TJR Retro: WWF Raw Deal 07/10/00 Review

There’s not much to say in the intro this week. The WWF was on the road to Fully Loaded in July with some interesting matches being set up. Here is the synopsis for this episode on WWE Network:

“While the rivalry between Triple H and Chris Jericho continues to escalate, Women’s Champion Stephanie McMahon plans a special surprise for Y2J. Shane McMahon explains his radical new friendship and has him go one-on-one with WWE Champion The Rock. Plus, Lita takes on Trish Stratus in a Street Fight and more.”

That description is creative in terms of avoiding Chris Benoit’s name.

Check out our WWF TV in 2000 archives in case you missed anything (Raw, Smackdown and PPV reviews) from earlier in the year. Also, make sure to visit TJRWrestling.net daily for my reviews of the current WWE shows, plus historical columns and all the relevant current news in the wrestling business. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport and tweet me to talk about this show or anything else. Let’s get to it.

WWF Raw #372
July 10, 2000
From San Jose Arena in San Jose, California

This edition of Raw is rated TV-14+ (D, L, S, V – D for Suggestive Dialogue, L for Coarse Language, S for Sexual Content and V for Violence) on WWE Network.

The Raw intro video aired to start the show. Pyro went off in the arena and the crowd was very loud. Plenty of signs in the building as usual. The announce team of Jim Ross and Jerry “The King” Lawler welcomed us to the show. JR noted that Commissioner Mick Foley wasn’t there due to being on a promotional tour in southeast Asia.

Let’s Hear from Shane McMahon and Chris Benoit

Chris Benoit entered the arena in his wrestling gear along with his new buddy Shane McMahon. The announcers plugged matches that were coming up. The fans greeted them boos.

Shane said that everybody was wondering the relationship between him and Chris Benoit, the next WWF Champion. Shane said they are just friends. Shane said he’s always respected Benoit, but as of late he has grown to admire what Benoit stands for. Shane talked about the things Benoit is like being cold-hearted, ruthless and an equal opportunity offender. Replays aired of last week on Raw when Benoit beat up Chyna and The Rock. They also showed replays from Smackdown when Benoit attacked Chyna again. Shane said he was proud to share the ring with Benoit, his friend.

Benoit said he is equally proud to call Shane a friend. Benoit said that The Rock is no friend because Chris has no friends that are cowards and that can’t admit that Chris is the greatest technical wrestler in the history of the WWF. Benoit said tonight, he’s asking The Rock to prove him wrong. Benoit claimed he wouldn’t ask Rock to put up the title tonight, but if Benoit wins, then he wants Rock one on one in a title match at Fully Loaded where Benoit will become the WWF Champion. Benoit noted that Commissioner Foley isn’t there to make the announcement because he’s on a PR tour in Southeast Asia. Benoit ripped on Foley and mentioned Rock again.

The Rock made his entrance to a huge ovation wearing his “JUST BRING IT!” shirt and the WWF Championship was in his hand. The Rock stood on the stage for this promo.

The Rock ripped on Benoit for running his mouth. The Rock said if you think you’re better than The Rock, you’re wrong. Rock ripped on Shane calling him a “punk ass son of a bitch” and the fans loved that. Rock mentioned whipping Benoit’s candy ass all over San Jose, which drew cheers and “Rocky” chants. Rock said “just bring it” to the jabronis in the ring as his way of accepting the challenge. Rock’s music played to end it…but that wasn’t all of it.

Analysis: It was a typical opening promo segment where they did a promo to set up a big match for later with Rock facing Benoit. It was smart to have Shane do most of the talking for his side. Shane was always good in a managerial type role like this and it was smart to pair him with Benoit, who was never a good talker. They had Shane do something similar with Big Show earlier in the year too. Rock was great as usual, but he didn’t speak for that long.

Eddie Guerrero and Chyna ran out to the ring with steel chairs while Benoit and Shane were still in the ring. Chyna hit Shane in the back to knock him out of the ring. Benoit got out of the ring before he could get hit. The heels left.

