Saturday, July 23, 2005

ECW Cyberslam ’99 – April 3, 1999 – Philadelphia, PA - DVD

1 – Jerry Lynn vs. Yoshihiro Tajiri
This match was pretty good. Giving the quality of the two athletes involved it wasn’t exactly special. For the most part they seemed like they were going through the paces. I tend to dislike Lynn’s dives to the floor; they just aren’t quite accurate. Some of it just looked lazy, i.e. Tajiri simply placing Lynn on the top turnbuckle to execute a move, etc. Not a bad match, but I’d have loved to see more.

2 – Super Nova vs. Rod Price
This was mentioned on the package as a tag team match featuring two individuals we’ll be talking about a little later. Sloppy nonsensical wrestling. Skull Von Crush got involved, then Chris Chetti did too. That led to some real nice confusion in a match that was already shaping up to be a mess. Super Nova hit one of the worst suicide dives in noted history near the end of the match.

3 – Mosco de la Merced vs. Super Crazy
This match started off fine, but got real nonsensical. Pretty sloppy at points. A lot of fanboy nonsense, like doing outrageous moonsaults into the crowd for no apparent reason other than the adulation of the rowdy audience of morons. To make a long story short, if they were doing this match in Mexico it would have went down a lot different. Picked up a bit at the end. There was a sweet spot where Crazy did an innovative block on a Merced moonsault. Crazy also hit a pretty nice powerbomb. Crazy executed a horrible frog splash for the finish. I’ve seen much better frog splashes in backyard wrestling videos.

4 – TAKA Michinoku vs. Papi Chulo
This match was pretty solid overall. The pacing seemed kind of weird, like both guys were impatient or trying to get it over quickly. Nothing really positive or negative to write about. Pretty average, which is a lot more than I can say about for the first three matches thus far.

5 – Rob Van Dam vs. Too Cold Scorpio
This was a really bad match. I’m not surprised a lot when I watch professional wrestling. But, I really couldn’t believe that this match sucked so hard. I’m a pretty big Too Cold fan, too. I don’t know what the hell happened. Lots of misses and miscommunications. A lot of stuff just looked ugly. Sabu’s interference put the final nail in the coffin. I did think it was pretty funny when Scorpio pie faced Bill Alfonso after the match though.

6 – Chris Candido vs. Taz – Falls Count Anywhere Match
I was extremely disappointed. At this point in the show I was already disgusted, and was hoping these two would step up and bring the wrestling. Instead they had one of the most unorganized and uncoordinated brawls I’ve seen in awhile. There was a stiff bump or two, but most of it was lame ass filler. They did a stupid stretcher job finish, instead of giving us a real winner. Thanks a lot, Heyman.

7 – Shane Douglas vs. Justin Credible
This match was pretty solid for what it was. There were a couple lame table bumps that were entirely unnecessary. They didn’t fit into the match at all, and weren’t even good bumps for that matter. There was interference too, which always stinks. More of the same from the E.C.W. faithful. Without the crappy garbage spots and annoying interference, this match wasn’t so bad. If they would have dropped those aforementioned elements and worked a little harder they probably could have pulled out a pretty good match.

8 – Dudley Boyz and Mr. Mustafa vs. New Jack, Axl Rotten, and Balls Mahoney – War Games Cage Match
This was absolute garbage, pure and simple. Did anyone even really try? Nothing looked good here. I haven’t had this much trouble watching a match for some time. Blood, thumbtacks, tables, scissors, and more. It doesn’t get much worse than this. Nobody took the time to consider selling moves or productively working to sell a story whatsoever. To close off the match and show, New Jack leaped from the top of the cage putting Mustafa through a table in a spot that made me wince due to it’s ugliness. How does anyone really actually appreciate this? I’m just thankful it’s over.

FMW Final Encounter: Backdraft – May 5, 2000 – DVD

1 – Ricky Fuji vs. Crazy Boy – Clipped
I couldn’t really tell much about this match because it was absolutely clipped to hell. Fuji hit a pretty cool spinning brainbuster. What we saw looked pretty decent.

