Inside Pulse No Way Out Countdown – 2001


The SK Rant for WWF No Way Out 2K1

– Okay, a couple of things before we get started. First of all, this is a day late because I didn’t rant live on the show and wanted to wait for Monday afternoon to do this anyway, so fear not, I haven’t forgotten about you. Second, I’ve gotten a bunch of really irritating feedback to the Best WWF Matches of the 1990s rant from last week. Irritating because the title is “Best of the 90s”, and yet I had several people asking why TLC and/or Foley v. HHH and/or Rock v. HHH Iron Man (all from 2000, mind you) weren’t on the list. I’ll let you figure that conundrum out for yourselves. Foley-UT is another story, and the short version is “I don’t like that match”. For the rest of you, thank you for the great feedback, and I’m probably doing a “Best PPVs of the 90s” rant next time I want to do a list.

– SHILL ALERT! Yes, the book is OUT. The book being my first published work, The Buzz on Professional Wrestling, available for $16.95 or less at a fine bookstore near you, or online via or Barnes & Noble. The ISBN is 0867308664, so if your local store doesn’t have it, ask them to order it. The Barnes & Noble page has a listing of the Table of Contents if you’re curious as to what the book is covering. At some point I’ll be giving away an autographed copy, so stay tuned.

– Live from Lost Wages, NV.

– Your hosts are JR & The King

– Opening match, Hardcore title: Raven v. The Big Show. MysTori gets taken out by Show right away, and Raven eats stairs. Show charges and hits the post, however. Raven uses the FIRE EXTINGUISHER OF DOOM and baseball slides him, but Crash Holly (dressed as a popcorn vendor) joins and gets killed by Show. Final Cut for Raven follows, but Hardcore Holly & Steve Blackman invade next. Billy Gunn sneaks in with a fameasser on Raven for the pin and the title at 2:40. Holly & Blackman go for the ironic touch, using a Sidewinder on Gunn, but Raven sneaks in for the pin to regain the title at 3:40. MysTori interferes but Molly decks her, and Show chokeslams Raven for the last pin and the title at 4:30. Stupid, but short and energetic. **

– Intercontinental title match: Chris Jericho v. X-Pac v. Chris Benoit v. Eddy Guerrero. Lillian the Brain Surgeon asks the Radicalz pre-match how they can co-exist. Well, gee, probably not very well when they’re OPPOSING each other. Slugfest to start, Jericho pounds Eddy with some CANADIAN VIOLENCE as Benoit & X-Pac head out. Jericho alley-oops Eddy into the corner and a lariat gets two. Benoit & Guerrero double-team Jericho while X-Pac lounges outside. Eddy misses a blind charge and takes a leg lariat, but X-Pac sneaks in with a spinkick. Radicalz kick the shit out of him and Benoit gets the Crossface, but Jericho saves. Benoit & Jericho brawl out while X-Pac & Eddy go. Eddy blocks a superplex and hits a frog splash for two. Benoit & Jericho go again, Benoit clothesline gets two. Radical beatdown #2 follows, but X-Pac dumps Eddy. Benoit suplexes him for two, but takes a leg lariat, setting up the broncobuster. Jericho stops it with a missile dropkick, but Benoit plows into HIM for two. Awesome spot. German suplex gets two, and the Radicalz go. Eddy hits a rana on Benoit and punches away as Jericho & X-Pac brawl out. Eddy drops Benoit on his head with a backdrop suplex, thus making both of them my heroes. Another suplex sets up a frog splash, but he gets superplexed off by Benoit. X-Pac & Jericho both sneak in and cover for a double two-count. Jericho & Benoit go, Jericho gets a backbreaker for two. Jericho with that sweet sweet CANADIAN VIOLENCE, and Benoit responds in kind. Jericho rollup gets two. Benoit clotheslines him for two. More CANADIAN VIOLENCE follows, and a Jericho bulldog attempt is double-reversed to a german suplex by Benoit for two. Another try is reversed to the Walls of Jericho, but Eddy saves and takes the move himself. X-Pac saves HIM, but then HE takes the move. AWESOME! Justin Potent runs in, allowing Benoit the chance to hit a dragon suplex on Jericho for two. X-Pac & Justin pull Benoit out and hit a Rockeresque double-superkick on Benoit. Well, I think we know which one is Marty, puff puff. Jericho Lionsaults Eddy for two, but X-Pac saves. Lowblow and X-Factor, Benoit saves. He nails Justin, Crossface on X-Pac follows, but Eddy saves with a vicious necksnap. Everyone’s out, including Justin. Benoit backdrops Eddy and hits the swandive, but X-Pac kicks him right in the face, then gets rolled up for the pin by Jericho at 12:17. OH YEAH, BABY! ****1/4

