I've only done 19 but still 20 feels like I've been doing this for too long.
-Sabin/Dutt v. Aries/Strong was pretty good. Not as good as the Naturals match from last week but still surprisingly good. Dutt looked absolutely awful in this. Normally I wouldn’t say that Sabin was the better worker in that team as I don’t care for either but this is worst Dutt's looked…maybe two matches in one nights taping is too much for Dutt. Zbysco on commentary says “All these guys have tremendous amount of talent they just need patience.” And well for most of this feds time on Spike these guys were working the impatient X division style. Here they have the patience to work classic tag and even with Dutt blowing everything it still was nice. Faces control early section, till Aries does eye poke followed by Bobby Eaton eye-rope-burn to transition onto offense, than heels control until Irish whipping Sabin into turnbuckle where he’s able to recover and Zbysco/Ringo Mendoza/Sano kick to escape Vader splash. A couple double team moves a couple tandem moves and a nasty released cradle shock. All you can ask for. Really Naturals should have been the team to win this tourney as they could probably have gotten a good match out of A1/Qilliams and you needed a face team going into PPV and Dutt/Sabin really aren’t good. But seeing this match made me think that AMW should be able to do something with them.
-Dudleys angle was nicely done. The early section with Diamonds was fine and the transition into the angle was done nicely with AMW calling the Dudleys out and Canadians attacking. A1 and Williams were awful in their attack section and Williams blew eating a clothesline out of ring but once Young and Roode came into the ring it ratcheted up a notch as Roode’s mounted punches looked vicious and Young takes his crazy routine and turns it into sadist crazy. D Von does the huge blade job, the rubbing the plaque in his face was sweet and Canadian Anthem at end all did nice job heating up the PPV match. It should be pointed out that the PPV match is on Sunday and this was aired Saturday (repeated Monday). One episode build of this where this comes across as heated match up with that one episode being less than 24 hours before PPV.
-Liked the sit down with Christian and Jericho. Pre-taped is the way to go. Christian this week and last week wasn’t working comedy and instead working guy who really wants the belt and that helps him. I didn’t like Jarrett’s insider talk about midcard and main. Lawler did this really well in match with Ken Lucas where Lawler came off really arrogant refusing to work Lucas in main event, “ I’m working this as an undercard match cause I’m not gonna lie to the fans and pretend like this guy is anything more than a journeyman”. Christian put that angle over as he described the slight “I’m not a comedy midcarder”. But Jarrett didn’t do that this week. Jarrett didn’t accuse Christian of being a comedy act and not a champion. Jarrett felt less Lawler insider term heelish and more Russo burying yourself and opponent at same time cause you’re an idiot who doesn’t understand wrestling shootish. Still did nice job heating up the PPV match. It should be pointed out that the PPV match is on Sunday and this was aired Saturday (repeated Monday). Two episode build where Christian comes off as credible challenger with one episode being less than 24 hours before PPV.
-They actually have been building Abyss v Rhino for more than two episodes. They have consistently over last 4 weeks been pushing the Abyss v Rhino angle. Unfortunately they’ve done that by putting them in matches against each other. Seeing actual Rhino v. Abyss matches should kill anyone’s desire to ever see more of them. So this weeks show ends with a Abyss/Brown vs. Killings/Rhino match. Smartest part of match is how little Abyss/Rhyno interaction there was. Killings huge dive is the best looking dive of anyone in the promotion and he looked really good for most of this. His punches in the corner looked weak but really liked Monty Brown’s punch block into dropping Killings on his neck spot. TIVO cut off before the finish and I decided to be generous and put on both sides of the WHAT WORKED divide. Killings was good. Brown did one nice thing. Probably doesn't deserve on top but figure can't really judge with it getting cut off.
WHAT DIDN’T WORK:
-If AMW and Kim are going to continue to do handcuff angles, Kim needs to buy a real pair of handcuffs. Those cute girly fashion handcuffs won’t cut it. I mean don’t get me wrong. I don’t think Tomko was named as a shot at me, I don’t like Tori Amos, but even I know those handcuffs aren’t "realistic looking" restraints.
