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TNA Impact
KELLER'S TNA IMPACT REPORT 6/16: Ongoing coverage of Slammiversary fallout on Spike TV

Jun 16, 2011 - 11:06:13 PM
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By Wade Keller, PWTorch editor

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KELLER'S TNA IMPACT REPORT
JUNE 16, 2011
TAPED MONDAY IN ORLANDO, FLA.
AIRED ON SPIKE TV


[Q1] -Mr. Anderson walked out with the World Hvt. Title belt as Mike Tenay and Taz introduced the show. The ring was ready for a party with tables set up for catering and also some games you would find at a sports bar. Anderson said he invited "all the boys" (whoever they are) and none of them showed up. He said that's fine because only five people are important to him. He listed that all he needs are his five year old niece, his lovely wife, me, myself, and I.

Gunner interrupted. He walked out and reminded Anderson that he asked him last week to soften up Sting. He said he owes him. He asked if he remembered that. Anderson said vaguely. He thanked him and said his services aren't needed anymore. Anderson asked if the ink on his contract is even dry. He said there are a few more people ahead of him in line. "Take a number, boob," he said. Then he poured himself a beer. The crowd chanted "We Want Beer!" Anderson took a sip, then threw the rest in Gunner's face. Gunner punched back and slammed Anderson through the table full of catered food.

-Tenay and Taz hyped the beginning of the Bound for Glory series and also Rosita & Sarita vs. Velvet Sky & Miss Tessmacher. They also hyped that they'd hear from Kurt Angle. They showed Mexican America headed to the entrance tunnel for a match against Devon. [c]

-They showed Sting walking backstage. Tenay wondered what would be next for him after what happened at Slammiversary.

[Q2]

1 -- DEVON vs. HERNANDEZ (w/Rosita, Sarita, Anarquia)

Devon acknowledged his family at ringside as he walked past them. Devon took early advantage with a diving shoulder tackle and then a flying clothesline for a two count. Taz said Devon has lost about 25 pounds and looks to be in great condition. He does look better. The Pope walked out as Devon splashed Hernandez in the corner. Devon's sons shook hands with The Pope. Devon hated seeing that and called out to ask what they were doing. Hernandez schoolboyed Devon from behind for a near fall. Devon fired back with a Thesz Press and a mount with punches. The rest of Mexican America attacked Hernandez to prompt a DQ.

WINNER: Devon via DQ in 2:00.

-Afterward, at the prompting of Devon's sons, The Pope charged into the ring and made the save. The heels fled the ring. Devon then got in Pope's face and implored him to stay away from his kids, clearly thinking he's a bad influence. Pope just stood there and seemed to both accept and resent Devon's attitude toward him. The Pope didn't respect what Devon said. Once Devon returned to the back, Pope went right back to ringside to covert with his family, who still shook hands with him.

-Anderson barged into Eric Bischoff's office. He asked Bischoff to call off his dogs going after him. Bischoff said he wanted to do things his own way and not take sides, "going Switzerland." He said he and Hogan have a symbiotic relationship with The Network at this point. He plans to solve this issue with a match. He said he'll put him in the ring against Gunner and he can take care of it on his own without any help from him. Bischoff smiled. Anderson asked if that's how it's going to be. Bischoff said yes. Anderson said, "Okay, game on."

-They showed Kurt Angle arriving backstage with his young kids, smiling and clearly happy with his win over Jeff Jarrett on Sunday. [c]

-Angle walked to the ring and told the fans he once trained hard and won an Olympic Gold Medal for his country. He said at Slammiversary he was also focused and at his best, so he was able to make Jarrett tap out to him. Angle said there's a competitive side of him that won't allow him to quit. He said he's been training very hard and he's going to train for the U.S. Olympic team in 2012. "You can call me crazy, you can say I'm going through a mid-life crisis, because I'll be 43-years-old and no one's ever done it before, but I want to represent my country one more time," he said. Jarrett's music interrupted.

Jeff strode to the ring without Karen. Jarrett said it ain't over until the Founder says it's over. He said the whole relationship started with a handshake in a parking lot in Pittsburgh, Pa and tonight in a parking lot in Orlando, Fla. it's all going to end. He said he wants to finish it once and for all. He said no Karen, no integrity, no cage matches, no MMA - just one-on-one. He said TNA isn't big enough for both of them. He said he'd leave the country and movie to Mexico, but he wants one last shot. He asked him to man-up and accept.

