Mega Powers Running Wild!

The legendary 'Macho man' Randy Savage teams up with 'The Immortal' Hulk Hogan to take on Ted Dibiase and Andre The Giant in the first ever WWF Summerslam!

Shawn Micahels vs. Mankind

The Heartbreak Kid defends the WWF Championship against Mankind in a thrilling main event at WWF In Your House: Mind Games.

The Birth of the nWo

From Hulk Hogan's shocking turn at WCW Bash at the Beach 1996 to the addition of Ted Dibiase, THe Giant Syxx and more, relive the very beginning of the New World Order.

Austin 3:16 Says I Just Kicked Your Ass

It's one of the most famous promos of all time; Stone Cold Steve Austin wins the 1996 King of The Ring and serves notice on all the WWF superstars. Check it out in our complete review

Wrestlemania 12 Review

The boyhood dream comes true as Shawn Michaels battles champion Bret 'The Hitman' Hart in a classic 1-hour iron man match. Plus, Diesel vs. Undertaker and more.

WCW Fall Brawl 1996 Review

Was Sting in cahoots with the New World Order? Would Lex Luger be able to get along with the Four Horsemen as they faced the nWo in War Games? Find out in this review

Showing posts with label Alex Shelly. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Alex Shelly. Show all posts

Thursday, 21 March 2019

PPV REVIEW: TNA Slammiversary 2005

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - Event poster
June 19, 2005 
TNA Impact! Zone, Orlando, Florida

Three years after they sprang into existence and set about looking to fill the void in the pro wrestling landscape left behind by WCW's demise, TNA presented their first Slammiversary pay per view. 

Designed as a celebration of the company's short-lived past, it's exciting present, and what they were surely hoping was a prosperous future, the first Slammiversary would become the start of a TNA/Impact Wrestling tradition, one which would last for the next 16 years.

Yes, despite countless rumours that they too would eventually go the way of WCW, the company are still alive and kicking today, and to celebrate that fact, they uploaded the first Slammiversary to their YouTube in its entirety.

Does that make it worth your time?

Let's click the play button and find out together.

Remember when...

After a quick signature which told us that TNA was "the new face of pro wrestling," we got a nostalgic look back at the first ever TNA show from 2002, weirdly interspersed with clips of children running through fields and playing in parks.

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - Don West and Mike Tenay
We also got clips of some of the biggest stars to come through TNA over the past few years, including Randy Savage, Kevin Nash, Sting, and Raven.

We also took a look at one time Jeff Jarrett did an angle with Hulk Hogan, years before Hogan would actually join the company properly, followed by highlights of the X-Division and a welcome to the company's third anniversary.

Out in the arena, pyro exploded around the entrance as Mike Tenay welcomed us to the show.

Jeff Jarrett Has Been Arrested

Together with co-announcer Don West, Tenay told us that Jeff Jarrett had been arrested and taken out of the Impact Zone for attacking a "fan."

That meant he would be out of tonight's 'King of the Mountain' match and would be replaced by his arch-rival, Raven.

With that out of the way, it was onto our first match.

Six-Way X-Division Match
Zack Gowan vs. Delirious vs. Jerelle Clark vs. Amazing Red vs. Prime Time Elix Skipper vs. Shark Boy

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - Shark Boy
This one started with the set up of two men in the ring with everyone else needing to tag in before quickly -perhaps inevitably- descending into a six-way free-for-all with bodies flying everywhere.

Though there were some entertaining spots (a nice Infrared by Amazing Red onto the outside for one), the whole thing felt very rushed. It just wasn't given enough time for anything to mean anything, so you just got one spot after another with very little rhyme or reason.

What made this worse was the commentary from Tenay and West.

I've always loved Mike Tenay's commentary and never thought I'd have reason to criticise him, but here, he and West oversold everything. At one point, we had the usual "everyone takes turns diving to the outside" spot, and the announcers sold it like we'd just seen Undertaker throw Mankind from the top of Hell in a Cell.

It kind of took you out of the moment and made you think - if they're getting this excited over some -admittedly cool- X-Division spots, how are we supposed to take them seriously if something really huge happens like a world title change?

