Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Stick or Twist: ECW One Night Stand 2005

ECW One Night Stand 2005
June 12th 2005
Hammerstein Ballrom, New York City, New York
Attendance: 2,500

* Rampant ECW chants kick things off. Out comes Joey Styles. He looks like he's either trying really hard not to cry or trying really hard TO cry.

"Oh my God!" He introduces his colour commentator, Mick Foley! He's in Cactus Jack attire and comes out to Cactus' music. The ring is much more like an ECW ring with the glossy ropes and no fat, square WWE logo turnbuckles.

Match 1: Lance Storm (w/ Dawn Marie) vs "Lionheart" Chris Jericho

I think Dawn was pregnant when she did this show? Joey touts The Impact Players, Lance's team with Justin Credible, while Foley hints it could be Lance's last match - facing his opponent from his first match too.

Handshake and smooth technical wrestling to start. Both trade armdrags then stand off. Bow and arrow by Y2J as fans chant "She's a crack whore" at Dawn. Storm is first to resort to blows, then after escaping a whip to the corner he eats a sick bottom rope dropkick by Jericho. Baseball slide by Chris but he hits the barricade trying to leap onto Lance outside. Joey claims New York made them have mats and they wouldn't be there otherwise - yeah right! A great dropkick and big stalling suplex both get Storm near falls. RESTHOLD.

Y2J brawls out. Storm leaps to the top buckle from a whip only to jump back first into another Jericho dropkick! NYC: "Holy shit!" Joey: "I believe we have our first faecal chant of the evening." Running enzughiri by Jericho. Both men fight for a waistlock, trading near falls from victory rolls. TIGER SUPLEX by Y2J. 1, 2... no. Lance comes back with a leg lariat and teases a cradle piledriver but has to settle for a superkick for 2. Foley: "We're not going to see some of that Lance Storm emotion in slow motion, are we?" Top rope reverse elbow gets Jericho 2. He hits the ropes only for Storm to beautifully slide under and lock in the Calgary Crab!

Y2J rolls through and tries the Walls but Lance wisely grabs Chris' legs so he can't be rolled over. Jericho settles for a catapult to the buckle. Bulldog! Lionsault... Storm got the knees up but Y2J blocks and hooks the Walls of Jericho! Dawn distracts the ref and out come Justin Credible and Jason Knight (breaking Joey out in hives) whom Jericho springboard dropkicks off the apron. Reverse victory roll by Y2J but Lance kicks him off into a cane shot from the outside by Justin! 1, 2... 3!

Winner: Lance Storm
Verdict: 8/10. Lots to like here, both men were great technically and Jericho busted out some different stuff for his buddy. Great opener.

* The camera pans to an empty balcony soon to be filled with "anti-ECW crusaders" from Raw and Smackdown. Then the Pitbull Gary Wolfe introduces an "in memoriam" package of ECW alumni no longer with us. It's pretty sad how young some of these guys died. Mike "Crash Holly" Lockwood (didn't know he was in ECW) and Chris Candido especially.

Match 2: Three Way Dance - Tajiri (w/ Mikey Whipwreck & The Sinister Minister) vs Little Guido (w/ The Full Blooded Italians) vs Super Crazy

Fuck me the announcement of Guido and the FBI takes forever. Joey: "Earlier JT Smith came over and asked me if an innuendo was an Italian suppository." This is an elimination match unlike WWE triple threat matches.

Brawl to start. Tajiri tosses LG out only to suffer a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker by Crazy. Hand spring elbow by Tajiri! Guido counters his tilt-a-whirl into an armbar, which Crazy breaks up with a standing moonsault. Crazy counters sunset flip attempts by both men by just dropkicking them in the fucking face. He was going to dive out onto Tajiri but Tony Mamaluke tripped him up and Guido gets the Sicilian Slice. Everyone somehow winds up in the audience. Oh God, Crazy climbs the balcony... MOONSAULT OFF THE BALCONY TO THE FBI!!!

