PPV REPORTS CALDWELL'S TNA TURNING POINT PPV REPORT 11/15: Ongoing "virtual time" coverage of A.J. Styles vs. Samoa Joe vs. Daniels
Nov 15, 2009 - 9:54:15 PM
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TNA Turning Point PPV Report
November 15, 2009
By James Caldwell, Torch assistant editor
First PPV with a jump to $34.95 on the price tag. TNA, as well as WWE, should have added value to their PPVs before deciding to increase the price. Anyways, the TNA PPV opened with a video package on it "being time for a change" in TNA. They incorporated some of Dixie Carter's speech from Impact two episodes ago along with Hulk Hogan in New York City announcing the partnership. It's time for a...Turning Point.
Impact Zone: Homicide came out first for the standard X Division opening match. Crowd with a babyface reaction for Homicide, as they're obviously not buying into the shoddy heel turn to join World Elite. Don West, in an all-black suit, then led out Amazing Red talking him up. West was mic'ed up and told Red he's got this one in the bag. Apparently West will be mic'ed up like Daivari was for Hassan back in WWE. "How loud is that man's voice?" Taz asked. "You're asking me?!" Tenay retorted.
1 -- X Division champion AMAZING RED (w/Don West) vs. HOMICIDE -- X Division Title match
Homicide chased West around the ring early on. What happened to the good old days of Homicide doing his suicide dive and smacking fists with West at the announce table? Red saved West from an intimidation, then the action moved into the ring for Homicide to blast Red with an inside-out clothesline. West continued to yell encouragement from ringside as Homicide worked over Red. Very distracting. Homicide, of note, played a great heel working over Red to get himself over. Red made a comeback at 6:00 with a DDT out of the corner for a two count. Also of note, too many close-ups of "promoter" Don West's wardrobe selection tonight. Homicide came back with a series of kicks and sit-out bomb for a two count. Homicide teased the Gringo Killer, but Red countered with a...move. He followed with a running shooting star press for a two count. Red tried to follow with a top-rope moonsault, but Homicide turned it into a Cutter for a two count. Match moved up top and Red blocked a huracanrana. He followed with Code Red off the top for the pin and the win. Afterward, Coach West talked up his little leaguer on the victory. Way to run out that groundball, son! Let's go get ice cream. Came across very condescending.
WINNER: Amazing Red in 10:00. Very nice opener, but there were too many distractions - Don West talking, Don West's wardrobe, the Impact Zone trying to get themselves over. Just need to let the guys do their thing in the ring. (**1/2)
Announcers: Tenay and Taz talked up Desmond Wolfe making an "impact" right from the beginning taking it to Kurt Angle. They transitioned into talking about the three-way PPV main event for the TNA Title.
Impact Zone: The Beautiful People came to the ring first for the dual Knockouts Tag and Singles titles match. If one of them pins ODB, she becomes KO champ. If one of them pins Sarita and Taylor Wilde, then BP possess the tag titles. Tag champs, then ODB came to the ring to get things started. Before the match, TNA made sure they took liberties with revealing shots of the BP on the ring apron.
2 -- Knockout champion ODB & Knockout tag champions TAYLOR WILDE & SARITA vs. BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE (VELVET SKY & MADISON RAYNE & LACEY VON ERICH) -- TNA Knockouts & TNA Knockout Tag Titles match
It was difficult to tell if this was a competitive women's wrestling match or something off a Wrestlicious show early on with Velvet positioning herself suggestively throughout the early portion of the match. Combine the name of the company being TNA with the Beautiful People act and it's easy to see why Hulk Hogan is concerned TNA can't pull in major advertisers. The BP worked over Sarita for some time, as the announcers drew attention to some not-fans of Lacey in the Impact Zone. Easy target with a less-than-impressive TNA debut thus far. At the end, ODB took the hot tag and cleaned house before scoring the pin on Madison Rayne for the win. Post-match: Madison sold shock that she lost the match for her team. The champs celebrated on the outside while the BPs gathered themselves in the ring.
