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January 11, 2002

by Eitan Shapiro
Exclusive to OnlineOnslaught.com


In case you forgot who I am…I'm the guy that recaps Smackdown. AND YOU BET YOUR ASS I'M BACK. Big thanks to that Jerkoff guy for covering for me while I was off romping around on the beach. Also, a big thanks to the Smarks.com for treating me to the ultimate disrespect of not being included in this year's Smarkies. Never mind the fact that WrestleLine put me up against hundreds of other potential recappers (and a lot of stress) before ultimately naming me Smackdown guy, and never mind the fact that KJP was the "filler" guy before I showed up. What a slap in the face, and from a fellow Canuck no less. Here's a hot poker up YOUR ass, Mr. Keith, and I hope you've got the bluest of blue balls over this whole Canadian Mafia tease. Not that being absent on a ballot that includes Joshua Grut is that great a loss anyhow…

In the tradition of respect, you'll be seeing some "rewind reviews" from me in the coming weeks, including ECW shows like 1996's "A Matter of Respect." RVD compresses some spines and Chris Jericho beats up on Mikey Whipwreck. It's all good. 

A quick note on RAW: Jericho's "face like a Picasso" bit definitely had me flashing back to Shawn Michaels at Mindgames, circa 1996, with his infamous, "there's not much going on upstairs when you're Shawn Michaels," slip. These guys are both great at the pretty boy-with-attitude shtick, but the problem is that Jericho is playing an asshole…Michaels IS an asshole. There was always a temper tantrum waiting to happen in every Michaels main event (see Summerslam 1996 for reference). The chicks dug him, the guys couldn't stand him, and he oozed arrogance out of every pore while working solid, innovative and sometimes downright stiff matches. All Jericho's got thus far is forced ego, predictable work, weak catch phrases and the championship belt "gesture" that really makes no sense, since it's traditionally used by people going AFTER the belt. I once said Jericho was 7 feet from greatness, as in a Diesel or Sid. But I'm thinking a bodyguard/valet alone isn't going to cut it. Our evil champion has to loosen up, big time. I suggest a quick visit to RVD's dressing room 10 minutes before showtime. 

On to tonight's (last night's) Smackdown! which most likely features Chris Jericho screaming "C'MON, YOU SON OF A BITCH!" and people talking about going through/tossing out/being victorious over 29 other men. You could just read the spoiler and save yourself a LOT of cynicism. 

We open with a dramatic retrospective of the events from Monday. Namely, THE RETURN OF THE GOD OF THUNDER. He came, he posed, he kicked Kurt Angle's ass. YOU BET YOUR ASS HE'S BACK. Seriously. Unlike the Canadian Horsemen, it's not a work. 

We go backstage, where DEBRA is discussing what seems to be her schedule with a stagehand. STEPHANIE McMAHON-HELMSLEY shows up, immediately out-skanking Debra with her outfit and showing off her backstage pass, courtesy of Triple H. They play "my husband's better than your husband" for a bit, and I get the sinking feeling The Stephanie Show is making a comeback. 

Smackdown! is NOT LIVE! from Madison Square Garden in New York. Our hosts are MICHALE COLE and JERRY LAWLER, and we've got a graphic for tonight's main event: RVD and The Rock taking on Jericho and Test. Sort of like the last Smackdown I recapped, but with Test taking over for The Undertaker. Tag Team Randomizer © booking rules! 

"My Time" fires up, and yup, it's back to The Stephanie Show. The deal here is that the backstage pass certainly allows Stephanie to roam the back and engage in random catty encounters, but it doesn't mean she can be part of the show. So I guess someone held a gun to someone in the back, what with her theme music heralding her slow, uninterrupted walk to the ring, where she then received a microphone with no trouble whatsoever. She cuts a decidedly heel-ish promo on her own husband, furthering the overall logic of this segment. "The Game is back, and I'm the Game's wife. Without me, without my business savvy and my brain, Triple H wouldn't have been the success he was in the WWF." She goes on, "I point my finger…and Triple H destroys. And no one wants me pointing my finger, especially Ric Flair." Crowd: "WOOOOO!" Security finally shows up and we can all just relax and enjoy ourselves now. 

