I’ll begin with a question: Is this the worst WWE PPV ever? It just might be. I’ll have a more direct answer at the bottom of the review. The WWE produced ECW December to Dismember 2006 PPV is a trainwreck that led to Paul Heyman being ousted as the guy in charge of WWE’s ECW brand. I’ll cover that in detail at the end of this article.
This was the first and only ECW PPV that WWE produced based on their ECW TV show, which launched on June 13, 2006. The ECW One Night Stand shows in 2005 and 2006 involved WWE guys, but they were before the WWE/ECW TV show launched. Why was there only one ECW PPV that produced? Because it was terrible.
The show drew 90,000 buys, which was the lowest number of PPV buys in the history of WWE. It was so low that the next lowest ones were about double that number. While the poor card was a big part of the problem, the fact that they did this PPV one week after Survivor Series (370,000 buys) and two weeks before Armageddon (239,000 buys) is odd. Three PPV events in a four-week span and this is the card they want people to pay for? Brutal. That would be a bad idea even today with WWE Network only costing people $9.99 US per month.
I found it odd that they picked August, Georgia to host this show. Why not in the northeast USA like Philadelphia because that’s more of an ECW city? It likely would have helped.
This was originally written in 2016, but I have tweaked it a bit since then.
For the last few years, I have been reviewing WWE PPVs starting in 2003 through the mid-2000s. Check out my WWE Retro PPV archive here if you want to read any of the reviews during that period. Let’s get to it.
WWE ECW December To Dismember
December 3, 2006
The James Brown Arena in Augusta, Georgia
This show was TV-14 with a “S” for Sexual Content on WWE Network.
There was a video package for the Elimination Chamber match for the ECW Title that is the main event of this show. They went with a smaller arena with 4,800 fans as the reported number.
The hosts for the show are Joey Styles and Tazz. The Spanish announcers are at ringside too.
The first match is MNM vs. The Hardy Boyz.
MNM (Johnny Nitro & Joey Mercury) w/Melina vs. The Hardy Boyz (Matt & Jeff Hardy)
Pre-match notes: MNM were heels while The Hardy Boyz were faces. These guys weren’t ECW regulars at the time, but they needed some big names for this show. Neither team was a regular team at this point since Nitro was getting pushed as a singles guy on Raw and Mercury wasn’t doing much on his own after being suspended. Jeff Hardy was the Intercontinental Champion at the time.
Melina looks tremendous. I liked her as a singles wrestler just fine, but she was at her hottest when managing MNM. Slow start to the match. Nice double team wheelbarrow type move by the Hardys to send Mercury out of the ring. Nitro hit a knee lift on Jeff to isolate him. If I call Nitro “Morrison” during this match I apologize in advance. It’s a force of habit. Nitro missed a standing SSP, so Jeff tagged in Matt, who took control for his team. With Nitro on the turnbuckle, Hardy put him on his shoulders and gave Nitro a sitout powerbomb. Melina tripped up Matt when he was running the ropes, so Mercury nailed a clothesline to knock down Matt. That led to the MNM duo working together to isolate Matt. Melina randomly yelled a few times to piss off the fans. It didn’t piss me off when they showed her on screen. Matt countered a double suplex into a double neckbreaker of his own. No tag to Jeff because MNM knocked him off the apron. MNM did the Poetry in Motion double team move on Matt. When Mercury wanted to hit a Twist of Fate, Matt shoved Mercury into the turnbuckle. Jeff got the hot tag from Matt.
Jeff was on fire against Mercury with clotheslines and a double foot attack to the lower body. Front suplex by Jeff on Nitro. Matt hit a clothesline over the top to send Mercury to the floor and then hit a slingshot dive. Nitro hit a no hands plancha over the top to take out both guys. Jeff Hardy went to the top and jumped on the three guys on the floor. The Hardys were in control in the ring with Matt hitting the Twist of Fate on Mercury, but Nitro yanked Mercury out of the ring when Jeff went for the Swanton Bomb, which led to Jeff hitting the mat. Nitro nailed a springboard dropkick on Jeff as MNM isolated him. Good double team offense by MNM as they continued to work over Jeff. I think fans are chanting “she’s a crack whore” although it wasn’t that loud. Nitro tossed Jeff out of the ring, so she kicked Jeff and yelled “crack whore” at the fans, then motioned with her hands in a FU kind of way. See that? Melina was awesome as a manager. This sequence where they beat down Jeff lasted several minutes. During a rollup attempt, Jeff pushed Mercury out of the ring. Mercury attacked Matt to prevent a tag from Jeff. MNM did a double team slingshot, but Jeff climbed to the top of the turnbuckle and hit his Whisper in the Wind dive. That was sweet.
