The Rise and Fall of ECW

The Rise and Fall of ECW — Disc Two
Released by WWE: November 16, 2004

Let’s just get the extras out of the way first: Tazz talks about starting in the WWF and how he felt about ECW after he left. Chris Jericho tells some stories about dealing with Heyman’s last-minute travel agent routine. And Stevie Richards talks about leaving ECW and asks for Heyman’s blessing. They’re short, but interesting and/or funny.

Joey Styles is your host on all matches. No history packages, just one match after another. And all the original entrance music is replaced by cheap recreations.

  • 2/3 Falls Double Dog Collar Match: The Pitbulls vs. Tag Team Champions Raven and Stevie Richards (w/ Beulah McGillicutty) (Gangsta’s Paradise – 9/16/95)

OK, here’s what you need to know going into this match: Raven, as usual, is playing the part of the manipulative cheater who has repeatedly avoided being beat cleanly by Tommy Dreamer. Raven lost to Dreamer several times in tag matches, but the finish was always something other than Dreamer pinning Raven. And according to the storylines, Dreamer has NEVER pinned Raven (although he did actually pin him on two house shows very early in the feud, but don’t mind that). Also, in a more-or-less unrelated angle, 911 has been on a rampage to chokeslam everyone he can get his hands on. He has been trying to get at Bill Alfonso (at this time a heel referee), but Fonzie has always gotten away, often with the protection of Big Dick Dudley, and he went so far as to ban the chokeslam! So, as of this event, the chokeslam is banned. Oh, yeah, an added stipulation is that if the Pitbulls lose, they must break up. You got all that?

First fall: Everyone’s in the ring except Richards, so Beulah gets on the mic to explain that he’s “injured,” that Raven will have to defend the belts by himself, and asks referee John Finnegan to make it 2/3 falls. Nobody has a problem with that, so here we go. Pitbull 2 and Raven are connected by a long chain. Raven gets pulled in for an inverted atomic drop and some stomps, then he’s sent to the floor, and Pitbull 2 pulls him from inside the ring and chokes him till he’s woozy. Meanwhile, Pitbull 1 takes off to the locker room to find Richards. He emerges with Richards already bleeding and connected to the dog collar, and beats him down in the entranceway. Pitbull 2 brings a table in the ring, but Raven fights back and delivers a PILEDRIVER THROUGH THE TABLE!!! Raven covers, 1-2-3. Raven and Richards are up 1-0 at 2:10.

Second fall: We come back from commercial break, and Pitbull 1 is all over Stevie, who’s bleeding profusely, and tosses him in the ring. Raven drives a chained fist to Pitbull 2’s face, and he and Richards hit Pitbull 1 with a double DDT. Raven covers, but it’s broken up. Pitbull 2 is also bleeding now as Raven sends him to the floor, but he yanks Raven around with the chain. Meanwhile, Richards hits Pitbull 1 with a STEVIEKICK for two. A second cover gets two, then Pitbull 1 fights back while Pitbull 2 brings another table in the ring. Raven is out, so the Pitbulls double-team Richards, and Pitbull 2 delivers a SUPERBOMB THROUGH THE TABLE! 1-2-3, it’s tied up at 4:19.

Third fall: We watch quick replays from the first two falls, then the next thing we see is Pitbull 2 getting smashed by chair shots from Raven in the crowd. Pitbull 1 brawls with a bloody Stevie Richards and takes him into the first row, where Stevie scores a chair shot.  Pitbull 2 sets up a third table in the ring while Stevie gets sent to the guardrail outside. Raven shoves Pitbull 2 into John Finnegan, so here come the Dudleys (Dances With Dudley and Dudley Dudley) for our first run-in. They beat down the Pitbulls and set them up for stereo superbombs from Raven and Richards. Pitbull 1 is also bleeding now, for those keeping score. The Pitbulls no-sell and each grabs two guys for a QUADRUPLE DDT! Then, to further prove their point, they hit both Dudleys with superbombs. Pitbull 1 keeps Raven and Richards down while Pitbull 2 brings in a fourth table. Raven gets set up for a superbomb, and in a wild spot, his lower back hits the side of the table and it doesn’t break! Ouch! The ref crawls over for the count, 1-2-NO! Pitbull 2 sets up two more tables on top of each other outside the ring, but that allows Raven time to sneak in a rag covered in ether, and he shoves it in Pitbull 2’s face. He sets him on the top table outside, and tries a leg drop from the second turnbuckle, which connects but doesn’t break any tables. This whole time Pitbull 1 delivers repeated right hands to Richards across the ring. Raven lays Pitbull 2 on the bottom table and jumps from the apron, this time crashing through to the floor.

