Slammiversary 2012: Sting-A-Versary Is One Of TNA’s Best Shows In Years

Slammiversary 2012
Date: June 10, 2012
Location: College Park Center, Arlington, Texas
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Taz

It’s the ten year anniversary show and the main event is Sting challenging Roode for the title. Other than that we have a guest appearance by Christian, likely as the first member of the TNA Hall of Fame for basically publicity reasons. The rest of the show is pretty much a regular PPV, but they’ve surprised me before with these bigger shows. Let’s get to it.

The opening video is about what you would expect: they started with a dream, they’ve come a long way, they’re here now. It’s interspersed with big moments in their history.

The crowd is HUGE, looking like a real PPV style crowd.

Here’s Hogan to open the show. The ring looks smaller than usual here. Hogan welcomes us to the show and says that this is a celebration of ten years. He says the next ten years are going to be even more awesome because this company is shooting to the moon. Tonight we’re going old school and opening with Joe vs. Aries. How exactly is that old school? Oh it’s for the title. So the weight limit is gone? SWEET.

X-Division Title: Austin Aries vs. Samoa Joe

That ring is 15 feet wide AT BEST. Aries is defending of course. They fight over a wristlock to start and it’s a standoff. The fans are split here but the Aries chants sound a bit louder. Aries gets in some kicks at the leg and we hit another standoff. Joe comes back with kicks of his own and down goes the champion. Aries will have none of that and dropkicks him to the floor, but Joe blocks the suicide dive with a kick to the head.

Back into the ring and Joe crushes him in the corner and hits an enziguri. Facewash connects and Aries is in trouble. Snap powerslam gets two. Joe charges into a boot but hits his own big version of it to take Aries down again. The backsplash hits knees and Aries fires off more forearms. Joe tries the suicide elbow but Aries dodges, slides in and hits the suicide dive to take over.

The dueling chants are getting louder here. Back in and Joe gets taken into the corner by a missile dropkick. The running dropkick in the corner is caught in a powerslam for two. They slug it out but Aries can’t hit the brainbuster. A rana is caught in a powerbomb followed by the Boston crab/STF/Rings of Saturn (used to be a Crossface) sequence that he hasn’t busted out in years.

Joe loads up the MuscleBuster but Aries forearms his way out of it. They go up but Joe gets knocked off, letting Aries hit the 450 for two. They fight from their knees and Aries gets caught in the Clutch but he kicks backwards into a cover for two. Aries charges into the release Rock Bottom out of the corner and Joe is all fired up. The MuscleBuster is countered again, this time into kind of a crucifix slam for no cover. Aries goes off with the forearms in the corner and hits the brainbuster for the pin at 11:44.

Rating: B+. Now THAT is how you do an opener. They beat the tar out of each other here and it was almost old school Joe out there, other than him being unbeatable and all that jazz. Still though, this was a good win for Aries and if they’ve taken away the weight limit on the division again, things are going to go up for it. That’s what they’ve needed to do for a long time.

Kid Kash vs. Hernandez

For the life of me I don’t get why this is on the card. When was the last time either of these guys was on TV at all? Kash tries to speed things up but he gets run over with ease and knocked to the floor. Hernandez throws Kash around with ease so Kash bites him on the nose. He hooks an armbreaker on SuperMex which is broken pretty quickly. We get a bad looking sequence with Kash not really selling a clothesline and then BADLY botching a rana. Tornado DDT puts Hernandez down but he pops up and hits the slingshot shoulder to put both guys down. Kash heads to the floor so Hernandez dives over the top to crush him. I miss that spot from him. Border Toss is escaped so Hernandez goes up, shoves Kash off and hits a top rope splash for the pin at 5:52.

Rating: D+. This wasn’t horrible but what in the world was the point of this? There were no other people that they could have put out there for this? Hernandez hasn’t been on TV as a singles guy in months and Kash shouldn’t be on TV ever for my money, so I don’t know why this match was taking place at all. Odd choice and it wasn’t anything good either.

Moment #3 is AJ Styles winning the first X Title.

Garrett Bischoff/D-Von vs. Robbie E/Robbie T

The TV Title feud continues. E and Garrett get us going and Bischoff slams him down with relative ease. Off to the current OVW Champion as we get dueling WE WANT D-VON/YOU CAN’T WRESTLE chants. Right hands have no effect on T so Garrett tries some clotheslines, only to get pulled down to the floor by E. Madison is out watching again, looking GREAT in a red dress.

