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10/8 TNA Impact Breakdown: Impact Starts It’s Stride, Strengths overshadow Flaws

Oct 9, 2005 - 12:42:00 PM

Paul Madavi, Torch Team Contributor

TNA Impact Review
Aired October 8th, 2005
Taped 09/27/05 at Universal Studios Orlando, FL
Aired on Spike TV at 11:00 PM (ET/PT)
Report by Paul Madavi, Torch Team Contributor

The Lowdown: Impact Starts It’s Stride, Strengths Overshadow Flaws

TNA Impact begins with a video package recapping Team 3D’s explosive entrance to TNA. Their run in is spliced with footage of a bomb exploding. Backstage Ray and Devon cut a promo. They are pumped and ready to take the tag team titles and sling them, once again, across their wastes. Good intensity is shown from both members of 3D.

Earlier tonight, Raven was handcuffed and banned from the Impact zone. Mike Tenay welcomes us to the show. The crowd chants TNA, as the first match is introduced.

(1) 3 Live Kru (BG James, The Truth, and Konnan) defeat Team Canada (A1, Bobby Roode, and Eric Young w/ Coach Scott D’Amore). Team Canada (not introduced by their individual names) make their entrance first. They taunt the crowd, and D’Amore shouts at the cameraman before they make they get to the ring. 3LK then make their way down the chute. Konnan, regaled in full gangsta warrior glory, grabs the microphone and pumps up the crowd. BG James then makes his old school announcer style promo.

The bell rings and Team Canada rushes in and gets in cheap shots on 3LK. BG James and Booby Roode start off the match. James gets off some of his trademark punches, before being hit from behind by Eric Young. Bobby Roode takes control, while Scott D’Amore joins Mike Tenay and Don West at the announce table. D’Amore announces that it was he who had gotten Raven banned. Tenay is disgusted. Back in the ring, Bobby Roode hits a neckbreaker and gets a two-count. He applies a rear chin lock w/ knee on BG James. At the shoot entrance, Kip James sits and watches in hopes of distracting BG. BG gets to his vertical base and elbows out of the lock. He punches away at Roode. They whip and work the ropes before colliding mid ring. BG manages to get to his corner and tag in Ron “The Truth” Killing. The Truth surges, as Eric Young is tagged in. Truth hits his spinning super kick for a two-count. Things break down as everyone gets in the ring. Everyone but Eric Young and Konnan are tossed out of the ring. Konnan dodges a Young charge, and hangs him up on the ropes. Konnan then throws his shoes at him, which is clearly the single lamest move in all of wrestling. This all eventually leads to The Truth and Young being the only ones in the ring. The Truth hits his spinning axe kick on Young for the pin.

After the match, Team Canada rushes in and being beating down on 3LK, focusing on BJ James. Kip James runs down to the ring and makes the big save. Konnan gets in his face, while BG tries to calm both men down. I’m not sure when the last time two people fought over BG James was, but I’m pretty it was NEVER.

The Breakdown

Psychology: This match was all over the place, yet somehow it all worked. I’m thinking some of it might have to do with the apt work of Mike Tenay, who managed to jump from point to point, call the match, and give us history, all without breaking cadence. The match itself was composed of a small isolation section, after some cheating by Team Canada. Once James made his save tag, pretty much all hell broke loose. Illegal men in the ring, illegal men wrestling in the ring for long period of time, and all kinds of shenanigans at ringside marked the match from then on. Even after the match, it was shmoz time. The match basically said two things: Team Canada loves to cheat, and you never know what’s going to happen when 3LK are wrestling, because they cheat just as much as the heels do! Again, somehow it works. The real gem of the match was Kip James making the save on BG James. This provides a real spark of interest, as the two men have a long history of tag teaming with each other.

Action: The action is this match was pretty darned bad. Between the boring work by James and Roode, the unnecessarily flashy work by The Truth, and Konnan throwing his shoes at other wrestlers (COME ON), the action in this match was ugly.

Entertainment: Of course, the entertainment factor of this match did not come from the action, and it was never supposed to. The entertainment came primarily from listening to Tenay masterfully handle the mess of a segment, and the intrigue surrounding Kip James, BG James, and Konnan. And sure, while I find it overly flashy, The Truth has a very cool arsenal of moves. Overall, this was a decent TV match, with lots going on.

