PPV REPORTS 3/12 TNA Destination X PPV: Caldwell's ongoing Alternative Perspective review
Mar 12, 2006 - 9:52:00 PM
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By James Caldwell, Torch columnist
TNA Destination X Alternative Perspective PPV Review
March 12, 2006
From Universal Studios in Orlando, Florida
- We began with clips from Sting's return to PPV in January followed by his retirement speech. More clips of Alex Shelley following Sting around So Cal then Jarrett with another harebrained scheme. So much for the X Division being the centerpiece this month.
- Jarrett's music hit. Well, we haven't had a pre-show Jarrett promo in two months. Jarrett came to the ring with Gail Kim. He was wearing a black leather jacket, a pink flowery button-down shirt, and designer jeans. Jarrett's Army followed him into the ring. Jarrett said they were having a big team meeting before the PPV. Jarrett said they all agreed that Sting doesn't have the guts to show up. Tenay sold the PPV on Sting guaranteeing he would show up. Jarrett called Alex Shelley and Eric Young to the front of the line. He said they had an assignment more important than their match. Jarrett told them to go find Sting. Shelley wasn't happy about the assignment. Eric was confused. The fans went for the cheap, "Brokeback Mountain" chant at America's Most Wanted. Jarrett got serious and stared into the camera. He said Sting is a quitter.
- Jeremy Borash discussed the Jarrett Army's game plan. He asked if Sting Borden will be here. Eric Young was looking around the ring behind Borash. It looked like one of those Vonage commercials with the giant lobster getting stuck in the revolving door in the background. Borash ran down the PPV card.
- We saw clips from the Christian Cage-Monty Brown feud.
(1) Shannon Moore beat Cassidy Riley at 3:20. Shannon hit a corkscrew splash from the top turnbuckle for the win. Basic formula match.
- Tenay and West ran down the card. We went to a video package on the Ultimate X match.
- Jeremy Borash was backstage with Christopher Daniels. Daniels talked about the Ultimate X match. He asked questions of whether Joe could compete, if Styles could regain the belt, and if he could survive after suffering so many injuries. Daniels said he is poised to regain the X Title.
- Don West was next to the St. Louis Cardinals. Jim Edmonds looked like he would rather be anywhere else than ringside. David Eckstein put over the Ultimate X match. Scott Spiezio rounded out the list of former Anaheim Angels turned St. Louis Cardinals.
- Simon Diamond walked to the ring with Elix Skipper and David Young. Diamond talked about the White Sox winning the World Title. He made fun of the St. Louis Cardinals for losing in the playoffs to the Astros. He said a 42-year old man - Roger Clemens - beat the Cardinals. Actually, it was Roy Oswalt in Game Six in St. Louis, but who's counting? Diamond said he was going to Tucson, Arizona to confront the White Sox. He said he's tired of baseball players.
- Shark Boy and Norman Smiley walked to the ring to face Diamonds in the Rough. The fans were strongly behind Norman.
(2) Diamonds in the Rough (Elix Skipper & David Young w/Simon Diamond) beat Norman Smiley & David Young at 3:16. The match fell apart early when Jim Edmonds laughed at the action going on ringside. Shark Boy feigned a punch and David Young fell flat on his face. Shark wasn't sure how to react. Norman did the Big Wiggle on David. Shark Boy threw himself onto the floor. Norman walked into a double team slam for the win. This made Ashley-Torrie look like Angle-Undertaker.
- West ran down the card one more time.
LIVE PPV REVIEW
- We started with the fake Sting in a "black and white 1910-era silent movie Charlie Chaplain style" video package going over the matches. A man in a Yankees jersey called his shot as if he were Babe Ruth. The video closed with the "return of Steve Borden." Fake Sting fell against a wall and his mask fell off. It ended up being Eric Young.
- Alex Shelley walked to the ring and set up his video camera. We open with X Division action to get the show started right.