The fans still want D-Von but it’s Garrett getting worked over in the corner. The Rob’s hit a double team side slam/elbow drop combo and it’s chinlock time. Garrett comes back with a flapjack and D-Von finally gets in. House is cleaned and a Rock Bottom puts E down. A shoulder block gets a cover but T makes the save. Garrett low bridges T and hits a dive, as D-Von spinebusters E for the pin at 5:58.

Rating: D+. Nothing but a basic formula tag match here that needed to be on Impact rather than the PPV. The fans flat out do not care about Garrett but I guess this is better than him being in the main events of PPVs. Now, can we PLEASE find D-Von someone to feud with not named Garrett or Rob? It can’t be that hard.

Garrett and D-Von dance for no apparent reason.

Daniels runs down his accomplishments in TNA and drinks a toast to himself and Kaz while saying how great they are. “You have permission to worship us now.”

Mr. Anderson vs. Jeff Hardy vs. Rob Van Dam

This is happening earlier than I expected. The winner gets a title match on Thursday. Either there’s some lighting issue or Van Dam’s face is green. Jeff flips a coin or something and goes after Van Dam as a result. He takes down everyone but Anderson gets in a knee to slow him down. Jeff sends both guys into the corner and hits a double splash, followed by a dropkick out of Poetry In Motion at Van Dam.

Hardy headscissors Anderson out of the corner but walks into a neckbreaker from the same person for two. Van Dam hits some shoulders into the ribs of Anderson in the corner and a running kick to the head of Hardy. After some control by Van Dam, Hardy goes up but gets caught in the Tower of Doom, but he crotches himself on the top. After disposing of Van Dam, the superplex hits Hardy. A Five Star attempt misses and everyone is down.

We get a three way slugout from their knees, followed by a spin kick from RVD to Anderson, followed by a rollup to Hardy for two. Another spin kick puts Hardy down and Anderson gets monkey flipped onto Hardy’s body for two. Anderson backslides Van Dam and Hardy covers Van Dam at the same time but it only gets two. That was a smart move though. Van Dam is knocked to the floor and he pulls Anderson out with him, allowing Hardy to hit a HUGE dive on both to put everyone down on the floor.

Hardy and Van Dam head into the ring and Whisper in the Wind gets two. Jeff’s suplex is countered so he hits a Twist of Fate instead. The Swanton hits but Anderson pulls the referee out to the floor. Hardy gets sent to the floor and Rolling Thunder is countered into the Mic Check by Anderson for the pin at 11:28. That came out of nowhere.

Rating: B. The match was incredibly energetic and fast paced, although I’m very surprised that Hardy didn’t win here. Anderson winning was a surprise though which is a nice touch, although the ending didn’t have any real build to it. That can work though as it’s nice to break up the formula once in awhile. Good match here again.

Crimson talks about how great and perfect he’s been for over 470 days. He doesn’t care who he’s facing tonight.

Crimson vs. ???

Crimson runs down Texas a bit and says he’ll fight a Maverick, a Ranger or a Cowboy if he has to. The opponent is…..JAMES STORM? Oh yeah the streak is done. The match starts fast and Crimson is quickly clotheslined to the floor. Storm has the old trenchcoat too. We get some hard chops in the corner but Crimson comes back with a shot to the head. There goes the coat and Storm is in some trouble. Storm shrugs all that off, hits the Codebreaker which has another name that I can’t remember, seems to go into a seizure, and hits the Last Call to end the streak at 2:09.

Aries says he wants to be in the main event. That gets a good reaction from the crowd.

Hogan joining TNA is the second moment.

Here’s Dixie for the HOF stuff. There are four matches left (tag titles, Ray/Park, Knockouts and world title) and it’s 9:15 so there’s a lot of time for the remaining matches. She thanks everyone that helped get us here from her parents to the Jarretts to the fans. Dixie brings out the locker room and AJ looks like he’s about to cry. The first inductee into the Hall of Fame is….Sting? It should be Jarret but I’m FAR more ok with this than it being Christian. We get a video and testimonials from the other wrestlers and Sting goes to the ring.

