Victory Road 2009
Date: July 19, 2009
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Don West, Mike Tenay
The Main Event Mafia is still around but it’s not what it used to be. Angle vs. Foley is the main event for the title with Angle defending, which makes me think little about the upcoming match. This card looks pretty weak, although we have AJ vs. Nash for the Legends Title and Joe vs. Sting. It just lacks a spark for me, but better days were coming soon for TNA. And then they just left but we’ll get to that later. Let’s get to it.
The video is about starting the road to victory and it’s as generic as the rest of them have been. Seriously, TNA needs to work on its opening videos BADLY.
Knockouts Title: Angelina Love vs. Tara
Tara is champion here and showed up recently, more or less hating the Beautiful People just because I guess. She also took the title on Impact about a month ago so this is the rematch. They’re scared of the spider which I can’t blame them for since I have a spider bite on my arm that refuses to heal. Love is freaking awesome as the hot chick with the big boobs. It just works for her.
Of course the announcers can’t think because there are women in front of them. I love that Broken theme. We stall for awhile as they run from the spider. What was the point of that anyway? Is it supposed to be sexy? I don’t want a freaking tarantula anywhere near me. Tara starts in the t-shirt early on and then rips it off which was always hot to me.
Then again I’ve always had a crush on Tara so there we go. Tara busts out the Tarantula move which at least makes sense here. West is mostly heel here also. Love starts dominating after some hot girls interference. We get a Bobo Brazil reference that even Tenay doesn’t get. We go old school with a double clothesline spot. I love that move.
Skye accidentally sprays hairspray into Love’s eyes but it only gets two because the referee throws the other two girls out. Tara misses a moonsault and Love covers her, but Tara’s foot is on the rope. Doesn’t matter apparently as Love gets the title anyway. Post match Tara superkicks the referee and beats up Love.
Rating: C-. Not bad, but nothing great. The thing here is that the Knockouts at this time were AWESOME with their stuff destroying the Divas. Somehow in a year that’s completely switched but whatever. Anyway, this wasn’t anything great but it’s certainly not bad. It did the job it was supposed to do though so I have to give it that.
We run down the card, including BOTH tag title matches. Dang I hated that period.
We go to the Main Event Mafia’s dressing room where Kurt says not to expect a quality match from him tonight. Well at least he’s being honest. Instead he’s going to destroy Foley as soon as possible. Angle says if the Mafia doesn’t get a clean sweep by pins or submissions he’ll fire them all.
We get a video about Morgan vs. Daniels which wasn’t a feud but more a way to give Morgan another PPV win against a big name. Daniels wasn’t much at all here but he was AJ’s friend and since Morgan wanted to be in the Mafia he helped them beat up AJ. There’s your match.
Matt Morgan vs. Christopher Daniels
What is up with Morgan’s robe? He just doesn’t need it as it looks stupid. Oh sorry there’s no Christopher anymore as apparently he’s lost his first name. Check under AJ’s bed. Morgan dominates to start as I think we’re looking at a glorified squash here. Daniels has a mustache here and it looks pretty stupid. Daniels hits a suicide dive but it doesn’t even knock Morgan down.
What is the big deal with Daniels? He just isn’t anywhere near as great as he’s made out to be. He just isn’t. A springboard split legged moonsault FINALLY puts him down for like 4 seconds. That more or less ends Daniels’ offense for the time being. I like that rotating elbow thing that Morgan does to people in the corner.
Those would have to freaking hurt. Morgan works on the knee which is allegedly hurt but it’s kind of on again/off again which is annoying as all goodness. Daniels does some small stuff but of course it doesn’t mean much. Daniels counters a chokeslam but he can’t hit the BME because of the leg. The Carbon Footprint and the Hellevator end it.
Rating: D+. It was just a glorified squash like I thought it would be. Morgan was never in anything close to trouble and we never had any reason to believe that he would be, which isn’t good at all. Daniels looked like a jobber here, as he continues to be thought of as nothing important at all in this company.
Dr. Stevie says he’s been working on this forever so he’s going to make this no disqualification. Sure why not. Were we just supposed to believe we didn’t recognize this guy or something? Was that supposed to be what they were going for because if that’s it, TNA is stupider than I thought they were.
We recap Stevie vs. Abyss, which is based on Richards being his therapist and trying to cure him of his addiction to weapons and violence, which was just a bizarre angle that didn’t work for me in the slightest. And then Abyss hated him for no explained reason. Also Stevie was his therapist for ten years apparently, so back in the day when he was chilling with Raven in WCW, he was a psychiatrist? SERIOUSLY? Oh and he kidnapped Abyss’ girlfriend or whatever, Lauren, who was gorgeous to say the least.