Analysis: It was a nice follow up after the attacks against Chyna last week.

(Commercial)

They showed a graphic that let us know about Commissioner Mick Foley’s PR tour in southeast Asia.

The first match was a triple threat tag team elimination match. Too Cool were up first, then T&A and they showed clips of Trish Stratus attacking Lita on Heat and The Hardys with Lita were last.

Elimination Match: Too Cool (Grandmaster Sexay and Scotty 2 Hotty) vs. Test & Albert (w/Trish Stratus) vs. The Hardy Boyz (Matt and Jeff Hardy) (w/Lita)

Pre-match notes: The Hardys and Too Cool were faces while T&A were heels.

The guys were brawling in the ring and Lita chased Trish around ringside. The referee stopped Lita, so that led to the match beginning. There was a double DDT by Too Cool on Albert. Scotty avoided a press slam, but Albert hit him with a clothesline to the back. Scotty got back into it with an elbow, Sexay charged and Albert kicked him with a boot to the face. Sexay with elbows to Test followed by a Tornado DDT and Test tagged Matt to bring him. Sexay with a belly to back suplex on Matt, but he missed a corner attack, so Matt hit a leg drop off the middle ropes for two. Jeff tagged in with a Poetry in Motion leg lariat on Sexay against the turnbuckle for a two count. Jeff charged at Sexay with a forearm, then it didn’t really connect and both guys went down. Something was messed up there. Anyway, Trish and Lita looked fantastic at ringside, so that’s what really mattered. Test tagged Sexay to make himself legal and Test sent Jeff into the barricade. Albert tagged in with a splash on Jeff followed by Test hitting the big boot to the face. Test with a body slam followed by an attack off the middle rope that missed because Jeff got a boot up to block. Matt tagged in with a clothesline on Test. Matt avoided a powerslam, Test got shoved into Scotty and Matt hit a Twist of Fate on Test. Jeff tagged in with a Swanton Bomb on Test. The referee Mike Chioda was trying to keep the Hardys out of the ring, so Albert went into the ring with a two-handed Chokeslam (that would be called a Baldo Bomb later in his career) on Jeff and Test covered Jeff to beat the Hardys.

The Hardy Boyz have been eliminated.

Lita went after Trish and took her down by the hair. Albert held Lita, so Trish hit a clothesline on Lita. Matt and Jeff jumped onto Albert to knock him down. Test with a back body drop on Sexay to send him over the top to the floor. Scotty followed up with a bulldog followed by the crowd popping huge with the W…O…R…but here’s Tazz to block that Worm attempt. Tazz with a Tazzmission choke on Scotty to put him down. The referee missed it, of course Test went up top, hit an elbow drop on Scotty and covered for the win at 7:13.

Winners by pinfall: Test & Albert

Analysis: **1/2 It was a pretty good tag team match with a hot crowd because of the Hardys and Too Cool being so popular, as well as the women outside the ring. Test and Albert winning might make you think they were getting a title push, but that didn’t happen. It was also a very cheap win for the heel side, which is fine for heels, but sometimes they booked those finishes too often in the same show. The random Tazz attacks were successful in terms of getting him booed after his face run flopped.

The DX group of Triple H, Road Dogg, X-Pac and Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley were in their office. Hunter complained about Mick Foley making Road Dogg vs. Hunter and Hunter told Dogg to take Jericho apart. X-Pac told him to chill out, but Hunter was pissed off.

(Commercial)

There was another replay of the cheap attack by Tazz to help T&A win.

Tazz was shown walking backstage with Kevin Kelly asking him to explain his most recent actions. Tazz: “So now you want to talk to me? I don’t think so.” Tazz left.

Road Dogg attacked Chris Jericho on the ramp before their match could begin. Jericho punched Road Dogg repeatedly as both guys went down towards the ring. They went into the ring to start the match.

Chris Jericho vs. Road Dogg

Pre-match notes: Jericho was the face and Dogg was the heel.

