Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Canon Wrestling Review: ECW It Ain't Seinfeld: May 14, 1998

On May 14, 1998, while the rest of the world was watching the final episode of Seinfeld (actually, in my house we taped Seinfeld and watched WCW Thunder that night, then watched Seinfeld the next day), ECW decided to hold a wrestling show at the Elks Lodge in New York City, and many ECW diehards came out to see the show. In hindsight, it was probably the right decision, as the Seinfeld finale was probably the most disappointing in the history of television, but that's a topic for another day. But was It Ain't Seinfeld a better show? Well, there's only one way to find out.

The first match of the night is between Justin Credible (w/ Jason and Chastity) and "Dynamic" Jerry Lynn. Joey Styles claims that Jerry Lynn is underutilized in ECW. Well, that would change. The two do a series of tieups to start, then Credible gets frustrated and shoves Lynn down. Lynn responds with a takedown and punches. After a series of leapfrogs, Lynn catches Credible with a spinning back elbow that gets a two count. Lynn whips Credible and Justin flips over the turnbuckle onto the apron, where Lynn charges and knocks Credible into the guardrail. Lynn then catches Credible with a baseball slide that sends Credible over the rail, and then performs a running somersault plancha off the apron onto Credible. Back in, Lynn gets a two count, then uses the "Minneapolis Jam" legdrop to get another two count. Lynn attempts a suplex, but Credible sneaks out and drops his opponent with a reverse DDT. After brawling with Lynn, Jason throws Credible a chair, and Justin uses it to steal Raven's drop-toe-hold into a chair, which gets a two count. More brawling by Credible in the corner, and a powerbomb from a seated position in the corner gets a two for Credible. Credible slows the match down with a chinlock. Back up, Lynn comes off the ropes with a sunset flip and a two count, then gets flattened by a diving clothesline. Credible gets a chair and dives off the top rope, only to get the chair jammed into his face by Jerry Lynn's boot. Dropkick by Lynn into the chair in front of Credible's face, then Lynn follows with a bulldog out of the corner onto the chair. Cover, only gets two. Lynn charges at Credible, but Credible ducks and Lynn goes flying to the outside of the ring. Jason interferes with a backbreaker on Lynn and rolls Lynn in. That gets two, and so does Credible's sloppy looking running spinning DDT. Vertical suplex attempted by Credible, but Lynn counters with a snap suplex while Chastity goes to distract the ref. Lynn to the top, only to be shoved off by Jason. Credible sets up Lynn for That's Incredible, but Lynn reverses, and hits Credible's own finishing move on him to get the three count. Not a bad opening match at all. I'll give it a 3 out of 5.

Next is the legendary Sabu (w/ Bill Alfonso) against the decidedly less legendary Danny Doring. Sabu is all over Doring to start the match, attacking him with punches and an elbow drop. He sits Doring up, and then catches him with a slingshot side-kick. Sabu sets up Doring in the corner, grabs a chair, and throws it in Doring's face, which made me laguh, at least. He then launches off the chair to dropkick Doring in the face. Cover, but Doring kicks out. Sabu continues the assault with a drop kick to the knee and a back body drop. Doring reverses an irish whip, only to take another dropkick to the knee. Sabu sets up a table between the guardrail and apron. Doring takes off with a suicide dive, only for Sabu to shrug him off. Sabu sets Doring up, sets up a chair and the ring, and launches himself off the ropes to elbow drop Doring through the table. Back in the ring. Alfonso holds a chair over Doring's head, and Sabu legdrops the chair into Doring from the top rope. A camel clutch is applied by Sabu, and Doring taps out. Really, this match was just an exhibition to show off Sabu, but at least it was entertaining and Sabu didn't blow anything, so I'll give it a 1.85 out of 5.

