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ECW Wrestlepalooza ‘98

Live from Marietta, GA

Airdate: May 3, 1998

Attendance: 3,401 (2,900 paid)

Hosted by Joey Styles

Can Snow cap off sixteen years by becoming World champion? Will Sabu dethrone RVD and capture the TV title? Will Rotten and Mahoney achieve gold? And what is Taz up to?

**WARNING** This reflection may contain strong language, so put the kiddies to be prior to reading.

Match 1: Blue World Order versus FBI (w/ Tommy Rich)


Rating: ***

Summary: Solid opener to get the Marietta faithful rocking. The comedy by the FBI was fun, and Nova’s arsenal of maneuvers was on point.

Video featuring Credible’s destruction of Whipwreck airs.

Match 2: Justin Credible (w/ Jason & Chastity) versus Mikey Whipwreck


Rating: **

Summary: Lots of eye-popping high spots without any selling. At least, it was entertaining.

Backstage, Rotten and Mahoney interrupt Styles and cut an angry promo on Candido and Storm.

Match 3 for the ECW World tag team titles: Lance Storm & Chris Candido (champions) versus Balls Mahoney & Axl Rotten


Rating: ***

Summary: Plenty of drama with the feuding tag team champions along with an assortment of high-flying by the champs made this match worthwhile.

After the match, the champs brawl in the aisle before heading backstage.

In the ring, Styles introduces Junkyard Dog who receives a “JYD” chant. Next, “Dirty” Dick Slater is introduced. The Masked Superstar receives the next introduction. Afterward, “Bullet” Bob Armstrong is the final legend to surface. This would mark JYD’s final TV appearance before his untimely death.

In the ring, Style interviews Douglas who curses out the wrestlers on guaranteed contracts who don’t work injured. He mentions his days in the WWF and Shawn Michaels’ forfeiture of the Intercontinental title to him. Next, he dismisses that title and notes that CNN Center is not too far down the street. So is the Big Chicken, but we’re not talking about that. Concerning WCW, he insults Ric Flair (“Dick Flair”) and Eric Bischoff by proxy. He lists his numerous injuries yet plans to bust his ass in the main event.

Abruptly, Taz saunters to the ring and wants Douglas to tell people how he got injured. He believes that he is the uncrowned champion and demands that Douglas hand over the title to him. Douglas walks into a right hand, and Taz cinches on Douglas’ injured right arm. ECW Security breaks it up and ushers Taz out of the ring. Meanwhile, Douglas writhes in pain on the mat.

Suddenly, Bigelow approaches and fights with Taz. ECW Security breaks that up as well and ushers Taz through the Marietta faithful out of the building. Outside the arena, ECW Security struggles to put Taz in a car, but Taz kicks the passenger window out of it. The Triple Threat checks on the injured Douglas who is bleeding from the mouth. Is the main event in jeopardy?

Match 4: Bam Bam Bigelow versus New Jack


Rating: DUD

Summary: Mindless brawl with a needless stunt. I could be wrong, but New Jack looked seriously concussed for most of this match. While I realize it’s entertainment, they should have gone home sooner.

After the match, medical personnel try to remove New Jack from the ring, but Bigelow throws the trash can along with the Godzilla toy atop him.

Video featuring Dreamer and Sandman airs. Apparently, the Dudley Boys put Sandman in the hospital with a severe neck injury.

Match 5: Dudley Boyz (w/ Joel Gertner, Big Dick Dudley, & Sign Guy Dudley) versus Tommy Dreamer & Sandman (w/ Beulah)


Rating: ***

Summary: Good story, excellent tag team synchronicity, and a wild Marietta faithful make this match exciting. Who said ECW sucked?

Video featuring RVD and Sabu airs.

In a pre-taped interview, Alphonso cuts a promo.

Match 6 for the ECW World TV title: “Mr. Monday Night” Rob Van Dam (champion) versus Sabu


Rating: **

Summary: While each wrestler impressed me with his own ability, this match was TOO DAMN LONG with way too many spots,not enough selling, and too much repetition.

After the match, the Marietta faithful mysteriously requests “five more minutes,” but Sabu and RVD quibble over the belt.

In a pre-taped interview, Douglas cuts a promo on Snow.

ECW HISTORY LESSON: In 1994, Douglas threw down the NWA World title and turned ECW into Extreme Championship Wrestling. As he inadvertently but legitimately broke Gary Wolfe’s neck, Douglas, as the consummate heel, shook a halo-wearing Wolfe to everyone’s shock and disbelief. Also, the Triple Threat along with Francine were on a mission to protect Douglas’ title reign at all costs. Next, Snow pinned Douglas at the previous PPV in a tag match. Could Snow triumph ending Douglas’ title reign?

Snow cuts a promo on Douglas in a pre-taped interview.

Match 7 for the ECW World title: The “Franchise” Shane Douglas (champion) versus Al Snow


Rating: ***

Summary: Knowing history, this was Al Snow’s career-defining moment had he won the World title. Since he was being called up to the WWF roster, he did everything he could to make Douglas stronger. Unfortunately, all the smoke and mirrors with Douglas’ injuries could only do so much.

After the match, the Marietta faithful showers the ring with foam heads out of protest. On the other hand, wrestlers climb into the ring and hoist both Snow and Douglas on their shoulders to celebrate.

Conclusion: It’s not a bad show; however, it’s just not memorable. Nothing historical happens, and some of this, while trademark ECW, is awful. As an alternative to WCW and the WWF, I see the market for ECW; nevertheless, the quality isn’t as good. Hopefully, by the next PPV, ECW will be booked better. Take a pass on this please.

Buyrate: 0.24

Stay tuned for WCW Monday Nitro 05-04-98!

Comments? Suggestions? Send them to me at rsg@rockstargary.com and follow me on Twitter (@rockstargary202).

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