Abyss vs. Stevie Richards
I’m in awe of how stupid this angle and character is but whatever. Abyss has just started wearing his current entrance attire that makes him look like a homeless man. Stevie has some kind of pipe or something and beats on Abyss with it. They continue to confuse me by calling him Stevie Richards and acknowledge his background in wrestling.
I’m not even going to rant about how stupid that is but whatever. Again we’re told how great Abyss can be. And again we ignore that he’s a former world champion. Are they ashamed of that or something? They say AJ is a former world champion here even though he had only won NWA Titles at this point.
I really hate that freaking clapping Abyss does. It’s stupid when Christian does it but it’s just freaking idiotic when Abyss does it. We head into the crowd so we can kill off some time to go along with the brain cells. Seriously, what is the appeal of the monster being all child-like? Is that supposed to be interesting or funny or something?
I’d assume it’s based off of being ironic or something but in order for irony to work it needs to be interesting which this just flat out isn’t. Since it’s TNA, of course Stevie starts bleeding. That’s a real problem with TNA today: they think blood makes a match better. Blood can help a match, but only when it’s done both in moderation as well as properly.
TNA has a real issue with it as they do it so often that it loses all effectiveness. The fans are insane and rather annoying here, wanting Stevie to get hurt more and more. Somewhere a man named Lee is crying. And now it’s chair time because we need to kill off more time in this match.
Just like the previous match, this is a glorified squash. He pulls Stevie up after two from Shock Treatment. Daffney brings Stevie a stun gun that he’s used lately. Instead he runs into a Black Hole Slam. He uses the tazer on him and smoke comes out of it. There’s the pin and I need a stiff drink.
Rating: D. This was even worse than the previous match as this one was even more of a squash. It was about 95% Abyss dominance which isn’t interesting at all. Then again neither of these guys are interesting characters so that likely has a lot to do with it.
The announcers tell us how this is THE most important event in TNA history. I love hyperbole.
Foley gives Beer Money a pep talk. I think they’re going for the Dudleys’ record for most turns in wrestling history. Oh and AJ is here too.
We hear about Team 3D vs. the British Invasion. But I thought Beer Money….OH! This is for the OTHER tag title. How could I be so clumsy? Basically the Dudleys were the TNA tag champions but the Invasion cost them the belts. So they just went and got their own belts. Sure why not?
IWGP Tag Titles: Team 3D vs. British Invasion
The Invasion is Magnus and Williams with Terry on the outside. These are the Japanese belts where the title defenses here aren’t sanctioned by New Japan but TNA just does it anyway because since the belts are Japanese they’re cool.
Apparently this is a career changing match because it would cost Team 3D their New Japan bookings. Yeah that’s how Tenay described it. Oh dear. What’s the deal with the wrist holding thing? Is that supposed to mean something? Then he talks about them again and this time throws in how important the pay days are. Great way to get your faces over there Mikey.
Doug Williams is completely different here. Today he actually has a personality which makes him far more interesting. D-Von dominates for the most part early on as I can feel the EPICNESS of this being for Japanese tag titles. I just have no desire to watch this match at all.
So what if they win the IWGP titles? There are OTHER tag titles to win. That’s what’s idiotic on this. In WWE it made sense where there were two different shows to have tag titles on. This is just stupid, but hey, they’re prestigious right? So is the WWE Title but it’s not defended on TNA television.
The Brits take over on Bubba and it’s very standard stuff. He gets out of it with a spear which is a move he doesn’t need to be doing. Then again there aren’t many people that should be. What is the appeal of Magnus? He’s not that good and he’s never on TV but whatever.
Bubba hits a Rock Bottom as the Dudleys take over. And now it’s table time. The fans get a solid TABLE chant going. It only lasts a few seconds and Magnus manages to not be able to be thrown over the top correctly. 3D ends Williams. The rest of what would become World Elite comes out and beats down the Dudleys. Never mind that as Team 3D fights them off and puts Bashir through the table.
Rating: D+. So? Like I said earlier, so what? This means very little in the grand scheme of things as there would be other tag titles for them to win. The match was bland as vanilla and since the titles would change in a few weeks on Impact anyway, this wound up meaning nothing at all. I’m bored beyond belief at this point.
We’re going to address the ending in the Knockouts match earlier where Tara’s foot was on the rope. Lauren is with the referee and asks what is going on. He says the decision is final even though it was wrong. He’s going to try to get Tara a rematch though.
Jenna Morasca vs. Sharmell
Neither of them are wrestlers, but they’re fighting on PPV anyway. These are both women in the Mafia and they’re fighting over who is the top girl in it. Sharmell is in an evening gown and is Booker’s wife. Sojurnor Bolt is with Sharmell and Kong is with Jenna. Jenna won Survivor so she’s guaranteed a spot on TNA’s roster.
