wrestling / TV Reports

The SmarKdown Rant – June 19 2003

June 19, 2003 | Posted by Scott Keith

The SmarKdown Rant – June 19, 2003

– Taped from San Antonio, TX.

– Your hosts are Cole & Tazz.

– Opening match: Undertaker v. Nunzio. Undertaker is a now a Texas legend and someone who has dominated the industry for longer than anyone else in history. Wait, I thought that WWE canon was supposed to be that Hulk Hogan was the one dominating the industry for 20 years? I’m confused. And how can he be a Texas legend if he’s been announced from Death Valley for most of his career? Nunzio offers Taker a leg, and then dives out of the ring when Taker goes for it. Taker follows him out and Nunzio dropkicks him off the apron and tries a sleeper on the floor. I’d call it a MAIN EVENT SLEEPER, but really who’s kidding who here? Back in, Taker looks to finish with the chokeslam, but then changes his mind and tosses him onto the FBI instead. Nunzio runs away again, but the Last Ride ends the misery at 2:59. Completely one-sided squash. DUD The FBI attacks, as usual, but it must be an off-night because he’s unable to make his own save and dominate them alone. The APA, appearing to be Ron Simmons and Billy Gunn, make the save. Wow, nice haircut, Bradshaw. Maybe they hired Rico as their stylist. Why Undertaker would need help to fight people he’s dominated alone for months now is beyond me.

– Elsewhere, Zach Gowan looks for Stephanie and finds Sable in her office instead.

– Chris Benoit v. Rhyno. Stephanie brings out a rather generic-looking WWE-ized US title belt and announces that this is a match in the tournament for the belt. You’d think this would be better promoted as the FINALS instead of just throwing it out there in a tournament with no brackets when they haven’t even split up yet. They do some matwork to start as Benoit takes him over with an armbar and into a pinning combo that doesn’t get anything. Cole goes over the history of the US title, thankfully omitting such great champions as David Flair and the time that Stephanie McMahon handed the belt over to Kanyon. Benoit takes him down again, but gets speared into the corner. He responds with chops to get things moving a bit, and Rhyno slugs back. Rhyno misses another charge and ends up on the floor, and we take a break. We return with Rhyno working a half-crab as Cole confirms that, indeed, we have no brackets. Benoit elbows him down for two. Rhyno comes back and hotshots Benoit in the corner, for two. Short-arm clothesline gets two. Rhyno appears to be working heel, which completely goes against the past few weeks. Another short-arm gets two. Powerslam gets two. He goes to a neckvice and gets two off that. Benoit cradles for two. Rhyno clotheslines him down again and hits the chinlock. Just what this match needed – a slower pace. Benoit fights out but gets overpowered, and Rhyno goes back to the chinlock AGAIN. Benoit fights out and Rhyno goes to the chinlock AGAIN! Oh my GOD end this match. Was this like an impromptu booking decision and they just decided to throw them out there for 15 minutes without a plan or something? Benoit finally comes back with a clothesline and some shoulderblocks, and a snap suplex gets two. Rhyno blocks the german suplex and gets the MAIN EVENT SPINEBUSTER, but Benoit finally gets the german suplex and goes up for the flying headbutt. That gets two. Rhyno comes back with a DDT, but misses the GORE GORE GORE. He knocks Benoit down for two, but the crossface finishes at 16:22. It took about, oh, 12 minutes to get going, but Benoit is like pizza – even when it’s bad it’s pretty good. **

– Elsewhere, Sable lets Zach cop a feel, which allows him to show off his acting range again. He does a remarkable impression of a 19 year old kid who’s never touched a boob before.

– Rey Mysterio v. Kanyon. Months of rehab and this is Kanyon’s big return? Rey takes him down with a drop toehold and a flying headscissors, and dodges Kanyon to put him on the floor. Rey follows but gets dropped on the railing as a result. Back in, Kanyon gets two. Backbreaker to block a springboard move gets two. We hit the chinlock, but Kanyon releases and misses a charge. He comes back with a northern lights suplex for two. They head up and Rey comes down with a bombs away for two. Cole suddenly goes off about how curious he is to see what’s going on with Zach and Sable. He’s a voyeur who wants to watch an amputee having sex with an old woman? Springboard moonsault gets two. Kanyon tries a powerbomb, but Rey springboards again and gets caught in an electric chair bomb that gets two for Kanyon. They head to the apron, but Rey guillotines him back in, into the 619 and West Coast Pop for the pin at 4:46. I can’t believe they can’t figure out anything to do with someone who can hang with both cruiserweights and heavyweights. He should form a team with Matt Hardy, I think their personalities and styles would gel really well. **1/2

– Haas & Benjamin (with new maroon & silver outfits, NO TRACKSUITS, and new music) come out to discuss the Team Angle situation. Seriously, how can you ditch the VELOUR TRACKSUITS~!? Kurt Angle was apparently holding them back, but he quickly interrupts to clarify things. In fact, he says, “next week” is for crybabies and girls, so if they want to prove themselves, then let’s fuck some shit up right now, beeyotch.

