Sunday, October 2, 2005

WWF Backlash 2002

1) Yoshihiro Tajiri vs. Billy Kidman - 6
Super stiff kicks by Tajiri and great moves by Kidman make this a watchable match. When these guys first came into the WWF, they were given a decent push and fought over the newly introduced cruiserweight title. Just for the record, this is when Vince gave a shit about the cruiserweights. Now, they’re regulated to opening match slots on Velocity. Probably one of the better cruiserweight matches under the WWF/WWE banner. It makes me want to scream when I see what has recently happened to the division.

2) Scott Hall vs. Bradshaw - 4
Nothing really much to say about this one. Hall seemed to have lost a bit since his glory days of Razor Ramon. I’ll give him credit, he didn’t look too awful.
Not a bad match. Seemed to be a bit longer than it needed to be. By now Vince’s version of the n.W.o. was pretty much dead and they were involved in second-rate feuds.

3) Jazz vs. Trish Stratus - 4
Trish beat Molly on Raw to set this one up. Molly came out before the match, cut a promo, and beat up Trish. Jazz just pretty much finished what Molly started. Once again, a division that has seen better days. But not a bad match, overall. Jazz retains after Molly beat up Trish before the match.

4) Brock Lesnar vs. Jeff Hardy - 3
This was Brock’s pay-per-view debut. I never really was a Lesnar fan, but I’ll give him credit, he could actually move in the ring unlike most people his size. Teddy Long was the ref for this one. Just thought I’d throw that out there. Brock pretty much uses Jeff as a punching bag. Hardy would be gone in less than a year and Lesnar would be champion in less than six months.

5) Kurt Angle vs. Edge - 6
So far this hasn’t been a bad show. This has the makings of a quality match. Now, I’ve never really been a fan of either of these guys so to say I was pleased by this one would be a safe conclusion. Angle actually carries Edge to a good match. Lots and lots of near falls and actually … gasp … wrestling! Good match that closes out the first half of the show nicely. These two would square off again at the next pay-per-view in a hair vs. hair match.

Chris Jericho Promo
Jericho comes out to rant and rave about how he was in the main event at WrestleMania and now he doesn’t even have a match. He has a valid point. Nice little rant by Jericho, who can be great on the mic when he wants to be. It serves its purpose to get Jericho over as a heel even more and to set up a possible run-in the main event.

6) Eddie Guerrero vs. Rob Van Dam - 5
This show just keeps getting better and better. Guerrero had just returned to the WWF on the first episode of Raw under the brand extension and RVD had won the belt from William Regal the month before at WrestleMania. I was expecting more out of these two, especially in a title match. Had this been just a regular match in the opening slot, it probably would’ve gotten a better rating. If it’s a title match, I expect just a tad more effort.

7) The Undertaker vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin (Special ref: Ric Flair) - 3
You would think that these two would put on a somewhat decent match, right? Wrong. I think there was maybe four minutes of actual wrestling in this match and 23 minutes of rest holds. Probably the most boring match I’ve ever seen in my life. Flair counts three with Austin’s foot on the rope and he doesn’t see it. That had to be the absolute worst match in the last five years. And yes, Buff Bagwell matches are included in that. Crowd was totally dead by the end of this one after 27 minutes of sheer boredom. Next please.

Jonathan Coachman catches up with Flair in the back and shows him the replay of the fall. He asks him if he saw Austin’s foot on the rope. Flair is speechless and pretty much realizes that he made a mistake. This would help start a program between Austin and Flair which would culminate at Judgment Day.

8) Billy Gunn & Chuck Palumbo vs. Al Snow & Maven - 4
There was more action and movement in this match than there was in all 27 minutes of the previous match. Maven never amounted to much during his tenure and was just recently released. It served it’s purpose to get B&C over. It also woke up the crowd for the main event, most of whom were asleep from the previous blunder.

9) Hulk Hogan vs. Triple H - 5
I was somewhat skeptical of this one because these are two of the most immobile wrestlers in the WWF. That being said, I was pleasantly surprised by this one. This isn’t their best by any means but it’s not bad either. I don’t get the finish though. Jericho interferes to hit Hogan with a chair and Undertaker interferes to hit HHH with a chair. You know, it’s just me, but Jericho should be angry at HHH for beating him at Mania so wouldn’t he want to hit HHH? I don’t know. Hogan wins to get the title for a brief nostalgia run. Suprisingly good, but not great. Nice way to close out the show.

This show was suprisingly good. I normally don’t expect much from shows that immediatley follow any of the four major shows but this one was quite pleasing. This show set up three feuds going into the next show and continued the RVD/Guerrero and Angle/Edge programs. Aside from Austin/Undertaker, the work ethic was great as well and helped the overall result. Recommended.

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