The WWF was on the road to Backlash with The Rock determined to get his revenge against Vince McMahon, Triple H and Shane McMahon in his quest to win back the WWF Title. As we saw on the previous Raw, there were also some turns that took place with Chyna aligning with Eddie Guerrero and Big Show becoming a babyface. On this show, a heel tag team became faces as changes continued.
Here’s the synopsis on WWE Network: “The McMahon-Helmsley Faction stack the deck against The Rock in a Handicap Match main event. Plus, Eddie Guerrero, Dean Malenko, and more!”
The McMahon family stacking the deck against a popular superstar? That never happens! (Now that’s sarcasm!)
WWF Smackdown #33
April 6, 2000 (Taped April 4)
From San Jose Arena in San Jose, California
This show has a TV-14 rating and “V” for Violence on WWE Network.
A clip aired from Raw that showed The Rock pinning Triple H in a match where it was Rock vs. Shane McMahon and Rock celebrated with the WWF Title that was not on the line.
Shane McMahon was talking on a phone in the parking lot (yes we had cell phones in 2000) saying he’ll see somebody there in a few minutes. The Smackdown intro video aired.
The pyro went off in the arena and the building was sold out with plenty of signs in the crowd. Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler welcomed us to the show.
Intercontinental Championship: Chris Benoit vs. Rikishi Phatu
Pre-match notes: Benoit was the heel Intercontinental Champion while Rikishi was the face challenger.
Rikishi with a clothesline and he missed a seated splash when Benoit moved, so Benoit hit a dropkick to the back. Benoit stomped away on Rikishi against the turnbuckle. Rikishi sent Benoit into the ropes followed by a launch in the air leading to a cutter and Rikishi followed with a kick to the back of the head. Rikishi missed a corner splash and Benoit hit a bridging Northern Lights Suplex for the pinfall win at 1:55. Rikishi kicked out right after Benoit got the win.
Winner by pinfall: Chris Benoit
Analysis: *1/4 That was a sudden finish. I didn’t expect this to go under two minutes and a clean win for the heel, but that’s what they did.
Post match, Benoit charged at Rikishi and Rikishi hit a Samoan Drop. Benoit rolled to the corner right into position and Rikishi hit the Stinkface on Benoit against the turnbuckle. Rikishi with a belly to belly suplex. Rikishi sent Benoit to the turnbuckle and hit the Banzai Drop on Benoit to end it. Rikishi celebrated with the IC Title even though he’s not the champion.
Analysis: That post match attack is why they went short on the match. I think this was the first time they called it the Stinkface or at least one of the first times I noticed it.
A limousine was shown pulling up to the arena. It was Vince McMahon and Shane McMahon was there to greet him.
Let’s Hear from Vince and Shane McMahon
Vince McMahon and his son Shane McMahon made their entrance to the “No Chance in Hell” song as the fans greeted them with boos. There were also “Asshole” chants as they stood in the ring to begin the promo.
Vince said before the people of Sacramento get upset (he got it wrong on purpose) and then said it didn’t matter if it was San Jose. Vince mentioned the nasty rumor that DX will not be here tonight. Vince assured us that as soon as DX has finished their autograph session, they will be here tonight. Vince said that the inmates were running asylum on Raw and said let’s see the closing moments of Raw. It showed the clip of Rock pinning Triple H and telling referee Earl Hebner to count the pin.
Vince said that Rock couldn’t beat his son Shane one on one at WrestleMania and he couldn’t beat Triple H at WrestleMania. Vince said that what we saw was referee Earl Hebner counting 1-2-3 and Lilian Garcia proclaimed Rock the victor and fans chanted “Shane’s a pussy” at Shane. Vince said the people of Sacramento are rude, so he got the city name wrong again no purpose. Vince said that Rock soiled the WWF Title by holding it above his head. Vince said let’s get to the bottom of it and called out referee Earl Hebner.
