Francine Reflects On The End Of ECW

For almost a decade, Francine was a cornerstone member of the ECW roster, known for managing top stars like Shane Douglas and Tommy Dreamer enroute to becoming one of the most popular women to ever step foot in an ECW ring. As such, Francine was there when the wheels finally came off for ECW in 2001, when the promotion officially folded, went into bankruptcy proceedings, and was later purchased by WWE.


Appearing earlier this week on "Stories with Brisco and Bradshaw," Francine reflected on ECW's final days, and why she decided to stick around to the end, as opposed to looking for work elsewhere.

"It was like the Titanic," Francine said. "I was on that ship when it went under, and I would still be on that ship [if it hadn't]. I never wanted to leave. I told Paul 'I never want to leave this company. I just love it so much.' I don't know if it was me being comfortable being a big fish in a small pond kind of atmosphere, cause I knew when I got my chance with WWE, whether it be I was too old at 34 or, you know, they didn't see what Paul saw in me. It was apples and oranges for me at that point. And I did not get a chance to shine. Paul let me shine. Paul gave me that ball. I ran with it, they listened to my ideas. I couldn't ask for anything more in a company and in a boss, to be honest with you. Despite the money, he was great."


Francine Reveals When She Knew ECW Was Finished

Francine further revealed that there were long rumors of investors, including Smashing Pumpkins frontman and future NWA owner, Billy Corgan, attempting to buy ECW, only for Heyman to refuse to sell it. As nothing was ever confirmed, Francine remains unsure how true any of the rumors were, and that it's still a discussion point for former ECW talent to this day. What Francine does know, however, is when she knew ECW was officially dead.


"The last PPV that we did, we were told we were going to do another PPV," Francine said. "So we closed the show and we formed a new faction, and my promo was the last promo on that last PPV, talking with the new faction that I had with these guys. It was Steve Corino, Jack Victory, Justin Credible, and myself. And we were going to be this new force to be reckoned with and all that stuff. And We were under the assumption that we had another PPV coming up. 

"And we didn't, and none of us were told that Paul signed a deal, well I wasn't told, I can't say none of us, with WWE or WWF, whatever they were at the time. I got a phone call at 9:30 in the morning, the Monday that Paul was debuting on 'Raw,' it was Dreamer, and he said 'I just want to let you know, Paul is going to be on 'Raw.” And that was the final nail in the coffin for me. I was just like 'Okay, this is 100% done.'"


If you use any quotes from this article, please credit "Stories with Brisco and Bradshaw" with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription