Monday, 17 November 2014

Stick or Twist: WWF Fully Loaded 2000

WWF Fully Loaded 2000
July 23rd 2000, Reunion Arena, Dallas, Texas
Attendance: 16,504

Again, being the Tagged Classics version, there's no scratch logo/WWF censoring which is an absolute God send. This was the first staging I can remember when the video screens changed depending on the match. It wasn't a concept that would be utilised fully until Wrestlemania the next year, but it was interesting to see.

*The opening VT is all gambling based, which I found a bit random. I didn't realise Fully Loaded was a gambling term?

*T&A come out with Trish for the opening match and my goodness Trish is smoking hot here.

We get a video package of the Trish-Lita feud, including Lita's shit attempt at Matt's legdrop & Trish putting her through a table then whipping her. Lita is still selling her ribs.

Match 1: Six Person Tag Team Match - T&A (Test & Albert) & Trish Stratus vs Team Xtreme (Matt & Jeff Hardy & Lita)

Brawl to start as Matt & Albert pair off, botching the lucha/test of strength stuff. Matt tries to land on the apron after being backdropped in the corner but falls outside. Test tags in but eats a legdrop. Tag to Jeff, but Test sits up at the wrong time during a Hardy double team, so Jeff's senton nearly missed & Matt fistdropped canvas. King on Jeff's hair: "He looks like a box of Lucky Charms". Better than Fruity Pebbles I guess.  MASSIVE sidewalk slam by Test. A plancha by Jeff halts a small WE WANT PUPPIES chant. There's a big Lita chant, as Test DECAPITATES a freshly tagged Matt. 

TAG TO TRISH! Test holds Matt so she can slap him, but he ducks and rolls up Trish (lucky bugger) only for Test to break it up & DDT him. Trish misses an elbow, and Lita gets the tag, but Trish tags Albert (uh-oh). They play cat & mouse before the Hardys jump in. POETRY IN MOTION! Double suplex to Albert, then a TRIPLE suplex to Trish & Test. Team Xtreme strip. King proposes he takes his shirt off too. JR: "Please don't".

Albert gorilla presses Jeff all the way out to the floor! Then his awesome butterfly suplex gets 2. T&A double backdrop Jeff, who bumps like it's a gorilla press and nearly dies. Big full nelson slam by Test followed by a RESTHOLD. Jeff's Frankensteiner is blocked into a powerbomb, but Test misses the top rop elbow. Mule kick! Tag to Matt! Clothesline & second rope bulldog by Matt, only for Test to pump handle slam him. Jeff Swanton's Test as he covers Matt. Albert interrupts but his powerslam is countered to a DDT.

TAG TO LITA! TORNADO DDT TO TEST! His bumping for that was ridiculous. Crossbody to Albert on the outside, then the Lita-canrana on Test for 2! The crowd actually bought that near fall. Albert cheap shots Lita's bruise, then Test hits a VICIOUS Doctor bomb and tags Trish, who covers for 2. Bulldog by Trish gets 2 as the crowd want puppies. Trish looks super indecisive in the ring. She gets hung up on top and SUPERPLEXED. Albert breaks up the fall, leading to the Hardys and T&A brawling & Lita getting the Moonsault for 3 and a big pop! 

Winners: Team Xtreme

*Post match, Albert Pearl Harbour's Lita! T&A then batter the Hardys to ASSHOLE chants & Trish whips Lita "like a Government mule" once again.

Verdict:7.5/10. Really high energy opener, there were lots of botches at the start but things picked up when they teased the women getting involved. T&A well very underutilised and the crazy-bumping Hardys were a good match for them, while Lita and (an albeit nervous) Trish upped the standard of spots you expect from women in the WWF.

*Backstage, Edge finds Commissioner Foley & says Christian has food poisoning. He slaps Edge on the arm ("You been training delts?") and doesn't buy it, saying he has "fraidy-cat-itus".

*The Undertaker arrives on his motorcycle! He finds Kurt Angle who promptly shits himself. Taker spits tobacco & gives chase. He drives all the way into the locker room! Kurt eventually gives him the slip.

Match 2: Tazz vs Al Snow

Recap of Tazz's random attacks on Kane, Rikishi & 2 Cool, as commentary get over how you never know who's next & how unstable Tazz is. As you'd expect. It's Tazz.

