Date: March 20, 2015
Location: Wembley Arena, London, England
Commentators: Taz, Josh Matthews
This is the last show of the European tour and they have a big main event to cap things off: Lashley defending the World Title against Kurt Angle. This is a match they’ve built up very well in the last few weeks and it feels like a match worthy of closing things out. There’s also a triple threat Ultimate X match for the Tag Team Titles, but that’s not important enough to advertise on TV. Let’s get to it.
Tag Team Titles: Wolves vs. BroMans vs. Manik/Great Sanada
Ultimate X, meaning the titles are hung above the ring where they’re suspended from two ropes in the shape of an X. You have to climb up the structures at the corners of the ring and crawl along the ropes to retrieve the titles. The Wolves are defending and it’s DJZ and Jesse Godderz this time due to Robbie being shaken up by losing to Brooke last week. The champs get quadruple teamed to start but they easily fight off the schmucks and lackeys to clean house.
Jesse gets beaten down by the champs but Angelina offers a distraction to break up a double dive. That’s fine with the Wolves as they throw DJZ over the top onto the Revolution. Nice way to get the best of both worlds, if you consider Angelina the best that is. The challengers finally get things together and beat Edwards and Richards down until Jesse holds Richards long enough to nearly allow Manik to get the belts. Instead he dropkicks Manik down, followed by a double backbreaker for good measure.
The BroMans try to get the belts without climbing and actually get their fingers on them, but the Revolution comes in to turn it into a game of chicken. That brings the Wolves back in for stereo dropkicks and all six guys are down. Richards powerbombs Manik into a Backstabber for a save and DJZ gets shoved into the truss. Jesse gets some mist to the face but Edwards crotches Sanada. A hurricanrana into the double stomp from Edwards has Sanada out of it, leaving the Wolves to take down the belts to retain at 9:23.
Rating: B-. This felt like a really good house show match: they didn’t do much besides the big stuff and the titles were never in any real danger, but it’s entertaining stuff and the crowd got into it. They weren’t going for some masterpiece here and it would have been a stretch for the Wolves to have a major problem dispatching either team. Good stuff here and exactly what it was supposed to be.
The announcers preview the main event.
Here’s Austin Aries with something to say. He hasn’t been around the last few weeks and it’s because of the Beat Down Clan. They beat him up and stole his briefcase, so get out here right now and give it back. Cue Samoa Joe and Low Ki with the briefcase with Low Ki saying possession is 9/10 of the law, so Aries can’t play his games right now.
Aries has two points: Low Ki isn’t Austin Aries because he doesn’t cash in that briefcase. Second, Low Ki isn’t Austin Aries because that briefcase doesn’t have his name on it. Aries wants his X-Division Title back too and is willing to put his briefcase up for a shot at it. Ki agrees, but only if Aries can get through Joe. Joe nails Aries and we go to a break.
Samoa Joe vs. Austin Aries
Joined in progress after a break with Aries in big trouble. His comeback is easily broken up as Joe gets in a shot to the shoulder and throws Aries to the floor. The arm gets sent into the steps before an overhead belly to belly gets two back inside. We hit the chinlock followed by a nerve hold as things slow way down. The backsplash misses though and Aries fires off some left hands in the corner. Joe is too big for the brainbuster though and he takes Aries down for a Fujiwara armbar on the bad arm. Aries makes the rope and sends Joe outside, setting up a big suicide dive, only to have Low Ki nail Aries for the DQ at 6:55.
Rating: C. This was just a match to set up the angle but it still worked well enough. Aries is able to have a good match with almost anyone in the company and I like that Low Ki seemed scared to go after the briefcase but trusted in his numbers advantage to take Aries down. Nice stuff here.
The BDC goes after Aries but Low Ki nails Joe in the head with the briefcase (great shot too) to knock him cold. Aries forearms the briefcase into Ki’s head and leaves with the belt. Cue Rockstar Spud with his X-Division Feast or Fired case and it’s time for a cash in!
X-Division Title: Rockstar Spud vs. Low Ki
Underdog gives Spud the title in seven seconds. Spud deserves something for all the work he’s done lately.
Magnus is beating Bram up in the back and throws him onto a cart. They come into the arena with Bram being knocked down the aisle. Magnus erupts on him with a chair but referees pulls him off. Mickie James comes out and kicks Bram in the ribs. That’s enough of an opening for Magnus to take Bram up to the stage for a powerbomb to leave Bram laying.
The roster is looking forward to the main event. MVP says they’re fighting for his title.
