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 Rikishi. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Rikishi. Show all posts

Thursday, 9 July 2020

PPV REVIEW: WWF Rebellion 2000

WWE / WWF Rebellion 2000 - Event poster
December 2, 2000
Sheffield Arena, Sheffield, England

With the notable exception of Summerslam 1992, nothing that ever happened on a UK-based PPV really made that much of a difference to the landscape of the World Wrestling Federation. 

Sure, there was the time Shawn Michaels stole the European Championship from The British Bulldog in controversial fashion back at One Night Only in 1997, but let's be honest:

Michaels and the WWF cared so little about this that when he gave the title to his then-underling Hunter Hearst Helmsley, it barely even mattered.

That was a shame, because while the company tried to promote events like the second annual Rebellion as a big deal,  you knew before the opening bell that nothing of any real consequence was ever going to happen.

Still, that didn't mean that this wouldn't be a fun show...







...or did it?

Let's head down to the Sheffield Arena to find out.

The Fatal Four Way is Fatal

Rebellion UK 2000 began with Commissioner Mick Foley and recently-appointed Leuitenant Commissioner Debra arriving at the arena in a chauffeur-driven black cab.

WWE / WWF Rebellion 2000 - Mick Foley and Debra set up announced tonight's main event
As the two presumedly made their way into the arena, we were shown a video package highlighting tonight's main event, a Fatal Four-Way match in which Kurt Angle would defend the WWF Championship against The Rock, Stone Cold Steve Austin, and Rikishi.

Just to hammer home the point, Foley and Debra then made their way to the ring, where Debra showed off her boobs while Foley told us that said Fatal Four Way was a No Disqualification match.

At this stage, all WWF main events were essentially anything-goes free-for-alls, so quite why they bothered even announcing the No Disqualification stipulation is beyond me.

Anyway, Foley after Foley got done telling us Triple H had gone home because he couldn't be in the main event, he and his Lieutenant were interrupted by the WWF Champion, who was there ostensibly to protest having to defend his title against three other men, but was really just there to wind up the crowd.

Tonight, Live, at Rebellion

WWE / WWF Rebellion 2000 - JR called the show with Tazz despite the two being sworn enemies months earlier
With the main event set-up out of the way, it was up to our announce team of Jim Ross and Tazz to reveal some of tonight's other matches.

It was only at Summerslam 2000 that Tazz and Ross hated each other so much that JR smashed the Human Suplex Machine in the face with a glass candy jar. Tonight, all that animosity was apparently not only forgiven but entirely forgotten.

Sounding like they were on the same page, the do told us that tonight, live at Rebellion, we'd see The Undertaker take on Chris Benoit in a "special challenge match." Honestly, I miss the days when WCW would label every match that wasn't a gimmick or title match a "special challenge match" as a way to make it sound more important, so I'm all good with that one.

However, JR and Tazz also told us that we'd see Kane vs. Chris Jericho in a match that was specially named a "one fall to a finish" match. It even had a graphic advertising that fact, though it was never explained how this particular "one fall to a finish" match was different from 99.99% of all pro-wrestling matches.

Three-Team Table Elimination Match
10 minutes 20 - sexy Trish
T&A (Test & Albert w/ Trish Stratus) vs. Edge & Christian vs. The Dudley Boyz (D-Von and Bubba Ray Dudley)

WWE / WWF Rebellion 2000 - JR called the show with Tazz despite the two being sworn enemies months earlierThough there'd be much better matches involving The Dudleyz, Edge, and Christian (usually also including The Hardyz), this was fine for an opening contest an mostly insignificant PPV.

Unsurprisingly, Test and Albert were the first to go after Edge and Christian powerbombed Albert through a table.

That left the two sets of kayfabe brothers to duke it out in decent encounter which, to be fair, did a great job in getting the crowd suitably fired up for the show.

Also unsurprisingly given the type of match it was, The Dudleyz walked away with the victory, though not before putting in an entertaining effort.
Your Winners: The Dudley Boyz

Out in the back, Lita told Michael Cole how excited she was to be visiting England for the first time and had her sights set on defeating Ivory to reclaim her women's championship

World Wrestling Federation Women's Championship
WWF Women's Champion Ivory (w/ Steven Richards) vs. Lita

WWE / WWF Rebellion 2000 - Steven Richards looks on proudly as Ivory cuts a promo before her match against Lita
Before the bell, Steven Richards made reference to The Full Monty being filmed in Sheffield and, in true Right to Censor fashion, bemoaned how terrible nudity was.

He also criticized England for having "a pub on every street corner" which made the crowd cheer loudly and said some anti-monarchy stuff that the audience were largely apathetic about.

For her part, the WWF Champion talked about busting Lita open at Survivor Series 2000 and insisted it had been for her own good.

The match itself was short and relatively sweet - not a gripping epic by any stretch, but a decent showing from both women given the brief time allocated to them.

At just under three minutes, Ivory retained her title with help from Richards.
Your Winner and Still WWF Women's Champion: Ivory

Finally, The Rock had come back to Sheffield. Backstage, The People's Champion told Michael Cole that his Christmas present to Kurt Angle was to whip his candy bum all over the arena, that is if we could nasally detect what he had in the oven.

World Wrestling Federation Hardcore Championship
WWF Hardcore Champion Steve Blackman vs. Perry Saturn

WWE / WWF Rebellion 2000 - Steve Blackman successfully defended the WWF Hardcore Championship against Perry Saturn
Most WWF hardcore matches were wacky, garbage-based brawls that went all over the place and utilized the kind of unique spots you usually wouldn't see in a standard wrestling match.

This wasn't one of those types of hardcore matches.

This was a bog-standard wrestling match with a few weapon shots thrown in and, you know what?

It worked.

Although the crowd wasn't too taken with the actual wrestling spots, from a TV viewer's perspective, it made for entertaining viewing.

