Written by: Adam King
Thursday, May 10th, 2001
Taped (5/8) from the Civic Center in Hartford, CT
List of WWF Champions at the time:
● WWF World Heavyweight Champion: Stone Cold Steve Austin (4/01/2001)
● WWF Intercontinental Champion: Triple H (4/16/2001)
● WWF World Tag Team Champions: Steve Austin & Triple H (4/29/2001)
● WWF European Champion: Matt Hardy (4/26/2001)
● WWF Hardcore Champion: Rhyno (4/19/2001)
● WWF Women’s Champion: Chyna (4/01/2001)
● WWF Light Heavyweight Champion: Jerry Lynn (4/29/2001)
~ Smackdown comes on the air with clips from Raw including Rikishi’s face turn and subsequent stinkface on Stephanie McMahon. After the intro Michael Cole welcomes to the show but instead of Tazz we have Paul Heyman subbing for him this week. Tonight Rikishi goes one-on-one with Triple H who’s looking for revenge for said stinkface.
- Chris Jericho vs. Christian (w/Edge)
If you remember on Raw Edge & Christian tried to get Kurt Angle’s gold medals back from Chris Benoit but Jericho came to Benoit’s aid and thus we have this match. Not surprisingly Benoit makes his way out Jericho’s corner to ensure the odds are even. Both men lockup to start, Jericho applies a headlock then goes through a hammerlock back to the headlock. Christian shovers Jericho away but Jericho hits a shoulderblock then comes off the ropes, Christian leapfrogs him but Jericho chops Christian down. Jericho hits an armdrag into an armbar but Christian is able to force Jericho into a corner and gets in his offense. Christian whips Jericho into the opposite corner but Jericho comes back out with a clothesline followed by a chop and a hiptoss. Christian rolls out to the apron when Jericho knocks him to the floor with the springboard dropkick. Christian gets distracted by Benoit on the floor when Jericho hits a baseball slide then rams him into the barricade. Jericho throws Christian back in the ring then climbs to the top rope and hits a crossbody for a two count. Jericho whips Christian who slides under him but Jericho takes him down and goes for the Walls of Jericho when Edge hops on the apron. So Jericho lets go of his opponent to deal with Edge allowing Christan to come back with a backbreaker. Christian lays the boots to Jericho and rakes his face but Jericho regains control. Jericho whips Christian into a corner and goes for the bulldog but Christian cuts him off with a lariat for a two count. Christian chokes Jericho on the middle rope and goes for a whip, Jericho reverses it but lowers the head and Christian kicks the face. Christian comes off the ropes but Jericho hot shots him on the top rope and both men are down. Jericho is up first and chops Christian then goes for a whip, Christian reverses it but Jericho hits the flying forearm. Jericho then hops to the middle rope and connects with a missile dropkick but only gets a two count. Jericho goes for a whip, Christian counters it and and scoops him up but Jericho floats over and bulldogs him. Jericho goes for the Lionsault but Edge decks him as he hits the ropes prompting Benoit to pound on Edge. In the ring Christian covers Jericho but only gets a two count as Edge climbs onto the apron to escape Benoit. Jericho goes for a whip but Christian rams him into Edge on the apron and rolls him up for the pin. (5:40) Score one for E&C against the Chrises. Good enough match for the most part.**½
~ Backstage The Undertaker is shown arriving at the building after serving his cooling-off period on Monday. Vince McMahon walks up assuring Taker he doesn’t want trouble then asks if he can co-exist with Steve Austin tonight now that he’s had time to simmer down, warning that any physicality could put his title shot in jeopoary. Taker responds by saying he’s pratically Kool and the Gang. Whatever that means.
~ Back from break The Undertaker comes across a backstage guy and asks him if he’s seen Steve Austin anywhere. Once the guy points the way Taker says he has something for Austin and pulls a chain out from his bag. That’s certainly a weird present.
