Written By: David
ECW Heat Wave ‘98
August 2, 1998
The current ECW champions were as follows:
World Champion: Shane Douglas (11/30/97)
TV Champion: Rob Van Dam (4/4/98)
Tag Team Champions: Sabu and Rob Van Dam (6/27/98)
Unrecognized FTW Champion: Taz (5/14/98)
Your hosts are Joey Styles, Shane Douglas, and Francine (but she barely ever talks).
Jerry Lynn vs. Justin Credible (w/ Jason, Nicole Bass, and Chastity)
This was match #7 of a best-of-seven series. Nobody would have guessed at the time that two years later, Lynn would beat Credible to win the ECW Title. They tie up and Lynn delivers an arm drag. Long pause as Credible jaws with the fans. Arm ringer by Credible. Lynn rolls through to reverse it, then floats over for another arm drag. Another pause. Credible takes the advantage with a knee to the gut, a right hand, and chops in the corner, but Lynn comes back with some overhand chops. Credible reverses a cross-corner whip, and Lynn mistimes a kip-up out of the corner and turns it into a sunset flip for two. Credible goes for a clothesline, but Lynn ducks, springboards off the second turnbuckle, and lands a cross body for two. Lynn goes for another cross-corner whip, Credible reverses again, Lynn kips up, gets caught by Credible, who goes for That’s Incredible, but Lynn wiggles free and gets a victory roll for two. Credible puts a boot in the gut and whips Lynn to the ropes. Lynn ducks a clothesline and delivers a flying head scissors, then clotheslines Credible to the floor. Lynn takes a big dive from the top turnbuckle onto Credible. Credible’s rolled back in for two. Lynn goes for that face first drop from a vertical suplex position move (What the hell is it called?) and gets two. Lynn’s in control. Headlock takedown and Lynn holds Credible down for two. Credible gets to his feet and breaks free with forearms to the side. Lynn goes into the ropes and scores a shoulder block. Off the ropes again, Credible drops down, then leaps over Lynn and heads into the ropes, Lynn picks him up for a tilt-a-whirl backbacker, but Credible counters it into an inverted DDT. Well done spot. Credible slows it down with right hands in the corner, then boots Lynn to a seated position. Jason grabs a chair and holds it in front of Lynn’s face, and Credible goes in for a hard running knee. Credible pulls Lynn up by the legs and turns it into a sit-out powerbomb onto the chair! 1-2-NO! Credible scores another right hand and sends Lynn to the outside. While referee John Finnegan has a conversation with Chastity, Lynn gets held back by Nicole Bass and receives a few martial arts kicks from Jason. Credible goes after him and they exchange chops. Jason gives Lynn a chop and Credible capitalizes with a thumb to the eye. Credible whips Lynn to the guardrail and hits him with a lethal cup o’ beer. Back in, Lynn reverses a cross-corner whip and Credible does a Flair Flip onto the apron. He ducks a clothesline and hits one of his own. He goes up top for a double-axe handle, but Lynn catches him and turns it into a flapjack. Lynn hits the ropes and Credible catches him for a sidewalk slam that gets two. A Credible chin lock gives the guys a rest. Lynn breaks free, heads to the ropes, goes for a sunset flip, but Credible counters for two, and then it’s one counter into a near fall after another until Lynn scores a sit-out powerbomb for the 1-2-NO!. Lynn sets Credible up top and hits a top-rope hurracanrana that gets two. Side slam by Lynn. He goes up top for a leaping hurracanrana, but Credible counters into a powerbomb for two. Credible brings the chair back and sets it on the mat. He whips Lynn, puts an elbow in the midsection, then goes for a front leg sweep onto the chair, but Lynn counters it into a DDT on the chair. He’s slow to the cover, and Chastity puts Credible’s foot on the rope after two. As Lynn jaws with the entourage, Credible charges at him but gets tossed to the apron, then Lynn drops his throat onto the rope. Credible’s dazed on the apron and Lynn moves a table in place, and delivers a big hurracanrana from the turnbuckle through the table on the floor! Lynn tosses him back in for a cover, but for no reason whatsoever, Finnegan has another conversation with Chastity, allowing Jason to sneak in and nail Lynn in the back with a chair. He goes for a powerbomb, but Lynn flips through it and hits Jason with a sit-out powerbomb. Nicole Bass comes in, hits Lynn from behind and sets him up in a fireman’s carry (Joey Styles: “Notice I didn’t say firewoman.”), but Lynn wiggles free and hits a low blow! The crowd loves that. He tops it off with a chair to the back. Chastity comes in and talks to Lynn while