After a fun six-minute encounter, Steve Blackman blasted the challenger to retain his gold.
Your Winner and Still WWF Hardcore Champion: Steve Blackman

Out in the back, European Champion William Regal tried to ensure that he’d still be received as a heel by cutting a fun promo in which he declared himself to be England’s only sporting hero.

After ripping on boxing greats like Frank Bruno, Lennox Lewis and Sheffield’s own Prince Naseem (remember him?), Regal insisted it was his honor to be our hero.

It was fun stuff from the champion, even if he was a little more subdued than normal.

World Wrestling Federation European Championship
WWF European Champion William Regal vs. Crash Holly (w/ Molly Holly)

WWE / WWF Rebellion 2000 - William Regal lost the European Championship to Crash Holly
Though he did get some boos, there were still a lot of cheers for Regal, so he decided to kill them by cutting yet another promo, this time in the ring.

The content was more of the same - English people are rubbish but Regal is awesome. However, it went on for so long that it was a relief when Crash Holly attacked him from behind to get this one underway.

What followed was a decent little title match that was fun right up until the unnecessarily weird finish.

Regal scored a three count but Crash had his foot on the rope the whole time. When Molly Holly pointed this out, the referee restarted the match then turned to ring announcer Tony Chimmel to let him know.

While the referee’s back was turned, Molly hit Regal with a missile dropkick. Crash scored the three and claimed the title.
Your Winner and NEW European Champion: Crash Holly

Post-match, Regal clobbered both Holly cousins from behind with a couple of clotheslines and walked off with his title, smiling and waving the whole time.

I know I started off this review talking about how nothing important ever really happened on these shows and then a title changed hands, but Regal would have his title back by Raw, so I stand by that.

You Scratch My Back, I’ll Scratch Yours

Backstage, Kurt Angle complained to Chris Benoit about his upcoming title match.

As The Crippler stood there, stoic as ever, the champion suggested that if Benoit were to help him out tonight, he’d see to it that he was rewarded with a title match.

The Radicalz (WWF Light Heavyweight Champion Dean Malenko & Eddie Guerrero) vs. WWF Intercontinental Champion ‘The One’ Billy Gunn & Chyna

WWE / WWF Rebellion 2000 - Chyna teamed with Billy Gunn to face Eddie Guerrero & Dean Malenko
Before the match, a video package reminded us that Chyna and Eddie Guerrero had split up after GTV (remember that?) had revealed Eddie cheated on Chyna by having shower sex with two women.

Chyna then came to the ring wearing a top with a Union Jack flag on it, prompting Tazz to show off how little he knew, or cared, about the country he was in.

“Chyna’s wearing that British flag, whatever it’s called,” he said.
“The Union Jack,” explained Ross.
“Union what?” asked Tazz. “Who’s Jack?”

This wasn’t him trying to be funny or even play a heel. Throughout the night he’d make multiple quips which proved his UK knowledge was nonexistent.

It might have been comical were it done for laughs, but it mostly came across as awkward and a bit offensive.

Anyway, the match itself was fine. A fairly by-the-numbers tag bout, this one saw both teams go back and forth multiple times until Billy Gunn drilled Dean Malenko with a cobra clutch slam for the win.

It was an all-round good effort despite looking a little sloppy in places.
Your Winners: Billy Gunn & Chyna

Out in the crowd, some British guy called Dan who nobody had ever heard of before or since interviewed some members of the audience.

He made out like it was a huge deal that one girl traveled two hours from Birmingham to be at the show.

Pfft. I once traveled five hours from Manchester to London to be at Capital Carnage in 1998.

Beat that, random lady.

Up next, we got a look at the feud between Chris Jericho and Kane which were told both was and wasn’t about Jericho spilling coffee on The Big Red Machine.

Kane vs. Chris Jericho

WWE / WWF Rebellion 2000 - Kane's match with Chris Jericho was weirdly billed as '1 fall to a finish' despite most matches being one fall
Before they locked up, Chris Jericho took to the microphone to go through his standard catchphrases and refer to Kane as a ‘black and white Union Jack Ass.’

At least one member of the roster knew what the flag was called.

The match itself was good stuff and probably the best thing on the card up to this point.

After a fun contest, Kane chokeslammed Jericho to hell for the three count.
Your Winner: Kane

Afterward, Jericho chased after his rival and blasted him with a chair and put him in the Walls of Jericho on the stage.

Tim White and Earl Hebner tried to stop him while Tony Garea just kind of stood there, watching.

Boobs and Stuff

Backstage, Trish Stratus mocked Lita for failing to win back her title.

Lita retaliated by throwing a glass of Apple Tango and Trish, beating her up and ripping her top off to expose her bra.

She then pushed her into a dressing room where Ivory was getting changed.

It was supposed to be sexy but it really wasn’t.

World Wrestling Federation World Tag Team Championship
WWF Tag Team Champions Right to Censor (The Goodfather & Bull Buchanan w/ Val Vanis) vs. The Hardy Boyz (Matt & Jeff Hardy)

WWE / WWF Rebellion 2000 - The Goodfather & Bull Buchanan defended the tag team titles against The Hardy Boyz
Like many of tonight's matches, this was a decent outing despite never really getting into high gear.

I've noted in the past how most Superstars would leave their A-Game in the States whenever they came over to England and usually did just enough to avoid sucking.

That seemed to be the case here.

The Hardyz, The Goodfather, and Bull Buchanan put in enough effort to make for a passable match, but this wasn't the sort of thing you'd ever be in a hurry to see again.

The Champions retained their title thanks to interference from Val Venis.
Your Winners and Still Tag Team Champions: Right to Censor

Out in the back, Kurt Angle tried to convince Edge and Christian to help him out in his fatal four-way later, but since Christian was still suffering from the effects of being put through a table (Christian: "that was way harsh"), both men declined and were called selfish by The Olympic Gold Medalist.