Impact Scale Rating: 4.5/10 – The lack of a good, cohesive match has to bring the score down below 5.0 for me. None of the wrestlers really came off as unique, or impressive, which is a must for TNA right now. Plus, the shoe throwing is definitely a solid point deduction. It gets no lamer than that. However, there’s a lot of setup and history established during this segment, and Mike Tenay showed off some real chops.

[Commercial Break]

Back at the Impact Zone, a match between America’s Most Wanted and Team 3D is announced. Tenay and West hype the match a little. West invites us to watch a video explaining the Ultimate X match. It is an X Division match in which the X Division belt (or a large X in a non title situation) is hung ten feet above the middle of the ring at the cross section of two ropes. The winner of match must pull the belt off the cross section. The video describes it as the most innovative and grueling wrestling match ever created.

(2) “The Fallen Angel” Christopher Daniels defeats Austin Aries and Matt Bentley (w/ Traci). Daniels makes his way to the ring first without much fanfare. Austin Aries then makes his entrance to some decent cheers. Bentley and Traci come down to the ring come down to the ring with some appreciation from the crowd.

The bell rings and the three men feel each other out before starting off the action. The men take turns hitting a series of arm drags on each other. Aries hits two flipping arm drags, one on Daniels and one on Bentley. He things hits a springboard diving back double elbow on his opponents. Bentley rolls out of the ring, and Aries goes after Daniels. He hangs up Aries on the top tope, and then hits a diving spinning splash for a two-count. Aries then rushes Bentley, one to be caught in a double arm suplex. Bentley bridges the suplex for a two-count. Bentley then focuses on Daniels, hitting some punches. They work the ropes, which leads to Daniels hitting a running STO on Bentley. The crowd begins chanting “Fallen Angel.” He then hits a double reverse face plant on both Bentley and Aries, and almost gets the pin on both of them! Daniels climbs the top rope, but is sent flying by Bentley and Aries who toss him of the top rope. Aries then hits a back suplex on Bentley. Aries then begins to surge on the other wrestling. He hits a mean running dropkick on Aries for a two-count, which is broken by Bentley. Aries jumps on top of Bentley, and does a reverse hurricanrana sending them both flying out of the ring. Daniels attempts a springboard moonsault from the inside of the ring onto both them outside, but they both dodge the attack, leaving Daniels outside in pain. Bentley and Aries work the ropes and hit a double cross body. Our focus is then switched to Traci at ringside, who is taunting Daniels. Petey Williams, who will be competing with Sabin and Bentley in an Ultimate X match comes down to harass Traci. Chris Sabin then runs down and attacks Williams. Bentley then drops them both with a flying senton over the top rope. This leaves Aries in the ring. Aries climbs to the top rope to get himself some of the action, but his legs are taken out from beneath him by Daniels. Daniels hits The Angel’s Wings (a double arm hook, seated face plant) for the pin and the win.

After the match, Daniels is pumped and celebrating in the ring. Traci tends to Bentley at ringside.

The Breakdown

Psychology: This match exhibited excellent three way psychology, in that it made sure that the wrestlers were taking advantage of each situation given to them. As soon as two wrestlers were focused on the other, the third had improvised a plan for gaining the upper hand and a quick pin attempt to follow. This psychology was bolstered by the fact that it sometimes backfired, and one of the already engaged wrestlers gained the upper hand. The way that Daniels won, established him as crafty in addition to being a risk taker and generally dangerous opponent. Both Aries and Bentley came off as slightly foolish for letting the match slip their minds as they tended to the ringside battle between the non-competitors. Also, the match was a little on the short side, not allowing the men to properly sell each move. It was a very well booked match though, giving Daniels some good rub heading into the PPV.

Action: Talk about some impressive action! This is the kind of match that is going to really set TNA apart from WWE. All three men worked hard, fast, and consistently kept the action at high level. Aries was the glue of the match, and he mixed it up between grapples, stiff shots, and high flying moves. His reverse hurricanrana out of the ring was incredible. Daniels provided an amazing highlight with his springboard moonsault from inside to the outside of the ring. Lastly, Bentley kept up his end of the deal hitting a beautiful bridging suplex and a massive suicide senton dive.

Entertainment: This was as good as a TV triple threat match is going to get. The psychology was smart and fresh, and the action was top notch. The match featured numerous innovative spots and did an excellent job of letting each of the wrestlers put themselves over. This match alone is worth watching the replay on Monday night, or at least recording it.

Impact Scale Rating: 7.5/10 – This had everything you could want from a TV match. The one weak spot in the psychology, in which Bentley and Aries lost their focus on the match, takes off from the match a little. Plus I didn’t think they sold some of the moves for long enough, probably because of the time limit. However, this was overall, an excellent and visually impressive match.

[Commercial Break]

When we return, a video package for Abyss, TNA’s resident monster is shown. The video puts over Abyss as a massive wrestler, and an overpowering force in TNA. It’s another well produced video from TNA.

(3) Abyss (w/ James Mitchell) defeats Sonny Siaki. Tenay sells Abyss as being 6’8 and 350 lbs. Abyss comes down with a chain wrapped around his arms and neck. Announced as being from Samoa, Siaki makes his way wearing custom warm ups.

Abyss dominates Siaki from the get go. Sonny’s punches have little affect, as Abyss is able to take them without falling. When Sonny goes for a clothesline, Abyss chops him straight to the mat. The crowd is wildly in favor of Abyss. Abyss attempts to powerbomb Siaki, but it’s turned into a hurricanrana. Mitchell then briefly distracts Siaki, allowing Abyss to get the upper hand on Siaki. He starts off with a big boot. Abyss hits a torture rack backbreaker, and then his Black Hole Slam for the pin.

The Breakdown

Psychology: There wasn’t too much to this match. Siaki got in some brief offense, capped off by his hurricanrana. However, after that it was squash time. It’s nice that TNA only has one monster. It makes him seem that much more effective, unique, and devastating. Abyss seems like a legitimate force. WWE has Batista, The Undertaker, Big Show, Kane, Gene Snitsky, and Batista towering in the land of giants, making each of them seem less impressive. If pushed properly, Abyss can be a great selling point for TNA.

Action: Abyss has an impressive array of moves, from what I’ve seen of him in the past. This match just showed off a little he’s got.

Entertainment: This was fairly entertaining as squash matches go, but it was still just a squash match. Combined with the video package, it was a good introduction to Abyss.

Impact Scale Rating: 5.0/10 – Although Abyss is an excellent character, and will certainly be a selling point for TNA as they continue to establish themselves, this segment was still just an average TV moment.

A video package for Samoa Joe “The Samoan Submission Machine” airs. Joe is shown devastating his opponents during matches. He is put over as being a dangerous wrestler who loves taking hurting his opponents with his Muscle Buster finisher.

[Commercial Break]

When we return, Mike Tenay is in the ring with “The Living Legend” Larry Zybysko. Tenay asks how The Title Committee has allowed Jeff Jarrett to get the TNA Title in another promotion in Canada. Larry says it happened and can’t be undone, but that TNA is bound for glory, and nothing, even Jeff Jarrett can stop it. So, for the title match at the Bound for Glory PPV, there will be a special referee at the match, and that referee with be MMA “legend” Tito Ortiz. Ortiz sells TNA and Bound for Glory. Ortiz says he has only two rules for both Nash and Jarrett. From this night on, he is respected as ref in the ring. And, that they cannot lay a finger on him. Ortiz says, in a nutshell, that breaking the rules will lead to an ass kicking of the highest order.

Jeff Jarrett makes his was down to the ring, and someone holds up a sign that says “Jarrett for President.” Jarrett says that if Ortiz lays a finger on him, he’ll break Ortiz’s neck. He then says Bound for Glory is going to be an unpleasant time for Nash. Nash’s music hits, and Jarrett runs out of the ring and rushes Nash. Nash is ready, though and punches Jarrett. In the ring, Nash pummels on Jarrett. Ortiz grabs Nash, and slaps on a rear naked choke with scissors. Nash tries to take advantage, and Ortiz tosses him off of Nash, as security comes in and separates the men. Ortiz looked completely emotionless during the entire segment, which was his only downfall, as he came of pretty good otherwise.

[Commercial Break]

Backstage, Shane Douglas is interviewing Christopher Daniels. Daniels says he defeated everyone in the X Division during the six month period he had as champ. He sells his Iron Man match with AJ Styles. He says to prove what an Iron man he is, he will let Styles pick three opponents for him to face next week, and he will defeat them all in 15 minutes or less. He says it’s the gospel truth! Just then AJ walks into the scene, and Daniels immediately hides behind Douglas. AJ says he going to accept Style’s little challenge, and he knows exactly which three guys to use. Here’s hoping Samoa Joe is in there!

(4) Team 3D (Devon and Ray) defeat America’s Most Wanted (Cowboy James Storm and Wildcat Chris Harris). AMW make their way to the ring first to some solid booing. Team 3D get a nice pop, as they make their way to the ring.