Meanwhile, in a hall somewhere in the building, CHRISTIAN assures LANCE STORM, his Randomized Partner © for the evening, that their title match with Tazz and Spike is a "gimme". That's the sort of the thing we need to hear just so we can remember that tag title or no, Tazz' reputation is still being flushed down the toilet. Christian finishes with a shot at the Knicks, then Storm confuses basketball with hockey. Hilarity ensues (supposedly). 

Funny little side-note: in Canada, we get ads featuring a Chris Benoit appearance at Toys R Us that states: "the Rabid Wolverine is creeping out of the shadows and scurrying through Woodbridge, Ontario, to mark his territory." New gimmick?

The PS2 Slam of the Week features Bubba getting suplexed onto a table, then eating a Dudley Dog through the aforementioned table. If it had broken on the suplex, it really wouldn't have been as spectacular a finish, would it?


Storm and Christian charge in, but Spike tosses Christian out and Tazz eats a superkick that sends him out. Storm is then tossed, because I guess SPIKE IS A MONSTER and then it's a cross-body off the top from Spike. Christian sends Spike into the steeeeeeeel steps and back into the ring for some stomping. Spike pulled into a VICIOUS gutbuster from Fireman's carry - Storm tags in. Storm with his patented series of swinging kicks. Spike up into another fireman's carry - SOMERSAULT SLAM! You want innovation, you've got it. Cover is good for just 2, then it's back to the heel corner for a tag in to Christian. Spike with some desperate elbows to mid-section, but Christian ain't having it. Irish whip - clothesline misses - Spike into a knee to the gut. Back into the corner, then Christian does some taunting in Tazz' general direction while Storm chokes Spike. Tazz steps in, allowing the double team while the ref holds him back, then Storm's in legit. Some stomping in the corner - a series of shoulders to the mid-section - into an attempted suplex but Spike turns it into a cradle for 2. Storm with a wicked spinning elbow, then the cover for 2. Storm with another gutbuster, the he asks Tazz, "how's your boy?" That's infinitely better than "C'mon…you son of a bitch." Desperation battering ram from Spike out of a corner takes Storm out, then it's a slooow crawl over to Tazz. Simultaneous tags and TAZZ BRINGS THE PAIN. Clotheslines for everyone - head-and-arm suplex for Storm - T-Bone for Christian - Storm clotheslined out! Christian manages to shove Tazz out, but Spike is behind him for a KICK WHAM DUDLEY DOG but Christian tosses him off. Time for a KICK WHAM UNPRETTIER but Tazz stops him with the Tazzmission. YOU CAN'T ESCAPE THE TAZZMISSION! Tapping goes down at 4:07 while Spike dropkicks Storm off the apron. THUMBS UP for a great little match, and some serious Tazz-kicking. THE DUDLEY BOYZ show up for some post-match hijinx, but in a rare turn of events, they get their own asses kicked and the champs walk off displaying the gold proudly. Here's hoping there's still a good couple of weeks before they job out to Chuck and Billy. 

The fundamental problem with KUNG-POW: you can't parody what is essentially a parody of itself. I'm not gonna get together with my buddies to engage in illicit activities and watch a movie by the co-creator of Ace Ventura. I'm gonna get together with my buddies to engage in illicit activities and watch something with a Flying Guillotine in it, or perhaps the Venoms. 

Seems that VAL VENIS, Big Valbowski style, is on his way back for the Rumble. That gets a big "whatever". 


Man, check out Edge's stiff competition. He's got the biggest waste of space in the WWF tonight, en route to taking on Regal for the 474th time at the Rumble. Here's hoping for a squash. They lock up, then Bossman tosses Edge to the centre (center, for the rest of you) of the ring. Stomping and kicking ensues. Edge turns it around and gets in some shots, but falls into a sidewalk slam which goes surprisingly well, i.e. Bossman doesn't trip, fall down, go boom. Some more punching, including the patented "slide out of the ring-into punch", which tries to create the illusion that something more than a simple punch is happening. Edge tries a cross-body off the ropes, but gets caught in a backbreaker. Bossman digs his heel into the back, then does some choking. Edge into the corner - Bossman into a boot - dropkick sending Bossman into the ropes and off. SPINNING HEEL KICK and let it be over now, for the love of God. There's the Edge-O-Matic into a cover for 2, then Edge gets greedy and jumps into a spinebuster. Bossman goes for the nightstick, but Teddy Long distracts him, allowing Edge to nail the spear. Edge with the nightstick - faces don't use foreign objects! - Bossman into an EDGECUTION. 1-2-3 at 3:55. THUMBS DOWN. Regal pops up on the screen for the official challenge for the Rumble. Edge accepts, and tells Regal to bring his "big shnozz" with him so he can smell Edge "Totally-Reeking-of-Awesomeness". Crowd-does-not-chant-along.

GOLDUST is the second "returning" surprise entrant into the Rumble. That gets a slightly smaller "whatever." 

KURT ANGLE cuts an interview with Lillian Garcia, and he's been so on with his material as of late, IT HURTS. "Goldust? That's all we need around here are more freaks. If I wanna see freaks and weirdos - I'll just step outside into mid-town Manhattan." Crowd goes into complete "WHAT?!" mode, so Kurt finally reacts and it looks like his head's about to explode. "STOP IT! (WHAT?! That's just rude! (WHAT?!) I'm an Olympic gold medalist! (WHAT?!) Please…don't say "what" again. (WHAT?!) CUT IT OUT! (WHAT?!). This is all Austin's fault! (WHAT?!)" It keeps going for a bit, then Angle challenges Austin to a match later tonight. Funny shit. On a related note - I recommend that you head on over to Lance Storm's site for his latest commentary, which concerns "WHAT?!". You'll be sickened by just how far the fans have gone with it. 

From funny we go to moronic, as BOOKER T. washes up in a bathroom and is subjected to the sounds of a man's digestive tract gone horribly wrong. Booker flips out, then RIKISHI strolls out of the stall in question. He calls it a "pre-match ritual", then Booker sprays him with cologne and says he feels sorry for his opponent. YOU DECIDE THE PUNCHLINE!

UP NEXT: THE ROCK! RVD! JERICHO! And Test. Hey, what's with the 411 T-Shirt? Isn't that like attempting to sell Chuck and Billy t-shirts? And hey, what's up with "internet columnists" asking people to buy them stuff on Amazon? Who the fuck is going to buy some guy who fears daylight and human contact CD's and games? If you're one of these people buying items for someone who uses an acronym for an alias, please contact me. I need to know if this is the apocalypse.

The Greyhound Overdrive of the Night features RVD's Van Daminator and Five Star Frogsplash on Test last Monday. Not sure how that's an "overdrive", but HE'S THE WHOLE F'N SHOW! RVD 4:20 DOODZ!