1 -- ALEX SHELLEY vs. JAY LETHAL
The fans chanted, "Lethal, Lethal" when he walked to the ring. Tenay said TNA is the present and future of wrestling. They went into a series of mat reversals in some unique holds. Tenay's voice broke out of excitement. More chain wrestling with quick nearfalls before a stand off. Shelley clapped. He extended his hand. The fans warned Lethal. Shelley went for a trickster clothesline, but Lethal saw it coming and scored with an arm drag. Shelley cooperated on a head scissors from the apron to the ring. Lethal hit a suicide dive through the ropes to the floor. Shelley instantly grabbed his knee on impact. Back in the ring, Lethal went on the offensive. Shelley came back with an enziguiri kick to the head. Shelley rocked Lethal with a clothesline. Shelley continued to pose for the hard camera. Lethal came back with a clothesline and a flip-over drop kick to the head. Lethal and Shelley exchanged quick pin attempts. Shelley hit a top rope atomic drop. Lethal ducked a clothesline and hit a German Suplex with a bridge for a very close nearfall. Lethal hit a scoop slam then went up top. Shelley crotched him. Lethal shoved Shelley off the top. He hit a diving headbutt for another nearfall. Lethal applied the Masterlock. Shelley broke the Masterlock! Shelley hit the Acid Drop for the win.
WINNER: Alex Shelley at 10:10. Very good opener. Good nearfalls to protect Lethal and give him some momentum. TNA obviously wants to do more with Shelley and this was a good way to utilize him in the ring.
- Jeremy Borash was backstage with Team Canada. Bobby Roode was on point with his comments on The Naturals. D'Amore talked about the International X Cup. Eric Young couldn't keep his head focused. He kept looking around the locker room. D'Amore said Canada produces the greatest wrestlers in the world. Alex Shelley walked in and grabbed Eric Young to go find Sting. D'Amore said A-1 would replace Eric.
2 -- "MAVERICK" MATT BENTLEY (w/Traci) vs. LANCE HOYT
Matt wore Shawn Michaels-style chaps. Traci wore a Michael Jackson get up. Hoyt went for a press slam, but Matt avoided the move. He took a back body drop. Hoyt clotheslined Matt over the top rope into the guardrail. Matt feigned walking out of the ring. Traci tried to distract Hoyt with her chest. Hoyt wasn't fooled and he clotheslined Matt, who tried to sneak back into the ring. Matt fired back with right hands. Hoyt came back with a sidewalk slam. The Hoytamaniacs showed up to drown out the anti-Hoyt chants. Matt and Hoyt went up top. Matt hit a spinning neck breaker. In the ring, Matt connected with another neck breaker. Matt scored a nearfall on the first pin attempt of the match. Hoyt came back with forearm blows followed by a clothesline in the corner. Hoyt punted Matt in the lower stomach region. Hoyt went for a pumphandle slam. He made the cover for a nearfall. Hoyt missed with a top rope moonsault at 6:20. In the middle of the match, we saw Eric Young and Alex Shelley looking for Sting in the rafters. Eric grabbed some flyers from a box and threw them down. At least this isn't Atlanta 1972. Traci grabbed a flyer and handed it to Matt. Matt wasn't sure what to think. Matt turned around and Hoyt hit him with a big boot for the pin.
WINNER: Lance Hoyt at 8:00. Seen it before.
- J.B. ran to the back for an interview with Team 3D, Rhino, and Ron Killings. Rhino cut a generic big man promo. Ray used the name of the PPV to discuss their match. Ron Killings rapped. Devon said his one line. Ray told Devon to teach him ebonics.
- Team Canada came to the ring. Eric Young nearly jumped out of his pants went the pyro went off. A-1 wasn't dressed to wrestle.
