WWF Heat 2/24/2002

World Wrestling Federation presents Heat
From: Rockford, IL

1.) WWF Cruiserweight Champion Tajiri defeated the Hurricane to retain the title
2.) Test defeated The Godfather
3.) Booker T defeated Val Venis
4.) WWF Intercontinental Champion William Regal defeated Rikishi to retain the title

Angle Developments/Notes:
1.) Tazz and Michael Cole are not at WWF New York and are rather calling the action from ringside this week.

2.) Hurricane and Tajiri show respect for each other by shaking hands before the action starts. Hurricane ducks a clothesline and they trade a couple of arm drags. Hurricane keeps a headlock on Tajiri and delivers a shoulder block. Hurricane runs the ropes and counters a hip toss, but not a kick to the face. Tajiri delivers a few strikes against the ropes and Hurricane connects with a clothesline. Hurricane punches Tajiri on the shoulder a few times followed by a side Russian leg sweep. Hurricane heads to the top rope and is met with a kick in midair. Tajiri kicks Hurricane several times and hits a handspring back elbow for a near fall. Hurricane ducks a kick and tries for a choke slam, but Tajiri kicks free. Tajiri stops Hurricane with a kick and put the tarantula on for a moment. Hurricane stops Tajiri on the top and slams Tajiri to the mat. Hurricane climbs to the middle rope missing a blockbuster. Tajiri misses a kick and Hurricane hits the Eye of the Hurricane. Tajiri counters the pin attempt and pins Hurricane to retain the title. (**. A fine matchup and I’m glad there was a clean finish for Tajiri. It was a competitive match and they both looked good throughout. It was short, and that’s a shame since it is Heat and we tend to get a little longer matches.)

3.) Backstage, Lilian Garcia chats with WWF Intercontinental Champion William Regal regarding his match with Rikishi. Regal asks how Garcia could doubt him to beat Rikishi. Regal told everyone that he’d retain the title at No Way Out and he proved that his punch is no match for anybody. Regal assures Garcia that Rikishi’s ass will not be rubbed into his face and the power of the punch will prevail once again.

4.) Godfather boots Test in the midsection and ducks a clothesline to connect with a shoulder block. Godfather slams Test and comes off the ropes to hit an elbow drop. Test avoids a superkick and clotheslines Godfather over the top to the floor. Test sends Godfather into the ring steps shoulder first. Test knee lifts Godfather and works over Godfather with strikes in the corner. Test clotheslines Godfather in the corner and sends Godfather hard back first into the opposite corner. Test continues with a vertical suplex for a near fall. Test chokes Godfather over the top rope, but Godfather fights back with strikes. Test stops Godfather with a clothesline and signals for the boot. Godfather avoids it and shakes the ropes as Test got caught over the top rope. Godfather drops Test with a boot to the head and delivers a leg drop. Test elbows Godfather in the corner and almost wins with his feet on the ropes. Godfather gets a rollup on Test for a near fall. Godfather boots Test in the corner followed by a strike. Godfather tries for the Ho Train, but Test moves. Test hits a swinging neckbreaker for the win. (*1/2. There is just zero interest in Godfather whenever he’s in control of the match and it’s evident that he’s just an enhancement guy, for the most part. Test looked solid and I could get behind a Test heel push. He certainly has ability to justify it.)

5.) Prior to the next match, Val Venis brings a woman into the ring and does his towel removal and kiss gimmick.

6.) Venis backs Booker into a corner, but cleanly backs away. Booker kicks Venis and follows up with several strikes and chops in the corner. Venis clotheslines Booker after Booker was arguing with the referee. Venis elbows Booker and delivers an elbow drop. Venis gets a two count after a knee drop. Booker nails Venis with a standing spin kick and taunts the fans. Venis counters a backdrop attempt with a neckbreaker. Venis punches Booker several times and hits a leaping shoulder block. Venis backdrops Booker and a few knee lifts against the ropes. Venis drives Booker down with a side Russian leg sweep for a near fall. Booker knee lifts Venis and hits a scissors kick. Booker misses a leaping sidekick and Venis connects with a spinebuster. Venis tries for his leg submission, but Booker gets to the ropes and rolls to the floor. Venis hammers away on Booker at ringside before they return to the ring. Venis shoulder rams Booker from the apron. Booker counters a sunset flip and holds the ropes for a two count. Venis almost wins with a sunset flip. Venis kicks Booker and hits a slam. Venis heads to the top rope looking for the Money Shot, but Booker got his knees up! Booker does the spinarooni and hits a leaping side kick for the win. (**. There was never any doubt how this was going to play out, but it was a solid encounter that got some decent amount of time. Booker doesn’t seem to have much of a direction at this point, which is a shame since he’s a talented guy and should be further up the card on a regular basis.)

7.) Backstage, Lilian Garcia interviews Rikishi regarding his match with William Regal. Rikishi says that Regal needs to realize the power of the ass. Rikishi is going to bring the gold home tonight.

8.) Rikishi controls Regal with a headlock for a moment and slams the champ to the mat. Rikishi taunts Regal with his ass to avoid a sunset flip attempt. Regal has wrist lock on Rikishi, but not for long. Regal breaks free of a bearhug and kicks Rikishi and comes off the ropes to deliver a knee strike for a two count. Regal forearms Rikishi a few times and comes off the ropes only to be met with a clothesline. Rikishi sends Regal into the corner and hits a belly to belly suplex. Rikishi comes off the ropes to leg drop Regal. Regal rolls to the floor to regroup. Regal grabs the championship, but is met with a savant kick. Rikishi waits in the corner to back splash Regal and Regal drops in the corner. Rikishi is setup to do the stink face! Rikishi delivers the stink face! Regal has the championship, but the referee takes it away and Regal decks Rikishi with the brass knuckles to win the match. (*1/2. For the short amount of time they had to work with the action kept a fine pace and held my interest. The finish is fine to give Regal the win and maintain his heat while protecting Rikishi from having to take a clean loss. These kinds of finishes always work for Regal and his character.)

Final Thoughts:
Two title matches and some decent throughout the show make this an easy hour show to watch.

Thanks for reading.

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