The Undertaker Prepares for His Match

The Undertaker Prepares for His Match...that's what The WWE Network calls this segment, though they could have just called it "The Radicalz attack The Undertaker," because that's what happened.

Chris Benoit confronted The American Bad Ass in the locker room, while the rest of his group attacked from behind.

The best part about this is that a security guard was sitting on a chair and he didn't move a muscle to help.

Chris Benoit vs. The Undertaker

WWE / WWF Rebellion 2000 - Chris Benoit and The Undertaker faced off in their final ever singles match
After the attack, Benoit insisted that 'Taker would no-show the match and thus he should win via forfeit. Sure enough, The Dead Man failed to appear but then turned up just as Tony Chimmel was about to declare Benoit the victor.

The match got underway and was all about The Crippler going after his opponent's knee, which made for a compelling if occasionally lifeless battle. In many respects, this was the exact same match Undertaker had with Kurt Angle back at Survivor Series 2000.

I mean that as a compliment. On a show that never really went above average, this was the closest we got to an all-out great match.

What's interesting, is that despite working well together here, the two would never have another singles match together, and indeed, had only ever met twice before in singles action on TV.

Anyway, after dominating the majority of the bout, Benoit lost on a fluke when The Undertaker rolled him up for the eins, zwei, drie.
Your Winner: The Undertaker

With that done, it was onto our main event.

Fatal Fourway for the World Wrestling Federation Championship
WWF Champion Kurt Angle vs. Rikishi vs. The Rock vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin

WWE / WWF Rebellion 2000 - Kurt Angle defended the WWF title against Steve Austin, The Rock, and Rikishi in a fatal fourway
It's only as the company's biggest stars blasted their way through a sub-10 minute main event at breakneck pace that I realize exactly what the problem was with this show:

It felt rushed.

Like, really rushed, as if the entire roster were in a hurry to get their stuff in and get back to America as quickly as possible without expending too much effort.

Don't get me wrong, this was an awesome effort with all four men going all-out with nary a moment's rest, but it sort of felt like watching a normal PPV main event at double-speed.

Great stuff, sure, but it might have been even better if it had another five minutes and didn't seem so rushed.

In the end, Edge, Christian, and The Radicalz got involved and, in the resulting fracas, Angle was able to plant Rikishi with the Olympic Slam for the three.
Your Winner and Still WWF Champion: Kurt Angle

Afterward, Rock and Austin took turns destroying The Radicalz before spending about twenty years teasing tension between them and eventually patching things up with the obligatory beer bash.

I kid you not, the post-match shenanigans went on just as long as the match itself.







The World Wrestling Federation never brought their A-Game to these UK PPV shows, but this was about as good as you were going to get.

The card got progressively better as it went on, culminating in a fast and furious main event that was a joy to watch even if it did move way too quickly.

Not a bad show by any means, but far from essential viewing.




For other year 2000 pro wrestling reviews see:

Thursday, 2 July 2020

PPV REVIEW: WWF Survivor Series 2000

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - Event Poster
November 19, 2000
Ice Palace, Tampa, Florida

As the 14th annual WWF Survivor Series got underway,  announcer Jim Ross told us that a new World Wrestling Federation Champion had been crowned at this show every year for the past six years.

It was a pattern that took us all the way back to Bob Backlund dethroning Bret 'The Hitman' Hart back at Survivor Series 1994 and culminated in The Big Show's largely forgotten victory at the previous year's event.

Would this be the year that Kurt Angle proved himself to be the first man to successfully retain the WWF Championship at Survivor Series since Bret Hart defeated Shawn Michaels back at the 1992 event?

Or, would history repeat itself as The Undertaker once again won the big one at the November show, a feat he accomplished back in 1991 against Hulk Hogan?







Ladies and gentlemen, let's head to Tampa, Florida to find out.

Master of Puppets, Pulling Your Strings

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler called the event
Our opening video package was the kind of compelling stuff that the World Wrestling Federation did best.

It featured Triple H boasting about being the puppet master who orchestrated the hit and run on Stone Cold Steve Austin back at Survivor Series 1999 and how, tonight, it would all be game over when the two went head to head.

The show then began with the usual pyro, shots of the live crowd and a look at the rabid audience watching from WWF New York as Jim Ross and Jerry 'The King' Lawler welcomed us to the show.

With that, it was onto the opening contest.

Inter-Gender Six Person Tag Team Match
T&A (Test, Albert, and Trish Stratus) vs. Crash Holly, Molly Holly, and WWF Hardcore Champion Steve Blackman

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - Test confronts Molly HollyThis was Molly Holly's first WWF PPV appearance, though we'd previously seen her on PPV back at WCW Bash at the Beach 1999 as Miss Madness.

In this explosive opening contest, it was Molly and her adversary Trish Stratus who were the real stars, putting together a competent performance with a couple of genuinely crowd-popping spots.

Though they played their parts, you got the feeling that Test, Albert, Crash Holly, and Steve Blackman were all just there to make up the numbers.

Not that it seemed to matter.

This was a hot match with a hot crowd that kicked off the show right away.

After a good battle, Molly got the better of Trish with a match-winning sunset flip from the top rope.
Your Winners: Molly Holly, Crash Holly, and Steve Blackman

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - Kurt Angle confers with Edge & Christian backstage
Out in the back, Edge and Christian relied on their old, familiar trick of pretending that Christian was sick. It felt like the two did this every single PPV without ever learning that it never, ever paid off.

This time, Christian hilariously suggested that he'd contracted mono after eating bad chili, all because he and Edge didn't want to help Kurt Angle in his match with The Undertaker later.

Christian then made a miraculous recovery when Angle claimed he didn't need their help anyway and just wanted to know if they wanted to go out for a drink later.