Credible regroups and drives a forearm to Lynn’s back. He holds Lynn back as Chastity winds up for a foot to the groin, but Lynn jumps up and she kicks Credible. Lynn delivers a tombstone piledriver on Chastity to more pops. He attacks Credible with some forearms in the corner and perches him up for another hurracanrana. Lynn’s ready to go, but Credible hits him with a low blow, and then both guys hold on tight as Credible hits a TOMBSTONE OFF THE SECOND ROPE for the 1-2-3. (14:36) Pretty damn entertaining match and perfect for an opener. Good story with Lynn taking most of the punishment and fighting through the interference but never quitting until being hit with a nasty finishing move. Some sloppiness brought it down, though. ***3/4
Chris Candido (w/ Tammy Lynn Sytch) vs Lance Storm
Since this is the ECW-released DVD version, we jump right to the in-ring introductions. Candido’s wearing amateur wrestling headgear. The two talk trash and Candido spits at Storm. They tie up and Storm puts Candido in the corner but gives him a clean break. Another tie up into the corner, Candido gives a clean break and pays for it with a boot to the midsection. A big series of rope running leads to a Lance Storm spinning heel kick. They chop the hell out of each other until Storm sends Candido to the corner and beats him to a seated position for a low dropkick to the face. Storm slaps Candido around and pulls off his headgear, but Candido pulls Storm by the tights into the corner. Candido stomps him a bit and his Irish whip is countered by Storm, who charges at Candido but gets tossed to the apron, receives a forearm, and goes crashing into the guardrail. Candido hits a flying cross body from the top rope, then sends Storm into the guardrail again. Candido rolls him in and gets a one count, then goes to a surfboard. Storm gets to his feet and breaks free with a mule kick. Candido reverses an Irish whip and Tammy grabs Storm’s leg, dropping him face first on the canvas. Storm catches Candido gloating with a dropkick. He chases Tammy into the ring and hits Candido with a clothesline. He goes for a hurracanrana, but Candido counters into a sit-out powerbomb. Cover gets two. Stalling suplex by Candido, then a leg drop from the second turnbuckle for two. Storm reverses a cross-corner whip, charges in, and catches Candido’s boot, but he hits a crescent kick for two. Candido is sent to the ropes, ducks a clothesline, and hits a swinging neckbreaker for two. He slows it down with a chin lock. Storm breaks free and goes the ropes. Candido bends down for a back body drop, but Storm kicks him, bounces off the ropes again, and Candido catches him for a picture-perfect powerslam for two. Candido drops Storm on the ropes. He does it again, but this time Storm lands on the apron, connects with a forearm, and delivers a nasty suplex from the apron to the floor! Candido landed hard but practically no-sells it, gets up right away, and eats a baseball slide that sends him over the guardrail. Storm hits a springboard plancha into the first row! Storm goes for a whip to the rail, but Candido reverses it, and they exchange chops. Back in, they exchange right hands, then missed clotheslines, then each hits the other with a punch at the same time. They stagger into the ropes, then stagger into each other, Storm falls, and Candido staggers all over the ring until falling on Storm for two. Candido gets caught going to the top turnbuckle and Storm delivers a superplex. Storm hits a flying spinning heel kick and gets two. Sit-out powerbomb gets two. Storm goes to the apron for a springboard off the top, but Candido catches him in the air for a powerslam that gets two. Cross-corner whip, and Storm springboards into a flying back elbow. Tammy smuggles Candido a handful of powder, but Storm sees it and knocks it into Candido’s eyes. Candido can’t see and starts swinging wildly and clocks referee Jim Molineaux. Storm hits another crescent kick and heads up top for a moonsault, but Tammy gropes his ass for a second before pushing him into an ugly landing on the top turnbuckle. Molineaux gets up and starts yelling at Tammy. She shoves him and then he grabs her by the straps on her dress. Candido takes Molineaux down with a school boy (WTF?), and Tammy’s dress comes loose as she falls to the mat. The fans and the ringside photographer try sneaking a peak as Tammy covers up. Candido meets Storm on the top turnbuckle and hits a SUPER BLONDE BOMBSHELL and staggers to a cover for the 1-2-3. (11:00) Not the technical clinic you might expect from these two, but still above average. Could have used a couple convincing near falls. I’ll say **3/4.