The bell rings and Devon and Storm start the match off. They begin by working the ropes. Devon hits a scoop slam and follows with a leg drop. Harris runs in, but he is clothesline by Devon. Ray comes in to even the odds, and they clear out the ring

[Commercial Break]

When we come back, Harris is working over Ray with a fish hook. He tags in Storm and they isolate Ray in their corner. Storm chokes Ray, and then punches him. Ray starts getting in some open hand chops to the chest which reverberate through the Impact Zone. Ray then gets up and hits a sit-down bomb leading to a stalemate in the match. Ray leaps to tag in Devon. Devon surges, hitting a big shoulder tackle. He hits a flapjack on Harris. Devon goes for a pin on Storm, but it’s broken up by Storm. Ray and Harris take their battle to the ringside. Storm whips Devon into the corner, and begins the mounted corner punch ritual. Ray gets quickly back into the ring, and lifts Storm onto his shoulder. Devon climbs to the top and they hit the 3D Device. Devon goes for the pin, but it’s broken up by Harris. Harris takes a 3D, and just as Storm is about to get one of his own, Gail Kim runs and gives Ray a low blow to earn the DQ.

After the match, Devon is about to powerbomb Kim, when Jarrett runs in with the title belt and busts open Devon. The bell rings incessantly, as AMW and Jarrett beat down on Team 3D. AMW hit their finisher on Devon, and Jarrett busts a guitar on Ray’s head. Team 3D lay bloody in the ring as the show comes to a close. Yikes, that’s a lot of blood!

The Breakdown

Psychology: This match had some tried and true psychology. It setup the teams as being fairly evenly matched, with Team 3D getting the edge over AMW with their experience and power. The match itself followed a typical tag storyline. The faces dominate part one of the match. The heels then isolate part two of the match. Then, all hell breaks loose and out of the chaos comes a sudden finish. It worked okay because of the short length of the match. Team 3D obviously has the odds stacked against them, because of Jarrett. This is always a good thing for the faces.

Action: Team 3D and AMW did their best to keep the action going. Ray looks like he needs to lose some weight, as his usually explosive sit down bomb looked a little lethargic and didn’t have its usual bounce to it. Being heels, it’s tough for AMW to show of their moves. The action was okay. They at least tried to be explosive and keep the punching to a minimum.

Entertainment: This was a pretty entertaining main event. I never truly felt like AMW was in danger of losing the match, and was waiting the whole time for the DQ. Again, they did what they could within the time period. It was nice to see Gail Kim thrown into the mix. I feel like the blade jobs were excessive. It’s only TNA’s second show on Spike. No need to pull out all the stops just yet.

Impact Scale Rating: 6.0/10 – The length and pacing of the match helped condense what might otherwise felt like a hackneyed tag storyline into an action packed match. The messy ending was telegraphed and the blood seemed excessive. However, all things being said, this was definitely an above average tag match, in our current era of wrestling anyway.

Overall Breakdown

Psychology: TNA really packed in a lot of storyline elements and a lot of wrestling into one hour. They’re doing a good job of promoting their feuds for Bound for Glory, and giving a little history at the same time. Tonight’s show showed off some more of TNA’s assets, and indeed some of their shortcomings. However, I think all in all, it was an excellent pick up of last week’s edition. All of the matches had a point, a message to get across. I get the feeling TNA is building well to their PPV.

Action: Even the matches that weren’t technical or aerial showcases packed in the action. TNA definitely is coming through on their “less talk, more action” promise. It is a good strategy on their part, and I think in time, it way pay off huge dividends. Once again, the X Division shined when it came to giving us excellent, innovative action. While I understand that TNA has a lot to get in before Bound for Glory, I think that they might even want to try working down to 3 matches per show. That would allow for even better matches.

Entertainment: TNA managed to pick it up a step from last week. They did a good job of furthering feuds while giving history. They packed in a lot of action. And absolutely all of the talking they did had a strong point to make. The show felt tight and exciting from start to end. While two of the matches didn’t receive strong ratings, they meshed well into the show and served a higher purpose as well. The flaws of the show are overshadowed by what they did well.

Impact Scale Rating: 7.0/10 – This edition of Impact featured storyline advancement, action packed matches, and entertaining video packages. It was a show that promoted the PPV well and gave fans some good free wrestling.

Paul Madavi writes his Impact reviews from Madison, WI where the beer is fresh, and the cheese is aged. If you’d like to respond to any of the content above, please email him and make eventful his otherwise boring existence.

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