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2/19 WWE Velocity review: Giebink's detailed match analysis and grades

Feb 20, 2005 - 12:39:00 PM
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By Dusty Giebink, Torch Team Contributor

WWE Velocity review
February 19, 2005
Taped 2/15/05
Aired on Spike TV
Report by Dusty Giebink, Torch Team Wisconsin Dream


Velocity is Trivial! Were going with a short, straight to the point version of VelociTrivial this time. Sports are sort of between seasons right now, and while we cant wait for March Madness, that unfortunately takes place in March. (Helpful reminder: This is February.) So heres the question!

To kick off their new 1999, Sunday Night Heat led off the program with a match between Headbanger Mosh and which WWF/E legend of the squared circle?
a) Superfly Jimmy Snuka
b) Sgt. Slaughter
c) George The Animal Steele
d) Rowdy Roddy Piper

Answer at the end of the review. On to the show!

I am really excited, everyone. Why, you may ask? Well, its simple. Yesterday morning, I was flipping through the channels to try to find a decent cartoon to watch. Low and behold, my local Fox affiliate is now running back-to-back episodes of The Smurfs. They ran the creation of Smurfette show, and followed it up with the show where the Smurflings created Sassette. This is the greatest thing ever. Oh yeah, besides Velocity. The opening montage aired, and Steve Romero and Josh Mathews welcomed us to the show. We are mere hours away from the No Way Out PPV.

(1) Charlie Haas defeated Rene Dupree. The finish came when Haas hit a German suplex into a bridge for the pinfall victory.

Match Analysis: You could tell by the look on his face that Haas would rather be anywhere but working the opening match on Velocity this week. Romero and Mathews were great together here, first talking about how Mathews doesnt actually like Dupree all that much, and then about how since Dupree dyes his hair, Fifi probably just likes to take after him. Dupree took three years to take his robe off, and Romero was having a mini-Michael Coleish bird about it. Only, his was actually sort of entertaining. They tied up and Dupree got a hip toss in, which caused for him to celebrate like he just won the WWE Title, according to Mathews. Dupree got in an armdrag and did it again. I would actually argue that Dupree is better off doing that (celebrating ridiculously after every offensive move) than trying to improve as a worker. Haas shoulder tackled Dupree to the outside and started a USA chant. Dupree whipped Haas into the turnbuckles with some extra Velocity. He then choked Haas out by laying his knee over his neck while Haas was prone over the first rope. Dupree hit a fist drop that actually got a two count. Haas hit a bulldog off the top rope. He then hit a springboard moonsault (I think) onto the standing Dupree. Nice move. He later hit a standing, spinning legdrop, but missed a splash in the corner. Dupree celebrated by hitting the French Tickler, but Haas hit a German suplex into a bridge for the pinfall victory.

Match Grade: B. This actually was better than I thought it was going to be. Maybe it was the silly over-celebration bit Dupree did at the beginning of the match, or the fact that Haas is a fine worker who could carry the younger, more inexperienced guy to a better than normal match, but I thought this was pretty okay.

From this past Thursdays Smackdown, Mark Jindrak was taking on Undertaker in what has to be considered an early match of the year contender. Jindrak had a headlock slapped on as we picked up the action. Undertaker punched his way out of it and then hit a DDT. It only got a two count, which caused for Jake Roberts to roll over in his grave. Jindrak blocked a chokeslam attempt, but Taker hit a flying clothesline and then actually did hit the chokeslam. Outside the ring, Luther Reigns knocked down a camera man and actually took the camera from him. Who does he think he is, Sid?! In any event, back in the ring Taker hit the tombstone and got the pinfall victory on Jindrak. However, after the match Luther nailed Taker with what was actually a very good, believable looking camera shot. However, moments later (because you just know it would kill Taker to do a prolonged sell job for just about anyone), the big, big, huge DONG hit and Undertaker sat up. He stared down Luther to end the segment. All of that set up this: Undertaker will be taking on Luther at the No Way Out PPV.

Segment Grade: C+. Yeah, this was just sort of there. What they should be showing over and over again is Luthers interview he did, talking about how rough his life was growing up and because of that, how he isnt really afraid of the Undertaker. That was an excellent interview and would have provided a nice backdrop to Taker sitting up and staring down Luther, in the video package. You know, the one thing on top of the other bit that they do sometimes? It would have worked here, I believe.

They aired the next in the line of WrestleMania movie spoof commercials, this one with Booker T and Eddie Guerrero as the two main characters in Pulp Fiction. This one was pretty funny, too. If I had to rank them, I would put the Eugene/Forrest Gump one first, the Stacy Keibler/Basic Instinct one second, this one third, and the Braveheart/Triple H one fourth. They were all really good, though, and much better than the Royal Rumble one, which I didnt like that much at all. I do think Booker should adapt the curly hair/ mustache into the sideburns look on a full time basis, too.

