Judgment Day 2002: Jump Hogan Jump!

Judgment Day 2002
Date: May 19, 2002
Location: Gaylord Entertainment Center, Nashville, Tennessee
Attendance: 14,521
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry LawlerWe’re firmly on the other side of the glory years here. However coming into this show the Undisputed WWE Championship is Hulk Hogan and he defends against the Undertaker. Also on the card we have a forgotten Hell in a Cell match with HHH vs. Chris Jericho. This looks decent on paper but in reality something tells me it’s not going to go that well, as most shows from this era didn’t. Let’s get to it.The opening video is almost creepy, as we see some people from what looks like the Salem Witch Trials being ready to go to the gallows and a voiceover talking about how what do you in life determines what happensIntercontinental Title: Eddie Guerrero vs. Rob Van DamEddie is champion coming in here and this is the second match in a series of I think three, the final of which being a ladder match. They talk some trash and Van Dam grabs a headlock to start. They speed things up to start with Van Dam getting a powerslam for two. Eddie hits the floor and is all frustrated. Back in with Eddie taking over with some shots.Van Dam fakes Eddie out with what would have been a cross body off the second rope and hits a split legged moonsault in a nice move. Suplex gets two for RVD. Tilt-a-whirl backbreaker gets two for Van Dam. He tries a surfboard but Eddies gets to the ropes. RVD drops an elbow on the back which has been his focal point so far. There’s the surfboard with Eddie in trouble.

After Eddie gets two with that, Van Dam kicks Eddie into the air out of a surfboard and rolls out to let Eddie hit the mat. Eddie finally gets a right hand in to take over for the first time all match. He chokes away in the corner and heads to the outside to get in some offense while Van Dam is on the apron. Back in now with Eddie firmly in control.

Rob gets a monkey flip to send Eddie flying onto his back again and adds some shoulders to the back. Another monkey flip sends Eddie down again as momentum shifts. Rolling Thunder gets two. The stepover spin kick by RVD sets up what was going to be the Five Star I guess but Eddie crotches him. A powerbomb out of the corner gets no cover for Eddie.

Guerrero goes up for the Frog Splash which is the point of this match: the battle of the frog splashes. Eddie takes too much time since he’s a heel and Van Dam rolls away. Another kick puts Eddie down but the Five Star misses. Both guys get up slowly and Eddie is all fired up. They speed it up again and Van Dam gets a cross body for two. Backslide gets the same for RVD but Eddie’s gets three. Granted he had his feet on the ropes but then again he likes to cheat.

Rating: B-. Decent match here and not bad for an opener. They would fight again very soon on Raw with Van Dam getting the title in a much better match. Still though this wasn’t bad as both guys looked pretty good out there. Remember when the IC Title was the wrestlers’ title? I miss those days.

Reverend D-Von says it’s time for prayer. He’s with Deacon Batista, Stacy (HOT!) and Vince. He’s managing Stacy in her match against Trish. The Dudleys are feuding here and no one cared, much like now.

Add for the new WWE, which has “gotten the F out”. Get it?

Women’s Title: Trish Stratus vs. Stacy Keibler

Each is going to have a Dudley in their corner for reasons of bad writing. Molly vs. Trish had been built up for months but they went with this instead because they picked the Dudley feud to be the better draw. Trish interrupted a swimsuit contest to set this up on Thursday. Well at least we get D-Von’s music. Aww man they hadn’t changed it yet so it’s just organ music. Dang it!

Naturally Bubba Ray Dudley is here. This was right before they were going to build him up as one of the top faces on Raw. Yes, that’s a true story. I’ll wait a bit while you regain consciousness. Stacy throws a kick that hits (read as her foot might have been two feet from Trish’s head, prompting a groan from the crowd) for two. Trish was just ok in the ring at this point and the awful Boston Crab shows that.

Stacy counters and Trish counters that into a rollup for two. This is quickly getting embarrassing, which says a lot as we’re maybe a minute into it. Trish hammers away and Stacy is sent to the floor where she has a fit. Batista comes in and drills Trish (lucky) with a slam that gets two for Stacy. Stacy chokes away and Trish fights back, getting a bulldog (minus springboard) to end this quickly. Terrible match but Stacy looked great.

