The Netcop Rant for Wrestlemania 2000
– Brought to you by refreshing, chilled orange soda! Don’t worry, it’s just an inside joke
– Note on the pre-game show: Hogan, Savage, Hogan, Savage, Hogan, Savage, Hogan, Savage, Hogan. Rahim and I were the only two out of the group to be true wrestling geeks and endure the entire 8 hour pre-game show (with all 6 outfits worn by Ivory), although I gave up on my pledge to recap the whole thing once the tension headache set in around Wrestlemania V, and it lasted until Wrestlemania XII when the Tylenol kicked in. That’s just too damn much wrestling for any one person. As a general note on the show, the editing choices were kind of weird, as were the match selections and clipping, and we counted about 17 different kinds of special effects used by the graphics people, with all sorts of letterboxing, color tinting, fades, dissolves and every other neato trick learned in film school. Owen v. Bret was shown almost in it’s entirety, but Steamboat v. Savage was clipped to three minutes? Still, a very interesting and LONG look back at all the Wrestlemanias.
– As a note, the picks for the main event going in were running 6-1 for Mick Foley, with my vote for the Rock being the sole exception.
– Live from Anaheim, California.
– Your hosts are Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler.
– Opening match: The Godfather & D-Lo Brown v. Big Bossman & Bull Buchanan. Ice-T raps Team Pimp down to the ring. Godfather and D-Lo control with some standard stuff. Bull rebounds out of the corner with a flying lariat to make D-Lo the Pimp in Peril. Scissor kick gets two. D-Lo fights back with a top rope rana. Hot tag to Godfather, who hits the corner splash on Bossman. D-Lo goes up to finish but gets knocked off and Bossman-slammed. Bull legdrops him off the top to finish. Bull looked good, the rest was lacklustre. *1/2
– Hardcore battle royale: Tazz, Kaientai, Hardcore Holly, Mean Street Posse, the Headbangers, Viscera & The Acolytes v. Crash Holly. Every pinfall in the 15-minute time limit results in a title change. Last person to be the Hardcore champion wins. Tazz suplexes Crash to win the title 30 seconds in. Viscera splashes Tazz on the floor to win it. Crash is busted open as the Acolytes go after Viscera. Lots of nasty weapons shots from Bradshaw leave everyone laying. Viscera escapes from both Hardcore & Mosh to retain for 5 minutes, which sets the record for the match. Pete Gas absolutely taps an artery and bleeds all over his sweater vest. Acolytes slam Viscera off the top, then put Funaki on top to give HIM the title. See, they don’t even care about the title, they just want to hurt people. Funaki runs like the wind to back and everyone follows. Rodney catches him first and gets a title reign. Joey Abs clobbers him and wins it. Thrasher rams him into a steel door and pins him to win the title. Everyone beats the shit out of him and we head back up the aisle. Pete Gas sprays Thrasher with a fire extinguisher, then nails him with it and gets his second title. Back to the ring as Tazz suplexes Pete and gets HIS second title. Three minutes left, the Hollies double-team Tazz in the ring and get several two-counts. They keep stopping each other. Crash gets the pin with 30 seconds left, but Tazz slaps on the Tazzmission as time winds down. With 7 seconds left, Hardcore smashes a jar of candy over both their heads and pins Crash to win the Hardcore title for good. That was quite the entertaining little crapfest, I gotta admit. ***1/2 The ending seemed blown, as Tim White was apparently supposed to have time run out before counting the pin. Oh well, I predicted Hardcore would take it pre-show, so I’m happy.
