NECW Somerville, MA 8/9/02
There was about a six-week stretch
between the last show and this one.
NECW probably got a nice buzz going
from the last one thanks to Doug Williams,
Sumie Sakai, Jodie Fleisch and Johnny
Storm. That got people to read the reports
and see the show and hopefully this
will increase the visibility of not
just NECW but New England as a whole.
Match One: Slyk Wagner Brown &
April Hunter v. One Night Stand (Edward
G. Ecstasy and Ronnie D. Lishus)
This was the first semi-final match
in a tournament to declare tag team
champions. This was also a great choice
for an opener because both teams are
very popular and got the crowd hot right
to start. (ONS, despite being heels,
usually get more cheers than boos until
the match starts and sometimes throughout
the match.) Slyk and April have a bit
where April holds open the ropes for
Slyk by lying on the second so the mimic
the missionary position when Slyk enters.
Maybe Slyk holds the ropes and April
enters, Im not sure at this point.
Wagner played the face in peril and
ONS cheated and double-teamed him relentlessly,
getting the crowd to boo them in the
process. The finish came when Slyk and
Ecstasy tumbled to the floor while ONS
were double-teaming Slyk. April came
in to confront Lishus, who grabbed her
and lifted her in a Gorilla Press. Slyk
got back in the ring and clipped Lishuss
leg and followed it up with a quebrada
for the pin.
This was a bit of an upset as I think
most were expecting ONS to face the
Egomaniacs in the finals. ONS then grabbed
the mics and gave a profanity-laden
promo claiming they got screwed. The
mic got cut and they were thrown out
of the building. They went back to the
locker room and then left with their
Match Two: Aaron Morrison v. Paul Tyrell
Paul Tyrell is NECWs latest British
import. For those who picked up the
UWA tapes from the mid-nineties, you
might remember Paul Tyrell as one half
of 2 Far Gone. Before the match started,
Ecstasy ran back in and grabbed the
mic. He said that he had a big birthday
surprise for NECW but he wasnt
going to say what it was and it would
be revealed later tonight.
Tyrell started the match by controlling
with some nice looking UK-style submissions,
focusing mainly on Morrisons arm.
Morrison couldnt outwrestle Tyrell
so he turned to power moves and strikes.
Tyrell did a good job of keeping the
crowd into the match, at least during
his hope spots. At one point Morrison
spat on Jason Knight who was ringside
doing radio commentary. This came in
to play at the end of the match. The
ref was holding Tyrell back from Morrison
in the corner. Knight came into the
ring and hit Morrison with an enzugiri.
Tyrell then followed it up with an impressive
ropewalk leg drop for the pin.
I could go for seeing some more Tyrell.
Hes not Doug Williams, but hes
still good and seems able to inject
an All-In style into a US match.
Match Three: Egomaniacs (Johnny Idol
& Mike Steel) v. All Knighters (Joey
Knight & Arizona)
Arizona was subbing in for Robin Knightwing
who I believe was in the UK. Ill
refer to Joey Knight as Joey, to avoid
confusion with Jason Knight.
The Egomaniacs attacked the All Knighters
from behind to start, but the All Knighters
quickly regained control and they had
a bit of an all-out brawl in the ring
to start. This ended when the Egomaniacs
manager, Scott Dickinson, shoved Joey
off the ropes and to the outside. The
Egomaniacs then dumped Arizona and rolled
Joey in to start the match. They focused
on Joeys leg and, instead of some
of their double-team spots, used a lot
of moves they dont normally use
in tag matches. Joey made the hot tag,
but it didnt matter as they got
the win after a suplex/powerbomb double-team.
Melissa Coates came out for a promo.
The ring announcer asked her why she
was here in NECW. She said she was there
to bring pain. The ring announcer asked
her what she meant by bring pain. She
said she was there to bring pain. This
happened two or three more times. I
think that her way of bringing pain
was by delivering promos like these.
Match Four: Mercedes Martinez v. Phoenix
If youve read my reports before,
then you know that I am very high on
Martinez. I am also incredibly happy
that NECW has decided to bring in new
opponents for her. Ive heard a
lot of good things about Phoenix so
I was looking forward to this match.
Just before it got started, L. Spencer
Greenwood, Esq., who does a heel attorney
gimmick game down to the ring. He informed
Martinez that the Japanese lost respect
for her when she lost the North American
Womens Belt to Sumie Sakai at
the last show and because of this, Scott
Dickinson was able to purchase her Japanese
contracts, making him her manager.
They had some really good chain wrestling
to start and both sold the moves as
painful rather than just shift from
hold to hold. They built up from there
with both exchanging some vicious slaps
along the way. Phoenix, being the heel,
was on offence most of the match. After
Phoenix missed an elbow-drop, Martinez
got her with a nice spinebuster and
followed it up with a figure four. During
the figure four, Scott Dickinson grabbed
her hands despite her objections.
There were lots of near falls near
the end including Phoenix reversing
Martinezs backdrop driver, one
of her finishers, into a neckbreaker.
Phoenix had Martinez in an abdominal
stretch when Scott Dickinson came into
the ring and hit Phoenix, causing the
ref to DQ Martinez and give Phoenix
The work in the match was really crisp
and smooth throughout and the only one
noticeable rough spot appeared to have
been when Dickinson was supposed to
pull the ref out to break a three-count
but was out of position. Mind you, I
wonder what the point of Dickinson being
there was. The crowd was hot before
the match as it always is for Martinez
but the angle killed that since nobody
knew whom to root for. Martinez was
the face, but she was being managed
by Dickinson and people didnt
want to cheer for her because of it.
Meanwhile, Phoenix is a new person who
has a whole lot of charisma who never
did anything overtly heelish and was
the victim of Dickinsons cheating
so people didnt want to boo her.
The ending did the two a huge disfavour
as they were building up to something
nice and that wasnt it. Id
almost rather see Martinez fight nobody
but Trinity again if her matches dont
suffer from booking like this. To be
fair, NECW is starting a program here
and Im sure that they know where
they are going. I just hope that when
they get there that these two can have
a rematch without the bullshit.
Match Five: Antonio Thomas v. Maverick
Thomas is a young kid with a great look.
He has a great, natural looking physique
and a good deal of charisma. Wild is
continuing his insane, sadistic heel
persona and had new tights with a demon
head on them
This was a fantastic match as Wild
has the ability to get a lot out of
limited opponents and make them look
great. I dont say this to take
anything away from Thomass ability
but he is inexperienced. Wild worked
the leg like mad, hitting it with knee
drops, kicks and all kinds of submissions.
There was one great heel spot where
he did the wishbone by dropping his
legs on each of Thomass knees.
When Thomas sat up in pain, Wild kicked
him the chest back down. The end came
when Wild got Thomas in a Texas cloverleaf.
Thomas made it to the ropes, but Wild
refused to let go and was disqualified.
I could watch this match all night long.
After the intermission they presented
Sheldon Goldberg with a plaque commemorating
NECWs second anniversary. Goldberg
gave a speech putting over the fans
and the wrestlers as well as the future
Match Six: Justin Powers v. Alex Arion
(c) for the NECW Heavyweight Title
Powers came out with Greenwood who informed
the crowd of legal actions that Powers
has taken. The first played off of Powerss
comments from the last show about April
Hunter calling him non-stop (and the
subsequent attack on Powers by Hunter),
as Powers has taken a restraining order
out on Hunter. The second was that Powers
brought an unsafe workplace complaint
against NECW since Powers had to face
Doug Williams who lacked a Massachusetts
wrestling license (well, everyone does
since no such thing exists, but shhh).
The settlement was for a title shot.
Arion came out and went for Powers
before getting a chance to remove his
belt. (Let me say that I love how NECW
champions wear their belts rather than
just hold them. It makes the belt seem
like less when a guy just dumps it to
the side.) They brawled around ringside
for a while with Arion firmly in control.
Back in the ring, Arion continued to
dominate but was caught trying to leapfrog
Powers in the corner. Powers dumped
him to the floor and returned the earlier
favour before returning to the ring
in control and keeping control by cheating.