Thankfully this would be her last appearance due to pure ineptness. She looked ok but that’s about it. No one knew who she was but why should that stop anyone? She tries to do a sexy entrance but it’s not working. Jenna thinks she’s hot and that’s about all she has going for her. This was voted Worst Match of the Year by Meltzer and that doesn’t surprise me at all.
Oh this isn’t going to be fun. When Sharmell is the best worker in it, that’s a BAD sign. Why they didn’t make this a tag with the two girls on the floor is beyond me. Neither of them can do anything and they just kind of run into each other rather than do actual wrestling moves.
My problem with these celebrity matches is that it undermines the people that work hard to get to a PPV level, but then again I’m putting too much thought into this. Even the fans are chanting boring. They have managed to piss off a TNA crowd. That’s IMPRESSIVE.
The girls on the floor get into it and Jenna is just laying there, not even selling. Well she’s rich so she can get away with that I guess. Oh look, a slap. And more slaps. And I want to shoot whoever agreed to let this happen.
Jenna pulls out some of Sharmell’s extensions and it’s still going. Kong hits Sharmell and Jenna grinds on her before pinning her. WOW Meltzer was right on this one. Kong beats Jenna up afterwards due to her making her sit through that mess.
Rating: N/A. This wasn’t wrestling.
Nash says good things about Kurt and runs down Foley and the guys Foley is with. Nash says if he loses tonight he’ll retire.
Nash wants the Legends Title for the money and AJ wants it because he won it. Yeah that’s it.
Legends Title: AJ Styles vs. Kevin Nash
The Legends Title is now the Global Title and AJ holds it here. This is back when AJ is the awesome version of himself that was on the rise back through the ranks and would win the world title in a few months. He was more or less considered the best in the world at this point and with good reason.
I was one of those people, but Punk was about to turn full Straightedge Messiah and the race was on. AJ hits and Nash runs which is a weird combination. AJ goes for the knees as you would expect. By the way, if a match like this happened in WCW (with AJ being replaced by Benoit or Malenko), the company could have had a fighting chance at the end.
Nash goes into his normal stuff but here it works for some reason. Nash was in a groove around this time with the whole in it for the money character trait. It worked very well for him though as that completely fit his character and it came off perfectly.
Nash kicks the tar out of AJ and knocks him to the floor where AJ hits his head. The Jackknife is blocked though and even I’m starting to cheer for AJ. He hits the forearm while Nash is sitting on the mat in a cool spot. AJ hooks a weird looking leg lock on Nash which is working quite well. It looks like a highly modified Sharpshooter but it’s working.
There’s the forearm which is one of my favorite moves of all time so I love it of course. Pele puts Nash down and West is refusing to believe AJ can lose…even though he’s the heel commentator…..he was new at it I guess. In a very anti-climactic ending, AJ goes for another forearm but Nash shoves the referee at him so AJ has to jump over him. That’s enough for Nash to catch him in a chokeslam for the pin. It came out of nowhere but it’s not horrible.
Rating: B. This really worked for me. AJ was able to make the David vs. Goliath thing work very well but I really do question putting a title on Nash. He wouldn’t hold it long at least but that’s another story. This was a fun match though as the dynamic was there which is usually the hardest part to get.
Lauren is looking for Tara but finds the referee from that match with Madison in the shower. Ok then.
So since Foley wanted a world title shot, he had to give Nash his title shot and Booker and Steiner their title shots. That’s all there is to this.
TNA Tag Titles: Scott Steiner/Booker T vs. Beer Money
Now remember that these are the OTHER tag titles. That stupid cruiser thing is back. I do kind of like how the tag belts look. We have to hear how awesome Steiner and Booker are as a super team because they both used to be in big tag teams years ago. So in translation, Axe and Marty Jannetty would be a great team? That sounds like an indy show nightmare.
We start off not very slowly here as we come to the realization that Beer Money doesn’t have a chance here. Even though they’re the champions they’re underdogs somehow because being tag champions is beneath being half of the tag champions like 15 years ago. And all companies to this. It’s a problem of modern tag wrestling: the constant throwing together of big names and calling them tag teams is what’s killed tag wrestling.
Implying that in their first match a team is the best team in the world is just ridiculous. Also it’s not about a team but two guys being together for one match or so. It’s why guys like Bubba and D-Von suck on their own but are great together: they compliment each other so well and without each other they’re far weaker and not a threat at all…even though Bubba was in the main event of an ECW PPV in a world title shot.
Oh look Steiner can throw punches and use belly to belly suplexes. What riveting offense! Storm gets beaten down as he must be used to since he’s been in tag teams for about 90% of his TNA career, of which can also be said of Roode although not as much. Roode gets the hot tag to no heat and hits a Blockbuster which is another of my favorite moves.
