Written by: Bob Colling
Extreme Championship Wrestling House Show
From: Middletown, NY
It’s kind of humorous that their entrance is literally a door that leads to outside the arena it looks like at least. Taz and Bill Alfonso start the show appearing in the ring with Taz not in his in-ring gear but rather jeans and a leather jacket. Taz believes that ECW is protecting Sabu and he is sick of it. He recalls November to Remember where Sabu bailed out of fear. This is being taped for the ECW TV, so it’s probably reviewed in one of the ’96 reviews. Taz calls out Sabu to come out and the fans chant for Sabu after literally just chanting “Fuck Sabu” so that makes little sense. The lights go out and Sabu appears in the ring! Taz dares Sabu to come at him but instead The Eliminators come in and nail Sabu with Total Elimination! Saturn and Kronus stomp away on Sabu while Taz taunts his rival. Total Elimination a second time for Sabu. Taz stands on the floor and tells Sabu that he is going to “fucking kill you.” Here comes the Gangstas to make the save for Sabu. Mustafa gets taken out with Total Elimination and the same goes for New Jack. It’s not everyday that the Gangstas get laid out on a save attempt, is it? Eliminators plant Sabu with a spike piledriver, as well. Rob Van Dam runs out and makes the save taking on the Eliminators. Sabu has recovered from everything and helps RVD take out the Eliminators. Sabu gets nailed by a heel kick from Saturn as does RVD. I’m thinking this is actually the battle royal at this point.
Opening Contest: King of the Hill Battle Royal: That’s exactly what is going on as the referee is in the ring. Fans are reminding Balls Mahoney that he is fat. A new entrant comes in every minute so this should go by rather quickly. Spike Dudley comes out and gets worked over quickly by the Eliminators. I’m not sure why I’m focusing so much on this battle royal. Everyone competing on the show and every top name is actually in the match. Shane Douglas came out and wrestled in pajama pants for goodness sake. Tommy Dreamer comes out and tries to get his hands on Douglas, but Douglas bailed probably not wanting to ruin his pants. Dreamer settled for Brian Lee, who punched a chair into Dreamer’s face. D-Von Dudley appears from out of nowhere and attacks Dreamer. It’s an instance where not having theme music actually benefits him. Lee whacks D-Von over the back with a chair and the same for Dreamer. The Sandman eventually comes out as well. This match is almost taking a half hour at this point as Brian Lee eliminated Blue Meanie and Nova. Stevie Richards nailed Sandman with a super kick but is tossed out by Lee. I think the final three is Sabu, Sandman and Lee unless someone comes in. Sabu gets a chair and Lee backdropped Sandman to the floor. Sabu springboards off the chair and clotheslines Lee over the top to the floor to win the match. So, the guy who got destroyed wins the battle royal. Talk about a mega push, huh?
Second Contest: GQ Gorgeous vs. Spike Dudley: I’m pretty sure GQ Goregeous, who is a masked man, is a young Chris Chetti. Spike gets the early offense taking Gorgeous down with a drop toe hold and dropkicks GQ to the floor. Dudley comes off the apron with a somersault dive to the floor. Spike tries a few rollups but GQ kicks out at two and comes back with a swinging neck breaker. The fans are shitting on both men. GQ continues his offense with a spinning heel kick. GQ stomps Spike off the bottom rope causing Spike to crash to the floor landing on his head. GQ knee lifts Spike off the apron into the guard railing. Spike attempts a slingshot sunset flip but messes up and settles for an inside cradle. GQ yanks Spike down by his hair and delivers a spear in the corner. GQ delivers another dropkick and the fans really want the match to end. “Do the job asshole” directed towards GQ by the fans, which is funny. GQ misses a top rope leg drop and Spike hits a bulldog out of the corner for the win. (*1/2. It was sloppy and the fans completely crapped on the action. Eventually, Spike would be beloved, but it is kind of odd to see him getting that kind of treatment from the ECW fans.)