Flashing back to earlier in the day, Tiger Ali Singh, D'Lo Brown and Chaz couldn't access the building because they'd been left off the security sheet, because that's how you tell your audience that this tag team doesn't matter at all.

Traditional Survivor Series Elimination Match
K-Kwik, R-Truth, Chyna, 'The One' Billy Gunn vs. The Radicalz (WWF Intercontinental Champion Eddie Guerrero, WWF Light Heavyweight Champion Dean Malenko, Chris Benoit, and Perry Saturn w/ Terri) 

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - Terri led The Radicalz into battle
The Radicalz had debuted in January, gone their separate ways by the spring and just recently reunited in time for a Survivor Series match against what was essentially a mini DX reunion with the addition of K-Kwik.

Making his PPV debut, K-Kwik (R-Truth) looked awesome in his one quick burst of in-ring action before being taken out by an explosive German suplex by Chris Benoit.

With Chyna already eliminated, that left former New Age Outlaws partners Road Dogg and Billy Gunn to battle The Radicalz.

For their part, Benoit, Eddie Guerrero, Perry Saturn, and Dean Malenko all looked impressive, and not just because they all chose to color-coordinate and wear matching black-and-yellow versions of their usual attire.

Even though Eddie and Dean were eliminated, the four men still worked well with the unofficial DX reunion to give us a solid match.

In the end, Gunn was left fending for himself against Malenko, Saturn, and Benoit. He managed to take out Dean but the numbers proved too much, leaving Saturn and Benoit as the victors.
Your Winners: Chris Benoit and Perry Saturn

Out in the back, Lillian Garcia tried to get an interview with The Rock, but The Great One ignored her.

Rude much?

Michael Cole has better luck with Chris Jericho, who insisted that his rivalry with Kane was about much, much more than the fact that he recently spilled coffee on The Big Red Machine on Raw.

Chris Jericho vs. Kane 

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - Chris Jericho faced Kane
Early on in the match, Jericho went for a suicide dive to the outside and just kind of...forgot what he was doing and fell into the ropes.

Honestly, I’ve rewatched that spot three times and I still can’t figure out what happened. He sort of just threw himself at the ropes then went head first to the floor and nearly died.

It looked weird and awkward and very dangerous.

Fortunately, the rest of the match got better. Not by much, I’ll grant you, but enough to keep this fan entertained at least.

Sure, there was a long stretch that basically just saw Kane destroying his opponent, but it made Y2J’s valiant comeback all the more dramatic, and when he had Kane locked in the Walls of Jericho, there was a genuine sense that he might just pull off the upset.

Alas, it wasn’t to be. Chris attempted a Lionsault but got caught by Kane and chokeslammed all the way to Hades.
Your Winner: Kane 

Out in the back, The Radicalz we’re resting and recovering after their match when Terri entered the room to let them know that Triple H was in the building and would meet up with them later.

It was only at last month’s No Mercy that The Game engaged in an all-out war with Benoit, but now the two were apparently in cahoots again.

Either that or the reason for Benoit’s diabolical laughter at the end of this segment was because he suddenly remembered a really funny bit from South Park.

World Wrestling Federation European Championship
WWF European Champion William Regal vs. Hardcore Holly 

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - William Regal defended the European Championship against Hardcore Holly
JR told us that this match hadn’t been advertised for the show and was the result of an earlier incident on Heat.

In other words, the show needed a filler match and William Regal and Hardcore Holly were it.

You could tell, too.

While the match wasn’t exactly bad, it wasn’t really interesting either.

Regal started with a pre-match promo in which he berated American’s lack of manners before spending most of this very brief match tying Holly in knots.

Eventually, the challenger got fed up and drilled the champion with the title belt for a DQ finish.
Your Winner via DQ and still European Champion: William Regal

Post-match, Holly continued to destroy Regal even though I’m pretty sure he was supposed to be the face.

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - Trish Stratus flirts with Kurt AngleClueless Kurt

Out in the back, Trish Stratus told Kurt Angle that since his business partner, Stephanie McMahon wasn’t here, she wondered if the WWF might need some ‘special assistance.

Clearly not understanding that Stratus was offering him some kind of nookie, the WWF Champion glossed morning over her flirting and insisted he’d be fine when taking on The Undertaker.

He Did it For... The Rock

Across the arena, The Rock walked through the backstage area en route to the ring.

That brought us to a pre-match video recapping the feud between The People’s Champion and Rikishi.

‘Kishi had admitted to running over Stone Cold and tried to implicate The Rock, even though it had been Triple H who had really ordered the hit.

That was enough for a feud between the two, and for their first PPV match since Rocky Maivia and The Sultan battled over the Intercontinental Championship back at Wrestlemania 13.

Rikishi vs. The Rock

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - The Rock defeated Rikishi
I’ve read a lot of negative reviews for this match and that kind of saddens me because I enjoyed it very much.

Was it of the same caliber of The Rock’s usual main event epics?

No, but it still had plenty of suspense and captivating action to keep the crowd on the edge of their seat from beginning to end.

Predictably, The Rock won thanks to The People’s Elbow, but not before getting his ass whooped by Rikishi.

A good effort, even if I’m the only one who seems to think so.
Your Winner: The Rock 

Afterward, Rikishi recovered, superkicked The Rock into oblivion then sat on him a bunch of times. He may have lost the battle, but he was the one left standing.

Meanwhile, over at WWF New York, Raven stood alone in the crowd, grinning like he'd just taken some really good drugs.

Your Friends are Banned From Ringside

Backstage, Triple H hung out with his old rival Chris Benoit and The Radicalz. The chill-out session was interrupted by Commissioner Foley, who first declared that The Radicalz were banned from ringside for The Game's match with Steve Austin, but then made the match No DQ.

I don't mean to be pedantic, but if Hunter couldn't be disqualified, what was to stop Benoit and the gang from getting involved?

