TNA: Victory Road, July 13, 2008
Finally! Time to review! My download worked the first time! I have time to watch the show the day after it airs! All the stars and planets are aligning for a wonderful piece of artistic prose which will be posted for all of you to enjoy! What could possibly go wrong!?
The show opens with an elaborate Apollo 11 metaphor. Iím not sure I understand how a wrestling PPV is as wonderful an accomplishment as going to the moon, but whatever. My boyfriend doesnít get it, either, I guess, so I donít feel so bad.
Oh, by the way, you will be hearing vicariously from my boyfriend, who is being more or less forced to watch this. Not that he doesnít enjoy wrestling, just that he would rather be grouting.
We start off the actual broadcast with Borash reminding us, amongst some rowdy fans, that we can vote on the stipulation for the semi-main event tonight. Lauren is with BG James who interestingly assumes an interviewerís roll tonight.
World X Cup Round Three: Twelve Man Elimination Match
I would like to point out before I start that I referenced wrestleview.com a lot for the review of this match, mostly because I 1) couldnít keep track of the non TNA members names and 2) couldnít always catch what moves where what because of the fast pace of the match. I have cited wrestleview.com when I could to give them credit for their hard work and knowledge.
Right off the bat, Team Japan comes off with this fellow and his fake dog. My boyfriend thinks this is ghey. He spelled it like that, too. And what is with the Machine Gunís new outfits? Silly, I say.
Anyway, onto the match; as you can guess, this is going to be a highlight real of sorts. There is too much going on for poor Jillie to keep track of. There is much tag team work going on in the first part of this match. The Machine Guns, naturally, are working well together. Bucenero and Ultimo Guerrero double team Internationalís Williams and Dux, respectively. Dux is eliminated first by Bucenero.
Puma and one of his teammates (Milano, so says wrestleview.com) work together against Bucenero. Bucenero tags in Averno (wrestleview.com), who ducks Puma, causing him to hit Milano by mistake. Puma is eliminated by Averno.
Itís now Sabin in the ring against Milano. Somehow, Milano gets a double half-crab on both members of the Motor City Machine Guns and Curry Man must make the save. Milano fakes that he has been lowblowed by Curry Man, fooling one ref but not the other. Sabin hits a Cradle Shock on Milano, eliminating him.
Yoshino and Sabin are going at it now. Yoshino receives a wicked kick from Shelley through the ropes from the outside. The Machine Guns again use their tag-teaming advantage with matching dropkicks to a Tree of Woed Yoshino. Yoshino, however, counters with an Octopus Submission on Shelley, which the Team TNA member counters. Averno is tagged in against Yoshino. This match-up is very athletic and back and forth, quite entertaining. It ends with Averno being eliminated by Yoshino thanks to a big facebuster.
We now have Koslov and Curry Man in the ring. Williams is tagged in and hits a great looking Chaos Theory Suplex on Curry Man. Ultimo and Bucenero hit double cross bodies to take them out. Ultimo reverses a hurricanrana attempt by Curry Man, which leads to his elimination.
Team Mexico next picks on Williams, who is ultimately eliminated by Bucenero.
The Machine Guns take a big double spill on the outside. Itís Koslov and Ultimo in the ring now, and Ultimo ends up tapping out to Koslov.
Bucenero comes in to replace his team mate and Koslov is replaced by Sabin. Sabin hits a hurricanrana off the top rope. Bucenero is eliminated by Sabin after a matching pair of superkicks from the Guns.
Team Mexico is now out of the match altogether. I the ring, itís the Machine Guns and Yoshino. There is a wicked tower move of some kind involving the Guns, Yoshino and someone else (neither myself nor wrestleview.com could remember who the fourth was), and this is followed up by a nasty looking kick combo. Sabin and Koslov collide mid-air. Koslov uses the ref to get the upper hand on Sabin, then uses the ropes to eliminate the Gun.
Koslov hits a massive somersault to Shelly on the outside. Itís now Koslov vs Yoshino vs Shelley, wich Shelley out on the outside. Yoshino applies an arm-bar submission on Koslov, who taps, and is eliminated.