– Head Cheese v. T & A. Al Snow introduces us to their new mascot: Chester McCheeserton. He’s a pygmie dressed as a wedge of cheese, you see. As captivating as it sounds. This match is a total waste, with everyone wandering around the ring randomly for a few minutes and blowing EVERYTHING. Stage fright, I guess. Crowd is dead. Snow & Blackman get the legdrop finisher (the Cheese Grater?) but Test drops the big elbow on Blackman for the pin. JR found about 7 different diplomatic ways to say that this sucked. No shit, everyone was saying that BEFORE the show. DUD
– WWF World tag title match: The Dudley Boyz v. Edge & Christian v. The Hardy Boyz. There’s three ladders to start, with more to come presumably. ON WITH THE SPOTS! Three-way brawl to start. Buh Buh nails Jeff with a backdrop and full-nelson drop. Ladder comes into the ring and Buh Buh gets splatted with it. Matt elbowdrops D-Von on a ladder. Jeff misses a 450 on a ladder and looks to kill his leg. Buh Buh sentons him under a ladder. He then does the Terry Funk spinning ladder bit to knock everyone down. He gets dropkicked, however, and the Blondes pancake D-Von onto the ladder. Christian puts the ladder near the apron and dives off it onto Buh Buh and Matt, drawing the first “Holy ShitÃ¢â‚¬Â chant of the night. Jeff climbs for the belts, but Edge spears him off it from the second rope. Edge goes up and gets powerbombed off by Matt. D-Von slams Matt off. Christian knocks D-Von off with a ladder. Three ladders get set up, and Buh Buh hits his half of 3D off the top on Christian. Another “Holy ShitÃ¢â‚¬Â chant for that. Hardyz go up one ladder each and hit Rolling thunder off them. Jeff takes a crazy bump to the floor, then, and back in the ring the Blondes double-suplex D-Von off the top of the ladder. Hardyz and Blondes each go up and knock each other off. Crowd chants for tables. All six climb ladders, and Christian & Jeff go flying to the floor in a suicidal bump, while Edge & Matt get crotched on the top rope. The leaves the Dudleys alone. Christian crawls back in and gets smashed. Edge gets 3D. Tables are introduced to a HUGE pop. Dudleys put a table on top of two ladders, making a scaffold of sorts. Oh man, that’s kinda insane. Much like the rest of this match. Two more are set up below in the ring. Buh Buh takes Matt outside and powerbombs him through a table as D-Von misses a dive and goes through one in the ring. Jeff’s rail run is blocked with a VICIOUS ladder shot to the face. Holy shit! Buh Buh finds a HUGE twenty-foot ladder down the aisle and sets it up, plus a table, but gets nailed with the ringbell and put on the table by Jeff, who proceeds to deliver the SENTON BOMB FROM THE LADDER, THROUGH THE TABLE! Buh Buh is dead. Back in, D-Von gets taken out by Matt and Christian, who proceed to climb onto the scaffold. Edge joins them, knocks Matt off, and Edge & Christian grab the titles to become the new WWF tag team champions. I need a vacation after just WATCHING that. ***** I’m starting to fear for Jeff Hardy’s life, however.
– The Kat v. Terri. Throwaway junk here, as Val Venis is the special referee and both women are wearing body stockings. Various shenanigans allow Terri to toss the Kat out first behind Val’s back with help from Moolah and get the win. Kat tears a good portion of Terri’s clothing off afterwards. Served it’s purpose, I guess. DUD
– The Radicalz v. Too Cool & Chyna. Pre-match, Eddie promises to use his “Latino HeatÃ¢â‚¬Â to charm Chyna, which may become the new catchphrase for this millennium. He just plays an awesome sleazebag, and I mean that in the nicest way. Color coordination report for the Rads tonight: Purple and black. Eddie tags out quickly to escape Chyna, who is dressed like Disco Inferno. Grandmaster Sexay gets caught in the corner for a bit, then Scotty comes in and gets nailed with the springboard senton by Eddie. Eddie gets suplexed to the floor and Saturn & Malenko take a double Worm, but rebound to double-team Scotty. Eddie goes to the top but gets superplexed. Hotty tag to Chyna, who cleans house with a nice double handspring elbow sequence and double ballshot to Saturn and Malenko. Eddie tries a powerbomb but Chyna escapes and splits her disco pants. She manages a drop sleeper on Guerrero, whose boots she is not worthy to carry, and gets the pin. Match was okay, if disjointed. **1/2
– Euro-Continental title match: Kurt Angle v. Chris Jericho v. Chris Benoit. First fall for the I-C title: Benoit chops Jericho to start, then Jericho and Angle go. Jericho dropkicks both off the apron and Angle whips him into the stairs. Back in, Benoit & Jericho hammer each other and Jericho goes flying into the Spanish table. Benoit gets a pair of suplexes on Angle for two. Jericho takes out Angle, who comes back to suplex Benoit for two. Jericho camel clutches Benoit, then hits a hanging suplex on Angle that gets two for Benoit. Angle suplexes Jericho for two. Benoit blocks a sunset flip for two. Jericho gets caught with the cross-face chicken-wing by Angle, broken up by Benoit. Flying headbutt on Jericho gets the pin and the title for MY BOY! Whoo-hoo! Guess that’s the reward for carrying the Rock to one of his best matches. Second fall, for the Euro title: Angle takes out both, but Benoit superplexes Jericho and Angle misses a moonsault (!). Jericho covers for two, then locks on the Liontamer. Benoit breaks. Triple collision sequence leads to the double powerbomb by Jericho on Angle, which leads to the rolling german suplexes on Jericho, for two. Dragon suplex on Angle gets two for Benoit. Ref gets bumped, and Benoit hooks the crossface on Jericho, who escapes and hooks the Liontamer. Angle blasts him with the Euro title for two. Benoit suplexes Angle, but misses the headbutt, and Jericho hits the Lionsault for the pin and the European title. Angle is understandably pissed, having dropped both titles (cleanly, too) without losing a fall. Match was, of course, great, and I think we’re all just waiting for the Benoit v. Jericho wars to follow now. ****
– Kane & Rikishi v. The Pot Puffers. This is really just an excuse for a Pete Rose appearance. Everyone hits their signature spots on everyone else (Salad tosser, bronco buster, crazy-legs kneedrop) in short order before X-Pac takes a diamond cutter from Rikishi and a tombstone from Kane finishes quickly, hopefully ending this for good. *1/2 Too Cool and the San Diego Chicken come out to dance, as Kane glances at the chicken suspiciously. However, when Kane goes after the innocent mascot, the REAL deal, Pete Rose, attacks from behind with a baseball bat and gets killed, as usual. Rikishi rubs his ass in his face for good measure. Well, there’s always next year.
