The WWF was rolling in May 2000 with an entertaining product on the road to Judgment Day on May 21. This was a unique episode of Raw because the WWF Champion, some guy named The Rock, was not at Raw or Smackdown this week. Instead, he was in England filming scenes for The Mummy Returns, which was his first movie role. Since The Rock was the top face on the show, that meant it was time for some other guys to step up.
The synopsis for this episode on WWE Network is: “Triple H challenges The Rock to an Iron Man Match for the WWE Title at Judgment Day. The McMahon-Helmsley Regime targets Chris Jericho.”
There was a UK only WWF PPV in London, England called Insurrextion two days prior to Raw. The Rock was there since the movie was filming in England, so that worked out in terms of his schedule. I’m not going to review that one. It’s just Raw, Smackdown and main PPVs from 2000.
My apologies for not doing a WWF in 2000 review last week. I was so busy with WrestleMania with detailed reviews of the NXT Takeover New York, Hall of Fame, WrestleMania 32 (is it still going on?), Raw, Smackdown and I wrote about 40,000 words in the last week. I’ll pick up the pace from here.
WWF Raw #363
May 8, 2000
From Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale (Long Island), New York
This edition of Raw is rated TV-14 with the dreaded “S” for Sexual Content.
The Raw intro video aired. Pyro went off in the arena, there were signs all over the place and it was a crazy atmosphere as usual. The announce team was Jim Ross and Jerry “The King” Lawler.
The WWF Tag Team Championship duo Edge & Christian made their entrance while the Acolytes were shown accompanying them into the ring.
Christian said that they were to issue another open challenge, which is why they hired the Acolytes. Fans chanted “Asshole” at them. Edge ripped on Long Island for not being the best looking people in the nation. Edge said that they were going to pose for six seconds (instead of five seconds) since Long Island needs pretty people like them.
Edge said if their friends there can stay sober enough, let the challenge commence. Bradshaw picked up the microphone said they aren’t sober right now and said they will give them a refund. Faarooq punched Christian to start the match.
WWF Tag Team Championships: Edge & Christian vs. The APA (Bradshaw and Faarooq)
Pre-match notes: Edge & Christian were the heel champions while APA were the faces.
Faarooq hit a powerslam on Christian for a two count. Bradshaw tagged in and hit a fallaway slam on Christian. Edge tagged in with a missile dropkick on Bradshaw, but Bradshaw came back with a forearm to the back. Shoulder tackle by Bradshaw and Faarooq was back in with punches. When Faarooq ducked his head, Edge dropped him with a DDT. Belly to back suplex by Bradshaw on Edge and Edge came back with a neckbreaker. Double team suplex by E&C along with a double headbutt for two. When Christian jumped off the middle ropes, Bradshaw decked him with a clothesline. Faarooq and Edge tagged in leading to Faarooq hitting a Spinebuster on Christian. The APA guys double teamed Edge with a double Spinebuster. Christian went back in the ring and hit Faarooq with the ring bell to the back, which the referee didn’t see. Bradshaw saw it, he got the ring bell and hit Edge and Christian with the ring bell. That led to referee Mike Chioda disqualifying the APA at 3:35.
Winners by disqualification: Edge & Christian
Analysis: *1/4 It was a boring match with a cheap ending to keep the titles on the champs without having the challengers lose since the APA were always booked strong. There just wasn’t a good flow to this match with the APA getting way too much offense for faces.
Post match, Bull Buchanan and Big Boss Man showed up to attack the APA. Boss Man decked both APA guys with the nightstick. Buchanan went up top and hit a leg drop on Bradshaw. Bull and Boss Man left.
A replay aired from the end of Raw when the babyface wrestlers Dudley Boyz, Rikishi, Jericho and Big Show showed up to help The Rock.
The McMahon-Helmsley Regime were shown backstage because they were up next for their usual promo.
The McMahon-Helmsley Regine entered to Triple H’s music led by Triple Haitch, Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley-Game-Haitch, X-Pac, Tori, Road Dogg, Pat Patterson, Gerald Brisco, Shane McMahon and Vince McMahon. JR sent best wishes to referee Earl Hebner after he was beat up on Smackdown.
