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Solie's Tuesday Morning Report

Dedicated to Gordon Solie
January 29, 1929 - July 27, 2000

The Rock will face Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania!!

Afterward he was hospitalized after
a spectacular truck/ambulance crash

WWF No Way Out Report

The nWo Debuts

Spoils Austin's Title Shot

Crossface Connection

by John Cross

The Way I See It...

by Earl Oliver

THE RICH, FULL LIFE OF A BAD GUY

Part 2 from Look Magazine, circa 1965 by Myron Cope

Volume 7, Issue 672 - February 18, 2002
Editor's Note: In this edition of the newsletter we have part 2 of a Solie's Classics Article about the legendary "Cowboy" Bill Watts from Look Magazine circa 1965, our weekly Crossface Connection column from John Cross, and my own TV Reports and topical rants.

You can get more of the latest news and rumors by listening to this week's Solie's Wrestling Radio report.


THE RICH, FULL LIFE OF A BAD GUY

From Look Magazine, circa 1965

By Myron Cope

Part 2

In addition to his black tights and black Western style ring shoes, the Cowboy wore a boxer’s headgear for protection against Bobo Brazil’s favorite weapon, his "coconut butt." "Take it off, Bobo!" the fans shouted as the match got under way. Bobo butted the Cowboy high on his forehead, but the headgear absorbed the blow and the Cowboy stepped back and withered Bobo with a piteous smile. A toothless young white man charged out of the fifth row, fists clenched, but two cops intercepted him.

Up in the ring the Cowboy suddenly shoved Bobo’s head between the middle and top ropes, twisting a pretzel like noose around Bobo’s neck. Bobo’s eyes bulged and his tongue hung out. Even though the referee freed him, the crowd was now convinced that Bobo’s only hope lay in divesting the Cowboy of his headgear. "Take it off, Bobo!" the fans pleaded.

Now, at close quarters, the Cowboy whispered a word or two into Bobo’s ear. (Skeptics might have concluded that Cowboy Bill was cueing Bobo, but the Cowboy assured me later that he was calling Bobo filthy names.) Running backward, the Cowboy flung himself against the ropes, then catapulted off them and crashed into Bobo, striking him to the floor with a forearm under the heart.

Tasting the kill, Cowboy Bill leaped high, bent on descending feet first on Bobo’s chest. In the nick of time, Bobo rolled aside, and the Cowboy crashed clumsily to the canvas. At once Bobo was upon him, ripping off his headgear. A deafening roar of jubilation burst from the crowd.

The Cowboy scrambled to his feet. Bobo charged, and the dreaded coconut butt struck high on the left side of Cowboy Bill’s forehead. Blood spurted out and then poured in tributaries down the Cowboy’s face and over his chest. Suddenly he climbed out of the ring and, with a great arm waving gesture of disdain for Bobo’s tactics, walked hurriedly up the aisle and through the ramp.

An hour later Cowboy Bill was sitting in a cocktail lounge, refreshing himself with six bottles of beer. Wearing a patch bandage on his head, he spoke of the advantages his career has brought him. He owns a one-third interest in a cattle ranch and is investing carefully in securities. He recently had taken an apartment with pool in Gloucester city, N.J., a town that is central to the wrestling circuit and from which he was able to drive-in his $5,500 air conditioned car-to most of his appearances in five hours or less. Best of all, his new career as a villain promised to be even more profitable.

"Look how well Buddy Rogers did," said the Cowboy. Rogers, a bad guy who reigned as champion before Sammartino, retired to a life of ease. "He wears a twelve carat ring on his pinkie, and he went to his high school principal at a class reunion and flicked the ash of his cigar and said, "Hey, daddy, I’m that dropout you said would never amount to anything."

