Judgment Day (2002)
Judgment Day (2002) was the fourth annual Judgment Day professional wrestling pay-per-view (PPV) event and the first PPV event produced under the WWE name. It took place on May 19, 2002, at the Gaylord Entertainment Center in Nashville, Tennessee and involved talent from the Raw and SmackDown! brands. This event was the first pay-per-view to use the WWE name after the change from WWF, although promotional materials produced before May 10, 2002 still bore the WWF logo.
|Judgment Day (2002)|
Promotional poster featuring The Undertaker
|Promotion||World Wrestling Entertainment|
|Date||May 19, 2002|
|Venue||Gaylord Entertainment Center|
|Tagline(s)||Judge, Jury and Executioner|
|Judgment Day chronology|
In the main event from SmackDown!, The Undertaker defeated Hollywood Hulk Hogan to win the WWE Undisputed Championship. In the main event from Raw, Stone Cold Steve Austin defeated Ric Flair and Big Show in a handicap match. On the undercard, Triple H defeated Chris Jericho in a Hell in a Cell match, Eddie Guerrero defeated Rob Van Dam to retain the WWE Intercontinental Championship and Edge defeated Kurt Angle in a hair vs. hair match.
The event consisted of nine professional wrestling matches that involved different wrestlers from pre-existing scripted feuds and storylines. Wrestlers were portrayed as either faces or heels as they followed a series of events which built tension, culminating in a wrestling match or series of matches.
The main feud leading into Judgment Day on the Raw brand was between the Undisputed WWF Champion Hollywood Hulk Hogan and The Undertaker. At Backlash, The Undertaker defeated Stone Cold Steve Austin and became the No. 1 contender to the championship, which Hogan won the same night. On the April 25 episode of SmackDown!, The Undertaker came to SmackDown! in order to attack Triple H, prompting Hogan to run and save Triple H. On the next Raw, Hogan and Undertaker confronted as Hogan tried to attack The Undertaker. However, later that night, during Hogan's match with William Regal, The Undertaker attacked Hogan with Hogan's weight belt, busting him open. The next week on Raw, Hogan stole The Undertaker's motorcycle and rode into the ring on it, and then tried to chase Undertaker with the motorcycle (which did not start). Later that night, Hogan destroyed the motorcycle with a truck. The next week on Raw, Undertaker attacked Hogan in the backstage, tied him into Hogan's motorcycle and dragged him all over the backstage. On that week's episode of SmackDown!, Hogan talked in front of the Montreal crowd, as Mr. McMahon confronted him and Hogan attacked him.
The main feud on SmackDown! featured Chris Jericho and Triple H. On the April 25 episode of SmackDown!, Jericho defeated Triple H with The Undertaker's help in order to get a title shot at Hollywood Hulk Hogan's title the next week. The next week on SmackDown!, Jericho managed to convince McMahon to make the match a no disqualification match and to prevent Triple H from hitting Jericho. Jericho taunted Triple H later that night, but during the title match, The Undertaker's music hit. However, The Undertaker did not come to the ring and Hogan defeated Jericho. The next week on SmackDown!, McMahon made Jericho and five other wrestlers beat on Triple H, while booking Jericho and Triple H in a Hell in a Cell match. Jericho cost Triple H a match against Reverend D-Von later that night, making Triple H attack Jericho as he teamed up with Kurt Angle against Edge and Hogan. Mr. McMahon then came to the ring and taunted Triple H, allowing Jericho to hit Triple H with the chair again. The next week on SmackDown!, Jericho and Angle attacked Triple H and Edge, and defeated them in the main event.
Another main feud from the Raw brand was Stone Cold Steve Austin against Big Show and Ric Flair. At Backlash, Flair refereed the Austin-Undertaker No. 1 contenders match, and counted Austin without seeing he had his foot on the bottom rope. The next night on Raw, Flair told Austin that he made a mistake and booked Austin and Bradshaw against the nWo of Scott Hall and X-Pac, but Bradshaw was attacked in the backstage. Flair put Big Show in the match as a replacement, but Show turned on Austin and joined the nWo, blaming Austin for him being left off WrestleMania X8. The next week on Raw, while Big Show was revealed as the man who attacked Bradshaw, Flair refereed a tag team match between Hall and X-Pac and the team of Austin and Bradshaw. Austin won, even though X-Pac's foot was on the bottom rope. Flair then booked himself in a six-man tag match the next week on Raw, with Bradshaw and Austin against the nWo. However, Flair turned on Austin and booked himself and Big Show against Austin at Judgement Day. The next week on Raw, Austin cost Flair a title match against Hogan, making Flair booking Bradshaw against Big Show and X-Pac (Scott Hall was fired the week before) and booking Austin in a lumberjack match against a new nWo member. After the nWo defeated Bradshaw, Flair revealed Booker T as the new nWo member. Despite the entire lumberjacks being heels, Austin defeated Booker, but he was attacked by the nWo and Flair after the match.
|English Commentators||Jim Ross|
|Spanish Commentators||Carlos Cabrera|
|Ring announcer||Howard Finkel|
The second match was for the WWE Women's Championship between Trish Stratus (with Bubba Ray Dudley) and Stacy Keibler (with Reverend D-Von and Deacon Batista). Despite interference from Batista, Stratus pinned Kiebler after a Bulldog to win the match and retain the title. After the match, D-Von attacked Bubba Ray, with D-Von and Batista performing a double flapjack through a table on Bubba Ray.