2 – June Kusanagi vs. Kaoruko
I can honestly say that this is one of the worst things I’ve ever seen passed off as a match. Two women sort of fell around the ring, stumbling around not really attempting much of any offensive maneuvers. This was a novelty match first off, but it didn’t even entertain in that respect. Kaoruko wearing a schoolgirl outfit, mind you, busted out some pretty swank dance steps. I hated this.

3 – Kyoko Inoue, Choco Ball Mukai, and Kaori Nakayami vs. Azusa Kudo, Emi Motokawa, and Yuka Nakamua – Clipped
Give me a break. This sucks. This match featured four women, a porn star, and an individual who underwent a sex change operation. Not my idea of an athletic demonstration. Some seriously botched spots. And some disturbing ones; like one guy (or was is it a girl?) chewing on Mukai’s crotch as an attack. The women wrestlers put on the worst example of Japanese women’s wrestling I may have possibly ever seen. Why?

4 – Eddy Fatu and Matty Smalls vs. Hideki Hosaka and Yoshinori Sasaki – Clipped
I can’t say a whole lot about this match because it was clipped up. Some bad garbage bumps. Fatu hit an ugly splash driving one of his opponents through a table. Hosaka attempted to do something resembling a balcony dive but it ended up looking less effective than a kiss. The majority of this was a wandering brawl.

5 – Kintaro Kanemura vs. Ryuji Yamakawa – Clipped
Lots of garbage, but pretty entertaining at points. Several dumb offensive concepts. They brawled into the back at one point. Ryuji smashed a fluorescent light bulb over Kanemura’s head, and Kintaro immediately crawled away presumably to blade himself in a laughable spot. Not too many surprises.

6 – Mr. Ganosuke vs. Sabu – Clipped
I’m pretty sick of all of these clipped matches. I can’t really say much good about this affair. Ganosuke hit a pretty awesome Rikishi Driver off the ring apron on Sabu through a table. They did some kind of screw job finish using a fireball. What the hell happened? More importantly, who cares?

7 – Kodo Fuyuki vs. Tetsuhiro Kuroda
Parts of this match weren’t bad at all. There was this one really lame period, however. They utilized eggs and underwear in it. Need I say more? I felt that if they would have tightened the match up, and eliminated a lot of the unnecessary crap they could have worked a genuinely solid match. But, I guess we’ll have to settle for this.

8 – Hayabusa vs. Masato Tanaka
This match wasn’t as good as I was looking forward to. I remember watching a tape a few years back of these two tearing it up in a rather long singles match. I was hoping for something similar here, but wasn’t impressed. There were some cool spots, but no real good sequences or smooth chain wrestling. I guess they’ve deteriorated over the years. Tanaka killed Hayabusa with a powerbomb, where he launched Hayabusa over the top rope and down to the floor where he was supposed to land on a table, but mostly made impact with the floor. There were a couple nice suplexes thrown in there.

WWE Raw – September 9, 2001

1 – Kane and Bradshaw vs. Lance Storm and Christian
This match wasn’t really bad. Bradshaw looked especially stiff, even for him. The champions (Storm and Christian) didn’t get much offense in at all, which made them look pretty weak. The match moved well, though, until the end was tainted by unnecessary interference. Who’s Kane kidding?

2 – Bubba Ray Dudley vs. Steven Richards
Richards rushed through a few of his sells. Bubba was pretty stiff, per usual. It was a little longer than I expected. Their finishing sequence came off looking contrived.

3 – Stacy Keibler and Victoria vs. Terri and Trish Stratus
This was a jumbled mess. One of the worst excuses for athletic competition on W.W.E. programming this year.

4 – Christopher Nowinski vs. Tommy Dreamer
Was this even a match? Tommy Dreamer came down and interrupted Nowinski’s promo. When they actually started fighting the only person in the World looking more confused than I was probably Dreamer himself. He didn’t seem to know what he wanted to do in there at a moment or two. He nailed Nowinski with about a dozen cane shots in a puzzling waste of time.

5 – Triple H vs. Spike Dudley
Whoever told Triple H he was the best wrestler of the year must be delusional. I simply loathe Spike’s horribly weak offense. This match will be remembered however due to Spike executing the ugliest flying head scissors ever. Triple H blocked a Dudley aerial attempt with a forearm. Right. Triple H nailed the Pedigree, but Dudley landed on his right hip and arm instead of flat. A sleeper hold came out of nowhere in an odd placement in the match, which coincidently was the finish to this dud. The “game” would be more aptly titled the “shame”.

