PPV REPORTS 2/15 WWE No Way Out PPV review: Keller's ongoing "virtual time" analysis of live event
Feb 15, 2004 - 9:32:00 PM
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By Wade Keller, Torch editor
WWE NO WAY OUT PPV
FEBRUARY 15, 2003
LIVE ON PPV FROM SAN FRANCISCO, CALIF.
-Sable and Torrie walked to the ring and chatted about being in Playboy.
-Michael Cole and Tazz introduced the show, then said hello to the Spanish announce team.
-A video feature aired on Eddie Guerrero and Brock Lesnar.
1 -- RIKISHI & SCOTTY 2 HOTTY vs. THE BASHAMS & SHANIQUA -- WWE Tag Team Title match
Scotty and a Basham had a botched exchange in the opening minute. Rikishi tagged in right away and beat up both Bashams and then yanked Shaniqua into the ring. He set up an early Stinkface attempt, but the Bashams made the save and Shaniqua bailed to ringside. Doug went for a headbutt on Rikishi, but it hurt him and not Rikishi. As Jim Ross would say, Doug didn't read the scouting report on Rikishi. Scotty went for the Worm, but Shaniqua stopped it. After the Bashams beat on Scotty, they tagged in Shaniqua. Scotty eventually backdropped Shaniqua and hot-tagged Rikishi. Rikishi set up a Stinkface at 6:45, but the Bashams dropped him off the top rope backward. Shaniqua made the cover and scored a near fall at 7:00. Rikishi made a comeback and gave Shaniqua a Samoan Drop. Then he did the sitdown splash for the three count. Rikishi even went to the trouble of making sure Shaniqua's arms were not under the ring ropes.
WINNERS: Rikishi & Scotty at 7:38 to retain the WWE Tag Titles.
STAR RATING: * -- Scotty had some botched spots during the match. Otherwise fine action. About what you'd expect.
-Tazz said Goldberg hadn't showed up yet and he thought he might not show up after all.
-A recap aired of the Jamie Noble-Nidia storyline.
2 -- JAMIE NOBLE vs. NIDIA -- Noble Blindfolded.
Right as the match was about to begin, Noble put the hood over his head and immediately dove at Nidia. Nidia stepped aside and then punched Noble. Noble yanked off his mask and complained to the ref. When Noble put the hood back on, Nidia dropkicked him in the head. Noble kept taking a quick shot at Noble and then diving out of his path. Noble had Nidia backed in the corner and almost reached out to touch her boobs, but he turned away at the last second. Nidia then yanked down his shorts revealing white boxer/briefs. Noble pulled his pants up right away. Nidia then sent Noble flying to the floor. Nidia celebrated. When he reentered the ring, Nidia walked behind him and made funny gestures, then gave him a kick to the butt. Then she ducked down and tripped him. Tazz complained that Noble is a world class athlete and doesn't deserve to be humiliated. Noble got ahold of Nidia by the hair at 3:30. He yanked out a wad of her hair. Nidia came back with a boot to Noble's head. Then she went to the top rope. Noble stuck a peek by lifting his hood and then pressed her to the mat. The ref didn't see. Noble then applied a chokeout and Nidia tapped out immediately. Tazz defended Noble's cheating as taking advantage of an opportunity
WINNER: Noble at 4:25 via submission.
STAR RATING: * -- It lasted about the right length of time and was a fun comedy match.
-Josh Matthews asked Kurt Angle if he could explain his actions on Smackdown last week. Angle said he was attacked by somebody, and common sense tells him it was either Big Show or John Cena, so they should be asked to explain themselves. Cena walked in and got in Angle's face. He said if he were going to attack Angle, he'd do it right in his face. He then slapped Angle. They had a brief pullapart brawl.
3 -- APA (Faarooq & Bradshaw) vs. SHELTON BENJAMIN & CHARLIE HAAS
Cole asked Tazz if longtime San Francisco promoter Roy Shire ever imagined "an event of this magnitude at the Cow Palace." He continued his imitation of Mike Tenay by bringing up that Pat Patterson headlined so many events in that arena. Bradshaw's right arm was wrapped. Benjamin and Haas worked over Faarooq's left arm starting at 2:30. . Faarooq hot-tagged in Bradshaw at 5:45. He tossed Haas over the top rope and then gave Benjamin a powerbomb. Haas made the save. Haas tossed Faarooq into the ringpost. Bradshaw gave Benjamin his Last Call overhead slam. Haas interfered, but got nailed with the Clothesline from Hall. Benjamin then blindsided Bradshaw with a sidekick for the win. Bradshaw sold that his arm was in great pain after the match.
