San Antonio, Texas
March 7, 2002
Just 10 days before WrestleMania X8, the March 7 episode of SmackDown! emanated live from the sold-out Freeman Coliseum in San Antonio!
As the show began, Ric Flair pounded on the door of the Undertakers dressing room. An irate Flair demanded that Taker open the door and look him in the face. Inside the locker room, Taker was seen watching Flair on a monitor, laughing at the Nature Boy, and telling Ric that his son was a bleeder, just like Arn Anderson. Taker said David Flair had more guts than Ric did. Flair continued to scream at Taker, and said he was going to the ring to address the situation.
Moments later, Flair headed to the ring, and the World Wrestling Federation co-owner was clearly not in a good mood after seeing his son David savagely attacked by the Undertaker on Monday's RAW. The Nature Boy said that when he came to the Federation, his dream of becoming an owner had come true. He said Vince McMahon didn't like that, so Vince has goaded him to walk the aisle again, and he did, and he kicked Vince's butt. Flair said that Taker had then knocked on his door, with Taker saying he wanted a match for WrestleMania, but Flair had said no.
Ric talked about Taker's attacks on Arn Anderson and David Flair in an attempt to get Ric's attention. Flair said Arn had told Flair not to let Taker get the best of him. Ric said today was David's 23rd birthday, but David wasn't celebrating, because he was laying in a bed somewhere.
Ric said that Taker now had his attention. He said Taker's trophy case wasn't big enough to hold Ric Flair the wrestler, and neither was Vince McMahon's. He said that as of tonight, he was a wrestler again. Flair said he and Taker would get in the ring, and he wanted to bleed! Flair agreed to meet the Undertaker at WrestleMania, and he promised to hurt him!
Suddenly, "Rollin'" filled the arena, and out came the Undertaker! Taker told Flair to calm down. Taker said that since Monday, he had been thinking, and to be honest, he wasn't really sure he still wanted to fight Flair at WrestleMania. Taker said he was willing to let bygones be bygones, and he would be willing to forgive Flair for everything Flair had put him through. Taker said it was like Flair told him -- he would think about it, and he would give Flair his answer later in the night.
Backstage, Stephanie McMahon ran into Triple H. She told The Game to stay away from her. The Game mentioned how good her skin was looking now that her hives were gone. Stephanie asked how it felt to lose on Monday night
Triple H said that since they were returning each others stuff, he was going to give back her Corvette -- the one Vince had given her for her 16th birthday -- and it would be here later in the night. Triple H said that he wanted their dog Lucy back. The two argued for a bit about the dog. Triple H asked why she would want the dog anyway, since one bitch in the house was enough! The Game then walked away, as Stephanie stared at a garment bag she had with her, and smiled.
Intercontinental Champion William Regal joined Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler for commentary as Rob Van Dam challenged Goldust for the Hardcore Championship. Regal was scouting RVD prior to their Intercontinental Championship Match at WrestleMania. Before the match even began, RVD flew over the top rope and nailed Goldust on the floor! Goldust soon threw golden trashcans and a golden chair into the ring, but it was Van Dam who got in the first shot, nailing Goldust with a trashcan lid! He also launched Goldust onto a chair. Regal was set to get into the ring to attack RVD, but Van Dam caught him with a kick to the head! Goldust set up RVD for the Golden Globes, but Van Dam escaped and kicked a trashcan into Goldust for two. RVD kicked a chair into Goldust's face, only to be met with a brass-knuckles shot from Regal! Goldust then rolled RVD up for the pinfall!
After a video feature highlighting the nWo's vicious assault on Stone Cold Steve Austin on Monday's RAW, Michael Cole announced that the Texas Rattlesnake would not be on SmackDown! due to the injury.
Stephanie McMahon was in her locker room when Undisputed Champion Chris Jericho came in and gave her the water she had apparently asked him to get. He asked why he was running her chores, since he was the Undisputed Champion. Stephanie said she had caused Triple H to lose on RAW, and that was exactly what she would do to The Game at WrestleMania. Stephanie then gave Y2J a gift -- Triple H's first robe. She said the robe was given to The Game by his mentor, Killer Kowalski. She said the robe was half hers, and the robe should only be worn by a champion. Jericho said he would wear the robe on his way to the ring for his match against Kane. He put the robe on, and the two shared a hug.
