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WWF SmackDown! taping




Oakland Arena
Oakland, CA

Thanks to the WWF and WrestleLine for getting me comped to the 9.1.1 WWF Oakland show!

Did you hear the one about the runaway XFL blimp? "The limp blimp," Channel 11 called it. Crashed on the side of the Jack London Square restaurant - rather spectacular home video footage that probably *won't* make it to WWF television. The REAL irony is that blimp was supposed to fly over the Raiders/Ravens AFC Championship game. *Somebody* still likes the NFL best!

Anyway, the blimp ended up landing a half mile away from I-880 - fortunately for us, it didnt land ON the freeway, meaning Phil and I could arrive at the Oakland Arena just in time (7:35) to catch TONY CHIMEL & MARK YEATON walking out to a "hey, I know who they are!" pop. Since SmackDown! was only 90 minutes this week, they took the opportunity to tape some extra matches - TWO weeks of Heat? An opportunity to test out new characters? Well, read on...we'll guess together!

Referee Mike Sparks gets an indifferent reaction, and the dark match is on:

PROTOTYPE defeated AARON AGUILERA in 4:04. If I remember my Learning Channel specials correctly, I think both these guys are UPW talent, and this isn't Prototype's first Oakland dark match. Aguilera wore a "Hijo de Jefe" T-shirt - Jefe's a UPW manager, isn't he? Anyway, you've heard it all before - Prototype is one *built* dude, and both men had a good chance to strut their stuff in the typical four minute special. I missed the finish when people walked in front of me to get to their seats, but it sounded like a definite power move for the pin.

Teddy Long comes out to a MONSTER pop off his performance Monday.

In a nontitle, non-hardcore match, RAVEN defeated RODNEY of the Mean Street Posse in 3:38 with ye olde DDTe and pin.

The Heat logo fills the oval in the entryway - will these matches air on Heat? Who knows?

Dennis Knight was annouced as TEX SLAZENGER, making his way out to the ring to Dusty Rhodes' theme "American Dream," dressed in Texas tights and a black, sleeveless T-shirt reading "don't annoy the crazy person" - *and* sporting a fresh Corino-esque dyejob on the hair. "Wassup Oakland! I didn't hear ya - what's up? Ya know, I been a lotta things in my time, but now I'm going to stop trying to be somebody else...and tonight I'm just gonna kick Big Boss Man's ass just like the Raiders will on Sunday!" Instant #1 face status for Slazenger. Indeed, BIG BOSS MAN made his return to competition, and HE got some mic time as well. "I would like for you, and all these people to take this opportunity to kiss my ass. You think you're a Common Man just like all these pieces of trash..." after some more "in-bred freaks" comparisons with the crowd, Slazenger stopped him with an "oof" and a slugfest erupted...albeit, a comedy one. Comedy spots included Slazenger shining his ass with a bandana and then giving Raven's snot rag technique to the Boss Man. He also kissed referee Jack Doan at one point in the match. Boss Man took the match in 5:23 with a Boss Man slam for the pin. Post-match, they had a battle for the nightstick which was so significant I apparently took no notes on it. Oops. Anyway, it looks like they're onto something with this Dusty-esque character - I don't think he's going to debut on TV yet, but they're pretty close with it. Nice to see Boss Man's back, as well.

Doan sticks around to tackle the next match - ESSA RIOS pins JOEY ABS in 5:28 after a moonsault.

JONATHAN COACHMAN & MICHAEL HAYES are introduced. Huh? Heat doesn't have commentators at ringside....unless maybe these will be shown the night of the Royal Rumble? Or are they the UK Heat commentators? Anybody know?

LO DOWN (with Tiger Ali Singh) came out - Singh again shared with us his quest for the respect he deserves. "You people have shown us nothing but disrespect and prejudice! We're not driving taxicabs, serving Slurpees at the 7-Eleven...we are ATHLETES! I demand all of your SILENCE (BIG BOO!) while we pay our respect!" Some ceremony involving their turbans and a silver tray of rose petals follows. Their opponents tonight are the ACOLYTES. Faarooq says they've got a tight schedule - do they have time to fight? Bradshaw suggests they can get them a taxi after the match. Everybody yuks it up. "We don't care why you make Slurpees, we just wanna know why you don't drink beer!" Bradshaw goes into a lengthy speech about how they're not prejudiced, don't care about heritage and so on and so on - "we're just equal opportunity asskickers!" This goes over rather well, leading to an "APA" chant during the match. Match goes in and out, Teddy Long loses track of things legal and illegal - not to mention behind his back, but the end comes in 4:54 when Bradshaw hits the Hades lariat on D'Lo Brown for the fall.

