3/7 Shore's TNA Impact Wrestling live coverage: Final hype for Sunday's Lockdown PPV, the last show in the Impact Zone, Gut Check judging, Best of 3 series to hype Lethal Lockdown
By Chris Shore
TNA Impact Wrestling on SpikeTV
Aired live from the Impact Zone in Orlando, Florida.
[Q1] An "In Memoriam" graphic dedicated the show to Paul Bearer…A video recapped the past few weeks, especially Kurt Angle unmasking the VP last week. Backstage, Invisible Question Guy asked Angle who the VP was. Angle said he would reveal him tonight. He said he was pissed off and that the reveal would cause shockwaves. He said it wasn't an Impact Zone problem, it was a TNA problem. He stormed off…
Austin Aries made his ring entrance as Todd Keneley, Taz, and Mike Tenay checked in on commentary. Aries said he couldn't find his partner again this week. He put over his win over Hernandez and then said he gave both Jeff Hardy and Bully Ray some pieces of advice and they didn't appreciate it. He said Bully said he would never be champion again and so he wanted to prove Ray wrong. He challenged Jeff Hardy to an immediate title match.
Jeff Hardy made his ring entrance and walked around the ring shaking hands. Aries dove on him and attacked. He rolled Hardy in the ring and the bell rang in an apparent non-title match…
Shore's Slant: So attacking a guy who hasn't answered your challenge and rolling him in the ring causes an actual match? What kind of shitty ass logic is that?
1. Austin Aries vs. Jeff Hardy. Aries continued to pound on Hardy. He whipped Hardy to the corner and ran in. Hardy tried his head scissor move in the corner and Aries tossed him to the floor…[C]
[Q2] Back from commercial, Hardy hit a sunset flip, but Aries rolled through and hit a dropkick for two. Hardy tried several more comeback moments that Aries found a way to reverse. Aries stood on the second rope and mocked Hardy. He hit a frog splash for two and argued with the ref. Hardy pulled the tights for a school boy near fall and started his comeback.
Hardy hit a splash from the second rope and then finally hit his corner head scissor that spilled Aries to the floor. Hardy dove on him and played to the crowd. He rolled Aries in the ring and went to the top. Aries stopped him and tried for a suplex. Hardy fought him off and hit back to back Twists of Fate. He took his shirt off, but Matt Morgan ran in and hit a carbon footprint on Hardy to cause a DQ…
Jeff Hardy defeated Austin Aries by disqualification at 12:16.
Post-match, Morgan set Hardy's head against the ring post and backed up for another carbon footprint. He started for the move, but Bully Ray ran out with a chain to stop him. Morgan backed away and Ray helped Hardy up…
Backstage, Sting gave a pep talk to his crew and said they all needed to win tonight. He said he would kick things off…A video recapped Angle's attack last week and he was shown heading toward the ring…[C]
Shore's Slant: This is ridiculous. Ray is being so over the top with the babyface stuff that he either has to turn on Sunday or damage his character significantly. I have no idea why Hardy is wrestling Aries on the go home show that did NOTHING to sell the PPV or put any heat on their respective storylines. What a mess. The match was fine, but they need to focus on more for Lockdown than the Lethal Lockdown match and this match didn't focus on anything.
[Q3] A video recapped the history between Angle and Aces and Eights, specifically Wes Brisco. Wes made his ring entrance. He said his father and uncle told him Angle was the best wrestler they had ever seen. He said he believed them until he met Angle and realized what a waste he was. He said he would beat Angle to death at Lockdown.
Angle made his entrance and said when you disrespect hi, you disrespect the business. What? He said he wasn't going to wait until Sunday and slid in the ring. He and Wes brawled until the agents came out. D-Lo pulled Wes away and Al Snow and the other one (didn't see who it was) pulled Angle away. Angle kept saying "That's him" and then D-Lo kicked him in the balls. He and Wes beat up Snow and the other guy and then D-Lo took a mic and revealed himself as VP…[C]
Shore's Slant: So the VP is a guy who hasn't been relevant in over five years? And why didn't Angle take a couple of shots at D-Lo when he first saw him run out? Doesn't anybody think about these things? The Aces and Eights storyline continues to flounder along. I think they may have waited too long to pay this whole thing off.
