Recap for TNA Impact 5.20.10, taped from Orlando, Florida.
- We get a recap of Sacrifice and then the pyro opening. They hype Kurt Angle's return, and Hogan making a huge announcement. How many 'huge' announcements will Hogan make before people stop paying attention?
- The show opens with Eric Bischoff and Ms. Tessmacher coming out to reveal the TNA Top-10 ratings. The criteria is 1. Fan Voting 2. Career W/L and prior championship record 3. TNA championship W/L. They announce each name, then the guy comes out, and they play a short video. The ratings go like this - 10 Joe 9 Rob Terry (and there they lost my interest) 8 Des Wolfe 7 Pope 6 Abyss 5 Anderson 4 Hardy 3 Styles 2 Angle (but he doesn't show) and 1 Sting. That probably means that the fan-voting probably counted for about 10% of the final decision since Sting had a single-digit percent of votes. So it's Sting v RVD at Slammiversary and Sting v Hardy for tonight. Sting comes down to the ring and starts destroying stuff with his bat because Bischoff, Hogan, and Dixie want change. He attacks Eric because he wants to "change the way Bischoff walks." Awesome line. Abyss tries to save so he eats bat as well. Hardy takes the bat away from him but gets a nutshot. RVD comes out to distract him, allowing Hardy to get a reverse Twist of Fate. Hardy wants the Swanton, but Sting bails to end the segment. I'm really torn on this - the ratings themselves were utter bullshit, but the Sting stuff was rather enjoyable. We'll take the high road and go 1 for 1. Btw, did you notice that when Bischoff congratulated Sting, he said it on behalf of "TNA Entertainment"?
- Hogan is backstage with Tessmacher, who is looking after Bischoff. Hogan says he wants to make Sting disappear. Mob wars! Matt Morgan wants a tag title rematch, and Hogan is preoccupied thinking about Sting, so he gets it.
Match 1: Non-title: Roxxi over Madison Rayne via Voodoo Drop in 3 minutes. Mostly a nothing match, but at least they remembered to show us Roxxi's last match and how she broke her ankle. 1 for 2.
- Des Wolfe reassures Chelsea that no matter what happens, she will always be his.
- Kurt Angle is walking in the back! Someone asks him why he didn't bother to show earlier, but unsurprisingly he doesn't bother to answer.
- Kurt comes down to the ring to address the Impact Zone. He says when he came he was one of the TNA Elite. "You Still Are" - Impact Zone. But now with the emergence of RVD, Hardy, Anderson, Joe, Young, AJ, and Lethal, he's just another name. He says he never wrestled for money or ego, for him it was always about going in the ring and putting everything on the line. He was bred to be a winner. He says he's done everything possible in the business, and he wants to reinvent himself. He takes himself off the top-ten list, and says he will prove himself to each of the ten contenders, wrestling each of them, from 10 to 1. He promises that we will see some of the greatest wrestling we've ever seen. Count me in. TNA can't possibly fuck this up, right? 2 for 3.
- Flair is in the back with Beer Money. Flair talks about Lethal and how imitation is not the sincerest form of flattery. He says it doesn't matter who Lethal picks as his partner tonight because they have to take on Beer Money. He calls them 'TNA's Muscle.' Kazarian drops by, asking to talk to Flair alone. Flair holds off Beer Money, saying it was ok. Then he asks Hemme if she got married without riding the legend first, which causes her to walk away disgusted. The first half of this was fine, but the thing with Kazarian and the pointless remark to Hemme didn't help.
- Rob Terry finds out from his doc that his knee is broken in four places. Is that even possible? But that won't stop him from kicking Orlando Jordan's teeth down his throat.
Match 2: Non-title: Orlando Jordan over Rob Terry via ref stoppage in 3 minutes. Jordan attacked the knee and locked a legbar, causing Hebner to call the match. Postmatch, Jordan won't let go, so several refs come pull him off. He goes right back to it, though. This wasn't much of a match. 2 for 4.
- Lethal says Flair took it all wrong - he was trying to honor him. RVD offers to be his partner and Lethal is down with that.
