PPV REPORTS 7/17 TNA No Surrender PPV: Caldwell's "Alternative Perspective" Review
Jul 18, 2005 - 1:26:00 AM
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By James Caldwell, Torch Columnist
TNA No Surrender PPV Alternative Perspective Review
July 17, 2005
From Universal Studios in Orlando, Florida
Report by: James Caldwell, Torch columnist
- After opening crowd shots, Jeremy Borash and Shane Douglas were in the ring to kick off the pre-game show hyping the PPV. Douglas said the opening match of the PPV will feature a six-man tag match pitting Lance Hoyt and The Naturals against Team Canada. Borash talked about the Super X cup tournament. They ran down the rest of the card while mixing in crowd shots and So Cal Val blowing a kiss to the camera.
- Backstage, Jim Mitchell was backstage with Abyss while standing behind a chain fence. Mitchell said Raven is a fool for getting in a dog collar match with a 6'8" monster like Abyss. Mitchell continued to describe the pain Raven would face in the NWA Title dog collar match as Abyss grunted and kicked the fence.
- We went to video footage from Slammiversary where Raven won the NWA Title after Jeff Jarrett was written out of the King of the Mountain match. After highlighting last month's PPV, we saw footage recapping the build up to Raven vs. Abyss while also integrating footage of Jarrett and Zbyszko discussing the "new talent" coming into TNA from recent editions of Impact.
- Borash and Douglas discussed the PPV then Cassidy Riley appeared in the stands behind Borash and Douglas. Riley said, "Nevermore," as if he was a disciple of Raven.
- Mike Tenay and Don West were ringside to go over the No Surrender line up. They were interrupted by Jeff Jarrett's theme music. Fantastic.
- Jarrett, sporting a suit and dress shirt, ran to the ringside area and said, "I'm not even on the card tonight!" Tenay got in Jarrett's face and said he had some things to get off his chest. Tenay said, "You're not going to hi-jack this show!" Tenay led Jarrett to the ring where he tried to speak, but Jarrett interrupted him. Jarrett reminded everyone that he was hauled off in handcuffs last month at Slammiversary. Jarrett brought up "Black Wednesday" from two weeks ago when WWE released 18 wrestlers in one day. Jarrett said, "Upwards of 50 wrestlers have been laid off." Jarrett said, "I know what's going to happen - the TNA officials are going to open the door to these people because TNA is the only alternative." Tenay said the wrestlers deserve to be in TNA. That drew up a loud applause from the audience followed by a strong "T-N-A" chant. Jarrett said that if TNA wants to bring in WWE talent, that means TNA is going to fire the same guys who built up TNA. Jarrett said the man at the top of the list of people to be fired is none other than himself. The fans responded with a mix of boos and cheers. Jarrett told the fans that you are the same guys who got suckered into the Matt Hardy b.s. storyline and were the same people who chanted, "Drop the title." Jarrett ripped on the fans for not knowing anything about the business. Jarrett asked Mike Tenay if he is here tonight? Tenay played dumb, so Jarrett spelled it out, "Is Rhino here tonight?" Tenay said he talked to Larry Zbyszko and informed him that Rhino is here tonight. Jarrett said, "You have not seen the last of Jeff Jarrett tonight." Don West took the mic ringside and said, "We're all sick and tired of your act, so take your coat and hat and leave."
- We saw video footage highlighting the interaction between Sean Waltman, A.J. Styles, and Jerry Lynn leading to Waltman vs. Styles set for the PPV.
(1) Shocker defeated Jerelle Clark. Shocker received a noticeable chorus of boos despite being portrayed as a babyface during his entire stint in TNA. Shocker won with a leg trap pinning combination after a few minutes of basic action.
- We saw video footage recapping the feud between Christopher Daniels and Petey Williams.
- Ringside with So Cal Val, Jeremy Borash and Don West talked about the PPV line up. Borash confirmed that Rhino will be at the PPV. Borash said the match between Abyss and Raven "will not be for the weak of heart as there will be plenty of bloodshed." Borash gave the final sales pitch that you don't want to miss what the wrestling world will be talking about on Monday morning.
Live PPV Show Review
- The PPV opened with another in the line of PPV video packages trying to be too cute for their own good. Much of the footage was shown in reverse motion to describe a return to the beginning.
- From ringside, Mike Tenay and Don West welcomed us to the PPV as the camera zoomed around the arena.