Backstage, D-Lo and the gang got hyped up as Devon got ready to face Sting. D-Lo said they would destroy TNA this Sunday like Devon was going to destroy Sting…
2. Devon vs. Sting. The winner of the series tonight gets the man advantage on Sunday. The match quickly spilled to the floor and a fan hit Sting in the face with a beer. Security cam e and dragged him off and Devon rolled Sting in the ring for the pin…
Devon defeated Sting at 3:21. Aces and Eights leads the series 1-0.
Shore's Slant: That was crazy as hell with the fan. I was busy watching him to see if this was planned and missed what Devon hit to win the match. I guess somebody wanted to make the final Impact Zone show one to remember. Sting was talking to Earl Hebner after the match. I don't know if he got hurt somehow, but he seemed to be talking a lot.
[Q4][C] Velvet Sky started to answer IQG's question about being champ again when Gail Kim walked up. Kim said she was surprised Velvet and Taryn hadn't split the title yet since they both screwed her. She kept talking to Velvet and asked if Velvet heard her. Velvet slapped her and asked if she heard that…
Danny Davis replaced Taz on the Gut Check team. They put over both women in a pre-tape and then cut to live with the women. They said this was the hardest decision to date, and then cut Ivelisse. She was visibly upset but shook hands and left. Prichard told Lei'D Tapa they would see her later in the ring…Mexican America 4.0 and Velvet Sky made their ring entrance together…[C]
Shore's Slant: Wow. I really don't know what to say. Tapa has made great improvements in the ring, and she has a great look, but I'm stunned Ivelisse was cut. From her face, so was she. Also, I didn't realize Sting was busted open by the beer, but there are pictures of him on Twitter showing it. I just thought it was his makeup smearing.
[Q5] 3. Chavo Guerrero, Hernandez, and Velvet Sky vs. Bad Influence and Gail Kim. Daniels bumped around for Hernandez and Chavo early. Gail Kim grabbed Chavo's leg on a whip to help Daniels take control. Velvet returned the favor almost immediately. But Kaz hit a dirty clothesline on Chavo to take control. Velvet got the hot tag, as did Kim. The match broke down and the men took each other out. Velvet cheered her teammates, but Kim hit Eat Defeat for the win…
Bad Influence and Gail Kim defeated Chavo Guerrero, Hernandez, and Velvet Sky.
A video recapped what happened with D-Lo and with Sting earlier. No question that the "fan" was a plant after that. Backstage, Sting freaked out by beating a chair with the bat. He and Joe and Magnus argued about if they could trust each other or not…An AJ Styles update was hyped for next…[C]
Shore's Slant: Go ahead and fire up the email machines TNA fanboys because I have nothing but disdain for this show thus far. I'm so incredibly frustrated. They have a PPV to sell for Sunday and they make the top of the second hour match a garbage mixed six man match? Get the f--- out of here! Who's putting this show together? This is usually the second or third highest rated segment. Put something that matters on in this spot, not a token match. The build for Lethal Lockdown has been well done, but that alone isn't going to sell the PPV. They need to put heat on some of these other matches, especially the World Title match, and they are failing miserably.
A video showed the camera crew finding Styles in his hometown at a bar. They got out of the car and AJ shoved them back in while telling them to leave…They immediately moved on because that's the TNA way and Doc and Garett made their ring entrance. Joe and Magnus were out next…
[Q6] 4. Doc and Garett Bischoff vs. Magnus and Samoa Joe. Garett got a "You can't wrestle" chant from the Impact Zone crowd. Bet he won't miss that next week. A graphic showed AJ Styles tweeted that he would be in Chicago next week. Way to distract from the match TNA. Magnus and Joe pulled out their old tag team moves and pinned Doc after a top rope elbow…
Magnus and Samoa Joe defeated Doc and Garett Bischoff at 4:52. The series is tied 1-1
Lei'D Tapa headed to the ring for Gut Check judging…[C]
Shore's Slant: Not a bad match, but I don't understand why they didn't do the AJ tweet before the match so it didn't distract from the match. That's the problem with TNA in a nutshell, they make really strange decisions when the right decision seems so obvious. Like cutting the person who actually won the Gut Check match. How does that happen?
