THE SPECIALISTS UNDER THE MICROSCOPE - 4/2 TNA IMPACT: LAX's tag title win, Dr. Stevie's second job, Daffney is back, Rhino's tough title stat
Apr 3, 2009 - 1:20:31 AM
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By Curtis Shanks, PWTorch Specialist
Welcome to the TNA Impact edition of Under the Microscope. We're here to review all those little observations and tidbits you may have missed. This is not a detailed recap of the show, but a review for those of you that saw the show but didn't actually "watch" it.
After last week, we know that TNA still remembers how to deliver a match longer than ten minutes, Sting was directing his comments towards "Mick," and Kurt Angle is not happy with second place. But what else is there to notice? Let's see what we can spot. Cue the opening pyro.
After a mess of a main event last week (at least there was actual wrestling, though) Samoa Joe and Kurt Angle were the final two left in the gauntlet match to determine the two team captains for Lockdown. Joe declined the offer last week and A.J. Styles declined it this week. This leads to Jeff Jarrett apparently being the second captain for the Lethal Lockdown match later this month. This is not the first time Jarrett has been a captain in the Lockdown match as he led a team with Scott Steiner, who confronted Jarrett tonight, and AMW at Lockdown in 2006.
Let's take a look back at who the captains have been in the Lethal Lockdown matches. The first match, in 2005, featured the match we are used to, but there were no actual captains named for the teams. Captains were named in 2006, as we saw Jarrett's team face off against Sting's team. The next year saw Team Angle (not Haas & Benjamin) face off against Team (Christian) Cage. Last year saw Cage as captain again, this time facing off against a team assembled by Tomko.
LAX and Lethal Consequences face off against Kiyoshi, No Limit, and Bashir in the first match of the evening. When Tenay and West finally take a break from discussing the Lethal Lockdown match, they mention that TNA stars are in high demand all across the world. They back this up by stating that LAX recently became tag champs in Puerto Rico, although there are no details given as to what titles they are referring to.
LAX is the current tag team champs in the International Wrestling Association promotion out of Puerto Rico. Like The Guns, Tenay and West are a bit tardy in mentioning a title win, as LAX won the belts over one month ago. Aside from LAX, the IWA promotion's tag title history has some other TNA ties as well. Former TNA wrestler Apolo has a run as tag champ, as do the pairing of D-Lo Brown and Shane Sewell. You can add Abyss to that list, along with The Naturals, Chase Stevens and Andy Douglas, who won the titles after departing from TNA in 2007.
Kurt Angle's bodyguards confront Team 3D in Jim Cornette's office, and in the process challenge them to a match. Rocco and Sal insult 3D, calling them Mamalukes. To most wrestling fans, the term reminds us of former ECW wrestler Charles Spencer, who competed as Tony Mamaluke. The insult is not meant as a reference to the former F.B.I. member, but is used in the form of a slang insult. The Urban Dictionary defines Mamaluke as "Italian slang for someone who did something foolish or silly." The insult is not named after Tony Mamaluke, as he took the name long after the term had been coined. If we were to create an insult off a wrestler's name, it would be more appropriate to call someone a "Waltman" or a "Heidenreich."
We've seen Rocco wrestle on Impact before as he faced Eric Young in the main event a few weeks ago. This time Sal gets a chance as well, as the duo faces Team 3D in a tag match. Sal has actually wrestled in TNA before, as the Mafia Security were in TNA before as Phi Delta Slam. As discussed in past Microscopes, PDS were the tag team of Bruno Sassi (Rocco) and Big Tillie (Sal) and have actually had more exposure in their few weeks with the Mafia than their run during 2005.
Dr. Stevie, a.k.a. Stevie Richards, is back this week with more psychiatrist segments with Abyss. Richards enjoyed some success in ECW, but has struggled to get his career off the ground since the promotions demise. He later signed with WWE, but was relegated to nothing more than Heat matches and accompanying Victoria to the ring. He joined the new ECW when it was reformed under the WWE banner, but did not achieve success their either.
