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WWF Wrestlemania X7

Sunday, April 1st, 2001

Live from the Astrodome in Houston, TX

List of WWF Champions at the time:
●  WWF World Heavyweight Champion: The Rock (2/25/2001)
●  WWF Intercontinental Champion: Chris Jericho (1/21/2001)
●  WWF World Tag Team Champions: The Dudley Boyz (3/19/2001)
●  WWF European Champion: Test (1/22/2001)
●  WWF Hardcore Champion: Raven (3/19/2001)
●  WWF Women’s Champion: Ivory (11/02/2000)
●  WWF Light Heavyweight Champion: Crash Holly (3/18/2001)

~ Wrestlemania comes on the air with an intro video about how tonight is the “Showcase of the Immortals”. Jim Ross then welcomes us to the show along with Paul Heyman who talks about being at his first Wrestlemania. As it turns out this would be the only Wrestlemania Heyman would do commentary on, and I don’t think he appeared at any of the other Mania’s during his WWF tenure.

  • WWF INTERCONTINENTAL TITLE: Chris Jericho © vs. William Regal

Jericho is coming in with an injured shoulder after Regal did a number on him on Smackdown. Regal quickly gets in the first shots and whips Jericho into a corner but Jericho comes back with a clothesline. Jericho hits a chop and goes for a whip, Regal reverses but Jericho hits a flying forearm and tees off on him. Jericho whips Regal and connects with a heel kick and Regal rolls out to the floor to try and catch his breath. Jericho slings himself over the ropes into a plancha on Regal then hits a chop and drops him onto the barricade. Jericho throws Regal back in the ring then climbs to the top rope and hits a flying elbow that gets a two count. Jericho whips Regal into a corner when Regal stops himself and goes for Jericho’s knee but Jericho counters it. Regal goes into a rollup when Jericho slips out of it and looks for the Walls of Jericho but Regal fights it off then throws Jericho shoulder-first into the ringpost. Regal throws Jericho into the post again then waves to the fans before slamming Jericho to the mat by his arm. Regal follows up with an armwringer takedown for a near fall then applies a keylock but Jericho fights out of it. Jericho shoves Regal into the ropes but Regal kicks his face then charges at him only to run into an elbow. Jericho goes for the Lionsault but Regal gets his knees up to block it then rolls Jericho up but only gets two. Regal hits a suplex for a two then removes a turnbuckle pad and rams Jericho’s shoulder into the exposed bolt. Regal kicks at Jericho’s bad shoulder but Jericho eventually stops that with an enzuigiri and both men are down. Jericho forearms Regal in the face then hops to the middle rope and hits a missle dropkick for a two count. Jericho whips Regal into a corner and goes for a Stinger Splash but Regal sidesteps and Jericho hits the post. Regal hammers away on Jericho on the top rope then goes up and hits a butterfly superplex but only gets two. Jericho escapes from a back suplex and goes for the Walls of Jericho but Regal counters into the Regal Stretch. Jericho tries to hold on as he inches his way toward the ropes and is able to grab the bottom rope for the break. Regal hits some kneelifts when Jericho fights back with chops but Regal stops that by kicking the hurt shoulder. Regal then goes for a whip but Jericho rams him into the exposed bolt and follows it up with the bulldog. Jericho hits a snap suplex then connects with the Lionsault and that’s enough for the three to retain! (7:08) The ending was a little too sudden but still a good, solid opener overall with some great psychology. But Jericho got the big win at Wrestlemania so this fued should be over, right? ***

~ Backstage we see a limo pulling in with ‘WCW1′ on the license place signaling Shane McMahon’s arrival.

~ Elsewhere in the Acolytes’ office Bradshaw is pacing around while Faarooq and Jacqueline are enjoying cigars and try to get him to relax. Bradshaw won’t have it and goes into the history of the Astrodome and about seeing the Oilers and Nolan Ryan before hyping up how important being on Wrestlemania is. That apparently gets Faarooq and Jackie fired up as well as they all head out to find Tazz for their match.

  • The Acolytes & Tazz (w/Jacqueline) vs. The Right To Censor (w/Steven Richards)

Richards gets on the mic but before he can really say anything Tazz’s entrance theme thankfully cuts him off. Val goes after Tazz on the floor but Tazz quickly tosses him back in the ring and the two of them start us off. Tazz clotheslines Val over the ropes when Richards comes in but Tazz pops him right into a DDT from Jackie. Val comes back in and knocks Tazz through the ropes then goes out and everyone is fighting it out on the floor. Buchanan throws Faarooq in the ring then runs up the turnbuckles and and springs off into his flying clothesline. Buchanan goes for a whip but Faarooq reverses it and plants him with a sloppy powerslam that gets a two count. Tazz tags himself in and hits a T-bone Taxplex then goes for a whip but Buchanan reverses it and hits a boot. Val tags in to take over on Tazz and hits a knee to the chest followed by a Russian legsweep and gets a near fall. Goodfather tags in and helps Val whip Tazz into a double elbow then slams him to the mat and hits a legdrop. Goodfather whips Tazz into an elbow and hits a back suplex for a near fall then whips him hard into a corner and connects with the Ho Train. Goodfahter climbs up the ropes and goes for a Vader splash but misses it. Bradshaw gets the hot tag and boots Goodfather down then whips him and plants him with a botched backdrop. Bradshaw boots Buchanan then whips Val who leaps up but Bradshaw catches him and hits the fallaway slam. Bradshaw and Faarooq whip Val and hit a double spinebuster when Buchanan nails Faarooq and pounds on him. Bradshaw sets Val on the top rope then goes up and hits a back superplex but Buchanan starts pounding on him. Buchanan and Goodfather then hit a double powerbomb when Faarooq knocks Buchanan through the ropes and they fight on the floor. Goodfather goes for the Ho Train on Bradhsaw but misses it while Bradshaw connects with the Clothesline from Hades and that’s it for this one. (3:53) A bit sloppy and dull in spots but at least they kept it short and sweet.

