ECW One Night Stand 2006
Cold open into a rabid-arse crowd, just like the good old days. The Hammerstein was perfect for One Night Stand, seeing as how 2000-era ECW would do a better job hyping house shows at this venue than their own national PPVs.
Heyman starts the show with another rousing speech, knowing exactly what buttons to press on a crowd that really wants to believe ECW’s back, WWE sucks and everyone’s going to win the lottery. All he’s missing is a ”Can you dig iiiiiit?”
The old (most recent) ECW purple-lightning intro segues into LET THA BODIES HI THA FLOOH LET THA BODIES HI THA FLOOH LET THA BODIES HI THA FLOOOOOOAHHHHH. The only time I want to hear that is drunk at a rock club at 1 am.
Commentator is Joey Styles by himself. Damn shame Cyrus is on the ”never going to work here again” list.
Tazz vs. Jerry Lawler
Harry Slash’s Jimmy Hart’s KISS War Machine brings out Tazz, who’s almost as wide as he is tall. Lawler makes his entrance and Styles mocks HIS weight. Lawler somehow hears these comments and slaps him.
Lawler gets in the ring but Styles Pear Harbours him, allowing Tazz to lock in the Tazzmission and that’s the match
Winner: Tazz (I read somewhere that the Irn Bru Oddjob would only come out of retirement as long as it was a quick non-match as he wasn’t in shape. Surprised they started the show with this but the crowd’s rabid and it was better than Lawler vs. Dreamer from ’97).
WWE vs. ECW Head to Head is recapped, you can read about it here. There’s generic rock music over the top but they sadly don’t play it with half the frames missing.
Tazz joins Styles in the commentator booth. Styles’ glasses fall off from Tazz sucking wind.
Randy Orton vs. Kurt Angle
Orton’s return match after suspension from not-shitting-in-Divas-Bags-but-it’s-been-joked-about-so-many-times-that-he-may-as-well-have-shit-in-a-Divas-Bag. Orton is pushed by a fan as he walks down the aisle. This may the last time we had a crowd full of disillusioned middle-aged fans believing it was real again.
Orton stalls to giant ”Fuck You Orton”, ”Pussy” and my personal favourite ”Go Fuck Cena” chants. This is ‘Wrestling Machine’ Kurt Angle so there’s lots of ground and pound but Angle could make Bryon Saxton exciting. Angle challenges Orton to put him in a headlock (Orton’s finisher at the time) just so Angle can counter it. All basic stuff so far but he’s a Wrestling Machine after all, the Schultz brothers didn’t moonsault. Orton locks in a thundering headlock and the crowd erupts in ”Boooooooring”.
Angle teases a German Suplex before Orton cuts it off with a mongolian chop (!!) before Angle gets the German after an Irish whip into the corner. Angle revs up the engines and goes for broke with the Triple Germans but Orton counters the Angle Slam with an armdrag (nice, he’s doing Angle’s basic counters now) but falls to an Angle Slam for two. Crowd demands Angle break his Ankle but Orton rolls him into the corner and plants him with the headlock backbreaker. Orton sets up the RKO but Angle sees it coming so Orton comes off the top with a crossbody, only for Angle to roll it into a pin-fall attempt. After some misses, Angle gets him in the Anke Lock With Grapevine and makes him tap.
Winner: Kurt Angle (I didn’t like this match when I first saw it years ago because it wasn’t chair-shots & flips, but time has been kind to it as the Angle match mould is hard to mess up. You start off slow, build the match up and then blast out the big moves. Such a good formula that nearly all WWE matches are this way now. I’m going to give Orton the benefit of the doubt and say he was pretending to wrestle like a rookie to milk the crowd.)
Orton demands more refs to help him backstage so the crowd can boo him some more.
Tazz: ”Yeah, now go back to Raw where you belong!”
F.B.I. vs. Super Crazy & Tajiri
The F.B.I. are Tony Mamaluke, Little Guido & Big Guido at ringside, which is a weird mix of old and new. At least there’s no Johnny The Bull or Chuck Palumbo. Tajiri is wearing tights emblazoned with the HUSTLE logo.
See, if this was a singles match then Guido would be losing but the F.B.I. have the tag team advantage. Styles point out Mamaluke’s put on some weight, but says that’s a good thing as he used to weigh a buck fifty. Tazz: ”He’s been eating his cannolis!” Mamaluke & Crazy start with mat wrestling as Styles gets his digs in on Cole not knowing the names of moves. Crowd chants ”Nacho Libre” as Mamaluke does his best to show off his mat-wrestling he knows he’ll never get another chance to show. Standing moonsault is called a ”backflip splash” by Styles, which sounds like what they may have called it in ’89. Styles then goes into TV mode and starts talking about the main event. On a PPV! Hey if you’re going to insult other commentators, don’t be shite.
Tajiri in and he wastes no time throwing the kicks with thigh-slap that everyone does now. Both Italians get put in trees of woe with stereo dropkicks and Crazy goes for his ridiculous Triple Moonsault finisher. Thank God that didn’t last long. What would he do at Wrestlemania, nine moonsaults? F.B.I. get sent outside so Crazy can Asai Moonsault everyone. Big Guido trips up Crazy as he gets back in and the crowd chants for Mamaluke. Crazy isn’t having that so he holds onto his leg on a flapjack to mess him up. Mamaluke was truly the Ziggler of ECW. Mamaluke camel clutches Crazy as Guido gives him a low dropkick but Tajiri isn’t happy so he buzzkicks everyone. Tajiri in for real and he wraps in a Stretch Plumb on Mamaluke and the Handspring Elbow on both men. Crazy & Tajiri both lock in Tarantulas as you wonder how Tajiri wasn’t a bigger deal in WWE. Big Guido comes in and gets treated as well as Big Guido should be treated in 2006. Crazy gets sent out the ring and into the front row (hey, that’s Mamaluke’s spot) so the F.B.I. give Tajiri a double Fisherman’s Buster for the win.
Winner: The F.B.I. (A decent way to waste twelve minutes. It was a highlight package of previous matches mixed together but everybody was so over it was alright. Except for Big Guido.)
Big Show waddles out afterwards and beats up everyone. Crowd inexplicably cheers this counter-productivity. Oh wait, Big Show’s part of ECW now so it’s OK. Tazz jokes about the snot coming out of Show’s nose which is sadly visible on the Network.
JBL is here, dressed for business so I assume he pre-drank in his cow-limo. The crowd chants ”You Suck Dick” to which he replies ”I don’t see a single woman here and you’re chanting about a male organ, so who’s the fruit booty?” Brian Christopher? The Blue Meanie incident is brought up but everyone had forgotten about it by 2006 because Meanie took the money and toddled off. JBL brags about going unpunished so he can do what he wants. He should have followed that up with a goose-step to really rub it in. He rambles but ends with the wonderful ”KISS MY ASS, THIS SHOW SUCKS” sound-bite.
Sabu vs. Rey Mysterio (Extreme Rules)
Well the result’s already a give-away: Rey’s the World Champ so he ain’t winning. Tazz has a go at Rey for being in ECW then leaving. Like Tazz did?
They start off with chairs in the ring with the weird ”it’s Extreme Rules, so we start off with weapons!” which isn’t ECW-ish at all. It’s cheaper than paying for Bill Alfonso to hand Sabu chairs, I guess. So we immediately start with Air Sabu in the corner followed by the Raven Trademark drop toe hold into a chair. Sabu hurls a chair at Rey and sets up a table stacked over the guard-rail and we’re wasting no time here. Sabu triple-jumps but Rey moves so Sabu crashes and burns like the metaphor for his career in a few weeks time.
Back inside, Rey busts out a top-rope moonsault but Sabu ignores it and drapes Rey over the middle-rope for a top rope leg drop. Did they have another town to make after this? They’re wrestling on fast-forward. Sabu locks in the Camel Clutch, causing the crowd to chant ”Sheik” which Sabu appreciates. Arabian Facebuster gets two. Sabu sets up the table outside and uses it to get back in the ring, so Rey takes advantage of Sabu’s stupidity to give him a springboard seated senton through the table. That looked beautiful and gets the first ”Holy shit” chant of the night.
Rey with a springboard leg-drop for another two. Rey tries for Air Sabu but Sabu moves, but Rey sees it and moonsaults away but Sabu gives him his springboard flying leg lariat. Nice sequence. Triple Jump Moonsault gets another two, sadly crushing Rey’s face in the process. Sabu misses a top rope leg-drop as I’m struggling to keep up with typing. Rey tries to jump on a seated Sabu but he moves and Sabu simply hurls a chair at poor Rey to a loud ”oooohhh”. This sends Rey outside to the already-set-up table so Sabu triple jumps outside and kills both Rey and himself with a DDT through the table. CHRIST.
Match is called a draw (by some guy with a New York accent so you know he’s important) as neither man can continue. Crowd chants ”Bullshit” but applauds both men as they rise.
Winner: Not Rey (Finish aside (which was for the best, Rey had just lost clean to RVD on Wednesday and losing to Sabu even in a non-title match was asking a lot), this was one hell of a sprint. Both men were smoother than peanut butter and showed Sabu could still be the myth of Sabu when it called for. After a quick Google, this was their only match together.)
Promo package for the next match. Heyman hated Foley for calling himself Hardcore when he was the guy who sold out and wore a sock on his hand, so he set Funk & Dreamer on him and Edge. Doesn’t make that much sense as Foley & Edge beat the ear and tooth out of each other at Wrestlemania, but associating Foley with the out-dated concept of ”selling out” is the best chance they had of this crowd booing him.
Foley apologies to the crowd and appreciates ECW when it was ran by a creative genius…Stephanie McMahon. ”Long live The Alliance!”
Edge calls this show the ECW fans’ Christmas, except their Santa is Jewish and gives out and endless supply of CENSORED ON THE NETWORK. He reminds the crowd they’re all going to pleasure themselves to pictures of his girlfriend as soon as they get home, which gets a ”yeah well you’re not wrong” reaction from the crowd. Edge then proves he’s a real heel by giving the mic to Lita.
Tazz: ”Hopefully there’s a bottle of peroxide in the back.”
Mick Foley & Edge vs. Tommy Dreamer & Terry Funk
Funk & Dreamer have Beulah as well as Jimmy Hart’s Alice In Chains’ Man In the Box with them. Beulah looks exactly the same as she did in 1995 and after insulting Lita they turn it into a six-person match. Styles puts over Beulah’s wrestling ability by reminding us of when Bill Alfonso lost a third of his blood and needed a transfusion after the match. According to The Sandman, Bill walked out of the hospital that night smoking a cigarette and drinking a beer.
Dreamer and Edge start off surprisingly respectfully, all things considered. Funk & Foley tag in but after a few Funk punches, Foley wants out. Funk follows him as the tries to escape and now everyone’s brawling. Funk nearly hits the fans with a flying chair. As long as it’s not on fire, it’s OK. Funk destroys everyone with a trash can and Dreamer sends Foley to the outside via trash-can-dropkick. Everything Funk does looks like he decided to do it that very second. Edge tries to spear Dreamer through a ladder in the corner, but Dreamer hip-tosses him onto it instead. Funk gets the ladder and we get the The Three Stooges spot because it’s not a Terry Funk hardcore match without it. The ladder gets set up as 61-year old Terry scales it. Edge simply pushes it down and Funk lands as well as could be expected.
