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Liking TNA's hardcore look
By TIM BAINES - Ottawa Sun

I’m not a fan of everything TNA does.

Giving Hulk Hogan the rule of the roost was a mistake, a big one.

Pushing aside huge talents like AJ Styles and Samoa Joe while giving former WWE stars like Jeff Hardy and Mr. Anderson considerable stroke was another booboo.

But I’m liking this whole Hardcore Justice thing. I’m liking the ECW ring it has to it — with guys like Balls Mahoney, Axl Rotten, Johnny Swinger, Sabu, 2 Cold Scorpio, Brother Runt, Jerry Lynn, Raven, Sandman, CW Anderson and the FBI jumping on board for Sunday’s pay-per-view. Others like Team 3D, Rob Van Dam, Mick Foley, Rhino, Tommy Dreamer and Stevie Richards were already on board. Many of these guys couldn’t be stars anywhere else (with Taz at the top of the list). But Paul Heyman made them larger than life and ECW rose out of the bingo halls with the chants ringing out ... EC Dub, EC Dub, EC Dub.

It’s not like TNA can build its company around the ECW heroes. ECW’s violence and unpredictable nature weren’t too kid friendly. WWE’s attempt to soften it was a disaster. But it can make for an exciting pay-per-view if it doesn’t attempt to suppress the spontaneity and creativity that made ECW so entertaining.

Around the ring

So was it Kane who was responsible for the disappearance of The Undertaker? Sounds like a pay-per-view main event in the making ... The Chris Jericho DVD, Breaking The Code: Behind The Walls of Chris Jericho, will be out in late September ... Fabian Washington, cornerback for the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens, is going into “Ric Flair mode.” Says Washington: “Ric Flair is always wired ... from the moment he gets in there until the moment he comes out. That’s going to be me this year. I’m kind of borrowing his identity.”

Tim Baines is the Sports Editor for the Ottawa Sun and can be emailed at