WWE tag team legends The Hart Foundation
HeadLocker — Jay Shannon
My Victory Road ’09 Predictions
Our resident philosopher breaks out his crystal ball, tea leaves and lucky coin to try and predict the outcomes and future impacts of Sunday’s Victory Road Pay-per-view.
Victory Road is the lead-in PPV to Bound For Glory. History always plays a big part in TNA’s future. Knowing that Bound For Glory will likely be TNA’s equivalent of Summerslam, it seems appropriate that this one’s a version of Night of Champions. Let’s get to the matches and see what kind of fun and adventure will roll out in Orlando.
Samoa Joe’s adviser revealed
Backstory: After getting the stuffing kicked out of him by the Main Event Mafia, Joe started talking with a mystery person that remained inside a car. There were several options that could have been Joe’s adviser. The person will be revealed on Sunday.
Prediction: Unless TNA is getting ready to pull a nasty little swerve, it’s obvious that Joe’s adviser is Taz. On Impact, they ran a entrance theme with the letters F.T.W. in it. Taz created and held the F.T.W (short for F*** The World) title for years. He may not be called by the Taz name, thanks to Vince McMahon owning most of the ECW identities. There’s always the possibility that Raven or Shane Douglas could be the adviser, but I’d bet my pitbull, Molly, that the Red Hook native is the puppet master in this whole scenario.
“Blueprint” Matt Morgan v (Christopher) Daniels
Backstory Morgan has decided that he should be a member of the Main Event Mafia, despite the fact that he’s never held a singles title anywhere (at least none that I could find). Morgan has decided to go on a mission to eliminate the Mafia’s foes. Daniels is the next one in his sights.
Predictions: From what I’ve read, Daniels is fighting a nasty knee injury. That’s going to be the deciding factor in this one. Morgan is getting the biggest push in his entire career and losing to Daniels is simply not an option. Daniels will keep Morgan spinning like a top for a few minutes but, in the end, Morgan’s power will overwhelm the former Fallen Angel. Morgan will hit the Hell-a-vator to take this one, no doubt about it.
Predicted Winner: Matt Morgan
Predicted Grade: B
Sharmell v Jenna Morasca
Backstory: Sharmell was the only female member of the Main Event Mafia. Kevin Nash found Jenna and decided to woo her, so that she’d invest the money she won on Survivor in the Mafia. Sharmell took exception to the snooty little reality star. Over the weeks, the cattiness flew back and forth. Sharmell and Jenna picked trainers to get ready for the battle. Sharmell took SoJourner Bolt, while Jenna called upon Awesome Kong.
Prediction: This is my W-G-A-C match of the night (Who Gives a Crap?). Neither of the women are true Knockouts. While both women are passingly attractive, I can’t even hope for a wardrobe malfunction in this one. This feud is boring and I personally could care less who wins. Normally, I’d just break out my lucky coin and flip for it. I won’t waste my coin on something this stupid. Let’s see, I may have a penny around here (which is all this mess will be worth).
Predicted Winner: Jenna (since she has Kong in her corner)
Predicted Grade: F-
Abyss v “Dr.” Stevie (Richards)
Backstory: Stevie Richards was basically brought in to replace “Father” James Mitchell in the torturing of Abyss’ soul. Stevie has drugged, abused and shocked Abyss over the past few months. The final straw came when Stevie kidnapped Abyss’ love interest, Lauren. Abyss has vowed to eliminate Dr. Stevie, for good.
Prediction: I really hope and pray that this is the end of this horrid feud. Unfortunately, I don’t think it’s going to happen. I’m expecting a good, old-fashioned plot twist in this one. Lauren is going to turn on Abyss, thanks to some post-hypnotic suggestion that Dr. Stevie placed in her mind during her time in Stevie’s custody. I also expect the taser to come into play for this one. Expect the rest of the Extreme Team (Raven, Shane Douglas, Taz, etc…) to also make an appearance. I’m having to smack my fingers not to book this one with my heart. If I did that, Abyss would destroy Stevie and move on to being a contender for a title. Again, that’s just not going to happen.
Predicted Winner: Dr. Stevie (and most of the rest of the Extreme Team)
Predicted Grade: C
Tara v Angelina Love
TNA Knockout Championship
Backstory: Love tied Kong’s dreadlocks to the cage at Lockdown to win the Knockouts title. Tara, the former Victoria, came to TNA and tricked Love into a title match by threatening to place her tarantula, Poison, on Velvet Sky’s body. Tara then hit the Widow’s Peak to take the strap. This is the mandatory rematch.
Prediction: This is such a non-match that I forgot it on my first draft of predictions. Tara is 1000 times the performer that Love will ever be. The Beautiful People will likely get involved, only to be scared off by Poison, the spider. Tara will nail the Widow’s Peak to retain.
Predicted Winner: Tara
Predicted Grade: B-
Team 3D v The British Invasion
IWGP Tag Team title match
Backstory: Brothers Ray and Devon created the Team 3D invitational Tag Tournament, a few weeks back. The Brits came in and went to the finals. (They lost to Beer Money). The Brits distracted Ray and Devon, which allowed Robert Roode and James Storm to take the TNA World tag belts. Team 3D was ticked that the Brits got involved. The former Dudley Boyz wanted to teach the Brits a lesson about respect and dignity. Brutus Magnus, Doug Williams and Rob Terry went to Mick Foley and had him tweak the battle by putting the IWGP tag belts on the line.
