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 WWE. Show all posts
Showing posts with label WWE. Show all posts

Thursday, 27 August 2020

PPV REVIEW: WWF Royal Rumble 2001

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Event poster
January 21, 2001
New Orleans Arena, New Orleans, Louisiana

It's fair to say that the year 2000 was the last full calendar year that everything was 'normal' in the world of professional wrestling as we knew it back then. 


By the end of that year, there were still three major players - the WWF, WCW, and ECW. Sure, the latter two may have been on their last legs, but they were there.

By the end of the year 2001, however, everything would be different. Not only would WCW and ECW be gone, but they'd be owned by the World Wrestling Federation, while the WWF itself would be only months away from not even being the WWF any more thanks to those pesky Panda People.

Still, at least everything seemed normal on that late January night when the World Wrestling Federation brought the Royal Rumble to New Orleans.






Here's what went down at the last Royal Rumble of an era remembered so fondly by so many of us...

The First Step Towards Immortality

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Jerry 'The King' Lawler and Jim Ross called the event
Tonight’s video package was a bold, dramatic affair that told us that if Wrestlemania was the showcase of the immortals then the Royal Rumble was the first step towards immortality.

As with 99% of the company’s PPV intros, it was very well done and really got you psyched for the show.

The camera then panned the huge crowd both live in the arena and at WWF New York. Man, I bet WWE -or indeed any wrestling company in the world- would kill to have such a huge crowd that was as red hot as the ones back then.

Jim Ross and Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler welcomed us to the show and, with that, it was down to ringside.

World Wrestling Federation World Tag Team Championship
WWF World Tag Team Champions Edge & Christian vs. The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray & D’Von Dudley)

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Edge and Christian battled The Dudley Boyz
The Dudleyz wasted no time going after their opponents and attacked them right from the opening bell, but Edge & Christian soon managed to cut D’Von off from his partner and dominate the bulk of the match.

That whole part was fine, but it did look as though it was going to give us a fairly bland opening match with neither team performing anywhere near the level they were capable of.

Then they began building towards the finish and it was absolutely tremendous.

Near falls followed counters followed reversals followed more near falls, all in one utterly enthralling finale which came to a head with a win for Bubba Ray and D’Von courtesy of the 3D.
Your Winners and NEW Tag Team Champions: The Dudley Boyz

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Drew Carey meets Triple H and Stephanie McMahon
Earlier, on heat, comedian Drew Carey arrived at the arena. Also on that show, Vince McMahon addressed something that had happened on Smackdown and told us that, yes, Steve Austin would be in tonight’s Rumble match and, yes, Triple H would be challenging Kurt Angle for the WWF title.

Back live in the arena, HHH urged Stephanie McMahon not to let her hatred of Angle’s manager, Trish Stratus get in the way of him becoming champion.

After Steph was done ranting about her man winning tonight’s match, they were interrupted by Carey, who was excited about bumping into Kamala at an airport.

Honestly, that’s what he said.

He also said that he wanted to talk to Vince McMahon about promoting PPVs since the only reason he was there on the show was to promote his own upcoming PPV special.

Steph didn’t know where her Dad was, but she did want to introduce Drew to Trish, partly to get the comedian out of Hunter’s way (because who has time to talk about Kamala’s singing career when you’ve got a title match?) but mostly to stick it to Trish.

Always Poundin’ Ass

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Farooq and Bradshaw with their questionable t-shirts
Across the arena, Farooq and Bradshaw were playing cards and drinking beer. They got into it about something but I’m not sure what because I was too distracted by their ridiculous APA: Always Poundin’ Ass t-shirts.

Seriously, who thought that was a good idea?

I sort of got the idea that they were talking about which number they’d drawn for the Rumble as both men flashed one another bits of paper and agreed it was going to make things interesting.

Crash Holly then burst on the scene to warn the two men that if they got in his way, he’d have no problem throwing them over the top rope.

‘DAMN,’ said Farooq.
‘And people call us drunks,’ added Bradshaw.

World Wrestling Federation Intercontinental Championship Ladder Match
WWF Intercontinental Champion Chris Benoit vs. Chris Jericho

In the past year, these two had given us many great matches at events like Judgement Day 2000, Summerslam 2000 and many others, so it was fitting that they kicked off 2001 with another scorcher.