Joey: "¡OH DIOS MIO!" Massive ECW chants. Crazy gets in the ring to show everyone he's alive but gets caught in the TARANTOOLA! Crazy punches Tajiri in the corner and fans count along in Spanish - ace! The FBI drag Crazy balls first into the ring post - ouch! Big Guido tries a powerbomb/Doomsday Device combo with LG on Tajiri, but when he gets Tajiri up he spits the mist into LG's face! Then Sinister Minister hits a shit low blow and Tajiri kicks BG and Tracy Smothers. Super Whippersnapper by Mikey Whipwreck! 1, 2, 3! LITTLE GUIDO ELIMINATED

Great double springboard moonsault by Crazy gets 2. Tajiri counters a powerbomb with a DDT for another 2. Crazy tosses him down and tries the triple moonsaults but Mikey pushes him off on the last attempt. Buzzsaw kick ducked... then an awkward pause draws "You fucked up" chants before Crazy hits a powerbomb and the final moonsault for 3!

Winner: Super Crazy
Verdict: 7/10. A really fun match that served as a nice introduction to the newly signed Super Crazy. The other two guys did enough not to be considered passengers too.

* We then get a sizzle reel of classic ECW clips. Notable ones not seen in the Rise and Fall DVD include Mike Awesome nearly breaking JT Smith's back on a tope into the barricade, somebody getting hog tied and Terry Funk branding Cactus Jack.

Match 3: Psicosis vs Rey Mysterio

Psicosis comes out in his mask then unmasks as a show of respect apparently. Foley calls their '95 rivalry feud of the year, while according to Joey these guys have wrestled each other 500 plus times!

Psicosis makes hard work of flipping out of an arm wringer. Rey shows him how it's done before they convolutely get into a knuckelock that Psicosis again flubs arm dragging out of. Rey sunset flips out of another knucklelock for 2. NYC to Psicosis: "Put the mask on!" He rolls through a springboard crossbody to hit a nice spin out facebuster, then covers Rey after a hard whip to the corner(!) Springboard moonsault by Rey gets 2 but he winds up in a sleeper. The hold is heavily booed so Psicosis just uninspiringly tosses Rey about. He hangs Rey on the barricade then gets the Psycho Guillotine leg drop from the top! Cover back inside gets 2.

Psicosis tries a running dropkick in the corner but Rey ducks and hits an X-Factor style move for 2. Psicosis randomly posts himself while charging to the corner and theatrically bumps all the way to the front row. Seated senton from the top to the outside by Rey! Oh God, 619 back inside gets severely booed, before the West Coast Pop gets the 3.

Winner: Rey Mysterio
Verdict: 5/10. Really flat match barring a couple of spots. Psicosis wasn't on form tonight, flubbing lots of spots and not really doing anything to justify him getting signed by WWE.

* As Rey celebrates, the Smackdown crusaders arrive. Loads of people flip off JBL. Joey says it sucks that they're here hot doggin' and grand standin' when they already get global exposure through WWE - tonight should be ECW's night. Sign in the crowd: Cane Bischoff. NYC: "Fuck you Smackdown!" Foley: "I don't think we can repeat that chant, can we?" JBL to Rey: "I got a ticket you little Mexican!" He's the only one not wearing a Smackdown shirt incidentally. They cut to more ECW highlights including Dreamer cuffing Raven to the cage and Taz's title win.

*Weeelllll weeeelllll weeellllll, it's the quintessential stud muffin Joel Gertner. But before he can even finish a rhyme Kurt Angle nicks his mike, then JBL shoves him down hard and literally kicks his ass. NYC: "You suck dick" Angle: "Your mother taught me how!" ...Erm, what?! Angle calls ECW scum and morons and promises everyone will get their asses kicked. JBL points out Madison Square Garden is only a block away and claims to be able to sell it out unlike ECW. He goes off at online fans telling each other they're hardcore and picks on one guy in the crowd saying he just needs to cane himself and bleed to be ECW. NYC: "Shut the fuck up!" JBL: "Nobody in that ring will make it to my level."

* ROB VAN DAM is here with Bill Alfonso to a tremendous response. He still has a big brace on from his knee surgery. He says everyone's sick of JBL being forced down their throats when they want wrestling. He's got no script tonight, so relishes having a vocabulary and reminisces about being the "Whole Fucking Show". He pitched this show to Vince ("we don't even need a storyline" *pointed look to crusaders*). His knee injury means he can't wrestle tonight. It sucks worse than missing the Japan tour, Booker T's wedding and Wrestlemania!

*GORE! GORE! GORE! It's Rhyno!! He beats up RVD's injured leg but then the lights go out. IT'S SABU!!! I think we have an impromptu match...

