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KELLER'S ECW ON SCI-FI REPORT 7/4: Show vs. RVD, Punk's debut, Test returns

Jul 7, 2006 - 5:47:00 PM
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By Wade Keller, Torch editor

ECW TV ON SCI-FI REPORT
JULY 4, 2006
LIVE FROM PHILADELPHIA, PA.


-The show opened with Paul Heyman standing backstage and addressing the viewers. He said RVD has taken on a schedule no other champion has ever endured. "This champion, your ECW Champion, has displayed more pride, more passion, more ambition than any champion who has come before him, and tonight on ECW we are going to proudly acknowledge Rob Van Dam's accomplishments." (You know Heyman wrote his own script because he used three superlatives in a row, which he almost always does when describing anything.) Big Show barged into the scene and told Heyman he was promised an ECW Title shot if he jumped to ECW. Heyman said he will, but at this time RVD needs their support. Show grabbed Heyman by the back of the neck and demanded a title match tonight, then walked away.

-The ECW opening aired, then Joey Styles and Tazz introduced the show as the camera panned the crowd. Tazz and Styles talked about the potential of RVD vs. Show. Styles stressed they were live from Philly, then was interrupted by Kelly Kelly.

-They went right to the stage where Kelly's Expose dance took place. She was Fourth of July themed, draped in a flag with a bunch of flags in the background. Mike Knox then covered her up once again about two minutes into her dance. Styles said he always steps in when she goes what he considers too far. Style said he shouldn't date a self-professed exhibitionist if he's upset by that stuff.

1 -- MIKE KNOX vs. LITTLE GUIDO

The crowd chanted "You suck d---" and no attempt was made by WWE to block out the chant. A "Shut the f--- up" chant broke out, and they put the camera on the fans as they chanted just seconds before they made a feeble, brief attempt to block it out with a two second mute. Guido attacked Knox from behind as he was declaring that Kelly is "mine, all mine." The crowd followed with a chant of "You can't wrestle." His rudimentary style wasn't disputing their point. The crowd followed with a chant of "Knox sucks c---." Again, WWE showed the fans as they chanted it, so they can't claim they weren't rewarding them with attention. The crowd then chanted, "Boring! Boring!" briefly. Knox eventually KO'd Guido during a comeback attempt with a boot to the face, then finished him with his unnamed finisher corkscrew faceplant type move.

WINNER: Knox in 2:00.

STAR RATING: 1/4* -- Knox isn't showing anything special that makes him fit with anything ECW stands for. He looks like a Heidenreich type guy who is pushed because Vince McMahon likes his size. That's not going to differentiate ECW from the other brands, although it's not like there's much of an effort being made for that anyway.

-RVD barged into Heyman's office and asked if Show challenged him and bullied him. "Screw that, make the match for tonight, for the championship," he said. Heyman said they've been friends for ten years. "There is no way I'm going to let this become a place where the bigger guys get the top spots whether they deserve it or not," said RVD. (By "no way," he means "no way - unless it gets in the way of my smoking.") He said he beats him, fine, then he's top dog. RVD said he would accept his challenge face-to-face. Heyman pleaded with RVD to consider. RVD walked out. Good segment at presenting RVD as a fighting champion with pride in ECW and Heyman as someone more concerned with "protecting the ECW Title." What isn't clear is why RVD defending the ECW against a fellow ECW wrestler poses any risk to that which Heyman is protecting. So what if Show beats RVD fair and square, from Heyman's perspective?

[Commercial Break]

-A Test vignette aired. It ended with the words: "Test Tonight."

-An unnamed bald man in a suit claimed he was watching ECW for the first time and he was disgusted by the filth. (An insult to longtime ECW fans and a credibility-buster for Styles and Tazz since he used to wrestle in ECW as a Baldy/Tony Devito.) "This show is deplorable and should not be on TV," he said. "As far as I am concerned, this form of entertainment should not even exist." He told everyone in the crowd and watching at home that they should be ashamed of themselves. "If you all enjoy ECW, then you are all sinners. That's right, sinners! Each and every one of you will burn in hell." Sandman came out and caned him, then busted a beer can over his forehead and bled.

-RVD confronted Big Show backstage and asked if he challenged him for the title. Show said yes. RVD said, "I like that." He slapped Show, then said, "I accept." Show smiled with anticipation, as if the buffet door was being opened after he had fasted for four hours.

[Commercial Break]

-Heyman confronted RVD backstage and asked him to tell him "where his head is at." RVD said he's on top of the world. "I'm here because we stuck by our guns. We are ECW, right? That means we go all out. To be ECW Champion, I have to beat Big Show. You with me?" Heyman said he was wrong and RVD was 100 percent right. "The match is on, and the title is on the line, and it's extreme rules." Let's see if the referee counts to five or scolds wrestlers in any way. If he does, will Styles do what Ross did and point out that the ref doesn't even know there are no rules.