WINNERS: Benjamin & Haas at 7:20.
STAR RATING: *1/2 -- Solid tag match.
-They showed Goldberg walking down the aisle. Tazz expressed disappointment. Cole said he didn't approve of Steve Austin giving a loose cannon like Goldberg a chance to disrupt No Way Out, but they cannot legally deny Goldberg the right to be a fan. A video recap then aired of the Lesnar-Goldberg situation. They went back live to Goldberg who was saying hello to kids at ringside.
-Paul Heyman walked out with a serious look on his face. Heyman asked Goldberg, "Who in the hell do you think you are?" He said: "Oh, I see, you're Goldberg. Well, I'm Heyman." He said this was the first Smackdown-brand PPV of the Heyman Administration. He said Goldberg has been part of the "inferior Raw brand." He told him he is going to witness the Smackdown brand PPV, but if he gets out of his seat, he won't hesitate to have security thrown him out of the arena and in jail. Heyman lost his cool. Then Brock Lesnar walked out. Heyman's voice cracked as he screamed, "Here comes the pain." Brock called Goldberg to enter the ring. Heyman interrupted and told Goldberg not to move. Brock said Goldberg is scared and told him to sit there "like the bitch you are." Goldberg jumped the railing and entered the ring. Brock backed off and looked nervous. Brock took off his shirt. Goldberg took off his. Heyman distracted Goldberg. Brock charged Goldberg and threw several shoulder blocks at him. Goldberg came back and gave Brock a quick Jackhammer as the crowd popped. "That's our champion!" shouted Tazz. Heyman shouted, "Help! Help! Hey, hey hey! Help! Heeelllp!" Security came out, but Goldberg stepped to ringside and let security put him in handcuffs. Just as Lesnar finally got to his feet, Hardcore Holly came out for his match. When he saw an injured Brock, he ran to the ring. Brock and Heyman jumped out of the ring and bailed to the back. Nice touch. Heyman was great in this angle, continuing his streak of the best performances of his career lately. Brock and Goldberg played their parts perfectly, too. Good segment.
4 -- RHYNO vs. HARDCORE HOLLY
The match started with nice intensity, including a brawl in the aisle and some hard chops in the ring by Holly. Then they settled in a pretty slow paced, low impact mat-based match that led the director to go to Spanish commentary briefly just to shake things up. Holly made a comeback with a dropkick at 7:00. He then hit an inverted DDT at 8:00 for a two count. Rhyno came back with a Spinebuster, which prompted Tazz to compare him to Arn Anderson. Rhyno then hit the Gore which woke up the crowd. Holly came back with the Alabama Slam out of nowhere for the win.
WINNER: Holly at 9:50.
STAR RATING: *3/4 -- The body of the match dragged just a little much to reach the two star average rating even though the first two minutes and last two minutes were pretty good.
-A Guerreros-Rey Mysterio recap aired.
5 -- REY MYSTERIO (w/Jorge Paez) vs. CHAVO GUERRERO JR. (w/Chavo Sr.)
They built slow and steady. Rey hit the 619 at 4:30. When Chavo Sr. interfered, Paez KO'd him. The ref ordered Paez to the back. Rey nailed Chavo Jr. with a plancha. Rey scored a near fall at 6:00. Rey schoolboyed Chavo for a near fall at 6:15. Chavo made a comeback with a backbreaker off the ropes at 7:00. Chavo began working over Rey's back. Chavo applied an abdominal stretch. Chavo shifted to a single-leg Boston crab at 9:00. The announcers did a nice job explaining the holds and actually paying attention to them. Rey hit a surprise sunset flip for a near fall at 10:15. Chavo came back with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. Rey made a comeback with a wheel kick to Chavo's face at 12:00, then sent Chavo into the ringpost shoulder first. Rey hit Chavo with a reverse Russian legsweep then went for a cover at 13:15. Cole took all the drama out of it by screaming, "Rey's going to get him, this is it!" Of course, announcers never call finishes correctly ahead of time. Rey hit a DDT onto the ring apron as he leaped to the ground. Nice move. He scored a two count. When he went for a springboard bodyblock, Chavo moved, then gave Rey a sitout gourdbuster and scored a near fall himself. Chavo went to the top rope with Rey and ripped at Rey's mask. Rey elbowed Chavo to the mat, then hit a moonsault for a near fall. Chavo put his foot on the bottom rope to stop the count at two. Chavo came back with a near fall himself at 15:45. Rey came back with his second 619 of the match. Rey then springboarded onto Chavo, but Chavo rolled through into a modified single leg Boston crab. Rey grabbed the bottom rope to break. Chavo waited until the ref's four count to break the hold. When Rey went to the top rope, Chavo Jr. distracted the ref and Chavo Sr. shoved Rey off the top rope. Rey clotheslined the top rope with his neck and then Chavo Jr. scored the pin.