Jamie Dundee comes out to the ring, and dances some (quite poorly, I might add) before grabbing a mic. Dundee doesn't seem to think highly of the women of New York or the fans in the crowd, stating that one fan reminds him of his nuts (I don't know how, but that's what he said). Dundee continues to insult the crowd, and throws a remark about Francine's promiscuity in before his opponent, Dundee's opponent is one-half of the Tag Team Champions, Chris Candido, who is accompanied by Francine. Before the match starts, Dundee propositions Francine to dump the zero and get with the hero, which proves to be unsuccessful. The match starts, and Dundee surprises Candido with a springboard body-press out of the irish whip and a pair of hip tosses. Candido consults with Francine while Dundee flexes. Back to action, Candido unloads on Dundee with knife edge chops, and goes to whip Dundee into the corner, but is reversed. Dundee follows up with a cartwheel into a karate chop to the shoulder. Well, I haven't seen that before. Candido is unimpressed and shoves Dundee down a couple times. Dundee decides to try and intimidate Candido with some crazy-looking martail arts poses, but gets clotheslined for his efforts. New Jersey Jam by Candido gets a two count, but Candido follows up with a delayed vertical suplex which also gets a two count. The two do a series of moves out of the corner which ends with Dundee bulldogging Candido from the second rope and getting a two count. Candido catches Dundee with a back suplex and goes for another vertical suplex, but Dundee gets out and eventually throws Candido to the outside, then catches Candido with a plancha. Some brawling on the outside of the ring follows, with finishes with Dundee rolling Candido back in and climbing the top rope, only to get caught and take a superplex from the top rope. Candido follows with a diving headbutt, and gets the three count and the victory. Not too bad of a match, although Dundee's constant obnoxiousness kind of took away from the match. I'll give it a 2.5 out of 5.

Up next is the team of the Full Blooded Italians (Little Guido and Tracey Smothers w/ the Big Don Tommy Rich) to take on the team of Super Nova and the Blue Meanie. I expect that there will be at least one dance-off in this match. Tommy Rich asked to be introduced as the newly elected President of Italy. Well then. The match starts with Nova and Smothers in the ring. Smothers takes the advantage with punches, but Nova counters with a series of arm drags before Smothers tags out to Guido, who also takes an arm drag. After an irish whip and leapfrog sequence, Guido tries to hurracanrana Nova, but takes a powerbomb instead. Meanie comes in, and Guido retreats. Tommy Rich grabs the mic, and yes, we're about to have a dance off. Smothers, the winner of the 'John Travolta dance award' according to Rich, cuts a rug, then Meanie somehow does even worse than Smothers before getting referee John Finnegan to dance, and he outdances everyone. Dropkick from behind by Smothers onto Meanie, and the FBI get into Finnegan's face. They go to attack, but Finnegan ducks, bounces off the ropes, and clotheslines both FBI members, and then follows up with a pair of hip tosses. Rich comes in, only to get shoved down by Finnegan, who is on fire right now. Guido charges at Finnegan, but he ducks, and Meanie catches him with a backdrop. Smothers follows, only to get knocked back by Meanie, and Meanie and Finnegan double clothesline Smothers over the top rope to the outside. Only in ECW. Nova with a suicide dive on both FBI members. Rich then gets involved and attacks Nova, eventually crotching him on the guardrail and rolling him back in the ring. The FBI double team Nova with a double clothesline and the Paisan elbow drop, which gets a two count. Guido and Smothers continue to attack Nova while Finnegan, apparently calling the match evenly again, restrains the Meanie. Smothers irish whips Nova, is reversed and tries for the Sunset Flip. Nova counters with the legdrop, but Smothers then catches Nova with a forceful dropkick that gets a two count. Tag to Guido, who is in control for a few seconds until Nova uses a reverse Russian leg sweep to send Guido down. Tag to Meanie, who fires a pair of dropkicks on Guido and Smothers, and then powerslams Guido out of the corner for a two count. Here comes referee Jeff Jones, and he squares off with Nova as Meanie and Smothers brawl on the outside. After a shoving match, Jones kicks Nova low, and Guido tries to take advantage with a swinging neckbreaker. But instead, Nova reverses it, and hits the Novacain (a reverse STO, and rather poorly done I might add) on Guido while Finnegan DDTs Jones. After Finnegan disposes of his fellow official, he delivers the three count and Nova and Meanie win the match. Well, that was strange, but entertaining enough. I'll give it a 2.1 out of 5.

