TV REPORTS KELLER'S TNA IMPACT REPORT 10/30: Scott Steiner joined the MEM, Angle vs. Abyss, Nash & Booker vs. Styles & Joe, Turning Point hype
Nov 9, 2008 - 2:14:45 PM
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By Wade Keller, Torch editor
KELLER'S TNA IMPACT REPORT
OCTOBER 30, 2008
TAPED IN ORLANDO, FLA.
AIRED ON SPIKE TV
-The show opened with a summary of the formation of the Main Event Mafia (MEM) and Mick Foley's subsequent announcement of an ownership stake in TNA.
-The TNA Impact opening aired, the new one that debuted last week with more of an edge and hard rock feel. Mike Tenay and Don West introduced the show from the newly redesigned Impact Zone. The new big screen above the upper deck of fans looks great as does the wider entrance stage and much more impressive pyro show. As bad as last week's setting was in Vegas, this is a huge improvement. It actually has the feel of a good-sized arena now rather than a soundstage for a cheesy reality show.
-A.J. Styles and Samoa Joe walked out and reacted to the formation of the MEM. Styles spoke first and said three of the members are responsible for one major wrestling company going out of business. He said TNA has been growing; he cited last week's HD live show from Vegas as evidence. Styles said he was disappointed that some TNA wrestlers sat back and didn't help last week when they needed it. Styles said too many people are waiting for a promotion rather than take it. Styles asked who has the balls to cross the line and stand with he and Joe. The crowd chanted , "A.J., A.J."
The music of Jobber Jay Lethal started and he walked to the ring nodding. Consequences Creed, Petey Williams, ODB, and Eric Young walked out. With all due respect, that's kind of a sad group of supporters relative to the clout and credibility of the MEM. Joe took the mic and said he appreciates them coming out there. Then the music of the Motor City Machine Guns started. (They need new music; once the lyrics kick in, it's really not a fit for their characters.) Alex Shelley called their supporters sheep. He asked Joe to convince them one more time why they should join them in their battle. Joe said it's not his war or A.J.'s war, but it's their war - and they're either in or out. Joe said it'd be best for him to fight against those who have kept him out of the main event scene. (The problem here is that the MMGs have lost so many matches on TV, it's hard to think someone else has been holding them back. For TNA bookers to make this a storyline that makes sense, MMG should have been winning matches but not being moved up the card.) Alex replied, "God, I wish you had a mint right now." Joe stepped back. Shelley said he doesn't think Joe cares about them. Joe slapped Shelley. Styles stepped between them.
The Main Event Mafia's mafia-style music played and they stepped out onto the stage. They have a huge "MEM" logo on the big screen. They all dressed in high-end suits. Angle said the younger wrestlers in the ring are a disgrace to themselves, the business, TNA, and all of the fans. Angle said they are a family. He said they have over 75 years of experience among them. He said that kind of experience demands respect. He said they deserve a thank you. Nash addressed Joe and said he tried to teach him how to act around the stars. He said in response he spit in his face. He said the reason Scott Hall didn't show up at that PPV was because "you weren't worth the rub." Nash said, "In retrospect, he was right." He said if they want a war, they got a war. Booker called them bums. He said the war starts tonight and by the end of the year, there won't be any of them left. He said it's all about "The Five." West wondered what that meant. There were five people on stage, counting Sharmell. West, though, wondered aloud whether there was a fifth member. At least if they're also known as "The Five," it precludes (somewhat) them bloating the faction like what hurt the NWO.
-Backstage, Jeremy Borash got Jeff Jarrett's reaction. Jarrett said he knows Styles and Joe are ready for the war and don't need his help. Mick Foley walked in and asked Jarrett if he minded if he improved a bit. Foley said he wants to have a heart-to-heart with Sting. As Jarrett left the room, Foley asked where he was going. Jarrett said he had to "take a Kurt." Foley said, "Be sure to wipe your angle." Foley said as an executive shareholder, he has to keep all of his investments in line, "especially Sting."