Let’s Hear from the McMahon-Helmsley Regime
Triple H was greeted with “asshole” chants. Hunter apologized for the actions of Earl Hebner, which led to JR wondering what he did wrong. Hunter continued talking about Hebner, which led to “Rocky” chants. Hunter spoke about how Hebner hasn’t been able to respond to your well wishes because it’s very difficult when your jaw is broken and you can’t speak. Hunter joked about Earl’s injuries. Hunter said that it could have been avoided if Hebner kept his nose out of their business. Hunter claimed that Earl got what he deserved. A clip aired from Smackdown showing the McMahon-Helmsley Regime beating up Hebner on Smackdown. Hunter said if you cross them and stand in his path of becoming the WWF Champion again, then that is what happens.
Hunter said that Judgment Day is coming and true to form, all truths will be told at Judgment Day. Hunter said it’s him and Rock one on one with the WWF Championship on the line. Hunter said there will be no Stone Cold Steve Austin, no Linda McMahon, no Earl Hebner – it will just be Hunter and Rock (that ended up being a big lie). Hunter proposed upping the ante and finding out who the general is in this ring. Hunter wanted to go the one place that very few people in this business will ever dream of going. Hunter: “Rock…you and me…Iron Man Match. 60 minutes, Rock. Let’s find out who the man is.”
Hunter explained it was the one with the most falls is the Undisputed WWF Champion. Hunter wondered if Rock could go one hour with The Game and put it all on the line. Hunter said when Rock lays in that mat gasping for air after 60 minutes of his getting his ass kicked by Triple H, he will learn that he can’t hang with Hunter. That led to Hunter getting fired up saying that he’s The Game, the WWF Champion and he’s That Damn Good.
Analysis: It was the kind of long Triple H promo that he did so often in this year and really over the next two decades. The Iron Man stipulation was rare, so it made the next Rock/Triple H match even more special.
Vince took over saying as far as tonight is concerned…but here’s Chris Jericho for the interruption.
Jericho was the Intercontinental Champion that received a huge pop from the crowd. Jericho said “Vance McMahon” because of his shtick where he would say names wrong on purpose. Jericho apologized for his actions last week on Smackdown like when he punched Vince in the face. Jericho mentioned Shane is referred to as a word that rhymes with “wussy” and the fans cheered, but did not start the chant. Jericho got into his rant ripping into Stephanie as a trashbag ho. Jericho said that “Big Mac” put over Vince as a multi-billionaire, but he did it to make up for the fact that you have a very small penis. He said it. The crowd popped big for that.
The closed caption guy didn’t want to go all the way with it.
Jericho said that it’s okay and it’s not his fault as the fans chanted “Y2J” for Chris. Vince fired back saying there’s not a damn thing stopping them from coming up there to kick his ass. That led to the Dudleys making their entrance along with Big Show and Rikishi.
The five men stood on the ramp together: Jericho, Bubba Ray Dudley, D-Von Dudley, Rikishi Phatu and Big Show.
Vince said that Jericho was misinformed because he’s got a set of grapefruits, which are grown on trees while adding that every tree has a trunk and by the end of the night, they will wish they were dangling by the end of his trunk. Vince told Jericho he’ll defend the IC Title against Kurt Angle. Vince said he guarantees Jericho he will not leave this arena with the Intercontinental Championship.
Shane McMahon wondered what Big Show was doing out there. Shane said he didn’t feel sorry for Show and said he’s acting like a fool, which led to “Shane’s a pussy” chants. Shane said that tonight, one way or another, he’ll settle this with Big Show.
Vince moved on to talk about the Dudleys. Vince said that there will be a tables match with the Dudleys in a match against Gerald Brisco. Vince said that Rikishi gave Pat Patterson a Stinkface, so tonight, Rikishi will go one on one with Patterson. Vince said there’s a fine line between insanity and genius, but by the end of the night, everybody in this arena will know of his superior mental acumen.
Analysis: They set up several matches for later while telling the story that Vince and his crew are going to get revenge against the five faces that were on the stage together.
