Taped from Fort Lauderdale, FL
Airdate: April 14, 1998
Hosted by Joey Styles
Joey welcomes us to another installment of the History of ECW. To start off the show he mentions that ECW World TV champion RVD will cut a promo. Also Axl Rotten and Balls Mahoney will face the “unstable” ECW World tag team champions.
Joel Gertner introduces “from the ‘Down Under’ section of Dudleyville” the Bushwhackers! Sign Guy Dudley escorts them to the ring. They are wearing Dudley Boyz shirts as well as replica Bubba glasses. Joey is astonished and claims that ECW has not signed a team from another decade. Meanwhile Sandman and Tommy Dreamer hit the ring. While Dreamer wields a chair and Sandman his cane the Dudley Boys come out of nowhere and attack them from behind!
After Sandman gets caned by D-von the Dudley Boyz give the Dudley Death Drop to Dreamer. They then practically break Sandman’s neck with a Dudley Death Drop. Big Dick Dudley picks up Dreamer by the throat to choke him then gives him the sit-out powerbomb. The Dudley Boyz prop Dreamer and Sandman next to one another against the ropes. Simultaneously Sandman gets caned while Dreamer eats a chair shot. To add insult to injury Sign Guy pours beer on them.
Meanwhile 2 Cold Scorpio hits the ring to save Dreamer and Sandman. He kicks the Dudley Boys away, but Big Dick Dudley hammers him. He whips Scorpio off the ropes and misses a clothesline. However, the Dudley Boyz grab Scorpio and give him the Dudley Death Drop. The Dudleys stand tall mocking Dreamer, Sandman, and Scorpio’s mannerisms.
The promo for Wrestlepalooza is shown followed by the opener.
We return to the ring to see the Sandman receiving medical treatment on the canvas. In an attempt to appear live Joey states that a video package featuring RVD, Sabu, and Bam Bam Bigelow was supposed to be shown later but will be shown now. Updates on Sandman’s condition will be forthcoming.
Highlights from last week’s match between RVD and BBB are shown including RVD’s aerial assault. It has to be seen to be believed. Afterwards Heyman tells Fonzie that RVD will defend the TV title at Wrestlepalooza against Sabu.
We kick it back to Joey who still promises an update on Sandman. We then get “FAN CAM” footage of Fatu versus Sabu. After Sabu legdrops Fatu through a table on the concrete floor RVD masquerades as Sabu and tosses Fatu back in the ring. He pins him after the ***** frog splash. Once again RVD and Sabu have a tug-of-war with the TV belt after the match.
Joey then runs down the card for Wrestlepalooza:
ECW World TV title: RVD (champion) versus Sabu
ECW World title: Shane Douglas (champion) versus Al Snow
ECW World Tag Team Title: Chris Candido and Lance Storm (champions) versus Axl Rotten and Balls Mahoney
Grudge Match: Mikey Whipwreck versus Justin Credible
Tentative scheduled grudge match: The Dudley Boyz versus Tommy Dreamer and Sandman
When we return from commercial break we see the back of an ambulance. Lori Fullington, Sandman’s wife, is shown crying. Sandman is immobilized on a stretcher ready to be carried to the ambulance.
Match 1 for the ECW World Tag Team titles: Chris Candido and Lance Storm (champions) versus Axl Rotten and Balls Mahoney
Immediately Storm nails Rotten with a chair then wallops Mahoney in the head with it. Shockingly Mahoney no-sells it! A second shot staggers him. A third shot puts him down. Storm adds a chair shot to the back of Rotten. After what seems like an eternity Candido comes in the ring and hits Mahoney with a chair removing him from the match. Subsequently Storm smashes Candido with the chair to the head!
Finally the bell rings. Rotten covers Candido but Storm saves. Remember that their jobs are on the line if they screw with each other. Seemingly Sunny took that literally. Off a reversed whip to the ropes Rotten elbows Storm. He then whips and elbows Candido. An attempted double-team on Rotten almost backfires as Storm just misses Candido. To no one’s surprise the champs argue then receive a double noggin-knocker from Rotten.
Rotten then delivers a pair of clotheslines to the champs followed by a slam on Candido. He tosses Storm out of the ring, follows him, and then nails him with a chair shot to the back. Next Rotten whips Storm into the steel guardrail. While Candido holds both belts overhead in the ring Rotten gives Storm another whip into the steel guardrail. Without question dissention is afoot here. We take a break.
When we return Candido appears to have received a low blow as he writhes in pain. Rotten continues the 1-on-2 exchange by giving Candido a back body drop off the ropes. Storm comes in and gets elbowed. After throwing a couple of punches Rotten delivers a pair of bionic elbows to the champs. Showing his love for both Dusty and Dustin Rhodes he then delivers the SST (Severe Skull Trauma/Curtain Call) to Storm.
