How Yesterday's ECW Stars are Impacting Today's WWF

By Dilk Bathoon

If you want to see the stars of ECW today, all you have to do is switch to TNN on Monday nights, and watch Vinnie Mac's WWF RAW IS WAR. Sure, the matches are shorter, the style is different, and who the hell are we kidding; most of the attitude is gone. However, over the past year or so, ECW wrestlers have taken the WWF by storm (and even without an invasion angle) giving them a more mainstream fan base, and world wide recognition. However, who from ECW is going where in the WWF? Who's connecting with the fans, and who's left in the dark? Who's on Smackdown, and who's on Jakked? Lets take a look.

The Dudleyz (Buh Buh Ray and D-Von): Masters of the table, the boys from Dudleyville have skyrocketed up the ranks of the WWF tag team division. Three time WWF tag team champions, D-Von and Buh Buh Ray have perhaps adapted to the WWF environment better then anyone. Recently by putting their brother Spike's girlfriend; Molly Holly through a table, a much anticipated heel turn seems to be in the works. Look for them to be major players in the WWF for a long time.

Jerry Lynn: A more recent addition to the WWF's roster, the former Mr. JL won the light heavyweight title in his very first match. While many insiders have picked him as the saviour of the struggling division, the WWF still seems to be keeping its light heavyweight stars in the dark. Jim Ross has stated that many people within the WWF are very high on Lynn's potential, but the only ones so far who seem to care about Lynn and the belt he currently holds are the few ECW fans scattered in the massive WWF crowd.

Tazz: The Taz that left ECW and the Tazz now employed by Vince McMahon are two very different performers. ECW's Taz was a suplex machine who didn't care who he hurt, the WWF's Tazz is a bad-ass commentator who carries Machael Cole every week on Smackdown and Heat. While most hardcore ECW fans have made a habit of complaining that Tazz is being wasted and belongs in the ring, I must disagree. In today's WWF most wrestlers are lucky if they get twenty minutes of TV time a week. Tazz gets three hours. And just because he is commentating, it doesn't mean that we will never see Tazz in the ring again, it just means that it will be more of an event. Look for Tazz to continue to be the "insiders commentator" for now, and an in-the-ring ass kicker later.

Rhyno: The very last ECW World and Television Champion ever, Rhyno has primarily been stuck in the default ECW wrestlers division; the hardcore division. However, WWF fans have seemed to taken a liking to the Man-Beast, and a recent match with the Intercontinental Champion Kane have seemed to indicate that perhaps bigger and better things are in store for Rhyno. As he continues to evolve and adapt, Rhyno could potentially become one of the WWF's most dominating heels within the next year.

Spike Dudley: Even though he weighs 150 pounds and has spent the majority of his very short WWF career lying on his back doing the J.O.B, it is impossible to not love Spike Dudley, and the WWF fans are no different. He's as over as anyone in the mid-card, and is currently the centrepiece in an angle that has grown to be one of the WWF's most intense; the Dudleyz vs. the Holleys. However the question remains; will Spike last? His 'nice guy' persona has worked for the time being, but if his brothers make their hinted heel turn, there is a good chance that being the odd man out Spike could easily get buried.

Raven: Finally we come to Raven. It's amazing what a simple boost in attitude and work ethic can do, and upon re-arriving in the WWF, Raven has shown enthusiasm we haven't seen from him in years. Scott Levy has treated this opportunity as a new beginning for him, and I wouldn't be surprised if we saw a major singles push for the Gen-X slacker in the not-too-distant future.

Next time, I'll take a look at who from ECW has made an impact in WCW, and who belongs in the federation upon their re-launch.

Till then, don't forget to bid on Francine.