– Kurt Angle v. Charlie Haas. Angle takes him down to start and easily moves into a headlock, then overpowers Haas and takes him down again with a fireman’s carry and an armdrag. He takes Haas down with a wristlock and another takedown that has Haas backing off. Single-leg takes Haas down again, but he comes back with an armdrag and works on the arm a bit. Angle takes him down with the headlock, and they work off that. Haas overpowers him and they criss-cross into an Angle double-leg and catapult that sends Haas over and out. He regroups with Benjamin and heads back in for some unwise mindgames with Angle, which results in an ass-whupping. Cross-body gets two for Angle. Backdrop, but this time Haas sends Angle to the floor, where Benjamin introduces him to the stairs. The ref tosses Benjamin as a result of his chicanery. Where’s Teddy Long when you need him? That’s clearly haterizing. Back in, we take a commercial break. We return with Haas stomping a mudhole, as Haas works on Angle’s shoulder and hammerlocks it. He bridges for fun. Hey, why not? Angle comes back with a Russian legsweep (TRAITOR!) and both guys are out. Kurt is up first with a flying forearm and a pair of clotheslines, but he charges and hits elbow. He recovers with an overhead suplex that gets two. German suplex looks to set up the Angle Slam, but Haas counters with a german suplex of his own. Haas then does his own strap routine to set up a bad version of the Angle Slam, which insults Kurt so much that he hits his own to show him how it’s done, and that’s it at 13:18. Benjamin quickly runs in to finish his assault from earlier in the match, and they apply a double-anklelock until Shiny Happy Brock makes the save. Not awesome or anything, but a good long TV match to get the ring rust off Angle. ***

– Elsewhere, Sable puts the moves on Zach, resulting in an enraged Vince rushing into to defend her honor, which of course chases him off as they reveal it was all a ruse to mess with him.

– Billy Gunn v. Jamie Noble. Words Tazz says now that never would have come out of his mouth in the past: “Billy Gunn is great!” Billy couldn’t get over with Chyna and I seriously doubt Torrie is going to accomplish that goal either. But then Billy Gunn is like a drum solo – no matter how much you protest, there’s nothing you can do to stop it from taking up 10 minutes. Noble takes him down to start and they trade wristlocks before Noble bails. Back in, Noble dropkicks the knee and goes to work on it. It gets two for him. Into a deathlock, but Gunn hammers out and comes back with a tilt-a-whirl slam and his faggy punches. Press slam, but the knee gives out and Noble gets two. Nidia trips up Gunn to block the Dumbasser, triggering a catfight. Noble dives and misses, and back in a gassed Gunn finishes with the Dumbasser at 4:10. Gunn was totally blown up a minute in and poor Noble had to bump all over the place for him. They just don’t grasp it. ѕ*

– Eddie Guerrero v. Sean O’Haire. O’Haire attacks to start and gets a faceplant, and slugs away in the corner. Eddie fights back but gets dropped again for two. O’Haire uses a bearhug (and a really bad one at that) but Eddie fights out and dropkicks the knee a couple of times. Another dropkick high and Eddie goes up with a missile dropkick to the knee. Back to the top, but the frog splash misses and O’Haire finishes with the fireman’s carry bomb at 3:13, which is called the Prophecy and still sucks. ј*

– Elsewhere, Vince and Sable get up close and personal. Oh, wow, another “Vince cheats on his wife with a Diva” storyline, can’t get enough of the Sex Life of Senior Citizens. Stephanie interrupts, however, and kicks Sable out, then bitches out Vince for using her all these years. In fact, she talks about Vince whoring her out to business associates when she was 17. No, really. She goes into overacting hyperdrive as I wonder who the fuck is supposed to care about any of this.

– Smackdown World title: Brock Lesnar v. Big Show. They brawl outside to start and Show hits the post, but comes back to pound Brock down. Into the ring, Brock powers him out again, but Show tosses him into the railing. Back in, Show sends him out again with a chop. Brock necksnaps him on the way in and slugs away, but walks into a sideslam. That gets two for Show. He slugs away and lays in the choke. Show slowly works him over with stomps, but Brock fires back with shoulders in the corner until a clothesline puts him down and Show goes to an abdominal stretch. Brock simply powers out, but walks into a big boot. BIG FAT STINKY WART-INFESTED GIANT-KILLING LEGDROP gets two. They head up so Show can return the superplex favor from last week, but Brock counters with a low blow and hammers away in the corner. Show misses a charge and Brock suplexes him to trigger the comeback. F5 is blocked by Show, and Not Team Angle run in for the DQ at 7:52. Kurt Angle then makes the save, destroying everyone, until getting chokeslammed. But then Mr. America makes the save for HIM, going after Big Show with the usual. I assume this sets up a six-man next week. Hey, great, program Show with Hogan, it keeps him away from the real wrestlers. Slooooooow match. *

The Bottom Line:

Pretty much a dead show after the Angle-Haas match, as the second hour trotted out a bunch of bad matches and a stupid angle with the Fussin and Feudin McMahons. I’m all about the wrestling, though, and a couple of good long TV matches and a good Rey v. Kanyon match in the first hour are enough to carry the show in my book. And my book’s the one that counts, really.


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