Promotional poster featuring The Rock
|"Bodies" by Drowning Pool|
|Promotion||World Wrestling Federation|
|Date||August 19, 2001|
|City||San Jose, California|
SummerSlam (2001) was the fourteenth annual SummerSlam professional wrestling pay-per-view event produced by the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) and the third presented by Chef Boyardee. It took place on August 19, 2001, at the Compaq Center in San Jose, California.
The main event was Booker T versus The Rock for the WCW Championship, which Rock won by pinfall after executing a Rock Bottom. Another two main matches on the card were Steve Austin versus Kurt Angle for the WWF Championship, which Angle won after Austin was disqualified for attacking referees and Jeff Hardy defending his WWF Hardcore Championship in a Ladder match against Rob Van Dam in which Van Dam won the match and the title. Another main match on the undercard was a Steel cage match between WCW Tag Team Champions Undertaker and Kane and WWF Tag Team Champions Diamond Dallas Page and Kanyon, which Undertaker and Kane won after Undertaker executed the Last Ride and pinned Page.
The main rivalry heading into SummerSlam was between The Rock and Booker T, battling over the WCW Championship. After losing the WWF Championship to Steve Austin at WrestleMania X-Seven, The Rock took a hiatus from professional wrestling to film the movie, The Scorpion King. On the July 9, 2001 edition of Raw Is War, campaigning for The Rock's return began. Following the campaigning, The Rock returned to the WWF on the July 30, 2001 edition of Raw Is War, where he chose to align himself with the WWF instead of The Alliance for The Invasion. This action was shown by The Rock delivering a Rock Bottom and the people's elbow onto Shane McMahon, The Alliance leader. Later that week on SmackDown!, Booker T and The Rock cut a promo, where Booker T challenged The Rock to a match at SummerSlam; the beginning of the The Rock-Booker T rivalry. Seeking revenge for the attack on the July 30, 2001 edition of Raw is War, McMahon fought The Rock in a Street Fight on the August 6 edition of Raw is War, where The Rock pinned McMahon. The rivalry between The Rock and Booker T intensified after the match, where Booker T and Shane McMahon double-teamed The Rock. Later that week on SmackDown!, in retaliation, The Rock accepted Booker T's challenge. On the August 13 edition of Raw is War, The Rock was involved in a tag team match, where he teamed with Chris Jericho in a loss to Booker T and Rhyno. After the match, Booker T delivered his variation of the Rock Bottom on The Rock, a move dubbed, The Book End. On the final edition of SmackDown! before SummerSlam, McMahon announced that Booker T would defend the WCW Championship at SummerSlam against The Rock. Later that night, the rivalry continued to intensify during a Lights Out match between Booker T and The Rock, after Booker T delivered a Book End onto The Rock through a commentators announce table.
The other main match on the card was Steve Austin versus Kurt Angle for the WWF Championship. The previous month at Invasion, Team WCW/ECW (Booker T, Diamond Dallas Page, Rhyno and Bubba Ray and D-Von Dudley) defeated Team WWF (Steve Austin, Kurt Angle, Chris Jericho, The Undertaker and Kane). Team WCW/ECW won after Austin turned on the WWF when he executed a Stunner on Angle. On the following night's edition of Raw Is War, Austin stated that he did this because he felt that Vince McMahon was grooming Angle to take over his spot, and that he was "unappreciated" when McMahon insisted he return to the old Austin. Later that evening, Austin interfered during six man Elimination Tables match by assaulting Angle. Then on the July 26, 2001 edition of SmackDown!, Angle appeared at his hometown of Pittsburgh, PA and challenged Steve Austin for the WWF title but Austin, instead, chose Booker T to defend his WCW Championship against Angle. Later on that night, Angle won the WCW title from Booker T despite of Austin's interference. On the July 30, 2001 edition of Raw Is War, Angle dropped the championship back to Booker T with the help of Steve Austin and Shane McMahon. Afterwards, Angle challenged Austin for the WWF Championship at SummerSlam, which Austin accepted. This would be the 2nd time that the two would meet one-on-one for the WWF title with the first being January 8 on Raw Is War. The feud between Austin and Angle would escalate in the following couple of weeks leading up to SummerSlam esp. in a Six Man Tag Team Elimination match pitting Austin and the Dudley Boyz against Angle and Matt and Jeff Hardy, which Austin's team won.
Another main match heading into the event was Jeff Hardy versus Rob Van Dam in a Ladder match for the WWF Hardcore Championship. At Invasion Van Dam defeated Hardy to win the WWF Hardcore Championship. In the following weeks, after Van Dam and Hardy faced each other in Tag Team matches, on the August 13, 2001 edition of RAW, Van Dam was scheduled to defend his title against Kurt Angle, and as long the match was underway Jeff Hardy interfered and pinned Van Dam to win the title for himself. This lead to a Ladder match for the title at SummerSlam between Hardy and Van Dam.
