Monday Night Raw – April 10, 2000: I Can’t Believe It, But 2000 Actually Had Some Bad Shows
Date: April 10, 2000
Location: National Car Rental Center, Sunrise, Florida
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler
Well after that mess of a 2002 show I just did, this is my reward I guess. We’re just after Wrestlemania and HHH is still champion. Other than that there isn’t much to say other than we need an opponent for the title at Backlash. I’m not sure why this was requested by given that it’s 2000, I’d bet on it being something to do with the Rock. Let’s get to it.
Here’s Rock to open the show and the place erupts. We’re near Miami so that has something to do with it I’m sure. Rock has video from last week of Vince which has nothing to do with a 900lb tuna and a pair of chopsticks. It’s from Smackdown with Vince hitting a referee to keep Rock from pinning I think Road Dogg. Rock laid out Vince on the stage in retaliation, followed by hitting him in the head with a chair. Rock has one more clip for Vince to see, and it’s of Vince out cold on the stage with Rock’s foot on his chest.
After everything Rock has done to Stephanie and Vince, Rock still wants more. He wants his WWF Title shot and he wants it tonight. Cue Vince with a chair to the ring. Rock says Vince has three options: he can put the chair down, swing at Rock, or have it shined up and stuck in a strategic place. Vince: “I’ll put it down, but if you move towards me your head will be like crushed papaya.” Who talks like that? Well other than Rock of course. Tonight, Rock gets a chance to earn a title match if he wins a cage match against someone to be announced. Somehow, no one had noticed the BIG FREAKING CAGE above the ring.
Vince says Rock has to earn everything he gets now and there are no more freebies. Vince wants Rock to think about who he (Rock) is. About a year ago, it was Vince that made Rock who he was. It wasn’t the people and it wasn’t the Rock, but rather Vince that made the Rock. Rock would have been a star, but not a superstar. Vince thinks Rock would have made a good Doink or a good Gobbledygooker or a GREAT Bastian Booger. With Vince’s help, Rock hosted SNL and was on the Tonight Show. All Vince was looking for was a thank you. That’s why Vince did it: he was never thanked.
Vince thinks Rock is an ingrate but Rock doesn’t really care, albeit in a bit more colorful language. Vince wants to know what’s up with Rock’s insane way of speaking and accuses Rock of being a pervert. This is VINCE MCMAHON accusing someone of being a pervert that is obsessed with the rectal cavity. Actually Rock is obsessed with what comes out of the rectal cavity. Vince says Rock could take all of what comes out of the collective rectal cavities of the people here, put it in a pizza oven and only then could we smell what Rock is cooking. WHAT IS WRONG WITH THIS MAN???
Cue HHH, Shane and Stephanie to keep this segment going. Vince goes for Rock with the chair but Rock blasts Vince in the back with it instead before holding off HHH and Shane with said chair. To call this an overly long and borderline bizarre segment would be the understatement of the year.
Tag Titles: Edge/Christian vs. Road Dogg/X-Pac
The Canadians are defending. I love that King of Rock music that DX uses here. Christian and X-Pac start things off with Pac getting beaten up. Off to Edge who hits a spinwheel kick for two. DX double teams to take over and stomp on Edge in the corner. There are the dancing punches and shaky kneedrop from Roadie for two. A double clothesline from Edge takes DX down again and it’s an ice cold tag to Christian. Edge goes to the floor but gets posted. Back inside, Christian tries the Unprettier but Road Dogg hits him with a belt for the pin and the titles.
Rating: C-. Nothing special here other than the title change. X-Pac and Road Dogg never quite worked that well as a tag team but they were trying at least. If nothing else there’s Tori in those tiny outfits of hers which is never a bad thing. Edge and Christian would get a lot better in a hurry.
Never mind as the referee see the belt and starts the match again. Edge spears X-Pac in about 15 seconds to retain.
Godfather is with his ladies.
Kat and Terri, former enemies, leave for a girl’s day out. As they leave, Eddie and Chyna, the new couple, arrive.