Snow looks very angry (must have been told to give a promo after twenty squat thrusts) and attacks from the bell with a Russian Leg Sweep. They brawl outside. Snow blocks a T-Bone attempt & superkicks Tazz. Belly-to-belly powerbomb gets 2. Snow tries to spring out of the corner but gets Alabama Slammed. JR says Al is a 17 year veteran (already!?) and he comes back with a BIG top rope leg drop and a less impressive Moonsault, drawing a two count and BORING chants. SNOW'S GOT HEAD! But Tazz chop blocks him. Tazz grounds him with crossfaces but Snow comes back with his trapping headbutts. A kick gets blocked into a cradle Tazzplex. Snow rolls through a Tazzmission attempt, but Tazz gets it eventually after a standing switch. Snow taps.

Winner: Tazz
Verdict: 5/10. Inoffensive lower card filler. Al probably got a bit too much offence but Tazz still got the advantage by suplexing and being nasty, which is the best way to get him over.

*Backstage, Christian is apparently barfing in the loo. The Doctor checks him over as Christian says they're the fighting-est champions of all time. After not a very thorough check (just a torch to the eyes) the doctor concludes he can't compete. Mick taps Christian on the back, prompting more puking.

*HHH & Steph are in their locker room. She's getting loads of flowers & Trips is pissed as they're not from him. Steph: "You mean they aren't from you?" Hunter: "I... was... gonna get you flowers, but..." BUSTED. HHH looks for a card, and finds one saying "Best of luck... It's true, it's true", so they suspect Kurt Angle.

Match 3: WWF Europena Championship Match - Eddie Guerrero (C) (w/ Chyna) vs Perry Saturn (w/ Terri)

Eddie & Chyna have a little tiff on the way to the ring... shoot? Naw, commentary put over the vile mood she's in after getting slapped by Terri on Smackdown. Saturn has the siren entrance and Terri's hiding behind him.

Eddie tries to stop Chyna going after her, but he gets shoved off & she knocks down Saturn. Saturn returns the favour & Eddie gives chase, bringing him to the ring to Eddie chants. Beautiful heelo by Eddie followed by his naff reverse elbow. Saturn rolls to the outside but gets Chyna-lined (which he Rikishi bumps for). Chyna looks happier now, as Eddie hits an ace top rope Frankensteiner. He throws him out to Chyna again, who whips him to the stairs. Big crossbody to the outside from Eddie. King's just realised Saturn's from Boston. "I thought he was from Mars or somewhere... or Saturn!"

Another Frankensteiner by Eddie gets 2, but he goes to the well too often and his next attempt is blocked into a powerbomb. Big tornado DDT by Eddie gives Perry a hardway on his big bald head. A flapjack and face first body press by Saturn gets 2. He tries another but gets hurracanranaed (again!), only to block the next attempt with another powerbomb. After taking AAAGES Perry rightfully misses his Moonsault. Brainbuster by Eddie, but he has to roll out of his froggy splash attempt as Saturn moved. A reverse nelson roll up gives Saturn a two count, which he celebrates by doing the Randy Orton "O" pose with his arms. He tries going up top but gets dropkicked outside.

Chyna tries to attack but she gets clotheslined onto the Spanish announce table, which breaks! (more on that later) This means Terri's safe to come back out, so Perry promptly hides behind her before she kicks Eddie in the cojones. Top rope elbow to the back by Saturn get the three! New champion!

Winner: Perry Saturn (New WWF European Champion, 1st reign)
Verdict: 7/10. Much better than the Judgement Day European Title match, I really liked the start, and while the middle got a bit samey with all the Frankensteiners, I appreciated the story where being confident enough to repeat your manoeuvres cost you.

*Edge & Christian are packing their bags, gloating about how gullible Foley was. Edge: "Food poisoning rules!" *high five*. Foley walks in, prompting dry heaving by Christian. Edge: "I think YOU make him sick." Christian: "Mick, don't look, I'm totally barfing in here!" Foley looks in the toilet cubicle & implausibly we see Christian is just cupping some disgusting looking mixture into the loo (where was the camera!? Kayfabe shattering here!). BUSTED! Mick: "You get an A for effort." They have to defend the titles after all.