Well, enough has been said about this one…let's get to it…


New, more intense intro for Robbie V. (and for those who didn't know, that was indeed his WCW nick). Jericho and The Rock with the staredown in the ring, then Jericho goes ULTRA HEEL by slapping Test into the match. Rock is understandably disgusted. Sudden charge towards Jericho, who leaps away, then Test has the upper hand. Lotsa punches - Rock ducks a clothesline - clothesline off the ropes from Rocky. Jericho is told to "bring it it", and seems confused. Rock shows him what he means by flipping him into the ring, but it gets broken up by Test. Rock blocks a punch - unloads his own - then gets pulled into a Jericho clothesline. Test stomps away - quick tag to Jericho - flurry of kicks in the corner. Scoop and a slam, then three elbow drops off the ropes. Cover barely gets 2, then it's a tag for Test. Jericho opens up Rock, then Test goes to work. BUT NO! Rock with some rights - Test whipped into a corner - Rock eating the elbow. Test charging - into a botched Samoan drop. Both men out - Rock slowly into the corner - tag for Van Dam! RVD ducking a clothesline - charging into Jericho and knocking him off the apron - into a double heel kick on Test! Test with an attempted boot, but Van Dam catches it - skip-over enziguiri! Jericho in, then eating a heel kick and ROLLING THUNDER. Test eats another heel kick, then RVD sets up on top. Jericho's up, so it's a mid-air conversion into a somersault splash! Test tries a quick powerbomb, but RVD flips out and rolls him up for 1, 2, Jericho with the dropkick to the head. Jericho kicking Van Dam out, then hitting a front suplex onto the table. RVD rolled back in to the waiting Test, then it's some elbows in the corner and a foot to the throat. Whip into the opposite corner - charging clothesline - and again into the opposite corner. Cover gets 2, then Van Dam gets tossed into Jericho's boot. Tag to Jericho, and he unleashes the chops. RVD fights back but Jericho rakes the eyes. Sustained suplex, then the "C'MON BABY" cover for 2. Test in for a suplex and another cover for 2. Test sends him into a corner and charges into an elbow - RVD up top again - crossbody attempt but he's caught. Van Dam escapes being darted into the turnbuckle, then hits the reverse thrust kick. Simultaneous crawling - simultaneous tags! THE CROWD IS CLINICAL. Rock pounding away on Jericho - huge belly-to-belly toss - SPIT PUNCH OF PENULTIMATE DOOM. Test gets knocked off the apron, then it's ROCK BOTTOM. 1, 2, saved by Test. BIG lariat, then Test sets up for the big boot. Rocky ducks - KICK WHAM DDT! Ref tends to Test, and Jericho's got GOLD to Rock's skull. RVD ain't having it, so it's a flying heel kick, then a TOPE SUICIDA to the outside on Test! OH MY GOD. RVD and Test brawl into the crowd while Rock and Jericho are laid out. Jericho drags himself over for the cover…1…2…NO! Rock unloads some rights, but gets caught with a knee - into a bulldog! Lionsault hits nothing but knee! They're both staggering…Jericho with some rights, Rocky ducking and attempting a Rock Bottom. Jericho with some elbows - off and into the ropes - SPINEBUSTER from The Rock! SHARRPSHOOTER! JERICHO TAPS! (9:33). THUMBS UP. RVD single-handedly made this a must-see. 

VINCE McMAHON sits down for an "exclusive" interview with JIM ROSS. McMahon glosses over some initial questions about his daughter and Triple H, then gets straight to Ric Flair. He's going to destroy his life, kick his ass, eat his liver, etc. Wouldn't it be a kick in the ass if Double A turned on Flair at RR? McMahon manages to plumb new depths by going all-out "insane, creepy old man" mode by leaning into Ross and telling him that ruining people's lives turns him on. This goes well coupled with our next segment, which involves fecalphelia. Yes sir, Vince and Co. have covered all the bases tonight.

The Stacker 2 Burn of the Week features Nick Patrick tossing some serious salad. Tonight, I think there's croutons in said salad. 

MR. PERFECT will be back for the Rumble, and that I dig. Recall it was Perfect that was Flair's "advisor" ten years ago at the Rumble. While they've certainly avoided using proper names like Hennig and Rhodes, I doubt the Fed would stoop so low as to pull another "Razor and Diesel", but if they did…wouldn't it be frickin' hilarious to see "Goldust" Gunn and "Perfect" Palumbo? Man, you'd think I was a fan of theirs or something…


Bear in mind that the main thrust of this match, thanks to the sustained stupidity of Cole and Lawler, is Rikishi's recent bowel movement. You can almost hear Booker thinking out loud about how his career is, fittingly, going down the toilet. They lock it up, then Booker pounds away and tries a sunset flip. Rikishi threatens with the SIT-DOWN OF DOOM, but Booker escapes. Booker running into an elbow - then a bodyslam. Whip into a corner - Book gets the elbow up. Charging into a slam - Booker out at 2. Booker takes it to the apron and snaps Rikishi's throat on the top rope, then he's back in for a spinning side-kick. Cover gets 2, then Booker chops and kicks away. Rikishi decides not sell it, then pulls Booker into a Samoan Drop. A pair of clotheslines, then a belly-to-belly, and Booker's dead. Into a corner, and it's a desperation leaping side-kick from Booker, followed up with the Axe-kick. Booker now convulsing - into a Spinaroonie - then a SUPERKICK from Rikishi. Booker falls into the Stinkface position - then eats it. We get an instant replay. What follows is almost surreal: Booker stumbles over to the announcing position and YAKS all over Michael Cole, and a couple of less-than-thrilled fans. Lawler hams it up, Cole walks off gagging, and then Rikishi is so pleased with himself he completes the segment with a dance. Match ran around 2:45. THUMBS DOWN. It was actually going quite well until the stupidity. Yes, people are PAID to write this. In retrospect, maybe I shouldn't be so hard on a segment that involves the simulation of puking on Michael Cole. Booker and Rikishi are both going nowhere, fast.

Jim Ross is out to replace Cole, and there's something messed up with the main event graphic that makes it look like Angle is a floating torso. 

POSITIVELY PAGE makes his triumphant return to television by comforting Booker back in the same bathroom. "At least it didn't happen to me…D-D-P. And that's a good thing. Go get 'em, Book." Now we're layering meaningless stupidity on top of meaningless stupidity. FEEL THE STORYTELLING TENSION!

THE GODFATHER is announced as yet another "returning" entrant into the Rumble. Not a bad idea, what with all the skank currently showing up on WWF television.

Jonathon Coachman catches up with The Rock. Jokes about penis size, anal sex and MORE fecalphelia are made. Rock says he's finally back in New York City, and Coachman is a sick freak. This was filler, and weak filler at that.

We get a Royal Rumble Replay of Flair taking it all in '92 and cutting a sweet promo after the fact. If you haven't witnessed the championship victory, do yourself a favor and track it down.


These guys could feud for the entire year and you wouldn't hear complain number one outta me. Let the exceptional in-ring action begin! Staredown to start, then Austin plays "mirror man" and repeats every motion Angle makes. It's actually pretty funny - then it's the double bird to officially get the ball rolling. Some circling - a lock-up - then a break in the corner. They lock it up again - then another slow break. AWE-SOME. When these two get in the ring it's EPIC. Austin with the wrenching headlock while Angle struggles to gain some leverage. Angle pulling it into an overhead wristlock, but Austin tumbles it over into a headlock on the mat. Back up, then Angle works in some forearms before being dropped with a shoulder off the ropes. Back into another takeover-into headlock. They exchange reversals, then Austin drops onto the leg and works it over until Angle skips out of it. MORE! MORE, I TELL YOU, MORE! Austin offers a test of strength but Angle declines. Back into a lock up, then Angle's got his own headlock. Austin takes him off and into the ropes, but Angle hits the shoulderblock, skips over, and then gets tossed out of the ring. Austin follows and chops away, then it's back into the ring. They struggle in a corner, then Angle nails his own chops. Austin reverses, then tries an irishwhip into the corner that Angle reverses. Angle charging - Austin sidestepping - ANGLE INTO THE STEEL AND OUT! Austin slides out right-quick and posts the injured shoulder, then sends Angle into the steps. Back inside, Angle reverses an irishwhip and delivers a knee to the gut. Favoring the injured arm, he hits another pair of knees, then stomps away. Some shoulders in the corner, then Austin LAUNCHES himself out, nailing a spear and some rights. Off the ropes - into an Angle overhead belly-to-belly suplex! Cover gets 2.5, then Angle stomps and chops. Austin fights back, then they go into an irishwhip-reversal sequence that ends with Austin hotshotting Angle on the ropes. He drops an elbow, sends him back into the ropes and nails a clothesline. Angle reverses a whip into the corner, but Austin gets the boot up and into a charging Angle. Austin with a clothesline attempt - Angle ducking and trying a German suplex - Austin elbowing his way out. Angle tries his own clothesline - Austin ducking and executing his own German suplex! And another! Angle elbows out, there's two German suplexes of his own! Austin's out, then goes behind - LOW BLOW from Angle. There's a clothesline, and Angle's going up top - MOONSAULT CONNECTS! 1, 2, NO! Austin goes for a kick - ANKLELOCK! Austin reaching for the ropes - Angle pulling him back - reversal into a roll-up! 1, 2, NO! CROWD IS CLINICAL! Angle tries the Angleslam - Austin blocks - STUNNER! Angle flops down, dead, and at 11:47 KANE's pyro pops. Chokeslams for everyone, then it's BIG SHOW delivering one of his own on Kane, and finally, THE GOD OF THUNDER going low on Show and planting him with the Pedigree. THE UNDERTAKER shows up for a staredown. It's a Rumble finish for one hell of a match. THUMBS UP.

