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Backlash 2002


Arnold Furious: I have very mixed feelings about 2002. I am ambivalent towards it, unlike any other year in wrestling. For starters, it’s the year that I fell so out of love with the WWF that I started watching both TNA and ROH. I needed an alternative to the WWF that desperately. Keep in mind, the WWF was available on TV for nothing whereas I had to buy tapes from America to see the other two promotions. That’s how irritated and disenfranchised I had become. And yet the second half of 2002 saw Paul Heyman take over on SmackDown! and they produced a string of great matches that’s pretty much unmatched by any other period in WWF history. The WWF had an insanely talented roster, including many of the best technical wrestlers on the planet and the undercard for this show features some tremendous talent, but then you get into the top matches and it’s the same old story. The main event is Triple H, who had already outstayed his babyface welcome after a couple of months, and Hulk Hogan, hobbling along on a nostalgia pop. And they get 22-minutes! 2002 very much reminds me a great of WCW at the peak of its powers: a sensational undercard busting a gut, but terrible main events. 21st April 2002. We’re in Kansas City, Missouri. Hosts are Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler.

Tangent: This is a strange old tape because it was filmed, as a PPV, as a WWF show but by the time it was released it had a WWE catalogue number. The time’s they were a changin’.

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