Kurt Angle vs. Godfather
Nothing to see here. Angle talks a bit about abstinence before the match in a funny bit that probably only he could pull off. The girls look good, Godfather does his schtick, the Angle Slam gets the pin in about two minutes. Nothing to see at all.
Big Show is excited and is going to be cutting loose from now on.
Chris Benoit/Perry Saturn/Dean Malenko vs. Scotty 2 Hotty/Rikishi/Tazz
What a bizarre team. Grandmaster isn’t in this team for no apparent reason other than a knee/ankle injury. Scotty and Benoit start things off and things speed up fast. Scotty suplexes him down and moonwalks, so Dean decks him from behind. Off to Saturn as the Radicalz take over. Scott gets rammed into the buckle and it’s back to Benoit.
The Radicalz tag in and out very quickly here and Dean gets two off a rollup. Hot tag brings in Rikishi who cleans house and gives Dean a Stink Face. Everything breaks down and it’s Worm time for Dean. Sweet goodness was that move over. Benoit breaks up a charge from Rikishi and Scotty puts Dean in a Cloverleaf. Benoit and Rikishi fight up the ramp and Saturn clotheslines Scotty so Dean can get the pin.
Rating: D+. This didn’t work all that well. Having Tazz out there didn’t fit at all as he did nothing of note, making this basically a handicap match. Then again Tazz didn’t really exist as much more than a warm body for his entire run with the company. Nothing to the match and it wasn’t anything of note either.
Kat is having her hair done and Terri hands her a spiked drink.
WWF Title: HHH vs. ???
Apparently HHH is giving an impromptu title defense against some random opponent. In the back, Kai En Tai walks through some doors…..accompanied by the APA. HHH isn’t happy with the bigger guys but the opponent is Taka Michinoku. The Acolytes chase off Shane and Stephanie so Taka jumps HHH and gets in some fast paced offense, including a headscissors and dropkick for two. Taka fires away in the corner and hits a tornado DDT for two.
HHH finally gets in a shot and Taka is in trouble in a hurry. A facebuster gets two as Lawler rips into JR for being against HHH. HHH gets in his traditional argument with Earl Hebner before sending Taka into the steps on the floor. Funaki cheats a bit and HHH is sent into the APA, drawing a great scared face from the champion. The APA destroys HHH and a dropkick from Funaki and a moonsault press from Taka get two. Shane comes back with Vince who tries to buy off the APA, which proves to be a distraction so the Boss Man and Bull Buchanan can jump them. HHH counters a rana into a powerbomb and the Pedigree ends this clean.
Rating: C. This wasn’t awful and while I don’t think Taka’s own mother would have thought he had a chance here, they threw something different out there which is usually a fun idea. Not a great match or even a good one but HHH was so hated that the fans wanted any reason to believe that he could lose the title, even on a crazy fluke.
The Kane funnycar won a competition.
We get a clip of T&A preventing Trish from being put through a table. T&A destroy the Dudleys in the back.
T&A vs. Hardy Boys
Sweet goodness does Trish look great in white. This is back when she was a shameless sex pot and no one was complaining at all. Test and Matt start us off. This was back in the period when I had no idea which Hardy was which. Matt hits a quick moonsault press for two but Test busts out his gutwrench powerbomb for two before bringing in Albert.
Albert fires off shoulders in the corner and counters a neckbreaker into a side slam. The currently known Tensai misses a middle rope legdrop and there’s the hot tag to Jeff. It doesn’t quite matter though as Test kills him with a clothesline, followed by a nice note from the referee that they have two minutes left. Everything breaks down and Test is sent to the floor. The Twist and Swanton out of nowhere get the pin on Albert in far less than two minutes.
Rating: C. This is certainly not a failure due to Trish in her outfit alone. Other than that, the match was ok due to the Hardys being masters of selling, especially for monsters like they had to face here. Test and Albert were fine for a vehicle to get Trish over and they certainly did that pretty well. The match was fine.
Post match here are the Dudleys with a 3D for Test. They load up a table but Trish stares at Bubba to distract him. Albert jumps Bubba from behind and chokebombs him through the table instead, enforcing Wrestling Law #1.
