TJR Retro: WWF Smackdown 03/16/00 Review (Rock vs. X-Pac, Triple H vs. Godfather)

The road to WrestleMania 2000 continued with The Rock earning a big win on the previous Monday’s Raw when he beat Big Show in the main event. With the win, Rock was added to the WrestleMania 2000 main event, which changed a few times. Rock also got some help in his match because Vince McMahon made his return after about three months off TV to stop his son Shane McMahon and help Rock beat Big Show. That brings us to this Smackdown.

I apologize for the delay in getting some of these reviews up. December was crazy, but things are back to normal now. My plan going forward is to get 2000 episodes of Raw posted on Mondays (sometimes Tuesday) and Smackdown episodes on Thursday (sometimes Friday).

Check out our WWF in 2000 archives for my reviews of all the other shows from earlier in the year. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport if you’re not doing so already and let’s get started.

WWF Smackdown #30
March 16, 2000 (Taped March 14)
From Nassau Coliseum in Long Island, New York

This show gets a TV-14 rating and “S” for Sexual Content on WWE Network. That’s rare for Smackdown, which has been TV-PG and “V” for Violence for months.

A recap aired showing all the highlights from the main event storyline on Raw involving The Rock, Big Show, Triple H and the McMahons. The video took nearly four minutes.

The Smackdown intro video aired. Pyro went off in the arena, there were signs all over and we were welcomed to the show by Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler.

Let’s Hear from Shane McMahon and Big Show

Shane McMahon walked out with Big Show to Show’s theme song. Show is wearing black leather pants that look awkward.

The fans greeted Shane with “Asshole” chants as he said we are thinking that he got what was coming to him on Monday night. He complained about Vince sticking his nose in Shane’s business. He said that fans think it is acceptable for Vince to knock his son down to the mat. Shane complained about getting hit in the head with a steel chair by his dad. Shane said that parental abuse is against the law. Shane claimed that it was unnatural for Big Show not to go to WrestleMania to compete for the WWF Championship, so therefore he will. Shane cued up a Rock video about a stipulation from Raw.

The clip showed Rock saying if he beats Big Show, he’s going for the WWF Title and if he loses, he’s gone from the WWF.

Shane noted that there was nothing said about Big Show losing and that it was not part of the deal. Shane said that the WWF Championship match at WrestleMania will now be a triple threat match between WWF Champion Triple H, Big Show and The Rock.

Big Show took over saying that with Shane McMahon in his corner, he is very confident he’ll leave WrestleMania victorious as fans chanted “Asshole” at him. Triple H’s music hit.

Analysis: Interruptions were very common during opening promos from this era just like they are today. As you can see, Vince McMahon’s booking hasn’t changed in nearly 20 years.

Triple H and Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley made their entrance. They did not look happy with Steph making her angry faces. They got into the ring with Show and Shane. Show told Hunter that at WrestleMania, he will once again become the WWF Champion.

Hunter asked who the hell he thinks he is. Hunter said if he wants to cry about crimes against nature, there’s no crime here and if Big Show is involved, it’s a freak of nature. Hunter said that if he lost the WWF Championship to Show or Rock, it would be a natural disaster. Hunter said that he can smell it a mile away. Hunter told Shane that he knows Big Show cannot beat him and they know that Rock can’t beat Hunter. That led to Hunter saying that in a triple threat match, nobody has to beat him to become WWF Champion. Hunter noted that Rock could beat Big Show…again…to become WWF Champion. Hunter said that if it’s a triple threat at WrestleMania then he’s got it. Hunter said that Big Show and Rock aren’t going to win because the winner at WrestleMania is going to be The Game because he is “that damn good.”

Stephanie spoke and was met with “slut” chants. Stephanie stated that she’ll be in Triple H’s corner at WrestleMania and there’s nothing Shane can do about it. Stephanie pointed out that she has as much power as him. Shane said that she looks and acts like a cheap…slut and “slut” got beeped. When Stephanie tried a slap, Hunter slapped Shane and here comes Vince McMahon to a huge pop.