The Hs didn't seem too concerned about it either way. He was pretty confident that his opponent wouldn't be able to use his legs afterward.

World Wrestling Federation Women's Championship
WWF Women's Champion Ivory vs. Lita 

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - Ivory defended the Women's Championship against Lita
This short, competent women's match offered little in the way of genuine excitement but was undoubtedly the best match the WWF's women's division was capable of producing at the time.

Champion Ivory dominated for the most part while Lita -her face caked in blood after an errant blow from Ivory- fought valiantly to make a comeback.

In the end, interference from Ivory's Right to Censor mate Steven Richards cost Lita the match.
Your Winner and Still WWF Women's Champion: Ivory 

Afterward, a battered and bloody Lita was helped to the back by the referee as the crowd's applauded her efforts.

Speaking of battered, Jonathan Coachman was shown outside of The Rock's dressing room. Coach told us that The Great One was in a bad way, struggling to breathe and coughing up a lot of blood, but was being attended to by EMTs.

Elsewhere in the arena, Chris Jericho attacked Kane with a steel chair and proceeded to beat the crap out of him. This was one feud that was far from over.

Dead Man, Inc.

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - Michael Cole interviewed The Undertaker about his tenth anniversary with the WWF
Up next, one of the WWF's always-excellent video packages hyped our impending WWF Championship match. This one saw Kurt Angle gloating about having the most successful rookie year of any new superstar ever since he debuted a year earlier at Survivor Series 1999.

It also showed The Undertaker beating Kane, Chris Benoit, and Chris Jericho to become number one contender, claiming that Angle would be the first victim of Dead Man Incorporated, and picking up a non-title win over the champion on Smackdown.

Cutting to the back, Michael Cole reminded 'Taker that he had debuted a year ago to the day at Survivor Series 1990.

Referencing his 'Decade of Destruction' The American Bad Mass cut a convincing promo in which he promised to take out The Olympic Gold Medalist and become our champion once again.

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

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - The Undertaker and his terrible snake skin pants challenged Kurt Angle for the WWF title
The Dead Man already held a PPV victory over Angle from back at Fully Loaded 2000 but, alas, tonight was not to be his night.

Undertaker opted to celebrate his tenth anniversary with the company by wearing the ugliest snakeskin pants you’ve ever seen.

I mean, these things were so terrible they almost distracted from the match itself.

Almost, but not quite, thanks to the impressive efforts of both men.

Sure, there was a long period where they chilled out on the mat and put each other in submission holds that could have bored some viewers but, honestly, it only made the whole thing more compelling.

After a solid 20 minute battle, The Undertaker looked to have the match won only for Angle to reveal that he’d pulled a Doink and switched places with a look-alike.

The resulting confusion allowed Kurt to roll up his opponent and steal a victory.
Your Winner and Still WWF Champion: Kurt Angle

Post-match, cameras focussed on the bewildered doppelg√§nger (who would later be revealed to be Angle’s brother) while the WWF Champion ran to his car and drive away.

A commercial then aired in which the XFL cheerleaders flashed as much flesh as possible. Although the commercial told us not to worry, the girls would be taught how to cheer, there was no mention of the fact that this was an ad for a football league, let alone how to watch it.

Man, I wonder why the original XFL failed?

Traditional Survivor Series Elimination Match
Edge, Christian and Right to Censor (WWF Tag Team Champions Bull Buchanan & The Goodfather w/ Val Venis) vs. The Hardy Boyz (Matt & Jeff Hardy) and The Dudley Boyz (D-Von & Bubba Ray Dudley)

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - Right To Censor teamed with Edge & Christian to face The Hardyz & The Dudleyz
Sandwiched between the championship match and the Austin/HHH main event, it would have been easy for the eight men involved in this traditional Survivor Series match to take it slow and give us a filler match.

It's to their credit that they did not do this, instead going all out to give us the best match they were capable of in the time allocated to them.

Though it was a far cry from the usual Hardyz/Dudleyz/E&C weapon-filled spotfests we'd been treated to throughout 2000, it was still nonetheless a fun contest that ended with Jeff Hardy standing tall as the sole survivor.
Your Winner and Sole Survivor: Jeff Hardy

Post-match, Steven Richards joined his Right to Censor posse in beating down Jeff until Matt Hardy and The Dudley Boyz ran to the rescue, dumping the heels through tables.

Triple H is The Game

Out in the back, Triple H colluded with The Radicalz. Although Foley had banned from the match, it was heavily implied that they' somehow play a part in tonight's main event.

This led to a video package showing Triple H boasting about how much he benefited from having Rikishi run over Austin.

With that done, it was onto our main event.

No Disqualification Match
Triple H vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin 

WWE / WWF Survivor Series 2000 - Steve Austin has a beer break before battering a bloody HHH
Of all the wild, out-of-control main event brawls Steve Austin had ever been a part of, this wasn't exactly the greatest, but it was still damn good fun.

The two men battered each other in the ring, out of the ring, and everywhere in between, all the while telling a well-told story that The Texas Rattlesnake was far more interested in getting revenge than gaining a pinfall.

Though much of this was your standard Attitude Era brawl stuff, there were a few fun spots -Austin taking a beer break and later back-dropping Hunter through a table to name a few- that kept it well above mediocrity, while The Game's gruesome blade job really helped sell Stone Cold's beat down.

Towards the finish, the two made their way backstage where, predictably, The Radicalz attacked.

Chris Benoit lured Austin out into the parking lot where Triple H was waiting, ready to run over his opponent with a car.

Avoiding a repeat of the previous year, however, Austin acquired a giant forklift from somewhere, lifted the car some 20-30ft in the air (with Hunter still inside it) and then dropped it on its roof.
Your Winner by Attempted Homicide: Steve Austin (official result: no contest)

Having been practically murdered live on air, Hunter would return to Raw just a few short weeks later, showing no signs of injury whatsoever.