Since the Roaring ‘20s, professional wrestling has flourished despite the practically unanimous opinion of sports authorities that all pro matches are theatrical frauds. Certainly it would be an easy matter to fix a wrestling bout, for dozens of the men who regularly wrestle one another work out of the same stable, controlled by a single promoter-manager. Professional gamblers will not bet a dime on a wrestling match. No enlightened sports fan would thrill to a finish in which Sammartino appears to collapse from exhaustion but by great good luck lands flat on his opponent, pinning him to save the day.

Solie's wishes to thank J. Michael Kenyon of the WAWLI Papers for unearthing this article. Watch for part 3 in the next issue...



Crossface Connection

by John Cross

You know the problem with business holidays?

I get them off, and it throws my schedule all to hell. I commented on this one time before, but i think it was in the Crossface Corner, over on the Bodyslam. I woke up this morning, thinking for a moment that it was Sunday, and that I had a full day of no responsibilities....

...but, then...."Oh, no...the Connection!" I purposely waited until after the PPV to write the Connection, just so I could see the nWo and their entrance, and any actions they undertook. I also wanted to see how the PPV went.

I liked the PPV...there was some really good wrestling in this show, and I enjoyed the nWo's initial entrance. Scott Hall, for all his problems, was pretty funny, as was Kevin Nash. Hogan looked like he was getting kinda choked up for a second, but entered a surprisingly mellow and low-key promo. I wasn't disappointed.

But, where was Vince?

I thought that Vince was introducing this cancer, this evil ingredient, into the WWF, and that he was the sole reason they were coming in. But, no, he wasn't anywhere to be seen. In fact, what I thought would happen (Undertaker joining up with the nWo) didn't happen, and the only flash we saw of Vince was during the Rock/Undertaker match.

Didn't anyone else think that Vince would come off in Bischoff-style, and be the rogue CEO? I did, but my brother brought up an interesting point when we did the Crossface Report. He said that the nWo would probably try to coerce Vince into doing what they want him to do, and not the other way around. That was their modus operandi in the WCW, and it worked, so why not duplicate it in the WWF?

I agreed, in principle, but I said that the nWo would need more numbers, and I figured that two people, namely Test and 'Taker, would be joining the ranks. This could do a couple things. First, Booker T could become a face. That would help him immensely. In my humble opinion, he's a better face than heel, and he can turn successfully now, since he has garnered some respectable heat with the WWF fans. If I remember correctly, he is actually the main-eventer that has been a heel the longest! If I missed someone, let me know....but he's been the top ex-WCW heel, and has been since summer of 2001. He could turn, and it would sell, because the old WCW fans will remember his heat with the nWo.

Next, it would give an outlet for Undertaker to assume a more stable and diverse character. Now, he could be in a clique, with a lot of heat, and will be automatically involved in a huge angle, for the long term. Then, like the Wolfpac split-off from the nWo, there is a future avenue for Undertaker to combat Hogan, Nash, and the rest of the nWo-ites for supremacy. In short, 'Taker would have an angle that he could get involved in that could take him into his well-deserved World Title run, and retirement.

There are a lot of possibilities.....HHH will probably ally against the incoming nWo, with Austin and with the Rock. This will pose an interesting situation for Kurt Angle, whom I can't see joining up with the nWo, or turning back to a face worker, either. What about Jericho? Does he now join up with them, because of their 'help' at the PPV, or does he hold them in contempt and make a turn? Can 'heel Vs. heel' work in this situation?

Or, will the nWo run out of gas before it gets started? I doubt that will happen, if Vince runs the program properly, if only because of the well-established notoriety those men share. But, if it does fail, and falls apart, where do Hall, Nash, and Hogan go? I think that the boys are committed to this, and they will live or die on it's success.

We'll know more on Raw, which I will be watching...heck, it's free. Well...I am paying for cable...

OK..I'll sign off here, and get this to Earl. I pushed my website enough today, so I will only remind you to come back often to Solie's, for the best Wrestling Site on the Web.

See you next week, with another Connection.