Before the event aired live on pay-per-view, a match for Sunday Night Heat aired on MTV. The match was originally slated to be a handicap match featuring Lita, and Jacqueline (representing the WWF) versus Torrie Wilson, Stacy Keibler, and Ivory (representing The Alliance). Backstage, before this match, Wilson, Ivory and Keibler attacked Lita, weakening her. Matt Hardy checked on her and advised her not to compete in the match, but she insisted that she was fine. Jacqueline was alone in the beginning of the match, until Molly Holly (from the WWF) ran to the ring, and became a part of the match, teaming with Jacqueline. Lita eventually came down to the ring and performed the Twist of Fate on Ivory, allowing Jacqueline to pin her for the win.
The first match to air was for the WWF Intercontinental Championship, with reigning champion Lance Storm facing off against Edge. Before the match started, Christian and other WWF stars were shown backstage watching the match. The start of the match saw Edge nail Storm with a clothesline and a cross-body splash from the top rope. Storm regained momentum and began the attack on Edge, knocking him off of his feet. When Edge got up, he hit a powerslam onto Storm. Storm made his way to his feet and trapped Edge in a single-leg Boston Crab, which Edge broke by grabbing the top rope. As Edge got up, Christian ran down to the ring. Christian tried to spear Storm, but missed and hit Edge instead. Edge hit a DDT onto Storm and covered him to get the pin, and win the championship.
The next match was The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray and D-Von) and Test versus The APA (Faarooq and Bradshaw) and Spike Dudley (with Molly Holly). As the match began, Spike immediately tried to attack Bubba Ray and D-Von, although Bubba Ray quickly threw Spike down. Test took over and attacked Spike while Bubba Ray and D-Von took out a table. Test picked up Spike and prepared to throw him into the table. Before he could, Spike poked his eyes, which caused Test to drop Spike. Test recovered and threw Spike into the table. Shane McMahon then ran down to the ring, and nailed Bradshaw with a steel chair, allowing Test to get the pin and win the match.
The next match was a Title unification match for the WCW Cruiser-weight Championship and the WWF Light Heavyweight Championship between X-Pac and Tajiri. Nearing the end of the contest, Tajiri had the upper hand but was distracted by Albert's interference and was forced to respond with a red mist. X-Pac took the opportunity and hit Tajiri with the X-Factor to win the match.
Following the match was between Chris Jericho from the WWF and Rhyno from the Alliance, who was accompanied by Stephanie McMahon. The competition went on right after Jericho delivered a diving elbow on Rhyno and tried locking him into the Walls of Jericho. As Jericho was about to give a flying body, Rhyno hit him with the Gore in mid-air. As the match went on, Rhyno decided to somehow catch the attention of referee Tim White, only to have Jericho slapped in the face by Stephanie McMahon Helmsley. Rhyno then locked him into a Body Scissors Submission, but Jericho got out of it. Rhyno then took Jericho in a Spin and a DDT. Jericho got out of Rhyno's Submission maneuvers. Both men knocked each other down after both hit clotheslines on each other. After a dropkick, when Jericho tried pinning, Stephanie interfered, preventing Tim to count. Then Jericho kissed Stephanie. He then he hit a bulldog and missed a lionsault on Rhyno, who after recovering used the Walls of Jericho on Jericho himself. Following an Enzuigiri by Jericho and a Belly-to-Belly suplex by Rhyno, he set himself up for the Gore, but he hit the turnbuckle which triggered the Walls of Jericho by Jericho. Rhyno tapped out, thus, Jericho scoring for Team WWF. Stephanie headed into the locker room, upset.
The next match was a hardcore ladder match for the WWF Hardcore Championship between Jeff Hardy and The Alliance's Rob Van Dam. Starting off as a back and forth match-up, Jeff started gaining momentum by driving Van Dam out of the ring and performing a Springboard moonsault over him. The action spilled outside as RVD kept Hardy down and went to use the ladder, but was stopped by Hardy who hit the dropkick on the ladder, hitting RVD in the process. Van Dam utilized the ladder in hitting Hardy on the face. Hardy used the same effort, hitting RVD's midsection in the process. Both Hardy and Van Dam kept using the ladder to keep each other down, including RVD's Rolling Thunder on Jeff, who was placed on the ladder. Jeff first gained the opportunity to climb the ladder and gain the Hardcore title back into the WWF but was stopped as RVD hit him with the flying kick from the turnbuckle. Then again RVD tried to get the title but was stopped by Hardy's Dropkick. Jeff then tried hitting Van Dam with the Swanton, but RVD moved away and tried hitting Jeff with the Five-Star Frog splash, but Jeff moved away, vice versa. Now, with both men barely able to stand, Hardy and Van Dam both climbed the ladder, with RVD using a suplex on Jeff from the top of the ladder. Jeff, in the same way as RVD, hit Van Dam with a power bomb from the top of the ladder. The match got intense as Jeff climbed the ladder, touched the title but RVD moved away the ladder, Jeff kept on hanging in the process. RVD tried to use some tricks, such as a kick from the top turnbuckle, but missed. Jeff wasn't able to hold on much longer, so he let go of himself, sighing as he went down. Jeff once again tried to climb up the ladder, but as he went on the top, RVD pushed the ladder and Jeff hit his neck and shoulder on the ropes. With Hardy barely able to stand, RVD climbed up top and caught hold of the Hardcore Title, winning in the process.