Pitbull 1 sets up the table in the ring, and the cameras miss a short comeback for Richards. He climbs up top, but Pitbull 1 pulls on the chain and crotches him on the top rope. Pitbull 1 delivers a vertical suplex through the table for 1-2-NO! Raven makes the save, having taken the dog collar off Pitbull 2, who’s still outside in a heap of table pieces. Paramedics appear with a stretcher for Pitbull 2. Beulah hops in the ring to check on Raven, and here comes Francine (referred to here as “Stevie Richards’ ex-girlfriend”). She has a quick catfight with Beulah, but Raven stops it and gives her a DDT. As Pitbull 2 gets stretchered away, Tommy Dreamer appears all of a sudden and puts Raven’s loose dog collar around his neck. He goes wild on Raven and drops a knee in his crotch. Dreamer hits the DDT, cover, 1-2-3! New champions! Dreamer pinned Raven! Dreamer pinned Raven! Wait, umm, who won the title, the Pitbulls or Dreamer and Pitbull 1? Here comes heel referee Bill Alfonso to clear things up. He explains that Dreamer’s pin doesn’t count because he is not a legal participant. Apparently, you can’t win a title by covering someone during a run-in, not even in ECW. Imagine that. He says the match is over because the Pitbulls can’t continue. Big Dick Dudley, wearing a leg cast and leaning on a crutch, moves gingerly into the ring to give Fonzie some backup. Here comes commissioner Tod Gordon to say the match is back on, and he loses a quick shoving match with Fonzie. Out of nowhere, Big Dick chokeslams Dreamer! Hey, he can’t do that, that move is banned! Fonzie announces that he’s allowing the chokeslam for one night only, then taunts Dreamer about never pinning Raven. Did he say chokeslam? Here comes 911! Fonzie tries talking his way out, but no luck, and 911 FINALLY gives Fonzie a chokeslam! The crowd is going nuts! Pitbull 2 is back. Dreamer unhooks the chain, and he and Pitbull 1 get Raven ready for a superbomb, they perch Richards on top of Raven, and Pitbull 2 superbombs them both! Cover, 1-2-3! New champions! (19:36) This was ECW storytelling at its most intense and elaborate, and for that this match often gets called ECW’s greatest match, even though the actual action amounts to a hardcore brawl. Remember that this was 1995, when matches just flat out were never this wacky, and before “hardcore” became so overexposed. It’s no doubt a great match, and it’s still a lot of fun to watch years later. A must-see. ****1/2

  • 2/3 Falls: Psicosis vs Rey Mysterio (Hardcore TV – 10/17/95)

First fall: Psicosis runs back and forth to start and gets slid under the ropes to the floor. Mysterio gets a head of steam, flips over the ropes, lands on the apron, then goes for a high crossbody, and both men go over the guardrail! Mysterio gets right up and delivers a tope that nails Psicosis as he tries to get back over the rail. That’s the way to set the tone. Back in, Mysterio dodges Psicosis as he runs the ropes and catches him with a hurracanrana, 1-2-3! Rey wins the first fall at 1:19.