Dr. Stevie has another client, as Daffney/The Governor shown. Thankfully, the Gov character is gone, as it appears she will now be known as Daffney again. Daffney has previous TNA experience (as Shannon and Shark Girl) as well as stints in WWE developmental, Shimmer and a couple ROH matches. She has portrayed many characters in her wrestling career, but it seems as though she is reverting back to her old WCW character. When she first debuted for the promotion, she played the mentally deranged boyfriend of David Flair and had a sort of Gothic persona, similar to what we saw this week.
Samoa Joe has snapped again, as he is involved in yet another DQ match after attacking the referee this week. After taking out Sting and the interfering Booker T, Joe sets his sights on Sharmell. He teases a chair shot, but in the end simply picks up Sharmell and carries her out of the arena as the show ends. We all know Joe wasn't going to hit Sharmell with the chair or take any other physical action towards her.
Spike TV does not allow TNA to show any resemblance of man-on-woman violence, even a simple move during the course of a match. TNA has teased it before, but never followed through as the male's efforts are always thwarted. Logically, if this were not scripted, there should be at least one instance where a male shoves a female, gives her his finisher, or any other type of physicality. TNA shouldn't have us believe every attempt at an attack on a woman will be diffused. Would the show simply fade to black or go to a "technical difficulties" screen if a male actually laid his hands on a female? You can't tease it and expect us to believe it is never accomplished simply because Spike TV is watching over TNA's backs.
Sting was on the mic again this week, which means it's time for the Sting name-counter. He held back this week, but still managed to say "Kurt" seven times, "Mick" three times, (in about four seconds) and "Kevin" two times. I hate to be picky, but it is quite annoying when Sting says his opponent's name every 20 seconds to their face. If I were to have a conversation with my good buddy Kris I could talk to him for hours without saying "Kris" to his face. I think the only time I would say his name would be a situation where I had to yell if he were not within ear-range. The constant name-dropping by Sting can make a promo seem a little forced, but we'll forgive him if there's ever an instance where he needs to yell "Hey, Mick!" across the Impact Zone.
Numbers crunched harder than an unprotected chair shot to the head: A few weeks ago I was flipping through an issue of WWE Magazine and they listed an interesting stat about John Cena. The figure stated that Cena has held some sort of championship for 49 percent of the days he has been employed by WWE. This of course led me to inquire how certain individuals in TNA have done with titles during their tenures.
While it is simple to figure out the number of days a wrestler has held a title, it is a little more difficult to find out an exact hiring and firing date for wrestlers in TNA. So we will assume that a tenure started on their first TV/PPV appearance and ended on their last TV/PPV appearance with the company. (Also considering that guys like Alex Shelley and Kaz who have left and come back have had two tenures with TNA.)
Looking at the 55 individuals who have held a title in TNA's history, three have bested the 49 percent by John Cena. Ken Shamrock held a title 75.38 percent of his tenure in TNA, followed by current Knockout champion Awesome Kong's 60.93 percent and Adam "Pacman" Jones' 54.69 percent.
Going further down the leader board, six more individuals have held a title for more than 30 percent of their TNA tenure - Jeff Jarrett (40.56), Taylor Wilde (39.16), Kurt Angle (38.42), A.J. Styles (33.64), Samoa Joe (30.71), and James Storm (30.20). Guys like Shamrock and Pacman benefited from a title run during a short run with the company, while guys like Jarrett, Styles, and Storm have had numerous title reigns to up their percentage. But who are the guys on the other end of the spectrum?
Rhino is dead last out of all of TNA's previous title holders, as a two-day World Title run during his 1,356 days with the company equals a minuscule 0.15 percent of time spent as a champion. Joining Rhino in the less than two percent club are three former TNA employees, Apolo, Johnny Devine, and D-Lo Brown.
Curtis Shanks is a self-described wrestling nerd. Who else understands what Matt Striker is talking about all the time. Feedback is welcome, as comments, suggestions, questions and ShamWows can be sent to Curtis at firstname.lastname@example.org or in the comments section below.
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