Kurt Angle entered for a pre-match promo. He’s honored that the McMahon-Helmsley Regime picked him to take the IC Title from Chris Jericho and he’s privileged to defend the honor of Stephanie, which drew boos. He said Stephanie had class unlike these people. Angle claimed that when Jericho insults Stephanie he insults what is good in society and that is true.
Analysis: It’s cool to see how far in advance they teased the Angle/Stephanie story that really became a big deal around SummerSlam time before it faded away. Long term storytelling is a good thing.
Intercontinental Championship: Chris Jericho vs. Kurt Angle
Pre-match notes: Jericho was the face champion and Angle was the heel challenger. Angle was a former IC Champion.
Jericho opened up with a back elbow, Angle with punches and he sent Jericho face first into the turnbuckle. Jericho with a back body drop over the top to the floor. With Angle on the apron, Jericho hit a springboard dropkick. Jericho left the ring, Angle charged, Jericho moved and Angle hit the steel steps at ringside. Angle with a belly to belly suplex on Jericho off the top as they mentioned “The Gladiator” movie. It was just Gladiator and is one of my favorites. Angle with a suplex followed a chinlock, Jericho fought back and hit a double underhook into a backbreaker for two. Angle with a fireman’s carry takeover into a two count and Jericho came back with a jumping heel kick to the face. Jericho with a flying forearm to the head, then a bulldog and that was good for a two count. Angle hit a belly to belly suplex, then a belly to back suplex and when he went for the Olympic Slam, Jericho landed on his feet to counter. Jericho slapped on the Walls of Jericho that was more like a Boston Crab version and Angle tapped out at 5:35.
Winner by submission: Chris Jericho
Analysis: **1/4 It was a pretty good match for the time given since they worked at a very fast pace. Jericho winning clean was not what I expected because Angle is usually protected in finishes like that. They likely did it that way because it added to the story of the night since this was not Jericho’s only match on the show.
Jericho celebrated with the title. Shane McMahon was shown in his office looking upset. Big Show showed up and grabbed Shane by the throat. Shane said that he wanted to motivate Big Show. Shane told Show he can become the IC Champion because he can be together with Shane-O-Mac and becoming a champion. Shane said that’s the Big Show they want. Shane got a call, he said it’s his stock broker, Show left to say he’ll get dressed and that was it.
The Godfather did his usual pre-match promo with the fans chanting along with everything. Godfather told Chyna she was smoking when she was I her bra and panties at Backlash. Godfather told Chyna he’ll get rid of all these ho’s if she joins the Ho Train. Chyna wasn’t interested and hit Godfather in the head with the flowers that Eddie gave her.
Eddie Guerrero (w/Chyna) vs. The Godfather (w/The Ho’s)
Pre-match notes: This is not for Eddie’s European Title. Eddie and Chyna were faces after initially being a heel pairing. The Godfather was a face.
The ring was full of rose petals with Guerrero hitting a dropkick on Godfather, then Godfather came back with a hip toss and a boot to the face. Godfather sent Guerrero into the turnbuckle. Godfather with two body slams followed by a back body drop. Godfather with a headbutt to the ribs that they tried to sell as a low blow even though it was not. Godfather with a Ho Train splash on Guerrero. Chyna was on the apron to distract the referee, D-Lo Brown went into the ring and hit a Sky High spinebuster on Godfather that the referee never saw. Eddie went up top and hit a missile dropkick to win the match at 2:26.
Winner by pinfall: Eddie Guerrero
Analysis: * A cheap win for Guerrero, who was still acting heelish even though he was getting cheered with Chyna. It’s a Godfather match, so just lower your expectations because it’s probably not going to be a good match.
The Dudleys were shown walking backstage with a table in hand.
The Dudleys entered the arena with the table.
Gerald Brisco made his entrance to the “Real American” theme song that Hulk Hogan used and he had on a Brisco Brothers t-shirt. Brisco introduced us to his partners, Test and Albert. No Trish Stratus sadly because she was selling the big table bump at Backlash eight days earlier.
Tables Match: The Dudley Boyz vs. Gerald Brisco, Test & Albert
Pre-match notes: The Dudleys were the faces while Brisco, Test and Albert were heels. Win the match by putting somebody through a table.