Match 4: Rhyno vs Sabu

Belly to belly by Rhyno. He goes up top but Sabu hits a huge chair shot to send him over the top! Baseball slide and triple jump clothesline to the outside by Sabu. He just throws a chair at Rhyno, who luckily got his hands up. The Man Beast blocks a springboard and gets a running kick back inside for 2, then a front powerslam. He goes up top but gets cut off again... Frankensteiner by Sabu! Then a slingshot leg lariat gets 2. He leaps off a chair for Poetry in Motion and Rhyno's throat hits the chair. Legdrop off the chair gets 2.

Sabu tries to run up for the triple jump moonsault but Rhyno trips him face first into the chair. TKO into a chair! 1, 2, no. An alley oop into the turnbuckle sets Sabu up for the Gore, but he dodges and it hits the ref. Piledriver by Rhyno. Van Dam throws a chair at him! One man Van Terminator in the corner! Fonzy gets a table and tosses Sabu a chair while he's up top as Van Dam drapes Rhyno on the table... Arabian Skullcrusher through the table!! 1, 2...3.

Winner: Sabu
Verdict: 7.5/10. Wow, what a sprint that was. Sabu was really on his game tonight and didn't fluff anything, while Rhyno got hit stuff in too. This whole segment was gold really, with JBL being a great troll and RVD giving the promo of his life leading into this pretty neat match.

*Al Snow blames Head for inviting the "Smackdown assholes" to the show before introducing more classic ECW clips.

*Now the Raw guys have arrived. Joey on Edge: "I'm glad I didn't bring my wife today." Random smark to Eric Bischoff: "Fuck you and fuck WCW." Some other guy spat beer at him. 

Match 5: Chris Benoit vs Eddie Guerrero

JBL to Benoit: "You make money, you should be here [with the crusaders]!" Oh yeah, Eddie has his awesome heel Lie Cheat and Steal song. He looks a little off tonight though. He had only just turned heel about a month ago so he may just be trying to keep kayfabe.

Pair of lock ups go nowhere but Chris gets a couple of armdrags. Eddie accidentally gets thumbed in the eye when Benoit escapes his go behind and take a breather, teasing leaving. He brawls and gets a reverse elbow back inside. Benoit chops back but Eddie thumbs his eye and stomps his face. RESTHOLD. There's a cut on the bridge of Eddie's nose from the stray thumb. Benoit suplexes out only for Eddie to hit chops, forearms and ANOTHER RESTHOLD. Fans distract themselves chanting "Fuck you Bischoff". Benoit fights back with a shoulderblock, but when he tries another Eddie ducks and he falls through the ropes.

Eddie whacks Benoit in the back with a chair and hauls him up for a massive superplex. Froggy splash... missed. Chris brawls back, a Northern Lights Suplex and superplex of his own getting near falls. Triple Germans. Throat slash! Diving headbutt. 1, 2... no. Eddie rolls through another German attempt but inevitably winds up in the Crossface. It takes ages despite Eddie offering no resistance, but eventually he taps.

Winner: Chris Benoit
Verdict: 4/10. Guh, what the fuck was that? Again, maybe they were just trying to maintain Eddie's character (it wouldn't make sense for a despicable heel to be happy to be at a reunion show and to seek approval) but this match had so little substance it was unbelievable. A huge letdown.

* Joel tries coming out again, but when he spots Eric he just begs for a job. Obviously Bisch refuses, calling him a scab. He says these fans don't have the class to watch Raw because they're just garbage.

Match 6: Mike Awesome vs Masato Tanaka

Joey launches a huge tirade at Awesome for leaving for WCW. The Raw guys turn their back to him when he tells them to fuck off.

Trading chops to start before Mike hits a belly to belly. Tanaka hauls him on the apron but Awesome springs back in with a shoulderblock. Tope by Awesome! Joey: "Suicide dive by Mike Awesome, and it's a shame he didn't succeed in taking his own life!" Guess how Mike Awesome died, boys and girls? Tanaka backdrops him over the barricade then runs a chair right into his head! Foley: "Is it just me, or does Awesome lack the awesome force now he's without the 1980s haircut?" Clothesline by Mike who sets up a table. He gets on the apron and reaches into the ring to clothesline Tanaka. Running Awesome Bomb off the apron through the table!!