The Way I See It...

by Earl Oliver

SmackDown was taped Tuesday at the AllTell Arena in Little Rock, Arkansas and opened with a recap of the Helmsley-McMahon catastrophe from RAW. Then, after the opening montage, Vince and Stephanie came to the ring looking pretty pissed. Vince delivered a rant saying that Stephanie's lies were no worse then what the home town crowd does everyday. Right. He was all over his son-in-law for "humiliating" himself and his daughter. And then he stated categorically that HHH would lose his chance to go after the World Title at WrestleMania to Kurt Angle. Stephanie then took the mic and accused Hunter of failing to pay enough attention to her, thus "making" her lie and cheat. She then talked about how she went through all of his scrapbooks and videos of his wrestling career and burned them! She vowed to make his life a living hell. Then Vince took back the mic and explained that HHH would have to face the Tag Team of Kurt Angle and the Undertaker with Maven as his partner. Stephaniethen added that she would be giving him some kind of "special, Stephanie Valentines surprise". Hmmmm...

Backstage, Booker T and Test are making jokes about Booker's big match later tonight...against Spike Dudley.

That match was right after the break. It was clear that Booker was taking Spike very lightly, so of course. Spike managed to surprise him before it was over. Not that it made much difference - Booker continued to diss his smaller opponent...right up to the moment when Spike hooked a leg coming out of a superplex and rolled him up for the pin!

Ric Flair ran into Chris Jericho in the hall and ordered him to come to his office. After the break, Flair told Jericho to go home before Steve Austin showed up. Jericho poopooed the idea, so Flair changed his mind and booked the Champ into a match against Kane!

Lenny and Lodi..uh...I mean, Billy and Chuck took on the APA in the next match. This one ended rather abruptly when Chuck brained Faarooq with a loaded box of Valentines chocolate!

Steve Austin came the ring looking somewhat subdued, and declared himself a drug addict...his drug of choice being the WWF Title...he then launched into a tirade about how he plans to beat Jericho on Sunday.

Val Venis was in the ring and gyrating as we returned from the break. He was there to have a match against IC Champ Willy Regal. First he used his charms on a young lady from the audience. He announced that he had a "heart on" - there was a heart clipped onto his tights. He then suggested to the girl that since he took something off, that she should do the same. So she took off her blouse! He kissed her, then gave her back the blouse. Regal showed up, there was a short match, and Val was knocked out with brass knucks (yawn...) As he was leaving, Edge attacked him (yawn, again...)

Backstage, Jericho caught himself trapped in a room with Steve Austin, who told him to pick up a beer off the table so that he could drink a toast to him. Chris opened the beer then Austin knocked it out of his hand. Jericho stood there thoroughly intimidated as Austin told him he better be ready because he is going to lose his title on Sunday.

Goldust took on Tajiri in the next match. What is it with Goldust? He keeps taking on midgets... In this one he came close to losing when he let Torrie distract him. But he came back with the Curtain Call (neck breaker) and took the pin.

Austin continued to stalk Jericho backstage, unnerving the Champ no end. The next match was Jericho's contest against the Big Red Machine. After one punch, jericho was ready to slit - but Kane dragged him back into the ring. So much for that idea. Jericho eventually brained his opponent with his title belt to get himself disqualified. Afterward, Austin ran down and attacked the Champ, hitting him with a Stunner then having a beer moment...on Jericho's carcass...

Backstage after the break, Vince is one the phone with Hulk Hogan as Stephanie stands by. he hangs up just in time for the Undertaker to show up and boast about the fact that the Rock hasn't made an appearance tonight. Then Kurt Angle walked up and started talking about how he and UT were going to break HHH up tonight. They promise to bring Stephanie his heart on a silver platter...hmmm...that should make interesting television. Shortly thereafter, they showed a mangled version of the WWF Tribute video with nWo promos interspersed among the historic clips. Cute...

