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[2000-02-28-WWF-Raw] The Rock vs HHH & Big Show (Handicap)


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The anti-highlight video HHH had production put together is priceless and gets huge heat at Madison Square Garden. I cracked up that Shane cut a promo that's pretty close thematically to the promo he cut when he returned last year. He's still waiting his turn to run the show nearly two decades later. HHH's asshole attitude toward Rock is off the charts, and he ends up setting up a match between Rock and Brooklyn Brawler for the night. Rock gets shown up by all the heels and is left at a loss for words in a way I have never quite seen. Rock comes out later in the show to make short work of the Brawler and immediately calls out HHH for a fight. HHH is ready to go until Shane comes out to talk him out of it, thinking this is all a ruse to manipulate a title match. Stephanie set up a handicap match where if Rock wins by pinfall, he gets the #1 contendership and goes to Wrestlemania. These guys are over and very good at what they do, but this was seriously almost 27 minutes of setup over two segments and was a test to sit through.


As much goodwill as HHH has built up in January and February, looking at what's ahead in the next few months and how all of this played out, he may have already peaked as far as that goes. We'll see, I'm trying to keep an open mind and he has already surprised me. The match had a lot of heat, as it should with the big stars at MSG, but it was a handicap match and more of a vehicle to play out an angle. Rock has victory in hand after a Rock Bottom and People's Elbow on HHH, but Shane breaks up the pin to cause an intentional DQ, leaving Rock to get laid out after the match. I'm not revealing some grand secret in saying this, but they made the build to this particular Wrestlemania way too complicated.

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Pretty crazy they were already back to MSG for a relatively big show this close removed from Rumble. HHH comes out for an interview and has some touching words and a video for Foley. This of course is a bait and switch but it was well done and before these totally became the norm so I enjoyed it. Steph and Hunter yucking it up in the ring helped as well. No Chance in Hell fires up and out comes Shane and Show. There is some animosity between them because as of now this is the Mania main event. Yeah Right. Rock comes out and cuts a promo but HHH tells him that he has hit Rock Bottom and must face the Brooklyn Brawler tonight. I loved Show laughing at that.

We get the match which is quick and easy with Rock killing Brawler and winning with a Rock Bottom. Afterwards, we get the main event set up with the handicap match and if Rock pins them, he is the #1 Contender. ¼*


Main event match was good action throughout. They did a good job of showing a little dissension between HHH and Show and Rock right now is at the top of his game as the ace of the promotion. In some ways, this is worked like Hogan title defense from the 80’s. I liked the finish too with Shane intentionally getting the DQ preventing Rock from being the #1 contender. Chants come for Foley as Show chokeslams Rock as the show goes off the air. **1/4

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  • GSR changed the title to [2000-02-28-WWF-Raw] The Rock vs HHH & Big Show (Handicap)

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