It's as if every spot was treated as the most amazing thing ever which, in a sense, made nothing the most amazing thing ever.

Anyway, after a short and disappointing match, Shark Boy hit Delirious with a Deep Sea Drop to pick up the three count.
Your Winner: Shark Boy 

Out in the back, Abyss hung around in the dark with some big steel chains, getting himself more and angrier and eventually punching his hand through a mirror while Tenay told us that The Monster would be in tonight's main event.

Alex Shelley Confronts The Shocker

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - Shane Douglas interviews Alex Shelley and The Shocker
Out in the back, Shane Douglas was happy to have found gainful employment as TNA's backstage correspondent. Here, he interviewed The Shocker, who in terribly bad English, told us that he was the best cruiserweight in the world.

His opponent for tonight, Alex Shelley, strongly disputed this. Shelley arrived on the scene to interrupt the promo and tell Shocker that he wasn't the only hybrid wrestler in the company.

"I can do your lucha libre, your catch-as-catch-can, your American pro wrestling, your Japanese strong-style, even MMA" said Shelley, after which he stormed off, leaving Shocker to rant at him in Spanish.

The whole thing was cringe-worthily awful. Shocker lacked the confidence to cut a compelling promo in English, and, even though he didn't have a language barrier to deal with, Shelley wasn't much better.

Alex Shelley vs. Shocker 

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - Alex Shelley vs. The Shocker
Thankfully, both men were better wrestlers than they were talkers, which I suppose is all that really matters.

Given plenty of time to play with, the two put on a good match that may have been better if they'd manage to get more than four guys on the front row interested in what they were doing.

Despite the lack of crowd reaction, the two worked very well together, blending lucha libre with European submission style to create something that was enjoyable from start to finish.

Despite dominating for a bulk of the match, Shelley fell prey to a roll-up and lost the match to his Mexican opponent.
Your Winner: Shocker 

Next, Tenay took us to a look at the fifth most memorable moment in TNA's short, three-year history, as voted for by the fans on the company's website.

That moment happened to be the time AJ Styles beat Jeff Jarett to win his first NWA World Championship.

Trouble with the 3 Live Kru

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - 3 Live Kru
Out in the back, Shane Douglas asked 3 Live Kru about their recent issues.

BG James took the mic and told Ron Killings and Konnan that despite whatever issues they might have had, he was 3 Live Kru through and through and could absolutely be trusted.

Though K-Dog and Truth were sceptical, they eventually agreed to bump fists with the former Road Dogg.

Confusingly, it was only after this promo that we were shown what the issue actually was:

The Outlaw (Billy Gunn) had come into the promotion and James' current partners suspected that his loyalties lay more with his former New Age Outlaws teammate than with them.

I know I'm nitpicking, but it would have made much more sense to tell us what the issue was before going to the promo.

The Outlaw vs.  Ron 'The Truth' Killings

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - The Outlaw Billy Gunn
Looking to settle things once and for all, Ron Killings represented his team in a fairly average match against the Outlaw which could have been better had Killings been given more time to show off his offence.

While most of us today think of R-Truth as little more than WWE's resident comedian, there were times in this match when he showed us that he's more than capable of doing some really impressive stuff between the ropes.

Not that it was any of that offence which actually won him the match. After taking a beating at the hands of his opponent, Killing's reversed Outlaw's finisher (cobra clutch slam) and got a roll-up for the win.
Your Winner: Ron Killings

Post-match, Outlaw continued to beat down on Killings until BG James ran out and took the chair from him. Outlaw offered his former partner a free shot, but James was hesitant to strike.

Eventually, Konnan ran in and saw off Outlaw, arguing with James as he and Truth left the ring.

TNA's Greatest Moment Number 4

Continuing our fan-voted look at the company's best bits, we went to January 2003 and the debut of Raven.

Team Canada are Pumped Up

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - Team Canada
Backstage, Shane Douglas interviewed Team Canada about their ongoing rivalry with Lance Hoyt and The Naturals. Bobby Roode was particularly impressive on the microphone, as was Scott D'Moore, at first.

