TV REPORTS CALDWELL'S TNA GLOBAL IMPACT REPORT 1/17: Ongoing coverage of Spike TV special
Jan 17, 2008 - 11:00:51 PM
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By James Caldwell, Torch columnist
TNA Global Impact on Spike TV
January 17, 2007
Documentary and matches taped Jan. 2-4 in Tokyo, Japan
Report by James Caldwell, Torch columnist
The show opened with the voice-over man narrating TNA's journey to Japan. Apparently, we're getting an hour of over-dramatic narration. The wrestlers are out of character for this portion of the documentary to express their feelings on traveling to Japan for the show.
They showed Christian Cage, Kurt Angle, and Tomko arriving in Japan at the airport on January 2. Angle said he's on top of his game and he doesn't think Yuji Nagata can beat him. Angle said the fans in Japan are skeptical of the action, so they expect a very good, credible match. He said he wants the Japanese fans to remember him forever.
They interviewed Tomko next about the Japanese culture. He said the Japanese fans are a little different than American fans because the fans in Japan expect more physicality and less theatrics. He said he speaks a little Japanese.
Next was footage of Team 3D and Scott Steiner arriving in Japan. They showed some old footage of the Steiners wrestling in Japan. Brother Ray said the Japanese fans will be in for a treat when the TNA wrestlers wrestle for them. He said American fans will also get a good showcase of how Japanese wrestlers work a different style. Christian said the fans in Japan read about TNA in the magazines, but now they get to see it live. Steiner said this shows the steps TNA has taken to become a factor in Japan.
Before going to break, the voice-over man plugged the matches on the show tonight.
The day before the mega-event, Tomko keeps to his routine of how to travel in the metropolis of 12 billion people. Next on Discovery Channel, it's how a lion consumes food on a daily basis. Seriously, why the overdramatic voice-over man for this special? They showed Tomko working out at a Gold's Gym in Tokyo.
They focused on Kurt Angle next, and showed some footage of the TNA press conference to promote the Tokyo Dome show. Brother Ray said it's the first time they've worked for New Japan and they want to fight their opponents right here, right now. Christian said it's great performing in front of the Japanese fans to bring the TNA brand overseas. Abyss stayed in character by not saying anything. Angle said he's one of the best wrestlers in history, then listed his credentials. He said facing Yuji Nagata is a huge test for him. He said he plans on making Nagata tap out to continue holding the IWGP Title. Angle said he's tired of hearing people say he doesn't hold the legit IWGP Title. He claimed to be the real IWGP champion.
Up next is an all-access pass to TNA wrestlers as they've never been seen before.
Back to Angle on Jan. 4 walking down the hallway of his hotel before the Dome show. He said he looks forward to making Yuji Nagata tap out. He said it will be a lot of fun competing in front of the Japanese fans. They showed A.J. Styles signing an autograph before the show. More footage of the TNA wrestlers walking from the hotel to the Tokyo Dome to prepare for the show.
They went to footage of Christian & Styles & Petey preparing for the opening six-man tag match. Petey said it's great competing here. They showed some highlights from the match, with the TNA six-man team winning. Christian shouted TNA 1, New Japan 0. At the post-match press conference, Christian said it's great to wrestle in front of knowledgeable, respectable fans.
Next were clips from Abyss's match against Nakanishi where Abyss took a face-full of thumbtacks on the entrance ramp. They showed Abyss tapping out to the torture rack. In the post-match press conference, Abyss cut a promo about facing a great opponent. He screamed about the blood on his hands. They showed a clip of him running down some Japanese photographers in the hallway.
Next was footage of Team 3D's victory against Togi Makabe & Toru Yano. In the post-match press conference, Brother Ray said Team 3D has never lost a match in Japan. He congratulated Makabe and Yano on putting up a fight, but said they were way in over their heads.
Next for footage of Tomko & Giant Bernard (A-Train) defending the IWGP Tag Titles. Before the match, Tomko cut a promo about the Steiners being a little older, but still worthy opponents. No mention of who Tomko's partner is. Just a random dude following around Tomko, apparently. After the match, Tomko said it was a dream to face the greatest tag team in history, so their victory must mean something special. Rick cut a promo putting over wrestling for Japan. Scott said he was disappointed the match ended in defeat.
Well, that was quite the lightning-fast recap of four big matches.
They came back and previewed the Angle vs. Nagata match. Angle did a pre-match interview about making Nagata's ankle snap with the ankle lock. They showed Angle doing some shadow boxing in between reflective thoughts on kicking Nagata's ass to help him become a better wrestler. The voice-over man said Nagata is a stiff, MMA-style fighter. They showed Nagata commenting on Angle in the pre-match press conference. The translation said he respects Kurt Angle, but doesn't think Kurt Angle is a true champion because he's skipped title defenses.
