We’re in Laredo, Texas and we still have the Manson intro that inspired so much discussion last week in the comments. Marcus Cor Von is still in the intro and Mechanical Animals was Manson at his best just for ”Yesterday I was a nihilist, today I’m just fucking bored.”
Backstage, a representative for Johnny Nitro declares this is the last time you’ll see Nitro on ECW. Tazz & Styles freak out because he’s the ECW Champ, he can’t leave. Unless you’re Lashley.
CM Punk vs. Elijah Burke
OH HELL’S TEETH, ENOUGH ALREADY. Punk has Nitro at Great American Bash and Burke has free food at catering so this is just filler. Punk starts the match by dominating against Burke, I think he was the only guy Punk started the match pounding on, everyone else he’s equal or stronger than Punk. Punk abuses Burke’s arm until Burke decides to use his feet to kick Punk and takes over to a very tepid reaction from the crowd. Punk cuts it off with a suplex and an armbar. Burke sends Punk to the floor, we go to break and Burke finally gets the advantage for real-real with a Single Crab. Burke punches Punk’s back while shouting ”DIE PUNK!” and locks in a Boston Crab. Punk escapes and uses his kicks to absolutely no reaction. Crowd doesn’t give a shit about Burke vs. Punk Part V The Final Frontier. Surfboard on Punk, which turns into more backbreakers for two. Burke argues with the ref, but the ref is Scott Armstrong and threatens Burke right back and even that gets no reaction. Punk makes a firey comeback and only a few kids going ”yayyy” care about his MMA kicks. Burke nails a Side Suplex for two. Punk gives Burke a badger’s arse-rough DDT for two. Burke with a German Suplex for two. The trading of big moves doesn’t wake the crowd up so Punk lands the GTS out of nowhere to mercifully end it.
Winner: CM Punk (For whatever reason, Punk didn’t do his usual job of making his opponent look like he could beat him. Not that I blame him, these two shouldn’t be wrestling each other every week after spending the last few months finishing their feud. They’re not Tajiri vs. Super Crazy.)
Raw Rebound gives us the dramatic video package for Cena vs. Lashley. Seemed way too early for that mega-match but with the benefit of hindsight it was the perfect time as Lashley had another match on Raw and then was gone forever as he was released from his contract while recovering from surgery.
Matt Striker introduces Big Daddy V and reminds us he’s here because Boogeyman attacked him. Striker has a point.
Big Daddy V vs. Tim Storm
Storm’s an indie guy who has the distinction of being the oldest guy to win the NWA Title at 51, In fact he’s still the champion as of today so if you’re in the Texas area and have a spare $500 lying around you too can end it. Daddy chokes Storm in the corner, squashes him with a Samoan Drop and ends the match with a Spinning Side Slam.
Winner: Big Daddy V (Viscera’s squashes are two hundred times more exciting than Snitsky’s. He slams bitches and ends the match quickly, he doesn’t piss around with his ham-fists and glares.)
The Miz is in-ring. He declares himself a Chick Magnet, saying it must be his good looks and personality. Miz’s delivery is Alan Partridge-esque but the women in the crowd cheer him. Extreme Expose saunter out to give The Miz his surprise, which is being in-ring for the weekly strip-tease that I can’t show on the Blog Of Doom because titties scare off Scott Keith’s ad-people. Miz looks so awkward, it’s amazing.
Tommy Dreamer vs. Kevin Thorn
Another match I was sick of seeing after the third one. Dreamer challenged for the title last week so let’s see if he gets to beat Thorn for once. Thorn sticks to strikes and working over Dreamer’s shoulder. Some plodding action continues as I check my Twitter. Strikes, strikes, strikes, Thorn gets pushed off the top rope and Dreamer somehow manages a Frog Splash.
Haven’t seen him do that since 1998. Thorn doesn’t care and it gets two. Single-arm DDT sets up the Crucifix Powerbomb but Dreamer clotheslines him away. Thorn hurls Dreamer into the turnbuckle right onto his damaged shoulder and that’s enough for the pin.
Winner: Kevin Thorn (Match wasn’t that bad and the finish made sense which is always nice. But the crowd didn’t care because it’s Thorn, a guy who has been here since the start of the revamp and accomplished nothing. So nobody cares and sadly like a real vampire he’d stick around forever.)
Main event press conference starts with some guy called Paul McBride listing Nitro’s history and accomplishments, stating we’ll never see Nitro on this show again…here’s John Morrison with new hair and new attire.
His real name is Morrison and he’s always been destined for greatness. At four months old, he could walk. He skipped first grade and went straight to third grade. He was elected Student Body President and he didn’t even run. What does CM stand for in CM Punk? Chasing Men? Cookie Monster? What’s a Punk anyway? A disrespectful tattooed guy who doesn’t know his place. Punk doesn’t appreciate this so he shows up. Morrison promises he’s not going to get into a fight with him prior to the PPV and asks him where his name comes from. He gives Punk the mic and punches him before he can answer, leaving him laying with the Flipping Neckbreaker ”with malicious intent”.
At the time I disliked the gimmick change as it was too derivative of Jim Morrison and I thought it would was too gimmicky to last. After seeing Nitro struggle to get out of the shadow of ”that tag guy” and die a death on the mic, I appreciate this was a very successful change in appearance, mannerisms and everything else. Morrison looked and sounded like a champ here, cocky as fuck and a liar too which was just what he was needing.
Overall: Given that Morrison would stay this way through the rest of his WWE run I’d say this was an important bit of ECW TV. Outside of that, the highlight was Big Daddy V killing a jobber and Taz’s shirt.