(1) America's Most Wanted (Chris Harris & James Storm) defeated Alex Shelley & Michael Shane. The match began with Shelley and Storm as Tenay talked about Shelley's hybrid wrestling style. Storm took Shelley down with an arm take over before both men came up for air after a brief moment of mat wrestling. Storm ran over Shelley with a shoulder block then Shelley ducked a clothesline and landed a series of chops to the chest. Shelley took two chops to the chest then threw Storm over the top rope, but Storm skinned the cat and swung back into the ring where he nearly connected with a super kick, but Shelley ducked out of the way. Shane took a tag from Shelley and Harris took a tag from Storm. Shane drove Harris to the corner and landed straight right hands to the head. Harris ducked a clothesline and landed two arm drag takeovers. Harris tagged in Storm then Shane scampered to his corner to tag in Shelley. AMW delivered a double beat down on Shelley then Harris mounted Shelley in the corner for ten punches, but Shelley fought out and tagged in Shane. Shane landed straight right hands then ducked his head too soon off the ropes allowing Harris to kick Shane in the gut before landing a high-elevated vertical suplex. Storm tagged in so Shane bailed out of the ring to avoid Storm at all costs. Storm went after Shane, but Shelley blindsided Storm with a clothesline. All four men brawled ringside as the action broke down. Harris and Shelley fought up the entrance ramp then Storm threw Shelley off the entrance ramp into the side of the bleacher stands. Security checked on Shelley. Storm flew off the entrance ramp with an awkward flying something or another move that looked like someone flying off the diving board into the swimming pool without a move in mind.
Meanwhile, Shane worked on Harris by wrapping him around the ringpost. From behind, Traci delivered a stiff low blow on Harris in plain sight of the referee. Shane went for a piledriver or powerbomb on the entrance ramp, but Harris reversed into a back body drop. Harris picked up Traci and dragged her to the ringpost where he handcuffed Traci to the corner ringpost. Traci screamed as she tried to escape the cuffing position. Back in the ring, Harris tagged in Storm where Shane had no one to tag out to since Shelley was knocked out of the match. Storm ran over Shane with a clothesline then Shelley returned to the ring and took a DDT from Storm. Storm powerslammed Shane to the mat then Storm dropped Shelley with the "Eye of the Storm" twisting body drop. AMW dropped Shane with a double team clothesline then Harris made a cover, but Shane kicked out at two. AMW set up for the Death Sentence, but Shelley threw Harris off the top rope to the corner. Shane threw Storm over the top rope and Storm tried to skin the cat for a second time, but Shane delivered a dropkick to the face. Traci tossed Shane one of her huge platform shoes and Shane clocked Harris with the shoe. Shane made a cover, but only scored a two count. Traci tossed Shane her other shoe, but Harris blocked a shoe shot and dropped Shane with a side slam. Shelley flipped over Harris into the ring and walked right into a super kick from James Storm. Storm made the cover on Shelley for the win.
- After the match, Michael Shane waited for Storm to turn around after celebrating the victory and dropped him square in the face with a super kick.
Match View: This was your standard AMW tag match with more action out of the ring than in the ring. We really didn’t get to see much of what separates Alex Shelley from most wrestlers with his great wrestling skills. AMW has been positioned as a much stronger tag team after appearing to be near a break up two months ago. Good way to start off the show with a high-intensity battle.
- We saw footage from the pre-game show when Jeff Jarrett and Mike Tenay got into a heated discussion about the "new talent" coming into TNA. Tenay said Rhino will be at No Surrender.
- Backstage, Shane Douglas was with Team Canada in the locker room area. After zooming in on a picture of Scott D'Amore, the camera focused on Bobby Roode, who said Lance Hoyt put D'Amore in a hospital meaning Hoyt and The Naturals were going to find out what Canadian payback is all about. Petey Williams said Team Canada is still the most dominant and elite group in wrestling with or without D'Amore. Team Canada started to sing the Canadian National Anthem, but Jeff Jarrett interrupted and told Team Canada to join with him to make sure their jobs are secure when the "Johnny come lately's" arrive in TNA. Team Canada wasn't trusting of Jarrett until Jarrett offered some convincing words. Petey said Team Canada would be there for him. Bobby Roode wasn't so convinced and said he didn't feel like they could trust Jarrett.
- We saw video footage setting up the Super X Cup, which is set to begin next week on Impact.