3 -- TEAM CANADA (BOBBY ROODE & ERIC YOUNG w/Scott D'Amore and A-1) vs. THE NATURALS (CHASE STEVENS & ANDY DOUGLAS)
The Naturals scored the first nearfall of the match after dominating early. Roode tripped Douglas from outside of the ring, allowing Canada to take control. Tenay said Canada has associated with the wrong crowd and they don't need shenanigans to be dominant wrestlers. That's all storyline, but it's something I've said for two years. Stevens punted Eric Young in the gut while he was draped on the top turnbuckle, repeating the same spot from the previous mach. Douglas missed with a splash on the outside and held his head. In the ring, Eric scored a nearfall on Stevens. Roode connected with a top rope knee drop on Stevens. Canada continued to work on Stevens. They picked up their sixth straight nearfall when Stevens tried to fight back. Roode cut him off and tagged out to Eric. Eric was trapped on the apron. The Naturals cornered him and he cowered up the Ultimate X poles like a scared cat. Douglas hit a kick to the head and Eric fell straight to the floor like a tree falling in the forest. A-1 dragged Eric to the Canada corner and helped Eric tag out to Roode. He cut off Stevens, who tried to tag out. Douglas finally scored the hot tag at 9:55. Douglas hit a swinging DDT in the ring for a nearfall on Roode. Naturals went for an awkward double team move on Eric. The action broke down to no heat. Canada went for a double team superplex, but Douglas ran to the corner out of nowhere and slammed everyone in a Tower of Doom spot. There's the big heat. Douglas scored with another nearfall. Canada 6, Naturals 5 on nearfalls. Naturals went for the Natural Disaster, but Roode escaped. Eric cracked the Canadian stick over Douglas's head. Roode made the cover for the win.
WINNERS: Team Canada at 12:30. Standard tag match. Three matches and the first wrestler/team to score a nearfall has lost all three.
- Monty Brown was backstage with Jeremy Borash. Brown said he was getting his respect tonight. He welcomed Christian to his playground. Brown said something about being covered in doorknobs. Larry Zbyszko walked in wearing a baseball cap and an ugly shirt. No, that isn't the ring crew coordinator, that's the TNA authority figure. Zbyszko promised a level playing field for the NWA Title match. Brown wanted nothing to do with it. He said he would level the playing field with the Pounce.
- We saw clips of the James Gang vs. LAX feud.
4 -- JAMES GANG (KIP & B.G. & BULLET BOB) vs. LAX (KONAN & HOMICIDE & MACHETE)
In Spanish, Konnan said LAX doesn't fear anyone. He said he hates everything in the world. B.G. did his pre-match mic work. No funny catchphrases tonight; it's fight night. Homicide was tossed out of the ring within the first ten seconds. Tenay said Bob's ring boots are older than half of the TNA roster. The heels worked on B.G. in their corner. Kip snapped on the referee. Homicide scored the first nearfall of the match on B.G. following a neck breaker. They had a mid-ring collision. Kip took a hot tag and drilled Homicide with a clothesline. At least he didn't laugh at him. Everyone cleared out of the ring except for Konnan and Bob. Bob ducked a punch and landed a punch. They spilled to the outside and Konnan limped around the floor. Bob landed punches on the announce table. In the ring, B.G. went for the pumphandle slam. However, Homicide entered the ring with a chair. Bob stole the chair and kicked the chair into Homicide's head. Kip hit a lift up slam on Machete for the win.
WINNERS: James Gang at 6:39. Basic match with Bob getting his revenge.
- Jeremy Borash followed Eric and Shelley into the men's locker room. There was a bat and a ring jacket next to the sink. Styles flushed and walked out of a urinal. Eric nearly took his head off with a bat. Styles asked why Shelley and Eric were in the bathroom together. Styles said Shelley was going to get himself hurt with his camera work.
