Date: September 24, 2014
Location: Manhattan Center, New York City, New York
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Tazz
We’re wrapping up the summer in New York and three shows left before Bound For Glory. The interesting thing for tonight is a tournament for a future title shot which may or may not be at the biggest show of the year. Granted at this point it looks like that’s Lockdown anymore as Bound For Glory is shaping up as another One Night Only level show. Let’s get to it.
We open with a video on Roode vs. Lashley from last week where Bobby almost won the title.
JB explains the tournament concept: five qualifying matches with the winners facing each other in a five way later tonight. The winner can challenge for any match they choose and the matches are surprises. This would fit better if they all hadn’t been announced on TNA’s website. MVP, Magnus, Austin Aries, Abyss and Robbie E. will all have qualifying matches.
Video on MVP.
Gold Rush Tournament Qualifying Match: MVP vs. Low Ki
Low Ki gets a video as well, talking about wanting to push the roster over the years. Feeling out process to start with MVP shoving Low Ki into the corner. He rams Ki into the buckle but gets kicked hard in the chest to send MVP across the ring. A slam out of the corner gets two for MVP but Ki fires off some chops and kicks to the chest. MVP opens up his vest and says hit me harder so Ki snaps off one of the hardest chops I’ve ever seen. MVP comes back with a knee to the ribs and a kick to the face to send Low Ki out to the floor. We actually get a plancha to take Low Ki before going to a break.
Back with MVP still in control with a facebuster and the Ballin Elbow. Low Ki gets back up and is thrown into the air, only to land in a standing position on MVP’s shoulders and jump forward to dropkick MVP in the back. Awesome looking move. A kick to the head gets two on MVP before Ki sends him outside for a big springboard dive. Back in and Ki tries a cartwheel kick but MVP takes out his leg. The Drive By is enough to send MVP to the finals at 13:05.
Rating: C+. This was a stiffer match than usual with both guys hammering on each other. Ki looked good with that spot of landing on MVP’s shoulders looking incredible. MVP needed a big win as he’s almost only been a talker for the last few months with only a handful of matches here and there.
The BroMans argue over whose girlfriend is hotter. They agree to disagree but Robbie brags about being in the tournament and then being on Amazing Race with Brooke starting this Sunday. He plans on switching between both girls but Jesse points out that cameras will be everywhere. Like the one filming them right now. They point out said camera and Robbie runs. This was actually kind of funny.
Quick tribute to Eric the Actor from the Howard Stern Show, a big wrestling fan who passed away over the weekend.
Video on the Tag Team Title series. The Wolves will pick the final stipulation next week.
Robbie E. comes out for his match and says he’s a huge star all around the world.
Gold Rush Tournament Qualifying Match: Robbie E. vs. Tajiri
The fans chant WELCOME BACK to Tajiri, suggesting that this was taped out of order with other shows. A big kick sends Robbie out to the floor but he sends Tajiri’s ribs into the apron. Back in and we hit the chinlock for a bit before Tajiri pops up with his namesake handspring elbow for two. There’s the Tarantula but the Buzzsaw Kick misses. Robbie gets two off an implant DDT but the referee gets bumped, allowing Tajiri to blow the mist and hit the Buzzsaw to advance at 3:40.
Rating: D+. I’m a fan of Tajiri’s and he’s about the same guy he was back in ECW at this point. That’s very impressive given that he’s in his 40s now and still goes just as well. He’s a guy like Rhino where you know what you’re getting and he doesn’t shift from that, but he can still make it work.
Spud insists there are no problems with he and Ethan Carter III and takes a call from him. The funny bit here: he shows the phone and it says “EC3 – BEST FRIEND”. After a break he’s still on the phone and tries to stand up to Ethan but gets talked down. Much like Robbie, he runs when he sees a camera on him.
Gold Rush Tournament Qualifying Match: Austin Aries vs. Knux
The fans are entirely behind Aries who tries a test of strength for some reason. Aries rolls away so Knux does a handstand, only to have Aries spin around. Taz changes the story again by saying Rebel and Knux are dating, even though I thought they were brother and sister before. Knux gets taken down by a wristlock so he nips up to a huge response. Knux takes a bow so Aries tries a brainbuster to stop the fun. The big guy shoves him off so Aries dropkicks the knee out and takes over in the corner.
Aries knocks him to the floor but Knux blocks the suicide dive with a big boot. Back in and Aries fires off more kicks to the leg to send Knux outside again. The suicide dive connects, but it’s with the Freak and Craazy Steve instead of Knux. Back in again with Knux getting two off a huge side slam. The Sky High is countered with a hurricanrana and Aries nails the corner dropkick. Knux is too big for the brainbuster so Austin hits some discus forearms and another corner dropkick before getting the big man up for the brainbuster and the pin at 7:04.