6 – William Regal and Test vs. Booker T and Goldust
There was an awkward moment where Regal and Goldust had a miscommunication and both threw punches at the same time, and then kind of stood there perplexed before Regal just stiffed him and took back over. Goldust was in the ring the majority of the match getting pummeled, which itself wasn’t paced well. Probably the slowest of the actual matches on the show. At one point Goldust kicked Test and instead of selling the impact of the move, Test climbed in-between the ropes and literally leaped out of the ring. Booker nailed his big axe kick on Regal, only to have him sell it 10 seconds later. The finish was soiled by interference, which is a bad trend on this weekly program.

7 – Rob Van Dam vs. Chris Jericho vs. Big Show vs. Jeff Hardy – Four-Way Elimination Match
Big Show attempted to assist Jericho by boosting his splash on Van Dam in what was titled a “rocket launcher” and easily one of the more hideous spots of the night. Hardy and Van Dam nailed consecutive top turnbuckle dropkicks on Big Show in a cool spot. Jericho unleashed some pretty sick chair shots on all the other participants. Big Show tried to do his one spot where he punches a chair when someone swings it at him, which drives it into their face. But, instead he missed completely and looked like a big oaf, as Jericho stood by confused. Jeff Hardy threw some strikes that looked weaker than Judy Bagwell’s. Jericho pinned Hardy with a Lionsault he hardly connected with. Jericho killed Van Dam with a brutal german suplex. Jericho was visibly caught talking to Van Dam during an infamous Van Dam forearm frenzy. I must say Van Dam was pretty damn solid on his aerial attack, which can sometimes by downright sloppy. Just to let everyone know who’s fucking the boss’s daughter, Triple H made his presence felt before the show was over.

WWE Smackdown! – September 12, 2002

1 – Brock Lesnar vs. Hardcore Holly –
It started off with a horrible brawl where neither guy was selling a damn thing. Brock needs to learn to swallow his pride and allow himself to look touchable. Holly tried some aerial attack that Brock kind of blocked, but it looked more like Lesnar was swatting at a fly going by then aiming at Holly. Lesnar attempted to execute a powerbomb but dropped Holly directly on his head in a disastrous botching. Even the crowd reacted to this debauchery. Instead of utilizing one of the strengths of his character and acting upon this, he instead stood there looking confused. Brock hit his F-5 finishing maneuver, which looked really bad, for the finish.

2 – Eddie Guerrero and Chavo Guerrero vs. Edge and John Cena –
This match was pretty solid. Chavo blatantly set himself up to be clotheslined over the ropes at one point. Besides that and Edge’s revolting leaping clothesline from the turnbuckles, this match was fine. Although not perfectly wrestled, by far better than most of the crap W.W.E. broadcasts but I suppose that is to be expected with the talent involved.

3 – Kurt Angle vs. Rey Mysterio
Given the admittedly short amount of time allotted to these two, they wrestled a pretty damn respectable match. After the initial stage, it picked up and got pretty fast pace. Rey looked real good, and Angle was right alongside him every step of the way. Angle hit a huge german suplex that virtually tossed Rey across the entire ring. There was one skilled spot where Angle tossed Rey over his head, and Rey landed perfectly on the top turnbuckle where once landed he immediately launched himself into a moonsault which connected. Mysterio also landed an astounding corkscrew plancha over the ropes onto Angle. These guys stole the show easily.

4 – Rikishi vs. Chris Benoit –
A decent but short bout. They were just beginning to get warmed up when interference marred the match before it got an opportunity to get good or bad. Benoit is nuts. He came back from a severe neck injury only a month or so ago, and actually lifted Rikishi (one of the biggest athletes in the federation) off of the turnbuckles and down to the mat without using his hands, letting the weight of the big man lay heavy squarely on his neck and shoulders.

