TNA 2008 Slammiversary PPV Flashback - Samoa Joe defends the TNA Title in a King of the Mountain match, Kurt Angle vs. A.J. Styles, LAX vs. Team 3D for the TNA Tag Titles, Awesome Kong challenge
The following is a flashback to Jason Powell's live coverage review of the June 8, 2008 TNA Slammiversary pay-per-view. Stop back on Sunday for live coverage of the 2013 Slammiversary event. Plus, Dot Net Members can look forward to an exclusive audio review after the show. Join us on the ad-free version of the website now via Prowrestling.net/amember/signup.php.
Live from Southhaven, Miss.
At the DeSoto County Civic Center
An Elvis-themed intro video hyped the various pay-per-view matches and events... Mike Tenay and Don West introduced the show at ringside... Fireworks exploded on the stage...
Powell's POV: The building looks really good on television.
1. Petey Williams (w/Scott Steiner, Rhaka Khan) defeated Kaz to retain the X Division Title in 15:30 The announcers noted that Petey was working with a broken orbital bone. He wore a face shield for protection. Meanwhile, Kaz is wearing a wrap around his left elbow.
At 5:00, Petey jumped over the top rope and performed a huracarana on the floor. Cool spot. Petey looked for the crowd's acknowledgement and they cheered him, which would be great if he wasn't the heel. The crowd was split in their cheers for both wrestlers.
At 12:00, Petey went for the Canadian Destroyer, but Kaz blocked it and hit the equivalent of a reverse piledriver with Petey's head behind him for a good nearfall. Rhaka entered the ring and was greeted with a dropkick from Kaz. Steiner slid his lead pipe into the ring and Petey nailed Kaz with it while the ref was trying to get Rhaka out of the ring. Petey made the cover, but Kaz kicked out at the last second in a great nearfall.
Kaz was bleeding heavily. He tried to climb to the top rope, but Steiner stopped him. Kaz dropkicked Steiner off the ring apron. However, Kaz walked into the Canadian Destroyer just a few seconds later and lost the match.
Afterward, the heels kicked Kaz repeatedly. Steiner took the mic and complained that he's not in the King of the Mountain match. He said he was screwed out of a title shot and added, "Kaz, tonight, I'm going to screw you." What? Steiner said he was going to make sure that Kaz couldn't challenge for the TNA Title on Impact.
Abyss's music started and he walked to the ring wearing a new mask and a sleeveless white mental hospital outfit. He performed Blackhole Slams on Petey, Steiner, and even Rhaka. Abyss then played to the crowd.
Powell's POV: Very good opening match with some excellent nearfalls. Petey had the flashier offense. Abyss has packed on some serious pounds since he last appeared on television. His outfit is horrible. It's like a white version of the prison suit that Nailz wore in the WWF years ago. It even has his last name "Parks" and a number on the back.
At ringside, Tenay and West discussed the pay-per-view at ringside. Eric Young showed up and hyped that he found Elvis Presley. A seat in the crowd was reserved for Elvis...
Powell's POV: I guess someone on the TNA booking committee remembers Jerry Glanville's coaching career. The former head coach was famous for leaving tickets for Elvis at will call.
A video recapped the Samoa Joe and Kevin Nash relationship... Backstage, Jeremy Borash interview Nash, who said he looks at Joe as an investment. "Tonight, if Joe loses, Big Sexy loses," Nash said. "If Joe wins, Nash cashes in"...
Powell's POV: Nice promo. It fits in perfectly with all the teases for Nash turning on Joe and sends the message that it could happen tonight.
A video hyped the six-woman tag match... Tenay narrated video footage of Graceland...
2. ODB and Roxxi and Gail Kim defeated Angelina Love and Velvet Sky and Mickie Knuckles at 10:15. Love and Sky tried to leave early on, but the babyfaces brought them back. The heels worked over Gail's injured knee. Knuckles was especially effective in that regard. ODB took the hot tag and dominated the heels. She finished off Knuckles with a running powerslam.
Powell's POV: The referees are wearing blue shirts with black bow ties tonight. However, Slick Johnson is still wearing those silly ass shorts. Referees shouldn't have their own unique looks that distract viewers from the action. Speaking of bad looks, Knuckles wore that same lousy outfit she wore on Impact. Her work was impressive, but that look screams indy.
An LAX vs. Team 3D video aired... Backstage, Lauren conducted a sitdown interview with Rhino. He said he said he sat at home and realized he still had issues and that making peace with Christian was a step forward. He said winning the King of the Mountain match would represent a second chance...
Powell's POV: Rhino's character has become a sensitive bitch. I'm all for adding layers to the one dimensional gimmick, but not if it means I have to listen to this second chance shit every time he gets the mic. Yeah, we get it, he had some personal problems. Move on already.
