TV REPORTS WILKENFELD'S TNA IMPACT REPORT 1/28: Ongoing "virtual time" coverage of Spike TV broadcast
Jan 28, 2010 - 10:00:58 PM
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By: Daniel Wilkenfeld, PWTorch Contributor
Where We've Been: Based on some of the comments last week, people seem not to get my annoyance at the six-sided ring. Rather than produce my own thesis, I'm just going to cite that all-knowing cultural source, The Simpsons. In "'Scuse me While I Miss the Sky", Bart gets overshadowed by Nelson. He then decides (I can't find the episode, so I have to paraphrase here) "If I want to be even cooler than he is...I should do exactly what he does!" For all Hogan and Carter's talk about going right to the top, having Val Venis pin Christopher Daniels in a four-sided ring isn't the action of a company playing for first. It's not even the action of a company playing for second—it's the actions of a puppy content with whatever table scraps get thrown his way. Redoing the Montreal Screw-job, which I don't think is quite the catastrophe some others do, also is not helping the "not a cheap WWE knockoff" message.
The Show: SCREWED!
Yes, the change in font size really was part of the title. Taz says something about some tournament I've never heard of, but I do always like me my tournaments.
Hulk Hogan hits the ring, accompanied by Eric Bischoff. Tenay says that Hulk has told him that he's investigating the circumstances of the end of last week's title match, which I assumed was what he was coming out to announce now. The crowd is still behind Hogan. I don't really know why. He says that things are rocking and rolling, and that he wants Mick Foley out right now because they have something to work out. Mick comes down to the ring, looking contrite, or at least sad. Hulk, in an attempt to give high school English teachers nightmares for life, says that things are going too good that he just wants to nip a lot of things in the bud. The situation between Mick and Eric is something that Hulk's going to take care of right now. Bischoff says that he hates to disagree, but there is no situation—he took care of it last week. Hulk says that he's never worked with Mick, but he has to say that he sees an upside to Mick...though, now that he gets a little closer, they do need to do some work to make him an asset. Bischoff says that Mick put his hands on him last week. Mick admits that he wanted to hit Bischoff, and now he wishes he had, but he never touched him. Bischoff asks if Mick really expects the audience to believe that he never touched him, after he (Eric) staggered out to the ring covered in blood. Mick replies that we do believe him, because Bischoff looks too damned good. If Mick had really gone off on him, he wouldn't have needed a couple of stitches—he would have needed to be carried out in a stretcher. Hogan tells them to work it out between themselves, and says (or at least implies) that Bischoff will have the final say.
Bubba the Love Sponge catches up with an arriving Jeff Jarrett and says that he feels nervous about this [meeting], since he's had to call in some favors to get this meeting, and he doesn't want to look bad.
Christy is in the back with Ken Anderson. He doesn't like her treating him like a buddy—it's "Mr. Anderson". He grabs the mic, complaining that he has to do everything himself. He has to announce himself, and, since he doesn't have a match tonight, it looks like he'll have to book himself. So he's issuing an open challenge to anyone in the locker room. He doesn't care if it's Sting or Joe or the guy who drops his mic, but deep down he's praying that it's Abyss. It doesn't really matter though, since no matter who he steps in the ring with, the only name people will remember at the end of the night is "Mr. Anderson..." when Christy tries to close things out, he comes back with the repeated "Anderson".
We hear that Against All Odds will feature an "Eight Card Stud" tournament to determine the number one contender for the World Heavyweight Championship. We'll have qualifying matches tonight, starting now.
(1)DESMOND WOLFE (w/CHELSEA) vs. SEAN MORLEY
Taz tells us the name of Wolfe's new special friend. The crowd, not being comprised of morons, comes alive for Wolfe. Morley starts things off with a hammerlock on Wolfe, which seems like a really bad idea. Sure enough, Wolfe reverses it and drives Morley into the ropes. He pounds Morley down in the corner. When he complains to the ref about the five count, Morley comes back with a series of clotheslines and chops. Tenay notes that Morley's using both arms for offense, which I hadn't noticed. Wolfe stops him short with a hammerlock takedown. He wrenches Morley's arm, then cinches in a Rings of Saturn like double arm bar. Morley gets up swinging, but gets taken down by an arm wrench. Morley blocks Wolfe's running elbow and comes back with more clotheslines. He goes for a cover, but Wolfe kicks out at one. Morley floors Wolfe with a nice half nelson slam, but when he goes to the top rope for The Money Shot Wolfe knocks the rope under him. Morley slips, and that's enough for Wolfe to connect with the Tower of London. The crowd happily counts along to three.