-Lauren interviewed The Beautiful People. Angelina Love said in HD everyone can see all of Lauren's blemishes and pock marks. She also asked why Christy Hemme is suddenly a wrestler. She told her: "Hey, Hemme, why don't you stick to the pages of Playboy with your silicone boobolas and your over-botoxed doggie face, okay?" She offered to help her with a makeover. Velvet Sky said: "ODB, what are you? A dude? A tranny? You're about as female as Rosie O'Donnell. Let me tell you something, Butch, don't blame the Beautiful People because you're a horse-faced slut. Just because you OD'd on ugly pills doesn't make us the bad guys. We are sick to death of the jealousy. We didn't ask to be beautiful. We were just born that way."
1 -- CHRISTY HEMME & ODB vs. ANGELINA LOVE & VELVET SKY (w/Cute Kip)
After an early flurry by ODB, the BPs took over on Christy with double-teaming. At 2:00 ODB got a hot-tag and tossed around Sky. Four-way action broke out. When it spilled to ringside, Christy leaped off the ring apron. Kip caught her. ODB meanwhile powerslammed Sky for the win.
WINNERS: ODB & Christy Hemme in 3:00.
-Lauren interviewed Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin backstage. She said they didn't appear to be willing to accept Samoa Joe reaching out for help. Shelley said things aren't always what they appear to be. Joe walked up and said apparently they have a misunderstanding. Sabin asked for them to start over with a clean slate. He said they understand what he's trying to do for the company, "so we're in." Joe said when it comes to allies he has trust issues, so he said when shots are fired, he'll wait to see if the shots are fired back.
-Borash interviewed Eric Young backstage. He said he's been with TNA for years dating back to Nashville. He said after what Angle did to his friends, he's sick of taking it lying down. He said he wants to show the world who the real Eric young is. He said he'll be in the trenches with Joe and Styles. Borash asked for the finger-eye gesture thingy, but Young looked at him seriously and said, "Not tonight."
2 -- ERIC YOUNG vs. JAMES STORM (w/Robert Roode, Miss Jackie)
Young didn't flinch at the pyro and walked to the ring seriously. West said sometimes people just need a cause, something serious they can believe in and get behind. West said Young has a new air of confidence about him. Young went on an early aggressive flurry. At 1:00 Storm knocked Young to ringside, then Roode stomped on him at ringside. Storm gave Young the Eye of the Storm for a two count. As Jackie, now dressed as a Wall Street Executive, distracted the ref, Roode shot beer toward Young, but Young ducked and the beer got in Storm's eyes. Young rolled him up for the win. Afterward, Storm and Roode beat on Young. Sabin and Shelley made the save, a nice follow-up to Joe's challenge to them minutes earlier to prove their loyalty through actions. They helped Young to his feet.
WINNER: Storm in 3:00.
-A vignette aired on the TNA Knockouts.
-Lauren interviewed Taylor and Roxxi backstage. She asked them what they're doing with weapons when they're not even scheduled for a match. Roxxi, who has a new potty mouth totally contrary to her vignettes of just last month, swore up a storm (all bleeped) and then blew off Lauren.
-Tenay plugged that TNA's website features a political roundtable led by Mick Foley.
-A vignette aired on Suicide with phrases on the screen such as "Patience will be rewarded" and "Their punishment will be severe."
-Tenay and West were shown on camera. Tenay welcomed fans to the new HD Impact Zone. They raved about their new digs. The background of Tenay and West is a real upgrade, with the stage and new big screen behind then rather than just a flat screen monitor. They plugged the main event and Foley's interview with Sting. What's scary is how little idea you'd have that there's a PPV on Sunday based on this show so far.
-As Borash attempted to interview Awesome Kong and Raesha Saeed backstage, Roxxi and Taylor attacked them with pops and then threw Kong onto a table of food in the locker room. Who wants to eat catered food on a table near a bathroom and lockers in the first place?
-Sheik Abdul Bashir walked to ringside to join Tenay and West on commentary. He displayed his X Division title on the table in front of him.
3 -- TANAHASHI & VOLADOR vs. MOTOR CITY MACHINE GUNS
Tenay shines when he gives background on international wrestlers almost nobody knows or cares about. I'm not sure anyone cares about them when he's done because TNA never keeps them around long enough to form a bond with fans, but Tenay gives it a good try. They really didn't establish at all what they were doing here, if they were here for long or just a one-night visit, or what a win would mean to them and TNA. So basically, sit back and enjoy a bunch of cool moves that may or may not have any ramifications. Early dives and flying moves by Volador and Tanahashi. Bashir talked about Rhino being upset with his so-called anti-American rhetoric. He argued that he is as much of an American as Rhino and has ever right to talk about problems he has with the country. A minute later he said he was rooting for Volador & Tanahashi because he wants to show that international talent always is the best. So is Bashir an American or an "international talent"?
