Against All Odds 2007
Date: February 11, 2007
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Don West
Another TNA show here with a very basic main event of Angle vs. Cage for the title that Christian won last month. Other than that we have Abyss vs. Sting in a Prison Yard match. Oh this is going to hurt isn’t it? It always does. 2007 was such a bad year for TNA but to their credit they bounced back the next year. Let’s get to it.
The opening video is about how Christian is great (“The best thing since sliced bread. Who are we kidding? I’m better than sliced bread.”) and how Angle is still pretty new around here and is looking for his first TNA (officially NWA) world title.
Team 3D is in the ring to open the show as they want to start the Little Italy street fight right now.
Team 3D vs. LAX
LAX has the titles but this is non-title. There are tables in the ring like at a stereotypical Italian restaurant. LAX comes from under the ring while Konnan is being wheeled out and jumps 3D to open things up. All LAX to start with Hernandez cracking D-Von with a chair and both of them hitting dives. Scratch that as Hernandez gets popped with a chair on the landing to give 3D the advantage.
For some reason there are cage kind of things with dancing girls in them at ringside. Ok then. Ray catches a diving Homicide and hits a fallaway slam onto the ramp. And now Ray gets the girls from the cages put onto his lap. Ok then. All LAX here as D-Von gets double teamed. Homicide brings in a trashcan complete with trash. He finds a pizza cutter and D-Von gets carved up.
Ray counters with a cheese grater which cuts up Homicide so Ray can lick the blood. The “Latino Nation” (read as guys in white undershirts and bandanas) come in for a beatdown but 3D fights them off. What’s Up to Homicide. It’s table time but they load up What’s Up on Hernandez, only to have D-Von dive on the Latino Nation guys instead. Hernandez fights back and hits a spinebuster to Bubba through the table. A top rope elbow from Homicide gets two. Saving Grace gets two for D-Von (the reverse inverted DDT) and his face is covered in blood. The Latino Nation blocks a superplex and the Border Toss pins D-Von.
Rating: C-. Just a standard hardcore brawl with a lot of blood. I don’t get the appeal of these but I’m sure they have an audience. Nothing happened as far as the titles until Lockdown where 3D got them off of LAX. LAX was supposed to be this huge deal but I never really got what was all that great about them. They were certainly good but I didn’t get the mass appeal.
Austin Starr talks about how he’ll get to shine tonight and makes various movie references. Bob Backlund strolls through the shot and Starr threatens him with violence. Starr leaves and Backlund says a lot of long words and implies he’ll fight back.
Austin Starr vs. Senshi
Starr was in the finals of something called the Paparazzi Production Series and felt he got cheated (he did) so he wants a chance to get noticed tonight. There are a bunch of people in the front row who look like a softball team. Senshi starts off fast and pounds away with his strikes. Starr sends him to the floor and hits the suicide dive. Slingshot hilo and an elbow drop get two.
A back rake gets two so Starr pulls on his ears. HARD chop by Starr. Pendulum elbow misses and Senshi fires off some kicks. Gutwrench powerbomb gets two for Starr. Senshi comes back with more kicks and chops. A springboard enziguri gets two. They both try suplexes but Senshi hits a Liger Kick. That doesn’t get sold as Sensehi misses a splash. Starr hooks a quick crossface chickenwing but it’s released quickly. Warrior’s Way misses and it’s back to the chickenwing. Starr tries an O’Connor Roll but Senshi rolls through and it gets a messy and mostly unclear three for the pin.
Rating: C-. Again the match was ok but I don’t care for these two. Their styles don’t do anything for me and therefore the matches come off as pretty uninteresting. I’m not a fan of all the strikes and the like which makes these indy guy matches dull. Not terrible, but it came and went and it’s over.
Post match Starr is ticked off and throws a bunch of chairs into the ring. He demands a mic and says he demands the match get restarted. He’ll throw every chair into the ring until someone restarts it. Backlund comes out and Starr backs away from the old man. He slaps Backlund and gets locked in the chickenwing. I know he’s nuts but I love Backlund.
