Date: January 17, 2010
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Tazz
So we’re in the Hogan Era on PPV, three months after he was announced. We’ve been over the stupidity of that so I’ll ignore it for now. The main event tonight is Angle vs. Styles, but we also have EPIC encounters like THE BAND vs. Beer Money. The idiocy of this astounds me. Also, we have two matches that are straight from the last PPV or January 4th and no one has a problem with that. This is hopefully going to be a live review so this is kind of a one man LD so let’s get to it.
The video is your standard thing about everyone saying it’s their destiny to be a champion. Not sure what that has to do with a new beginning or a Genesis but whatever.
Oh and we have a four sided ring now. Nothing says being an alternative to WWE than looking even more and more like them. And my life is made complete as we have the fans with an epic WE WANT SIX SIDES chant at Hogan and Bischoff as they come out to open the show.
I would bet that they’ll keep it as they decide that they know more about the wrestling the fans want than the fans. Of course they mention Vince because it’s a law or whatever. This made my night though, as Hogan and Bischoff show that they don’t know everything the fans know.
Also, it shows me that the fans aren’t just brainwashed. Also, it amuses me that they keep saying that the ring is pro wrestling. Strange, I’ve always thought pro wrestling was what went on in the ring. You can wrestle on the floor or in the back. ECW made a company out of it. So wait. According to TNA, when a match goes outside the ring, it ceases being a match? Is it interpretive dance or something? Either way, that made me smile.
X–Division Title: Amazing Red vs. ???
There was no opponent announced and without saying it’s a mystery opponent, it’s Brian Kendrick coming out to some weird violin music. This isn’t bad, but it’s better than some other options I suppose. This should be good I guess though if they just let them go. The name helps a lot also as it’s his real name so it’s not something awful like Junior Fatu.
If nothing else this is the best choice for the opener as it’s almost certain to be high flying and interesting looking. It worked in WCW and it should work here. That’s the point of openers: get the crowd alive. These two should be able to do that pretty well and they are so far. And we’re in a leg lock. Why are we using psychology in a match like this? And my stream is out so the rest of this is being written on Monday other than the intro to the Knockouts match.
Oh there’s also a ramp leading to the ring. Think of ECW or old school WCW. Hogan’s changes are already viewable. The fans chanting WE WANT SIX SIDES truly made my night. Hogan’s daughter is here. If she isn’t naked, I don’t care. Kendrick sticks to the knee for no apparent reason. Actually that’s not fair as there’s a point to it, but this is supposed to be a high flying match and it’s a mat based thing instead.
Oh and Lashley isn’t going to wrestle tonight, which is false advertising but whatever. Ah there we go. NOW we get to the air and the match picks up A LOT. For one thing the fans are into it which is the whole point of this. We get our second shot of Brooke Hogan and I still don’t care at all.
Well at least Kendrick is working on the knee a lot so he’s being consistent and it takes away Red’s best offense so he’s thinking which is a big way of scoring points to me. The fans are split here which is interesting. Red hits a HOKEY SMOKE move to get the win. More or less he goes for a sunset flip but jumps to the top rope so he hits a very fast and fluid sunset flip that looks awesome. I was genuinely impressed by that ending.
Rating: C+. This was designed to get the crowd going and while it could have been much better it did its job well enough, especially the ending. I’m not entirely sure on the idea of having your big surprise losing here, but at the same time it might not be a long term thing. Either way, this was certainly ok, although the leg work might not have been the best idea.
Bischoff, Hogan and the Band are in the back and the Band is told this is their only shot so make it count. Hall and Pac play Rock Paper Scissors to determine who is Nash’s partner. Hall loses and won’t wrestle, as he looks awful in tights apparently. False advertising number 2.
Sean Morely vs. Christopher Daniels
Remember, even though Morely is wearing a towel and coming out to porn music, HE ISN’T VAL VENIS! Brooke gets Morely’s towel. Three times the camera has been on her in less than 30 minutes now. Daniels is the heel here and cuts a bland heel promo before the match which doesn’t work well at all since the fans aren’t buying it. Fourth shot of Brooke.