Third Contest: D-Von Dudley vs. Bubba Ray Dudley: They trade right hands after Bubba runs into the ring. D-Von slaps Bubba a few times but is met with right hands and a kick to the groin. D-Von takes Bubba down with a back suplex. D-Von scoop slams Bubba and hits a jumping head butt for a two count. Bubba low blows D-Von and follows up with a dropkick. Bubba drops D-Von with a slap and head butts D-Von in the groin area a few times. Bubba tosses D-Von to the floor as the fans chant that D-Von has a little dick. D-Von stops Bubba with a flurry of strikes and sends Bubba into the guard railing back first. D-Von slams Bubba face first onto a table at ringside. D-Von blocks a chair shot and whacks Bubba over the head with a chair. Bubba sends D-Von into the railing and splashes him as well. Bubba power slams D-Von on the floor and uses Sign Guy’s sign to whack D-Von over the head. Bubba whacks D-Von with a chair over the head and plays to the crowd on the floor. D-Von uses the chair and whacks Bubba with it as they enter the ring again. D-Von had to go to the top rope but gets crotched. D-Von still nails Bubba with a steel chair. D-Von leaps off the middle rope with the chair but Bubba hits a dropkick to send the chair into D-Von’s face! Bubba misses a chair shot and gets a Fame Asser onto the chair. D-Von had the cover but didn’t stay on for the three count. D-Von hits a middle rope diving head butt but Bubba powers out at two. Bubba plants D-Von with a power bomb but isn’t able to keep him down on the cover. D-Von sends Bubba into the corner but Bubba soon comes back with a lifting ace crusher and that wins the match. (**. A decent match that was mainly brawling and nothing else. It’s obvious that these two are far better teaming than they are competing against each other. Bubba impressed me with his agility shown in the match, too.) After the match, Joel Gertner awards the match to D-Von Dudley based on his point system. Bubba takes Gertner out with a clothesline after pretending to agree with him. Bubba heads to the top rope and delivers a big splash!
Fourth Contest: Brian Lee vs. Louie Spicolli: Louie goes on the attack with right hands and dropkicks Lee to the floor. Lee pulls Louie to the floor and sends him into the railing before going into the crowd to brawl. Lee sends Louie into the side of the ring truck, I believe. They trade right hands on the floor until Lee sends Spicolli into the ring post face first. Lee puts Spicolli through a table with a suplex on the floor! Lee puts a chair over Louie’s body in the ring and goes to the middle rope. Lee leaps off but Louie tosses the chair into Lee’s face to block it. Spicolli slams Lee but is met with a slap to the face. Spicolli ducks a clothesline and goes for the Spicolli Driver, but Lee hits a choke slam on the referee while on Louie’s shoulders! Spicolli hits the move but the referee is knocked out. A second referee has entered the ring and Lee has recovered. Lee waits and grabs Spicolli to hit the choke slam for the win. (**. While it was rather quick, I was entertained. The choke slam on the referee while on Louie’s shoulders is something I’ve never seen before. That was pretty cool. Hey, Brian Lee did something cool!)
Fifth Contest: ECW World Champion Raven vs. Mikey Whipwreck: The BWO is in the crowd to start the match which distracts everyone for a few moments. Raven takes Whipwreck down with a headlock for the early advantage. Raven hip tosses Mikey and goes back to controlling the match with a headlock. Raven holds onto the ropes to avoid a dropkick and stomps Mikey. Mikey takes Raven down with a backslide but Raven connects with a clothesline upon getting to his feet. Mikey head scissors Raven and sends the champ to the floor with a dropkick. Mikey takes Raven out with a somersault dive to the floor. Mikey continues to work over Raven in the crowd before sending him back over the railing to ringside. Mikey whacks Raven across the back with a chair. Mikey drop toe holds Raven onto the chair but only manages a near fall. Mikey sets the chair up in the corner and sends Raven back first into the chair a couple of times. Raven sends Mikey into the corner and goes for the DDT but Mikey fell down too soon. Raven proceeds to hit the DDT anyway and wins the match. (*1/2. There wasn’t any doubt, but that finish being botch kind of killed the match. Mikey had some decent offense and Raven is good at selling for guys.) After the match, Lori attacks Mikey but here comes the Sandman. Raven plants Sandman with a DDT. Lori has the kendo stick and whacks Sandman over the head with it a few times. Mikey gets up but gets decked by Raven. Raven drops Mikey with a championship shot to the head. Sandman misses a kendo stick shot and gets met with a DDT onto the championship. Raven breaks the stick, but Sandman gets up and plants Raven with a DDT onto the championship. Sandman has the championship and his broken stick. Sandman leaves the ring stealing the ECW World Championship. Raven wakes up and the fans are chanting “where’s your belt?” which is causing Raven to freak out a little but before heading backstage.