Tomko and Christian get in an argument about I believe Steiner. Steiner comes in and yells because Tomko won’t shine his shoes or clean his glasses. Steiner yells about Tomko but Christian turns this around onto Angle somehow. Scott says he’s about to want to beat up Christian instead of Angle. Christian tells Tomko to go fix this.
We run down the rest of the card.
Recap of Christy Hemme vs. most males in TNA. She says she wouldn’t sleep her way to the top but the James Gang (Kip in particular) said she should do that and this started on a long feud that not many people cared about. Cornette says he’ll have an opponent for her.
Christy Hemme vs. ???
It’s a tuxedo match. And the opponent is…..Big Fat Oily Guy. Literally that’s his name and it’s a parody of Big Dick Johnson from WWE. Oh joy. Christy doesn’t look bad in a tux. Then again there’s very little she wouldn’t look good in. Oily guy is billed as being from Stanford, Connecticut. I’m not going to bother talking about this. Both of them lose their jackets and Oily Guy loses his shirt. This is booed out of the building. Christy wins in about two and a half minutes. Just awful.
Kip James comes out and strips her post match.
We get the latest Paparazzi Production Video and it’s implied that it’s a sex tape with Traci and Eric. It’s of Traci in a hotel room on the phone. There’s a Roode contract there and she glares at the cameraman, whoever that is. She’s off the phone and someone knocks. The cameraman gets into the closet and it’s to be continued.
We recap the Basebrawl which is a couple of baseball players and a wrestler each. Lance Hoyt says that Dale Torborg and AJ Pierzynski don’t get what he has to do. He’ll have David Eckstein with him. Johnny Damon was involved in this somehow too.
Dale Torborg vs. Lance Hoyt
Torborg is more famous as The Demon in WCW. Oh ok the softball team from earlier is Team Eckstein. Torborg was the strength coach for the White Sox so he really is a baseball guy. The fans chant baseball sucks. They go to the floor and this is a big mess. AJ whips Hoyt into the railing. The fans do not care. I mean AT ALL. I love baseball but I have no idea why this is here. Well I know why it’s here because it’s good to have your name associated with Major League Baseball but don’t expect the live fans to care.
Torborg hasn’t been a regular wrestler in about six years at this point and Hoyt is a pretty generic big guy so there isn’t even a decent match to see here. Hoyt tries a run up the corner spinning cross body and slips, hitting most of one of Torborg’s legs. Hoyt makes a comeback and goes up but Pierzynski hits him with a chair so Torborg can get the pin.
Rating: D-. The match was horrible but like I said, I get the point in them doing it. That being said, Torborg isn’t a wrestler anymore and could only do basic stuff, making the match a total joke. To be fair though, they kept it short (five minutes) and the baseball guys are professional athletes so them getting physical is a lot more believable.
Eckstein gets in and says what happened with the chair while his brother pops Torborg with a chair. The match is restarted and a layout F5 ends Torborg.
More of the Paparazzi video including a few jokes from Nash in the first place. In the film, Eric arrives with chocolates and flowers. He ate some of the chocolates and the flowers are plastic. She rips his shirt off and allegedly it’s both of their first times. Eric’s unknown friend told him that was a bad idea but as he’s about to sign, it’s to be continued again.
We recap AJ vs. Rhyno. AJ had been running so they’re having a chain match. That makes sense right? WELL OF COURSE THAT’S NOT ALL THEN!!! There are going to be poles or something and the key is on one of them and there’s a weapon on another one.
AJ Styles vs. Rhyno
The weapon of choice is a nightstick. AJ runs a lot and Rhyno chases after him instead of just standing still and letting AJ run out of room on the chain. AJ gets back in first and hits a baseball slide to take over. They get into a tug of war and Rhyno takes over with pure power. The chain is wrapped around the post here. Back inside now and Rhyno takes over and hits a belly to belly.