Jericho with a clothesline on Dogg followed by a springboard missile dropkick that knocked Dogg off the apron and down to the floor. Dogg sent Jericho face first into the steps followed by a clothesline. Back in the ring, Dogg remained in control with a knee to the ribs. Jericho came back with a rollup, but Dogg hit him with a weak clothesline. Dogg with a body slam followed by two elbow drops. Jericho came back with a leaping forearm. Jericho with a bulldog. Jericho went for the Walls of Jericho submission, Dogg fought out of it and kicked him into the turnbuckle. Dogg with a punch combo that knocked Jericho down. Dogg up top for a moonsault, Jericho moved and Jericho hit a Lionsault for the pinfall win at 5:15. When Jericho landed the move, his right boot hit Dogg in the face. There wasn’t much body contact.

Winner by pinfall: Chris Jericho

Analysis: **1/4 Good match with Jericho getting the win as the right finish since he’s got the big Fully Loaded match with Triple H. Giving Jericho a win in a competitive match like this was what he needed. The finish was a bit sloppy, but otherwise, it was a fine match.

They showed Triple H in the office getting pissed off about the result and he tossed a lamp across the room.

The Undertaker was shown riding his motorcycle backstage and everybody in the hallway moved to let him go through.

(Commercial)

The DX group was back in their locker room with Hunter getting mad at Road Dogg for losing to Jericho and he shoved him on the couch. X-Pac said they were all on the same side. Road Dogg said Hunter needs to calm down as Hunter left the room.

Let’s Hear from The Undertaker

The Undertaker made his entrance on a motorcycle. He said when somebody pisses him off, there’s going to be hell to pay. Taker said he can’t stand a guy that’s afraid of a fight – Kurt Angle. Taker said that Angle as an “American Hero” is a load of crap. Taker reminded us of how Angle stopped Taker and Kane from winning the Tag Team Titles and if that ain’t enough, Angle poured milk and food on Undertaker’s brand new Titan motorcycle. Taker said Angle didn’t even have the common courtesy to clean it off. Taker said he is not hard to find since he’s 6’10” and 330 pounds and he’s usually kicking somebody’s ass. Taker said that he does not accept Angle’s bogus apology. Taker said it’s time that Angle finds out why Taker is an American Badass, Angle deserves an old school ass kicking and it’s time to fight right now.

Kurt Angle made his entrance and he has already stopped wearing his King of the Ring crown. Angle was on the stage. Angle apologized for ruining the Tag Team Title match and for soiling the “motorbike” with Kurt saying “my bad” for that. Angle said he didn’t have a problem with a match, but he thinks a match of this magnitude cannot be wasted here in San Jose, which drew boos. Angle said if a match like this were to occur, then it would have to be at Fully Loaded. Angle even claimed he wasn’t sure anyone wanted to them go at it – the fans cheered. Angle said they were “booing with anger” because heels lie. Angle said he’s an Olympic Hero that would be taking on an American Badass…if he really is that bad. Kurt claimed that would be Un-American and he’s not sure if people want to see an American Badass. Angle suggested that he clean up his image. Angle said that he knows Undertaker won’t accept his apology, but he has something Undertaker will accept. Angle went backstage.

When Angle emerged on the stage again, he had a tiny motorbike with him. Angle said he wanted Undertaker to forget that motorcycle and enjoy his brand new scooter. JR: “It sounds like a lawnmower!” Angle rode the scooter down towards the ring. Angle went all around the ring with the scooter. Angle told him to accept his gift and ride what a real American rides!

The Undertaker said he’s going to kick his teeth so far down his throat that he’ll be able to chew his own ass out for pissing him off. Angle went up the ramp on the scooter, then Undertaker went up the ramp on the motorcycle and Angle walked to the back before he got there. Taker grabbed the scooter and shoved it off the stage. The fans cheered.

Analysis: That image of Angle on the scooter was hilarious. Angle was tremendous in these ridiculous comedy skits because of the way he delivered the lines as if he actually believed in what he was saying. The Undertaker was well established as a badass, so everything he said fit his character. I thought the segment was very well done.

