TV REPORTS 10/29 TNA Impact Review: Caldwell's Review of Nash's Return, Hardy vs. Williams, Victory Road Hype
Oct 29, 2004 - 6:37:00 PM
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James Caldwell, Torch Contributor
TNA Impact Review
October 29, 2004
Taped October 26, 2004 in Orlando, FL at Universal Studios
Aired on Fox Sports Net
Report by James Caldwell, Torch Team Contributor
- We opened up with a highlight package from last week including: Triple X challenging AMW to a match at Victory Road, the creation of a three way feud between Monty Brown & Abyss & Raven, followed by Jeff Jarrett accepting Jeff Jarrett's proposed Ladder Match for the TNA Title at Victory Road.
- To live action this week where we saw multiple TNA wrestlers standing outside of the ring as Dusty Rhodes came to the ring accompanied by D Ray 3000 to the sound of "Hail to the Chief." Please. Rhodes entered the ring and said he's reporting for duty. Rhodes said he will make history at Victory Road with or without Vince Russo. Rhodes reminded us to vote on TNAWrestling.com for him instead of Vince Russo as Director of Authority. Rhodes introduced 3 Live Kru, who Mike Tenay announced would be facing the Naturals tonight with the winner getting a Tag Title shot at Victory Road. Next up on the introduction list, the #1 Contender to the X Division Title, A.J. Styles. Rhodes brought out his next guest, #1 TNA Title Contender, Jeff Hardy. The crowd response was limited to screaming girls ringside and not much else. Let's just say his honeymoon with TNA fans is over. The celebration was interrupted by Vince Russo and Heavy D. Russo stormed to the ring and said "this might be the last time I speak in front of a wrestling audience." Russo and Rhodes shoved each other. Russo rambled on... "Do you think this is new to me? For the past five years, they've just tried to run me out of the business." Russo said he's tried to promote the young talent for years and Rhodes has just stood in his way with his "old style 'rassling." Russo said that he doesn't care if he gets fired. Russo called Rhodes an egomaniac which prompted Rhodes to shove Russo. Rhodes and Russo shouted over each other as Styles & AMW held back Russo while 3 Live Kru & Jeff Hardy held back Rhodes.
Impact Note: This is pretty sad when two comedy act personas get more air time than the rest of the TNA talent. Russo claimed to have stuck up for the young guys backstage. Well, if he truly cared about getting the young guys over, he wouldn't center himself in storylines that have consumed TNA's airwaves for months.
- We went to the backstage area where Jeff Jarrett pulled up in a limo. He told his driver, Kevin, to bring out his ladder to the Impact Zone.
- Raven was shown in a dark, deep area where he laid down his challenge to Abyss and Monty Brown for a Monster's Ball No DQ Triple Threat Match at Victory Road.
(1) Alpha Male Monty Brown defeated Eric Stevens & Mark Stephens at 0:50. Monty Brown entered the ring with a bag in hand. Brown placed the bag down then went to work on his two opponents. Mark Stephens took a Pounce then shortly after, Eric Stevens took a Pounce. Brown dragged both to the middle of the ring and pinned both for the victory.
- After the match, Brown took the mic and told Raven that this isn't the time for games. Brown told Raven to take Abyss in the Ravenmobile and head over to Toys R Us if he wanted to play game. Brown had a game for Raven and Abyss. Brown went to his bag and pulled out a mask. Brown placed an Abyss mask on Stephens then powerbombed him. Brown took out a straightjacket and wrapped it around Stevens. Brown with an overhead suplex sending him to the outside. Brown told Raven and Abyss that this is his territory, not the Terradome or the Black Hole. Brown went on a tirade on Brian Cox from the Best Damn Sports Show. Brown challenged Cox to enter the Impact Zone. Brown was interrupted by a video package highlighting Abyss's desire to take out his deep seeded hatred on Brown and Raven. Brown watched the video package while trying not to look intimidated.