They went to real-time footage of the Angle vs. Nagata match. Mike Tenay is doing the voice-over commentary. Tenay did a quick recap of New Japan's Dome shows and created some context for the match. That's more of Tenay in his element of establishing historical significance than trying to sell bad TV storylines. Yuji Nagata did his ring entrance first, then Kurt Angle came out from the TNA entrance tunnel. Tenay said Angle is the TNA World Hvt. champion and holder of the IWGP 3rd Title after defeating Brock Lesnar. Angle completed his ring entrance before they cut to a break.
They plugged a 3-hour Global Impact DVD with complete match action. DVD will be coming soon.
1 -- KURT ANGLE vs. YUJI NAGATA -- IWGP 3rd Title match
The bell sounded and Angle quickly jumped Nagata. Don West has joined Tenay on commentary for the match. Angle landed offense, then Nagata charged him with a quick strike, but Angle bailed to the floor. Angle slowly re-entered the ring as Tenay talked about the fight strategy for each man. Don West talked about the sports history in the Tokyo Dome. Angle blocked a kick strike and nailed an overhead release suplex for a one count. Nagata slapped on a reverse chin lock as Angle talked out some spots. Angle broke free, then dove at Nagata's left leg to take the knee out. Nagata cried out in pain and bailed to the floor, where Angle followed out and smashed Nagata in the knee.
At 5:00, Angle took Nagata back into the ring for a toehold and repeat kicks to the knee. Angle then slapped on the figure four, but Nagata grabbed Angle's left foot to prevent full extension of the hold. Nagata tried to turn the hold over to apply the pressure on Angle, but Angle retained the hold until Nagata grabbed the ropes to get a break. Angle took a breather, then went for another mat hold, but Nagata quickly slapped on a cross-arm breaker. They cut to break with Angle in danger of tapping out.
They returned with Angle landing German Suplexes. During the break, Angle avoided a running boot in the corner to regain control. Tenay said they're going to lay-out and let the New Japan announcers call the match. After about five seconds of silence from Tenay and West with Japanese commentary, Tenay came back on to talk about the fan response to the match. So much for laying out. Back to the action where Nagata applied a crossface submission with his arms wrapped around Angle's head rather than his hands across the face like Benoit. Angle suddenly countered into the ankle lock at 14:00, but Nagata countered right back into a crossface. Angle fought the hold and went for the anklelock again, but Nagata flung him off and slapped on the crossface for a third time.
At 15:00, Angle rolled up to his feet and nailed the Olympic Slam. He made a cover for a nearfall. They did a wide-shot of the Dome as both men recovered on the mat. Angle then went to the corner for a moonsault, but Nagata moved out of the way in time. Nagata caught Angle in the corner with a running knee, then he took Angle up top for a belly-to-belly suplex. Nagata made a cover for a two count. Nagata went back to the crossface for a fourth time, but Angle refused to tap. Nagata then transitioned from the crossface to a shoulder wrench, but Angle escaped again. Both men battled on their feet with an exchange of forearm and uppercut blows. Nagata then landed a running boot, but Angle rebounded off the ropes with a running lariat. They reached their feet again and Nagata scored with a release suplex for a close nearfall.
At 20:00, Nagata went for his kick strike to the face, but Angle grabbed Nagata's ankle and sat down on the anklelock in center ring. Angle grapevined the leg ala WrestleMania 21 against Shawn Michaels as Nagata kept trying to fight the hold. Angle pulled and yanked on the ankle until Nagata eventually tapped out.
Afterward, both men remained on the mat. Nagata was checked on by his trainers while Angle came to his knees in sheer exhaustion. Angle lifted his arms in victory before having his hand raised. Nagata eventually reached his feet. Tenay said Angle has defeated people like Brock Lesnar, Steve Austin, The Rock, Sting, Big Show, and Samoa Joe. Now, he can add the name Yuji Nagata. As usual, TNA trying to be relevant by referencing other people's wrestlers. Angle and Nagata then embraced in center ring to acknowledge each other. Angle embraced Nagata and told him he was awesome.
WINNER: Kurt Angle in 21:00 to retain the IWGP 3rd Title. Excellent pro wrestling match. Both men seemed to meet a mutual style point where Angle did more of an American main event heavyweight match, while Nagata used more MMA-style submission holds and strikes. They worked well off each other by incorporating the two styles into the match. It was a different type of match where the crowd reaction wasn't a focal point of the TV presentation, unlike the American style of incorporating the crowd into how well a match comes across. This was just two men having a great pro wrestling match independent of whether the fans were cheering or silent. (****)
They showed post-match footage of Angle resting his back on a training table in the locker room. In the post-match press conference, Angle gave respect to Nagata for being tougher than he expected. Angle said he's either greedy or selfish, but he wants to hurt people when he steps into the ring. He said he works for the best organization in wrestling.
The voice-over man recapped TNA's participation in the Tokyo Dome show.
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