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Matt Spaulding



King of the Ring Preview: Coming Unglued

Y'all know the drill by now...


WWF What? A Light Heavyweight Title Match? You're Kidding, Right?: Jeff Hardy vs. The Ladies Love To Hate X-Pac

This actually got started in the Tag Team Turmoil match at Judgment Day, when X-Pac and Justin Credible eliminated the Hardys. Various one-on-ones followed, and Jeff beat Jerry Lynn for the LHW title in the meantime.

I still think this appearance of a WWF LHW renaissance is going to end up as part of the WWF/WCW feud, but more on THAT as Invasion approaches.

What I'd Do: For the first time in a while, we have two recognizable WWF superstars fighting over the Light Heavyweight belt. A title change here would seem to signify that the WWF is actually getting serious about a light heavyweight division again. But I don't know if that's the case, so I'd put Jeff over anyway.

What They'll Do: I think they'll keep it on Jeff.

King Of The Ring Semifinals:
Olympic Villain Kurt Angle vs. Not Edge
I Thought I Knew Him vs. Rhyno

Team R.E.C.K. has come apart at the seams these last few weeks. Kurt's trying to become the first man to win back-to-back KotR tournaments. Edge and Christian have shown signs of being annoyed with Angle as of late, but the relationship between them has gotten more complex, as they both want to win and aren't happy that the other is in the tourney. Rhyno just wants to kill people.

Edge and Christian are through as a tag team after this. Bank on that if nothing else.

One thing I don't like about having just the semifinals and finals of the tournament on PPV is that I can't tell you that the other reason Jeff Hardy lost on Monday is because nobody's ever won King of the Ring while holding a title. Conversely, Rhyno dropping the Hardcore strap to Test greatly improved his chances.

Last year, I completely botched picking the tournament. For my sanity's sake, let's hope I do better this time around.

What I'd Do: Christian over Angle, Rhyno over Edge via Christian interference, Rhyno over Christian via return interference from Edge, who comes out of this as the face.

What They'll Do: Christian over Angle via Shane interference (leading right into the next match), Edge over Rhyno, Edge over Christian.

Street Fight: Olympic Villain Kurt Angle vs. Shane McMahon, Rebel Leader

Kurt's also angry with Shane for interrupting his gold medal reenactment, while Shane doesn't like the fact that Kurt dissed WCW.

Making the match a street fight was Angle's idea, but it makes me wonder about the rumors that Shane was working with Al Snow to get some moves down for this match. We know he can do an Olympic Slam.

Did you know that Shane is 3-2 on pay-per-views?

What I'd Do: What we always do in a Shane McMahon match - get the boy to bounce off a lot of stuff. I'd have him win.

What They'll Do: DUH. Shane bumps like a freak, and wins when some WCW wrestlers get involved, particularly since it looks like they're setting up Angle to chase Shane to WCW.

Triple Threat WWF Title Match: Hi, My Name Is vs. Da Crip vs. Chris Jericho

His name is Stone Cold Steve Austin, and as God is my witness, his mind is broken in half.

Jericho pinned Austin the night after Judgment Day to win the tag titles for himself and Benoit. Austin whined about how Jericho didn't belong in the same ring as him. Vince pulled a Montreal on Benoit in Calgary, but paid for it by eating a Crossface. Austin beat Benoit with a tights-assisted rollup in Benoit's hometown of Edmonton. Austin then beat Jericho with help from Regal and a misguided shot from Mick Foley, but Benoit got a rollup of his own on Austin in a tag title defense.

Linda Mac decided that since both Jericho and Benoit had pins over Austin, and since Austin said he could beat them both at the same time (and since the original plan was for Benoit to face Triple H here), that the fair thing to do would be to book a Triple Threat match.

If there was ever a time to actually continue the feud after the PPV match with the guy who didn't get pinned, this is SO it.

What I'd Do: Austin over Jericho, leading to Austin/Benoit at Invasion.

What They'll Do: They won't turn anybody in this match, I don't think. And I foresee no title changes this evening.

And that's even if they add Matt/Credible for the Euro title and/or a Kane/Albert IC rematch on Heat. (I picked those because they make sense given the storylines.)

Don't expect an actual match between Diamond Dallas Page and the Undertaker, either - but there will be a confrontation.

Small Packages:

  • For the first time in a while, the WWF actually had a legitimate surprise for a "big surprise." And I liked the thinking behind DDP's promo, but I felt his delivery was lacking.

  • Still, though... he's trying to get to the Undertaker by stalking Sara, when he's got Kimberly at home? I'm starting to think Page is just a horny mofo.

  • It also makes you wonder: did Shane know about it? And if he didn't, how did Kane know that he didn't?

  • Where the hell is Chyna?

  • Michael Cole has a tattoo? Who'd have thunk it?

  • Now that the Dudleys are tag champs again and have apparently turned heel also, who are the challengers? Edge & Christian are headed for a split, the Hardys are enjoying singles runs, there's no Too Cool, X-Factor are heels, and the A.P.A. are wherever Chyna is.

    Matt Spaulding
    The Oracles' War Room

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