bottomed!" yelled Jim Ross as The Great One threw off his elbow pad and drilled Stephanie with a crowd-pleasing People's Elbow.

      Finally, The Rock had come back to Wrestlemania, and though he didn't win the title, he was the only man left standing as Wrestlemania 2000 went off the air.





      You know, I've read a lot of great things about how the year 2000 was one of the World Wrestling Federation's best from a creative, in-ring standpoint. Yet if all you had to go off was Wrestlemania 2000, you certainly wouldn't believe that to be the case.

      While the main event was pretty good and you had some fairly entertaining contests like Radicalz vs. Too Cool & Chyna and the Kishi/Kane vs. DX stuff, a lot of this card wasn't spectacular.

      However, there were two matches that do deserve special praise.

      Angle/Benoit/Jericho is definitely worth a watch and as for the triple-threat ladder match, that is genuinely one of the best things I've ever seen in all my years writing Retro Pro Wrestling reviews.

      If you're a completist looking to watch all of the Wrestlemanias, then you can at least enjoy the knowledge that Wrestlemania 16 is better than many of the others that you'll be watching, but otherwise, I'd recommend you just watch the two matches mentioned above.




      For other 2000 pro wrestling reviews see:
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      Retro Pro Wrestling

      New reviews of classic WWF/WWE events recalling every moment from Wrestlemania 1 - 30. You'll also find reviews of WCW, ECW, TNA and the occasional indie event, along with a look at old school magazines, merchandise and more.