The upcoming match was for both the WCW and WWF Tag Team titles between The Brothers of Destruction, Undertaker & Kane with Taker's Wife, Sara against The Alliance's Diamond Dallas Page & Chris Kanyon. The promo showed that DDP has been messing with Undertaker's personal life and his wife, Sara since the Invasion started. He even built a SHRINE in honor of Sara, stating he just wanted to be famous and now he wants "his" Sara. Undertaker trashing the shrine and being attacked by Kanyon and DDP, with Kane coming to the Rescue, also showing William Regal, congratulating them on winning the WWF Tag Team Titles and that they have to defend them on Summerslam against the B.O.D. in a steel cage match.The match started up as Sara sealed the Cage with a padlock. DDP and Kanyon tried escaping the cage as the bell rang but thanks to Kane and Taker's size, they were brought back in the ring. Taker hit DDP with a big boot, while Kane was choking Kanyon . Taker kept hitting DDP with a series of punches and elbows and Kane kept using the steel cage's walls as a weapon. Kane hit the chokeslam on Kanyon. Taker was about to chokeslam DDP but he hit the Low Blow on him. Kane hit Kanyon with a powerbomb right on the corner of the cage, while Taker used his body on DDP who hit the cage wall. Kanyon after hitting Taker with a flying clothesline, Kane tried to prevent him from escaping, but hit a DDT on him. Both DDP and Kanyon tried escaping, but Taker and Kane both did their iconic Sit Up. Kane kept hitting Kanyon's face on the cage wall, while Undertaker drove DDP's midsection right on the ropes. Undertaker told Kane to let Kanyon go. All that was left was The Undertaker, Kane and DDP, who got one heck of a beating from the brothers of destruction. From Clotheslines to bodyslams. Taker prevented the 3 count as he was ready to punish DDP more, as Kane and Sara looked over Undertaker hammering and kicking DDP . Sara passed the Steel Chain to Taker and he used it as a weapon on DDP. Undertaker was about to hit DDP with the chokeslam but Taker gave him a chance to get out of their sights, without looking onto Sara, saying he would forgive him. But as DDP almost made it to the top, he was stopped by Taker, who completed the chokeslam which he was about to give. Kane helped Taker get DDP onto the Last Ride,which Taker said he is dedicating it to Sara. Taker pinned DDP and won the match, making Kane and Taker a double Tag Champion, gaining a win for the Team WWF.
The next match was the first Main Event of the evening. WWF Champion Stone Cold Steve Austin who was a part of the Alliance went one on one with WWF's Kurt Angle. The promo showed how the rivalry started, since Invasion, the RAW after that and following the events between Austin, Alliance, Angle and WWF. The match started off as Angle started attacking Austin before he even entered the ring. The action, obviously, spilled outside as both Austin and Angle exchanging punches and kicks along with hitting each other on barricades. As they came back into the ring, Angle tackled Austin and started jabbing him. Austin however retaliated with chops and jabs of his own, and Vice Versa. Austin and Angle exchanged blows as Angle gained the upper hand to pin Stone Cold, but Austin kicked out. Austin started hurting Kurt's left leg, specially the ankle. But Angle countered in an unsuccessful Ankle lock. Austin moved out of the ring, only to hit Angle with a clothesline. As Angle was about to get a third suplex by Austin, he countered with 3 German Suplexes, with Austin hitting Angle with his elbows, Angle followed with 2 more. As Austin caught hold of the ropes, Angle hit him on the back and hit him with even 2 more German Suplexes. As Angle was about to hit Austin with the Angle Slam, Austin countered and dropkicked him, by which Angle hit the turnbuckle. Austin then set Angle up on the top turnbuckle,but shoved him down as he was about to hit Angle with a suplex. Austin tried again and successfully hit Angle with a Suplex. With both men down and Austin trying to get up, he hit angle with the Stunner. But Angle kicked outta 2, due to which Austin started talking trash to the ref, and yet again, Angle was stunned by Austin, this time, the force threw Angle outside. Austin then hit Angle's head on the turnbuckle, only to make it prone to bleeding. A second hit on the turnbuckle made his head busted open. Austin tried using the WWF title as a weapon but Ref Earl Hebner prevented him from doing so. Austin kept hitting Angle on the head, using the turnbuckle as a weapon as well as jabbing him on the forehead. Austin then tried