We see a clip from earlier in the day of New Jack talking to the camera while a bunch of fans make noise. Jack Victory shows up and New Jack challenges him to a showdown right there, but the Dudley Boyz roll up in a car and attack New Jack. Balls Mahoney and Axl Rotten try to the make the save, but Victory (Old Jack) slams New Jack’s head into the car. New Jack’s hurt so the weapons match between the Jacks won’t happen tonight. Big loss there.
Rob Van Dam and Bill Alfonzo give a promo while Sabu stands by wearing a suit and sunglasses.
Mike Awesome vs Masato Tanaka
Again, who would have guessed then that these two would battle for the ECW Title a little over a year later? They lock up and Awesome kicks Tanaka in the corner. Cross-corner whip reversed by Tanaka, but Awesome walks up the turnbuckles for a back elbow that gets a quick two. They exchange punches, Tanaka goes to a headlock, gets thrown the ropes, there’s a standing collision, and Awesome calls Tanaka a motherfucker. Tanaka goes to the ropes again, an Awesome hip toss is reversed into a Tanaka hip toss, but that’s countered. Awkward moment as they both stand there for a second. Awesome misses a clotheline but connects on a kick, bounces off the ropes, catches Tanaka trying to leap frog, and heaves him across the ring with an overhead belly-to-belly suplex. Awesome charges and gets tossed to the apron but lands on his feet, and then hits a slingshot shoulder block. Splash gets two. Clothesline over the ropes by Awesome, followed by a tope! He tosses Tanaka in and heads to the top for a flying clothesline for two. Cross-corner whip and a charge by Awesome, but Tanaka moves out of the way, big swing ducked by Awesome, who then scores a release German suplex. But Tanaka does his patented no-sell, and then catches a charging Awesome with a powerslam. He sends Awesome to the elevated rampway and hits a springboard clothesline from the second rope. He grabs a chair and heads to the rampway. Chair to the gut, then he backs up for a 20-yard dash and smashes the chair into Awesome’s head. Back in, a missile dropkick gets two. Tanaka charges but Awesome puts him on his shoulders and dumps him outside. Both men grab chairs and it’s a chair duel until Awesome drops his and Tanaka scores a kick and a chair to the back. Awesome gets whipped into the rail, but back drops Tanaka into the crowd. Awesome hits a big springboard plancha into the first row. Back in, an Awesomebomb gets a two count. A slam and a splash off the ropes gets another two. Awesome goes for a chair and hits two stiff ones on Tanaka’s head, but Tanaka’s no-selling again. Rope running series ends with Awesome picking up the chair and scoring a third chair shot. 1-2-NO! Running release Awesomebomb puts Tanaka down long enough for Awesome to get a table in position outside the ring. He takes a chair up top and comes down hard with another chair shot to the head. Awesome gets set to powerbomb Tanaka outside, but Tanaka wiggles free, runs the ropes, and runs into a big boot. Awesome goes for it again, Tanaka wiggles free again, and Tanaka powerbombs Awesome through the table! Looked like a painful landing. Tanaka rolls him back in for the 1-2-NO! A strong forearm by Tanaka, then he catches Awesome going for a kick, then scores with the ROARING ELBOW for the 1-2-NO! Crowd thought it was over. Tanaka sets up two chairs on the mat near the corner and scores with a tornado DDT onto the chairs, and he gets the 1-2-3. (11:49) Fun match. Their World Title feud saw a few better matches and they stole the show at the first WWECW One Night Stand, but this one isn’t too far behind. ***1/2
Standard Taz promo in some mysterious dark room, followed by an annoying Dudley Boyz promo.
