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WWE Smackdown 8/22/2002

Written by: Bob Colling

World Wrestling Entertainment presents Smackdown
From: Fayetteville, NC

Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman make their way down to the ring to start the show with a promo. Heyman wants people to consider the fact that Brock Lesnar is aware of the facts. Heyman says that Lesnar is the number one box office attraction in the WWE and the biggest star in the history of Smackdown. Heyman says Lesnar is the biggest movie star and on the cover of People magazine. Heyman continues the lies by saying that Lesnar has the biggest fanbase. Heyman assures us that he’s not talking about the Rock. Heyman says that Hulk Hogan’s career is dead thanks to Brock Lesnar. Heyman believes the fans boo Lesnar because they are jealous of him. Heyman promises the same thing will happen to the Rock this Sunday at SummerSlam. Lesnar wants Rock to have a little taste of SummerSlam tonight. Heyman guarantees that the Rock will collide with Lesnar tonight. Lesnar grabs the microphone and says that he feels the same way he felt when he wrestled Hulk Hogan. Lesnar is going to make Rock cry like a little bitch.

WWE Undisputed Champion the Rock makes his way out to the stage. Rock says that he’s been telling Lesnar to bring it for weeks but all Lesnar has done is talk. Rock promises that tonight will be a night like none other. Rock says he’ll have to bring it to Lesnar since Brock refuses to bring it to the Rock. Rock makes his way towards the ring, but is attacked by Chris Benoit and Eddie Guerrero. Lesnar and Heyman and laughing in the ring. Benoit locks in the Crippler Crossface on the aisle until referees come out to break the hold. Lesnar taunts Rock in the ring to end the segment.

Backstage, Benoit and Guerrero attack Edge briefly until officials save Edge.

Opening Contest: WWE Cruiserweight Champion Jamie Noble & Tajiri vs. The Hurricane & Shannon Moore: Moore and Tajiri start off the tag match. Moore keeps wrist control on Tajiri, but Tajiri breaks free with a few kicks. Moore avoids Tajiri in the corner and hits a spinning heel kick for a two count. Hurricane tags into the match and leg drops Tajiri as Moore had a backslide. Hurricane hits a top rope crossbody for a two count on Tajiri. Tajiri kicks Hurricane and tags in Noble, but Hurricane hip tosses Noble followed by a shining wizard for a near fall. Moore hits a head scissors off the top to send Noble to the floor. Moore takes Noble out with a crossbody to the floor. Nidia distracts Moore on the floor to allow Tajiri to hit a kick to the head. Noble tries to cover Moore, but only manages a two count. Tajiri keeps control on Moore with a stomp and kick to the back. Tajiri keeps a sleeper on Moore, but doesn’t get a submission. Moore elbows free, but Tajiri tries for a handspring back elbow only for Moore to hit a back suplex.

Hurricane and Noble are tagged in with Hurricane cleaning house with right hands. Hurricane decks Noble with a leaping clothesline and a middle rope blockbuster for a near fall. Hurricane misses the Eye of the Hurricane. Noble misses a clothesline, but elbows out of a chokeslam. Moore has tagged in and they hit a Samoan Drop/neckbreaker combo for a two count. Tajiri beats on Moore with kicks while Noble works over Hurricane in the corner. Noble decks Moore from behind and Tajiri gets the tarantula on Moore. Hurricane hits the Eye of the Hurricane on Noble and chokeslams Tajiri. Noble clotheslines Hurricane to the floor. Noble drops Moore chest first over the top rope, but Moore counters a powerbomb with a rollup to win the match! After the match, Noble decks Moore with a clothesline and Tajiri helps beat on Moore. Hurricane makes the save with right hands and tosses Noble to the floor. Matt Hardy runs down to the ring and stands in the ring to celebrate with his buddies. Hardy has them lift him up, but they drop him quickly. Hardy is clearly stealing the spotlight. (**1/2. An enjoyable contest and it’s clear that Moore is being setup to be the next challenger to Noble. I think Moore has been looking great since he’s arrived and a title match with Noble has my interest.)

Backstage, Stephanie McMahon is walking. Stephanie wants to talk to Benoit and Guerrero and asks what they are doing by attacking Rock before the PPV. Stephanie says that if Rock can’t compete at SummerSlam then they will have a drastic pay cut. Benoit reminds Stephanie that she wanted him to make Rock submit and squeal. Stephanie wanted that in a competitive match. Stephanie doesn’t like trying to have them injure Rock on purpose. Stephanie says she will protect the main event at SummerSlam. Edge enters the scene from behind with a chair and whacks Benoit over the back. Edge wants a tag match with him teaming with Rock against Benoit and Guerrero. Stephanie makes the match.

