Written by: Scott Keith
– Okay, this show is split into two parts: Clips of the New York show from March 8, and then the full show from Philly the next night. The New York show featured a main event of Raven going over Sandman to retain the ECW title, plus another 2/3 falls match between Rey and Juvy, and other stuff. I don’t rate clips, so we’ll skip to the full show from the Bingo Hall.
– Taped from the Bingo Hall
– Your host is Joey.
– Joey brings out the Gangstas for an interview. Oh, yeah, give New Jack mic time, that’s REAL smart. Better call the lawyers, just in case. New Jack was just in jail and apparently was lacking for entertainment, and wants to cause physical injury to someone to make up for that. You know, that’s the kind of thing that tends to make the police put you BACK in jail. He says “fuck” a lot, too. Damian Kane comes out to make small talk. It’s always a good sign when the Satan-worshipping hardcore redneck manager gets into a spat with the psychotic and militantly white-hating ghetto tag team. Notice how Kane disappeared shortly after this feud? Makes you think. New Jack thinks things over and pops Kane one, so he decides to manage Sandman and Scorpio later tonight for a tag match against the Gangstas. New Jack wants the Headhunters involved, so it’s a three-way. The crowd pops like a Flair-Steamboat Iron Man match was just announced. I’m convinced Paul Heyman put something in the beer to solicit that kind of reaction for some of the shitty matches he booked under the guise of main events.
– Clips of the Axl Rotten v. JT Smith match, as JT blows a tornado DDT, but recovers and pins Axl in the corner using the ropes.
– The Bad Crew v. Damien Stone & Pablo Marquez. A total squash, only notable because Mr. Stone was repackaged shortly after as Little Guido. Brian Pillman interrupts at 1:38 and cleans house. Pillman mouths off Shane Douglas while hiding behind his football player bodyguard, but when Douglas answers and charges the ring, Pillman bolts like Vince Russo being chased by a pack of wild logicians.
– Clips of the Eliminators downing Hack Myers & Buh Buh Ray Dudley via Total Elimination on Hack.
– Tazz v. Chris Jericho. Tazz works a cross armbreaker to start, and overpowers Jericho. Jericho gets a quick german suplex for two. Tazz bails. Springboard dropkick puts Tazz on the floor again, and Jericho follows up with a plancha. Back in, he goes up with a flying splash for two. Suplex and Lionsault get two. Jericho unleases the CANADIAN VIOLENCE, but Tazz gets a northern lights suplex for two. Jericho superkicks him and goes up, but gets crotched. Tazz’s superplex is countered by Jericho landing on his feet, and he gets a clothesline. Tazz gets another suplex – T-Bone this time – and Styles sells the neck injury in admirable fashion. The ref wants to stop things, but Jericho’s tough. He’s only 30 seconds tough, however, as Tazz quickly puts him out of his misery with the Tazzmission. The Path of Rage is still going strong. Nowadays it’s the Path of Jelly Donuts, but there’s not much call for a monster midget heel anyway. *1/2 Tazz keeps beating on Jericho and fellow Stampede alumnus Brian Pillman comes out to save, but then changes his mind and cackles gleefully until Shane Douglas runs him off again.
– Rey Mysterio Jr. v. Juventud Guerrera. This is from the Big-Ass Extreme Bash in 1996, and it’s Rey’s last ECW match before jumping to Atlanta. It’s also 2/3 falls. Rey with a surfboard, into the bridging deathlock. Juvy gets a northern lights suplex for two. Rey gets a rana for two. Pinfall reversal sequence ends with a two count for Juvy. Nick knucklelock gymnastic exhibition spot leads into a near-fall for Juvy, and Rey comes back with another rana for two. Rey dumps him and fakes a highspot, then follows with a quebrada. Back in, Rey goes up with a top rope powerbomb for two. They fight over a suplex, won by Juvy for two. Spinkick, springboard dropkick, and dragon suplex finish for Guerrera at 5:30. Second fall: Rey snaps off a rana for two. Juvy charges and splats on the apron, and Rana headscissors him to the floor. Rey vaults over the ref and gets a tope on Juvy, and they head back in. Powerbomb gets two for Rey. Lionsault gets two. Juvy snaps off a clothesline and kicks away, but gets dropkicked while trying a bodypress and Rey finishes with a Doctorbomb at 9:01. Third fall: Juvy takes a breather outside and then dropkicks Rey, and puts him on top for a dropkick to the floor. Baseball slide, and Rey is in the crowd. Juvy follows with a quebrada. Back in, springboard leg lariat gets two. Springboard legdrop misses, and Rey comes back. They head up and Juvy blocks a rana, but gets caught coming off into a powerbomb for two. Rey with a northern lights suplex, and a moonsault misses. Juvy gets a blockbuster suplex for two. Rey with the leg lariat and Juvy bails, but Rey slides out with a headscissors on him. Rey hits a tope and battle outside the arena, where Juvy powerbombs Rey on a CAR, and they head back in. To the top, where Rey reverses Splash Mountain into a rana for the pin at 16:00. Non-stop spots. ***1/2
