We get our Armageddon #1 Contender, Albert jerks the curtain and John Cena becomes just another victim. Confused? You won't be...
WWE Smackdown for December 5, 2002, from Dallas, Texas
Report by Brendan Johnston exclusively for www.411wrestling.com
I didn’t realize until my traditional late night re-watching of the show last week that the Thanksgiving Smackdown absolutely sucked. The opening tag match was decent and Angle/Benoit vs. Los Guerreros was their typical passable outing, even though I would have preferred it to end on the voluntary count-out to further Los Guerreros (whose graphics actually say that now; and they say WWE doesn’t read the IWC) as conniving heels and just let Angle and Benoit go at it... actually no. The hell with that. I know I’m gonna get crucified for this but I’m f**king SICK to death of the endless permutations of Angle/Benoit/Edge/Rey/Chavo/Eddie. It’s gotten stale, which is something I never thought I’d say about the Smackdown Six (credit: Ashish). Something new needs to happen with them sooner rather than later or else I’m not going to be the only one bitching.
Let me bitch a bit about my week, because... well, it’s my column and I’ll write whatever I want, really. First of all, it’s snowing here in New York. Which is nice when you’re like ten and they cancel school, but when you’re twenty one with a bad back -resulting from lifting a couch with a guy known as “the Animal” on it just to prove you could... which you couldn’t- and a van whose rear wipers haven’t worked in months (I still love my Space Boat, though), it’s a bit of a pain in the neck.
On the upside, I got to re-read The Long Halloween by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale, which is, among other things, the reason Cari and I are friends.
Tuesday I go to my 7:30 class only to find that the professor hasn’t shown up, so I leave school and go home till about nine, at which point I leave my house to go the cable studio where my acting class met this week. I get to the actual street the studio is on, and then realize that I never dropped off the money from the Stager show this week, which the office of Student Life needed by 9:00 Tuesday morning. So I turn around to go back to school despite being actually at the studio, speed back to school, get stuck in traffic coming back and end up being half an hour late for a class I was initially ten minutes early. Life? Don’t talk to me about life.
And somehow, someday... I will find a way to blame this all on Triple H.
Raw... okay, my initial mark out at the reunion of the Dudley Boyz has faded. Bubba’s improved far too much in the last few months to be stuck in a tag team with Reverend Bland Offense.
Though it was the best 3-Minute Warning match I’ve ever seen. Which isn’t saying much, since I think I’ve seen every match they’ve had in WWE and this was average at best.
It looks to me, at least right now, like it’ll be a four way match for the tag titles at Armageddon. The three teams will of course be Chris Jericho and Christian vs. the Dudley Boyz vs. Booker T and Goldust vs.... Shawn Michaels and Triple H, who will fight later in the show for the Raw Title. They will also compete in a triple threat elimination match for the Women’s title, during which Victoria will be eliminated inside five minutes and Shawn and Hunter will go another ten. They also intend to resurrect the IC and European titles, then fight over them too, all building toward three- count ‘em, THREE- title unification matches at the Royal Rumble. All of which will feature Shawn Michaels and Triple H. They will also compete in the Rumble itself, Hunter entering in spots 1 through 15 and Michaels in spots 16 through 30. All HHH/HBK, all the time. That’s the key to saving the ratings and boosting the buyrates, by golly.
Hey, remember when HHH/Michaels had the whole fan community abuzz back in August? Me too. Fickle bastards, we wrestling fans are. That’s right; I freely admit it.
Booker and Goldust lost their second hometown Tag Team Title shot on Monday. But fellow Texan Jacqueline beat Victoria. Not for the title. Woo. Tex-as, Tex-as! Yeah.
But Lance Storm did the Sharpshooter again, on that Day-Glo f*ck Jeff Hardy. Lance Storm rules.
