Wrestler of the Day – December 4: Motor City Machine Guns

Same idea, other team. Today it’s the Motor City Machine Guns.

Again, not a best of and I’ll skip the DVD matches. You know, all like two tag team matches.

Also again, we’ll start things off in the early days of the team. From Victory Road 2007 in a BIZARRE feud.

Motor City Machine Guns vs. Jerry Lynn/Bob Backlund

The Guns have Nash with them. This is another of those bizarre angles that only happens in a company like TNA. For a 57 year old guy, Backlund is in great shape. Apparently Backlund was a problem for TNA as he disappeared from his hotel on the morning of the PPV. The reason: he walked the five miles from the hotel to the Impact Zone and left earlier than everyone else.

He’s an odd one, but if I can look like that at his age I’ll be happy. It’s weird seeing Sabin just getting out wrestled by Backlund. Both guys tag and we get dueling geriatric/LET’S GO JERRY chants. Shelley does all these flips and twists and Lynn just stands there and watches him until he stops so he can throw a hold on him. That was hilarious. I love when people do that.

One of my favorite moments ever was just after Joe debuted he was fighting Puma and Puma went up top for this big flip and Joe just took a step to the side and let him crash. Why over complicate things? This has been more or less ALL old guys so far. Shelley spits water in his face to take over. West declares that you can’t prance. Good to know.

Heat grabbing 101 (missed tag) allows more beatings on Lynn. Backlund storms the ring and just beats the tar out of everyone in sight. And then Nash comes in to kick Backlund in the head to set up the AS/CS Rush for the pin on Jerry. Now remember boys and girls, as good as they are, they’re not allowed to win the tag titles.

Rating: C-. Entertaining, but again I ask, so what? This put the focus on Nash more than anything else. I just do not get the point in doing this ending other than to protect the old guys and let the new guys say they won. It’s either really basic or really stupid and I’m leaning towards the second given the track record here.

From Genesis 2007 for a major showdown.

Team 3D vs. Motor City Machine Guns

It’s the second brawl on the ramp to start the match tonight. The Guns take over with their speed early on and bust out some nifty double teaming stuff. The Dudleys start to walk off and then go after the announcers for a bit. Ok back to the match with Bubba vs. Sabin in the first official pairing of the match. A slick hurricanrana sends Ray into Shelley and Ray is frustrated. Off to D-Von who gets two off a side slam/legdrop combo.

Sabin literally dives into a tag to Shelley who fires off some strikes to take over. Ray breaks up some double teaming and D-Von takes over on Alex for a bit. Some chinlocking is broken up by an enziguri but he can’t make the tag. Ray comes in and the guy is pretty awesome as an evil jerk. Ray challenges D-Von to see who can hit Shelley harder. Now that’s just mean.

Back to that chinlock which D-Von could at least flex on. Shelley gets a big old kick in and both guys are down. There’s your hot tag and Sabin cleans at least the basement and ground floor. Tornado DDT gets two on D-Von. As the Guns double team D-Von, Ray shouts in encouragement. “Come on D-Von! Come on! OH MY GOD!” That last part was when the Guns hit a dropkick to send him to the floor.

This actually is pretty solid stuff, mainly as the Guns are very exciting to watch. A rana sets up a frog splash for two. Ray comes back in and kills both of them with a double clothesline. Hey Alex, What’s Up? It’s Table Time and I don’t get why. Do they think they’ll get away with it? Even the Dudleys aren’t that stupid. The Guns take over again and the High Low gets two. Ray grabs his belt and whips Sabin with it a little.

Dudleyville Device gets two. A table is set up in the corner but Sabin walks up the table and backflips to the ring (think Bryan in the corner but much faster and impressive looking). D-Von is sent through the table but that isn’t a DQ for no apparent reason. The Guns hit their series of kicks to Ray and we’re done.

Rating: B. Entertaining match here, odd rule choices aside. This was power vs. speed and you really don’t need to do much more than that most of the time. The matches are almost always fun and this was exactly that. This would lead into a months long feud which eventually incorporated Johnny Devine and Jay Lethal over the X-Title. It would also result in a fish market street fight but we’ve covered that before.

