In what should make at least some ECW fans very happy, it has been confirmed that WWE is bringing back the ECW brand on a weekly basis.
Details are sketchy at this time but several former ECW wrestlers have already been contacted and sent contracts while others are on the list. Naturally those contracted by TNA (Which would mean Raven, all three Dudleys, Rhino, and a number of others) cannot legally be approached by WWE to break their contracts and come back to WWE.
Sabu, who broke his arm recently but still wrestled on Sunday's TNA Lockdown pay per view, is a free agent and will probably end up on the new ECW show.
Paul Heyman and Tommy Dreamer will be in charge of this project, which should come as a great relief to us ECW purists who do not want to see any ECW programming booked by a McMahon.
Although the brand is being revived, it is uncertain whether they will have their own show, have matches on Raw and/or Smackdown, or be an online show. However, they will be doing house shows from I have heard.
This decision was made only last week and I have no idea why is was made now. Last year, fans were so ready for an ECW show, especially after the very successful ECW One Night Stand pay per view, but nothing came of it.
Sources have said that the contracts will be signed before June's second ECW One Night Stand pay per view, where Rob Van Dam will challenge for the WWE or World Heavyweight title.
Form those I spoke with, the feeling is the ECW brand will be a mixture of ECW veterans and new developmental workers who will work the ECW style.
This brings up a million questions for me.
With so many of the top ECW guys either under contract or not in ring shape, will there be enough to please the ECW purists? Will Heyman have the final word or will Vince still have his say, which could water the product down. Will ECW take over Ohio Valley Wrestling where Paul Heyman has been very successful booking shows since he took the job months ago, replacing Jim Cornette?
And how will this all affect the ECW pay per view? Rob Van Dam is the key to the ECW brand and he just about has to get a win to start the promotion off with a bang. However, he can't take a WWE belt to ECW.
Then again, sources are slating September for the debut of the ECW show/matches/brand so there is a lot of time in between to build up the brand and get the needed talent and position the top guys.
And what does this mean for Joey Styles? Will he go back to calling ECW's matches and will Jim Ross return to announce Raw (I hope so).
Many questions are looming but one thing that everyone I spoke to is certain of is that the ECW brand is being revived complete with merchandise and their own unique style. All the rest is still up in the air but should be ironed out by the pay per view in June.
Several names have come up: Lance Storm, Sandman, Sabu, Balls Mahoney, Francine, and Justin Credible have been approached while WWE has Rob Van Dam, Kid Kash, Super Crazy, Johnny Swinger, and Al Snow on their roster already. Stevie Richards was also a big part of ECW and remains under WWE contract. Steve Corino has denied he has been in talks with WWE about being part of any ECW brand events in his myspace blog and Blue Meanie has also denied any contact with WWE for either the pay per view or the ECW brand.
At this point one thing seems certain. ECW is coming back! Everything else remains speculation and a mystery but more details will be forthcoming very soon. Stay tuned. This could be a great thing for we ECW fans or it may end up a disappointment considering several workers that we associate ECW with can't be on the shows and others have passed away or are not in ring shape. Still, a new crop of ECW stars could be made if WWE allows Paul Heyman and Tommy Dreamer full control. Only then will we see a pure ECW match and show as opposed to ECW-Lite.
I will be back with lots of news on Bob Holly suffering from a serious infection, a diva debuting on Sunday's TNA Lockdown pay per view as well as a regular worker returning to the promotion after a long hiatus, and, of course, ECW! ECW! ECW!
Join us on the forum as we discuss the pros and cons of this major announcement.
Classic and awesome ECW DVDs to check out!