Date: February 21, 2013
Location: Wembly Arena, London, England
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Todd Keneley, Tazz
It’s the last of the England shows and the main story tonight is that we get to know the winner of the tournament last week. The winner gets to face Hardy at Lockdown in three weeks so it’s about time they announced something. Other than that we’ve got two title matches which makes for a pretty packed show. Let’s get to it.
We open with the usual intro from last week, recapping both the tournament and Hogan being saved by Ray and Sting.
Hulk Hogan opens us up and talks about how Aces and 8’s interfered before he could announce the #1 contender last week. That interruption gave him an extra week to think about who should get the shot. This person showed that he was the only person who really wanted it. That person is…..Bully Ray. As in someone not even in the competition at all.
Here’s Ray but he isn’t sure what to think. He has a partially torn quad (whether that’s legitimate or not, the similarities to HHH/Stephanie/Vince continue) but Hogan cuts him off. Hogan says Ray is tough and Ray says it was the greatest day of his life when he married into this family. Bully wants a six man tag tonight with Aces and 8’s facing himself, Sting, and Hulk. Ray calls him dad and the match is made.
Bad Influences come in to visit Roode and Aries. They wish them luck in an eight man tag tonight.
Bad Influence/Bobby Roode/Austin Aries vs. Chavo Guerrero/Hernandez/James Storm/Joseph Park
Storm vs. Daniels to start and the Cowboy quickly clotheslines him to the floor. Kaz throws Storm to the floor and everything breaks down quickly. It’s a big brawl and the good guys clear the ring. Park looks so proud but Chavo tells him to watch the elbows as we take a break. Back with Chavo working over Kaz with a front facelock before it’s back to Joseph Park. We’re told that the title match at Lockdown will be in a cage. As in just like every match at Lockdown ever?
Park gets caught in the wrong corner and the tag champions start beating him up. Or is it down? Either way they can’t suplex him which leads to a brief argument. Back to Daniels who rams Park’s head into the buckles and pounds away at the temple a few times. Everyone wants the tag but the heels get in an argument, nearly allowing Park to make the tag. Park comes back with a double clothesline to put Bad Influence down.
Roode and Aries walk out on their partners and it’s hot tag to Storm. He cleans house on everyone in sight and it’s off to Hernandez. SuperMex hits a few shoulders to knock everyone around and Chavo adds a frog splash to Daniels. The Last Call puts Daniels down and here’s Park with an a middle rope splash for the pin by Chavo on Kaz at 12:20.
Rating: C+. This was a fun tag match and I liked the way the egos got in the way of the heels’ success. That’s the logical way those characters would interact and it’s nice to see them not get along just because they’re all villains. It’s also good to see Storm back in the company he belongs in rather than slumming it with Godderz. Just please, no more Chavo and Hernandez in featured matches. I can’t handle it.
We recap Bully getting the title shot from earlier tonight.
We look at Rockstar Spud winning British Bootcamp and having a confrontation with Robbie E a few weeks back.
Robbie E. vs. Rockstar Spud
Spud almost immediately runs into a boot from Robbie to put himself down. Robbie hits a top rope elbow for no cover but misses a charge into the corner. A spinning DDT puts Robbie down and Spud goes up top. Spud misses a guillotine legdrop but the Rob’s get in an argument, allowing Spud to roll up Robbie for the pin at 2:46.
Post match Robbie E. yells at Big Rob and slaps him in the face. Big Rob stares him down and Robbie runs.
Jesse gives Tara a pep talk. The Knockouts Title match is next.
Knockouts Title: Velvet Sky vs. Gail Kim vs. Miss Tessmacher vs. Tara
Tara is defending and this is under elimination rules. Brooke Hogan gets to be ringside because what would a segment be without her? The bell will be after this break. Jesse is ejected by Brooke and we’re ready to go. We get a bunch of quick rollup attempts but no pins early on. Tessmacher tries a victory roll on Tara but gets caught in an electric chair to send her out to the floor. Things settle down a bit and Tara hits the tilt-a-whirl backbreaker on Sky, only to have the pin broken up by Gail. Why would she do that?
Now Tara and Gail go at it but Gail is sent to the floor for a bulldog from Tessmacher. Velvet and Tessmacher ping pong the champion back and forth with punches but Tara fights back. A moonsault hits Tessmacher but Velvet grabs Tara and hits In Yo Face, only to be broken up by Gail. Kim steals the pin on Tara to eliminate her, guaranteeing us a new champion.
Tessmacher hits a kind of spinning neckbreaker on Gail but goes up and gets crotched. Gail loads up a superplex put Velvet adds a powerbomb to make it a Tower of Doom. Velvet covers both opponents for two so she tries In Yo Face on Gail. Tessmacher tries to roll up Sky but Velvet rolls through it and covers Tessmacher for the elimination. We’re down to Velvet vs. Gail.
Sky pounds away to start but misses a dropkick to stop her momentum cold. Kim tries a cover but gets caught grabbing the ropes like a good villain should. Some shoulders in the corner miss and Velvet grabs a pretty sloppy sunset flip for two. In Yo Face hits this time and Velvet wins the title at 8:35.