Indeed, the whole thing was shaping up to be the best segment on the show so far (including matches) until D'Moore likened himself to Hitler and Mussolini and tried to make it sound like a good thing.

This led us to a video package highlighting Team Canada and their rivalry with The Naturals.

Again, it probably would have been better to show us all of this *before* getting the wrestlers' comments on it.

NWA World Tag Team Championship
NWA World Tag Team Champions The Naturals (Chase Stevens & Andy Douglas) vs. Team Canada (Eric Young & Petey Williams w/ Scott D'Moore and Alistair 'A-1' Ralphs)

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - The Naturals vs. Team Canada
By far the best match on the card so far, this one saw all four men deliver a compelling performance way beyond their relatively limited experience.

This one had it all: Exciting action in the early going leading to the drama and agony of seeing Chase Stevens isolated from his partner and outnumbered by Team Canada and, of course, a dramatic finish.

Throughout this whole tag-team title section of the show, the announcers had been speculating on a mystery mentor and "spiritual advisor" that The Naturals had mentioned.

At the culmination of this brilliant match, that mentor revealed himself to be none other than Jimmy Hart, who tossed Andy Douglas his famous mega phone to use as the match-winning weapon.
Your Winners and still NWA tag team champions: The Naturals. 

man, that was fun.

Up next, we were told that the fans had voted for that 2005's Lock Down cage match as the third greatest moment in TNA history.

Sean Waltman is Ready for the Main Event

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - Sean Waltman is interviewed by Shane Douglas
Drug addiction isn't funny, so I'm just going to pretend that Sean Waltman had just woken up from a nap as that's about the best way to describe his dopey manner and appearance in this backstage segment.

Interviewed by Shane Douglas, Waltman sort of drowsily fumbled his way through a bland promo in which he said that despite being a good backstage politician, the real reason he was in the title match tonight was that he deserved it.

I'm a big fan of Waltman's, but he did not look good here.

Sonjay Dutt vs. Samoa Joe 

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - Samoa Joe debuted against Sonjay Dutt
Making his TNA debut, it would have been easy for Samoa Joe to simply toss Sonjay Dutt around like a ragdoll and be done with him.

It would have made sense too. Joe was built by the announcers as a really, really big deal, so having him simply squash his opponent wouldn't have been out of place.

Instead, while The Samoan Submission Machine certainly dominated, this was more of a competitive match than an outright squash, with Dutt looking pretty impressive in his own right.

Still, the outcome was a foregone conclusion.

After a couple of minutes full of enjoyable action, Joe hit the Muscle Buster, applied a Rear Naked Choke and made Sonjay tap.
Your Winner: Samoa Joe

Cutting to the announce table, Tenay and West told us about some of TNA's upcoming PPVs, including the big Bound For Glory in October which West likened to the Super Bowl.

Quote the Raven, NWA-TNA Champion...

Somewhere in the bowels of the building, Raven cut a mesmerising promo in which he described himself as a "human cancer" and declared that he'd rather hug a suicide bomber than be in his opponents' shoes tonight.

Why? Because tonight, said Raven, he was going to fulfil his destiny of becoming the NWA Kingpin. Quote the raven...NWA-TNA Champion...Never More

Bobby Roode (w/ Scott D'More) vs. Lance Hoyt 

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - Lance Hoyt faced Bobby Roode
I'm a big fan of Bobby Roode and honestly think he could be used better in WWE, but even I have to admit that this wasn't his finest moment.

Though there was nothing particularly terrible about his short match with Lance Hoyt, there was something off about it which made it almost a chore to watch.

Towards the finish, Hoyt looked to have things under control and set up Roode for a big boot. However, the two spent so long in the set-up that it was blatantly obvious the move wouldn't pay off. Predictably, D'More grabbed Hoyt's foot, Roode attacked and got the three count.
Your Winner: Bobby Roode

Afterwards, Roode continued to attack while D'More cheered him on, yet when D'More took his shirt off and went for a top-rope moonsault, Hoyt moved out of the way and mounted a comeback, hitting D'More with a moonsault of his own.

Team Canada ran out along with some EMTs who stretchered D'More to the back while the crowd sang 'na na na, hey hey hey, goodbye."

