TV REPORTS 11/12 TNA Impact Review: Another Solid Show but with Questionable PPV Push
Nov 13, 2005 - 12:55:00 PM
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Paul Madavi, PW Torch TNA Specialist
Rest In Peace, Eddie. We already miss you.
Aired November 12th, 2005
Taped 10/18/05 at Universal Studios Orlando, FL
Aired on Spike TV at 11:00 PM (ET/PT)
Report by Paul Madavi, PW Torch TNA Specialist
The Lowdown: TNA airs another solid show, but does not sell PPV well enough.
The show kicks up with highlights of last week’s 2 hour special, which included Petey Williams winning the Ultimate X rematch, and Jeff Jarrett picking up his title once again. Jarrett and AMW have regained the power and control in TNA with the title win. Fans everywhere groan.
It’s the eve of Genesis and TNA has a stacked edition of Impact ready for us. Mike Tenay runs down the card, before we kick off the show with Monty Brown. Brown walks down to the ring with microphone in hand. Brown will be facing Jeff Hardy Sunday night on Genesis to see who will be the #1 contender. Brown gets in the ring and starts off a promo. Brown claims he is the most dominant force in TNA, and being so deserves and demands a title shot. Brown says that if there’s anyone more deserving of the title than he, they should come out to the ring and prove. Brown promises that Jarrett will feel the pounce . . . period. Just then, Abyss comes out. James Mitchell says Brown’s brains are clearly scrambled, because of his grandiose proclamations. Mitchell does a good job running down Brown, before getting to his point. Mitchell also does a great job of hiding behind Abyss’s massive frame (I got to see Abyss live at Chicago Ridge this past weekend, and the guy is simply huge). Mitchell then says Abyss is the truly worthy contender, and then tells Abyss to go get ‘em. Hardy then makes his entrance. Before Jeff can say peep, Brown and Abyss attack him. The three have an impromptu couple minutes of wrestling before security separates them. No wrestler really went over in the segment. It’s good to see TNA take some time out to promote feuds, however this doesn’t seem to be the one to be giving the time. The insertion of Abyss and Hardy into what started off as Brown’s segment seemed forced. I can only imagine what kind good that time would’ve done A.J. Styles and Petey Williams.
A video package airs promoting the problems that Christopher Daniels and Samoa Joe had when tagging last week against the babyface X division wrestlers.
(1) Samoa Joe defeats Austin Aries at 3:12. Joe makes his way down to the ring. Daniels sits with Tenay and West. Joe gives Daniels a dirty look, which is a nice touch. Aries makes his now familiar determined march to the ring.
The bell rings at 14:00 and the action kicks off, literally. Joe kicks Aries in the stomach to start the match. Joe moves quickly to a face wash. Joe picks up Aries and tosses him a corner. He chops Aries and then whips him into another corner. He charges, but Aries gets the boot up. Aries follows up with a headlock. Joe converts it into head scissors, but Aries does a headstand and then leaps out of the hold. He nails Joe with a dropkick to the head immediately. Aries gets a back elbow in a corner for a one-count. Aries tries to whip Joe a couple of times, but can’t get him moved. Joe reverses a third whip attempt and gets off a running kick to the head. He follows up with a senton splash. Aries gets up, and Joe runs right at him. Aries spins around Joe and manages to get off a crucifix bomb. Aries tries to get a suplex on Joe, but he can’t lift him. Joe then picks up Aries and sets him on the top turnbuckle. This leads to the Muscle Buster and Kojita clutch for the submission victory.
After the match, Samoa Joe glares at the camera. We also get a replay of the Muscle Buster and the Kojita clutch. Joe stares down Christopher Daniels before he leaves ringside.
Psychology: Tonight we had yet another match putting over Samoa Joe. He’s powerful. He’s agile. He can kick. He can grapple. Austin Aries was able to mount some offense as well. They did a good job of making Joe’s size the real obstacle in the match for Aries. It wasn’t like Joe simply out classed him. He was just too much wrestler for Aries. Daniels was very good with Tenay and West, coming off as very arrogant, but also having good logic to back up his opinions, while still ignoring the obvious facts – they way any good heel should.
Action: Three solid minutes of action featured most of Samoa Joe’s spots, and even a nice little mini chain wrestling segment. It’s clear even after three minutes that these tow guys are very, very good workers.
Entertainment: This was a much better than average squash match. Once TNA figures out that X Division is where the money’s at, and they give these guys promo time and main event matches, we’ll be talking about better than average main events from Samoa Joe and Austin Aries.
Impact Scale Rating: 5.5/10 – Pretty darned good for a squash match.