2 -- TEST vs. AL SNOW

Test walked out and flexed, looking more like Lex Luger circa 1995 than the old Test. It's nice how when you have time away from the rigors of life on the road, you can eat right and work out religiously. Styles gave a brief backstory on Snow, saying he used to be part of the New Rockers, but had a breakdown and began talking to the head. Fans chanted, "You take steroids!" at Test. He was asking for that when he posed like that when he entered the ring. Test clotheslined Snow in the corner. Snow punched back. Styles said, "Some have questioned whether or not a pretty boy bodybuilder like Test belongs in ECW. We'll find out." Tazz said he doesn't care about muscles, it's all about intensity. Has anyone ever considered Test a "pretty boy" before? He finished Snow quickly with a neckbreaker. "I'll admit that was impressive," said Styles, whose credibility with viewers evaporates quicker than rubbing alcohol on a 100 degree day in the desert. Test punted Snow's "Head" into the crowd after the match. Styles added that's the most impressive Test has ever looked.

WINNER: Test in 1:00.

STAR RATING: 1/4*

-A vignette aired on Sabu. That was prepared before the traffic/drug citation, and it was very well done. It's still strange to hear him talk, but I've been all for him talking for years. His silence has worked against his character development for years.

[Commercial Break]

-Outside the arena, the Vampire spit red stuff at the camera lens again.

-C.M. Punk addressed the camera backstage. He said, "Don't let the tattoos fool you. I'm straight edge. I'm a man of great discipline. I don't drink, I don't smoke, I don't do drugs. My addiction is wrestling. My obsession is competition, discipline. My name is C.M. Punk." It was only a matter of time before someone debuted doing a gimmick that might as well be based on Triple H's real-life approach to his job and life back when he was breaking out as a star in WWE. Punk, though, used the same gimmick a few years ago in ROH and it was touched on in TNA during the Wednesday weekly PPV era.

3 -- ROB VAN DAM vs. BIG SHOW -- ECW Hvt. Title match

A fan held up a sign that said, "RVD and Sabu are Innocent." Nothing else seemed to acknowledge their run-in with the law during the show. After ring intros, they went to a break.

[Commercial Break]

The crowd chanted "RVD, RVD" at the start. A chant with the word "marijuana" began, but ironically, never got coordinated enough among those chanting it to make sense. It was tough between handfuls of popcorn to keep it going, apparently. Show lifted RVD at ringside and ran toward the ringpost, but RVD slipped out and shoved RVD into the post instead. Show then dropped RVD over the security railing and knocked him into the crowd. Show followed him into the crowd. RVD made a comeback at 4:00 and leaped off the ring apron with a twisting legdrop onto Show over the ring barrier. They cut to a break.

[Commercial Break]

They showed that during the break, Show took control and hit RVD with a boot to the face. Back life, Show caught an RVD boot to the face as he charged him in the corner, then hit a sidekick. When he went to the top rope, Show headbutted him off balance. Show headbutted RVD and then superplexed him off the top rope to the mat. RVD stood immediately, then collapsed and clutched his back. His wincing facial expressions were great. An exhausted Show draped his arm over RVD for a two count. Show gave RVD a guillotine legdrop for another two count. The crowd chanted "Mar-i-juana" for about 20 seconds. Show dropped an elbow and scored another two count. Show yelled at the ref out of frustration. At 13:00 RVD attempted a comeback, but Show caught him and attempted a chokeslam. RVD, though, countered in mid-air and turned it into a DDT. RVD slidekicked Show and then hit Rolling Thunder for a two count. Show caught RVD in mid-air as he leaped off the top rope with a sidekick. Show tossed him to the floor. Tazz said he's never seen that happen before. Show lifted the ringside steps and headed toward RVD. RVD kicked Show's legs and Show fell face-first onto the steps. RVD dove off the top turnbuckle onto Show at ringside. Show caught him and rammed him back-first into the ring apron. "That was unreal!" said Tazz. RVD entered the ring with a chair. Show swatted it away and chokeslammed RVD for a very near fall. Show complained to the ref and then tossed him out of the ring at 18:00. Show set up RVD for a powerbomb, but RVD lifted a chair and KO'd Show with it as he was lifted. The crowd chanted, "ECW, ECW." RVD followed with a Van Daminator and a Five-Star Frogsplash. Heyman ran to the ring to make the count instead the ref, but he stopped after two counts. He stood up. The crowd went silent. RVD asked Heyman for an explanation. Heyman bailed out of the ring. "You sold out!" chanted the fans. Show got up and hit RVD in the skull as soon as he turned around. Heyman ran into the ring and told Show to chokeslam RVD. Show did, and Heyman counted to three.

WINNER: Show at 19:00 to win the ECW Hvt. Title.

STAR RATING: *** -- Good match. They both worked well with each other. RVD sold really well. The finish was shocking, but satisfying in the sense that if left you wondering what Heyman's explanation would be (unless you're disgusted by the idea of Show as ECW Champ or Heyman being turned heel by Vince McMahon).


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