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ECW: The Next Generation

By Neil McGilloway
Welcome back.  I am quite aware no one reading this could possibly give a shit, but Phillies are officially 4 wins away from winning the World Series two years in a row, so I am in a FINE mood tonight.  As a result, I'm fully expecting tonight's ECW to wholly disappoint.
Of course since I have a habit to do it, let's mention things before actually starting the report!  In this case, it's the inexplicable moving of Sheamus, and Kofi JohnsI MEAN KINGSTON.  First, I really can see no reason to move Sheamus to Raw other than to mess with ECW.  Again.  They can't even wait until the draft anymore!  That being said, what the hell is he going to actually DO on Raw?  If last night is any indication...not much.  Hey, just like the last guys they took from ECW not named Mark Henry!  I mean, they're TRYING something with Swagger and Bourne, but they're still very much off the radar.  Do they even THINK about what to do with them before moving them to Raw?  Ugh.  So, congrats Sheamus!  Say hello to relative obscurity for me! 
Speaking of ECW guys they're only recently trying something with, KOFI!  He might not be welcome in Jamaica anytime soon, but Kingston had a hell of a night last night.  Winning in a nice match with Jericho, and busting out easily the best promo of his career later on while he did his best black stereotype impersonation - good good stuff.  However, he was on the brink of a Goldberg-sized DISASTER a few times during that segment, almost slipping off the car and looking like a fool on multiple occasions.  Wrestlers and destroying cars just don't mix.  Finally, while I'm happy that he's getting a big push, I just have to note that all it took WWE to create a new main eventer was DESTROYING A FREAKIN' NASCAR CAR.  Just saying, there's probably a more cost-effective method for creating new stars.  Let's get to it!
Still standing here in...well you can't blame me because they never displayed it!  And we're falling right off the cliff from the start as out comes Tony Atlas to Mushmouth his way through another introduction of the Abraham Washington show.  This is of course met with groans and boos aplenty.  Abe cuts the crap and gets right to introducing his guest, General Manager Generic Blonde Tiffany.  And looks like she has new music, dropping the cowbell for some poppy bullshit that constantly repeats (quoting verbatim) "I'M INSATIABLE, I CAN'T GET ENOUGH, I NEED TO FIND A BOY."  Yep, because logically, you want the face of your company to be a huge pulsating cockslut.  Abraham Washington goes for the throat immediately calling GMGBT on how ECW was completely absent from the pay-per-view, again.  Stuck on her only emotion (chipper), she says how lots of people in the tag match were in ECW first.  Abe replies with how Sheamus left for Raw (and immediate obscurity), and GMGBT replies with how apparently there's a revolving door policy in place with ECW.  That is, you can leave when you want to.  But apparently WWE realized at the last second that Sheamus was in the middle of a feud, he has one last match with Shelton tonight.  Finally inquiries about the broken arm bring out Regal, who FURIOUSLY DEMANDS a title shot.  GMGBT proceeds to stay in her monoemotional state and tells him no, again.  Apparently compelling matches aren't her style.  Her music plays her off, presumably to call a stagehand or three into her office for a quickie.  Regal stays on the ramp and stands there for a while, before launching into a trademark SEIZURE OF RAGE, tossing Abe's set all over the place.  This transfers to the broadcast booth, and MAN Striker got a hell of a tan.  Oh wait, that's just his replacement, Byron Saxton.  Hope it's temporary, otherwise - LAME.  Hype video for Yoshi Tatsu plays us out.  Nothing special.

Sheamus Vs. Shelton Benjamin
Lauren Mayhew decided to go into total valley girl mode when announcing Sheamus for some inexplicable reason.  It made me chuckle.  Before Shelton gets to come out, he gets to have a quickie backstage interview with Savannah.  Man, this episode is pornolicious tonight!  Anyway, basic stuff, he's going to teach Sheamus to respect the gold standard.  Well of course he's going to respect gold - he has a whole pot of it! MATCH TIME GO.
Shelton is all over Sheamus from the opening bell, with a very cool highlight being when Sheamus is knocked to the outside.  Shelton proceeds to leap from the apron into a split-legged moonsault off the rope to a standing Sheamus on the outside.  First time I ever seen something like that.  Why must Shelton balance such skills with such an abyss of charisma?  It's perplexing, I tells ya.
Back from break, the new announcer is pulling off his best "white person impersonating a black person" impression, mixing street slang with perfect news anchor inflection.  Sheamus finally turns it around after slinging Benjamin into the post on the outside, and goes right to hossin' it up with power slams and rest holds.  This goes for a little while, but Shelton is able to battle back with his trademark athleticness. It's all back and forth from here and fast paced and exciting and...a bicycle kick (preceded by Shelton getting hotshotted on the ropes after missing a charge into Sheamus) ends it. Slightly anticlimactic.
Winner:  Sheamus
What Stood Out:  Well I guess they have to make the guy look threatening for the A show, but still, he's using the bicycle kick as a finisher now instead of the Irish Curse?  Who does he think he is, A-Train?  WRONG, MISTER.  You need to grow so much body hair that people mistake you for having a tan, damn it.