WINNERS: ODB & Sarita & Wilde in 7:00. Fine showing at times, but overall not a memorable outing from a wrestling perspective. Too much T&A for this match to be taken seriously and Lacey for Angelina Love is a poor trade for the top heel group in the division. (*)
Backstage: Jeremy Borash brought in Desmond Wolfe, who was dressed in a suit. Wolfe said he's made one thing perfectly clear that he more than has the number of Kurt Angle. He said Angle is ignorant because he's given Angle plenty of opportunities to walk away, but now Angle wants to wrestle him tonight. Wolfe said he knows Angle better than he knows himself, while Angle knows nothing about him. He said in Wolfe 101, Desmond Wolfe ends the career of Kurt Angle.
Impact Zone: Beer Money came to the ring first for the TNA tag title three-way match. Crowd hot for Beer Money. Motor City Machineguns then came out to another strong reaction. British Invasion then came out to defend the tag titles as Taz talked about them "getting themselves over" playing politics with World Elite. Just can't mix insider terminology with a storyline-driven statement. Counter-productive.
3 -- TNA tag champions BRITISH INVASION (DOUG WILLIAMS & BRUTUS MAGNUS) vs. BEER MONEY (ROBERT ROODE & JAMES STORM) vs. MOTOR CITY MACHINEGUNS (ALEX SHELLEY & CHRIS SABIN) -- TNA tag title match
Tag champs started on the outside with first pin winning the titles. Very fast start with Beer Money going against the Guns. BI showed smart strategy in the context of trying to win a match by letting the babyface teams wear each other out before going to work on Sabin. Sabin then kicked Brutus in the face with a kick, which turned the tide against the Brits. They eventually took the Beer Money spot where they ram one heel's head into his tag partner's crotch to get a cheap reaction from the crowd. Sabin then tried to splash Doug on the floor, but Doug moved and Sabin ate the padding. Action had completely broken down into a Texas Tornado-style match at this point. More spots. Guys doing spots. Crowd quietly waiting for the next spot. Suddenly, Eric Young came to ringside in a suit and yanked Storm off the apron to the floor. Back in the ring, Roode had a handful of trunks for a pin attempt, but Brutus kicked out.
At 10:00, Storm stalked Young up the ramp, but Kevin Nash suddenly showed up on the entrance ramp and yanked the Global Title belt away from Young. Nash then suddenly smashed Storm from behind with the title belt. Young sold shock as Nash just walked away with the title belt. Back in the ring, Roode was looking for a tag, but Storm was KO'ed. Brits then hit a double-team clothesline move on Roode for the pin and the win. After a recap, of the match Taz said "Nash went into business for himself." What context does that have in the storyline?
WINNERS: British Invasion in 12:00. And Beer Money being shut out of the tag titles continues. Nash's re-appearance, KO on Storm, and title belt theft became the story of the match. As for the match, there were plenty of spots and guys did a lot of stuff, but it amounted to filler, as the finish was the result of outside interference and not the product of any of the in-ring work leading to the finish. (*1/2)
Impact replay: Mick Foley was given the flashpaper from a returning Raven. Mike Tenay said Foley was hospitalized due to the burns and doctors have told him to stay away from TNA until he heals. Tenay promised Foley will be in the Impact Zone this Thursday. Taz wants to know what his face will look like. Tenay then sent it back to Nash.
Backstage: Jeremy Borash was with Kevin Nash. He was shocked and confused. Borash that is. "What the hell was that?" Borash asked. Nash sarcastically asked Borash what kind of language he's using. He cracked a joke on Borash, then said he does what he does for a reason. "This is between me and Hulk." Nash said if Hogan calls him on Thursday night and explains him what's going on, then he'll relay the message. Nash sold the free show on the pay show, then gave a shout-out to Hulk before flashing the Legends Title-turned Global Title belt to the camera.
Impact Zone: Tara came to the ring first for the steel cage match against Awesome Kong, who slowly made her way to the ring to intimidate Tara. Once Kong entered the cage, the brawl was on.
4 -- TARA vs. AWESOME KONG -- Steel cage match
Tara tried to climb the walls Spiderman-style early on, but Kong yanked her down to the mat and started climbing herself. Tara had other ideas and yanked Kong down onto the top turnbuckle for a hard landing. Kong made a quick comeback, but Tara answered her with a kick strike. Kong sold being knocked silly for a bit, but then both women started climbing the cage before crotching each other on the top rope. Tara then won the exchange with a sunset flip powerbomb out of the corner. She had a chance to climb out, but opted to climb all the way to the top of the cage to land a big splash in a big moment for the pin and the win.