(2) Sonjay Dutt defeated Prime Time Elix Skipper, Shark Boy, and Mikey Batts to qualify for the Super X Cup. Dutt and Prime Time started things off with Dutt scoring a nice tilt-a-whirl take over after several revolutions around Prime Time's back. Mikey Batts, sporting brand new ring gear and a new heel persona, tagged himself in and slapped Dutt across the face. Dutt landed chops to the chest then took Batts over with a head scissors take over. Batts tagged in Shark Boy, who landed a nice drop kick before taking a leg whip after missing with a clothesline. Batts attacked Shark Boy from behind then Shark Boy took a bite out of Batts's back. Shark Boy turned around and took a knock down clothesline by Dutt. Prime Time tagged himself in then drop kicked Dutt off the top turnbuckle to the floor. Shark Boy went for a pin on Prime Time after scoring with a quick slam. Shark Boy mounted Prime Time in the corner for ten punches, but Prime Time shoved Shark Boy to the mat. The action broke down with all four men finding one way or another to get in the ring without a tag. Prime Time threw Batts over his head with a shoulder throw before making a cover for a two count only. Prime Time placed Batts on the top rope then walked the rope for his trademark huricanrana, but Prime Time lost his balance and fell backwards off the top rope to the floor. Batts threw himself off the top rope as Prime Time barely got a piece of Batts on the way down. Shark Boy flew onto both men outside of the ring before Dutt flew off the top turnbuckle with a splash onto all three other men. Back in the ring, all four men did battle with Prime Time dropping Batts with his "Sudden Death" finisher. However, Prime Time couldn't make a cover as Shark Boy threw him over the top rope to the floor. Dutt chucked Shark Boy over the top rope to the floor allowing Dutt to take advantage of Batts's weakened state to score his Hindu Press corkscrew moonsault on Batts for the pin and the win to qualify for the Super X Cup.
Match View: Standard high spot X Division fest that only means Dutt advances to the Super X Cup and nothing more. At least Batts has somewhat of a persona he can work with, as he debuted as a heel after playing a nothing babyface throughout his tenure in TNA. We'll see if TNA does anything on Impact with the new Batts. Dutt looked to have an extra boost of confidence going into and during the match. Prime Time falling backwards to the floor after attempting his "walking the top rope" move wasn't pretty, but at least it didn't occur atop a steel cage.
- Backstage, Konnan and Ron Killings were with Shane Douglas. Konnan said B.G. James hasn't been heard from in one month. Killings said they should trust James and give him time. Konnan said he didn't want to worry about James because they had a street fight to worry about.
- Simon Diamond came to the ring with David Young. Diamond said he's always on the look out for new talent, especially when he sees untapped potential. Diamond said he has a man who can bench press 400 pounds and has "blue chip" athletic ability. Diamond said David Young didn't win a match for nearly two years because he did not have guidance or leadership. Diamond said he's going to take Young and mold him into a superstar as part of group of "Diamonds in the Rough."
(3) Sonny Siaki & Apolo defeated Simon Diamond & David Young. Young and Apolo started things off with Apolo shoving Young to the mat before dropping him with an overhead slam. Apolo dropped Young with a press slam before landing a leg drop to the back of Young's head. Apolo landed a stiff chop to the chest before tagging in Siaki. Apolo and Siaki landed a double team pancake then Siaki locked in an arm bar as Diamond yelled encouragement from ringside. Siaki went for a move off the ropes, but Diamond pulled the ropes down causing Siaki to fly over the top rope to the floor. Young flew off the apron with a back flip splash onto Siaki. In the ring, Apolo ran over Diamond with a clothesline then sent Diamond to the floor. Apolo flew over the top rope onto Young and Diamond with a somersault splash. Nice execution. Back in the ring, Diamond clotheslined Siaki to the mat giving Young and Diamond the heel advantage to work on Siaki with in and out tags before Siaki scored the hot tag to Apolo. Apolo ran over both opponents before dropping Young with a back body drop and Diamond with a clothesline. The action broke down with all four men scoring finishing moves. Young had Siaki pinned after hitting a spinebuster, but the referee refused to make the count as he deemed that Young was not the eligible man. Young complained then turned around and took an Ace Crusher from Apolo. Apolo made the pin for the win.
Match View: This match belonged on the pre-show, but all four men worked hard throughout the match. Apolo seemed to have more confidence than we've seen from him recently. His somersault splash and wider-than-usual smile showed something else from him. I picture Siaki as someone TNA could turn into a legit mid-card wrestle who could be a featured PPV act if the company gave Siaki some promo or character development time.
- Tenay and West talked about the TNA Bound for Glory PPV set for October 23.