Matt Hardy with the hot tag for his team as he hit clotheslines and a nice clotheslines/bulldog spot. Side Effect by Matt on Mercury and then on Nitro for a two count. Leg drop by Matt on Nitro gets a two count. Nitro with a hurricanrana on Jeff off the top thanks to Mercury helping him out. That was a weird sequence where they looked like they may have messed up a spot, but it they got it right. There was a double superplex by the Hardys on opposite sides of the ring. Melina jumped on the apron, so the ref didn’t count Jeff trying to pin Nitro. Jeff went after Melina, then Jeff moved and Nitro accidentally hit a dropkick on Melina to knock her down. Jeff got a rollup for two. Mercury sent Matt into the steps. MNM hit their Snapshot finishing move, but Matt made the save for his brother. Matt saved Jeff from a double team move and Matt hit a double Twist of Fate on both guys (kinda like a double RKO). Matt stacked MNM on top of eachother. Jeff hit a Swanton Bomb on both MNM guys and covered Nitro for the win at 22:33.
Winners by pinfall: The Hardy Boyz
Analysis: ***1/2 It was a long match that was about seven minutes longer than it needed to be, but this show ended up being pretty short, which is why they gave this more time. There were a few moments in the match where they looked disjointed and out of place, but they were able to tell a good story for the most part. No surprise that the faces won because this was billed as a one time only type of match since the teams aren’t from ECW, so having the faces go over was the right call. Tget ended up a part of the Armageddon PPV a couple of weeks later and also the Royal Rumble in another tag match a month after this (due to Joey’s broken face), so it’s not like this was a one time only deal. The finish was well done. Jeff was as good as anybody there’s ever been in terms of firing up the crowd with his offense. The MNM team was pretty awesome during the time they were together in 2005 and 2006, but it didn’t last long enough because management wanted to push Nitro (later known as Morrison) as a singles wrestler. If every other match was at this three-star level (out of five) then that would make for a pretty good show. Sadly, that was not the case. Not even close.
There was a pre-taped promo from Rob Van Dam talking about wanting to win the ECW World Title in the main event.
Matt Striker made his entrance. Striker was hyped up as a former teacher to get heat and he’s wearing a pink shirt to make people hate him more. He said his opponent is a man named Balls Mahoney. He looked up to the Extreme Elimination Chamber and then talked about trying to stop violence. He said that his match will be extreme rules – then later clarified that it would be an extreme enforcement of the rules. He told the ref to enforce things in a strict way. He said it was Striker’s Rules.
Analysis: It was a cheap promo to get some heat. Saying you don’t like violence or extreme matches is an easy way to get booed. This was really cheesy.
Matt Striker vs. Balls Mahoney
Pre-match notes: Matt Striker was a heel while Balls Mahoney was a face.
Striker has his own face on the back of the tights. Mahoney got some “Balls” chants. When Balls did a leapfrog, Striker was surprised. Mahoney applied an armbreaker, but Striker got to the ropes. Mahoney missed a corner charge, Striker applied an armbar and did a hair whip even though he said no hair pulling before the match. Heels lie. Striker hit a neckbreaker for two. Mahoney did a slow counter out of an armbar. This is pretty bad. Side slam by Balls gets two. Rolling armbar submission by Striker, but Balls got out. Balls with a back body drop and then his Balls punching routine. Strike came back with a kick. Mahoney nailed a Spinebuster for the win at 7:22.
Winner by pinfall: Balls Mahoney
Analysis: 3/4* That was a bad match. They didn’t do a good job of building up to the finish at all. It felt like Striker should have got a cheap win somehow. Instead, Mahoney got the clean win with a move that rarely wins matches. Maybe they were told to “go home” because of how bad the match was leading up to it.