Post match D-Von offers Bubba a hug but it’s a trap. Batista jumps Bubba and gets thrown to the floor. When will you ever see THAT again? D-Von jumps him and tells Batista to get the tables. Bubba blocks a Batista Bomb but gets drilled by the money box and then put through the table by a double flapjack.

Flair and Arn are talking and Vince comes in. Flair is teaming with Big Show later to fight Austin. They seem like they’re just meeting despite feuding earlier in the year. He says he’ll take control of Austin and Vince hugs him while rolling his eyes. Odd segment to put it mildly.

Hardy Boys vs. Paul Heyman/Brock Lesnar

Brock had debuted the night after Mania and he needed a first feud I guess. He’s been destroying people right and left so this is pretty much a given. Brock doesn’t even have his signature music yet. The Hardys jump Lesnar to do what they can earlier to get at Heyman. That lasts about 4 seconds as Brock just goes off on Jeff to start us off. Ross HATES Heyman here and the commentary is funny stuff.

Brock beats up both guys with ease as neither Hardy can do anything with him. The fans chant for Goldberg. Trust me, you don’t want Lesnar vs. Goldberg. Heyman keeps orgasming over Brock every 2 seconds. Brock destroys Matt with ease as I guess we’re waiting on Jeff to come in. Matt gets a tornado DDT to break the momentum and make Paul terrified. There’s Jeff who hits the Whisper in the Wind and some double teaming puts Brock down for a bit.

Poetry in Motion hits Brock and Lesnar is sent to the floor. Heyman runs as fast as he can but gets caught in the ring by Matt. Poetry in Motion takes him down but Brock ends Matt. Brock stands in front of the Swanton so Jeff dives on him. In the words of Tazz, here comes the pain. HUGE F5 puts Jeff down and Heyman gets the pin.

Rating: D+. Just a squash here as the Hardys best stuff got nothing in there on Brock. They were there to make Brock look good and that’s what they did. Brock would be King of the Ring in the next month and therefore the #1 contender for the eventual Champion The Rock at Summerslam where he would become a star.

Booker is glad to be part of the NWO. This didn’t last long and they pulled the plug on it very soon due to reasons of suck. Booker talks to some random chick who whispers a place she wants Booker to autograph in his ear.

There’s a hair vs. hair match later with Edge vs. Angle so we look at the barber stuff.

We recap Austin vs. Flair/Big Show. This was about Flair vs. Austin with Austin not wanting to be on Flair’s (he was co-owner of the company) brand. Flair was a guest referee and accidentally screwed Austin over as he didn’t see Austin’s foot on the rope in a #1 contenders match. Show came in as the enforcer dude. Oh and they’re both in the NWO.

Steve Austin vs. Ric Flair/Big Show

Show is in his women’s one piece swimsuit here. Ok apparently Flair isn’t in the NWO. That blue robe really does work on him, but why is the Raw owner wearing the Smackdown color? Also what happened to those robes while he’s in TNA? Is there a reason Austin is in the fourth match of the show? He would bail very soon after this and be gone for months. Austin fights both guys at once even though they have to tag.

Austin actually used double axes instead of punches on Show. Flair gets clotheslined to the floor and Austin gets a figure four on Show. Flair saves as this has been all Austin so far. He gets the figure four on Flair and avoids a leg drop from Show. Steve grabs a chair which is taken away from him. Austin’s solution? Grab another chair. He sits down and flips off the referee to get a nice chuckle out of the crowd.

Flair and Austin officially start us off after Austin beat both guys up for awhile, making them look like idiots. Austin hammers away on Flair who takes a break. Flair finally gets something going with a thumb to the eye and some chops. Austin fires back with some more and chops away with WHAT being shouted every time. Flair begs off. It’s remarkable how much Flair deteriorated in the last ten years. He looks pretty decent here and you know what he looks like now.

Show comes in and Austin isn’t sure what to do here. Austin hammers away but gets his head kicked off with ease. Flair comes back in and they chop away at each other but it’s back to Show who drills him with a powerslam for two. Flair hammers away in the corner and then goes after the knee. Off to Show again who hammers away on the knee some more.

