After the sick and twisted details emerged surrounding the Chris Benoit tragedy, it was clear that Vince McMahon was extremely pissed about having wasted a three hour RAW to honor the sick killer. Not to mention the perfect storm of steroid allegations. So, to open ECW, McMahon issued this statement that virtually brushed Benoit off the WWE map:
Last night on ‘Monday Night Raw,’ the WWE presented a special tribute show, recognizing the career of Chris Benoit. However, now some 26 hours later, the facts of this horrific tragedy are now apparent. Therefore, other than my comments, there will be no mention of Mr. Benoit tonight. On the contrary, tonight’s show will be dedicated to everyone who has been affected by this terrible incident. This evening marks the first step of the healing process. Tonight, the WWE performers will do what they do better than anyone else in the world — entertain you.
And with that being said, the WWE was back to business as usual; on screen, that is.
John Cena made a rare ECW appearance as he kicked off the show with a match against the newly crowned champion of the brand, Johnny Nitro. Nitro gave it his all, but he was completely outclassed by Cena and, in his first title defense, the paparazzi’s favorite superstar tapped out to the STFU.
But the fun didn’t stop there for the humiliated young champ as he discovered that the new number one contender for his title will be CM Punk. Punk survived a “two out of three falls” match against Elijah Burke by delivering the GTS in the third and final fall to set up a rematch of Vengeance’s title bout.
And in between those two matches was a ridiculous skit involving Rowdy Roddy Piper and Matt Striker that ended with Striker getting a face full of his own birthday cake. Oh, and to top it off, the Boogie Man showed up and KO’d the birthday boy before doing performing his worm regurgitation tradition. Happy Birthday To Ewwwww!