CM Punk was shown warming up backstage.
There was a backstage shot of Sabu getting looked at by doctors because he was knocked out. Paul Heyman showed up to ask what happened. Doctors just told him they found him like that.
Analysis: That’s the classic way of writing somebody out of a match.
Elijah Burke and Sylvester Terkay made their entrance. Burke said this is the Elijah Experience along with the three-time All-American MMA fighting machine Sylvester Terkay. He said they will leave their mark. He said the “manbear” and himself are going to have a feast.
Analysis: I remember there was a lot of hype around Terkay around this time. They had high hopes for him. He never became a big deal despite having an impressive amateur background. Burke had a decent WWE career although it was short. He spent more time in TNA where he’s a current announcer.
Elijah Burke & Sylvester Terkay vs. The Full Blooded Italians – Little Guido Maritato & Tony Mamaluke (w/Trinity)
Pre-match notes: Burke and Terkay were heels while FBI were faces.
The heels are Burke and Terkay in case you aren’t sure. Some people reading this might know Guido better as Nunzio. A very tight dress on Trinity. I’m not complaining. Terkay was pounding on Mamaluke, but then he missed a corner charge. Terkay caught Guido on a dive, kicked Mamaluke down and then tossed Guido onto Mamaluke outside the ring. Burke nailed a double knee attack in the corner and then a legsweep takedown, but Mamaluke broke up the pin. Mamaluke got the hot tag to no reaction, hit a couple of dropkicks, then a forearm smash and the FBI double dropkicked Terkay to knock him down. Double flapjack by the FBI on Burke for two. Terkay nailed a forearm shot on Mamaluke and then Burke nailed The Elijah Experience for the win at 6:41. It’s the same move that Jeff Jarrett did for years that he called The Stroke.
Winners by pinfall: Elijah Burke & Sylvester Terkay
Post match, Terkay gave Guido a Muscle Buster similar to what Samoa Joe has used for much of his career.
Analysis: 3/4* Another boring match. It was a showcase match to put over the new heels. The face team were mostly used as guys that were there to put over the other team. The fact that this was on PPV also showed how there was a lack of depth on the ECW roster. As I said before, they had really high hopes for Terkay. You could tell he was still really green here because he didn’t do a lot.
There was a video of Sabu on a stretcher getting placed into an ambulance. Rob Van Dam and CM Punk were there along with officials. Everybody was wondering what happened.
Daivari entered with The Great Khali. He did a promo in Farsi to upset the fans since it wasn’t in English.
Daivari (w/The Great Khali) vs. Tommy Dreamer
Pre-match notes: Dreamer was a face. Daivari and Khali were heels doing the evil foreigner gimmick even though Daivari is from Minnesota.
This was early in Khali’s run in WWE. Tazz was doing the usual thing that announcers did where they put over Khali’s size. Dreamer hit basic moves and Daivari kept leaving the ring. Daivari hit a baseball slide dropkick, but then Dreamer came back by whipping Daivari back first into the barricade. When Dreamer ran the ropes, Khali held the rope down and Dreamer went flying to the floor. The ref sent Khali to the back. Daivari went at it alone with a chinlock. This chinlock lasted far too long. Then Daivari went to a sleeper. Oh man, this match is putting me to sleep too. Dreamer started his comeback with fists and a reverse DDT for a two count. Daivari got some momentum and went for a cross body block, but that missed. Dreamer nailed a dropkick with Daivari upside down in the corner in the Tree of Woe position. Dreamer went for his DDT, but Daivari reversed it into the dreaded ROLLUP OF DEATH~! (with tights) for the win at 7:22.
Winner by pinfall: Daivari
Analysis: 1/2* Another poor match on this show. It felt like most of the match was stalling whether it was the early portion or the part where Khali got tossed out. It wasn’t a match that was full of action. The crowd was barely into it. I don’t blame them for losing interest because I was not entertained by it at all.
Post match, Dreamer chased after Daivari to the back. Khali was there and gave Dreamer a two handed Chokeslam onto the stage. Ouch. The announcers used SERIOUS VOICES~! to talk about the pain Dreamer was in. He slowly got back to his feet with the help of referees. Then he crawled to the back.
