Why Road Dogg and Rob Van Dam Cost Tommy Dreamer His Only Summerslam Match

On Tommy Dreamers “House of Hardcore” Podcast this week, he was talking about angles that never took place. The first story that he tells, takes a bit to get through but ends in him saying that backstage politics is the reason he never had a Summerslam match.

This was during 1997’s extreme invasion of WWE. Many ECW talents were highlighted on WWE television. This was too lead to a Summerslam tag team match.

As you can see, no mention of a match taking place during the biggest WWE event of the Summer. Tommy Dreamer explained why.

ECW was on fire and getting ready for their big pay per view. This is during the whole crossover with WWE and we had already done the invasions. We had already done a bunch of stuff, and uh, we were supposed to work Summerslam. It was all leading up to Summerslam which was supposed to be at The Meadowlands.

It was going to be an ECW match at Summerslam, with Tommy Dreamer and The Sandman vs. ‘Mr. Monday Night’ Rob Van Dam and either Jerry Lawler or Sabu or any part of that mix. It could have been Van Dam and Sabu with Lawlor in the corner and Beulah in our corner. That would have been a cool thing for ECW and a cool thing for Tommy Dreamer and his career.

We get to Detroit, Sabu has not the best match, the table wasn’t breaking. And then, it was supposed to be, Road Dogg, who they were doing nothing with. This was around the J.O.B. Squad time vs. Rob Van Dam in a featured match with Rob Van Dam. Road Dogg refuses to lose to Van Dam. To his defense he was like “How does this help me if a guy who doesn’t work here beats me? What am I? A piece of shit.” So then Van Dam is getting all offended. Okay so they try to find another opponent and Flash Funk, who was 2 Cold Scorpio is already working Sabu. We are trying to find  all these different guys where they are. To put Rob over.  So it’s all going down. Now Paul is playing both sides. Remember he is in Vince’s pocket. So, Vince is like “what the hell is with your boy Rob Van Dam, because we want him to do a job now and he is not doing it.” Cause that’s how they came up with “okay now Road Dogg beats you” Rob Van Dam is like, absolutely not, I’m not doing the job. Paul E. is riling Rob up “you cannot put him over, he is the lowest guy on the card, if you put him over this whole angle is done.” So Paul is playing both sides and Vince was like “yo, get your boy under control” and Paul was like “I can’t do anything with him.” And Rob is like “I’m not doing the job” and Paul is like “yeah stick to your guns.” So it all goes south. The culmination was we were supposed to have this feud and it was supposed to end at Summerslam. But, Road Dogg not wanting to do a job for Rob and Rob not wanting to do a job for Road Dogg, got what would have been, I don’t think I ever wrestled at Summerslam. You son of a bitch Road Dogg, you son of a bitch Van Dam. It would have been my Summerslam debut.

Tommy Dreamer on the House of Hardcore Podcast

It’s amazing that, because one guy decided he didn’t want to lose, an entire domino effect happened on the whole angle. Tommy knowing that Paul was playing both sides and keeping everything close to the vest. This explains why Tommy runs his company like he does. Too many things go into making a wrestling product, you wouldn’t want ego’s to be the reason that something falls through.

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