Rating: C-. This wasn’t bad but at the end of the day, what difference does this really make? Velvet is another person that happens to hold the title now. She’ll probably hold it for about three months before dropping it back to Tara or Gail and the cycle starts all over again. That’s the problem with the women’s divisions in both companies: they’ve been going around in circles for years.
Hogan and Sting get ready in the back. Sting leaves and runs into Bully who wants to make sure Hogan is cool. Ray thinks it’s cool to be tagging with the two of them.
We’ll get an update on AJ Styles next week.
We recap Samoa Joe, Kurt Angle, Wes Brisco and Garrett Bischoff. Angle vouched for Garrett and Wes but they joined Aces and 8’s to stab him in the back.
Samoa Joe vs. Garrett Bischoff
Garrett bails to the floor to start but gets in some shots to the knee once he’s back inside. Bischoff chokes away and stomps away a bit more as that’s about the extent of his offense so far. A shoulder tackle takes Joe down and it’s off to a chinlock. Joe comes back with an atomic drop and big boot, followed by a senton backsplash. The Facewash has Garrett in trouble in the corner and Joe loads up the MuscleBuster, only to have Brisco run in for the DQ at 5:06.
Rating: D. As I’ve said dozens of times, Garrett Bischoff is not that talented. Even in Aces and 8’s he comes off like a guy who is in a t-shirt pretending to be intimidating and powerful. Instead he’s actually a guy who has a very limited moveset and hasn’t won a match of note in about a year. Nothing to see here.
Kurt Angle makes the save and says it’s him vs. Brisco in a cage at Lockdown.
X-Division Title: Kenny King vs. Rob Van Dam
Van Dam is defending and gets dropkicked off the apron during his entrance. King rams him spine first into the post and slams Van Dam down to take over. A springboard legdrop misses the champ though but he kicks Van Dam right back down for two. King hits a spinwheel kick for the same result and a chinlock keeps Van Dam down for a bit.
Back to the chinlock but Rob fights up and hits some kicks to take over again. King counters a monkey flip by landing on his feet but can’t quite hit the Royal Flush, allowing RVD to kick out at two. King misses a pair of knees in the corner and takes Rolling Thunder as a result. The Five Star retains the title at 6:21.
Rating: C-. Of all the successful Van Dam defenses against King, this is the most recent. There was a mention of King beating Ion on Xplosion (sidebar: PUT XPLOSION ONLINE AND PROMOTE IT!!! TNA’s biggest problem is not enough programming and they never talk about the other hour they have. That’s an extra 50% of air time they could have and they NEVER mention it on air! Promote that instead of Dixie’s freaking Twitter!) but other than that there’s no reason for this match to happen. Either end the division or give it some attention.
Hulk tells Brooke that he has to do this.
Jeff Hardy will be back next week.
Hulk Hogan/Sting/Bully Ray vs. Aces and 8’s
It’s D-Von, Anderson and Doc here. Everyone comes out for the match but there’s no Hulk. We keep waiting for it and there’s still no Hogan. The music plays again but Aces and 8’s jump Sting and Ray to start things off. Sting and Ray fight back and Doc gets caught with a Stinger Splash as we take a break.
Back with Doc coming in to continue a beating on Bully. Off to D-Von for a falling headbutt and an unseen tag off to Anderson. After some basic pounding here’s D-Von again for a chinlock. Ray suplexes out of it though but Anderson breaks up the tag to Sting. Off to Doc again and he has to immediately stop a Ray comeback with more right hands.
Ray spears D-Von down and there’s the real tag to Sting. The Scorpion Death Drop gets two on Doc but Anderson makes the save. Anderson gets loaded up in What’s Up as the other bikers come out with both Hogans being held hostage. Hulk yells that his knee is hurt as it’s 3-1 against Sting. Doc hits a big boot and Aces and 8’s actually win a match at 11:26.
Rating: D+. Is this supposed to mean something for the bikers? They’ve lost so many times and now they can win a 3-1 handicap match that they had to cheat to win as well? The match was nothing of note and was rather boring for the most part, which isn’t a good sign heading into the second biggest show of the year.
Sting gets beaten down to end the show.
Overall Rating: C-. This one didn’t do much for me. The matches were ok and the stories were advanced somewhat, but overall the show felt like it was tired. That’s perfectly understandable though as this was their fourth taping in a handful of days and it’s clear that they’re starting to drag. Next week they’ll have a fresh show and things should be back to normal though.
That being said, the Aces and 8’s stuff is getting tiresome. It’s clearly coming to a head at Lockdown, but hopefully it ends there or they REALLY revamp it. I’m bored by these constant losses or barely meaningful wins and I think most people are too. Not a bad show tonight but it was hardly lighting anything on fire.
Chavo Guerrero/Hernandez/James Storm/Joseph Park b. Bad Influence/Bobby Roode/Austin Aries – Chavo pinned Kazarian after a splash from Park
Rockstar Spud b. Robbie E. – Rollup
Velvet Sky b. Tara, Gail Kim and Miss Tessmacher – In Yo Face to Gail
Samoa Joe b. Garrett Bischoff via DQ when Wes Brisco interfered
Rob Van Dam b. Kenny King – Five Star Frog Splash
Aces and 8’s b. Sting/Hulk Hogan/Bully Ray – Big boot to Sting
Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews