The SmarK Rant for WWE Velocity – 06.01.02
Taped from wherever Smackdown was that week, apparently Calgary. Of course, this leads me to check if I was actually at that show, but apparently I only did the Edmonton RAW show and skipped the Smackdown tapings in Calgary. However that RAW was pretty notable for having the RVD-Eddie ladder match, which is one of the best matches I’ve seen live and I believe also the first major title change I was in attendance for.
Your hosts are Michael Cole & Al Snow
Mark Henry v. The Godfather
Yes, kicking it off with FAST-PACED action here on VELOCITY! I love that it only took one match into the second show to kill the gimmick. So in more stuff that I don’t remember in the slightest, Godfather is now some kind of non-pimping biker heel in the aftermath of the RTC. Godfather slugs away on Henry to start, but Mark hits him with a running powerslam and Godfather bails. Back in, Godfather necks him as Cole notes that Henry is “still learning the craft”. He’d been in the company for SIX YEARS at that point! Godfather beats on him in the corner and gets the Nash choke, and a shoulderblock gets two. I should note that the crowd is REALLY hot for this match, probably because it was the opener for the tapings. Henry comes back with an elbow and a bearhug, and Godfather submits at 4:04. Well that was abrupt. *
Meanwhile, on Smackdown, Undertaker offers that young rookie Randy Orton a shot at the WWE title and puts him away with a chokeslam. Well, we can only hope that this Orton kid gets another shot at the bigtime someday. Undertaker is going to finish the kid off with a chair, but HHH makes the save and he also wants a shot at the title. Later that night, HHH faces Test and eats the big boot with help from that damn Undertaker and Lance Storm. That DAMN SICK EVIL UNDERTAKER. And he’s got a DAMN STEEL CHAIR! HE’S THE DEVIL! Oh no, please stop beating on HHH with that chair. Insert sarcasm filter here.
Albert v. Hugh Morrus
Oh damn, it’s the TRAINER SHOWDOWN! Morrus is looking kind of weird with a crewcut here and he’s being the smiling babyface. They trade clothesline attempts and Morrus powerslams him for two. He goes up and Albert hits him with a pump kick on the way down and slugs away in the corner. Albert goes to the abdominal stretch, but gets caught using the ropes and Morrus makes the comeback. German suplex gets two. Morrus goes up with a flying elbow for two. He tries the moonsault and misses. NOBODY HOME! NO WATER IN THE POOL! And Albert puts him away with the Baldobomb at 4:14. A reasonably OK hoss fight. **
Meanwhile, on Smackdown, Edge faces Kurt Angle in a cage match that ended up on a couple of different DVD releases. Angle escapes the cage with the ref knocked out, so Hulk Hogan comes down and throws him back in, allowing Edge to come back and win with the spear. It’s an excellent cage match and worth checking out on the Network, by the way. The May 28 2002 Smackdown episode.
VELOCITY EXCLUSIVE! We get some bonus footage of Edge and Hogan posing together after the match.
Reverend D-Von v. The Big Valbowski
This Reverend gimmick was death from the start and just didn’t fit D-Von. But he liked to say “Testify” so I guess they figured they could give it a try. And poor Deacon Batista just looks like he wants to crawl under a rock and die. D-Von attacks in the corner and follows with a clothesline, but Val drops a knee and slugs away on the mat. Val with the armdrags and he clips the knee as we take a break. Back right where we left off with Val getting a reverse deathlock, but Batista takes the ref while D-Von is tapping out. So D-Von stomps him down in the corner and wraps him around the post, and D-Von cuts off a comeback with the back elbow for two. D-Von sets up for a piledriver, but Val backdrops out of it and makes the comeback. Neckbreaker gets two. Seaman’s suplex gets two. Val goes up, but D-Von brings him down with a neckbreaker for two. D-Von goes up and tries the diving headbutt, but that misses, and Val hits the Blue Thunder Bomb for two. But then the ref is bumped and Batista hits Val with the collection box, and D-Von gets the pin at 6:49. Perfectly cromulent wrestling. **3/4
Despite not being any cruiserweights on a show designed to showcase cruiserweights, this was an OK 45 minutes that mostly flew by.