- Hardy talks about how he idolized Sting when he was a kid. He says Sting taught him how to break out of the normal - so in short be can blame Sting for Jeff Hardy being a freak. Hardy says he's always wanted to wrestle Sting, but didn't imagine that it would go down like this.
Match 3: Jay Lethal and Rob Van Dam over Beer Money (Lethal on Roode - Figure-4 Leglock) in 4 minutes. Criminally short, but nonstop action. 3 for 5. Flair and Lethal brawl postmatch, while RVD soaks in the cheers. One of the fans decks him in the head, however. Turns out that was Sting. Oops.
- Jeff Hardy comes to the ring and cuts a promo which is basically an extended version of his earlier backstage promo. He says he's made a living out of being different and that no one knows what goes on inside his head. I'm not gonna argue that one. He dares Sting to try and figure him out. He says the Creatures of the Night are going to blow his imagination. This was a waste. They could've combined the two promos into one. 3 for 6.
- Abyss is in the ring and he demands Wolfe to hand Chelsea over to him. He says on Sunday he made Wolfe his bitch and tonight he's taking Wolfe's bitch. Des and Chelsea come out with TNA security, who are holding Chelsea. Des says that Abyss is sorely mistaken if he thinks he's gonna get Chelsea. He says he can have her over Des's dead body. Des hits a nutshot, and then slices Abyss's arm with a broken bottle. He wipes out security but gets distracted and eats a Black Hole Slam. Abyss picks up Chelsea and heads to the back. I hate Abyss, so watching him getting his ass kicked is enjoyable to me. 4 for 7.
- The Band is in the ring. Eric Young has the mic and says he understands the boos because Young has everything and the fans have nothing. He says Hall and Nash are the only two people in TNA that he has anything in common with. He puts over Nash as an asskicker and says they're not here to play cool tunes, but they're here for the big bucks. They're going to take everything and the fans know there's nothing anyone can do about it. This leads to... Match 4: Eric Young over Shannon Moore via Piledriver after Band and 3-D interference in 4 minutes. I like the Young push, but couldn't he get a clean victory over Moore? I mean he needs the help of 4 people 3 times his age to beat Shannon Moore? 4 for 8. Postmatch, Brother Ray wants to beat some more sense into Jesse Neal, but Devon asks him to lay off him.
Match 5: X-Division Battle Royal: Winner takes #10 spot in the TNA rankings: Kazarian over MCMG, Young Bucks, Homicide, Amazing Red, and Brian Kendrick in 3 minutes. Shit-tastic. Flair comes out and applauds Kazarian. 4 for 9.
Match 6: Jeff Hardy over Sting via Anderson-ference in 6 minutes. Anderson hit the Scorpion Death Drop on Sting to allow Hardy to pin him. Postmatch, Anderson raise Hardy's hand, but Hardy shoves him away. Anderson wants Hardy to hear him out, and calls for his mic, but that allows Sting to wipe out both of them with the bat. Sting stands tall as the show ends. 4 for 10.
Wrestling Counter: 23 minutes.
Score: 4 for 10. A mixed bag of a show, but about par for the course for TNA. I'm interested in the Angle storyline, especially if the matches get time, and in the Anderson character progression. The rest of the show felt unfocussed, with too many things going on at once. There was not one match here worth watching, and most of them were there more for angle advancement than the in-ring action. And you can call me old-fashioned all you want, but I just cannot buy into a six-minute main event done only so that someone not involved in the match at all could have a bit of character development. And what the hell was supposed to be Hogan's big announcement? Did I just completely miss that?
(edited by used2bcool on 21.5.10 1216) Forfeit the game, before somebody else takes you outta the game, and puts your name to shame Cover up your face, you can't run the race The pace is too fast, you just won't last - "Points Of Authority" - Linkin Park
I can't argue with who comprises the top ten, quibbles with rankings aside. Rob Terry, well, he's the Global Champ, so you got to let that one slide. I'm surprised Matt Morgan's not on the list, though, and I'm VERY surprised -- pleasantly so -- that neither is Jeff Jarrett.
