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Before I we get to the preview, needless to say what we just witnessed in New York leaves us all in great shock and disbelief. I am sure no religion preaches this insanity and such acts are committed by a few mad, frustrated people who deserve to be punished in the worst possible manner. My thoughts and prayers to the victims of this terrible, cowardly act of terrorism.

The Event: Backlash 2001
The Date: May 27, 2001
The Place: Chicago, Illinois
Your Host: Andy X
Attendance: 17,164

The History:
Vince McMahon had gone ahead and fulfilled his long time dream of overcoming his arch nemesis Ted Turner and his WCW. And boy did he do it in style. He got the entire WCW for about $10.50 Canadian with a car muffler and Shawn Stasiak thrown in as a bonus. To top it off the WWF was coming off perhaps the most successful WrestleMania ever and needless to say the last 2 Backlashes had been pretty good. However not all was good in the wacky land of the WWF. The Rock had left to become a mummy, that doesn't sound right does it? Anyway SCSA had been turned heel rather hastily if you ask me. The result, No top money drawing mega face. So the WWF decided that Stone Cold should team up with Triple H, call themselves the 2 man power trip and push the O'Brien Brothers: Kane O'Brien and Undertaker O'Brien as the top baby faces against them. And we all know what happens when the Undertaker is pushed as the top face (If you don't see: 13,WrestleMania). True the guy has been hugely over for the last ten years and has the ability to be a very decent top heel but put him in the main event picture as the top face and that spells disaster with a capital D. To make things really "interesting" the tag belts were given to the O'Brien's and the IC belt to HHH and they were all put on line tonight in a special tag team main event.

On With the show:

We are live from Chicago, my favorite wrestling town in the world. Onto the first match:

  • X-Factor vs. The Dudley Boyz:
    Dudleyz in first and that pathetic X-Factor music hits. Dudleyz get some initial offense in. Spike to the top and comes down with a sloppy foot drop off the top rope. D-Von and Buh Buh toss Spike over the top rope onto Justin Credibly Stupid and 123 Pac. The dudz triple team Credible and Spike gets a couple of 2 counts. The crowd start their usual "we want tables" chant. Spike gets caught in the heels corner. Albert misses a standing leg drop but blocks the Acid drop. Tag to Justin who misses and hits the post. Hot tag to D-Von, as I enter my typing work rate heaven. D-Von beats up every heel like all good faces should when they get hot-tagged. X-Pac gets beaten up for about 30 seconds till Albert gets a cheap shot in to reverse things. That awesome X-Pac martial arts kick and D-Von is down. Albert distracts the ref as Credible and X-Pac double team D-Von. X-Pac tagged in and hits a rest hold. Onto to the ropes and X-Pac almost completely misses a spinning heel kick but D-Von sells it anyway. X-Pac hits an amazing shoulder block. I don't know why so many people bitch about X-Pac sucking in the ring because this guy can still out work most of the WWF roster. Admittedly he is not as good as he was in his 123 Kid persona but still pretty decent to watch in the ring. Back to the match as Credible gets tagged in. Now this guy truly sucks and is a great example of Paul Heyman's ability to make a star out of an undeserving nobody. Credible gets some "little" offense in. D-Von hits back but Credible hits a sidewalk slam to change all that. Albert tagged in and hits an under hook slam. Credible gets in as they try to double team D-Von but he hits his own double clothesline. Hot tag to Buh Buh. Justin gets a Bubba Bomb, X-Pac gets a side slam for a two count as Albert hits his own partner by mistake. D-Von clotheslines both himself and Albert out of the ring. Slam on Justin and could it be? Yes its time for waaaaasssup. Waaaaaaassup on Credible. D-Von...GET THE TABLES. But wait, big boot on D-Von by Albert. Albert charges Buh Buh as Credible and X-Pac get double super kicks in for the 3 count as I have to sit through that pathetic music again. X-Pac brings in the table and goes through it for his troubles.

    Match Rating: ***1/4, Good opener. Crowd gets wood, the newer team goes over.

    Backstage, Duchess of Queensbury (Wrestlecrap TM) arrives. Steven Regal greets the Duchess of Queensbury (Wrestlecrap TM). Oh this is so funny, HA HA HA, This really is funny, HA and HA. Remember when Leslie Neilson was bought in to solve the mystery of the second Undertaker? Well this is funnier than that. YES, it's that funny. By the way the Duchess looks like Pat Paterson in drag which makes it all the MORE funnier. Somebody stop these people before I die laughing.