(Commercial)

A replay aired of Undertaker tossing the scooter off the stage.

The entrances took place for a triple threat IC Title match with Rikishi out first, Kane was next and champion Val Venis was last. Venis had a short haircut after he had long hair in his first two years in WWE.

Intercontinental Championships: Val Venis vs. Kane vs. Rikishi

Pre-match notes: Venis was the heel IC Champion while Kane and Rikishi were faces. Venis won the IC Title from Rikishi on the previous Smackdown. No Trish Stratus with Venis since she has a match coming up.

Rikishi attacked Venis outside the ring to start the match. Back in the ring, Kane with a clothesline on Venis and Rikishi with a running splash on Venis. Rikishi kicked Kane to knock him down, so Kane sat up and punched Rikishi. Samoan Drop by Rikishi followed by a leg drop. Kane with a clothesline with Rikishi doing a flip bump. Venis with a chop block to Kane, then he whipped Rikishi into the steps and back in the ring where Kane hit a clothesline. Kane with a hard whip into the turnbuckle. Venis with a running dropkick to the knee of Kane, but Kane back with a press slam into the turnbuckle. Kane up top with a clothesline on Venis, but Rikishi was back in with a leg drop. Venis with a DDT on Rikishi, who no sold it (Samoans have hard heads) and Rikishi hit superkicks on both guys. Venis avoided a corner attack followed by a side Russian legsweep on Rikishi. Venis up top, Kane tripped him up to crotch him and Rikishi with a clothesline on Kane. Rikishi and Kane battled in the ring with Rikishi hitting a headbutt followed by a clothesline over the top. Kane with a neckbreaker on Rikishi on the top rope and Venis with a DDT on Kane on the floor. Venis went for a title shot, Rikishi avoided it and Rikishi hit a side belly to belly suplex. Rikishi with a running back splash on Venis against the turnbuckle. Rikishi did the Stinkface to Venis against the turnbuckle, which drew a lot of cheers. Venis grabbed the IC Title, he hit Rikishi with it and that led to the DQ finish at 5:31.

Winner by disqualification: Rikishi (Venis retains the IC Title)

Analysis: **1/2 It was a decent match with a cheap finish. In today’s WWE, that wouldn’t be a DQ because triple threat matches are no disqualification. However, in this era, that rule wasn’t established yet. Anyway, they went with that ending because they didn’t want Kane or Rikishi to take a pinfall since they are protected a lot and it continued the Venis/Rikishi rivalry as well.

Post match, Kane gave Venis a Chokeslam. Kane’s music played to put an end to this.

Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley went into the bathroom to talk to Triple H, who was smiling and said he had an idea, so they left.

There was an earlier today video of WWF New York with The Kat arriving to hang out with the fans.

Let’s Hear from Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley

Stephanie walked out to the ring with the Women’s Title on her shoulder. The fans booed her, of course. Stephanie said she had a proposition for Jericho and she invited Jericho to the ring. Stephanie said that Jericho and her have said and done things they aren’t proud of. Stephanie claimed that at King of the Ring, when Jericho kissed her, she “kinda liked it.” Stephanie said she thinks Jericho liked it too. Stephanie suggested that she become friends with Jericho.

There was a shot of Jericho standing backstage. Jericho said he’s been thinking of that kiss. Jericho sarcastically said he wants to squeeze Stephanie. Jericho told Stephanie he’ll give her a big smooch and he called her “sugar muffin” as well.

Chris Jericho’s music played and the pyro went off on the stage. There was no Jericho, but Road Dogg, X-Pac and Triple H were there. Jericho was still backstage saying that Triple H orchestrated that and it was painfully obvious just like Stephanie is a trashbag ho. Jericho said that Hunter has to live with the fact that Y2J got more action with Stephanie than Hunter has gotten in the last ten months. Jericho said that Hunter is still The Game, but Jericho has become the hunter.

