ECW invades Canada for its first show this Saturday in Mississauga, Ontario, and two of their superstars can’t wait.
“We’re really excited” Jerry Lynn to SLAM! Wrestling at an indy show in Guelph. “I know that Canada gets ECW through TNN and that there’s a lot of fans for us.”
Terry “Rhino” Richards agreed. “People get ECW TV and they’re starving for it. They’re tired of driving three hours to Buffalo, or coming from the other side of Toronto to see it. It’s going to be in their own backyard and it’ll be a good show.”
With the uncertainty of ECW’s television status this fall it is likely that once again Canada will be left without the ECW hardcore product. Lynn assures that it won’t stop ECW from returning.
“If we do a really good house up there I wouldn’t be surprised if Paul E. has us do a pay-per-view there.”
While on the topic of ECW television, both are certain that no matter where they end up things will work out for the best.
“We’re all hoping we get on USA because we at least know they’ll try for us,” Lynn said with a hint of anger in his voice. “Hopefully they’ll want to invest some money in us and that’ll make them try harder to get a nice return out of us. I mean, with TNN we were basically their little guinea pig to see how wrestling would do without any advertising whatsoever. Really anywhere we go we’re going to do better then we did with TNN ’cause they just basically screwed us.”
Rhino seemed less worried about the impact moving networks would have on the company.
“I’m not really worried about it. Wherever I wrestle, whoever I wrestle in front of, whether there’s 20,000 or twenty I’m going to do my job. I don’t really worry about TV deals. I don’t have a lot of input, and I don’t know too much about it other than turn on the station and there it is.”
Another ECW happening that has people talking is the XPW “invasion” that took place at the Heatwave 2000 pay-per-view. For those who don’t know, the independent promotion XPW caused a disturbance during the show, which lead to a physical altercation in the parking lot outside of the building. After joking about the situation being a work, Rhino got serious and admitted the situation was blown out of proportion.
“I don’t think it was a big deal to be honest with you. Were their names said? Who knows why they did it, who knows what they did it for.”
Lynn jumped in with a less sympathetic view of the situation.
“They were trying to make a name for themselves off of us, but all that came out in the end was that they made fools of themselves, and they embarrassed themselves. There was no way they were going to get any good out of it.”
When asked about Paul Heyman’s involvement in the altercation, Rhino was quick to put any rumours to rest.
“I was coming back from Burger King and I guess what happened was they got pushed out the door, and I heard there were a few punches thrown by the security guards but it was all just a big rumour … If that promotion succeeds, that’s great, there’s one more place for wrestlers to work.”
Often the subject of rumour himself, Rhino is getting tired of it. “I’ve signed with the WWF three times and WCW was calling me with Mike Awesome and I never once received a call from WCW. It was all just rumours. It was in bad taste.”
Individually these two men have been involved in feuds that have set ECW rings on fire. When asked about his feud with the Sandman, Rhino made no attempt to hide the real life animosity behind the two.
“When you go out there, you just have to go out and hope he’s drunk because when he’s sober he’s dangerous. [He laughs] Honestly, I think he’s a filthy drunk and I’ve told him that, but to each his own. … He’s just a disaster and he’ll be lucky to live into his forties.”
He was also less then kind with his comments regarding the time the Sandman came to ring drunk and among other embarrassing acts, pulled his pants down in the ring.
“Actually I thought it was kind of funny at first, but you know what, I mean, with a [bleep!] that small you gotta be piss drunk to get naked in the ring. [He and Jerry both laugh.] No, actually, when he got naked I couldn’t believe it, I wasn’t going to wrestle him naked. But he pulled up his pants and wrestled, and pulled people’s earrings out and stuff like that but s— happens and it gave people something to read about.”
Switching over to Lynn, he admitted that the legacy he and Rob Van Dam have built doesn’t come with too much pressure.
“There’s a bit of pressure because everyone’s expecting a really good match every time we wrestle. Then there’s a pressure to try and top the last match so people won’t be disappointed but that’s really it. Rob’s easy going, and he’s willing to try anything, and he always wants to do better too so that makes it easier.”
Even after injuring his face earlier in the year, Lynn says that he isn’t any more cautious then he was before.
“That was a freak accident. You really can’t be overly cautious ’cause that’s usually when you get hurt. If you’re to afraid to do something, then that’s when something will happen. It was just one of those freak things.”