So last week ECW decided to put the World Title on a certain fellow known as Justin Credible. Yeah, as you can guess that was a tad controversial back at the time and is still roundly criticised to this day. Still though, let’s see if Justin can present himself as a credible (pun partially intended) Champion going forward. I mean, his first feud is likely going to be Tommy Dreamer, so it might take a while like, but we could get there eventually…maybe…
Chuffing wrestling, let’s watch!
This week’s matches were taped from Poughkeepsie, New York
Calling the action is Joey Styles
We open up with a recap of Justin Credible winning the belt last week, after Tommy Dreamer had already defeated Taz for the belt.
Simon Diamond is in the ring with The Prodigy Tom Marquez, The Prodigette, The Musketeer and Mitch. Diamond says that he’s sick of people thinking he’s a comedy character, and states that he is a blue chip athlete. He lays down the dreaded open challenge, which leads to Tommy Dreamer answering it.
Simon Diamond w/ his menagerie Vs Thomas Dreamer
Joey pushes on commentary that Dreamer is more popular than ever. Seeing as I can’t actually hear the crowd due to the dubbed music, I’ll just have to take Joey’s word for it. Diamond jumps Dreamer from the bell and peppers him with punches, but Dreamer fights back and gets a babyface shine. The crowd does indeed seem into his stuff, so Joey may have been correct. Dreamer takes the fight outside, where he boinks Diamond right in the Kenney’s with the ring bell.
Diamond’s lackeys provide a distraction however, which allows Prodigy to come in with a clothesline for the cut off. Diamond works some heat on Dreamer following that, and it looks fine for the most part. Dreamer manages to get a suplex for a double down and then hangs Diamond in the Tree of Woe before wrecking his junk once more. Mitch tries to help out, but Dreamer takes care of him with an umbrella shot. Oh, so that’s where Jack Gallagher got that spot from!
The Musketeer comes in and demands a duel, but ends up taking a Spicolli Driver. This allows Diamond to catch Dreamer with a cheeky roll up though, but Dreamer manages to kick out at two. Prodigy and Prodigette come in next, but Dreamer gives them a double DDT before adding one to Diamond for the three count.
WINNER: TOMMY DREAMER
This was fun and was a good little TV match.
Mikey Whipwreck and Sinister Minister are hanging out backstage. Minister asks Mikey to either bring him Justin Credible’s ECW Title or his soul, whichever one he can get. Mikey offers his soul instead, but Minister says nobody wants his soul. The segment ends with them both cackling uncontrollably. Crazy Mikey was the best Mikey.
Justin Credible and Francine have a promo in a corridor somewhere. Credible says he’ll always be looking over his shoulder, whilst Francine says she will strip Dawn Marie naked in due course.
We get clips from TNN, as Lance Storm confronts Justin Credible over Credible throwing down the tag belts. Storm is mighty unhappy about this and demands a shot at the ECW Title, which leads to a brawl between the two men. It’s a good believable fight as well. Dawn Marie and Francine of course deliver their contractually mandated catfight, which then leads to Raven running down to attack Credible. Storm super kicks Raven, which leads to Jazz attacking Dawn. This all leads to a Kid Kash Vs Lance Storm match somehow, as it has turned into Paul Heyman’s favourite thing of “one long interconnected segment”. Storm defeats Kash via cheating, which would appear to show that he’s still a heel who just hates Credible. I’m not sure if that was the right way to go. They should have just turned him face I think. Credible Vs Storm is a heel program right now and it needs a babyface for the fans to get behind.
We get clips of Jerry Lynn defeating Scotty Anton thanks to a Rhino run in. Lynn doesn’t seem to appreciate it though and flips off Cyrus before diving out onto Steve Corino and Jack Victory (High Spot!) to remain babyface. This leads to Rob Van Dam running down for a brawl with Rhino. Goodness me, Paul is making Vince Russo look reserved in this TNN taping! RVD looks to be beaten down by The Network, but former Network member Tajiri runs down for the rescue. In an important bit at the end of the brawl, RVD dives out of the ring to get Lynn, but ends up catching Anton in the process.
