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Matt Spaulding



No Way Back

Man, I've been sick ALL DAY today. Damn Olympics.


The Whole Show vs. Dustin Rhodes May Finally Get Over Again

Goldust returned at the Royal Rumble and started talking about an unknown "he", who he described as a rising star whose dreams he was going to shatter. Turned out he was talking about RVD, which sort of makes sense - he's a rising star.

If this isn't the very definition of "major style clash", I don't know what is.

TNM Says: Goldust (5:57 DQ) Rob Van Dam

What I'd Do: Goldust has not yet begun to obsess, and his attempt at being a bad-ass is somewhat amusing. I'd like to see how he'd react if RVD beat him.

What They'll Do: For some reason I see a Goldust victory.

Tag Team Turmoil, Winners Go To WrestleMania: The Dudley Boyeeez vs. Scotty Too Hotty & Albert vs. Totally Buff 2002 vs. Just Send Beer Money vs. The Poor Man's Kurt Angle & I Thought I Knew Him vs. The Hardy Boyz

The WWF does this once or twice a year when they have a bunch of tag teams that aren't doing anything - tosses them all into a match to see what develops.

What brought this one about was the Dudleys complaining to Ric Flair that they hadn't gotten their tag team title rematch. Christian and Lance Storm interrupted and said that they deserved a title shot. So Flair set up this match and dangled a carrot with the words "Tag Team Title shot at WrestleMania" on it. He also announced the Hardys' entry last, which got a reaction from the other men in the room at the time.

TNM Says: Albert & Scotty 2 Hotty (11:39 crucifix ---> pin Bubba Ray) Dudley Boys Billy & Chuck (23:38 [total time] running powerslam ---> pin Scotty) Scotty & Albert Billy & Chuck (26:43 kendo stick shot ---> pin Faarooq) A.P.A. Billy & Chuck (33:24 DQ) Lance Storm & Christian Hardy Boyz (39:12 Hardy Bomb ---> pin Gunn) Billy & Chuck

What I'd Do: Just say no to Billy and Chuck. This seems custom-made for the Hardyz to make a triumphant comeback as the last team in and win this thing.

What They'll Do: It'll come down to Dudleys-Hardyz for the 39,420,163rd time, and the Hardyz will prevail.

WWF Tag Team Title Match: Tazzz & Lil' Spike Dudley vs. Sucka T & The Test (without Jillian Barberie)

Until this week, Booker T was interrupting opening interview segments and turning them into matches. Until this week, Test was apparently out injured or something, as the only other time we saw him after the Rumble was the Rollerball SmackDown! Somehow, they became the top contenders for the tag team titles.

Post-Rumble, it's been a rather uneventful reign for the champs, although Spike has recovered from his neck injury and lost the brace.

TNM Says: Spike & Tazz (7:40 Northern Lights Suplex ---> pin Test) Test & Booker T

What I'd Do: This would seem to have "hot shot" written all over it, but I'm not sure a title change now is a good idea.

What They'll Do: I smell new tag champs.

Our Champion vs. Hell on Wheels

Rock got a soundbite out of Undertaker being eliminated from the Royal Rumble by Maven. Taker took it as yet another diss, so he cost Rock an opportunity to fight for the WWF title at this show. Rock said he was gonna be his own man and that he didn't have to answer to Taker, then he helped Maven beat him for the Hardcore title. Taker responded to this by giving Rock a Tombstone on the roof of a limo so he could take the week off and try to save The Scorpion King.

TNM Says: The Rock (8:22 Rock Bottom ---> pin) The Undertaker

What I'd Do: Thanks to this feud, Taker got the Raw crowd to turn on him in 15 seconds. A win might actually get him some sustained heel heat.

What They'll Do: An Undertaker victory wouldn't shock me, but I think they'll put Rock over.

WrestleMania Title Shot On the Line, The Corporate Bitch as Special Referee: Risk vs. Olympic Villain Kurt Angle

Triple H eliminated Kurt Angle to win the Royal Rumble after Angle thought he'd eliminated HHH earlier. Angle conceded that he'd failed to eliminate Triple H, but complained that he didn't play fair by coming up from behind and tossing him. So he went to Vince, who, to spite Triple H, made this match for his WrestleMania slot.

Then Monday happened.

At the end of SmackDown!, Stephanie announced her "Valentine's Day surprise" for her soon-to-be-ex - her special referee assignment. Why? Because increased doubt about the outcome = increased buyrates. Also, she wants him broken, beaten, humiliated, and killed damn dead, so Angle will get to do whatever the hell he wants.

TNM Says: Kurt Angle (9:48 Angle Slam ---> pin) Triple H

What I'd Do: Triple H wins after giving Stephanie a Pedigree and another ref counts the pin on Angle.

What They'll Do: After taking an ass-kicking of Olympian proportions, Triple H wins after Stephanie gets KO'd and another ref runs in to count three. Then CUE THE PORNO MUSIC as the nWo officially arrives and (at Vince's direction) beats down Triple H.

(Note: I would have picked Angle had the title shot not been put on the line.)

Undisputed Unified WWF Title Match: Champ Jericho vs. The $64,000 Question

Jericho outlasted Rock at the Rumble, and now gets to face the other man he beat at Vengeance. Austin, meanwhile, has admitted to a terrible addiction - the WWF title - and he's desperate for another fix. He got this chance by beating Angle in a #1 Contender's Match after Angle thought he'd won.

Jericho smashed a cooler full of beer over Austin's head on Raw, then drank what wasn't spilled and taunted him with it. Austin got revenge on SmackDown! by getting into Jericho's head and scaring the crap out of him.

TNM Says: Stone Cold (9:05 Stunner ---> pin) Chris Jericho

What I'd Do: No reason to change course now. Jericho retains.

What They'll Do: The Chris Jericho Survival Tour continues with the narrowest of victories here. It wouldn't shock me if this one's clean, either.

Also, give me Regal over Edge if that's been announced and I missed it.

Small Packages:

  • Hey, who had Goldust as the first of the returnees to make PPV?
  • And has the TV picture always gone to letterbox format during his entrance? I've forgotten.
  • No one does highlight packages like the WWF - if you haven't seen SmackDown! yet for whatever reason, what they do with Stephanie in the opening after Triple H trashes the wedding set is absolutely brilliant.
  • And believe it or not, they've actually come up with a situation where her horrible overacting is Perfectly Acceptable.
  • Shouldn't Mr. McMahon's boys (UT and Angle) be worried about the nWo coming in and destroying their company?
  • CRZ, a suggestion for Vince: vKm

    Matt Spaulding
    [slash] wrestling

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