WINNERS: Machine Guns in 4:00.
STAR RATING: *3/4
-Some mixed signals there. Bashir ranted afterward, upset that the Guns won. He entered the ring and chewed out Volador. Rhino entered the ring and surprised him with a Gore.
-Tenay threw Lauren interviewing Christian Cage backstage. Christian mocked Booker T for making up a title and giving it to himself. Then he accepted the challenge to face Booker for that title. Christian said if he took sides, which he doesn't feel the need to do, it certainly wouldn't be with the Main Event Mafia. He said Booker is confused about who he really is, one week hunting elephants in Africa and the next a gansta. Christian said he knows who he is and the side he ends up on is the side he's always been on.
4 -- BOOKER T (w/Sharmell) & KEVIN NASH vs. A.J. STYLES & SAMOA JOE
Nash began the match against Styles. Nash grabbed the top rope to avoid a leverage takedown attempt by Styles. Nash poked at Styles's eyes with his reach advantage, frustrating Styles. Then he hit the kneelift and elbows. Styles came back with a springboard dropkick. Joe dove through the ropes at Booker at ringside, who attempted to stop Styles seconds earlier. They cut to a break at 2:00.
After the break Joe was in control against Nash. Nash reversed Joe into the ropes and threw an elbow to the chest, knocking Joe down. Booker then tagged in and exchanged chops with Joe. Booker didn't like his end of that, so he poked Joe's eyes. Nash hit Joe from behind on a rope rebound. Booker then KO'd Joe with an axe kick. Styles broke up the pin attempt. Nash tagged back in and hit a side slam for a two count at 8:00. Styles hot-tagged in at 11:00 and took shots at both heels. Booker avoided a corner charge, but Styles sprung right back with a flying forearm. He applied an armbar submission on Booker, but Nash broke it up with a headbutt. Joe put Nash in the rear naked choke. Booker broke it up from behind, knocking Joe to the floor. Booker went for an axe kick, but Booker avoided it and hit the Pele kick suddenly for a clean pin. Styles and Joe celebrated with the Small Young Jobbers (that's a comment on how they're booked, not who they are or could be) who walked out onto the ramp after the win.
WINNERS: Styles & Joe in 12:00.
STAR RATING: **1/2 -- Good tag match. All four contributed to the match nicely.
-Lauren interviewed Abyss about facing Kurt Angle later. She asked if he's 100 percent recovered from the burns. Abyss said, "Thanks for asking." He said he's fine; it's just a flesh wound. Matt Morgan yelled, "Just a flesh wound!" He said mentally he wasn't fully into his match against Angle two weeks ago, and he doesn't believe Abyss is either mentally or physically ready. Morgan said he can't be out there to help him. Abyss said he hasn't forgotten Angle ripping at his bandages two weeks ago.
-A TNA Cross the Line vignette aired.
-A recap aired of last week's Mick Foley announcement and aftermath.
-Borash interviewed Sting backstage. He asked him what he thinks Foley, "your new boss," will have to say to him in a few minutes. Sting noted Borash's sarcasm. "I guess I know where you stand," he said, adding that nobody has confirmed to him that Foley is his boss. He said he hasn't talked to him in over a decade, but he's going out there with an open mind and he hopes he doesn't close it.
-Mick Foley walked to the ring. Tenay referred to him as a new "executive shareholder." Foley asked, "How about this brand new Impact Zone?" he said. "Even without the Mick Foley poster over there, it looks pretty good."
He told viewers to call their friends and tell them to vote, and while they've got their ear, be sure to tell them that TNA is in HD every Thursday on Spike TV. Foley then announced "two huge main events" for Turning Point: Kevin Nash vs. Samoa Joe and Sting vs. A.J. Styles. He said he wants to have a word with the TNA Champion, so he asked Sting to step out to the ring. Sting's music played and he walked out. Foley addressed Sting saying this is the first time they've been face to face in about 14 years. He said he wants to go on record saying Sting put him on the map for the first time back in 1991. He said few people had heard of him until their matches. He said he has often wondered where his life would have ended up had Sting not entered into it. He said that's why it made it all the more difficult last week to see Sting standing among the Main Event Mafia. He said in his opinion, TNA is on the verge of something very, very big. He said all of the pieces are there and he sees Sting's role being the glue that holds it all together. Instead, he sees him as a wedge driving those pieces apart for good. He wants to know what he has to say on his behalf.