3. LAX (w/Hector Guerrero, Salinas) defeated Team 3D to retain the TNA Tag Titles in 15:00. During the match, West mentioned something about Brother Ray weighing more than 300 lbs. Tenay, playing on the old weigh-in storyline, said he thought Ray weighed 275 lbs. West seemed thrown off for a few seconds and I'm not sure he ever figured out what Tenay was referring to.
Hernandez hit an early suicide dive over the top rope onto Devon and Homicide followed up with dive between the ropes onto Ray. The crowd loved it. Later, 3D went for the Whassup spot, but LAX broke it up. Moments later, Johnny Devine ran out with a kendo stick, but Hector cut him off. Meanwhile, Salinas performed the Whassup spot on Team 3D.
Homicide hit the frogsplash on Ray and had the win, but Devon pulled the referee out to break up the pin. A short time later, the heels were setting up Hernandez for 3D, but Homicide rolled up Ray and scored the pin.
Powell's POV: Both teams tried hard, but it just another LAX vs. Team 3D match. It's time to turn the Motor City Machine Guns heel and get them into the tag title picture.
A Robert Roode video aired... Backstage, Borash interviewed Roode about the King of the Mountain match. He was quiet and mellow. He said he's out to prove that he's a main eventer. He said he's done a lot of talking, but tonight it stops because he's going to prove to everyone in the locker room that he's "for real and a main eventer"...
Powell's POV: The King of the Mountain match is short on heels, yet one of them just cut a babyface promo. What's with all the emo introspective main event promos tonight? Yuck. Don't get me wrong, though, this has been a solid pay-per-view thus far.
Awesome Kong and Raisha Saeed walked to the ring. Borash polled the crowd and asked if anyone from the Memphis area wanted a chance to win $25,000. Borash interviewed Serena from Mississippi and Josie from Memphis. Saeed picked Josie, who said she's been training in MMA...
4. Awesome Kong (w/Raisha) squashed Serena in a $25,000 challenge in 2:30. Early in the match, Kong took the fight to the floor. She picked up Serena by the legs and whipped her into the guardrail. The crowd was impressed. Kong walked over to Josie, who was still at ringside behind the guardrail, and shoved her down.
Back inside the ring, Kong used the Implant Buster and scored the clean pin. Afterward, Kong walked over to Josie and shoved her. Kong indicated that she wanted to fight her.
5. Awesome Kong (w/Raisha) vs. Josie Robinson in a $25,000 challenge. The woman signed Borash's release form and then punched Kong in the face. She jumped over the guardrail and threw a flurry of punches at ringside that popped the crowd. Back inside the ring, Kong came back with a spinning back fist. The rest was all Kong, who hit the Awesome Bomb for the win.
Powell's POV: Really fun stuff. Kong looks like an absolute killer.
With Kong still in the ring, Young walked onto the stage and introduced Elvis Presley. A guy who looked more like Sonny Siaki than Elvis walked onto the stage. The crowd booed. Elvis danced his way down the ramp and into the ring. He asked Kong what she thought of Graceland. Kong kicked him and delivered the Awesome Bomb.
Powell's POV: All those stupid skits for that? I can't imagine how old the Elvis stuff is for people who live in the Memphis area.
A Christian Cage video aired... Backstage, Lauren interviewed Christian, who quoted a movie line, "If you love something then set it free." He said he's taken a step back from the title picture lately, but was ready to become the TNA World Champion for a third time... A video recapped the Jay Lethal, SoCal Val, and Sonjay Dutt storyline... Tenay narrated a shot of Beale Street in Memphis...
A minister named Hank Whitman stood in the ring and stated that it was time for the wedding ceremony to being. Ace Young waas booed. Kamala walked out wearing a tuxedo with no shoes or socks. Jake Roberts got a big pop. He wore a tux, but did not carry a snake bag. Koko Ware walked out with "Frankie" the bird. George Steele walked out through a side entrance and looked about the same as he did 20 years ago. Yes, he had the green tongue.
Sonjay Dutt walked out with the Maid of Honor. Up next was Jay Lethal, who wore a gold Macho Man outfit with glasses and shades. The minister cut to the chase and got to the "I do" parts. Jay did. Val didn't get a chance to accept. Sonjay interrupted and professed his love. He got down on one knee and begged her not to marry Lethal.
Lethal grabbed Sonjay by the throat and dragged him away. Lethal went to Val. Sonjay picked up a piece of the wedding set and struck Lethal with it. Ace Young ran down to the ring and leaped over the top rope. Sonjay punched him out. Thank God. Val and her Maid of Honor headed backstage. Koko Ware and Kamala got the better of Sonjay. Jake pulled a snake from underneath the ring and placed it on Sonjay, who made a quick exit. Steele ripped the turnbuckle pad open. Lethal recovered and was consoled by the legends...