WINNER: Desmond Wolfe in about three and a half minutes. This is more the role I envisioned for Morley—maybe they felt like he needed one win before being a legitimate jobber?
Jeff Jarrett joins Hogan and Bischoff in their office. He apologizes for bringing his attorney a couple weeks ago. The Love Sponge gave him a bit of an outsider's perspective, and he realizes that over the last seven years maybe he has done some things that have made him harder to trust. Hulk says that trust is the most important thing to him, and if Jarrett is back to the way he was when Hulk started dealing with his family years ago, the things'll work out well. Jeff is happy to work his way up form the bottom, if that's what he has to do. He hasn't wrestled in seven months, but he's sure that, given time, he'll be valuable. Hulk says that they need help right away, and Bischoff says that as a matter of fact they have an open challenge from Ken Anderson right now. Jarrett says that he'll be happy to have the match at Against All Odds, but Bischoff wants it tonight, and he's confident that Jarrett is a great enough athlete to compete right away. Hulk says that it's best for the company, and so Jarrett grudgingly agrees to the match. After he leaves, Hulk criticizes Bischoff for being a bit too tough.
AJ is in the back with Ric Flair, where he's admiring the rack of custom made suits Flair's gotten for him. There's some blond woman with them, and Ric says that once they find him a friend too they'll be going on a 30 day vacation. If he hasn't defended the title since last week, wouldn't he max out at a 23 day vacation before forfeiting his title?
(2)DANIELS vs. HERNANDEZ
It's a shame that one of these guys won't go on. I'd assume that Daniels is doing the job, but Hernandez does have that tag team championship weighing him down. Daniels jumps the bell, getting in some quick strikes before Hernandez slows him down with a knee lift. Hernandez hits a delayed vertical suplex that must have taken at least 10 seconds. Daniels looks for a Sunset Flip, but Hernandez stops himself and tosses Daniels across the ring with a Cracker Jack. Daniels pokes the eyes as he gets up, then nails a standing Ensuguri that barely gets two. We're told that, in addition to determining the #1 contender, this tournament will also be used to establish new TNA rankings. Daniels works a nerve hold. When Hernandez starts to power out Daniels takes him down with an STO then connects with a Springboard Moonsault for two. Daniels is looking for some kind of power move when Hernandez takes him over with a Back Body Drop. Daniels quickly knocks Hernandez out of the ring, but Hernandez comes back with his slingshot shoulder block. Hernandez hits a big clothesline, a towering Back Body Drop, a Stinger Splash in the corner, and then a t-shirt assisted toss across the ring. He charges in the corner, but this time Daniels steps aside. Daniels hits him, but he comes back with a boot and elevates himself to the top rope. Daniels tries to meet him there, but Hernandez knocks him down. Daniels gets out of the way of the ensuing top rope splash, but even a rope-assisted cover isn't enough for 3. Daniels hits a series of palm strikes, but Hernandez just shoulder blocks him half way across the ring. Daniels gets up into a gut-wrench Dominator, and that's all she wrote.
WINNER: Hernandez in five minutes.
Team 3D and The Nasty Boys are walking around backstage.