Albert with a splash on D-Von and Test with a boot to the face. There are tags in this match. Test with a sidewalk slam on D-Von. Brisco tripped up Bubba, elbow drop and a leg drop. Bubba gave Brisco a body slam, the ref was distracted by Test and Bubba hit a headbutt to the groin of Brisco. Test tagged back in with an elbow to the face. Albert was in there and D-Von took him down with a clothesline. Bubba tagged in with a Samoan Drop on Test, a cutter on Albert and a clothesline to Brisco. Bubba sent Brisco over the top to the floor. Bubba brought the table into the ring, Albert kicked Bubba and Test with a big boot to D-Von’s face. The match broke down here with no more tags going on. Bubba whipped Albert into the steel steps. D-Von countered a Test slam attempt and Bubba went back in leading to the Dudleys hitting a 3D on Test in the ring to break the title and win the match at 4:37.
Winners by pinfall: The Dudley Boyz
Analysis: *1/4 Boring match, but the crowd was into it. The wrestling wasn’t that good. It was weird that the match would have tags and that the referee would enforce the rules when the goal is to put somebody through a table. The rules were ignored in the last few minutes, so why even enforce them? It was a bit sloppy in execution, but they got through it with the Dudleys going over.
Post match, Brisco waved for some help as Road Dogg, X-Pac and Tori went into the ring. Torie slapped Bubba in the face as Dogg hit a pumphandle slam on D-Von and X-Pac came back with a X-Factor on Bubba. The heels set up a table in the ring. Bubba was placed on the table in the ring. Brisco went up top and hit a splash off the top to put Bubba through the table! Air Brisco!
Brisco celebrated to the “Real American” song again. He even took off his shirt with people laughing at him for being a crazy old man.
Analysis: That was an effective post-match angle to set up the Tag Team Tables match at Judgment Day between DX and the Dudleys.
Chris Jericho was shown walking backstage and so was Big Show with Shane McMahon.
The commercial aired for Judgment Day with the three girls playing on the playground.
Intercontinental Championship: Chris Jericho vs. Big Show (w/Shane McMahon)
Pre-match notes: Jericho was the face champion, Big Show was a face and Shane was a heel that used to be aligned with Show when Show was a heel.
Show with a clothesline followed by a kick that sent Jericho out of the ring. Show sent Jericho back in, Jericho with a dropkick, when Jericho went for a dive over the top, Show caught him and tossed Jericho back in. Show with a hard chop to the chest, Show missed a corner attack and Jericho went up top with a dropkick. Jericho hit a Lionsault off the ropes for a two count with Show doing the power kickout. Show with a military press slam. While this was going on, a clip aired from earlier when Shane was talking to his “stockbroker.” Shane said that he’s got Show completely wrapped around his finger, he has him brainwashed, he owns this guy and he said he owned him. Show was pissed off about what he saw, so he went after Shane at ringside. Shane ran up the ramp to the back, Show ran after him, the referee counted Show out and Jericho was announced as the winner by countout at 3:19.
Winner by countout: Chris Jericho
Analysis: 1/2* It was not much of a match. It was more of an angle to continue the rift between Show and Shane, which led to a Judgment Day match between them.
There was a shot of Shane McMahon running away in the parking lot and he jumped into a limousine. Shane jumped into the driver’s seat of the limo and he drove away while Show was left looking frustrated.
Vince and Stephanie were in the office with Vince saying that was the first time Shane has driven himself anywhere in his adult life. Stephanie complained about Jericho as the champion. Vince said that Jericho had another title defense, this time against Chris Benoit.
Too Cool (Scotty 2 Hotty and Grandmaster Sexay) vs. Bull Buchanan and Big Boss Man
Pre-match notes: Too Cool were the faces while Bull and Boss Man were the heels.