Post-match: Lauren caught up with Tara outside of the ring to get a celebratory word or two from Tara, who celebrated with her tarantula. Good follow-up on the victory with the announcers suggesting Tara is now the dominant woman in the Knockouts division.
WINNER: Tara in 8:00. Solid, very good Knockouts match featuring two of the top women in the company. Right finish with a big spot actually leading to the finish. Well done. (**1/4)
Announcers: Taz and Tenay talked up Hulk Hogan and the "changes" in the air in TNA. More general talk about "change." More "change." Someone give Taz some "change" to buy a soda. Tenay talked up Dixie Carter's "words of inspiration" from Impact two episodes ago.
Video package: Hulk Hogan joining TNA with Eric Bischoff's voice on a TNA PPV. Never thought that would occur. Hogan and Carter. Change in the air. They showed Hogan in a pre-tape on change being in the air. Wrestlers talked up Hogan coming to TNA. ... Back live, Tenay and Taz asked questions on how the company will be affected. "We're going to find out...sooner or later," Tenay said with little conviction.
Impact Zone: Rhino came to the ring first for a six-man tag match. Tenay said Rhino is buying into the theory that management is siding with the younger wrestlers. Seems like TNA is building up Rhino & Team 3D as the key group to potentially oppose Hulk Hogan siding with the youngsters. After Team 3D came out, D'Angelo Dinero came out first for the babyface trio. Money dropped from the ceiling as Dinero came out and Taz commented on the "mask gimmick" for Dinero. TNA really needs to pre-produce Taz. Too much insider talk to distract from the stories on the show. Hernandez, then Matt Morgan rounded out the field.
5 -- RHINO & IWGP tag champions TEAM 3D (BROTHER RAY & BROTHER DEVON) vs. D'ANGELO DINERO & HERNANDEZ & MATT MORGAN
The bell sounded and Taz talked about the glory days with Team 3D in ECW. Taz is turning into Larry Zbyszko on WCW TV talking about "the glory days." Brother Ray and Dinero had an early exchange after Ray tore up some of the Dinero Bucks that fell from the ceiling. Ray then ran out of the ring to stomp around ringside upset with being shown up by Dinero. Ray then re-entered the ring and started his Dusty Rhodes bionic elbow smashes before Dinero knocked him to the outside. Dinero followed with a dive and got some camera time with the fans on the front row. Audience reaction was typical TNA with folks split on cheering and booing Dinero, reflecting the audience just picking their favorites since the storylines change every week. The action returned to the ring with Morgan and Rhino battling before the action broke down into a six-way brawl. Suddenly, Dinero "took a bullet" for Hernandez to take a beating for Team 3D, which the announcers sold with confusion. Rhino and 3D began working over Dinero to isolate him in their corner. In the middle of the beating, Ray dropped an elbow on Dinero on the floor, then got in the camera and shouted that he's a bigger pimp than Dinero is. Okaay.
At 10:00, Dinero finally made his way to Morgan for a hot tag. Morgan cleaned house, then Devon dropped down to the floor to avoid contact from Matt. Morgan then landed rapid-fire elbow strikes in the corner before bringing in Hernandez, who cleaned house. Hernandez gave Ray a lift-up chokeslam before dropping Rhino for a two count. Heels regrouped on the outside, then Hernandez came flying over the top with a big splash onto all three. Back in the ring, Hernandez landed a top rope splash on Rhino for a two count. Action broke down again before Morgan chokeslammed Ray. Rhino then dumped Morgan to the floor when Morgan did too much celebrating. Rhino did too much celebrating and Dinero kinda powerbombed Rhino. Meanwhile, Hernandez dropped an elbow on Rhino for a two count. Burke then called for the Pope Express, but Ray yanked him down and yanked him crotch-first into the ringpost. Devon then entered the ring with a char to smash Hernandez in the gut behind the ref's back leading to Rhino landing the Gore on Hernandez for the win.