- Raven vs. Albert (w/X-Pac & Justin Credible)
Raven’s had some run-ins with Albert over the past week and here’s their chance to settle things. X-Pac and Credible join the announcers for commentary and Heyman asks them if they have a plan. Raven gets in the first shots but Albert clotheslines him from behind and pummels him in a corner then throws him across the ring and headbutts him. Albert whips Raven into a corner and goes for the Avalanche when Raven sidesteps it and goes for the bulldog but Albert cuts him off. Albert throws Raven into the ropes but lowers the head and Raven kicks the face and hits a forearm. Raven comes off the ropes with a dropkick then clotheslines Albert and himself over the ropes. Albert scoops Raven onto his shoulder but Raven slips off and shoves Albert into the ringpost. Raven attacks Albert as he comes back in and comes off the ropes but runs right into a bicycle kick. Albert slingshots Raven into the middle rope and Raven rolls out to the floor but Albert is behind him and throws him into the barricade. Albert tosses Raven back in the ring and goes for the Baldobomb but Raven manages to fight out of it. Raven comes off the ropes but runs into an elbow and Albert climbs to the middle rope but misses a legdrop. Raven goes for a whip, Albert reverses him into a corner and goes for the Avalanche but eats a boot. Raven connects with a kneelift and follows up with a clothesline and Albert staggers into a corner. Raven charges but runs right into Albert’s waiting hands and the Baldobomb seals the decisive win. (4:00) So much for Raven getting any momentun since this was just barely above a squash. DUD
~ Backstage The Undertaker barges into Steve Austin’s lockerroom looking for him and finds no one there, but does find Austin’s title belts laying on the bench. Taker figures Austin is sure to come back for his belts and decides to wait for him so takes a seat with the chain, saying once Austin comes back they’re going to get a few things settled. Looks like that’s our main storyline for this show.
~ Back from break Steve Austin complains to Vince McMahon and Debra about Undertaker being in his lockeroom. Yes, you read right, Austin is whining to Vince about The Undertaker. Vince reminds Austin that Taker has a chain with him and Austin says that proves what a coward Taker really is because if Taker didn’t have that chain he’d go into his lockerroom and turn his lights out in a flash. Vince promises Austin he’ll think of a way to get his title belts back and Austin says he’d better, and fast.
~ Elsewhere Spike Dudley is walking with Molly Holly who is really impressed with his putting Albert through a table on Raw. Crash Holly suddenly storms up and gets in Spike’s face saying his many Hardcore Title reigns are more impressive. Crash challenges Spike to a match and walks off with Molly in hand while Molly tells Spike goodbye.
~ Back in Austin’s lockerroom Undertaker is going through Austin’s shirts and even takes his tobacco when a delivery guy comes in with a case of beer for Austin. Taker tells the guy the room is his yard now but he’ll make sure Austin gets his beer and continues to wait for him to appear.
~ Still elsewehre Austin, Vince and Debra react to what they just watched on a monitor with disgust. Vince tells Austin that Taker is trying to bait him into going into the room so he can use the chain on him. Austin whines about Taker having his stuff and Vince tries to calm him down of he can think of something. Has Austin really been neutered for this heel run or what?
~ Yet again elsewhere Triple H is preparing when Johnathan Coachman interviews him on facing Rikishi tonight, and Triple H admits he and Rikishi once had a business relationship but Rikishi threw it all away on Raw when he put his hands on Stephanie. Triple H says Rikishi made this personal and threatens to tear Rikishi apart, because his motivation for fighting anybody has to involve his wife. Coach points out Rikishi didn’t exaclty put his “hands” on Steph, if you know what he means, but Triple H chases him off as we go to commercial. Yep, an entire chunk of backstage segments in succession.
- The Hardy Boyz & Lita vs. Bull Buchanan, The Goodfather & Ivory – Intergender Match
Steven Richards is apparently on the outs with the Right To Censor as Cole mentions they’re looking for a new leader. Goodfather starts off with Matt Hardy and applies an arm wringer then works the arm and goes into a hammerlock. Matt reverses it but Goodfather forces him into a corner to breatk it then whips him into the opposite corner and goes for the Ho Train but Matt stops him with a boot. Matt hops to the middle rope and goes for a flying crossbody but Goodfather ducks it. Goodafther whips Matt but Matt slides under the ropes and dares Goodfather to chase him. Goodfather indeed goes out after him but Matt heads back in and tags Jeff who nails Goodfather from behind. The Hardys whip Goodather into a corner and Matt drops to the mat for Jeff to hit the Poetry in Motion. Buchanan comes in but the Hardys pound on him when Ivory asks for a tag and Goodfather obliges. Ivory demands Jeff tag in Lita and Jeff does make the tag but Lita runs right into a drop toehold. Ivory lays the boots to Lita then hits a backbreaker for a two count as we get a shot of Chyna watching from the back. Ivory whips Lita but Lita comes back with the headscissors and follows up with a armdrag. Lita hits a suplex for a two count then goes for a whip but Ivory reverses it while Buchanan tags himself in. Jeff also tags himself in and Lita crawls under Buchanan to the floor leaving the Hardys to double-team him. The referee forces Matt back to the corner but that allows Goodfather to hit Jeff with a suplex as Eddie Guerrero makes his way out to the stage to watch. Buchanan works over Jeff then whips him into a corner but Jeff sidesteps him and makes the tag to Matt. Matt hammers Buchanan and comes off the ropes with a clothesline then pops Goodfather off the apron. Matt hits a neckbreaker and goes for the Twist of Fate but Goodfather clubs him form behind to prevent it. Goodfather charges at Matt but tumbles to the floor after Matt pulls down the top rope. So Ivory comes in and grabs Matt by the hair but Lita spears her and both ladies roll out to the floor to go at it. Meanwhile Jeff climbs to the top rope and hits a plancha on Goodfather as Eddie comes down to ringisde. In the ring Buchanan slams Matt and runs up the turnbuckles for the legdrop when Eddie trips him up from the floor. Matt quickly follows up with the Twist of Fate on Buchanan to put this one away and it’s another loss for the RTC. (4:42) Eddie walks back up the ramp acting happy while Matt glares at him wondering just what his deal is, as we all are. **
~ Backstage Vince has his radical idea on how Steve Austin can get his stuff back from Undertaker and suggests there’s one person who can safely go into the lockeroom and get Austin’s belongings: Debra. Vince mentions Debra slapped Taker last week but Taker didn’t do anything so Vince figures he’d never hit a lady, thus he suggests Debra go and confront Taker. Austin agrees with it, calling it the best he’s heard, then orders Debra to go along with it and Debra reluctantly heads out as we go to commercial.
~ Back from break we get a look at the Hartford skyline as Cole hypes the Triple H/Rikishi match to come next.
~ Backstage the Undertaker is still waiting for Austin to appear when Debra comes in and polietly asks him to please leave the room. Taker is surprised he doesn’t get a slap this week while Debra warns him she will not be responsible should Austin decide to put a mark on him at Judgment Day. Taker tells Debra this situation does not concern her and asks her to deliver a message back to Austin for him before spitting on her saying she has a mark on her now. That wasn’t very nice, Taker. Debra storms off while Taker chuckles then sits back down and holds Austin’s WWF Championship belt on his thigh as he continues to wait for him.
- Triple H © (w/Stephanie) vs. Rikishi – Non-Title Match
So Rikishi couldn’t beat Austin, now let’s see how he fares against the other half of the Power Trip. Before the match Stephanie gets on the mic and describes the Stinkface on Raw in very graphic detail before saying a woman like her shouldn’t look ridiculous and promising Triple H will take Rikishi apart. And once again Rikishi gets very little reaction coming out. Triple H pounces as Rikishi climbs in the ring and Rikishi fires back but Triple H regains control. Triple H goes for a whip but Rikishi reverses it and hits a backdrop then clotheslines him over the ropes. Rikishi goes out and rams Triple H into the announce table twice before tossing him back in the ring. Triple H attacks Rikishi as he rolls in but Rikishi stops that with a thrust chop followed by a Samoan Drop for a two count. Rikishi whips Triple H but lowers the head and Triple H hits the facebuster followed by a clothesline. Triple H tees off on Rikishi and chokes him on the middle rope and Rikishi rallies but Triple H stops that with a neckbreaer for two. Triple H climbs to the top rope and leaps off but Rikishi belts him in the chest and clotheslines him before hitting a belly-to-belly suplex for a near fall. Triple H comes back with a boot in a corner and goes for the Pedigree but Rikishi counters with a backdrop, Triple H tries to counter that with a Sunset Flip but Rikishi hits the sitdown splash. Stephanie comes in the ring as Triple H brings a chair in but Rikishi cuts him off with a superkick followed by the massive legdrop. Rikishi covers Triple H but Earl Hebner is too busy getting Stephanie out of the ring to make the count. Rikishi glares at Stephanie then goes for the running butt splash in a corner but Triple H sidesteps it then grabs the chair and whacks Rikishi with it to get himeslf DQ’ed, like he cares. (4:17) Okayish match and it was somewhat comeptitive. The crowd just didn’t care much for Rikishi, though. **
Triple H follows up with the Pedigree then holds Rikishi for Stephanie to come in and slap in the face. Test suddenly runs in and dukes it out with Triple H, eventually getting the advantage but The Big Show makes his way out and nails Test from behind. Show pounds Test down in a corner but Rikishi is back up and deck Triple H. Rikishi then traps Stephanie in a corner again and readies for another stinkface but turns and superkicks Show, allowing Triple H to pull Stephanie to safety. Rikishi hits the running butt splash on Show in a corner and Test follows up with the big Boot then convinces Rikishi to give Show the Stinkface which he does. Rikishi then commences with his post-match dance to try and get back on the fans’ good side.
~ Backstage Debra returns to Vince’s office screaming about Undertaker spitting tobacco on her dress and Austin yells at Vince for his stupid idea. Vince then says he knows the guy who can get Austin’s gear and walks off to fetch him while Austin promises to get even with Taker for what he did to Debra as we go to commercial.
~ Back from break we get a replay of Big Show getting the Stinkface that was meant for Stephanie. We then find Stephanie trying to flee the arena to avoid Rikishi with Triple H reluctantly going along.
- Spike Dudley (w/The Dudleys) vs. Crash Holly (w/Hardcore Holly & Molly Holly)
Yes, this is pretty much the beginning of that storyline. Crash starts off with a slam but Spike comes back with a rollup for a two count. Crash goes for a whip but Spike reverses it into a hiptoss and follows up with a dropkick. Spike hits a Frankensteiner and goes for the Dudley Dawg but Crash blocks it and clotheslines him. Crash stomps Spike down in a corner then hits a London Bridge and follows up with a backbreaker. Crash lays the boots to Spike then dropkicks him under the ropes to the floor and throws him back in. Crash whips Spike into a corner and charges at him but Spike cuts him off with a shoulderblock Spike goes for another Frankensteiner but Crash catches him into a powerbomb for a two count. Crash follows up with a suplex and starts celebrating but Hardcore tells Crash to stay on Spike. Crash goes for a whip but Spike counters into an inverted rollup that gets the three. (2:21) Looked like it was going to be a solid match but as is was way too short. The Dudleys celebrate while Hardcore goes in and yells at Crash for blowing the match. *½
~ Backstage Steve Austin is conversing with Debra when Vince comes in with Commissioner William Regal in tow, feeling he’s his answer. Vince explains the problem to Regal and asks him to get Undertaker out of the lockerroom, feeling he may be willing to listen to a reasonable person. Vince does mention the chain and Regal balks but heads out. Couldn’t they just simply have security get Taker out of Austin’s lockerroom? Oh yeah, security at wrestling events is supposed to be incompetent, and besides it wouldn’t make for a silly storyline. My bad.
~ Back from break we get footage of the Smackdown Your Vote campaign at a nearby Connecticut high school. Now I have to question the wisdom of bringing this thing up again when it’s not even an election year.