Kenny King cut a promo about being the new X Division Champion and said he was going to prove he was the best ever. He said it didn't matter who they gave him to face on Sunday, he would beat them…Backstage, Sting walked up to EY and James Storm. Young cut a good promo about how he was the funny guy, but Aces and Eights tried to take wrestling away from him. He said he would never forget it and there was no punch line and asked Sting to pick him for the final match. Sting said he appreciated it but had to go with Storm. He walked away and Storm said he had it covered…
[Q7] Jeremy Borash introduced the judges and then Lei'D Tapa. She drew unbelievable heat as Borash asked her if the judges saw her best. She either played to the crowd or let them get under her skin as they chanted "No." She answered with a lengthy response about how far she has come in two years and how far she will go. Davis gave her a yes.
Prichard gave a shout out to Paul Bearer and then gave her a no. Tapa's kick out promo was heartfelt at first, and then got passionate at the end. She said she knew what she could add to TNA and the Knockouts division. Snow said he would miss Uncle Paul and then gave her a yes.
Shore's Slant: Congratulations to Lei'D Tapa. I have met her a couple of times and she is very nice and very committed to wrestling. She has serious size and could add something to the Knockouts after some more ring time. That said, I still can't believe Ivelisse was cut. Hopefully there is a bigger plan that we can't see right now.
5. Mr. Anderson vs. James Storm. Anderson got in few strikes, but Storm fought back quickly and hit Closing Time. Aces and Eights came out and stood by the railing. Team TNA ran out and stood between the gang and the ring. Storm watched all of this play out and turned around into a mic check…
Mr Anderson defeated James Storm at 3:50. Aces and Eights wins the series 2-1 and will have the man advantage at Lethal Lockdown.
[Q8] Jeff Hardy, Brooke Hogan, and Bully Ray were all shown heading toward the ring…[C]
Shore's Slant: Cut and dry. Storm looks a little dumb for turning his back on Anderson, but that's a standard wrestling gimmick. I don't think the results of this match were ever in doubt.
Ray and Brooke made their entrance. Hardy was out next. Ray said he's had Jeff's back but the bromance was over and he was coming for Hardy. Jeff said he was proud of Ray for what he's done. Ray said he's never been proud of himself because he always expected greatness. He said he wasn't going to go through the backdoor, he was going to go through the front door and beat Hardy with his best move.
They shook hands and Hulk Hogan's music hit. Hogan came out and said TNA was going on to greatness and they were looking for the guy who could take them there. He put over both guys and said the best man should win on Sunday. Aces and Eights ran out to attack Hardy and Ray. The rest of team TNA ran out as well and a brawl closed the show.
Shore's Slant: I know it seems I can be hard on TNA sometimes, but honestly folks, who thought that sold any PPVs? The bromance continued, even though Bully said it was over, and Hulk had to come out and stroke his ego and take what precious little heat there is off the match. And then Aces and Eights ran out to kill it even more. I honestly don't get it. I have never said this about a show that I remember, but I would be less likely to order Lockdown after this episode.
It feels like TNA has been holding back until they go on the road. I get the point behind that, but with only two PPVs left after this, you would expect them to give a damn about making this one feel special. I will give them full credit for making the Lethal Lockdown match feel like a big deal, Storm's senior moment notwithstanding, but nothing else even feels close to a big deal, not even the Angle vs. Briscoe match, and certainly not the title match. I had such high hopes when the schedule changed, but all they've done is be lazy with the extra time. Will Pruett and Ryan Kester will have more on the show on Friday. Thanks for watching along tonight.
Questions? Comments? Anyone, anyone? Let me hear from you. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet me @TheShoreSlant with whatever is on your mind.
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