Earl Hebner made his entrance in his referee shirt. Vince yelled at him because he wanted him to walk faster. Vince asked why Earl would count 1-2-3 in a non-sanctioned match. Earl said it was because The Rock told him to count. Vince said that until this moment, the integrity of WWF officials has never been questioned, but Earl has impugned the integrity of officials with his bias. Vince: “If you ever do it again little man, I will knock you on your ass.” Earl left. The fans chanted “Asshole” at him. Vince called out ring announcer Lilian Garcia
Lilian Garcia walked down to the ring. Vince said that in addition to being a misinformed ring announcer, she’s not a bad singer. Vince said she should just assume that it’s just Vince and her. Vince grabbed some of her hair and told her to sing a song to him. He requested “Do you know the way to San Jose?” so she started to sing it well. Vince said the point he is making is that pretty women with a little bit of talent are a dime a dozen and can be replaced in an instant. Vince said that if she makes another mistake then the only thing she’ll be signing is the blues. The fans booed and chanted “Asshole” at Vince again.
Vince said it’s not easy being the boss because you’ve got incompetence surrounding you. Vince said that The Rock is not the WWF Champion, nor is it likely that he will ever be again. Vince said that there was one other mistake on Monday and that was Good Ol’ JR on commentary. Vince reminded us of JR saying that Vince and Shane couldn’t stand up to The Rock while Vince reminded us that his balls are the size of grapefruits while Shane’s are pomegranates. Vince said “Sacramento” again to piss off the crowd. Vince announced that him and Shane are going to team up against The Rock.
Analysis: It was a way to promote a big main event match later in the show even though that’s not what happened. Vince is a heat machine. He knows how to be jerk and piss off the fans so well. He’s the master at it. Watching these shows again is a nice reminder of how great he was at promos like this.
There was a shot of Trish Stratus backstage as she led her team Test & Albert to the ring for a tag team match.
The Castrol GTX Slam of the Week showed a clip of Jeff Hardy’s crazy Swanton Bomb off the ladder on Bubba Ray Dudley through a table.
The T&A duo made their entrance with Trish Stratus. The Dudleys were up next as the opponents. Obligatory Trish image.
To the fan with the “Know Your Roll” sign, that should be “Role” there. Good effort, I guess. To the other fan, I agree Trish is a class act.
Test & Albert (w/Trish Stratus) vs. The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray and D-Von Dudley)
Pre-match notes: Test and Albert were heels although I could never boo Trish. The Dudleys were heels, but that didn’t last much longer.
Test with a gutwrench powerbomb on D-Von for a two count. D-Von with a jumping back elbow. Bubba tagged in with a clothesline off the turnbuckle for two. Test with a back body drop on Bubba. Albert tagged in, splash on Bubba in the corner and Test with a big boot for two. Bubba came back with a clothesline on Albert, punch to Test distracted a referee and D-Von hit a headbutt off the top to the groin. No legal tag, but D-Von took over with an elbow drop. Albert got bicycle kick to D-Von’s face after Test hit a knee to the back. When D-Von tried to get going, Albert booted him in the face. D-Von avoided a corner charge and hit a forearm. Bubba got the hot tag with two clotheslines on Test and Bubba hit a cutter for a two count as Albert broke up the pin. Albert clotheslined D-Von out of the ring. Test whipped Bubba into a Albert for a two handed chokeslam. Test up top and hit an elbow drop on Bubba for two as D-Von broke up the pin. Bubba hit a back body drop to send Albert over the top to the floor. The Dudleys hit 3D on Test and Bubba covered for the pinfall win at 5:08.
Winners by pinfall: The Dudley Boyz
Analysis: **1/2 The match was solid with the former champion Dudleys getting a win after losing the titles a few days earlier at WrestleMania. Five minutes is a good amount of time for a TV match in this era.
Post match, Trish Stratus went into the ring and checked on Test while Bubba was still in the ring. Bubba had a psychotic look on his face as he grabbed Trish’s hat and grabbed her head. Bubba told D-Von to get the table, but Albert knocked D-Von down. Albert left with Test and Trish.
Analysis: That’s the storyline that would turn the Dudleys into faces with fans wanting Bubba to put Trish through the table. It also continued the story of Bubba having fun by putting women through tables. What a nice guy.