Vince McMahon showed up on the stage with a microphone in hand. The fans were going wild for him. Some crowd editing may have been done there, but Vince was loved by this crowd.

Vince sarcastically said that Shane and Stephanie make him proud as a father. Vince said that watching the two of them in the ring jockeying for position and power every week is like watching a bad soap opera. Vince told them to book themselves on the Jerry Springer Show. Vince said that the two of them have driven one of the greatest superstars in history, Mick Foley, out of the company. Vince said gone but not forgotten is Long Island’s own Mick Foley. Vince said that’s not good for business. Vince said that on Monday night, they almost drove The Rock from the WWF and he said that’s not good for business. Vince told them their public display of bickering and bitching isn’t good for business. Vince said that’s why he has come back to take control to seize the reigns of power once again before they screw it up for good.

Vince said that since Shane insists on being in Big Show’s corner at WrestleMania, since Stephanie is going to be in Triple H’s corner at WrestleMania, then why don’t we make this a family affair? Vince: “It’s only right that I’m going to be in The Rock’s corner at WrestleMania.” Vince said that’s good for business. The crowd cheered.

Shane said that tonight in this very ring, let’s see the People’s Champion in action. Shane put Rock in a match against Kane. Stephanie set up a match with Big Show facing Rikishi. Vince said Triple H can have a match that is not a title defense and it’s somebody that Stephanie McMahon has something in common with…The Godfather. The fans cheered that insinuation of Vince calling his daughter a ho. Vince said that Stephanie might even get lucky tonight and she might take a ride on the Ho Train! The crowd popped for that. That ended the opening promo.

Analysis: That was a hell of a promo from Vince, who reminded us of how awesome of a talker he is. They accomplished a lot with the promo after the bickering early on with Shane and Stephanie. They announced three singles matches for later in the show while Vince also said he’ll be a part of the WrestleMania main event in Rock’s corner. Vince calling his daughter a ho is a unique thing, but that’s the Attitude Era where they would say or do anything.


The WWF Rewind showed a clip of Hardcore Title hijinks from Raw.

Edge and Christian made their entrance for a WWF Tag Team Title match. They earned this match with a win at No Way. The Dudleys entered as the WWF Tag Team Champions. The Dudleys put Mae Young through a table on Raw.

WWF Tag Team Championships: The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray and D-Von) vs. Edge and Christian

Pre-match notes: The Dudleys were the heel champions while Edge and Christian were heels.

The Dudleys started in control with D-Von hitting a reverse suplex and then Bubba hit aback body drop on Edge. Double team move connected with D-Von hitting a headbutt to the groin with the ref having his back turned. D-Von with a spinning back elbow, but an elbow drop moved because Edge moved. Christian got the tag with a DDT out of the corner for a two count. Edge and Bubba went in the ring leading to a double clothesline spot. D-Von accidentally punched down the referee when Christian moved. Terri bounced down to ringside with a steel chair that she slid towards Bubba, who put her through a table a few months earlier. Christian with a dropkick that knocked the chair out of Bubba’s hands. The Dudleys recovered quickly and hit a 3D on Christian for the pinfall win at 3:03.

Winners by pinfall: The Dudley Boyz

Analysis: *1/2 It was so short for a Tag Team Title match, so that was disappointing. I understood the angle they were going for with Terri continuing to cost Edge and Christian matches, but it would be nice if they got more time for a championship match.

After the match, Terri celebrated her distraction with some “she-devil” poses on the ramp when the Hardy Boyz showed up. The Hardys grabbed Terri and sent her into the ring to Edge and Christian. Edge and Christian were about to leave, Terri did her “she-devil” pose again, Edge saw it on the video screen and Edge turned around with a Spear for Terri. The fans cheered that as Edge and Christian left.

Analysis: The man on woman violence getting cheered is awkward for sure, but it was the fans reacting to Terri getting what she deserved. It was a way to make Terri pay for all of the problems she caused Edge and Christian.

Triple H and Stephanie were shown walking backstage for a match up next.


The replay aired of Edge hitting the Spear on Terri.