Time to start chasing the titles at Turning Point 2008.

Tag Titles: Beer Money vs. Motor City Machine Guns

One of the taglines things is will the Guns finally get the titles. Oh that’s rich. Neither team has their current music so things are just ridiculously bland. Again they mention the Guns possibly winning the titles. Wow that’s funny. So despite acting like heels in the back, they of course act like faces here. Could the psychology have been more messed up in TNA around this time?

The challengers of course are all over the place and getting a ton of damage in on Storm. Shelley reminds me of Miz a bit looks wise. ALL Guns here as Shelley hits a Lionsault for two. The champions take over as I think we’re going to be in for a long while here. Storm puts on his hat which of course makes him fail.

I love the missing the tag thing which is as basic as possible of a tag cheating tactic but it works every time and is perfectly legal. Shelley hits a combination Downward Spiral/DDT to get enough time for the hot tag to Sabin. The crowd is uncommonly quiet here. Dang the Guns are fun to watch.

Storm has been gone for a LONG time. It’s a double team clinic from the Guns here and they’re completely dominating. Storm comes back in and botches what is now Madison Rayne’s move. The big Tower of Doom spot does nothing special at all as they kind of just fall backwards. ASCS Rush to Roode but here’s Jackie of course because we have to have the annoying pest in there once at least. Storm spits Beer in Sabin’s eyes so that DWI can keep the belts for Beer Money. Yes the Guns lose again. Film at 11.

Rating: B-. Not bad here. This was another one of those matches where they let them do their thing and it worked for the most part, but at times the Guns’ offense gets so ridiculous that it’s a waste of time and takes away the point of it. Not bad, but nothing classic, as we’ll get to those later.

Due to the DVD clipping some of the matches, we’ll jump to Turning Point 2009.

Tag Titles: Beer Money vs. British Invasion vs. Motor City Machineguns

The Brits (Williams and Magnus) have the titles here. They’re heels and Beer Money are faces….I think. They won a match on Impact to get here. No clue on the Guns but they’re faces also. Storm vs. Magnus to start as Storm jumps him to control early. Roode comes in quickly and it’s off to Shelley. Backbreaker gets two for Roode as we get the usual solid stuff from these teams.

They chop it out but Shelley hits the floor and takes Roode’s leg out. Off to Sabin who comes in with a hilo and they speed things up a bit. Williams makes a blind tag which is rather smart when you think about it. Sabin and Williams have a nice gymnastics routine (thankfully minus the tutus) and it’s off to Shelley. The Guns get to show off which they do rather well to say the least.

Sabin comes back in and the fans chant USA. I would love Beer Money to get all fired up and say they love America more than the Guns and have it fire them up. Why can only faces be patriotic? The Brits take over on Sabin but Beer Money comes in for the save. They shout their representative names in the title of their team, only for the Guns to get a blind tag of their own.

We get a bad oral sex joke with the Brits as this breaks down just for a bit. The Guns take over and everyone beats on Magnus. Williams tries a backslide on Sabin but Shelly gets a superkick to break it up. Sliced Bread (I love that name) can’t connect as Shelly is caught in a nice superkick (why does EVERYONE use that move anymore) German suplex combo. Take that USA fans!

Beer Money takes over on the Brits now as they might as well put up a big sign saying BRITS WILL RETAIN. Maybe I’m jaded but as soon as they get beaten down this much it’s clear they’re going to get the come from behind win. And as I say that, here’s Eric Young, the leader of World Elite of which the Brits are members. Storm chases him off and Kevin Nash of all people comes out to stop Young. Ah apparently he wants the Global (now TV) Title back. Nash takes it….and hits Storm to join World Elite. In the ring a Hart Attack with a jumping back elbow instead of a clothesline and off the top ends this.

Rating: C-. Match wasn’t bad but at the same time it was kind of a mess at times. The Nash turn came off as unnecessary to put it mildly as it really didn’t add anything to the match and felt like the whole point of things rather than the match itself, as the point is supposed to be. Not bad, but a bit too sloppy for my tastes.

We hit the spotfest at Destination X 2010.