(4) Samoa Joe defeated Chris Sabin. Joe took his time walking to the ring to give everyone a good look at his imposing presence. Joe slowly walked around the ring as Sabin drew the crowd into the match before locking up. Joe missed with a clothesline then no-sold a slap to the chest. Joe slapped Sabin to the corner then no-sold a kick to the leg. Joe drove Sabin to the corner then took Sabin down with mat wrestling holds. Joe dropped Sabin to the mat with a single leg take down then Sabin and Joe exchanged shoulder blocks. Sabin ducked a kick then drop kicked Joe to the corner. Sabin flew into the corner with a flying fist smash then went for the Cradle Shock, but Joe stood his ground and shoved Sabin to the mat. Joe slapped Sabin across the chest then dropped Sabin with a leg kick straight in the face. Joe sent Sabin to the opposite corner then drove a knee to the face. Joe dropped Sabin to the bottom turnbuckle then delivered a face wash before running from the opposite corner with a foot smash to the face. The fans chanted, "Joe, Joe, Joe!" Joe slammed Sabin to the mat then drove a high-elevated knee to the throat. Joe locked in a neck wrench submission hold then Sabin fought to his feet and broke the hold, only to take a shoulder block taking him down to the mat. Joe locked in the same submission hold and Sabin fought out, only to be slammed to the mat after pulling Sabin's hair. Joe dropped Sabin with a textbook suplex then made a cover for a two count only. Joe paintbrushed the back of Sabin's head then landed stiff chops and punches to Sabin's weakened body. Joe nonchalantly picked up Sabin giving Sabin time to punch and slap his way back into the match. Joe quickly cut Sabin off with a kick to the face then Joe back body dropped Sabin over the top rope to the apron. Joe bounced off the opposite rope then Sabin flew off the top turnbuckle with a sweet missile drop kick sending Joe to the outside. Sabin flew off the apron with a drop kick sending Joe crashing into the guardrail ringside.
Sabin took Joe back into the ring and stomped on Joe's back sending him crashing to the mat. Sabin dropped a leg from the top turnbuckle then made a cover for a two count only. Sabin went for the Cradle Shock for a second time, but Joe resisted and landed a German Suplex. Joe sent Sabin to the ropes then caught him with a snap-over powerslam. Joe made a cover, but scored a two count only. West and Tenay wowed at a replay of Joe's powerslam. Joe missed in the corner with a clothesline then Sabin flew off the middle rope with a Tornado DDT. Sabin scored a nearfall on a pin attempt. Sabin slapped Joe across the chest then missed with a top rope move as Joe caught him with a powerbomb, which he turned into an STF. Sabin tried to fight out of the hold as the fans cheered on. As Sabin appeared to be out of the hold, Joe turned an STF into a Crippler Crossface. Sabin tried to drag Joe to the ropes to break the hold, but Joe decided to turn the Crossface into a shoulder wrenching submission hold. Sabin countered by swinging his leg to the bottom rope to break the hold. The fans clapped in appreciation of the great sequence of submission holds and Sabin resisting. Joe, frustrated, took Sabin to the corner as the fans exchanged dueling chants. Joe went for the Muscle Buster, but Sabin blocked it. Joe took Sabin to the top turnbuckle for a superplex attempt, but Sabin slipped out and dropped Joe with an amazing powerbomb! Sabin thought he had it won, but Joe kicked out at two! Awesome. Sabin called for the fans then screamed at Joe to get up. Sabin went for the Cradle Shock, but Joe fought out. Sabin scored an enziguiri kick to the side of the head then went up top. Joe got to his feet and drop kicked Sabin, crotching him across the top turnbuckle. Joe caught Sabin and delivered the Muscle Buster off the top turnbuckle. Joe locked in his choke out submission hold and Sabin passed out as the referee dropped his arm three times.
- After the match, Joe kept the choke out locked in a little longer then necessary as officials ran to the ring to check on Sabin.
Match View: Damn good match. Just a damn good match. Sabin didn't look particularly strong at the beginning of the match, but as the match progressed, Sabin looked very strong absorbing Joe's strong style offense and array of submission holds. Great nearfalls at the end of the match to get the crowd excited and tell a story of Sabin resisting Joe's monstrous offense. Mike Tenay did a nice job telling the story of the match.
- We saw footage highlighting the feud between Team Canada and Lance Hoyt and The Naturals.
- Backstage, The Naturals, Lance Hoyt, and Jimmy Hart were with Shane Douglas. Chase Stevens said their match against Team Canada was about respect. Hoyt cut a quick, but effective promo then Jimmy Hart talked about having his experience and age to complement the youthful exuberance of The Naturals and Hoyt.