Powers hit five locomotion Northern
Lights suplexes on Arion but because
he was too dizzy to make the pin quickly
he only got a two count. He sold disbelief
at this and then set up Arion for a
super-plex. Arion blocked the attempt
and sent him to the mat, hitting him
with a splash to retain.
This was a great match made all the
better by the great crowd. The crowd
was really into hating Powers and really
into cheering Arion. ROHs tagline
of Arion being the most popular wrestler
in New England might be true, at least
in NECW. While the crowd may have popped
louder at points during the Arion/Bob
Evans title change, I think that the
crowd was louder throughout in this
match. A good crowd that isnt
afraid to boo the heel and cheer the
face makes anything better.
After the match, Wild ran down and
attacked Arion with Greenwoods
briefcase. Wild and Powers stomped Arion
until Slyk Wagner Brown made the save.
Match Seven: Mark Briscoe v. Jay Briscoe
Whats really amazing is how the
crowd went from a regular US wrestling
crowd in the last match, to an ROH-style
pop when they pause after big
spots crowd. This was, in fact,
billed as an ROH match under ROH rules.
The only visible difference was that
they shook hands before they started
The match was a Briscoe brothers match.
They had a big long stalemate sequence
to start with a lot of submission reversals.
They paused, got a pop, and then started
the match proper. I was happy to see
them go, at least a little bit, with
the usual structure of the heel, Jay,
controlling most of the match with the
face, Mark, getting hope spots. Of course,
for the crowds that they normally are
in front of, it doesnt much matter.
However, the crowd here still showed
its traditional tendencies by popping
louder for Marks offense than
it did for Jays. Jay was working
Marks knee and Mark got a hope
spot where he hit mark with a flying
knee against the ropes and Mark went
over. I liked that as a cut off for
a hope spot, a desperation move taking
too much. They had a lot of nearfalls
at the end. Mark went up for a splash
or something but Jay got up and kicked
him in the knee and followed up with
a muscle buster for two. He then hit
some vicious lariats for two. He whipped
Mark off the ropes but Mark got him
in a rolling reverse cradle. They did
a double pin here with Mark bridging
back onto his shoulders and the match
was a draw.
After the match, Jay offered a handshake,
but Mark spit at him. The crowd treated
this as a double-turn. Jay then grabbed
the mic and said theyd have a
rematch at the ROH show.
I was prepared for this to be one of
the mat-based spotfests Ive seen
from these two in the past. I was pleasantly
surprised that it wasnt and definitely
enjoyed the match. I did find it odd
that the same crowd who popped like
mad for Arion kicking out at two was
dead for a rope break from Mark but
applauded Jays kicks.
Match Eight: Slyk/Hunter v. Egomaniacs
The first announcement made was that
Scott Dickinson was barred from ringside.
The second announcement was the revelation
of Ecstasys surprise: ONS had
stolen the belts on their way out. However,
this was still for the championship,
even if the belts werent there.
Justin Powers then came down to enforce
the restraining order against April
by sitting at ringside.
The Egomaniacs returned to their normal
quick tags and double teams that I never
tire of seeing and Slyk once again played
the face in peril for his team. The
finish came when Slyk hit his finisher
but Powers jumped on the apron. He held
up a thong and shouted, look what
she gave me. Brown got enraged
and chased Powers to the back, allowing
the Egomaniacs to get their suplex/power
bomb on Hunter to win the belts.
Putting the belts on the Egomaniacs
makes sense since they were the unofficial
champs for so long, although they have
an outstanding loss against ONS. Unfortunately,
this ending felt like a foregone conclusion
once ONS were eliminated. Putting the
belts on the Egomaniacs also makes sense
because I hear theyre the best
tag team in New England, bar none.
Despite some questionable booking (and,
once again, this is going somewhere,
Im sure) this was a really good
show. The only place where it hurt the
crowd reaction was the womens
match and possibly the Tyrell/Morrison
match but thats a tough call since
Tyrell was a newcomer. Even in the womens
match, if youre able to separate
it from the angle and ignore the finish,
it was a good match. It felt heavy to
me, but if its working and going
somewhere, I cant objectively
complain. As long as NECW continues
to deliver quality wrestling, I wont.