That lasts a few seconds as Flair comes back in and gets rolled up by Austin for two. Flair grabs the Figure Four and curses away a lot. Austin gets up from that with relative ease and they chop it out. Really bad spinebuster sets up another figure four by Austin which again is broken up by Show. Show comes in and runs into some boots and a Thesz Press. Flair gets one as well. X-Pac, another NWO member comes in and Show is stunned. That gets Austin nowhere but Pac kicks Show down and Stunners for all heels allow Austin to pin Flair to end it.

Rating: B. This was pretty good with Austin being very entertaining as usual. Now can someone explain to me why in the world Austin is on in the first hour of the show in a more or less worthless match? This would never be finished as Austin just left due to getting ticked off from this angle. Rather good match here though with Flair still being good back in the day.

We recap Edge vs. Angle. Angle was going to unveil his new t-shirt and it said You Suck. This is where the You Suck chants started. Somehow Lance Storm got roped into modeling the actual shirt. They had a great match at Backlash so this should be awesome. Angle wanted a rematch to get back at Edge and offered the hair vs. hair stipulation. Edge said groovy and here we are. Yeah I’m not saying groovy again. Doesn’t suit me at all.

Kurt Angle vs. Edge

Edge is more or less the hottest thing in the world at this point so this should be awesome. Angle starts off with grappling stuff but gets sent to the floor. Back in Angle stomps away but gets tied up in the ropes. It’s so weird to see pre-neck injury Edge. He spears Kurt as he’s tied up but Kurt escapes and hits a belly to belly to send Edge to the floor. Angle hammers away as this has been back and forth so far.

DDT gets two for Kurt as we’re in a long Angle is in control segment of the match. Off to a chinlock now as we make Finkle jokes. Lawler accidentally says WWF as Edge is taken down again by the hair in what could be considered irony but it probably shouldn’t be. Angle throws on a front facelock which goes on for awhile. Edge gets an Edge-O-Matic for two. Angle heads to the apron and Edge hits a dropkick to send Kurt’s face into the apron.

Back in Angle tries the run up the corner belly to belly only to have Edge shove him off and get a missile dropkick for a long two. Belly to belly by Kurt puts Edge down as JR says that was finer than frog hair. Where does he get these things? Edge goes up again and this time he gets caught in the suplex for a VERY long two. Edge busts out a superkick of all things and gets a DDT out of the corner for two.

Spear accidentally hits the referee and a suplex puts Edge down. No referee though so Angle grabs a chair. Spear puts Angle down Angle but again no referee. Noticing a theme here? Another spear eats boot and the Angle Slam is countered. ANOTHER spear gets two as the referee is up. Edgecution is reversed and Angle hits a spear of his own and then the Angle Slam for a VERY close two. Ankle lock goes on but Edge kicks him in the head to escape. On it goes again but Edge kicks him off and a small package ends this and signals Kurt’s bald time.

Rating: B. Good match but the spears got annoying. Their match at Backlash was WAY better which is what’s holding this one back. It’s not bad at all and they looked good out there, but at the same time it got a bit repetitive. Edge was getting very awesome very fast at this point and Angle probably had a lot to do with that.

Angle fights back so Edge hits an Edgecution to put him out and take him to the barber’s chair. Angle wakes up and runs.

We go to the hotel that Booker is in with that chick from earlier. She pops up in a black dress and the chick wants the lights off. Various sounds are heard and then Goldust’s voice is heard, saying he wants Booker to leave the NWO and come back to him. Booker gets out of bed and runs off naked. Goldust pulls off the covers and is in a nightgown. Oh dear.

We recap HHH vs. Jericho as the Cell is lowered. This stems from Mania as Jericho is jealous and beat on HHH for a long time, resulting in this. HHH and Stephanie were getting a divorce so Vince jumped on Jericho’s side for this feud.

Oh I forgot to mention that Michael Cole and Tazz have introduced various matches tonight, including this one.

HHH vs. Chris Jericho

They stare it down and slug it out to start with HHH getting the high knee and a backdrop to take over. This is one of the forgotten Cell matches and I think that’s probably due to Jericho having no chance whatsoever here. Out to the floor with Jericho trying to hammer away and failing at that endeavor. Back in and Jericho gets a forearm to take over. Nothing special at all yet but we’re only two minutes into this.

Jericho’s shoulder hits the post and he hits the floor, so of course the referee threatens to count him out. Inside the Cell that is. Do they even get the concept of this match anymore? Jericho goes into the Cell wall and then does it again. Clothesline puts him down as it’s all HHH here. Back in the ring and a suplex gets two. Why are we covering after suplexes in a Cell match?