Ultimate X: Motor City Machine Guns vs. Generation Me

You think this could be awesome? Yeah me too. Penzer screws up a bit on his opening line. Ok one is Max and one is Jeremy. I’ll never remember that but whatever. BIG pop for the Guns. Seriously, how have these two never been tag champions? This is Sabin’s 13th Ultimate X match out of 20 that have happened. That’s INSANE. The Guns immediately hit the corners which is rather stupid but whatever.

Don’t expect a ton of play by play or criticism over psychology here. It’s just not going to happen. In a painful looking spot, One of the Bucks gets their hair pulled around the structure. FREAKING OW MAN! Ok Max has the headband. Got it. I think we got a Team 3D chant in there. Why? What the freaking hell? Who cares as Shelley hits a sweet looking dive to shut the fans up.

There is little more fun to see than precision double teaming. That’s what the golden age of tag wrestling was predicated on and these guys bring that back. Jeremy is freaking entertaining. He hits a springboard modified X-Factor and immediately hits a moonsault to the floor. Sweetness. They do something smart and say no replays until the match is over. That’s a good idea.

Jeremy gets up on the X but Sabin makes the stop. Shelley actually tickles Jeremy to knock him down. Well whatever works I guess. The fans think this is awesome. Now if only they were paying to see it. Everyone goes on one part of the X and they all do the leg hook thing but everyone falls. Kick-o-rama begins and it’s sweet. The speed of these guys is epic.

In a SWEET spot, Max is in the Tree of Woe and Jeremy takes a belly to belly into him. And in a STUPID move, the Guns unhook Max. Seriously, why in the world would you do that? It makes NO sense. One guy is on the floor and the other is stuck in the corner. One guy plays guard and the other goes up. Whatever though as we got a cool double team out of it. Sabin and Jeremy go up but down comes Jeremy and the Guns win it!

Rating: A-. Just a sweet match here. Much like the TLC matches, this wasn’t about wrestling but about high flying spectacles which is just fine. These are designed to have the guys showcase themselves and that’s what they did here. Very fun match and worth finding a copy of for sure.

Time for the big showdown with Beer Money, starting on Victory Road 2010.

Tag Titles: Beer Money vs. Motor City Machine Guns

Ok so the Guns more or less have to win here. I like the Guns’ music. Storm and Shelley start us off. They’re doing a slow build to start us off as Taz says the Guns are the best team from their city, including the Tigers. Uh, deep? We get a Mel Torme reference of all things as we’re talking about tap dancing. Beer Money takes over and after a double vertical suplex they do their thing.

Shelley is getting beaten on. This is a good match so far so it’s hard to make jokes. Well other than Taz and Tenay who are always jokes. Ah there’s Sabin. I like him better than Shelley I think. We crank it up a bit and Sabin hits a running punt on Storm while he’s on the apron and Storm is on the floor. The crowd is getting back into it a bit too. Eye of the Storm gets two on Sabin.

I’m sorry for the excessive play by play here but that’s the main thing going on here. That made less than no sense but just go with it. We’ve lost any resemblance of a tag match here as it’s just all insanity. Maybe Heyman is booking the company. Everything just goes insane and this is awesome for once. The Guns dominate as Storm has a beer bottle. The referee gets beer spit in his face as the Guns hit a combination splash/neckbreaker on Roode for two.

There’s another referee here now and I have a bad feeling about this. It’s ALL Guns here as we’re going fast paced here. They hit their kick combination and cover Roode as Storm rolls Sabin up. The referees count a double pin and it’s Dusty Finish time. Earl, not the original referee, says restart it. The Guns win in like a minute with the same thing they did earlier, making the restart TOTALLY POINTLESS. Very good match though so I can’t complain much.

Rating: A-. This was a VERY good match. The main thing holding it back is the restart which was the walking definition of overbooking. What in the world is that supposed to help? Whatever it was I certainly don’t get it. The Guns are the champions, albeit nearly three years later. Still though, if they’re going to win them, at least win them in a classic I guess. Very good match all the way through. Loved it.

Off to TV for a match in the EPIC best of five series with Beer Money. From Impact, July 29, 2010.