5 -- PETEY WILLIAMS (w/A-1) vs. PUMA vs. SONJAY DUTT vs. CHRIS SABIN
T.J. had the mask on as a representative of New Japan. Tenay said TNA is different from other promotions because they bring in top talent from around the world. Dutt and Puma had a quick opening with good counters. Sabin and Petey had some good opening mat wrestling. Petey thumbed Sabin in the eye and went for a roll up for a nearfall. The action broke down in the ring. Sabin hit a tornado DDT after hitting a spin kick on Puma and Dutt. Sabin and Dutt fought in the ring, throwing away their tag team allegiance. Puma locked in a nice submission on Sabin. Dutt answered with a springboard moonsault on Puma. Sabin tagged in and worked over Dutt with a surfboard stretch in the middle of the ring. Dutt broke free and slammed Sabin into the corner turnbuckle. Puma and Sabin exchanged some nice chops and kicks to the chest. Petey did the tree of woe groin spot on Sabin. Petey hit a huricanrana from the apron to the floor on Sabin. They regrouped and Puma hit a somersault dive onto Sabin and Petey on the outside. Puma cut off Dutt in the ring. Sabin ran past Puma with a suicide dive onto Petey. Dutt hit a moonsault on everyone on the outside. Great spot. In the ring, Puma avoided the Cradle Shock and hit a spin kick to the head. Everyone crashed on the mat. Petey went for the Sharpshooter on Puma. Puma crawled to the ropes, but Dutt made the save by breaking up the hold. Petey hit a Tornado DDT on Dutt. Petey reeled in Dutt for the Destroyer, but Dutt countered into a modified Styles Clash for a nearfall. Dutt and Sabin had an exchange. The tag partners fought before Sabin hit a combination powerbomb into spinning powerbomb. Puma hit a double underhook slam on Sabin for a very close nearfall. Petey threw Puma over the top rope. Dutt went for the Destroyer on Petey, but Petey countered. Petey answered with the Destroyer on Dutt. Puma hit a springboard neck breaker on Petey. Sabin grabbed Puma and hit the Cradle Shock for the win.
WINNER: 15:00. Order the replay just for this match. Absolutely, positively the best undercard match in TNA PPV history. Puma earned a permanent spot on the roster.
- For the ultimate buzzkill, we went backstage with the Jarrett Army. The "that was awesome" chants drowned out Borash's introduction. Eric Young walked in and said they couldn't find Sting. Jarrett said he's going to the ring with a bulls-eye on his back. He told Sting to come find him in the ring.
6 -- AMERICA'S MOST WANTED (w/Jackie) & JEFF JARRETT (w/Gail Kim) & ABYSS (w/James Mitchell) vs. RHINO & RON KILLINGS & TEAM 3D (BROTHER RAY & BROTHER DEVON)
The match started off as a brawl in the ring, which fits fine to follow the previous match. The wrestlers paired off and brawled around the building. Jarrett paired off with Killings. Ray paired off with Storm. Rhino and Abyss brawled. Harris and Devon paired off. Rhino went for a gore through a barricade on top of the stands, but Abyss blocked with a big boot. Killings and Jarrett brawled to the Spanish announce table. As Bill Simmons wrote, it's only inevitable. Killings and Jarrett exchanged blows. Rhino landed multiple chair shots on Abyss. Don West said that if Tony LaRussa finds out the Cardinals players are this close to the action, he would suspend them. Rhino and Storm returned to the ring at 4:00. West said a tag was a mere formality in the match. Good line. Devon hit a spinning shoulder thrust on Storm. The action broke down in the ring. Everyone stumbled around before Jarrett entered and attacked Devon. Ray took a hot tag and slammed the opposition except for Jarrett. Gail ran into the ring and blocked Rhino as he set up for the Gore. Gail slapped Rhino. He went for a piledriver, but Abyss cut him off with a boot to the face. Jackie and Gail bickered outside of the ring. Rhino and Abyss exchanged blows. Abyss did his cross-arm signal at Ray then charged Rhino with a splash in the corner. Funny spot. Harris grounded Rhino and applied a chinlock. Rhino fought to his feet, but Harris pulled him down by the hair. As Tenay said, Jarrett entered the ring to try to cherrypick a pin on Rhino. Rhino kicked out on three pin attempts. The heels continued to work over Rhino. Gail and Jackie argued on the outside. Rhino finally scored the hot tag to Killings at 15:00. Abyss accidentally squashed Harris in the corner. Killings hit a suplex into a Stunner for a nearfall when Jarrett broke it up. The match broke down in the ring. Jarrett asked for the guitar. He measured Killings, but Rhino gored Jarrett. The action spilled to the outside and took out a cameraman. Ray did some Dusty punches on Jarrett. He held Jarrett's legs open, but Devon was nowhere to be found. Gail jumped on Ray's back. Ray slammed her on her back. Jackie held open Gail's legs for a Killings leg drop while Ray held Jarretts legs open for a Devon headbutt. Team 3D hit the 3D on Abyss. Storm caught Ray in the chops with a superkick. AMW set up for the Death Sentence on Devon. They connected, but Killings intervened. AMW tried to cuff Killings to the corner ringpost. Storm accidentally cuffed Harris and Killings came out unscathed. He hit the axe kick on Storm for an apparent vicory, but Jarrett pulled the ref out of the ring. Killings splashed Jarrett from the ring to the outside. Jarrett went for the Stroke on Killings with the help of Harris, who tripped Killings. Jarrett pinned Killings clean in the ring to win.
