December 30, 2009
ECW: Dreamer's real swan song
By MATT BISHOP - SLAM! Wrestling

Tonight on ECW on Syfy: Last week was supposed to be Tommy Dreamer's final week in ECW. Instead, he returned for one more show near his home city. With his family in the front row, Dreamer faced Zack Ryder with his career on the line. If you've followed Dreamer's career at all, you should be able to see how this goes. He came close, but Dreamer's career came to an end. Afterward, he made a very emotional goodbye speech.

And we are"LIVE!" from East Rutherford, N.J. Josh Mathews and Byron Saxton are our hosts. This show is presented in WWEHD (TV-PG,V).

Match #1 - ECW Homecoming Qualifying Match - Matt Hardy (Cameron, N.C.) vs. Finlay (Belfast, Northern Ireland)

Finlay works over Hardy's left leg. Hardy fires up for a second but Finlay kicks him in the back of the knee. But Hardy recuperates and hits the Side Effect for two. He goes for the Twist of Fate but Finlay pushes free. Hardy gets Finlay down and goes for a moonsault but Finlay moves. Finlay picks Hardy up but Hardy counters and hits what I can best call a modified Stone Cold Stunner for the fall.

Winner via pinfall: Matt Hardy

Zack Ryder and Rosa Mendes are walking backstage when they run into Tommy Dreamer, who has swerved us all and has returned for one more week. Ryder asks him if he's sick and tired of embarrassing himself week in and week out. Dreamer says he is sick and tired of losing to guys like him each week. Dreamer gets all up in his grill and says if Ryder beats him, he'll leave ECW forever. Ryder says he's on.

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Ezekiel Jackson makes his way to the ring. He says Kozlov betrayed William Regal and himself. Kozlov became a liability. He talks some more when Kozlov's music hits. He makes his way to the ring and shoves Jackson out of the ring by his throat. Jackson spazzes out and yells to Kozlov that he's gonna get it and walks up the ramp. Kozlov celebrates like he's having a seizure.

Christian is backstage with Dreamer. He says he always believed in Dreamer, but is he sure this is what he wants? Dreamer says he's out to prove himself.

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Match #2 - ECW Homecoming Qualifying Match - Evan Bourne (St. Louis, MO) vs. Mike Knox (Phoenix, Ariz.)

FINALLY, Evan Bourne has returned to ECW! He never should've left. And tonight he faces someone who's been growing on me lately, Mike Knox. This should be a good big man/little man match.

As predicted, Knox makes full use of his size advantage and almost takes Bourne out with a ridiculous crossbody. The only thing that saves Bourne from the loss is getting his hand on the bottom rope. But Bourne quickly turns it around, hitting Knox with a high kick and finishing him off with the Shooting Star Press.

Winner via pinfall: Evan Bourne

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Match #3 - Tommy Dreamer (Yonkers, N.Y.) vs. Zack Ryder (Long Island, N.Y.)

Ryder gains the edge by pushing Dreamer into the post via a distraction by Mendes. Ryder hits a flatliner and goes for the big kick in the corner but Dreamer moves and hits a neckbreaker. Dreamer goes to the top but eats a kick. Ryder goes for the Zack Attack but Dreamer counters into a jackknife cover but Ryder kicks out. Ryder hits the leg lariat for a near fall. Ryder goes to top with his back to the ring but Dreamer stops him and pulls him into the tree of woe. He hits the running dropkick and then hits the DDT and referee Scott Armstrong counts to three but then sees Ryder's foot is under the bottom rope, negating the fall.

Dreamer is hot off the restart. He sets Ryder on the top turnbuckle and goes for a back suplex, but in midair, Ryder reverses, coming down on top of Dreamer and picking up the stunning fall.

Winner via pinfall: Zack Ryder

And like that, Tommy Dreamer's ECW career is officially over. Dreamer is in disbelief. He now has a mic. He recalls being in this same building seeing Roddy Piper do a Piper's Pit during his second-ever WWE show. He thanks everybody from the original ECW. He says he promised himself he wouldn't cry, but it's not happening. He talks about his family and they cut to his family in the crowd, crying. As his last act, Dreamer takes off his ECW shirt and lays it in the centre of the ring. He goes over to his family and grabs his two little girls and carries them up the ramp. He hits his trademark pose one last time before riding off into the sunset.

Matt Bishop can be reached at bishop20@msu.edu. Please include your name and hometown. Click here to follow Matt on Twitter. And if you're interested in mixed martial arts, check out Matt's weekly podcast -- Lights Out Radio. Should be a good one!.


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