ECW on Sci-Fi: September 2, 2008
by Samoa Rowe
They are airing from Pittsfield, Pennsylvania. Our hosts for the evening are Todd Grisham and Matt Striker.
-We open with John Morrison and The Miz for the Dirt Sheet! The Miz puts over his chances of winning the ECW Championship at Unforgiven. They think it’s bogus that Morrison didn’t quality for the Scramble, but they seem to be good sports about it. Mark Henry and Tony Atlas join them in the ring. Morrison makes a dig at Henry’s “belt extender” but The Miz keeps the peace. Chavo Guerrero and Bam Neely join them, and Chavo is outraged that his entrance music has been replaced with the sound of Miz and Morrison humming. Chavo is excited about his chance to get the ECW title back. Finlay is absent (supposedly because he couldn’t find a sitter for Hornswoggle) and we are treated to a pretaped segment of Morrison and Miz in a bar as the “Finlay brothers.” Finlay and Hornswoggle show up anyway. Finlay isn’t too upset about the video and tells Hornswoggle to greet his “uncles” with a bite. They are joined by Matt Hardy, who defeated John Morrison to qualify for the scramble. Hardy takes a mic and picks on his opponents and their “male partners” and drags the segment down. Henry cuts him off and puts himself over as the inevitable winner, so Hardy brings up his disqualification win at Summerslam. Morrison cuts the tension by attacking Hardy, and a brawl erupts. Tommy Dreamer and Evan Bourne join the fray and help dump all the heels to the floor.
-Backstage, all the participants from the opening segment are arguing in the backstage area. Teddy Long breaks it up and makes the logical eight man tag team main event. It’ll be Morrison, Miz, Chavo, and Henry vs. Dreamer, Bourne, Finlay, and Hardy. That sounds awesome (no sarcasm).
Super Crazy vs. Gavin Spears
This is my first look at Gavin Spears, a talent that creative isn’t too high on. Well, I’m not too high on the creative team, so I’m going to give this guy the benefit of the doubt. Spears works the wrist, but Crazy reverses and works the legs. Hip toss by Super Crazy and some turnbuckle punches. Spears slides out and slams Crazy to the mat. Cover by Spears gets 2. Spears knees the head and gets another two count. Headlock by Spears. Drop toe hold by Spears, who gets another cover. Spears is trying hard to establish himself as a heel, and tells the referee to count faster. Spears works the head again. Super Crazy rolls through a sunset flip and hit’s a drop-kick to the jaw. Series of drop-kicks by Super Crazy and a spinning heel kick. Spears drops Crazy on the apron, but gets kicked in the temple. Super Crazy hit’s a moonsault off the second rope and gets the win at 4:16. Spears didn‘t show much, but hey, he tried, *.
Winner: Super Crazy
Ricky Ortiz vs. Ryan Braddock
Hey look, it’s Braddock, another guy the creative team doesn’t like. Braddock works the head, but Ortiz flips him to the mat. Braddock hangs on to the wrist and transitions to a headlock. Ortiz leap frogs over Braddock and side tackles him to the mat. Suplex by Ortiz gets a over for 2. Braddock launches himself off the top, driving his knee into the back of Ortiz’s head. That was pretty cool. Cover by Braddock gets 2. Chinlock by Braddock. Braddock continues to target the head and upper body. Ortiz fights out of a chinlock and cleans house. Ortiz goes high risk and connects with a flying shoulder tackle. It’s time for the “Big O” which is just a splash. That’s enough for the win for Ortiz at 4:40. Ortiz could use a better finisher. Decent effort from both newcomers, *¼.
Winner: Ricky Ortiz
-In case you missed it the first ten dozen times, here’s a look back at Chris Jericho punching Mrs. Shawn Michaels in the mouth.
-Josh Matthews, Mr. Kennedy, and Mickie James are at the Republican National Convention. Whoo hoo.
Matt Hardy, Tommy Dreamer, Evan Bourne, and Finlay (with Hornswoggle) vs. Mark Henry (with Tony Atlas), The Miz, John Morrison, and Chavo Guerrero (with Bam Neely)
Hardy kicks the match off against Morrison. Hardy blocks a hip toss and gets one of his own. Dreamer tags and hit’s a suplex. Elbow drop by Dreamer gets a cover for 1. Dreamer drives Morrison into Finlay’s boot and tags in the fighting Irishman. Morrison backs Finlay into the heel corner and tags Chavo. Miz chokes Finlay, while Chavo charges. Finlay clotheslines Chavo, but gets dumped from the ring. Finlay blocks the baseball slide with the ring apron and launches Hornswoggle on an interfering Neely. After a hot start, we head to a commercial break.
After the break, Finlay is in control of Chavo. Evan Bourne gets a tag and drop-kicks Chavo off the top rope. Cover by Bourne gets 2. Chavo reverses Bourne’s Irish whip, but runs into a big boot. Chavo reverses Bourne’s tirt-a-whirl backbreaker. Miz tags, but runs into a flurry of offense from Bourne, including a standing moonsault. Miz regains himself and drags Bourne to the corner and tags Henry. Henry launches Bourne into the air and makes the quick tag to Miz. It looks as if we have our face in peril. Miz applies a chinlock to Bourne. The bad guys keep the tags coming and they isolate poor Evan Bourne. Eventually, Bourne fights out of a Morrison chinlock, but his tag is prevented. Chavo continues the work on Bourne. Dreamer finally gets the hot tag and cleans house on Chavo. Henry tags and pummels Dreamer. Dreamer tags Bourne’s place as the face in peril, and the heels keep the tags and rest holds coming. Hardy gets a hot tag and cleans house on Chavo. Hardy gets some false finishes, but eats a suplex from Chavo. Henry tags and effortlessly scoop slams Hardy, but misses the splash. Bourne makes a tag and hit’s the shooting star press! Dreamer nails a frog splash and Finlay dishes out a sitting splash. Henry is in deep trouble now. Hardy tags again and nails the Twist of Fate on Henry for the win at 14:41. That was a great finish to a strong television main event, ***.
Winners: Matt Hardy, Tommy Dreamer, Evan Bourne, and Finlay
Final Thoughts: The eight men in the main event are the right guys to build this brand around. I am enjoying the tone of this show in that they are trying really hard to introduce new talent and give them the spotlight. The new talent has a way to go, but it will be interesting to see where guys like Ryan Braddock and Gavin Spears wind up. Anyhow, the Dirt Sheet and main event were both very entertaining and make for an easy thumbs up this week.