IVORY comes out to say a few words. "Let's take a look at what aired this past Monday night on RAW." Highlights of the Cole/Chyna sitdown. "Let me ask all of you...does anybody here really care whether Chyna steps back into the ring? Well, the World Wrestling Federation should not allow it - the World Wrestling Federation should not allow Chyna to talk all of you into believing nudity is okay...and violence is acceptible...and maybe the almighty dollar is more important than making a difference in this world." The WWF, by making Chyna a role model, has everyone confused, but the Right to Censor knows that Chyna is more interested in cashing in on immorality than making a difference in this world. "Now, Chyna, if you're so anxious to get back into the ring, then I want to be the one you get in the ring for!" She calls Chyna a cheap tramp, cashing in on who knows what people do to that dirty magazine! It's disgusting, it's humiliating, and it's totally unacceptible. Chyna is a CANCER to the image of what the Right to Censor stand for. She goes on to intimate that Chyna looked..."rather healthy," in fact *she* believes she's bluffing - and afraid to step into the ring with her! "I'm so sure...that I'll put my title on the line to prove it! And that is where I will prove that *I* am the TRUE champion of women's rights...and it will be for poor little Chyna's own good."

Best match of Heat saw KAI EN TAI take on TOO COOL. "Yo, homeboys! You might be funky...but can you fight?" "In-DEED." Too Cool worked the crowd, and everybody was happy to do the American Males clap. Back and forth match had the one spot *I* wanted to see (camel clutch/bow/dropkick to the face) so I was able to ignore the Worm and be happy. After about 4:30, both men from Japan rolled out and took the the mic one more time. "Your teachers taught you well, but there's a time to fight...and there's a time to dance. So LET'S GET JIGGY WITH IT!" In-DEED." Too Cool are taken aback, but produce two pair of Magic Funky Glasses and the next thing you know, all four men are DANCING! Taka settles for the "I'm gonna do the Michioku Driver" dance....or is that the "choppy choppy your pee pee" dance? The turnbuckles go sparkly and the crowd goes nuts. Anyway, they hit that final "crossed arms" pose...and then Kaientai brings about the SHOCKING SWERVE by totally punking out Sexay and Hotty! MICHINOKU DRIVER! "You fools! We are not to be trusted! We are EVIL! HAhahahahahaha!" "In-DEED." Referee Jack Doan apparently threw the match out - depending on how charitable you want to be, you can call it (no contest 4:30) right up to (no contest under 7)

Mike Sparks takes the ring as ALBERT (by his damn self) takes out CRASH (with Molly Holly) with an Albertbomb in 3:27. Crowd was more interested in chanting "We want Trish!" After the match, Albert continues the punishment - I keep waiting for Molly to take him on, but instead HARDCORE HOLLY runs out and turns it around, giving Albert the patented crotch kick, then the Best Dropkick in the Business. Hardcore and Crash had a bonding moment, and all three Hollys left together.


MICHAEL COLE is introduced.

LILIAN GARCIA hits the national anthem. For Jeff Amdur, I timed it at 1:36.

Chimel starts to shill the framed photos...but he's cut off by JERRY LAWLER's music. Cole has a good laugh at his expense for *that*.

Chimel manages to get the entire shill out - Undertaker, Lita, Rock, and Trish Stratus are available!

At 8:58 the lights go out...and we're off!

One World Leader Attitude - WWF!

Clips from RAW

Opening Credits

Hit the PYRO and everybody's got a sign!