Next up, Tajiri -- accompanied by Torrie Wilson -- took on Booker T. Tajiri commanded Booker with kicks in the early-going, but Booker used his power to battle back. Tajiri scored a near-fall off a standing moonsault, and scored with several kicks. He soon nailed the kick to the head, but Booker kicked out. Booker nailed Tajiri with a spinebuster, and nearly took Tajiri's head off with a scissors kick, which helped him earn the pinfall victory. After the bout, Booker did the spinerooni, and again hit Tajiri with a scissors kick.
As he continued his assault on Tajiri, Edge ran down to save the Cruiserweight Champion, knocking Booker from the ring and mocking him!
The sold-out crowd at the Freeman Coliseum rose to its feet as finally, The Rock came back to SmackDown! Rocky said he was a lot of things, but above all else, he was human. He said he had made a mistake -- three weeks ago, when Vince McMahon announced that the nWo was coming back to the Federation, Rock was happy, because he was thinking about The Rock vs. Hollywood Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania, instead of thinking about what a cancer the nWo is. Rock said Hogan who he called a self-centered, bitter, jaded son of a bitch -- had made an even bigger mistake by not finishing off The Rock when he had a chance. Rock challenged Hogan to try and finish him off tonight.
Rock waited in the ring for a few moments, and soon, out came Hogan, along with Scott Hall and Kevin Nash, to the stage. Hogan said he could understand Rock being upset, but there was no need to use such nasty words. Hogan said if he wanted to, he could kick Rock's crippled ass right now without breaking a sweat. But he said he was going to wait until WrestleMania, when Rock would be 100 percent. He said that at WrestleMania, the millions of fans -- who were Hogans fans first -- would see Hogan kick Rock's ass, just like Hogan had beaten every other flash in the pan. Hogan said he didn't want Rock to have any excuses.
Hogan said he was just too nice of a guy, and that Rock was pitiful, and he wouldn't take advantage of a man in such a weakened state.
But The Rock begged Hogan, challenging him to please come down and take advantage of a weakened Rock. Rock said it was The Price is Right -- and told Hogan to come on down! An enraged Rock mocked Hogan, saying who would have ever guessed that the man with 24-inch pythons would have half-inch testicles! Hogan wanted to head to the ring, but Hall and Nash held him back. The three had a conference for a moment, and then Scott Hall said that while Hogan might be too nice to take advantage of The Rock, Scott Hall wasn't. Hall said that Rock shouldn't forget what happened to Stone Cold on Monday. Hall challenged Rock to just bring it on SmackDown!
Rock said, "What did you just say, Chico?" Rock said Hall had told the wrong man to bring it. Rock said he would never forget what Nash and Hall did to him on SmackDown!, and he accepted Hall's challenge for SmackDown! But Rock told Hogan not to get too comfortable -- because when he was done with Hall, Hogan had to get ready -- because Hogan's candy ass is next!
In a Handicap Match, Maven and Al Snow took on the Undertaker. Taker attacked both men before the bell, focusing much of his offense on Snow. Maven broke up a pinfall attempt and laid into Taker, but the Dead Man was soon taking on both men. Taker then brutalized Maven for a while.
The fight spilled to the outside, where Taker tossed Snow into the ring steps. Back in the ring, Taker chokeslammed Maven and was about to pin him, but instead pulled Maven off the mat so that he could inflict more punishment. Taker soon locked Maven into a dragon sleeper, and Maven tapped out, giving Taker the win.
After the bout, Taker grabbed a microphone and said he thought Flair deserved an answer. Taker said that if Flair wanted to fight him at WrestleMania, the answer is yes -- on one condition. He said Flair needed to walk to the ring immediately, get down on his hands and knees, and beg him for the match!
Flair did indeed run down, but there was no begging involved -- the two superstars started slugging it out! The two fought into the crowd until security pulled the superstars apart! In the melee, Flair accidentally punched a fan!