The whole post-match stuff was more interesting than anything in the actual match.

TNA's Greatest Moments: Number 2 

The TNA debut of Jeff Hardy in 2004.

America's Most Wanted Can't Get Along

Up next, we were shown a video package which highlighted the ongoing arguments between America's Most Wanted partners Cowboy James Storm and Wildcat Chris Harris. The two had been squabbling among themselves while simultaneously feuding with 3 Live Kru who also couldn't get along because of the whole Outlaw/BG James stuff.

America's Most Wanted (Wildcat Chris Harris & Cowboy James Storm) vs. 3 Live Kru (Konnan & BG James)

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - BG James battles Chris Harris
Despite some early miscues, Harris and Storm were able to get on the same page as they took the fight to their more experienced opponents in a decent, though unremarkable, match.

After a fairly average back-and-forth between both teams, The Outlaw ran in and immediately got into it with Konnan. That left James at the mercy of AMW, who quickly put him away for the pin.
Your Winners: America's Most Wanted

Afterwards, BG refused to accept Konnan's apology for leaving him high and dry, and simply stormed off through the crowd.

TNA's Greatest Moment Ever

As voted for by the fans, TNA's greatest moment was shown to be the time Elix Skipper walked across the top of the cage back in 2004. Deservedly so too, that was insane.

This quick clip was followed by a look at the rivalry between X-Division Champion Christopher Daniels, Michael Shane, and Chris Sabin. The three would meet next.

X-Division Championship
TNA X-Division 'The Fallen Angel' Champion Christopher Daniels vs. Michael Shane (w/ Traci Brooks) vs. Chris Sabin (w/ Trinity) 

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - Trinity and Chris Sabin
Fought under elimination rules, this triple threat match was every bit as good as you might expect it to be.

Though not exactly a classic for the ages, it was certainly a very, very good X-Division match.

Towards the half-way point, Shelley had the choice to either finish off Michael Shane or rescue Trinity from the evil clutches of Christopher Daniels. He chose to eliminate Shane from the competition, prompting Daniels to hit Trinity with Angels Wings.

Poor Trinity was then helped backstage and that was the last we'd see of her on tonight's show which was a shame because, well, she looked smoking hot.

Anyway, that left it down to just Sabin and Daniels, both of whom gave us a very solid effort before The Fallen Angel picked up the three count.
Your Winner and Still X-Division Champion: Christopher Daniels 

Out in the back, Shane Douglas interviewed The Alpha Male Monty Brown about his participation in the upcoming King of the Mountain match.

Weirdly charismatic, Monty called all of his opponents 'Omega males' and promised to demolish them in our main event.

Speaking of which...

NWA World Heavyweight Championship King of the Moutain Match
NWA World Heavyweight Champion AJ Styles vs. Abyss vs. The Alpha Male Monty Brown vs. Raven vs. Sean Waltman 

TNA Slammiversary 2005 - AJ Styles
If you've never seen a King of the Mountain match before, it's essentially a reverse-ladder match in that, instead of using the ladder to retrieve the title belt, you use it to go hang the belt up.

Oh, but in order to be eligible to hang the belt, you first have to pin somebody or make them submit, and the person you pin or submit then has to go spend two minutes in a "penalty  box."

Though it sounds like a silly idea that is way more complicated than it needs to be, this actually turned into a very fun main event.

A wild, out of control brawl in the best possible sense of the word, this one just had all five men destroying each other.

Highlights included Waltman hitting the X-Factor on Style from atop the ladder, and Styles himself hitting a top-rope Spiral Tap to Abyss, who was lying prone on a table outside of the ring.

Still, despite such big-time offence, this wasn't to be the champion's night.

Battered and bloodied, Raven eventually scaled the ladder, hung the title, and became our new champion.
Your Winner and NEW NWA Champion: Raven

Post-match, Raven basically meandered around the ringside area with his new title belt, looking genuinely moved to have won.

And so that was that. 

While TNA Slammiversary 2005 wasn't the worse show ever, it was far from the best either. 

If you're a fan of the company's X-Division style then you'll find a lot to like here. Between the X-Division title match, the tag team title match and the Shelley/Shocker outing, TNA gave us lots of quality action. 