The third match was between Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman and The Hardy Boyz (Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy). After Matt and Jeff gained control of the match, they attempted to attack Heyman, but Lesnar threw Jeff into Matt and performed an F-5 on Jeff. Heyman pinned Jeff to win the match.
The fourth match was a handicap match between Big Show and Ric Flair and Stone Cold Steve Austin. After Big Show and Flair dominated Austin, Flair applied a figure-four leglock on Austin, but Austin countered the hold. X-Pac interfered, attempting to perform a superkick on Austin, but Austin avoided the move, resulting in X-Pac performing a superkick on Big Show, and Austin performed a Stone Cold Stunner on X-Pac. Austin pinned Flair after a Stone Cold Stunner to win the match.
The fifth match was a hair vs. hair match between Kurt Angle and Edge. Edge attempted a spear on Angle, but Angle avoided the move, resulting in Edge performing a spear on the referee. Angle performed a German suplex on Edge and attempted to hit Edge with a chair, but Edge ducked and performed two spears on Angle for a near-fall. Angle performed an Angle Slam on Edge for a near-fall. Angle applied an ankle lock on Edge, but Edge countered the hold. Edge pinned Angle with a small package to win the match, after which Edge shaved Angle's hair.
Main event matchesEdit
The sixth match was a Hell in a Cell match between Triple H and Chris Jericho. Early in the match, both men threw each other into the cell wall. Triple H attempted a piledriver on Jericho, but Jericho countered the move and performed a catapult into the cell wall on Triple H. Jericho retrieved a ladder and hit Triple H with the ladder, causing Triple H to bleed. After Jericho controlled the match, Jericho attempted to use the ladder on Triple H, but Triple H hit the ladder with a chair, causing the ladder to hit Jericho. Jericho attempted to hit Triple H with the steel steps, but Triple H performed a drop toe hold on Jericho, knocking Jericho into the steel steps. Triple H pushed Jericho into the referee, knocking him into the cell wall. Jericho hit Triple H with a chair and pinned Triple H, but the referee was still down. Jericho threw the referee into the cell wall, causing the referee to bleed. Triple H performed a spinebuster on Jericho as referees opened the cell door to check on the downed referee. Triple H hit Jericho with a sledgehammer and pinned Jericho, but the referee was still down. Mike Chioda replaced the referee. Triple H and Jericho fought outside the cell, where Triple H performed a DDT through a broadcast table on Jericho. Triple H retrieved a 2X4 wrapped in barbed wire, but Jericho climbed the cell, leading to Triple H and the referee climbing the cell. Jericho hit Triple H with the 2X4 and applied the Walls of Jericho on Triple H atop the Cell, but Triple H hit Jericho with the 2X4, forcing Jericho to release the hold. Jericho attempted to hit Triple H with the 2X4, but Triple H performed a low blow on him and attempted a Pedigree, which Jericho countered into a back body drop. Triple H hit Jericho with the 2X4 and pinned him after a Pedigree atop the cell to win the match.
The main event was for the now renamed WWE Undisputed Championship between Hollywood Hulk Hogan and The Undertaker. Before the match, Undertaker whipped Hogan with a belt, but Hogan whipped Undertaker back with his belt. After a back-and-forth match, Undertaker performed a chokeslam on Hogan for a near-fall. Hogan performed a running leg drop on Undertaker for another near-fall. Mr. McMahon interfered, distracting the referee whilst Undertaker retrieved a chair. Hogan attacked McMahon, performing a running leg drop on McMahon. Whilst the referee was distracted, Undertaker hit Hogan with a chair and pinned Hogan after another chokeslam to win the title.
With his feud with Triple H now over, Chris Jericho decided to enter the King of the Ring tournament, with the winner to receive a WWE Undisputed Championship match on August 25 at SummerSlam. Jericho was scheduled to compete against Edge in the first round tournament, but Edge forfeited his match to Jericho due to a legitimate shoulder injury. Jericho advanced as far as the semi-finals, losing to Rob Van Dam. On the May 30 episode of SmackDown!, The Undertaker defeated Randy Orton to retain the title. Afterward, Triple H assaulted The Undertaker and demanded a title shot. During Triple H's match against Test, Undertaker interfered, enabling Test to nail Triple H with a big boot for the pin. Afterwards, Taker nailed Triple H with multiple chair shots to his elbow. On the June 6 episode of SmackDown!, Triple H became the No. 1 contender to the WWE Unisputed Championship by defeating Hollywood Hulk Hogan. Triple H faced The Undertaker for the championship at King of the Ring, only to lose despite interference on his behalf from a returning The Rock.