Daniels in the long tights works much better. Has that thing on his shoulder ever been explained? I don’t think it has been. I’ve always liked Morely. He’s a guy you can almost guarantee a good match out of which is so rare in modern wrestling. Daniels hooks a triangle choke to appeal to the MMA fans out there.
Apparently Morely is a true pro. I thought they were all pros. You can wrestle in TNA as an amateur? They’ve never heard of Mass Transit have they? Morely hits a Blue Thunder Bomb which is one of my favorites in No Mercy so I’m liking this more and more every second. I’m still not sold on a match being made for no apparent reason and then having a PPV match of it 3 days later but then again I’m no professional.
A clothesline is called an STO. That’s expected I guess but still, that wasn’t even close. The Best Moonsault Ever misses and Sean goes for the splash. Since that’s too easy though it doesn’t work, although he hits it a few seconds later which draws Brooke Hogan shot #5.
Rating: C+. Again, not bad at all. Morely is a guy that you can certainly depend on for a good match and it worked well here. Again though, why is this on PPV? Why were they even fighting? That was never explained which is a common theme on this show I think. Also, Morely hasn’t wrestled on the main stage in years and he can beat last month’s world title challenger? That makes perfect sense right?
Now I didn’t see this, but allegedly during this match, a group of fans turned their back on the match. This is allegedly a “stable” of fans that are collectively going against this because they don’t want Val in the company. Are you kidding me? It’s one thing to boo faces and cheer heels or something, but to become the focus of a match isn’t being a fan. It’s being a selfish jerk. Get over yourselves people. That’s just pathetic as all goodness.
We recap ODB vs. Tara, which is they’ve feuded over the title so tonight they’re doing it again because they have nothing else. It’s 2/3 falls if nothing else though.
Knockouts Title: Tara vs. ODB
This is 2/3 falls which makes sense as they’ve had a match or two before and you can’t have the same match again as we had a few weeks ago and then ask people to pay for it. THAT WOULD MAKE NO SENSE! That Broken song is AWESOME. There’s not a ton going on in the first few minutes here as it’s just them going back and forth.
This is the problem with 2/3 falls matches: you don’t have to really pay attention until the second fall, which is starting right now as Tara hooks a small package for the first fall. Tara hooks the tarantula. Not a lot is going on here at all. We get a great shot of Tara’s back to make this match much better. Brooke shot number 6. This time she’s with Joey Fatone.
If TNA insists on the celebrity thing, get celebrities that have mattered this millennium. ODB uses the Tumbleweed. Are we in the mid 70s all of a sudden? She pulls something out of her cleavage to be odd before hitting a powerslam for two. This is kind of meandering along and needs to end soon.
ODB keeps touching herself and checking her pulse. It’s freaking stupid looking. And the Widow’s Peak ends it. The timing was pretty good if nothing else. What is up with the freaking spider???
Rating: C-. Not great here as the 2/3 falls thing felt way too much like a gimmick for the sake of having a gimmick which I can If never advocate. Tara winning the title is fine, but she didn’t need to get two straight wins to do it. That was overkill which is never a good thing.
Pope cuts a promo where I have no clue what he’s talking about. Oh it’s about Desmond Wolfe, who he already beat clean, making this match completely pointless. Christy reminds me of Lois Lane from Smallville.
Tag Titles: British Invasion vs. Hernandez/Matt Morgan
The stupidity of just putting two big names like these guys into a team astounds me but whatever. If nothing else they’re most likely getting the tag titles off of the worthless British Invasion, although putting them on two guys thrown together and called a tag team? That’s nothing WWE would ever do, nope.
Hernandez is wearing a shirt here so it looks like he’s wrestling in a one piece swimsuit. It’s fairly obvious that we’re getting new champions here but at least they’re giving us a bit of drama first and letting the Invasion have some credibility. The problem here is that other than Williams we have three power guys and Williams isn’t in the match much either.
Oh and Nick Hogan is here too. This is idiotic at this point. They make fun of the vintage joke, because no one has ever done that before. Williams gets a jumping back elbow from the top which makes this a much better match already. Morgan FINALLY hits the chokeslam that he’s been trying to get all match.
The problem with this match is apparent as either face is able to beat up both champions on his own. What’s the point of something like that? The bicycle kick from Morgan hits and it’s so hard that Magnus jumped before it connected. That’s very impressive.