Analysis: That sounded very bad and probably hurt quite a bit. Dreamer always took crazy bumps like that.
Paul Heyman was backstage. He went into the locker room to see Hardcore Holly dressed in his ring gear. Heyman said he needs a replacement for Sabu. He told Holly that he’ll be the replacement. Holly said he likes that.
The announcers talked about the storyline saying that Heyman wanted Holly in the Chamber, but Lashley signed a contract. Now Holly is in because Sabu was “mysteriously” knocked out.
Analysis: I have no recollection of that storyline. Now the ring gear makes sense at least because he was working with Heyman.
Next up was the mixed tag match with Kelly Kelly and Mike Knox against Ariel and Kevin Thorn. Kelly spoke on the microphone to say she wanted to wish CM Punk good luck in the Elimination Chamber. That upset Knox, who was the jealous boyfriend in the story.
Analysis: I love how WWE signed Kelly when she was 19 years old and had her strip her clothes as her gimmick. What a company. She retired at 25 years old. What a life.
Mike Knox & Kelly Kelly vs. Kevin Thorn & Ariel
Pre-match notes: Knox was a heel that was a possessive boyfriend and Kelly was a face. Thorn and Ariel were heels that were followers of vampirism. I always thought Ariel (Shelly Martinez) was hot.
There were a lot of boob jokes by the announcers for Ariel because…well…look at her. With the guys in the ring, Ariel stood on the bottom rope so the camera could shoot her from the back, which meant a nice shot of her butt. Huge clothesline by Knox. Thorn took control with some punches and kicks. This crowd doesn’t seem to care, so they have something in common with me. Knox nailed a boot to the face for two. They have barely done anything in this match and then Knox grabbed a headlock. Ariel tagged in, so Kelly had to go in. The fans cheered for Kelly because it was her first time in the ring. Ariel kicked her a bit and choked her against the ropes. The biggest ovation of the match was Ariel sticking her leg against Kelly’s throat so that the camera could show another shot of her butt. Ariel missed a corner charge. Kelly kicked her away, which was Kelly’s only offense and it was really a defensive move. Kelly went for a tag, but Knox walked away. The crowd booed that. Ariel hit a STO (sort of) for the pinfall win at 7:43. The way Ariel pinned Kelly was the best part of the match because she sat on her face.
Winners by pinfall: Kevin Thorn & Ariel
Analysis: -* That’s a minus star. This was brutal. It advanced the storyline with Knox getting mad at Kelly because Kelly liked Punk. The highlights of the match were the shots of the girls. Kelly did no real offensive moves because she wasn’t trained that much and all of her selling involved screaming loudly. Give Ariel some credit for getting into her character. She was committed to it. Other than that, it was eight minutes of my life I’ll never get back.
After the match, Ariel attacked Kelly Kelly with some awful looking punches. The Sandman’s music started up and he entered through the crowd. Sandman went into the ring, he nailed Thorn with the Singapore cane three times. Sandman hit Thorn about ten more times. Thorn left. Sandman celebrated with some beer as the crowd cheered.
Analysis: The storyline was that Kelly liked CM Punk, but he has a match later, so it was Sandman that came to Kelly’s aid.
Bobby Lashley was interviewed by Rebecca Dipietro. I barely remember her, but she’s hot, so of course she was qualified to work for WWE because that’s all that mattered especially in this era. A video package aired showing all of the obstacles that Lashley has had to deal with in the last few weeks. Lashley said that nothing is going to stop him.
The ECW Champion Big Show was shown walking backstage with Paul Heyman, Test and Hardcore Holly behind him.
A video package aired for the main event with the six men featured in it, including Sabu, who is out of the match now.
Analysis: I remember watching this show live and thinking why is the main event starting so early? This video aired at the 90-minute mark in the show.
Paul Heyman walked out with two dudes dressed in riot gear to protect him. Heyman looked up at the Chamber above him. He said this will be your main event of the evening. He spoke about how Sabu missed his opportunity to enter the chamber. Heyman said the day of Sabu, Sandman and RVD has come to an end. He called ECW a global phenomenon and that this is the crowning achievement of Big Show’s career.
Analysis: It was just a promo to set up the main event and upset the crowd because Heyman was the heel that was in charge of ECW.