Dreamer tries for the Dreamer Driver but Lita kicks him in the crotch. Foley & Edge decide to bring the barbed-wire plywood into play and they double suplex it onto Dreamer. They helpfully pull it off him but as they try for another, Funk grabs their legs and they suplex the wire onto themselves. Edge sells it like a gunshot. Foley is sent into the board but he stops himself and the crowd boos. No wonder Foley hated the ECW fans. Funk & Dreamer toss him in anyway. Dreamer gets crotched on the outside as the crowd chants ”This is awesome”. Feels weird hearing that from an ECW crowd but in fairness, there’s been no dull moments or rest. Funk gets put through the wire now and remains stuck in it. Foley wraps wire around his arm and goes to town on Funk’s forehead. ”My eye, my eye!” Fucking Lawler. A medical guy at ringside interferes and helps Funk backstage.
Crowd wants Sandman but the baddies ignore them and attack Dreamer’s crotch with a barbed-wire baseball bat. Foley gets Mr. Socko and applies it to Beulah & then Dreamer. Edge spears Dreamer and then turns his attention to Edge as the crowd now wants ”New Jack”. Oh man what a sight that would have been. Edge gets ready to give her a Pump Handle Sex Slam but wrapped-up bat-swinging Funk returns and kills everyone. He then lights the bat on fire (OH FUCK, THE FANS THE FANS) and sends Foley off the apron and into the barbed wire board on the floor. Funk is then sent off the apron but he comfortably lands on Foley. Dreamer then chokes Edge with barbed-wire until Lita sticks her jiggly bits in again. Beulah has enough and grinds with Lita as Joey Styles gives us ”CAAATFIIIIGGHTTT” out of his system. Dreamer dunks her with the Dreamer Driver and then poses (like he always does) so Edge wraps even more barbed wire around Dreamer’s face and gives him the Edge-O-Matic. Dreamer was asking for that. Edge then sex-pins Beulah after a spear to end it.
Winners: Edge, Foley & Lita (What a tremendous blend of nostalgia, violence and making Edge look like a big deal. The fact that the crowd was still booing him after all the impressive violence he took is a hell of a compliment. Like the previous match, the spots kept on escalating and there was no let-up.)
Balls Mahoney vs. Masato Tanaka
Well if you need a rest in between that match and the main event, these two are as good as any. Tanaka’s a former ECW World Champion but Balls Mahoney headlined more PPVs than him.
Styles: ”Tanaka had that match against Mike Awesome last year.”
Tazz: ”Mike who?”
Tazz: ”Oh. Yeah I remember choking him out a few times.”
Weird that both men still hate Awesome. How dare someone leave a company when they’re not being paid? This is strictly filler but the crowd remembers and likes both men so they don’t care. Deafening ”Balls” chants for the punches. Mahoney gets sent outside and shouts ”OH SHIT” but it’s censored on the Network. They censor the occasional swear word by the wrestlers while the crowd’s Fucking and Shitting every few minutes. Tanaka dives onto Balls, but Balls has none of it and punches him. Balls asks for beer so he could take a sip and send the rest over Tanaka.
Styles: ”Does it matter if you use a heavy beer or a light beer?”
Tanaka resumes the action inside the ring with a superplex for two. Tanaka tries a top rop move but Balls superplexes him instead for another two. Both men get the chairs and re-enact their 1998 chair duel with Balls winning and pinning Tanaka with a pre-Benoit chair shot to the head.
Winner: Balls Mahoney (Five minutes of ECW spots we haven’t seen yet to kill some time. It was what it was).
Eugene comes out to tell us Uncle Eric used to call him as smart as an ECW Wrestler. He chants ”He’s Hardcore, He’s Hardcore” and sings a poem until The Sandman (with stock music #2) enters through the crowd as I try and spot indie wrestlers who attended this event. Can’t see any but I spot Vladimir The Superfan.
Sandman canes him out of the arena (Eugene, not Vladimir). Given the state of 2006 gimmicks, it’s almost a surprise they didn’t have Sandman cane the retard out of him and have Eugene start speak normally like Flowers for Algernon.