WINNER: Chavo Jr. at 17:11 to capture the Cruiserweight Title.
STAR RATING: ***1/4 -- Very good match. It never had a vicious intensity that would take it to the three-and-a-half star level, nor truly spectacular spots or rapid-fire sequences that led to huge adrenaline rushes, but overall a solidly worked match with good ring psychology and nice near falls.
-A plug aired for the Mick Foley DVD.
-Backstage Chavo Jr. and Sr. celebrated the title win.matthews caught up to Chavo Jr. He said he just beat all the odds to beat Rey Mysterio. He then pointed at Eddie Guerrero's locker room and called him a loser. He said: "He's always going to be a loser. You know why? Because he's an addict. He's addicted. There's a monkey on his back. And that monkey causes him to be a loser."
6 -- KURT ANGLE vs. JOHN CENA vs. BIG SHOW -- No. 1 contender's match
They listed Angle at 6-2, Cena at 6-1, and Big Show at 7-0. They added about three inches to both Angle and Show. Cena's height is close to accurate, because he's taller than Angle by an inch or two. Angle and Show had an intense staredown as Cena headed to the ring. Cena said: "Kurt thinks I hit him with a chair. This fool is out of his mind. I'm not the guy who's going to hit another guy from behind. I'm not your right hand, there's no way I could whack you. If I'm going to beat you, I'd come right up to your face and smack you. You want to know who knocked you out, here's a really big clue. He's 500 pounds, he smells like crap, and he's standing right next to you. Let's throw this whale back into the Bay and have him sleep with the fishes. This is no three way dance, this is me serving two bitches. No Way Out is my house, check the chain and the lock. There people will hang from words, you two can swing from my (blank)." A below average opening spiel from Cena. Show began against Angle as Cena looked on and reacted. Cena then went after Show as Angle observed. Angle and Cena then went face-to-face and exchanged some blows. When Show had Angle down after a sideslam, Cena broke up the pin attempt. Angle attempted to back suplex Show off the ring apron, but Show held onto the top rope. Cena ran into Show. Angle then gave Show a low blow from behind. Show fell to the ground, giving Angle and Cena a chance to fight. Angle rammed Cena's head into the stairs. Cena scored a two count on Angle at 5:00. Angle back suplexed Cena three consecutive times. Show then took over on Cena, tossed him around the ring. He stomped and rubbed his boot into Cena's sore knee. Cena sidestepped a charging Show, then came off the top rope onto Show. Cena then sold his knee giving out. Angle stepped into the action and covered Show for a near fall at 8:15. Cena recovered and gave Show an FU at 8:45. Angle then went for an Angle Slam on Cena. Cena escaped and dropped Angle to the mat. Cena crawled over to Show and covered him. Show put his foot under the bottom rope. Cena dove at Angle, but Angle ducked, so Cena landed on the floor. Angle gave Show an Angle Slam for a two count at 9:30. Cena reentered the ring and lifted Angle, but Angle slipped out and applied the Ankelock. Show then chokeslammed Angle. Cena rolled Show for a convincing near fall. Show came back immediately with a chokeslam. Angle then put Show in an Ankelock just as Show went for the cover on Cena. Show screamed in pain. He powered out of the hold by twisting and kicked Angle off of him. Cena then gave Angle a Spinebuster. He followed with a fistdrop. He set up an FU, but Show clubbed his leg out from under him. Cena collapsed and dropped Angle. Show then slammed Cena into the top turnbuckle. Angle went for a back suplex. Show elbowed out of it. Angle then lifted Show and dumped him over the top rope Angle-slam style. Angle then went after Cena with a stomp to his leg and a grapevine. Cena tapped out at 12:19. Cole said half of the main event at WrestleMania has been decided.
WINNER: Angle at 12:19 to earn a title shot at WrestleMania.
STAR RATING: ***1/2 -- They did a really nice job with the three-way format and convincing near falls in the final few minutes.
-A replay aired of the Lesnar-Eddie storyline.