TO THE BACK now with Rosa Mendez annoying the shit out of Gregory Helms.  So apparently that's her gimmick now, that no one wants her around.  Hey, wasn't the old adage that the best gimmicks are just their natural persona turned up to 11?  Well in that case Rosa's on the fast track to superstardom!  Good for her!  The Burchills appear in order to tell her to hit the bricks, and Paul tells Helms to get Hurricane to meet Paul in the ring at some point (probably next week) for a proposition.  It just does NOT end.
VIDEO RECAP TIME.  Bragging rights.  Big Show SHOCKINGLY turns on his team to give SmackDown the win and the trophy.  Kind of like how SHOCKINGLY I need to go to the bathroom after drinking a gallon of water.  Knowing Jericho's hockey roots, I was a little disappointed that he didn't drink champagne out of that trophy after winning it.

TO THE BACK AGAIN where Savannah interviews with Christian.  He puts over Yoshi, saying how seeing him gets him excited about the future.  You heard it here first - Christian gets a boner watching Yoshi Tatsu wrestle.  He also takes the time to put down Regal, saying how Yoshi has won matches recently.  Yep, this main event won't end in bullshit interference, no sir.  He concludes that one night it's going to be Yoshi's turn to be champ, just not tonight.
I must comment on this commercial highlighting Batista's heel turn on Rey-Rey at the PPV.  YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO BE MY FRIEND~!  YOU KNOW, THE KIND OF FRIEND THAT TOTALLY DOES WHATEVER I SAY NO QUESTIONS ASKED AND I DO NOTHING BUT TREAT YOU LIKE CRAP.  THE BEST KIND OF FRIEND!  Yeah, I didn't really see a heel turn, all I saw was Batista being Batista.
ECW Champion Christian w/ Championship Belt Vs. Yoshi Tatsu w/ Black Belt
So, the new announcer follows in Lillian's foot steps, as apparently Yoshi's from Toki, Japan now. E-NUN-CIATE.  Big match announcements in the ring to start us off, then the bell rings at about 10:45, so this one's going for a while.  You know, only to be totally raped by commercials.
Things start off slow with some back and forth mat wrestling, which Christain wins with a springboard sunset flip for two.  Yoshi answers back with a BAAAAAACK BODY DROP and a standing senton for two, then a backslide for another two count.  Fancy pins aplenty get close counts on the champ, and we go into commercial with Christian retreating into the corner, showing some concern.
Back from break, Christian is on top for a moment before getting knocked to the outside.  Yoshi tries to pescado all over him, but Christian sidesteps him and Yoshi looks like he breaks his ankle trying to land on his feet.  Christian answers with a springboard cross body and rolls Yoshi back in.  Apparently they don't teach selling in Japan because Yoshi is running just fine and hits a running cross body for two before Christian comes back with some rest holds and a reverse DDT.  Yoshi is able to turn it around when he tosses off a tornado DDT attempt, and hits his spinning heel kick off the top for another close count.  Kicks run wild from here, finishing with a discus elbow for a closer count.  Christian gets a Killswitch attempt in, but in the end settles for standing on Yoshi in the ropes, bitchslapping him, and missile dropkicking him.  Christian then goes immediately for another one, which gets countered into a pin attempt, which get closer and closer.  Another reverse DDT gets another close one, and the crowd is loving every second of it.  It's a counter-fest from here, as Christian tries to counter a roundhouse into a Killswitch, which is shrugged off.  This turns into that kick through the ropes he does, a SHORYUKEN, and finally hits the Killswitch to pickup the victory.
Winner:  Christian
What Stood Out:  Yoshi's definitely made it.  On ECW, anyway.  The crowd totally ate up these two guys going at it, as well they should have.
After the bell, Christian tries to wake up Tatsu, but here come the ladies in red to beat the everloving shit out of the two faces, especially Christian.  Regal casually strolls in as they deliver a double chokeslam to the champ, and Regal holds up the title to raucous chants of "Regal sucks" as we're done for the week.  Well at least they were polite enough to wait until the match was over.  THE END.

Uppers:  Main event was fine stuff, as noted by the absence of jokes.  Yes, THAT'S how you know I'm into a match.  The other match was pretty good too, with the bonus of not seeing it again for a LONG time.  EVERYBODY WINS!  Except fans of Raw main event booking, but fuck those guys.  Finally, I'll give a gold star to the Abraham Washington show opening up.  What can I say?  GMGBT's music exposing her as a huge whore and REGAL SMASH made me happy.
Downers:  Eh, I guess the only fault I can think of is that the matches were focused on quality over quantity tonight.  Only two matches does qualify as a downer.  Also, as a minor gripe, they pretty much exposed that ECW has been totally off the radar of WWE lately.  I mean they openly admitted ECW hasn't been on PPV for the past few months, how guys can leave for other shows whenever the hell they feel like, and how GMGBT is probably the worst GM in the history of man, giving ECW the shaft on a constant basis.  But, again, GMGBT, huge whore, so she likes the shaft just fine.
Overall:  Once again, dynamite main event, which seems to be the pattern of these shows.  Great match with a lot of fluff preceding it.  Not that I mind...if I wanted shitty matches I'd be recapping Raw.
And that'll do it.  Have to go get ready for the Phillies starting up the World Series Repeat attempt tomorrow.  Depending on the outcome, next week I'm either going to be really happy, really pissed, or just late with the report because I decided baseball is more important than wrestling for one night.  Them's the breaks.

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November 2006


by Sean Carless

With Christmas just around the corner, what better way to spend your few remaining dollars (left over after the seemingly infinite line-up of fucking pay-per-views ) then on the following "quality WWE merchandise!" After all, if they don't move this stuff, and fast, stockholders just might get time to figure out what "plummeting domestic buyrates" means!... and well, I don't think they need to tell you what that means! (Seriously. They're not telling you. Everything is fine! Ahem.).