-They have consistently over last 4 weeks been pushing the Abyss v Rhino angle. Unfortunately they’ve done that by putting them in matches against each other. Seeing actual Rhino v. Abyss matches should kill anyone’s desire to ever see more of them. So this weeks show ends with a Abyss/Brown vs. Killings/Rhino match. Smartest part of match is how little Abyss/Rhyno interaction there was. Killings huge dive is the best looking dive of anyone in the promotion and he looked really good for most of this. His punches in the corner looked weak but really liked Monty Brown’s punch block into dropping Killings on his neck spot. But when comes to this match I don’t know MAAAN. Killings is clearly the best guy in this. But for first couple minutes of this Killings looks like the only trained wrestler in this. It gets to point where Don West has to comment on it. Don West explains that Killings is “clearly the most focused” wrestler in this match since he doesn’t have any issues going into the PPV. The Killings looks like the best guy in this match because he doesn’t have a PPV match is an ingenious explanation by West. It also is a really damning statement about the idiots who book this promotion.
-The other thing they've built nicely has been the Joe, Daniels, Styles angle. HEY SQUASHES! The Samoa Joe three way dance didn’t really do anything for anybody. They have done a nice job of over last 4 weeks constantly building toward the 3 way. This episode they did the least amount of promotion of the 3 way angle . And this match didn’t help anyone. Could have been replaced with video package. And when I first wrote about TNA when they were doing the Wednesday PPVs, one of the sentences that pretty much made the bottom of every review was, Slick Johnson sucks. And well let me say it once again. Slick Johnson sucks. He’s taller and stockier than most of the roster and awkward and out of place in the ring. Tenay still harping on Joe breaking “the code” was funny.
-PPV airs Sunday. SUNDAY. This show airs Saturday and repeats the Monday after the PPV airs. This show did a really good job heating up a couple angles for the PPV. But you don’t do the big DVON gets bloodied and Dudleys want revenge under 24 hours before PPV. You don’t do the big Christian wants belt under 24 hours before PPV. It just all seemed a week too late. You do this a week ago and then recap it this week. Hey remember when the slow dissolution of 4/3LK was the hottest thing going in this promotion? The big challenge match is in under 24 hours and no video recap? Nothing? Nothing! I mean they’ve fucked than angle up so much that I can’t imagine a video package could save it but still. They did do a nice job of over last 4 weeks constantly building the 3 way and Abyss v. Rhino. But thats been only thing they've tried to sell. Still this was first time watched episode where felt like they really wanted to sell the PPV. It's more than a litle late to be start selling it now. Comes off amature. Like an indy promoter who spends all his time booking a show and never bothers to put any energy into advertising.
-It should be said that if you are trying to sell a PPV you should never do another Jackie Gayda backstage segment. Taylor interviews Riley about Raven. Raven’s gone!!! Gone Why is he getting pushed heavier than Christian?? Going into a PPV tomorrow. TOMORROW!!! Then Jackie Gayda comes in “HEY LOLLIPOP!” She shouldn’t mention Lollipop since that cage dancer was a better actor than Gayda. Next thing you know I’m watching another episode of Jackie Gayda Scott Damore theatre. Every week you think you’ve seen the peak of awful Jackie Gayda mic work. Wow that Jackie Gayda back stage segment was painful. I mean I guess they should be commended for putting Dámore and Gayda in one section together. Concentrate all the suck in one place. But it would be smarter to have neither on the mic than put both on it together. You know I shit on Vince Russo as being one of the stupidest bookers in the history of wrestling. But he had this idea that you could just take professional actors and with minimum of training plug them into wrestling angles. People pretty universally mocked him for this idea. But you watch Raw and Thea Vidale is really the best thing on that show. With no wrestling experience she seems to be a better second than Dámore or Mitchell. Watching Jackie Gayda, I couldn't help but think "you know Sheryl Underwood has big tits and a horse’s face put her in the same outfit and I’m sure that she could have pulled off this backstage skit". It's TNA they might not be able to afford her but still. There must be a local cage dancer who could do better than Gayda. I mean you don't need to be Sheryl Underwood to do better than Gayda. Fuck is there a Comedy Sportz in Orlando? Any two guys on an Orlando Comedy Sportz team could do better than this.. and really this does nothing to sell your PPV. You can waste your time in post PPV shows forwarding this storyline but your show is SUNDAY!!!
I had a chance to see Orton wrestle Lance Storm at a house show back in March, and while he's obviously no Kurt Angle wrestling wise, I still found it to be a damn good match. Give the kid some time, and see what he has to show you.