Miss Tessmacher is an awful character. There are ways to do a "sexy secretary" if they absolutely feel that they need one -- they don't, but still -- but Tessmacher is just repulsive.
I agree with u2bc -- Sting's "You need to change the way you walk" just before the beatdown was pretty great.
I'm delighted to see Roxxi again, and I hope that her victory over Rayne is an indication that I am totally wrong in my prediction that they're going to make Lacey Von Erich the #1 KO face.
I don't know, u2, I thought the Terry/Jordan segment worked -- not much of a match, sure, but Jordan's relentless single-minded focus on Terry's knee gave it a simple story that made it work better than their interminable Sacrifice match. Thumbs up from me.
I am also delighted (and astounded!) that they have yet to include any "gay panic" spots in Jordan's matches -- like Jordan humping or kissing Terry and Terry being horrified and killing Jordan for it. Faint praise for their treatment of the sexuality angle via omission, I know, but still.
Jay Lethal -- the guy just has this core of earnest sweetness that's really appealing. I don't think u2bc mentioned that Jay Lethal is just straight-up Jay Lethal now -- no more "Black Machismo." Hopefully they do something significant with him this time around.
I loved Sting in the Sting mask "disguise." Surprise! He looks exactly like Sting!
Wolfe defending Chelsea against Abyss (who called Chelsea a "bitch") is actually, you know, the heroic thing to do, and the crowd was behind him, too. Well, until he started threatening Chelsea with the bottle, too. Still, if TNA wants a Stone Cold-style anti-hero -- Wolfe would be a great pick.
I hope that the bit where Wolfe slices Abyss' arm with a broken bottle was a bit of subterfuge -- Wolfe feints, Abyss recoils, Abyss gigs -- because otherwise that seems insanely dangerous. Meltzer says that Abyss needed 17 stitches, so maybe they all are that stupid. This segment put me in a funk for the rest of the show.
I suspect we're getting a 3-way tag match -- The Band, Ink Inc, and Team 3D -- at Slammiversary. Which would be WEIRD seeing as MCMG are the #1 contenders and all. We'll see!
The X Division battle royal was awful -- what was it, like a minute long? Grr rumph. The whole division should really, seriously be put out of its misery at this point -- being labeled an "X Division" wrestler is the kiss of death in TNA these days. "The stars of the X Division," as they're now generically referred to en masse, are presented almost entirely as just an interchangeable mass of silly little bouncy weaklings who are at the absolute bottom of the barrel and it's ridiculous.
Also, why have an X Division match to determine the #10 heavyweight contender? If you want someone from the X Div, why not its champion, Doug Williams? (I'd like to see Williams vs. Angle!)
I have nothing to say about Sting.
(edited by Karlos the Jackal on 21.5.10 0200) Last 5 movies seen: The Messenger *** - The Rock-afire Explosion *** - Adventureland **1/2 - The 7th Victim ***1/2 - Crazy Heart ***1/2
The Angle idea is cool, as long as it does not involve him beating the ENTIRE top 10 on his way back to the title. Who was #10, Samoa Joe? Surely Joe can beat Kurt Angle, right?
I am a life-long Sting fan, but he looked pathetic and old in the main event. I know he is injured, and probably wears the shirt as a result, but I am close to adding him to my “getting too old for this shit” list with Flair, Nash, and Hall.
I thought maybe they would swerve us and simply have Abyss treat Chelsea like a lady for 30 days, unlike Wolfe. My problem with Abyss is similar to my problem with Cena: I like earlier versions of the character so much, that it makes me resent the watered down, pandering, current version.
There was more to like than dislike for me on this show, and that is saying something. I wish we could have more ring time, but that’s fruitless at this point.
"I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ."