*Taker is interviewed by Michael Cole, who says Angle will need a doctor to remove his foot from his arse. He then sees Angle on a monitor playing with his bike. Taker goes on the hunt. "YOU WANNA PLAY BOY! C'MERE YOU LITTLE BITCH!"

*Edge & Christian come out to the ring now, looking pretty happy despite being forced to defend the titles. Edge says Christian really is sick... of being in Dallas! They diss Dallas sports teams then make a tasteless JFK joke to ASSHOLE chants. Before those with flash photography could benefit, out come the APA. Bradshaw gives a passionate promo defending Dallas & gives out about E&C's cheap heat tactics... only to then give the biggest cheap heat face promo you'll see, name dropping Murdoch and the Von Erichs. He says parents everywhere will be able to tell their kids about the APA making E&C their personal bitches.

Match 4: WWF Tag Team Championship Match - Edge & Christian (C) vs APA (Farooq & Bradshaw)

Brawl on the outside as Farooq clobbers E&C with the steps. Poetry in motion is blocked by Bradshaw into a SUPER fallaway slam. Double shoulderblock gets 2. JR apologises for a third time about the JFK comments. Wicked powerbomb by Bradshaw, but a second attempt is countered by a dropkick from Christian. USA chants. E&C isolate Bradshaw, as Edge gets a neckbreaker for 2. A double superplex attempt is blocked by Bradshaw, who shoulderblocks Edge from the top.

Tag to Farooq! POWERSLAM! SPINEBUSTER! That gets 2. Christian eats the CLOTHESLINE FROM HELL! Edge knocks Bradshaw into the time keeper & grabs a tag belt. Dominator by Farooq on Christian but Edge whacks him with the belt for the DQ.

Winners: APA (by DQ, Edge & Christian retain the titles)
Verdict: 4/10. Nothing match. APA hit decent moves, E&C get cheap heat, we get a good hot tag then a BS finish. I guess it made sense story-wise, but seriously, fuck that finish!

*At WWF New York (remember that deal?), Boss Man asks a guy drinking at the bar for his ID, tells him not to step out of line and then sips some of his beer. What a cunt.

*HHH is still pissed about "Kurt" sending Steph flowers before his Last Man Standing match. Steph points out they don't say they're from Kurt but Trips cites the catchphrase, so it's obviously him. Steph says he should sort it (or abort it).

*...but Kurt's got his hands full with Taker. It looks like he's cornered, but he slips out back & whack's Taker's knee with a pipe wrench!

Match 5: Steel Cage Match for the WWF Intercontinental Championship: Val Venis (C) (w/ Trish Stratus) vs Rikishi

Victory is by pin, submission or escaping the cage. They replay Val winning the title from 'Kish thanks to Tazz's camera shot. Then they show Val tossing Scotty 2 Hotty off... the stage on Raw last week. Val has short hair & the club remix of his sex-jazz music. King questions how 'Kish will escape the cage with an arse that big. JR think's he'll want to win by pinfall.

Val tries to escape immediately but gets jerked off... the ropes. 'Kish rams Val into all sides of the cage & tries escaping. Val climbs next to him but gets knocked off. He heads for the door but 'Kish cuts him off. Val chop blocks Rikishi when he tries to go for the door himself. When Val throws 'Kish into the cage, he throws him into the brackets. Damn. He beats on 'Kish in the corner, but it's countered and they tease the Stinkface, only for Val to low blow him & botch a second rope bulldog. Big clothesline by Val yields a Rikishi bump and a two count.

Both men climb again, but this time Val knocks 'Kish off and hits a rope walk elbow drop for 2. JR thought he should have climbed. King doesn't mind because he gets to see Trish count along with the ref. NOW Val climbs, but Rikishi catches him while he's half dangling out. Both men whack each other into the cage (busting Val open), leading to both men getting crotched on the top rope. Val then cuts 'Kish off at the door. Val: "Close that damn door!" Rikishi then sidesteps a head of steam to send him to the cage. Samoan Drop (and he's actually Samoan!)! Butt bump! Bonsai Drop... but Val's foot's on the ropes (rope break in a cage match?).