pinning Angle in the ring but Angle kicked out again. Therefore, Austin, again, threw Angle out of the ring only to hit Kurt's head on the Ring Post and the Announcer Table. Austin was about to powerslam Angle on the Table but Angle countered. The action widely spilled outside this time as Austin suplexed Angle past the barricade, towards the crowd. As Austin was about to get out of the barricade, Angle applied the Ankle Lock on Austin. Paul Heyman stating that was illegal, hence widely supporting Austin. Angle brought Austin in the Ring and applied the Ankle lock on Austin, but Stone Cold caught the ropes. Angle hit a belly-to-belly suplex on the floor to Austin. Angle kept on retaliating Austin's moves. As Angle brought Austin in the ring, Angle hit him with a moonsault, which was unsuccessful in gaining a 3-count. Austin countered the Angle slam and applied the Cobra Clutch Submission. Angle, still in the submission, attempted to pin Austin, but he kicked out, still keeping the submission on Angle. Angle, then wisely threw Austin off the ring. Austin then hit Angle with a stunner, but Angle again kicked out, that made 3 Stunners which Angle kicked out from. Angle then hit Austin with the Angle Slam as Austin slapped him and was about to hit a 4th Stunner. Austin kicked out of the Angle Slam. Austin, frustrated, hit Earl Hebner on the face. Angle then hit Austin with the DDT, another WWF Referee, Mike Chioda came and counted an unsuccessful 3-count . Austin hit a stunner on Chioda. Then Austin hit Referee Tim White with the WWF Title. Nick Patrick, an Alliance Ref, decided to DQ Steve Austin and make Angle the winner. However Austin was still the WWF Champion as the Title can NOT change hands on a DQ or Countout. Angle, frustrated, put Patrick on the Ankle Lock. Overall, Kurt Angle was screwed.
The Final Main Event of the evening was between The Rock and Booker T for the WCW Championship. The promo showed the events happening following the night of his return. As the bell rang, The Rock started jabbing Booker T and chased Shane McMahon. With the Irish whip, Booker hit Shane and Rock hit the Samoan drop and pinned him for a 2 count. Booker retaliated with a Knee to the abdomen. The Rock and Booker T exchanged blows to each other from the Turnbuckle and Irish Whips. Booker used a Super Kick on the Rock's face. The Rock drove Booker out of the ring and hit his head on the Announcer table multiple times including a low blow. Booker built momentum by hitting Rock on the Steel Steps and putting him through the barricade. The action spilled outside towards the crowd as Booker gained the upper hand by clotheslining Rock and putting him through another barricade. Booker then attempted to put the Announcer table apart, Rock tried building momentum but Booker reversed with an Irish whip which hit Rock on the same Ring Post where Kurt Angle shed blood on. Booker kept hitting Rock with jabs and kicks. As much as Rock tried building momentum, Booker reversed the moves. The Rock then locked Booker in the Sharpshooter after reversing Booker's Headlock. Shane tried interfering but Rock brought him in the ring, only to get a kick from Booker. Shane put a Chair on the corner of the Ring. As Booker was about to get it, Referee Charles Robinson tried preventing him, at the same time, Shane hit Rock with the WCW Title. Then the APA (Bradshaw and Farooq) Chased Shane McMahon, who received a deadly Clothesline From Hell from Bradshaw, due to his early interference in their match with Spike Dudley against the Dudleys and Test. In the ring, Booker hit the Book-End on The Rock, which Rock kicked out. Rock then fought back, blocking Booker's blows, hitting him with Belly To Belly Throw. As Booker was about to hit the Scissors kick, Rock retaliated with the spinebuster, leading up to the People's Elbow. Shane McMahon interfered with the count on the Alliance Referee, only to be hit with a Rock Bottom by The Rock, who then kept hitting with jabs on Booker in the ring. Booker used a spine buster on Rock, hitting Rock with the Scissors Kick and performing the Spin-A-Rooney, but the Rock got up and hit the Rock Bottom, pinning Booker with a 3 Count, gaining the WCW Championship, bringing the Title back to WWF for the second time (first being Kurt Angle on an earlier Smackdown event). Jim Ross commented that the night belongs to the returning Rock.
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The Rock would head to Hollywood after WrestleMania to assume his first starring role as the title character in The Scorpion King.
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