The Godfather entered for his match with the Ho Train joining him. In the past on Smackdown, they avoided saying “Ho Train,” but it seemed like they were back to doing it. Triple H was up next with Stephanie. When they got into the ring, Godfather told her that there might just be a place for her on the Ho Train, but it would be in the caboose. Triple H attacked.

Triple H (w/Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley) vs. The Godfather (w/The Ho’s)

Pre-match notes: Triple H was the heel WWF Champion and Godfather was a face.

Hunter worked over Godfather with punches as well as a choke. Hunter with a running knee to the face. Godfather came back with a clothesline to the face, a boot to the face and a whip into the turnbuckle. Godfather with a back elbow to the chest. Godfather hit a back body drop. Godfather set up a for corner attack, Hunter moved and hit a facebuster to the knee. Shane and Big Show went down to the ring. Shane got on the apron with Stephanie, so Hunter attacked Show with punches. Shane hit Hunter in the back with punches, then Show sent Hunter back first into the ring post. Show tossed Hunter in the ring and Godfather covered for the pinfall win after 2:51.

Winner by pinfall: The Godfather

Analysis: *1/2 Upset win to give Godfather the victory thanks to some help. I thought the finish could have been better because it was just a move where Show sent Hunter’s back into the ring post. They should have done more to set up the finish. That’s two matches with interference on this show so far. I don’t recall if Hunter faced Godfather again to get the win back, so we’ll see if it happens in the coming weeks. I could check, but I like finding things out as I go.


A replay aired showing what happened before the break with Triple H losing to Godfather.

The APA guys entered with Mideon, who was trying to be part of the group. Al Snow and Steve Blackman were backstage with Snow suggested they become some outer space tag team. Snow even had a “martian” with him. Blackman surprisingly said it’s a brilliant idea, so Snow left and Blackman hit the martian in the gut with one of his sticks.

The Acolytes (Bradshaw and Faarooq) w/Mideon vs. Steve Blackman and Al Snow

Pre-match notes: The Acolytes were the faces and Blackman/Snow were becoming faces due to this storyline they were in.

Bradshaw and Faarooq were aggressive early on, Snow came back with a clothesline and Bradshaw hit a boot to the face. Double team shoulder tackle by the Acolytes knocked down Snow. Snow sent Bradshaw into the steps, then Snow jumped onto Mideon and Bradshaw slammed Snow into the steps. Snow got back into it to trip up Faarooq to give his team positive momentum. Blackman and Snow hit a double team suplex on Faarooq, but Faarooq came back with a double clothesline on both guys. Bradshaw got the hot tag, back elbow to Snow and a kick on Blackman. Bradshaw with another back elbow on Snow. Mideon threw the head in the ring, Snow caught it, Snow hit Mideon with the head and Bradshaw hit the Clothesline from Hell on Snow for the pinfall at 3:02.

Winners by pinfall: The Acolytes (Bradshaw and Faarooq)

Analysis: *1/4 Boring match. The finish was awkward and looked like it was messed up.

Rikishi and Big Show with Shane McMahon were shown in separate parts of the arena getting ready for their match.


A replay sponsored by Lugz showed us the return of Vince McMahon on Raw.

Big Show entered with Shane McMahon. Show is wrestling in those leather pants he was wearing earlier in the night. Rikishi Phatu got a nice pop for his entrance.

Big Show (w/Shane McMahon) vs. Rikishi Phatu

Pre-match notes: Show was the heel and Rikishi was the face. Rikishi still had his left leg taped up to sell an attack about one month earlier.

Show attacked Rikishi outside the ring and tossed him into the steps. They went back into the ring with Show opening up on him with elbows to the chest. Rikishi got back with a corner clothesline followed by a kick to the face. Rikishi delivered the Stinkface, which was not yet called that, but that’s what it became. It drew a big pop. Rikishi hit a sloppy Samoan Drop only for Show to come back with a running clothesline. Show hit Rikishi with a belly to belly suplex, which is not a move that Show did that often in his career. Triple H ran out to ringside and decked Shane with a punch. Stephanie distracted dumbass referee Teddy Long, so Triple H hit a low blow to Show and a Pedigree. Hunter threw Shane into the ring post. Rikishi hit the Banzai Drop (they didn’t call it that, but that was the name when Yokozuna did it) on Big Show and pinned him at 3:03.