5 – Torrie Wilson vs. Nidia –
Honestly not as bad a it should have been, albeit it was really short. Besides screwing up one spot, they got through it without totally making me lose hope for women’s wrestling in America. It’s probably a good thing this didn’t go much longer.

6 – Matt Hardy vs. The Undertaker –
Matt hit a clothesline that looked like it hurt him more than his opponent. Way too much interference. The match itself was actually just a platform to elevate one of the company’s bigger current storylines, and didn’t feature much actual wrestling. That being said, Hardy bumped pretty good for what little it was.

WWE Velocity – September 14, 2002

1 – Reverend D-Von vs. Shannon Moore
Shannon gets a little ahead of himself at times. Their styles mixed like milk and gasoline. There was one spot where something was supposed to happen, but neither guy took the initiative and they simply walked right by each other like two strangers passing on the street. Moore’s rolling senton looked like a grandmother falling down a flight of stairs. All of this being said, the match itself wasn’t horrible or anything, just nothing to brag about.

2 – Billy Kidman vs. Randy Orton –
They started it off with a pretty good wrestling sequence. A few near fall scenarios, which I wish we’d see better utilized more often. Kidman’s mid-air reversal of a powerbomb into a faceplant looked really good. Kidman’s missile dropkick was one of the only bad moves in this match. I enjoyed it.

3 – Albert vs. Funaki –
Besides a lame comedy spot and Albert missing a punch (albeit being a few inches away from his opponent) this match wasn’t bad. Then again, it was pretty short. I guess it was okay for what it was.

4 – The Hurricane and Crash Holly vs. Tajiri and Jamie Noble
Tajiri and Noble hit simultaneous dropkicks to the fallen Holly’s head in a cool spot. This match really flowed well, and the guys appeared to have real good chemistry together. Hurricane came in after a hot tag and his offensive fury was pretty good stuff. Crash stole AJ Styles’ finishing maneuver. Entertaining match and one I’d definitely like to see again but with a longer running time.

WWE Raw – September 16, 2001

1 – Ric Flair vs. Rico –
The match was pretty short, but the beginning wasn’t bad. Then, out of nowhere Rico hit Flair with the absolute ugliest roundhouse kick I’ve ever seen thrown and pinned him. An absolute travesty!

2 – Booker T vs. Test –
And I thought Rico’s kick was bad, here Test had the hugest botch of 2002 by attempting to execute a sidewalk slam on Booker. He didn’t even get a hold of him, and then dropped him on the mat while he fell awkwardly. Booker hit a nice missile dropkick, especially for a man of his size. Booker countered a Test powerbomb with a hideous hurricanrana. Booker’s rollup at the end was even sloppy. Bad match.

3 – Lance Storm and Christian vs. Spike Dudley and Bubba Ray Dudley –
Spike Dudley does the awesome Bret Hart sternum sell when he’s whipped in the turnbuckles. Storm and Christian are in classic heel mood; distracting the ref, etc. Spike’s diving headbutt was horrible. The majority of the match was decent, though, and had some of the better flowing wrestling of the night.

4 – Rob Van Dam vs. Chris Jericho –
Jericho hit an ugly flying forearm. This was the second week in a row I caught Jericho talking during one of Van Dam’s forearm frenzies, then I caught him again moments after that. Interference altered the finish of this match. Not very spectacular at all.

5 – Kane vs. William Regal –
It took Regal three attempts to clothesline Kane over the top rope in a ridiculous spot. As Kane was getting back in the ring, Regal threw a knee from a few inches away and totally missed. Regal looks like a northeastern indy worker by wrestling in a t-shirt. Myself, and I imagine the rest of the viewing public caught Kane calling out for a “backdrop” as you heard him say it plain as day. Kane’s top turnbuckle clothesline looked like shit. What a laugh. Interference ends this awful match.

6 – Jeff Hardy vs. Triple H –
Jeff’s infamous clothesline off the barricade outside the ring looked absolutely outlandish and absurd. Triple H had to practically jump in the way of the move for it to make impact. Jeff did the laziest springboard moonsault not long after, which looked like crap. Triple H whipped Hardy in the weakest ringsteps bump ever. Hardy executed one of the most terrible moonsaults I’ve ever seen. Overall, Jeff just looked horrible out there. A total dud.