– Meanwhile, Vince makes sure to clearly let Regal know that he’s to interfere in the women’s match tonight and do the right thing. Regal, the poor soul, has no idea what that might be

– Trish Stratus v. Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley. Steph runs into Trish and pounds her to start, and Trish bails to the ropes, but gets dumped on her head. Steph gets a pair of clotheslines and the ever-present hairtoss, and dumps Trish. They brawl on the floor, and Steph bumps into the crowd. She then comes off the railing with a clothesline (!) and back in we go. Suplex attempt is stopped by a hotshot from Trish, and she slaps Steph around. CANADIAN VIOLENCE! It’s a good night to be Canadian. The Trish-Dog gets two. Steph fights back with a stiff forearm, but Trish DDTs her for two. Trish goes up with a chokehold, but Steph slams her off the top. She dumps Trish and gives her a few shots to the table. She adds a pitcher of water on Trish, always a bonus. Back in, Trish’s rana attempt is blocked with a powerbomb (!!) for two. Steph rips some clothes off Trish, and chokes her with them. Psychology in the clothes-ripping! They charge each other and do a funky Matrix hair-pulling spot for a double-KO. William Regal joins us and casually bumps the ref, putting Trish on top, then changing his mind and putting Steph’s foot on the ropes at two. Trish is like “What the hell!” so Regal gives her the neckbreaker and Steph gets the pin at 8:29. Someone call the church, IT’S A MIRACLE! *** Seriously, this KILLED anything on the WOW PPV. I mean, it’s not even close.

– Wrestlemania X-7 spot, which is apparently Michael Bay’s sequel to Armageddon. I swear to god that if Vince McMahon ever gets into the movies, they’ll be produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, so really I shouldn’t surprised that the WWF would produce a promo that looks like something out of Con Air.

– Steve Austin v. HHH. Slugfest kills that zero tolerance thing dead, and they proceed to destroy each other as the audience goes batshit. Austin beats the hell out of him in the corner and hits a lariat. HHH ducks an early stunner, but reverses a Thesz Press to a stungun. Pedigree attempt is reversed to a single-arm DDT and they hit the floor. Austin works on the arm. Back in, Pedigree is stopped with a lowblow and Austin keeps working on the arm. Thesz Press and F.U. Elbow get two. Spinebuster, but a move off the 2nd rope hits foot. Neckbreaker, and HHH works the neck. HHH then changes tracks and goes to the knee, wrapping it around the post a couple of times. He clips him and continues viciously working the knee. Into a figure-four, which gets a surprisingly big pop. He even uses the ropes for leverage, like a good heel. Austin reverses, but after breaking HHH goes back to the neck. After breaking the momentum, he goes back to the knee. Austin kicks at HHH’s face to break the assault off. He makes a superman comeback and hits a Thesz Press and another elbow for two. Stunner, blocked, but a clothesline hits. Stunner, blocked again with a neckbreaker. Good spot. Blocked again, HHH rolls him up for two, Austin reverses for two. HHH goes low, but KICK WHAM STUNNER finishes at 12:20. So far so good.

– Second fall: Austin dumps HHH and suplexes him on the ramp, twice. Well, that’s just excessive brutality. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Over to the announce table, where HHH gets a monitor sandwich. Austin throws some chairs in the ring, and HHH flees the scene. Austin chases him down and continues pounding him. Back in, Austin uses a chair for nefarious purposes and beats him like the proverbial redheaded stepchild. Awesome. See, THAT’S how you beat a guy down. It gets two. Austin grabs the bell, but HHH flees again. Austin retrieves him again, then finds a barbed wire 2×4 under the table. What, are we playing a THQ game here? HHH quickly grabs it and nails Austin, drawing blood. They fight on the table, but Ausitn backdrops him through the Spanish table. Awesome bump. I love this match. Austin beers him and back in the ring we go. Bell to the head puts Austin down for two. Neckbreaker on a chair gets two, again gets two. Austin tries a sleeper but gets dropped on a chair for two. Vicious. Pedigree is reversed and HHH does a Holy Shit bump over the top. Austin grabs a chair and tattoos HHH with it. Stairs to the head follows. HHH manages to escape and finds his trusty sledgehammer as Lawler starts questioning how they didn’t see those before. Into the ring, Ausitn stomps the mudhole, but gets sledged before walking it dry. Pedigree finishes at 28:08 (total time).