The Hardys ran into the ring to get into a brawl with the Dudleys. That lasted for about 20 seconds until referees came down to the ring to break it up, so that feud is continuing.
Kurt Angle went up to Scott 2 Hotty saying that they should be a tag team to go after the Tag Team Titles. Scotty said no to that.
Analysis: Scotty’s partner Grandmaster Sexay was out with a knee injury, but he was back in action the next month, so it was just a minor injury.
The Rock was shown backstage getting ready.
Tazz made his entrance and Perry Saturn attacked him from behind leading to a brawl around ringside. Saturn sent Tazz throat first into the barricade. Tazz whipped Saturn into the steel steps. Tazz and Saturn went brawling to the backstage area, so there’s no match.
Analysis: That was brief and I don’t remember much of a rivalry between them. At least it was quick.
The Rock was interviewed by Kevin Kelly in the backstage interview area. Rock said that Shane can suck on a monkey’s nipple and Vince can lick a llama’s anus. Rock made it clear that he wasn’t scared of their candy asses. Rock said that Vince is the owner of a very successful company and even without his family’s approval (he called Stephanie a slut, which got muted on this taped show) while noting that he reigns supreme. Rock said he accepts the Vince/Shane challenge on The Rock’s show Smackdown. During the promo, they showed a crowd shot and a fan held up a sign that said “I HAVE BIG BALLS” on it. They cut away quickly. Rock said that he’s going to raise the people’s hand, Shane gets the front of a slap and Vince gets the back. When it’s all said and done, the two candy ass jabronis will smell what The Rock is cooking.
Analysis: Great Rock promo as usual. Oh, and here’s that sign. I wasn’t lying about it. The great thing is they could have edited it out of this taped broadcast, but they kept it in.
The DX Express bus was shown driving up to the arena. A camera guy was on the bus with them. That led to Triple H, Stephanie McMahon, Tori, X-Pac and Road Dogg to enter the arena.
Al Snow and Steve Blackman vs. Big Boss Man and Bull Buchanan
Pre-match notes: Snow and Blackman were faces by this point while Boss Man and Buchanan were heels. They showed a clip of Bull and Boss Man beating up Kane on Raw.
Blackman hit Boss Man with three kicks to knock him out of the ring. Snow hit a moonsault onto Boss Man on the floor. Snow tagged in with a cross body block on Boss Man. Buchanan distracted Snow, so Boss Man hit a body slam on Snow. The announcers tried to tell the story of Boss Man and Buchanan being prison guards together. Buchanan with a scissors kick to the back of the head of Snow. Blackman back in, Buchanan jumped to the top rope and hit a clothesline, which is a spot he botched on the previous Raw. Buchanan and Boss Man hit a double team clothesline on Blackman. The fans chanted “Head Cheese” as Boss Man hit a corner splash on Blackman. Buchanan with a boot to the face of Blackman. Boss Man went for an attack off the middle ropes, Blackman got a foot up and blocked it. Snow tagged in against Boss Man. Buchanan whipped Blackman into the steel steps. Snow whipped Boss Man into the ropes, blind tag by Buchanan and Show hit a jumping leg lariat on Boss Man. Boss Man came back with the Boss Man slam on Snow and Buchanan jumped off the top with a leg drop to pin Snow at 4:43.
Winners by pinfall: Big Boss Man and Bull Buchanan
Analysis: * Boring match. This is one of those matches where if it went two minutes I wouldn’t complain about it. At least the finish was executed well with the blind tag. This was WWE continuing to push Buchanan as an athletic newcomer.
After the match was over, Blackman went back into the ring and kicked Buchanan and Boss Man repeatedly to clear them from the ring.
Eddie Guerrero and Chyna were shown driving up to the arena in a low rider.
The Lugz Boot of the Week was a replay of Chyna helping Eddie Guerrero beat Chris Jericho for the European Title on Raw.
Let’s Hear From Eddie Guerrero and Chyna
Eddie Guerrero made his entrance with the European Title around his waist and Chyna by his side. Eddie had roses with him as well. This was when he first started with that “Latino Heat” theme song and nickname. They were not in wrestling gear. There were a lot of signs about them in the crowd, so it showed the angle was working.