VINCE McMAHON starts us off with the heap big interview segment. He wants us to know he had *nothing* to do with Austin being screwed out of the title by Triple H - he was just as shocked as all of us were! Triple H was verbally reprimanded as late as "this morning." Where's all the acrimony between Austin and Triple H from? Consider the past - Triple H hired Rikishi to run Austin down a year ago. Austin raised Triple H thirty feet in a car...and dropped him to the ground. It was miraculous that Triple H even survived. Monday, Triple H used a lead pipe to give Austin a concussion. Where will it end? "Right here, right now - tonight." Vince ordered a special 24 hour cooling off period, strongly suggesting that neither man appear tonight - in the interests of safety. Austin's bubble has burst - he's possessed with becoming WWF Champion, but his chance came and went. In the interests of fairness, however, he'll consider putting Austin in the Royal Rumble. Speaking of fairness, the current champion Kurt Angle must defend the WWF Championship at the Royal Rumble against the #1 Contender...who just happens to be Triple H. Vince, remember, is tough but fair...he didn't pick Triple H just because he happens to be his his son-in-law - he picked Triple H Because He's Just That Damn Good. Since neither man will be here tonight, he's gone to great expense to set up a special satellite link so that we could hear from both men tonight. Unfortunately, only one man took him up on it...good evening, Triple H and Stephanie.

H plays contrite while the crowd chants Austin. "I cost Austin the one thing he holds dearest in his heart, the WWF Championship...I wish I could change know, truth be told, I wouldn't change a damn thing. Austin, just when you thought I was gone, your problems had disappeared...I'M BACK." A year of rehab, blood, sweat and tears, and just when he thought it would all pay off, and he'd once again have the WWF Championship... "quicker than a referee can get his hand down for the third time, I took it all away....I took it all away." This will end when he says it'll end. This will be over when he SAYS it's over. It will be finished when he's happy - and he'll be happy when Stone Cold Steve Austin sits on his bed in San Antonio - not drinking a beer, because his head will be held in place and he won't be able to - he will be watching the World Wrestling Federation champion...he will be watching.... "me." This will be finished when Stone Cold Steve Austin is finished.

Stephanie tells her father: "Triple H was justified in what he did on Monday! Did you see what Austin did to me? Austin dumped beer all over me, then Austin ripped my shirt off in front of millions of people. Austin, as far as I'm concerned, is gettin exactly what's coming to him." Citing her father's fairness, she thanks him for bestowing upon her husband what he richly deserves...

Back to Vince: "I'm not doing this on behalf of my family - it's just the fair thing to do. HHH: "Kurt Angle, you have been and you still are the World Wrestling Federation champion because *I* have allowed it. My attention has been diverted elsewhere, but at Royal Rumble you will receive my undivided attention, and *I* will receive the WWF Championship. Vince, I've said it before and I'll say it again: you are a genius, as well as a great father-in-law, father of the most beautiful woman on the planet." It's a good idea that he didn't want he and Stone Cold in the building..."if we were, I wouldn't be able to help myself - I'd kick his ass one more time." Play his music!

The Rock is WALKING!

TONIGHT: A fatal 4 Way pits Rock, Undertaker, Rikishi and Kane - winner gets #30 in the Royal Rumble matchup!

Tim White hits the ring during the "ad break" - also, "Go Raiders" buys me a beer. God bless that man - and God bless the Raiders!

When we come back, Edge & Christian are backstage, wondering why "Sir Nose-a-lot" gets a title shot? Well, they'll visit Kurt and cheer him up - say - where *is* Kurt Angle?

HARDY BOYZ (with Lita and Let Us Take You Back to Monday) and THE ONE BILLY GUNN fall to GOODFATHER & BULL BUCHANAN & VAL VENIS (with Stevie Richards & Ivory) in 4:12 when it all breaks down, Richards sneaks in a Stevenkick on Matt and Venis covers for the fall.

Lilian Garcia talks to Undertaker backstage - he has designs on winning the #30 spot in the rumble, and using that as a stepping stone to the WWF Championship. Garcia bows to Undertaker's flawless logic. ad

Jim Korderas hits the ring during the break.

Here's a look at the Oakland Arena...and the SOLD OUT marquee. They *did* look to be a legit sellout - must have been a good set of walkups today

Kane paces about

TEST beats K-KWIK with a big boot and pin in 3:34. Kwik got the super extended rap intro and made up for it by blowing his backflip three times - never DID land on his feet. At least one whip reversal series was blown so badly that they just decided to do it again - and I'm sure it'll be edited out by Thursday. There's a Hand of Friendship post match - awwwwwww, they're both faces! After some replays, we look back at Test up on the stage, posing to the crowd one more time - and who should appear but WILLIAM REGAL, waffling him with the European title belt! Is Regal still acting on Trish's Vince's behest? And how many people will overlook this shocking continuity in favour of bitching that Regal has moved from Test? (Hint: not me, but definitely everybody else)

Rock is in his dressing room! Wow!