Not that the main event was a letdown. Despite being more of a hardcore-style match (at one point, Waltman went around stapling people's balls) than a cruiserweight or technical wrestling classic, it was a fun match and the perfect way to end the show. 

For as long as TNA have this on YouTube it's worth watching, just don't expect the greatest show of all time or anything. 

Be the first to catch the latest Retro Pro Wrestling reviews by following on Facebook or Twitter @RetroPWrestling.

Friday, 22 September 2017

TV REVIEW: TNA Impact - February 5th, 2009

Orlando, Florida

They say that if you don’t like a television programme, just don’t watch it. So why your resident wrestling reporter finds himself once again tuning into a show that he finds frustrating and illogical probably makes no sense at all. 

(NOTE: This review was originally written at the time that The February, 5th 2009 episode of Impact actually aired. I found a bunch of my old TNA reviews in my archives recently and wanted to share them on RPW, so here we are.) 

The only reason I can give is that there’s still hope for Total Non-Stop Action wrestling. With a varied cast of talented performers, Impact could be a good show.

Let’s see if this one is:

The Mafia’s Address

As per the norm these days, the suit-clad Main Event Mafia make their way to the ring to open the show.

Kevin Nash takes to the mic first and alludes to his penchant for backstage politicking; if Big Kev wants someone gone in this industry, he makes sure they’re gone. For some reason though, he hasn’t managed to get rid of Samoa Joe, so he’s going to beat him up instead.

The stick gets passed to Kurt Angle, who, in typically enjoyable fashion, hypes the Against All Odds pay per view and his impending tag match tonight with Sting against their ppv opponents, Team 3D.

Backstage with Team 3D

More fantastic microphone work comes next from the IWGP tag team champions. Brother Ray and Brother Devon hype their upcoming matches against the Mafia.

The beginning of the end of the Front Line?

The lovely Lauren is backstage with Lethal Consequences, she wants to know if all is still well with the TNA Frontline.

Consequences Creed insists it is, before hyping the tag match later against the Motor City Machine Guns. Black Machismo Jay Lethal also gets in on the act, but apparently is a bit confused; as far as Lethal is concerned, he’s out to face Shawn Michaels and Marty Jannetty tonight!

Tag Team Match: Motor City Machine Guns vs. Lethal Consequences

At least, that’s what we’re supposed to get. As it happens, this match never really takes place as the TNA tag team champions, Beer Money Inc head to the ring and destroy their Against All Odds opponents.

With Creed taken out, Black Machismo gives a good account of himself in a pretty entertaining handicap match.

Before long however, Eric Young arrives on the scene to make up the numbers, plants the Guns with a double Death Valley Driver and gets the win.
Your Winners: Eric Young and Jay Lethal

In the post-match, Alex Shelley grabs a microphone and challenges EY to an X-Division title match at the pay per view. Young seems to produce a mic from thin air and accepts the challenge.

Admittedly, that was pretty fun. Though a straight tag-match would have been preferable, getting more interest in two pay per view title matches works for this writer.

Jim Cornette in the Land of Nonsense

The Kongtourage are gathered in Jim Cornette’s office, with Awesome Kong sporting a wonderfully ridiculous pair of snow boots. With no mention as to why Cornette is now responsible for the Knockouts (wasn’t that the job of Traci Brooks?), Jimbo tells them off for something or other and they storm off to be replaced to Booker T and Sharmell.

Dressed in referee attire, the Legends Champion asks to be the referee for the upcoming Sewell/Bashir clash. When his request is denied, Booker says he’ll get involved in the match anyway. Oh, thanks for giving that one away.

You wouldn’t like us when we’re angry

Lauren is backstage with The Beautiful People and Cute Kip. Angelina Love and Velvet Sky are darn angry and promise to beat up Roxi and Taylor Wylde later tonight.

Shiek Abdul Bashir vs. Referee Shane Sewell

Even despite the nice, tidy bout Bashir and Sewell put together, it’s hard to care about anything they do in the ring.

After all, Booker T has already told us he’ll be involved, so it’s just a case of sitting around and waiting for the inevitable.