They lowered the Extreme Elimination Chamber. The announcers went over the rules. They showed weapons in the Chamber including a barb wire bat, a table, a chair and a crowbar.
The order of entrants for the Elimination Chamber: ECW Champion Big Show with the barb wire bat, CM Punk with a steel chair, Test with a crowbar and Bobby Lashley with a table. He’s arguably the biggest face in the match, yet he barely got a reaction. That means that Rob Van Dam and Hardcore Holly start the match. Paul Heyman was watching from ringside.
Extreme Elimination Chamber Match For The ECW World Title: Big Show vs. CM Punk vs. Test vs. Bobby Lashley vs. Rob Van Dam vs. Hardcore Holly
Pre-match notes: ECW Champion Big Show, Hardcore Holly and Test were heels. CM Punk, RVD and Lashley were faces.
RVD and Holly begin the match as the clock counts down from five minutes until the third man gets in there. Holly’s the heel here. Outside the ring, RVD went for a leaping attack off the top, Holly moved, RVD landed on the cage and then missed a diving attack. Cool spot by RVD. Holly slammed RVD on the steel outside the ring. Holly missed an attack, so he was out on the steel. RVD did the Rolling Thunder spot where he ended up jumping over the top to splash Holly. Holly suplexed RVD back into the ring.
The #3 entrant in this match is CM Punk, who was a popular young babyface at the time. The crowd cheered loudly for him. Punk threw a chair at Holly and nailed a springboard clothesline on RVD. RVD threw the chair at Punk’s head to knock him down. Punk nailed a leg drop on the back of RVD’s head onto the chair. Punk whipped RVD head first into the chair wedged against the turnbuckle. RVD was bleeding above his right eye. Holly slammed Punk into the cage. Holly dominated both guys for the next couple of minutes including a superplex by Holly on Punk. Van Dam was a bloody mess. He nailed a kick on Punk to knock him down.
It’s time for #4 at the 10 minute mark and it’s time for Test. Test nailed Punk in the ribs with the crowbar. Then Test rammed the crowbar against RVD’s bloody head. RVD nailed some clotheslines and kicks on Holly followed by a hard chair shot to Test’s head. RVD nailed a dropkick into the chair on Punk as Punk was against the turnbuckle. With Punk in a lot of pain, RVD nailed a Five Star Frog Splash on Punk and pinned him. The crowd hated that.
CM Punk eliminated by Rob Van Dam
Analysis: I remember that elimination when I saw this live and I hated it. Punk was the future – the young star they could build around. He shouldn’t have been pinned first when they have others out there who were simply midcarders. This was a Vince McMahon booking call rather than Paul Heyman’s choice. More on that later.
Test set up RVD for a big boot, but then he hit Holly with it. The ref counts one…two…stops…Holly doesn’t move and the ref says it’s three. So even though the ref’s hand didn’t hit the mat three times in a row, Holly is out. That looked so awkward. There was a mistake somewhere in there. Holly’s eliminated.
Hardcore Holly eliminated by Test
Analysis: Somebody messed that up. The ref Mickey Henson must have thought that Holly was supposed to kick out, but Holly just stayed there. The storyline is that Test turned on his partner Holly even though they’re supposed to be on the same page.
RVD jumped off the top rope and nailed a jumping kick on Test. RVD went on top of Big Show’s pod to do an attack, but Show grabbed his feet. Why climb up a pod where a guy is standing? Because he’s not smart. Test nailed RVD with a chair shot to the rib and then he slammed RVD to the mat. Test went to the top of the pod and hit a flying elbow drop onto the chair, which was good enough for the pin to eliminate RVD. There was 45 seconds until the next man entered the match. The fans hated that too.
Rob Van Dam eliminated by Test
Analysis: At least the spot to eliminate RVD was well done. That was an impressive elbow drop. I’m not sure about the booking decision to have RVD eliminated by Test. It was probably done that way to shine more of a spotlight on Lashley as the remaining babyface in the match. If RVD or Punk was in there the fans may focus on them instead of Lashley.