Back inside a huuuuuuge Aweseome Splash gets 2. Tanaka backdrops out of a powerbomb attempt but Mike hangs on and powerbombs him anyway. Both men get chairs, Awesome dodging Tanaka's shots then finally getting him down after three utterly vile headshots. Tanaka get right back up! He lures Awesome to the corner and scores a blockbuster cutter, then a Tornado DDT on a chair! 1, 2, no! He lays a chair on Mike's face and whacks another chair into it, then goes up top for an elbow drop with the chair! 1, 2... no! ECDUB! ECDUB!

Dangan elbow ducked... big release German by Awesome. Tanaka no sells only to eat a spear. Jesus Christ, top rope chair shot by Aweseome! He tries to bring a table inside but breaks its leg doing so and has to bring a fresh one in to ironic cheers. He gets Tanaka up top... Tanaka fights back... TOP ROPE DDT through the table!! 1... 2... NO! Joey thinks JBL has started to support Awesome because of the pay off he took from WCW. Aweseome cuts off Tanaka up top... TOP ROPE POWERBOMB ON THE BROKEN TABLE!!! 1... 2... NO!! That gets a huge standing ovation and ECDUB chants. Awesome sets up another table outside to "This match rules" chants. Awesome hauls Tanaka up at the second time of asking... Awesome Bomb over the top through the table outside!!! AWESOME SPRINGBOARDS OUT ONTO TANAKA!!! Cover outside - 1, 2... 3!!!

Post match a clearly concussed Awesome powerbombs the ref!

Winner: Mike Awesome
Verdict: 8.5/10. Holy shit what a violent match. Back and forth, brimming with action, both guys putting themselves through hell. A crazy match that was a great watch, even if some of the headshots might make you cringe.

* Look out, here comes Paul Heyman!!! Nearly the entire crowd does the "We're not worthy" arm waving to massive "Thank you Paul" chants. It clearly leaves him a bit teary, but he claims it was because he had a joint with RVD haha! He thanks Tod Gordon and Ron Buffone... and then decides to shoot on the crusaders! Hey Eric Bischoff, he's not at a WCW show with his tail between his legs is he? "You're in our house, Bitch!" Hide your wives, it's Edge. JBL: "Nobody here is married." Paul: "I have two words for you... MATT FREAKIN' HARDY!" Naturally the crusaders go crazy over that being three words and JBL starts pretending to write cheques that are bouncing - brilliant! So Paul addresses "Mr. Shoot Promo"... "The only reason you were WWE Champion for a year is because Triple H didn't want to work Tuesday!" That causes John to feign a heart attack and proclaim "At least I'll have Wrestlemania." Paul closes by reminding everyone where they are - "This is E C FUCKING W!" He kisses the fans goodbye and flips off the crusaders.

* The Dudleys are out for the main event. They do a pretty poor job of overdubbing their "Drop The Bombshell" theme. Both are in old school tie dye. They applaud Tommy Dreamer as he comes out. Joey: "People call Paul Heyman the brains of ECW, they call me the voice of ECW. Tommy Dreamer, always the heart, the soul, the guts of ECW." Naturally The Sandman's Metallica theme is overdubbed too. The guy JBL picked on earlier hits himself with Sandman's cane while he's in the crowd - ace! As he stands on the barricade one guy holds up his replica ECW title around his waist, aww. They drink beer from the breasts of blonde women. Sandman wanks his cane at the crusaders and JBL is furious.

Main Event: The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray & D-Von) vs The Sandman & Tommy Dreamer

Wait, before the match even starts out come the bWo!

Joey: "If any gimmick didn't deserve to make a dime and went out and made a butt load of cash, this is it!" Look at the Blue Meanie's muffin top! Foley: "I can only imagine what the uninitiated are thinking at this moment." Stevie says a true hardcore invasion needs the bWo. We're taking over! Stevie kick to Sandman! Kid Kash (Joey: "Mr TNA - Total Non-stop Attitude") is out but gets shitcanned before Balls Mahoney and Axl Rotten join the fray. They take out the bWo with jabs and chairshots. Everyone brawls outside. Foley: "There are some hideous looking human beings running around." Kash convinces the ref to help him do a triple jump heelo onto everyone outside!!! That gets rid of the interlopers as the Dudleys find some plunder and the bell FINALLY sounds. It's main event time!