They hit a combination clothesline/backstabber for two on Steiner. Storm spits beer at Steiner and down goes the referee of course. And then Booker hits the axe kick so Steiner can pin Roode. Somehow they haven’t had the tag belts since.
Rating: C+. This wasn’t great or anything but it was ok I suppose. I hate how they more or less made Beer Money look subservient to a thrown together tag team but such is the way of modern tag wrestling like I got into earlier. This wasn’t anything terribly special but it did its job I suppose. Booker would leave soon enough so the Brits got the tag belts.
Booker and Steiner cut unintelligible promos about being Mafia or whatever.
Joe talks about beating Sting, complete with face tattoo. Also his mentor might be debuting tonight.
We see a recap of Joe joining the Mafia at Slammiversary after being bought off using Jenna Morasca’s money. Sting got thrown out and Joe took his place, setting up this match. This is also about Joe’s mentor and giving us the letters FTW and the number 13 on an orange background aren’t hints at all.
Samoa Joe vs. Sting
So let the countdown to Taz begin. TNA needs to work on their surprises a bit better. Sting’s coat is purple and his attire is red and black. Ok then. We’re going at it early and Joe is FAT here. There’s maybe a foot between the steps and the railing which is weird to see. And we hit the crowd for some brawling.
We then stay out there with Sting in control. Joe goes into the steps and his arm hurts now. I’m sure that means no choke out. Joe looks ridiculous and we finally get into the ring for a change. Joe hits a diving elbow through the ropes which gets two. Dang Joe’s tattoo is running again. I love that.
Sting is in trouble. Actually he likely isn’t because it’s all a DECEPTION BABY! Sting hits a pinful looking enziguri to take over for a bit. The crowd is somehow dead here. There’s the Scorpion and there’s Taz. Sting, like an idiot, lets go of the hold and Joe goes off for about 8 seconds before Sting beats him right back down. That was idiotic. Joe crotches him on the top rope, then doesn’t hit the Musclebuster but the Clutch to end it.
Rating: D+. This was all about Taz’s debut and then that sucked too. Taz would cut a face promo on Impact and throw this all away but whatever. Taz showed up and then Joe got beaten up again. Was that the plan, because if it was then it sucked. This just wasn’t much at all given who was in there.
Lashley is with TNA.
Foley says he’s not worried about the Mafia and even though he doesn’t match up with Angle that well, but if he can hit his running elbow it’ll work.
We recap Joe turning on TNA at Slammiversary (after destroying them for weeks after they hurt him a few months earlier to have it make even less sense) to cost Foley the world title. Angle cut a deal that said Foley gets his rematch for the Mafia getting two title matches earlier in this show.
TNA World Title: Kurt Angle vs. Mick Foley
Tenay says Foley has finally learned how to put the company ahead of personal accomplishments. And there goes any theory that TNA has a clue about anything for me. Yeah, Mick Foley’s ego is out of control! This was when Angle was in a movie and has a beard which just looks freaking stupid.
I actually had issues recognizing him at times. Angle MIGHT weigh 190lbs here. We start with a slow and ground based thing which is very weird to see. This goes on for awhile before Foley takes over and works on the neck. And now he gets thrown into the steps.
The Mafia has all the titles at this point so this is TNA’s last chance. The moonsault of course misses as there isn’t much to say here at all. No one buys Foley having a chance so it’s just killing time before we get to the finish here. The referee goes down as it’s sock time. Angle Slam kind of hits for two of course.
He drops an elbow on the referee for no adequately explored reason other than for the Mafia to run in I’m guessing. It’s chair time but the sock makes the save. Only in wrestling does that make perfect sense. Elbow hits on the floor and Angle is in trouble.
West: “he got his shoulder up in time. It wasn’t even close. Ok I lied it was as close as you could get.” Was there a point to that? The Claw gets two arm drops but here comes Angle. Ankle lock doesn’t work as surprisingly we haven’t had any run ins here. He gets the leg scissor and Foley has to tap. Well that was anti-climactic if there’s ever been an anti-climactic match.
Rating: D+. Like I said, just NO drama here at all. Everyone knew Foley was losing here and Angle never really seemed to be in any real danger. This wasn’t terrible but it felt like a very weak main event. AJ would get the title in two months, but this was all about the Mafia and it wasn’t good as it was just too much. The match was nothing special at all though.
Overall Rating: D. This was a rather weak PPV. There is one good match here and it’s hardly a classic. Other than that it’s just kind of there. This was ALL about the Mafia and it was total overkill at the end. You need to have one guy as a resistance to make the people want to watch. It just didn’t work for me and I wasn’t a fan of last summer. Take a pass here as it’s just a weak PPV overall, although there have been far worse.
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