(5) Team Canada (Bobby Roode & A-1 Ralphz & Eric Young) defeated Lance Hoyt & The Naturals (Chase Stevens & Andy Douglas w/Jimmy Hart). Hoyt and The Naturals received a monstrous pop from the Impact zone as the "Hoytamaniacs" ringside held up their Hoyt signs. The match began with Hoyt and Roode in the ring after Team Canada jumped their opponents before the bell sounded. Hoyt clotheslined Roode over the top rope to the floor leading to Hoyt and The Naturals standing tall in the ring. All six men did battle in the ring with the babyfaces taking out Team Canada for the second time. Hoyt chased Roode outside of the ring where he slammed Roode headfirst into the guardrail. Back in the ring, Hoyt dropped Roode with a back body drop as Chase Stevens flew off the top turnbuckle with a moonsault splash onto A-1 and Eric Young. Hoyt flew over the top rope and crashed into A-1 and Young. Back in the ring, Stevens went for a pin on Young, but scored a two count only. With the match back to normal tag action, The Naturals worked on Young with quick in and out tags. Douglas ran over A-1 with a clothesline then tagged in Hoyt, who laid into A-1 with shoulder thrusts followed by an arm slam across the top rope. Hoyt and The Naturals exchanged in and out tags until A-1 slammed Douglas in the corner. Douglas countered with a knee to the gut and reached his corner where Stevens tagged in. A-1 threw Stevens to Team Canada's corner leading to quick in and out tags.
With the referee's back turned, Bobby Roode brought the Canadian flag to the ring. Jimmy Hart didn't appreciate the potential weaponry use, so he hopped up on the apron to contend. Roode tossed Hart the flag then dropped to the mat as if to say Hart hit him in the face. The referee turned around and saw Roode clutching his face and Hart holding the smoking gun. The referee kicked Hart out from ringside for his phantom interference. As Hoyt and Douglas contended with the decision, Stevens took a three-on-one beat down by Team Canada. Team Canada went to work on Stevens for the heel beat down phase of the match. Hoyt finally took the hot tag and ran over all members of Team Canada. Hoyt chokeslammed Roode after dropping A-1 with a big boot. Hoyt mounted Young in the corner for ten "Hoyt" punches to the head. Hoyt dropped Young with a spinebuster then Douglas flew off the top rope on Young. The action spilled to the outside with Hoyt clotheslining A-1 over the top rope to the floor. The Naturals set up for the Natural Disaster on Young, but Roode picked up Jimmy Hart's left-over megaphone and laid out both Naturals with the megaphone. With A-1 holding Hoyt's foot preventing him from re-entering the ring, Young covered Douglas for the pin and the win.
Match View: Standard tag match that - as in any Team Canada match - was full of outside interference. Removing Coach D'Amore from the equation hasn't done much to eliminate Team Canada's penchant for the cheap finish that really bogs down their matches. Heels are supposed to cheat, but not in every match, and definitely not for as many matches as Team Canada has done. TNA protected Hoyt, but I'd like to see him challenged in some one-on-one opportunities.
- We saw video footage highlighting the five-month long storyline involving B.G. James's decision to stay with the Kru or join The Outlaw.
- Backstage, Shane Douglas was with The Outlaw and Monty Brown. Outlaw said he's changing his name to Kip James in honor of B.G. James's family accepting him into their family years ago. Monty Brown started to deliver his "Pounce" line, but Jeff Jarrett interrupted and asked if they had seen Rhino. Outlaw told him that they had a match to worry about. Brown told Jarrett they only work together if Jarrett gives him an NWA Title shot. Brown pointed out that Jarrett doesn't have a belt, so Jarrett can't hold up his end of the bargain.
(6) The Outlaw a.k.a. Kip James & Monty Brown defeated 3 Live Kru (Konnan & Ron Killings) in a No DQ, Street Fight. Konnan took the mic and did his usual pre-match speech. The action broke down to the outside early on in the match with Konnan slamming Kip headfirst into the announcer's table. Kip came up busted open. That was quick and indicative of a short match. Konnan picked up a cookie sheet and slammed it across Kip's head. Back in the ring, Konnan missed Kip and hit the referee with the cookie sheet. Brown entered the ring and hit Konnan from behind. Security dragged referee Slick Johnson out of the ring and Andrew Thomas ran into the ring to pick up where Slick left off. Off the top turnbuckle, Killings dropped a leg across Brown's crotch. Killings ran over Kip with a clothesline then Monty Brown shoved Killings off the top turnbuckle to the floor. Kip and Brown went to work on Konnan with double team offense. Outlaw slammed the cookie sheet over Konnan's head then Outlaw made a cover, but scored a two count only. Brown worked on Killings in between screaming at the fans ringside. Back in the ring, Killings reversed a power bomb into a nice huricanrana followed by a leg whip to the face. Outside of the ring, Kip slammed Konnan into the ring steps. Back in the ring, Killings dropped Brown with an axe kick then made a cover, but Kip pulled the referee out of the ring to the floor. Kip sent the referee into the guardrail. Konnan had a chair he was going to use on Outlaw, but Outlaw kicked Konnan in the gut and dropped him with a DDT on the chair. We saw B.G. James standing atop the entrance ramp after arriving to watch the match. In the ring, Brown delivered a devastating Pounce on Killings in the middle of the ring. Brown covered Killings and referee Rudy Charles came to the ring and counted three count.