Gore is countered by a dropkick and AJ chokes him with the chain. AJ goes for the key but Rhyno makes the stop. You don’t win if you get to the key or anything. AJ just gets loose and makes the whole gimmick totally pointless. Springboard forearm takes Rhyno down for a delayed two. Rhyno takes over and hits a spinebuster for two. He gets the nightstick but AJ hits him low to switch the momentum back.
AJ gets in some stick shots which should probably knock someone into a coma but it doesn’t even knock Rhyno down here. Styles gets the key and unhooks himself to totally negate the point of this match. AJ cuffs the chain to the ropes, tying Rhyno to it. Rhyno can get over halfway across the ring though so it’s not that horrible. Pele puts Rhyno down but he walks into a Gore but Rhyno can’t reach the key. Hebner casually kicks the key over to Rhyno in what is supposed to be a big deal I guess.
Ok now no one is chained up. In a chain match you know. Spinebuster puts Styles down and Rhyno goes for a table. Rhyno tries the running spinebuster kind of thing but AJ escapes. Another belly to belly looks to set up the Gore through the table but AJ moves and pins the not very down Rhyno off the crash.
Rating: D. It was an ok match but the gimmick part of it made my head hurt. This is Russo 101. If you want to have a gimmick attached that’s fine, but don’t overdo it like this. What did the poles and the key add to this? Either have the gimmick or don’t have it. It turned this into a game show instead of a match, which is what gets old with Russo.
Here’s part 3 of the Paparazzi thing. Eric doesn’t want to sign so Traci takes her jacket off to leave. He signs on her chest and the cameraman moves. She makes Eric close his eyes and Traci runs off, giving the contract to a waiting Roode. And they leave. That’s the end of the film. Backlund runs in and FREAKS, yelling about pornography.
We recap Sabin vs. Lynn. It’s old vs. new. Again.
X-Division Title: Jerry Lynn vs. Chris Sabin
The old X Title looks like a toy. They go to the mat to start and Sabin is sent to the floor. The idea is that Sabin underestimates Lynn because Lynn is 43. Sabin stalls more and we get some technical stuff with Sabin not being able to do anything to counter Lynn. And Sabin stalls AGAIN. The fans think this is boring as Lynn avoids a dive by Sabin. Sabin finally does something by kicking the ropes as Lynn gets back in.
Chris stomps away and works on the back. Backbreaker gets two and it’s off to a bow and arrow. Dropkick to the back gets two. Lynn tries to get something going but Sabin drops him face first onto the buckle. Another backbreaker gets two. Sabin gets in his face and pops him in the face a few times. Jumping back elbow in the corner has Lynn in trouble. Lynn kind of Hulks Up and fires off some dropkicks. Into the corner and Lynn spits onto his hands and rubs it in Sabin’s face, which Sabin did earlier.
Lynn gets a bit too cocky though and walks into a kick. Neckbreaker gets two for the challenger. Sabin is sent to the apron and manages a Stunner onto the ropes to take over again. Helicopter Powerbomb gets two for the champ. Cradle Shock is countered into a sunset flip for two. TKO gets two. Lynn tries the Cradle (theme in this match) Piledriver but his back goes out and Sabin backdrops him, grabs the rope and gets the pin.
Rating: C+. This was fine. What more can you ask for than a decent match with an injury worked in and then that injury playing into the ending? That’s what you call psychology people and while this was very basic levels of it, that’s all you need at times, especially in a match like this. Fun stuff and the best match of the show so far.
Samoa Joe, the unofficial enforcer for the main event, leaves Angle’s dressing room.
Here’s Roode for an interview. He and Traci are very happy about the contract that they have Young’s signature on. Roode talks about how Traci finally did something right and calls out Eric Young. Young is all depressed and Roode says he doesn’t get what the fans love about him. He’s figured it out now though: the fans see themselves in Young. Like Young, the fans are worthless. Just like Young, the people will never know what it’s like to be successful.
