The house show that caused a reshuffling of ECW's plan and essentially cost us from getting a Mike Awesome/Rob Van Dam feud.
Extreme Championship Wrestling House Show
From: Orlando, FL
The show takes place at the Zuma Beach Club, which looks to be a bar of some kind. The wrestlers have to walk down several wooden stairs and is not setup like your traditional venue. Considering it is ECW, it doesn’t overly surprise me.
Opening Contest: The Dupp Brothers vs. Super Crazy & Prodigy: Seems kind of weird to see Crazy involved with three virtual unknowns. Prodigy gets double teamed to start the bout, but Crazy hits a springboard clothesline to help his partner out. Crazy takes Bo down with a head scissors and Prodigy hits a top rope missile dropkick. His offense doesn’t last too long and gets worked over by the Dupp Brothers. Crazy gets the hot tag and cleans house hitting a springboard moonsault for a near fall. Crazy hits a trifecta of moonsaults on Jack and wins the match. (1/2*. A pretty boring match and seemingly a waste of Crazy on the card to just throw him into a random tag match with three guys that nowhere near his skill level.)
Second Contest: Simon Diamond vs. Masato Tanaka: Diamond insults Tanaka for his lack of understanding English and is promptly met with several strikes. Tanaka hits a sit out slam and goes for the roaring elbow but Diamond avoids it by hitting a super kick. Simon follows up with a clothesline and a few snap suplexs before a sit down slam for a near fall. Tanaka hits a missile dropkick to send Diamond to the floor and Tanaka leaps over the top to hit a dive. Tanaka grabs a chair and the fans go nuts for it. In the ring, Tanaka leaps off the middle rope to dropkick Diamond out of the chair. Tanaka plants Diamond with a tornado DDT onto a couple of chairs for a two count. Tanaka gets distracted by Simon’s manager but still hits the roaring elbow for the win. (1/2*. These two just don’t click and it came across as a squash match for Tanaka. Diamond being saddled with a comedy gimmick just didn’t help him.)
Third Contest: Kid Kash, Chris Chetti & Nova vs. Danny Doring, Roadkill & Mikey Whipwreck: Kash and Doring kick off the contest trading wrist locks and arm drags. They have a standoff after a dropkick attempt but it lacked the speed and impressiveness to warrant the fans to clap, and they don’t. Whipwreck enters but is worked over by Kash followed by a double hip toss and two splashes in the corner. Chetti drops Roadkill with a leaping side kick. I’m not even sure who the legal guys are as the match has broken down. Roadkill with a side slam on Nova for a near fall. Roadkill splashes Nova in the corner and Doring hits the Bareback for a two count. Whipwreck tags in and chokes Nova before hitting a slingshot leg drop across the bottom rope. Roadkill drives Nova down with a side slam but Kash breaks up the cover attempt. Doring hits a top rope elbow drop onto Nova for a near fall. The fans try to get behind Nova and he hits a swinging reverse DDT.
Chetti tags in as does Whipwreck with Chetti hitting a side kick and a series of kicks to Roadkill. Doring is met with a scissors kick for his troubles and Nova comes off the top to send Roadkill into the front two with a cross body. Electra slaps Chetti in the ring but Whipwreck attack from behind. Whipwreck is backdropped onto Nova and we get a cat fight in the ring with Jazz and Electra. Jazz hits Whipwreck with a face buster and Chetti hits Mikey with a sit out death valley driver for the win. (*1/2. Some decent action, but we really got nothing from Kash the entire match and honestly it lacked fast pace action I was expecting. A better match could have been put together involving six of the better workers ECW has to offer at this point.)
Steve Corino comes out and is clearly bandaged up from a recent match. He has never claimed to be a hardcore wrestler. He got his ass handed to him last night against Dusty Rhodes, apparently. He calls out Tommy Dreamer, who indeed comes out. Corino says that Dreamer beat him the last time they were at the building. So, Corino has gotten a new opponent for Dreamer and that man just so happens to be Tajiri.
Fourth Contest: Tommy Dreamer vs. Tajiri: Dreamer backed Corino into a corner and yelled at him before getting hit by Tajiri and several kicks. Tajiri sends Dreamer over the top to the floor and Corino gets a few shots in. Tajiri rams Dreamer face first into the guard railing but Dreamer fights back and tosses Tajiri into the railing followed by a shot with a plastic cup. Dreamer crotches Tajiri on the railing and they return to the ring. Dreamer slams Tajiri but gets stopped on the top. Dreamer is placed in a tree of woe but Tajiri misses a baseball slide dropkick and hits the ring post. Dreamer puts Tajiri in the tree of woe and steps on his groin! Francine places a chair in front of Tajiri’s face and delivers a dropkick! Tajiri fights back with a handspring back elbow and stomps away on Dreamer. Tajiri locks in the Tarantula but Francine gets involved. Dreamer clotheslines Tajiri but runs into a kick in the corner. Dreamer ducks a kick and hits the Death Valley Driver only for Corino to enter and plant Tommy with a DDT. Raven comes out with the snot rag and rubs it in Steve’s face. Dreamer and Raven hit double DDTs and Dreamer pins Tajiri. (*1/2. Similar to the previous match as there was some alright action, but you can tell these guys aren’t putting forth the effort they would in the ECW Arena. The matches have been very simple and not much depth to them.)