Powell's POV: Lousy wedding. Totally predictable. Tenay and West acted like they were shocked when Sonjay interrupted even though the video segment earlier in the show focussed on how upset he was when Lethal popped the question. The crowd enjoyed the legends. The rest of it was low budget and predictable. At least it didn't go on forever.
A Booker T video aired... Backstage, Borash interviewed Booker, who said he was begged to sign with TNA "just to put TNA on the map." He said he put TNA on the global stage and that TNA ratings and pay-per-view buyrates are up. What? He complained that the locker room smelled like elephant urine while channeling the King Booker character. He said he was told what to do in WWE, but said that wouldn't happen here...
Powell's POV: Well, at least he played a heel character. Good promo with a couple fun King Booker teases.
6. A.J. Styles defeated Kurt Angle (w/Tomko) in 23:00. Referee Earl Hebner sent Tomko backstage about six minutes into the match. A.J. flipped over the top rope and landed legs first on Angle, and one of his legs caught the back of Kurt's neck. Angle writhed in pain on the ground while Hebner checked on him. He was back in the ring a short time later and appeared to be fine. Kurt was responsible for bracing Styles's fall and he may have actually put himself in that position intentionally.
Angle controlled the bulk of the action for the next several minutes. Eventually, he went for a superplex, but Styles countered the move and Angle. Later, Styles slid out of Angle's Olympic Slam attempt and turned it into a DDT. A.J. went for the Styles Clash, but Kurt avoided it and applied the ankle lock until Styles rolled out of the hold.
Later, Kurt avoided the Styles Clash and caught A.J. in the ankle lock again. This time, A.J. kicked Kurt into the referee. With both men and the referee down, Karen Angle walked to ringside with a chair. She called for Kurt and extended the chair between the ropes. Kurt tried to take the chair, but Karen smiled and wouldn't let go of it. Second later, A.J. hit the Styles Clash for the win.
After the match, Styles hugged Karen. Kurt recovered and struck Styles with a chair. Karen slapped Kurt. He made a fist and teased hitting her. She rolled to ringside and Kurt spat at her. Tomko ran out and prevented security from getting inside the ring while Angle applied the ankle lock...
Powell's POV: Good match. Tasteless post-match segment. He teased striking her and then spat in face. Totally unnecessary. By the way, Kurt is looking very thin these days.
Backstage, Lauren interviewed Samoa Joe, who said the fans are tired of watching politicians get ahead. "I am Samoa Joe, I am the TNA World Champion, and by god I am pro wrestling," he concluded...
A King of the Mountain video aired... Tenay narrated footage of Madison Street in Memphis... Tenay and West discussed the tale of the tape...
7. Samoa Joe defeated King Booker and Christian Cage and Robert Roode and Rhino in a King of the Mountain match to retain the TNA Title in 20:00. Kevin Nash came out wearing his ring gear and served as the special enforcer referee. Poor Tenay explained the rules to start the match.
Early in the match, Booker shoved Christian off the top rope toward the floor. Christian's left leg struck the ring apron as he was coming down and he sold a left knee injury. The camera showed Christian a minute later and he was just lying there making no attempt to sell it. A few minutes later, Christian darted back inside the ring. West assumed he was just playing possum.
Booker scored the first pin of the match around 7:45 and sent Rhino to the penalty box where he could wallow in his character's usual depression. At 11:00, Christian was the first person to dive off the top of the penalty cage. At 12:30, Roode struck Christian with a chair and then pinned him. Seconds later, Rhino pinned Roode. Roode wouldn't go to the box, so Nash punched him and threw him inside.
At 15:00, Joe caught Booker in a submission hold. Christian climbed onto the penalty box, jumped off, and splashed Joe and Booker. Christian pinned Booker. Two minutes later, Booker exited the penalty box. He took the belt from Nash and then struck him with it. Booker each of his opponents with the belt and then climbed the ladder in an attempt to hang the belt. Nash came in and stopped him.
Later, Joe hit the MuscleBuster on Roode and pinned him. Joe climbed the ladder and hung the belt to win the match. Afterward, Nash extended his hand to Joe. They shook hands and then Joe left the ring while the announcers stressed that he was the first TNA Champion to retain his title in the King of the Mountain match.
A video hyped Victory Road for July 13 to close the show...
Powell's POV: A good main event with a couple innovative spots and all five guys trying hard. I enjoyed the match even though I'll never like the idea of having the winner hang the belt. TNA closed out the show with two strong matches and it's really a shame that they had zero momentum heading into those matches thanks to the crowd killing wedding angle.
Overall, It was a solid show when they just let the wrestlers do their thing. The comedy and sports entertainment aspects were beyond bad, though. The wedding was awful and I still can't believe they didn't have something more than the obvious planned. The legends helped a little, but who thought this segment was worthy of valuable pay-per-view time? The Elvis skit was just stupid. How does something like that make it out of the creative team meeting? Is there anyone outside TNA who found that funny?
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