Backstage, Coach D’Amore is interviewed by Shane Douglas in Larry Zybysko’s office. D’Amore. D’Amore offers up some kind of ridiculous hockey stick on a pole match for Team Canada versus Three Live Kru at Genesis. Zybysko says that “violence may be good for hockey, but this is professional wrestling.” I sh*t you not. Zybysko says someone may get killed. D’Amore says he’s just thinking about the buy-rate. Zybysko caves and says that it’s a good idea after all, and that an even better idea is to have Kip James be the special referee. Douglas has a good chuckle as Zybysko splits and D’Amore is besides himself.
(2) Kip James defeats Lev Lovett at 1:07. This is the match for which everyone has been waiting, breath abated and hands wringing. Kip James makes his was down to the ring, where Lovett awaits him.
The bell rings at 23:57. Kip and Lex lock up, leading to a series of punches and kicks from Kip. He goes for an early finisher, which allows Lovett to score a kick and handspring elbow. Kip James recovers, turning a clothesline attempt into a backbreaker and clutch bomb combo for the win. Before hitting the clutch bomb, he yells, “I’m Kip James, Bitch!”
After the match, Team Canada comes down to the ring with hockey sticks. 3LK come down and make the save. Eric Young becomes the punching bag briefly. BG and Killings get in the ring and do their thing, but Konan stands outside the ring, shaking his head disapprovingly.
Psychology: He’s Kip James, Bitch!
Action: He’s Kip James, Bitch!
Entertainment: He’s Kip James Bitch!
Impact Scale Rating: 3.0/10 – Here, I can steel from a famous comedian too. This was a great match, for me to poop on!
(3)Petey Williams (w/ Coach Scott D’Amore) defeats A.J. Styles at 5:56.For some reason, this is being booked as a non-title Styles Clash versus Canadian Destroyer match. I don’t know if all they’re allowed to do is finishers one after the other or what, but we’ll find out. Petey comes down to a chorus of boos. D’Amore, big surprise, is yelling incessantly. A.J. Styles makes his usual entrance to his usual cheers. I really like that Styles doesn’t grin and shill like most babyfaces. He’s all about being the best. Kind of like the later years of Bret Hart.
The bell rings at 32:03. Both men circle for a little before locking up. Williams rolls out of an early Styles Clash attempt. They lock up again, and start working each other over with some punches and kicks. Williams goes for an early Destroyer attempt, but Styles reverses out of it. They taunt each other briefly before getting into it again. Styles hits a big dropkick, but is then distracted by D’Amore. This lets Williams get the upper hand. He works A.J. over in a corner. A.J. punches out of the predicament and follows up with a Pele kick that stuns Williams. Styles surges with a few clotheslines. He then hits an Osaka Street Cutter, and goes for the Clash. Williams flips out of the attempt and hits a DDT. Styles attempts a tilt-a-whirl, but Williams reverses it into a side Russian leg sweep. Williams goes for another Destroyer, but Styles escapes it again. Styles then hits his flipping DDT. Styles then picks up Williams for the Clash, but Williams grabs the rope. Styles kicks him and picks him up for it again, but Williams grabs the ref’s leg. This causes the ref to bump. Styles drops Williams, when D’Amore runs into the ring with the X Division belt. Styles goes for the Clash on D’Amore, but is hit on the back of the head with the belt by Williams. The ref wakes up just in time to see Williams hit the Canadian Destroyer. The bell rings, signifying that the stipulation of the match was the first person to get off their finisher is the winner of the match.
After the match, D’Amore and Williams celebrate in the ring as a replay of the Destroyer airs.
Psychology: The stipulation of the match was utterly ridiculous in the context of wrestling. The whole point of a finisher is that it’s a powerful move that you execute so well, it almost guarantees you a victory. Hitting a finisher and not pinning the opponent is like pouring a perfect pint of beer and not drinking it. Furthermore, the winner being the first person to get off a specific move is a very silly way of getting Williams the victory without actually pinning Styles. If Williams is important enough to get a win over Styles, he’s important enough to get it through a pin. Stipulations aside, Williams and Styles worked well together in the match to build to the finish. Styles did come off as the superior wrestler. Tenay and West did a great job of putting over the offense.
Action: There was five minutes of very good action in this match. A.J. Styles did most of the exciting moves in the match, and Williams bumped well for him. At one point, they felt like they didn’t know what they wanted to do next, but they moved quickly from that point back into the fray.
Entertainment: This was a fun match to watch. As ridiculous as the stipulation was, it didn’t really take away from the action, or the excitement of the match. Williams and Styles also did a good job of making the match a little more personal with the trash talking and taunting at the beginning of the contest. As can be expected, the wrestling was very good.
Impact Scale Rating: 6.5/10 – This was a good match that was brought down a notch by a silly concept. A.J. Styles is as over as it gets right now in TNA. He doesn’t need to be protected from the occasional pin fall, especially when it could do so much for Williams.