From beginning to end, the WWF had enjoyed one of their best PPV runs in history throughout 2000, producing some truly outstanding shows.

Never really going above "pretty good," Survivor Series 2000 was not one of those shows, but it says a lot about the creative streak the company were on that one of their most underwhelming shows of the year was still a fairly enjoyable effort.

Despite the ridiculousness of Austin's blatant homicide attempt, the main event stole the show, though the tag team elimination match which proceeded it came a solid second.



For other year 2000 pro wrestling reviews see:

Thursday, 11 June 2020

PPV REVIEW: WWF No Mercy 2000

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Event poster
October 22, 2000
Pepsi Arena, Albany, New York

From late 1997 until November 1999, there was no hotter star in professional wrestling than Stone Cold Steve Austin. 

One of those rare performers who transcends the medium while still retaining a devoted following among the hardcore audience, Austin's run as 'The Guy' was on a level not seen since the heydey of Hulk Hogan.

In fact, you could probably argue -and find statistics to back you up- that Stone Colds popularity even dwarfed that of The Hulkster.

So it was a credit to Vince McMahon and the World Wrestling Federation's creative efforts that the company had continued to flourish in the eleven months that Austin had been on the shelf.

With the former multi-time champion on the shelf, The Rock had moved from being a close second to being the number one man in the promotion, while the likes of Triple H, Kurt Angle, and Chris Benoit had also kept the WWFs main event scene burning bright.







Tonight, however, the Rattlesnake was back.

Would he be able to return effortlessly his throne as the undisputed king of the lawless jungle that was the WWF, or would he have to fight to take his spot back from those who had claimed it in his absence?

Let's head to the Pepsi Arena to find out as No Mercy 2000 comes live from Albany, New York.

Stone Cold Steve Austin is Out For Revenge

After a year off, Stone Cold Steve Austin had finally returned to the World Wrestling Federation at Unforgiven 2000 and promptly set about trying to discover who ran him over back at Survivor Series 1999.

Between then and now, The Texas Rattlesnake had learned that the culprit was none other than Rikishi who, as we all know, did it for The Rock.


In tonight's opening video package, Austin swore to get revenge on his assailant, promising no mercy on him when the two locked up later tonight.

Austin's promo was interspersed with clips of him in the ring, and of rabid dogs barking at chain link fences. As opening videos go, it wasn't the greatest, but it was still pretty compelling.


With that over, we got the usual pyro, crowd shots and welcome from Jim Ross who, along with Jerry 'The King' Lawler, was ready to call all the action.

The Dudley Boyz Invitational Tables Match
Too Cool (Scotty 2 Hotty & Grandmaster Sexay) vs. Low Down (D'Lo Brown & Chaz) vs. Tazz and Raven vs. The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray & D'Von Dudley)

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Chaz and D'Lo Brown competed in The Dudley Boyz Invitational Tables Match
The best way to describe this gauntlet-style, winner-stays on elimination match is that it was a good idea poorly executed.

Two teams began, and when one team was eliminated, the next team came in until only one team remained.

Too Cool and Low Down kicked things off, which really made you feel for D'Lo Brown.

For the past few years, the former European champion had been one of the most entertaining mid-card acts in the company and had become one of this writer's favourite performers from the time period.

However, he really hadn't been the same since the horrific Darren Drosdov incident and hadn't appeared on WWF PPV since Wrestlemania 2000. Even then, he'd been reduced to performing as The Godfather's mini-me and was now mostly a lower-card afterthought.

So it was no surprise when he and former Headbanger Chaz got taken out by the ever-popular Too Cool, nor did it come as much of a shock when Scotty 2 Hotty and Grandmaster Sexay were eliminated by Raven and Tazz, setting up an inevitable ECW showdown with The Dudley Boyz.

More predictability followed.

Since it was their match, Bubba Ray and D'Von naturally took out Raven and Tazz, then got the better of Right to Censor's Goodfather and Bull Buchanan, though not before a pointless false finish. Bubba put Bull through a table, but the referee was knocked out, so Goodfather was able to pull his partner out of the way. When the referee woke up, he saw Bubba lying on a broken table and called for the bell.

A moment later, a second referee came out to explain what had really happened. The match was restarted and, one quick 3D later was officially over.

As I say, it wasn't a bad idea in theory, but in practice, it just came off as bland and predictable.
Your Winners: The Dudley Boyz

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Trish Stratus with T&A
Backstage, Test, Albert, and Trish Stratus joked about how they were going to use Trish’s big boobs to distract Farooq and Bradshaw later on in the show.

I’m not making that up.

Across the way, Riksihi brandished a sledgehammer as he stalked the backstage arena in anticipation of Steve Austin’s arrival.

Back in the arena, King and JR told us why T&A were at odds with the APA.

It all stemmed from a backstage poker game between the two teams. T&A had run out of money, but Trish came to the rescue of her men by stripping down to her undies. It was then strongly implied that she showed them her hooha, distracting Farooq and Bradshaw so that Test and Albert could attack them.

Add Stratus’ arch-rival Lita into the mix, and we had ourselves a six-person intergender tag match.

When T&A Attack

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Lita was attacked before her match
Well, we were supposed to, but Trish, Test and Albert had other ideas.

The men assaulted the APA backstage and dumped some huge cases on them. By this time, WWF Women’s Champion Lita was already in the ring.

When she set off to find out what had happened to her partners, she was blocked by T&A and attacked by Trish.

All three heels then proceeded to give Lita hell until her buddies The Hardy Boyz came to her rescue.

Got Nuts?

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Edge and Christian talk to Lilian Garcia about their nuts
Backstage, Lillian Garcia interviewed Edge & Christian. The duo had previously claimed to have food poisoning as a way to get out of the earlier Dudley Boyz table match.

The pair thought said poisoning had come from some bad nuts they’d had at the movies the night before, but apparently, that wasn’t the case.

