Tag Teaming With James Ellsworth
Join Date: Nov 2004
ECW's demise/NXT's emergence
I haven't posted a lot here anymore because WWE induces more stress than enjoyment (to me anyways) in recent years and ECW's handling is a nice portion of the negativity I have towards WWE.
I think ECW was just doomed to fail with the WWE running it. An organization once established to be uniquely different than the rest relaunched to be the same as it's sister programming. I think the earliest naysayers back in 2005 following the first ever One Night Stand PPV gauging what Vince must have thought of the success were most correct sadly. Vince only saw name name value and that if he re-used the ECW name again on his version of Paul Heyman's company, the results would be the same or better. Vince obviously believed the extreme nature of old ECW was negligible and if he phased it out in favor or more WWE stylings that no one would notice.
As a WWE show, I believed it was often better than Raw or Smackdown. That's also a gripe in itself in that it was a WWE show. Vince wanted to relaunch a previous entity and as opposed to one more like his own in say, WCW, he chose one that was very different in ECW. Had it been a WCW relaunch, I can tell you the differences would have been harder to spot. As good as it was, the only reason it didn't get Sunday Night Heat/Velocity type treatment was it's own title.
The ECW Championship took a beating in terms of credibility. Yes, there were some good champions like Matt Hardy, C.M. Punk, The Big Show, and lastly Christian's being one of the longest title runs ever. There were a lot of bad champions such as Chavo Guerrero who was a Smackdown guy when he won it, who had moments like being dumped into the Gulf of Mexico and losing the title in 8 seconds at the WWE's biggest PPV. Bobby Lashley basically used the title as a reason to lean towards going to Raw and eventually switch to that show while still being ECW Champion. Rob Van Dam dropped the ball having the ECW and WWE titles at the same time with his public arrest and the accompanying reasons that forced him to drop both. Mark Henry had a pretty forgettable run having been an easy pick to win the title based on the circumstances from the draft of 2008 with only one real rival for the duration of his title run. Lastly, one of the killing blows was Vince's own month-plus reign as ECW Champion that seemed to spur on a lot of ECW Originals leaving the company. They tried to pass it off mentioning Vince was a WWE Champion, but he smartly vacated that title when he won it. He actually competed a few times to defend this one.
I've mentioned most of the good that came from this brand and there wasn't an awful lot. But the bad just came in droves like Mike Adamle's tenure as an announcer. Things even Triple H did such as his smart-ass "bingo" remark when DX cameo'd (2006) or even his burial of the ECW roster (2008) in a special tag match prior to ECW's 100th episode. The removal of Armando Estrada as GM for no reason just to put Theodore Long in his place. You had quick failures like Braden Walker, Tyler Reks, and Colin Delaney who was around just long enough to get an action figure made. You had a hybrid attempt (talent exchange as it was worded) to put Smackdown guys like Deuce/Domino, Kenny Dykstra, Chavo, Hawkins/Ryder, Edge on their show. To a lesser extent one was done to incorporate Raw but only centered on 3 guys really such as Bourne, Morrison, and Miz. They buried Nunzio as a tag team performer, in his Little Guido name, and did so under his WWE name even costuming him as a vampire for one of his many jobs. They even put Tommy Dreamer in a get-up to look like Paul Heyman and wouldn't mention Heyman by name when they did it. Guys who wouldn't cut it as main eventers even on other WWE shows were unreasonably given pushes like Snitsky, Big Daddy V, and The Great Khali. Younger talents that had promise were either ignored mostly (Elijah Burke who now thrives in TNA or Paul Burchill), or literally dressed down for no reason at all just to be forgotten (Kevin Thorn). Extreme Rules match-ups which should have occured with some frequency were sometimes turned into one-sided jobs if they involved Tommy Dreamer. You even had an extreme rules match stopped briefly so blood could be wiped off. From more wastes of time like the Boogeyman who was released twice or Extreme Expose which have still accomplished nothing (2 of the 3 anyways), ECW was made to look bad and even forgettable.
As far as NXT goes, I doubt it's going to do much at all. I'm going to at least give it's pilot a viewing and am honestly not expecting much as some of it is unclear. The wwe.com schedule's been changed to reflect no more ECW, but NXT isn't listed alongside Smackdown for any Tuesdays last time I checked. Somehow, 9 rookies, 9 established WWE names and the Divas are to be involved in an hour long show. WWE dropped the ball with a roster of about 15 regularly for nearly 4 years and somehow around 20 guys with some right to be in the business are going to balance out? I'm just not seeing it and if the pilot doesn't work for me, I won't be burdening myself with anymore of it. WWE must be paying a nice chunk out to real organization that's changing it's name from NXT.