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[2000-12-03-ECW-Massacre on 34th Street] Rhino vs Spike Dudley


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Spike Dudley is a man with a plan, not bothering to hang around and immediately launching himself at Rhino.  That looks like it’s caught his opponent off guard but as he goes for an early Acid Drop Rhino just powers him off.  A gore from Spike followed by a drop toe hold.  He stomps away at Rhino’s knee, trying to take one of those tree trunk legs away from him, the strategy being that if he can’t stand he can’t gore.  The pace is relentless and every chance Spike gets he attacks that leg.  Rhino manages to kick him off with his other leg and Spike takes a tumble through the ropes.  The champion whips him into the guard rail, drives him head first into the announcer’s table and finally busts him open with a couple of chair shots.  Back inside, and after slamming him face first into the chair, he climbs the ropes to yell at some fans in the front row.  That gives Spike the time he needs to recuperate and when Rhino turns back around he’s met by a chair that his opponent had flung full force at him.  The action returns to the floor and, this time, over the barricades and into the crowd.  Crossbody off the balcony by Spike!  The ‘runt of the litter’ whips Rhino into the corner but the ‘Manbeast’ gets some payback for earlier, a drop toe hold of his own sending Spike crashing into the turnbuckles.  He presses him overhead, however Spike with a go-behind and as he looks for an Acid Drop Rhino carries him across the ring and dumps him over the top rope and through a table on the floor.  After a gore, which saw the crowd start chanting “Goldberg”, Spike does the smart thing and rolls to the outside.  Rhino goes to grab him but is met with repeated chair shots.  Spike pulls out some tape which he uses to tie Rhino to the bottom rope, Cyrus thinking that it’s not the smartest move as he won’t be able to pin him that way, while Joey Styles speculates that maybe he doesn’t want to pin him, maybe he is looking to break his leg?  Styles may very well be right as time after time Spike brings the chair down hard on Rhino’s leg.  In doing so, the tape snaps though, freeing Rhino.  He snatches Spike, pulls him to the mat and locks in a rear chinlock, using some of the tape to choke Spike with at the same time.  The referee lifts up Spike’s arm which drops once, twice and finally for a third time to bring the match to a close.  Yuk, fortunately we were watching a different camera angle but it looks like Spike puked at some point there.  The action isn’t over, Rhino ending up goring referee Mike Kehner through a table after he and some other officials had come out to try and persuade Rhino to leave.

 I really liked this and thought that it was incredibly smartly booked.  Not once was I ever looking at these two, seeing the size difference and thinking that it was ridiculous Spike was getting the better of things.  Huge testament to Spike, especially the quick pace he was working at at the start of the match which set the tone for what was to come.  He came across as courageous, gutsy whilst Rhino retained that air of psychotic bad ass’ery.  Pretty violent in places too with those chair shots and completely caught off guard with the finish.  Props for doing something different there rather than the predictable, and expected, gore.  Real good stuff.

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