The fans chant YES, which I’m not sure how to take. The formal induction won’t be until Bound For Glory. Sting says he’s honored and starts a chant for the crowd. He says that tonight it’s Showtime.

Knockouts Title: Gail Kim vs. Miss Tessmacher

Ok…..there is ZERO reason for Tessmacher to lose here. I mean, it’s her home state, she’s been built up perfectly, the champion has gotten stale and says the same things over and over……she’s screwed isn’t she? Tessmacher speeds things up to start and they head to the floor. Back in and she tries a victory roll but gets hot shotted instead. Shoulder breaker gets two.

Gail works on the arm before shifting to a headscissors for a bit. Tessmacher makes her comeback but gets bulldogged back down. A horrible looking neckbreaker puts Tessmacher on the apron and then into the barricade. Back in and Eat Defeat is countered so Gail tries Tessmacher’s finisher. Brooke (screw Hogan’s daughter) countered into a rollup for the pin at 7:05.

Rating: D. I REALLY do not like that ending. Tessmacher got dominated for almost the entire match and then caught Gail in a mistake to win the title. That doesn’t make her look better or anything, but rather just that it makes the win look like a fluke. Still though, anyone being champion instead of Gail is a good thing.

Brooke celebrates post match.

Bully runs down Texas and talks about how great New York is. He has Park right where he wants him and it’ll be an assault tonight. Ray can’t be held responsible for his actions due to the contract.

We recap the Park vs. Ray story which I’m sure you’ve heard of already. In short, Joseph is Abyss’ brother and is looking for him. Abyss popped up and said that Joseph needed to stay away from the fire. Ray got annoyed by Joseph and challenged him to a fight tonight. The fight is happening. Ok then.

Joseph Park vs. Bully Ray

Park comes out in a workout suit. He takes off the glasses and Ray offers him the first shot. A right hand misses as does a second. Ray offers to put his hands behind his back but spits in Park’s face too. Park gets in a single slap and down he goes. The fans think New York sucks. Ray goes and gets a chair but Park trips the rope as he comes back in to send Ray down. Park picks up the chair but isn’t sure what to do with it. Instead he looks at the fans and gets hit in the back for his mistake.

A chair to the back puts Park down and the sweat is dripping. Another chair shot to the back puts Joseph on the floor and there’s a water bottle to the head. Back in and the middle rope backsplash misses to give Park a chance. He seems pretty ok two minutes after two chair shots to the back. Park pounds away in the corner and Ray is in trouble. And never mind as Ray kicks his head off to take him down.

Ray brings in a table and kendo stick, drawing the second ECW chant of the night. The thing is dead people. Let it go. Joseph punches Ray in the balls to block a kendo stick shot before clocking Ray in the head for two. Park goes under the ring and Abyss comes out (with his hood up to hide short hair). Ray sees him and panics before getting chokeslammed through the table. Abyss goes back under the ring, Park pops out and gets the pin at 10:28.

Rating: C-. Ok, what were you expecting here? They’re not really even trying to hide that it’s Abyss anymore. Either that or these fans are REALLY gullible. Park winning was probably the only option they had here and while the ending was bad, they couldn’t do much else. Decent comedy match here.

Roode says he’ll keep the title.

Cue Hogan again for some reason. He tells the fans to give it up for Park and that he has a surprise for us. Hogan brings out Christian Cage to no real buildup or fanfare. Tenay of course makes it sound like it’s someone here every week because that’s how he rolls. The fans ask Christian to come back. Christian says he’s been asked if he was really appearing here tonight all week, and yeah, he is. The fans chant YES of course.

He remembers there being more corners in this ring. Things might change, but the fans never change. They should stand up and give themselves a round of applause. He presents the #1 moment in TNA history and it’s…..Sting returning. No. Just NO. That’s it for Christian. He isn’t seen again and he doesn’t say anything else as we move on to the package about the tag titles.

We recap the Styles/Angle vs. Kaz/Daniels feud. The idea is that Daniels thinks AJ is sleeping with Dixie and has shown some circumstantial evidence to destroy AJ, so tonight AJ and Angle are teaming up to go for the tag titles.