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Chris Benoit faced Chris Jericho in an excellent ladder match
I’ve always said that my favorite match of all time was the Intercontinental Championship ladder match between Triple H and The Rock at Summerslam 1998, but I genuinely believe that Chris Benoit vs. Chris Jericho at the 2001 Royal Rumble might be every bit as good as that one.

Honestly, I’ve watched so much wrestling over the course of running this blog that I start wondering if I’m not becoming a bit desensitized to it all.

Then a match like this comes along and reminds me why I do love pro wrestling.

I can’t remember the last time I spent so long literally on the edge of my seat, utterly enraptured by every move. Nor do I ever remember joyously yelling ‘HOLY S**T!’ as often as I did here.

It was stiff, it was brutal, it was dramatic,  and it was absolutely exceptional.

Quality stuff from start to finish, this one ended when Jericho knocked Benoit from atop the ladder to the outside then climbed up and captured his third Intercontinental Championship.
Your Winner and NEW Intercontinental Champion: Chris Jericho

Out in the back, Drew Carey was busy getting rejected by Trish Stratus when Vince McMahon walked in.

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Drew Carey flirts withTrish Stratus
Seizing his opportunity, Carey quizzed McMahon on how to better promote his upcoming PPV, but Vince was more interested in encouraging him to enter the Royal Rumble match.

Yep, that was happening.

Don’t Worry About Chyna

Across the arena, Chyna was gearing up for her match with Ivory as her buddy Billy Gunn urged her not to go through with it.

The Ninth Wonder of the World was in rough shape after being on the receiving end of a spike piledriver at the hands of Right to Censor, but she wasn’t going to let that get in the way of getting revenge on arch-rival Ivory.

Instead, she stormed off and insisted that Gunn would be better off worrying about the 29 other men he’d have to fight in the Rumble.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Your New Intercontinental Champion

Before we went back to Ross and Lawler, Michael Cole got a quick word with new IC champion Y2J.

Referring to Benoit as ‘one of the toughest bastards I’ve ever faced,’ Jericho kept it short and sweet, declaring that he’d proven his rival wrong once and for all.

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

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Chyna presses Ivory in their women's title match
Though the match was very short, it was actually kind of fun to watch Chyna woman-handle her much smaller opponent, throwing her around like a rag-doll and generally kicking her ass all over the place.

Then the finish came, and it was really underwhelming.

The challenger backed the champion into the corner and went for her trademark cartwheel handspring elbow. However, as she struck Ivory, Chyna’s neck injury was reaggravated and she collapsed to the mat like a sack of crap.

A barely-conscious Ivory draper an elbow over her opponent and won the match in the space of just a few minutes.
Your Winner and Still Women’s Champion: Ivory

Selling the seriousness of the injury, Chyna lay prone on the mat, unable to move as Jerry Lawler abandoned his position at the announce table and hit the ring to check on her.

Chyna’s buddy Billy Gunn came down, quickly followed by agents Sgt. Slaughter and Tony Garea as we got a really long stretcher job.

I’ll Touch You, Trish

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Trish Stratus confronted Stephanie McMahon backstage
Backstage, Stephanie McMahon headed to makeup to her hair fixed, only to find her nemesis Trish Stratus was already there.

Trish offered to touch it up for her, leading McMahon to warn the blonde beauty that if she cost HHH the title then Steph would, yes, touch her.

The crowd cheered at the thought of some Steph/Trish touching.

Ahem.

Drew Carey is a Big Deal

Elsewhere, Harvey Wippleman handed some wrestling gear to a very nervous-looking Drew Carey.

‘Hey, who's the guy in the goofy mask?’ Asked Carey as Kane walked in, looked at the comedian, and left again.

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Kane stares down Drew Carey backstageNo doubt that would pay off later.

As if to hammer home the point that Carey being there was a big deal, his name was dropped in another segment when Vince McMahon told Lo-Down (Chaz and D’Lo Brown with Tiger Ali Singh) that neither of them would be competing in the Royal Rumble because they’d been replaced by Carey.

You’ve gotta feel bad for D’Lo Brown.

He was one of the most entertaining parts of the early Attitude Era midcard and now he was basically comic fodder.

Who Will Win the Championship?

