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COMMENT





ECW: A touch of Flair
By MATT BISHOP - SLAM! Wrestling


Tonight on ECW on Sci-Fi: Ric Flair makes a rare appearance in the Land of Extreme. What for, you ask? Stay tuned to find out. Should be a good one!

And we are LIVE! from San Diego, Calif., Joey Styles and Tazz are our hosts and this show is presented in WWEHD (TV-14DLSV).

They waste no time in getting the man advertised for the show out, as Ric Flair is in the ring with Tazz.

Tazz congratulates Flair on being named to the Hall of Fame and hands the mic over to the Nature Boy.

Flair says it's an honor to be inducted and even more of an honor to be the first active wrestler to be inducted. He says he's honored to be here tonight and honored to be apart of ECW.

He chats about San Diego before he is interrupted by the oft-forgotten Elijah Burke.

Burke expresses his fandom for Flair and welcomes him to his house, ECW.

Shortly after, Burke himself is interrupted by ECW's Gold Standard, Shelton Benjamin.

Shelton says he wants to be the second person to come out and congratulate Flair. He says that, for as long as he can remember, Flair has been the Gold Standard in professional wrestling. He then introduces himself as the new Gold Standard of professional wrestling to a chorus of boos. He tells Flair that his time is over.

Flair says he is really struggling with his level of sincerity. He says all the gold those two will even win will never compare to his 16 World Heavyweight Championships, WOOOOOO!

They don't like this and commence a beatdown on Flair, but he is saved by ECW's golden boy CM Punk.

(Ads)

Backstage, General Manager Armando Estrada announces our shocking main event: Shelton Benjamin & Elijah Burke vs. CM Punk & Ric Flair.

Match #1 - Kofi Kingston (Jamaica) vs. Jason Riggs (Parts Unknown)

The Kofi Kingston Jobber Tour 2008 lands in San Diego with Mr. Riggs tonight. Can we find the man a real opponent?

Tazz speculates that Kofi's vertical leap is slightly larger than his.

More of the same, as Kofi finishes it with the Jamaican Buzzsaw in about 90 seconds.

Winner via pinfall: Kofi Kingston

Joey Styles has found his way to the ring to interview Kingston. He says ECW is paradise and if there is trouble in paradise, he'll take care of it.

(Ads)

Match #2 - The Miz (Cleveland, Ohio) w/ John Morrison vs. Colin Delaney (Rochester, NY) w/ Tommy Dreamer

Much of Colin's upper body is bandaged up and Miz (HOO-RAH!) commences to whip Delaney from pillar to post.

Delaney catches a break and socks Miz with two punches but is tripped by Morrison, who is then ejected from the ringside area.

While arguing, Miz almost gets rolled up but gets out at two. Then right away, Miz hits the Reality Check for the win.

Winner via pinfall: The Miz

Post-match, Dreamer comes in to check on Delaney, but Morrison comes back, hits the corkscrew neckbreaker on Dreamer and then the champs faceplant Delaney.

(Ads)

Match #3 - Stevie Richards (Philadelphia, Pa.) vs. James Curtis (Minneapolis, Minn.?; Rockford, Ill.?, Parts Unknown?)

Mr. Curtis is taking his traveling job show on the road this time, as he doesn't even get a hometown this time around.

Curtis gets an early advantage and starts to work on the throat and neck area. But it does not last long as Richards hits the running splash and the Stevie-T for the quick pinfall.

Winner via pinfall: Stevie Richards

Flair and Punk 'WOOOO' their way down the hall as they head to the ring for their match, which is next.

(Ads)

Match #4 - Ric Flair (Charlotte, NC) & CM Punk (Chicago, Ill.) vs. Elijah Burke (Jacksonville, Fla.) & Shelton Benjamin (Orangeburg, SC)

Since this is a tag team match, Flair's career is not on the line. In a hilarious twist, Burke pokes Flair in the eyes and goes to the top rope only to be thrown off. HA!

Flair then tries to test fate by going to the top where he is met by Benjamin. He pokes Benjamin in the eyes and hits a flying fist on Burke and Benjamin as they roll out of the ring to regroup.

(Ads)

Of course, when we come back Flair is getting a beatdown and Tazz tells us that Burke and Benjamin have been working over Flair's left knee during the break.

Flair then Flair Flops into the hot tag and Punk is the proverbial house o' fire before being thrown forward by Benjamin during a bulldog attempt.

Burke gets the tag and hits the Outer Limits elbow and works a chin lock briefly before tagging in Benjamin.

Benjamin attempts to hit the turnbuckle powerbomb but it is reversed. Punk tags in Flair who styles and profiles all over his opponents. Flair goes to suplex Flair but Benjamin kicks Flair's knee out. Burke goes for a pin and gets two.

Burke sets up Flair for the Elijah Express but Flair gets out of the way. Flair then locks in the Figure Four and Burke has no choice but to tap.

Winners via submission: Ric Flair & CM Punk

Flair and Punk share what looks to be some legit heartfelt words and a hug in the center of the ring as we fade to black.

Well, that was a strong show. Obviously, the involvement of Flair lends a ton of credibility to it but it was strong overall. The only thing: Where the heck was the ECW Champion tonight? Hopefully we get some movement toward ECW's WrestleMania involvement next week.



Send Matt e-mail about ECW/wrestling/MMA/hockey at bishop20@msu.edu. Please include your name and hometown. And if you're interested in mixed martial arts, check out Matt's weekly podcast -- Lights Out Radio. Should be a good one!.