Val Venis vs. Big Show
Show is dressed as Val here which is a rather different look for him. At least it distracts from the horrible R&B version of his theme. Show does a bad sounding Val imitation but the mannerisms and outfit (pink trunks with the V) make up for it. Val tries to jump Show to start and is promptly knocked to the floor. Show misses a running boot and crotches himself on the top rope. A shoulder puts Show down and a middle rope elbow gets two. Val keeps running which ticks Show off enough that Show rips his wig off and chokes Val out for a DQ.
Show gyrates a bit to make people smile.
European Title: Chris Jericho vs. Eddie Guerrero
Eddie is defending in a rematch from last week where Chyna joined Eddie to cost Jericho the title. Jericho says he’s happy with the new couple but he isn’t sure which of them is the man and which of them has the bigger package. Jericho hits a fast backbreaker to start and the champ runs, hiding behind the referee. Eddie might have dropkicked Jericho low and takes over. Jerry makes some very dated Elian Gonzalez jokes, which apparently were old even then.
Eddie works on the knee and hooks a Figure Four, putting it on the correct leg and thereby making him more proficient at the hold than Flair himself is. Jericho makes the rope and doesn’t seem all that interested in selling the knee. Eddie charges into a boot in the corner and gets backdropped down as Jericho makes his comeback. Jericho loads up the Walls but Chyna’s distraction lets Eddie rolls Jericho up for two. Chyna throws Eddie the belt but before Eddie can hit Jericho, Eddie is knocked into the referee. Jericho hits the Lionsault but Chyna takes out Jericho with a DDT, letting Eddie get the pin to retain, just like last week.
Rating: C-. For a Jericho vs. Guerrero match, I was expecting a lot better performance here. This was almost the same match as last week which doesn’t exactly make me care about the feud that much. Chyna and Eddie went on to have a pretty big run together which was pretty entertaining at the same time. Not a great match here and Jericho’s non-selling was annoying.
The cage is lowered.
Terri wakes up the Kat who has short green hair now. Kat screams so Terri hands her a dog.
The Rock vs. ???
It’s pin/submission/escape here. The opponent(s) are Boss Man and Buchanan, as introduced by HHH and company. Rock fires away on both guys to start before the numbers catch up with him. Both guys beat him down and go for the escape but Rock pulls them both down in a nice display of athleticism. Rock goes to escape but Shane climbs the cage for the save, allowing Buchanan to crotch Rock for the real stop.
A legdrop gets two for Buchanan and Rock is still in trouble. Gee, who would have bet on him getting beaten down this much to start? The ax kick from Bull puts Rock down again for two from both big guys and they’re getting frustrated three minutes into the match. There’s a double suplex to Rock and things slow down a lot. A lot of choking ensues and Rock is sent into the cage.
Buchanan tries the one cool move he can do, a spinning clothesline off the top, but it hits Boss Man by mistake. Rock makes his comeback and hits a Samoan Drop on Bull for two before walking into a sidewalk slam from Boss Man for two. Rock knocks Boss Man down and sees Buchanan trying to leave. He hits Bull in the back and catches a jumping Bull in a Rock Bottom for the pin out of nowhere.
Rating: C. Did anyone not know the ending from the opening bell here? The fans were into it but it doesn’t do much this many years later. At the end of the day there was no way Rock wasn’t winning here off a Rock Bottom out of nowhere. It sets up HHH vs. Rock though at one of the best shows ever so I can’t complain much about that.
Post match HHH and Shane destroy Rock with brass knuckles and a Pedigree. Rock is busted open and HHH says he’s done playing with him. The APA comes out to save Rock from a Pedigree on a chair and chase off HHH and Shane to end the show.
Overall Rating: C-. This was a pretty weak show overall, but it would set up the best feud HHH ever had over the summer. HHH was just so freaking good at this point as one of the best heels of all time. You pair him with a guy as insanely popular as the Rock and there was no way they weren’t going to give you one of the best feuds ever. This show however was pretty dull with most of the matches not working and the main event being predictable. It set up better stuff down the road though so at least there’s that.
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