The order of the rankings is a joke and I'm not real sure why Morgan isn't on the list. I thought all the divisions would have rankings but they threw a bunch of X Division guys out there in a four minute battle royal. Where was Williams? Does he not wanna be in the top ten? Looks like Kaz might be turning heel and be aligned with Flair. It might not be a bad idea as Kaz has had trouble connecting with the audience. Did the announcers even say why Lethal was wrestling Beer Money or why Rvd would team up to take em on? There is some backstory there as Rvd got involved? in a mini feud with Beer Money and got hit with a Beer bottle and they also attacked Lethal a feud weeks after he beat them. Good to see Roxxi back and it looks like they might do something with her for once. Hopefully Angie comes back soon. Jeff Hardy in radio intwerviews has stated that his #1 dream match is against Sting who he grew up idolizing well I've railed against giving away matches for free many times why not at least built the Match up a week and have it next week and maybe pop a better rating than usual. Sting wearing a Sting mask and ambubising RVD was creative. I think it's too soon to turn Anderson face but they're doing it anyway. Abyss used to be a favorite of mine but his character has been getting worse and worse for a year now and Hogan has made it worse too. So are The MCMG gonna get a title shot on a ppv or will it just be a throw away five minute match on Impact? I know I know rhetorical question.
I thought this was a much better show then last week. At least they kept the garbage with the stalking/assault angle in the ring instead of the dumb backstage skits that we had last week.
I will say that, with all this talk about roster cuts coming down the line, why in the world does Ms. Tessmacher have a job? I hate to wish anyone out of work but if they have to cut someone in a wrestling position just so they can have her on the show each week standing next to Bischoff - that's criminal. I was amused by the fact that she was taking notes on the criteria of the Top Ten Ranking system though as Eric Bischoff was announcing them when, you would think, that that would have already been written down and agreed upon well before tonight.
The Rob Terry taped promo showed more personality then he's ever shown before. I don't understand why TNA is booking him in longish bouts which consist of a lot of rest holds, though. I get that he's injured and all but shouldn't he, if they are trying to get him over as a power house, be doing Goldberg-esque type of short matches which feature him overpowering his opponents (since he can't really wrestle them)?
The Abyss/Wolfe stuff was awful - I feel bad that Wolfe has to be stuck in this lame angle. While I'm insanely glad that Abyss didn't get sliced open and then "hulk up", I don't understand how someone with an arm that's sliced open by a glass bottle can lift someone over his head and do a Black Hole Slam. With the whole Chelsea thing, does this mean this angle is going on for another 30 days?
It was amusing that Sting had on a mask of his face paint over his face paint.. but that's about all that interests me about him at the point. I loved him, too, but something about him in TNA now just seems... stale. :/
Has TNA already forgotten that the MCMG's are the number one contenders for the tag team titles already?
The Beer Money/Lethal/RVD match was great, IMO. Beer Money is a really great team. I also loved the Rayne/Roxxi match - but I've liked Roxxi since she debuted. It was good to see her back. Hopefully they're going to start building back up the Knockout's Division again.
Of course Russo is booking and we know he can't do two "successful" shows back-to-back so I throughly expect next week to be awful.
I'm sick to death of Sting at some point. I wonder if it was the Lex Luger-style face/heel switches over the past 12 months, but I'm running on Sting fatigue, which is amazing considering he was gone for a good while. It doesn't help that the end game seems to be to have a Sting/Hogan match, which could set a new non-celebrity standard for terrible.
I don't mind them pushing Jordan at this point. I mean, if they INSIST on pushing the guy, push him all the way. But I seem to remember they were trying to market Rob Terry as a Goldberg-style monster and now that seems to have gone out the window.
Angle running through the Top 10 could be an awesome angle that could draw a lot of interest. I wonder how far he'll actually get, because I could see someone like Pope stopping him flat.
The ending to the show has my Spidey Sense tingling. I still smell a double turn coming.
Tazz said "in my opinion" roughly 300 times. He's one of my favourite colour commentators even though he can be a bit slow, but, in my opinion, he's starting to get as annoying as when West and Tenay would say "just" every other word. But that's just my opinion.
I like to imagine that Sting's heel turn is entirely because he's pissed off that while he was away Orlando Jordan moved into the rafters, and Sting really hates having to share his lair up there with him.
I've read in a couple of places -- dirt sheets, nothing credible, add grains of salt to taste -- that Hall and Waltman, at least, are on "pay-to-play" deals -- they get paid for what they do, and they're not under long-term contracts (or maybe ...