As you can probably imagine, this was just a chance for Edge and Christian to make as many jokes about their nuts as possible.

Elsewhere in the arena, Rikishi continued to wait for Austin.

Steel Cage Match
Chris Jericho vs. X-Pac

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Chris Jericho beat X-Pac in a cage match
With the notable exception of Bret vs. Owen at Wrestlemania 10, steel cage matches very rarely lived up to the hype.

Fortunately, this one did.

Before the bell, Chris Jericho took to the mic, rechristening the cage as a ‘Y2-JAIL’ and vowing to settle his long-running feud with X-Pac once and for all.

The two then locked up and gave us a really solid bout with plenty of high spots, the highlight of which saw Jericho slap Pac in the Walls of Jericho at the top of the cage before being thrown all the way down the canvas.

At that point, X-Pac looked to have the match won, climbing to the outside and standing atop the cage door. Before he could drop to the outside, however, Y2J dropkicked the cage, causing the former DX man to crotch the door, much to the delight of the crowd.

Jericho then climbed through the door and this very fun cage match was all over.
Your Winner: Chris Jericho

Backstage, Rikishi continued to wait for Stone Cold.

He approached Mick Foley’s makeshift office, where the WWF Commissioner insisted that, while he would be willing to declare ‘Kisihi the winner via forfeit if the Rattlesnake no-showed, he had every faith that Austin would arrive.

Billy & Chyna Reunited

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Billy Gunn and Chyna reunited to face Right to Censor
Having last teamed up back at Fully Loaded 1999, Bad Ass Billy Gunn and Chyna were once again a team and were set to take on Right to Censor here tonight.

A flashback told us that this match came about when Billy Gunn’s scheduled Intercontinental Championship match against Chyna’s ex, Eddie Guerrero, was cancelled due to a Guerrero injury.

For reasons that weren’t made entirely clear here, Eddie had formed an alliance of sorts with Steven Richards and Val Venis, making them a logical substitute.

Right to Censor (Steven Richards and Val Venis) vs. Bad Ass Billy Gunn & Chyna

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Right to Censor faced Billy Gunn and Chyna
Like the earlier gauntlet match, this was a rather bland affair with very little to get excited about.

Pre-match, Steven Richards cut a convincing promo, insisting that Right to Censor would never hit a woman unless they had to.

Tonight, he said, they had to. As such, he and Val were looking forward to taking out Chyna and her “rectally-obsessed” partner, Mr Ass.

That promo was the best part of this otherwise mediocre match which ended when Eddie Guerrero ran in and drilled his former Mama Cita with a lead pipe disguised as a bouquet of flowers behind the referee’s back.

That gave the RTC the opportunity to make the cover and pick up the win.
Your Winners: Right to Censor

Watching the action in the dressing room, Triple H was approached by his wife, Stephanie McMahon.

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Triple H & Stephanie McMahon
After Hunter refused to let her accompany him to the ring for a match with Chris Benoit, the McMahon heir handed her man a tape of The Crippler applying his patented Crossface which she assured him would be ‘very interesting.’

Paying little attention to it, The Game warned his missus that if anything happened to her as a result of her ‘business partner’ Kurt Angle facing The Rock tonight, he would put the Olympic Gold Medalist out of action for good.

Elsewhere in the arena, Riksihi looked set for battle, dressed in his ring gear and traditional Samoan attire and brandishing a sledgehammer.

The announcers told us that his match with Austin was next, and we got another look at the rivalry between the two men before the actual match took place.

No Holds Barred
Rikishi vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Stone Cold Steve Austin destroyed Rikishi in a no contest match
At this point, we were only an hour into a show in which Austin/Rikishi had been promoted as the only bout on the card that mattered, yet here we were already.

Much like he had done against  The Rock way back at D-Generation-X: In Your House 13, Stone Cold drove his pick-up truck right down to the ring and proceeded to stomp a mudhole in his nemesis.

Make no mistake about it, this wasn’t a match. This was Austin getting revenge on the man who tried to permanently incapacitate him by beating him down to within an inch of his life.

Sure, ‘Kishi got the occasional blow in, but Austin no-sold all of them and then went right back to his murder attempt.

Eventually, Austin killed Rikishi with a chair and dumped him in the back of his truck.

He then drove him outside, dumped him against a brick wall and was all set to murder him for real until a police car showed up.

Stone Cold rammed headlong into the police car, prompting about eight million more of them to show up.

The Rattlesnake was arrested and this utterly enthralling non-match was over.
No-Contest

Afterwards, the policeman who had been driving the car Austin ran into was taken out in an ambulance while Rikishi lay, battered and bloodied, on a grass verge.

World Wrestling Federation European Championship
WWF European Champion William Regal vs. Naked Mideon

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - European Champion William Regal faced Naked Mideon
Having ditched the ‘Real Man’s Man’ gimmick, William Regal had returned to the World Wrestling Federation in September 2000.

 Here, he made his first WWF PPV appearance since Survivor Series 1998 and his first appearance on any PPV since his cameo in the Hardcore Invitational Junkyard Battle Royal back at WCW Bash at the Beach 1999.

Before the match, Regal announced that  Commissioner Foley had given in to his demand that Naked Mideon wear some clothes for the match.

As such, the challenger came to the ring wearing an Undertaker tank top and those press-stud popper pants that were so popular in the 90s, so you knew some Naked Mideon nekkidness would take place at some point.

Sure enough, after a mostly decent throw-away match, the former Godwin stripped down to his thong and fanny-pack and drove the crowd into a frenzy.

His naked butt was enough to make Regal think twice about applying the Regal Stretch on him, but it wasn’t enough to help him win the match.

The champion hit a Regal Cutter and scored the fall.