Main Event: The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray & D-Von) vs The Sandman & Tommy Dreamer

Dreamer tries to use a cheesegrater(!) on Bubba but gets suplexed. Joey suddenly notices how big Bubba's arms are. Oh fuck Bubba rakes the cheesegrater over Tommy's head!! Naturally he misses his second rope senton though. Reverse 3D to Tommy! Sandman hits the Dudleys with a ladder. Dreamer drapes it on his shoulders for the Terry Funk/Benny Hill spot. Cheesegrater to Bubba! Sandman drop toeholds D-Von into a trash can. Dreamer hits Bubba with a baking tray only to get his balls driven into the barricade. Sandman drapes a ladder over D-Von and hits the Rolling Rock.

SICK chairshot to Sandman by Bubba. NYC: "Holy shit!" Sandman gets laid on the ladder and Bubba splashes him from the second rope for 2. Sandman avoids a cane double team and hits the White Russian Legsweep on D-Von. Tommy and Sandman hook simultaneous Figure Fours on The Dudleys! Joey: "I'll be damned, wrestling holds!" Credible and Storm are back out and Justin Tombstones Sandman on a barbed wire sphere! They hold Dreamer up and Francine kicks him in the balls. IT'S BEULAH! CAT FIGHT!!! She escapes a double team by the Impact Players and kicks Storm in the balls before Dreamer shitcans him. Beulah and Tommy hug then DDT the Dudleys, Bubba and Beulah mistiming theirs terribly. Joey: "I gotta teach my wife how to do that!"

Sandman and Tommy mock the "Wassup!!!" by whacking a chair into D-Von's ball with a road sign, before Bubba takes them out with cane shots and exclaims "Fuck this!" He're a table.  Double powerbomb on Sandman through the table! 1, 2... no! Dreamer in with cane shots, only to fall for the 3D! Bubba gets another table and out comes Little Spike Dudley. He's got lighter fluid! They douse the table in it and light it... POWERBOMB THROUGH THE FLAMING TABLE!!! 1, 2, 3!

Winners: The Dudley Boyz
Verdict: 6/10. Watchable garbage brawl with some fun cameos, although some of the spots with the cheesegrater were a bit grim.

* Post match the Dudleys try to attack Beulah but Sandman fights them off with his cane and pleads for a beer. What? A beer? What?

STONE COLD! STONE COLD! The crowd lose their shit. He says Sandman needs a whole case of beer, but he wants the ECW alumni to join too. The locker room comes out as the crusaders do not look amused. Before he serves the beer, he chastises the crusaders for running their mouths and challenges them to fight the ECW guys. The highlight of Austin cajoling them into a fight is him calling Angle a "gold medal son of a bitch". A threat to personally slap the piss out of them finally convinces them to come down. The ring is split in half, ECW one side, crusaders the other.

IT'S TAZ!! At some point JBL cheapshots the fuck out of the Blue Meanie and opens up his stitches from a match at a previous show. Taz and Angle pair off outside and everybody schmozes!  Angle gets Gored by Rhyno trying to rejoin the fight in ring and gets locked in the Tazmission! Snitsky somehow winds up through a table as ECW eventually clear the ring. Austin puts on JBL's cowboy hat haha. He spotted Bischoff snuck off to the commentary desk so he gets Foley to bring him to the ring. Sandman is still relentlessly gagging for a beer so Austin finally gives in.

3D to Bischoff! Headbutt from the top by Benoit. Austin: "Kill this sunnovabitch!" Oh jeez that's uncomfortable viewing. 619(BOOOO). Austin conducts a post match interview with Eric who defiantly yells "Fuck ECW!" So Austin has the Dudleys haul him up. Flip him the bird! Kick. Wham. Stunner. Good night. The Dudleys then haul Eric out of here and everyone toasts, Al Snow feeding Head some beer haha.

Final Thoughts: This was such a fun watch. Having never seen an ECW show at the time they were originally around I don't really hold much nostalgia for the company and this is basically a nostalgia show, but even without that this show stands up well and is really entertaining. The opener, the three way, Sabu vs Rhyno and Awesome vs Tanaka were all really good, the main event was fun with all the cameos and weapons. Guys like Sabu, Sandman and Super Crazy who I wasn't overly familiar with delivered, and WWE guys who'd soon be out of the door like Rhyno, the Dudleys and Tajiri were also great. The show was also littered with great verbal performances (Heyman excellent as always, RVD with a career high point promo, JBL trolling the fuck out of everyone).

TL,DR: Great talking, and fun wrestling from familiar and unfamiliar faces.

Final Verdict: STICK