'Kish heads for the door, but Trish slams it in his face! Neckbreaker by Val, followed by the Money Shot! 1, 2, ...Rikishi kicks out! LITA IS OUT HERE! SHE'S WHIPPING TRISH! The crowd loves it. Both men climb again, but 'Kish knocks Val off into the ref. He reaches the top of the cage... but sees Val inside. He shimmies along the top... SUPERFLY SPLASH OFF THE CAGE TO VAL!!!! That has to be seen to be believed.

Massive Rikishi chants. Val is dead.'Kish crawls to the door, but that damned Tazz is out & whacks him with a camera to massive heat. JR calls Tazz garbage as Val covers for 3.

Winner: Val Venis (still Intercontinental Champion)
Verdict: 7/10. Good stuff al round here. Lots of escape attempts to get over the stipulation.  No doubt though, the big moment in this match was Rikishi's splash at the end, which was amazing and showed the lengths he'd go to to get the title.

*We see Taker backstage, who rubs the number off the "__ of days without incident" sign. Excellent!

*HHH looks for Kurt, but finds Harvey Whippleman(!) with more flowers, and demands to be taken to him. He gets shown to a room expecting Kurt, but gets twatted behind the closed door, which then opens to reveal Jericho! MIND GAMES!

*Shane McMahon comes out wearing Rock's "Just Bring It!" T-shirt, so King thinks that's Shane's catchphrase! We get SHANE'S A PUSSY chants, but Shane says he's out here to prove that's not true, by calling out The Rock! He says it wouldn't be for the title, as Benoit will win that tonight. He hopes Rock has no excuses like all these typical Texans! He does his jiving & says "Just Bring It!"

*Out comes Rock, who's looking for Benoit, expecting a sneak attack. He says 20,000 Rock fans can't be wrong & Shane IS a pussy, then speculates on Benoit's whereabouts: under the ring? In the rafters? Up Shane's candy ass? IT DOESN'T MATTER because The Rock wants to fight now.

*We see Benoit backstage, saying Rock shouldn't worry about being DQed (meaning he'd lose the title in a special stipulation) because Benoit will tap him out or pin him. He then pulls apart Rock's "GQ clothing", as we find he's trashing Rock's locker room. Rock gives chase.

*We get a video package for the first of our TRIPLE MAIN EVENTS, Angle vs Taker, including Kurt inadvertently ruining Taker's bike with milk backstage. Note, Kurt is King of the Ring, and as such was SUPPOSED to have had a title match at this event, but there's no explanation as to how that didn't happen during this show.

Match 6: Kurt Angle vs The Undertaker

Kurt comes out still holding the wrench and is scared of his own pyro. Nice! Taker comes out while Kurt's music is still playing (saves having to pay Kid Rock too) and Pearl Harbour's Angle! He beats him up 'round ringside. Big boot. Big elbow. Taker covers but pulls Angle up before 3. BIIIG stalling vertical suplex by Taker but again he pulls Angle up before 3. Angle comes back with a sleeper but gets squashed in the corner. Corner clothesline & sidewalk slam get 2. Angle's thrown outside, but attacks with the wrench when the ref's not looking!

He works over the leg with pick ups & grapevines, but Taker legdrops out. Slugfest, and Angle wins(?) and works Taker's leg more after blocking a chokeslam. Taker rolls through a leglock and gets some body shots. Chokeslam! The ref asks him to cover but Taker says he ain't done. Last Ride! 1, 2, ...3!

Winner: The Undertaker
Verdict: 3/10. Far too one sided, Angle's offence was less than spectacular. Way to squash your King of the Ring.

*We see Rock return to his locker room looking pissed.

*Video package for Jericho vs HHH, featuring Y2J kissing Steph at King of the Ring & HHH repeatedly saying "I want Jericho's ass". Wit-woo! Jericho has taped ribs after a sledgehammer attack.

Match 7: Last Man Standing Match - Triple H (w/ WWF Women's Champion Stephanie McMahon Helmsley) vs Chris Jericho

You win when your opponent can't answer a ten count. There's no DQ or pinfalls. This is still only the second Last Man Standing match, blimey!

