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KELLER'S ECW ON SCI-FI 8/22: Sabu vs. Big Show rematch, Punk vs. Anderson, Thorn vs. Balls

Aug 27, 2006 - 2:18:00 PM
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By Wade Keller, Torch editor

ECW TV ON SCI-FI REPORT
AUGUST 22, 2006
LIVE FROM WILKES-BARRE , PA.


-Joey Styles and Tazz introduced the show hyping the Big Show vs. Sabu match.

-They went to the ring for an "Extreme Bikini Contest." When Tazz brought up Torrie Wilson being on the cover of FHM and Playboy magazines, Styles said he only reads those magazines for the hard-hitting articles. Yeah, that joke is more stale and cliched than saying "Whassuuuuup!" with co-workers. It's something the boss on The Office would say, completely unaware that it's ten years past being a clever joke. Torrie showed off first, then it was Kelly's turn. Mike Knox and Test ran out and interrupted. Sandman and Tommy Dreamer then came out to save... well, to stop the boyfriend of a woman from stopping his woman from stripping on national TV in front of a bunch of strangers. They are true heroes! Sandman challenged Test, Knox, and Kelly to a mixed tag. It was accepted.

1 -- TORRIE WILSON & SANDMAN & TOMMY DREAMER vs. KELLY KELLY & MIKE KNOX & TEST

Torrie attacked Kelly and yanked her into the ring. As the match began, the lights went out briefly. Then Torrie rubbed her butt in Kelly's face. Tazz and Styles tried to come up with a name for that move. Test put Dreamer in a bearhug at 2:00. He followed with a pump-handle attempt, but Dreamer flipped out and gave Test a neckbreaker. Dreamer hot-tagged Sandman, who threw some lefts at Test and Knox. He gave Test a White Russian Legsweep and a suplex to Knox. He then went to the top rope and flipped onto Knox with the Rolling Rock. "It's happy hour here in ECW!" said Styles. It got him a two count. Knox shoved Sandman off the second rope and went for a legdrop, but Sandman moved. Dreamer tagged in, surprised Knox with a DDT, and got the pin.

WINNERS: Dreamer & Sandman & Kelly in 3:00.

STAR RATING: * -- Good pace and ambitious moves from these bigger guys. Dreamer celebrated like Kurt Angle winning a Gold Medal.

-Backstage, Paul Heyman gave Big Show a pep talk, reminding him that he's the largest athlete on the face of the planet, but then said he has a problem with him accepting a rematch against Sabu. "I beat Sabu at his own game," said Big Show. "Relax, I've got it taken care of. I'm the giant. Sabu's out of his element tonight." He said he is a walking weapon, so he's got Sabu. He said Heyman worries too much. Heyman's storm troopers were standing beside him.

[Commercial Break]

-A vignette aired with Matt Striker. Yeah, that's what ECW needs - an influx of Raw/Smackdown gimmick rejects. He began doing alliterations. He's like Bob Backlund, but not interesting. He talked down to the fans and said he's use common vernacular. He said brawn works some of the time, but brains work all of the time. He said he's bringing his brain to ECW. Vince McMahon thinks because gimmicks like this coincided with some of the success he's had, that he had that success because of, not despite, really bad gimmicks like this.

2 -- KEVIN THORNE (a/Aerial) vs. BALLS MAHONEY

Aerial is challenging Melina for best ring entrance, as she hung upside down from the ropes and let Thorne kiss her, then she spread her legs before slithering into the ring. After some more PDA, Balls Mahoney made his ring entrance and jump-started the match with a chair. Balls went after Thorne with a barrage of punches and a kick. They brawled at ringside for a half minute, then Thorne took over back in the ring. Tazz asked if fangs were a legal weapon in an Extreme Rules match. He used his walking stick, right out of a Halloween costume shop, as a weapon against Balls, attacking his neck with it. The crowd chanted "Balls, Balls, Balls," especially loudly as he was punching Thorn. He came back with a sitout spinebuster for a near fall. He retrieved his security chair, but Aerial bit his leg as he reentered the ring. Thorne kicked the chair into his face and lifted him for his hangman stunner and scored the pin.

WINNER: Balls in 2:00.

STAR RATING: 3/4* -- The limited time didn't allow for much, but what there was of the match was pretty good. They let Balls save face because of Aerial's interference, but it is still a sign Thorne is on more of an upward fast-track than Balls in the ECW hierarchy.

[Commercial Break]

-A brief Shannon Moore vignette aired. he looked like he was peeing against a wall in a dark corner of an old basement. He said, "The system is oppressive." No oppressive system would allow someone to walk around in public like that without getting his ass kicked.

