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Scott Rees



An Awesome Defection

(This is the first of three columns dealing with the aftermath of Mike Awesome's defection to ECW. This one deals with the effects of Awesome's move into WCW. The second is my opinion on what ECW needs to do to survive. The third is how I would book the 4/10 WCW Nitro.)


Or in the words of us ECW fans, HOLY SHIT!

Last night, as I was thinking up a column idea before I fell asleep, I figured a "What if Mike Awesome jumped to WCW?" would be a good piece. Kind of like my Bret Hart in ECW column several weeks back. I had read about Bubba the Love Sponge saying Awesome would be at the 4/10 Nitro, and I thought it would it make for an interesting read. But I thought the chance of that happening was the same as Bret going to ECW. I mean, I know Bubba's tight with Hulk Hogan, and that Hogan's nephew Horace is tight with his cousin Awesome, but why the hell would I trust a statement from a guy known as the Love Sponge? After all, "friends" of Hogan usually end up as Hogan's Love Sponge.

So, right before I sit down to write, I check out the Observer, and the first newsbite is about ECW trying to stop Awesome from dumping the belt in the trash at Nitro.

Holy shit.

Mike Awesome has a three-year contract with ECW. He's stated it, Paul Heyman's stated it. So how the hell can Awesome be on Nitro? Remember, Sabu has a contract with ECW. Sabu claimed Heyman breached it and tried to jump to WCW. Paul sued to stop Sabu from appearing on Nitro. A Sabu, I'd like to add, who would never be higher than mid-card in WCW, who ECW had already dropped to upper mid-card, and who new fans would consider a Hardy Boyz's wannabe (Oh, the irony). Sabu's now stuck in the indies.

And Heyman's only concerned about having the belt dropped in the trash? He's going to let Awesome be on Nitro? His World Champ? The guy beating the shit out of every ECW wrestler for the past eight months? The huge risk annoited savior after Taz left?

What the fuck????

And this just can't be a work. It can't be. Bischoff and Russo working with Heyman? No way.

I'm just shocked by this. How could Heyman, who took a huge risk on picking Awesome to succeed Taz when a healthy RVD was available, not have locked Awesome up in a binding contract? And if he had a binding contract, how could Heyman breach it?

We're not talking about a guy who's seen his better days. We're talking about the best big man in the business today. That's not even debatable. Kane is usually mentioned as the best big man around, and he doesn't hold a candle to Awesome. (If you don't believe me, watch a Kane match. It's punch, punch, punch, punch, punch. It's boring. His top rope clothesline is nice, but Awesome's top rope moves and leaping ability puts Kane to shame.)

Mike Awesome is a believable unstoppable force. I've seen him in person. I'm 6'5" and 270 pounds (albeit extremely out of shape), and I wouldn't fuck with him if he was raping my cats. And I think my cats are the shit. I sing songs about them. Course, the BOBOB would kick Awesome's ass if he tried, but that's another column.

Think what a Mike Awesome can do for WCW. His Southern-laced "I'm here to kick ass, because it makes me money and puts food on the table, which is what makes me happy" interviews work. He busts his ass off in the ring to the point he might just embarass the WCW "Brand Name" roster into working again. He works hurt. And he's hungry.

All they have to do is let Awesome destroy people, win the belt, PIN GOLDBERG CLEAN, and they have a monster on their hands. Goldberg and Awesome would be a huge moneymaker, but they have to push Awesome as his equal.

At the same time, ECW is just F'N screwed. This is the second heavyweight champ they've lost, and this one's leaving with the belt. Heyman takes a huge risk, and it was paying off. Awesome's matches on ECW were the highest rated segments. Awesome/Dreamer would've made a nice PPV. And the inevitable Awesome/RVD was money in the bank.

ECW will have to take a gigantic chance to stay alive. The second of this three piece saga will be about it. But losing Awesome is a devastating blow for ECW. Make no mistake about it; they're back in third place.

And WCW has gained the breakout star it needs in its attempt to be number one again. If they don't screw it up. The third and final piece is my foolproof plan on how to make WCW #1.

WCW has my complete attention now. I'll be watching all two hours of Nitro for the first time since November. And the Spring Stampede PPV in Chicago looks like it'll be worth the trip.

Things just got interesting.

Scott Rees
[slash] wrestling

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