ECW on TNN – November 26, 1999: New York Subways Deserve Better Than This

Date: November 26, 1999
Location: Aragon Ballroom, Chicago, Illinois
Attendance: 3,912
Commentators: Joey Styles, Joel Gertner

It’s the day after Thanksgiving which means the Cowboys are probably on a losing streak. When may be a bit more surprising is that with this episode, I’ll be ¼ done with the entire series. Think about that for a minute. This show wasn’t even on the air for 60 episodes. The next PPV isn’t for a month and a half so we’ve got some time to fill. Let’s get to it.

After a very quick intro by Joel and Joey, here’s Jerry Lynn to open things up. Joey asks him if he’s in league with Tajiri and Jerry says that’s it for this interview and leaves.

Theme song.

Rhyno tells Candido that Candido needs to find him a warmup match or Candido will get the warmup beating. Sunny implies she’ll de-hornify Rhyno if he gives her ten minutes.

TV Title: CW Anderson vs. Rob Van Dam

During RVD’s entrance, we cut to New Jack in New York looking for the Baldies. New Jack flat out says he wants to rape Angel. We miss the opening of the match because of a merchandise plug. Anderson is in control to start with a headlock and left hand in the corner. Van Dam comes back with a sunset flip and spinwheel kick to take over. Another kick takes Anderson down and the cartwheel moonsault gets two. CW comes back with a superkick (WAY too popular of a move in ECW) for two and a neckbreaker for the same.

Anderson goes up but gets crotched. When has going to the top EVER gone well for someone named Anderson? Yes, they’re actually pushing him as Arn’s relative, which I hope has some tongue in cheek aspects to it here. They head to the floor with Van Dam putting him over the barricade and hitting the spinning leg to Anderson’s back. Back in and a spinebuster puts Van Dam down for two. That doesn’t seem to matter though as a few kicks put Anderson down and the Five Star retains the title.

Rating: C-. This was your normal TV Title match for Van Dam: he comes out, he gets the crowd fired up, he hits some kicks, he retains the title, the fans all say it’s way better than it really was. Anderson was supposed to be a big time heel in ECW but he never quite got anywhere with it, other than an I Quit match with Dreamer which again wasn’t as great as people make it out to be.

New Jack is still looking for the Baldies. He annoys the one person he finds on a NEW YORK CITY subway and that’s about it.

We come back to the arena and Sabu is fighting Van Dam.

TV Title: Rob Van Dam vs. Sabu

Why is Sabu out here? No reason given. Why are tag partners fighting? No reason given. Van Dam kicks Sabu down but gets crotched as he goes up. Sabu hits a springboard hurricanrana off the top for two. Fonzie slides in a chair which goes upside Van Dam’s head. The Triple Jump Moonsault mostly misses and we head to the floor. Van Dam dives into the crowd onto Sabu and we take a break.

Back with Van Dam on a table between the barricade and ring with Sabu diving off the top through it. Sabu slams him down in the ring…..and we take another break? Back with Sabu falling on the chair as he loads up another Triple Jump Moonsault which apparently hurt his knee. Van Dam goes after the knee and here are Candido and Rhyno to beat both guys up.

Van Dam and Sabu kick them down with chairs before Van Dam hits a flip dive over the top to take both guys out. Sabu tries a dive of his own but the knee gives out. Van Dam goes back in and works on the knee, hitting a Five Star onto the chair onto the knee. He puts on a bridging Indian Deathlock and Fonzie throws in the towel.

Rating: N/A. This is one of those matches where the match went long enough to get a rating, but there was so much other stuff going on that there is no way to fairly grade it. These two would have a title match at the PPV which Van Dam would win, but that begs the question of why give it away for free here? That’ll come up later on so we’ll get to it in a bit.

Little Guido vs. Super Crazy

Before we start what should be a good match, we go back to New Jack in the subway. He’s on the #6 train. Actually he’s in front of it so he’s already lying. Once again we miss the opening and come back to see Guido taking him to the mat. A cross armbreaker is broken up and we have a standoff. They both counter a few moves until Crazy tries a standing Lionsault but gets dropkicked out of the air.

Guido drops a knee to the face of Crazy but Crazy stops to go after Big Sal. After Crazy escapes Sal’s clutches, Guido misses a dive onto Crazy and Crazy hits an Asai Moonsault onto both of them. Back in and Guido hits a top rope Fameasser for two. The idea of selling doesn’t mean much in ECW. In a cool move, Crazy sets for a Lionsault but Guido pops up onto the ropes and hits a Russian Leg Sweep off the middle rope for two.

Crazy gets powerbombed out of the corner for two. Again the lack of selling is ridiculous. A tornado DDT puts Guido down for a delayed two. A top rope flip dive gets the same and it’s time to punch in the corner. Big Sal comes in and crushes the referee before getting ranaed by Crazy. Tajiri and Lynn come in for no apparent reason and beat up Crazy to give Guido the pin.

Rating: D+. This wasn’t dull but it wasn’t any good. The problem here was that instead of a coherent match with any flow or psychology (or selling) to it, they were just hitting random moves on each other until the run-in which made no sense at the end. The annoying thing about ECW is that Crazy vs. Guido could be a good match but they have to overbook it so much that it loses whatever it could have going for it.

Lance Storm/Justin Credible/Rhyno vs. Tommy Dreamer/Raven/Sandman

Here’s a rematch of November to Remember’s main event, because why pay for it when you can get it for free here? Then again why would you pay for it in the first place? Back to New York and the Baldies were on another train and leave with no confrontation. Yep, that’s the payoff after all that build up. Before Sandman and Raven get here, Dreamer goes after Credible. It turns into a three on one beating and here’s Raven for the save. That goes badly for Bird Boy as Storm kicks him down. A chair is brought in and Storm goes face first into it, giving the tag champs (Dreamer and Raven) the advantage.

We have like six minutes of airtime left and Sandman hasn’t started his entrance yet. Dreamer gets double teamed by Rhyno and Storm in the ring while Credible beats on Raven on the floor. Here comes Sandman so the heels all stop what they’re doing. You know, because a guy staring at them is enough to make them stop beating on their opponents.

Sandman comes in and misses everyone before Storm superkicks him down. There’s no semblance of a match here at all as it’s just a big brawl. Dreamer piledrives Rhyno and Francine hits Storm low. Dawn does the same to Dreamer and we have a Catfight. Sandman hits the White Russian Leg Sweep on Justin for two. Raven loads up a DDT on Storm but Sandman hits his partner with the cane and Storm pins him.

Rating: N/A. This wasn’t a match. It was a wild brawl with the occasional wrestling move thrown in. When you have a wrestling match for me to rate, let me know. Nothing to see here.

New Jack finds a Baldie but a single shot to the back from another one knocks him out.

Overall Rating: D. The problem with ECW on TNN is that it’s very obvious that there are only about three stories going on in the entire show. You have Sabu vs. Van Dam (with no reason given as to why they’re fighting), the Dreamer/Raven stuff, and the Baldies vs. New Jack. Other than that, there’s NOTHING going on here. If I don’t care about any of those stories, I have no reason to watch. The problem on top of that is that these stories aren’t fleshed out at all. Basically the people are fighting because they’re supposed to be fighting. That’s not good and it’s not working here.

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