Sting said all along he wanted to be the glue. He said his intentions and motives were pure, but he was rejected by the younger wrestlers. He asked Foley if he has respect for Terry Funk. Sting said that's the missing ingredient from TNA. He said if he's not careful, that next generation is going to show him disrespect, too. Foley said they'll have to agree to disagree and it's clear he'll do what he has to do, but he will do the same. Sting said he understands that, but added: "Mick, this is not your war; it's mine." Good segment. One of Sting's more focused interviews. Good drawing from history by Foley, who spoke the truth about the feud with Sting being a real advancement for his career.
-Backstage Angle shoved Borash away as he asked a question, then addressed the camera directly. He asked Jeff Jarrett how long he'd hide behind a desk. He said he'll keep going through everyone in TNA until he gets to him. He said that's his obsession. He said he's been champion everywhere he's gone, but now he wants to get his hands on Jarrett. "I'm capable of doing anything, Jeff. Anything!"
-Tenay and West ran down the Turning Point line-up: Nash vs. Joe. Bashir vs. Rhino, Sting vs. Styles, Gunns vs. Beer Money Inc., and Christian vs. Booker T.
5 -- KURT ANGLE vs. ABYSS
When talking about the friendship and chemistry between Morgan and Abyss, West said Morgan is perhaps the best influence Abyss has had in years. They seem to avoid talking about Jim Mitchell by name, although it's a logical storyline to have Mitchell return down the line with a true counterforce as soon as Abyss seems to find some stability in his life and career.
After a couple early lockouts, Angle bailed out to ringside. Abyss chased him down, brawled with him, and then fought him back into the ring. Abyss clotheslined Angle over the top rope to the floor with a blunt forearm. Angle retreated into the crowd. As Abyss chased him down, they cut to a break.
Abyss threw Angle back into the ring after the break. Angle turned the momentum with a leg clip, taking Abyss down and then concentrating on grounding Abyss. Abyss, though, made a fast comeback with a clothesline and a corner splash. West said he was feeding off of the emotions of the crowd, although they weren't exactly going crazy. Abyss hit Shock Treatment for a near fall. When he went for a chokeslam, Angle rolled through into an anklelock. Abyss powered out at 10:00 and hit a chokeslam for a near fall. Angle fired back with an Angle slam for a near fall of his own. Angle climbed to the top rope and set up what West called "a backwards moonsault"; is there any other kind? Abyss caught Angle at the top and powerbombed him to the mat for a near fall. Angle grabbed a chair at ringside. Abyss went after Angle, but Angle hit him with a chair. The ref called for the DQ. Thumbs up to Abyss for bringing up his forearm to absorb some of the chairshot. Same effect, no concussion or brain damage.
WINNER: Abyss via DQ in 11:00.
STAR RATING: **1/4
-Angle attacked Abyss afterward. He held him facedown on the mat and scratched at his back, scraping his burns through his shirt. Angle then applied the anklelock. Morgan ran out to make the save. He took Angle down with a big boot. Booker and Nash ran out to stop a further beating. Nash hit Morgan flush in the skull with a chair. So much for TNA cracking down on flush chairshots to the skull. Nash shoved the top of the chair against Abyss's throat. The Small Young Jobbers and Samoa Joe ran out for the save. Scott Steiner followed from behind, making his return to TNA after a long injury layoff. He brought a pipe into the ring and hit the SYBs. Nash, Angle, Booker, and Steiner beat down the babyfaces as West noted the added experience Steiner gives the Main Event Mafia. Sting walked out in his suit. He entered the ring and helped Styles to his feet. Styles spit at Sting. Sting gave him a Scorpion Death Drop. West said he thinks Sting was trying to show respect, but what did Sting expect Styles to do after the beatdown by Sting's buddies. The show ended with the MEM5 and Sharmell standing together mid-ring.
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