June 20th, 2006 | Pepsi Arena, Albany, New York
This episode of ECW starts off in a weird way, with who I believe is Ariel posing as a tarot card reader, and showing us what happened on the past episode of Monday Night Raw. This is relevant because ECW invaded Raw in order to hype up the Vengeance matches. She also informs us that this episode for ECW will feature a tag team match between Rob Van Dam and Kurt Angle vs. Edge and Randy Orton.
Sabu vs. Tony Mamaluke w/ Trinity
The match starts off with some fast paced back and forth action. Things slow down when Tony Mamaluke hits Sabu with a knee lift followed by a stiff kick to the head. Sabu does get back into control however after he kicks Mamaluke in the head and hits a nice springboard legdrop. After a while things spill to the outside where Sabu manages to perform a very good looking triple jump plancha. The arena is filled with "ECW" chants after that move. As Sabu goes to set up a table, Tony Mamaluke ambushes him and they both go back into the ring. Mamaluke drops a chair on Sabu and goes to the top rope, but as he jumps, Sabu throws the chair up at his face. He follows up with putting Tony Mamaluke on the table outside of the ring where he does a diving crossbody onto the table. It breaks, but it is definitely not a pretty landing. Afterwards Sabu gets Mamaluke back in the ring and makes him submit with a Camel Clutch.
Winner: Sabu in 3:31
Other than the fact that this had zero story to it, it was a fun little opening contest. It got the fans in the extreme mood, and was short and sweet. *¼
After the match, the camera cuts to Kelly Kelly. She again says that she is an exhibitionist. This week however she apologizes for not being able to get off her bra, and claims that she will show off everything this week. I hate wrestling sometimes.
After the commercial break, we go backstage to find Rob Van Dam. This little segment seems like it was planned word for word. He made a lot of weed jokes, talked about how he is going to "whoop Edge's ass" and etc. Not an exciting promo at all.
Big Show and Tommy Dreamer come out to the ring, and Tommy makes a statement towards Big Show saying that he may be extreme, but if he wants to feel the true hart of the business, he has to go through him. Dreamer then proceeds to slap Big Show which leads to a brawl where Big Show pummels Dreamer. I don't quite understand why this couldn't have been a match.
After this beating we get another vignette hyping up the main event of this episode.
Macho Libre vs. The Sandman
When Macho Libre came out, I thought that perhaps this was a serious competitor. Then he started talking and completely mocked Randy Savage. The Sandman came out and did the exact same thing here as he did last week.
Winner: The Sandman in 0:25
This seems to be the cherry on the top when asking whether or not the relaunch of ECW was really that bad. The fight between Big Show and Tommy Dreamer was more of a match than this, and it lasted longer. Why even make these segments matches? Just to show again, how bad these are, I will give this short match a rating. -*
The camera cuts backstage and we see Heyman talking with a ref, but then another man walks up who looks like another ref, informing Heyman that Cena is here. Heyman then tells the ref to get everyone together.
Another commercial break, and when we come back we see Heyman surrounded by the entire ECW roster and he seems to be explaining a plan. Then the camera cuts to Cena and he walks over to the superstars. He says he wants Sabu in an Extreme Lumberjack Match. Sabu quickly accepts, and Cena walks away.
Apparently it is now time for Kelly's Expose. The same thing as last week, teasing poor fans in what is supposed to be a wrestling show. Then supposedly right as she is about to reveal herself, Mike Knox comes on stage and covers her up. The only good part about this segment was the guy in the crowd yelling "Let her finish! Jesus Christ!" Not sure why but this made me laugh.
Another vignette hyping up the main event, saying it's up next.
We also get an interesting little video package that says Test is coming to ECW.
Edge and Randy Orton vs. Kurt Angle and Rob Van Dam
The bell rings and right away Kurt Angle is mat wrestling Edge right into the ground. Angle tags RVD in and Edge tags Orton in. Orton seems to have the upperhand until RVD hits him with a roundhouse kick which brings him to the outside, where RVD performs a beautiful moonsault onto Randy. Randy tags Edge however and they begin to get the upperhand. Lita gets involved and pulls the ropes down on RVD and also choke him with the ropes. Edge and Orton begin brutalizing RVD, and they keep each other fresh by constantly tagging each other. This seems to be where the Rated RKO tag team truly started. RVD however uses his martial arts background to find an opening and tag in Kurt Angle. Suplex city ensues and doesn't stop until Edge cheats to get Orton out of an Ankle Lock. But even then it only slows down the suplexes. Finally a chop block and multiple leg shots weaken Angle. Angle however comes back only to be stopped by Lita again. Angle finds an opening and gets RVD tagged in. RVD goes crazy taking everyone out in sight. He goes to grab a chair and hits Orton over the head with it. Edge hits RVD from behind, but then gets caught in an Ankle Lock. Lita comes in to break it up but gets a nice Angle Slam, but right after Orton hits Angle with an RKO, which is followed by a flying boot to the face from RVD to Orton. Counter after counter when finally Edge goes for a spear but is hit with the championship belt by Van Dam which is followed up by a Five Star Frog Splash for the win.
Winners: Kurt Angle and Rob Van Dam in 15:15
This was a good match for the go-home episode of ECW. It had nice drama, constant action, and a nice finish. Can't ask for much more in a match like this. ***
Overall: 5.5/10. A huge step-up from the previous episode. You still got the terrible Sandman match but at least you had a solid opener and a terrific main event. Everything is set up for Vengeance at this point, and the show did a pretty stand up job at it.