At WWF New York, a bunch of fans gave their pick for the WWF title match.

It was pretty much a 50/50 split between those who thought HHH would win and those who were rooting for Kurt Angle.

Back in the arena, HHH got psyched up for the big match by snarling at himself in the mirror.

World Wrestling Federation Championship
WWF Champion Kurt Angle (w/ Trish Stratus) vs. Triple H (w/ Stephanie McMahon)

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Trish Stratus led WWF Champion Kurt Angle into battle against Triple H
Point of interest, this was the first WWF PPV in which Triple H used his Motörhead ‘The Game’ theme.

After his entrance, Hunter engaged in a solid wrestling match with Kurt Angle which was mostly very good.

Why only mostly?

Because at one point, Steph and Trish got into a predictable catfight that had to be broken up by Vince McMahon because this was during the time when he booked himself to be shagging the beautiful Ms. Stratus.

That was unnecessary, but the rest of the match was damn fine.

The Game dominated, for the most part, spending a large part of the bout working over the champion’s leg before just going all out to try and beat him.

Toward the finish, Earl Hebner got murdered which gave Stone Cold Steve Austin the chance to run out and get revenge on HHH for costing him the title recently.

The Texas Rattlesnake smacked his rival in the face with the title belt then planted him with a stunner for good measure before hauling a mostly-dead Earl Hebner back in the ring.

A lifeless Kurt Angle managed to drape an arm over his opponent, Hebner made the slowest count in all history and the Olympic Gold Medalist had once again barely escaped another match with his title.
Your Winner and Still WWF Champion: Kurt Angle

Afterward, The Game stormed off, presumedly to find Austin.

Finally, The Rock Has Come Back...to New Orleans

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Kevin Kelly interviews The Rock
Interviewed by Kevin Kelly, The Rock cut a fantastic promo about tonight’s 30-man rumble.

First, he addressed rumors that Kane and The Undertaker were in cahoots (that again?) and vaguely suggested they might be into some kind of weird brotherly incest before insisting that he’d throw both men over the top.

Finally, he confirmed that it may all come down to him and Stone Cold, if you could detect the odor of his efforts in the kitchen.

A video package followed, highlighting tonight’s Rumble competitors. The video did a good job telling us that Rikishi had the number 30 spot as well as showcasing main event stars like Kane, Undertaker, The Rock, and Stone Cold.

30 Man Royal Rumble Match featuring The Hardy Boyz, Drew Carey, Kane, Raven, Honky Tonk Man, The Rock, The Undertaker, Stone Cold Steve Austin, Billy Gunn, Rikishi and more...

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - Drew Carey tries to buy his way out of fighting Kane in the Royal Rumble match
From start to finish, this was one of the most entertaining Rumbles in history with nary a dull moment in sight.

Howard Finkle gave us the rules of the match, including the fact that there’d be two minutes between entrances.

Then it was on with Jeff Hardy as competitor number one, Matt Hardy as number three, and Bull Buchanan between them at number two.

The brothers made short work of Buchanan then turned their attentions to one another, holding nothing back as they battled tooth and stopping only to dispose of number four entrant Farooq.

Drew Carey made his way out at number five and rejoiced as Matt and Jeff eliminated each other at the same time. His celebration was short-lived, however, as Kane was out at number six.

Pacing up and down the ring looking goofy and nervous, Carey offered Kane a handshake. When that didn’t work, he offered him money.

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - The Honky Tonk man put in a surprise appearance in the Rumble match
Naturally, the Big Red Machine declined that too and was about to chokeslam Carey when number seven Raven came to the rescue.

Realizing he wanted none of that, the Drew hopped over the top rope and eliminated himself.

Raven’s arch-rival Al Snow then came out and filled the ring with garbage so that the two of them -along with Perry Saturn and Steve Blackman- could attack Kane hardcore style.

The Big Red Machine eventually cleaned house, only to be joined by none other than The Honky Tonk Man. Appearing in his first Rumble match since his last surprise appearance at the 1998 Royal Rumble, Honky wanted to sing his theme song, but Kane wanted to chokeslam him and eliminate him.

Guess who won that exchange?

With Honky gone, The Rock came out at number 13 to kick off the second, more serious half of the rumble.

In other highlights.