Sixth Contest: Chris Candido vs. Rob Van Dam: Candido wants to shake hands but Van Dam isn’t interested in that. Candido settles for a handshake with the referee before starting the match. Candido takes RVD down to the mat and they trade some mat wrestling holds until Candido goes to the ropes for a rope break. RVD pops out of a head scissors and nails Candido with a heel kick. Candido wants to do a test of strength but RVD isn’t wanting to do it. They eventually do the test of strength with Candido getting the advantage. RVD monkey flips Candido off the ropes but misses a spin kick and they have a standoff. RVD kicks Candido several times and kicks Candido to the canvas. RVD nails Candido with a standing dropkick. RVD works over Candido with strikes in the corner but Candido drives RVD down with a power bomb. Candido takes RVD over with a suplex for a near fall. Candido tries to get a submission but RVD isn’t going to give up. Candido got confused by RVD’s incredible split and let go of the hold. Candido drives RVD down with a slingshot back suplex. RVD stops Candido with a low blow, but Candido continues to work over RVD after a brief sell. Candido stops RVD in the corner with a big boot but runs into a snap power slam. RVD heads to the top rope but gets crotched by Candido. Candido pulls RVD off the top to hit a piledriver for a two count. Candido misses a splash in the corner and RVD nails Candido with a springboard heel kick. RVD strikes Candido several times followed by a monkey flip out of the corner and a top rope kick to the face. RVD plants Candido with a double under hook front slam and a leg drop off the top for a near fall. Candido backdrops RVD over the top to the floor to regain control of the bout. RVD slides back in with a chair but gets whacked with it. Candido gets the chair kicked into his face and he stumbles into the referee. Shane Douglas comes out and puts a chain on Candido’s fist. Candido nails RVD with the chain and Louie Spicolli comes out with a referee shirt and plays like the referee. Candido pulse Louie up and is surprised to see him. Spicolli drives Candido down with the Spicolli Driver and RVD gets the win. (**1/4. The pacing was kind of off for these two, but the action was decent and they got plenty of time. I liked that Louie came out and how he screwed over Candido. Even with that help, it’s still a good win for Van Dam.)
Seventh Contest: ECW Tag Team Champions New Jack & Mustafa vs. The Eliminators: All four men are in the ring trading shots as the Gangstas will likely have their music playing the whole match. Saturn nails New Jack with a championship. Mustafa big boots Kronus into the ropes and tosses him to the floor. Mustafa brawls with Kronus on the floor while Saturn works over Jack in the ring with basic strikes. Mustafa and Kronus return to the ring where Mustafa got a few shots on Saturn. Jack low blows Saturn with a wooden object. Jack hits Saturn several times causing Saturn to be busted open. Jack chokes Saturn over the top rope and delivers a fore mar shot to knock Saturn off the apron. Jack delivers a chair shot on Saturn and sends him into the guard railing. Kronus decks Jack from behind to save Saturn on the floor. Mustafa and Kronus continue to fight in the ring while Saturn brawls with Jack on the outside. Jack tosses Saturn onto a table at ringside. Saturn knocks Jack into the broken table on the floor. All four men are on the floor brawling at this point. Kronus slams the table onto Jack and Kronus is bleeding heavily. Saturn spin kicks Mustafa in the ring. Kronus uses a piece from the broken table on Jack’s forehead. Mustafa takes Saturn over with a double under hook suplex. Jack sends Kronus into the ring post as they brawl on the floor. Kronus nails Mustafa with a kick to the face and gets a two count. Saturn gets rammed head first into the ring post. Kronus nearly pins Mustafa with a somersault leg drop. New Jack blocks a chair shot and whacks Saturn over the head with it. Jack does the same to Kronus. Saturn hits Jack with a chair in midair as Jack was coming off the top rope. Mustafa gets hit with Total Elimination and that’s good enough for a three count. (**. Again, it’s a fine brawling match between two teams that hated each other. Kronus sure knows how to bleed well. The fans seemingly wanted the title change to happen, as well.) After the match, Mustafa doesn’t want to give the titles away. In a sign of respect, they handover the titles and leave the ring upset with the loss. Well, I wasn’t expecting that.
