September 20, 2001
With the red, white and blue in full effect, the September 20 episode of SmackDown! kicked off from Memphis, Tenn.!
World Wrestling Federation Champion Stone Cold Steve Austin headed to the ring as the show began, to the boos of the 15,000 fans on hand at the Pyramid. Austin said the Federation Championship was his and all his. He said that “Unforgiven” was a good name for this Sunday’s Pay-Per-View, because he would never forgive Kurt Angle for making his life a living hell as of late. He said that although Kurt has embarrassed and humiliated him in recent weeks, he wouldn’t put up with it anymore.
Stone Cold promised that although Angle pinned him on RAW IS WAR, it would never happen again. He said that this Sunday in Angle’s hometown, he would make an example of him, whipping Kurt’s ass right in front of the Olympian’s family!
Austin said he wasn’t going to wait until Sunday to address his problems, however. As the leader of the Alliance, he said he was calling out Torrie Wilson. Moments later, a frightened Torrie made her way to the ring.
Stone Cold asked what kind of woman Torrie was, calling her pathetic. He said she didn’t deserve to be in the same ring as him, or even to breathe the same oxygen! As Torrie began to cry, Austin asked why she was hanging out with Tajiri and helping him become U.S. Champion if she was supposed to be in the Alliance. Austin called her trash and said she made him sick.
He told her to beg him to stop, and when she did, he told her to shut up, saying he hated it when a person begs. He then told her to cry, then to stop — saying that it made him sick when people cried.
He told her to come to the center of the ring, saying he would give her something she would never forget. Stone Cold then turned around, and Tajiri ran down to the ring and got into it with the Rattlesnake! Stone Cold pounded on Tajiri’s injured ribs on the outside, and then got back in the ring with Torrie, and asked her if she set him up. As the crowd chanted for Angle, Austin continued to berate Torrie.
Suddenly, Angle made his way to the ring, and he and Austin started duking it out on the floor. With Angle in control, Tazz got up from the broadcast position and locked Angle in the Tazzmission — but Angle nailed Tazz with the Angle Slam! That allowed Stone Cold enough time to recover and again attack the Olympic hero, repeatedly hitting him with a steel chair, and slamming him into the ringpost.
Austin was about to piledrive Angle on the outside, but instead stopped, hit Angle with a chair, and removed the padding on the floor, revealing the concrete floor! He then piledrove Angle directly onto the concrete twice! A number of referees came down to check on Angle, as did Jim Ross and Commissioner William Regal. Angle was heard exclaiming that he couldn’t move his arms as he was taken away on a stretcher.
In the ensuing minutes, superstars including the Hardy Boyz, Chris Jericho and the APA came to help EMTs get Angle safely to a waiting ambulance.
Shortly thereafter, J.R. joined Michael Cole at the announce table, and the somber duo discussed the horrible situation which had just gone down.
As the match pitting The Hurricane and Lance Storm against Big Show and Spike Dudley began, Cole announced a four-team match for the Tag Team Championship for this Sunday at Unforgiven — the Dudleys will defend against the Hardys, Hurricane & Storm, and Show & Spike. At one point, Molly Holly was knocked from the ring apron, but was caught by Hurricane, who gave her a big thumbs-up. Moments later, Hurricane hit the “Eye of the Hurricane” on Spike and pinned him to win the match. After the bout, Ivory and Molly got into it at ringside, as the Dudleys sneak-attacked Big Show and put him through a table!
The members of the Alliance gathered backstage, and Stone Cold addressed them. The members of the Alliance looked disgusted with the Rattlesnake’s actions, and Austin said he wanted to make sure they were clear on the direction the Alliance was taking. Stone Cold said they were either with him or against him. Austin said he didn’t do what he did because he was afraid of Angle — he did what he did because Angle was a threat to the Alliance. He said what he had done was strong, but maybe not even strong enough, since he was trying to protect them.
He said he would stand up and fight for every one of them, and he was proud for what he had done. Tommy Dreamer asked Austin about Tajiri, and Austin said that Tajiri had stuck his nose in his business, so he would pay the price. He promised to whip Tajiri’s ass, as the Alliance members finally started to cheer and rally behind him again.
Kronik and Steven Richards made their way to the ring, and Steven said that no one has ever manhandled Undertaker and Kane like Kronik did on Monday’s RAW. He said that what happened on Monday will pale in comparison to what happens to the Brothers of Destruction this Sunday at Unforgiven, when his team becomes the WCW Tag Team Champions. He said his team would offer Taker & Kane a preview of things to come tonight on SmackDown!, as the team took on Kaientai.
As the bout began, J.R. announced that Kurt Angle had just arrived at the medical facility, and was undergoing a series of tests. In the match, Kronik used their incredible size advantage to dominate Taka and Funaki, and the duo hit Taka with a double chokeslam to pick up the pinfall win.
In the commissioner’s office, Earl Hebner asked Regal how Angle was doing, and a somber Regal told him that Kurt’s vital signs were stable, and that’s all he knew. Stone Cold then barged into Regal’s office and started pushing the commissioner around — but the commissioner pushed right back!