Mike Tenay is in the ring, where he talks about how Against All Odds will feature the first meeting between two of history's most famous tag teams. Oh please no. Tenay introduces the Nasty Boys. Taz says that his sources tell him that Nastyville is 2, 2 ½ miles southwest of Parts Unknown. Here come Team 3D. Since TNA i no longer gratuitously picking on someone's family, can this be the segment I boycott as a matter of principle? The principle in this case being, of course, that wrestling shouldn't suck. Security guards block the ramp way. Ray briefly recaps the feud. What he wants to know, what Devon wants to know, and what all of us want to know is where the hell The Nasty Boys have been for the last ten years. Actually I'm cool not knowing that. Sags's rebuttal: blah blah blah, born nasty, die nasty, whatever. Devon says that while The Nasty Boys were sitting on their couches, Team 3D have been winning titles in wrestling organizations across the world. Not only are they the best, but no other tag team has come close to accomplishing what they have. Take that, Road Warriors! Oh hey, Knobbs actually makes the same point, listing the Road Warriors first among his list of legendary tag teams that have fallen to the Nasty Boys. Come Valentines Day, they won't be giving Team 3D chocolates and candy, they'll be beating Team 3D up just like they beat up every team they've put in front of them. Team 3D says that the one thing they can agree on is that people all around the world want to see those two teams try to kill each other. Please don't.
Christy is in the back with The Beautiful People, and she wants to know what they think of Angelina Love. Sky is sick of hearing about Love, who's been wallowing in their shadows since she came back. Everyone wants to be a BP, but not everyone has it in them. Rayne adds that Love is so 2009, and that they'll be showing the world where the knockout gold belongs. She gestures to her waist, but Lacey is confused as to how the belts would get into their bellies. Sky has Rayne pet her.
Jeff Jarrett is lacing up in the locker room.
Lashley is in Bischoff's office, and Bischoff says that Hulk agrees that it was very impressive of him to come back last week and admit his mistake, and that, after a careful review of the roster, they've decided that Bobby Lashley is fired. Lashley flips out, but security guards are already there to escort him out. I have no idea who's heel anymore.
(3)THE BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE vs. HAMADA, AWESOME KONG, & TARA (w/POISON)
Hamada and Rayne are about to lock up when Rayne decides it would be a good time to mock Kong. Hamada just chops the hell out of her, then arm wrenches her to the mat. She grabs Rayne's arm and does an Old School style Arm Drag off the top rope. Rayne gets to her corner, and the Beautiful People start trading quick tags and working over the left wrist of Hamada. Hamada rolls through and takes Rayne down with a Drop Toe Hold. She gets the tag to Tara who hits a series of right hands, a Body Slam, and a shimmy-shake Moonsault for two. The crowd says that "divas suck", but I don't know if they're responding to The Beautiful People or the shimmy-shaking. Sky gets in a cheap shot from the apron, which lets Rayne back Tara into her corner. The Beautiful People trade quick tags again, but when Sky Irish Whips Tara both she and Tara look for hair yanks at the same time. Tara tags in Kong, who scares the Beautiful People a bit before just tagging Hamada back in. Hamada takes down everyone with spinning kicks and Ensuguries, but when she tries to finish off Rayne with a Moonsault the ref is distracted from the cover. As Awesome Kong chases Sky backstage, Lacey hits Hamada in the back of the head with the ugly stick then wards off Tara long enough for Rayne to get the cover.
WINNERS: The Beautiful People in six minutes. After the match they continue the beat down on Hamada and Tara till Love comes down to make the save.
Hebner is in Hogan's office, where Hogan is saying that things aren't good. He wants to hear Hebner's side of the story, but all Earl Hebner says is that when Kurt hit the mat he tapped. Hogan says that the hold wasn't even cinched in yet. Hogan notes the similarity to a past screw job, and asks why he did it. Hebner says that the truth is that Vince didn't screw Bret, Michaels didn't screw Bret, and Bret didn't screw Bret—he screwed Bret, just like he screwed Angle. When Hogan asks why, Hebner looks at him like he's an idiot, and says that he did it for the money—Flair cut him a fat check for rigging the match. Hogan says that he doesn't know what to do about that, but that Hebner is of course suspended. That better not be the actual explanation, cause it's all sorts of anti-climactic.
Flair and AJ are still lounging around backstage when three more beautiful women come in. Flair picks one, and AJ asserts that the rest are for him.
Bubba The Love Sponge catches up with Mick Foley backstage, and he says that things aren't looking good. Mick says that Bubba is a glass half-empty guy, but Mick is a glass half-full kind of guy—he thinks that he'll come out of his meeting with Bischoff with both of them having a better understanding. Bubba asks what'll happen if they don't, and Mick points out that he drives a run down car and doesn't owe anyone a dime—no matter what, his glass is half full.