~ Backstage Trish Stratus is wheeling the comatose Linda McMahon around when Stephanie McMahon walks up to her and tells her that she has one child who turned out good. Stpehanie then asks Trish about her new ‘Daddy’s Girl’ jumpsuit before demanding she start crushing some ice for the post-match party. Stephanie heads out but not before she tells Linda she’ll see her out there.

  • WWF HARDCORE TITLE: Raven © vs. The Big Show vs. Kane

I believe this is Raven’s only Wrestlemania appearence. Raven hits the ring first with his shopping cart of plunder then starts attacking Kane after he comes out, looking to knock him out and pin him before Show can make his way to the ring. Raven grabs a sign but Kane boots him down and works him over as Show finally comes out to join to match. Kane press slams Raven onto Show then climbs to the top rope and hits a flying clothesline on both men. Raven quickly covers Show but Kane breaks it up and uppercuts Raven over the barricade then goes after him. Kane scoops Raven up but eats a boot from Show who chases Raven through the crowd with Kane behind him. Kane whips Show into a wall then heads to the back looking for Raven when Raven surprises him with a sign. Kane throws Raven into a wall, causing a dent, when Show comes up and slams Kane onto a stack of palettes. Show then stalks after Raven into a fenced-off area and locks the gate, hoping to keep Kane out of the picture. Kane rips open the gate anyway and hits Show with a broomstick while Raven creeps away for something. Kane breaks a 2×4 over Show’s back when Raven chokes him with a hose but Kane backs him through a fence. Kane grabs the hose himself and chokes Raven through it before throwing him through a plate-glass window! Show knocks Kane through a door then Kane grabs him by the throat and the two end up going through a wall. Both men are down when Raven comes into the room and gets in his shots on Show then heads back outside. Raven tries to drive away on a golf cart but Show climbs on and grabs him from behind as the cart starts moving and it crashes into a fence. Kane and the referee follow them in another cart and nearly runs over Raven. The three of them fight each other past the refreshment table and eventually emerge back out on the stage. Show headbutts Raven and Kane hammers away on Show but Show comes back with a short-arm clothesline. Show turns and presses Raven up when Kane boots Show, sending both guys off the stage and through the set. Kane then leaps off the stage and hits a legdrop on Show then covers him and gets the three for the title! (9:18) Kane grabs his new belt and walks off while Show and Raven are left laying in the wreckage of the stage. Garbage brawl but still pretty fun to watch. **

~ Backstage we find Kurt Angle reviewing a tape of himself tapping out to Chris Benoit’s Crossface last week when Edge and Christian come up suggesting they should celebrate after winning their matches. Angle isn’t in the mood then asks if they agree that if someone makes someone tap out when it’s not an official match then it “never happened”. E&C agree that Benoit never “officially” made Angle tap out and Angle dismisses them to goes back to his preparation.

~ We then cut over to WWF New York and find Superfly Jimmy Snuka among the legends entertaining the crowd. Back at the arena Johnathan Coachman interviews some woman who came all the way from Australia to be here. We also get a shot of The Rock arriving at the arena. You mean he’s just now arriving at the biggest show of the year?

  • WWF EUROPEAN TITLE: Test © vs. Eddie Guerrero (w/Perry Saturn)

So even though Eddie already jobbed to Test a few weeks prior on Smackdown, here he is with another shot at the title. Plus Saturn comes out wearing some stupid hat. Both men go at it to start and Test quickly gets the advantage then whips Eddie and drops him to the mat. Test follows up with a powerbomb for a near fall and Eddie bails out to the floor but Test is right behind him. Both men roll back in when Eddie gets in his shots and goes for a whip but Test reverses him into a corner. Test then drops Eddie onto the turnbuckles and follows it up with a clothesline that gets another two count. Test wips Eddie into an elbow and slams him to the mat then climbs to the middle rope but Eddie cuts him off. Eddie goes up looking for a huricanrana but just slips off to the mat when Test holds onto the ropes to block it. Test connects with a flying elbow for a two count then gets in a few right hands before coming off the ropes. Eddie ducks and Test sails over the ropes … but his foot gets caught in the ropes leaving him hanging from it in an unplanned spot. Saturn gets in a few shots before the referee tries to free Test while Eddie heads out .. and slips off the apron. The referee struggles to get Test’s foot untangled so Eddie and Saturn have to help out until finally Test is freed. Pretty embarassing moment at the worst possible time.