WINNERS: Rhino & Team 3D in 14:00. Good tag match. Lots of action, heels played their part well, and Rhino was given a considerable boost taking the win. Hernandez had enough offense to not lose much because no one will remember he took the fall in this match. The heels winning via cheat-to-win tactics was expected in this match and TNA hasn't featured too many tricks and gadgets thus far to where the finish didn't take away from the match. (**3/4)
Backstage: Lauren brought in Scott Steiner to talk about him stalking Krystal Marshall. The match against Bobby Lashley has been "upgraded" from a standard singles match to a No DQ, Falls Count Anywhere match. Steiner talked about Lashley's muscles being all show, no go. He talked about things he wanted to do to Krystal, but added "he's going to take Lashley home and pin him." Steiner vowed to beat Lashley tonight, then give Krystal a real man to be with.
6 -- BOBBY LASHLEY vs. SCOTT STEINER -- No DQ, Falls Count Anywhere match
Lashley came to the ring second and Steiner met him on the floor to begin the brawl on the outside. Lashley then chucked Steiner into the ring as the announcers talked about Steiner "crossing the line" with Lashley's wife. Lashley had enough in the ring and clotheslined Steiner over the top rope to the floor. Steiner took a shortcut and landed successive kicks to the groin leading to a nearfall on the outside. Steiner followed with a chair across the back before tossing Lashley back into the ring. He landed a belly-to-belly suplex before executing an overhead suplex and another. Steiner took Lashley up top at 6:00 for the Frankensteiner, which he kinda executed and popped the crowd, which is at that point of cheering their favorites and not buying into the storylines, which change from week-to-week. Steiner then went up top, but Lashley popped up to his feet and press-slammed Steiner stomach-first across the top rope.
The match moved to the outside again and Lashley love-tapped Steiner with a chair shot to the shoulder/back area. The match moved backstage into a dark hallway without much lighting. Lashley was shown walking around before they cut to a wideshot of the Impact Zone. A camera caught up to Lashley and Steiner, who was now bleeding from the forehead. They arrived at the TV production area backstage before Lashley suplexed Steiner across a gimmicked catering table. Taz started cracking jokes as the "intense action from this personal feud" continued with Lashley eating some wooden boards from the Home Depot collection when he missed with a spear. Steiner tried to choke the life out of Lashley with a cable cord (which has no place ever in wrestling in the post-Benoit era) before the action went back down the hallway to the Impact Zone area. At 11:00, Steiner cleared out the Spanish Announce Table area before hitting Lashley with a pipe from the scaffolding above the table. Steiner then covered Lashley for the win.
Post-match: refs and medics immediately stormed over to check on Lashley. Steiner came to his feet in a daze as refs tried to sell the shot to the head as a life-threatening issue for Lashley. Lashley placed his hand on his head to sell the impact of the pipe as the announcers asked whether they need an ambulance. Lashley tried to sell pain before lightly throwing away the refs. Lashley made it to his feet and grimaced before leaving up the ramp. He kind of looked around the arena before leaving.
WINNER: Steiner in 12:00. A shortcut gimmick match to cover for them not being able to have an interesting 12-minute straight singles match. At first, the ending seemed like a storyline write-off for Lashley, but he popped right up after a few minutes. (*1/4)
Backstage: Kurt Angle says Desmond Wolfe is trying to act like they're in a prison yard. Considering how close Angle was to experiencing that, he's whistling in the graveyard with that reference. Angle said no one will make a name for himself at his expense. It's real, it's damn real.
Impact Zone: Desmond Wolfe came to the ring, followed by Kurt Angle. Angle's music hit to a mixed reaction of cheers and apathy, but the crowd was hot for Angle once he entered the ring.
7 -- KURT ANGLE vs. DESMOND WOLFE
Wolfe was in control early on working over Angle with solid technical holds as the audience couldn't decide what chant they wanted to go with. Angle made his first comeback at 3:00 with a suplex for a one count. Wolfe then regained control and executed a one-arm overhead suplex to methodically work over Angle's left shoulder/neck. Wolfe continued to focus on the region as the announcers talked up Angle's history of neck injuries. Wolfe put Angle in the corner and wanted his running lariat out of the opposite corner, but Angle exploded on Wolfe with an overhead suplex for a two count.