Eighth Contest: Sabu vs. Balls Mahoney: Sabu takes Mahoney down with a leg takedown followed by a springboard heel kick. Mahoney slams Sabu and leaps off the middle rope hitting a forearm drop. “This match ain’t worth $30” a fan is heard saying. Sabu spin kicks Mahoney to the floor and delvers a baseball slide sending Mahoney into the crowd. Sabu springboards off a chair and the top rope to take Mahoney out with a dive in the crowd! Sabu lays Mahoney across the middle rope and hits a leg drop. Mahoney power bombs Sabu to counter a hurricanrana attempt. Mahoney comes off the ropes to deliver an elbow drop. Sabu springboards off the ropes for another heel kick but Mahoney kicks out on the cover. Sabu continues with a moonsault for another two count. Mahoney slams Sabu followed by a leg drop. Mahoney is really getting heckled by the fans as he goes to the top rope but is stopped by Sabu. Sabu takes Mahoney off the top with a hurricanrana for a near fall. Sabu leaps off the top but Balls strikes him in the midsection. Balls comes off the middle rope missing an elbow drop. Sabu knocks Mahoney to the floor with a baseball slide and puts Mahoney on a table at ringside. Sabu puts Mahoney through the table with a slingshot leg drop. Sabu jumps off a chair int he ring but misses a splash in the corner. Mahoney goes to the top but misses a leg drop. Sabu connects with a triple jump moonsault for the win. (**. This was just an exhibition for Sabu for the most part and a filler for the program. The guy got destroyed in the first twenty minutes of the show, won a battle royal, and then had very little issue winning a singles match. That kind of storytelling bothers me a little bit.)
Main Event: ECW Television Champion Shane Douglas & Francine vs. Tommy Dreamer & Beulah: Dreamer decks Douglas to start the match and delivers a clothesline. Douglas rolls to the floor to regroup. Dreamer tosses Douglas into the guard railing back first. Dreamer punches Douglas with a cup of beer. Dreamer has a chair and rolls Douglas back into the ring. Douglas dropkicks Dreamer off the apron into the guard railing. Douglas stomps on Dreamer while on the apron. Douglas tosses Dreamer into the railing side first. Dreamer continues to be sent into the railing and dropped face first across the apron. Francine actually gets tagged in and leg corps Dreamer and taunts the fans. Until, Dreamer gets up and grabs her by the crotch. Francine accidentally slaps Douglas and Dreamer almost gets a pin. Francine chokes Dreamer over the bottom rope. Douglas hits a piledriver onto the championship but Dreamer pops up at the count of two. Dreamer fights back with a superplex managing a near fall. Dreamer plants Douglas with a DDT for a two count. Dreamer grabs Francine by her hair and points to Beulah to make the tag. Here comes Beulah and we get a cat fight. Douglas went for a belly to belly suplex on Beulah, but Dreamer gets a rollup and pins Douglas. After the match, Douglas plants Dreamer with an arm breaker and attacks Dreamer some more. Beulah tries to help but gets met with a back elbow. Douglas has Beulah but here comes Pitbull #1 who makes the save hitting a few clotheslines. Pitbull has Francine but gives her to Dreamer who spikes her with a piledriver! (**. A decent main event that didn’t go overly long, but they kept a good pace and it was a fun way to close the program with the good team going over. The aftermath was good, too.)
There was a lot of decent wrestling but nothing amazing. The title change for the Eliminators was a surprise, but it was a TV taping so it’s not a major shock. I’d say it was an average show overall.
Thanks for reading.