Jericho whips HHH into the corner and the Game goes flying over the buckle and down to the floor. Back outside again and HHH is sent into the cage. They seem like they don’t have much of a plan here. HHH reverses and Jericho eats cage for the 3rd time in like a minute and a half. Piledriver onto the steps is blocked into a slingshot by Jericho to send HHH into the cage. This is not very interesting at all.

It’s ladder time as we make this a hardcore match because the HELL IN A CELL isn’t enough. Ladder goes into HHH’s face and HHH is busted. Back in the ring the ladder takes HHH down again. At least we’ve gotten to the violent aspect of the match now. HHH goes out to the floor so Jericho throws the ladder at him. Freaking ow man. It’s not good enough for the all caps one but it looked good.

JR says this is the Supreme Court of Gut Checks. Jericho sends HHH into the Cell when he starts getting too feisty. HHH gets a chair to hit the ladder back into the face of Jericho as he charges at HHH with it. Bulldog by Jericho which is a good foot from the ladder but allegedly HHH hit it head first. Whatever. The referee cusses Jericho out for going outside again. That’s rather funny to me for some reason.

Jericho brings the stairs in and HHH grabs a drop toehold to send Jericho face first into them. After a facebuster HHH THROWS THE STEPS at Jericho to send him to the floor. Ok, now it’s ok. FREAKING OW MAN!!! HHH sends Jericho into the ropes but Tim White is there and gets sent into the cage HARD, legitimately injuring him and more or less ending his active career as a referee.

As White is hurt, JR mentions that White has the key. I get that they’re advancing the match with that, but here’s the thing: this match is about staying in the Cell. Why in the world would who has the key make a difference here? They’re supposed to stay in, so why would you mention that? Jericho throws White into the cage arm first which might have been the shoulder injury that put him out. He’s busted too. When do you see a referee bleeding?

Spinebuster takes HHH down as he comes back in but Jericho has the key. It’s not like it matters though as guys come out to open the Cell and check on White. Jericho charges at HHH in the corner with a chair but gets it kicked back into his own face. Sledgehammer shot takes Jericho down but there’s no referee as everyone is checking on White. Jericho crawls out of the Cell and slams the door on the pursuing HHH.

They’re out of the cage now and Jericho takes over. Naturally we hit the Spanish Announce Table and Jericho tries a Pedigree which of course is reversed into a DDT by HHH to destroy the table and leave Jericho laying. We get that Supreme Court metaphor again which is still stupid. HHH finds the barbed wire 2×4 as this is desperately trying to be epic and it’s not there.

Jericho runs up to the top of the Cell rather than like, around the corner of it or something. HHH goes up top with the 2×4 which Jericho gets away and cracks HHH in the back with it. They fight up top for awhile and Jericho grabs the Walls of Jericho up there. Apparently you can tap out up there now. Mike Chioda comes up to the top to check for a submission. They’re making the rules up as they go apparently.

A low blow by HHH keeps himself from getting caught by another shot from the 2×4. I guess Jericho saw a pretty bunny instead of keeping the hold on. Jerry says HHH and Jericho must have seen that match where Foley flew through the Cell off a backdrop. No King REALLY??? You think HHH might have seen it??? YOU THINK SO??? A backdrop saves Jericho from the Pedigree which is what brought that on if you were wondering. Anyway a 2×4 shot to the head and the Pedigree up top on the Cell ends it.

Rating: B. Well they tried but at the same time this was full of issues the entire time. First and foremost, there was never any doubt at all that it would be HHH winning. Second, the rules changing hurt it a lot. Third, Tim White needs to shut up with the telling them to stay in the ring. It’s a war, not under Marquis of Queensbury rules. Either way, this was good but it’s NOTHING compared to the other Cell matches that came before it for the most part.

Angle pretends to be a woman to hide from Edge who doesn’t fall from it. I give up.

We get a messed up WWE Get the F Out ad complete with the Sexual Chocolate music.

Maven and Torrie are on a date and Torrie makes various innuendo.

