HeadLocker — Jay Shannon
The TNA (1/28) Impact Insight
Our resident philosopher, Jay Shannon, looks at this week’s rather chaotic edition of TNA Impact
The Hulk Hogan era continued. There was a new champion at the end of the night. All this and more on this week’s soap opera-ish edition of TNA Impact.
The show opened with the Mick Foley situation. Eric Bischoff came out, bloodied, and fired Foley. Also, Ric Flair named A.J. Styles as his successor. Hogan made a match between Styles and Kurt Angle. That led to the “Orlando Screwjob”. Kurt snapped, spat at Hogan and quit. There was question if Hogan was involved.
This Week’s Episode: Screwed?
Bischoff and Hogan made their way from the back. Hogan had been investigating the Angle/Styles match from last week. Hogan took the stick. Hogan said things were moving fast. Hogan called out Mick Foley. Mick slowly walked from the back. Taz and Mike Tenay were confused why Foley was there. Hogan said he wanted to work out the situation between Bischoff and Foley. Bischoff said he already took care of the situation by firing Foley. Hogan saw “good things” in Foley but Foley needed to be “reeled in”. Foley said that he didn’t touch Eric, last week, even though he wanted to. Eric yelled at Foley that no one believed Eric. Foley said Eric looked a little too good to have been trashed by him. (I said something like that, last week). Hogan warned them both “Work it out or walk out”.
Jeff Jarrett and Bubba, The Love Sponge walked in. Bubba was worried about the meeting with Hogan that he set up. Jeff told Bubba not to worry about it.
Other places, Christy Hemme chatted with Ken Anderson. Anderson talked about them being buddy, sarcastically. He told her to remember to refer to him as “Mr. Anderson”. Anderson said he had to book himself, so he sent out an open challenge to anyone who wanted to go. He wanted Abyss but he’d taken whoever showed up. He went into his “Mis-Ter An-Der-Son” yell. Annoying, as always.
The Eight Card Stud Tournament will happen at Against All Odds to determine the number one contender. The qualifying matches began, this week. Desmond Wolfe was the first to arrive. He has a new valet, Chelsea. He did the English Two-Finger Salute.
TRIVIA: That salute goes back to the Middle Ages. When Archers were captured, their middle and pointer fingers were often chopped off to make them useless as bowmen. The salute came about as a way to show defiance with a “See, I still have mine (fingers)”. College courses in British History finally pay dividends.
Wolfe’s opponent was Sean Morley. The former Val Venis came out in his towel and flirted with the girls. He tossed the towel to a couple of cute Asian girls in the second row.
Desmond Wolfe d Sean Morley
Eight Card Stud Tournament, Qualifying Match
Morley sent Wolfe to the corner but took a boot. Morley with a Full Nelson Bomb. Morley went to the top rope but Wolfe slammed into them. Morley ended up crotched on the top rope. Wolfe grabbed Morley and took him out with the Tower of London.
Jay’s Thoughts: This Tourney just might be interesting. Chelsea was definitely a good addition to Wolfe’s team. I have to see her stay at his side.
Jarrett knocked and then entered to chat with Hulk and Eric. Eric mocked Jeff about not bringing his lawyers. Jeff said Bubba helped Jeff see things with “new eyes”. Hogan wanted the “old” Jeff Jarrett. Jeff was willing to start at the very bottom of the ladder and wanted to work up. Hogan said that they needed immediate help. Eric mentioned Ken Anderson’s open challenge. Eric wanted Jeff to fight Ken, tonight. Jeff mentioned that he hadn’t wrestled in months but He accepted the challenge. Eric, sarcastically, wished him “Good Luck”.
Tenay sent it back to the ending of last week’s TNA World title. Earl Hebner was the ref who called for the bell, way too early. Kurt spat at Hogan and then tore up the Impact Zone set. Angle has talked with Hogan, all day.
Flair and Styles were looking at new clothes. Styles was allowed a 30-day vacation. Styles got all kinds of new suits. Styles had a blonde hanging all over him. The girl had friends for Flair.
The next Eight Card Stud Tournament Qualifying Match. Daniels came out. He had his shoulder bandaged. He faced off against Hernandez.
Hernandez d Daniels
Eight Card Stud Tournament, Qualifying Match
Daniels called for the Angel’s Wings but Hernandez turned it into a Back Body Drop. Daniels Kneed Hernandez and sent him to the outside. Hernandez with the Slingshot Shoulder. Hernandez with a Clothesline and Back Body Drop. Corner Splash by Hernandez. Hernandez used his shirt to Biel Daniels. Daniels with a Fore-arm shot. Hernandez rolled up the ropes but got punched. Daniels wanted a Superplex but Hernandez shoved him off. Hernandez missed the Splash. Daniels with a School Boy for a two. Daniels with Palm Strikes. Hernandez with a Pounce. Hernandez finished off Daniels with his new Dominator-like finisher.
Jay’s Thoughts: I wish TNA would figure out what they want to do with Hernandez. He has the potential to be a great singles competitor. Matching him with Matt Morgan seems like a backwards step. I realize that they have the World Tag belts but Hernandez could be challenging for the World title.