Knockouts Title: Awesome Kong vs. Taryn Terrell vs. Gail Kim
Terrell is defending. The early double teaming of Kong gets her down but she sends Gail into Taryn to take over. Kong lifts Taryn up for a slam but Gail dropkicks Terrell in the back. That doesn’t phase Kong and she drops Taryn on Gail in a cool spot. Taryn gets clotheslined out of the air but Gail counters the Implant Buster.
More double teaming fails and Gail is knocked to the floor. A middle rope dropkick staggers Kong but she shoves off the Taryn Cutter. There go the gloves but she misses the splash, allowing Taryn to hit the second attempt at the cutter for two. Instead a dropkick sends Kong to the floor where Gail nails her with a huge dive. Back in and Gail sunset bombs Taryn for two but gets rolled up for the pin to retain Taryn’s title at 6:16.
Rating: B-. I’d love to see the Divas get a chance to do something like this. Seeing the Knockouts and NXT Girls having matches like this one make me wonder why the Divas aren’t given the chance to pull off something similar. The time helped here but the whole thing wasn’t even seven minutes long, meaning it doesn’t even take a long time to put together a classic.
James Storm flips a coin to determine what happens to Matt Hardy. The decision is to cause him severe pain.
Video on Angle vs. Lashley with a theme of surviving changes in life.
Angle says he’s ready.
James Storm vs. Matt Hardy
No DQ. The brawl starts in the aisle again with Matt getting the better of it and throwing a bunch of chairs into the ring. Storm comes back by wedging a chair in the corner before they trade trashcan shots to the head. Matt gets crotched on the top and kicked in the head, setting up a superplex onto two open chairs for two. Abyss throws in some tacks but Matt knocks James’ back first onto them, followed by a top rope elbow for two.
The Twist of Fate connects but Abyss pulls the referee out at two. The rest of the Revolution gets involved but are easily dispatched, only to have Storm send him into the chair in the corner for a close two. Another Twist of Fate drops Storm but Matt can’t cover. Instead Abyss hands Storm the bell as Sanada mists Matt. A cowbell to the back of the head and two Last Calls are good for the pin at 6:48.
Rating: D+. I wasn’t feeling this one as it felt like they were cramming way too much stuff into this. I’m not even sure why the Revolution is going after the Hardys but it’s better than them having nothing to do and just wasting time while adding more people to their ranks. This one missed though and it was due to just not letting the match build and going too hard with it.
James says he put Jeff out of wrestling and has the Revolution hold Matt.
TNA World Title: Kurt Angle vs. Bobby Lashley
Lashley is defending. We get the old school long walks through the back to the ring to really make this feel like a big deal. After the big match intros we’re ready to go with nearly twenty five minutes for this match. The fans are behind Angle but Lashley throws him into the corner with ease. A big clothesline puts Angle down again as it’s all champ so far. Kurt goes back to basics with rolling Germans and sends Lashley to the floor, but the champ takes over again with pure power.
Back in and Lashley pounds him down in the corner before starting in on the arm and shoulder. Kurt fights up and escapes, setting up a middle rope shoulder to drop Lashley. It’s time to roll some Germans and Lashley is in trouble. Kurt lets go but snaps off five more Germans before taking down the straps. The ankle lock is countered and Lashley nails the powerslam for two as we take a break.
Back with Lashley going shoulder first into the post and getting caught in the ankle lock again. Lashley rolls through but charges into a boot, setting up the Angle Slam for two. Now the spear connects for two but Lashley takes way too much time going up, allowing Angle to avoid a splash. This time it’s Kurt going up for a high cross body but Lashley rolls through into an ankle lock of his own. Kurt grabs the rope and hits another Angle Slam only to get caught in a cross armbreaker. That gets turned over into another ankle lock with the grapevine and Lashley taps at 20:18.
Rating: B+. It’s really good but it’s clear that Angle just doesn’t have the same reserves he used to. I’m ok with the title win as it feels more like one last reign for Angle instead of making him the long term top guy again. Angle more than deserves a reign like that and if he puts over a young star (which he likely will), this is fine. Lashley looks good in a loss, but the match didn’t hit the levels of epic they were hoping for. Still though, really good stuff.
Overall Rating: A-. Really solid show this week in TNA’s form of a pay per view. It’s a great way to blow off the UK tour and it felt like a major show. The big deal next week is the return of Jeff Hardy, and it’s going to be interesting to see if they can keep this momentum back in Orlando. History suggests otherwise, but this has been their best run in years. Really good show though and it’s nice to see TNA deliver when they were supposed to.
Wolves b. BroMans and Manik/Great Sanada – Edwards pulled down the belts
Austin Aries b. Samoa Joe via DQ when Low Ki interfered
Rockstar Spud b. Low Ki – Underdog
James Storm b. Matt Hardy – Twist of Fate
Kurt Angle b. Bobby Lashley – Ankle lock
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