[Q3]

Angle said he's like a gnat. He's a liar, a cheat, and a bit of prick, but he thought he had honor for the business. He asked what his ancestors would think of him begging for another match. He said it was time for him to move on with is life and deal with his loss. Angle said his word means nothing to him. He said two years ago he looked him in the eye and promised him nothing was going on between him and Karen. Angle said if he gets a legal document written up with his name signed on it that he will move to Mexico without his kids, then he has himself a deal. Jarrett: "Kurt, get the pen, get the paper, I'm all in." Angle said: "I'll see your little pussy ass in the parking lot." Tenay said it won't be a wrestling match, it'll be a fight in the parking lot.

-Tenay teased that up next would be the reveal of the Bound for Glory series. [c]

-A video package aired on the Bound for Glory series during which every win and every loss anywhere a match takes place will count. Oddly, a submission win gets 10 point, a pinfall only 7. A countout win is worth five, a DQ win is worth 3, and a draw is worth 2. Will wrestlers forego pinfalls once they have their opponent down and out and apply a submission instead? It only makes sense. The four top point-getters will be the finalists. They didn't list the wrestlers, but flashed Gunner, James Storm, A.J. Styles, Matt Morgan, Scott Steiner, Devon, The Pope, Bully Ray, Sting, Bobby Roode, Kurt Angle, RVD, Samoa Joe, Crimson, and Mr. Anderson. That's 15, but only 12 are in it. So who knows? RVD vs. Joe was announced as the first match in the Series.

-Eric Young approached Matt Morgan backstage. He told him he gets his TV Title shot this week. Morgan said he is flattered, but he is one of 12 wrestlers with a chance to headline Bound for Glory. He told Young to pick someone else to defend against. Young said the TV Title can only be defended against TV stars, he Morgan is a former member of "American Gladiators." Morgan laughed and said he's flattered, but he can't help him. Morgan then turned back and said maybe a certain executive producer who acted in a hit TV sitcom might be interested. Almost nobody knows they're talking about Jason Hervey. Young referred to Eric Bischoff and Hulk Hogan (Terry Bollea) as "E.B. and T.B.").

-Tenay and Tazz hyped Angle vs. Jarrett and Gunner vs. Anderson. [c]

[Q4]

2 -- KID KASH vs. JIMMY RAVE vs. AUSTIN ARIES

Tenay talked about Kash wrestling TNA starting back in 2002. They showed clips. Those clips showed how far the TNA Impact Zone has gone in terms of the strategic layout of the stands and the overall lighting and production values. Rave came out doing his phony rock star persona. Tenay said Aries is a bit of a hybrid who was last in TNA from 2006-2008. Taz said he's a fan of his. Aries ticked off Rave and Kash in the opening seconds, so they turned to attack Aries and knock him out of the ring. Aries came back at 1:00 and took over on Rave. Aries really stood out here with flashy moves and then, even more impressively, flashy execution of basic moves. He did a spear dive through the ropes onto both Rave and Kash. Kash flip dove onto Aries and Rave at ringside a minute later. Aries broke up a pin attempt by Rave on Kash, then he gave Rave a brainbuster suplex for the win. Taz said it was like a videogame. What he meant to say is videogame action is based on what guys like this have been doing in the ring before there were videogames. Aries looked like a star out there, not just his moves, but how he carried himself.

WINNER: Aries in 5:00 to advance toward a TNA contract at Destination X.

-Miss Tessmacher and Velvet Sky talked strategy for their tag match later, then grabbed each other's asses. [c]

[Q5]

3 -- SARITA & ROSITA vs. MISS TESSMACHER & VELVET SKY -- Knockout Tag Team Title Match

The ref kicked Hernandez and Anarquia to the back before the match. At 3:00 ODB walked through the crowd and distracted Sky. That helped Rosita get the pin on Tessmacher. Tessmacher was upset with Sky for turning her attention to ODB. She stormed out of the ring as Sky tried to explain herself.

WINNERS: Sarita & Rosita in 3:00.

-Afterward Jackie returned and joined ODB in attacking Sky. The bell rang frantically. Security ran in, but ODB and Jackie beat them up with low blows. I like the energy and variety of personality that ODB and Jackie bring to the Knockouts Division.