Rating: C. This was average. The title change was more or less a given and there’s nothing at all wrong with that. Sometimes you have to have it go one way or the other and that’s what this did here. It’s not bad but it was more of a formality than anything else and it came off pretty well.
Lashley jumps Bischoff for no apparent reason and Abyss knocks him the heck out. Dress rehearsal for Strikeforce I guess. Hogan and Bischoff come in and Abyss as the childish character is something I’m not sure of yet. It’s just odd. He sucks up to Hogan which at least fits with his character as of late. Yeah he’s not channeling Foley from 98-99 at all here.
Desmond Wolfe vs. D’Angelo Dinero
Yet another match that was on Impact and we’re getting it again here, but this time we get to PAY FOR IT! WOO HOO! Wolfe has some hot chick with him that needs to be on camera more. Slick 2.0 comes out second. He’s dropping money on the crowd. Completely original there. Dang that girl is hot indeed. I have never once gotten the appeal of Elijah Burke. I just don’t get it at all.
Wolfe is good but I’m not sold either way on him yet. Thankfully Pope gets stretched all over the place which makes me smile quite a bit. If nothing else Pope gets a NICE STO to put him down, which Tenay screws up the call on again by calling that a clothesline. Come on Mikey. You know the history of the Villiano family yet you don’t know what a freaking clothesline is?
I’m digging Wolfe here as he’s showing off a lot of submission work in there which is more of a staple of TNA. The fans like Pope if nothing else, although these fans will cheer anything you ask them to. The fans say this is awesome. I would disagree but it’s been decent. Pope tries to get a big knee but Wolfe just takes his head off with a lariat. NICE.
Rating: B-. Not bad at all here. The fans were into it so I can’t ask for much more than that. Wolfe winning is definitely the right thing, although I’m not sure I get the point in having the same match on Impact and then the same match on PPV but whatever. This wasn’t terrible at all though with some nice stuff in there.
JB is thrown off of TV by Bischoff. More room for Bubba I guess. Hemme interviews Flair who says nothing important.
We recap the Band jumping Beer Money. That’s about it, and we have a tag match because of it.
Kevin Nash/Syxx–Pac vs. Beer Money
Penzer’s mic cuts up a lot during the announcement of the Band. Hall and Pac need to leave soon. They’re just not worth anything anymore, not when there are so many young guys that can do their thing just as well. THANK GOODNESS there’s no beer wagon there or whatever for Storm to ride on. I hate that thing.
Still not entirely sold on Beer Money but they’re not terrible at all. Pac and Storm, who looks a bit like Shane Douglas in the eyes to me, start us off. Nash comes in and thankfully he manages to not get injured yet. Pac isn’t bad, which I think is because they’re keeping him away from the bigger guys. I’ve never been able to get into him vs. a big man. It just never worked at all for me.
I freaking hate the Bronco Buster. Have I made that clear over the years? Hall eventually stumbles out, having lost the rock paper scissors game that they keep bringing up. And Hall randomly pulls a fan over the railing and kicks his head in. In the ring Nash gets caught by presumably a superkick although we can’t see it and Roode pins him. Thank goodness there as I really thought they would have it go the other way.
Rating: C+. Not bad at all here, but again it was nothing special. Beer Money winning was a HUGE positive here and really does relieve a lot of my worries here. The match wasn’t terrible but it’s nothing great. The whole show has just been ok from a wrestling standpoint, which isn’t good as this is supposed to be all top level matches right?
Hogan and Bischoff talk about the Band and Hogan is going to call them out on Thursday. They hint at something Hogan did but don’t say what. Where’s that ominous music when I need it?
Abyss vs. ???
This was supposed to be Lashley but they’re changing everything around as usual so we don’t know who he’s fighting here. And it’s Mr. Kennedy now called Mr. Anderson. This is a very interesting pick up to me as he’s incredibly polarizing. He’s a guy that could be a huge deal or he could stay as unimportant and boring as some see him.
There were a few times that I loved this guy and a few times that I wanted to change the channel as I was sick to death of him. Either way, I like the signing even though it was a bit lackluster. He starts saying Kennedy and cuts himself off to say Anderson before telling the audience to wait for it and do it again.