Kurt Angle comes down to the ring. Taz tells us that he's been granted a qualifying match for the tournament. Kurt can't forget about their match at Genesis. It was the best match of his career, which is why he's so pissed off. He and AJ agreed that that match would be when they determined the greatest wrestler of all time, and it would have been great. That would have been a match that they could have told their grand kids about, but AJ ruined it for everyone, especially the wrestling fans hoping for a classic. Then last week they had the Hebner screw job. He didn't see that one coming. But AJ shouldn't really think that Flair cares about him. He's just ruining his innocence and sucking him dry. Um...why? Anyway, Kurt's in the tournament, and if he wins it, it'll be AJ-Kurt again, and this time AJ won't get by the greatest wrestler who ever lived. It's real, it's damn real. Hogan comes down to the ring. He says that a few minutes ago Kurt accused him of something he didn't do. If this had been 30 years ago and we lived in a world where he didn't have to worry about lawyers or lawsuits things would have been different, but we don't. Last week Kurt spit in his face, and Hulk has to be a businessman about it. If Kurt ever crosses that line again, he'll be unemployed. Kurt apologizes for his conduct last week, but since Hulk is leading TNA, whatever happens in that ring is his responsibility. He still apologizes, since what he did was wrong. Kurt extends his hand, and Hulk shakes it. After Hogan strides away Syxx-Pac and Hall attack Kurt from behind. Well Syxx-Pac attacks from behind as Hall sort of lumbers around.
I love the Video Vault ad highlighting the six sides of steel, which is now known just as the "of steel" match.
Hall and Pac are being escorted out by security, but they say that they've already done what they came here to do anyway. Hall says that they'll see security again next week.
Brian Kendrick and The Motor City Machine Guns come down to the ring. Does anyone listen as the crowd goes ballistic for the Guns?
(4)BRIAN KENDRICK & THE MOTOR CITY MACHINE GUNS vs. AMAZING RED & GENERATION ME.
Kendrick jumps the bell, attacking Amazing Red and beating him into the corner. Red slips away, tosses Kendrick to the other corner, and runs up his back. Shelley tags in and the Guns look for a double team, but Red kicks one and rolls over his back with a spinning wheel kick onto the other. Max of Generation Me tags in, and they hit some wacky quick double team moves, including a joint neck breaker/back breaker. The Guns take control and hit the front face lock/dropkick. Red tags in, but when he looks for his Sunset Flip Powerbomb on Sabin Shelley cuts him off with a Superkick to the head. Kendrick blind tags himself in as the Guns look for their stereo Superkicks, then just kicks Red in the side of the head and gets the cover.
WINNERS: The Motor City Machine guns and Brian Kendrick.
The British Invasion suddenly come down to the ring, briefcase in hand. They beat down Red a bit more, but right when Terry's about to cash it in, Magnus suggests that he should give it to Williams. I'm thinking we have the first failed surprise Feast or Fired title shot coming. That'll be fun.
During the break Terry gave Doug Williams the briefcase.
(5)DOUG WILLIAMS vs. THE AMAZING RED X Division Championship Match
We come back just in time to see Williams connect with his Chaos Theory rolling German Suplex, which is enough for the win.
WINNER: Doug Williams in ???. My ending was better.
Foley is telling Bischoff that he admires his gumption. Hulk isn't here, so Mick wants to know how Bischoff did it—did he pay someone, or did he just do it himself. Bischoff says that they're supposed to forget about the past. Mick says that he has one more memory to go over. About five years ago when his kid was at a three year old's birthday party, someone "dropped a deuce" in the tunnel at Chucky Cheese. They argue for a second over Mick's terminology. Mick continues that while everyone else was running away, one brave person went in there with a bucket of sanitizer. Bischoff asks what his point is. His point is that he'd rather be that guy then work in this company for Bischoff. Bischoff understands, but is sorry to hear that, especially since it's not just Mick's career they're talking about. Mick's friends Abyss and Jeremy Borash also have their careers in Bischoff's hands. Mick says that Bischoff wouldn't, but Bischoff disagrees. Bischoff has the camera guy follow him to AJ's locker room, where AJ is inviting one of the women to get a shot at his title. I don't think he understands how euphemisms work. Anyway, Bischoff commends Flair on his lawyer, since the contract he signed before Hogan took over is apparently iron clad. He does however suggest that they cancel their vacation plans, since Against All Odds is coming up and in TNA, everyone works. Ugh—I hate tag team main events.
