ECW on TNN – September 1, 2000: Unfortunately, Tournaments Are A Thing

Date: September 1, 2000
Location: Hammerstein Ballroom, New York City, New York
Commentators: Joel Gertner, Joey Styles

After last week, I’m really not sure what to expect from this show. This promotion goes from a fun wrestling show to some insane clip show with a bunch of wrestling that wasn’t very good to set up an angle that we’ve seen before. The next pay per view is in just over a month and I have no idea we’re going to see on the way there. Let’s get to it.

We see the end of Tajiri/Mikey Whipwreck advancing to the finals of the Tag Team Title tournament.

Opening sequence.

Joey and Joel are in the ring and the big arena does actually look cool. Joel does his rhyme about various escapades in each of the boroughs before Steve Corino comes out, flanked by Billy Corgan playing New York, New York on his guitar. I’m not sure how old school the Smashing Pumpkins were in 2000 but it’s better than Limp Bizkit.

Corino is the new #1 contender (What about Jerry?) and refuses to apologize for cheating to pin New Jack, Dusty Rhodes and Tommy Dreamer. He’s not going to apologize either when he pins Justin Credible. Cue Lou E. Dangerously and WHEN DID HE BECOME JUSTIN’S MANAGER? He’s not Justin’s manager? Well he certainly acts like him and that doesn’t help because this company makes no sense half the time with all the people running around doing random promos to advance the overall angles.

Lou yells about wanting to beat Corgan up and wants the title shot at Anarchy Rulz. A fight is about to break out when Justin Credible “sneaks” (read as Corino clearly looks over his shoulder to see him coming in) in and canes Corino. Corgan actually chokes Justin with the cane until Lou hits him in the back of the head with the phone. Lou says that’s a message from the Network. Ok so he works for the Network and not Justin? Really I’m not sure at this point and I don’t particularly care either.

Tag Team Title Tournament Quarter-Finals: Rhino/Justin Credible vs. Sandman/Chilly Willy

The winners get Jerry Lynn/Tommy Dreamer. A table is brought in less than ten seconds in but Sandman cleans house with the cane. Rhino shrugs them off and Gores Sandman through the table for two, followed by the piledriver to advance Credible and Rhino in less than two minutes. Did Willy stop for a taco?

Tag Team Title Tournament Semi-Finals: Simon and Swinger vs. Roadkill/Danny Doring

Roadkill starts fast with a powerslam on Simon but CW pulls Doring to the floor because almost every heel is part of a stable. A double Downward Spiral gets two on Doring but he grabs a double Bareback (Those names get annoying.) and makes the hot tag. Everything breaks down and Roadkill is thrown through a table, only to have Anderson hit Simon by mistake. Not that it matters as the Problem Solver puts Doring away and send Simon and Swinger to the finals.

Rating: D+. As much of a mess as most of ECW was at the end, they did have a good tag division going. Unfortunately we barely saw most of it as the matches were either clipped or had nothing on the line because of the ridiculous four month waiting period. Four weeks is a long time to not have champions but from April to September is unthinkable.

Tag Team Title Tournament Semi-Finals: Tommy Dreamer/Jerry Lynn vs. Rhino/Justin Credible

Joined in progress with separate brawls in the crowd. They’re nice enough to come back to the ring with Jerry dropping Justin but having to spank Francine instead of going for the pin. The Gore takes Dreamer out and there’s a piledriver through the table. Little Spike Dudley comes in with an Acid Drop to Rhino and the cradle piledriver puts Justin away to send Dreamer/Lynn to the finals.

Rating: D. As usual, WAY too much going on to keep track of anything here and that gets annoying in a hurry. Why do so many matches have to go into the crowd in a wild brawl or have so many people interfering? Would a straight match every now and then, especially when we’re coming up on a title shot, be too much to ask for?

Tag Team Titles: Tommy Dreamer/Jerry Lynn vs. Simon and Swinger vs. Tajiri/Mikey Whipwreck

The titles are vacant coming in and this is elimination rules. The Sinister Minister is the only manager present and Dreamer is in a neck brace. Tajiri, Lynn and Simon start things off with Simon sitting back while the other two start fast. Everyone tags out and the new three stare at each other for a bit.

Swinger stops to pose and gets put down by the physique-phobic Dreamer and Whipwreck. Everyone fights to the floor (of course) and Dreamer actually kicks Tajiri for a change of pace. Lynn takes Simon back inside for a bow and arrow hold. All six get inside again and it’s time for double Tarantulas with Lynn and Mikey being stretched.

They’re fine enough for stereo tornado DDT’s for stereo two’s on Simon and Swinger. Cue CW Anderson to hit Dreamer with something made of metal, setting up the Problem Solver for the elimination. The locker room comes out to watch as Tajiri mists Simon, setting up a Whippersnapper for the pin and the titles.

Rating: C-. This is the kind of match that I normally don’t care for but at least it gives us something. Tajiri and Whipwreck are still a new team but at least they’re a team instead of two people just thrown together for the sake of being thrown together. They’re fine as the new champions, especially since they’ll defend the titles against a strong tag division.

Everyone celebrates with the new champions.

Overall Rating: D+. It’s like they were trying to show a tournament in one night but didn’t have enough time. It was kind of confusing when they went from one round to the other and some brackets would have helped a lot. The finals being shown in full was the right move though and while I would have gone with Simon and Swinger, at least the titles aren’t vacant like they’ve been since a few weeks after Wrestlemania.

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