– Cactus Jack v. Mikey Whipwreck. This is the final appearance for Mick Foley before selling out to the WWF machine and getting remade into Mankind. Jack works Mikey’s injured neck and stomps him. Nothing fancy there. Running knee and Mikey gets tossed. Mikey dodges a chair, but hits the post. Back in, Mikey fights back and dumps Cactus with his own Cactus Clothesline. Backdrop suplex on the floor, and back in Mikey gets a legsweep. Jack dumps him out onto the table…and it doesn’t break. Big elbow from the second rope to the concrete follows, as Jack busts out the classics for his last match. Mikey keeps fighting him off, however, and they head into the crowd. Mikey comes back in and then comes barrelling out of the ring like RVD on a sugar high with an insane somersault into the front row that nearly misses and ends his career right there. Jack clotheslines him over the railing again, and suplexes him on the floor. Back in, he debuts the Mandible Claw, but no one has a clue what’s he supposed to be doing. Just goes to show what training the audience can do for even the dumbest finisher. Piledriver gets two. Double-arm DDT gets two. Guillotine on the apron, but he dives at Mikey on the floor and hits the railing instead, which is quite the sick bump. Back in, Mikey absolutely smokes him with a chairshot, about 0.8 on the Rocky Scale. A full 1.0 would require Mick to be handcuffed. It gets two. Again with the furniture, and Mick bails while clutching a Leonard Cohen album. I am not making that up. They brawl through the crowd and arrive over at the broadcast area, where Mikey does a balcony dive onto Cactus. They drag each other to the ring and back in, but Jack nails him on the way down from the top rope and MURDERS him with a chair. Thank god it was only on the back or the kid would be dead, I swear to god. Piledriver on the chair puts Mikey out of his pain at 16:24. This was, as Good Ol JR might say, a hellacious asskicking and a very physical encounter. Both guys sold like champs, too. ***3/4 Jack pesters the terrified Mikey into a final hug goodbye, and then delivers his farewell speech, which is actually quite heartfelt and moving, very unlike the Mick Foley that the world knew at that point. Stevie Richards and Blue Meanie come out for a dance number to “New York, New York”, and then Jack struts off into the sunset.
– The Bruise Brothers v. The Pitbulls. Matched is pretty clippy, as we jump to everyone brawling outside and into the crowd. A Bruise brother gets superbomed, but Tommy Dreamer and Richards and Meanie all run in and there’s no finish apparent. ј*
– Sabu v. Big Titan. Our old friend Titan would show up in the WWF later that year as Razor Ramon II. Sabu squashes Titan with a DDT on a chair and Arabian facebuster at 2:11. Ѕ*
– ECW World title: Raven v. Shane Douglas. Raven complains that he has the gout and can’t wrestle tonight, but Stevie decides to ambush Douglas and the match starts anyway. Raven DDTs Shane for two. They brawl out, Raven limping around the whole way. He DDTs Shane again, on the floor, and decides to try for the countout win. In ECW? Douglas makes it back at 8. Raven sends him to the railing and Richards & Meanie run in, but get decked by Shane. He then uses a chair on Raven’s injured leg, and DDTs him for two. Shane stops to spank Kimona, who of course was asking for it and really enjoyed it once it was done. You know, maybe if Paul Heyman’s dad was a shrink instead of a lawyer, he might have been a much nicer person with less issues towards women. It must kill him to work under Stephanie. Shane then kicks Kimona to the curb, but Raven kicks him in the curb, if you know what I mean. The ref gets bumped and Douglas wipes out the Dynamic Dipshits and Raven with the BELLY TO BELLY SUPLEXES OF DOOM, but there’s no ref to see the sure pinfall. The Bruise Brothers attack Shane, Raven gets two. Shane kicks a chair in Raven’s face and gets a hotshot for two. Atomic drop on a chair and a clothesline get two. Raven DDTs him on the chair for the pin at 8:40. They just never meshed, and the result was a dull match. ** A six-person brawl with the Bruises and Raven against Tommy, Sandman and Shane breaks out, but never went anywhere in the long run. Joey is confused, and says that the only real certainty in life is that WCW’s next PPV will suck. WCW’s next PPV was Uncensored ’96, so if you need lottery numbers, call Joey.
– Sandman & Scorpio v. The Headhunters v. The Gangstas. Missy was so think and nonskanky here compared to today. Gangstas are fashionably later, as per usual. Scorpio gets a quick splash on a Headhunter, and Sandman legdrops him from the top. Canings & catfights become the order of the day, and Headhunter moonsaults Scorpio in the confusion while the other one splashes Sandman. And now of course the Gangstas get going. They go after the Headhunters and brawl. Mustafa gets maimed by the Headhunters while New Jack tussles with Sandman. Scorpio hits a plancha onto New Jack, who’s in the second row. More brawling. Sandman chairs people. Back in, New Jack works Scorpio over. The Hunters grab New Jack and pummel him, but Sandman dives onto them from the ring. A Headhunter misses a legdropon Scorpio, so Scorp finishes him with a 450 at 10:00. So it’s Sandman & Scorpio against The Gangstas. Headhunters take their time leaving, making sure to destroy Scorpio first. Sandman chases the Headhunters back to the dressing room and doesn’t return. Mustafa powerslams Scorpio for two. Double-team suplex gets two. New Jack fucks up a hotshot, so they REDO THE DAMN SPOT and get it right this time. Powerslam/headbutt combo finish the helpless Scorpio at 14:19. Usual ECW mindless brawl here. * I was literally falling asleep at points during the brawling section
The Bottom Line: Two real good matches, and as Robert Plant might say, a Whole Lotta Crap. But Mikey v. Cactus is definitely worth seeking out. The rest is more dependent on your tastes than anything else.
34-year-old currently living in Syracuse, New York. Long-time fan of the New York Mets, Chicago Bulls, and Minnesota Vikings. An avid fan of professional wrestling and write reviews/articles on the product. Usually focusing on old-school wrestling.