WINNERS: Jarrett Army at 20:11. Positives - great opening brawl that fit well on the PPV after good technical matches. Also, some fun spots. Negatives - Killings being pinned clean in the ring after TNA built him up. Also, a really boring heel beat down on Rhino that lasted too long.
- We saw a video package on the Lockdown PPV next month. Jarrett grabbed the mic and told Sting Borden to show up and prove him wrong. He said Sting is a quitter. The fans chanted, "Boring." Jarrett said he would count to ten. He got to nine and paused. On his back in the middle of the ring, Jarrett reiterated his speech. He reached ten and nothing happened. He looked to the entrance ramp and saw nothing. He laughed and he said he was proven right. He called for his music and his music hit. He walked out of the ring. Boy, if Sting isn't on this show, it will be the ultimate bait and switch.
- We went to an Ultimate X video package. Two years in a row, the X Division isn't in the main event of its own PPV. Disappointing error in judgment.
- Borash was backstage with Samoa Joe. Borash compared the undefeated streak to Bill Goldberg. Joe nearly snapped Borash's neck off. Joe told Borash it's never about who's next, but who's left.
7 -- SAMOA JOE vs. A.J. STYLES vs. CHRISTOPHER DANIELS -- Ultimate X match for the X Divison Title
Styles and Daniels tried to climb the corner turnbuckles early. Styles climbed up, but dropped to the mat when Joe went after him. Daniels did the same and Joe caught him with an overhead slam. Joe teased climbing at 1:15. Styles hit a dropsault on Daniels. Styles and Daniels climbed the cables and kicked each other off. Joe flipped Styles over the top rope onto Daniels, who moved in the way to catch Styles. Joe gathered himself in the ring. He hit the cannonball dive on Styles and Daniels in a repeat of the famous spot from Joe-Styles-Daniels I. Joe climbed the structure. He reached the cables and tried to climb. He made his way across but fell down. Daniels called his spot in the corner. Daniels hit a flip over slam on Joe from the top turnbuckle to the mat. Styles kicked Daniels in the small of the back. Styles climbed up top and Daniels met him up top. Styles hit a flip over powerbomb from the top of the corner structure to the mat. Nice. Styles climbed the cables and neared the belt. Joe caught him and dropped him with a sick atomic drop. Joe snapped off a kick and Sentaun splash. Joe washed Daniels's face then hit the charging kicking to the head. Great camerawork zooming in on the spot. Joe walked to the outside and grabbed a chair. Joe placed Daniels in the chair next to the guardrail. Joe went for the Ole kick in the corner, but Styles caught Joe with a flying clothesline out of nowhere. Back in the ring, Styles ascended the cables at 8:50. Styles fell down on his own. Joe caught Styles with an E. Honda front slam out of the corner. Joe tossed the chair into the ring and placed Styles in position for the Muscle Buster. Daniels intervened. Joe slapped Daniels hard across the face. Daniels answered with punches. They fought to the corner. Joe caught Daniels with a reverse chin lock from the top. Styles hit a kick to the head on Joe and Daniels. Styles went up top with Joe. Joe headbutted him to the mat. Daniels and Joe shared a similar thought and grappled Joe for a dual Muscle Buster. Styles and Daniels traded right hands and chops. Styles hit a triple combination of kicks at 11:45. He climbed the corner structure once again. Joe grabbed a chair and smacked Styles in the back. Daniels kicked the chair into Joe's face. Daniels climbed the cables. He slid down the cables to the belt. He unhooked the belt and dropped to the mat with the belt in hand.
