Forgotten Match | Sabu vs John Cena’s Hardcore Extravaganza

Sabu is one of the most influential and revolutionary wrestlers in the history of the sport.

He turned pro-wrestling on its head, with a high-flying, death defying hardcore style that many have tried to replicate, with little success.

One key feature of Sabu’s matches were his botches. With his high-risk style, bothces and mistakes seemed inevitable, although Sabu has admitted to doing them on purpose to fool the fans.

He is a former ECW Champion and has wrestled in some of the biggest, and most dangerous matches all over the world.

As a regular is Atsushi Onita’s FMW promotion, he took part in more explosion and barbed wire filled matches than most people have ever seen.

He did have a short run in the WWE, years after ECW went under. He was brought in for the ECW One Night Stand event, and signed for the promotion as part of the ECW reboot.

During this time, he would wrestle in a largely forgotten match – Sabu vs John Cena in an Extreme Rules Lumberjack match.

Sabu vs John Cena

At Vengeance 2006, Sabu took on John Cena in a surprisingly good match for the era.

Cena had recently lost the WWE Championship to Rob Van Dam, in front of a rabid crowd at ECW One Night Stand 2006.

With the help of Edge, RVD won the WWE Championship for the first time in his career, ending the reign of Cena that had helped propel him to the top of the card.

However, since the loss, he had been broadly in a feud with ECW as a whole. Members of the brand had invaded Raw, attacking Cena and challenging him to matches.

He accepted one of these, against the Homicidal, Suicidal, Genocidal, Death-Defying Maniac at Vengeance 2006, in a one-off match type in the WWE – an Extreme Rules Lumberjack match.

The match had no rules, which was a staple of ECW. The ring was also surrounded by a litany of ECW stars, ready to attack Cena at a moment’s notice if he exited the ring.

This stacked the odds against John Cena, who was hit by a variety of Sabu’s signature moves as the match went on.

Triple jump moonsaults, triple jump leg drops and Arabian facebusters were just some of the punishments he took during this short match.

He got very little offence in the match, putting over Sabu huge. He did eventually run out and attack the lumberjacks, giving him some breathing room.

John Cena won the match after hitting an FU (later changed to the AA) on Sabu through a table, before locking in the STFU and forcing the hardcore legend to tap out.

Sabu On His Match With John Cena

Sabu ECW
Sabu at ECW One Night Stand

Sabu has spoken well of John Cena, after their match at Vengeance 2006. In an interview with WSI, Sabu called Cena “the perfect guy” to work with, mainly because he doesn’t do “his stuff”, so their styles mesh well together.

” He’s the perfect guy for it. He doesn’t do my stuff. Same with Big Show, he doesn’t fly around or do backflips or crash through tables unless I crash into a table. You know, he doesn’t do that stuff, and that’s my stuff. You know, when someone does my stuff, it’s harder for me to get over or to be, you know, original.”

Sabu also spoke about how he and John Cena put together their extreme match together.

The former ECW Champion detailed how he plans his matches, which includes smoking a joint earlier in the day.

“We just put, you know, I don’t know, I usually around three o’clock smoke a joint, around 3:15 start going over the match, it’s about five o’clock, and let it rest until about nine o’clock, and then do it.

Yeah, there is no, I don’t know, there is no percentage here, and there is whoever has a good idea, I go. Sometimes I don’t come with almost any other match the other guy does. He’ll say, ‘How about can you do this? Can you do that?’ Yeah, I can do that. And if it sounds good to me, I don’t reject.”

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