They’ll never know what it’s like to sleep with a beautiful woman either. That gets Young’s dander up and he wants to hit Roode but he can’t bring himself to do it because it means he’s fired, which is Eric’s greatest fear. This would be the scene for about the next three months between these two.
Christian says everything is cool but Tomko walks away when asked if things are cool with Tomko and Steiner. As for Angle, Christian knows that Angle won a gold medal. Well the NWA World Title is the gold medal of TNA, so at the end of the night, Christian will be standing on top of the medal stand. Cornette pops up and reminds Christian that in TNA, if a champion is disqualified the title changes hands, so his goons better not get involved.
We recap the mixed tag. Gail Kim had been turned on by Storm so she wanted to beat him up but Jackie Moore returned for the save. Petey Williams is with Gail for some reason so let’s have a mixed tag!
Gail Kim/Petey Williams vs. James Storm/Jackie Moore
The guys start us off and it’s Petey in early control. Jackie wants in there because she hasn’t annoyed us yet. Off to Gail who is looking good in those white shorts. The heels cheat so the fans chant brokeback cowboy. Storm hooks on a bad chinlock. Petey tries to come back but gets kicked in the face for two. The fans now want to kill the cowboy. Not nice people there in Orlando.
Eye of the Storm puts Petey down again. This has basically been one sided so far. Off to Jackie for more of her great additions to this one. Petey finally starts moving and hits a slingshot Codebreaker to Storm. The problem is Petey can’t tag because his partner has breasts. Here comes the Destroyer but Jackie continues to mess up our good time. The girls go at it which is a lot less exciting than it sounds. Top rope dropkick puts Jackie down for two. Gail rolls her up but is kicked off, right into Storm. The collision is enough for Jackie to pin her.
Rating: D. Whatever man. I don’t really see why this feud was supposed to be interesting but the idea here was to have Storm be out there for the post match thing which we’ll get to in a minute. As for Jackie, she continues to hold the title of most worthless female in the history of wrestling.
Post match Storm goes for a bottle shot but Williams saves it, only to get kicked in the face. The referee takes a DDT from Jackie and they load up the Death Sentence on Williams. And here’s Chris Harris for the big return, looking to kill Storm. This would set up one of the worst TNA matches I’ve ever seen and then the rematch which was one of the best.
We recap Sting vs. Abyss. Oh boy it’s Sting vs. Abyss. Ok so Abyss was basically subservient to James Mitchell and Sting wanted him to be his own man. Mitchell said it’ll never work and this spiraled into a huge and overly complicated backstory of Abyss being in prison for shooting his father in the head three times and Mitchell getting him bailed out. I’m not sure if it’s been revealed at this point but Mitchell is Abyss’ father. The world title was involved earlier. This results in a prison yard match, whatever that is. Mitchell burned Sting’s face too. Eventually it would be revealed that Abyss’ mom shot him. Got all that?
Sting, in an Abyss mask, says he’ll take care of Mitchell after he takes care of Abyss.
Abyss vs. Sting
The arena has been made to look like a prison yard and there’s a solitary confinement box. You put the other guy in it and lock it to win. Whatever. Abyss comes out to the ring, then walks outside where the match starts. Sting goes into the arena also and plays to the crowd a bit. He’s in the singlet and t-shirt ensemble this time. Outside he goes and the match is finally ready to get going.
They’re outside to start and they fight near a big dumpster, as in one of the kind that’s like 15 feet long. Sting gets launched into it and Abyss loads up a table. Sting pops out of the dumpster and hits Abyss with something that he found in there. For no adequately explored reason, Abyss rolls himself onto the table and Sting splashes him through it. They go into the arena now and Sting finds a barbed wire ball bat which goes into the ribs and back and arm of Abyss.
Sting calls for the cage to be lowered but Abyss avoids going into it. Sting beats up Mitchell and steals his belt, popping Mitchell with it for fun. I must have missed Abyss getting knocked down. Sting whips Mitchell for awhile and Mitchell is busted. Abyss finally comes back and the brawl continues. He pulls one of the lights off the posts and shatters it over Sting’s head. That looked great.
Abyss still can’t quite put him in the cage though so here’s a table. And here’s a barbed wire board. You know, because every wrestling ring has one underneath it. Black Hole Slam puts Sting down and Abyss rips the mask off Sting. He still can’t shut the cage though and Sting hits a pair of Splashes and the Death Drop. Sting puts Abyss in the cage but doesn’t shut up because Mitchell runs in.
Sting, Rhodes Scholar that he is, puts Mitchell in the Deathlock and Abyss runs him over. Abyss puts him on the table For absolutely no apparent reason, Abyss tries to climb up the cage. Sting gets up and since Abyss is slower than molasses at Christmas delivered by a snail with a limp, Sting loads up the barbed wire board onto the table, pops Abyss with the bat and powerbombs him through the board/table. That’s good for the win.
Rating: C+. How exactly do you call something like this? It isn’t exactly a match that has a precedent for it but the match was entertaining enough. The whole idea was for Sting to get to be able to be alone with Mitchell and that’s what happened. It was fun enough so I can’t really complain.
Sting destroys Mitchell post match until security makes the save. Mitchell would be gone for six months.
Angle talks about how when he got here, Samoa Joe looked like the best in the company. They beat each other up but it was worth it to get here.
We recap the world title match. Angle won the shot in an iron man match last month. Tomko was brought in to help out Christian and Steiner came in too. Joe was teased as the helper but Joe keeps saying he’ll be impartial.
NWA World Title: Christian Cage vs. Kurt Angle
Christian is undefeated in TNA at this point. Tomko gets thrown out before the bell. Joe isn’t here yet either despite being the unofficial enforcer. Angle easily takes him to the mat to start. About a minute and a half in, here’s Joe with a chair. After the match basically stops for a minute, let’s continue. Angle pounds him down and grabs a quick ankle lock but the champ gets to the floor.
More bald man dominance out there as Angle picks him up in the Slam position and rams him back first into the post. The fans are into this and split probably 70/30 to Angle. Kurt misses a charge and his shoulder goes into the post. Joe yells at Angle because he wants the next shot to be at Angle. Oh yeah I forgot: Joe gets the winner at Destination X. Off to a chinlock back in the ring.
Back to the floor and nothing happens so let’s go back inside. They slug it out from their knees and Kurt takes over. Kurt hits some suplexes but both finishers are countered, resulting in the ankle lock but Christian quickly gets a rope. Low blow sets up the Unprettier for two. Slingshot by Kurt sends Christian into the corner. For some reason the champ tries to climb the ropes so Kurt runs them and throws him down.
The American hits the Germans on the Canadian, getting all the way to seven but that only gets two somehow. AJ runs in out of nowhere and gets on the top but Angle says jump. Joe chases AJ to the back and Christian pops Angle with a chair during the distraction. A Frog Splash gets two. Unprettier gets two. Kurt grabs an ankle lock but Cage counters, sending Kurt into the referee.
Angle Slam gets a very delayed two. The ref goes down again and here’s Tomko to take out Joe, only to walk into rolling Germans. Here’s Steiner with a pipe and Joe gets back up. Angle thinks Joe jumped him I think but Joe takes out the muscle guys. Joe beats them to the back and Angle throws on the ankle lock and Christian taps. No referee though so Christian pops Angle with the pipe and Unprettier #3 keeps the title on him.
Rating: B-. Fun main event here and a solid match for a B-ish level PPV. This set up Christian vs. Joe where Christian cheated again to keep the title. Good enough match as Christian did a lot of growing up in TNA, as he was just a midcard guy before this in WWE. Granted having matches with Angle and Joe is going to help anyone.
Overall Rating: C. Very much just an average show. It’s not bad but it pretty much just came and went. Some of it was good and some of it was bad, but for the most part here there was nothing on this card that I’m going to remember. I wouldn’t have been terribly disappointed had I watched it live though, which is usually a good sign. This was good enough. That’s about as good of a description as I can give it.
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