The main event was HHH and Maven against the Undertaker and Kurt Angle. At first the two bad guys just knocked Maven out and then went to work on Helmsley. But then Maven made a comeback and became the focus of their ire. UT eventually tossed Maven to the floor, where Angle did a number on him while UT faced off illegally against HHH. Back in the ring, after the referee sorted things out, maven was on the receiving end some more from UT. The Angle tried to take over - but missed a moonsault. Both guys crawled toward their corners, but Angle recovered first and halted his opponent's escape. Finally, HHH got back into the fight and faced both opponents, downing them one after the other. He was about to hit a Pedigree on Angle when UT intervened with a boot to the face. maven got back into the match and was dragged out to the floor, where UT powerbombed him on the announce table, taking it down. In the ring, Angle hit a series of German suplexes on Helmsley, who managed to escape and then ducked a shot from UT which knocked Angle to the floor. HHH was about to lay UT out with the Pedigree when Angle ran back in and clobbered him with a chair. After that the two of them continued to beat on Helmsley - then UT was about to hit another chair shot when Ric Flair ran in and grabbed the weapon away. UT hit him and was ready to powerbomb him when Vince McMahon showed up and told UT to save it so that Flair will get to the PPV and witness the arrival of the nWO. Then Stepanie was allowed to tell HHH that she will be the guest referee for his match against Angle on Sunday!Angle then clobbered him one more time with the chair and the program ended with Stephanie screaming at her husband as he lay semi-conscious on the mat.


WWF No Way Out PPV Report

The program opened live from the Bradley Center, Milwaukee, Wisconsin and right off the bat we got Hogan, Hall and Nash stalking in to their porno movie music. Nash took the mic and lamented the fact that he and his companions have been maligned over the last few weeks. The crowd kept up a constant "What?" response to each sentence. He claimed that all they want is a fair chance to prove their worth to the fans and the rest of the wrestling world. Hall then claimed that their "not the bad guys, in fact we're marks. We're fans. We just want to work with some of the great WWF superstars...", get some autographs, take some pictures, maybe have a beer or two. He then handed the mic to Hogan and the crowd went wild - a "Hogan!" chant tried to get started but didn't quite make it. Hogan reiterated what his friends had said, and asked the fans to "just give us a chance". He praised Vince McMahon for giving them the opportunity and ended his speech with the words, "God bless Vince McMahon, God bless the fans, and God bless America." Then they were gone. At ringside, Jerry Lawler was trying to convince Jim Ross that, "...maybe these guys have changed." Right...

The first match was the Tag Team Turmoil elimination match for a shot at the Tag Titles. Scotty and Albert started against Lance Storm and Christian. As is not unusual, Scotty went for the Worm but got distracted and then face jammed for a pin - this brought the Hardeys in for the next round. After some high flying action, Jeff hit a senton bomb on Storm and took the pin. The Dudleys were out next and it was just like old times between these classic antagonists. During this confrontation, Stacy decided to get physically involved. This brought Lita in for a short cat fight. Moments later Matt got a roll-up pin on D-Von, thus eliminating the Duds. Before they left, they managed to hit a 3D on Jeff out on the floor - leaving Matt to face Billy and Chuck on his own. A short Fame-a$$er later and the Hardeys were eliminated. The final team was the APA. This part of the battle lasted longer then all that had gone before. Farrooq was caught and isolated in the ring for quite some time until he managed a spine buster on Billy. Bradshaw came in and cleaned house then took Billy out with a clothesline of doom that turned him inside out. The APA will go to WrestleMania for the Tag Titles.