Tag Titles: Beer Money vs. Motor City Machine Guns

Technically this is a title match but not really. Screw it as it makes the show sound better. The Guns climb in over the back of the cage to get an early advantage. Roode is busted open early and we’re tagging in a cage match. I’ve always hated that. They’re flying around and there’s little flow to it. They’re going with the tag match in a cage instead of tag team cage match, which is fine.

Taz says Beer Money has the lead in the series in his opinion. I’m pretty sure they have it in reality too Taz. Sabin hits the hesitation dropkick which is awesome. Shelley hits a top rope double stomp which is always a dangerous as all goodness bump to me. Storm hits an elevated Backstabber as this match is pretty solid. Everyone other than Sabin goes for the escapt but they all come down.

Sabin does a cross body off the top to take down Beer Money in a cool spot. Storm gets the beer bottle from somewhere and cracks it over the head of Roode by mistake. The Guns hit their finisher to take over and get to pick the match next week which they’ll win to set up the final match later on.

Rating: B. Solid match here but at just 10 minutes or so it needed more. These matches have been good but having one a week is just kind of overkill of it. I get it: the matches are great, but it would be nice to have a point to them and have matches where the winners aren’t completely predictable. Also: the Guns are now 1-2 as tag champions.

And the finals of the series on Impact, August 12, 2010.

Tag Titles: Beer Money vs. Motor City Machine Guns

This is 2/3 falls. I’ll give TNA this: when they find something that works, they RUN with it. Shelley and Roode start us off and the crowd is WAY behind Shelley. The Guns do their usual insane speed stuff which is always cool looking. Roode does the old classic heel tactic of slapping his hands to convince the ref that there was a tag. It doesn’t work but it’s always awesome.

Sabin breaks through the endless domination of the heels as the fans are just getting irritating. NICE (I think) double team spot from the Guns as we get a downward spiral combined with a DDT and a missile dropkick. Roode takes Sabin’s head off with a big boot and the Guns clear the ring. Back in the ring a Backstabber sets up DWI on Shelley to make it 1-0 Beer Money.

Never a fan of challengers getting clean pins in the first fall of a 2/3 match. It makes the champions look like they lost completely clean. Nice double dropkick by Sabin to clean house again. The splash/neckbreaker ties it up after about two minutes. That move needs a name.

Roode does a HUGE dive over the ropes which they screw up by changing the camera at the last second. After a break it’s more even fighting. This has been a great match. Sabin hits a springboard DDT on Roode which I loved. Granted that might be because the DDT is my favorite move. Both teams hit a sweet double team sequence.

Sliced Bread #2 is countered as is DWI. Last Call superkick ends Roode and the double team combo DOESN’T get the pin on Storm. I would have bet on that ending it. Another one does in fact end it though, which is a bit anticlimactic but still, GREAT match here, although just a step behind the initial win at the PPV. Still though, great match.

Rating: A. This was indeed a great match but it makes me wonder where they’re going to go now that these two have fought so many times now. This is more about a back and forth insanity pitch rather than psychology or storytelling and that’s fine a lot of the time, especially in tags. This was very entertaining and the false finish was great for drama. These two teams have insane chemistry and this was no exception at all. Great match and well worth finding, although most of their matches are.

Time to defend the things against ANYONE else, starting at No Surrender 2010.

Tag Titles: Generation Me vs. Motor City Machine Guns

Ok so apparently London Brawling isn’t here so this is your replacement. Shelley and Jeremy start us off with some very nifty mat work. Shelley is in shorts here which is a weird look on him. Taz implies the challengers have an attitude now, which probably means a heel turn. Apparently Generation Me are Christian athletes. Nothing wrong with that, but interesting that this comes up just around the time they turn heel.

The fans call them the Bucks of course because they have to be smart right? Oh wait that’s the last name of Gen Me here right? It is as we prove again how stupid the name Generation Me is. Young Bucks is hardly a bad name. Shelley with a reverse Boston Crab into a surfboard. They’ve both been in there the whole time and just as I say that Sabin comes in.

We crank it up as Max hits an INSANE backflip into a Diamond Cutter. Neckbreaker on Shelly on the apron and Shelly may have a bad neck now. It turns into a gymnastics routine, which is always fun if nothing else. These are perfect choices for openers as they’re very exciting and gets the crowd going. I’d prefer them in the middle of the show though as they can breathe life into the show later if things start to drag.