Hunter did a promo saying tonight might not be the night, but at Fully Loaded, “your ass is mine.” Stephanie left the ring and Hunter’s music played to end it.

Analysis: This felt like they were just killing time. We already knew of the match at Fully Loaded, so they didn’t add anything to it with this segment. It was just there to show that Jericho was ready for Hunter and Stephanie trying to play games with him.

Edge and Christian were interviewed by Kevin Kelly in the locker room. They complained about Mick Foley booking them against the Acolytes with Christian claiming he had the sniffles. That meant that Edge would only have to do a singles match and their titles wouldn’t be defended. They celebrated that logic.

Analysis: The idea was that Foley wasn’t there to make them defend the titles, so they got out of a title defense.

(Commercial)

There was another graphic of Mick Foley on the Southeast Asia promotional tour.

The DX guys were back in the locker room with X-Pac saying it was a stupid idea while Hunter said it was his idea, so he was mad about it. Hunter said that Jericho’s the idiot, yet they are in his face. Hunter pushed X-Pac onto a couch, Road Dogg tried to break it up and Hunter said he wanted to face X-Pac.

Edge and Christian made their entrance. They were the WWF Tag Team Champions. No pre-match promo followed by Bradshaw entering with his buddy Faarooq.

Edge (w/Christian) vs. Bradshaw (w/Faarooq)

Pre-match notes: Edge was a heel while Bradshaw was a face. At Fully Loaded, it was Edge & Christian defending their titles against the Acolytes.

Bradshaw was aggressive early on as he hit a clothesline to send Edge over the top to the floor. Bradshaw with a belly to back suplex from the apron. Bradshaw with a two-handed choke into a slam for two. Edge with a kick to the gut followed by a DDT. Edge went up top with a missile dropkick. Bradshaw with a fallaway slam that sent Edge across the ring. Bradshaw with a clothesline on Edge against the turnbuckle, the referee was distracted by Faarooq, Christian went on the apron, Faarooq punched Christian down and Edge hit a cross body block off the top, but Bradshaw turned it into a slam. Christian brought the ring bell into the ring, Bradshaw decked him with a clothesline and then Edge hit Bradshaw in the face with the ring bell (the referee never saw any of it) for the pinfall win at 3:01.

Winner by pinfall: Edge

Analysis: *1/4 The champs found a way to win in a cheap manner yet again. The finish was booked well, but it wasn’t an exciting match. It did add more heat to their story going into Fully Loaded.

Lita was shown walking backstage with The Hardy Boyz and they wished her good luck for her match.

The heel trio of Test, Val Venis and Albert were in the locker room. Albert knocked on the door to tell Trish her match was next. Trish was looking tremendous as she walked out of the room, but the guys told her that she was on her own and Val said that they’re not allowed at ringside. They encouraged Trish to kick her ass.

(Commercial)

It was back to the DX office with Road Dogg telling X-Pac he’s going to regret having this match.

Trish Stratus made her entrance looking tremendous. JR: “Man, is she fully loaded or what?” Well said. Lawler screamed about puppies, of course. Lita, who entered to the Hardy Boyz music, got a nice pop for her entrance.

Street Fight: Lita vs. Trish Stratus

Pre-match notes: Lita was the face and Trish was the heel. This was their first official singles match against eachother. They went on to wrestle many times over the next six years and are best friends.

Lita grabbed Stratus by the hair and tossed her across the ring two times. Lita with punches. There were “Lita” chants as Lita hit a suplex. Lita went up top and hit a perfect moonsault onto the chest of Stratus. Lita ripped at the top of Stratus and pulled it off to leave Trish in her bra, which drew a massive ovation from the crowd. Lita also tried to pull Trish’s shorts off, but Steven Richards’ music hit and Richards covered Stratus with a towel. Let’s call it a countout at 1:30.

