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[1999-11-04-WWF-Smackdown] Steve Austin & The Rock & Kane & Shane McMahon vs HHH & X-Pac & Road Dogg & Billy Gunn (Elimination)

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Kind of an early sign of the WWF’s end to popularity when DX are presented as heels for not obeying authority. It goes against everything they promoted for the previous two years. This match was helped a lot by having X-Pac in the match since he’s such a good ring general. This comes down to Austin/Rock vs all of DX within a few minutes and has great heat. They cut a heavy pace here and Rock is FIP for the biggest part of this, squeaking out an elimination of Road Dogg while HHH taunts Austin on the apron. After Austin gets the hot tag, he goes on a tear, giving X-Pac a stunner to eliminate him. HHH gets huge heat for cutting off the People’s Elbow but Rock still pins Gunn with a roll-up. It comes down to Austin/Rock vs HHH, but Rock is quickly eliminated when Billy Gunn refuses to leave the ring and attacks Rock, helping HHH get the win. Finally, it’s Austin and HHH. Vince tosses a chair into the ring which HHH intercepts, then grabs the belt and goes to clock HHH but hits Austin by accident, giving HHH the pin. HHH was put over incredibly strong here, but that’s what needed to happen at this point. Interesting how the wrestling got so much better almost immediately when Russo left.

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Kane getting up so quickly from the Fameasser sure made King Ass's finisher look weak. Good match but the crowd died when Rock was eliminated. It's pretty obvious he was more over than Austin was at this time. Can't believe they did the same finish as Raw.

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Another good TV bout--they run through 7 eliminations in about 10 minutes but they all work and make sense. Aside, yes, from Kane popping up from the Fameasser. Vince has now gifted HHH two consecutive wins through his own incompetence, but HHH going over both Rock and Austin is the real story here. Well, that and another one: it's hard not to notice how little Austin does here. He basically works one sequence to eliminate X-Pac and another at the end. No one knew it then but that seems like an ominous sign.

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