Second fall: After a commercial break, Psicosis charges at Rey for a bronco buster-like move, but Rey gets out of the way. Rey hits the ropes and goes for a crazy headscissors into an arm drag move, but he slides off and settles for a spinning wheel kick. Psicosis tries dumping Mysterio, but he lands on the apron and hits a flying hurracanrana, sending Psicosis to the floor. He chases right after him and hits another flying hurracanrana off the apron. Psicosis gets in and extends a hand, Rey buys it, and Psicosis goes to work with a wristlock and an enziguri. Psicosis taunts the crowd with what looks like a precursor to the DX crotch chop! Mysterio gets flipped over into the corner, then gets rammed abdomen-first and upside down into the other corner. Psicosis tops that off with a running shoulderblock and a single bronco buster. A powerbomb gets two with the nonchalant cover. Then he goes for a sidewalk slam and the sharpshooter. Outside, Mysterio hits the rail hard, then takes a chair to the knee. Back in, Psicosis delivers a slingshot leg drop, but misses a running shoulder in the corner. They both go off the ropes, and Rey cartwheels into a Mysteriorana! Rey tries a second-rope springboard moonsault, but Psicosis catches him and delivers a tombstone piledriver for 1-2-3. It’s one fall a piece at 7:03.

Third fall: Mysterio retreats to the floor, Psicosis chases him, and he hits a modified powerbomb onto a table. The table doesn’t break under Rey’s tiny body, but rather one set of legs collapses. Psicosis launches Rey into the crowd and hits a huge tope! Back in, Mysterio avoids a corner splash and Psicosis falls outside, and Mysterio springboards from the top rope into a front flip seated senton on the floor! Mysterio gets extreme with a couple chair shots, then places the unfolded chair around Psicosis’ head and shoves him hard into the ring post twice! That’s brutal. Back in, Mysterio hits an ugly flying hurracanrana for two and a half. Psicosis reverses a whip and Mysterio delivers an awesome modified headscissors. Psicosis rolls to the floor, and Mysterio follows up with a slightly altered springboard front flip seated senton. Psicosis comes back by whipping Rey to the rail a couple times, then sets a table in place, lays Mysterio on top, and drives a chair to the midsection. That sets up a HUGE senton from the top rope through the table! Back in, Psicosis delivers a powerbomb, sets a chair on top of Mysterio, and delivers a TWISTING MOONSAULT SENTON, 1-2-3. Psicosis wins. (13:50) Lucha libre + Extreme = Awesomeness. The action in this match is off the charts. This is up there with my favorite matches ever. Needs to be seen to be believed. ****1/2

  • Ladder Match: ECW Champion Sandman (w/ Woman) vs Mikey Whipwreck (Hardcore TV – 10/28/95)

The ladder is just a weapon and the match ends on pinfall or submission. Before the match, Steve Austin comes out, takes a seat atop the ladder in the middle of the ring, and talks a bunch of trash before saying he wants to challenge the winner for the title. Man, that Steve Austin guy was perfect for ECW. He could have been huge. It’s a real shame that McMahon had to snatch him up and bury his career. Sandman hits Mikey with a can of beer to start, as Austin picks up Woman and takes her to the back. Mikey avoids getting slammed into the ladder and nails Sandman with it a few times, sending him to the floor. Back in, Mikey tries a leg drop facebuster on the ladder, but Sandman counters and dumps him right on the ladder! Damn, that had to hurt. Sandman sets the ladder on Mikey and hits a slingshot senton from the apron. Mikey rolls outside, and Sandman hurls the ladder at him from the ring. He bridges the apron and the guardrail with the ladder, suplexes Mikey onto it, then hits a guillotine leg drop off the apron. Mikey comes back by reversing a whip to the rail and punishing Sandman with a chair. FRANKENMIKEY off the apron! Sandman stops a series of punches with a backdrop over the railing. They brawl through the crowd, and Sandman drives Mikey’s sternum into the top of the ladder. Mikey’s in the crowd, and with the ladder leaning on the rail, Sandman comes over the top rope to seesaw the ladder into Mikey’s face! Sandman tosses the ladder and Mikey back in the ring and drops the ladder on him. Mikey avoids a slingshot elbow drop and rocks Sandman’s world with the ladder, which busts him open. Mikey suplexes the ladder on Sandman and gets just a one count! He drops the ladder on Sandman again, goes up top to deliver a flying splash, 1-2-3! Mikey’s the champ! (7:51) Don’t let the length fool you. This match really doesn’t need to be any longer with its level of intensity and all the brutality that’s dished out, and the quick ending makes the surprise of Mikey winning even more shocking. ****

