July 25, 2002
SmackDown! kicked off with general manager Stephanie McMahon welcoming fans to the first episode of SmackDown! under her reign. Stephanie announced that Edge would finally be getting his one-on-one match with Chris Jericho in a steel cage on SmackDown! Also, Stephanie said this week's show would include the WWE debut of Rey Mysterio. The Tag Team Championship would be on the line, as Lance Storm and Christian would be facing the team of Hollywood Hulk Hogan and The Rock! Finally, Stephanie said that she hoped Eric Bischoff was watching because this week's program would also be the SmackDown! debut of Brock Lesnar!
Live action kicked off from the Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis with Olympic hero Kurt Angle going one-on-one with another former Olympian, Mark Henry. As the match began, Henry showcased his superior strength and size as he went full-speed against Angle. The World's Strongest Man topped off his display with a gorilla-press slam on Angle in the middle of the ring. The Olympic hero turned the tide, however, after nailing a German suplex on his massive opponent. As the crowd chanted "Angle Sucks!" in unison, Henry continued his assault on Angle, including a powerslam and an avalanche in the corner. Henry was about to continue his attack when, suddenly, Brock Lesnar ran into the ring and leveled Henry with some powerful blows. Lesnar then did the unthinkable when he lifted Henry onto his shoulders and executed an F-5 on the World's Strongest Man, leaving Henry lifeless in the middle of the ring. As Lesnar and Paul Heyman were making their way back up the ramp, Angle was visibly upset that Lesnar had interfered in his match.
Angle followed Lesnar and Heyman backstage and the Olympic hero asked the duo why they disrupted his match. Lesnar answered by saying that it looked like Angle was in trouble and he needed help. Angle replied by saying, "Who in the hell do you think you are?" Lesnar responded by stating he was the man who was going to fight for the WWE Undisputed Championship at SummerSlam. Lesnar added that he wanted to face Angle at SummerSlam, but the Olympic hero had ruined his chance. Brock said that it seemed as if Angle was having a hard time remaining the No. 1 guy on SmackDown!, and he said that Angle's run as the premiere superstar on Thursday nights was over. An enraged Angle stormed off as Lesnar and Heyman stared him down.
Backstage, Stacy Keibler was seen knocking on Stephanie McMahon's door. Stacy entered the room and found Steph talking on her cell phone. Stacy told Stephanie that when Mr. McMahon left, he told her that she wouldn't be needing her services anymore. Stephanie said she is sure that her father is being serviced elsewhere! Stacy asked Stephanie to keep her in mind if she needed anything. A knock was heard at the door, and Stacy answered it to accept a delivery of flowers for Steph. Steph took the card, which read, "See you tonight...love Eric!" Stephanie hurled the vase against the wall in anger!
Reverend D-Von took on the Big Valbowski with Batista observing from ringside. Valbowski brought Hardcore Holly to the ring to serve as his backup. D-Von started strong, but a back bodydrop from Valbowski evened the match. Batista grabbed Valbowski from outside the ring, causing Hardcore Holly to take down the big man. Meanwhile, Valbowski nailed a powerbomb to take the win! Batista clotheslined Valbowski after the match and crushed Hardcore with a spinebuster.
Stacy instructed a group of security guards to be on the lookout for anything suspicious and report it to Stephanie McMahon as soon as possible. Stacy spotted Edge walking backstage toward the exit and screamed at security to stop him. The guards raced after the superstar as Stacy alerted Stephanie via cell phone.
In the locker room, Lance Storm and Christian gloated over their Tag Team Championship. Lance said they can't revel in their victory because they need to send a statement by knocking off American icons Hulk Hogan and The Rock. Christian agreed, saying that Hogan is a real American because he's lazy, ignorant, stupid and thinks the world revolves around him.
Edge traded banter with the security guards when Stephanie came up and called them off. Stephanie said it looked like Edge was going to help Bischoff and RAW. Edge protested, saying that he is SmackDown! through and through. He said he trusted her vision for SmackDown! and said he had something to show her. The two went to the production truck where Edge popped in a tape, which showed a clock that was counting down. Edge said that clock was counting down to the end of the show, but before then Edge would get Chris Jericho in a steel cage and crush him! The best part about it, Edge said, is that he gets to do it on SmackDown!
Albert and Rikishi clashed in the evening's next match. Albert battled Rikishi in the corner and stomped him to the mat. Albert nearly got a pinfall after splashing down on Rikishi from the second rope. Rikishi kicked out and hit a DDT then got Albert set for a Stink Face! Rikishi shoved his ass in Albert's face and followed with a kick to the head and the Rumpshaker off the second rope to get the pin! Rikishi exited up the ramp, but stopped after spotting his black hat at the top of the stage. RIkishi put the hat on and danced as showers of sparks flew around him!
Lance Storm and Christian entered their first Tag Team Championship defense, going up against The Rock and Hollywood Hulk Hogan. Storm clotheslined Hogan to the amt but the Hulkster responded with a big clothesline of his own and tagged in The Rock. The Undisputed Champion suplexed Storm and produced a two-count. Lance hit a shot to the Great One's mouth that stunned The Rock, allowing Christian to get tagged in
The Rock suplexed Christian hard, but Lance Storm distracted The Rock and Christian hit a spectacular spinning heel kick to drop the Undisputed Champion. Storm reentered the match and took a Samoan Drop followed by a spinebuster. Rock set up for the People's Elbow, but was sent spilling over the top rope when Test interfered. The Rock took punishment from each of the Canadians as the ref had trouble keeping order. Storm nailed a superkick to the chin that sent the Great One reeling, but didn't put him away.
Hogan fended off an attack from Test while The Rock struck down Lance Storm and tagged in Hulk! Hogan tried to land a Big Boot but was caught in a double suplex. Rock raced in to help the Hulkster and soon only Christian and the Hulk remained in the ring. The Hulkster hit the Big Boot and dropped a leg on Christian and went for the pin! But Brock Lesnar raced in, broke the pin up and whirled Hogan into the F-5! The match ended with a disqualification and with Brock taunting The Rock from the entranceway.
Brock and Paul Heyman retreated backstage where they found a white limo. Brock asked the drive who the car was for, and the driver responded that he was there for Hulk Hogan. Brock got in the driver's face and told him it was his limo and ordered the man to drive him off. Brock and Paul got in and burned rubber out of the arena!
Marc Loyd found Kurt Angle talking to Eric on the cell phone and was shoved away. As Angle walked away, Loyd mentioned that Eric Bischoff was seen earlier in the day at the Indianapolis airport.
Stephanie found Loyd and confirmed that Angle was talking to someone named Eric. Stephanie picked up her cell phone and left a message for Kurt, asking why he would be talking to Bischoff without talking to her first. She pleaded for Angle to call her as soon as possible.
Michael Cole announced that John Cena would be facing Test that night and interviewed the rookie, who was backstage. Cena said that Test talks a lot of trash. Cena said that Canadians get free health care, but it's obvious from looking at Test that they don't get free dental care! As Cena poked fun at his opponent, Test barged in, called Cena a punk and slapped him hard in the face!
Rey Mysterio was shown in his locker room getting set for his WWE debut!
Chavo Guerrero entered the ring, followed by newest high-flying superstar in WWE: Rey Mysterio! The masked superstar arrived to a loud roar from the crowd and faced Chavo in the ring. Chavo put Mysterio in an arm lock, but Rey showed tremendous balance and flipped out of that move and several others that Chavo attempted. Finally, Chavo hit a hard suplex then dropped Rey onto the ropes, abdomen first. Chavo put Mysterio into the abdominal stretch, but Mysterio battled out of it. Mysterio went for a cross body off the middle rope but met with a drop kick from Chavo.
Chavo continued to attack Mysterio's midsection by hitting a gut buster. Mysterio countered by kicking Chavo from the ring and whirling into a corkscrew that leveled his opponent. Back in the ring, Mysterio climbed the turnbuckles and launched his body into Chavo. Guerrero responded with a unique facebuster. Mysterio countered back with a 619 and a springboard hurracanrana and got the pin after an amazing debut match!
Backstage, Test bumped into Mysterio then attacked the newcomer viciously! Test called Rey a kid and told him to go back to kindergarten!
Test faced John Cena next and started off by kicking Cena repeatedly in the corner and dropping him with a clothesline. Test missed with an elbow drop and Cena hit a DDT. Test went for a pumphandle slam but Cena countered into a tilt-a-whirl slam! Soon after, Test tried to put Cena away with a powerbomb, but Cena rolled up the Canadian and got the pinfall! Test angrily nailed Cena with a kick that knocked the rookie unconscious.
Backstage, Stephanie McMahon found Chris Jericho with headphones on. Stephanie tried to tell Y2J how much he means to SmackDown! and asked if he is happy here. Jericho took of his headphones and said he didn't hear what she said, but then laughed and said he's kidding. Jericho produced a copy of the new CD from his band Fozzy and gave it to Steph, saying she didn't have to wait until the release date this coming Tuesday. Y2J said that Edge is just a pawn but he is the king of the world. Jericho set out to meet Edge in the steel cage!
Stephanie left another message for Kurt on his cell phone and said that she was a little frustrated that he had not contacted her. She told Kurt to come back to the arena and tell her what his decision was in person.
Jericho attempted to bring a steel chair with him into the cage but was stopped by the referee. Edge took advantage by stepping out of the ring and assaulting Y2J before the match even began. With Y2J softened up, Edge thrust his opponent into the ring to get things officially underway.
Jericho crawled to the doorway early, but Edge grabbed him and slammed his face into the steel mesh cage. Edge then tried to Irish whip Y2J into the corner but Jericho leapt up the turnbuckle and began climbing. Edge pulled him back in. He propped Jericho up on the rope and speared him hard in the gut. Y2J got back in the game by whipping Edge face first into the steel cage. Jericho grated Edge's face on the fence and choked him on the ring rope. Jericho catapulted Edge into the cage and crawled toward the door. Edge caught up to him before Y2J hit bottom, but Y2J managed to get his hands on a chair. He smashed it onto Edge and covered him for the pin, but Edge managed to kick out after two
Y2J took the chair and swung, but Edge ducked and hit a spear! Y2J caught Edge halfway up the top of the cage, and both men crashed hard to the mat. Y2J got up first and managed to get his legs over the top of the cage before Edge pulled him back in and hit an Electric Chair off the top rope! Edge began climbing the cage as Jericho inched toward the door. The race ended with Edge hitting the floor first to get the win!
Suddenly, Lance Storm, Christian and Test raced in and beat up Y2J's opponent. The three men shoved Edge into the ring where they dismantled him with kicks. John Cena tried to rescue Edge but was overpowered. Rey Mysterio snuck down and climbed ot the rop of the cage where he leapt and took down Christian and Storm, followed by a hurracanrana to Test! The three vile Canadians fled in fear with Cena, Mysterio and Edge still ready to fight!
Backstage, Stephanie raced to the parking lot where Bischoff was pulling out of the arena in his limo, laughing! Stephanie scowled in anger as Kurt Angle walked up to her and said how much he hated Bischoff. Stephanie said she was confused because he heard Angle was talking to Bischoff. Angle said he hates Bischoff and he was actually talking to his brother, Eric Angle! A look of relief filled Stephanie's face, but it faded into worry as Stephanie which Superstar was going to RAW!