Winner by pinfall: Rikishi Phatu

Analysis: *1/4 It was fine as an angle advancement match with Triple H out to screw Show. I have no problem with this being a short match because it would have sucked if they got a lot of time. The result was payback for what happened to Triple H earlier.

The Too Cool duo of Grandmaster Sexay and Scotty 2 Hotty joined Rikishi in the ring for a post match dance routine, which drew a lot of cheers from the crowd.

There was a clip of Kurt Angle and Bob Backlund backstage with some old guy that worked at the building and Backlund gave the poor guy a Crossface Chickenwing submission because he’s a crazy old guy.


Big Show and Shane McMahon were shown backstage looking angry about what happened with Show tossing things around.

Kurt Angle, the Intercontinental and European Champion, entered with Bob Backlund by his side. Angle did a promo that included him ripping on the New York Islanders. Angle said that tonight we don’t have one hero to look up to, we now have two heroes to look up to in Angle and Backlund. That led to a quick ranting promo from Backlund, but that was interrupted by Chris Jericho’s music.

Chris Jericho entered with his friend Chyna. Jericho said that Angle and Backlund are the two biggest nerds in America. Jericho mocked Backlund for his suspenders, his haircut and he wants to use him like a dummy.

Tazz was up next as Jericho’s tag team partner. Tazz was losing a lot of steam after his debut in January. Tazz did a quick promo saying that they are going to get choked out and they can’t do anything about it.

Kurt Angle and Bob Backlund vs. Chris Jericho (w/Chyna) and Tazz

Pre-match notes: Angle and Backlund were the heels while Jericho and Tazz were the faces.

Angle took down Tazz with an overhead belly to belly suplex. Backlund went for the Crossface Chickenwing, Tazz tripped him up and Angle tagged back in. Tazz hit a belly to back suplex on Tazz. Jericho hit two Powerbombs on Angle followed by a Lionsault where Backlund broke up the pin. Backlund left the ring and ran into the crowd with Tazz following him. Taz put the Tazmission submission on Backlund. Angle got a sunset flip on Jericho, but Jericho kicked out and Jericho slapped on a Walls of Jericho submission on Angle. Chris Benoit went into the ring and gave Jericho a belly to back suplex for the DQ finish at 2:01.

Winners by disqualification: Chris Jericho and Tazz

Analysis: *1/4 That was rushed. The promos before the match went longer. Benoit got involved here because it set up a triple threat at WrestleMania with Angle vs. Benoit vs. Jericho for both titles.

Chyna went into the ring to kick Benoit, but Eddie Guerrero came into the ring with a forearm to Chyna’s back to knock him down. Benoit went up top and hit a headbutt on Angle. Benoit and Guerrero left.

Analysis: This attack felt random at the time, but it made sense by the next week because they set up the WrestleMania triple threat match.


Jonathon Coachman was shown talking about Crash Holly when Kane showed up, he choked him and Coachman said he didn’t know where X-Pac was, so Kane left.

A clip aired from Fun Time USA with the Headbangers and Earl Hebner was there dressed as a referee. They were there looking for Crash Holly to try to get the Hardcore Title. Mosh gave Crash a body slam, but Hebner wasn’t there. Crash went down a slide and so did the cameraman. Thrasher hit Crash in the head with a trash can, but Mosh broke up a pin attempt. The Headbangers slammed Crash into a guard rail. They hit Crash with their belts. Crash managed to get away from them in some ball pit. Crash hit a clothesline on Thrasher and he hit a hurricanrana on Mosh. Crash grabbed his title and he left to end it while the Headbangers were mad that they weren’t able to beat him.

Analysis: That was one of the more fun segments during Crash’s Hardcore Title reign. I give them credit for some creative spots in there. WWE has uploaded it to their Youtube channel, so check it out below.

A video aired showing some Mae Young antics over the previous few months since she was put through the table by Bubba Ray Dudley on the previous Raw.

