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ECW: Can Sabu, RVD pass the Test?
By MATT MACKINDER - SLAM! Wrestling


After a one-week sabbatical (thanks, Waldman), I'm back on the ECW beat. And from the looks of things, I don't think I missed much last week.

Live from Hampton, Virginia, ECW champion Bobby Lashley hits the ring and when he jumps up on the apron, new pyro comes out of the turnbuckles a la Kane. Lashley reflects on ex-champ The Big Show and says whenever he wants a chance to get the title back, he knows where to find him. Lashley then says Show has been his toughest opponent since he's been in WWE. He flinches and realizes he should have said ECW. The champ then says he knows he has a target on his chest and a female fan yells something that makes Lashley chuckle.

Lashley then says that fans can pick his opponent for the live Jan. 2 show by logging on to WWE.com (he corrects himself this time saying ECW.com) and choosing Rob Van Dam, Test or Sabu. What is this? Cyber Tuesday ECW-style? Lashley starts in on hyping the trip to Iraq when Renee Dupree's music hits and the second-generation grappler storms the ring.

Dupree gets cheap heat saying the troops are getting their asses kicked in the Middle East. Lashley sucker punches Dupree and tonight's opening match is on, albeit a non-title affair.

Match # 1 ECW Champion Bobby Lashley vs. Renee Dupree

Dupree is over the Greg Valentine no knee pads look, but has the advantage early over Lashley. Dupree latches on with a rear chinlock, but Lashley escapes with an Electric Chair. Lashley spears Dupree in the corner and then wins with the Dominator.

Winner via pinfall: Bobby Lashley

Brad Armstrong joins Tazz and Joey Styles after tonight's main event is announced a Triple Threat Match between RVD, Test and Sabu.

Match # 2 Balls Mahoney vs. Matt Striker

Back and forth until Balls nails his spinebuster, but fails to cover Striker. Mahoney heads up top, but lands can-first after missing a leg drop. Striker then hits the Golden Rule, a knee to the head while falling backwards, and gets three on Balls.

Winner via pinfall: Matt Striker

Yes, folks, Striker can wrestle. A clean win like this may be a push for the former school teacher, but as we've said a million times, who really knows any more?

Test cuts a promo saying he'll win the Triple Threat match. He looks different, too. Maybe it's the haircut, maybe it's the beard. Maybe he's off the (Chris) Masteroids (too cheesy?). See for yourself when you get a chance.

Van Dam then hypes the main event after whining about how the ECW belt was stolen from him last summer. He says the fans need to vote for him because when they think ECW, they think Rob Van Dam.

Hardcore Holly is in the ring, mic in hand. He calls out CM Punk and says he can't make him tap out. Punk accepts the challenge, but as he gets in the ring, Holly adds the stipulation that Punk only has three minutes to get him to tap.

Match # 3 CM Punk vs. Hardcore Holly

Punk tries for the Anaconda Vice twice in the first 20 seconds, but Sparky escapes each time. Lots of rest holds by Holly to run down the clock. With just under 10 seconds left, Punk gets Holly down, but can't apply the Vice and time expires.

Match Result: Hardcore Holly survives the three minutes

Punk looks bummed. Maybe the bookers are trying to bring him down a bit after he looked so invincible for so long. Holly jumps Punk from behind and leaves him laying after an Alabama Slam.

Backstage, Shannon Moore is on the phone telling the person on the other line, "It's only a problem if you make it a problem. I'll be home tomorrow." He then turns into Daivari, who says he'll teach him a lesson in the ring. Tonight.

A video montage to Scott Stapp's The Great Divide airs highlighting the WWE's visit to Iraq and the tribute show next Monday night.

Daivari and The Great Khali come down with Moore already in the ring. Moore faces off with Daivari, who jumps out of the ring and forces Moore to face Khali. Khali choke bombs Moore and apparently gets the pin (camera was on the outside), but Tommy Dreamer appears with a chair and clocks Daivari. Khali intervenes and choke bombs Dreamer on the ring steps. Dreamer grimaces in pain as Khali carries Daivari to the back.

Winner via pinfall (I think): The Great Khali

A quick video montage for Sabu is next.

Dreamer is loaded onto a stretcher by paramedics as Tazz and Styles sound like they are near tears.

OK, enough is enough. More scenes and interviews from See No Evil are shown. We get it. It's on DVD. We know.

A recap is shown of Mike Knox dumping Kelly Kelly two weeks ago. Knox is then in the back and says he was the victim because Kelly didn't hide her feelings for CM Punk and that what Knox did to Kelly hurt him more than it hurt her. Get this guy's ridiculous mug off my TV screen already.

Match # 4 Triple Threat Match Sabu vs. Test vs. Rob Van Dam

It's almost 11:00 ET, so this match looks to be quick. At 10:57, we go to commercial. Back from the break, all three wrestlers are on the floor. What'd we miss? Who knows? No replay. Sabu is bleeding from the mouth, though. Van Dam goes to the top rope, but Test pushes him off into the ring barricade. Sabu then goes up top, but gets superplexed off by Test, who got power bombed by RVD in the process. Sabu uses Van Dam for Air Sabu on Test, who then gets double clotheslined to the floor by Sabu and RVD.

Sabu and Van Dam square off with Van Dam hitting the Five Star Frog Splash. Test comes in from nowhere and fires Van Dam to the floor and then covers Sabu for the three count. Haven't we seen finishes like this much too often?

Winner via pinfall: Test

Tazz enters the ring to announce the winner of the fan vote for Lashley's opponent in two weeks. RVD gets 45 percent, followed by Sabu with 37 percent and Andrew Martin with 18 percent. Test charges at RVD with a big boot and leaves Van Dam laying as he heads to the back.

Sabu helps up RVD and shakes his hand as the show ends.

All in all, not too bad of a show tonight. Next week's show is a Best of ECW event, which confuses me because what was so great about ECW since the "rebirth?" Guess we'll find out next Tuesday, eh?


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    Matt Mackinder thinks he should have been the fourth guy in the fan vote. He'd kick out of the Dominator and beat Lashley with the old school Ghetto Blaster. Email Matt at mackindermedia@yahoo.com.