Eddie slams Test’s knee into the floor then stomps away at the leg that was caught before rolling him in the ring. Eddie continues attacking the leg with stomps and elbowdrops then drapes it on the ropes and sits down on it. Test starts fighting back but Eddie stops that with a knee then whips him and jumps on his back with a sleeper. Test tries to reach the ropes but starts to fade and drops to the mat when Eddie lets go to continue the beating. Eddie goes for a whip when Test reverses it and hits a tilt-o-whirl slam but Eddie is back on him with rights. Eddie goes for another whip but Test reverses it and hits a tilt-o-whirl into a powerbomb but only gets two. Test whips Eddie into a corner and goes for the Full Nelson slam but Eddie counters with a kick below the belt. Eddie then distracts the referee while Saturn comes in and plants Test with the Moss-Covered-Family-Gradunza but that only gets Eddie a two count so Eddie drills Test with a brainbuster. Eddit climbs to the top rope and goes for the Frogsplash which misses Test but he’s s able to roll out of it back to his feet and duck a big boot. Test comes back with the pump-handle slam when Saturn hops on the apron to distract him from covering Eddie so Test decks him then covers Eddie for a two count. Test goes the big boot and Saturn comes in and takes the hit. Test nails Eddie with another big boot and covers him when Dean Malenko runs out and pulls Test off Eddie. Test grabs Malenko on the apron and decks him but doesn’t see Saturn tossing the European belt over to Eddie. Eddie clocks Test with the belt then covers him and grabs the three to win his second European Championship! (8:30) Eddie did a nice job carrying Test to a decent match, though it’s hard to ignore the embarassing gaffe with the ropes. **½

~ Backstage Michael Cole interviews Mick Foley, asking if he can be impartial refereeing the Vince/Shane street fight, amd Foley wonders why’d he ask that. Foley says that despite the way Vince battered him, embarassed him and ended his commissionership, he’s going to call it down the middle … and he’s going to do it right here in Houston.

~ We then see Steve Austin also just arriving at the building. Why are both main event participants so tardy? You’d figure that being in the biggest Wrestlemania main event would inspire Rock and Austin to arrive extra early.

  • Kurt Angle vs. Chris Benoit

So despite being booked six days before the show with virtually no build here’s the first one-on-one PPV meeting in this feud. Angle comes out with a mic in hand and says he isn’t a fan of Texas because their stage flag is 49 other stars before insisitng he never tapped out to Benoit and that even the “beer-bellied bullriders” know that he never will. Angle also tells the fans to “please lose the freakin’ cowboy hats” because they’re not seven years old anymore. Both men have a staredown before locking up to start and Angle takes Benoit down by the leg for the first move. Benoit counters into a front facelock and both men go through several moves before ending up with a stalemate. Both men lockup and Angle takes Benoit down again but Benoit counters with a bodyscissors plus an armbar. Angle counters out of that and both men go through more amateur moves and once again end up in a stalemate. Both men lockup and Angle forces Benoit into a corner when Benoit takes control as the referee forces a break. Angle picks Benoit up by the legs and slams him to the mat then both men take turns reversing front facelocks. Angle goes for the leg and both men wrap each other up then end up in the ropes as the crowd grows restless. Angle takes Benoit down by the leg when Benoit goes into the Crossface but Angle grabs the ropes to prevent it. Angle goes for the leg again and Benoit again goes for the Crossface but Angle gets his foot on the bottom rope. Angle then bails out to the floor to catch his breath before climbing in and taking Benoit down to the mat again. Benoit counters into the Crossface again but Angle again grabs the ropes then surprises him with a forearm and tosses him through the ropes. Angle goes out and rams Benoit into the barricade and into the Spanish table. Angle whips Benoit into the ringsteps then tosses him back in the ring and hits a snap suplex for a two count.

Angle hits a back suplex for a near fall then stomps Benoit down in a corner and hits elbows to the chest. Benoit starts fighting back and goes for a whip but Angle reverses it and plants him with a belly-to-belly suplex. Angle hits a second belly-to-belly suplex then goes for a whip but Benoit counters with a short-arm clothesline. Angle works Benoit over in a corner when Benoit escapes from there and hammers way on Angle with chops. Angle regains control with his own chops then goes for a whip but Benoit counters it with a knee to the chest. Benoit whips Angle into an elbow for a two count then follows up with a snap suplex that gets another near fall. Benoit suplexes Angle onto the top rope then goes up himself and hits a superplex but only gets a two count. Benoit whips Angle into a corner and hits a German suplex then holds on and hits a second German suplex. Benoit then goes for a third German suplex when Angle trips Benoit by the leg and goes right into the Anklelock. Benoit tries crawling for the ropes when Angle pulls him away but Benoit counters into an Anklelock of his own. Angle kicks his way out of the hold so Benoit goes for the crossface again but Angle gets his hand up to block it. Angle then counters out of it and gets his own crossface on Benoit but Benoit gets his foot on the bottom rope. Angle pulls Benoit away and Benoit kicks him off his leg but ends up knocking him right into the referee. Benoit slaps the Crossface on and Angle starts tapping out but the referee is still recovering and doesn’t see it. Benoit checks on the referee when Angle plants him with the Olympic Slam … but that only gets a two count. Angle slams Benoit then climbs to the top rope and goes for a moonsault but Benoit gets his knees up to block it. Benoit then climbs to the top rope himself and connects with the diving headbutt but that only gets two as well. Benoit goes for another German when Angle counters with a kick below the belt. Benoit takes Angle down and goes for a pin but Angle reverses it into a cradle and grabs the tights to steal the pin for the victory. (14:08) All that and that’s the finish? Very good match from these guys but not a really great one. It started out slowly with all the amateur holds and got much better down the stretch until the lame finish. These two would also have more epic meetings in their careers but still a great first match in this feud. ****

~ Backstage Michael Cole meets Commissioner William Regal outside the trainer’s room for a quick interview. Regal tries to respond as he heads in his office and finds Kamala on his desk as Kim Chee tries to get him down. Kamala rubs a picture of the Queen Mother on his belly as the flabergasted Regal orders them out of his office.