Lance Storm, the other half of the Tag Team Champions, comes out to wrestle the next match against Balls Mahoney, probably the best wrestler ever with the first name Balls. Although I must say I do like Balls' Pantera T-Shirt. Lance and Balls start out trading basic wrestling holds, and not surprisingly, Lance gets the advantage on most of them. Lance comes off the ropes after an irish whip and misses a cross body block as Mahoney ducks out of the way. Balls follows up with a spinning heel kick that makes Lance Storm land face first on the outside of the ring. Balls uses a bell and a broken table leg to continue his assault on Storm. Then Balls takes a chair to Lance Storm's back, and follows up by dropping him throat first on the guardrail. Balls tries to dive on Lance from the apron, but Lance moves and Balls lands chin first on the guardrail. Back in the ring, Storm gets a two count after a dropkick, and comes back by whipping Balls into the corner and hitting a cartwheel body splash on Balls. Two count after a bulldog by Storm, and Lance slows the match down with a chinlock. Balls gets back up, and catches Storm's superkick attempt and counters with punches and a superkick of his own. Balls then decides that now would be a good time to take his shirt off, which doesn't do the viewing audience any favors. Powerslam by Balls gets two, and Mahoney goes to the top for an elbow drop, but misses. Storm hits the slingshot clothesline from the apron, and gets a two count. Storm goes to the top and dives, but is caught by Mahoney who sets him up for the Nutcracker Suite. However, Storm gets out and gives a spinning heel kick. Storm grabs a chair and gives Mahoney one of his trademark chair shots, which predictably does not effect Mahoney at all, and Balls fires back with punches. Storm reverses an irish whip into the corner and charges, but Balls drops him over the apron. Unfortunately for Balls, Storm lands on his feet, and as Balls goes to hit Storm with the chair, Storm uses a springboard dropkick to drive it into his face to get the pinfall victory. Nothing really worth writing home about, so I'll give it a 1.4 out of 5.

Joey Styles is in the ring while the fans chant 'Seinfeld Sucks', but is interrupted by Taz, who I guarantee is about to drop a few f-bombs. Sure enough, Taz uses the f word to describe his new belt, the FTW championship. Since he can't get a shot at Shane Douglas's world title due to Douglas's injuries, caused by Taz, Taz has decided that the next logical step is to make his own championship. He challenges Douglas to come out and take his title, but instead Bam Bam Bigelow comes out. He disputes Taz's claim of being a World Champion, and states to Taz that if he wants a piece of Douglas, he'll have to go through Bigelow to get him. Taz has no problem with that, but ECW does, as referees come out to keep the two apart. Bigelow decides to pick up one referee over his head and chuck him into the crowd, and oh here go hell come as the two trade punches and drop to the mat before additional security breaks it up.