The Big Show returned to the company after a lengthy absence and murdered everyone in sight with chokeslams before being quickly eliminated by The Rock. To get his revenge, Show dragged Rock under the bottom rope and chokeslammed him through a table.

WWE / WWF Royal Rumble 2001 - The Brothers of Destruction, Kane and The Undertaker
The Undertaker revealed that he and Kane were working together after all. The two cleaned house and then dominated the match.

Stone Cold Steve Austin was attacked by Triple H during his entrance. The Game beat Austin to a bloody pulp. Austin did a gruesome blade job that was even more intense than his infamous crimson mask from Wrestlemania 13. At one point, he honestly looked like Frank from the first Hellraiser movie.

Haku returned to the World Wrestling Federation, appearing in his first WWF PPV since the 1992 Royal Rumble. Haku looked impressive here, almost as impressive as he’d looked when he won the WCW Hardcore title at WCW Sin just one week before this event.

In the end, it came down to Austin, Kane, and The Rock. Kane got rid of The Great One but got smacked upside the head with a chair several times by Austin before being clotheslined over the top rope with force.
Your Winner: Stone Cold Steve Austin

Ladies and gentlemen, Stone Cold was going to Wrestlemania, and as the show closed, he threw a beer bash to celebrate.







Apart from the women’s title match which wasn’t really anything, WWF Royal Rumble 2000 was an awesome show from beginning to end.

Jericho/Benoit was the match of the night and is worth checking out for Jericho’s performance if nothing else.

Elsewhere, Kane and The Rock shone as MVPs of an utterly enthralling Rumble match.

A show well worth tracking down.

Other reviews of 2001 pro wrestling events: 
For more Royal Rumble reviews see:

Thursday, 16 July 2020

PPV REVIEW: WWF Armageddon 2000

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - event poster
December 10, 2000, 
Birmingham–Jefferson Civic Center, Birmingham, Alabama

I've said it before that the World Wrestling Federation's annual December PPV often felt like an off night for the company and its roster; a chance to slow it down a gear before things picked back up in the run towards the Royal Rumble.


Tonight, however, something just felt different.

Armageddon 2000 was to be headlined by a multi-man Hell in a Cell match which the company were promoting as the biggest thing to happen in the WWF since...

..Well, since ever.

That alone made the show feel important right from the outset.  At a time when Hell in a Cell is basically just another match, it's refreshing to find a show where the 'demonic steel structure' is still held in some reverence.

Yet for all the hype, would the World Wrestling Federation really be able to deliver? Or would this be yet another lacklustre December PPV in which everyone took a night off?







Let's head to Birmingham, Alabama to find out.

The End is Here

Tonight’s show began with an awesome video package that interspersed scenes of war, violence, and general-Armageddon-things with shots of the WWF’s top stars.

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - Jim Ross and Jerry 'The King' Lawler called the show
On its own, it wasn’t too impressive, but it was the song that accompanied it that really made it work.

An obvious nod to The Doors’ track of the same name, The End was a Jim Johnson original with Jim Morrison-esque vocals that really made for a compelling introduction to tonight’s show.

What wasn’t so great was the take on Sweet Home Alabama which accompanied the opening crowd shots and introduction from Jim Ross and Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler.

On its own, the music was annoyingly repetitive, but the worst part was that it’s cheery, upbeat tone was totally at odds with the general theme of doom that you’d want for a show called Armageddon.

With the Hell in a Cell hanging seriously low over the ring, Ross and Lawler told us that Mick Foley had promised to resign if anyone was seriously injured in tonight’s match.

Vince Don’t Want No Coffee

Backstage, a limousine pulled up. Pat Patterson and Gerald Briscoe argued over who was going to open the door to allow Vince McMahon to step out of it.

For some reason that I can’t be bothered to look up, Vince was limping with a cane as he pushed onto into the arena, refusing an offer for coffee because he wasn’t in the mood for it, damnit.

That was a mostly odd and pointless segment.

Six Person Inter-Gender Elimination Match
Team Xtreme (Matt Hardy, Jeff Hardy, and Lita) vs. The Radicalz (WWF Light Heavyweight Champion Dean Malenko, Eddie Guerrero, and Perry Saturn w/ Terri)

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - Lita teamed with The Hardy Boyz to face The Radicalz
Before the bell, a video recap told us how this match came about:

Lita challenged Dean Malenko to a Light Heavyweight Championship match, lost, and had to go on a date with the champion.

