TV REPORTS 1/6 ECW on Sci-Fi Report: Mayer's "alt perspective" report on Swagger vs. Finlay, Hardy vs. Henry, Kennedy DVD drinking game
Jan 6, 2009 - 9:35:41 PM
PLEASE TAKE A MOMENT TO BOOKMARK US & VISIT US DAILY
By Dominick Mayer, PWTorch contributor
ECW on Sci-Fi TV alt. perspective report
January 6, 2009
Report by Dominick Mayer, PWTorch contributor
We're in New Orleans, Louisiana tonight. The opening camera pans over a "Nick Hogan Drove Me Here" sign. Interesting. Anyway, tonight is Matt Hardy vs. Mark Henry, Vol. 7,000,000.
Jack Swagger is out to start the show. He's still undefeated. Striker reminds us that he's still the number one contender to Hardy's ECW championship. Where's the push for that?
Finlay comes out as the opposition. Interesting to see which way they go with this one. Hornswoggle dives right under the ring at the start of the match.
1 -- JACK SWAGGER VS. FINLAY (w/Hornswoggle)
This is the first time these two have squared off one-on-one. Some mat wrestling between the two to start things off, with Striker turning on the ten dollar words even more than usual so far tonight. Swagger temporarily gets the better of Finlay, but Finlay escapes with a half-successful Russian leg sweep. Great moment when Finlay tells Swagger to smile after taking him down. Headlock takedown by Swagger. Striker and Grisham put over Swagger's amateur background, talking about how impressive Swagger's winning streak is in context of how long a Greco-Roman wrestling season lasts. The crowd is buzzing despite a slow-paced start; it'd be a great boost for ECW if they got the NO crowd that Raw got last night. They're pacing this to go into the second quarter hour, which is only beneficial to both men and the show as a whole, given how it's been going as of late.
Things pick up, with Swagger sending Finlay into the corner, but Finlay responding with a hard clothesline and then sending Swagger to the outside. Hornswoggle appears from under the ring and gets onto the apron. He hits a flying shoulder block on Swagger, taking him down for a big pop. However, Swagger's not amused, and he slams Hornswoggle into the barrier, hard. Finlay heads outside immediately and lays into Swagger, whipping him face-first into the ring post. He checks on Hornswoggle as we go into the commercial break. Dynamic mid-match, with things picking up into the commercial. Major heat-generating moment for Swagger. One has to wonder why more people haven't taken that route yet. During most of the Finlay-Henry matches, the response to Hornswoggle's match-ending interference is a slow-lumbering chase.
Out of break, Finlay is bleeding from the mouth and Swagger has him locked up. During the break, Swagger gave him a running boot to the face. Belly to back suplex by Swagger for two. Swagger goes back to working the left arm, yelling for Finlay to give up. Finlay counters with a hip toss, but Swagger quickly counters with a boot to the stomach and a series of strikes to the arm. Finlay rolls outside to get a breather, clutching his arm. Swagger comes out after him, but gets his head slammed into the apron. Back in the ring, a hard clothesline by Swagger. Swagger checks his nose, then gets a short one count on a pin. Armbar on Finlay, which Swagger uses to leverage him into the corner. A few stomps on the arm, and an armbar takedown. Running high knee on Finlay for two. I'm starting to feel like Finlay's going to eke out a win, with the amount of offense Swagger has gotten in.
Another modified armbar, which Finlay sells like a champ. The crowd is still buzzing, but slowing down some. Good pop for Finlay's temporary escape. Swagger counters back into a shoulder drop for two. He goes for a running senton, but Finlay rolls away. A boot to Swagger's face, and a trio of clotheslines, and Finlay is back in it. Two count on Swagger. Finlay goes for a corner tackle at 14:00, but eats the ring post and gets rolled up for a near two count. Swagger goes for the gutwrench powerbomb, but Finlay reverses into a pin for two. Finlay corners Swagger, but gets pulled off by the referee, which is just enough of an opening for Swagger to hit the gutwrench powerbomb out of nowhere for the pin and the win.
WINNER: Swagger in 15:00. Very good TV match. This was the right finish, with Swagger looking dominant throughout. This was necessary, because after Swagger just sort of declared himself the number one contender, he needed a high-profile win to back it up. This justifies the status. It'll be interesting to see if he goes straight on to Hardy now, or if his assault on Hornswoggle will lead to a program with Finlay first.
D.J. Gabriel and Alicia Fox are dancing backstage. They're up next.
Backstage, Tiffany is excited to be home. Swagger storms in, and he's angry. He's beaten everybody he promised to beat, he's been number one contender for weeks, and he wants to know when he's getting his title match. Long shuts him up long enough to tell him that next week, he's getting Hardy for the ECW Championship. Swagger has that X factor in full swing now, and that answers my earlier question about where Swagger's going next. Unless, of course, Finlay gets involved next week.
In the ring, Katie Lea is out for a Divas match. So are she and Burchill now officially on ECW? Alicia Fox is out next, dancing and dressed to wrestle, with D.J. Gabriel in tow.
2 -- KATIE LEA (w/Paul Burchill) vs. ALICIA FOX (w/D.J. Gabriel)
This is Fox's first WWE match. Katie Lea is apparently very accomplished. Really, now? Lea goes on the attack early, but Fox gets her back with a monkey flip out of the corner for two. Apparently, she's trained in Capoeira, which is pretty impressive. That tidbit also adds to the dancing gimmick. Fox hits an enziguiri and then a dropkick. High axe kick by Fox for a near two count. Lea throws her into the ropes, and takes Fox down for a quick three-count.
