TV REPORTS ECW ON SCI-FI ROUNDTABLE REVIEWS 3/10: Caldwell, Hoops, Mayer, Mezzera, Parks rate and review
Mar 11, 2009 - 4:18:18 PM
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James Caldwell, Torch Assistant Editor (7.0)
Another "solid seven" episode of ECW TV. I have no idea what a 10.0 episode of ECW TV looks like, but this was another solid effort with something newsworthy occurring in the form of Christian winning the final MITB slot at WrestleMania. The battle royal main event wasn't that bad despite a slew of mid-carders to nobodies in the match. Poor Ricky Ortiz. Dude gets tossed five seconds into the match after being forgotten on TV. At least everyone remembers him more than, say, The Brian Kendrick, who did nothing.
Where was ECW champion Jack Swagger? Swags apparently doesn't have an opponent for WrestleMania, which would be a shame if he's left off the card after his awesome work in February. Perhaps the pre-Mania battle royal will give us the #1 contender to Swagger later in the show. Hopefully Kane doesn't win the royal this year, as we know what happened last year when Chavo dropped the belt to Kane in eight seconds.
Tyson Kidd over D.J. Gabriel was the right decision. I can't figure out Gabe's character. He's not a babyface looking too muscular and without any noble traits that make him a babyface. Then again, the March 2008 line-up of babyfaces includes blackmail (Cena), breaking and entering (Hunter), threatening a man's life with a knife (Joe), and vandalism (Styles). ... I'm hoping when Bourne returns next week that he gets a program live with Tyson Kidd. Should be fun to see that progress.
Brian Hoops, PWTorch.com Contributor (6.5)
Again, this show is a must see just to listen to Matt Striker on commentary. Who else could make references to Pedro Morales, the Basham Brothers and Tetris in the first 30 minutes of the show? Three solid matches on this show with The Miz vs. Primo being a very good singles match and DJ Gabriel vs. Tyson Kidd being solid, albeit too short. The Battle Royal was decent, but with so many guys in the ring with very little time, it was mostly guys throwing each other out instead of any storylines playing out. Seeing Kahli throw out Koslov made me utter a small prayer that spot would not lead to a match between the two. I was surprised that Dreamer was so far out of position on the superplex spot. Good action by Christian in the closing segment of the Battle Royal. He could be a dark-horse winner of the Money in the Bank ladder match.
Dominick Mayer, PWTorch.com Contributor (7.5)
Last night's show was mostly entertaining, but I have one major gripe with it. First, though, the good. The Kidd-Gabriel match was very good while it lasted, and while I'm wondering why Gabriel is suddenly jobbing as he's hitting his in-ring stride, Kidd looks good, and I'm looking forward to him and Evan Bourne feuding. The Primo-Miz match was one of the better matches on ECW this year, and the fact that they let an undercard match go twelve minutes, even if it was to fill time, was something notable and enjoyable. The battle royal was what it was, putting Christian in the MITB and being passable enough in-ring. My only issue is that we didn't see any of the ECW champion this week, and nothing has been said about an ECW Title match at Wrestlemania, and with only three weeks, there's not even a vague setup towards establishing a match. Plus, with Christian now in, who's going to face Swagger?
Jon Mezzera, PWTorch.com Contributor (7.0)
This was a good episode of ECW. I enjoyed The Miz vs. Primo. It was clearly one of Miz's better singles matches. He deserves more credit for his in ring work which often gets overlooked when people think about how good his partner is in the ring and how good they are as a team on the mic. Primo was good too. The match had plenty of high energy action. John Morrison and Carlito added to the fun with their guest commentary as well.
I also liked the battle royale for the seventh spot in Money in the Bank. It wasn't great, but got better after the commercial once the fat had been trimmed. Christian was the obvious winner, but with a possible rematch against Jack Swagger, there was a bit of a chance that someone like William Regal or Chavo Guerrero might get the win instead. It was strong at the end as Christian and Chavo battled on the apron. Christian can definitely add to the quality of a ladder match. With him out of the ECW Title picture, I have to ask, who's in? Finlay vs. Swagger happened at No Way Out and I can't imagine going there again. I can't imagine giving Tommy Dreamer a shot so early in his "win the Title or retire" angle. Could a returning Evan Bourne get a Title shot? He comes back next week and I can't wait, but time will tell what happens with him and Swagger.
My one complaint about the show was the over use of videos. Last week was terrible when there were 6. This week was a bit better, but there were still 5. The worst was the long recap of Raw. Throw in a replay of the "12 Rounds" video that aired on Raw and you get a lot of time that could have gone to giving more that 2 minutes to Tyson Kidd vs. DJ Gabriel.
Greg Parks, PWTorch.com Contributor (7.0)
A lot to like about this episode of ECW. The show started off hot with the Primo vs. Miz match, a match that got more time than I expected it to. I didn't think WWE had that much confidence in Primo or Miz as singles wrestlers. Primo just has so much energy in there, it's infectious. Morrison and Carlito walked the line of entertaining and obnoxious on commentary, but for the most part, they didn't go over it.
Tyson Kidd vs. DJ Gabriel was surprisingly well-worked for as short as it was. No surprise WWE didn't give these guys more time, but I was especially impressed with Gabriel, as I was expecting Kidd to look good and Gabriel to just kinda take up space, but he held his own. Unfortunately, the mystique seems to have worn off with him.
I despise "abandon ship" battle royals as I would like to see the guys mix it up a little more as opposed to half the cast thrown out in two minutes. But they made the right move in giving Christian the win, even if I was nervous that Chavo might steal it. The last few minutes were well-done too.
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