Winner by countout: Lita

Analysis: 1/4* It wasn’t a match of the year obviously, but it furthered the Steven Richards angle that would lead to the Right to Censor heel group. I give them credit for booking him in a way that would get him massive heat because the fans hated him for ending this match. Stratus didn’t get any offense in since she was still learning to wrestle, while Lita looked dominant. The Trish and Lita rivalry was only getting started.

Richards did a promo on the stage saying that the people think they know what they want to see, but as he has stated before you do not know what’s good for you. Richards said he knows what is good for you, so the fans chanted “Asshole” at him. Richards said he took the responsibility to censor this display and he officially declares this contest over. Steven’s annoying music played. The fans booed.

Analysis: This gimmick got Richards and his future group a lot of heel heat. It worked.

It was back to the bathroom with Road Dogg telling Hunter that this can’t happen. Hunter said that X-Pac was getting his ass kicked. Road Dogg said he was leaving.

(Commercial)

There was an earlier today video about the XFL playing football in San Jose in February 2001. That was a huge money loser.

There was a clip of Road Dogg leaving the building during the break.

Triple H made his entrance with Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley by his side. X-Pac was up next.

Analysis: It was obvious what was happening when this took place in 2000 and it’s probably obvious to you if you never watched this show before.

Triple H (w/Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley) vs. X-Pac

Pre-match notes: They were both heels.

Hunter and X-Pac were wrestling in shirts along with track warmup pants instead of their wrestling gear. X-Pac decked Hunter with punches followed by a leaping clothesline. Hunter knocked X-Pac down with a clothesline and dumped him out of the ring. Back in the ring, Hunter with a facebuster to the knee. Hunter with a whip into the ropes followed by a jumping knee to the face. X-Pac came back with a spinning heel kick. X-Pac wanted a Bronco Buster, but Hunter moved and X-Pac hit the corner. X-Pac sent Hunter over the top to the floor. That brought out Jericho with punches and kicks on Hunter. The referee saw it, but he did nothing. That’s when Road Dogg went back to the ring with a sledgehammer. JR: “It’s a damn setup!” Yes. That’s what I meant that it was obvious. The three DX guys attacked Jericho. The bell never rang to end it, but let’s call that the match right there at around 3:30.

Match Result: No Contest

Analysis: 1/2* It was an angle more than a match. They went through the motions for three minutes and it was done to add more heat to Hunter’s rivalry with Jericho.

Hunter, Road Dogg and X-Pac stomped away on Jericho outside the ring. Lawler loved it while JR noted that they beat eachother up just to get Jericho to take the bait. X-Pac hit the X-Factor on Jericho. Hunter with a Pedigree on Jericho. Hunter hit Jericho in the ribs with the sledgehammer. Stephanie slapped Jericho in the face and knocked him down. Jericho was bleeding from the mouth to sell the attack to the ribs. Hunter with the sledgehammer again and he hit Jericho in the head with it. Jericho was bleeding from the head as well. Several referees and agents went to the ring to try to break it up as Hunter punched Jericho some more. Hunter and friends celebrated in the ring.

Analysis: It was very well done as an angle and a heel beating. Jericho had the upper hand against Triple H for several weeks in this rivalry, so this was a way to give the heels control again. The blood on Jericho’s face was a tease for what was going to happen at Fully Loaded. That became a Last Man Standing match, but it wasn’t official yet.

They brought out a stretcher to take Jericho away.

(Commercial)

They showed Jericho getting taken away on a stretcher and he was placed in an ambulance. Hunter, X-Pac, Road Dogg and Stephanie were there to watch Jericho getting put in the ambulance. JR said “local medical facility” instead of hospital because that’s WWE lingo.

They showed The Kat dancing with some fans at WWF New York.

Shane McMahon was shown walking with Chris Benoit with Shane telling him he was the man. The Rock was also shown backstage for the main event match up next.

(Commercial)

Shane McMahon entered the arena with Chris Benoit for the main. The Rock entered with the WWF Championship in his hands and the crowd was cheering loudly for him.

Analysis: In 2000, as a huge Benoit fan, I was excited for this match and I remember it well. Today, obviously those feelings have changed.

