TV REPORTS 8/19 ECW on Sci-Fi Report: Mayer's "alt perspective" report including Henry-Hardy SummerSlam rematch
Aug 19, 2008 - 10:25:32 PM
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By Wade Keller, PWTorch editor
ECW on Sci-Fi
August 19, 2008
Live from The Quad Cities
Report by Dominick Mayer, PWTorch Contributor
Quick note: If I miss bits of matches and promos, I apologize in advance. DirecTV has decided to choppily broadcast Sci-Fi for me tonight.
We open with a video package on the Summerslam ECW title match, which makes it look a lot longer than a minute in length. That was so very, very disappointing. Focus is on the Hardys taking out Mark Henry.
Grisham and Striker tout the Hardy-Henry rematch for tonight. I guess this is WWE's way of apologizing.
Morrison and the Miz make their entrance for what's apparently going to be a six-man tag. Chavo comes out next, with Bam Neely. Evan Bourne comes out with Super Crazy (who's moved rosters about six times in the past week), and Tommy Dreamer comes out as their partner. Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you 90% of the ECW roster.
1. JOHN MORRISON, THE MIZ & CHAVO GUERRERO (w/Bam Neely) vs. EVAN BOURNE, SUPER CRAZY & TOMMY DREAMER – Six-Man Tag
Morrison and Crazy start off, with Crazy taking the early offense. Crazy tags in Bourne, who hits Morrison with a modified legsweep. Morrison hits some shots to the chest, brings Bourne to the corner and tags in Miz. Bourne greets Miz with a huricanarana off the second rope. Pretty great move. Chavo comes in next to continue the isolation of Bourne. The crowd is VERY behind Bourne during the heel beating. Morrison comes in and hits Bourne with a neckbreaker/Russian leg sweep combo. Miz tags in, and gets a weak two-count before hooking Bourne in a modified chinlock. So far, this has been a pretty sustained beating of Bourne. However, he gets the hot tag to Dreamer, who cleans house. He bulldogs Miz out of the corner, and then powerslams him for two, before Morrison makes the break. Crazy enters the fray, and he and Dreamer clear the ring. Crazy hits a somersault to the outside, and when the heels regroup, Bourne hits a gorgeous moonsault to the floor. There's an "ECW" chant for the first time in what seems like forever. Moments later, Morrison assists Miz in giving Dreamer a knee to the face, leading to Miz getting the pin.
WINNERS: Miz, Morrison and Chavo in 5:00. Good opener, but it's pretty obvious that this was the writers' way of getting everybody on the show for this week, without having to advance storylines. This is likely due to the fact that there's nothing for Dreamer (or Super Crazy, since he's back on ECW now) at the moment. Though, storyline-wise, Morrison and Miz don't have a whole lot to work with either. Also, the crowd is getting hotter for Bourne every week. That moonsault was the cleanest I've seen in a while.
Ricky Ortiz is in action, next.
A plug for Raw on Sci-Fi next week.
Striker and Grisham talk about Summerslam in terms of "controversy abounding". I love how they're not actually talking about the ECW Title match directly. Even they know how bad that was on numerous levels.
Ricky Ortiz makes his entrance while passing out some Ricky O Rally Towels. It's not a bad idea, really. Striker expresses some dislike for him, which is interesting, given that Striker's been pretty moderate in judging wrestlers thus far. Next comes some Rick Roll humor. I like Striker more and more with each passing week
Gavin Spears, evidently the new Talent Exchange guy, cuts a promo slamming Ricky Ortiz. Spears says that he doesn't need towels or catchphrases to win matches. Dry, but at least the new guys are getting some personality.
2. RICKY ORTIZ vs. GAVIN SPEARS
Some basic chinlocks to start off. Spears is playing the heelish aggressor role. I guess they had to, since Ortiz was somewhat in limbo as far as his character's leanings. Spears stomps on Ortiz's head. Striker mentions new referee Aaron Davis, who I'm guessing replaced the ref that was fired last week. Apologies to him, but I don't remember his name. Ortiz hits some forearms and a dropkick, and then drops him from over his shoulder into a Scorpion Death Drop for two. Ortiz heads up to the second rope and hits a high body block. Ortiz plays to the crowd, and then hits his standing big splash for the win.
WINNER: Ortiz in 3:00. Slow action, but Ortiz showed some real offense this week. I'll take wagers on how long Spears lasts after getting the Braden Walker treatment in his first match.
After the match, Ortiz plays to the crowd, a surprising amount of which are waving their rally towels. Ortiz needs to get a little stronger in the ring, but charisma goes a long, long way in making up for a wrestler's shortcomings nowadays. See: Marella, Santino.
Cut to Tony Atlas cheering on Mark Henry as he lifts weights. The title rematch is tonight.
[Commercial Break] : Summerslam commercial. Hell in a Cell was awesome, but the flames still don't sit well with me. Paging Alex Dunn...
The Power of the WWE Universe: For the second week in a row, Raw beat Monday Night Football. It's preseason ball, guys. You're not fooling anyone.
Hornswoggle and Finlay enter. Finlay even has Hornswoggle's hat on now. I like this, because Finlay's showing that he doesn't care what Mike Knox thinks of him. Also, this reaction is pretty loud; it's not just the kids.