Rob Van Dam vs. John Cena
RVD was the first wrestler to tell the champ when he was going to cash in his MITB. And the only other person to announce was Cena in 2011 so CIRCLE OF LIFE. The whole meta-storyline of RVD not winning the title for years and Cena representing everything He-Man Woman Haters dislike about WWE may seem childish (especially when Cena was at his arguable career best as Fighting Champ) but it makes for an amazing atmosphere. In one of those only-at-this-event moments, Cena throws his shirt into the crowd but they return it every time.
Toilet Paper is thrown, as well as duelling ”Fuck You Cena” chants. Styles calls it a big fight atmosphere and he isn’t kidding. Cena plants RVD with a Cradle Suplex and he has to stop to acknowledge the ”You Can’t Wrestle” chants. Cena’s playing his role perfectly. They trade blows, giving us the incredibly loud BOO/YEAH punch-off that’s been mimicked ever since. ”Same Old Shit” chants for Cena and (as has been pointed out many times in the comments section) that’s a pretty hilarious chant considering he’s wrestling RVD who’s only changed his singlets since 1999.
Cena flies off the top rope to the outside with a forearm (a new move) so the crowd chants ”You Still Suck”. It’s like an entire message board showed up to an event. Cena responds to the ”Over-rated” chant by holding his Title up. Ha! RVD tries to spring-board off the guard-rail but Cena shoves him into the unwashed masses. Cena then follows and holds up a FUCK YOU CENA sign before punching RVD. But as Cena follows RVD back into the ring, RVD gives him the swinging leg drop off the apron. Nice to see that spot look more natural than just ”I’m going to dump you over the rail, wait here OK?”. Another leg-drop followed by the skateboard chair spot in the corner for two. Rolling Thunder with chair only gets two. I’m sure I don’t need to type this but in case you haven’t seen it yet, the crowd is 100% behind RVD the whole match.
Cena manages to DDT RVD onto a chair so RVD can land on his head (as per contract) and Cena tries to cheat by using the ropes but gets two. ”You Can’t Wrestle” again as Cena sends RVD into a set-up chair into the corner. See, Cena doesn’t even need to do a chinlock or whatever to rest, he just needs to stare at the crowd and look annoyed. Cena gives him the Five Knuckle Shuffle as Styles predicts the riot. RVD cuts him off but a top rope jaunt is halted by a Cena pull-down powerbomb. ”Die Cena Die!” RVD awkwardly tries to set up Cena on the ropes but God knows what he was thinking as it doesn’t work so he just dropkicks Cena off instead. Crowd blames Cena for the fuck up, ahahaha. RVD sets up a table but Cena locks the STFU and has to have the ref push him off. Cena pushes the ref who pushes back, so he clothesline him. Cena needs to start twizzling his moustache while he’s at it. Table’s set up in the corner. Cena dunks RVD with the steel steps and summons a ref so Smackdown’s Nick Patrick runs out for two. ”Fuck Nick Patrick!” Cena sends RVD outside with a F-U but a masked man runs out and spears Cena through the table and decks the ref. It’s Edge who then buggers off. ”Thank You Edge!” RVD gives Cena the Five Star Frog Splash as Heyman bounces out to count the pin in what seems like an obvious Dusty Finish.
Winner and New World Champion: Rob Van Dam (An unforgettable match where the action was secondary to the atmosphere. The finish is a bit of a letdown if you see One Night Stand as it’s own thing but it was part of the every-week storylines now so they had to have something. Given what happens in a few weeks time, WWE were probably glad they did do it. But we’ll get to that soon enough.)
Overall: What a blast and a half this was. Nearly everything that was advertised delivered or over-delivered with the main event in particular influencing a generation of IF name WINS WE RIOT signs. RVD, Edge, Sabu, Angle, Foley & Dreamer all looked strong so I can’t wait for that new show on Sci-Fi next week.