The Rock vs. Chris Benoit (w/Shane McMahon)

Pre-match notes: The Rock was the babyface WWF Champion while Benoit was a heel. This is not for The Rock’s WWF Title.

The story was that if Benoit won, he got a WWF Title shot at Fully Loaded.

Rock with a powerslam for two. Benoit with an elbow strike to the face followed by a belly to back suplex. Benoit with a bridging Northern Lights Suplex for a two count and a snap suplex also got a two count. Benoit was aggressive with hard chops to the chest. Rock came back with punches, which the fans loved and Benoit whipped Rock into the turnbuckle. Benoit with two German Suplexes, Rock blocked a third and hit a side belly to belly suplex. Rock connected with a DDT for a two count. Rock hit a spinebuster, so Shane pulled referee Earl Hebner out of the ring and sent him into the steel ring post. Shane took his shirt off to reveal a referee shirt. Benoit with a clothesline. Benoit slapped on the Crippler Crossface, Rock was fighting it, he reached for the ropes, then his hand missed the rope and hit the mat, so Shane said ring the bell. Shane announced Benoit as the winner via tapout, so they went with the Montreal Screwjob finish yet again. It was not a tapout as JR pointed out. The match went about 4:30. Rock was down on the mat as Shane lifted Benoit’s hand as the winner.

Benoit and Shane left up the ramp. However, referee Earl Hebner informed Lilian Garcia that the winner via disqualification was The Rock. That was the right call.

Winner by disqualification: The Rock

Analysis: ** It was a nice preview of a longer match. They made the most of the time given. The finish was not liked by fans of course, but sometimes you need to do that kind of cheap ending to advance a storyline. They wanted to get some heat on Benoit, so they used Shane to do it and worked.

When Benoit and Shane got back in the ring, The Rock was ready to fight as he knocked them both down with punches. Benoit left the ring. Referees went into the ring to try to get Rock to stop, so Rock dropped Mike Chioda with a Rock Bottom. Shane and Benoit left. The Rock was down in the ring selling the attack and that was the end of the show.

Analysis: Looking back on this now, it’s a bit surprising that they went off the air of this show without announcing the WWF Title match for Fully Loaded yet. However, based on the previous week and this show’s ending, I’m sure fans could tell that it would be Rock vs. Benoit at Fully Loaded. I just think they could have announced it by the end of this show. The reason they didn’t is likely because Commissioner Foley was out of the country. The crowd was really into The Rock’s comeback to end the night.

This episode of Raw had a runtime of 1:35:39 on WWE Network.

 

Three Stars of the Show

  1. Chris Jericho
  2. Triple H
  3. Kurt Angle – He’s here solely due to the scooter bit. That cracked me up.

 

Final Thoughts

This Raw episode gets a 5.5 out of 10.

This episode felt like a step back from what we usually got in this era, so it’s just an average score. There are still good storylines and things that I liked, but how they got there wasn’t the best. The way it was booked, you could tell that it was done to give the heels the advantage a lot since babyface Commissioner Foley was out of the country.

The match finishes on this show were not the best. The first match had a run-in to give the heels the win. The second match was the only clean finish of the show. They opted for a DQ finish in the third match for the IC Title. The fourth match was another cheap finish with a ring bell to the face that the referee didn’t see. The women’s match had a countout in a short match. That Triple H/X-Pac match was just a big angle to set up the attack on Jericho. The main event was another cheap ending with the Montreal Screwjob finish that was eventually changed to a DQ. To sum all of that up, they had seven matches with only one clean finish. I understand advancing stories in some cases, but on this week’s show, it just felt like too much.

There was also a lot of talking on this episode. Some of it was necessary and some of it felt like it dragged on too long, or didn’t have much of a point other than to fill time.

I think they could have made some more matches official for Fully Loaded too.

Check out our WWF TV in 2000 archives for my reviews of every other previous Raw, Smackdown and PPV from 2000 as well.

Thanks for reading. My contact info is below.

John Canton

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