This is a good acquisition I think though, although the issue I have here is simple: they’re rapidly running out of signings to make. Also, they don’t have room for a midcard champion to be on the card, yet they’re bringing in more talent. Some guys have to go soon or they’re going to run out of room. Anderson looks great and hopefully won’t get hurt.
That’s the other bad side of him: can he stay healthy? If he can, then the sky could be the limit for him. The emphasis there is on could though. Anderson works on the arm but that gets him nowhere. The fans chant overrated at Anderson. The fans are vocal if nothing else.
Back to the arm so at least we have some flow to it. I have no idea who the faces and heels here are supposed to be but what the heck, who cares? Abyss makes a small comeback but Anderson hits a botched neckbreaker to stop that. A chokeslam gets two. I keep expecting Anderson to break.
Why does Taz always use the term pin cover? I’ve never heard anyone else say that. It’s chair time now. And Anderson pulls out brass knuckles to hit Abyss and knock him out for the pin. Yeah he hit the guy in the leather mask with knuckles for the pin. That would in theory not work that well but it’s TNA so there we go.
Rating: C-. This ran a bit long but it wasn’t that bad. It was a way to give Anderson credibility and nothing more which there’s nothing wrong with. This worked fine though and got a decent reaction from the crowd. Anderson is a big deal potentially so this was the only real outcome.
We recap Angle and Styles, which was more or less about them wanting to be champion and be the best in the world. This is Angle’s last shot which I don’t buy for a second but there we go.
TNA World Title: AJ Styles vs. Kurt Angle
This is one of those matchups where all you have to do is just throw them out there and it’s more or less a guaranteed near classic. Flair comes down soon after we start and I’m not thrilled at all. Why do they need to have Flair get involved and likely have him interfere? These two are going to have a great match no matter what, so why mess with it?
To be fair though that could be the title for all of TNA at the moment so there we are. Styles has been teasing a heel turn as of late which really scares me. For one thing, the only other face is Sting, and what’s the point in that as they JUST had their feud at BFG. This is another match that’s hard to comment on as it’s very solid. They keep countering finishers and Angle finally hooks the ankle lock.
AJ just kicks him off. I don’t think I ever remember that before. AJ isn’t limping blast it. Angle gets a Styles Clash which never gets old. There’s a tiny A for effort chant. We’ll see about that. The Angle Slam gets two as we’re running low on time. Angle goes Olympic and puts Styles in the ankle lock with the grapevine.
AJ taps but Flair pulled the referee out. And of course his ankle is ok now. Flair throws the belt to AJ and he clocks Angle with it to go heel and gets the easy pin. I guess the pair of heels celebrate to take us out.
Rating: B+. This was a great match, but two things keep it from being a classic. First of all, the no selling of the ankle by AJ. He’s tapping out one minute and the next he’s perfectly fine? That doesn’t work for me, not when Angle had been working on it all match.
Second, the unclean ending, but that’s a way of life in all wrestling so I can let that slide a bit. This wasn’t as good as their Impact match a few weeks ago but it was still pretty solid. Easily the match of the night but they’ve had far better ones.
Overall Rating: D+. Aside from the main event and MAYBE Anderson’s debut, this felt like a long Impact. Morely vs. Daniels, Kendrick vs. Red, ODB vs. Tara, the tag title match (to a lesser degree) and Pope vs. Wolfe all could have been on any free TV show and in many cases were on free TV less than two weeks ago.
Also, not only did AJ and Angle have the same match on free TV, they had a BETTER match on free TV. Again I ask: why should I pay for something that may or may not be better that I could have seen for free a mere thirteen days earlier? Two of the big matches didn’t happen and while we got perfectly suitable replacements, it’s kind of a screw you to the fans that might have paid to see those matches.
I’m sure a lot of people paid to see the Outsiders and some paid to see Lashley, but they didn’t see either of those. To the good aspect here, among other things: every match was perfectly watchable. However, that’s just it: other than the main event, they were all just watchable.
There was nothing here I would go out of my way to see at all, and that’s the point of a PPV. The main event kept this from being a borderline failure. Check it out if you’re a big TNA fan, but other than that, not so much.
Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews