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[2001-04-06-TWZ] The Sandman vs Balls Mahoney (Stairway to Hell)


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What a bizarre show, on the same card that featured Gillberg vs Bob Backlund  we get Balls Mahoney vs The Sandman in a Stairway to Hell match.  There’s something pretty sad about Balls doing his crowd participation stuff when there are more empty chairs than there are people in attendance.  The Sandman’s entrance goes four and a half minutes and that doesn’t even include a very noticeable jump on the video.  We then get another minute and a half of unclear mic work from him before he and Balls have a pre-match hug.  Some barbed wire is hung from the ceiling, which they either have to retrieve to win or can retrieve to you use against their opponent.  One Singapore cane shot and Sandman throws Balls through the ropes to the outside where they start brawling.  We’re not even sixty seconds in and he pulls out a table from under the ring which he bridges against the safety railing and whips Balls through.  He quickly finds himself a second table which he slides into the ring.  Balls begins to fight back, encouraging the fans to shower the ring with their rubbish for some reason.  As a result all kinds of trash, empty drinks containers etc. end up in there.  This is like a poor man’s version of when the fans threw their chairs into the ring at the ECW Arena that one time.  Sandman with a clothesline, he then collects that ladder which he tosses inside.  Bulldog onto the ladder.   Balls gets in a low blow before positioning that second table next to the now opened out ladder.  With the referee holding it firm he begins climbing...slowly.  So slow that you know full well he’s getting slammed off the ladder through the table.  Which is exactly what happens.  Sandman retrieves the barbed wire before grating it across Balls’ forehead.  I did wonder whether he thought it worth his while to even bother blading but he does do.  As the Sandman sets up a third table Balls kills him with a “holy shit!” chair shot.  He lays him on the table, places the barbed wire on his chest and splashes him through it, off the top, for the win.

A big time ‘ECW tribute’ feel to this.  The opening brawling outside the ring wasn’t bad but there really wasn’t a lot of meat to the match.  All the fans seemed interested in were tables, ladders, barbed wire and blood, which they got.  Why Balls decided to get them to pelt the ring with garbage I’ll never know.

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