Mikey Whipwreck gets a chance to regain the Television Title he once held against the current champion, Rob Van Dam (w/ Bill Alfonso). The match starts with Van Dam hitting a couple of punches, then flatting Mikey with a lifting double underhook facebuster. When Mikey sits up, Van Dam knocks him back down with a spinning heel kick. Back up, RVD irish whips Mikey and catches him with a dropkick on the rebound. Another spinning heel kick by RVD, who follows up with a corkscrew leg drop. To the outside we go, and RVD tries to whip Mikey into the guardrail, but Mikey is able stop himself and Russian leg sweep him into the guardrail. Whipwreck follows up with a suicide dive, but Alfonso then interferes, and RVD is able to regain the advantage. Whipwreck is whipped into the guardrail, and like he's done after every single move thus far, Van Dam showboats for the crowd. Mikey gets crotched on the guardrail, and Alfonso holds up a chair in front of Whipwreck so Van Dam can hit a modified Van Daminator. Back in the ring, Van Dam sets up a chair and monkeyflips Whipwreck spine first onto the chair. Five-Star Frog Splash from Van Dam, but he doesn't attempt a cover and Whipwreck gets back up. Van Dam kicks out quickly after a Sunset Flip, and Whipwreck tries to attempt a Victory Roll, but Van Dam drops him and uses Sabu's camel clutch. Mikey gets crotched on the top rope, and Van Dam uses a standing heel kick to send Whipwreck flying to the outside. Van Dam an Alfonso take forever to find a table, and eventually set one up between the apron and the guardrail, in the exact same spot where Sabu set up a table earlier tonight. Van Dam then crotches Mikey on the guardrail, and nearly clips the table as he corkscrew leg drops Whipwreck. Back in the ring, Van Dam goes for another monkeyflip, but Whipwreck counters with a bulldog onto the chair, and nearly gets a three count after a sunset flip. Whipwreck then uses the chair to his advantage, by drop toe-holding Van Dam face first into the chair, then driving his head into it with a legdrop. Mikey goes to the apron, but Alfonso grabs his leg, and this allows Van Dam to hit the Vandaminator. Alfonso sets up Mikey on the table while Rob Van Dam tries to mimic Sabu with a triple jump dive, but here comes Sabu, and he stops RVD to elbow drop Whipwreck through the table himself. Van Dam is not happy, so he springboards off the chair to hit Sabu with a kick. The two fight it out until Candido comes out, and the two double team RVD because they are teaming up together in a future match against RVD and Lance Storm. Sabu hits Air Sabu off Candido's back, and Candido power bombs RVD before Lance Storm comes out, The four fight it out until the locker room empties to separate the men, making this match a no contest. Just as well, because it was just one RVD spot after another without any cohesion and there was too much time in the match where nothing happened. Plus, RVD was just terrible at selling back then. I'll give it a 1 out of 5.

Up next we have Bam Bam Bigelow coming out for the second time tonight, this time to face Axl Rotten, who comes out wearing an Insane Clown Posse shirt. Bigelow starts the match by attacking Axl from behind, and is all over Rotten as he backs him against the corner. Bigelow charges into the corner and hits one avalanche, but Axl moves after a second attempt and grabs his chair. Rotten hits Bigelow in the back three times with the chair, and the third one sends Bigelow down. Axl charges at Bigelow and tries to hit him in the head, but Bigelow moves, and then scoops up a stunned Axl to deliver the Greetings from Ashbury Park. That gives Bigelow the victory. Well, that was quick. 1.1 out of 5.

The Dudley Boys (Bubba Ray, D-Von, Big Dick) come out to the ring with Joel Gertner and Sign Guy Dudley and grab the mic. D'Von starts by telling the crowd to 'shut the f up', and promises to mess up anyone in the crowd who says anything, which does not silence the crowd to say the least. Bubba Ray takes the mic, and from there the crowd only gets more riled up, as they nearly entice an overweight man to jump into the ring. Trash fills the ring, and some idiot even throws a chair, yet Bubba and D'Von continue to egg the fans on. Some kid threatens to jump from the balcony, so the Dudleys try to goad him into it some more before the kid elects to simply moon the Dudleys instead. Joel Gertner is handed the mic and goes through his usual introduction, but in the middle of it, the kid jumps from the balcony, and eventually jumps the guardrail before security gets in there to keep him from the ring. Good thing, because the kid was about as big as one of Dick's legs. Anyway, the trash is eventually shuffled off to the side of the ring, and here comes the Dudley's opponents in the main event, Tommy Dreamer, the Sandman, and Spike Dudley (w/ Beulah McGillicutty).