Brawl to start. Jericho gets momentum with clotheslines and dropkicks. They brawl with the broken Spanish announce table. Back in the ring Jericho gets a top rope reverse elbow. The Game turns the tide with the face breaker as they go back outside. Hot shot onto the barricade as a "Stephanie swallows"(?) chant breaks out. HHH zones in on the ribs & rips off Y2J's tape. King says that's lucky because if they're on for too long they'll cause a rash. Shoulders in the corner. Wow, Mike Chioda looks young. No attempts at counts yet which I like. HHH chokes Jericho with the tape, drawing Y2J chants. King: "How'd you like someone to call your wife a trash bag ho?" JR: " How'd you like someone to call ALL YOUR wives that?" King: "All my wives? I'm not married..." JR: "That's my point!"

Back outside, Steph slaps Y2J and we get out first count. Y2J back up at 5 & back in the ring. Abdominal stretches by Trips. The ref forces the break  because he was using the ropes (WHY? NO DQ!) before Jericho hip tosses out of it. Hunter rightly give the ref shit for that & we get the HEBNER SHOVING SPOT. Spin wheel kick by Jericho! Lionsault... which HHH gets the knees up to. DDT by HHH as a count begins. King bemoans the slow count. JR speculates it's retaliation for the shoving match earlier. Sleeper by HHH with the body scissors. The arm drops three times, but Jericho is up at 9 for the all important ten count. JR implores Jericho to stay down, but he just talks smack to HHH, asking for more. JR puts over how tough Jericho is. Y2J says suck it! PEDIGREE! Hunter looks pissed. The count is on as The Game "lazy boy"s in the corner. 7... 8... 9... he's up to the ropes & HHH is FURIOUS.

He bring in a chair & batters Y2J's ribs with it. Pedigree on the chair... is countered with a bollock shot! Chair to the head of HHH! (BLADE BLADE BLADE!!!) Jericho is selling fatigue brilliantly. HHH is up at 7 & Y2J zones in on the wound. Second rope dropkick! Bulldog on the chair! The count is on but Y2J is still attacking. He whips HHH over the top but gets whipped to the steps. Pedigree on the steps... countered with a backdrop. HHH desperately strips the announce table. Both men get monitors & knock each other down with them simultaneously. Great call back to the first LMS, which JR points out. 8... 9...  BOTH men are up! Back in the ring... Pedigree... no, countered with the Walls!

HHH is tapping but Y2J won't let go. HHH gets to the rope but NOW the ref refuses to call a break. Y2J pulls him back to the centre before Steph grabs him by the hair. Slap blocked... WALLS OF JERICHO ON STEPHANIE!!! HHH breaks it up & we head back near the announce table. The Game's got the sledgehammer. He swings & misses (but hits the post, drawing a great sound effect). Catapult to the post by Jericho! He hits Hunter in the ribs with the sledgehammer. 

He tries to Lionsault HHH through the table but gets low blowed. Both men are on the timekeeper's desk now... BACK SUPLEX THROUGH THE ANNOUNCE TABLE!!! THE COUNT IS ON! Both men are devastated. JR: "Bah Gawd count faster and put them out of their misery." 7... 8... HHH stirring... 9... 10 - TRIPLE H IS UP! TRIPLE H WINS! But immediately collapses again in an excellent bit of selling.

Winner: Triple H
Verdict: 9/10. Ace match, the best they've had together. Jericho looked damn tough out of this, with the former WWF champion only beating him by the narrowest margin. HHH was just ON at this point and could deliver the goods whenever asked. The finish was meant to be from the English to the Spanish announce tables, not from the timekeeper's desk to the announce table, but Chyna broke the Spanish one so they had to improvise. It was till an excellent, narrow finish.

* The video package for the WWF title match makes no attempt to explain how Benoit became the number one contender over KotR winner Angle. It shows Rock fetching Benoit from the locker room & twatting him good & proper, prompting Commissioner Foley to add the stipulation that Rock could lose the title on a DQ, to try and motivate him to win properly.

Main Event: World Wrestling Federation Championship Match - The Rock (C) vs Chris Benoit (w/ Shane McMahon)

Benoit comes to the ring in one of Rock's shirts that he's just ripped up. JR puts over that Rock has already lost the title by DQ at Judgement Day. Shane tries to jump Rock after his entrance, but Rock spots it, only for Benoit to then jump him & we're under way!