In fact, it seems even announcers, Mike Tenay & Don West think so too and start discussing politics instead of the in-ring action.

As soon as the clich├ęd ref’ bump takes place, here he comes. Sewell and Booker brawl for a little while before they’re split up by officials.
Your Winner by Disqualification (I think): Shane Sewell

A Legacy Tarnished?

Jeremy Borash is backstage with TNA World Heavyweight Champion, Sting. Sting admits that he doesn’t know where he stands with Main Event Mafia cohort, Kurt Angle, but what he does know is that the TNA World title stands for honour, prestige and all that nonsense, and if anyone else has the title other than him, the belt will be tarnished. Of course it will, Stinger.

The Beautiful People (with Cute Kip) vs. Roxi & Taylor Wylde

Now dressed in pretty matching dresses, Angelina & Velvet attack their opponents on the way to the ring and annihilate them in a one-sided, yet still reasonably entertaining bout.
Your Winners: The Beautiful People

The girls continue their assault before something takes place that is even more predictable than Booker T interfering in the last match; ‘The Governor Sarah Palin’ runs down and fends off the bad girls.

Brutus Magnus vs. Shark Boy

Well, this one’s a forgone conclusion, so instead, let’s lay into the new boy shall we?

Magnus, better known to Gladiator’s fans as ‘Oblivion’ looks like a muppet and his finishing move is rubbish. Tenay and West spend half the match hyping up Magnus’ move, The Tormentum, which actually turns out to be a naff-looking Samoan drop.
Your Winner: Brutus Magnus

With that taken care of, Brutus issues an open challenge to anyone who wants to fight him at Against All Odds.

All’s Well in the Family

Backstage, a fired-up Kurt Angle tells Jeremy Borash that even though there is no tension between the Main Event Maifa, he actually doesn’t need Sting and can do all this on his own.

The Blue Print Matt Morgan vs. The War Machine Rhyno

With Rhyno still selling his Genesis beat-down at the hands of the Main Event Mafia, this turns into a slightly-above-average big man match.

Towards the close, Morgan is interrupted by his former tag team partner, Abyss, who legs it ringwards with bags of drawing pins in hand.

Abby beats up Morgan and plants him with a Black Hole Slam before the DNA of TNA does a runner.
Your Winner: erm, Morgan by DQ.

With Morgan gone, Abyss grabs a microphone and cuts a fantastically intense promo on his rival, climaxing with The Monster punching the life out of the thumbtacks until his hands bleed.

Backstage with Mick Foley

In another throw-away segment, Mick Foley hypes the pay per view and announces that Jeff Jarrett will return next week.

Main Event: Team 3D vs. Kurt Angle & Sting

Not surprisingly, the story here is Angle refusing to tag out to, and ultimately getting into a row with his partner, with the Main Event Mafia coming to the rescue.
Your Winners by Disqualification: Team 3D

Don’t be surprised if you don’t get any further TNA coverage from this writer. There was so much that was just plain wrong with this show that it would take me forever to get through it all, but here’s a couple of things that spring to mind.

• The amount of actual wrestling on the show was shocking. What’s more, out of the six matches that took place, only two were actual straight wrestling matches with the scheduled opponents and a clean finish and neither were that interesting.

• Almost everything was predictable, not least because TNA told us what was going to happen. Booker T ‘I’m going to interfere in this next match’. Great, thanks, Book. Now I know what’s going to happen, I don’t need to watch it.

• Wasn’t Samoa Joe supposed to be returning tonight?

• Why do Team 3D carry those IWGP titles around with them? TNA are promoting Ray & Devon as main eventers, and by having them carry around another company’s tag titles and hyping those belts as incredibly prestigious, they’re only devaluing their own tag titles and champions.

I'm slowly working my way through re-publishing all of my old TNA reviews from 2008 - 2009. For now, you can also read:

TNA Impact: 
For more TNA, WCW, and WWE/WWF reviews follow Retro Pro Wrestling on Twitter or hit 'like' on the brand new Facebook page.

Thanks for reading.