Itís down to Yoshino and Shelley now. Yoshino hits a hesitation missile dropkick (which looked beautiful) for the cover. Shelley hits a Sliced Bread for his turn at a cover. Shelley tries for a Frog Splash, but Yoshino gets his knees up. Shelley hits a reverse Tiger Driver (wrestleview.com) for yet another cover. Yoshino tries for a cover once again after a springboard necktie. Itís Shelley that finally comes out on top with a side driver (wrestleview.com).
This match was super fun! I love fast paced clusters like that, where you can hardly keep up with the action! I also love the X Division and it was a treat to see these competitors from other promotions.
This match also spawned the quote of the night; Mike Tenay to Don West, ďHow was that for an opening Big Boy!?Ē Iíll let your imagination take that one away. Happy dreaming!!
We are now treated to a tour of Booker Tís house in Houston. Those achievements the Wall thereof are spread out rather thin. How much of this crap is actually Bookerís? Does he actually make enough money to own all that stuff!? Working for TNA? He must have been a savvy saver in his WCW/WWE days. That or Iím gullibleÖ
Angelina Love vs Gail Kim
I really enjoy Love. I usually am not a fan of the overtly slutty members of the female roster, but Love is GOOD. She is GREAT in front of the camera and on the mic, and she is really talented in the ring.
Iíd like to take this opportunity to point out that Angelina Love, the heel, is announced from Toronto, Ontario, Canada. However Gail Kim, who is equally Canadian, is the face, and is announced from Tampa, Florida. Itís a conspiracy, I tell you.
Anyway, back to the show. Love starts out the match with a cheap shot for the advantage. Love dominates the match with several dirty tactics including a figure four hold around the ropes on the outside. Sky also plays a part in this, getting her shots in on the outside and knocking Gail off the top rope. Love hits a superplex off the second rope and suffers a small and entirely unrevealing wardrobe malfunction (sorry, boys). Kim gets the win finally with a handcuff neckbreaker (Don West via wrestleview.com).
This is not, as you have probably already guessed, the end, however. Sky comes from behind on a celebrating Kim and continues the attack. Kim narrowly escapes a good paper bagging.
We cut to the back where BG James, still in the roll of backstage interviewer of sorts, is instructing the fans who will be involved in the fanís revenge match. My boyfriend canít believe theyíre letting a bunch of fans beat up on wrestlers. He has a point. It is pretty bold considering the crazy people that exist out thereÖ
Jay Lethal vs Sonjay Dutt
Lethal comes down with SoCal Val by his side (ďwhat does he see in HER?Ē says my wonderful and well trained boyfriend). Val actually excepts Sonjayís card and flower. Stupid woman. This is going to end in disaster for Lethal, I can already tell. Lethal, for his part, is wearing some gosh darn furry pants.
To the match, then. Dutt and Lethal are pretty evenly matched here. Dutt gets off with a springboard drop. One of the announcers wonders after Lethal fails to get Dutt with his Lethal Combination how he will ever beat Dutt, to which my boyfriend (who has taken a break from grouting) advises ďthrow a cookie at him, and when he goes for it kick him in the head!Ē
The match continues with great equality. Lethal seems to have snapped suddenly, taking his anger out on his former friend with a face-slam into the announce table. Dutt is now calling out for Val to help him and Val actually tries to reason with Lethal! Hereís a hint to all of you wrestlers who have apparently never seen a wrestling show before Ė leave your woman at home. Unless sheís a wrestler in her own right, sheís only going to cause trouble. And remember, folks, I can say that because Iím a girl. smile.gif Eventually Valís stupidity catches up with Lethal, who is surprised by a roll up after going for a Lethal Combination and being distracted by Val once again. After the match, Dutt kisses Val on the hand. Smart move, Romeo.
This was a great match. Iím happy the feud between the two is apparently going to continue. They put out great matches and they are both entertaining to watch. Yes, the storyline is a little on the lame side, but it produces great matches and an opportunity to make fun of Val, so itís ok.