~ Backstage we find William Regal approaching Steve Austin’s door but hesitiates on going in.
- Chris Benoit (w/Chris Jericho) vs. Edge (w/Christian)
Same setup as our opening match, just with the participants switched out. Both men feel each other out to start before Benoit trips Edge into the bottom turnbuckle then stomps him down and chops him. Benoit goes for a whip, Edge reverses it but Benoit slides under Edge and takes him down by the legs then catapults him into the turnbuckles. Benoit follows up with a snap suplex but holds on for a second suplex followed by a third suplex. Christian climbs on the apron and Benoit decks him but Edge pulls Benoit into the turnbuckles. Edge stomps Benoit down in the corner then goes for a whip but Benoit reverses it and hits a knee to the chest. Benoit starts to go for the Crossface but Edge grabs the bottom rope to ward him off. Benoit goes for a whip but Edge reverses him into a corner and chopblocks him in the knee then goes outo the floor and wraps Benoit’s leg into the ringpost. Edge heads back in and lays the boots to Benoit then works over the leg until Benoit hits an enzuigiri. Benoit clotheslines Edge and chops him down then whips him into a corner and hits a German suplex then holds on for a seconed German suplex followed by a third German. Benoit climbs to the top rope and connects with the diving headbutt but hurts his knee which keeps him from capitalizing. Benoit eventually crawls over and drapes an arm over Edge but Christian pulls Edge out to the floor. Jericho starts attacking E&C before Benoit joins in and all four men are going at it at ringside. Jericho hammers Christian up the ramp while Edge shoves Benoit, knocking the referee into the apron. Edge goes in and suplexes Benoit back in but Benoit floats over Edge and hammers him. Benoit goes for a suplex and Edge blocks it then turns around but Benoit slaps on the Crossface. Edge starts tapping out but the referee is still down on the floor and can’t record the submission Jericho pounds Christian on the ramp and puts him in the Walls of Jericho. Kurt Angle suddenly runs in the ring and stomps away on Benoit before hitting the Olympic Slam and running back out through the crowd. Edge covers Benoit and the referee counts the three, giving E&C a 2-0 sweep on the night. (5:38)Another solid match from these two sides. **½
~ Backstage The Undertaker is enjoying one of Steve Austin’s beers when William Regal comes in the room and informs him he’s trespassing. Taker disagrees and insists this is his yard now but Regal calls Taker’s actions disgraceful and demands he clear out of the room and apolozige to Debra as well, threatning to use force. Taker then responds by dumping a cup of tobacoo spit on Regal! Eww! Regal is dusgusted and staggers out of the room and Taker contines to wait for Austin as we go to commerical.
~ Back from break we get a look at WWF New York where Mick Foley was signing copies of his new book earlier. Just in case you wee interested.
~ Backstage William Regal is still reeling from the tobacco spit when Edge and Christian run up to him and complain about the smell, with Regal claiming he had a mishap when someone startled him while drinking coffee. Edge mentions his and Christian’s wins over Benoit and Jericho and feel the two of them will be wanitng a rematch so they’re ready to face them in a tag match on Raw. Regal offers to takes it under adivsement then departs to freshen up and E&C comment that tobacco is wacko for teens and British guys too.
~ Elshewhere backstage Lillian Garcia interviews Rhyno on defending the Hardcore Title against Bradshaw later. Rhyno says he gets intense when he defends his title because he’s a hardcore man living in a hardcore world. Rhyno promises to show Bradshaw how hardcore he can be and gives Lillian a look before departing.
~ Back in Austin’s lockerroom Taker finally gets fed up with waiting for Austin to show up and face him so he decides he’s going to make Austin come to him one way or another. Taker slips on Austin’s vest then glances at his title belts and readies his chair while saying it’s on as we go to commercial.