  • Television Champion 2 Cold Scorpio vs Sabu (Cyberslam – 2/17/96)

This is the battle of the awful outfits, as Sabu wears lavender purple and Scorpio wears his blue and white tights with Brutus Beefcake-esque holes. Sabu goes after Scorpio before the bell, but Scorpio scores with a kick anyways. Scorpio misses a big spinning kick and Sabu connects with his own. Sabu gets a chair (that didn’t take long), and a chair shot to the back sets up AIR SABU. A clothesline puts Scorpio on the apron, then a dropkick sends him to the rail. Scorpio gets tossed into the first row, and Sabu delivers an awesome triple jump plancha suicida! Sabu gets two back inside, then a body slam sets up a slingshot knee drop. Scorpio flips through a powerbomb and responds with one of his own. A body slam by Scorpio sets up a top rope leg drop, and he elects to mess with the fans instead of going for a pin. He brings a chair inside and drops Sabu with a knee lift, then unfolds the chair and drives Sabu’s head into it. They trade hard right hands until Scorpio tries driving Sabu into the chair again, and Sabu counters and drops Scorpio’s head onto it. With Scorpio backing up to the ropes, Sabu hits a Triple Jump Cactus Clothesline! He follows up with a somersault shoulderblock off the apron. Scorpio suffers some chair shots before getting tossed inside, and Sabu springboards into a leg lariat on a seated Scorpio for two. Back up, Scorpio sneaks in a pretty crescent kick that levels Sabu. Scorpio takes the chair and runs over Sabu with it. He beats Sabu up a bit with some shoulders, some chops, and a corner splash, then after a few counters, Sabu floats over to avoid a Rock Bottom and takes the advantage with right hands. Scorpio reverses a whip, Sabu kips up, Scorpio catches him in a reverse powerbomb position, and Sabu turns it into a victory roll for two. Sabu struggles to apply a chin lock, and Scorpio breaks free with a flipping kick, but Sabu keeps the advantage and grabs a half camel clutch. Scorpio gets to his feet and drops Sabu back, but Sabu immediately grabs another chin lock on the mat. Gotta love Sabu’s technical side here. We’re ten minutes in.

Scorpio gets free and gives Sabu a boot right where it hurts, sending him to the floor. Scorpio pummels Sabu outside, then a suplex from the apron gets two. Scorpio applies a surfboard maneuver that has Sabu’s abs and quads on the mat while Scorpio sits right behind him pulling back on his arms. That gets golf claps from the ECW Arena crowd. He moves along into a half nelson, then executes a nice grounded crucifix for two. Sabu comes right back with a set of stomps and a slingshot somersault leg drop. A delayed covers gets two, then Sabu grabs an arm bar. Scorpio rolls out of that and drops a knee to the face. Scorpio scores a body slam and delivers a moonsault that looked good in the air but not on the landing. Delayed cover gets two. Sabu comes back with a stomp and an ARABIAN FACEBUSTER for two. He delivers an ARABIAN PRESS with a chair, but there’s no cover because Sabu’s hurt (I’m pretty sure it was Scorpio landing on Sabu’s leg on that moonsault). Scorpio takes over, and a tombstone slam sets up a quick splash out of the corner for two. Scorpio goes to the floor and pulls on Sabu’s legs to crotch him on the bottom rope. Scorpio dominates with strikes until missing a rounding splash from the top rope. Sabu goes up, but Scorpio follows and delivers a sweet sunset flip for two. Sabu quickly bounces up and hits Scorpio with a low dropkick to the head. Sabu is still fighting off pain, so Scorpio gets up first and goes up top, but Sabu stops him and delivers a victory roll from the top rope! That gets two. They’re both slow to get up, and Sabu gets whipped but holds the ropes as Scorpio misses a dropkick. Sabu dumps Scorpio to the floor, then runs the ropes for a high-speed suicide dive. There’s a nice touch there when referee Jim Mollineaux drops to the mat to avoid Sabu. Back in, Scorpio gets sent to the turnbuckles, and a clothesline gets two. Sabu goes to a Fujiwara arm bar, and Scorpio eventually gets out and drops a knee to the face. Twenty minutes have passed.