Tag Team Champions Sabu and Rob Van Dam (w/ Bill Alfonso) vs Hayabusa and Jinsei Shinzaki
Shinzaki is perhaps better known as Hakushi from mid-90′s WWF. Van Dam and Hayabusa start with some standing switches. Hayabusa with an arm bar, RVD with a single-leg takedown and an ankle pick. Hayabusa reverses it into a cradle for a one count. RVD goes back to the leg, punches, stomps, then eats some time strutting around the ring. Hayabusa puts him in a headlock, hits the ropes, scores a shoulder block, goes for a springboard off the second rope and whatever was supposed to happen gets completely botched. Van Dam eats some more time. He hits Hayabusa with some forearms, sends him to the ropes, split-legged drop down, and then there’s another botched spot. RVD sends him to the ropes again for a Japanese arm drag. Hayabusa gets tired of RVD’s gloating and scores with a series of kicks, then slaps Sabu, who goes nuts but gets stopped by referee John “Pee Wee” Moore. Shinzaki comes in and controls RVD with some throat shots, a body slam, and a second-rope springboard splash for two. He sends RVD to the ropes for a back body drop, but RVD kicks him in the chest. Shinzaki catches Van Dam’s foot, then ducks an enziguri, but RVD lands on his feet and delivers a beautiful back heel to the face. More gloating, except this time he earned it. Boots and right hands in the corner by RVD, then an Irish whip, Shinzaki counters, now they’re going the other way, and Shinzaki hits an enziguri of his own. He goes to an arm ringer, then does the praying rope walk, and comes down with a chop to the shoulder. RVD ducks a clothesline and tries a double underhook drop, but Shinzaki counters with a leg sweep, then drops a knee but misses. RVD hits a spinning kick and a corkscrew leg drop. Sabu gets the tag and goes for a quick two, followed by a springboard leg drop and another two. A chinlock, a few boots, and a clothesline get another two. Sabu goes to the chinlock, then works on the shoulder before Shinzaki tags out. Hayabusa receives a drop kick to the shin and an Arabian press. Sabu gets another two, then goes right back to a chinlock. Hayabusa sends Sabu to the ropes, and Sabu hits a shoulder block and goes back to the ropes, but Hayabusa quickly kips up and scores a nice high drop kick. Sabu ducks out to the floor, and Hayabusa does a backflip to show up the Pot Connection on their own turf. A slugging contest ensues, then Sabu drop kicks the shin again for another two count. Perhaps some smart fan psychology here as Sabu, who everyone knows has done a lot of work in Japan, seems to be taking his opponents more seriously than Van Dam is. It’s a stretch, I know. Sabu goes to a couple leg submission moves, then a couple right hands for another two. Hayabusa wants out, but Sabu holds him in. Snap mare and a variation on a camel clutch by Sabu. Van Dam hops in, does a fancy springboard backflip off the second rope, then a dropkick into Hayabusa’s face as he’s stuck in the hold. Shinzaki doesn’t like that and gives Van Dam a springboard dropkick that sends him to the floor, then hits a tope. Hayabusa kicks Sabu out to the floor, then adds a baseball slide that sends Sabu into Van Dam. Big asai moonsault by Hayabusa. Shinzaki sends Van Dam over the guardrail, and Hayabusa joins a brawl in the second row. Sabu breaks it up with a triple jump plancha! Funny moment as RVD throws Sabu over the rail as if he were an opponent. RVD drapes Hayabusa on the rail and hits a corkscrew leg drop off the apron. In the ring, Shinzaki gets the worst of a slugfest with Sabu, and RVD puts him in a Mexican surfboard. As Sabu goes up top, Fonzie throws him a chair, but Sabu drops it. He hops down to regain it, goes back up, and comes flying down with the chair onto Shinzaki. Not quite a blown spot, but still pretty sloppy. Van Dam covers despite not being the legal man, but Hayabusa clubs him at two. Tag rules are out the door. Sabu is sent to the floor, and RVD gets double-teamed with simultaneous side kicks and a double bulldog. Body slam by Shinzaki, springboard swanton from the apron by Hayabusa, springboard knee drop from the apron by Shinzaki, then a springboard moonsault off the second rope. Hayabusa covers but Sabu makes the save. Sabu takes control on Hayabusa and goes for Air