Afterwards, Styles and Daniels shook hands. Joe snapped and threw the ring steps across the ringside area. Tenay and West made the point that Joe was never pinned.
WINNER: Christopher Daniels at 13:23 to capture the X Division Title. What the...? 13 freakin' minutes for the X Title match with a very anticlimactic finish? I throw my hands in the air.
- Jeremy Borash was backstage with Christian Cage. Christian said he might be the underdog in the match, but Monty Brown hasn't been busting his ass in the ring to earn respect.
- A video package aired from Christian's NWA Title victory last month. We went to ring introductions with a good 35 minutes of PPV time remaining. Oh dear.
8 -- CHRISTIAN CAGE vs. MONTY BROWN -- NWA Title match
After TNA killed time for no apparent reason, referee Earl Hebner checked on Brown and Christian, who had taped ribs. They went through the feeling out process. Brown tossed Christian over the top rope at 2:30. Brown took Christian to the outside and threw him over the guardrail. They brawled around the ringside area. They returned to the ring at 5:15. They went back to the outside at 5:45. They returned to the ring at 6:45. Brown continued to dominate the match by working on the injured ribs and stomach. Christian made his comeback at 11:20 with a Tornado DDT. Christian missed with an ill-advised frog splash at 13:30. Brown stretched Christian on the mat with a submission hold. They fought to the corner ringpost. Christian headbutted Brown off the top turnbuckle to the mat. Brown slid into position for Christian to hit a diving back splash on Brown. Brown countered the Unprettier with a powerbomb. Brown hit a lift up slam into a front face pancake on Christian for a nearfall at 16:20. Brown went for the Pounce, but Christian kicked him in the face. Christian hit the Unprettier at 17:10. He made the cover for the anticlimactic finish.
WINNER: Christian at 17:10 to retain the NWA Title. Blah title match, leaving us with about 15 minutes of PPV time remaining. Brown got in enough offense to look strong.
- Afterwards, Christian celebrated with the NWA Title. Jarrett's music hit. Jarrett walked to the ringside area with a guitar. He said Sting is a quitter. He said he wanted the title belt back like Christian's "brother up North." He wanted a rematch now. Wait, he didn't win the Money in the Bank. Christian asked Jarrett if he would retire if he received a title match. Christian and Jarrett told each other to shut up. He said he couldn't give Jarrett a title match, but he could give him an ass kicking. Brown and Jarrett double teamed Christian until Christian hit a double clothesline. Abyss entered the ring and attacked Christian. Rhino evened the score. Team Canada and AMW hit the ring. Abyss hit the Torture Rack slam on Christian. Shelley videotaped the whole episode. Harris cuffed Christian to the ring ropes. Jarrett whipped Christian with a leather belt. D'Amore got his shots. They passed the belt around. Christian continued to take the Tommy Dreamer treatment until Steve Borden ran into the ring from the stands. Borden attacked everyone in the ring. He cleared the ring of everyone except Eric Young. Eric ran scared out of the ring. Jarrett was left cowering in the corner. Borden landed a hard right hand. Borden grabbed the belt and whipped Jarrett across the back. He applied the Scorpion Deathlock. Jarrett tapped out. The heels didn't intervene for whatever reason. Scott Steiner ran into the ring and attacked Borden from behind. Steiner hit a fallaway slam on Borden. He did push-ups next to Borden. Steiner put Borden in the Steiner Recliner. Jarrett grabbed his guitar. Jarrett slammed the guitar over Borden's head from a seated position ala Vince McMahon at the Royal Rumble 2005 telling Batista and Cena to restart the Rumble match. Jarrett held Borden's head and slapped him around.
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