She then tricked him into taking her to a hotel room for some nookie, reminded him that he was a married man, then had Matt and Jeff Hardy attack him.

The actual match was pretty good even if it was entirely predictable.

Busting out the kind of entertaining spots that you’d want from a PPV opener, this fun, fast-paced elimination match obviously came down to just Malenko and Lita.

After a good bit of back-and-forth, the former put the latter in the Texas Cloverleaf and this one was done.

All round, an enjoyable effort, and not just because Terri got involved and flashed her ass at one point.
Your Winner: Dean Malenko

Afterwards, Malenko hurled Lita out of the ring. The Ice Man showed more personality in this one little bit then he had done for his entire career.

Eventually, The Hardyz came to Lita’s aid while Michael Cole got a ringside interview with her.

Clearly in agony, the former women’s champion insisted she could beat Malenko.

Angle is Ready

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - Lilian Garcia interviews WWF Champion Kurt Angle
Backstage, Lillian Garcia interrupted Kurt Angle’s workout routine to get an interview.

As excellent as he ever was on the microphone, the WWF Champion admitted that there was no way he could properly prepare to face five other men inside Hell in a Cell, but that he wasn’t worried anyway because he was an Olympic Gold Medalist who was sure to win.

The promo was followed by a flashback to No Way Out 2000, when Triple H backdropped a battered and bloody Cactus Jack through the cage roof to the ring below.

Man, it feels like such a long time ago that I reviewed that show.

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

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - William Regal defended the European Championship against Hardcore Holly
This was a better match than William Regal had with Hardcore Holly’s cousin Crash a week earlier at Rebellion 2000, but it still wasn’t Regal’s finest hour.

Before the match, the European Champion took to the microphone to insult the Alabama crowd, labeling them all as overall-wearing, beastiality-loving rednecks.

He was great at this part, but when Alabama’s own Bob Holly came down and the match got underway, it never really went past being inoffensively decent.

After a short encounter, Raven inexplicably ran in and destroyed Holly with an Even Flow DDT.

The champ capitalized and, one three count later, this was all over.
Your Winner and Still European Champion: William Regal

On Smackdown, Kurt Angle had broken an alliance with HHH and Rikishi by blasting the latter with the world title.

Backstage at Armageddon, ‘Kishi cut a convincing promo in which he told Kevin Kelly that it didn’t matter who else turned on him because he had sacrificed his heart, body, and soul for a shot at the WWF title and would take advantage of that shot tonight.

I may be in the minority, but I enjoyed main event ‘Kishi.

Chyna vs. Val Venis (w/ WWF Women’s Champion Ivory)

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - Val Venis bodyslams Chyna in their singles match
Right to Censor were upset with Chyna for appearing in Playboy, so Val Venis was tasked with taking her out in this short, uninteresting match.

I’m usually a fan of Chyna and tend to give her more credit than some reviewers, but there was nothing about this match that made me want to pay attention.

Val won after Ivory interfered.
Your Winner: Val Venis

Post-match, Chyna went to attack Ivory but Venis returned and planted The Ninth Wonder of the World with a powerbomb.

Steph is Scared

Afterward, we once again flashed back to No away Out, where Cactus Jack set a barb-wire wrapped 2x4 on fire and blasted HHH with it.

Back live in the arena, Stephanie McMahon told Vince that she was scared for her husband’s safety in the upcoming main event.

For his part, Vince replied that he’d had enough of Commissioner Foley and would put a stop to him and his actions.

The Animal Within

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - The Undertaker gave a compelling interview to Kevin Kelly
Earlier in the day, The Undertaker met Kevin Kelly inside Hell in a Cell to about his history in the sadistic cage.

Talking about how he felt more like an animal than a human Inside Hell in a Cell, ‘Taker went into graphic, gruesome detail about the violence he’d inflicted on both Shawn Michaels and Mick Foley, and promised to do the same to someone here tonight.

This was excellent stuff that really sold how brutal the Hell in the Cell match was, as well as how wicked the American Bad Ass could be.

Vince Hates the Main Event

With The Stooges by his side, the Chairman of the Board took to the ring to express just how much he was opposed to tonight’s main event.