~ JR and Heyman then kill some more time by showing clips of a recent pep rally held in nearby Fort Hood.

~ Backstage Kevin Kelly interviews Kurt Angle, asking if he respects Chris Benoit after their brutal contest earlier. Angle says the better man won and doesn’t respect Benoit when Benoit flies in and slaps him in the Crossface. Angle starts tapping out on the floor as a group of referees appear to try and pull Benoit off Angle, letting us know this feud is only getting started.

~ A video package is shown highlighting the latest in the Chyna/Ivroy feud.

  • WWF WOMEN’S TITLE: Ivory © vs. Chyna

Yes, we finally get to the payoff of this feud, and does anyone really think Ivory has a chance here? Once both ladies are out Chyna is eager to get things started while Ivory sobs and holds the title belt close. Ivory then nails Chyna from behind with belt and gets in as much offense as she can while Chyna is down on the mat. Ivory wails away on Chyna’s “injured” neck but Chyna soon catches a kick and that’s it for Ivory’s offense. Chyna throws Ivory across the ring and stomps her down in a corner then whips her and hits her with a hiptoss. Chyna connects with a series clotheslines and whips Ivory into a backdrop then caps it off with a powerbomb. Chyna covers Ivory but pulls her up at 2 and says she’s not done yet as Heyman calls it a big mistake from her. Chyna presses Ivory up and drops her to the mat then covers her and now gets the academic pin for the title. (2:39) Every bit a squash as we expected and but fortunately they kept it short. Of course Chyna would go on to pretty much bury the entire division before leaving the company in the summer because of her inflated ego. DUD

~ Johnathan Coachman interviews Astros players Jeff Bagwell and Moises Alou about if they’re enjoying the show.

~ Backstage Vince McMahon meets with Stephanie, Trish and the still-comatose Linda about his street fight. Vince asks Trish if she doubled Linda’s dosage then reminds her to bring Linda down when Shane is totally imobile. Michael Cole barges in the room and asks Vince about Shane shocking him by purchasing WCW from under his nose.
Vince responds by guaranteeing that something shocking will happen tonight then sends him on his way.

~ A video package is then shown highlighting the Vince McMahon/Shane McMahon feud.

  • Vince McMahon (w/Stephanie McMahon) vs. Shane McMahonStreet Fight

After the way Vince has been running wild since his return in December, will this be his comeuppance? Shane comes out first and gets on the mic and gives a shout out to a number of WCW wrestlers in attendance. We then look up to a skybox and find Lance Storm, Hugh Morrus, Chavo Guerrero, Stacy Kiebler and others, who get zero reaction from the crowd. Shane then brings Mick Foley out to act as the special referee before Vince makes his way out with Stephanie. Vince slaps Shane around to start us off and works him over in a corner then chokes him while cursing him out. Vince knees Shane in the chest when Shane starts fighting back then comes out of the corner with a clothesline. Shane spears Vince and unloads on him with right hands then hits him with sledges and elbowdrops his back. Stephanie heads in the ring and backs Shane away before slapping his face while Vince rolls out to the floor. Stephanie flees while Shane nails Vince with a baseball slide then goes out to continue his assault on the floor. Shane grabs a sign and whacks Vince in the head with it then works over his back and chokes him with a cord. Shane rams Vince into the ringsteps then climbs onto the barricade and connects with a flying clothesline. Shane throws Vince into the barricade then pulls out a kendo stick and wahcks Vince repeatedly in the back. Stephanie begs Shane to stop while Shane hammers Vince with the stick then follows up with some stinging jabs. Shane caps off with a right hand then clears off the Spanish table and cracks him in the head with a monitor. Shane rolls Vince onto the Spanish table then climbs to the top rope and leaps off looking for his usual flying elbowdrop but Stephanie pulls Vince out of the way and Shane ends up crashing through the table! Yikes! Foley checks on Shane while Stephanie tends to Vince as we see Trish Stratus wheeling Linda down to ringside. As Linda looks on Trish goes over to help Vince back to his feet … then ends up slapping him in the face! Trish has words with Vince when Stephanie slaps her cowboy hat off and the two ladies start the catfighting. Stephanie tries to escape through the ring but Trish cuts off her escape when Foley decides to pull them apart. Stephanie slaps Foley then takes off up the aisle with Trish following her and they fight all the way to the back.