- After the match, B.G. James reluctantly came to the ring after mouthing that he couldn't believe Kip was calling himself Kip James. Kip took the mic and encouraged James to enter the ring. Kip handed James a chair to smash over Killings's head. James dropped the chair and refused to hit Killings. James slipped out of the ring as the fans chanted, "New Age Outlaws."
Match View: Either TNA wants to milk B.G. James's decision until they get back on TV, TNA really thinks it's helping the storyline to drag it out past the "range of drawing heat," or TNA has no idea what to do with the storyline once they deliver the pay off. Monty Brown's role in this match should have been handled better because he didn't come across as the star player he should be treated as. He seemed to be more of an afterthought.
- Backstage, Shane Douglas was with Jerry Lynn. Douglas asked Lynn about his officiating role in the match between Sean Waltman and A.J. Styles. Douglas asked Lynn if he was giving either man a little edge in the match. Lynn said he's had hate-filled, bloody battles with both men and both men were going to see what Lynn is made of. Lynn closed, "May the best man win."
(7) A.J. Styles defeated Sean Waltman with Jerry Lynn as special referee. Both men went through the feeling out process through the first minute of the match not wanting to make the first mistake. Waltman took Styles to the mat with an arm drag take over after using Jerry Lynn's shoulder as leverage. Waltman and Styles went into a series of mat wrestling counters and reversals before Styles scored two scoop slams causing Waltman to roll out of the ring to the outside. Waltman took his time returning to the ring before giving a mock applause to Styles. Waltman delivered a knee to the gut before Styles bounced back with a high-elevated vertical suplex. Styles scoop slammed Waltman to the mat then dropped a knee to the throat. Styles questioned the speed of Lynn's count then locked in an Indian Deathlock, wrenching Waltman's neck backwards. Waltman broke out so Styles kicked Waltman in the gut. Waltman no-sold and dared Styles to kick him again. Styles answered with an even stiffer kick that sent Waltman flying backwards on his back. Styles delivered a great drop kick to the chest causing Waltman to roll out of the ring to recover. With Waltman checking his lip, Styles flew over the top rope with a perfect somersault splash onto Waltman. Styles missed with a clothesline and Waltman spun him around before sending Styles crotch first into the corner ringpost. Waltman praised himself then came back into the ring as Styles recovered outside of the ring. Lynn checked on Styles before heading back into the ring to apply a count.
Styles re-entered the ring at a five count before Waltman dropped an elbow to the back of the head. Waltman drove Styles to the mat with a reverse chin lock then delivered a scoop slam followed by a cover for a two count, only. Waltman slapped Styles across the chest in the corner then drove a boot to the throat. Waltman went for a Bronco Buster in the corner, but Styles popped up and countered with the Styles Clash, but Waltman slipped out and drove Styles to the bottom turnbuckle. Waltman followed up with the Bronco Buster then scored a spin kick to the face sending Styles crashing to the floor. Waltman went up top and flew into Styles with a cannonball somersault dive sending the back of Styles's head directly into the bottom of the guardrail. Styles came up with a bloody nose after Waltman smashed Styles in the face. Styles reversed a scoop slam into a lift up slam sending Waltman crotch-first into the corner ringpost. Styles gasped for air as his nose and mouth were both covered in blood. Styles sent Waltman into the ring then flew off the top rope with a springboard flying fist smash. Styles came up with a look of intensity that helped him connect with the audience. Styles went to the apron then flew off the top rope with a springboard back flip DDT resulting in a two count only.