The backstory here was that Vince didn't want the main event to go ahead because it contained all of his top stars in one violent match. If any of them -or many of them- got injured, then he was down a lot of money.

It was a smart backstory, but despite Vince being a genius on the microphone, he struggled to get that message across, not even in a subtle way.

Last Man Standing Match
Kane vs. Chris Jericho

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - Kane puts a submission hold on Chris Jericho in their last man standing match
At Fully Loaded 2000, Chris Jericho was involved in one of the greatest Last Man Standing matches ever against Triple H.

This was nowhere near on a par with that one, but it was still a pretty solid effort by all accounts.

Kane destroyed Jericho, but the plucky Y2J continually found a way to fight back, eventually dropping The Big Red Machine in an awkward table spot before burying him under a stack of fake toxic waste barrels that were made up the set.

At the last possible second, Kane’s arm shot through the barrels but it was too little, too late.

Teddy Long called for the bell and this gripping Last Man Standing match was over.
Your Winner: Chris Jericho

Out in the back, Jonathan Coachman had to get past Debra’s boobs so that he could have a word with Commissioner Foley.

In a good promo, Foley insisted that he knew how dangerous tonight’s main event was, but that he was committed to seeing that it went ahead anyway.

Live from New York, it’s The Heart Break Kid

Dancing around on the stage at WWF New York, Shawn Michaels was asked if he had any advice for tonight’s Hell in a Cell competitors.

Despite being in the first-ever cell match back at Badd Blood 1997, HBK declared that there was nothing he could say as literally anything could happen tonight.

We then flashed back to Hell in a Cell 2 at King of the Ring ‘98, where Undertaker chokeslammed Mick Foley onto some thumbtacks.

World Wrestling Federation Tag Team Championship Fatal Fourway Match
WWF Tag Team Champions Right to Censor (Bull Buchanan & The Goodfather w/ Steven Richards) vs. Edge & Christian vs. Road Dogg & K-Kwik vs. The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray & D’Von Dudley)

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - The Dudleyz do 'Wassup' on Edge
This was a solid effort from all involved, even if the first half of the match seemed to matter very little.

Things started with all four teams taking to their corners as in a traditional tag team match.

It was fine, and the actual wrestling that took place during this portion of the match was good enough, but you knew that it would eventually break down into a free-for-all, and so did the crowd.

From very early on, they got loud with their ‘WE WANT TABLES’ chants, making anything going on in the ring seem like it was killing time until they eventually got them.

Inevitably, The Dudley Boyz went through a crowd-popping burst of offense, taking out everyone in their path and reaching under the ring for the furniture.

'I think Bubba Ray’s got wood.....on his mind!’ Yelled JR, who clearly knew what he was doing.

The actual tables never really came into play in the match, but the whole chaotic closing minutes of the match were still very enjoyable.

Eventually, Christian hit Bubba with the Unprettier, Edge made the cover and Right to Censor lost the tag team titles without even being beaten.
Your Winners and NEW Tag Team Champions: Edge & Christian

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - HHH told his wife that the WWF Championship was the most important thing in the world to him. What a jerk.
Backstage, Triple H told his own wife that the WWF Championship was the most important thing in the world to him.

Honestly, with that kind of attitude, it’s a miracle their relationship lasted so long.

The Game then cut a scathing promo in Steph’s face, promising that nothing would stop him from getting the title back tonight.

We then flashed back once again to HHH/Cactus from No Way Out, with Hunter sending Jack crashing off the cage through the announce table.

Curiously, both HHH and Steph had referred to that match as taking place ‘last year,’ even though it had only been in February.

World Wrestling Federation Intercontinental Championship
WWF Intercontinental Champion ‘The One’ Billy Gunn vs. Chris Benoit

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - Chris Benoit puts the crossface on Billy Gunn
If you’re the kind of fan who hates Billy Gunn, you’ll probably love this match.

The intercontinental champion got his ass handed to him in what was, admittedly, a thoroughly satisfying contest.

After getting destroyed for most of the contest, The One submitted to the Crippler Crossface snd relinquished his title.
Your Winner and NEW Intercontinental Champion: Chris Benoit

And that was about it for Billy Gunn’s push as a major star in the WWF. He’d do nothing of note until Chuck Palumbo turned up, eventually turning up in TNA as The Outlaw and, um...Cute Kip.