Rating: C. I liked this match better than I was expecting to but the Menagerie makes me smile most of the time. Knux is a talented guy but he can only go so far as the leader of a failing carnival. To be fair though it’s very nice to look at Rebel….who may or may not be his sister and/or girlfriend depending on what week it is.
Video on Roode vs. Lashley from last week.
Gold Rush Tournament Qualifying Match: Mr. Anderson vs. Magnus
Magnus jumps him to start and slams him face first into the mat for some early two counts. We hit the chinlock for a bit before a clothesline gets two on Anderson. Back up and a double clothesline puts both guys down before Anderson wins a slugout. Magnus grabs a belly to back suplex into a slam for a close two. He loads it up again but Anderson reverses into the Mic Check for the pin at 6:50.
Rating: D. Really basic match here until the last 45 seconds or so. These guys are the low level main event wrestlers in TNA right now as they’re both former World Champions but neither guy has anything going for him. The match wasn’t terrible but it really didn’t feel like they had any interest in trying out there.
Quick video on set of the Knockouts calendar shoot.
Video on Team 3D going into the Hall of Fame.
We recap the tournament so far.
Video on Gail Kim vs. Havok for next week. This is designed to make Havok look like a monster.
Gold Rush Tournament Qualifying Match: Abyss vs. Samuel Shaw
The fans chant “Dexter Morgan” at Shaw. Abyss knocks him down and grabs a chokeslam but Shaw kicks him in the ribs to escape. Instead Abyss grabs him by the throat again and shoves him out to the floor in a big crash. Shaw fights back on the floor and rams Abyss into the steps.
He goes after Abyss’ arm in what is called a smart move by ramming it into various objects. This idea works in theory, but it would make more sense to go after the arm Abyss uses for his big moves. To be fair though, Shaw is a bit out there. Shockingly enough, Abyss makes a comeback using moves with his strong arm, including a chokeslam to put Shaw on the floor. Shaw grabs a chair and blasts Abyss in the head, which Hebner somehow doesn’t see. Back in and the Black Hole Slam ends Shaw at 6:35.
Rating: D+. Well now that that formality is out of the way, let’s get on with the main event. This was the usual tournament match where a big name beats up someone that has no chance of beating them. At least they kept it short as there’s no real reason to sit through a long match which isn’t very good and has no surprise to it.
Gold Rush Tournament Finals: Austin Aries vs. Abyss vs. Tajiri vs. MVP vs. Mr. Anderson
Winner gets a shot at any title at anytime and it’s one fall to a finish. MVP stays in the ring while everyone else brawls on the floor but Abyss will have none of that. Instead MVP bails to the corner so Abyss can beat up Anderson to start. It’s off to Tajiri who wins a kickoff with Anderson before missing a charge into the corner. Anderson misses a charge of his own and hits the post, giving Tajiri a rollup for two. Aries comes in and grabs on Tajiri’s head but Taijri scores with the handspring elbow for two.
Back with Aries countering the Tarantula but getting kneed in the back to block the suicide dive. Anderson comes in for the rolling fireman’s carry for two but it’s off to Abyss. Aries escapes the chokeslam and slaps MVP for a tag. MVP doesn’t want to come in so Aries catapults him in over the top but MVP tags out to Tajiri.
Abyss brings in Anderson who is quickly caught in the Tarantula. Mr. slams Tajiri down off the top but MVP tags himself in. Anderson looks right at him before MVP hits the Drive By for two as Aries makes the save. Everything breaks down and MVP loads up the Drive By on Aries, only to get rolled up for the pin at 15:12.
Rating: C. The match was ok but we’ve seen all these guys once tonight so this was kind of repetitive. Aries winning is the best option, even though we’ve seen him vs. Lashley before. I can’t imagine he’d pick Joe, even though it would be an entertaining match. This wasn’t bad but it didn’t work all that well.
Overall Rating: D+. Well that was different. This was literally a one idea show and they’re already recycling challengers for the World Title. You have to assume it’s the World Title, but there was that one time when Kaval went after the Intercontinental Title instead of the World Title like a sane person. It’s now clear that Bound For Glory isn’t going to be an important show this year, which is a shame given that they usually do something big with it. Then again TNA needs to worry about staying alive at this point and how would the biggest show of the year help them do that?
The wrestling wasn’t great tonight and I’m not a fan of one concept shows. This felt much more like a One Night Only and that’s not something you want to do. TNA survives off Impact anymore and now they’re going with that one idea formula which has worked SO well before. Nothing much to see here and it could have been spread out over a few weeks to set up some other stuff.
MVP b. Low Ki – Drive By
Tajiri b. Robbie E. – Buzzsaw Kick
Austin Aries b. Knux – Brainbuster
Mr. Anderson b. Magnus – Mic Check
Abyss b. Samuel Shaw – Black Hole Slam
Austin Aries b. Abyss, Mr. Anderson, MVP and Tajiri – Rollup to MVP
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