Guerrero said that he’s been really wanting to know why Chyna did what she did by helping him win the European Title. Chyna said that this might embarrass him, but the truth is she couldn’t resist his Latino Heat. Eddie kissed her feet. Chyna said that there’s also the little, insecure Jericho…and she did mean little…they laughed. She said that Chris was worried a woman would show him up and steal his glory, which she did. Chyna claimed the reason that Jericho couldn’t get in her pants is because she wears the pants around here.
Guerrero said that she truly is the ninth wonder of the world. He said that he knows all of us don’t understand, but his ancestors like Cortez, Columbus, Don Quixote, Macho Villa and now there’s Eddie. Chris Jericho’s music hit for the interruption.
Jericho ran down to the ring with punches for Eddie and Chyna. The crowd was strongly behind Jericho after he went after both of them. Jericho with a kick to Eddie’s stomach and he hit a Powerbomb. Referees ran down to the ring to break it up.
Analysis: Good segment. I liked the heel promo from Chyna and Eddie even though they became a popular duo. Chyna had gotten a bit stale by this point, so pairing her with Eddie was good for her career. It also allowed Eddie to show off his personality, which he had done a bit in the WCW days, but this “Latino Heat” character was some of the best work he did in his career. It’s fun to be able to see it all again. Jericho showing up to attack made sense after he lost his title, but they didn’t have a feud that lasted that long.
Kurt Angle was shown backstage with Essa Rios with Angle trying to tell him he wanted to be his tag team partner. Lita showed up. Angle said he realizes Rios is from a poor country, so he said that Rios could win the gold with him and sell it to his family. Lita talked to Rios, who left angrily and Angle was left confused.
Analysis: Considering Rios is almost never on the show, he should want to be in any match. I’m just saying.
The DX group showed up to talk to Shane and Vince McMahon in their offense. Hunter complained about being at a contract signing so that Shane and Vince could challenge The Rock. Hunter said he wanted to face The Rock and he didn’t care if he had to put the title on the line to get it. Vince said no to that. Road Dogg said that they are ready. Vince told them to let them have their night. Stephanie talked to Vince saying Triple H didn’t mean any disrespect.
The conversation between Vince and Stephanie continued on the couch. She said that X-Pac and Road Dogg are ready to go, they’ve paid their dues and they deserve a chance to kick The Rock’s butt. She said Vince can kick Rock’s butt any time, so she said let them do it. Steph said please…for me. Vince said okay, just this once.
Analysis: That means the main event is now The Rock vs. Road Dogg and X-Pac due to Stephanie’s request.
Light Heavyweight Championship: Dean Malenko vs. Taka Michinoku
Pre-match notes: Malenko was the heel Light Heavyweight Champion and Taka was a face. This was Taka’s return after being on the shelf for a few months.
Taka with a rollup for two to start the match. Taka with a dropkick that sent Malenko out of the ring. Taka with a moonsault off the middle ropes onto Malenko on the floor. Great move. Back in the ring, Taka with a low dropkick. Malenko came back with a slam after grabbing him around the waist. The fans were distracted by something in the crowd. Malenko with a belly to back suplex followed by a chinlock. When Taka got back up, Malenko decked him with a clothesline followed by a backbreaker leading to Malenko stretching Taka’s back across his knee. Malenko with a clothesline against the turnbuckle and a suplex. Taka came back with a belly to belly overhead suplex for two. Taka hit a Tornado DDT out of the corner for a two count. Taka up top and he connected with a dropkick off the top. Malenko avoided a Michinoku Driver and managed to hit a Powerbomb for two. Malenko sent Michinoku to the apron, Malenko put Michinoku on his shoulders and hit a gutbuster with the knee to the ribs. That looked impressive while getting a nice pop from the crowd for the big move. Malenko slapped on the Texas Cloverleaf and Taka tapped out to give Malenko the submission win at 5:05.
