WWF Smackdown 4/25/2002

Written by: Bob Colling

World Wrestling Federation presents Smackdown
From: Peoria, IL

WWF Undisputed Champion Hulk Hogan started off the show to talk about wanting to give Triple H a rematch tonight. He puts over HHH for raising his game to a new level and wants HHH to know he is the best he has stepped in the ring with. Hunter makes his way down and tells Hogan he has earned his respect and wants to know if Hogan would be man enough to shake his hand. Vince McMahon comes out and announces that HHH will wrestle Chris Jericho with the winner earning a title shot next week on Smackdown.

Backstage, Rico is showing Chuck to properly give Billy a shoulder massage. WWF Cruiserweight Champion Tajiri enters the room with Tajiri and is congratulated by the tag team champions for regaining the belt. Rico insults Torrie for her decision to wear a Japanese robe. Rico ends up giving a red band to Tajiri who accepts it.

Opening Contest: WWF World Tag Team Champions Billy, Chuck & WWF Cruiserweight Champion Tajiri vs. Maven, Al Snow & Billy Kidman: Kidman and Chuck star the match with Kidman getting the better of Chuck with a dropkick but Chuck quickly comes back with an overhead belly to belly suplex. Maven gets tagged in and decks Chuck with strikes a heel kick. Billy enters and knocks Maven out with a big clothesline before following up with jabs. Maven is being worked over by the heels for a few moments. Billy hits the Fame-Asser but Snow breaks up the cover attempt. Tajiri enters but gets distracted by Rico touching Torrie and he yells at Torrie. Kidman comes back in and hits a hurricanrana and tornado DDT on Billy. Chuck super kicks Kidman. Snow backdrops Chuck while Tajiri knocks Kidman out with a kick to the floor. The tag champs are sent into each other and their trunks are pulled down to reveal them wearing thongs. The tag champs run to the backstage area.

Rico gets his pants pulled down by Torrie and he is wearing a thong as well. Kidman counters a power bomb with a face buster on Tajiri and heads to the top rope to hit the Shooting Star Press to get the three count. (**. Another decent match between these six guys, though Snow didn’t exactly do anything. Kidman and Tajiri should continue to wrestle each other, too.) After the match, Snow and Maven put Billy and Chuck’s trunks on and they mock the tag champs while Kidman acts like Rico.

Backstage, Kurt Angle says he is going to unveil his new shirt which will have it available in 2XL or larger.

Backstage, Vince McMahon meets Randy Orton and lets him know that he has a tryout tonight. He leaves the room and Stacy Keibler hits on Orton only to tell McMahon that Randy was hitting on her. McMahon is furious and puts Orton in a match with Hardcore Holly.

Backstage, Mark Henry successfully bends a frying pan and steel rod after being challenged by Christian and Test. Henry is whacked from behind by Christian with a frying pan. Christian proceeds to run away.

Second Contest: Hardcore Holly vs. Randy Orton:
This is the debut of Randy Orton in the WWF. Orton takes Holly over with an arm drag and a bulldog for an early near fall. Holly cuts Orton off with a clothesline and begins to pummel Orton. Holly chops Orton while he is trapped between the ropes. Orton fights back and hits a nice dropkick for a near fall. Orton gets cut off on the top rope and Holly is knocked off. Orton hits a top rope cross body but Holly rolls through for a near fall. Orton catches Holly with an Oklahoma Roll and gets the win. (*. Nothing memorable of a match, besides that it’s the debut of a top star for the next decade.)

Backstage, Edge sneaks up behind Kurt Angle as he is talking and switches Angle’s shirt out with a different one.

Kurt Angle comes to the ring and hypes up his new shirt. Edge eventually comes out and Angle wants to know what Edge is doing out there. Edge assures Angle that he just wants to support Angle with his new shirt. Angle reveals the shirt but is laughed at and soon realizes the shirt says “You Suck.”

Third Contest: Christian vs. Mark Henry: Christian avoids Henry early on but Henry sends Christian flying over the top to the floor. Henry press slams Christian from the floor onto the top rope.Christian runs into a body shot and Henry nearly wins after a standing head butt. Christian fights back with a few kicks and goes for the Un-Prettier but Henry counters and has a bear hug locked in ramming Christian into the corner. Henry keeps the bear hug on and wins the match due to Christian passing out. (1/2*. Well, it’s a shame that Christian got fed to Henry. The finish didn’t get a pop from the crowd and it seems like the interest in a baby face Henry push is lacking.)

Backstage, Chris Jericho hypes up his match with Triple H and his likely match with Hulk Hogan next week for the WWF Undisputed Championship.