Scorpio whips Sabu and launches him for a crash landing on the mat. He puts Sabu in a fireman’s carry and tries to dump him over the ropes, but Sabu pulls him over with an arm drag. Sabu throws Scorpio against the rail and delivers an asai moonsault, hitting his own shins on the steel! He sets up a table in the crowd for a TRIPLE JUMP SOMERSAULT SENTON, but Scorpio rolls off, and Sabu shatters the table. That was wild. Scorpio goes for a cover inside, but Sabu’s on the ropes. Sabu leap frogs a back body drop, Scorpio goes for a gutwrench powerbomb, and Sabu counters to a hurracanrana for 1-2-NO! Sabu wins a rope running exchange with a springboard moonsault press for 1-2-NO! Sabu goes up top and a moonsault misses. Scorpio hits a powerbomb and DROPS THE BOMB beautifully for 1-2-NO! Scorpio delivers a cool judo trip, sets a chair on Sabu’s head, and hits a top rope leg drop! Delayed cover gets 1-2-NO! Scorpio goes up, but Sabu heaves the chair at him and hits a hurracanrana for 1-2-NO! They get up slow and hit each other with simultaneous double-KO clotheslines. Two minutes remaining! Scorpio is up first, and he sets up the SCORPIO SPLASH (450 splash). He doesn’t even go for a cover, and instead takes a chair up top in the far corner. One minute left! Scorpio misses a long splash, and Sabu hits a little springboard leg drop on the chair. 30 seconds remaining!!! Sabu delivers a slingshot somersault leg drop on the chair, and a slow cover gets 1-2-NO! Sabu covers again in a last ditch effort, but the bell sounds. Time limit draw, Scorpio retains the title. (30:00 on the dot) People may not necessarily put Sabu and technical wrestling in the same sentence, and this match would prove those people wrong. You rarely see a match that blends technical wrestling with hardcore, and it’s even more rare that a match blends the two effectively, but here it is, a match that has it all (except a decisive finish). Both guys put on an unbelievable performance. ****3/4

  • Tommy Dreamer (w/ Beulah McGillicutty) vs Raven (w/ Lupus and Chastity) (Wrestlepalooza – 6/6/97)

