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9/16 WWE in Raleigh: Smackdown taping results including 60 min. match

Sep 17, 2003 - 1:37:00 AM
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WWE Smackdown tapings
September 16, 2003
Raleigh, N.C. at the RBC Center
Report by Brad Stutts, PWTorch.com correspondent


Crowd was pretty decent, I'd say between 60-75% but I'd guess heavily papered.

DARK MATCHES

(1) Jamie Noble pinned Kendo Ka Shin. Even as a novice Japanese wrestling fan, it was a treat to see Ka Shin live as we got there just in time for about the last three minutes or so of the match.

(2) A-Train & Sean O'Haire defeated Paul London & Spanky. Good to see London live as well. This wasn't a squash per se but Spanky got nearly all of the offense in for his team. Spanky took the pin after a Derailer.

VELOCITY TAPINGS

(1) Big Show defeated Murray Happer & Pat Cusick in a handicap match. Cusick and Happer, better known as Otto Schwanz/Bo Dupp are both from Carolina Wrestling Federation based out of Burlington, NC. Show dominated and pinned Cusick following a chokeslam.

(2) Matt Hardy pinned Joey Matthews with a Twist of Fate. Hardy got a big North Carolina pop and Matthews went heel for the match. Good back-and-fourth match.

(3) Happer & Cusick returned to the ring and Happer got on the mic (!), doing the "Shaddup!" shtick he often uses at local events. He went on to insist that their previous match was a fluke and demanded Big Show return to the ring. Show did so and defeated both of them again in an even shorter match, pinning Cusick again. I'm assuming this was a do-over.

(6) Billy Kidman pinned Shannon Moore following a Shooting Star Press.

(7) Orlando Jordan pinned Chuck Palumbo. Palumbo was originally escorted by Nunzio and Johnny Stamboli but they were ejected following interference. This match got the only audible "boring" chant of the night. Jordan, who has a good built but doesn't show much charisma or athleticism, went over.

SMACKDOWN TAPINGS

Vince McMahon appeared on the Titantron and put over the iron man match main event before being confronted by Undertaker, in his only appearance of the night.

(1) Chris Benoit & Rey Misterio Jr. defeated Tajiri & Rhyno when Misterio pinned Rhyno following a 619 and a springboard leg drop. Good action.

(2) Shaniqua defeated Torrie Wilson & Nidia w/ Dawn Marie in a handicap match. Short and painless.

Vince McMahon, Big Show and Sable were harassing Stephanie McMahon in her office trying to get her to quit. This was shockingly the only McMahon segment of the night.

John Cena cut a taped promo from the roof of the building saying he was America's team (while wearing a Braves jersey) and heeled on John Ritter. He also said he'd win the U.S. Title next week

Los Guerreros cut a babyface promo in their locker room

(3) Eddie & Chavo Guerrero defeated Charlie Haas & Shelton Benjamin to win the WWE Tag Team Titles. Los Guerreros got an insanely loud pop. Eddie Guerrero may very well be the most over act in WWE right now. Great match from both teams, as per usual. Haas & Benjamin are the best thing to happen to American tag teams since the Hollywood Blondes, although both appeared to be injured after the match. At one point Benjamin attempted a belt shot but missed and Chavo went to roll him up but Benjamin sold it like a clip to the back of the leg. He rolled to the floor and was not seen again the rest of the match, appearing to be legit injured. Los Guerreros double-teamed Haas and hit a flapjack that appeared to go wrong as well, as Haas landed on either the top or back of his head. Chavo went to pick Haas up and he was nearly limp, Chavo hit the brain buster and tagged in Eddy who nailed the frog splash to a HUGE pop for the pin and the titles. Afterwards, both Haas & Benjamin were helped to the back, Haas walked out under his own power but Benjamin was helped back and was favoring his leg. Despite the two awkward spots where injuries apparently occurred, this was an awesome tag team stuff executed perfectly.

Separate shots were shown of the FBI, Basham Brothers, A-Train, O'Haire, Hardy & Moore in the heel locker room and the APA, Funaki, Ultimo Dragon and others in the APA office playing cards, discussing the iron man match.

(4) Brock Lesnar defeated Kurt Angle in a sixty-minute iron man match to win the WWE Championship. This was a tremendous match. Angle won the first fall by disqualification following a chairshot by Lesnar but Lesnar wore him down enough to win the next two with an F5 and ankle lock in quick succession. Referee Brian Hebner took a sick bump off a Lesnar clothesline that incapacitated him for a few minutes. I won't spoil all the falls but I felt this was a very smartly booked and smartly paced match that ended up 5-4 in Lesnar's favor. Angle hit seven consecutive rolling German suplexes in the last minute of the match trying to put Lesnar away before locking on an Ankle Lock (which got a huge pop each time it was used) but Lesnar held on long enough to win the match 5-4. I'd definitely call this MOTYC quality. Some will blast the heel stalling by Lesnar during the first 10 or so minutes but I felt it was smartly paced and booked and fit well in context. I was shocked (in a good way) to see it end clean without a run in from McMahon, Taker or both. Don't know how it will play on television, but a super match live and was thrilled that it ended cleanly.

Post-match, Kurt Angle addressed the crowd and thanked them, saying he would not have made it back from a broken neck if not for them, leaving to a thunderous ovation.

This was the best WWF/E show I have attended in 20 years as a fan, blowing away the lackluster Unforgiven 98 and KOTR 99 PPVs and numerous house shows and TV tapings during the boom when WWF ran Greensboro quarterly. The show was nearly all action from top to bottom with no run-ins and all clean finishes. Just a night of great wrestling.

Biggest Pops: Eddie Guerrero, Undertaker in his Titantron appearance, Kurt Angle post-match


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