We go backstage to Beer Money Inc and Jacqueline. Both men threaten the ďmarksĒ who are going to be a ringside. The interview ends with Jacquie telling the boys theyíre on their own tonight and abandoning them.
TNA World Tag Team Champion LAX (w/Salinas and Hector Guerrero) vs Beer Money Inc
My boyfriend astutely points out that Payton Banks seems to have fallen off the face of the Earth. Anyone know where she is?
The fans the TNA people have picked to beat up Beer Money Inc are a sad, unfair representation of wrestling fans everywhere. Every anti-smark out there has just received a checkmark in his or her column tonight.
Iím not a fan of Beer Money Incís combined music. If they are going to be together for a while, they need to get unique music.
To start the match itís Homicide and Roode. Roode goes through the ropes early and gets a licking. He cowers in his corner back in the ring with a suspiciously homoerotic hug to his partner. Homicide steals some of Roodeís beer on the outside and shares it with the fans. This causes Storm to run to the outside in anger and he is promptly strapped. He, in turn, shares a homo-hug with Roode in his corner. As the action continues, Hector Guerrero pulls Storm to the outside. He hides in the banner draping the ring and comes out on the other side for the safety of the ring. Homicide hits the Three Amigos on Storm (is Storm is looking a little doughy lately or is that just me?). Storm and Roode use some dirty double team tactics on Homicide, isolating him from Hernandez. Hernandez finally gets in the ring and nails Storm with a Cracker Jack. He catches Roode in a sitout powerbomb. The momentum shifts, however, and Beer Money Inc attempts a double suplex off the ropes. Hernandez fights them off and hit a splash on them. Homicide hits a DDT and Storm is on the outside again. LAX double teams Roode with a stunner combo for the win.
I thought this match was great, with great use of the fans at the ringside area. There was even a point early in the match where Hector Guerrero told the fans to back off for a second to let their victim to his feet. It would have been interesting to have Jacquie ringside, but it was probably better and less confusing that they left her in the back. The only problem with this match was its anti-climactic ending. I thought it came too fast and too unexpectedly, as TNA matches have a tendency to do. Itís like they plan out this great match and these wonderful spots and relevant psychology and storytelling, but donít leave enough time to plan the ending of the match, hence its rushed feeling all the time.
We get a look at Booker Tís wrestling school. His students, it seems, are all brown nosers (you will notice that later in the night one, and possibly two, of his students are acting as Sharmelleís bodyguards for the main event).
TNA Knockout Champion Taylor Wilde vs Awesome Kong w/Raisha Saeed
I find it funny that they have to announce that extra three eighths of a pound for Kong. It makes all the difference, you know, just like that extra little dollop of mashed potatoes at Thanksgiving.
Kong starts off with a cheap shot, surprise, surprise. She is clearly dominating, and Wilde is clearly screaming too much. Wilde gets this advantage quickly, though, and while Kong has a few moments where she shows off her power, she canít seem to get the upper hand on Wilde again for the rest of the match. This is a typical match where there is a gross size difference between the opponents Ė Wilde hits hard and fast and uses her speed to out-perform Kongís size and power. Kong just canít keep up. Wilde ends up on top, literally, with a surprise roll up for the win
As you have probably guessed yet again, this is not the end of the issue. Raisha Saeed attacks the celebrating Champion and rolls her into the ring. She has less luck with the chair. Kong hits Wilde with an Implant Buster (which is the greatest named move in the history of named moves, by the way) before a third party makes the saveÖ
ABYSS! No way! This is going to be fun!! Jillie is now marking out on the couch and her boyfriend has to take a break from grouting to find out what the Hell is so exciting. Abyss comes into the ring and Kong stares him down, fearless. Raisha convinces Kong to back down, but then turns around and mouths off Abyss, slapping him across the face. Nice, Saeed. Donít let the 300 plus pound woman do your dirty work. The smaller the better! Needless to say, Saeed gets a big fat Black Hole Slam before Abyss picks up Wilde and carries her off into the sunset.
At this point, nothing would make me more exited than seeing Kong and Abyss tie it up, even if itís just in a non-match situation.