Goldust made his way to the ring (on film, in letterbox format) to take on Rob Van Dam. Goldust attacked his opponent as soon as he entered the ring and threw him out to the floor, then tossed him back inside. As he returned, RVD got a boot in his face and the fight was on. Then Goldust abruptly abandoned the fight and started to leave! But it was just a ruse, he returned, lured RVD to the ropes then dragged him out to the floor and went after him, only to find himself knocked over the security railing. As he crawled back over, Van Dam threw a leg drop off the apron and dealt some more punishment. Again Goldust lured him to the edge then got the drop on him. Back in the ring, Goldust dominated the former ECW star. In no time he had him tied up in the corner and snapped his neck over the top rope. Now it was all Goldust as Van Dam was thrown around like a rag doll - but the gold guy couldn't get the pin. Eventually, Van Dam made a come back and dazzled us with his aerial artistry - but he couldn't get the pin either. He went for the frog splash...and missed. Goldust hit a DDT but only got a two count. Now it was see-saw action for a while until Goldust missed a bulldog. Van Dam hit the frog splash this time and it was over.

Backstage, the nWo encountered the rattlesnake...and offered him a six-pack of beer! Steve said he wasn't thirsty, and then tossed the beer on the floor. Hogan told the others to let Austin through - so he passed through their ranks and walked on.

Next up - Booker T and Test challenged Tazz and Spike Dudley for the Tag Titles. This was a very competitive match in the early going, but then Spike was caught and isolated for quite a while. When Tazz got back into the fight, he managed to keep both challengers busy for a while - then Test got into an argument with the referee. Tazz grabbed a Tazzmission from behind and put Test down for a submission victory.

William Regal defended the Intercontinental Title in a Brass Knuckles on a Pole match against Edge. This was a brutal match which ended when Regal, eschewing the Brass Knucks on the pole, pulled a second set out of his tights and finished off his challenger.

Backstage, Kurt Angle told Lillian Garcia that he is confident of victory tonight against Triple H.

Next up the Undertaker in a grudge match against the Rock. This was the longest match on the program so far and showcased both men to their advantage. Toward the end, the Undertaker got a chokeslam but only was able to get two. After that, an exhausted UT left the ring and sat down on his motorcycle. When the referee came out to see what was going on - UT threw him onto the steps, then pulled a lead pipe from its place of concealment under the seat. Ric Flair ran in to try and grab the pipe but got a boot to the face. UT returned to the ring and missed a shot with the pipe, the Rock got the Rock Bottom - then Vince Mcmahon ran up and jumped on the apron. The referee revived and started arguing with Vince, then Flair recovered and hit UT from behind with his own pipe! The Rock took the pin and it was all over.

Kurt Angle took on Triple H for a shot at the Undisputed World Title at WrestleMania, with Stephanie as the referee. Steph, of course, made no pretense at impartiality, vocally egging Angle on througout the contest, and applauding him whenever he scored a hit. Then Kurt went for a clothesline and accidentally knocked Stephanie to the floor! Other referees gathered and tried to revive her while HHH dispatched Angle temporarily - then had a big laugh at his soon to be ex-wife's expense. Steph was hauled away, then Tim White took over the duties. What was odd was that there was a woman with a voice remarkably like Stephanie's who continued to scream at ringside, thus providing some confusion for listeners of the broadcast. As things began to go badly for Angle in the ring, he decided to clobber the referee. Suddenly Stephanie came running down again and was back on the job for a minute, until she was caught in the corner and knocked silly. Angle took advantage of the situation and grabbed a chair, but HHH ducked the swing then got a Pedigree. As the reviving Tim White was making the count, Stephanie recovered and dragged him away. Triple H turned his attention to her, which gave Angle his opening. He hit Hunter with the chair then the Olympic Slam to take the pin. Kurt Angle goes to WrestleMania.

Backstage, the nWo asked the Rock to pose for a photo - Scott Hall wanted it for his son. The Rock obliged, but then there were a few harsh words. Again, the nWo allowed the WWF wrestler to pass unmolested. The debut of the nWo is decidedly tepid so far.

The main event was Steve Austin challenging Chris Jericho for the Undisputed World Heavyweight Title. This was a real barn burner which saw the title belt brought into the action on several occasions, and also saw the referee knocked out yet again. In fact, Austin got the stunner on Jericho while the referee was out on the floor - and then the nWo struck. They put Austin down and out, allowing Jericho to get an easy victory. After the winner was declared, Hogan, Hall and Nash ran back in and started doing a number on Austin. Then Hogan found some cans of black paint under the ring. Hogan and Nash held the semi-conscious Austin on the mat while Hall scrawled the initials on Austin's back.