At the top of the third hour, Angle started a series of German Suplexes. Impact Zone turned into a college football crowd on a kickoff building up to each successive suplex. Angle hit five, then executed to complete two trios of suplexes. Looked awesome, but hard not to think of Angle's legit health concerns. Angle then wanted the Angle Slam, but Wolfe ducked and hit a lariat for a two count. At 10:00, Wolfe wanted the Tower of London, but Angle countered with an Angle Slam for a two count. Angle tried to follow with another Angle Slam, but Wolfe threw Angle away and went back to working on the shoulder. Angle took the hold, but then countered into the Ankelock. Wolfe then countered into a hammerlock on the shoulder, only to have Angle counter into the Anklelock again. Wolfe teased tapping, then Angle yanked him back to center ring. Wolfe made it to the bottom rope on a second try. Crowd with a legit "This is Awesome" chant. Angle tried the Angle Slam again to follow up, but Wolfe countered mid-air with a DDT.
After a pause, Wolfe took Angle to the corner and hit the Tower of London neckbreaker for a two count. Wolfe then teased the lariat, but Angle exploded with a clothesline of his own. Angle then ran up top and wanted a moonsault, but Wolfe moved and went back to a keylock submission on the left shoulder/neck. Angle teased tapping, but he put his foot on the bottom rope for a rope break. Wolfe then tried the Tower again, but Angle blocked. Angle blocked a top rope superplex, then came off the top with a big frogsplash for a two count. Ref Hebner took a shot in the process.
At 15:00, Angle stalked Wolfe and wanted a Tombstone Piledriver, but Wolfe countered into a Tombstone attempt, only to have Angle counter into an anklelock. Wolfe kicked away, but Angle kept it locked in. No grapevine, though, and Wolfe escaped only to take an armbar submission from Angle that Angle turned into a triangle choke. This time, Wolfe tapped out. Post-match: Angle seemed to be worse for wear than Wolfe, who talked trash from the entrance ramp as Angle gasped for air in the ring.
WINNER: Angle via submission in 17:00. There's your value-added for the additional $5 on the price tag. Star-making match for Wolfe, who had plenty of credible offense and positive talk by the announcers to not lose anything from taking the loss. Angle was on-fire, as usual, and really answered the call working with a wrestling talent at his level. The drawback to this was watching Angle in this style of a match considering his real health concerns. (****1/2)
Backstage: Borash brought in Samoa Joe, who said he just "shined the light" on the issues between Styles and Daniels. Joe was asked if he manipulated the situation to his advantage, but Joe said that doesn't matter because no one has sent them to the hospital more than he has.
Video package: They played up Styles-Joe-Daniels via video package with focus on the sneak-attacks against Styles leading to the PPV. ... Back live, they showed Daniels walking down the hallway before coming to the ring clean-shaven. Samoa Joe was shown walking down the hallway before he came to the ring looking cocky and confident. Back in the hallway, A.J. Styles pumped himself up as Taz said they have an instant classic in the making if four years ago is any indication. Well, they're wrestling smarter now and have taken four more years worth of bumps, so it's not a fair expectation after they tried to kill themselves four years ago at Unbreakable to have a five-star match. In the ring, Jeremy Borash handled the formal ring intros. A few blue streamers for Daniels. Looks silly if only a few people do it. Samoa Joe with the heel reaction and none of the streamers reached him. Styles a solid babyface with some streamers getting to him. Suddenly, a camera was out of place and they stayed with a weird crowd shot three seconds too long. Crowd was quiet, then the bell sounded and they came to life.
8 -- TNA World Hvt. champion A.J. STYLES vs. SAMOA JOE vs. DANIELS -- TNA World Title match
The three men came together center-ring for a meeting of the minds and Daniels blasted Styles with a slap to set the tone for no friendships in the ring tonight. Good early storytelling. Joe then went to work with his trademark offense on Styles, but Daniels knocked Joe to the floor. Daniels and Styles had an exchange ending with Daniels hitting an STO with help from Joe on the outside knocking Styles off his pace. Joe then entered the ring and nailed a rapid-fire punch/kick combo on Daniels. Joe followed with a high-knee strike then light kick strikes to put Joe on the mat for a toehold. Styles broke it up with a scissors kick on Joe, though. Styles followed with an impressive suplex on Joe before settling into a Muta Lock. Styles left himself exposed, though, and Daniels punched him in the stomach to break up the hold and work over Styles.