Fanatic Series: WWF Divas in the Caribbean ad

ad break

Chimel shills tag team replica belts and WWF Championship belt "with scratch logo!" as well as the stuffed worm of Scotty 2 Hotty - they're TWENTY BUCKS! Can you BELIEVE that?

WWF New York look

Rikishi squats

The Demon cheerleaders (woo woo!) encounter Kaientai, who dazzle them with dubbed pickup lines. "How do you do that?" "Ancient Chinese secret...although we're not Chinese. Show us your pom poms!"

Coach has found Kurt Angle. He resents that people think Austin had him beat on Monday. "I HAD Austin...but I guess we'll never know, will we." He was all set to beat Austin and get the respect he deserved! In the Olympic Game of life, Austin doesn't even qualify. Turning to Triple H, Angle reminds him that HE too was involved in the Hell in a Cell match that he won - and by extension, Triple H lost. He knows better than anyone that the McMahons have a habit of always getting what they want, and since he can't get a McMahon to stand in his corner, he'll get the next best thing...a person whose lifelong dream it has been to manage a champion...and he brings out...Trish Stratus!

Chris Jericho is WALKING!

Chris Benoit is WALKING!

The Dudley Boyz are WALKING!

Dick Butkus is PIMPING!

ad break

The WWF Slam of the Week is brought to you by 1-800-COLLECT...and it's Edge & Christian's faux Dudleyz...and the real Dudleyz' reaction to them, from RAW

EDGE & CHRISTIAN hit the ring. "Greetings to all of our fans in Oakland! As you all know, it's playoff time...and just like Edge & Christian (the five-time champions) are the bad boys of the World Wrestling Federation, the Raiders are so TOTALLY the bad boys of the NFL." "And this Sunday, over at the Colesium..." and he removes his jacket to reveal a Ravens shirt. ...well, the crowd turns on a DIME, just as you'd expect. For the benefit of those with flash photography, tonight's pose is called On Any Given Sunday. Christian, clad in a Raiders jersey, attempts to spear Edge, only to fall to the mat when the Raven doesn't budge. Their partner is CHRIS BENOIT (with Let Us Take You Back to Monday) - it's six-man action and the first opponent is CHRIS JERICHO. He's always wanted to be the intercontinental champion just like Benoit - he's already done it twice, but when he sees the title around his waist, he wants to go for number three. He beat his gap-toothed ass [huh?] Monday, so at the Royal Rumble he wants a title shot. Benoit says that they've battled all around the world, and he's beaten him, and beaten him, and beaten him, and beaten him. And beaten him every single time, so "I accept - in fact, I'll give you any kind of match you want." 'cause he can't Prove Him Wrong. After asking him to Shut The Hell Up, Jericho says he'd like ...... a ladder match. At the Rumble it's time for lucky number three - and tonight, it's time for 3D! Jericho's partners are the DUDLEY BOYZ. Unfortunately, this six man action doesn't last even a minute before the sound of breaking glass and STONE COLD STEVE AUSTIN (with a chair) interrupts everything - the ring clears quickly, but not quickly enough for Buh Buh Ray Dudley and Edge who each get WHACKED on their way out. Austin tells Vince he's got three seconds to get his ass to the ring. "1, 2, 3, 4, Jesus Christ son, you're already late!" "No Chance in Hell" plays and VINCE McMAHON walks out...but Austin stops him. "Stop right there - you take another step and I'l split your skull wide open! You ever turn your back on me again, I'll split your skull wide open! Now you sit there, look like a jackass and listen to Stone Cold Steve Austin. I'm not here to cry about Monday," but he takes offense to Vince's suggestion that he cool off, Stone Cold, stay away, Stone Cold - "nobody tells Stone Cold Steve Austin what to do." He's got one question. Is Stone Cold Steve Austin in the Royal Rumble? Crowd goes nuts. Austin repeats his question (for editing purposes?) Vince: "You're in." "Yer damn right - that's all I needed to from ya. Now turn around and go tell 29 others that Steve Austin is highly pissed off." As far as Triple H, it's easy to talk trash two thousand miles away. It ain't over until he says it's over? Eh eh! Austin plans on settling the score after winning the Rumble - and that's the bottom line, because Stone Cold said so! So...Austin doesn't think Angle has a chance either, does he. Austin FINALLY gets some beer this week, with a two beer salute from the stage.