Backstage, Matt Hardy is bragging about the reaction he got tonight. Hurricane notes they are in his hometown. Hardy believes that is reaction would be double when he walks out again. Hardy heads towards the entrance to prove his point. Hardy makes his way out and does his usual entrance, but the reaction certainly isn’t the loudest.

Chavo Guerrero Jr. comes out to cut a promo on Matt Hardy. Chavo doesn’t know who Hardy think he is thinking he’d get a great reaction. Guerrero wants to know what kind of reaction Hardy will get when he loses to him tonight.

Second Contest: Matt Hardy vs. Chavo Guerrero Jr.: Hardy elbows Guerrero to the mat and delivers a standing fist drop. Hardy hammers away on Guerrero in the corner followed by a forearm. Hardy kicks Guerrero, but Guerrero sends Hardy to the floor with a drop toe hold. Guerrero rams Hardy back first into the apron and hits a slingshot splash from the apron. Guerrero uppercuts Hardy in the corner followed by stomps. Hardy battles back with right hands, but runs into an elbow in the corner. Guerrero plants Hardy with a back suplex for a two count. Guerrero knee lifts Hardy and locks in a modified abdominal stretch. Hardy nearly wins with a rollup. Hardy clotheslines Guerrero and both men are down. They trade right hands until Hardy hits a backdrop and a neckbreaker for a near fall. Guerrero boots Hardy in the corner and tries to leap off the middle rope, but Hardy catches Guerrero by hitting the Side Effect for a near fall. Guerrero misses a wild right hand and Hardy hits a back suplex turned into an elbow drop as well. Hardy hits a middle rope leg drop and signals for the Twist of Fate. Kane’s pyro hits and that causes a distraction. Guerrero gets a rollup from behind and pins Hardy! (**. I think it’s obvious that this is just setting up an angle for Hardy and he’s going to fully embrace an eventual heel turn. He’s just delusional now, but soon enough he’ll snap. The action was okay for what it was.) After the match, Hardy is pissed with the referee. Hardy says that if there is an explosion then the match ends. Hardy thinks this is the biggest screw job since Bret Hart got screwed in Montreal.

Backstage, Funaki says he’ll bring the fans into the women’s locker room after a commercial. After the break, Funaki enters the locker room. Nidia is changing behind a door. Molly Holly says that Funaki needs to leave because she could have been changing her clothing. Nidia doesn’t care that Funaki is in the locker room. Nidia says that Molly needs to mind her business because Funaki is there to admire her breasts. Nidia tells Molly that she’s not afraid to show what she’s got. Nidia tells Molly when she wins the title tonight she’ll take off her shirt to expose her bare breasts to celebrate. Molly is disgusted by that and promises that Nidia will not win. Funaki loves Smackdown.

Backstage, Rey Mysterio Jr. cuts a promo saying that he’s proven he can hang with Kurt Angle when he pinned him in a tag match. Angle enters the scene and says that Mysterio has the mask tied on too tight. Angle mocks Mysterio for thinking he can hang with him. Angle wants to give Rey a dose of reality. Angle wants Mysterio to sit back and relax. Angle has requested a match against Billy Kidman tonight so that Mysterio can see what he has coming to him. Angle is going to send Mysterio running for the border. Angle tells Mysterio if he sees him out there he will break his ankle.

Third Contest: Kurt Angle vs. Billy Kidman: Angle takes Kidman down to the mat and keeps arm control. Kidman avoids a fireman’s carry and head scissors Angle followed by a dropkick. Angle puts an ankle lock on Kidman, but Kidman reaches the ropes. Kidman takes Angle over with a hurricanrana. Angle elbows Kidman and hits a series of German suplexs. Rey Mysterio pops out on the stage to distract Angle. Angle walks up the aisle and nearly gets counted out. Angle tosses Kidman with an overhead belly to belly suplex. Angle stomps on Kidman to keep control of the contest. Angle drives Kidman down with a backbreaker for a near fall. Angle continues to stomp on Kidman. Kidman fights back with right hands and head scissors Angle to the floor. Angle rips a Mysterio mask off a fan in the front row. Angle is pissed. Kidman leaps off the top to hit a crossbody on Angle on the floor! Angle decks Kidman with a few right hands. Kidman nails Angle with a forearm smash and almost wins with a rollup. Angle knee lifts Kidman and tries for a suplex, but Kidman hits a bulldog out of the corner for a near fall. Kidman plants Angle with a tornado DDT for another two count. Kidman tries for a rollup, but Angle counters with the ankle lock. Kidman gets out of the hold and kicks Angle on the side of the head.

Kidman goes to the top rope looking for the shooting star press, but Angle runs the ropes to toss Kidman overhead. Angle tries for a cover, but Kidman kicks out at two. Angle waits for Kidman and tries for the Angle Slam, but Kidman breaks free. Angle accidentally clotheslines the referee. Kidman sends Angle over the top to the floor. Angle grabs a steel chair and returns to the ring. Kidman dropkicks the chair into Angle’s face and nearly wins the match. Kidman misses a clothesline and Angle hit the Angle Slam. Mysterio hits the West Coast Pop off the top rope. Angle chases after Mysterio running backstage. The referee counts Angle out and Kidman wins the match. (***. The finish is a little cheap, but I enjoyed that and this showcase kind of shows that Kidman could hang with a guy like Angle. Sure there’s the Smackdown Six, but there’s no reason to suggest that Kidman couldn’t be a viable addition to that grouping.) After the match, Angle attacks Kidman by hitting an Angle Slam over the top to the floor.

Backstage, Edge meets up with the Rock to talk about them being jumped on two different occasions. Rock doesn’t care about his hurt ribs because he doesn’t quit. Rock will always find a way to compete no matter what happens to him. Rock used his usual humor here. Edge finishes off with Rock’s catchphrase and they walk off.

Fourth Contest: Rikishi & John Cena vs. Rev. D-Von & Batista: D-Von tells Batista he’s starting against Cena. D-Von works over Cena with several right hands and kicks to the midsection. D-Von chops Cena against the ropes and stares at Batista. Cena sends D-Von into a punch from Rikishi followed by a clothesline. Rikishi tags in and slams D-Von before hitting a leg drop. D-Von elbows Rikishi followed by a jumping forearm. Batista tags into the match and decks Rikishi with a clothesline. Batista shoulder rams Rikishi several times in the corner. Rikishi clotheslines Batista in the corner and follows up with a Samoan Drop. D-Von tagged in and gets decked by Cena. D-Von sends Cena to the floor. Rikishi superkicks Batista in the corner and hits a running back splash. Rikishi sends D-Von into Batista in the corner and hits a backdrop. Batista drops down in the corner and Rikishi hammers away on D-Von. Cena dropkicks Batista to the floor. D-Von clotheslines Rikishi and taunts him. Rikishi plants D-Von with a DDT. Rikishi hits a back splash in the corner and D-Von drops down. Rikishi delivers the stink face to D-Von. Batista slides into the ring and clotheslines Rikishi. D-Von hits Cena with a reverse DDT. D-Von yells at Batista because of the stink face. Batista plants D-Von with a spinebuster and leaves the match. Rikishi finishes D-Von off with the Bonzai Drop for the win. (*1/2. The match broke down rather quickly and probably for the better as a formula tag match likely would have sucked. Batista leaving D-Von is probably the best decision for his career.)

Backstage, WWE Cruiserweight Champion Jamie Noble and Nidia are walking. Noble has Nidia show a random man her breasts and he enjoys that visual. That’s a preview for what the world will see tonight when Nidia wins the championship.

Fifth Contest: WWE Women’s Champion Molly Holly vs. Nidia: Nidia counters Molly early on to get arm control, but Molly takes Nidia over with a fireman’s carry. Nidia is shoulder blocked by Molly and Noble causes a distraction. Nidia almost wins with a couple of rollup attempts. Molly drops Nidia face first over the top turnbuckle and rams Nidia face first to the mat. Molly keeps control with a chin lock, but Nidia counters with a rollup moments later. Nidia yanks Molly down by her hair a few times. Nidia catapults Molly face first into the top turnbuckle and almost wins with a rollup. Molly misses a handspring elbow in the corner and Nidia hits a DDT for a near fall. Nidia crotches Molly on the top turnbuckle, but Molly forearms Nidia off the ropes. Molly kicks Noble off the apron. Molly hits a somersault splash off the top onto Nidia to win the match. (1/2*. Nobody cared about this and that’s even with the tease of a woman showing her bare breasts. Molly winning is the right decision, but the women’s title should be on one brand as I don’t think there’s enough women to justify it over two brands.) After the match, Noble wants Nidia to show the world her breasts, but Molly dropkicks Noble into Nidia to prevent that from happening.