Kurt Angle and Edge continued to feud for a few weeks after Judgment Day, and Edge was later joined by Hollywood Hulk Hogan on the May 30 episode of SmackDown!. On that episode, while Hogan had a stare down with the WWF Chairman Mr. McMahon, Angle attacked Hogan with a steel pipe. Later that night, Hogan interfered in a steel cage match between Angle and Edge by assaulting Angle. Moments later, Edge hit a spear on Angle from the top rope and won the match. In the process, Edge legitimate injured his arm and would be forced out of action for a month. The centerpiece of this feud was a hairpiece Angle was wearing after being shaven bald, which he held to his head with a piece of amateur wrestling headgear. On the June 13 episode of SmackDown!, Angle and The Undertaker were scheduled to wrestle Hogan and Triple H, but Undertaker and Angle assaulted Hogan before the match started. After Angle and Undertaker defeated Triple H by disqualification, Hogan went after Angle and eventually stripped Angle's wig from his head, which led to a match between the two at King of the Ring. At the event, Angle won by submission.
Brock Lesnar ended his feud with The Hardy Boyz and entered the King of the Ring tournament. On Raw, Lesnar defeated Bubba Ray Dudley in the first round tournament, then the following week he defeated Booker T in the quarter finals. At the King of the Ring event, he defeated Test in the semifinals then went on to defeat Rob Van Dam in the King of the Ring tournament, which earned him the SummerSlam title shot against the WWE Undisputed Champion.
After Judgment Day, Stone Cold Steve Austin continued his feud with Ric Flair, which added both Eddie Guerrero and a returning-from-injury Chris Benoit (who was last seen in June 2001 at King of the Ring due to neck injury). However, the feud ended abruptly with Austin's unexpected departure from the company on June 3 for his refusal to lose a hotshotted match to Brock Lesnar. That same night, Flair lost his half of the WWF ownership to Mr. McMahon and returned to active wrestling. Austin would return in 2003 and he would face The Rock at WrestleMania XIX in a losing effort, which would turn out to be Austin's last match before retiring from wrestling on medical grounds.
Guerrero's feud with Van Dam ended on the May 27 episode of Raw, when he lost the Intercontinental Championship in a ladder match. Two weeks later on Raw, he lost to Van Dam again in the King of the Ring first round tournament. He went on to face Flair at King of the Ring in place of Austin and lost the match after interference from Bubba Ray Dudley, with whom Guerrero entered a feud the following night on Raw. After pinning Bubba Ray, Guerrero had the table set up, only for Bubba Ray to put him through it. Chris Benoit then applied the Crippler Crossface on Bubba Ray. The following week on Raw, Benoit and Guerrero fought Bubba Ray and Spike Dudley in a tag team match, which Bubba Ray and Spike won. Afterwards, as Spike tried to execute the Dudley Dog on Benoit, the latter countered it and tossed him through a table. Benoit then applied the Crippler Crossface on Bubba Ray while Guerrero frog splashed Bubba Ray from behind. The following two weeks on Raw, Benoit and Guerrero had defeated Bubba and Spike in two different tag team matches. Then on July 21 at Vengeance, Bubba Ray and Spike defeated Benoit and Guerrero in a tag team elimination tables match when Bubba last eliminated Benoit following a Bubba Bomb. On the July 29 episode of Raw, after Benoit defeated Van Dam for the Intercontinental Championship, he and Guerrero would then defect to the SmackDown! brand during a storyline "open season" on wrestler contracts, with Benoit taking his newly won Intercontinental Championship with him. Van Dam defeated Benoit for the title on August 25 at SummerSlam and returned the title to the Raw brand.
Trish Stratus concluded her feud with Stacy Keibler after defeating Keibler in the bra and panties match on the May 25 episode of Velocity. She was then challenged by a returning Molly Holly, who returned with a drastic attitude change and new look. Holly's return took place on April 1, when she attacked Stratus. On the June 3 episode of Raw, Stratus successfully defended the WWE Women's Championship against Terri Runnels in a lingerie match. Holly then appeared to the ring with brass knuckles only for Stratus to nail her in the head with the title belt then took her undergarments off and threw them in Holly's face. The following week on Raw, after Holly defeated Stratus in a non-title match, she took Stratus's undergarments and choked her out with it. At King of the Ring, Stratus lost the match and the title to Holly after Holly executed a belly to belly suplex and pinned her with a handful of tights for leverage.
Undisputed WWF Championship #1 Contender's Tournament (April 2002)Edit
|1||Stone Cold Steve Austin||Pin|
|Stone Cold Steve Austin||27:02|
|3||Rob Van Dam||Pin|