Austin said he wanted to kick Tajiri’s ass, and Regal gave Austin a choice — he could either fight Tajiri, or fight Regal! Austin said he had no problem with Regal, and that he wanted Tajiri — and Regal said the match would be on SmackDown!, and would be for Austin’s World Wrestling Federation Championship!
Chris Jericho provided color commentary for the Hardcore Championship match between Rob Van Dam and Raven, just three days before Y2J meets RVD for that same title this Sunday at Unforgiven. A high-impact bout ended with RVD hitting the Five-Star Frog Splash for the pin. After the bout, Perry Saturn ran down to attack Raven, after what Raven and Terri did to Moppy on RAW. Terri attacked Perry from behind, and as Perry grabbed her, Raven nailed Saturn from behind and hit him with a DDT.
Billy Gunn and Edge talked backstage, and Billy said he couldn’t believe what Austin had done to Angle. Edge told Billy that he saw an advance copy of Angle’s book, and Angle had apparenly broken his neck three months before winning the gold medal in the Olympics — so Angle is one tough son of a bitch!
Edge — complete with new theme music — defended his Intercontinental Championship against Kanyon. During the bout, Christian came out to try to attack his brother, but wound up spearing Kanyon by accident! Moments later, Edge finished off Kanyon with the Buzzkiller, and pinned Kanyon to retain his title.
In a non-title bout, the Hardy Boyz took on the Dudley Boyz — the World Wrestling Federation Tag Team Champions. The Dudleys seemed to have the match in hand until Spike Dudley ran down and shoved D-Von off the top rope, allowing Matt to roll up Bubba Ray for the win! After the bout, Spike was celebrating on the ramp when Lance Storm and The Hurricane attacked him with a nasty double superkick from behind! In the ring, the Dudleys earned a measure of revenge by putting Matt Hardy through a table with a 3-D.
Austin was talking to Debra about Tajiri when Rob Van Dam entered his locker room, and asked if he had heard the news — that Kurt Angle had checked himself out of the hospital, and was headed back to the arena! The Rattlesnake seemed shocked at hearing the news.
Next up, Stone Cold defended the World Wrestling Federation Championship against Tajiri. The Rattlesnake brutalized Tajiri, and pinned him with a Stunner to retain his title.
After the match, Austin taunted Tajiri and was setting him up for a piledriver when Kurt Angle’s music hit! A shocked Austin looked to the stage, where Angle — clad in a neckbrace — came out to a huge ovation. As the crowd chanted “U.S.A.”, Angle said that when Austin threw his gold medals into the river a few weeks ago, he had thrown away a piece of America, which he would never forgive him for. And he said he would never forgive him for what he tried to do to him earlier tonight.
Angle said he finally saw Austin for what he truly was — a desperate man who was afraid to face him for the Federation Championship. He said Austin knew that Angle was the one man who could beat him. Angle promised to walk out of his hometown this Sunday as the World Wrestling Federation Champion. He said he would have no forgiveness for the Rattlesnake. An emotional Angle then tore off his neckbrace as Stone Cold seemed to begin counting down the minutes of his title reign.
The Coach interviewed The Rock about his Handicap Match for the WCW Title this Sunday against Booker T and Shane McMahon. Rock said that he got his ass whooped last Monday on RAW, plain and simple. He said he was down, especially after being pinned by Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley. He said he realized that Stephanie had probably been on top of a lot of guys so it didn’t bother him, but it had given him a case of the Rock Bottom Blues. He said after the match, he drove 220 miles to the home of the blues — Memphis! He said that at 3:30 in the morning, he had gone to his favorite diner on Beal Street for a piece of pie, and he had run into Jerry Lee Lewis! Rock said Jerry Lee had played a song to lift his spirits — and Rock then sang a modified version of “Great Balls of Fire!” He said his meeting with Jerry Lee made him even more determined that there was no way the WCW Title would leave his waist this Sunday at Unforgiven.
The main event on SmackDown! was a six-man elimination match, as The Rock teamed with the APA against Booker T, Test and Rhyno, who were accompanied at ringside by Shane McMahon. The first man eliminated was Bradshaw, who was pinned by Booker T after Shane nailed Bradshaw with a chair, and Booker followed up with a scissors kick. After the pin, an irate Bradshaw chased Shane out of the arena. Faarooq was the next man eliminated, as Rhyno nailed him with a Gore, and then Test pinned him after a big boot.
The Rock was now outnumbered three-on-one. The Alliance members used the numbers game to their advantage, but at one point, Rhyno went to Gore Rock but instead hit Test. Rock followed up with a DDT on Rhyno and pinned the manbeast to reduce the odds to two-on-one. Moments later, Rock hit a thunderous Rock Bottom on Test, and then pinned him to make it one-on-one — The Rock against Booker T!
Rock called for Booker to just bring it, but Booker stayed outside the ring and just stared Rock down. Referee Earl Hebner counted Booker out, meaning that Rock was the winner of the bout! After being down three-on-one, Rock had come back to win! With just three days until Unforgiven, Rock and Booker stared each other down as SmackDown! went off the air!
34-year-old currently living in Syracuse, New York. Long-time fan of the New York Mets, Chicago Bulls, and Minnesota Vikings. An avid fan of professional wrestling and write reviews/articles on the product. Usually focusing on old-school wrestling.