Tag Titles: Rikishi/??? vs. Billy/Chuck

The partner for Rikishi will be announced in a bit. To the shock of no one, the partner is Billy and Chuck’s manager/stylist Rico. Billy vs. Rikishi to start us off here. DDT does nothing of course and Rikishi takes over. This is when there was only one set of titles at the time. Chuck comes in and hammers away which gets him nowhere for the most part. Suplex gets two.

The idea here is that Rico will lay down for his buddies so they can keep the titles so Rikishi is more or less in a handicap match. Belly to belly by Rikishi gets two. Billy comes in and gets beaten up by Rikishi too. Rico is just chilling on the apron at the moment. Dropkick by Chuck puts Rikishi down. Rico tries to help Chuck and accidentally drops Chuck, giving him and Rikishi the titles.

Rating: D. Was there any point to this other than to give the crowd a breather? No? I didn’t think so. Moving on here as there’s nothing to say here. The title reign meant nothing if you didn’t guess.

Rikishi dances a bit post match.

WWE Confidential is coming. The first episode was an interview with Shawn about the Screwjob. This was AWESOME at first but then would turn into exactly what you would expect.

Edge is still looking for Angle but Angle jumps him and it’s time for Edge to get his hair cut. Angle throws Edge onto the barber platform but Edge fights him off. Edge grabs a sleeper and Angle is done, resulting in the haircut. The comedy in the next few weeks was pretty good actually. Edge tries to get a You’re Bald chant going and it just fails.

We recap Hogan vs. Taker. At Backlash Taker beat Austin to become #1 contender in the match mentioned earlier with Flair screwing Austin by mistake. Taker interfered in HHH vs. Hogan, costing HHH the title and getting beaten up by Hogan. Hogan destroyed the motorcycle so Taker tied Hogan to the bike and dragged him around the arena which looked fun. This gets the music video treatment.

WWE Undisputed Title: Undertaker vs. Hulk Hogan

Taker has Hogan’s weight belt and Hogan again comes out to Voodoo Child. It’s supposed to be Hollywood Hogan but he’s in red and yellow. Hogan charges and gets whipped by the belt. This is before the bell. Hogan hammers away and gets the belt to whip Taker a bit. The belt (the weightlifting one, not the title) is thrown out and we finally get a bell. A backdrop sends Taker to the floor and Hogan rips off his shirt.

Taker goes knee first into the steps as there are some overly happy fans out there for this. The fans are totally behind Hogan here to put it mildly. Old School is blocked and the old balls are taken to school. Superplex by Hogan gets two which actually looked a bit decent. Taker ducks a clothesline and goes after the knee. Well it’s good to see him attacking something that Hogan has had replacement surgery on (I think).

The knee is wrapped around the post as this isn’t much of a match as far as excitement but it’s been ok. Taker lays on the leg of Hogan so Hogan drops a bunch of legs over Taker’s face. Wouldn’t that be very similar to the leg drop? Hogan was on the mat when he did that if it wasn’t clear. Big boot out of nowhere sets up the legdrop but Taker rolls away and throws on a half crab. Yeah Hogan tapping wouldn’t happen….until next month actually when Angle made it happen.

Taker gets up and tries a chokeslam. The key word being try as Hogan more or less dead weights him and doesn’t even jump, making it more or less a choke takedown. Hogan Hulks Up after the weakest finisher of all time. There’s the boot and there’s the leg and there’s the two. DDT gets two for Taker and here’s Vince. He distracts the referee and another leg drop gets no count. Leg drop to Vince but Taker gets a chair shot to the back of the head and a chokeslam to end this. Taker becomes I think the only person ever to win two world titles off of Hogan.

Rating: D. This was what it was. They kept it relatively short at about 11 minutes which is probably best for all involved. Hogan wasn’t really around the world title again which is probably best for all involved. Taker would drop it to Rock who would drop it to Lesnar at Summerslam but that’s a different story. Weak match, but seriously what were you expecting here?

Taker pops Hogan again with the chair for the motorcycle.

Overall Rating: D+. Well there’s some ok stuff here but nothing is exceptional. It’s not the worst show I’ve ever seen but this was a bad time for the company as they were letting the same old guy syndrome that killed WCW happen here. Weak show overall and not worth seeing, which is saying a lot with Hell in a Cell on there. The main problem is that the decent matches have been done elsewhere, which is what kills this.

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1 comment

  1. farhan says:

    good review,kb.just watched it now