While Rotten attempts a pin Candido comes off the top rope for the save. Instead of headbutting Rotten he nails his partner! Rotten clears Candido out of the way with a punch, puts Storm in the corner, and cross-corner whips him. Storm jumps to the second turnbuckle and delivers the back elbow. Candido shoves his partner out of the ring in order to cover Rotten for the pin. *
Once again Candido steals the spotlight from his partner. After Candido retrieves the belts from the timekeeper Storm grabs his belt away from him. Candido then wallops Storm with a belt shot to the head then tosses him over the top rope.
Danny Doring then introduces himself and Roadkill as they make their way to the ring. Unfortunately for them Axl takes them both out with chair shots. Candido then whips Storm to the steel guardrail. Since that’s the third time Storm has eaten the guardrail I wonder if he got a discount or at least some ketchup!
Candido gets on the mic, claims he did all the heavy lifting, and challenges Storm to a singles match. As Storm tries to re-enter the ring Candido baseball-slides him. He then rams Storm’s head into the table. Rolling back in the ring Candido demands the bell to be rung to start the match.
Match 2: Chris Candido versus Lance Storm
Without hesitation Candido goes to work on Storm in the corner with punches and kicks. He then chops Storm. Lance comes back with four chops then grabs a headlock. However, Candido shoots him off. Storm gets the shoulderblock and hits a spinning heel kick off the ropes getting a 2-count. To follow up he whips Candido off the ropes but receives a swinging neckbreaker.
Candido gives Storm a delayed vertical suplex and gets another 2-count. If chopping is what you prefer these two provide plenty as they chop away. Heartily the crowd supplies plenty of “Woo!” with each chop. They are exchanging chops more than the Chicago Board of Trade here. Storm cross-corner whips him then clotheslines him in the corner.
Continuing his onslaught he follows up with an elbow and dropkick then paintbrushes him with slaps in the corner. After a whip he delivers his patented high-elevation dropkick. He heads to the apron and delivers a springboard clothesline for a 2-count. He tries to whip Candido but gets countered with a knee to the midsection. Candido then powerbombs him and falls face-first onto Storm getting another 2-count.
After receiving a cross-corner whip Storm jumps to the top turnbuckle but Candido crotches him. Upon celebrating with the Triple Threat hand gesture he mounts the top rope to deliver the Blond Bombshell. Nevertheless Storm escapes. Candido tries to missile dropkick Storm, but Lance catches him with a powerbomb for the pin. **1/2
In celebration Storm retrieves the belts from the timekeeper and holds them overhead. He drops one of the belts alongside Candido and gives him the “Forget You” gesture while leaving the ring. Joey gives them no shot to retain at the PPV.
We get more footage of Sandman being loaded into the ambulance. Lori Fullington is in the front of the ambulance while Joey mentions technical difficulties with both video and audio.
More “FAN CAM” footage is shown as Shane Douglas bursts out of the driver’s seat of a car wearing a sling on his right arm. As Douglas complains to BBB and Francine about having another surgery Chris Candido surges out the back door in disbelief. He lies about beating everyone up and lures the rest of the Triple Threat inside to lay some lumps. Francine yells at Douglas to wear his sling since he’s hurt.
Instead of having a match between John Kronus and Chris Chetti the Triple Threat hit the ring. BBB delivers the Greetings from Asbury Park to Kronus then tosses him out of the ring through a table! The crowd chants “ECW!” In a menacing tone Douglas addresses Chris Chetti.
Douglas states “when I was in this business for a year I was working for an asshole named Bill Watts, and I was being forced to drive 1000 miles a night to make $50….not being chauffeured around on MY back!” As Douglas continues to berate Chetti Taz hits the ring. I should point out that Douglas revealed Chetti as Taz’s cousin.
As Taz tries to rebut with Douglas Chetti interrupts him. Cousin or not, Chetti might be drinking his dinner for a while with that type of behavior around Taz. As soon as I type that he gets the taste slapped out of his mouth by Taz and then a Taz-plex. Douglas challenges Taz to a fight. Taz says if they put “their pretty belts on the line” he’ll accept. Paul Heyman is obviously shouting something at Douglas as Shane tells him that this is between him and Taz.
Douglas mentions Stan Hansen’s claim to fame as 20 years ago he broke Bruno Sammartino’s neck. In order to knock him out of his title match against Al Snow he offers the same proposal to Taz to break his arm. He begins to plead with Taz. Rather stupidly he pokes Taz in the face with the microphone as well as slaps him to provoke him. He even calls him a pussy.
Taz rebuts with his own expletive and takes Douglas down. He bars Shane’s arm while BBB and Candido try to get Taz off Douglas. While Candido protects Douglas BBB lowers the boom on Taz. Bigelow and Taz brawl at ringside then into the crowd.
Joey closes us out wondering if either the Sandman or Shane Douglas will be able to compete at Wrestlepalooza.
Overall, ECW was definitely trying to pull off a WCW Monday Nitro type of show where anything can happen. Their only real problem was that this was taped for syndication. How can the fans believe it was live and really happening when some viewers got this show at 2 in the morning? I can give props to them for trying to create a new way to view ECW. The little guy has to always try to improve to keep and grow its audience.
Let’s hope next week’s show answers some of the questions being asked here.
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