July 23, 2000
Originally reviewed here.
This was a last person standing match.
The hype video for this match featured Triple H shouting, “I want Chris Jericho’s ass!” no fewer than three times. I love how homoerotic professional wrestling is. It’s a shame it’s a business that reinforces heteronormativity in every situation possible.
They were brawling from the start, which I appreciated given the stipulation and the grudge-nature of the feud. HHH got control after a few minutes and targeted Jericho’s injured ribs. HHH undid Jericho’s bandages as he continued to target the midsection. HHH blocked an attempted Lionsault from Jericho which re-injured the ribs. Jericho managed to survive a sleeper. HHH then gave him a pedigree. Jericho got to his feet at 9. HHH used a chair to attack the ribs, but Jericho hit a desperation low blow. Jericho gave him a chairshot to the face, which busted HHH open. Jericho made a comeback. HHH went for the pedigree on steel steps, but Jericho avoided it. They then hit each other with the monitors at the same time. They barely got to their feet, and Jericho then applied the Liontamer. He transitioned to the Walls. Stephanie eventually broke it up, and Jericho then decided to apply the Walls on her. HHH made the save. Jericho hit HHH with the sledgehammer but then got back suplexed through a table. HHH got to his feet at 9, but Jericho failed to do so. HHH won and then immediately collapsed.
One of the best matches from either man’s career. This match managed to be worked and finished in a way that was both satisfying in the moment but also made clear that the result easily could have gone the other way.
HHH was probably at his career peak at this point, as he was still capable working at a great pace and was better at making his opponent look strong. Jericho absolutely came out of this match seeming like a main-eventer even in defeat. While Jericho’s peak would come years and years later as a sniveling, thesaurus-using heel, there was a period in 2000-2001 where he was an excellent, fiery babyface. I loved this one.
Match Rating: ****1/4