Vince ran No Way Out heads-up against SuperBrawl. Austin had his typical fantastic match, with Chris Jericho as this month's opponent. Except Steve was no longer the champ, so his match was in the semi main event spot instead of closing out the show. The show ender was the first title defense of Bubba Ray Dudley, who retained over Big Show. I'm not sure they could've picked a worse initial opponent for him if they tried. That match was predictably lackluster. The show itself was still fine, but it obviously would have been much better with that Austin/Jericho match in the main event slot. The show also featured the PPV return of Bam Bam Bigelow, who beat The Goodfather by DQ. Not exactly setting the world on fire there. Royal Rumble winner Rocky wasn't in a match, but he did have a confrontation with Austin to continue that program. Hogan's only involvement was a backstage segment where both he and Undertaker tried to politic their way to a world title shot from Commissioner Foley.
Some notes from tonight's show:
-Bryan Clark was unhappy about losing to True Heroes. I responded to that by making sure he was the one to take the fall. See how he likes that!
-Ric Flair wasn't happy about putting over Dustin and his new gimmick. In his case I agreed to protect him with the booking, and once he heard The Empire would interfere and the finish wouldn't be clean, he was more accepting of it.
-Steiner didn't want to put RVD over either. I was expecting this, and that's why the match was structured so heavily in his favor. The match suffered as a result, but at least we don't have an angry Big Poppa Pump to deal with.
-I congratulated Booker and Misterio for their show-stealing match during my post-show speech, and also gave Ric a salute for putting Dustin over. Maybe he didn't deserve it since I had to make concessions in order for him to go along with it without complaint, but I'm trying to raise his spirits a bit. He's remained pretty irritated ever since I brought Bischoff back.
-Thanks largely to the disappointing main event, this was the worst PPV we've put on since I bought the company. It was still a good outing given our current stature though, and I think it was also good enough to give SuperBrawl a boost in importance.
I've made yet another acquisition for our future women's division. Lacey is an 18-year old independent worker whose in-ring skills are nothing to write home about at this early stage of her career, but she does have something of a star presence. She's reported to Wildside, and she'll probably be down there for some time in an effort to bring her in-ring ability up to respectable levels.
Prediction scores (maximum possible points: 14)
((+1 = Correctly predicted either Hardy as the free agent Arn was negotiating with))
K-Nection: 11 (+1)
crackerjack: 10 (+1)
Cro Cop Rules: 10
Nobby_McDonald: 10 (+1)
smw88: 9 (+1)
GingeyOne: 9 (+1)
jscotty: 8 (+1)
franticloser: 8 (+1)
michgcs: 8 (+1)
Rateddc: 8 (+1)
LordofGustav: 8 (+1)
chrismday: 8 (+1)
The Lariat: 7 (+1)
Standings in prediction contest after 2 shows (1 show remaining)
Cro Cop Rules: 18
The Lariat: 16
I seriously wish I could outsource the task of tallying up these prediction scores. Talk about tedium!
Originally Posted by Briskout
If anyone's a good replacement for Awesome, it's bizarro-Rhodes, even without the undertones. If Awesome returns, that'll be one dominant stable.... and Vampiro.
Good show overall, I really can't wait to see heel Rey come out more. Rey definitely needs a good heel run and can pull it off.
I'm hoping The Unnatural can be a big deal, but we'll see.
Awesome will return, but I'm not nearly as high on him as I was right after Sin.
Originally Posted by K-Nection
Booker T says to Rey.....
I think he's too busy moping about not winning the title!
Originally Posted by deanohbk
I can't wait for clash of champions to come down under
Ah, are you Australian?
I'll probably start running about 2 months + PPVs per year in Australia/New Zealand. It's one of my better regions thanks to my TV exposure there.
Originally Posted by michgcs
Finally finished reading the show-- are we seeing a Rey Misterio heel turn?
Also, did either Flair or Candido complain on their losses? I'd imagine Flair's still higher up on the pecking order compared to The Unnatural, and I think Candido's done well for himself; hopefully he's not a sore loser?
Are we? Hmm...
Flair I obviously covered in my in-character portion. As for Candido, he's still well behind Jeff's popularity in most regions aside from Japan. I THINK they're close enough that Jeff wouldn't have complained about losing to him though.
Originally Posted by Beejus
I dug the show, man. Glad I don't end up having a mutiny on my hands with the Agents because of Dustin not showing up! I can't say I exactly chose an Unnatural creature, but he got the win, so no complaint yet. I'm a little surprised you decided to split the Hardyz wins, and Rey's actions make me pretty curious like it seems everyone else is as well. Personally, I don't think he plays a very good heel, but if anyone can make it write out well, it'd be you. Can't wait to see more!
Picking Dustin when you did was honestly great value. It would have been a decent value pick even without the gimmick change, but the switch only boosted his value. Besides, I think The Unnatural is a much better Agent of Chaos than plain old Dustin Rhodes would've been!
Until fairly late in the game both Hardys were supposed to win, but I had a change of heart.