100% Coffee Fuelled

Earlier in the day, Stone Cold Steve Austin had hung out in some kind of random kitchen, telling Jim Ross that he’d been drinking coffee all day and was now ready to go stomp a mudhole in his opponents.

Austin didn’t care that Hell in a Cell had shortened Shawn Michael’s career, or that it had ended Foley’s, all he cared about was becoming the champion again.

As all the main event promos had been so far, this was very compelling stuff from Stone Cold.

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - Trish Stratus faced Molly Holly and Ivory in a three-way for Ivory's women's championshipWorld Wrestling Federation Women’s Championship Triple Threat
WWF Women’s Champion Ivory vs. Molly Holly vs. Trish

It would be years before the women were putting on matches that consistently rivaled the men’s and tonight was no exception despite having competent workers in the form of Ivory and Molly Holly in there.

This was an incredibly short match that barely lasted more than two minutes.

The actual action was OK for what it was but, really, what can you do in two minutes?

Ivory won. Very few people cared.
Your Winner and Still Women’s Champion: Ivory

Afterward, Test and Albert came down to get Molly after she cost Trish the match, but Crash came down and challenged them to a brawl.

This led to the return of the APA, who came after their rivals.

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - The Rock silences Kevin KellyFinally, The Rock has Come Back...to Hell

Backstage, The Rock cut a captivating promo in which he promised Kevin Kelly that he would sweat and bleed and beat everyone’s candy asses when he walked straight into hell to become our six-time WWF Champion.

The Great One was on fire here, and I’m glad he cut a serious promo rather than goofing around for laughs, an approach which only added to the gravitas of our main event.

Six-Man Hell in a Cell for the World Wrestling Federation Championship
WWF Champion Kurt Angle vs. Triple H vs. Rikishi vs. The Undertaker vs. The Rock vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin

I love HHH’s theme here, by the way, it’s a mix of My Time and The Game, and it sounds epic.

The Undertaker came out to 'Rollin’which was surprising because they had to edit out American Bad Ass on the WWE Network but somehow Limp Bizkit was still ok.

In between them both, Kurt Angle was the third man to make his way to the ring, an odd position given his status as the reigning champion.

Regardless, this match met every exception.

A glorious celebration of pro wrestling violence, the match was essentially a three-act story.

WWE / WWF - Armageddon 2000 - The Rock silences Kevin Kelly
In the first act, all six men brawled wildly around the ring until Vince McMahon and The Stooges came down with a flatbed truck carrying a bunch of kennel bedding that you immediately knew somebody would take a bump on later.

McMahon had his cronies attach a chain between the cage door and the truck to rip the door off. The Chairman’s aim was to use the truck to tear down the cage completely, but Foley came down, beat a bunch of people up and had McMahon escorted away by security.

This led to act two, an even wilder, bloodier brawl in which all six men made their way to the junk cars that made up the entrance set and annihilated one another. Everyone except Rikishi got busted open.

It was chaotic, it was fun, and it was as brutally brilliant and brilliantly brutal as you might hope for.

Eventually, the match wound up on the top of the cell where Rikishi almost caved Angle’s skull in with a chair before -somewhat predictably- being the one to take the big bump off the top of the cage to the truck courtesy of an Undertaker chokeslam.

Back in the ring for the final act, only HHH, Angle, The Rock, and Austin remained, and even they could barely stand.

After a gripping climax, Angle barely got a hand on The Rock’s chest to pin him for the three count.
Your Winner and Still WWF Champion: Kurt Angle

Afterward, Austin delivered one last stunner to Angle, but that was all he was capable of.

Battered, bloodied, and absolutely broken, nobody could stand. Nobody could move.

Hell in a Cell had delivered everything the WWF had told us it would.







And that’s why I love this show so much.

From an in-ring standpoint, only the main event stood out as anything special, but man did it ever stand out.

The story throughout the night was that this was one match so brutal and diabolical that it would forever change the lives of those who entered it, and then they came through by really selling us on the fact that it really had done that.

The story and the sell may have been better than most of the matches, but it made for compelling viewing.



For other year 2000 pro wrestling reviews see:
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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 doppelgänger (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:

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.