The Beautiful People warmed out for a Six-Knockout Tag Match.
Mike Tenay was in the ring to host a meeting between Team 3D and the Nasty Boys. The Nasties were brought out first. They got a lot of heat from the crowd. Both of them talked trash all the way to the ring. Tenay then brought out Team 3D. These two teams will meet at Against All Odds. Brother Ray and Brother Devon walked out with bad intentions on their minds. Security jumped between them. Ray said the Nasties couldn’t face them, straight up. Ray said, last week, they took out the Nasties with steel chairs. Ray wanted to know where the Nasties have been for the last 10 years. Sags started talking about how nasty they are and would always be. Devon said that while the Nasties have been sitting on “you fat *sses” for the last decade, they had been winning titles in ECW, WCW, Japan and TNA (He left out the WWE). Devon said no team, ever, has come close to matching Team 3D’s success. Knobbs started throwing out all kinds of names of teams that the Nasties have beaten. Knobbs said Team 3D would just be the next team to fall. Ray said the fans wanted to see the two teams beat the crap out of each other. Ray stared the fans in a “Team 3D” chant.
Hemme talked with the Beautiful People about facing Hamada, Awesome Kong and Tara. Hemme then asked about Angelina Love. They all trash-talked Love. They said that they had So moved past Love.
Jeff Jarret was getting ready for his battle.
Eric Bischoff talked with Bobby Lashley. Eric and Hulk have talked about Bobby. Eric “fired” Lashley. A herd of Security guys took out Lashley. Eric laughed about “taking out the trash”.
Velvet Sky, Madison Rayne and Lacey Von Erich made their uber-sexy entrance. Kong and Hamada then arrived to do battle. I really like this team. Tara then joined the party.
The Beautiful People d Tara, Hamada and Kong
Six-Knockout Tag Match
Sky then tagged in an distracted the ref for Lacey and Rayne could double team Tara. The women in the ring hit Double Face Plants. Kong and Rayne tagged in. Lacey tried to help Rayne but they both ended on the mat. Hamada took the tag and hit Thrust Kicks on Rayne and Lacey. Tara with a Moonsault on Lacey but Rayne broke out the “Ugly Stick” and knocked out Hamada. Kong chased Sky out of the arena as Rayne made the pin. Lacey and Madison wanted to attack Tara but Angelina Love came in and cleared house.
Jay’s Thoughts: This match was so much fun for the eyes but it really didn’t mean anything. In the real world, The Barbie Babes wouldn’t have a snowball’s chance against Kong and Hamada.
In Hogan’s office, Hogan read Earl Hebner the riot act. Earl claimed Kurt tapped out. Hogan wasn’t buying it. Hogan demanded the truth. Earl said “Vince, Shawn and Bret didn’t screw Bret….he did”. Earl said he needed the money, so he took Flair’s money to do it. Hogan suspended Earl for his behavior. Whatever.
Kurt walked backstage. He had something to say…next.
Flair and Styles relaxed in the locker room. Rachel, A.J.’s squeeze, brought in a bevy of babes for Flair to choose from. They were ready to start partying. Bubba ran into Mick Foley, elsewhere. Bubba felt Foley was in trouble. Foley said he had no bills to speak of so, no matter what, it was all good.
Kurt came to the ring, slowly. The fans cheered wildly for him. Hogan gave Kurt an Eight Card Stud Qualifying Match. Kurt talked about how great the match was against A.J. at Genesis. Kurt called the match “the greatest match of my life”. Kurt said he was “P*ssed Off” by Styles’ current behavior. Kurt said A.J. corrupted their great match by what he’s done recently. Kurt said Styles disappointed everyone, including the fans. The crowd was totally into Kurt. Kurt called Styles a “Punk-*ss B*tch”. Kurt asked Styles if he thought Flair really cared about him. Kurt said Flair wanted to strip Styles of his innocence. Kurt said he would win the Eight Card Stud Tournament and come after Styles.
Hogan came out alone to confront Kurt. Hogan said Kurt accused him of something he didn’t do (the screwjob). Hogan told Kurt he would get to the bottom of things, and he did. Hogan said spitting in his face was unacceptable. Hogan warned Kurt that if it ever happened again, he would not have a job. Kurt apologized for spitting in Hogan’s face. Kurt said everything that happens in TNA is on Hogan’s shoulders. The two shook hands. Hogan thanked Kurt and then left the ring. “The Band” then hit the ring and attacked Kurt. 6-Pac and Scott Hall took turns trashing the Olympian as TNA went to break.
Security forced 6-Pac and Hall to leave the Impact Zone. Brian Kendrick and the Motor City Machine Guns came out for a Six-Man tag match. They faced off against Generation Me (The Young Bucks) and Amazing Red/
Chris Sabin, Alex Shelley and Brian Kendrick d Jeremy, Max and Amazing Red
Six-Man tag match
Jeremy made the tag but the Guns were ready for him. They hit the Bridging Back Neck Vise into the Facial Dropkick. The crowd broke loose with a “Motor City” sing-song chant. Red made the tag and rolled under a Clothesline. Red with a Hurancanrana and a Jumping Spin Kick. Red tried to set for a Canadian Destroyer, I think, but he never got to go there. Shelley came in and Superkicked Red. The Guns executed a P-I-M Dropkick on Gen-Me’s Max. The Guns nailed their Combo Face Plant on Red. Brian made the blind tag on the pass-by. Brian with a Running Kick to the face and took the pin. Sabin and Shelley were confused about what the heck was going on.
Jay’s Thoughts: These six are fantastic. I hope Hogan and Bischoff use two brain cells and push the X-Division, not just submerge it into all their running buddies.
The screeching violins of Brian Kendrick’s music was replaced by the British Invasion theme. The Brits came out in unison. The Brits beat down on Red.Rob Terry hit a Chokeslam. Rob wanted to cash in the briefcase but Brutus Magnus demanded that the case by given to Doug Williams. The Brits talked it out while TNA took a break.
Doug Williams d Amazing Red
X-Division Title Match
Red with a Tornado DDT on Doug. Doug barely kicked out. Doug rammed Red into the corner and hit the Chaos Theory to take the win…and the title!
Jay’s Thoughts: Not surprised by the change but it still stinks like week-old fish. Red deserves much better than this.
Side Note: During the recent European tour, Rob Terry defeated Eric Young to take the Global Championship.
Backstage, Jeff Jarrett walked towards his confrontation with Ken “Mr.” Anderson.
Tenay sent it to the meeting between Eric and Foley. Foley wanted to know how Eric ended up bloody, last week. Eric said that Hogan told them to work it out. Foley started to talk about how his son took a poop at Chuck E Cheese. Foley said he would rather be the guy who cleaned up kid’s poop than work for Eric. Eric warned Foley that both Abyss’ and Jeremy Borash’s careers were based on Foley staying in TNA. Eric then strolled down to the Flair/Styles party. Eric looked all serious. Flair and Styles talked about the 30-day break. Eric congratulated Flair for being able to get into TNA before Eric and Hogan took over. Eric told Styles that the 30-day vacation was canceled. Styles would fight at Against All Odds. Eric also warned Styles and Flair that “Everybody has to be ready…24/7”. Hmm…
Jarrett and Anderson got ready for the Main Event.
After a break, Mr. Anderson came out for his battle. he taunted the crowd on the way to the four-sided ring (I want the six sides back, darn it). Anderson called for the special mic. The crowd was major-league hostile to the cocky youngster. He did his Michael Buffer-esque intro thing. Some of the crowd chanted along with him. Jeff Jarrett then came out to a huge pop from the Impacters. Jeff came out to no music.
“Mr.” (Ken) Anderson d Jeff Jarrett
Anderson kicked at Jeff, who was on the apron. Anderson ran Jeff into the ring post, shoulder-first. Anderson went tot he outside and taunted Jeff. Anderson pounded on Jeff’s skull. Anderson slammed Jeff’s hand into the steel steps. Anderson rolled Jeff back into the ring. Anderson with a Hammerlock Uranage Slam. Anderson with an Extended Arm Wringer. Jeff Irish Whipped Anderson to the corner but took the boot. Anderson with a Flying Arm Bar for a two count. Anderson sent Jeff to the ropes. Jeff ducked a pair of Clothesline and got free of Anderson’s Sleeper hold attempt. Anderson slapped on a Top Wrist Lock to take Jeff to his knees. Jeff pounded free but ran into a Shoulder Block by Anderson. Anderson dragged Jeff into position and went to the top rope. He missed the Swanton off the top. Jeff “Hulked Up” and punched away at Anderson. Anderson countered the Mic Check and set for The Stroke. Anderson spun around and brought up his leg for a Low Blow. Anderson with a Small Package to take the cheap win.
Jay’s Thoughts: Anderson was a great addition to the company. Jeff’s climb back to greatness is going to make for some good TV. If the writers, especially Bischoff, can keep their fingers off the trigger, the rise could lead to a perfect storyline of Jeff taking the World title at Bound For Glory. Knowing past history, he’ll get tossed in the mix at Slammiversary, which is way too soon.
In the back, Eric cackled about how great this was. Anderson announced himself as the winner. Jeff rolled out of the ring. Anderson went out to drop a Double Sledge on Jeff. Anderson pounded away at Jeff and rolled him back into the ring. Anderson told Jeff to “Get your *ss Up”. Anderson made fun of Jeff and then nailed the Mic Check. Anderson then called for the mic, again, to complete his mic work. Eric said “Jeff, it’s going to be a long, hard climb to the top of “My” mountain.” Fade out.
Final Grade: B+
Final Thoughts: I’m still not thrilled with the Hogan Regime. I want the six-sided ring back and I really want to have Hogan clear out a lot of his old hanger-onners. TNA is going through major growing pains, right now. It should settle down in a few months, I hope. Maybe Hogan and Bischoff have learned from their mistakes in WCW and will not kill this company, as well.