Fifth Contest: ECW World Champion Mike Awesome vs. Little Guido: Awesome shoves big Sal but Guido tries to attack from behind, which doesn’t work out so well for him. Awesome hits an overhead belly to belly suplex. Guido is sent to the floor where Awesome slams Guido and taunts the fans who are chanting for Rob Van Dam. Awesome tosses Guido into the fans, who don’t exactly catch him. Awesome goes for a power bomb on the floor but Big Sal attacks and sends Awesome into the railing before delivering a big splash! Guido hits a middle rope leg drop and has a cross arm breaker on the champ. Awesome nearly wins after a Samoan Drop. Awesome drives Guido down with a sit out spine buster for only a two count. Awesome calls for a table and Jeff Jones gives him one.
Guido gets out of a power bomb attempt and Big Sal holds Awesome on the apron. Awesome fights off and grabs Guido a second time. Awesome drives Guido through the table on the second attempt and the crowd goes nuts as Awesome gets the win. (1/2*. A dominating performance by Awesome as Guido didn’t put up much of a fight. There was a lot of money ECW could have made with Awesome, and if anyone thinks otherwise they are just not aware of how over Awesome was a heel for the company.)
Sixth Contest: CW Anderson vs. Sabu: Anderson backs Sabu into a corner but is met with a right hand and a springboard tornado DDT! Sabu goes to the floor and grabs a table to setup on the outside but gets speared off the apron. Anderson delivers a left hand and places Sabu on the table. Anderson heads to the top but slips and crotches himself. Sabu gets up and hits a hurricanrana for a near fall. Sabu takes Lou Dangerously and Bill Wiles with a dive to the floor. CW avoided it and gains control in the ring with a few strikes. Sabu sets up a table in the ring ut Dangerously causes a distraction to allow a super kick from CW. Anderson has Sabu on the table and gets crotched on the top again. CW avoids a hurricanrana and decks Sabu to the canvas. Anderson puts Sabu through the table with a spine buster for a near fall! Wiles gets met with a chair shot and the same for Anderson.
Sabu sets up another table and leg drops Dangerously. Sabu puts Dangerously on the table and hits a leg drop off the top to put CW through the table due to Anderson saving Dangerously. Sabu covers but CW is able to kick out. Sabu delivers a chair assisted leg drop and puts CW away. (**. Some good action by these two guys but I have a hard time buying to CW Anderson to beat Sabu. The show has come across as just a way to highlight the top names and pop the crowd with their finishers.)
Seventh Contest: Balls Mahoney & New Jack vs. Angel & Vic Grimes: Actually, it started off as Mahoney taking on Grimes, but this is going to get the short treatment because it’s exactly what you’d think it is. Mahoney gets double teamed with a pizza cutter. We cut outside to see an ambulance where Paul Heyman is giving Mike Awesome direction for a promo, it looks like. That was actually kind of neat to see a behind the scene look at how they put together a promo. We go back to the match where New Jack had come out for the save and Da Baldies have been betting destroyed. Jack nailed Angel with a chair shot and got the win.
Throughout the entire show the crowd had been egging on a female fan to expose her breasts. She continually refused showing that some ECW fans were classy while the other men just looked like jackasses for be unrelenting.
Prior to the main event, Rhino got some extra heel heat by GORING Joel Gertner after his usual entrance. Rhino calls out Rob Van Dam in a not so friendly way.
Main Event: ECW Television Champion Rob Van Dam vs. Rhino: Rhino attacks right after RVD’s introduction to get the cheap advantage. RVD takes Rhino over with a hurricanrana for a near fall in the opening minute of the match. RVD leaps off the top and bulldogs Rhino face first onto the apron! RVD goes for a baseball slide and that’s where he breaks his leg. Van Dam is limping but sends Rhino into the guard railing. RVD crotches Rhino on the railing and hits a springboard punch sending a chair into Rhino’s face. The fans think RVD fucked it up but RVD has a broken freaking leg. Steve Corino isn’t even attacking RVD as you can hear the camera man ask if Rob’s hurt. Corino sends Bill Alfonso into the crowd but the crowd catches Alfonso and send him back to ringside. Van Dam backflips off the top on a broken leg and is met with a GORE! Rhino decides to stomp the injured leg, apparently unaware of the injury.
He must know now because he puts a half Boston Crab on the non-injured leg. Rhino gores RVD in the corner but can’t get a three count on the cover. Rhino gets a chair tossed to him but RVD hits a northern lights suplex onto the chair. RVD atomic drops Rhino and grabs a chair from Alfonso. RVD dropkicks the chair into Rhino’s face. RVD hits a rolling thunder on Rhino with a chair across his body. Rhino plants RVD with a power bomb and nearly wins. RVD hits a step over heel kick but Rhino regains control rather quickly. Rhino gets a chair kicked into his face and Jack Victory gets on the apron. Corino accidentally punches Victory off and Alfonso hits Corino with a chair. RVD hits the Five Star Frog Splash and pins Rhino to retain the title. (***. Alright, I’m probably overrating the match but the fact is that RVD wrestled a twelve minute match with a broken leg and was doing backflips and springboards with such an injury. Guys in WCW wouldn’t work if they had a headache for goodness sake. It’s a good match to finish the show and shows that at the time RVD was capable of being a solid performer even with one good leg. Much credit to Van Dam on this performance.)
This show is only memorable due to the injury that Van Dam suffered and would then miss several months costing the fans a RVD/Mike Awesome feud. The wrestling leaves a lot to be desired and is another example of ECW wrestling just not holding up well over time.
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