    Kurt Angle follows with his usual promo and Jerry Lynn is shown winning the LHW title.

  • Hardcore title: Rhyno v. Raven
    Rhyno in first, Raven comes out to a huge pop and a trolley full of hardcore stuff. Rhyno charges but Raven gets him down with a drop toehold on to a stop sign to get a quick two count. Rhyno head first into the top turnbuckle. Raven charges Rhyno with a trash can and hits him on the head. Rhyno with shoulderblocks as he takes charge of the match. Rhyno's charge backfires backfires as Raven blocks it with a trash can but Raven's defense backfires as he gets the worse hit of the two. Rhyno sets up the ring steps to try a dive off them but misses and smashes into a chair. Raven tries the same thing and clostheslines Rhyno for a two count. Back in as Raven punches Rhyno right back to the outside. Raven throws everything including the kitchen sink into the ring. Raven misses a charge in the steel post as Rhyno is back in control of the match. Ryhno hits Raven with various objects and covers for another 2 count. More shots to the head for another 2 count. Raven thrown back into the ring as Rhyno throws in the shopping cart. Rhyno introduces Raven to the shopping cart as Raven returns the favor by drop toe holding him onto the cart. More shots to the head as Raven bulldogs Rhyno for another 2 count. Rhyno picks up the cart again but Raven reverses with a garbage can. Do you think when Greeks were wrestling all those years ago, anyone would have ever imagined a reversal with a garbage can? Back to the match as Raven gets another 2 count. Raven with a shopping cart charge into Rhyno's abdominal area. Raven sets up the cart in the corner but Rhyno makes a come back with hitting Raven in the head with a sign. Garbage can shots to the head. Rhyno charges Raven but instead end up in the shopping cart in an abso-f*cking-lootely amazing spot. Raven with some kitchen sink shots to Rhyno. Cover for two. Raven tries to get another kitchen sink shot in but Ryhno charges and GORE! GORE! GORES him for the 3 count.

    Match Rating: ****1/4, Rhyno's title reign helped give the hardcore title some much needed credibility as both guys prove that when it comes to hardcore there is none better than them extreme folks.

    More hilarity with the Duchess of Queensbury as we still don't know what the rules of the match are. Well folks its what we all have been waiting for. The Duchess of Queensbury match, Next!

  • Duchess of Queensbury match (Wrestlecrap TM): Chris Jericho v. William Regal.
    Matches like these that remind me of that famous line "Who booked this crap". Regal in first and calls out the Duchess of Queensbury who comes out to a rather ordinary crowd reaction. Damn us Americans. We have no idea how to treat royalty in drag. Chris Jericho comes out to the biggest pop of the night. Bigger than ANYONE will get tonight as we see a really hot girl sitting in the front row with a pink top on. Lockup as Jericho goes for a side headlock. Arm bars reversed by both wrestlers as Jericho goes to the top and comes down with an axe handle on the commissioner. Drop kick as Regal bails out. On the outside Jericho gets some offense in. Back in and Jericho misses a drop kick off the top rope. 2 count for Regal. Kicks to the back by Regal followed by a couple of uppercuts. Regal goes for a mid rope move but Jericho gets up and tosses him. Jericho in control as he connects a bulldog. Lionsault is next as Jericho covers. But before the ref could count we are told that the time limit for the first round has expired as par the Duchess Queensbury (Wrestlecrap, TM) rules. We all know where this is going so lets just get it over with. Jericho is in shock as Regal rolls him up for a two count. Regal gains control and goes into a submission hold but Jericho recovers and goes for The Walls of Jericho but of course we are informed that the Duchess of Queensbury (Wrestlecrap TM) match don't allow a submissions victory. Jericho goes after the Duchess but Regal stops him and rams him into a steel post. Of course as you all might have figured it by now, a Duchess of Queensbury (Wrestlecrap TM) rules match up has no DQ rules. Back in the ring as Regal gets a couple of 2 counts in before Jericho takes control again and throws regal outside onto the Duchess' lap. Jericho grabs the Duchess and throws her inside and puts in the Walls of Jericho. Regal makes the save with a few chair shots for the 3 count and the win.

    Match Rating: * , One star subtracted for the stupid gimmick attached to the match.

  • 30-minute Ultimate Submission match: Chris Benoit v. Kurt Angle. Rules: The person with the most submissions in 30 minutes wins the match with a 1-minute rest period after every submission. Kurt Angle praises Michael Jordan and shoots about the sad state Chicago basketball has been in since he left. Stone face walks out to a nice pop. Some basic mat wrestling as expected to get us underway. Angle bails out a couple of times as Benoit is in control. Back in Angle with a with modified leg bar as Benoit gives up promptly at the 23:24 mark. Angle 1, Benoit 0. Angle works on the Benoit's knee but Benoit makes a comeback with a cross arm breaker and this time Angle quickly taps at 21:54 to make it 1-1. Benoit firmly in control as he works on Angle's arm after the rest period. Benoit shoves the referee for no apparent reason and Angle hits him with a chair. Ankle lock for another QUICK submission at 19:37. Angle 2, Benoit 1. Right after the rest period Angle goes straight into a Crippler Cross-face of his own to go 3-1 up at 18:54. Angle in control but Benoit throws Angle to the outside. Back in and they exchange more submission holds without changing the score until Benoit goes for a one-legged Boston Crab and the submission to get one back on Angle at the 11:53. Angle 3, Benoit 2. Great psychology here as Angle tries to waste time by not letting Benoit back in the match. He finally manages to get in with Angle in control. Angle tosses Benoit to the outside. Back in Angle goes for a rest hold as we have under 5 minutes left. Under 3 minutes left as Angle is still in control of the match. Benoit makes a comeback with German suplexes and an ankle lock of his own to get a submission at 2:07. Angle 3-Benoit 3. Benoit works on the leg but Angle with a comeback and the Ankle lock but the time expires and we are into OT. Crippler Cross face and Angle submits to give Benoit the victory. If I haven't mentioned this already, great psychology here. Adding the 1-minute rest periods really makes it worthwhile to submit quickly to a move and makes all the more sense to the viewer when a wrestler does that. If you cant quite grasp that concept, allow me to explain. In wrestling psychology terms if a wrestler is in a submission hold from which he has little or no chance of getting a reversal or saving himself, its best to submit quickly and take a rest to make a comeback rather than waste precious energy and risk long term damage to that particular part of the body PARTICULARLY in a multiple submissions match like the this one. This one was for the true "technical wrestling" enthusiast.

    Match Rating: ****, I really enjoy these Benoit-Angle matches. You can almost always be assured of a decent match with good psychology when Benoit or Angle are out there. Too bad Chris Benoit has the personality of a Dan Savern-Steve Blackman love child and speaks like a 2 year old who just learned to talk not too long ago. Lets face it; this guy will never be a main event draw. But still he is a great wrestler to have on the upper mid card. I see great things in store in Angle's future though.

    Recap from Smackdown as Shane O'Mac recites from the book "Shane and the beanstalk". Get it? Shane and the bean stalk. As stupid as the it sounds, it actually made sense when Shane climbed up on top of that steel structure and... we'll get to that later. First here is Shane O'Mac: "Hello Big Show. I saw what you did to Test, so I though I'd try to calm you down. So I thought I'd read you from this fable to turn that frown, upside down. This story stars a giant a beanstalk and a boy named Jack, But for the purposes of this story the boy will be named...Shane O'Mac. Now Shane had a dad, who was angry and crass, Because at Wrestlemania Shane kicked his dads ass. Shane's dad was sore he could barely walk, So he called Shane out for a father-son talk. They stood in the ring, face-to-face and toe-to-toe, When Vince called out for the giant Big Show, Fee Fie Foe fum, I' am seven foot tall but me funny dumb. Show grabbed Shane by the neck, picked him up off the mat, Than choke slammed Shane down with a ferocious swat. Vince grinned from ear to ear upon seeing the crash, Said you two will compete this Sunday at Backlash. Once the match started the giant looked high and low, But he couldn't find Shane...which way did he go? Up to the top of the mighty beanstalk The people were stunned they could barely talk. The fairy tale ends with a mighty crash landing, When it was all said and done, Shane O'Mac was THE LAST MAN STANDING."