Mr. Anderson comes down to the ring and does his thing. The crowd is still moderately psyched by it. Jeff Jarrett is announced, and comes down to the ring without any entrance music. I just noticed that in the new Impact Zone the ramp ends level with the ring. That could have lead to some fun spots. Tenay tells us that Eric Bischoff had Jeff Jarrett's music pulled.
(6)MR. ANDERSON vs. JEFF JARRETT
Anderson and Jarrett lock up. Anderson backs Jarrett into the corner. When the ref pulls him off he tries for a cheap shot, but Jarrett sidesteps and connects with punches of his own. The ref pulls him off next. Anderson gets a side headlock, which Jarrett reverses. Jarrett comes off the ropes with a couple shoulder blocks, then feints a right hand, the mere prospect of which sends Anderson to the mat. Anderson gets up swinging, and connects with a couple clubs to the back. He taunts the crowd with Jarrett chants of his own. Jarrett comes back with a couple hip tosses and a high dropkick, then clotheslines Anderson out of the ring. He struts.
We get back as Anderson shoves Jarrett, on the apron, shoulder first into the ring post. He follows Jarrett to ringside and bangs his arm into the steel steps. They roll back into the ring, where Anderson hits a hammerlock slam for two. Anderson yanks back on Jarrett's arm. Jarrett powers out, but then runs into a boot from Anderson in the corner. Anderson connects with an arm bar takedown, and does an Angle-style cover for two. Anderson shoots Jarrett off into the ropes; Jarrett dodges a couple of clothesline attempts, but then gets caught with a side headlock and an overhead wrist lock. Jarrett powers out again, but this time is stopped short by a running shoulder block. Anderson goes to the top rope, but Jarrett rolls out of the way of the attempted Senton Bomb. Jarrett powers up, and gets up firing with right hands. Anderson looks for the Mic Check, but Jarrett reverses into an attempted Stroke; Anderson connects with a low blow below the ref's field of vision, and connects with a Small Package for the win.
WINNER: Mr. Anderson in fourteen minutes. We cut to Bischoff smiling in the back, commenting that this is great.
Mr. Anderson announces his own victory, but after the first "Anderson" he follows Jarrett out to ringside and starts whacking his back. He rolls Jarrett into the ring, stalks him, then nails the Mic Check. Bischoff, apparently talking to himself in the back, tells Jarrett that it'll be a long, hard climb back to the top of this mountain.
Where We're Going: Things seem to be realiging as I said they should, with Jarrett and Foley face, Bischoff and the nWo heel, and Hogan distinctly ambiguous. We'll probably have AJ and Flair tagging at Against All Odds, which with any luck should lead to a more definitive role for Bischoff. The real question is why they completely shut the door on the Montreal Screwjob plotline—the answer they gave was stupid, and even if there's another one coming, they've given no indication that we should be waiting for it.
Star of the Night: Mick Foley. When he's being his old likeable self, there's really no one better. Hogan and Bischoff also continued to play their respective parts well.
Overall: This show had a treading-water feel. The tournament was neat, but neither it nor Angle's involvement was announced in a particularly dramatic way. The realignment of course I liked, and I liked both the main event and the X Division tag match. I don't particularly agree with moving the belt off Red so abruptly, and can think of better champions than Williams, but he's certainly pretty good. There was a certain punch missing from the show though, and not enough solid wrestling or mic work to wholly bridge the gap. Also the Hebner bit was really stupid. B-
Daniel is a graduate instructor at The Ohio State University. For those paying attention, he did pass that big exam thing last Friday. Congratulations can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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