Sabu off RVD’s back. Big swinging kick by RVD and a cover, but Shinzaki makes the save. Shinzaki sends RVD to the floor, and he and Hayabusa give Sabu a series of martial arts kicks. German suplex by Hayabusa gets two. RVD was late on the save. RVD and Hayabusa brawl on the outside while Sabu scores a hurracanrana from the top rope. That’s followed by a FIVE-STAR FROG SPLASH by RVD that is partially missed by the camera. There’s no immediate cover (?), but Sabu rolls over for a two count. RVD looks for a German suplex, but Shinzaki counters with a backflip drop kick that Van Dam doesn’t know how to receive. Hayabusa gives Sabu some right hands and goes up top while Shinzaki delivers a powerbomb on RVD. Hayabusa hits RVD with a STARDUST PRESS (450 splash). Sabu breaks up the cover after two. For no reason, Shinzaki rests in the corner while Sabu snap mares Hayabusa and the Pot Connection does their patented Rolling Thunder and slingshot leg drop combo. Shinzaki wakes up and spin kicks RVD in the gut, then goes after Sabu, who catches him and puts him in a Boston crab while RVD comes off the top with a leg drop. Without releasing the hold, Sabu rolls Shinzaki up for the 1-2-NO! Some slow brawling ensues as Sabu brings a table into the ring and sets it up. A bit more brawling. Shinzaki gets on the top rope while RVD and Hayabusa brawl in a corner, and while Shinzaki’s up there, it becomes clear that if there was something planned, it got botched. Sabu wants to save the moment, so he awkwardly pushes the table aside and points to the ceiling to let Shinzaki hit him with a flying shoulder block for two. Shinzaki locks an awesome submission move that has Sabu choking himself with his own forearms, but RVD is there to save him. Shinzaki catches an RVD kick and does a wicked version of a dragon screw leg whip. Hayabusa gets back in and lifts Sabu onto the turnbuckle. He’s set for a hurracanrana, but Sabu crotches him on the top rope. In yet another sloppy display, Sabu actually grabs Hayabusa’s pants to keep him from falling off, then stands up on the turnbuckle, only to jump off when RVD hits a flying Van Daminator with assistance from Fonzie. RVD gloats and Shinzaki sneaks up on him for another dragon screw. Shinzaki looks like he wants to do something with the table, but the legs are broken on one side, so he hits Van Dam with a spin kick. Sabu grabs the table, but apparently got a splinter in his hand, allowing Hayabusa to clean his clock with another kick while everyone tries to figure out how this thing will ever end. Shinzaki tries placing Van Dam on the table, which is resting up diagonally, but his weight brings the table down. Hayabusa goes up top anyways and hits an awkward looking splash. There’s even more sloppiness as Sabu calmly walks around the ring while his partner is being covered, but RVD kicks out at two. Sabu tosses in two new tables while Hayabusa hits RVD with something close to a Michinoku Driver. Sabu breaks up the cover with an Arabian facebuster. Shinzaki stands bent over for an awkward second before Sabu tosses him the chair and RVD hits another Van Daminator. Sabu sets up a table, and Shinzaki and Hayabusa are placed on top. The Pot Connection goes up for stereo flying leg drops through the table! Van Dam tries to cover Shinzaki, but Sabu knocks him out of the way and makes the cover for the 1-2-3. (20:51) Wow. One of the sloppiest matches I’ve ever seen, but somehow it’s still entertaining as hell. I guess that’s what a bunch of aerial moves can do for you. The few moves imported from Japan were pretty cool, too. I suppose it did the trick since the match was meant to be a spotfest anyway and the crowd ate it up, but I can’t forgive the number of sloppy moments. **3/4, and that might be generous.
Quick history package for the Taz/Bam Bam Bigelow feud. This will be a rematch from their Living Dangerously encounter that ended with Bam Bam crushing Taz through the ring mat — you know, the clip that ECW showed over and over and over — and Bam Bam getting the win. Taz claimed that Bam Bam tapped to the Tazmission just before falling onto Taz and through the mat, and Bam Bam and the rest of the Triple Threat claimed he didn’t. The feud culminated at Guilty as Charged 99 when Shane Douglas dropped the strap to Taz.