Sandman has to get his pre-match smoke and six pack of beer in, so his team's entrance takes about five minutes overall, what with everyone throwing down a few and all. There's a big standoff to begin that takes a few minutes and involves both Bubba and Beulah insulting the other's appearance in between. Finally, Dreamer and D'Von start the match for their respective teams. They tie up, seperate, and stall some more. After some punches by D'Von and a rope-running sequence, Dreamer's sunset flip is blocked by D'Von for a two count, then Dreamer rolls back D'Von for a two count of his own. Back up, Bubba Ray and Spike are tagged in for their teams. Spike charges Bubba twice but is shoved down, then gets caught, picked up, and slammed down to the mat with the Bubba Bomb. Irish Whip into a backdrop by Bubba Ray, and he continues to pound away on Little Spike. Bubba backs Spike into the corner and charges, but Spike moves and fires away at Bubba with shoulder blocks and punches. Spike climbs on Bubba Ray's shoulders and delivers a huracanrana. Spike comes back with a pair of running flying forearms sandwiching a headscissors takeover, and Bubba has to back away into his corner. Big Dick Dudley is tagged in, so Spike decides to do the smart thing and tag in the Sandman. The match slows to a crawl as the two stare each other down and the Sandman tries to go after the other Dudleys on the apron. After a pair of tie-ups, Sandman goes after Bubba again before locking Big Dick in a side headlock. However, Dick shoves Sandman into the ropes and knocks him down hard with a shoulderblock on the rebound. Sandman flips out of a back suplex and clotheslines Big Dick, who answers with a clothesline of his own to knock down the Sandman. Powerbomb attempt by Big Dick, but the Sandman punches his way out of it and knocks Big Dick flat on his back and gets a two count. Sandman clotheslines Big Dick over the top rope, and oh here go hell come as all six man battle on the outside. Bubba gorilla presses Spike and drops him throat first onto the guardrail. Everybody's fighting everybody now and eventually both Bubba and D'Von get thrown over the guardrail, allowing Spike to dive off the turnbuckle onto Bubba and D'Von in the crowd. Dreamer and Bubba are back in, and Dreamer nearly gets a pinfall after a slingshot splash. Irish whip, Bubba ducks a clothesline and flattens Dreamer with a back suplex. D'Von and Spike come back into the ring, and Spike slips out a body slam and huracanranas D'Von down to the mat. Stratusfaction by Spike gets two. Back up, D'Von reverses a whip into the corner, only to get a boot in the face. Spike leaps to the top and jumps, only to land into a waiting D'Von's arms, who then powerslams Spike down. The two roll out, and now it's Big Dick and Sandman enter the ring. Big Dick climbs the top rope (huh?) but Sandman catches him and ties him in the tree of woe. Bubba Ray and Dreamer come back in, and Dreamer and Sandman proceed to tie him up in the tree of woe in another corner. D'Von and Sign Guy also get tied up in trees of woe, I guess and chairs are planted in front of their faces. Dreamer, Sandman, Spike, and Beulah all baseball slide right into the chairs, knocking the Dudleys out. Gertner comes in to challenge Beulah and do his best Ric Flair impersonation in the process. A tie-up ends when Gertner plants a wet one on Beulah. Bearhug by Gertner, but Beulah gets out of it and low-blows Gertner, following that up with a DDT. Dreamer and Sandman line up to annihilate Gertner, but the Dudleys come to the rescue. Spike leaps from the top, only to get caught by Big Dick. Total Penetration by Big Dick (yes, that's the name of his finisher, which is basically a Baldo Bomb) and the Dudley pile on Spike for the three count. But they're not done yet, as Bubba smacks Sandman with his own cane. New Jack comes out with his trash can of weapons, and each Dudley (save Spike) takes a variety of cookie sheets and trash can lids and other various weapons, including a doll with a wooden stick in the middle of it, to the head, clearing them all out of the ring. Gertner for some unknown reason challenges New Jack, and Sandman grabs him from behind, allowing New Jack to annihilate (actually, he barely hit him) Gertner with a guitar. Post match, Dreamer, Sandman, and the rest stand tall in the ring. Wow did this match take a long time to get going, between the Dudleys nearly causing a riot, the Sandman and his team's rather long entrance, and all the stalling in between. I mean, it's one thing to build suspense, but this was a bit much. The match itself suffered from too much down time, so I'll give it a 1.78 out of 5.

Overall, the show started out well, but the last three matches kind of brought everything down. Still, it wasn't too bad of a show, and there were some definite highlights. So I'd give It Ain't Seinfeld a 4.7 out of 10, as it wasn't the best ECW show, but it wasn't too bad. Well, thanks for reading, and if you have any thoughts about this or other posts, or ideas for future posts, than let me know about them either by leaving a comment on the blog or sending me an e-mail at

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