Winner by submission: Dean Malenko
Note: Two signs in that image refer to pimping. It ain’t easy.
Analysis: **3/4 That was really good for the time given. I wish they got a few more minutes because it was a competitive match that the crowd was into. Taka got to show off some of his aerial moves that he could always do so well. Malenko won with his great technical wrestling ability. That gutbuster off the top was sweet. Taka had a great match with Triple H on the next Raw.
There was a shot of Shane McMahon in the locker room with highlights from Raw when Big Show did some dancing and then he attacked Grandmaster Sexay. Shane said that he was feeling Big Show’s new style. Show said he had a new style, but we couldn’t see him. That’s after a break.
There was a shot of Kurt Angle backstage with Mae Young in her wrestling gear wanting to be his partner. Hardcore Holly walked by, so Angle pleaded with him and Hardcore said it would be fun to kick Edge & Christian’s ass, so Angle has a partner.
The Godfather made his entrance with the ho’s. Since it’s Smackdown, they avoided using the word “ho’s” and would just call them ladies. They did show a fan sign saying “ho train” though. Godfather did his usual pre-match promo letting us know that pimpin’ ain’t easy.
Big Show entered as the opponent dressed as a pimp. Show said that he was the “Big Pimp” on his way to the ring. Big Show told the ladies that if everything goes well tonight, they will get to see Big Show wrapped in leather.
The Godfather vs. Big Show (Big Pimp?)
Pre-match notes: Godfather was a face. Big Show had been a heel, but this was part of his face turn.
Godfather was aggressive with punches. Show whipped Godfather into the ropes with a dropkick. That was impressive for Show. Show worked over Godfather with punches. Show hit a body slam on Godfather. Show went to the second rope and missed an elbow drop. Godfather with a kick to the face followed by a bulldog. Godfather hit the Ho Train splash against the turnbuckle. A woman was on the apron distracting the referee, Show grabbed Godfather’s cane and hit Godfather in the back with it. Show covered Godfather for the win at 2:26.
Winner by pinfall: Big Show
Analysis: * It’s a good thing that it was a short match because I don’t think these two would have an entertaining match if it went much longer. Even though Show was turning face, it was still a heelish ending to this match.
After the match, the big boobed brunette woman went in the ring and Show kissed her while grabbing her ass. They left together.
Analysis: The woman was Show’s fiancée at the time named Beth. They got married and I believe they are still married with kids.
Edge and Christian were shown walking with the Tag Team Titles backstage.
Kurt Angle made his entrance followed by tag team partner Hardcore Holly. Edge and Christian entered through the crowd.
Tag Team Championships: Edge and Christian vs. Kurt Angle and Hardcore Holly
Pre-match notes: Angle and Holly are heels. Edge and Christian were faces for months leading up to WrestleMania, but were more heelish in the last couple of weeks.
Holly started with Christian with Christian hitting a back body drop, Edge tagged in and a double team hip toss by the champs. Angle tagged in with punches on Edge, who came back with a boot to the face and Christian hit a cheap clothesline. Edge with a kick to the sternum of Angle. Edge off the middle rope, Angle with a block and a belly to belly suplex. Holly with a back elbow on Edge followed by a delayed vertical suplex for two. Angle with a suplex on Edge for two. Edge got a sunset flip on Angle for two, so Angle came back with a clothesline for two. Holly hit a powerslam on Edge followed by a sidewalk slam. Angle back in, Edge with a drop toe hold into the middle turnbuckle and a running clothesline. Christian got the hot tag against Holly with a double team flapjack for a two count on Holly as Angle made the save. Edge hit a Spear on Angle. Holly kicked Edge out of the ring. Holly with a clothesline on Christian followed by a backbreaker. Outside the ring, Edge whipped Angle into the ring post. Holly up top, Edge tripped him on the top rope. Christian with a superplex on Holly while Edge had Christian on his shoulders for a double team superplex (cool move!) and Christian pinned Holly to win at 6:37.
