WWECW Workrate Report, 7/28/09
1. Tyler Reks vs. Paul Birchill
The rematch!! Were they really trying to get Reks over as "guy who likes extreme sports"? I'm shocked they didn't call him something like Tyler Cortese. And while I'm making shitty MTV Sports jokes, Burchill hits an absolutely SICK knee drop from the top that really is more vicious than any other WWE finisher. Holy shit that looked like it should have caved Reks' chest in. It sucks that it was literally Burchill's first move of the match as nothing will look more spectacular than that. Burchill continues to work over Reks' chest/abdomen with a nice body vice, some kicks, a nasty Saito suplex and his awesome running double knees in the corner. But then once Reks starts making his comebacks I realize that almost all of Reks' big moves (plancha, crossbodies) involve hitting his chest and abdomen really hard against his opponent, and since there was no chance he WASN'T going to hit those moves, it really makes all the cool Burchill body part offense a waste. Reks wins with his nice springboard dropkick, but this was really a 50/50 match where Burchill took his 50 to start and Reks finished with his 50. That's like the worst kind of 50/50 match. After seeing two matches between these guys I know there is a really good match somewhere in there. Last week's was almost it. Paul Burchill at this point is looking like the lost great worker of the last few years. The guy has been working like Regal but with twice as much offense. I doubt the feud will continue after this, though, which is probably for the best as I'd rather see Burchill against other guys.
2. Vladimir Kozlov vs. Bill Baine
Baine was nice enough to already be waiting in the ring for Kozlov. Between Kozlov, Big Zeke and Viscera, WWECW had some of the greatest squash match workers in all of wrestling. The matches are 90 seconds, the jobbers get crushed in fantastic ways, and the moves are cool. It's that easy. Kozlov looks just vicious here, bursting out of the gates with a running boot to Baine's chest, then blasting him with stiff headbutts to the chest and tossing him around with cool dead lifts into fireman's carry slams. Fuck Kozlov looks awesome in these short matches.
It has to be said, but Tommy Dreamer actually knows how to work a suit really well. For a guy with arguably the worst ring gear in WWE (or possibly even of anybody who's ever worked a semi-major program in a semi-major wrestling fed ever), he's backstage talking with Tiffany, and he's rocking the black blazer with conservative but properly fitted button up white shirt, and actual non-douchebag jeans. Blue jeans, white button up, nice blazer. And it's not one of those shitty Affliction-type white shirts and blazer (like the date rape asshole white button up Shelton Benjamin was sporting earlier), but just a nice simple white longsleeve button-up. A classic American look pulled off to perfection by Tommy Dreamer of all people. And the best part was when I was talking on the phone with Phil about it, and he was busy getting ready for a party, and I told him I wouldn't take up much of his time, and then I talked about Tommy Dreamer wearing suits for 7 minutes.
3. Sheamus vs. Goldust
Crowd is absolutely on fire for Goldust right from his entrance here, cheering loudly for him and starting up "Goldust" chants the whole match. And rightfully so as he looks killer here. Every single thing he does looks good, including things that you long accepted would just never look good, like his rope running. When Sheamus tosses 'Dust into the ropes he careens out of control into them and actually somehow makes it look like the ropes are making him bounce back into Sheamus. Rope running is just one of those things we all have to look the other way when it happens as it's almost always going to be goofy and illogical but it's just kind of a thing that exists within this dorky ass form of entertainment we've all become so obsessed with over the years. Goldust pumps his boot right into Sheamus' face as he charges into the corner, and follows it with an epic uppercut. Sheamus catches the next boot and dishes a great body blow and then locks on a cravate as the fans chant for Goldust and well you know this shit is awesome. Goldust makes people care during another resthold and they are jacked during his comeback punches. He also throws a cool yakuza kick that I've not seem him use often. Sheamus gets a little crossed up at the end but we forgive him because he's fairly green at this point (wocka wocka wocka!) but who cares, this is what every 5 minute match wants to be.
4. Christian vs. Zack Ryder
Christian dominates the first few minutes of this and Ryder does a nice enough job just taking offense. He takes offense like kind of a douche, but that really fits with his character I guess. He can't just land like a normal human being, he has to REALLY slap both hands against the mat. Can't just bump off the apron to the floor, has to take an overly dramatic fall and whip his palms into the floor. So of course you know he'll eventually bump the Killswitch like Rock taking a Stunner. He does something I really liked here when Christian went to the top rope, Ryder just ran away across to the opposite corner. It didn't work as Christian immediately jumped down and clotheslined him in the corner, but it's better than guys just aimlessly wandering into a dropkick. This was one of those matches that made people really get into WWECW while it was around. It was 12 solid minutes of nicely executed moves that had good nearfalls and nice believable back and forth. It also featured horrendous Matt Striker commentary, as he would drop gems like "Christian, finding success by employing his trademark offense" which sounds like either a generic sound bite you'd hear Cole repeat 3 times a match on a PS2 wrestling game, or like something an alien would say when he's trying to fit in with humans at a wrestling show. "That one human man certainly damaged the other human's torso yes?" But who cares about how shitty Matt Striker is, when Christian can make it seem like Ryder has a chance of upsetting the champion then you have something that works. And ECW really was delivering something like this almost every week.