On the NWA:TNA pay-per-view this week, Roddy Piper blamed Vince Russo for the death of Owen Hart. Then in a sit down interview, Curt Hennig declared that he beat up the WWE Champion on an airplane. Upon hearing this, Vince McMahon promptly signed away the entire X-Division, sent the Big Show to Nashville to sit on Hennig’s head, had Scott Hall infected with a debilitating bone disease, published pre-sex-change-operation pictures of Chyna in X-Pac’s hometown newspaper, launched a small nuclear weapon at Vince Russo’s house, impregnated Ron Killings with an alien fetus, tied Jeff Jarrett hand and foot and presented him as a sex slave to the Heat-exclusive talent, and had Triple H and Rikishi hold down Roddy Piper while Lance Storm carved the words “YOU DON’T F*CK WITH VINCE MCMAHON” into his forehead with a soldering iron.
Dave Dymond debuts on 411 with his column “The Skeptic Tank,” in which he breaks the shocking news that wrestling is... brace yourselves... not real. It’s a good column, go read it. Or else. Also, I refuse to accept that that’s his real name.
Tom Cocozza apparently now has two cocks. This is despite his being unable to find even one of his own on Tuesday. Don’t ask me how that works.
The montage rolls, the pyro hits and Cole and Tazz (thank God it’s Tazz) welcome us to WWE Smackdown for December 5, 2002. Tonight we get Kurt Angle vs. Chris Benoit vs. Edge vs. Eddie Guerrero for number one contender status at Armageddon.
Rey Mysterio vs. Albert: YEAH, MOTHERF*CKER!!!! ALBERT IN THE HOUSE!!! Albert’s got new trunks, by the way. I love this big hairy goon. Rey’s in some very gay powder blue.
Mysterio slugs away but gets whipped. He starts dropkicking Albert’s knee and ducks a clothesline. Springboard dropkick and springboard legdrop get two. Rey can’t whip Albert and gets military pressed and pounded in the corner. Tazz compares Albert to George “the Animal” Steele. Albert guillotines Rey on the second rope and yells at the crowd, then covers for two. Albert misses an avalanche in the corner, and gets kicked a few times. Some shenanigans off the top rope lead to a bulldog by Rey for two. Second rope moonsault caught but Rey floats out and dropkicks Albert to the second rope. 619 hits. West Coast Pop is countered with an over the shoulder backbreaker to give Albert the win.
Winner: Albert by pinfall (3:00)
After the match, Albert avalanches Mysterio from behind and hangs him on the top rope, then starts kicking the hell out of his left knee. Albert gets a chair, scares off the refs, and pounds away on Rey’s leg. Edge runs down and checks on Rey instead of going after Albert, who calmly walks to the back.
Okay, WWE, listen up: I know you have guys who read the IWC, and as such you know that this right here is the most popular wrestling site on the web, thus making me, like, I don’t know, the second or third most read Smackdown recapper? I’ll make you a deal: Albert vs. Edge at Armageddon and I’ll never say another bad thing about Triple H for the rest of my time here at 411. He can get an actual blowjob every week at the top of Raw and I won’t say diddley-crap if you give me a halfway respectable Albert push.
And we’re back.
Funaki, Smackdown! #1! Announcer interviews Bill DeMott, who says that Tough Enough III was his job, nothing more, nothing less. He’s been in the business eleven years, and all WWE can offer him off TE is an interview with a guy who can barely speak English? He grabs Funaki and shoves him down.
Moments Ago... Albert beat the stuffing out of Rey Mysterio. Edge is backstage yelling at the paramedics about what they’re doing with Rey.
Steph’s music hits and she comes to the top of the ramp. She’s as horrified as the rest of us at what happened to Rey Mysterio, but all Smackdown talent make sacrifices for the fans, just like she made a sacrifice Monday night. The video of Steph as Steiner’s “Superfreak” rolls. Steph says she sacrificed herself to bring Scott Steiner to Smackdown for all of us (Eww, EWW, EWW!!!! Only for Steiner. I’m back to thinking Steph’s a bit of a looker.). Big Poppa Pump will be there next week to sign his contract. Steph then moves on to the subject of Brock Lesnar. Her sacrifice tonight will be to let Brock give his side of the story here tonight (YAAAAAAAAAAAY!)... live via satellite (BOOOOOOOOOOOO!).