– Third fall: HHH tosses Austin into the cage right away and continues pounding, albeit slower now. Another trip to the cage follows, and he rakes the barbed wire into his face, literally dragging Austin around the ring. Austin chairs him to break. HHH eats cage, and Austin goes to work with the barbed wire, for two. DDT on a chair puts Austin down, and HHH gets two. Austin fights back and HHH does a Flair Flop. Art imitates life. Austin gets two. HHH climbs, and Austin follows, only to get crotched in a Flair-ish spot. Austin slams HHH off for two, however. HHH comes back with a Pedigree, but Austin kicks out at two. Chairshot (of the vile variety) sets up another Pedigree, reversed to a catapult and KICK WHAM STUNNER for two. Both guys hit each other with their weapons of choice, and both guys collapse, with HHH on top for the pin at 39:23. Austin is BACK, HHH is still the man, and you know what that equals *****

– Jerry Lawler v. Steven Richards. Tazz takes over color commentary duties. Lawler pounds away and Steven bails a couple of times. Back in, Steven misses a Ho Train and Lawler bulldogs him for two. Steven suplexes him for two. Chair gets involved, but Lawler DDTs him, twice. Ivory distracts the ref, as does Kat. Richards whiffs with the title belt a couple of times, then Ivory charges, hits Jerry by mistake, and Richards gets the crowd-killing pin at 5:31. I’m sure this is leading to the Big Blowoff at Wrestlemania to kill RTC once and for all. Jerry was trying like a madman but Steven must have drank the funny Kool-Aid tonight. *

– WWF tag title table match: The Dudley Boyz v. Edge & Christian v. Undertaker & Kane. Brawlomundo to start. Edge & Christian get bumped around by the Brothers Grim and meet the table. Dudleyz chair the Grim Twins to stop a pair of powerbombs, leaving Dudleyz v. Edge & Christian in the ring. Edge & Christian put Buh Buh in the corner and stomp on his testicles. If you’re gonna steal a spot from Tommy Dreamer, might as well steal the best one. Flapjack for D-Von, but he ducks the Conchairto and the Dudz hit the Wassup Drop. D-Von goes for the tables right where Undertaker & Kane have been sitting around waiting. Oh, that was smart. UT & Kane kill him and head inside, for stereo powerbombs and stereo lariats on the Canadian faction. Rockers 2001! They clean house on both teams. Dudleyz set up a table, but UT almost chokeslams Christian through it, before a lowblow stops him. Edge & Christian double-suplex UT, barely missing impaling his leg on an overturned table. Kane chokeslams them both. Dudz get chokeslammed, but Haku-Shi waddle in and take the Brothers Grim out of the match entirely by brawling with them. That leaves the champs and the chumps, and 3D finishes Christian at 12:01. Good enough for government work, as my Chemistry teacher used to say. *** Best of all, no titles for Kane & UT!

– WWF title match: Kurt Angle v. The Rock. Tick tock, tick tock. Rock lays the smackdown with a lariat and a russian legsweep for two. Angle gets the upper hand and chokes away. Rock comes out of the corner and into the Angle-Lock. Rock makes the ropes. Angle gets a belly-to-belly, but Rock hits his own. Double-KO and slugfest follows. Rock hits an insane lariat and hooks the Sharpshooter. Angle makes the ropes. Samoan drop gets two. Angle comes back with a backdrop suplex and goes upstairs, but gets crotched. Superplex gets two for Rock. Angle dumps Rock, who hurts his knee on the landing. Back in, Rock gets a DDT and the sound of that giant toilet flushing is the Big Show making his walk-on to chokeslam both guys. Thrilling. Well, that helped nothing. A couple of refs help the first one as Angle covers Rock for two. Rock blasts him with the title for two, as Earl Hebner drops the first ref to valiently take over as referee. Funny stuff. Rock hobbles over, but gets caught again in the Angle-Lock. Angle WRENCHES it in, and yells, and I quote “Give it up before I break your f*cking ankle, Rock!” I love this match. Rock finally makes the ropes again, and fights back, but Angle pounds him down. Rock gets a spinebuster out of nowhere, followed by the People’s Elbow for two??? Crowd is shocked. Angle retreats to the corner, but gets stomped. Angle lowblows him and removes the turnbuckle pad. Rock Bottom is countered by a shove into the STEEL bolt and Olympic Slam, which 99 times out of 100 finishes but this ain’t one of them. Rock kicks out at two, and Angle is hysterical. Rock beatdown in the corner is stopped with a kick to the ankle. Angle is my HERO. Angle charges and gets thrown to his own exposed turnbuckle (IRONY!), Rock Bottom gets a dubious two, and another Rock Bottom gets a decisive three for his SIXTH WWF title at 16:53. And the world is right again. ****1/2

The Bottom Line: OH HELL YEAH! Awesome PPV to restore my faith in the WWF machine after some sucky RAWs. Order the replay, NOW.

Thumbs way up.