Fourth Contest: Kurt Angle & Albert vs. Edge & Rikishi: All four men brawl in the ring with Edge and Angle starting off legally. Edge hits a spinning heel kick and works over Angle in the corner. Angle takes Edge over with an overhead belly to belly suplex and tags in Albert. Albert clubs away on Edge in the corner and hits a double under hook slam for a two count. Edge counters a press slam and sends Albert into Angle before hitting a spear but Angle breaks up the cover attempt. Angle knocks Rikishi off the apron but Edge plants Angle with a face buster. Edge tags in Rikishi who cleans house with punches on the heels. Rikishi power slams Albert and splashes both men in the corner. Albert stumbles out and Rikishi hits a Samoan Drop. Rikishi with a sit down splash but Angle again breaks the cover. Edge clotheslines Albert over the top and Angle is sent to the floor. Albert comes back in but is splashed in the corner and falls in the corner. Angle prevents the Stink Face with the Olympic Slam. Edge spears Angle to the floor but Albert hip tosses Edge to the floor. Albert misses a splash in the corner and Rikishi delivers a super kick. Rikishi knocks Angle off the apron to allow Albert to deliver a bicycle kick and the Baldo Bomb for the win. (**1/2. Some good action provided by these four. I’m glad to see that Albert was able to get the victory. He could be a good heel moving forward for the company.) After the match, Angle tries to hit Edge with a chair but Edge blocks it and sends the heels scrambling when he gets possession of the chair.

D-Von Dudley is in the crowd and passes around the collection basket only for a fan to sneak up and steal it. D-Von catches the fan and beats the fan up saying they should not steal.

Backstage, Kurt Angle is running around looking to find Edge for messing up his debut of a shirt.

Main Event: Triple H vs. Chris Jericho in a number one contenders match: Jericho decides to bail to the floor and stall for a few moments since there is still twenty something minutes of the show remaining. HHH works over Jericho with a few strikes and sends Jericho to the floor. Jericho rolls into the ring but is cut off by a clothesline. HHH sends Jericho shoulder first into the ring post. HHH rams Jericho into the ring post shoulder first a second time. HHH continues to work over the arm with an arm breaker and drags Jericho to the corner to wrap Jericho’s arm around the ring post. Jericho rakes HHH’s eyes and sends Hunter into the ring steps. Jericho knocks HHH down with a forearm smash and follows up with right hands. HHH has been busted wide open. Jericho puts a sleeper hold on HHH. Jericho gets knocked down after a collision and HHH falls head first onto Jericho’s groin.

Backstage, we see that the Undertaker has entered Vince McMahon’s office. Vince is scared but pissed at the same time. We go to commercial. Back to the match, Jericho and HHH trade right hands with Jericho nearly winning after a bulldog. Jericho nearly wins after a heel kick. Jericho misses a spear in the corner and hits the ring post. HHH takes advantage with a neck breaker. HHH plants Jericho with a spine buster but only gets a near fall. Jericho drops HHH with a sleeper hold slam for a two count. Jericho heads to the top rope but HHH crotches Jericho on the top rope. HHH goes for a superplex but Jericho shoves HHH off and gains footing on the top to hit a missile dropkick for a near fall.

HHH knocks Jericho down with a knee lift but can’t get a three count on the cover attempt. HHH gets another two count following a clothesline. HHH catapults Jericho to the corner and kicks Jericho on a springboard attempt but Jericho nearly wins with a backslide. Jericho takes HHH down with a bulldog but misses the Lionsault. HHH attempts the Pedigree but Jericho counters with the Walls of Jericho! HHH reaches for the bottom rope but appears to pass out. The referee checks HHH’s arm but HHH raises his arm before the third drop. Hunter reaches the bottom rope to break the hold. Jericho grabs a steel chair but HHH blocks the shot with a kick and DDT. HHH covers but Jericho kicks out at two, again!

Jericho gets caught with a face buster and HHH attempts the Pedigree but Undertaker comes out of nowhere to get on the apron and distract HHH. Jericho rolls HHH up and wins the match! After the match, Taker and Jericho attack HHH. Taker plants HHH with a choke slam. Jericho puts the Walls of Jericho on HHH to add more punishment. Taker has a chair but here comes Hulk Hogan to make the save and clotheslines Taker to the floor. Hogan punches Taker over the railing and they battle into the crowd. Jericho is quite happy with his victory and will meet Hulk Hogan next week for the WWF Undisputed Championship. (***. A good main event with HHH and Jericho working well together. A good win for Jericho who had been lost in the shuffle following WrestleMania. I’d have to think many people were expecting a Hogan/HHH rematch on television. I’m kind of glad they went the other way with it. )

Final Thoughts:
Not a bad show as there were a few entertaining matches. The Edge/Angle feud seems rather comical to me all over a t-shirt but they put together really good matches, so I’m not going to complain about it. A good main event as well and I’m interested to see how Hogan and Jericho mesh in the ring together.

Thanks for reading.

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