Falls Count Anywhere: FTW Champion Taz vs Bam Bam Bigelow
Bam Bam scores a powerbomb right off the bat, but Taz no-sells and catches him coming off the ropes with an arm drag. Boots in the corner by Taz, a cross-corner whip is reversed, but Taz bounces back with a pair of clotheslines and a samoan drop. He takes the big man out to the rampway, connects with rights, and knocks Bam Bam into the crowd. He leaps off, but Bam Bam catches him and drives him into the guardrail. Chair to the back and a headbutt by Bam Bam, then Taz gets away momentarily. We’re still in the crowd, and the two brawl back and forth for a while. Bam Bam gets two after a whip into a row of chairs. Later on, Taz goes barreling into some loose guardrails, then Bam Bam drops another guardrail on him, but Taz no-sells again and delivers a double-leg takedown for two. Taz counters a vertical suplex into a Northern Lights for two. Bam Bam follows Taz across the arena until both men get their heads smashed into a chair, then Taz goes for a Fujiwara arm bar! That’s pretty cool. Bam Bam breaks free and takes control, tossing Taz onto chairs and adding a chair to the back for two. Taz somehow gets an advantage (serious lack of psychology here) and puts on the TAZMISSION, but Bam Bam turns it into a jawbreaker. He finally brings the match back to ringside and hits Taz with a STIFF chair shot to the back. Taz gets rolled in. He’s bleeding and Bigelow’s limping. Bigelow hits another powerbomb, then brings a table in the ring, sets it up diagonally in the corner, and whips Taz through it face first. That was probably the quickest lifespan for a table after being tossed in the ring in wrestling history. Bigelow stomps him a bit, then goes for a whip, but Taz counters to a short arm clothesline. Taz adjusts the broken table back into a corner and hoists Bam Bam up for a T-bone Tazplex through what’s remaining. Both men are slow to get back up. Two Brooklyn boots by Taz and a clothesline by Bam Bam. It gets slow again until Bigelow pummels Taz out to the rampway. Bigelow tries a body slam, but Taz counters into a swinging DDT and both men go through the rampway! Obviously an allusion to the Living Dangerously spot. There’s a long wait until Bam Bam crawls out and is staggered on the rampway. Taz pops up and he’s pissed. He charges at Bam Bam and jumps on his back for the TAZMISSION. Bigelow taps immediately and this one’s over. (13:21) Not the worst brawl ever, but really nothing special other than the rampway spot. **1/2
Sandman, Tommy Dreamer and Spike Dudley vs. Buh Buh Ray, D-Von and Big Dick Dudley (w/ Sign Guy, Joel Gertner and Jeff Jones)
The story here is that the Dudley Boyz broke Beulah’s neck with a 3D (kayfabe) and Tommy wants revenge. Jeff Jones is carrying a mannequin with a Beulah picture on it. Buh Buh taunts the crowd, then Joel Gertner does his thing (“harder than Chinese algebra”). Sandman, Dreamer and Spike show up with three ladders of varying heights. Dreamer and Spike join Sandman in a pre-match beer binge. Everyone stares each other down while I try to recall a match that took longer to get started. D-Von and Tommy start it off with a few punches and long series of rope running and reversals. D-Von sits down on a sunset flip, and then it’s one near fall after another. D-Von eats a right hand, then gets perched on the top rope, and Tommy hits a neckbreaker out of the corner. Buh Buh and Spike tag in. Biel and a press slam by Buh Buh. He goes for another press slam to the outside, but Spike pokes him in the eye and falls on him for a one count. Spike comes back with forearms and hits 10 right hands in the corner. He stands on Buh Buh’s chest, then drops down for a hurracanrana, but it’s countered into a powerbomb. Buh Buh slows it down and tosses Spike into the corner, where he’s choked by D-Von. You gotta love ECW tag team psychology. In any other promotion, if a babyface is being choked, his partner would try to break it up, and would most likely get stopped by the ref. Instead, Tommy and Sandman calmly stand on the apron and talk mess with Buh Buh Ray. We slow down to a snail’s pace as Buh Buh hits a forearm, a clothesline, and a back body drop. They trade a few blows and Buh Buh picks Spike up for another body slam, but misses a splash. Spike charges, but gets stopped with a boot. Buh Buh tries a powerbomb, but Spike counters into a hurracanrana, and then Buh Buh walks into a can o’ beer from Sandman, allowing Spike to hit a facebuster. Big