Styles went for a suplex, but Waltman flipped out to his feet and kicked Styles in the crotch. Waltman connected with a Northern Lights suplex and scored a two count only. Waltman went up top for a cross body block, but Styles countered with a drop kick in mid-air. Styles ducked a clothesline and hit the Styles Clash. That appeared to be the finish, but Waltman kicked out of the Clash at two. Whoa! Styles came up shocked and went up top for the Spiral Tap, but Waltman moved out of the way. Waltman dropped Styles with the X Factor faceplant, but Styles kicked out of a pin attempt. Waltman went to the outside and grabbed a chair. Waltman brought the chair to the ring and placed Styles's ankle inside the chair. Waltman went up top and Jerry Lynn refused to let him use the chair. Waltman got in Lynn's face and turned around to find a kick to the face. Styles went for the Styles Clash, but Waltman reversed into a sunset flip attempt. Waltman held the top rope for a leverage pin, but Lynn saw the illegal advantage and kicked Waltman's hands off the ropes. Styles hooked Waltman and delivered the Styles Clash for the pin and the win.
Match View: Waltman had a lot to prove based on not having wrestled a true wrestling match in TNA after wrestling several hardcore-style matches. Waltman brought his "A" game and delivered a very strong performance that gave me confidence in Waltman's ability to deliver in similar matches against similar opponents. Despite the focus at the end of the match being more about Waltman vs. Lynn than Styles winning and overcoming his "naivety" factor, Styles looked strong for fighting a tough battle to defeat the wily veteran. Just a good wrestling match that showed Waltman still has it.
- Backstage, Jeff Jarrett confronted Larry Zbyszko. Jarrett said he wasn't leaving the building until he received his title re-match. Zbyszko said Jarrett had to wait in line. Jarrett asked Zbyszko about Rhino's whereabouts. Zbyszko said Rhino was in the building. As he flashed his guitar in the air, Jarrett told Rhino that the TNA welcoming committee was ready to greet him.
- We saw a video package recapping the feud between Petey Williams and Christopher Daniels leading to their X Division Title match.
(8) Christopher Daniels defeated Petey Williams (w/A-1 Ralphz) to retain the X Division Title. Daniels and Petey went right after each other with stiff right hand exchanges. Petey ducked a clothesline and threw Daniels to the outside. Petey flew over the top rope and delivered a nice huricanrana sending Daniels flying across the outside. Back in the ring, Petey delivered a back elbow smash before landing a Russian legsweep. Petey scored a two count on a pin attempt. Petey drove a leg across the throat then went for another huricanrana off the apron, but Daniels caught Petey and slammed him straight into the apron with a stiff powerbomb. Painful. Daniels dragged Petey into the ring and went to work on Petey's back with a series of back breakers across his knee and other back-focused offensive moves. Petey fought back with forearm blows, but Daniels countered with a neck vice submission. From outside the ring, A-1 pulled Petey's leg to the ropes forcing a break of the hold. Daniels told A-1 he was a piece of crap then went back to work on Petey. Petey countered a body slam attempt with a reverse DDT leading to an intense exchange of right hands. Samoa Joe was seen standing atop the entrance tunnel watching the action in the ring. Daniels slipped out of the ring and started to leave, but caught a glimpse of Joe and turned around to be dragged back into the ring. Petey connected with a DDT in the middle of the ring and made a cover, but scored a two count only. Petey tried to float over Daniels in the corner, but Daniels caught Petey's legs and scored a side slam.
Daniels regained the offensive advantage, but was momentarily distracted by Joe's presence allowing Petey to take the offensive advantage with a Sharpshooter. Daniels found the ropes even after A-1 pulled the ropes away from Daniels. Petey and Daniels exchanged false finishes with Petey turning an Angel's Wings attempt into a nice huricanrana. Daniels and Petey found themselves up top with Daniels slamming Petey off the top turnbuckle to the mat. Daniels flew off the top with a cross body block attempt, but Petey moved out of the way. Petey and Daniels exchanged right hands before Daniels landed a knee to the gut. Petey caught Daniels off the ropes with a crucifix slam and had Daniels's arms trapped, but scored a two count only. A-1 pulled out a chain from his trunks and tossed the chain to Petey. However, Daniels had a chain of his own and used the chain to smash Petey in the face. Daniels connected with the Best Moonsault Ever as the feed was temporarily interrupted. After the glitch, we saw Daniels's arm being raised in victory.
Match View: I was not into the match because my level of anticipation dropped when A-1 came out with Petey because I knew we were going to see some sort of interference-influenced finish to a match that should have been decided on its own merit. I wish A-1 wasn't ringside to take away from the match because both men worked a solid match that I just couldn't get into.
- Tenay and West talked about the Super X Cup set to begin this coming Friday on Impact with the finals occurring at the August "Sacrifice" PPV.