Commercial break... Armageddon spot airs. Guess which feud is highlighted? Just guess. Come on... that’s right: EDGE VS. ALBERT, BAY-BEE!
And we’re back.
Jamie Noble (w/Nidia) vs. Crash: Funaki has challenged Bill DeMott to a match, apparently. Nidia joins Cole and Tazz on commentary to talk about how bad cousin Nunzio is. Tazz thinks he knows Nunzio, and that he runs a chop shop on Atlantic Avenue. As a lifelong New Yorker, I only have this to say to Tazz, who is merely furthering a stereotype of the citizens of our fair city: Nunzio’s chop shop is on Woodhaven Boulevard. The one on Atlantic is Johnny Viti’s. Come on, man.
Noble beats on Crash to start and gets a pair of two counts. Scoop slam and legdrop get two. Crash comes back with a flapjack and clothesline. Running top rope bulldog gets two when Nidia puts Noble’s foot on the bottom rope. Tazz sings “Stand By Your Man.” Crash chases Nidia and plants one on her. Noble goes for the Trailer Bomb, Crash fights out and hits the Crash Landing for the win.
Winner: Crash by pinfall (2:00)
Noble tells Nidia that he has to bring in his cousin Nunzio next week.
They show Benoit sitting in a leather jacket talking about how he’s worked for seventeen years through divorce, three kids he never sees, a broken neck, and he’s done it all to be WWE Champion, and there’s three men standing in his way. And he’s going to do everything in his power to get through them tonight to become what he’s dreamed of being since he was three years old: a champion. The champion. The WWE Champion.
And we’re back.
Dawn Marie approaches Torrie backstage and instinctively says “Don’t hit me!” Dawn knows Torrie doesn’t like her, and she wants to clear the air. Al’s overseas this week, and Dawn wants Torrie to know that Al’s not the only Wilson she’s interested in. Dawn’s been watching Torrie for a long time, and talks about how beautiful she is. (Oh my god...) Dawn tries to cop a feel and Torrie gets angry about her using her dad to get to her. Dawn says she loves Al a great deal, so much so that she’s willing to call of the marriage if Torrie will meet her in her hotel room tonight. Dawn slips a key-card into Torrie’s jacket and says something about women pleasing other women.
Okay... that was... oddly exciting.
Funaki vs. Bill DeMott: DeMott pounds on Funaki and whips him to the corner. Avalanche and he yells at Funaki, then stomps away. Funaki gets his foot on the rope off a cover. Tazz talks about DeMott’s old WCW gimmicks. DeMott continues to pound away. Funaki fights back but gets clotheslined.DeMott chokes him on the top rope. Funaki comes back with a jawbreaker and punches. Whip reversed to a powerslam to set up the No Laughing Matter moonsault for the win.
Winner: Bill DeMott by pinfall (2:30)
Backstage Eddie Guerrero and Chavo Guerrero talk about how they’re going to expand the Guerrero gold with the Cruiserweight Title and the WWE Title after Eddie wins tonight. They talk about their family, especially Grandma- the original Mamacita- and how proud they’re going to be once Los Guerreros start to dominate the WWE.
From Minneapolis, Minnesota, Brock Lesnar prepares to talk to us live via satellite.
And we’re back.
Cole and Tazz talk to Brock Lesnar. He says he got what he deserved for associating with Paul Heyman. He’s going to get his vengeance on Heyman and on his puppet, the Big Show.
Big Show’s music hits and Paul Heyman comes to the ring with the WWE Champion. Heyman on the mic, calls him Brock since they’re so close. Paul says he’s glad they can talk face to face. He says the title was taken because he was like a petulant child. Heyman yells about how they screwed Brock, and how they’d do it again if given the chance. Paul tells Brock to enjoy his suspension and enjoy watching Angle, Edge, Benoit and Guerrero fight to see who gets to lose to Show at Armageddon. Brock says that any of those four would give Show a hell of a match, and he’s looking forward to watching it... in person!