WINNER: Katie Lea in 2:00. Strange that they'd have Fox lose her very first match, especially since she and Gabriel are the major gimmick-in-progress on ECW now that Swagger is established. Furthers the undercard program, though, so that's a plus.
Did You Know: Last week, ECW was more watched than a handful of cable channels.
Raw Rebound: Orton and Jericho do not approve of the JBL/HBK alliance. Michaels continues to look sad all day. The angle is getting better, but I don't like these five-minute recaps, even if ECW has trouble filling the full hour.
The Boogeyman is on his way out. Oh, dear. No graphic for the designated jobber.
3 -- THE BOOGEYMAN VS. BRETT BARNES
Boogeyman is frothing at the mouth. I think the jobber's name is Brett Barnes. Grisham compares Boogeyman's head to a salamander, changing colors and shapes, except that salamanders don't do that. Striker wonders if gumbo worms are being eaten tonight. Hard toss into the corner by Boogeyman, followed by a clothesline. Boogeyman toys with Barnes, then hits another clothesline. Avalanche in the corner from the ropes, then more toying. The pumphandle slam ends it.
WINNER: Boogeyman in 2:00. He came, he saw, he had a generous New Orleans crowd on his side tonight. Moving on.
Post-match: More worms. Then, a slow-mo recap of the worming.
Next: Hardy-Henry for the first time in 2009.
Mr. Kennedy is still in "Behind Enemy Lines: Colombia," just in case you forgot. From what I've read, it's drinking game bad. Or good, depending on your perspective.
Matt Hardy is out first for the match. Why is the champion coming out first, especially in this match? Henry is out next, with Tony Atlas in tow. Man, he's got some bags under his eyes. He looks like he's about to cry. I'm sorry, I just can't get excited for the latest rendition of this match.
4. ECW CHAMPION MATT HARDY VS. MARK HENRY (w/Tony Atlas) – non-title match
Extremely loud "Hardy" chant to start the match off. He goes down pretty fast, with the Mark Henry Offense (patent pending) going into effect quickly. Chinlock on Hardy, with the chant still going. Henry throws Hardy out of the ring, and Atlas begins to stalk him. Henry picks Hardy up in a gorilla press, but Hardy counters and sends Henry into the steps. Back in the ring, Hardy begins to work the leg, before Henry settles into a pressure hold. Big boot on Hardy. Henry goes for an avalanche, but Hardy evades him and dumps him to the outside. Hardy goes up top, and avoids Atlas' interference long enough to hit a cross body block to the outside. Break time.
During the commercial, Hardy got slammed into the post. In the ring, Henry has the chinlock in place. Henry with a big vertical suplex for two, but with a really weak pin. Henry's favoring his knee. Henry stands on Hardy's chest and waits for the ref's count. Henry with something of a flying clothesline at 10:00 for a near fall. Henry dodges the Twist of Fate, but takes a bulldog. Hardy goes for another Twist of Fate and gets dumped. Henry misses with a splash, and Hardy finally gets the Twist of Fate for the pin and the win.
WINNER: Hardy in 11:00. The same match these guys have had over and over already, but nothing terrible. Next week, Hardy and Swagger go at it, which is finally something to look forward to for a "Next Week on ECW."
THE TORCH REACHES MORE COMBAT ENTERTAINMENT FANS THAN ANY OTHER SOURCE
PWTorch editor Wade Keller has covered pro wrestling full time since 1987 starting with the Pro Wrestling Torch print newsletter. PWTorch.com launched in 1999 and the PWTorch Apps launched in 2008.
He has conducted "Torch Talk" insider interviews with Hulk Hogan, The Rock, Steve Austin, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, Eric Bischoff, Jesse Ventura, Lou Thesz, Jerry Lawler, Mick Foley, Jim Ross, Paul Heyman, Bruno Sammartino, Goldberg, more.
He has interviewed big-name players in person incluiding Vince McMahon (at WWE Headquarters), Dana White (in Las Vegas), Eric Bischoff (at the first Nitro at Mall of America), Brock Lesnar (after his first UFC win).
He hosted the weekly Pro Wrestling Focus radio show on KFAN in the early 1990s and hosted the Ultimate Insiders DVD series distributed in retail stories internationally in the mid-2000s including interviews filmed in Los Angeles with Vince Russo & Ed Ferrara and Matt & Jeff Hardy. He currently hosts the most listened to pro wrestling audio show in the world, (the PWTorch Livecast, top ranked in iTunes)
REACHING 1 MILLION+ UNIQUE USERS PER MONTH
500 MILLION CLICKS & LISTENS PER YEAR
MILLIONS OF PWTORCH NEWSLETTERS SOLD
PWTorch offers a VIP membership for $10 a month (or less with an annual sub). It includes nearly 25 years worth of archives from our coverage of pro wrestling dating back to PWTorch Newsletters from the late-'80s filled with insider secrets from every era that are available to VIPers in digital PDF format and Keller's radio show from the early 1990s.
Also, new exclusive top-shelf content every day including a new VIP-exclusive weekly 16 page digital magazine-style (PC and iPad compatible) PDF newsletter packed with exclusive articles and news.
The following features come with a VIP membership which tens of thousands of fans worldwide have enjoyed for many years...
-New Digital PWTorch Newsletter every week
-3 New Digital PDF Back Issues from 5, 10, 20 years ago
-Over 60 new VIP Audio Shows each week
-Ad-free access to all PWTorch.com free articles
-VIP Forum access with daily interaction with PWTorch staff and well-informed fellow wrestling fans
-Tons of archived audio and text articles
-Decades of Torch Talk insider interviews in transcript and audio formats with big name stars. **SIGN UP FOR VIP ACCESS HERE**