Match View: Well, 50 seconds of wrestling during the first twenty minutes of the show isn't going to cut it. I like the storyline advancement and the hype surrounding the Monsters Ball Match, but it could have been done without the lame match and post-match skit. I guess when the Impact Jobbers only get 50 seconds of ring time, they don't deserve to be paid $100 a show.
(2) Chris Sabin defeated Alex Shelley & Kazarian & Sonjay Dutt & Michael Shane & Shark Boy at 5:12 in an X Division 6 Man Gauntlet Match to gain the #20 Spot at Victory Road. Shelley entered the ring without Goldylocks, sporting a bit of a new look including a gangster style bandana and a full beard. Shelley and Sabin started off the gauntlet with a series of reversals. Kazarian entered the ring after 45 seconds and helped Shelley double team Sabin. Kazarian with a springboard leg drop on Sabin followed by Shelley delivering a leg drop off the ropes. 45 Seconds expired and Sonjay Dutt entered the ring. Dutt with a sweet huricanrana on Kazarian right off the bat. Dutt with a face first slam on Shelley. Dutt with a huricanrana attempt on Kazarian. Kazarian blocked it, but Dutt used his leg strength to whip Kazarian over the top rope to the outside, eliminating Kazarian. Next in the ring was Michael Shane, accompanied by Traci. Shane entered the ring and went to work on Sabin. Trinity ran to the ringside area and said she was going to enter the Gauntlet. Trinity tried to enter the ring, but Heavy D held her back. Triniti and Traci brawled on the outside as Shark Boy entered the ring as Entrant #6. Shane with a super kick sending Dutt over the top rope and to the outside, eliminating him. Shane was clotheslined by Chris Sabin over the top rope, eliminating him. Shark Boy and Shelley went at it with Shark Boy scoring a knee drop. Shark Boy went for a clothesline on Shelley, but was back body dropped over the top rope to the outside. And back to our original two wrestlers: Shelley and Sabin. Sabin and Shelley exchanged offensive moves then Sabin scored the Cradle Shock for the pin and the win to gain the last spot in the X Division Gauntlet at Victory Road.
Order of Elimination
1. Kazarian by Sonjay Dutt
2. Sonjay Dutt by Michael Shane
3. Michael Shane by Chris Sabin
4. Shark Boy by Alex Shelley
5. Alex Shelley by Chris Sabin
Match View: Good, fast paced action that was a good taste of what the 20 man version at Victory Road will feel like. Chris Sabin seems to be the favorite to win the Gauntlet at Victory Road based on his victory this week and increased exposure on Impact. Now, TNA needs to give us some depth to Sabin's character through a promo, vignette, anything, that showcases him in a different light other than being just another high flying X Division guy.
- We went to the back where Shane Douglas was with Coach Scott D'Amore and X Division champ, Petey Williams. D'Amore ripped on Jeff Hardy and let Hardy know that he won't even make it to Victory Road when Petey destroys him tonight. Petey ripped on "pretty boy" A.J. Styles. Jeff Jarrett interrupted by setting up his ladder. Jarrett told Petey to take out Jeff Hardy tonight.
- A Presidential promo for Vince Russo aired to combat Dusty Rhodes' plea to be the Director of Authority.
(3) 3 Live Kru (Brian James & Konan) (w/Ron Killings) defeated the Naturals (Andy Douglas & Chase Stevens) at 2:00 to become the #1 Contenders to the Tag Titles. Konan took the mic and did his WCW "arriba la raza" spiel followed by Brian James doing his New Age Outlaws spiel. Brian James and Andy Douglas faced off to begin the match with James holding the early advantage until Stevens attacked James from behind. Stevens tagged in and was knocked down by James. James made the hot tag to Konan at 1:33 while Stevens made the tag to Douglas. Konan entered the ring and cleared out Stevens. Douglas was left in the ring and took a powerbomb from Konan for the pin and the win.
Match View: Good to see such a long, well drawn out, psychologically sound wrestling match. How can they justify giving two minutes to a #1 Contender Tag Title Match? If they would cut out the five minutes from Russo and Rhodes rambling, maybe the wrestling would actually have time to develop and tell an effective story.
