wrestling / TV Reports

411’s MLW Underground Report 08.18.03

August 20, 2003 | Posted by Terry Gant

So a strange thing happened to me last week while flipping around after Raw: ECW came on my television screen. Well, it wasn’t REALLY ECW, of course, but there was Joey Styles, there was Sandman, there was Mikey Whipwreck (woo!), there was Jerry Lynn, etc etc.. It was MLW.

Major League Wrestling is on The Sunshine Network Mondays from 11 – 12 pm et. The roster is made up of some of the usual ex ECW suspects, as well as some indie and Japanese guys. If you want info, including the latest on their event on Friday the 22nd, you can go HERE (www.mlw.com). Steve Corino is YOUR MLW Heavyweight Champion, and Simon Diamond and CW Anderson are the Tag Champs, which works a hell of a lot better for me than Those Evil Generic Foreigners. But I digress..

As part of the weekly recap, I’ll also babble about the preceding Raw. So, without further ado, here is your first Raw Quick Hit: I say we call Rosey’s Quivering Palm Heart Punch Thingy “Manos – The Hand of Fate” This means nothing to about 99% of you, but to the other 1%, welcome to my world…

We start with an interview. What is this, Raw? CM Punk has issues with Raven, since CM is Straight Edge and Raven is not. Punk talks about life on the indie road, and how it was worth it to get his hands on Raven. Alrighty then.

Joey is counting down the minutes to this Friday night and Summer Apocalypse, where the main event is Terry Funk vs. Jerry Lawler. Why would I make that up? Anywho, down to the ring!

CM Punk and Michael Shane (with Francine) vs. Raven and Norman Smiley (w/ GI Ho. No, really. Once again, why would I make that up?)

The match with Raven on Friday will be a Straight Edge Match, of which no one knows the rules yet. Joey accuses him of Shenanigans in regards to not giving out the rules ahead of time. Apparantly Michael Shane has a famous wrestling relative. My guess is the third Ultimate Warrior. Punk grabs the mike and accuses the Orlando crowd of general druggery, and busts on the crowd for not being able to get together on a common chant of hatred for the heels. Of course the crowd then focuses their wrath on Francine. Joey riffs on how Raven actually seems happy, and worries about how it wil affect his wrestling. GI Ho loves the Big Wiggle, and Joey makes a Kobe Bryant joke. The match finally starts…

Punk and Raven start, but Punk, as the heel ducking his nemesis, tags out to Shane, so we get Shane and Smiley to start. Joey thinks the best thing that could happen this match is having the valets bust out of their tops. Smiley with a body slam and we go to break. We are 12% into the show and have had one move. Just sayin.

We come back to the heels still stalling. Is this live and they needed to wait for the commercials to finish? Punk and Raven are in the ring and they get punchy kicky with it. Raven bulldogs Punk, catching Shane with a clothesline simultaneously in a clever spot. The heels bail, because, really, who could be expected to keep up this blistering pace? I’m sorry, I told myself I’d be nice. Smiley and Shane are in and Shane takes over with more punches. Smiley catches a crossbody and drops him to the ground. Regal Uppercut turns the tide for Smiley. Francine gets involved again, allowing the heels to get Smiley into their corner. Suplex for Punk gets two. Double team suplex gets two for Shane, who then immediately goes to a resthold. Now see, if I’m in a tag match and tired, instead of going to a rest hold, I simply tag out. Once again, just sayin. Yet another break, as Joey shills Some Other Website’s numerous WWE moles.

We come back with Smiley taking more mat based punishment. Francine gets some, er, licks in by sitting on Smiley’s head. Double Underhook Backbreaker on Smiley. Shane tags in and hits a Second Rope Elbow for one. A doubleteam rana goes horribly wrong in a botched spot, putting the heels down. Hot tag to Raven, and he hits the Drop Toe Hold Onto The Chair on both heels. Smiley and Shane go to the outside, and Raven hits The Evenflow. Francine brakes it up, Ho comes in, and Joey’s voice goes up eight octaves. Shane hits a Superkick on Ho, as everyone is down. Shane gets the chair on Smiley, who was busy checking on Ho. Shane goes for the same on Raven, but ends up doing the Stevie “Hit Yourself With The Chair” Spot. Punk gets the baby powder on Raven, allowing hm to get the pin. Nothing to see here, just to set up the Raven/Punk match on Friday. This was in the 1/2* range.

The Extreme Horsemen (Corino, Anderson and Swinger) hang out backstage. Corino gets a letter delivered, and is suspended for reasons not explained. They complain to the cameraman. They go off to look for the responsible

Joey is indignant about Corino messing up the larynx of Funk, and he can’t show up on Friday, and if he DOES (da da DAAAA) he will be stripped of the belt.

Cut to Doctor Death and Sandman backstage. Doc is doin squats, Saandman is doin Budweiser. It’s all about the carbs, ya know. They are getting ready for their tag title match on Friday. Doc looks good, I’ll give him that…

Jamal shows up and is the newest member of the Samoan Island Tribe. He goes to meet his peeps, but gets attacked by Da Hit Squad. They beat him with his own luggage. What’s that thing about irony again? Jamal (actually, Ekmo now) gets left laying.

Cut to The Sinister Minister and Mikey (woo!) running down Sabu. Mitchell gives Sabu his props, then threatens him with one of Jim Cornette’s Cosmic Fireballs. Minister and Mikey are their usual money selves. I *still* say Vince is insane for not bringing Mikey in. You can recycle the whole Foley Tag Team thing, then move him to Smackdown. Trust me, there are LOTS worse tag teams out there than Mikey n Tajiri.

Cut to Sabu and Fonzie (double woo!) for the usual Fonzie screaming and whistle blowing.

Cut to Da Hit Squad talking about how people get hurt when they have toys in their hands. Damn straight. You ever get your finger caught in a Hungry Hungry Hippo? That’s some serious pain, man. DHS is livin for today. Isn’t that a Bon Jovi song?

Joey hypes Funk vs. Lawler. You’re a better man than I am, Gunga Din.

Mikey Whipwreck (w/ Sinister Minister) vs Sabu (w/ Bill Alfonso)

There’s no need for this to be anything worse than OK. Apparantly this was supposed to be La Parka (TRIPLE WOO!) vs Sabu, but Mikey and company punked him out. Sabu with a quick springboard into a Camel Clutch (sigh). Fonzie offers the chair, but Minister gets him from behind, distracting Sabu, allowing Mikey to whomp Sabu with a Tajiri Kick. Mikey gets wood, but Sabu takes him down. Sabu throws the chair at Mikey’s head. Sabu goes to the top, but Minister knocks him down. Mikey with the Top Rope Clothesline for two. We’ll be right back.

While Joey shills the website, I’m just wondering: Has anyone ever seen Joey and Animal Planet Animal Dude Jeff Corwin in the same room? Didn’t think so.

Back in, as Mikey crotches Sabu on a table standing on its side. Ok, ow. Mikey with another kick, as Joey talks about how he must have learned it from Yoshi. DDT by Sabu ends up with Mikey on the table. Top Rope Legdrop ends up getting Foznie put through the table. Sorta Whippersnapper gets two. Sabu gets the Camel Clutch in the middle of the ring, but Minister gets in Sabu’s grill and hits him with the promised Cosmic Fireball. Minister with the whistle in a hilarious bit, as Mikey pounds Sabu into goo with the chair. He goes to Pillmanize the arm, and does a pretty good job.The pin is surprisingly academic. Mikey with more Chairy Goodness after the fact. Way too short and too many commercials, but still good stuff for what there was. ** sounds about right.

They run a montage hyping Friday, including the Horsemen punking Funk out (NOT funking Punk out), Sabu gouging Chirstopher Daniels with a spike, Mikey and Jerry Lynn beating Sabu with a car door, the Horseman beating down Doc n Sandman, Punk and Raven, Lynn and Homicide, and Francine and Ho rolling around.

End of show.

Pretty much what you would expect for a show before a big event. Not NEARLY enough wrestling, and way too much self promotion. You get people interested by showing, not telling. Show us good stuff, don’t tell us it’s good. Two matches with not much in ring time won’t get it done. The promotion has enough talent, for sure, and there are plenty of good workers who have had enough time with each other to put forth good matches. MLW has a real shot at being a big time indie player, they just have to avoid some of the mistakes ECW made. The show has the exact look and feel of the old ECW syndies, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Cut down some of the self promotion, throw in a decent, third ten minute or so match and you have a show that’s instantly lots better.


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Terry Gant

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