HeadLocker — Jay Shannon
ECW (9’29) Extreme Examination
Our resident philosopher looks at a rather weak editiion of ECW.
The journey to Hell in a Cell continued with this week’s ECW. ECW did a little cross-promotion with the arrival of a former ECW Champion for a little chat with Abraham Washington. Also, ECW found itself with a new GM, at least temporarily.
This Week’s Episode: It’s good to be the King
William Regal opened the show to tell the fans that Tiffany was in a nasty car accident. She will make a full recovery. The Board of Directors appointed Regal as the interim GM, due to his experience as GM of Raw, some time back. Regal can’t make any decisions that would directly affect the ECW title. Regal did have the ability to change the main event. Regal modified the Christian v Zack Ryder to add both Vladimir Kozlov and Ezekiel Jackson and himself to Ryder’s side. It would be a 4-on-1 Handicap Match.
Tony Atlas was introduced. He then did the introduction for the Abraham Washington Show. Abraham thanked the crowd that booed him. Abraham talked about Hell in a Cell. For the first time, Abraham got a huge pop from the crowd. Abraham then brought out John Morrison, the former ECW and current Intercontinental champ. Morrison got a huge response from the crowd. They did a cheap plug for Morrison’s new T-Shirt. Morrison told Tony he loved the laugh and wanted to use it as his ringtone. Morrison said that he liked what Abraham does. They brought up the old Dirt Sheet. Morrison dissed The Miz, saying that Miz would never be in the Hall of Fame. Morrison said Miz and Dolph Ziggler were both delusional about thoughts of winning championships on Sunday.
Dolph Ziggler’s music sounded and Dolph strolled from the back. He plopped down on the couch. Abraham didn’t know what Dolph Lundgren was doing on his show. When Abraham started to threaten “Ivan Drago” that he would go all Apollo Creed up on him, Morrison reminded Abraham that Ivan killed Apollo in Rocky IV. Abraham did a little quick back-peddling and told Dolph that they were going to have to reschedule. Morrison told Dolph “Say Goodnight, Mister Ziggles”. That started a huge chant from the crowd. Tony tried to do the same thing but messed it up, calling him Mr. Ziggler, not Mr. Ziggles. Poor Tony.
Segment Grade: C
Jay’s Thoughts: Another successful (sarcasm dripping) episode of Abe’s little talk show. If they are going to keep the silly show going, move it to Smackdown. There’s plenty of space for his schtick and another star or two might get the chance to showcase their talent.
Regal was on the phone when someone knocked on the door. Kozlov got defensive until he noticed it was Zack Ryder. Ryder told Regal that he didn’t need any help. Regal, who had finished his phone call, told Ryder that he didn’t care what Ryder wanted. The Board of Directors had changed the match that he changed. It would now be an 8-man tag match: Team Regal v Team Christian. Aiding Christian would be: Yoshi Tatsu, Goldust and Tommy Dreamer. Regal was offended by Ryder’s questioning of his ability as GM. Ryder said he was not doing that, and left. ECW went to break.
The opening match brought Paul Burchill and Katie Lea Burchill to the ring. Shelton Benjmin was then introduced as Burchill’s opponent. ECW looked back at the issues between Benjamin and Sheamus. They got into a heck of a fight during last week’s Abraham Washington Show. As Shelton neared the ring, Sheamus rushed Shelton from behind and clobbered him with a Clothesline and wild punches to the head. Sheamus ran Shelton into the ring post and stomped away. He then choked Shelton and threw him in the ring. Security ushered Sheamus out of the ringside area as Paul waited in the ring.
Shelton Benjamin d Paul Burchill
The ref began to count both men down. Shelton punched and kicked Paul. Paul Elbowed the shoulder of Shelton and stomped away at it. Paul Shouldered Shelton in the corner and then sat him on the top rope. Paul set for a Superplex but Shelton blocked the move. Shelton threw a flurry of fists and pushed Paul off the ropes. Shelton couldn’t follow up on the move. Shelton finally got to his feet and went for a Somersault off the rope. Paul moved and Shelton landed with a thud. Paul hit a Flying Kneedrop but still couldn’t get the pin. Paul tried, again, to lock in the Fujiwara Arm Breaker. Shelton shifted his weight and threw Paul into the corner. Shelton and Paul punched each other. Paul went to the ropes and ran into…Paydirt.
Jay’s Thoughts: The feud with Shelton and Sheamus has so much potential. Sheamus pretty much dominated his first feud with Goldust and he really needs a younger star to push himself to the next level. I could see Sheamus v Shelton for the ECW strap, maybe a year down the road. As for Paul, he just continues to help the others do their thing.
Matt Striker and Josh Mathews talked about the dual main events for Hell in a Cell. Randy Orton will try to take back the WWE title from John Cena and C.M. Punk will defend against The Undertaker.
Tommy Dreamer was warming up in the back. Christian came in and talked about going into war against Team Regal. Christian said Yoshi was the future of ECW and needed to step up. Christian then turned to Goldust and called him a “freak”. Christian asked Goldy to take them home. They all did Goldust’s Tourette’s-like yelp. Tacky.
The main event combatants began to arrive for war. The Ruthless Roundtable of Regal, Jackson and Kozlov strolled from the back, first. ECW went to break before the other 5 arrived to battle.
Zack Ryder joined his partners for the 8-man war. The Ruthless Roundtable didn’t seem all that impressed. Goldust was then introduced. He was followed by the Heart and Soul of ECW, Tommy Dreamer. Yoshi Tatsu then came out to join his teammates. Christian was the last to arrive for the party. He got the biggest pop of the group.
Team Christian (Christian, Yoshi Tatsu, Goldust and Tommy Dreamer) v Team Regal (William Regal, Zack Ryder, Vladimir Kozlov and Ezekiel Jackson)
8-Man Tag Team Match
Kozlov took the tag and pounded on Christian. Kozlov placed Christian on the top rope and Headbutted the ribs. Christian got off the ropes and dodged a charge from Kozlov. Christian Double Booted Kozlov and then nailed him with a Missile Dropkick. Yoshi got the tag, as did Ryder. Yoshi hit a pair of Knife Edge Kicks and a Jumping Dropkick. Yoshi hit a Clothesline and then the Roaring Elbow. Yoshi sent Ryder to the corner and nailed the D.D.E (aka Elijah Express). Yoshi did the Rolling Snap Mare and a Crescent Kick to the chest. Yoshi went High Rent and hit a Spinning Heel Kick off the top rope. Jackson made the save. It all broke down as everyone got involved and went tot he floor. Regal made the legal tag. Christian did a Springboard Crossbody onto the floor to take out everyone, except Regal, Yoshi and Ryder. Yoshi caught Regal with a sharp kick to end the match. ECW had a lousy camera angle on the finish. The members of Team Christian stood in triumph.
Jay’s Thoughts: A decent main event. Nice to see Yoshi get the push. Even in such a stale environment, ECW is still trying to excite the crowd. All 8 men got the chance to really look good in this one.
Final Grade: B
Final Thoughts: 2 matches? ECW is really cutting back on the actual wrestling to deliver promos and Abe. Hurricane could have battled Sheamus in the time we had to listen to Tony Atlas barking like a seal. Regal in charge of ECW is a major mistake. He stank as the Raw GM and can only do the same on ECW. How about someone give the job to Tommy Dreamer? At least he knows about the “real” ECW.
— Jay Shannon