- We went to a clip from last week when Scott Hall challenged Kevin Nash to a match at Victory Road, while looking very old and gray.
- Don West and Mike Tenay bartered back and forth ringside about why Nash and Hall would be against each other after their long, storied past together.
- We went to a video promo from Kevin "greased up white hair" Nash who said he broke into the WWF with Scott Hall, "back when it was WWF, before the dress code." Nash mumbled, and by mumble, I mean you could barely make out what he was saying, about Hall never declining a Last Call or a lovely lady. Nash said he was trying to figure out where Hall's head was. Nash, ambiguously, said he was supporting "Jeff," which led to Tenay and West debating as to which Jeff each one was supporting.
- Roddy Piper entered the Impact Zone and said he wanted to talk to the fans tonight. Piper rambled about Victory Road, promoting each of the matches lined up for the show. Piper went to the front row and asked three people who they were voting for between Dusty Rhodes and Vince Russo. The third fan said "Dustin Rhodes." Piper corrected him then rambled on. Wait, you mean I can't vote for Goldust? Piper said if you vote for Rhodes, "you will soar with the eagles." And as for Russo? "You will scratch with the chickens."
- A presidential promo for Dusty Rhodes aired, which touted his qualifications for TNA Director of Authority.
- Jeff Jarrett entered the Impact Zone with ladder and TNA Title in hand. Jarrett set up the ladder at the Announce Table then sat down with Tenay and West for commentary on our main event match between Petey Williams and Jeff Hardy.
(4) Jeff Hardy defeated Petey Williams (w/Coach Scott D'Amore) at 5:24 in a Non Title Match. Hardy landed a right hand at the beginning of the match, starting a series of mat based reversals. Petey went for the Canadian Destroyer at 0:34, but Hardy flipped out of the hold as we went to commercial.
Back from commercial, Hardy was upside down in a Tree of Woe. Petey stood on Hardy's legs then pulled him down. Petey with a swinging neck breaker then a forearm to the chin. Petey with an Irish Whip in the corner which Hardy turned into a backwards elbow smash from the top turnbuckle. Hardy with a back body drop then a spin kick to the face. Hardy with a double leg drop to the chest. D'Amore grabbed Hardy from behind, distracting Hardy. Williams rolled up Hardy from behind and scored a two count only. Hardy with a face first plant in the middle of the ring. Hardy went up top for a Swanton Bomb, but Jeff Jarrett ran into the ring and shoved Hardy off the rope as D'Amore distracted the ref. Petey set up for the Canadian Destroyer, but A.J. Styles ran into the ring and scored his Back Flip Reverse DDT on Williams with the referee still distracted by D'Amore. Hardy rolled up Williams and scored the pin for the win.
Match View: OK, that ending made no sense whatsoever. Why would D'Amore distract the referee when A.J. Styles entered the ring? Not a good main event match due to the commercial taking out a good 1/3 of the action. Also, you just get the overall sense that Hardy can't put together a good solid, main event match.
Closing Thought: TNA just needs to have Victory Road come as soon as possible. Nothing new was established and the show just felt like filler. TNA seems to falling into the same sort of traps WWE regularly finds themselves in when they have all the matches for a PPV established and there's nothing left to add onto. That said, TNA can make the TNA Title Match seem important if Jeff Hardy can be given some time to actually talk. Apparently, TNA and Hardy aren't willing to take that step, therefore there's nothing TNA can really do to make this match seem like a "can't miss." There's no deep seeded hatred or back stabbing that can make the story behind the match seem more intriguing. Unless Hardy is willing to get over his hang up about speaking and actually tell us why he wants to take the TNA Title, there's nothing fans can attach to which would make them care if Hardy won or not.
As always, feel free to send me feedback on today's show at firstname.lastname@example.org. I'm open to any and all reader comments. I'll be checking in with the second edition of the "Sunday Brunch" Sunday afternoon and I will also see everyone next week in the Impact Zone.
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