7 -- BROCK LESNAR vs. EDDIE GUERRERO -- WWE Hvt. Title match
The match began at 9:58 p.m. ET, leaving nearly an hour for the match if they choose to go long with the match. After some Brock bully-like facial expressions, they did a collar and elbow hook-up. Brock easily tossed Guerrero backward. Then he threw a series of kicks to his belly in the corner. Guerrero caught a charging Brock with an elbow, but Brock stopped Eddie's attempt at an offensive flurry. Eddie went for a head scissors off the top rope, but Brock caught him and spun him around and then released him. Tazz said Brock was treating Guerrero like a rag doll and dissecting him. Brock charged Eddie in the corner and hit him with a high knee. It looked painful. Tazz said he didn't think Guerrero was in Brock's class. Cole asked Tazz what Eddie's strategy could be. Tazz said he wasn't completing counting him out. Eddie staggered around ringside. He shouldered Brock and then yanked Brock's neck over the top rope. He dragged Brock's leg toward the ringpost and wrapped it around it with force. Brock did a great job fighting it. Eddie rammed his leg again into the ringpost at 5:45. Brock came back and settled into a chinlock. Eddie escaped at 7:45 with a drop down jawbreaker. Brock fired back with a vicious clothesline. They did a slo-mo to show the sweat flying off of their bodies upon impact. Brock smiled as the regained his composure and moved in on Guerrero with some kicks in the corner. Brock flew at Guerrero, but Eddie ducked and Brock landed hard on the floor. He grabbed at his knee. Cole and Tazz excitedly wondered aloud whether it could be the turning point in the match. Eddie began working over Brock's legs. Brock turned momentum briefly by dropping Eddie over the top rope. He scored a two count. He put his boot over Eddie's throat, then lifted him by the neck. Eddie turned the throat grab into a UFC-style reversal into a kneebar and then an STF. Great sequence at 12:30. The crowd screamed encouragement to Guerrero as Brock attempted to power out. Guerrero began to apply a figure-four, prompting "whoos" from the crowd. Brock kicked at Eddie to break the attempted submission. Lesnar struggled to get to his feet and then powered Eddie over his head with a belly-to-belly toss. Guerrero continued to work over Brock with some matholds that slowed the match down a bit. Brock came back with a spinebuster at 18:15. Brock applied a chinlock and held it on despite Guerrero attempts to escape. Guerrero dropped Brock face-first into the middle turnbuckle at 20:00. When he flew off the second rope, Brock moved. Cole said fatigue had to be a factor now. Brock was bleeding from his nose. Brock squeezed Guerreros belly and yelled, "Die!" Eddie made a full-fledged comeback at 23:45 with some headbutts and a dropkick to Brock's knee. Cole wondered how he was doing it. He then dropkicked Brock in the back of his head. Brock then picked up Eddie coming off the ropes, but Guerrero turned it into a head scissors takedown. Brock powered Guerrero into the corner, but when he charged, Eddie moved. Guerrero kicked Brock in the gut and then went for his three unreleased vertical suplexes. After two, Tazz wondered if he could do a third. He did a third. After working the crowd into a frenzy, Guerrero went for a Frog Splash. Brock moved out of his path and then went for an F5. Brock spun Eddie right into the ref. With the ref down, Brock went to ringside, grabbed his title belt, and brought it into the ring. Goldberg ran to the ring and nailed Brock with a Spear. "Where the hell did he come from?" asked Cole. Goldberg returned to the back laughing. After about 45 seconds, Guerrero went for a cover. Brock kicked out just before three. Eddie picked up the title belt and called for Brock to stand up. The ref was trying to regain his consciousness. Eddie swung the belt and missed when Brock ducked. Brock then kicked Eddie in the gut and went for an F5 on the belt. Guerrero reversed it and DDT'd Brock near or on the belt. Eddie then hit the Frog Splash for the win. Eddie dove into the crowd in celebration. They mosh pitted him briefly. Eddie held the belt in the air in celebration, then found his mother in the crowd. He hugged her. Eddie stood on the announcers table and saluted the crowd. Tazz said he didn't think anyone could beat Brock.
WINNER: Guerrero at 29:55 to capture the WWE Hvt. Title.
STAR RATING: ****1/2 -- Excellent match. The Goldberg interference late didn't take a lot away from Eddie's win since Brock was able to comeback with an F5 attempt, which Eddie reversed and then hit his own finisher. It also doesn't hurt that his gimmick is "lying, cheating, stealing."
If you watched the PPV, let us know your thoughts afterward. Send your name, hometown, 1-10 score, picks for best and worst matches, and brief comments on the show to "torchreax" (@pwtorch.com).
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