ECW On Sci Fi – July 3, 2007

ECW on Sci Fi
Date: July 3, 2007
Location: American Airlines Center, Dallas, Texas
Attendance: 13,500
Commentators: Joey Styles, Tazz

We have a new focal point as last week saw CM Punk become the new #1 contender to Johnny Nitro’s ECW World Title. That should be enough to get us to the Great American bash, though they might want to have something else to build towards, as one feud isn’t likely to be enough to fill in a whole show. Let’s get to it.

Opening sequence.

Johnny Nitro vs. Tommy Dreamer

Non-title and CM Punk picked Dreamer to be Nitro’s opponent. Dreamer knocks him down a few times to start and we hit the armbar. That’s switched into an abdominal stretch as commentary isn’t sure how much sense it makes to go after Nitro’s stomach (ala Rick Rude). Nitro fights up and starts in on Dreamer’s arm but a Cactus Clothesline puts them both on the floor. Dreamer can’t suplex him to the floor so Nitro dropkicks him off the apron instead.

We take a break and come back with Nitro staying on the arm, including an armbar and some kicks to said arm. The cranking continues until Nitro gets up and tries the springboard kick to the face, which only hits mat. A one armed fall away slam gives Dreamer two and he ties Nitro in the Tree of Woe for the running dropkick. The DDT is blocked though and Nitro’s corkscrew neckbreaker is good for the pin.

Rating: C-. There was a lot of armbarring in this but at least the ending was the right way to go. Dreamer made Nitro sweat a bit and that’s about as far as he should ever be going. Nitro picking Dreamer apart and then finishing him is fine, as Nitro isn’t quite the one to get a dominant win. Fine enough for a longer TV match.

Raw Rebound.

Video on the Boogeyman.

Video on CM Punk.

Extreme Expose is back next week. Normally I would say ‘they’re that big of a draw?’ but yeah, they probably were.

From Vengeance 2007.

ECW World Title: CM Punk vs. Johnny Nitro

The title is vacant coming in and Nitro is replacing Chris Benoit, who is missing the show due to personal reasons. The Peacock version changes the intro from “CM Punk’s opponent, the man who will be replacing Chris Benoit” to “CM Punk’s opponent” and commentary is muted during Nitro’s entrance. What isn’t edited out is the WE WANT BENOIT chants as they circle each other to start. Punk wastes no time in kicking him out to the floor and it’s time for a chase on the floor.

Back in and Nitro hits the Flying Chuck to take over and some right hands are rained down. We hit the armbar as the fans still want Benoit. A flying armbar takes Punk down again and Nitro grabs a cobra clutch to keep him in trouble. Punk fights up and hits an enziguri, setting up the slugout. Nitro gets up an elbow in the corner and puts his feet on the ropes for two, with the referee catching him. Back up and Punk hits the running knee in the corner into the bulldog for two. Nitro avoids the springboard clothesline though, setting up the hanging flip neckbreaker for the pin and the title.

Rating: C+. Nitro has come a long way and is actually feeling like a serious threat to win some fairly big matches. That being said, this was still an upset and Nitro looking surprised was a nice touch. It came out of nowhere and this wasn’t quite the original match, but at least they did rather well with what they had.

The Miz is coming.

CM Punk vs. Kevin Thorn

Thorn is Johnny Nitro’s handpicked opponent. Punk takes him straight down for the kick to the back and some more kicks to the leg keep Thorn in trouble. Another kick to the leg sets up a slingshot hilo for two on Thorn and we take a break. Back with Thorn dropping him throat first across the top rope for two and grabbing a chinlock.

Punk fights up and hits a springboard spinning crossbody before striking away. Some right hands in the corner rock Thorn again but he catches Punk on the top. The Dark Kiss is broken up but so is the GTS. Instead Thorn tries a Razor’s Edge but Punk escapes and hits an enziguri. A cradle finishes Thorn.

Rating: C. Much like the opener, I don’t think there was much doubt about who was winning here and it was fine to see Punk sweat a bit before pulling off the win. This was more about putting Punk in the ring and giving him a win to keep up his momentum on his way to the second title match with Nitro. Thorn isn’t great, but he’s more than good enough for a match like this.

Post match Johnny Nitro comes out for a distraction so Thorn jumps Punk again. Punk fights up and clears Thorn out, just as Nitro arrives. The champ bails to end the show.

Overall Rating: C. This was quite the weird version of ECW, but they were trying to figure out where to go with everything and needed another week to get there. At the same time, this was part of a triple taping on the same night, so cutting out about fifteen minutes in the middle was probably necessary for the sake of some breathing room. That being said, it was quite a lot to have the whole show be built around one feud. Not a bad show, but some variety would have helped a bit.



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