From this past Thursdays Smackdown, because you just know you liked this past weeks Smackdown, stop lying to yourself. In any event, this time we were taken to the John Cena vs. Booker T match, which was a match in the tournament to determine who would go to WrestleMania to challenge for the WWE Title. The winner of this match would take on Kurt Angle in the finals, on the No Way Out PPV, for that honor. Cena was on 12 different kinds of fire here, hitting clotheslines and shoulder blocks and stuff like that. Booker hit a spinebuster to thwart the momentum. Booker missed the axe kick and Cena made like he was going to hit the F-U. However, Booker was able to hold onto the ropes, so Cena just hot shotted him down on the top rope. Booker ducked out of the way of something and hit a nice spinning kick for a two count. Cena hit the F-U pretty much out of nowhere (he really is Diamond Dallas Page) for the victory. All of that led to this: Kurt Angle vs. John Cena at the No Way Out PPV, with the winner getting a shot at the WWE Title at WrestleMania. Also on that show is Chavo Guerrero vs. Akio vs. Paul London vs. Shannon Red Rooster Moore vs. Funaki vs. Spike Dudley in a six way for the cruiserweight title, the Basham Brothers defending the tag team titles against Rey Mysterio and Eddie Guerrero in a match where Guerrero definitely wont be turning against Mysterio, and four nameless, faceless women with large breasts will be having some sort of competition against each other in a segment or group of segments meant to take PPV time and money away from actual good workers who deserve to be on the payroll, like Charlie Haas. Also on the show is Luther vs. Undertaker and Big Show vs. JBL for the WWE Title. The only match I can get emotionally interested in is Luther hopefully beating Undertaker, but how remote a possibility is that? Yeah.

Segment Grade: B+. There was nothing technically wrong with this segment, and I graded it higher than Ive graded most Cena segments lately because the focus was on what was going on in the ring, and not Cena trying to advance his ridiculous character that doesnt draw any money or new fans to the arena, but must be great because it elicits big pops from the dwindling audience that makes up of his (and WWEs) fan base.

(2) Heidenreich defeated Mike Mundo. The finish came when Heidenreich hit a tilt-a-whirl sidewalk slam for the pinfall victory.

Match Analysis: Before this match began, we got some of the biggest, bestest news in the history of getting news. Mathews helpfully informed us that because of their backstage altercation on this past weeks Smackdown, Teddy Long has signed Booker T vs. Heidenreich for the PPV. Yippee hippy skippy! Or something. Mundos name was eerily similar to OVWs Mike Mondo. Nah, cant be. Heidenreich backed Mundo into the turnbuckles, hit a couple punches, and then got a couple kicks in. This isnt going to be a technical masterpiece. Heidenreich worked over Mundos arm, but Mundo tried to fire back with some punches of his own. This lasted about three seconds before Heidenreich hit a shoulder breaker. Heidenreich did some more stuff, including a choke and a couple more punches. Mundo got his boots up as Heidenreich charged at him in the corner and then hit some punches, but Heidenreich stopped that right quick with a big boot. Heidenreich hit a big time backbreaker (I guess). Heidenreich hit a tilt-a-whirl sidewalk slam to get the victory and then made his great creepy faces.

Match Grade: C-. There is a particular, very specific reason why workrate snobs do not like Heidenreich. This is because he is not a good worker. In any event, I like the occasional squash match on TV. Really, they ought to do more of them, because they help to establish the victors character and moveset (assuming he has one), and help get him over without doing damage to an all ready established character by making him job too much, or having the same matches on TV too many times. More squash matches would have helped in the initial implementation of the brand split, had they utilized it more often. But what have you.

From this past Thursdays Smackdown, we were first taken back to the previous Mondays Raw show. Batista was taking on Edge in a very good match until Triple H came in for the pointless, senseless DQ finish. Trips and Batista then spotted JBLs limo arriving in the parking lot (since it was shown over the TitanTron, assuming they still call it that). Flair came out of nowhere and told them to hurry up and get them some of JBL right now. Triple H was great here, using the word we a hundred times in referring to how together they would take care of JBL, even though Batista had insisted that he wanted to take care of matters himself. He blew a gasket and told Triple H to stay behind as he take care of JBL. However, JBLs limo started peeling out, heading towards Batista, so Triple H came back into the scene out of nowhere to shove Batista out of harms way and save the day. That brought us to. . .