Elbow by Rock after an early crossface attempt. Big Rocky chants. He chases Shane around and inside the ring, clotheslines Benoit, then chases Shane again in one fell swoop. Inverted atomic drop by Rock, followed by a catapult into Shane (who was originally on the wrong apron, which made things look contrived). ROCK goes for the crossface but Benoit scrambles away. Benoit gets the advantage with a knee to the gut & starts working the mid section (just like the LMS match, dammit D'Lo!). Chants of SHANE'S A PUSSY & BENOIT SUCKS. Another knee lift gets 2.

Rock hangs Benoit on the top rope & punts his chest. King: "An XFL punt!" *sigh*. Benoit jumps up top in one swift move ala RVD, but gets crotched and back superplexed for his troubles. Both men beat the count and Shane distracts the ref, allowing Benoit to hit Rock with the belt! 1, 2, ...NO! He cuts Rock off some more with suplexes. Sharpshooter on The Rock. He crawls to the ropes... and gets there! Rock fights out of a second attempt but gets low bridged by Shane. He fights back, whipping Benoit to the steps & crotching him around the ring post (DQ?).

Back inside... Dragon Screw by Rock! Figure Four! Benoit gets to the ropes, then knocks Rock outside to Shane, who sends him over the barricade. Benoit gives chase, but Rock throws a fan's drink in his face (DQ?). Benoit suplexes him over the barricade. Back in the ring... DDT by Rock! Which gets 2. Benoit regains the advantage with a backbreaker, Shane's dirty tactics and a neckbreaker for 2. Rock comes back... alley oop into the top rope! He covers but Benoit's foot was on the rope. Benoit comes back with a knock down and the flying headbutt, but is too knackered to make the cover.

Rock back with rights. SPINE ON THE PINE! PEOPLE'S ELBOW! But Shane is distracting the ref. He finally gets there. 1, 2... NO! Benoit brawls back. Superplex city! The count starts amid Rocky chants. Cover by Benoit... gets 2! Both men trade clotheslines, then Benoit gets a chair. Shane now comes in & nails the ref in the back with a chair. Rock chases Shane off. CROSSFACE BY THE ROCK!!!

The ref gets in position and calls for the bell, so everyone thinks Benoit submitted, but he didn't. It turns out THE ROCK IS DQED! THE REF THOUGHT IT WAS HIM THAT HIT HIM WITH THE CHAIR! Shane hits Rock with a chair. Benoit is announced as the champion!!!

They replay the incident & Commissioner Foley comes out. JR says the DQ thing backfired on him. Foley chants. He says he didn't see a DQ, to a big pop, & no-one in Dallas saw one either, so he's RESTARTING THE MATCH! Rock with the "Just Bring It!" pose to Benoit and we see he's busted open. JR: "Dammit the fight is on!"

They brawl but Benoit hits the three Germans! 1, 2... Rock out at 2 to massive Rocky chants. Benoit tries the crossface... and gets it after pulling Rock away from the ropes. It's a long, slow crawl to the ropes for Rock. JR: "Inches away... but it might as well be a mile if he can't get to the bottom rope!" He gets there! Benoit tries again... ROCK BOTTOM!!! 1... 2... 3!

Winner: The Rock (still World Wrestling Federation Champion)
Verdict: 8/10. Well how about it, a Dusty finish that vaguely made sense! I guess they figured having Jericho winning the title only for the decision to be reversed worked enough to make it worthwhile doing with Benoit too. It certainly didn't do him any harm. They put over how well Benoit took it to The Rock, although Rock didn't look like a slouch either, as he opened up his playbook a bit for this match, busting out some different stuff. These two had really good chemistry and I'd have liked to have seen more high profile matches from them.

Final Thoughts: Another good show overall, a few more peaks and troughs than Judgement Day. The Taker - Angle match was worthless and the Tag Title match was much less entertaining than the build to it. And Tazz - Snow was just kind of there. But other than that you had a pretty innovative opener, a neat European title match, a great effort in the cage, a fabulous LMS match and an exciting and controversial main event. Another thumbs up.

Final Verdict: STICK

"Paaan's People!"