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The SmarKdown Rant – June 27 2002

June 28, 2002 | Posted by Scott Keith

The SmarKdown Rant – June 27, 2002

– Taped from Chicago, IL

– Your hosts are MC & Tazz.

– Vince McMahon introduces Kurt Angle and shares in the jubilation of making Hogan tap like a bitch. And then he leaves. Geez, talk about a pointless cameo. Angle finally ditches the wig and takes it like a man, because he’s just so darn happy. So he throws out the dreaded open challenge. He even promises to take it easy. John Cena answers, and Angle isn’t impressed. Cena attacks and we’re off.

– John Cena v. Kurt Angle. Cena attacks and dumps Angle, and back in he fires away with a pair of clotheslines. Stinger splash gets two. He overpowers Angle again, but falls prey to the Anklelock. He powers out of it, but gets suplexed for his troubles. Angle’s got it under control, but Cena reverses a suplex for two. Angle pounds on him in the corner and gets a vertical suplex for two. To the facelock, but Cena powers out of it. Forearm and he’s on the comeback trail. Spinebuster gets two. Well, he’s a future main eventer already. Angle Slam is reversed to a DDT, which gets two. Angle charges and posts himself, and Cena gets two. Small package gets two. Powerslam gets two. Angle catches a double-chickenwing and rolls him over for the pin at 5:36, however. Well, Cena gave it the old college try. **1/2 Cena even offers a handshake, but Angle is too cool for that. Cena reminds me of a very young Sting, both facially and in build. Cena wants more, however, but Angle blows him off after thinking it over a couple of times.

– Elsewhere, Cena meets the boys, including Undertaker. This time he gets his handshake. Okay then.

– Tag title match: Billy & Chuck v. Hardcore Holly & Val Venis. Well, I guess sticking them in a tag team is one way to find a use for them. There’s even a sort of motif – they’re a Wunza team. In this case, wunza lover, wunza fighter. Holly overpowers Billy to start and gets the DROPKICK OF DOOM. Billy retreats and Chuck comes in, but Val works him over with chops. They exchange high kicks, and Chuck clotheslines Val to take over. Val gets an elbow and the kneedrop for two, however. Holly comes back in and they even do a little double-teaming, but the old cheapshot-from-the-illegal-man trick turns the tide. Why does a move hurt more if the guy isn’t legal? Someone should look into that. I’d be happy to accept any government grants offered. Billy chokes away, but Holly fights back against Chuck and gets a backdrop suplex for the double KO. Hot tag Val, and he’s a a Porn Star Afire! The match is dangerouly close to BONZO GONZO as Val cleans house, but he can’t get the Seaman’s Suplex on Billy thanks to Rico. Holly takes of that problem, but Billy gives Val a Fameasser at 4:20 in the confusion to retain. I have no beef with this and would actually enjoy seeing Holly & Venis continue as a team. They even have the matching purple tights already. **

– Torrie shows off her lingerie to hype the show on Saturday.

– Earlier today, Jamie Noble pimps Nidia to Tajiri. Literally. Poor guy.

– Lance Storm v. Mark Henry. An earlier pre-taped segment reveals that Lance is going to beat Henry not just for himself, but for the whole world. If someone like Lance was representing the interests of world peace at the G8 summit, there would be no protests – we could all unite under the banner of kicking the crap out of Mark Henry! Henry overpowers Storm to start with the dreaded KNUCKLELOCK OF DEATH and chokes him out. Storm goes flying out after a shot, and Henry tosses him back in. Storm comes back with chops, but has to bump around for Mark some more. Storm hits the post, but Henry misses a pump splash and Storm gets a missile dropkick. Stormkick gets the pin at 2:33. Whoa, CLEAN WIN. Kudos. Christian offers more of those kudos on the way by. Ѕ*

– Undertaker comes out for some gabbin’. We establish through some basic logical arguments that he is the champion (he has the belt, he who has the belt is the champion, therefore he is the champion, QED. You kids out there who go into comp sci in university can use that when you start building logic circuits). He takes credit for injuring HHH’s arm and badmouths the Rock. I have to draw the line there. So anyway, Rock returns July 11, and Undertaker is gonna make him pay. What, he’s gonna force to him to watch the last three Undertaker matches on PPV? Because that Austin match was really a form of cruel and unusual punishment. Kurt Angle interrupts all the Rock-hating and accuses Taker of talking too much. See, that’s irony. Angle wants a title shot next week on Smackdown (building ahead, what a concept), but Undertaker wants some right now. Angle politely declines the beating, but Undertaker accepts that title match regardless. Angle wants to touch the belt. And he even asks nicely. Showing that a little manners goes a long way, Taker lets him, but it’s a SWERVE, and Angle attacks and quickly gets the anklelock before running away. I have a theory on this: They’re hyping a title match for Smackdown against Angle, but first they’re hyping one with Jeff Hardy on RAW. They want to get the title on Angle (supposedly) but a heel-heel switch wouldn’t work without turning Taker face. So perhaps they’re gonna book that fluke title win for Jeff, have him take UT’s place against Angle on Smackdown, and then Angle can manhandle him and win the title. However, this messes up the July 11 Rock return because then Undertaker is stick on RAW and can’t carry through with his threat against Rock. But I wouldn’t be 100% shocked to see a title change on Monday and then again on Thursday.