The match was kind of entertaining for Regal’s always-excellent mannerisms, but the wrestling wasn’t much to write home about.
Your Winner and Still WWF European Champion: William Regal

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Kurt Angle edited together a fake interview with The RockUp next, we were shown the classic ‘Kurt Angle interviews The Rock’ promo in which the Olympic Gold Medalist edited together clips from several of The Rock’s past interviews to make it look as though the WWF Champion was admitting to behind Rikishi running over Steve Austin.

It was so amazing that even The Rock himself couldn’t help but smirk as he watched it on a backstage TV.

At least, he did before he turned the TV off and walked away.

Si, Senor

Backstage, Kevin Kelly interviewed The Conquistadors about their upcoming tag team title match against The Hardyz, and about the rumours that they were really just Edge & Christian in disguise.

To all of Kelly’s questions, the 80s jobber team could only reply ‘si, senor.’

It was pretty funny.

World Wrestling Federation Tag Team Championship
WWF Tag Team Champions The Hardy Boyz (Matt & Jeff Hardy) vs. Los Conquistadors (Conquistador Uno and Conquistador Dos)

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Edge & Christian disguised themselves as 80s jobber team Los Conquistadors
If this was the original team consisting of Jos√© Estrada Sr. and Jose Luis Rivera, then this would be the first PPV appearance since Survivor Series 1988, but, of course, it wasn’t.

It was Edge and Christian, using the old gimmick to sneak their way into a title shot after it had been ruled that they would no longer be allowed to compete for the titles.

The match wasn’t the best Hardyz/E&C encounter we’d ever get, but the Conquistadors gimmick did make it very entertaining in its own right.

Towards the end, Matt Hardy ripped off Dos’ mask only to reveal another mask underneath. Uno then hit an Unprettier to claim the tag team titles.
Your Winners and NEW WWF Tag Team Champions: Los Conquistadors

Outside the arena, Steve Austin’s truck and the police car he’d destroyed were both taken away by police. Meanwhile, in the locker room, HHH studied the tape that Stephanie McMahon had given him and apparently saw something he liked.

This led to a video package explaining the rivalry between Helmsley and Benoit. In a nutshell, the evil Benoit had headbutted Steph and then cost HHH a title shot against The Rock.

The two would meet next.

Chris Benoit vs. Triple H

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Triple H battled Chris Benoit
A hard-hitting, high-impact, all-out war, this was probably the best match Triple H had up to this point that wasn’t against The Rock.

Everything they did looked great, made sense, and told a compelling story.

That story was Pedigree vs. Crosssface, with both men having seemingly figured every possible way to counter or prevent their opponent’s finisher.

Stephanie McMahon got involved near the finish, but even that didn’t detract from what was otherwise an exceptional contest in which both men genuinely brought out the best in one another.

After an epic battle, HHH finally nailed the match-winning pedigree.
Your Winner: Triple H

Backstage, Los Conquistadors were congratulated on their big title victory by none other than Edge and Christian themselves.

For some completely unknown reason (since they clearly hadn’t just competed in a match), E&C were tired and sweaty as they handed the tag champs celebratory bottles of Corona and said that they looked forward to challenging for those titles on Raw the following evening.

I might be wrong, but I seem to remember that the Conquistador who was supposed to be Christian was actually played by Christopher Daniels.

No Disqualification Match for the World Wrestling Federation Championship
WWF Champion The Rock vs. Kurt Angle (w/ Stephanie McMahon)

WWE / WWF - No Mercy 2000 - Kurt Angle defeated The Rock to win his first WWF title
A pre-match video told us that Stephanie had agreed to be Angle’s business associate and accompany him to the ring all the time after Triple H had banned her from his corner due to her being "a liability."

As the duo made their way out to the ring, Howard Finkle announced that it was now a no-disqualification match much to the surprise of the commentators who genuinely seemed taken off guard by the last-minute stipulation.

The champion then made his way out, and what we got was your typical WWF main event drama. I mean that very much as a compliment.

Nobody did main events quite like the World Wrestling Federation, and this was a perfect example of that. Though the earlier HHH/Benoit match may have technically been better from a pure wrestling standpoint, this was still a very, very, very good sports entertainment match that delivered on all counts.

That's even considering the couple of run-ins we had.

At one point, Stephanie got involved and ate a Rock Bottom for her trouble. Unsurprisingly, this brought out her husband who proceeded to attack both men, Angle for putting his wife in harm's way, and The Rock for causing said harm.

Angle even scored a near-fall after Hunter nailed the champion with a Pedigree, but that wasn't enough to end the match.

More gripping action followed before Rikishi made his way out. Wearing a bandage and wearing a mask of dried blood, he looked like he'd been through hell and back but was still out to help The Rock.

Not that he succeeded. On two separate occasions, he tried to hit Angle, missed, and planted the champ instead. Kurt then drilled Rikishi with an Olympic Slam, pinned The Rock, and won his first WWF Championship.
Your Winner and NEW WWF Champion: Kurt Angle

Afterwards, Angle raced from the ring so fast that Earl Hebner had to chase him down with the title belt. Holding the gold aloft, the new champion proceeded to drop to his knees and weep in such a way that you weren't sure whether it was part of his gimmick or whether he was genuinely overwhelmed.







What started off as a lacklustre show soon turned into a contender for one of the WWF's best efforts of the year. Outside of the Jericho/X-Pac cage match, the undercard was very underwhelming, but from the tag team title match onwards, everything got progressively better, culminating in two of the very best professional wrestling matches of the year 2000 and Kurt Angle's big moment.

Having debuted the previous year at Survivor Series 1999, Angle's rise had been nothing short of meteoric. From a nothing-feud with Steve Blackman in late '99 to the World Wrestling Federation Championship in less than a year, the Olympic Medalist had spent the time in between being the first man to capture the European Championship, the Intercontinental Championship, King of the Ring and now the grand prize in under 12 months, a feat which would begin establishing his status as one of the greatest of all time




For other year 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.