Well, for my money, the nWo could have made a bigger entrance - but we'll see what happens tomorrow night.


Raw came to us live from the Allstate Arena, Chicago, Illinois and opened (pretty predictably) with Stone Cold Steve Austin coming to the ring to whine and complain about what was done to him last night by the nWo. He called them out. Hogan, Hall and Nash appeared on the platform, then hesitated to talk it over, started to slowly advance toward the ring...then turned around and sauntered back through the entryway. In the ring, Austin stated that he was going to sit down and drink beer until he got him some nWo butt to kick. We left him there as we cut to commercial.

Austin was still in the ring as we returned. Kurt Angle's music blared, and out Olympic hero came out to the platform with a phalanx of security guards. He said he had an announcement to make and invited Austin to get out of the ring and stop wasting valuable air time. Austin refused to move, and threw beer at Angle! Eventually, Angle decided to make his way to the ring and make his announcement anyway. He kept harping on the fact that his companions were "off duty cops" - Steve wasn't impressed. Angle stood on the apron ordering Austin to get out of the ring. Austin just stared at him. Angle turned to the crowd and proceeded to make his announcement - that he is going to WrestleMania to vie for the World Title. Austin attacked him. Then the security guys subdued him. The one putting on the cuffs had a real hard time keeping from laughing. At Angle's orders, the troops hauled Austin away, as Kurt continued to taunt him. More commercials...

After the break, Austin was packed into a car and driven away. Scott Hall was on hand to taunt him as he was hauled away.

The Hardey Boyz (w/Lita) took on Lance Storm and Christian in the first match of the evening. Apparently the Hardeys and Lita are all back on the same page. Lita was back to getting physically involved in their matches. She hit her a Frankensteiner on Storm out on the floor. Christian immediately went into one of his temper tantrums. He went for the Unprettier on Matt, but the latter reversed it into a Twist of Fate. Jeff hit the swanton and took Christian out so that Matt could take the pin.

Kurt Angle and Stephanie were congratulating each other on their supposed triumph over Triple H when Ric Flair walkeed in and informed them that he had decided that the match last night was so great that has made the same match for tonight! With the same stipulations!! Triple H vs. Kurt Angle - the winner goes to WrestleMania!!

The Undertaker arrived and immediately went on a quest to track down Ric Flair. When he found him, he challenged him to a match at Wrestlemania. Flair declined the match, saying he had to moe improtant things to worry about as the co-owner of the company. UT told him woulod see what he can do to change his mind.

Out back, the nWo were getting ready to split, but Hogan told the other two to go ahead - he had some business to take care of. He headed back into the building.

In the ring, Curt Hennig made his entrance and made a speech. Pointing out members of the Chicago Bears at ringside, he said they had had a great season, but screwed up in the playoffs. he figures that makes him better then them because he's...perfect. His opponent, kane, didn't seem impressed at all. Surprisingly, Hennig did not seemed dwarfed by Kane at all - this guy is a lot bigger then I remember him. He did get beat, however. In short order.