-Backstage Jarrett signed a contract in Hulk Hogan's office. Hogan said he's betting on him. He laughed about the "moving to Mexico" thing. Hogan said: "Jarrett is the King of Kings." Jarrett left and Sting walked in. Hogan said he's going to follow Sting's contract by the letter of the law and he'll give him the rematch he wants against Mr. Anderson. "I'm a man of my word, brother," he said. Sting said he can tell looking into his eyes, he means what he says. Hogan said they have a history with each other that no one knows about and he owes it to him. Sting asked if the real Hulk Hogan is back. Hogan said he is the real Hulk. Sting told him to knock it off and answer his question. Hogan said he's trying to make it work his way. Sting said he's forgetting their history. He said he remembers what his mindset was like when he came to WCW, wanting to be a positive influence to all of the wrestlers. He said he had respect for the groundwork he already laid.

Sting said he wanted to follow in his footsteps. He asked if it mattered to Hogan that once all of the wrestlers worshiped the ground he walked on. He asked if the talk of praying and taking your vitamins was just for the money. "Is this the legacy you want to leave behind for Brooke and Nick?" he asked. Hogan blew up: "That's enough! That's enough!" Hogan asked who he thinks he is. Sting said he's the Stinger. He yelled that he is not finished. He shoved everything off of Hogan's desk and said he'd leave when he wanted to leave. He started calling him Terry and shoved him into the corner and said he could put the facade on his face for him. It just got weird here went into Joker mode. Hogan leaned back into camera view and revealed that Sting had drawn red facepaint all over his face. [c]

[Q6]

-Tenay and Taz commented about Sting's odd actions before the break. Taz said he's never seen him like that.

-ODB and Jackie said the Knockout Division is a joke and they're there to clean it up. Sky attacked ODB and mounted her. Jackie tossed her off of her. ODB called her a "dirty whore!" and Jackie threw in "you skank!" Boy, they had a little streak going of "skank" not being heard on Impact.

-Jason Hervey off camera asked Austin Aries if now is the right time to back in TNA because of the "Wrestling Matters" campaign. He said until now it's all been rhetoric, but now that he's back, it's real. Eric Young barged in. Hervey said, "Hey, we're shooting." The camera actually panned over and showed Hervey for the first time. He can almost grow a beard now! Young said he and Jason have business. Young accused Hervey of trash-talking and sneaking up on him. Young threw a TV Title contract into his chest and said he knows his history. Young shoved Hervey down and covered him and hooked his leg. He asked Aries to count a pin and make it official. Young said it's one of the best matches he's ever had. "You're next, Baio." Presumably, he meant Scott Baio.

-Tenay and Taz chuckled, then hyped the Jarrett-Angle showdown, and if Angle wins, Jarret has to leave the country and move to Mexico. Taz plugged the Bound for Glory Series: Devon, Pope, Joe, Styles, RVD, Morgan, Gunner, Crimson, Roode, Steiner, Ray, and Storm were shown, so those are the full 12. Not sure why Anderson, Sting, and Angle were part of the video package earlier.

-RVD made his ring entrance. Tenay talked about this as a dream match and hyped that every win matters. [c]

4 -- ROB VAN DAM vs. SAMOA JOE -- Bound for Glory Series

Straight up PPV style match, paced for going a longer distance than average for TV.

[Q7]

RVD showboated at 7:00 and Joe recovered enough to one-arm slam RVD, then set him on the top rope. RVD punched his way free and hit a Five-Star for the win.

WINNER: RVD in 8:00.

STAR RATING: **1/2 -- Well on its way to being a true buzzworthy match. Eight minutes is a marathon these days for a non-main event TV match, but not really long enough to be more than a teaser of what these two could do if the setting was right and they had 15-25 minutes to really tell a story. The backstory provided for this was just the Bound for Glory Series; otherwise no promos or video packages or anything. Tenay called it a "dream match," although in TNA's world, there's nothing about it that makes it a dream match. In general, I like the idea of the Bound for Glory Series giving meaning to these matches since every win, and the type of win, counts in the standings. I hope TNA does a thorough job keeping fans up to date on all of the participants matches and really lets fans follow along legit tallying of the wins for each of the 12 participants.