Rick Rude joins Joey Styles on commentary for this match. This is Raven’s last ECW match before jumping to WCW, and the crowd knows it, so they berate him with “You sold out” chants, but Raven also gets a bit of a respectful pop during his introduction. According to the storylines, Dreamer has still never pinned Raven after feuding for over two and half years. The bell sounds, there’s a quick staredown, and Lupus tells his “boss” to forget about it and just leave, so Raven takes off over the rail to the front door. Dreamer chases after him for a brawl and slams him against a garage door. He takes him through the bleachers, and Raven comes back by heaving him off the top of the bleachers through the merchandise table! Raven delivers a piledriver onto a table, but the table slides out from under them and they fall to the floor! Damn, that could have been disastrous. They get onto the stage and Raven suplexes a table onto Dreamer, who’s now busted open. Dreamer avoids a piledriver onto the table, but misses a splash and goes through the table. Back to the floor, Dreamer gets whipped to the rail near the entrance, but he comes back and sends Raven into it, then crotches him on it. Back at ringside, Tommy beats him up and busts him open before tossing him back into the crowd. Raven gets slammed into a soda machine and gets pulled up a ladder, but he fights back and Dreamer falls off the soda machine to the concrete! The match finally gets back into the ring, where Raven delivers a drop toe hold onto a chair. He scores a low blow and sets Dreamer up top, Dreamer comes back with a low blow that looks like it legitimately connected, but Raven pops back up and a rocket launcher sends Dreamer down onto the chair! Raven covers, 1-2-NO! Back up, Dreamer counters a hiptoss into a swinging DDT. Dreamer grabs a “sign” from the crowd, they fight over it, and referee John Finnegan gets bumped. Dreamer nails Raven with the sign and pulls off its cover to reveal that it’s a road sign and sets it down on the mat. Dreamer delivers a piledriver onto it, the ref gets up slow, like … really … really … slow, 1-2-NO! Lupus makes the save. He takes some swings at Dreamer, but Dreamer no-sells, and Beulah comes in to give Lupus a DDT. Raven sneaks up and low blows Dreamer, and a school boy gets 1-2-NO! Raven gets on his knees and pleads with Beulah to come back to him, Dreamer sneaks up, low blow, school boy, 1-2-NO! The crowd thought it was over for sure. Chastity jumps in and hair sprays Dreamer, allowing Raven a dropkick, cover, 1-2-NO! Beulah and Chastity start up a catfight, Raven pulls Beulah back, she hits him with a low blow, Dreamer hits the DDT, cover, 1-2-NO! The crowd thought that was it again. Dreamer goes for another DDT, but Raven pushes him back and the ref gets bumped again. Dreamer hits another DDT, but there’s no ref. Here comes Louie Spiccoli and he jumps all over Dreamer. He DDTs Dreamer, pulls Raven on top of him, the ref is slow to the count, 1-2-NO! Spiccoli jumps back on Dreamer, but Dreamer hits him with a DDT. Raven rushes up right behind him and he hits a DDT, cover, 1-2-NO! Dreamer delivers a Death Valley Driver, waits for Raven to get up, DDT on the sign, cover, 1-2-3! Dreamer pinned Raven! Dreamer pinned Raven! For real this time! (15:05)

Tommy’s moment in the sun lasts about ten seconds, and the lights go off. When they come on, it’s Mr. Monday Night Rob Van Dam, along with Bill Alfonso, both wearing WWF Raw gear. RVD hits Dreamer with a VAN DAMINATOR, but Dreamer fires back by catching a leap frog and giving RVD an inverted atomic drop. As Dreamer jumps on RVD, the lights go off again. This time it’s Sabu. He hurls a chair at Dreamer and proceeds to stomp away at him. Meanwhile, Louie Spiccoli holds Beulah back in a corner, and Raven calmly leaves down the entranceway. Dreamer ain’t going down like that, and he catches Sabu and RVD for a double DDT, but the lights go down one more time. This time it’s … JERRY THE KING LAWLER!!! The crowd is going absolutely crazy. Sabu and RVD hold Dreamer back as The King runs his mouth on the mic. A whole host of guys come down to defend Dreamer and ECW — Axl Rotten, Chris Chetti, Blue Meanie, Nova, Balls Mahoney, and a couple others — but Sabu and RVD keep them out of the ring while Lawler riles up the crowd even more. Fonzie takes the mic and asks Shane Douglas to come down from the broadcast area and get a piece of the action, but Shane doesn’t give a shit about ECW, so he tells them to kick all the asses they want. The Gangstas come out, but not even they can get into the ring. Lawler goes on about how there’s nobody tough in ECW, and Dreamer tackles him from behind and unloads on the back of his head! Awesome! But Sabu and RVD take control once again. Now here comes Sandman, who scores some cane shots on Sabu, but RVD jumps in and hits another VAN DAMINATOR. Dreamer takes more and more punishment as the crowd chants, “We want Taz.” Sure enough, Taz shows up, Sabu wants a piece of him, but RVD, Fonzie, and Lawler all hold him back, and they all scurry off down the entranceway.