Kane was shown backstage and he found X-Pac. He attacked Kane and Triple H, but Triple H came back with a 2×4 piece of wood and hit Kane in the back with it. Kane was in a truck, so Hunter and X-Pac locked him in the truck.


Vince McMahon was interviewed by Lilian Garcia in his office. Vince said because of what happened to Kane, it will be X-Pac versus The Rock later tonight.

Light Heavyweight Championship: Dean Malenko (w/Eddie Guerrero) vs. Grandmaster Sexay (w/Scotty 2 Hotty)

Pre-match notes: Malenko was the heel champion while Sexay was the face challenger. Eddie Guerrero still had the sling on his left elbow, but he didn’t really need it. Heels lie, my friends.

Sexay with a hip toss followed by a running clothesline and he sent Malenko out of the ring. Sexay hit a baseball slide dropkick to knock Malenko and Guerrero down. Back in the ring, Sexay hit a suplex, but Malenko came back by sending Sexay groin first into the turnbuckle. Sexay with a DDT on Malenko. Sexay whipped Malenko into the turnbuckle, he did a stupid dance and a kick to the head by Sexay. No referee to count because of a Guerrero distraction, so Malenko hit a clothesline. Malenko with a forearm to the back and then he teased doing The Worm, but Scotty tripped him up. Sexay sent Guerrero into the turnbuckle. Scotty knocked down Malenko. Sexay up top, ref distracted by Malenko and Guerrero hit Sexay with the loaded elbow pad and Malenko got the pinfall win at 4:03.

Winner by pinfall: Dean Malenko

Analysis: ** Cheap win by the heel champion. I thought the finish was set up well. The “referee never saw it” finish was used a lot, but if booked right, it always worked and in this case, it went exactly as planned.

Post match, Too Cool hit a double clothesline on Malenko. Chyna went back to ringside and knocked down Eddie with a punch. Chyna hit a DDT on Eddie on the floor to get revenge on him. Chyna celebrated with Too Cool to end it.

Analysis: Payback for Chyna for what Eddie did earlier. They would become a pairing within the next month.


The duo of Sgt. Slaughter and Tony Garea were shown trying to break the lock to free Kane from the truck he was in.

The Hardy Boyz (Matt and Jeff Hardy) vs. Chris Benoit and Perry Saturn

Pre-match notes: The Hardys were faces while Benoit and Saturn were the heels. This was announced as a Number One Contenders match with the winners getting a Tag Team Title match.

Benoit and Saturn double teamed Jeff leading to a bump over the top to the floor. Matt took down Benoit with a neckbreaker followed by the leg drop off the middle rope. Benoit shoved Matt into the ropes, Benoit got in a punch and the heels took control. Saturn and Benoit made quick tags as they worked over Matt to isolate him from his brother. Saturn went up top and jumped off with a knee to Matt’s chest for a two count. Saturn slammed Matt into the turnbuckle. Matt came back with a cross body block off the top to take down Saturn. Jeff got the hot tag with a dropkick on Saturn, a drop toe hold by Jeff on Saturn and Hardy hit a forearm on Benoit after Saturn launched him. Hardy stepped on Saturn’s back leading to a leaping kick on Benoit. Saturn hit a Tiger Suplex for two with Matt breaking it up. Hardys double team punch and Benoit broke up the pin. Double team Hardy suplex on Benoit. Jeff ran across the barricade and hit a clothesline on Benoit on the floor. Matt with a Twist of Fate on Saturn and Jeff went up top with a Swanton Bomb for two as Benoit broke up the pin. Matt hit a cross body block onto Benoit on the floor. Saturn hit a somersault dive over the top to take out everybody on the floor. Replays aired of the action and while that was going on, the ref counted to ten leading to a countout finish. It went 4:55.

Match Result: Double Countout

After the match was over, referees ran out there to try to break it up.

Analysis: **3/4 That was pretty good, especially in the last few minutes with several believable nearfalls for both sides. I thought the way they showed the finish was lame because we couldn’t see the ref counting them, but we could hear him as the replays aired. It’s rare to see them not show the countout happening.