-Without warning, they showed Gunner getting a cut above his left eye tended to including a needle being inserted into his skin twice to presumably numb the area before he got stitches. While this was going on, Gunner cut a promo saying he did Anderson a favor. He said Sting was all messed up in the head going into Slammiversary because he got beat by him last week on Impact. He said he doesn't really like anybody, so it's not just Anderson. [c]

5 -- MR. ANDERSON vs. GUNNER

This began 41 minutes into the second hour. Taz said Gunner is Immortal's Blue Chipper. It's still tough to tell whether we're supposed to be more inclined to root for Anderson or Gunner. There's not really a sympathetic, likable figure here, and that's a problem. Anderson doesn't look like a World Champion, so TNA needs to take steps to establish why fans are supposed to take him seriously out there as the top fighter in the company. He's kinda flabby, not that tall, not particularly physically intimidating in any way, and his offense is conventional enough that it doesn't really make up for those cosmetic shortcomings. In the context of TNA, he looks like a regular guy, so they really need to figure out what makes him the Best of the Best in TNA and accentuate that. In other words, give those who want to believe something to believe in. At 3:00 Anderson missed a top rope cannonball. Gunner landed an elbowdrop for a near fall. He scored another two count after a short-arm clothesline.

[Q8]

Anderson rallied and scored a near fall and then mounted Gunner and threw a barrage of punches. Anderson then got cocky and asked for the mic to drop from the ceiling. He announced himself as the World Champion and bragged himself up. Gunner recovered during this time and surprised Anderson with his finisher for the win. "He did it again!" shouted Tenay. "The second week in a row he beat the World Heavyweight Champion." The crowd popped.

WINNER: Gunner in 8:00.

-Bischoff walked out applauding slowly and arrogantly. He raised Gunner's hand. Again, how are we supposed to feel about Gunner's success and Anderson's loss? It's like two sports teams I don't like just played a game. It doesn't really resonate much with a viewer without that person to root for. It's just passively interesting in the sense that you wonder how Anderson will react and you wonder if Gunner is really this good. Not really tapping emotions, though. [c]

-Scott Steiner backstage yelled about how he had nothing to do other than workout. He said what else will he do, play a guitar? He said he doesn't play the guitar, he just beats people up. He yelled at Bully Ray: "I know you love sugar, but I ain't got none!" He challenged him a fight next week and vowed to beat his ass "because that's what I do."

-Elsewhere backstage Bully Ray said Scott may be doing cheeseburger jokes and sugar jokes, but he should remember that he crushed his trachea and that scar is from the surgery he went through as a result. Ray said he will go through the tournament undefeated and he will go on to win the title at Bound for Glory.

-Out at the parking lot, it was time for Jarrett vs. Angle. The locker room cleared out and surrounded them and cheered them on. Angle wrestled Jarrett to the pavement and applied a submission from behind early. Jarrett tried to punch himself free from underneath, but Angle drew blood and remained on top, again going for a chokeout when Jarrett gave him his back. Angle let Jarrett up, but then slammed him hard to the pavement. The wrestlers cheered them on like a prison fight was going on. Jarrett came back and shoved Angle head-first into the trunk of a car. Ray shoved Jarrett back toward Angle and told him to stay on him. Jarrett told Angle to go train for the Olympics and get the hell out of his life. Jarrett said he'll never leave TNA because he founded the company. As Jarrett began to walk away, Angle stood and said they're not done yet. Jarrett charged Angle, who lifted him and turned and slammed him onto the pavement. He then pounded away at his face and suplexed him onto the hood of a car. Angle then choked Jarrett from behind with a shirt. Angle told Jarrett to say "adios." Jarrett did. Angle dropped him and walked away. Jarrett, gasping to catch his breath, said, "Adios" again. Ray insisted, "He didn't say nothing. What are you guys talkin' about?" Pope laughed and said, "He said something'" It's really tough to pull off a street fight scene in pro wrestling. They did just about everything right here in terms of the lighting at night, the wrestlers surrounding the action and acting like prisoners cheering on a knife fight, and not doing anything too corny in the actual fight, most of which took place on the ground as most parking lot fights do. Is Jarrett really going to Mexico? That's a decent cliffhanger to end with. Angle carried himself like a star in this segment. Of course, viewers who ordered the PPV thinking they saw the Final Chapter might feel a little taken for a ride since this felt more like the real final chapter, and it was free.

FINAL THOUGHTS: Impact is a show that too often is going in way too many directions, many of which make you wonder if anyone is paying attention or has a clue or is even decent. There are times you see things in these shows that you cheer and say "more of that, more of that" and this show had more of those aspects than usual. The new faces, even if some of them were old faces, freshened up the show, too...


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