ECW (8/18) Extreme Examination

HeadLocker — Jay Shannon
The ECW (8/18) Extreme Examination
Our resident philosopher looks at a shocking edition of ECW.

SummerSlam is rapidly approaching. ECW continued with the week-long infomercial for the summertime tradition. In this week’s edition of ECW, a new unholy alliance was formed and the riddle of Ezekiel Jackson and Vladimir Kozlov was finally solved, or was it?

This Week’s Episode: All the World’s a Stage…

ECW kicked off the action with a fun new comic book-like intro for The Hurricane. The bearded superhero got an incredible pop from the crowd. (Man, I’ve missed this character). His opponent was “The Ripper” Paul Burchill. Paul was seconded by his sister, Katie Lea Burchill. ECW showed Hurricane’s arrival, last week, to save Yoshi Tatsu from a vicious post-match beating from Burchill.

The Hurricane d Paul Burchill

The Finish:

Hurricane began to bash Burchill but Paul fought back by reversing an Irish Whip. Hurricane hit a Back Elbow and then whipped Burchill into the corner. Hurricane came off the ropes with a Flying Clothesline. Hurricane hit a modified Falling Neckbreaker and then sent Burchill to the corner. Burchill came out of nowhere with a version of the Pele. He still couldn’t get the pin. Burchill set for a Tornado DDT in the corner but Hurricane blocked it. Hurricane flipped Burchill off the ropes with a Hurancanrana. Burchill dodged the Shining Wizard and tried for a Brainbuster. Hurricane Floated Over and took out The Ripper with the Eye of the Hurricane.

Grade: B+

Jay’s Thoughts: This match was a decent opener but I can’t believe Tony Chimel blew the announcement of Hurricane’s name. There was supposed to be this whole Who IS this masked man? kind of thing going and Chinel blurts out “Your winner…Hurricane HELMS”. It’s kind of a “Look, up in the sky! It’s a bird, It’s a plane, It’s Clark Kent in Spandex!” Jeez. Anyway, I have always liked the Hurricane character. I especially like this new Goth version. I just have this horrid mental image of Goldust taking Rosey’s place as the new Super Hero In Training. And we All remember what a stinker that sidekick gimmick was, don’t we?

ECW’s new interview girl, Courtney Taylor, began her WWE career by talking with Tommy Dreamer. Taylor looks like a cross between Trish Stratus and Kelly Kelly, with Carly Simon’s smile. She asked him about teaming with Christian. Tommy said that they were still friends and looked forward to fighting someone that he doesn’t like. William Regal came out to taunt Tommy. That let Kozlov come up from behind and decimate Tommy with a Headbutt. Regal then hit his Trembler kick in Tommy’s face. ECW went to break.

The medics checked on the downed Tommy Dreamer. Christian wanted to know what happened to Tommy. Tommy tried to sit up but he was forced back down.

Abraham Washington was back for another week of bad jokes and insults. The crowd was hostile to the massive waste of time. Washington finally accepted that he wasn’t getting a warm reaction from the crowd. He drew cheap heat by saying the Kansas City crowd just couldn’t read. Washington started to chat about SummerSlam. Washington got another shot in on David Letterman. Makes one wonder if the gap-toothed late night legend is heading to ECW or Raw as a Guest Host.

Washington then brought out Goldust to chat with. Washington got little shots in on the Bizarre One. Goldust agreed with Washington that he (Goldust) was a bit different than the rest. Washington brought up Sheamus. Goldust started into his Tourette’s Syndrome persona. Washington then started to make fun of his “affliction”. Goldy was twitching like crazy as he tried to lift a coffee cup full of water. Washington thought Ashton Kutcher was Punking him out. (I’ve been thinking for weeks, that ol’ Ashton’s been doing that to us with the Abraham Washington Show). Goldust talked about being electrocuted, six and a half years back. Washington brought out his second guest, Sheamus.

The Celtic Warrior waltzed from the back. The kid’s hair has turned from flaming red to a darker auburn. The two men stared at each other. Sheamus refused to sit down. He told Goldust that Goldy got lucky, last week. Sheamus called Goldust a “gold freak”. The two men had a long staredown. Goldust then had another of his “ticks”. Washington brought the train wreck of a talk segment to a close, thankfully. The two odd grapplers stared at each other.

Segment Grade: D-

Jay’s Thoughts: Again, Washington wastes a prime segment of ECW’s limited TV time. Heck, Sheamus and Goldust could have slugged it out in the time that this wanna-be Arsenio Hall made fun of Goldust’s “ailment”. Speaking of that, the Tourette’s thing was lame, six years ago. It was offensive as Hell, about as funny as a case of summer heat rash, and a total waste of tv time. Someone grab the electric cables and shock Goldy back to semi-normal, please!