Winners by pinfall: Edge and Christian
Analysis: *** That was a fun match that was very competitive with the champs working well together for the win. Angle and Holly didn’t have any problems as a team. It was weird with E&C working as the faces in the match since they were heels going into WrestleMania while the announcers talked about their change in attitude. It doesn’t matter that much, but I just found it weird that E&C weren’t being more heelish. It was an entertaining match with the champs looking strong.
After the match, Angle did a promo saying this was Holly’s loss and he should have picked Mae Young instead of Holly. That led to Holly slapping Angle, Holly with a dropkick and a Falcon Arrow slam.
Analysis: The deal was that Angle was an egomaniac and always found ways to piss people off, so Holly kicked his ass.
The Rock was shown pacing in the locker room for his match up next.
Shane McMahon made his entrance prior to the main event. Shane instructed announcer Tony Chimel to say something and Chimel announced Shane as the special guest announcer. Shane told Earl Hebner that his services were no longer needed in this match. Shane introduced us to a special guest referee: Triple H along with Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley. The fans booed them during their entrance.
Shane introduced the Degeneration X tag team of Road Dogg and X-Pac with Tori. That meant no pre-match promo from Road Dogg. They entered to the “King of Rock who, King of Rock what” song from Run DMC.
The Rock made his entrance to a thunderous ovation as usual. Stephanie McMahon joined the commentary team for this match.
The Rock vs. Road Dogg and X-Pac (w/Tori) – Triple H is the referee
Pre-match notes: Rock is the face of course while Dogg and X-Pac were heels along with Triple H.
There are only about six minutes left in the WWE Network broadcast for this match. Rock tossed Dogg out of the ring and hit a Samoan Drop on X-Pac. Hunter did a very slow cover, so Dogg went into the ring to stomp on Rock. Dogg worked over Rock with punches, Rock blocked a punch and X-Pac hit a cheap kick to the back leading to a Dogg punch. Triple H did a fast count, but Rock kicked out. Chinlock by X-Pac on Rock. This looked like the weakest chinlock ever. Rock got back into it with punches, but X-Pac stopped him with a spin kick to the face. Triple H put his foot on Rock’s throat leading to X-Pac hitting a Bronco Buster on Rock against the turnbuckle. Rock came back with punches that knocked down X-Pac and a DDT on Dogg. Rock hit a powerslam on X-Pac with Dogg attacking Rock again. Rock with a spinebuster on Dogg and he punched X-Pac off the apron onto Shane on the floor. Rock hit a Rock Bottom on Dogg. Rock covered, the crowd was screaming and there was no referee to count it. Earl Hebner went running down to the ring, but Vince McMahon followed him and when Earl went into the ring to count, Vince punched Earl to knock him on his ass! Let’s call this match over at about 5:00.
Match Result: No Contest
Analysis: *3/4 It was entertaining as a match until it broke down to further the storyline.
Rock stared at Vince, mouthed “son of a bitch and Rock went up the ramp going after Vince. Rock punched Vince and knocked him on his ass on the ramp. Rock left to the back.
When Hunter and the others tried to help Vince, Rock came back with a steel chair. When Vince turned around, Rock hit Vince in the head with a steel chair. The show ended with Rock standing over Vince, the crowd cheering and the DX guys staying back because Rock was in control.
Analysis: That was an entertaining ending with Rock getting revenge on Vince for screwing him at WrestleMania and keeping the DX guys back by using the steel chair. It’s one of those “hostage situations” type angles that works well in a situation like this.
This episode of Smackdown had a run time of 1:30:37 on WWE Network. That’s three minutes more than the previous week.
Three Stars of the Show
- Vince McMahon
- Edge and Christian
- Kurt Angle and Hardcore Holly
This episode gets a 6.5 out of 10.
It was a solid show. There were a few very good matches, so that helps although the main event ending without a real finish is lame. I think this was around the time where the WWF was giving matches some more time on TV because there were not as many short matches as in the three months before this. It was likely a post-WrestleMania decision. The Vince promo early on was awesome and I enjoyed the Guerrero/Chyna promos too.
They were building to Backlash well with The Rock getting some revenge on the McMahons by the end of the night, which was needed in this storyline.
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.