Moving along. We are now seeing Booker Tís restaurant. Really? Does he really have a restaurant? Please, someone tell me if Iím being a stupid mark here or if I should really believe thisÖ
Hey! The Apollo 11 reference makes SO much more sense now that were are treated to a view of the Moon Museum (or whatever it was called). I feel kind of dumb sometimes.
This is my main event. The show could be over after this and I would be satisfied. Not that the next two matches arenít going to be good, itís just that I LOVE the X Division, and I LOVE Ultimate X.
I find it particularly nice of them to rig the scores so that itís still anyoneís game.
This match will be Doi vs Volador Jr vs Daivari vs Kaz, complete with a braced elbow. Here are the highlights of the match. Daivari is slammed into the truss. Kaz goes up but Doi and Volodor pull him down. Kax is alone in the ring but has never seen a wrestling match before and takes too long to get up. Kaz finds himself on the wrong end of a triple team effort as Teams Japan, Mexico and International work on Kazís injured arm. Kaz turns it around because of miscommunication between his opponents. Doi lands a nice flip into Kaz in the corner. Doi goes up the truss and Daivari follows. Doi falls from the top of the truss to the outside. Daivari and Volodor go at it now. Someone that I forgot to write down his name misses a wicked looking handstand move but lands on his feet (I think it was Volodor, but my notes are unclear. Sorry). Volodor is up on the cables. Kaz causes Doi to hit Volodor off to the mat. Doi now has an opportunity and is climbing backward on the cables. Kaz kicks him off. Volodor is now knocked off by Kaz. Daivari is up on the cables now and Volodor powerbombs him off. Volodor and Doi hit each other with matching clotheslines. Doi is up on the cables now but Volodor kicks him down. Volodor hits a moonsault off the ropes to the outside. Itís Kaz and Daivari going to the top of the truss now. They play chicken there until Daivari is able to get onto the cable. Kaz hits a wicked leg drop from the top of the tower, knocking him to the mat. Volodor takes advantage of the carnage and grabs the X for the win.
This was a GREAT match! It seems someone other than Kaz can win the super crazy gimmick matches, which is good. My boyfriend would like to point out to everyone that Team Mexico was getting booed hardcore after the match. So much for sportsmanship, eh?
WAIT! Booker T GOLFS!? Now, thatís just ridiculous.
Kurt Angle and 3D vs Christian Cage, AJ Styles and Rhino Ė Full Metal Mayhem
Frank Trigg is providing guest commentary. As AJ Styles comes to the ring, Angle tries to ambush him, but AJ is prepared. As expected, the match quickly devolves into chaos, so here are your highlights. AJ hits a somersault over the top to the outside to take out Devon and Angle. Cage brings in a garbage can and attacks Ray with it for the near-fall. Cage takes a wicked back body drop courtesy of Ray. 3D double teams AJ Styles with a face plant, only to be answered with a double team with a ladder by Christian and Rhino. Angle clears the ring with a chair and grabs the ladder. Christian gets a belly to belly overhead suplex on the ladder propped on the bottom rope. 3D sandwiches Rhino with two ladders. AJ is on the top rope, jumps onto the top of the ladder, and dives onto Ray for the near fall (thanks to someone pulling the ref out of the ring). Christian has climbed to the top of one of the Ultimate X trusses that have been left in place and dives off onto his three opponents with a cross-body block. He covers Angle, who kicks out. Ray blocks Christianís ladder with a chair before attacking AJ with it. Rhino hits successive gores on all three of his opponents. Rhino goes to get a table. Rhino scares Frank Trig ďa little.Ē Rhino gets a 3Deep into the table he just set up himself. Devonís ankle is hurt (actually really hurt, I read later). Christian sets Angle up for an Unprettier but Angle reverses. Christian tries a second time only to end up in an Ankle Lock. Christian in turn counters with a roll up for a near-fall. Christian gets caught on the top rope by Devon with a low blow, and then is 3Ded through a table on the outside. AJ is hit in the head with a garbage can. AJ ducks a clothesline from Angle, who in turn hits Devon, and Angle is kicked in the back of the head. Frank Trig is complaining about the praise Mike and Don are giving AJ. AJ gets booted in the chin by a kick by Ray, who declares tells us that we didnít know he had that in him (Don West points out that he probably split his pants. Haha). Ray is caught on the top rope with a low blow by AJ. AJ takes Ray by the head and slams him through a table. AJ sidesteps Devon and puts him through another table. AJ gets the Styles Clash on Angle, who kicks out. Johnny Devine shows up for some reason with a kendo and is hit with a Pele for his trouble. AJ points the kendo stick at Frank, but is levelled with an Olympic Slam. AJ kicks out. Angle is angry. Frank is offended. Everyone else is unconscious. Angle pushes Hebner over the table and Hebner hurted his leg. Angle tries for an Olympic slam on AJ onto a table but AJ reverses. Frank Trig is coming to play with the Kendo stick. He whacks AJ upside the head as AJ climbs the ladder. Angle takes advantage by Olympic Slamming AJ through the table from the ladder for the win.