Scotty started with Bull, he draped his neck across the top rope and hit a cross body block off the top. Sexay tagged in leading to a double team slam. Sexay with a neckbreaker on Boss Man, but Boss Man came back with a boot to the face. Buchanan hit an attack off the ropes followed by scissors kick to the back for two. Buchanan to the apron, jumped off with nothing, Sexay with boots to the face and Scotty tagged in against Boss Man. Two dropkicks from Scotty, then Sexay dropkicked Scotty onto Boss Man for two. Double team DDT by Too Cool on Buchanan. Sexay with a bulldog on Buchanan followed by the W-O-R-M followed by the chop to the chest. Boss Man back in with punches. Boss Man Slam connected on Scotty, but the referee was busy with Bull and Sexay hit a leg drop off the top on Boss Man. Scotty covered Boss Man for the pinfall win at 4:01.
Winners by pinfall: Too Cool
Analysis: * A decent match with Too Cool trying hard, but Bull and Boss Man were just not that interesting to watch. JR called it an upset even though Too Cool typically won matches way more often than Bull and Boss Man. I guess it was deemed an upset since Too Cool were the smaller guys in the match.
After the match, Boss Man and Bull stomped away on Too Cool. The Acolytes showed up for the save and chased Buchanan and Boss Man to the back. Too Cool did their dance return to celebrate their win.
There was a shot of Dean Malenko and Perry Saturn arguing in the locker room with Chris Benoit showing up to tell them the arguing stops here right now. Eddie Guerrero showed up saying Dean is frustrated, he said that Saturn is just as talented as any of them and they all left. Eddie looked at his European Title.
The Hardy Boyz (Matt and Jeff Hardy) vs. Perry Saturn and Dean Malenko
Pre-match notes: The Hardy Boyz were the face. Saturn and Malenko were heels while Malenko was already the Light Heavyweight Champion.
The Hardys hit a double team clothesline on Saturn to send him over the top to the floor. Matt with a body slam on Malenko. Both Hardys went up top for a double team leg drop and splash on Malenko for two. Saturn pulled the referee out of the ring to break up the count, which should be a disqualification, but the match kept going. Saturn caught Jeff and slammed him down. Saturn and Malenko with a low kick/high kick combo on Jeff for two. Saturn slammed Jeff ribs first into the turnbuckle. Jeff hit the Whisper in the Wind attack off the top on Saturn. Matt tagged in with clotheslines, back body drops and Jeff ran the rail leading to a clothesline on Saturn. Malenko with a neckbreaker on Matt and Saturn shoved Jeff off the top. Saturn accidentally superkicked Malenko because he was going for Jeff, who moved. Jeff hit a Swanton Bomb on Malenko and Matt covered for the pinfall win at 3:25.
Winners by pinfall: The Hardy Boyz
Analysis: **1/4 Good match for the time given with four great workers telling the story perfectly. It was all about continuing the issues that Saturn and Malenko were having in the weeks leading up to this.
Post match, Saturn and Malenko got into a shoving argument, so Eddie Guerrero and Chyna went into the ring. Saturn knocked down Eddie and Malenko hit Chyna with a clothesline. Referees ran out to try to break it up.
Analysis: This was building to a triple threat at Judgment Day with Eddie defending the title against Perry and Dean.
Rikishi and Pat Patterson were shown warming up separately backstage.
Rikishi made his entrance to a good pop.
Pat Patterson entered to the “Real American” music. JR: “I can’t believe this Real American music. Patterson is from Montreal!” Good point. I laughed too. When Patterson got to the ring, Vince announced that Patterson’s partners will be Road Dogg and X-Pac.
Rikishi vs. Pat Patterson, Road Dogg and X-Pac
Pre-match notes: Rikishi was the face while Road Dogg, X-Pac and Patterson were heels.
Rikishi with a running back splash against Dogg and X-Pac against the turnbuckle, but Dogg and X-Pac came back with their signature moves including a spin kick as well as an elbow drop. Patterson tagged in, went to the top, Rikishi knocked him down, Rikishi knocked Dogg and X-Pac down and Rikishi hit a running back splash on Patterson against the turnbuckle. X-Pac hit a jumping spin kick to Rikishi (or “Rawkishi” as JR says it) to knock him down. Patterson and X-Pac held up Riksihi while Patterson hit Rikishi in the head with a gentle chair shot to the head, so it’s a DQ ending at 1:43.
Winner by disqualification: Rikishi
Analysis: 1/4* Boring match with a weak ending. A common theme during this week’s episode.
Post match, Patterson pulled down his shorts to reveal tighty white underwear with a brown skid mark, which drew a huge reaction from the crowd. Patterson gave Rikishi the Stinkface. I am not going to screencap that. It was painful to watch that again. Too Cool ran out to save Rikishi as the heels retreated. A replay aired of the Stinkface from Patterson.
Analysis: That was not a fun visual. It’s not fun when Rikishi does it either, but this is worse.
Triple H made his entrance saying he’s the troubleshooting referee on the outside of the ring. He even had the earpiece in.
Chris Jericho entered for his third Intercontinental Championship defense on the same night. Jericho was selling as if he was exhausted since it was his third match. Chris Benoit was up next as the challenger.
Intercontinental Championship: Chris Jericho vs. Chris Benoit
Pre-match notes: Jericho was the face champion while Benoit was the heel that was the former champion. Jericho won the title from Benoit on the previous edition of Smackdown. Benoit’s right eye was swollen.
Jericho with a forearm to the head, he missed a moonsault and then hit a spinning heel kick. Benoit to the apron, Jericho to the turnbuckle and Benoit shoved Benoit over the top into the barricade. Benoit whipped Jericho into the steel steps at ringside. Benoit with a snap suplex on Jericho on the floor. Back in the ring, Benoit with a clothesline on Jericho, belly to back suplex and a backbreaker. Jericho tried for a dropkick, Benoit held onto the ropes to avoid and Benoit did the catapult to send Jericho into the turnbuckle. Benoit got into a shoving match with Mike Chioda, so Triple H went into the ring, faked an argument with Benoit and Triple H punched Chioda to take him out. Jericho with a dropkick for two. Benoit with a Northern Lights Suplex for a two count with Triple H taking over as the referee. Benoit hit two German Suplexes, Jericho blocked a third and slapped on the Walls of Jericho. Triple H the referee checked on Benoit and Stephanie McMahon went down to ringside with her Women’s Championship. Benoit tapped, but Hunter was busy saying hi to Stephanie. Jericho stomped on Hunter’s back, so Hunter hit a forearm to Jericho’s back, Benoit with the Crippler Crossface on Jericho and Hunter called for the bell to ring to end the match. Jericho did not tap out, so Triple H screwed him out of the title. The match went 7:08.
Winner by submission and New Intercontinental Champion: Chris Benoit
Analysis: **3/4 It was the typical very good match between these two that were very familiar with eachother. The finish was controversial with Triple H screwing Jericho out of the title. Jericho did well in terms of selling the story that he was exhausted while Benoit was aggressive on offense.
Benoit was handed the title and he left while Triple H’s allies walked down to the ring. JR was complaining about how unfair it was.
There was a group attack on Jericho with Triple H, Road Dogg, X-Pac, Shane, Vince, Tori, Patterson and Brisco attacking Jericho. Triple H gave Jericho the Pedigree. Stephanie got to slap Jericho too. Shane punched Jericho as well.
Vince grabbed a chair and went into the ring. Jericho was held by the DX guys, which was the cue for the save. That led to Big Show, Too Cool, Rikishi and the Dudleys to make the save for Jericho. The heels retreated at that point while the faces stood tall in the ring. The show ended with each group having a staredown.
Analysis: The save took a while to happen because Jericho was getting beat up for a couple of minutes before the faces arrived, but obviously there was going to be a save. There would be a follow up on Smackdown, so it’s a way to build to the next show later in the same week.
This episode of Raw had a runtime of 1:33:11 on WWE Network.
Three Stars of the Show
- Chris Jericho – Three matches in one night plus a promo. Busy night for Y2J.
- Triple H
- The Hardy Boyz
This Raw episode gets a 5 out of 10.
This show was lacking in terms of interesting segments and matches. They tried hard to drive home the story of the McMahons making life difficult for the faces, but it got old by the end of the night. Plus, that’s a theme of these shows far too often in this era. It’s happened for over twenty years too.
The Rock was missed a lot in this episode. He had the kind of energy and star power that nobody else had on the active roster at this point. At least we got to find out the next Rock/Triple H match would be an Iron Man Match for the WWE Championship at Judgment Day.
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