The after-match fiasco lasts eight minutes. At the actual event, there was more afterward (Sabu came back out and beat Taz, then Taz made Douglas tap in under three minutes to win the TV title), but this DVD cuts it off before all that. Anyways, the match isn’t technical great, but the drama makes up for it, especially toward the end. You’d think that it would be obvious that Dreamer would finally go over to end the feud, but the crowd still has some nervous doubt during some of Raven’s nearfalls. ****

  • Television Champion Taz vs Bam Bam Bigelow (Living Dangerously – 3/1/98)

An alternate commentary with Tazz and Michael Cole is available for this match. We’re on Bigelow’s home turf in Asbury Park, New Jersey, so he’s getting a bit more crowd support than Taz. There’s a staredown, then Taz dodges a punch and puts on an arm bar. He scores a big takeover and clotheslines Bam Bam to the floor. He comes off the apron, but Bam Bam catches him and runs him into the ring post, pummels him a bit, and tosses him back inside. A big powerbomb gets two. Bam Bam hits a corner splash, but Taz stops the second try with a clothesline. He tries a suplex, but Bam Bam lands on top for two. Bam Bam charges and gets dumped on the elevated rampway, where Taz delivers a pump handle Tazplex into the crowd, hitting his own head on the steel guardrail! They have a brawl until Bam Bam clotheslines Taz back to ringside. Back in, a DDT sets up the BIGELOWSAULT for two. Bam Bam brings in a table that’s already broken at one end, but he manages to set up it eventually. He goes for a powerbomb, but Taz punches his way out and barely gets the big man up for a hotshot through the table. Delayed cover gets two. They roll to the floor for a long brawl in and out of the crowd. Taz gets the worst of it, but eventually no-sells, and Bam Bam hits him with a low blow. Back in, Bam Bam picks him up for maybe a powerslam, but Taz wiggles around and locks on the TAZMISSION. With Taz on his back, Bigelow falls back and they both go through the ring mat!!! Oh, so that’s how this match ended up on this DVD. Some time passes before Bam Bam climbs out, he pulls Taz out, 1-2-3. Bigelow is the TV champion. (13:37) I really think that this should have been replaced by something else. The ring mat spot was pretty awesome, I admit, but we’ve all seen it before and the rest of the match was just OK. ***

  • Television Champion Rob Van Dam vs Jerry Lynn (Hardcore Heaven – 5/16/99)

During Van Dam’s in-ring introduction, Fonzie moves the ring announcer toward the ropes so that RVD can pose in the middle of the ring. That Fonzie’s always good for a few antics. Arm ringer by Lynn, one by RVD, Lynn rolls and puts on another arm ringer, single-leg takedown and headlock by RVD, Lynn tussles into a hammerlock, RVD reverses that, drop toe hold by Lynn, RVD gets out of a front face lock and puts on a hammerlock, and he rolls Lynn down for a one count. Very nice wrestling series there. RVD struts around for a while like he always does. Headlock by Van Dam, off the ropes, shoulderblock, they run some ropes, split-legged drop down by Van Dam, he avoids a leg drop, Lynn ducks a kick, Van Dam avoids an elbow drop, Lynn avoids a somersault senton, and they’re back up. Van Dam wastes more time before they lock up again. He pushes Lynn to the corner and proceeds to waste even more time. Lynn pushes him into a corner, kicks him, corner whip, Van Dam kips up over Lynn, Lynn catches him for a catapult, Van Dam lands safely, leap frogs Lynn, Lynn goes for a springboard, Van Dam waistlocks him back to the center of the ring, and Lynn hits him with a mean back elbow that cuts him over his eye, misses a second elbow, Van Dam whips him to corner and delivers a monkey flip, but Lynn lands on his feet (well, he actually ended up off balance and fell, but you know what I mean), and there’s another standstill. Van Dam takes the advantage with a bunch of strikes, tries a springboard, but Lynn dumps him on the apron, smashes him into the turnbuckle, and knocks him to the floor with a springboard dropkick. That sets up Lynn’s crossbody plancha. He lets Van Dam get up to the apron, but then rushes him and hits a guillotine leg drop. That gets two. A bulldog off the second rope gets another two for Lynn. He goes up top, and Fonzie crotches him on the top rope and holds a chair up for a flying VAN DAMINATOR, but Lynn ducks it and gives Van Dam a chair shot. He charges and Van Dam crotches him on the rope and delivers a springboard side kick, Lynn’s foot gets caught on his way down, and he lands face first on the floor! He’s out cold, so Van Dam dead lifts him to the apron, but then pulls him back down and whips him over the guardrail. He tries to kill some time to let Lynn gain his composure, then hurdles the guardrail for a clothesline. In the crowd, Lynn avoids a slam and dropkicks Van Dam back over the rail.