3 -- C.M. PUNK vs. CHRISTOPHER W. ANDERSON

I assume they changed Anderson's name from C.W. to Christopher W. because of the new Smackdown affiliate, "The CW." They don't want to appear to have an ECW wrestler named after the new network losing on Sci-Fi. Styles said Anderson had "a cup of coffee" toward the end of the original ECW. Tazz said he had more than a cup of coffee, maybe some doughnuts, too. Tazz said Punk has "that 'it factor' that says he's a star." Styles hyped Anderson's powerful left, and Anderson used it at 1:00 and downed Punk in a heap. Anderson went for an early submission cross armbreaker as a counter to a sunset flip. Punk punched out of it. Punk flew at Anderson with a running knee followed by a running bulldog and front kick. Anderson, though, countered with a spinebuster for a two count. Punk countered another spinebuster attempt and hit Anderson with a powerhouse kick to the head, followed by a uranage into a submission grip for a quick, frantic tapout by Anderson.

WINNER: Punk via submission in 3:00.

STAR RATING: *1/4 -- Good, competitive, short TV match.

-Styles and Tazz hyped Sabu vs. Show.

-Sabu looked into the camera and said, "Tonight, Big Show is going down." If they're not going to position him to cut better promos than that awkward few seconds, they ought to make him mute again.

[Commercial Break]

-Heyman looked up and talked to someone off camera and said he should be angry about being held back for being overly volatile. The camera panned over and revealed Hardcore Holly. Heyman whispered a name in Holly's ear, telling him that as soon as news spread that he signed him to ECW, that person spread bad word about him. Heyman said nobody wants him in ECW but him, and to make it in ECW, he'll need to make an impact. Holly just nodded with an intense look on his face.

4 -- ROB VAN DAM vs. DANNY DORING

If RVD is going to be perceived as a top star in ECW, they ought to hype any TV appearance he makes as if it's a big deal, even just a squash match, as if it's a treat for viewers just to see him in action. This "match out of nowhere" minimizes his perceived star power. RVD floored Doring with a spin wheel kick to the chest. RVD then bent over for some reason with his arms spread, giving Doring a chance to give him a neckbreaker for a near fall. RVD stopped a short Doring flurry with a front kick to the face, two running clotheslines, and a sidekick. RVD finished Doring with a sidekick off the top rope, Rolling Thunder, and a Five-Star Frog Splash.

WINNER: RVD in 3:00.

STAR RATING: 1/2* -- To add suspense to future pin attempts after Rolling Thunders in more competitive matches, RVD should win a squash match now and then with that move. As it is, when he uses it in a competitive match and goes for the cover, it feels like nothing more than an inevitable warm-up for the Five-Star later.

-After the match, Hardcore Holly attacked RVD from behind with a chair, did the same to Doring, then gave RVD an Alabama Slam, then pointed at himself RVD-style and yelled, "Hard-Core-Holly."

[Commercial Break]

-A vignette aired with Rene Dupree looking in a mirror. He said he sees the most extreme athlete t ever step into an ECW ring. He has much more personality with a stripped down gimmick and being more himself. Go figure.

5 -- BIG SHOW vs. SABU - ECW World Hvt. Title match

They aired clips of Show beating up DX in the Summerslam semi-main event match with Vince and Shane McMahon reacting to his attack. Tazz said there was a "big time fight feel." Show headbutted Sabu to the mat in the opening seconds, then chopped his chest hard in the corner. Show dropped Sabu across the top rope gut-first; Sabu tumbled to the floor as they cut to a break.

[Commercial Break]

Sabu tried a comeback with a series of punches, but Show clotheslined him hard to the mat. Sabu gouged Show's eyes to down him. Show charged toward Sabu, but instead knocked the ref Scott Armstrong down hard. Sabu dove at Show, but Show caught him and fallaway slam tossed him across the ring. Styles said Sabu seems almost weightless when tossed around like that by Show. Sabu surprised Show with two chairshots while the ref was down, then knocked Show to one knee. He came off the top rope with another chairshot, then launched off a chair with the triple jump moonsault. The crowd chanted "ECW, ECW." He followed up with an Arabian Facebuster and went for the cover. The ref remained out. A second ref entered the ring and counted to two before Show threw Sabu off. Sabu went back to ringside and grabbed the ring bell. The second ref admonished him, but Sabu hit Show anyway, then threatened to hit the ref with the bell. Show came up bleeding from the forehead. Sabu knocked Show out of the ring and through the table at ringside. At least with Show, Sabu doesn't have to worry about the table actually breaking. They showed a big puddle of blood under Show's head at ringside.

WINNER: Show via DQ in 9:00.

STAR RATING: *3/4 -- Okay action. Show really looked dominant, and Sabu non-threatening, until Sabu began cheating with the chair after the ref went down. It establishes further that Sabu needs to be in his environment with ECW rules to have a chance against someone like Show.

Final Thoughts: A run of the mill ECW show. Solid at promoting the brand given it's current direction. They managed to fit five matches into an hour and five minutes, with the main event going nearly ten, which is quite an achievement.


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