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  May 30, 2001



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The McMahons are on both sides of ring
WWF boss Vince McMahon in full form last night at Skyreach Centre. -- Perry Mah, Edmonton Sun
  • PHOTO GALLERY
  • By MIKE ROSS -- Edmonton Sun

      Imagine if you could beat your boss over the head with a metal chair and still have a job the next day.

     This is the ultimate working-class fantasy seen every day at a little family company called World Wrestling Federation Entertainment Inc. By day, Vince McMahon is in charge of a multimillion-dollar sports entertainment empire. By night, he's just another heel - a villain in the passion play of his own making.

     Sure, he signs the cheques, big ones, too, but in the ring he's known as "the Genetic Jackhammer" or "Vinnie Mac" or worse, and subject to the same abuse all the other heels get.

     Go ahead and boo if you want to. It's OK. Let it all out.

     More than 13,500 fans expressed their displeasure at the WWF boss - and by extension, all bosses everywhere - when he made his inevitable appearance at WWF Smackdown! in Skyreach Centre last night.

     "Thank you for the warm Edmonton reception," he said sarcastically, as a chorus of boos erupted around him.

     In our last episode (Calgary's Raw is War show Monday night), McMahon stopped the fight just as Chris Benoit was about to get one over on reigning WWF champion Stone Cold Steve Austin. A dirty bit of cheatin' there. Benoit responded to putting his patented "Crippler Crossface" on McMahon, while Chris Jericho deployed the dreaded "Walls of Jericho" on Stone Cold. Mayhem ensued. It took eight referees to break it up.

     Hey, I don't write this stuff. McMahon's daughter Stephanie does, being the "director of creative writing" at WWF Entertainment Inc. In the ring, however, the "Billion Dollar Princess" may be a heel, but she's no diva. It's all very complicated.

     Last night, Jericho opened the TV taping by saying that he and tag-team partner Benoit "absolutely, positively, expoovicably (sic) enjoy beating the hell out of Vince McMahon." They challenged their boss to join Stone Cold in a tag-team match, which McMahon naturally refused, being the coward he is. Boo.

     He told Benoit, "I will spare you the indignity of losing the tag-team title in your home town."

     Boo. Hiss.

     Benoit responded, "You may be the chairman, and I respect that, but the next time you step into the ring with me, I will beat you to within an inch of your life."

     Big cheer.

     Later on, more of the McMahon Dynasty-style family saga played out, both live and in little pre-taped skits. Son of Vince Shane McMahon caused a stir when he attempted to disrupt a match between Jericho and the heel Kurt Angle and was dragged off by security. Dad was furious. You see, Shane supposedly bought the rival WCW from under dad's nose. "How could it come to this," the commentator said. "Father against son." (Vince actually bought the WCW from Ted Turner and gave it to his son to run).

     Vince McMahon may have poor judgment when it comes to starting a professional football league (the laughably ill-fated XFL), but he plays a great heel - insulting the wrestlers, insulting the crowd, insulting his underlings, insulting Canada, insulting Edmonton. That's what you're supposed to do when you're a heel - be a jerk.

     The crowd put it better. As the chairman spoke, a chant filled the arena: "a--hole! a--hole! a--hole!"

     It's easy when good and evil are so clearly defined. No grey areas, no moral dilemmas, just good old black and white.

     SMACKDOWN! STUNNERS

     1. All those explosions. Heh, heh. Cool.

     2. The fan who kept yelling out, "You fight like a girl!" Must be a smart mark.

     3. Raven vs. Rhino, hitting each other with garbage cans that appeared to be made out of extra-strong tin foil. Hilarious.

    More Edmonton Smackdown! stories

  • May 30: Home-town welcome for Benoit
  • May 30: The SmackDown! divas
  • PHOTO GALLERY


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