Bobby Lashley is the #5 man against Test. Two of the dudes in the riot gear took out the ref that was going to unlock Lashley’s pod. That meant that Lashley was stuck in the pod. Lashley used the table to break through the cage on the top of the pod. Lashley climbed up the top of the pod and nailed a clothesline off the top rope on Test. Lashley whipped Test into pod doors a couple of times. Test got the chair, took too long and Lashley nailed a boot to the face. Lashley with a snap suplex. The crowd isn’t reacting to much. Lashley nailed Test with a crowbar shot to the ribs. Lashley hit a Spear on Test to eliminate him.
Test eliminated by Bobby Lashley
Lashley had about a minute to wait until Big Show entered. Heyman gave Show a pep talk.
The final entrant at #6 is ECW Champion Big Show. Show looked really out of shape and he was too big. He had the barb wire baseball bat with him while Lashley had a steel chair. Show attacked with the bat, but Lashley blocked it with the chair. Lashley was able to avoid an attack as he nailed Show in the ribs with the chair. Lashley sent Show’s head into the cage. The camera cut away from Show and that led to Show doing a blade job as he was busted open. Lashley whipped Show into the pod. Show tossed Lashley back into the ring with Heyman yelling “finish him off” at Show. Clothesline by Show. Lashley countered a Chokeslam into a DDT. Lashley went for a jumping attack, but Show caught him. Show wanted a powerslam, Lashley slipped out of it and Lashley hit a Spear. Lashley covered for the pinfall win at 24:42.
Winner and New ECW World Champion: Bobby Lashley
Analysis: *1/2 It’s pretty hard for an Elimination Chamber match to be bad, but that’s what this was. This is the Elimination Chamber and even a regular one of these matches should hit the three-star level. Aside from a few cool spots from RVD as well as the top rope elbow from Test, this was a poor match that was very disappointing. The booking was poor because they really could have used this as a springboard to make CM Punk into a bigger star. Instead, WWE favored Bobby Lashley, who had the physique they liked even though he was never able to get the crowd support that Punk or RVD received. As for Show, his WWE deal expired two months after this and he took a year off. The goal of the match was to put over Lashley as the face of WWE’s third brand while getting him ready to be a star on Raw or Smackdown, but it didn’t work because it was a poor match. You can’t springboard somebody into stardom if the match designed to put them over is a disaster.
Post match, Lashley went up the ramp with the ECW Title in his hand. It was 10:15pmET as that happened. In those days, most PPVs ended at around 10:45pmET or so. It was 30 minutes early, yet they didn’t care and signed off early.
Analysis: I remember how much people were pissed about the show ending early. I was too. When you get a WWE PPV you’re used to nearly three hours of entertainment. Back then people were paying $35 or so for a PPV, so they wanted to get their money’s worth. It was as if WWE admitted this show was terrible and they didn’t want to put anything else on there even though they had a deep roster that could have filled 30 minutes easily. They launched the ECW brand about five months before this. They should have spent that time building up matches for this show. Instead, they couldn’t even put together a full card.
Who was the man that eventually beat Lashley for the ECW Title many months later? Vince McMahon. Way to build up that young talent, Vince.
This event had a run time of 2:14:15 on WWE Network.
After this show was over, Paul Heyman was fired as the lead creative writer behind ECW. He took the blame for the show being so bad even though he said in this 2008 interview with The Sun that he was trying to get things changed. Vince McMahon kept refusing. Here are Heyman’s comments.
“I thought the undercard was horrible. I thought that the design of the show itself made no sense. I just felt that the entire layout of the show, the entire complexion of the event was a downer. I also thought that we were doing Bobby Lashley no favours the way he was going to win the title. Lashley winning the title, especially if you eliminate Rob Van Dam and CM Punk early, would be leapfrogging over RVD and Punk. Van Dam was the sentimental favourite, Punk was the kid that all the crowd was getting behind and they wanted to see the upset. If you don’t appease the need for the audience to see that new hero gets crowned like Punk did the week before at Survivor Series when DX let him say ‘Are you ready?’ then the audience will feel ripped off. If you don’t put that spotlight on Van Dam, with whom the paying customers have just taken this long ride back into the title chase, then the paying customer will feel ripped off. My opinion was to start the chamber off with the Big Show saying: “I’m a seven foot tall, 500lb giant, I’m gonna mow through every one of you.” And the first to take him on would be Punk. Playing to the fact that UFC is so hot and in the public consciousness, Punk chokes out Big Show in the first round of the Elimination Chamber, four-and-a-half minutes in, and now the champion is out. You know for a fact, before any two contenders lock up, I’m getting a new champion at the end of this match. Then, the first guy to come out after Big Show v Punk, would be Van Dam. You let Van Dam and Punk fight it out, and then you start feeding in the heels. Vince hated this. He especially hated the fact that Big Show liked it.”