- WWF HARDCORE TITLE: Rhyno © vs. Bradshaw
Bradshaw has been getting a few wins in the singles ranks lately and looks to cop a singles title along the way. Both men lockup to start and Bradshaw goes for a whip, Rhyno reverses it but Bradshaw hits a shoulderblock. Bradshaw pounds on Rhyno and goes for a whip but Rhyno reverses him into a corner and hits the running shoulderblock. Rhyno whips Bradshaw but lowers the head and Bradhsww clubs him in the back and hammers away on him. Rhyno backdrops Bradshaw over the ropes then goes out after him but Bradshaw rams him into the ringsteps. Bradshaw throws the steps in the ring along with Rhyno then knocks him back out through the ropes with them. Bradshaw tosses the steps at Rhyno but misses then goes out but Rhyno whacks him with a trash can lid. Rhyno goes for a whip but Bradshaw reverses him into the barricade then boots him over it into the crowd. Bradshaw goes after Rhyno and rams him into a wall then pulls a pipe off the bleachers but misses his swing. Rhyno clubs Bradshaw but Bradhsaw hits a knee to the chest then throws Rhyno through a door to the back. Bradshaw brings Rhyno into the loading area but Rhyno rams him into a case. Rhyno then goes for the Gore but Bradshaw sidesteps it and Rhyno crashes into a stack of anvil cases. Bradshaw clubs Rhyno in the back then brings him onto a large case and sets him up for a powerbomb. However The Big Show appears and breaks a 2×4 on Bradshaw’s back and tosses him down to the floor. Show throws Bradshaw into a case then headbutts him and chokeslams him through a wodden pallette. Show asks Bradshaw who needs protection now then allows Rhyno to cover him for the pin. (4:26) Rhyno walks off with the title while Show glares down at his fallen foe. *½
~ The Undertaker is showing walking while wearing Steve Austin’s vest and carrying his WWF Championship belt. Looks like a big confrontation is going to close us out tonight as we go to commercial.
~ Back from break Undertaker rides out to the ring on his motorcycle still wearing Austin’s vest and title belt. Taker gets on the mic and says tonight isn’t about Judgment Day or the WWF Title which looks good on him. Taker says he waited all night for Steve Austin to prove he was a man but Austin wouldn’t show his face so now he’s daring Austin to come out to the ring and face him. Instead Vince McMahon makes his way out and gets on the mic scoffing at Taker saying he was Kool and the Gang earlier. Still want to know what that means. Vince claims Austin is twice the man Taker is because he doesn’t need a chain around his neck to call him out then suggests Taker drop the chain and face Austin like a real man. Taker figures that will bring Austin out and proceeds to toss his chain and Austin’s vest over the ropes. Vince points out Taker still has Austin’s WWF Championship belt which he has used as a weapon before and Taker responds by tossing the belt out to the floor. Vince still isn’t satisfied and tries to gather up all the chairs at ringside when Austin finally comes out and charges in the ring to duke it out. Taker gets the advantage and works Austin over in a corner when Vince comes in with a chair and whacks Taker in the back with it but Taker no-sells it. Vince readies another shot when Taker grabs him by the throat and chokeslams him but that allowsd Austin to nail Taker from behind. Austin stomps Taker down in a corner then grabs a chair and readies his own swing when the familiar pyro goes off and Kane makes his return coming down the ramp. Austin goes out to the floor with the chair but Kane cuts him off with a boot while Taker goes out and grabs the chair but misses his swing. Austin runs from Taker around the ring but Kane stands in his way, and finding himself surrounded on both sides Austin climbs over the announce table and escapes through the crowd. Vince also takes off and Taker and Kane stand tall in the ring as Smackdown goes off the air.
Conclusion: We got a couple of good matches involving the Canadian duos, but outside of them this show was pretty much a junkpile. The storyline throughout the show was silly and showed just how neutered Ausitn was during this time, another reason why the heel turn bombed. Plus once again the angles advanced at a snail’s pace, which is not good since this was 10 days before Judgment Day which, BTW, received very little mention on the show. Then again only three matches were actually made for the supercard by this time so it wasn’t like there was anything to plug anyway. Thumbs down.