Meanwhile Vince notices Linda at ringside and moves in when Foley stands in his way telling him to back off. Foley then tries to get Linda away from ringside but Vince grabs a chair and nails Foley from behind with it. Vince then rolls Linda in the ring and sets her down in a chair making her watch as he beats Shane to a pulp. Vince throws Shane in the ring along with some garbage cans then grabs one and waffles Shane in the head. Vince grabs another can and tells Linda to take a good look while he works Shane over and over with the can. Vince then grabs a third can and readies to finish Shane off … when Linda suddenly stands up from the chair! And that moment actually gets a huge pop from the crowd! Vince turns back and is shocked to see his wife standing up … just before Linda kicks him below the belt. Foley makes it back in the ring and pounds away on Vince in a corner then caps it off with the running knee. As Linda looks on from the floor Shane sets a can in front of Vince then climbs up the ropes on the other side and leaps across the ring, dropkicking the can into Vince’s face a’la the Van Terminator. Vince is out of it as Shane covers him and Foley counts the three to give him the victory. (14:12) Overbooked but very fun match and the crowd was way into it. The McMahons always go all-out to make their matches entertaining and this was no exception. ***

Linda embraces Shane on the floor as we see the WCW guys applauding their new boss’ win from the skybox. Linda and Foley then walk off with Shane but Shane takes one look back at Vince who glares at him from the ring.

~ We then get an interview Kevin Kelly had with the Hardy Boyz as they were at the Fan Axxess event yesterday. Kevin asks the Hardys about the TLC match and Matt talks about them, the Dudleys and Edge & Christian creating it. Matt says they’re out to leave Wrestlemania with the belts as well as get even with Rhyno taking out Lita last Monday. Matt says this thing with them, E&C and the Dudleys will finally come to an end and all six will never be the same. Kevin then asks Jeff about the danger and Jeff says he and Matt will go into their match like it’s their last.

~ We then get shots of Triple H and the Undertaker both preparing backstage for thier big confrontation later.

~ Some tables, ladders and chairs are then set up at ringside and we also get a look at the tag team belts already hanging from the ceiling, signlaing the TLC match is coming up next.

  • WWF WORLD TAG TEAM TITLES: The Dudley Boyz © vs. The Hardy Boyz vs. Edge & ChristianTables, Ladders & Chairs Match

So for the second straight Wrestlemania it’s these three teams in a ladder match with even the same setup. Also the Hardys and Dudleys are out for revenge after E&C’s new pal Rhyno took Lita and Spike out the past few weeks, though he got taken out as well. The Hardys and Dudleys go after E&C to start and the Hardys beat on Edge while the Dudleys pound Christian. Bubba and D’Von whip Christian into a double flapjack while the Hardys clear out Edge then attack the Dudleys. Both sides pair off with Bubba pounding Jeff while Matt rakes D’Von’s face then comes to his brother’s aid. The Hardys whip Bubba into a corner then duck a double clothesline from D’Von and whip him into Bubba. Matt then drops to the mat and Jeff hits Poetry on Motion on both Dudleys before Matt clotheslines Bubba. However E&C bring a ladder in the ring and clothesline the Hardys with it then do the same to the Dudleys. Christian works over Matt while Edge brings in a chair before helping Christian tie Matt in a tree of woe. E&C hit a stomp on Matt below the belt then set the chair up and trip Jeff into it with a double drop toehold. The Dudleys pull Christian out of the ring and double-team him on the floor while Edge sets the ladder in position. Edge starts up the ladder but Matt pulls him off then takes his turn on the ladder when Edge clotheslines him off. Edge climbs up the ladder again but Jeff launches off the chair and knocks Edge back off with a dropkick. The Dudleys try to slide another ladder into the ring but the Hardy knock it into them with a baseball slide. Christian climbs up the ladder but Matt pulls him off then he and Jeff ser a pair of ladders up in the corners. Matt slams Christian before the Hardys each climb up a ladder and connect with the Event Omega on Christian.

The Dudleys made it back in the ring and toss the Hardys through the ropes as Edge also rolls in the ring. Bubba slams Edge and sets him up while D’Von climbs to the top rope and hits the “Wassup” headbutt. The Dudleys then bring a pair of tables in the ring and one is set up while the other is proped up in a corner. Matt is back in but D’Von rams him into the table in a corner while Bubba rolls Edge onto the other table. Jeff attacks Bubba and goes for a whip but Bubba counters it and powerbombs him through Edge and the table. The Dudleys go out and set up four tables in a 2×2 formation at ringside and I imagine they’ll be used later. Christian attacks D’Von with a chair while Matt nails Bubba with a third ladder before setting it up in the ring. Matt tosses Christian over the ropes but the Dudleys go in and crack Matt in the head with one of the ladders. All three ladders are then set up underneath the belts and the three teams all climb up them and duke it out. Matt andd Christian fall off one ladder and land on the ropes while D’Von and Jeff fall off another ladder. Bubba and Edge and are still fighting on the middle ladder when they fall off as well and all six men are down. Plus the replay shows Christian took a really vicious bump on the floor! Edge is up first and tries to move a ladder into position while we see Christian setting a table up on the floor. Edge starts climbing the ladder when Spike Dudley runs out and pulls Edge off the ladder with the Acid Drop. Spike then goes and drives Christian through the table on the floor with another Acid Drop off the turnbuckles. Matt battles with Bubba while Jeff climbs up the ladder but Rhyno appears and pulls Jeff off with an armdrag. Rhyno nails D’Von with the ladder and spears Bubba then turns and Gores Matt through the table in the corner! Rhyno sets the ladder back up and Edge starts climbing up when Lita runs out to complete the trifecta of run-ins. Lita pulls Edge off the ladder and rams him into it before Rhyno grabs Lita by the hair and presses her up. Spike makes the save with a low blow then Lita climbs to the top rope and takes Rhyno out with a huricanrana.