Pretty good huh? But wait, there’s more!
“Big Show is so underappreciated in terms of how smart he is to the business, and how willing he is to make new stars. Vince wanted all babyfaces out of the way and for all the spotlight on Lashley and for Lashley to do a Goldberg-style two minute squash of The Big Show. At that point, not only did I realise that this is going to suck, not only is everyone going to throw this back at us, but this show is going to run short. And during the show, I pointed all this out to Vince, which just angered him even more, and he didn’t care. His attitude was: “When this broadcast is over, people will see a new champion, they’ll have a new hero and they’ll all be happy.” When I went to Vince right before I went out to introduce the Chamber, I pointed out again to him “Vince this show is horribly short.” I had this idea of getting 15 minutes out of the crowd, but Vince said: “No, no, no. Just go out there, make your point, and introduce the Chamber.” Which is why, when I was in the ring, I made the statement: “ECW will live long after I am gone.” Because I knew, either when I went back into the dressing room, or within the next day or two, it was time for me to leave.”
It’s pretty sad that Big Show wanted to put Punk over in a big way and Vince denied it. Heyman wanted this show to be the launching pad for Punk to be the top guy in ECW – the new leader of Extreme, but McMahon prevented it from happening. Heyman’s right about the undercard being horrible too.
The timing issue really bothered me and you could see there that Heyman even mentioned it to Vince. Apparently, Vince didn’t seem to care. What a shame.
This was the last ECW only PPV that WWE produced. The brand stuck around for another three years, which was a big mistake, with most WWE PPVs featuring an ECW Title match on the card.
Show Rating (out of 10): 2
That’s about as low as I could go for any PPV because I appreciate the work of the guys in the ring. I just think there were so many things that went wrong that it warrants such a low rating. The only highlight was the Hardy Boyz vs. MNM match, but even that was hurt because it was too long. Some more thoughts on what went wrong:
– The undercard matches were horrible as Heyman said. They had a long time to plan for this show, yet they were unable to put on any interesting matches. Heels had to do promos before the matches to try to get heat, yet the crowd didn’t seem to care about any of them.
– Ending a PPV 45 minutes before the 11pmET hour is inexcusable. People were pissed about it at the time and I don’t blame them. They have done so many PPVs and they almost always go to around the 10:45pmET yet they couldn’t find another 30 minutes of content? Brutal. They should have given refunds to the people that actually paid for this.
– Whoever thought it was a good idea to put Kelly Kelly in a match was wrong. I get that there was a storyline payoff with Knox walking away from her, but she was not ready to be in a match. That was some of the worst selling I’ve ever seen.
– They booked the main event poorly. Show looked so out of shape. Maybe it was the injuries, but he was not the right guy to put over Lashley in a big way. They probably should have done something where Show and Test were double teaming Lashley, then he beat them both in succession. That would have worked better in terms of popping the crowd.
– One of the reasons WWE’s relaunch of ECW failed was that they didn’t have many “extreme” matches. In this show, the only use of weapons was during the main event and when Sandman attacked Knox. Part of the draw of ECW in its original form was the unique matches they had. This show didn’t have enough of that.
Worst WWE PPV ever? Yes. I think so. I can remember shows like King of the Ring 1999 and King of the Ring 1995 being really bad as well as several others from the mid-1990s, but this one really may be the worst of them all.
Best Match: The Hardy Boyz vs. MNM (***1/2 out of 5)
Worst Match: Kevin Thorn and Ariel vs. Mike Knox and Kelly Kelly (-*)
Five Stars of the Night
1. The fans for sitting through this atrocity of the show.
Next up: Armageddon 2006, which is Smackdown show that wrapped up 2006 in WWE PPVs.
Thanks for reading.
John Canton – [email protected]
Check out my other retro WWE PPV reviews here as well.