– WWF World title: HHH v. The Big Show v. The Rock v. Mick Foley. Big brawl to start. Mick v. HHH and Rock v. Show result. Show tosses HHH & Rock around the ring. Sideslam on Rock, chokeslam on HHH, but Mick nails him in the knee to stop the momentum. All three of the others gang up on the Show. Mick & HHH fight outside as Rocky finishes Big Show quickly with a Rock Bottom for the pin, to no one’s surprise. So we’re down to three. HHH tries reasoning with both men, but the Rock n Sock Connection attacks him. They brawl outside the ring. Rock nails Mick with the ringbell, showing what an idiot Foley is at times. Rock and HHH fight, but Mick finds the barbed-wire 2×4. HHH lowblows him and delivers his own shot with it. HHH tosses Rock, out, but Mick DDTs him and it’s the return of Socko! Rock blasts HHH with the WWF title, but Mick puts the Sock on Rock instead. HHH ballshots them both. Vince passes a chair into the ring as Mick clotheslines Rock for two. Double-arm DDT gets two to freak out the crowd. Rock comes back with a floatover DDT for two. HHH takes him down and Foley helps to beat on him. Foley kneelift gets two. HHH kneedrop gets two. They head outside and Mick tastes the STEEL stairs. HHH nails Rock with those stairs, then puts him on the Spanish table and sends Mick to the 2nd rope. He misses badly, nailing his arm on the table, so HHH improvises and puts Rock through the old-fashioned way: He jumps on him really hard. Back in, HHH turns on Mick and Pedigrees him for two. Chairshot and Pedigree on the chair gets the pin. Well, what the hell was the point of having Mick in there? We’re down to Rock v. HHH, at any rate. Mick comes back and blasts HHH with the 2×4, then leaves for real. It gets two for Rocky. They fight down the aisle, and back to ringside, where Rock charges with the stairs and gets nailed with a chair by HHH. Piledriver on the stairs follows. Ouch. Back in, it gets two. Rock fights back, but HHH escapes the Rock Bottom and tries the Pedigree. Rock backdrops HHH to the floor to escape. Back into the crowd, and then Rock spinebusters HHH on the floor. He suplexes him through the announce table for good measure. HHH hits a drop-toehold to the stairs, however, so Vince snaps and rams HHH into the ringpost. Shane then attacks Vince from behind, ramming a monitor into his head. Vince no-sells and beats on Shane back to the aisle, where Shane smokes Vince with a chairshot. Rock & HHH recover in the ring as Vince is carried off. Rock makes the comeback. DDT gets two. Tilt-a-whirl gets two. HHH comes back with a facebuster and 2×4 shot. Shane comes in and Rock catapults HHH into him to prevent interference. Vince returns and takes Shane out then turns on the Rock! Chairshot gets two for HHH, and a second one GETS THE PIN?!? The crowd is PISSED. The McMahons reunite (with the exception of Linda), and Rocky makes somewhat good by Rock Bottoming both Vince and Shane, then doing it to Steph and delivering a People’s Elbow to her in addition. But this McMahon nonsense is getting WAY out of hand. I can’t argue with the logic of keeping HHH as the champion, however, even if it was pretty heartbreaking to see the heel actually walk out of Wrestlemania with the title this year. ***1/2
Post-Game highlights: Hardcore Holly calls Michael Cole the Little Goatee Wearing Bitch a shithead, Edge & Christian give a victory speech while still selling the injuries sustained, Mick regrets not being 23 years old when he tried that dive, Pete Rose explains that he’s a competitor, and there’s always next year, and Vince finishes by giving a non-sensical explanation for his turn, which probably boils down to “Watch RAW tomorrowÃ¢â‚¬Â.
The Bottom Line: Bizarre final match booking aside, this was an AWESOME show, featuring a *****, a **** and two ***1/2 matches, and just generally being entertaining for the entire 3 Ã‚Â½ hours. I *think* that they might hotshot the title onto the Rock on RAW, thus getting the biggest rating in history while unopposed. Or maybe another McMahon will win a title, who knows.
Huge thumbs up here, at any rate, even if the ending left us all shell-shocked.