This past Thursdays Smackdown, now in live time, where Batista vowed to show up (By myself!) to take care of JBL. JBL was in the ring talking about how he wanted to handle Batista man-on-man, eyeball-to-eyeball. This was great because he said it with his entire cabinet standing next to him. In any event, he implored Big Show to put down his pizza backstage and watch him take care of Batista like he was going to take care of him at the PPV. Batista showed up, systematically took out every window on JBLs limo (including a nice spot where he looked himself over in the mirrors before smashing more windows), before JBLs cabinet could get back there to take care of him. This left JBL alone in the ring, so Big Show took it upon himself to go after him. He pounded away on JBL until the rest of the cabinet could get back into the ring and do a four-on-one on the Big Dumb Show. However, this was short-lived since Batista actually came back out and took out the cabinet members on his own accord, including dishing out some powerbombs and the like. He had a staredown with JBL and then one with Big Show in the ring. This was an amazingly well booked segment.

Segment Grade: A. Absolutely tremendous segment which not only served to help set up JBL vs. Big Show at No Way Out, but also made it clear that Batista might somehow play a role in that matchs outcome, since hes going to be at the show, too. I love that its clear Triple H had something to do with JBLs limo going after Batista, but yet he still has plausible deniability on his side. And when they finally do turn on each other, the limo driver could be revealed to be someone (Orton?) who could take Batistas spot in Evolution. Everything would come together nicely here. Great booking.

(3) Hardcore Holly defeated Kenzo Suzuki (w/Hiroko). The finish came when Holly hit the Alabama Slam for the pinfall victory.

Match Analysis: Romero pointed out that Suzuki either has an ear infection, or else hes tired of hearing the boos from American fans. Mathews was fantastic here, pointing out the inconsistencies in Suzukis character. Like, how he was booed in Japan, and claims to love America, so why should be he be upset when the crowd chants USA and all that? Mathews then pointed out that Holly is loved all over the world. The announcers then talked about how great of a singer Suzuki is, and how great it would be if Suzuki were in a band with William Hung. Id buy every single one of their albums. I suppose there is a match going on here, too. Suzuki whipped Holly into the turnbuckles, but Holly got out of the way of whatever was up Suzukis dastardly sleeve and got a non-fruit rollup for a two count. Holly chopped away on Suzuki. Holly propped Suzuki up (sort of hanging him out to dry) and then kicked him in the lower abdomen region. Outside the ring, Suzuki rammed Holly shoulder-first into the ringpost. Back in the ring, this got a two count. Holly started punching his way back to the offensive, but Suzuki hit a clothesline to thwart the momentum. Suzuki did a long headlock spot, but Holly eventually battled his way out of it with punches, clotheslines and dropkicks and stuff like that. Holly hit a full nelson slam for a close two count. If theres one thing Holly is good at, its acting surprised when someone kicks out of his big moves. Holly hit a top rope clothesline. This travesty of a move was enough to bring Hiroko up to the ring apron, which provided enough of a distraction for Suzuki to get back on offense. Holly reversed it and whipped Suzuki into the ropes near Hiroko, which scared her and caused her to jump off the apron on her own volition. This allowed for Holly to hit the Alabama Slam to get the victory back in the ring.

Match Grade: B-. I would sort of put this in the same category as the opener. It was not a good match, really, and it certainly was worse than the opener, but it was better than I thought it would be. That said, its time to cut their losses with Suzuki and replace him. It pains me that people like Heidenreich, Snitsky, Suzuki, Chris Masters and others are on the Big Two rosters, but talented people who are ready to contribute like Matt Morgan, Tank Toland and Chris Cage are stuck in OVW for the time being.

Final Show Grade: B-. Another disappointing, worse than could be episode of Velocity. What brought this one down was the quality of the Heidenreich squash match (probably because Heidenreich was in it), the less than stellar main event featuring my two least favorite wrestlers right now, Holly and Suzuki, and the worse than usual Smackdown highlight segment featuring the build up for the Luther vs. Undertaker PPV match. The opening match was surprisingly quite good, and the booking of the main event JBL vs. Big Show angle with the added Batista intrigue was spectacular, so all was not lost. Heres hoping for a better show next week!

Answer to Trivial! The correct answer is c). George Steele, green tongue and A-Train backhair included, beat the Headbanger with relative ease in much the same way a lot of his wins over squash opponents happened; they were frightened to defeat. (Program aired January 3, 1999.)

***Dusty Giebink would like you to know that his Smurf name is Transparent Smurf, and he welcomes any questions, answers, comments or concerns that you might have. He can be contacted at dusty13@gmail.com, or the ultra-clever Dusty Giebink on the VIP Forum message board, if you have anything you wish to say.


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