Finlay takes the mic for what seems like his first promo in some time. He thanks the crowd, and makes fun of Knox. He addresses how Knox has called him soft for having some fun, and reminds Knox that he challenged him, and wants to give him another shot tonight. He even left his shillelagh behind.
Knox comes out and calls Finlay out for not being able to handle the pressure of being destroyed by Knox. The crowd gives Knox a "What?" after everything he says, so at least he's getting some legitmate heat. Finlay tells Knox to come down, and Knox does, until he's about fifteen feet from the ring. Then, he tells Finlay that he'll take him on when he's ready, not when Finlay's begging him to put him out of his misery. Finlay heads out of the ring after Knox drops his mike, and tackles him to the floor. They brawl around, rolling on the ramp. Security comes out to pull them apart, and fails as usual. Finlay even headbutts Knox. They break away from security again, before Finlay heads back for the ramp. Maybe it's strange to say this, but I was more engaged by this pull-apart than I was by the Cena-Batista one before Summerslam. I'm impressed by just how interested I am in a feud starring Mike Knox. Both delivered in their brief time on the mike. This is how a mid-card feud should be built up.
Matt Hardy is backstage, preparing for his match. Striker: "He was mere seconds away from the ECW Championship." True, but he was still several minutes from the match living up to the well-handled hype.
Another plug for Raw on Sci-Fi. Nothing's actually being promised, except for maybe another poorly named Adamle Original. The Championship Scramble? Seriously?
Striker and Grisham solemnly bring in a package on the Jericho-Michaels wife-punching incident at Summerslam. Their entire feud needs to be shown to every up-and-coming wrestler learning how to talk on the mic. For that matter, it also needs to be shown to Samoa Joe, so he can learn that a few words done quietly and menacingly works a hell of a lot better than ten minutes of screaming. Now that Edge is "burning in hell", Jericho has become the best heel in wrestling.
Matt Hardy's music hits for the main event. If they over-run, Hardy and Henry will get about 15-20 minutes. Maybe they'll get this right on the second try.
The same package from the top of the show is re-aired. I'll give the editors credit where credit is due. They really made this look a lot more epic than it was.
As Hardy's music continues, Striker announces that Finlay vs. Knox will take place next week.
Mark Henry makes his entrance, talking trash at Hardy.
3. ECW CHAMPION MARK HENRY (w/Tony Atlas) vs. MATT HARDY – ECW Championship Match
Ring intros take place for Hardy and then Henry. Scratch what I said about this match getting some length. The crowd is loudly and vocally behind Hardy. As the bell rings, Hardy goes for a Twist of Fate almost immediately, but Henry takes him down. Hardy goes shoulder-first into the corner, but then gives Henry a drop-toe hold into the second turnbuckle. Hardy slams Henry's knee into the ringpost, and then continues to work the knee inside the ring. Henry gives Hardy a powerslam, but limps around before dropping an elbow. He misses, and Hardy takes him down for two. Atlas tries to trip Hardy up, but this leads to Henry getting a boot in the face. Henry goes back on offense, as a loud "Hardy" chant breaks out. Henry stands on Hardy's chest, before throwing him into a corner, where Hardy sidesteps an avalanche. Striker with the observation of the night, pointing out Atlas' sleeveless dress shirt. The man still looks good. Hardy tries another Twist of Fate, but Henry clotheslines him to the outside, and it's time for one last commercial.
Out of commercial, Henry has Hardy in a chinlock. During commercial, Hardy took a big vertical suplex. Hardy powers out to a good pop, but takes a boot and goes down again. Henry, however, is selling the knee still, and doesn't capitalize. Another chinlock by Henry. Hardy goes for a Side-Effect, but Henry elbows out. At this point, my reception on the television is absolutely hideous. Henry is still on offense, putting Hardy in the bearhug. He runs Hardy back-first into the corner. Henry kicks Hardy in the ribs as he tries to reach his feet, and kicks him down for two. Yet another chinlock by Henry, while he shouts at Hardy. Henry applies a half-nelson, into a full-nelson, but Hardy escapes with a kick to the midsection. Henry puts Hardy up in the gorilla press, and drops him on his chest. Henry laughs before missing a running splash. Hardy goes back on the offense, knocking Henry into the corner. Hardy goes to the second rope twice in a row, finally taking Henry down for two.
[Q5 – over-run]
He goes up top and hits a high cross body block for an even closer two. He signals for the Twist of Fate, but Henry counters into the World's Strongest Slam position, which Hardy counters again into a successful Twist of Fate. He has the win, until Atlas pulls him out of the ring. However, this time the referee allows the match to continue. Hardy goes for a moonsault, but nearly misses, and Henry gets a knee up. Henry with the World's Strongest Slam for the pin and the win.
WINNER: Henry in 15:00 to retain the ECW Championship. Good TV main event, until the Atlas involvement. If people didn't like it Sunday night, why would they like it any more after an otherwise compelling match? Both men did a good job of getting Henry to look like he was making it a match, save for the lengthy chain of rest holds coming out of the final commercial break, and the ending was exciting enough. There's no other logical competition for Henry's title, so Hardy will likely continue on, but I'm curious to see where this goes from here.
One more plug for Raw on Sci-Fi ends the show.
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