(9) Raven defeated Abyss (w/James Mitchell) in a Dog Collar Match to retain the NWA Title. The match began with Raven landing right hands before Abyss clotheslined Raven to the mat with a handful of chain. Abyss brought a chair into the ring and wedged it in between the top and middle turnbuckle. Raven knocked over Abyss then went to the outside and threw several chairs into the ring. Raven pulled the chain causing Abyss to run headfirst into the chair wedged in the corner. Raven went under the ring and grabbed a table. Raven set it up then attacked Abyss, but Abyss set up for a chokeslam. Raven fought out of the predicament near the table and rolled back into the ring. Abyss picked up the initial steel chair and placed it across Raven's chest. Abyss went up to the middle rope and flew down with a splash onto Raven's stomach and the chair. Abyss placed Raven on top of a stack of chairs then flew off the top rope with a leg drop attempt. However, Raven moved out of the way and Abyss ate steel. Raven lay on the mat trying to recover from previous offense allowing Abyss to recover first and choke Abyss with the steel chain. Raven fought back with a chair shot followed by a second chair shot. Raven picked up a staple gun and held it up in the air. Raven pulled out a dollar bill of sort and stapled the bill to Abyss's forehead, which was busted open at this point. Raven went for a chain yank into the corner ringpost, but James Mitchell distracted Raven enough to give Abyss the time to pull Raven directly into the ringpost. Abyss punched Raven in the face as we saw that Raven was busted open.
Abyss took Raven to the section below the entrance ramp where he set up a table in the empty space. Abyss set up a second table as James Mitchell helped with the third table. Abyss dragged Raven up the entrance ramp then grabbed Raven by the throat for an attempted chokeslam. Raven fought out so Abyss went for a second attempt, but Raven kicked Abyss in the crotch before shoving Abyss off the stage through two tables down below. Raven nonchalantly walked down the entrance ramp so Abyss yanked the chain causing Raven to fly off the guardrail through the third table down below. Abyss choked Raven with the chain as James Mitchell taunted Raven for not being able to surrender or quit. Abyss dragged Raven across the open floor ringside before going under the ring for yet another table. Abyss placed the table against the ringpost then turned around to find Raven charge at him. Raven speared Abyss through the table into the ringpost. Back in the ring, Raven ran over Abyss with stiff right hands then clotheslined Abyss in the corner. Raven delivered the Raven Effect DDT then made a cover, but scored a two count only. Raven clotheslined Abyss over the top rope then hung him across the top rope. Raven pushed his foot against the middle rope for additional leverage as Abyss was trying to hold back on the chain to prevent choking. Mitchell broke up the chokehold by entering the ring to smash his cane across Raven's back. Abyss, having broken free from the chain, covered Raven, but scored a two count only.
Abyss went back under the ring and pulled out his dangerous black bag - thumbtacks. Abyss ripped Raven's shirt apart exposing Raven's back. Abyss laid thousands of thumbtacks across the ring then stomped Raven's fallen body. Abyss perched Raven atop the top turnbuckle then Cassidy Riley ran into the ring and tried to powerbomb Abyss, but Abyss chokeslammed Riley off the top turnbuckle through a table down below. Raven was still motionless in the corner as Abyss punched Raven in the head. Raven, playing opossum, bided his time before slamming Abyss off the top rope with a powerbomb into the thumbtacks. Abyss jumped around in pain then Raven went for the Raven's Effect DDT, but Abyss countered with the Black Hole Slam. Raven kicked out at two! Abyss kicked the thumbtacks around then measured Raven for a chokeslam into the tacks, but Raven reversed it with the Raven's Effect DDT sending Abyss face-first into the tacks. Raven covered Abyss and scored the three count for the victory to retain the NWA Title.
Match View: Good car wreck match (better than a decent car wreck match) that told a good story based on the storyline entering the match. The nearfalls to close the match were very well done and both men did a nice job building anticipation towards the finish of the match. I was a little disappointed TNA didn't focus on Raven during the PPV with a special video package devoted to his first PPV main event as NWA Champion or just giving him promo time to talk about the NWA Title. In that sense, the match seemed to be focused more on the dog collar than the NWA Title aspect.
- As if we couldn't end a PPV without Jarrett for two straight months, Jeff Jarrett came to the ring with guitar and mic in hand. Jarrett said he was about to give Raven a reality wake up call because there's no one that can stop him from taking back the NWA Title. Jarrett said, "TNA has always been and will always be my world." Jarrett headed to the ring and got on the apron. However, before Jarrett reached the ring, the camera panned back to show Rhino standing behind Raven in the corner. Giving away the association, Jarrett told Raven to turn around. Raven turned around and took a gore from Rhyno. Jarrett held up the NWA Title as Rhino threw his hands in the air to celebrate his swerve on the audience.
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