Monday, 18 September 2017

TV REVIEW: TNA Impact - January 22nd, 2009

Orlando, Florida

The journey between Genesis and Against All Odds got much more interesting on this week's edition of TNA Impact.

(NOTE: This review was originally written when the January 15th, 2009 episode of TNA Impact actually aired. I discovered a number of my old TNA posts in my archives recently and wanted to share them on RPW, so here we are.)

Here's what went down:

4-Way X-Division Championship Match: Alex Shelley (champion) vs. Chris Sabin vs. Sheik Abdul Bashir vs. Sonjay Dutt (with So Cal Val) 

You can always count on the X-Division to give you a good opening contest, and these four don't disappoint here.

As the match starts, Mike Tenay ponders whether Bashir and Dutt will work together to take out the Motor City Machine Guns and, to an extent, they do. But this is more than just a thinly-disguised tag match, with the 'Guns working up the crowd with some smooth chain-wrestling in the early going.

After a good match, Shelley retains his title with a nifty roll-up.
Your Winner and still TNA X-Division Champion: Alex Shelley

In the post-match, referee Shane Sewell is confronted by Sharmell. Apparently, Booker T wants to see Sewell and his naff beard in his locker room.

We then get a shot of three members of the Main Event Mafia making their way to the ring before cutting to the first of a hundred pointless promo videos.

Sewell Answers his Summons

Backstage in Booker T's extravagant dressing room, referee Shane Sewell is asked by the TNA Legends Champion to get behind the Main Event Mafia in tonight's Booker/Steiner vs. Young/Williams bout.

Shane remains non-committal; walking off without telling Booker whether he'll help or not.

A Death in the Family?

The Main Event Mafia come to the ring. Well, at least Kurt Angle, Scott Steiner and TNA World Heavyweight Champion, Sting do.

Once again, Angle gets on the microphone to talk about how good the 'Mafia are and how much they're like a family.

He then quashes Team 3D's hopes that we'll have Angle/Devon and Sting/Ray at Against All Odds. Though apparently, this upsets Sting.

 'The Icon' gives Kurt a telling off and tells him that nobody but Sting gets to decide who he does and doesn't wrestle.

With tension stinking up the air, TNA Management's Jim Cornette comes onto the stage and says that Angle is right; we won't have Angle/Devon and Sting/Ray at Against All Odds.

Oh no, instead we'll have a four-way match for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship. At the next pay per view, we'll see Brother Ray vs. Kurt Angle vs. Brother Devon vs. Sting for the belt.

Before leaving, Cornette wonders aloud whether Angle and Sting will be able to co-exist in that match. Hmm, I smell a break up for the Main Event Mafia.

Petey Gets Pumped

Backstage, Lauren is with 'Maple Leaf Muscle' Petey Williams.

Petey gives the usual spiel about how he's going to fight Scott Steiner. It's not a bad interview, but what really gets this writer is why, if Petey Williams now hates Scott Steiner, why on earth is he still dressing like him.

Live via Satellite.

Team 3D have been wrestling in Japan, where they've just captured New Japan Pro Wrestling's IWGP tag team titles. Mike Tenay congratulates the former Dudley Boys, before Don 'Oh My God Everything is So Exciting' West lets them know about their match at Against All Odds.

The Duds are fine with it. Either way, they get to put the hurt on the Mafia boys, and that's all that matters.

Sting Tells Off JB

We're back in the Main Event Mafia dressing room, where Sting tells Jeremy Borash that the 'Mafia are fine. It's a great piece of microphone work from Sting, which is only ruined by Scott Steiner giving a god awful promo against Petey Williams.

Knockouts Match: Sojourner Bolt vs. ODB

A pretty decent women's match that finally gets this ODB/Awesome Kong feud properly under way. ODB comes across as hugely popular, and her work here is a shining example as to why she deserves to be at the top of the Knockouts pecking order.

The end comes when TNA Women's Knockout Champion, Awesome Kong, followed by the Kongtourage run in and beat her up.
Your Winner by, presumably, disqualification: ODB

In the post-match, Roxxi and Taylor Wilde run down with weapons and save the day.