Back in the ring, Lynn still looks a bit out of it as he takes a pummeling from Van Dam. Lynn gets corner whipped but kips up into a sunset flip for two. He tries a piledriver, but Van Dam counters and plants him hard with a pancake. Van Dam goes for ROLLING THUNDER, Lynn sits up, and Van Dam stops and lands a roundhouse kick! That was pretty sweet. He goes for it again, but Lynn rolls out of the way. Lynn takes the advantage with forearms in the corner, he delivers a corner whip and goes for a monkey flip, but Van Dam avoids that and puts Lynn in the corner, Lynn fights back and goes for a tornado DDT, but Van Dam counters into a flawless Northern Lights suplex for two. Lynn gets perched up top, then fights back and hits a sunset flip powerbomb for two, then a short-arm clothesline gives him time to set up a table outside the ring. Outside, Van Dam gets sent to the rail, but then dumps Lynn into the first row. Fonzie gets involved and Van Dam hits a FLYING VAN DAMINATOR off the rail. Back at ringside, Lynn shoves Van Dam into the ring post. On the apron above the table, Lynn tries to set up maybe a hurracanrana, but he gets backdropped through the timekeeper’s table! Van Dam front suplexes him onto the rail for a corkscrew guillotine leg drop off the apron, and that gets a two count back inside. He scores a low dropkick, then does his fancy backflip, picks up the chair, and dropkicks it into Lynn’s face. He takes him to the apron and sets him on top, Lynn fights back again and tries a tornado DDT, but Van Dam puts him back on the apron and clotheslines him back into the ring. A slingshot leg drop gets two.

Van Dam stays in control with forearms and a corner whip, but he gets dumped to the apron, Lynn wins a slugfest, and he delivers a sunset flip powerbomb from the ring through the table! It’s good thing there are mats on the floor because the table did not break Van Dam’s fall whatsoever. Lynn rolls him inside for two. Van Dam gets the boot up on a corner charge, Fonzie gets in, tosses a chair to Lynn, Lynn ducks the VAN DAMINATOR, nails Van Dam in the gut, launches the chair at Fonzie, then delivers a German suplex for 1-2-NO! Lynn goes up top, but Van Dam stops him with a running front kick. He sets the chair down and wants maybe a superplex, but they both lose their footing and plummet to the mat. “You fucked up! You fucked up!” Van Dam covers for two. They get up slow, and Lynn hits a JERRY LYNNINATOR for 1-2-NO! He delivers an extremely sloppy sunset flip for two, Van Dam turns it over for two, they bridge up, Lynn tries the CRADLE PILEDRIVER, Van Dam breaks free at the last second, but Lynn rolls him up with a school boy for 1-2-NO! After a short battle in the corner, Van Dam shoves Lynn down and hits a split-legged moonsault for two. Lynn avoids a body slam, Van Dam avoids a reverse DDT and hits a snap mare, then delivers a corkscrew leg drop. That sets up the FIVE STAR FROG SPLASH. He takes way too long to cover, though, and Lynn sneakily rolls him up for two. Back up, they have a quick waistlock exchange, Van Dam leap frogs Lynn coming off the ropes, Fonzie tosses in the chair, Van Dam tosses it to Lynn, VAN DAMINATOR! The second FIVE STAR FROG SPLASH finishes him off, 1-2-3. (26:57) They give each other a high five after the match. Another RVD/Lynn classic. There are definitely several sloppy moments, which I think puts this match just a step behind their Living Dangerously 99 match, but for the record I’ve yet to see anyone on the Internet agree with me on that. ****½

Final Thoughts: This disc alone is the best collection of ECW action available. Period.

Posted on August 4, 2009, in ECW and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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