– Test v. Rikishi. Test pounds away to start and gets a belly to belly. They slug it out, won by Rikishi, but Test clotheslines him and elbows away in the corner. Test shoves the ref, because he’s a biased American, and slams Rikishi for good measure. That’s CANUCK POWER! Rikishi comes back with a superkick for two, however. A Banzai drop is blocked with a nutshot for two. You should know that Canadian wrestling rules stipulate that low blows are legal. Ref bumped, but because he’s prejudiced against Canadians, he DQs Test for no reason, thus robbing our great country of a glorious victory against America. Storm & Christian hit the ring to defend the honor of Canada and explain the legalities to the ref, but much like Earl Hebner, he’s taken off for the dressing room after screwing Canada and can’t answer to his heinous refereeing job. I DEMAND AN INQUIRY! ј*

– Elsewhere, Vince was personally upset at seeing Hogan submit at the PPV. He’s all heart. Hogan tries using the FINGERPOKE OF DOOM on Vince, but he’s not the World champion (any more) or Kevin Nash, so it doesn’t work.

– Elsewhere, Test agrees that America sucks. How could I have been so wrong about Test all this time? Maybe he is okay after all.

– Jamie Noble & Tajiri v. Kidman & Hurricane. An astute fan at ringside has a sign saying “Trailer Trash”, presumably referring to Noble & Nidia. Man, where do people think of those witty signs? It must have taken hours to come up with that one. Tajiri attacks Hurricane from behind, and Noble comes in and immediately gets beaten on. Clothesline and Shining Wizard Magazine get two. Noble clotheslines him and the heels try a double-team, but Hurricane bulldogs both and Kidman lends a hand with a double-team on Tajiri. Kidman armdrags him, but walks into a handspring. Noble comes in, but gets powerbombed and Kidman is on the attack, but a cheapshot from outside puts Kidman in a situation tighter than his disturbing tiny pants. Tarantula and kneedrop , but Kidman reverses a tornado DDT into a facejam, hot tag Hurricane. Hurricane slugs away on Noble and sends him facefirst to the floor outside. Tajiri catches him with a superkick for two, however. Blind tag to Kidman and Helms chokeslams Tajiri, and Kidman finishes with the Shooting Star Press at 4:29. They should just forget the cruiserweight designation and let Hurricane & Kidman challenge for the tag titles. It’s Kidman and Hurricane, the dynamic duo! **1/4

– D-Von & Bautista v. Faarooq & Randy Orton. I think they need a better bad-ass name than “Bautista” if they’re gonna dump the Bull Buchanan look for him. Orton controls D-Von and gets a sideslam for two. D-Von dropkicks him and gets the spinning elbow. They head up top, where Orton blocks a superplex and follows him down with a bulldog. Hot tag Faarooq, and that epic brother v. brother feud continues. Powerslam gets two. D-Von DDTs him, however, and heads up for the missed headbutt. Orton comes back in with a bodypress that gets two. Dropkick gets two. Bautista tags himself in and gets a vicious lariat on Orton, and a spinebuster that finishes at 3:18. He needs a better finisher, but all he needs to do is master the sleeper and he’s set for the main event, too. That would be sarcasm, by the way. Match was okay. *1/4

– Hulk Hogan v. Chris Jericho. Hogan’s website is apparently “redandyellow.com” Does that refer to his wardrobe or the colors needed to make up his skin pigment? Jericho attacks from behind (also perfectly legal in Canada, FYI) and hammers away in the corner. Hogan clotheslines him and gets a backdrop, but the elbow misses. Jericho chops away, but gets slugged in the corner. Jericho goes low (legal according to Canadian rules, remember) to take over and gets a backdrop suplex. ARROGANT COVER gets two. He chokes away and gets a DDT for two. Michael Cole notes that Hogan isn’t gonna make any excuses because he “never has before in his career”. Oh man, I could spend HOURS disputing THAT little claim. Do the words “How much was the plastic surgery?” ring any bells? Jericho gets the abdominal stretch (using the ropes to steady himself in case he falls over), but Hogan escapes and slugs back. Jericho posts himself and Hogan makes the big comeback, but Jericho ducks the big boot (I’m amazed no one has thought of that before) and goes for the Walls. Hogan powers out, but falls prey to the bulldog and Lionsault, which get two. Hulkup time and he fights back, and Jericho bails off the big boot and grabs a chair. Chairshot draws a DQ at 6:32, but more importantly puts Hogan out. That’s a fair trade. Hogan seemed strangely motivated here, but then they were basically doing Hogan-Savage from 1986 so he didn’t need much prompting in order to work the match. According to Jericho’s wacky star ratings system, this would be a ***1/2 show-stealing spectacular! I’d call it *1/2, which is very respectable for Hogan these days. Jericho goes for the Edge Special on Hogan’s arm, but the Y2J countdown hits, and Edge makes his triumphant return and saves his buddy Hogan. Some asskicking results. Hogan doesn’t even hog the spotlight!

The Bottom Line:

See, now THIS is the kind of show I can get into – letting some new guys show their stuff, everyone working hard more or less, Canadians everywhere, using midcard guys in tag teams to shore up the ranks…just tremendous all around.

And Cena’s debut not only made him look like a MAJOR player right away (and mark my words – he’s the next Sting) by working him into the mix with the big boys rather than the losers, but also showcased his stuff in a really good match and made me want to see more of him.

Good show all around.

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