Tag Titles: Kazarian/Christopher Daniels vs. Kurt Angle/AJ Styles

The match starts fast and AJ gets double teamed. It’s Styles vs. Kaz to get us going with Kaz rolling him up quickly before walking into a spin kick. Out to the floor and AJ does his slide under the barricade into the forearm spot. Daniels tries to interfere but Angle takes his head off with a clothesline. A knee to the face puts Kaz down and it’s off to Angle. Double suplex gets two. Off to Daniels who takes Angle down but he walks into a belly to belly.

Off to AJ who Daniels over his knee and goes for the Styles Clash but Chris runs to the apron. Kaz comes in and puts AJ on the ropes. Daniels interferes and Kaz hits a sweet bicycle kick to the face, catching AJ by his knee in the ropes. Daniels chokes a bit as AJ’s knee is done at the moment. Kaz comes in and gets hiptossed into a legdrop onto AJ for two. A suplex is blocked into a neckbreaker and both guys are down.

Double tag brings in the bald guys and Angle is all fired up. He snaps off an overhead belly to belly on Daniels and a German on Kaz. Angle Slam gets two on Daniels due to Kaz making the save. Kurt is like cool man and Germans them both at once. Ankle lock to Daniels is broken up by Kaz again and Daniels is back up. Angel’s Wings is countered and it’s off to AJ with the flying forearm. Moonsault into the reverse DDT takes down Kaz but it’s combined with a regular DDT to Daniels. Kaz distracts AGAIN before hitting a kick to the face of Styles.

Daniels busts out Last Rites but Angle makes the save. Things slow down a bit and AJ loads up a superplex on Kaz but gets shoved off. Angle runs the corner for the belly to belly and it’s down to Daniels vs. Styles. They slug it out and the release Rock Bottom sets up the BME, but Daniels lands on his feet. Unfortunately he lands in perfect position for a release German. Angle hits a top rope splash of all things for two but Daniels pulls the referee out. AJ hits a HUGE shooting star over the top to take out Daniels on the floor. Back in the ring Kaz tries Fade to Black but Angle reverses into the ankle lock for the tap at 14:26.

Rating: B+. Another good match here but it really doesn’t give us a bunch of resolution. Dixie wasn’t involved here, which to be fair is probably the best possible outcome, but it doesn’t really matter much. The match itself was great and it seems like they’re building to yet another final blowoff between Daniels and AJ, which is annoying but it’s what’s coming. AJ getting another title is fine by me.

We recap the main event which is being built up as way bigger than it probably really is.

TNA World Title: Sting vs. Bobby Roode

Roode stalls before the bell and stalls again after the bell. After a chase Sting sends Roode into the barricade and then does it again for good measure. Roode goes into various other hard objects and it’s all Sting so far. The champ (Roode in case this is like 2020 by now or something) guillotines Sting across the top rope and stomps away. Sting blocks a punch and makes a comeback but charges into a boot for two.

Off to a sleeper by the champ which is countered into one by Sting, but Roode escapes with a jawbreaker. Roode goes up but Sting punches him down and busts out a superplex. Scorpion goes on but Roode finally gets to a rope. Roode goes to the floor and they head up the ramp. Back to ringside and Sting ACTUALLY HITS THE SPLASH ON THE BARRICADE. Roode gets put in the Scorpion on the announce table but the tap out there doesn’t count. For no apparent reason there’s a six pack of beer by the table and Roode gets one out. It goes upside Sting’s head and it gets the pin at 9:52.

Rating: C+. I’m not a big fan of Sting’s main event matches. Or is it Roode that I’m not a fan of? Either way, this was a pretty dull main event but after the love fest that this show was for Sting, he had to lose at some point here. Roode needs to lose the title soon as there’s nothing left for him to do with it and he’s reaching boring levels by this point. Maybe Anderson takes it Thursday, but at the end of the day that’s better than another Sting win.

Post match Sting snaps and takes Roode up the ramp before hitting the Death Drop off the stage through some tables.

Overall Rating: A. If TNA was looking to hit a home run with this show, they certainly did it. The Sting stuff was a bit of overkill but all in all, this worked incredibly well. You get three very good to great matches and it felt like a celebration of TNA rather than just another PPV. The crowd looked great, the wrestlers looked fired up, and we still have places to go off this. Great show here and one of their best ever if not their best ever.

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