X-Pac complained to Triple H and Stephanie about having to have this match. Triple H promised X-Pac he’ll find a way to get him out of this, X-Pac wanted to know if he promised, Hunter said yes and that was it.

The Rock was shown walking backstage to get ready for the main event.


X-Pac entered for the main event with the lovely Tori by her side. Those shorts are really short and that’s not a bad thing.

The Rock made his entrance to a huge ovation from the sold out crowd. Before Rock could get in the ring, X-Pac tried to attack outside the ring.

Rock tossed X-Pac over the barricade and then tossed him back towards the ring. They brawled over to the other side of the arena with X-Pac getting in some offense. Rock picked up X-Pac and drove him groin first into the ring post. Rock rolled X-Pac into the ring as the bell rang.

The Rock vs. X-Pac (w/Tori)

Pre-match notes: The Rock was the top face in the company and X-Pac was a heel.

Rock worked over X-Pac with punches as Big Show and Shane made their way down to the ring. Running clothesline by X-Pac led to a two count. Triple H (carrying the WWF Title) and Stephanie made their way down to the ring as well. X-Pac dumped Rock over the top to the floor. The referee was distracted, so Show punched Rock and Hunter whipped Rock into the steel steps after Hunter hit Show in the back. That led to a two count for X-Pac. Leg drop by X-Pac. Rock came back with a whip into the ropes leading to a spinebuster. Rock followed that up with a Samoan Drop. X-Pac with a boot to the face, but Rock came back with a powerslam. Tori distracted the referee, so X-Pac hit a spin kick on Rock to put him down. X-Pac set up for a Bronco Buster, but Rock hit a Rock Bottom for two as Show pulled the referee out. That should lead to a DQ, but it did not. The referee was distracted on that side of the ring, so Hunter hit Rock with the WWF Title. Kane entered to a huge pop and he punched X-Pac, so that led to a disqualification finish at 4:15.

Winner by disqualification: X-Pac

Analysis: **1/2 Good match with a lot going on outside the ring, so that took some of the attention from the match. The one thing I keep seeing in this era in terms of refereeing is when matches should end earlier and they don’t (like Show grabbing the ref to stop a pin), but again that was normal in this era. The Rock worked well with X-Pac because Rock could show off his power moves more against a smaller opponent.

Kane continued the attack on X-Pac and they went brawling into the crowd. That’s something WWE does when they want to take guys out of the picture and have fans focus on what’s going on in the ring.

The trio of Rock, Hunter and Show got into it in the ring. Rock fought off both guys and he sent Hunter into Show against the turnbuckle. Rock left as his music played. Show and Hunter got into it with punches while Vince McMahon was shown watching it backstage. Vince had a smile on his face.

Analysis: It continued the story from Raw with Vince getting involved to prevent Shane and Stephanie from taking over, so now that Vince is back, it has led to more problems for Show (Shane’s guy) and Hunter (Stephanie’s guy). It all makes sense.

This episode had a run time of 1:28:43 on WWE Network.


Three Stars of the Show

  1. Triple H
  2. The Rock
  3. Vince McMahon


The Scoreboard

This episode gets a 6 out of 10.

It was a solid show with good angle advancement all night long. Some of the matches were too short, but that was common in this era. I liked the way that people got payback on this show after somebody else attacked them earlier in the night. Sometimes that is done on the next show, but I think doing it in the same show. like Triple H did and Chyna did, makes the wrestlers look smarter.

The three guys that were in the WrestleMania main event at the time (Triple H, Big Show and Rock) all lost their matches although Rock’s was a DQ loss while the other two were pinned.

Triple H was all over this show. I know he’s the WWF Champion, but he was involved in so many matches, promos and backstage segments. It’s no wonder he got over huge.

The last two matches were a lot of fun, but I wish they were given more time. If they were closer to ten minutes each it would have made this show great.


Please let me know what you think of these reviews and feel free to offer any suggestions too. Check out our WWF in 2000 archives for my reviews of all the other shows from earlier in the year. Thanks for reading.

John Canton


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