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HeadLocker — Jay Shannon
The ECW (12/22) Extreme Exam
Our resident philosopher takes a look at one of the better ECW episodes in recent months.

The ECW Homecoming Tournament continued this week. Jack Swagger returned home to battle Yoshi Tatsu. ECW also reached a new historical moment in it’s history, a rather sad one. I’ll explain, at the end.

The show opened with a look back at Vladimir Kozlov v Ezekiel Jackson, from last week. William Regal pulled a good strong swerve when he turned on Kozlov to help push Jackson to the next round of the tourney. Kane also moved forward in the tourney.

ECW was in TNA Country, Orlando, FL. Jack Swagger was introduced to the crowd. The crowd simply was not impressed. Swagger said the show was finally worth watching, now that he was back. Swagger ran down the ins and outs of the Tournament. Swagger took verbal shots at Christian and Tommy Dreamer. He then sent it to a video package about himself. Swagger said he would be the future ECW champ.

Zack Ryder came from the back for the next match. He would face Tommy Dreamer in what would be, very possibly, Tommy’s last ECW match. Yes, it has been announced that Tommy is leaving ECW. That means that this will be the last time that ECW would be using any actual ECW Originals on their roster.

Zack Ryder d Tommy Dreamer

The Finish:

Zack climbed to the top rope but got caught. Tommy with a Superplex that stunned them both. Tommy with a Back Body Drop and a Clothesline. Tommy with a Scoop Powerslam. Tommy reversed an Irish Whip and went for a Missile Dropkick. Tommy blocked Zack and grabbed both legs. Tommy then catapulted Zack into the corner. Tommy strapped Zack into the Sullivan Tree of Woe. Tommy hit the Hesitation Dropkick. Tommy tried for the D(reamer)DT but Zack slid out of the ring. Zack snapped Tommy’s neck in the ropes and then nailed the Zack Attack.

Grade: B

Jay’s Thoughts: I can only hope that Tommy joins the other ECW Originals over in TNA. I would have liked to see Tommy win this match, but at least he gets to look good on what may be his WWE Swan Song.

Abraham Washington and Tony Atlas were back for another edition of Abe’s really lousy show. The crowd had zero patience for him. Abe got a few shots in on Tiger Woods. Oh,now I get it. That whole chick with a golf club thing on Monday night was a shot at Tiger. D’uh. Abe brought out his guests: Trent Barreta and Caylen Croft. Abe wanted to know why Croft and Barreta jumped on his couch. The team said that their moms were their biggest fans. They wanted to be tag team champs. Tony said that he used to be a tag champ, but Croft and Barreta dissed him. Abe put Croft and Barreta in their place and sent it home.

Jay’s Thoughts: Yawn.

Tiffany was in her office. Swagger walked in and wanted to know how she was still in charge. Tiffany said it was easier without Swagger. Hurricane flew in. Swagger wanted to know what hurricane’s powers were. Hurricane made fun of Swagger’s lisp. Swagger just walked off with a “Whatever”.

ECW looked back at this year’s Tribute to the Troops show. It was another really touching show. Thanks, JBL for creating this for all of the military men and women. I’m getting ready to move back to a military town and I know how close these people can be.

Vance Archer came out for a ECW Homecoming Tournament Match. Goldust was his opponent.

Vance Archer d Goldust
ECW Homecoming Qualifying Match

Archer moved Foldust to the corner. The two men exchanged fists and Goldust hit the Rump Bump. Goldust punched away and tried for an Irish Whip, which was reversed into a Power Whip by Archer. Scoop Slam but Archer into a Neck Wrench with the knee planted in the back. Goldust punched free but Archer stunned the Bizarre One. He hit a Flying Leg Lariat to the back of Goldy’s head. Archer stomped on Goldust and then pulled back on the neck. Goldust tried to punch free but Archer sent him to the ropes. Goldust hit a pair of odd Clothesline. Goldust rocked Archer with the Goldustin Uppercut. Goldy then nailed a Running Bulldog. Archer blocked a Suplex and then took out Goldust with his Masterpiece of Agony finisher.

Grade: B+

Jay’s Thoughts: If the rumors are true about the death of ECW, in favor of a new Future Champions of Wrestling organization, I have a feeling Vance might take the ECW title and convert it to the FCW title. WWE could then merge ECW and FCW.

It was time for the Smackdown Rebound. Last week, Rey Mysterio battled Batista for the Number One Contendership position. Batista really tore Rey apart but, somehow, Rey pulled off the win.

Josh and Byron talked about the destruction of the Ruthless Roundtable. In the back, Christian talked with Yoshi Tatsu, offering his advice. Swagger came in and make fun of Christian and Yoshi. Swagger said he would take out Yoshi and go on to face Christian. Yoshi called Swagger a “Jackass”.

ECW sent it to another video preview of The Marine 2. Yawn.

Jack Swagger came out for the main event. Yoshi came out to a deafening pop.

Yoshi Tatsu d Jack Swagger
ECW Homecoming Qualifying Match

The Finish:

Yoshi with the D-D-E (another faint TNA chant) and his Rolling Bulldog. Swagger dodged the Buzzsaw, again, and tried to use the trunks to pull Yoshi into a pinning situation. Yoshi countered into a Sit-Down Pin Attempt. Swagger reversed an Irish Whip but missed the Splash. Swagger flipped Yoshi onto the apron. Yoshi Shouldered Swagger from the outside and started up the ropes. Swagger tried to catch him but Yoshi pushed him away. Yoshi hit a Spinning Wheel Kick from the top but only got a two count. Swagger pulled yshi into the ropes but couldnt’ get the three. Swagger with a Clothesline to the back of the head for a two count. Swagger lifted Yoshi up and ran him into the corner before hitting the Running Powerslam. Swagger with the Avalanche Splash. Swagger argued with the ref, which allowed Yoshi to nail the Buzzsaw Kick to the face. Yoshi moved on to the Battle Royal

Grade: A+

Jay’s Thoughts: If this is the beginning of the conversion of ECW, Yoshi stands a good chance of leading the new wave of future superstars. This match was amazing.

Final Grade: A-

Final Thoughts: Despite the drag from Abe’s silly little talk show, this week’s episode was really a good one. The matches were top-notch. I can only hope the next few weeks keep this momentum.

I will be taking a few days off to spend with my new family. To all of you, I wish you the best during this holiday season. I want to send a special Holiday wish to a very good friend of mine, fellow OWWer, Arnie Katz and his wife. They have both been good friends for a long time and I wish both you happiness and prosperity during this season and for many more to come. Thanks for giving me a chance, all those years ago, to share my mindset with so many people.

— Jay Shannon
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