Undisputed Champion Chris Jericho wore Triple H's first wrestling robe to the ring as he took on Kane in a non-title bout. Stephanie McMahon accompanied Y2J to the ring. Y2J talked some big-time smack to Kane prior to the bout, but it was the Big Red Machine who dominated at first, using his size to his advantage. Jericho soon tried to walk away from the bout, but Kane pulled him back into the action. Kane went up top, but Y2J caught him with a huge dropkick! Kane soon had Jericho set up for the chokeslam, but as Stephanie distracted the ref, Kurt Angle ran down and gave Kane the Angle Slam!
Y2J then hit the Lionsault and pinned Kane for the win! After the bout, Angle went to hit Kane with a chair, but Kane caught him with a boot to the face, knocking the chair into Angle's head! Kane and Angle slugged it out to the backstage area.
In the ring, Stephanie was giving Triple H's robe to Y2J when Triple H ran in. The Game attacked Jericho and threw Y2J from the ring, and Triple H then set up his soon-to-be ex-wife for the Pedigree! Luckily for Stephanie, however, Y2J saved her, as Triple H took back his robe.
Ric Flair was backstage in his locker room when there was a knock at the door. It was the police! They asked to speak to the Federation co-owner. It turns out they were accompanied by the fan that Flair had hit by accident during his melee with Taker! The police told Flair they would have to arrest him for assault. Flair said it was all an accident, but the cops took him away, as Taker watched on and smiled.
Kane was walking in a parking area looking for Kurt Angle. Angle soon ambushed Kane from behind, and the two brawled! Kurt knocked Kane down under a metal door, and dropped the door right onto Kane's ribs! He even smacked Kane's head with a steel chair!
In a battle of divas, Stacy Keibler took on Lita. Stacy attacked Lita with a spinning heel kick before the opening bell, but Lita kicked out of a pinfall attempt. Lita hit Stacy with a forward slam soon thereafter and picked up the victory.
After the bout, Lilian Garcia interviewed Lita and asked what her next goal was. Lita said that her next goal was to win the Women's Championship. As she spoke to Lilian, Stacy attacked her, but Lita recovered and hit Stacy with the Twist of Fate and a moonsault! But as Lita talked trash to Stacy, Jazz attacked Lita from behind and downed her with a DDT!
Coach caught up with Stephanie McMahon as she was leaving the arena, and Stephanie reiterated that Triple H's robe was half hers. Triple H then approached Stephanie and said her Corvette was here. He gave her the keys, and she went over to the car -- which was cut in half! Stephanie threw a fit when she saw that her husband had cut half the car off, as The Game just walked away and laughed!
The main event on SmackDown! pitted The Rock against Scott Hall. Rock's ribs were taped, as he was obviously still feeling the effects of the attack three weeks ago on RAW. Rock vented his frustration on Hall early, but Hall held his own with the Brahma Bull. Rock downed Hall with a spinebuster and locked him in the sharpshooter, but down to the ring ran Hulk Hogan, and Rock released the hold to chase him away. Kevin Nash also headed to the ring to be in Hall's corner.
With the referee distracted, Hogan pulled Rock to the outside and pummeled him, even dropping him ribs-first onto the barricade. Hall tried to pin Rock, even putting both feet on the ropes, but Rock still kicked out.
Hall took it to The Rock, trying to wear down the People's Champion even more. Hall hit Rock with a fall-away slam, and then gave the sign for the Razors Edge, but Rock countered and backdropped Hall.
Rock tried to fight back, and got in some shots on Hall. He then nailed the Rock Bottom, but Nash ran into the ring, and Rock had to fight him off! As Rock sent Nash flying to the outside, Hogan got in the ring, and he and Rock stared each other down. The nWo then triple-teamed Rock, with Hogan going to work on Rock's ribs. Suddenly, Stone Cold's music hit, and down ran the Rattlesnake! Austin knocked down all the nWo members, and nailed Nash with a steel chair repeatedly.
Suddenly, Vince McMahon came out to the stage and told Austin he was a son of a bitch. Vince said that if Austin and Rock wanted some of the nWo, then they could face them in a two-on-three Handicap Match this Monday on RAW! Austin and Rock stared down the nWo and Mr. McMahon as SmackDown! went off the air!