Tony Chimel reminds the live crowd of the main event to come.

Phil starts mullet hunting...remind me to see if I can provide scans later.

Your hosts are a pair of kings, lest you've forgotten - there's a "Tough Enough" ad in here - I was thinking about signing up, but after reading up on how they want to totally take over your life for months while you don't see a dime from it, I've decided that it may be the 21st century, but it's still slavery....even if you COULD get famous from it.

Moments Ago, two WHACKS and several quotes

Earl Hebner comes out. Looks like no more matches before the main event...

Vince McMahon is WALKING! Behind his door lies Trish Stratus. "What are you doing, volunteering your services to Kurt Angle?" Trish gets creepy with "I wouldn't EVER do anything to displease you..." and Vince starts growling and I start figuring I'll just catch it on Thursday. But then Trish says something about "deserving a spanking," and I start paying attention again. "Come to think of it, you HAVE been....a very bad girl." Oops, just lost me again. Just as well, as the door closes in front of the camera and we stare at the MR. McMAHON nameplate instead." Guess Triple H and Stephanie really *aren't* here, or we'd have seen them by NOW, right?

Just as the door closes, Kane's BOOM goes off, scaring all of us shitless.


I *totally* blew it. I had a real chance to figure out how the STEEL steps made it from ringside to on end and against the barricade, but I NEVER SAW IT HAPPEN. Apparently, I was staring at the Ovaltron. Had the chance - blew it. SO sad. I may NEVER know how it happens.

Anyway, UNDERTAKER rides out on his beautiful Titan bike - Rikishi, having avoided Kane all this time, rolls into the ring to avoid getting run over and they start brawling. Undertaker hits the fray, and *then* THE ROCK makes it out to the ring. The bell doesn't ring to start the match until Rock's in. EVERYBODY decides to stand up during this match, so I can't tell you too much of what happens - basically they pair off, usually with one pair in and one pair out. Surprisingly, it's usually Kane and Rikishi as one pair, and Undertaker and Rock as the other (are they developing an issue here?). Watch for the KING of all chairshots on Rikishi by Kane. Finishers are hit, and saves are made in quick succession. If I saw correctly through the throng, at least two men come up bloody from this match. Anyway, the finish comes at 8:39 when Rikishi manages to squash Kane with the Fat Ass Splash for the fall while Rock and Undertaker are occupied outside the ring. So Rikishi will get #30 - has #30 EVER won?

Post-match, Undertaker demolishes Rikishi with a triple-spin clothesline, Undertaker and Rock have a visible disagreement, Undertaker readies Rock for a chokeslam (!), but Rock kicks him in the nuts. Kane's up - ahhhhhTHECHOKESLAAAAAM for the Rock. ahhhhhTHECHOKESLAAAAAM for Undertaker! ahhhhhTHECHOKESLAAAAAM for Rikishi as well! Kane's the last man standing - he sets the turnbuckles alight as his music hits...and off he goes.

I think that's where the show will end.

Rikishi staggers off next...

Undertaker drives off on his Beautiful Titan Bike - stopping at the top to give the Power to the People fist.

Rock's already got a mic in the ring...will he use it? I wonder. "Rock E!" "Now the Rock says...whether it's Kane or Rikishi, the Rock says he doesn't feel like leaving Oakland!" Here comes RIKISHI back out to the stage... and here's Rock with the "Just bring it" hand motion. Hebner tries to stop him, but now he's in... They trade punches...Rikishi getting on top of the exchange, into the ropes, reversal, spinebuster! Annnnnnnnnnnnnd...the People's Elbow! Rikishi rolls out of the ring as "If ya smelll.........." plays. And Rikishi walks off.

Rock poses on all four corners...teasing leaving the ring before hitting the last corner. DJ Ran would probably say that *that's* the rowdiest section in the building. And now Rock DOES go between the ropes...and walks back up the aisle. One more raised fist to the crowd...and a People's Eyebrow into the OvalTron. And he's gone without any more words to the crowd.

And the music stops.

Chimel reminds us the souvenir stands are still open, and thanks us on behalf of WOW the entire company for attending tonight. "Don't forget to watch yourselves on UPN 44! GOOD NIGHT!"

RAW was better - oops, sorry - still, lots of interesting things buried in there. Did you find them all, too?

I'll be back Thursday with a studio version of this live track. Come back then!

[slash] wrestling

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