Prediction:The British Invasion aren’t quite ready to take gold. Ray and Devon are going to face a 3-on-2 disadvantage, going in. There’s always the possibility that Team 3D might bring in a friend. (I’m thinking Rhino). This match is going to serve to teach the Brits a lesson in respect. Ray and Devon are going to go “old school Extreme” on whichever two Invasion members show up. The Brits will try to take out Ray with the Morningstar (European Uppercut from the Clutch position). Devon will derail that plan. Brutus will then fall victim to the 3D.
Predicted Winners: Brother Ray and Brother Devon, Team 3D
Predicted Grade: B+
A.J. Styles v Kevin Nash
Legends title match
Backstory: Booker T created the Legends title, just shy of a year ago. A.J. Styles surprised Booker by taking the crimson strap from the odd grappler. Styles really hasn’t defended the belt since getting it. The Mafia wants the belt back. Since Booker T is working with Scott Steiner to take the tag belts, Kevin Nash is the only available Mafia member to go after the Legends belt.
Prediction: TNA is likely going to unite Styles and Daniels to make a run at the tag belts. That’s going to require two things: Steiner and Booker will need to take the tag belts (more on that later) and Styles needs to drop the Legends belt. Nash has been a solid competitor for years but hasn’t really been a serious title contender since his nWo days. It’s time for Big Sexy to wear gold. Nash won’t take it clean. I expect Booker and Steiner to get involved, which will help set up a tag match at Bound For Glory between the Mafia and Styles/Daniels.
Predicted Winner: Kevin Nash
Predicted Grade: B
Robert Roode & James Storm (Beer Money) v Booker T & Scott Steiner
TNA World Tag Team title match
Backstory: Roode and Storm won the Team 3D Invitational Tag Tourney. Part of that win brought them a title shot against Team 3D. With a little unwanted help from the British Invasion, Roode and Storm took the tag belts. The Main Event Mafia decided that they wanted to take all the belts in TNA. They aligned two tag specialists Booker T (Harlem Heat) and Scott Steiner (Steiner Brothers) to go after the tag belts. While neither Mafia member can conduct an interview worth a darn, they have gelled well in the ring.
Prediction: As a set-up for Bound For Glory, the Main Event Mafia really does need to take the various belts. Since TNA has pushed just what a mega-team that Steiner and Booker make, I see little doubt that the Mafia will claim the tag titles. They will likely take out Roode or Storm with the same Ax Kick/Bear Hug combo that they used on Thursday to eliminate Robert Roode.
Predicted Winners: Scott Steiner and Booker T
Predicted Grade: B
Samoa Joe v Sting
Backstory: Sting defeated Kurt Angle to become the “Godfather” of the Main Event Mafia. Kurt did an end-run on The Icon and enlisted Samoa Joe as a new member of the elite clique. Sting was ticked off that Kurt would dare to bring in one of the people that served as the reason for the Mafia, in the first place. Sting was dumped from the Mafia and mugged by the various members of the Mafia.
Prediction: Since I’m expecting Sting v Kurt Angle at Bound For Glory, this match is going to serve as the springboard. Taz will arrive, to no one’s surprise, to aid Joe. If Joe were to complete dominate this match, the momentum of Kurt v Sting would be lost. I think Sting is going to upset the Samoan Submission Machine and spoil the clean sweep for the Main Event Mafia. There is an outside chance that Sting will win by DQ, but I think The Icon is going to pull a few old tricks out of his hat and take out the Samoan with the Scorpion Death Drop, possibly off the ropes.
Predicted Winner: Sting
Predicted Grade: A
Kurt Angle v Mick Foley
TNA World Title match
Backstory: Foley took the belt from Sting. He went on a bizarre rant about only defending the belt once a year. During the King of the Mountain match at Slammiversary, Kurt Angle was handed the title to hang on the hook by Samoa Joe, the newest Mafia member. The Mafia then went on a campaign of humiliation of the former champ. Foley then invoked his rematch clause. He did ask Kurt to face him, one-on-one.
Prediction: If Bound For Glory wasn’t the next big PPV with TNA, I might be tempted to go with Foley upsetting Kurt for the belt. As it is, Kurt will slide past this match and straight into a brutal World title match against Sting at Bound For Glory. I expect Bobby Lashley, Jeff Jarrett, Sting, Eric Young and most of the Mafia to get involved in this one. Foley will put up a decent fight but he’s just not in the same league with Kurt. Foley’s my age (44) and looks in just about as good as shape as my chunky self. Kurt is in, perhaps, the best shape of his life. Foley will bring out the Hardcore style but Kurt will simply out-wrestle him. After several distractions, Kurt will hit the AngleSlam and slap on the Grapevine variation of the AngleLock. Foley will simply pass out to the pain.
Predicted Winner: Kurt Angle
Predicted Grade: B
Final Grade: B-
Final Thoughts: Honestly, this PPV is going to be a major disappointment to most TNA fans. The bad guys are going to dominate this show. TNA jumped the gun in revealing that Taz was about to show up. It reminds me of watching Jaws in the theater, way back in the 70s. My little sister, Lucy, was with me. There was a guy sitting in the row ahead of me. He kept turning around and warning me about all the surprises that were about to happen. TNA pretty much did the same thing by showing their hand with most of the major surprises before this “movie” had the chance to start rolling.
— Jay Shannon