Tommy Dreamer and Beulah. Shane Douglas and Francine. ECW has several couples who are well-remembered today.
And then there was the couple of Kelly Kelly and Mike Knox.
Great-ing Gimmicks of the Past: Kelly Kelly and Mike Knox â€“ WWE, 2006
This angle started on the very first episode of ECW on Sci-Fi. A blond girl named Kelly Kelly came out and announced that she was an exhibitionist, and then started taking her shirt off. This would have gone better if she actually knew how to unfasten a bra. After fighting to unhook her bra, she finally wrapped her dancing routine by just shoving it down and covering herself with her arms.
The next week, Kellyâ€™s Expose hit again and again Kelly stripped down. This time, however, was different. Her boyfriend Mike Knox came out, covered her up, and pulled her off her little stage.
The following episode saw Mike Knox facing Danny Doring with Kelly in his corner. Kelly kept teasing fans until Knox shoved one down. Knox then returned to the ring to defeat Doring. Afterward, Kelly started another striptease only for Knox to grab her and pull her to the back.
Knox faced Little Guido a week later. Before the match, Kelly planned to present another Expose. Knox put a halt to it and then defeated Guido.
Things took an interesting twist on July 11. Kelly met up with Candace Michelle backstage and there was an immediate magnetism between them. They headed out for the Expose and began stripping each other. Knox soon made an appearance and tried to pull Kelly away, only for the Sandman to show up and begin caning Knox while the girls fled.
July 18th saw Knox getting a shot at the Sandman. Again, Kellyâ€™s Expose was quickly stopped by Knox. Things turned ugly when Sandman took a swing with his cane at Knox and accidentally nailed Kelly. Knox pinned Sandman after two low blows and left while Kelly was being stretchered out.
The next weekâ€™s show opened with the same match. This time Kelly threw herself into the ring to protect Knox from the cane. Test then showed up and attacked the Sandman. After the match, Knox and Test battered the Sandman then got attacked by Tommy Dreamer.
The next show saw ECWâ€™s return to the Hammerstein Ballroom. Knox and Test teamed against Sandman and Dreamer in an Extreme Rules match. Dreamer and Sandman were in firm control of the match when Paul Heyman and his personal security guards came down. The guards threw Dreamer into barbed wire and Test hit him with his finisher to put him away.
Knox faced Dreamer again to open the next show. Sure enough, Heyman appeared and sent his guards to ringside to pummel Tommy Dreamer. Sandman and Test then got involved and we had a handicap match.
Test and Knox won that match when Sandman was disqualified for using his cane.
Kelly seemed content to simply serve as Test and Knoxâ€™s valet. However, problems continued whenever she tried to show off.
On the August 22 episode, Kelly was set for a bikini contest against Torrie Wilson. Test and Knox stopped Kelly immediately before she could show off her choice in swimwear.
The August 29 episode saw Balls Mahoney backstage. Before Balls could do his interview, Kelly stopped by and flashed him.
On September 12â€™s show, CM Punk and the FBI were celebrating Punkâ€™s win over Shannon Moore earlier in the night. Suddenly Kelly showed up and began flirting with Punk. That was Knoxâ€™s cue to come out and drag her away.
When Punk defeated Shannon again the next week, we saw Kelly in the crowd watching the match until Knox pulled her to the back.
By the next week Knoxâ€™s patience was wearing thin. When he caught Kelly flirting with Punk again, Knox chewed Punk out about it.
Punk defeated Danny Doring the next week and Kelly came out again to congratulate him. Knox again pulled Kelly away and warned Punk to stay away from her. Punk replied by telling Knox to worry about keeping her away from him.
The next episode saw Punk defeating Rene Dupree. After the match Knox came out to attack Punk. However, Punk saw him coming and ran him off.
Knoxâ€™s opportunity came a week later. Punk was facing Matt Striker. This time Knox didnâ€™t wait for the end of the match to attack. He jumped Punk during the match.
Halloween night saw a costume contest between Trinity, Kelly, and Ariel. Kelly chose to dress as CM Punk. When Knox came out and confronted her about it Punk attacked him.
A week later Punk was set to face Knox. Before the match even started, Knox sent Kelly to the back. Punk wound up winning the match.
Punk defeated Knox again the next week in a grudge match. Kelly was in Knoxâ€™s corner, but she was rooting for Punk through the entire match.
Punkâ€™s opponent seven days later was Kevin Thorn. Kelly came down during the match to cheer for Punk and then congratulated him afterward. However, that caused Ariel to attack Kelly, only for Punk to save her. The cameras then pulled back to show us Knox watching everything from the stage.
That brought us to the December 2 Dismember PPV, where Knox and Kelly faced Thorn and Ariel. Thornâ€™s team won after Knox abandoned Kelly during the match and headed to the back.
Kelly defeated Ariel on the next episode of ECW. After the match, Knox entered the ring with roses to apologize for Sunday night. Knox then said he was only apologizing for taking so long to dump her and threw the flowers at her before leveling her with a swinging neckbreaker.
And that was the end of that. Knox appeared on TV once more to explain his actions and then vanished.
To be honest, Kellyâ€™s Expose is something that the fans hated (and thatâ€™s something to be said about having a beautiful woman taking her clothes off). I recall that WWE.com ran a poll shortly after this asking whether the Expose should return and the fans voted an overwhelming no.
Letâ€™s face it. The fans saw what it was. Kelly was a blonde airhead who couldnâ€™t even figure out how to unfasten a bra.
Then we brought in Mike Knox in an attempt to make people care about Kelly and we got the return of the Marc Mero-Sable feud. The angle also shows exactly how little the writers cared about the angle. Weâ€™d see Knox in a mini-feud that got blown off on TV (usually with him losing).
One of the biggest gaps of logic was â€œWhy did Kelly stay with him?â€ Knox feuds with Tommy Dreamer and the Sandman and Kelly suddenly (after fighting to escape Knox) decides to sacrifice herself to keep Knox from getting caned. Then we get her hitting on Balls Mahoney and the angleâ€™s dropped immediately. She then falls for Punk â€“ until Punk beats Knox. Since Knox lost, she stays with him.
Overall, the angle helped to throw another shovelful of dirt on fansâ€™ hopes that the new ECW would be like the old. More than that, it helped fans to decide to change the channel and see what else was on.
Where are they now?
Kelly remains with the WWE today. After the end of the Knox angle, she joined Layla and Brooke in Extreme Expose which was a dance group reminiscent of the Nitro Girls. After Extreme Expose split up, Kelly began wrestling. She was moved to Raw in July of 2008.
After vanishing from WWE television, Knox was reassigned to Deep South Wrestling after his name apparently mistaken appeared on a list of releases on WWE.com in January of 2007. He returned in September and remains with ECW today.
Tags: cm punk, ECW, Kelly Kelly, Mike Knox, sandman, tommy dreamer