In the back, Courtney chatted with Tiffany about Tommy Dreamer’s condition. Tiffany said that Tommy did have a concussion. Christian would have the option to find himself another partner, since Tommy would not be able to fight. ECW went to break.

Zack Ryder came out for the next match. His opponent was Yoshi Tatsu. Tatsu, much like TNA’s Kiyoshi, came out with a dyed streak in his hair.Tatsu’s was Ric Flair blond. Tatsu bowed to the ring before entering.

Zack Ryder d Yoshi Tatsu

The Finish:

Yoshi flipped through a Tilt-a-Whirl Backbreaker and almost locked in the Fujiwara Arm Bar. Zack sent Yoshi to the outside. Yoshi came back in with rapid kicks. He sent Zack to the corner and hit a Flying Knee that jammed Zack’s back into the corner. Yoshi hit a Back Kick and a Spiral Roll, followed by a Crescent Kick. Yoshi couldn’t make the pin. Yoshi missed a Roundhouse Kick. Zack tried to set for his Zack Attack finisher, but Yoshi swept the back leg to drop Zack. Yoshi then hit a Rolling Senton and went to the apron. Yoshi went for a Springboard Elbow Drop but Zack got the knees up. Zack easily pinned the injured Yoshi Tatsu.

Grade: C+

Jay’s Thoughts: I’m not sure if Yoshi really banged up his arm or if ECW just ran out of time. The ending of the match would seem to suggest that Yoshi and Zack changed the ending to get Yoshi out of there. This should have been an opening or closing match, not a quick filler to pad the time until the main event. This one was a major disappointment to me. Both men are so much better than that.

ECW promo’d Floyd Mayweather coming to Raw as next week’s Guest Host. (Oh, joy! Another celebrity comes out to wreck Monday nights). Josh Mathews and Matt Striker sent it to the Raw Rebound. It focused on the rebirth of D-Generation X, such as it was. HHH and Shawn Michaels were having a great time, until Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase, Jr. crashed the party and assaulted the Bad Boys of wrestling. Rhodes and DiBiase left HHH and Shawn lying in the ring.

Matt and Josh ran down the updated SummerSlam card. I want to send my best wishes out to Stephen Tyler of Aerosmith, who is recovering from a nasty fall at a concert event. Aerosmith provides the theme music for this year’s SummerSlam. The original plans were to have the band perform, but that’s not going to happen, due to the head and neck injury to Tyler.

Tiffany and Christian talked about Christian needing a partner. Christian wanted more time to find a partner but Tiffany said that there just was no more time. Off camera, someone came into the office. Christian looked at the unidentified person and said “That’ll work”.

Back in the arena, William Regal and Vladimir Kozlov arrived for the main event. Christian then came out to battle the foreign contingent. ECW went to break before Christian’s partner could be revealed.

Regal and Kozlov looked pensive as ECW returned. They couldn’t imagine who Christian could have gotten as a partner. They learned that it was…Ezekiel Jackson!

William Regal & Vladimir Kozlov d Christian & Ezekiel Jackson

The Finish:

Kozlov Shouldered Christian in the corner, over and over again. Kozlov cinched in a Deep Front Face Lock. Kozlov twisted Christian to keep him from making a tag. Kozlov wrenched Christian’s neck and kept him down. He dragged Christian to the corner and tagged in Regal. Christian came out of nowhere with a Backslide. Regal sent Christian to the corner but took several shots to the face. Christian hit his Springboard Sunset Flip but Kozlov made the save. That brought Jackson into the ring, for the first time. Kozlov stared in disbelief at the Harlem, NY native. Jackson slipped behind Christian and planted him with his Mon-Star finisher. He then backed off to allow Regal to take the pin.

Grade: B+

After the match, Kozlov and Jackson took turns hitting their finishers on Christian. Regal raised the arms of Kozlov and Jackson. The Triad of Destruction stood triumphant over their hapless victim.

Jay’s Thoights: I guess somebody has been reading my columns. I strongly suggested that Kozlov and Jackson be partnered, for weeks. Ok, I know that the Creative team isn’t going to rip off my idea, but it sure feels good to think that they might. Truthfully, the Cold War-riors are going to be one heck of a team, I hope. They have the potential to instantly rise to the top of the tag team division. They’d likely feud with Cryme Tyme, first. From there, they’d go on to face Big Mouth (Show and Jericho). Face it, there are really only like 4 actual full-time teams in the company, these days. Kozlov/Jackson could elevate that to a whopping 5!

Final Grade: C+

Final Thoughts: ECW was plagued with too much backstage baloney, this week. When you toss in Abraham Washington and a 5-6 minute main event, the show barely makes it above Heat or Velocity level. The new interview girl is kinda cute, though she’s a little too skinny for my tastes. ECW has been a Hot/Cold rollercoaster for months. This week, I got a healthy dose of frostbite.

— Jay Shannon
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