The McMahon interview is a definite THUMBS DOWN, as is the backstage stuff, but we'll upgrade what should then be an overall THUMBS DOWN show to THUMBS IN THE MIDDLE because of some spectacular WRESTLING. So far, the Rumble's got Austin, Angle, Show, Kane, Triple H, The Undertaker, Godfather, Val Venis, Mr. Perfect, Val Venis, and presumably, Booker and Rikishi. Toss in Flair/McMahon and Rock/Jericho and things could be worse. I just don't get the sudden bursts of stupidity that break up some truly sweet stuff. Until next week. 


SMACKDOWN RECAP: Bonding Exercises
RAW RECAP: The New Guy Blows It
PPV RECAP: WWE Night of Champions 2012
RAW RECAP: The Show Must Go On
SMACKDOWN RECAP: The Boot Gets the Boot
RAW RECAP: Heyman Lands an Expansion Franchise
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Losing is the new Winning
RAW RECAP: Say My Name
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RAW RECAP: Dignity Before Gold?
PPV RECAP: SummerSlam 2012
RAW RECAP: Bigger IS Better
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Hitting with Two Strikes
RAW RECAP: Heel, or Tweener?
RAW RECAP: CM Punk is Not a Fan of Dwayne
SMACKDOWN RECAP: The Returnening
RAW RECAP: Countdown to 1000
PPV RECAP: WWE Money in the Bank 2012
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Friday Night ZackDown
RAW RECAP: Closure's a Bitch
RAW RECAP: Crazy Gets What Crazy Wants
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Five Surprising MitB Deposits
RAW RECAP: Weeeellll, It's a Big MitB
RAW RECAP: Johnny B. Gone
PPV RECAP: WWE No Way Out 2012
RAW RECAP: Crazy Go Nuts
RAW RECAP: Be a Star, My Ass
RAW RECAP: You Can't See Him
RAW RECAP: Big Johnny Still in Charge
PPV RECAP: WWE Over the Limit 2012
SMACKDOWN RECAP: One Gullible Fella
RAW RECAP: Anvil, or Red Herring?
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Everybody Hates Berto
RAW RECAP: Look Who's Back
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Care to go Best of Five?
RAW RECAP: An Ace Up His Sleeve
PPV RECAP: WWE Extreme Rules 2012
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Sh-Sh-Sheamus and the nOObs
RAW RECAP: Edge, the Motivational Speaker?
SMACKDOWN RECAP: AJ is Angry, Jilted
RAW RECAP: Maybe Cena DOES Suck?
RAW RECAP: Brock's a Jerk
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Back with a Bang
RAW RECAP: Yes! Yes! Yes!
PPV RECAP: WWE WrestleMania 28




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