As the three of them fight it out Edge is able to climb up the ladder to the top and nearly touches the belts. However Spike nails Rhyno with a chair causing him to knock the ladder over and Edge straddles the top rope. Bubba sets Rhyno on his shoulders while D’Von climbs to the top rope and connects with the Dudleyville Device. Lita thanks Spike for his help by nailing him with a chair but the Dudleys respond by laying her out with a 3D. Edge nails D’Von with a chair then tosses it over to Bubba just as Christian whacks him with another chair. Jeff pounds away on Rhyno and rolls him onto a table on the floor while Spike is also there for some reason. Edge sets up a ladder in the ring while Christian goes out and grabs a tall ladder but Jeff takes out Christian. Jeff climbs the tall ladder then leaps off and drives Rhyno and Spike through the tables with a Swanton Bomb! Edge sets the tall ladder up in the ring and Christian climbs up while D’Von also climbs it from the other side. The two grabs the belts when Patt pulls the ladder away leaving D’Von and Christian hanging from the ceiling. Both men eventually lose their grip and fall to the mat while Jeff climbs up one of the other ladders set up. Jeff walks across some ladders when he falls off one of the ladder but is able to land on his feet below. Jeff resets the ladder and climbs up then grabs the belts but loses the ladder and ends up hanging as well. Jeff tries to grab the ladder with his legs but Edge climbs the tall ladder nearby and spears Jeff off in mid-air!! Jeff and Edge are both down while Matt and Bubba position the tall ladder under the belts and both climb up. Matt and Bubba fight on the ladder when Rhyno shoves it over and they crash through the four tables below!! And those two guys didn’t just break the tables, they completely disintegrated them!! D’Von is up and starts climbing up the tall ladder but Edge is able to stop him from reaching the belts. Rhyno then helps Christian climb up the other side and Christian pulls down the belts for the victory!! (15:41) So E&C notch their third straight win in this series and become the first 7-time WWF Tag Team Champions. Just an amazing, insane battle and all six-men continued to outdo their previous meetings with some new spots. Could have done without the run-ins, though, but still another excellent meeting between these three teams. ****½

~ As the referees carry the broken bodies to the back we then get footage from yesterday’s WWF Axxess convention. Next Howard Finkel announces a new attendance record has been set for the Astrodome tonight at 67,925.

  • Gimmick Battle Royal

I guess after two good matches we need this to spell the crowd before the two remainig big matches. Mean Gene Okerlund is here to do the commentary and has Bobby “The Brain Heenan” with him, both making their first WWF appearences since 1993. The first participants are the Bushwackers, Duke “The Dumpster” Drose, Iron Sheik, Earthquake and The Goon. And let me tell out the Sheik has a huge beer gut and takes nearly all night just to waddle to the ring. Next is Doink The Clown, Kamala, Kimchee, Repo Man, Jim Cornette, Nikolai Volkoff and Michael Hayes. Finally we have One Man Gang, The Gobbledy Gooker, Tugboat, Hillbilly Jim, Brother Love and Sgt. Slaughter. Once the action starts Hayes dumps Repo Man over the ropes for the first elimination just three seconds in. Tugboat sends the Gooker over the ropes next only for Earthquake to come up and toss Tugboat over as well. Kamala tosses Earthquake and then Kimchee over the ropes while Jim Cornette eliminates Bushwacker Luke. Brother Love then sends Cornette over the ropes where Luke attacks him with the tennis racquet off-camera. Doink knocks Droese over the ropes while Goon charges at Butch but gets dumped over and out of the match. Slaughter sends Volkoff over while Doink does the same to Butch but Kamala elimiantes Doink and gets booed. Gang sends Hayes over only to get tossed out by Kamala who is then dumped over the ropes by Slaughter, leaving him, Hillbilly Jim, the Sheik and Love as our final four. Love is dumped over the ropes by Slaughter, Hillbilly Jim dumps Slaughter over but Sheik then sends Jim over for the final elimination. (3:04) Sheik celebrates but Slaughter comes back in and pounds him then slaps on the Cobra Clutch and puts him out. Pretty bad match but mostly harmless since it was short and mainly there for nostalga.

~ JR and Heyman reclaim the headsets as a video package is shown highlighting the Undertaker/Triple H feud.

