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On this date in ECW history: Rest in peace, Mike Awesome

On February 17, 2007, Michael Lee Alfonso, who was perhaps best known as "Mike Awesome" during his time spent in Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) and beyond, was found dead in his apartment, from an apparent suicide, at the relatively young age of 42.

Awesome, who was incredibly agile for a man of his stature (6'6", 292-pounds), was also a mainstay on the Japanese pro wrestling circuit, having some classic matches against Masato Tanaka, including their show-stealing match at the ECW One Night Stand pay-per-view (PPV) event in June, 2005.

That match helped erase some of the bad memories from his ECW departure, when he abruptly jumped ship for World Championship Wrestling (WCW), despite being champion; after a falling out with ECW head cheese Paul Heyman.

Awesome eventually returned to drop the strap to Tazz, but was officially gone for good.

His run in WCW, along with a layover in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF), was short and not that sweet, but he continued to bounce around the independent circuit following his WWF release in 2001.

"Awesome" match, in the video clip below:

Mike Awesome vs Masato Tanaka ECW One Night... by StephFR82

Where do you rank him among the ECW greats?

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