Brock takes off the mic and walks off. Big Show flips out about how Brock’s suspended.
And we’re back.
Raw Retro: Shane McMahon appearing on the final Nitro
Tazz talks about the Raw when DX gave Cole a wedgie.
WWE Cruiserweight Champion Billy Kidman vs. WWE Tag Team Champion Chavo Guerrero: Lockup to a Kidman wristlock. Chavo with a double leg takedown to a Kidman hammerlock. Chavo elbows out but gets ‘rana’d off a hiptoss. Whip reversal sequence leas to a gutbuster by Chavo.. Whip but Chavo telegraphs ad gets kicked in the face. He starts working the ribs, hanging Kidman in the corner. Chavo stomps the ribs. Another gutbuster gets two. European uppercut by Chavo and he grabs a ropes-assisted abdominal stretch. Chavo goes for a Gory Bomb but Kidman reverses to a rollup. Chavo grabs the ropes. Chavo continues to work the ribs. Flapjack countered by Kidman with a dropkick. Elbow to the chin by Kidman and back body drop. Short arm clothesline by Kidman. Fireman’s carry to neckbreaker gets two. Chavo floats out of a suplex and rolls Kidman up for two. Tornado DDT countered with a Rydien bomb for two. Corner whip reversed and Chavo gets a tornado DDT.They fight to the top rope and both get tossed to the outside. Kidman goes for the Shooting Star Press but Chavo tries to superplex him. Kidman fights him off but the Shooting Star misses. Gory bomb gets two as Kidman gets his foot on the rope. Chavo gets tossed and grabs his tag team belt. Kidman gets a reverse DDT drop from the apron and hits the Shooting Star Press for the win.
Winner, and STILL WWE Cruiserweight Champion: Billy Kidman by pinfall (7:38)
Mark Lloyd talks to Edge about the four way later on. Edge says the match tonight will be an outlet for the aggression he feels toward Albert. Edge then spots Albert offstage and charges. They get separated by various officials.
Hip Hop Challenge- John Cena (with B-Squared) vs. Rikishi: Both Cena and Buchannan are in full blown rick-white-boys-who’ve-never-been-within-six-blocks-of-a-ghetto-but-think that-they’re-rappers gear. Rikishi is in Rikishi Wear. The two combatants rap at each other and Cena is actually passable. So’s Rikishi, and the heels attack, going so far as to hit Tazz, which is just, like, in general, kinda the wrong thing to do in any situation. Rikishi does a number on the heels, and Tazz just kind of stands there, loses the glasses and literally morphs before the Smackdown audience’s collective eyes from goofy, fun-loving announcer into the tough as nails thug from Brooklyn we all know and love. Rikishi punches Cena toward Tazz and... TAZZMISSION!!! Cole marks out for his buddy, which is cool. Tazz and Rikishi clean house and then dance to celebrate, Tazz somewhat reluctantly.
Man I could watch that bit all night. And I thought it was gonna suck.
Backstage, Kurt Angle tapes his knee and Mark Lloyd asks him his thoughts on the upcoming fatal four way. Angle talks about how great he is.
Edge comes down to the ring for the match. It’s starting NOW?!
Oh, wait... here’s Albert to wail on Edge’s knee with a chair. Edge rolls around outside, holding his knee.
During the break... some guys helped Edge to the back.
Number One Contender’s Four Way Elimination Match: Edge vs. WWE Tag Team Champion Eddie Guerrero vs. Chris Benoit vs. Kurt Angle: It’s just Eddie, Angle and Benoit to start, and they stare down, then...
“YOU THINK YOU KNOW ME...” Edge limps down to the ring.
We go to commercial.
And we’re back.
Number One Contender’s Four Way Elimination Match: Edge vs. WWE Tag Team Champion Eddie Guerrero vs. Chris Benoit vs. Kurt Angle (continued): We come back in progress. Eddie is stomping the hell out of everyone. During the break, Angle and Benoit attacked Edge’s leg. Edge comes back with back body drops for everyone, then Eddie dropkicks his knee for two. Clothesline for Eddie by Benoit and he and Angle attack the leg. Angle gets rolled up by Eddie for two.Angle pound away on Eddie but gets tossed. Benoit clotheslines Eddie out. Benoit works on Edge in the ring, legdropping the knee. Edge reverses a corner whip and faceplants Benoit for two. Eddie swoops in and dumps Edge, then suplexes Benoit out. Angle slugs away and hits a suplex for two on Eddie. Angle punches away in the corner but Eddie rakes the eyes. Eddie stomps away and pounds on Angle. Suplex gets two.Belly to belly by Angle but Eddie armdrags out of the Angle Slam. Gutwrench suplex by Eddie, but the frog splash only gets two. German suplex by Benoit as Angle rolls out. Swandive headbutt gets two for Benoit. Edgecution gets two on Benoit. Edge dumps a charging Angle. Eddie dumps Edge. Benoit hits two German suplexes on Eddie, then lets Edge spear him then dumps Edge and grabs the Crossface on Eddie to eliminate him at 5:30. Three Germans by Angle to Benoit but he gets missile dropkicked by Edge- who’s supposed to be like half-lame at this point, but whatever. Benoit clips the leg and gets clotheslined by Benoit. Edge counters the Angle Slam with the Edge-O-Matic for two, but Benoit pulls him out of the cover and grabs the Crossface. Angle breaks it up with the ankle lock to Benoit, who fights out. Eddie comes in with a belt shot to Benoit and gets speared. Edge spears Benoit next and covers for the elimination at 7:10. Angle grabs the ankle lock on Edge straightaway. Edge reverses somehow-once again, despite the injured leg- sending Angle outside. Angle pulls Edge out and puts him into the steps.
And we’re back
Number One Contender’s Four Way Elimination Match: Edge vs. WWE Tag Team Champion Eddie Guerrero vs. Chris Benoit vs. Kurt Angle (continued): Kurt Angle is sitting on Edge’s chest and just punching him in the head, which I know from experience you have to be mighty steamed to do. Short arm clothesline gets two. Edge bladed from the steps shot. Suplex gets two for Angle. Angle chokes Edge on the ropes. Edge comes back with a flurry of chops and punches. Cross corner whip reversed but Edge gets the boot up. Belly to belly by Edge. Sleeper by Angle. Edge’s hand drops twice and he fights out and hits a belly to belly suplex of his own.Double KO, both men up at eight. Clotheslines by Edge and back body drop. Edge-O-Matic gets two. German suplexes for Edge but the third is countered to a rollup for two. Spear gets two. Edgecution reversed to the Angle Slam reversed to the Edgecution and it only gets two after all of that. Edge goes up top, blocks the pop up superplex and hits a missile dropkick for two. GOD DAMN IT! Spear blocked with a boot to the face. Angle Slam! Two count! SON OF A BITCH!!! Ankle lock. Just let it be over, Edge. Ankle lock countered to a rollup for two. Drop toehold to the ankle lock. Edge kicks out but Angle rolls through and maintains the hold, but Edge makes the ropes. JESUS CHRIST! Angle Slam by Edge gets two. SHIT SHIT SHIT!!! I DON’T CARE WHO WINS ANYMORE! Edge goes up top but Angle pops up and delivers a pop up top rope Angle Slam to finally end this match.
Winner, and Armageddon #1 Contender: Kurt Angle by pinfall (22:00)
Big Show appears suddenly (well, suddenly for him) to chokeslam Angle. He holds the belt over his head as he stands over Angle.
Elsewhere, Torrie goes into Dawn Marie’s hotel room, a room which actually exudes evil. But lesbian evil, so that’s cool. Dawn goes to kiss Torrie, who walks away. Dawn says she guesses she doesn’t love her father after all. Torrie comes back and we fade on that.
Well, that was a way to go to end the show. Not the way I’d go, but a way to go. Thanks for reading. See you next week.