What a dumb ending! Where was the Karen Angle factor!? Where was the rest of AJís team!? I donít like it! It was like the Angle and AJ show with a little Christian, Rhino and 3D peppered in.
Samoa Joe is with JB in back. Joe is angry that JB thinks he has doubt. Nash interrupts Joe and says heís in Joeís corner. Joe says he believes Nash, but tells him if he really loves him to stay in the back.
TNA World Heavyweight Champion Samoa Joe vs Booker T
What is with Joeís silly faux-hawk? Itís silly. Booker and Joe pussy foot around for a bit before tying up. The two trade blows evenly. Joe is finally thrown to the outside where the battle continues mostly evenly. Joe is thrown into the steps and is busted open. Sharmelle is offended. The fight goes back into the ring where Booker is in charge. Joe gains momentum with an atomic drop and tries for a Senton splash, which Booker avoids, hitting an Axe Kick instead for the near-fall. Joe continues to be punished until Joe gets some forearms in and reverses a whip into the ropes with a knee to Bookerís body. Joe hits a leg lariat for a near-fall. Joe hits a snap slam for another near fall. Joe hits a T-Bone suplex for a near-fall. Booker launches himself into the ref for some reason, knocking the poor old guy out. Sharmelle is a wreck. Booker T is thrown outside and smushes him into the guardrail in front of Sharmelle, who is now begging for mercy. Sharmelle slaps Joe. Smart move, chick. Joe beats up Sharmelleís body guards. Sharmelle continues to be annoying. Booker T is busted open. Sharmelle is still screaming. The ref calls someone from the back. What!? Why do they stop the match for Bookerís blood but not Joeís!? Joe beats up the refs and continues his assault. Sharmelle is going to get herself killed here. Joe beats up security. This is silly. I am angry. Why didnít they ďtry to calm downĒ Booker when Joe was bleeding!? Sharmelle is now begging, in the ring, I might add. If it was really that much of a problem she could just kick Joe in the nose. Thatíd stop him. Instead, Sting shows up. Joe turns his back on Sting and this will inevitable end in Sting getting hit upside the head. Or I guess Joe getting hit upside the head is a good ending, too. Not that this is a good ending. In fact, itís a crappy ending. Itís a cop-out. Itís silly Sharmelle is now doing the three count for Booker, which seems to perturb Sting. West calls this ďbizarre.Ē I have other words for it. Sharmelle takes the title and crowns Booker champ. Interesting. But not really.
I am upset by the ending of this match, although it serves the purpose for the continuation of the feud. Itís silly because, as I stated, why did the refs tell Joe to calm down when Booker was hurt but didnít tell Booker to calm down with Joe was hurt? And why does Sharmelle have to get involved in everything? Why do wives in general have to get involved? Canít they stay home? Or at least do something useful and have a career of their own instead of leeching of their husbands?
Anyway, all in all, it was a great show. I was thoroughly entertained. Every match was at least good, if not great, and I didnít have to (or wish I could) fast forward through anything. I am looking forward to Thursday to see how the aftermath goes down.
Oh, by the way, my boyfriend wants to know what happened to Shark Boy? Anyone?