Smackdown GM Stephanie McMahon comes out to thank everyone for coming to the show. Stephanie says that Smackdown has a better show lined up for SummerSlam. Stephanie believes that SummerSlam will be the best one ever and Stephanie thinks they will steal the show. We proceed to get the same SummerSlam hype video that we saw on RAW.

Backstage, Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar are seen watching a monitor for the main event.

Main Event: WWE Undisputed Champion The Rock & Edge vs. WWE Intercontinental Champion Chris Benoit & Eddie Guerrero: Edge runs into the ring and goes after Benoit not waiting for Rock. Guerrero attacks Edge from behind and stomps on Edge. Rock sprints towards the ring and helps Edge out with right hands and a clothesline to Benoit. Edge and Guerrero legally start the match with Edge hammering away on Guerrero. Edge catapults Guerrero into Benoit off the apron. Edge nails Guerrero with a clothesline for a near fall. Guerrero controls Edge with a few strikes to the back and tags in Benoit. Benoit delivers several chops to Edge in the corner, but Edge counters with a few strikes of his own. Edge comes out of the corner with deliver a clothesline and flapjack for a two count. Guerrero attacks Edge from behind while the referee is distracted by Rock on the apron. Guerrero hits a slingshot senton from the apron into the ring and stomps on Edge. Guerrero taunts the crowd and delivers a few more strikes. Guerrero elbows Edge to the mat and taunts Rock. Guerrero ducks a clothesline and boot scrapes Edge before tagging in Benoit.

Benoit drives Edge down with a backbreaker for a near fall. Benoit and Edge trade a few strikes. Benoit chokes Edge over the middle rope and Guerrero delivers a few strikes while the referee is distracted. Edge avoids a suplex by Guerrero and they collide on stereo forearm strike attempts. Rock and Benoit are tagged in with Rock hammering away on Benoit before delivering a DDT. Rock sends Guerrero to the floor and takes Benoit down with dragon screw leg whip. Rock locks in the sharpshooter, but Guerrero makes the save. Rock plants Guerrero with a spinebuster and hits the People’s Elbow to Guerrero for a near fall. Benoit drags Rock to the floor and drops Rock chest first over the announcers table. Benoit sends Rock face first into the ring post. Benoit rolls Rock back into the ring and nearly wins the match. Benoit tags in Guerrero to maintain control of the match. Guerrero keeps Rock on the mat with a few stomps. Rock fires back with right hands, but Guerrero nails Rock with a dropkick. Benoit tags into the match managing a two count on Rock. Benoit knee lifts Rock several times and decks Edge off the apron. Benoit locks in the Crippler Crossface!

Rock isn’t giving up but he’s fading. Guerrero was pulling the rope away from Rock. Rock prevents his arm from dropping three times and reaches the ropes to break the hold. Benoit drags Rock to the middle of the ring and goes back to the Crossface, but Edge saves Rock and nails Guerrero with a right hand. Benoit punches Edge to the floor and keeps control on Rock before tagging in Guerrero. Guerrero slams Rock and heads to the top rope only to be knocked off by Edge. Rock makes the tag to Edge and Edge cleans house with clotheslines to both Guerrero and Benoit. Edge backdrops Guerrero and hits a facebuster. Edge spears Benoit int he corner but misses a spear on Guerrero. Edge plants Guerrero with a lifting DDT for a near fall. Rock hammers away on Benoit and hits the Rock Bottom! Guerrero is speared by Edge and that’s good enough for the three count. (***. A solid main event as they got plenty of time to showcase their skills and tell a story. Edge pinning Guerrero makes sense, but I feel like I would have avoided such a finish until after their PPV match. The action held my interest even if the outcome was obvious from the beginning.)

Brock Lesnar slides into the ring and confronts Rock face to face. Rock holds Edge back telling him to leave the ring and that it’s okay to do so. Rock tells Lesnar to bring it. Rock blocks a right hand, but Lesnar knee lifts Rock and shoulder rams Rock in the corner several times. Lesnar runs into a right hand by Rock. Rock punches Lesnar over the top to the floor. Lesnar is held back by Heyman on the floor to end the program.

Final Thoughts:
I continue to enjoy Smackdown as we head into SummerSlam. The action here was solid throughout. I’m interested in seeing the rise of Shannon Moore in the Cruiserweight division and the character development of Matt Hardy. I hope they followup on Kidman’s showing here because he did a good job in there with Angle. I didn’t like that Brock and Rock got physical with each other as I was liking the mind games approach. In spite of that, the show was good overall and I’m for sure more interested in the Smackdown matches at the PPV.

Thanks for reading.


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Bob Colling Jr. View All

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.

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