#5: Chris Benoit vs. Eddie Guerrero
They tie up and Benoit backs him in to the corner. Eddie shifts his body out of the ring and Chris pushes his shoulder in a disapproving manner. There’s a lot of talking, but it’s hard to make out what they’re saying. Eddie might be playing up his heel persona too hard at this point. The fans are yelling obscenities at the invaders while the match finally gets going. “Lita’s got herpes?” apparently.
There’s literally only one point in the match where Guerrero could have bloodied his nose. When Eddie’s hooked up behind Benoit… Chris drops to the mat and accidentally catches Eddie’s face on to his shoulder. This seems right, because shortly after… Eddie purposely backs out of their exchange and walks to the corner. Eddie looks exhausted, although they have done little. He gets out of the ring and takes a breather, while Chris looks confused, but with a deal of concern. The camera tries to get a shot of his face, but he looks away. Benoit holds the rope open for Eddie while he talks to the ref.
Fans haven’t noticed this break, as they direct a “You Screwed Matt” chant at Edge. I think the timing of this match was bad, considering the Raw invaders had just arrived, and the fans hadn’t given them the same treatment as the SmackDown guys. Eddie finally fires up and pops off some quick, powerful strikes. We do eventually get to see his nose, but there’s no other way it could have happened. Tired? Concussed? Frustrated? Commentary point out his mental well-being, and the fact it could get worse when he figures out his nose is bleeding.
Fans finally take notice of the match with a “Let’s Go Eddie, Let’s Go Benoit!” chant. Benoit drops Eddie down with a back drop really, really hard, and the blood trickles in to Eddie’s eye. I can see why he’d be pissed off, I would be too. Some of this offense is stiff, almost like they are in a proper fight. “Fuck You Bischoff!” chant. They end up at ringside and Eddie hits Benoit with a chair. They are doing everything to keep the fans attention, and after getting back in the ring, a mean superplex does that. Ok, so it looks like they have finally got flowing and the fans aren’t dicking around anymore.
Benoit takes over from here, and the Crippler Crossface ends it a couple minutes later. You can see that Eddie isn’t selling this at all. Usually when someone is in a Crossface they would squirm and try to break free, but Eddie lies there motionless before tapping out. After Eddie recovers, the stare down between them is borderline chilling. Eddie has a look of disdain, while Chris is more like… what the fuck man? Disbelief. Eddie mouths “I owe you”? Now that I’ve seen this match again, something tells me that Eddie wasn’t happy going in, and when he got his nose busted open, he took a rest and slowed the pace down to not only recover, but to get the fans invested.
When it seemed like they weren’t clicking and hadn’t succeeded, they got their planned spots done and went home. We may never know the true extent of what happened here, but what is apparent is that the match was poorly placed and it didn’t live up to expectation. But it wasn’t terrible, they worked an acceptable match despite the issues and no one seemed to notice. It’s an enigma, and I’d appreciate it if others dissect this move by move to see if they come to the same conclusions I did. This should have been an instant classic. Winner: Chris Benoit
Joel Gertner’s back, and he has a question for Mr. Bischoff. On behalf of ECW, he asks him… if he can please have a job?? What the hell Joel?! He does his best to sell himself as a model employee, but Bischoff wants the mic and demands he holds his beer.
Hell no, he won’t hire Gertner! He’s just a piece of garbage like everyone else he sees. Bischoff doesn’t want to see any of these ECW fans at Raw because they don’t have the class.
#6: Mike Awesome vs. Masato Tanaka
Please read the article in the link below, for the full breakdown of the rivalry between these two. Includes a detailed rundown of their last match at ECW One Night Stand 2005.
Afterwards, Joey Styles says if this show is much like a One Night Stand… where the lights go out, they sneak out the back and leave cab fair with a fake number; he thanks all the fans for buying the Rise & Fall of ECW DVD. Without that their support, this show wouldn’t have happened.
“I Have Something To Say To You!”
ECW announcer Bob Artese enters, and then Paul Heyman does as well! This is probably my joint first moment of the PPV. He’s already getting emotional. He gets on his knees and bows graciously to the fans. “Thank you Paul!” chant. Paul wants us to know he’s not crying, his eyes are red because he was backstage smoking a joint with RVD. Damn! Never going to hear a comment like that again on WWE TV.
He thanks former ECW owner Tod Gordon, Ron Buffone and Charlie Bruzzese for helping him to run the show. Heyman thanks the “crazy bastards” in the front row. He was thinking about taking the high road… but “I Have Something To Say To You!” directed at the invaders. He tells Bischoff it’s not Paul Heyman with his tail between his legs coming to a WCW PPV, they are in ECW’s house bitch! Hide your wives… it’s Edge. He’s got two words for this guy; “MATT FREAKING HARDY!”. Edge can’t believe what he just said… surely that was three words, right? And now it’s time to shoot with the cowboy, seeing as he loves talking about checks bouncing and all that.
Directed at JBL he tells him “The only reason you were WWE Champion for a year… is because Triple H didn’t want to work Tuesdays!” – One of my favourite moments of any PPV coming up right now… Heyman says let’s do it one more time for old times sake, right at the camera where the world can see it. “This ain’t WCW, this ain’t Monday Night Raw, this ain’t SmackDown, this ain’t even WWE, this my friends… is E–C–FUCKING–W!”. One of my all-time favourite promos. Heyman’s passion is undeniable in this moment.