Hogan made his appearance after the break. With Steve Austin off to the pokey, he found no reason not to go ahead and enter the ring. When the crowd chanted, "What?" at him, Hogan slickly added, "...'ch gonna do?" After they settled down, Hogan told the crowd that he is really glad to be back in the WWF. he talked about all of his accomplishments - like slamming the 700 lbs.(?) Andre the Giant. He claims that something went wrong, that the fans drove him out of the WWF, just like the Chicago fans did to Michael Jordan. He went on to say that he has only one thing to tell the WWF fans. He invited them to kiss his butt! He claimed that he was the one who made the WWF and put pro-wrestling on the map. He went on and on, calling himself the biggest wrestling star that ever stood in the ring. The Rock decided to come down and dispute that claim. Hogan stood stone faced while Rocky acknowledged the crowd, which broke into a "Rocky!" chant. The Rock and Hogan stared each other down, then Maivia started his spiel, with a, "...finally, the Rock has come back to Chicago!" He went on to tell Hogan that he listened to what he said and that he agreed with some of it - but he disputed Hogan's assertion that the fans drove him out. His thinking is that Hogan just made the fans sick after a while. He told Hogan that he agrees that Hogan is one of the greats, maybe the greatest ever - then he challenged him for a match at WrestleMania!!! As the two faced off, the crowd broke out into a Hogan chant!!!! Then they changed it to a "Rocky!" chant. Hogan, turned to Maivia and told him he was the "flavor of the month." He asked, "What makes you think you're even in Hulk Hogan's league?" Rock cut him off, saying, "Yes or no?" He urged Hogan to take the match, pointing out that the fans want to see it. He asked them and they responded with a resounding cheer. Rocky then responded to them, aping Hogan's classic hand to ear gesture. Hogan accepted the match!! He then tried to intimidate Mavia, who responded by laying in the Rock Bottom! As Maivia left the area he was waylaid by Hall and Nash, who took him back to the ring and punked him. Hogan then dragged a tool box out from under the ring, found a hammer, and then went back in and hit the Rock in the head with it! He finished him with his famous leg drop - and then they spray painted his back! nWo 2 Sweet. The Rock was stretchered out. 2 down...

After the break, as the Rock's ambulance was pulling away, it was suddenly blocked by a truck in front and a limo behind. The nWo emerged from the limo and chased away the ambulance crew, then they smashed out the windows and chained the doors shut. Then Hogan got into the truck and rammed the ambulance!!! He smashed into it and shoved it 100 feet or more - then he backed up and hit it twice more!!! The ambulance was crushed like a crackerbox. They looked inside, then fled to their limo and sped away. Great stuff!!

After the break, the emergency crew were back calling for help. back at the announce table, even Lawler was appalled at what happened. This scene was reminiscent of the infamous nWo attack on Arn Anderson and others that started that whole storyline - as I am sure it was meant to be.

Oh well - on with the show... The Godfather and his "escorts" came down for his match against Booker T. The announcers continued to decry the situation as the match went on, pretty much uncalled. This was a tactical error, in my opinion. When WCW did this bit, they stopped the show for 20 minutes, which allowed the gravity of the situation to really sink in. That was a spectacular stunt and deserved more time. Oh yeah, in the ring, Booker T put the Godfather down in a matter of minutes.

Out back the police arrived. There was talk of a fuel leak and another ambulance on the way. They were preparing to pry the doors off the vehicle as we cut to commercial.

Next up, Rob Van Dam and Edge vs. Willy Regal and Goldust, That was a hell of a match between Goldust and Van Dam last night - maybe the match of the night. The announcers were still a little shaken, but seemed to be starting to pull it back together. This match also was over in a flash as Edge put an Indian Deathlock variation on Regal and made him submit. Out back, the Rock was finally driven away in a second ambulance.

The main event was a replay of Kurt Angle vs. Triple H for the Title shot at WrestleMania, with Chris Jericho at ringside "helping" the announce team. The match itself was fast paced with a lot of false endings. At one point, HHH went for the Pedigree, but Angle reversed it into a monkey flip. Triple H was put down and Angle headed for the top corner - but Helmsley caught him there and dropped him on his back for a two count. The fight went to the floor, where HHH was thrown for a released German suplex on the safety mat, then hit in the face with Jericho's title belt. Back in the ring, Angle failed to get the pin and the fight went on. Finally, Triple H slipped in a Pedigree and took the pin. helmsley goes to Wrestlemania...at least at the moment...

At least that's the way I see it...

Earl Oliver
Editor, Solie's Wrestling Newsletter


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