Dick and Sandman tag in. They trade shoves into the corner, then Sandman hits some left hands and a clothesline to the floor. Dick recovers quickly, pulls Sandman out, and now we’ve got a six-man brawl on the floor. Mayhem ensues outside as Buh Buh and Sandman wrestle on the inside. Cross-corner whips and right hands by Buh Buh. He misses a clothesline and Sandman slugs away, then perches Buh Buh on top for a ROLLING ROCK (top rope hurracanrana). Big Dick is busted open by Tommy outside. Spike is also busted open. He and Sandman snag the tallest of the ladders, set it up in the ring, and Spike takes the long plunge onto all three of the Dudleys on the outside! Sandman hits D-Von with a body slam and drops the ladder on him, then goes up top for a rolling senton onto the ladder, onto D-Von, who is also bleeding now. Sandman gets dumped outside by Big Dick, and suddenly the Dudleys are in control. Big Dick hits a body slam on Tommy, then Buh Buh places the ladder on Tommy and hits a normal senton from the second rope. Spike hits Buh Buh with a low blow and an ACID DROP, which gets two before D-Von makes the save. D-Von drops Spike hard onto the ladder with a side slam. That looked brutal. Big Dick inexplicably heads up top and Sandman shoves him into an ugly landing, then bends him back into the tree of woe. Tommy and Spike put D-Von and Buh Buh Ray into the tree of woe while Sandman throws some chairs into the ring. Sign Guy jumps in and Tommy puts him and his cast-covered leg into a figure-four. Jeff Jones hops in and stomps away at Tommy, then he brings in the Beulah mannequin, piledrives it, then mocks Tommy with his arms-out taunt. Predictably, Tommy pops up and hits a piledriver of his own. He and referee Jim Molineaux put Gertner in a tree of woe. Each corner’s got a guy in the tree of woe, and Sandman has placed a chair in front of each guy’s face. The Dreamer squad plus the referee team up and go for simultaneous baseball slides into the chairs. Tommy hits a Dreamer Driver on D-Von for a two count before Big Dick makes the save. Sandman and Buh Buh brawl awkwardly while Big Dick holds Tommy in a high choke hold and drops him with a sit-out powerbomb, which is supposed to look like it landed Tommy on the ladder, but only Big Dick’s big ass made contact with it. Spike goes for an acid drop on Big Dick, but he counters and tosses Spike into the table on the outside! Sandman catches Big Dick gloating with a cane to the back of the head, then to the crotch. Buh Buh ducks the cane and delivers a big chair shot. Tommy’s laying on the ladder, and Buh Buh tries a splash from the second rope, but Tommy moves. Tommy finishes him off with a DDT on the ladder, and that gets the 1-2-3. (14:26) After the match, Jack Victory runs in and hits Dreamer with a guitar filled with powder and starts stomping away. And then, to nobody’s surprise, New Jack’s music hits and he heads down the ramp and dumps a shopping cart full of weapons on the mat. Buh Buh picks up a stop sign. He swings at New Jack, who blocks it, pries it away, and smashes it over Buh Buh’s head. Jack Victory eats a garbage can and D-Von eats a pan. Big Dick gets dumped out with a shopping cart shot. Sandman helps set up Victory for a golf club to the stop sign to the groin move. New Jack tops that off with another stop sign to the head, and then the powder-filled guitar, and Jack Victory’s officially done. Sandman sets up the ladders and he, New Jack, and Dreamer celebrate atop the ladders while Spike runs around the ring like a psycho. Just a senseless brawl with a few cool spots. **1/4
Final Thoughts: This show is called ECW’s best more often than any other pay-per-view or pre-PPV-era supercard, but I disagree. It’s a fun ride all the way through, everyone on the card was a good worker at the time (except Big Dick Dudley), and there isn’t one throwaway match, but it doesn’t have any real standout matches. Lynn/Credible is awesome but doesn’t quite hold the show on its back. I think it gets a good wrap for RVD/Sabu/Shinzaki/Hayabusa and Tanaka/Awesome, which were both a lot of fun, but not quite the caliber you might expect from these six names. Also, in terms of ECW storylines at the time, there weren’t many surprises. Everyone knew that Taz and Tommy Dreamer were going to get revenge in their respective feuds and everyone knew that RVD and Sabu wouldn’t job to a pair of imports brought in for one night. Thumbs up, one of the best ECW pay-per-views, but just not THE best.