The same video package that aired last week for the NWA Title is shown again. Backstage, Douglas interviews Zybysko and Raven, with security standing by. Zybysko and Raven argue, which leads to Zybysko telling Raven that he can’t fire him, but he can book him anyway he wants. He’s going to put Raven through hell. The segment ends with Raven choking Zybysko.
(4)Jeff Jarrett (w/ Gail Kim) and AMW (James Storm and Chris Harris) defeat Chris Sabin, Lance Hoyt, and Jeff Hardy at 6:07. AMW make their way down to the ring first. Some weirdo in the crowd wearing big taped glasses and an old school gold hat holds up a sign that reads “Gigiddy, Gigiddy, Gail,” ala Quagmire from Family Guy. Sabin spins his finger around and awaits his partners at ringside. Hoyt bushwacks his way down to the ring. Jeff skips down to the ring. The faces the ring and pose before the match.
The bell rings at 51:33. Chris Sabin and James Storm start off the match with some chain wrestling. Sabin shows amazing agility and speed, culminating in a monkey flip. He tags in Hoyt. Storm runs to his corner and tags in Chris Harris. Hoyt hits a side slam, but Harris gains control after the pin attempt. Jarrett is tagged in, but Hoyt manages to tag in Jeff Hardy. Jarrett manages to hit a clothesline, which gives the heels the opportunity to work over Jeff Hardy. Harris tags in and hits a big delayed suplex. Storm tags in and hits a running dropkick for a two-count. Storm hits a back elbow and tags in Jarrett. Jarrett hits a leg slide on Hardy and does the Jarrett strut. The heels continue to tag in and out and work over Hardy. Hardy manages to counter a whip into a spinning, flipping splash on AMW. Hardy tags in Hoyt. Hoyt hits a double flapjack. Sabin then follows with a double dropkick on AMW. Hoyt and Hardy then dive out of the ring on AMW. This leaves Sabin and Jarrett in the ring alone. Jarrett has his guitar in hand, but Sabin ducks the swing and gets Jarrett up for the Cradle Shock. Jarrett gets out of the hold and goes for The Stroke, but Sabin counters that. He hits a climbing DDT on Jarrett, simultaneously kicking AMW who are on the apron. This is a nice spot and good for a two-count. Sabin climbs to the top rope, but Gail Kim pulls his leg. Jarrett hits a middle rope Stroke for the pin.
After the match, AMW and Jarrett decide to beat up on the faces for a while. They handcuff Lance Hoyt to the bottom rope. Just before Jarrett can hit Hardy with a guitar, Rhino runs in and make a save. Then, Team 3D come in from the other end, and trap AMW and Jarrett. The bell rings incessantly as we fade to black.
Psychology: If TNA is really the new wrestling alternative, they need to come up with a different tag team storyline. The face isolation is worn out worse than the bedsprings at a cheap motel. That being said, the match had a very good finishing sequence, with Sabin really showing off what he can do. It was probably a good move having Jarrett pick up the win on Sabin, as they’re not likely to face each other too often, and it saves Hoyt and Hardy for future match ups versus Jarrett.
Action: There was plenty of good action in this match. Even the isolation segment was host to some good action. The finish of the match felt slightly rushed, but overall they really packed in a lot of good wrestling into a short match.
Entertainment: Keeping the face isolation to a minimum amount of time really helped the match out. The action was constant and pretty solid throughout. I’d like to see Hardy work at a quicker pace, and Jarrett at least hit his finisher cleanly, if it’s going to be his finisher. Otherwise, it was a better main event than I had expected given the participants.
Impact Scale Rating: 6.0/10 – Good main event, but aside from Sabin, there was nothing special going on.
Psychology: This show did well as far as booking content and using promo time well. However, it still lacked a decent amount of exposure for X Division wrestlers, and did nothing to make me want to order Genesis. I still feel like the show could use one less match and a little more match or promo time for the X Division.
Action: Lots of good, solid action on this show highlighted once again the strength of TNA wrestling. It’s no surprise that the best stuff came from the X Division wrestlers. Every week, AMW impress me with the consistency of in ring performance.
Entertainment: This show was about on par with all the other editions of Impact we’ve seen. Now it’s time for TNA to change up the format a little, or do something otherwise special to improve Impact. Shows like this one will always bring the .8 or .9 rating that is TNA’s base audience. Once they can experiment with the format successfully, they’ll start getting over that 1.0 mark.
Impact Scale Rating: 5.5/10 – Despite having two very good matches, some nice promo segments, and another good Samoa Joe match, this edition of Impact did nothing to make me want to order Genesis. The PPV feels like a rehash of Bound for Glory, and this edition of Impact should’ve done something to make it feel different.
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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