    With that in mind lets to go to our next match, the last man standing match of coarse with Big Show taking on Shane O'Mac. And in the spirit of the story line I'll do something that probably has never been done before. Recap a match in form of a poem (Will also be available shortly at wreslteREcrap.com)

  • Last Man Standing: Shane McMahon vs. The Big Show Get ready for some real exhilaration, As we wait for Shane O'Mac with great anticipation. I love that theme "Here comes the money" by the way, Its really great but that X-factor theme, now that is quite gay. Shane still has that book with the Shane and the beanstalk story, They are really working that angle with all its glory. Shane runs from the big show as he chases him around, As this looks like a real mismatch pound for pound. Shane attacks the Giant with a mighty kindo stick blow, But the Giant hits him back and its time to start the Big show. Shane gets the control back through some chair shots to the back, And follows it up with an ether soaked rag. The show looks to be down for the loss, But Vince saves the day just because he is the boss. The big show takes back the control, As the Big Show offense on Shane seems to have taken its toll. All seems lost for Shane O'Mac, But test makes an appearance to get things back on track. Brawling back towards the entrance they go, But they cant keep the giant down, after all he is one mighty foe.

    But Shane has a plan or is he simply a stunt freak, I hope this match ends soon; I got to take a leak. Shane goes up to the top of the mighty steel structure peak, The people are stunned, they can barely speak. The over match with the over gimmicked story line ends with a mighty crash landing, When it was all said and done, Shane O'Mac was THE LAST MAN STANDING.

    Match Rating: ***1/4, 2 for the match, 1 for Shane's jump off 50 feet, for my originality. Kudos to Shane for taking bumps that he just doesn't have to. Even with all those safety precautions he might end up killing himself someday. But that doesn't mean I am not going to enjoy watching someone fly off 50 feet for my amusement.

    Hey its Brian Christopher and Steve Blackman. Who?

  • European title: Matt Hardy v. Christian v. Eddy Guerrero.
    Eddy and Christian team up on Matt and throw him outside as they battle each other on the inside. Power slam for the near fall. Matt Hardy back in to take control. Christian with a clothesline as all three men are down. The match goes to and froe as the action goes to the outside. Eddy suplexes Matt back in the ring for a 2 count Christian back in as Matt Hardy clotheslines them both off the top rope. Christian throws Matt to the outside and distracts the ref allowing Edge to spear him. Jeff makes an appearance to take care off Edge and as a bonus, Swanton's Eddy. Twist of fate for the pin and Matt Hardy retains.

    Match Rating: **1/2, nothing special but a decent match nevertheless.

  • WWF World title, Intercontinental title, Tag team title match: Undertaker & Kane v. Steve Austin & HHH.
    SCSA gets mixed a reaction. HHH out to pretty decent face heat. Both the O'Brien's get pretty decent pops as well. Who's brilliant idea was it to use Rolling with the UT? Doesn't suite the persona at all. American badass was perfect but there are a dozen others that would be fit. Anyway, long stalling to begin. The O'Brien's beat on Austin and Trips. Taker and Kane in control as both heels decide to take a rest outside. HHH with a cheap shot and the 2-man power trip is in control. They work on Kane's arm, which is by the way injured. As I quickly skip through the proceedings. Hot tag to the Undertaker, but the ref doesn't see it. Kane is still the legal man. Stunner on Kane as Austin brawls with the Taker distracting the stupid ref. Vince runs in, gives HHH the sledgehammer, and that finishes Kane to give Trips and the cold one the tag titles.

    Match Rating *1/4, that ladies and gentleman is the vary definition of an excessively long, pointless main event. Incase you are wondering why I keep using the term "O'Brien Brothers" To describe UT and Kane, go to observer.com and search for an article with ESPN in the heading. Or better yet go to ESPN.com and search for Summer Slam. A very interesting read that will also solve the O'Brien mystery for ya'all.

    Conclusion: Apart from the main event almost everything was interesting to watch. But it was interesting only because of the good work of some great talent. There wasn't a single decent story line going into the pay-per-view. Again you have to question the rationality of turning Austin at a time where there was no other money drawing baby face around. Turning him in and around Summer Slam would have made so much more sense. Even if you don't have the Rock around, at least a face HHH or Angle should have been there to give Austin a mega baby face to work with. There was no point in doing it at WrestleMania. But still I would definitely recommend this show just because of the great work put in by the undercard.

    Average Match Rating: **3/4
    Crowd: ****
    Best match of the night: Raven vs. Rhyno
    Best Promo of the night: Shane O'Mac
    The Show Stealer: Shane O'Mac
    Worst Match: Undertaker & Kane vs. Stone Cold & HHH
    Historic moments: Shane McMahon's 50-foot dive.
    Overall Event Rating: ***3/4, In other words, If you are an Iraqi don't brave an American attack for this one but go get it as soon as its over.

    As usual all gifts and donations to the Andy X charity for Beer will be taken at wrestlefanatics69@yahoo.com

    Andy X
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