The ring looks a bit smaller than usual here for some reason. Sabin gets the hot tag and it’s on again. Springboard Tornado DDT gets two. Cue R-Truth’s opening line as this is the part where we crank it up. Sabin and Max slug it out in the ring and another tornado DDT is blocked. Gen Me kick the heck out of Shelley and set up for More Bang For Your Buck. In a very innovative counter, Jeremy goes for a superkick but Shelley grabs it and throws the foot into Max’s head. Skull and Bones end it clean.

Rating: B. Solid opener as always between these two. They know how to just make things exciting and fire up the crowd, which is always a great thing to see in the opener. The Guns are without a doubt the best team in the world today and highlight the division about as well as anyone can. Very fast paced match that has me wanting to see the rest of the show.

And again at Turning Point 2010.

Tag Titles: Team 3D vs. Motor City Machine Guns

After a lot of standing around looking at each other, D-Von and Shelley start. Pre-match handshake is always nice to see. They start with some technical/mat stuff and not a lot is going on so far. Dueling chants begin. We’re told that Dreamer, Raven and Tazz started the Dudley Boys which is only technically true as the Dudley Family, who didn’t start off as Bubba and D-Von, were based on the brothers from the movie Slapshot. Ah ok they mention that at least.

They get to say Dudley Boys here which is surprising. Sabin vs. Bubba now. Big boot cuts the head off of the small one. Back to the starters now with the Guns in control. Shelly might have hurt his knee off a top rope move but his knee seems to be ok as it gets worked on by Bubba. They’re going for the big match here and it’s working to an extent.

Back off to Sabin now and some modified Poetry in Motion and double teaming sends the Dudleys to the floor. Sabin misses a dive though and eats floor. Bubba goes into the post and DIVES under the ring. Shockingly when he comes back up he’s busted open. The fans want tables. Shelley bends Bubba’s fingers back which is a freaking ow move if there ever has been one.

They’re trying to make the Guns wrestle heel here because this is a rather stupid company. Top rope Batista Bomb gets two on Sabin. Nice one there. Bubba’s facial expressions are kind of funny. Shelley kicks D-Von while he’s on the apron to a few boos. Sabin and D-Von both come in off hot tags as the cranking up thing here isn’t really happening.

Sabin gets beaten down for awhile while the other two are on the floor. D-Von catches Poetry in Motion and throws Shelley onto Sabin which was cool. All Dudleys here as D-Von hits the top rope headbutt on Shelley for two as Sabin makes the save. What’s Up hits and it’s table time. This version is in the corner if you’re curious. HUGE table chant.

As per the laws of table usage, the person that set it up, Bubba in this case, goes into it. Skull and Bones hits D-Von for only two. That gets kicked out of every time. 3D to Sabin but it only gets two as Sabin kicks out. That’s not something you ever see so I can give it points there. Skull and Bones to Bubba end it soon afterwards to set up the big send off.

Rating: C+. They were going for the big and epic match here and didn’t really get there. This was good but at the same time it’s just another title win for the Guns, which is the right move at least. I don’t buy them leaving at all but that’s neither here nor there. This wasn’t a classic but it was by far the best match of the night so far.

One more time with the Bucks at Final Resolution 2010.

Tag Titles: Generation Me vs. Motor City Machineguns

I still can’t believe that there are no more challengers other than these guys. This is Full Metal Mayhem, which according to Gen Me before this match is the final match in this rivalry. Don’t you have to beat the other team once to make it a rivalry? The fight is on before the Guns even make it to the ring. Don’t expect much play by play here due to the large amount of stuff going on here.

Jeremy with a slingshot X Factor to take out Sabin and in one movement he hits the apron and takes out Shelley with a moonsault. Sweet spot. Sabin and Jeremy are left in the ring. Gen Me goes for the first ladder but of course gets it sent into their faces as they’re trying to bring it into the ring. Once it’s finally in the ring Jeremy does the ladder ride down onto Shelley.