  • The Undertaker vs. Triple H

They’re trying to make it sound like this is the first one-on-one meeting but these two fought the previous year on Smackdown, in a match won by Triple H. Triple H makes his way out first as Motorhead plays him to the ring, and isn’t doing a very good job of it. Taker then rides out on his motorcycle and goes right to work on Triple H as they brawl on the floor to start. Taker decks Triple H onto the makshift Spanish table before tossing him in the ring and there’s the official bell. Triple H gets in his offesne when Taker goes for a whip but Triple H reverses and connects with the high knee. However Taker pops right back up and pummels Triple H in a corner then whips him and hits a backdrop. Taker clotheslines Triple H in a corner then whips him into the opposite corner and clotheslines him again. Taker plants Triple H with a powerslam but misses an elbowdrop and Triple H fights back then whips him. Taker comes back with a clothesline then grabs the arm and walks the top rope but Triple H pulls him down. Triple H hits a neckbreaker for a two count then unloads on Taker with rights and elbows him in the head. Triple H drapes Taker on the apron and elbows him in the chest then heads back in and hits a neckbreaker. That only gets a two count and Triple H starts arguing with the referee allowing Taker to start fighting back. Taker whips Triple H but Triple H hits the facebuster then heads out and brings his sledgehammer in the ring. Triple H shoves the referee aside and readies a swing at Taker but the referee grabs the hammer away in time. Triple H then sets Taker up for the Pedigree but Taker counters and catapults Triple H right into the referee. The referee is reeling while Taker nails Triple H with the chokeslam and covers him … but that only gets two! Taker is not happy with that and kicks the referee for no real reason then hits an elbowdrop to knock him out.

Taker headbutts Triple H and tosses him over the ropes then goes out but Triple H rams him into the steps. Taker backdrops Triple H over the barricade then brawls with him through the crowd and over to the tech area. Both men make their way onto the tech platform when Triple H tries to fight back but Taker quickly stops that. Taker then follows Triple H onto a higher platform but Triple H grabs a chair and whacks Taker in the back. Triple H works Taker over with the chair but Taker grabs him and chokeslams him off the platform to the floor! Taker then tries to catch his breath while we see Triple H on the floor trying to recover. Unfortuantley a replay shows Triple H landed on a springy foam mat. Geez, way to ruin the spot, guys.

Some EMTs check on Triple H when Taker leaps off the platform and nails Triple H with an elbowdrop. Taker shoves the EMTs aside and unloads on Triple H then brawls with him as they head back toward the ring. Taker hiptosses Triple H over the barrier and tosses him in the ring where the referee is still out of commission. Taker then grabs the sledgehammer and readies it as Triple H begs him off before kicking him below the belt. Triple H grabs the hammer himself but Taker cuts him off with a boot then both men start exchanging right hands. Triple H whips Taker and scoops him up but Taker reverses and drills him with the Tombstone Piledriver! Taker covers Triple H but the referee is still out and can’t count the pin so Taker finally decides to revive him 10 minutes after he took him out. Taker sets up for the Last Ride but Triple H grabs the hammer on the way up and cracks Taker in the face! Taker looks knocked out as Triple H covers him and the referee is finally aboe to count … but only gets two!! Triple H is shocked as he works the bloodied Taker over in a corner. Triple H goes up for the count-along punches when Taker grabs him then plants him with the Last Ride and that gets him the three count! (18:18) Taker gets his revenge and extends his Wrestlemania streak to a perfect 9-0. Very good brawl there with lots of heat as both guys busted their tails here. Surprising that Triple H jobbed cleanly like that. In fact some reports say Shawn Michaels was supposed to reappear and help Triple H get the win but it didn’t happen due to several factors. Still a very good match as is. ***

~ Johnathan Coachman takes a moment to interview some fan in the crowd that won some Limp Bizkit contest.

~ The Rock and Steve Austin are both shown heading to the ring as we get video highlights of their road to tonight.

  • WWF WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE: The Rock © vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin

Here we are, the main event with the two biggest WWF stars at the time. This is a rematch from the WWF Title bout at Wrestlemania XV, but in the two years since Rock had risen very near to Austin’s level and even carried the company after Austin left for his neck fusion surgery. Now Austin is hoping to reclaim his spot at the top against the man who just about replaced him. Anyway before the match Howard Finkel announces this is now a no disqualification bout and JR is surprised by this. Austin makes his way to the ring first and gets a HUGE reaction from the Texas crowd that almost blows the roof off. Rock comes out next and does his usual posing on the turnbuckles but Austin jumps him and goes right to work. Austin grabs the title belt away from Rock and tries to use it but Rock ducks the swing and gets in his shots. Rock goes for a whip but Austin reverses it and hits the Thesz Press followed by the rights and the elbowdrop. Austin whips Rock but Rock hits a neckbreaker that draws boos from the crowd. Rock goes for the Rock Bottom already, Austin fights out and goes for the Stunner when Rock shoves him away then tries to hit his own Stunner but Austin escapes and tosses Rock over the ropes. Austin goes out and pops Rock over the barrier and brawls with him in the crowd. Rock fights back and tosses Austin over the barricade back to ringside then rams him into the announce table. Rock goes for a whip but Ausitn counters and hits a clothesline then grinds Rock’s face with his knee brace. Austin tosses Rock in the ring and lays the boots to him then chokes him on the middle rope and hits the straddle. Austin sets Rock on the top rope then goes up and plants him with a superplex but that only gets a two count. Austin undones a turnbuckle pad when Rock fights back again then goes for a whip and hits a flying clothesline. Rock whips Austin and hits a belly-to-belly throw that gets a near fall then clotheslines him over the ropes.

Rock goes out to the floor and rams Austin into the annouce table then repeatedly into the timekeeper’s table. Rock then shoves Earl Hebner aside but Austin grabs the ringbell and clocks Rock with it, busting him open. Austin rams Rock into the steps and into the announce table then Rock crawls on the table when it collapses. Austin decks Rock back in the ring and hits several rights then hammers away at the open cut on the forehead. Austin chokes Rock on the mat then tries to ram him into the exposed bolt but Rock blocks it and rallies again. Rock whips Austin but lowers the head and Austin hits a neckbreaker for a two then wails on him some more. Austin stomps Rock down in a corner but Rock comes out with a clothesline .. and gets booed by the crowd! Rock connects with another clothesline and gets in his own shots before ramming Austin into the exposed bolt. Now Austin is busted open as Rock brings the bell in and clocks Austin in the face with it but only gets a two. Rock hammers away on Austin all around the ring then drapes him on the apron and elbows him in the chest. Austin soon fights back and drops Rock on the barricade then catapults him face-first into the ringpost! And I mean Rock really flew three feet into the air and hit the post head-on then bounced off it. Austin bashes Rock in the face with a monitor then tosses him back in the ring and covers him for a two count. Austin flips Rock the double bird and goes for the Stunner but Rock blocks it then puts him in the Sharpshooter! Austin tries to hold on as he tries to reach for the bottom rope but Rock drags him away to the center of the ring. Austin tries for the ropes again and this time grabs it so Hebner orders a break, even though the match no DQ. Rock goes for the Sharpshooter again but stops to flip Austin off first and Austin rakes his face to escape it. Austin takes Rock down by the legs and puts him in his own Sharpshooter but Rock manages to power out of it. Austin slams Rock’s knee into the mat and stomps him in the chest before putting him back in the Sharpshooter. Rock tries not to submit as he manages to grab the bottom rope and that draws some huge boos from the crowd. Austin refuses to release the hold at first but eventually lets Rock go then slaps on the Million Dollar Dream! JR even mentions Austin hasn’t used that move since his days as the Ringmaster years ago. Rock begins to fade as Hebner checks the arm and it drops once, drops twice, but Rock keeps it up on three. Rock then kicks off the turnbuckles into a pin just like Bret Hart did six years ago but this time Austin kicks out.

Austin pounds away on Rock and goes for a whip but Rock counters and drops Austin with his own Stunner! However Rock can’t cover Austin immediately and only gets two as Vince McMahon comes out to ringside. Both men get to their feet and Rock gets in some shots but Austin plants him with a spinebuster for a near fall. Austin goes for a whip but Rock reverses and hits his own spinerbuster followed by the People’s Elbow! Rock covers Austin as Hebner counts 1..2..when Vince goes in the ring and pulls Rock off Austin?? Huh? Rock glares at Vince then goes out and chases after him around ringside and Vince tries to flee in the ring. Rock follows Vince back in but Austin grabs him with his own Rock Bottom … but only gets a two count!! Austin sets Rock up for the Stunner but Rock shoves him into Hebner, sending him tumbling through the ropes. Austin nails Rock below the belt then turns toward Vince and … instructs him to bring a chair in the ring? Huh??! Austin tells Vince something then holds Rock up and Rock doesn’t duck as Vince cracks him with the chair and at this point it’s becoming obvious that something’s amiss here. Vince goes out and brings Hebner back in the ring as Austin covers Rock … but that only gets a two count. Austin grabs the chair and flips Rock off then readies another swing but Rock catches him with a Rock Bottom. Vince then hops on the apron when Rock brings him in the ring the hard way and works him over in a corner. Rock nails Vince with the Smackdown but Austin takes him out with the Stunner … and still can’t get the three! Austin isn’t happy when Vince hands the chair over to him and Austin cracks Rock with it, confimring he’s turned heel. Austin covers Rock as Vince counts along … but still only gets a two count. Austin is stunned Rock is still alive then hammers him with the chair over and over while Vince urges him on. Austin covers Rock one more time as Hebner counts 1..2..3 and Austin finally wins his fifth WWF Title!! (28:07) The funny thing is the crowd still goes insane for the pin even though it’s obvious that Austin has turned heel. Even with the overbooked finish this was still a flat-out awesome battle with non-stop action and drama and some great stuff from both guys. A main event truly worthy of Wrestlemania. *****

Austin takes the championship belt then stands face-to-face with Vince who offers a hand and Austin shakes it! Austin calls for some beers to be tossed his way then hands one to Vince and they share a toast over Rock’s form while JR is going bonkers about this. Austin then poses with the belt while flipping off the crowd to eliminate any doubts that he’s joined forces with Vince! Rock struggles back to his feet but Austin waffles him with the belt for good measure then he and Vince leave together. This offically ended the Attitude Era, but the Austin heel turn didn’t quite work out the way the WWF hoped and as a result is still hotly debated to this day.

~ Finally we wrap up with a highlights video of tonight’s action at Wrestlemania X7, capped off by Austin’s heel turn.

Conclusion: At the time this was hailed as one of the best pay-per-views ever. A decade later and Wrestlemania X7 still holds up as one of the top wrestling supercards of all time. The wrestling was mostly great with everyone putting forth a great effort and all the big matches delivered in their own ways. There’s something for everyone here, from technical wrestling to spotfests to brawling. It’s not totally perfect since there were a few stinkers on the card but the good far outweighs the bad so they can easily be overlooked. Plus the crowd was into just about the entire show and it still had that magical feel a Wrestlemania should have. Overall a highly recommended show and a prefect capper to the WWF’s last golden age. The only thing is with Austin siding with Vince and WCW no longer existing on its own the WWF was heading into a strange new era. And when you’re at the peak there’s only one direction to go.

Categories: WWF
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