The Beautiful People's Revenge

Backstage, Lauren is with the fake 'Sarah Palin', who admits how much fun she had making fools of Angelina Love and Velvet Sky. That's when The Beautiful People absolutely beat the life out of her. And they probably would've done so quite literally had Cute Kip not beat up all the security guards who'd come to 'Palin's' aid, before making the girls stop.

Tag Team Elimination Match: The Main Event Mafia (Big Poppa Pump Scott Steiner and Booker T, with Sharmell) vs. Show Time Eric Young and Maple Leaf Muscle Petey Williams.

This match is so one-sided it's so hard to know what it was supposed to achieve. In the early going, Steiner and Booker cut Eric Young off from his partner and beat him up until he's eliminated. Then, despite a fiery effort from Maple Leaf Muscle, the 'Mafia boys do the same to him and get the win in what can only be described as a squash match.
Your Winners: Scott Steiner and Booker T

After the match, Steiner and Booker get in the face of referee Shane Sewell. As you might have guessed, this causes ol' Naff Beard to do his 'God God, I'm Freaking Out!' routine and try to attack the Mafia. Of course, this backfires and he gets his backside handed to him by the 'Mafia.

I'm Sorry, Abby

After coming to blows with his 'best friend' last week, The Blue Print Matt Morgan comes to the ring to apologise to his partner, The Monster Abyss.

Abby (apparently that's Morgan's pet name for The Monster) accepts the apology and gets all excited, throwing his 'girlfriend' Lauren around with joy. With the two now back on the same page, it's time for them to rumble with Beer Money Inc. in a First Blood Match.

First Blood Match: The Blue Print Matt Morgan & The Monster Abyss vs. Beer Money Inc. (James Storm & Robert Roode with Jacqueline).

Of course, you know that any time you get Roode and Storm in the ring together, they're going to whip a storm no matter who their opponents. This match is no different, and even though I'm not convinced that a First Blood match is really necessary on free tv, it's still a good bout all the same.

The end comes when Matt Morgan reveals his earlier apology to be a rouse, busting Abyss wide open with a nasty chair-shot to give Beer Money the win and the Morgan/Abyss team the final kiss of death.
Your Winners: Beer Money Inc.

Afterwards, Morgan continues to beat the life out of Abyss, security guards, and anyone else who happened to get involved. It's a sick looking assault that leaves blood absolutely pouring out of the monster's head.

Abyss Freaks Out

After the break, we see security try to help Abyss. Instead, The Monster freaks out and destroys everything in his path.

JB Talks to Kurt Angle

This is the usual pre-match fight talk, with Kurt Angle telling Jeremy Borash that he's going to end AJ Styles' career tonight.

Tables Match: Kurt Angle vs. AJ Styles

This revamped match comes in place of the scheduled Angle/Styles bout which was postponed last week and, as you've probably guessed, this is a sweet match. Despite the hardcore nature of a tables match, Styles and Angle get off to a pretty good wrestling match in the early going before building into a vicious brawl.

In the end, Styles misses a flying forearm and gets put through the table thanks to an Angle Slam.
Your Winner: Kurt Angle

In the aftermath, the Olympic Gold Medallist destroys the Phenomenal One's ankle before confronting the announce team, grabbing a microphone and says that tonight is the beginning of the end of TNA.

The Main Event Mafia are taking everybody out, one by one, starting from next week. It's a great segment to close the show with.

This week's TNA Impact was actually a really solid show. 
Even if the group do persist in cramming more pointless promo videos than actual wrestling into their show, when they do take it to the ring, they at least deliver the goods. 

As always, Angle and Styles stole the show, but there was good wrestling all-round tonight and things look as if they're going to get a lot more interesting in the war between the Main Event Mafia and TNA's unlucky Front Line, who so far have been booked to look like plebs.

I'm slowly working my way through re-publishing all of my old TNA reviews from 2008 - 2009. For now, you can also read:

TNA Impact: 
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Thanks for reading.

Retro Pro Wrestling

New reviews of classic WWF/WWE events recalling every moment from Wrestlemania 1 - 30. You'll also find reviews of WCW, ECW, TNA and the occasional indie event, along with a look at old school magazines, merchandise and more.