Champ: Justin Credible w/ Francine Vs Mikey Whipwreck
There’s a good interview I heard with Sinister Minister a while back where he said that Mikey realised that he was getting bigger pops when Minister came to the ring with him, so he went to Paul Heyman and asked for them to be hooked up as a regular act and Paul went for it. Mikey is of course a former Triple Crown winner in ECW, but I doubt he’s going to be winning the ECW Title again anytime soon. Stranger things happen at sea I guess.
Before the match starts Credible grabs the mic and insults the crowd, leading to a long bleep. I’m not exactly sure what he said but it was certainly enough for Heyman to decide to bleep it out, and he’s a guy who knows a thing or two about lawsuits so it must have been something that set off his litigious Spider Sense. Credible tries to leave, but Mikey is having none of that and drags him back down to ringside so the bout can begin.
Credible manages to throw him off the apron into the guardrail however, which is enough for the cut off. Credible and Mikey actually had a pretty heated feud in 97/98, which saw Credible injure Mikey in his hometown, so they have some reasonable chemistry and Mikey sells well whilst Credible works him over in the heat segment. I know, Mikey Whipwreck selling a beating well, next I’ll be telling you that water is wet.
Mikey eventually manages to catch Credible with a catapult that sends the Champ flying out of the ring through a table. Credible missed most of the table though and took most of the bump on the floor, which I bet was something he didn’t enjoy. Mikey gets a Russian Leg Sweep back inside for two and then grabs a chair. Credible mule kicks him right in the whippersnapper to stop that, but Mikey comes right back with a DDT on the chair that gets two when Francine breaks up the pin.
Mikey is unhappy about this and goes to piledrive her onto the chair, but Credible whacks him with his Singapore cane for two for a pop from the crowd. Good near fall there. Credible heads up top, but Mikey stops him and tries to bring him down with a Stunner. Credible fights that off and goes for a cross body, but Mikey rolls through for two. Mikey gets the Stunner right after, but Credible manages to kick out at two.
Francine gets involved again by hitting Mikey with the cane, which allows Credible to get a super kick for a two count. Credible follows up with a Tombstone Piledriver next though, and that’s eventually enough to hold Mikey down for three.
WINNER AND STILL CHAMPION: JUSTIN CREDIBLE
A decent match there, but I think they probably should have put Credible over stronger. That sort of match would be fine if Credible was already established as a World Title level guy, but right now he’s won the belt basically at random and needs to be given some strong wins to establish him in the position. I get that they wanted to show that Francine was an effective valet, but they didn’t do enough for me to show that Credible was an effective singles guy. Mikey looked good in what he did, and the crowd was with him, but if it were me I wouldn’t have done the spot where Francine had to literally come into the ring to break up the pin, because that made Credible look super weak and almost presented him as a Honky Tonk Man style figure, which may work for a mid-card belt but doesn’t cut it for a Main Event level one.
It’s a PULP FICTION MONTAGE, this time to hype up Hardcore Heaven on the 14th of May 2000. Sandman wants to get revenge on Rhino and become a Triple Crown Champion by winning the TV Title. Jerry Lynn is going to kick RVD’s butt real good to earn himself a World Title shot. RVD seems to be annoying Scotty Anton. Justin Credible knows what Lance Storm is going to come at him with. The New Dangerous Alliance are annoyed that Credible threw the tag belts down, as now they can’t win them. Nova and Chris Chetti put over great tag teams from the past and lament that the tag belts got thrown down by Credible. Danny Doring and Roadkill are also angry about the tag belts getting vacated. This one promo segment has done more to make Tag Titles seem important than I think the WWE has done since the early 00’s. Cyrus mocks Sandman for being a drunk and says that Rhino is going to destroy him at Hardcore Heaven.
Well, it was about time that they acknowledged Hardcore Heaven was happening.
The card currently is as follows
ECW World Title
Champ: Justin Credible Vs Lance Storm
ECW TV Title
Champ: Rhino Vs The Sandman
Jerry Lynn Vs Rob Van Dam
Decent show this week with two fun matches and some hype for the pay per view. It’s about time they really started pushing that show, although I’ll give them a bit of a break due to all the commotion going on with Mike Awesome and the World Title.
Next week it’s the Hardcore Heaven go-home show, so hopefully you’ll join me for that!