Great spot at 7:00 with Daniels putting Styles in a Boston Crab while having Joe in a Camel Clutch simultaneously. Joe bit Daniels's fingers to break the hold, though, and Joe dropped Daniels with a frontslam to regain control. Joe then face-washed Styles before landing the trademark running kick strike in the corner. We're getting the old-school Joe tonight, thank goodness. Heels and babyfaces have been discarded, of note. Crowd just picking their favorites from moment to moment wanting certain spots. TNA's attempt at TV storylines just don't really matter. Back to the action where Joe kicked Styles on the apron from the floor, but Daniels nailed a suicide dive on Joe to regain control. Back in the ring, Styles busted out the running Fosbury Flop from the ring to the floor onto both men. Crowd popped for more old-school, this time from Styles.
At 10:00, the action returned to the ring where Styles hit a huracanrana on Daniels for a two count. Joe suddenly had a burst of energy and he dropped Daniels before hitting a powerbomb on Styles, who kicked out and was then locked into the Boston Crab following the kickout. Joe then transitioned into an STF, but Styles reached the bottom rope for a rope break. Styles reached his feet, but ran into a snap powerslam from Joe for a two count. After Joe had his time in the sun, Daniels took control and Joe rolled to the floor. Daniels nailed a powerslam on Styles for a two count, then Joe re-entered the ring and rocked Styles before Daniels answered in-kind with offense on Joe. Styles suddenly came back on Daniels with the Pele kick and all three men went down to the mat to recover.
At 16:00, Styles gave Joe a dive splash before popping up and nailing Daniels with a discus clothesline. Styles then dumped Daniels to the outside and absolutely flew onto Joe with a springboard flying forearm smash for a close two count. Styles had major hops on that splash. Styles then followed on Joe with a huracanrana for a two count. And then to the back flip reverse DDT for a two count. Daniels then almost took the move, but Daniels countered with Last Rites for a two count when Joe broke it up. Joe then crotched Daniels in the corner and followed right up with the Musclebuster, but Styles made a desperation save to break up the pin. Suddenly, Joe and Styles entered into a rolling pinning sequence across the ring with Joe landing a two count at the end of the revolutions. Styles, wobbly, followed with a kick strike on Joe. Styles wanted the Clash, but Daniels blasted Styles with an enziguiri kick. Styles then teased Daniels's own Angel's Wings, but Daniels countered into the Clash, only to have Joe cream Daniels with a kick to break up the sequence.
At 22:00, Styles and Daniels came face-to-face and seemed to form a working agreement, only to have Daniels attempt a suckerpunch that Styles saw coming that he blocked. Styles and Daniels then battled up top and teased a high-risk move, only to have Joe chop Styles off the top to the outside. Daniels avoided the Musclebuster, then hit the STO and followed with the Best Moonsault Ever. Daniels had a pin, but Styles came off the top with a springboard 450 splash onto Daniels and Joe. Styles then discarded Daniels and covered Joe for the pin to retain the title. Taz said if you're rating this on a five-star level, this was 15-stars. Oh, Taz.
Post-match: TNA replayed the numerous highspots from the match, then cut to a shot of Styles celebrating with the title belt. Daniels was shown complaining from ringside that he had Styles beat. Joe was shown angered higher up the stage. Announcers pointed out Daniels was not beaten, seeming to suggest a future title match.
WINNER: Styles in 22:00 to retain the TNA World Title. Excellent, awesome main event match. Not quite the 2005 level, but darn close and the peak of what these three can do together four years later. Styles was an absolute star with his display of offense, while Joe was a monster taking it back to the old-school with the trademark offense that made him stand out in 2005 as the TNA Rookie of the Year/Wrestler of the Year overall. Daniels was very good in his role and stood out as a legit main-eventer. All the pieces came together to match Angle-Wolfe for a great one-two punch on this PPV. (****1/2)
Next month: Feast or Fired at Final Resolution.
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