Gen Me almost gets to the belts until they realize the belts are too high up in the air. Nice job guys. Granted that might have been on purpose. Shelley takes out the knee of Max. The Guns are in control and are mostly dominant here. Sabin goes up but there goes the ladder and he hits the top rope on the way down. The fans want tables….again. Some indy company should raffle off a table once and see how big of a pop they get.

The ladders get laid over Gen Me and then Sabin puts chairs over those. Shelly gets a double stomp off the top to drive everything into them. That looked pretty awesome. Shelly goes up the ladder but he too can’t reach the belts. Their solution is to bring in more ladders for some reason. Taz isn’t sure what that’s going to accomplish either. Gen Me gets up and it’s a big brawl again.

Alex sets up a table as I have a bad feeling that I know where this is going. And I’m wrong. I was thinking they were going to put a ladder on the table but they put the table on the ladders like a scaffold so that they can stand on the top and have some actual balance rather than standing on the top of a ladder. That makes a lot of sense.

Then Sabin realizes he can’t climb the ladders with the table on top. This is a work in progress I suppose. The Guns bring in another table and realize that’s not going to work either. Max puts Sabin on the table and spits on him like a truly evil man. Shelly manages to get Sliced Bread on Jeremy through a table to the floor. Sabin and Jeremy get up to the table scaffold and have a chair duel. Sabin wins that and Jeremy goes through the table to allow Sabin to grab the belts to retain.

Rating: B+. This was definitely fun. It’s not up to the original TLC matches but it was definitely good. The ending was creative which is always a good thing. It was ahead of most MITB matches also. This was good like you would expect it to be, but at the same time was there ever any real doubt to the Guns retaining the belts? I never thought there was at least. Still though, fun stuff.

Injuries and singles runs would stop the team for a good while. Here’s their last major match at Lockdown 2012.

Tag Titles: Motorcity Machineguns vs. Magnus/Samoa Joe

The Guns have generic music to start but their regular theme starts during their walk to the ring. Methinks that was a glitch. You can win by pin, submission or escape for the rest of the matches. Magnus and Shelley start things off. Things speed way up to start and Magnus gets a clothesline for two. Sabin gets a blind tag and a pair of kicks get two. Off to Joe who is too fat for Sabin to run over.

A crucifix into a sunset flip doesn’t really work either so let’s try a dropkick. That at least slows Joe down and it’s off to Shelley. Back to Magnus who gets caught in a pinball series of punches. Magnus comes back and manages a fallaway slam to throw Sabin into Shelley in a cool spot. Back to Joe who pounds Sabin down to give us a face in peril. I think he’s in peril to another face but you get the idea.

The champions double team Sabin to keep him in the ring including a big boot to set up a backsplash for two. Magnus hooks a chinlock but Chris comes back with a jawbreaker to get out. A spinning spinebuster puts Sabin right back down and it’s off to Joe again. Snap suplex gets two. Sabin grabs a tornado DDT while climbing up Magnus and is able to make the tag. Shelley comes in but even that doesn’t wake this crowd up.

Sliced Bread is broken up but Sabin powerbombs Joe out of the corner. Magnus is knocked off the top and a top rope double stomp gets two for Shelley. A move I think called the elevated Hero’s Welcome gets two on Magnus. Skull and Bones is broken up and Sabin is caught in the Clutch. Sliced Bread hits Magnus and Joe has to break up the choke to make the save. The champions’ finisher misses so Sabin hooks up a rear naked choke on Joe. Magnus hits a kind of Michinoku Driver on Shelley and Joe runs out of the corner, dropping Sabin on Shelley. The snapmare/elbow gets the pin on Shelley at 11:19.

Rating: B-. This started really slow but once they stopped the tagging it got a lot more exciting. I definitely agree with the champions retaining here as there’s nothing for the Guns to do in this division anymore. Having them as something like Beer Money for the last year they were together would be a much better spot for them which is something they could do now.

I really don’t think the Guns need that much of an explanation. They’re just great no matter how you look at them and were one of the most precise tag teams you’ll ever see. There’s always a place for a team that just fires off offense so fast while thinking as one. It was cool with the Rockers and Midnight Express did it and it’s still cool here.

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