HeadLocker — Jay Shannon
My Lockdown Predictions
Our resident philosopher, Jay Shannon, looks at this Sunday’s PPV from TNA.
Well, I totally blew it with predicting Wrestlemania. Other than Shawn v Taker, I missed every single match (including the Colons v Miz/Morrison dark match). I’m going to try and redeem myself with this one. TNA is offering it’s annual all-steel cage PPV. It’s being held in the Home of Hardcore, Philly. Let’s take a look at the carnage.
Eric Young v Danny Bonaduce
Special Pre-Show match
Backstory: Danny Bonaduce got a big head after his run on the Hulk Hogan debacle of Celebrity Championship Wrestling. He wanted to battle someone in TNA. He got Eric Young. Young went on Danny’s radio show and slapped the taste out of the celebreality star’s mouth. Danny has vowed to kick the stuffing out of Eric.
Predictions: This is my “Oh Puh-leeze” match of the night. Eric should, in reality, tear the child star from Hell apart. Sadly, the Partridge Punk is going to be allowed to take the win in this snoozer. Eric will have to work doubly hard to make Danny look decent. Danny is not a wrestler, no matter how much he crows about the CCW mess. It irritates me that this washed-up bum gets to wreck the career of Eric Young. Eric must have really ticked off someone at TNA to get stuck with the crap match. Eric better get a run with the X-Belt or the World Tag belts as a reward for this garbage.
Predicted Winner: Danny Bonaduce (yawn)
Predicted Grade: F-
The Latin American Xchange v No Limit v The Motor City Machine Guns
New Japan Tag Team Title Match
The Backstory: The Guns took the straps off Naito and Yujiro, over in Japan. TNA is working a cross-promotional angle with some of the Japanese stars coming to the US (with more to come). No Limit want their titles back. Sabin and Shelley want to keep them. For some odd reason, LAX (Homicide and Hernandez) were tossed into the mix. I guess TNA didn’t think No Limit v Guns would have enough pull.
Predictions: This is basically a “who cares?” match. The IWGP Jr. Tag belts, while meaningful in Japan, don’t really stand for squat in the States. Since Homicide is being prepped for a run at the X-Division title, I kind of doubt that LAX would get the belts. If No Limit regain the belts, the IWGP Jr. Titles will be about as memorable as the old WCW Cruiserweight Tag Team straps. If TNA really wants to push the tag belts, the Guns need to keep them.
Predicted Winners: Chris Sabin and Alex Shelley
Predicted Grade: A+
ODB v Madison Rayne v Daffney v Sojo Bolt
Queen of the Cage Match
Backstory: This is an annual tradition with TNA. The winner of this cage match gets the title of Queen. Shouldn’t Sharmell be in this one? There is almost no history between the women in this match. ODB and Daffney did have a brief encounter on Impact, but it was only the set-up for a comedy skit between Abyss and Cody “Cooter” Deaner.
Predictions: This match is actually really hard to call. Bolt has faded from the scene since creating Chocolate Thunder with Rhaka Khan. ODB has really become a non-threat to anything or anyone. Rayne is a minor player in the whole Beautiful People/Mi Pi Sexy faction. Daffney is just getting her feet wet in the company. I have to go with who needs a good push. I’d love to see ODB walking around with the sash barely covering her ample bosom but that’s just not going to happen. There’s no need to put the “crown” on Bolt. It comes down to Daffney and Rayne. With her current BP character, it makes the most sense to turn Rayne into Royalty. While I hate the Plastic Diva-wannabes in MPS, I have to go with Rayne to take the win.
Predicted Winner: Madison Rayne
Predicted Grade: C
Jay Lethal v Sheik Abdul Bashir v Consequences Creed v Kiyoshi v Suicide
X-Division Xscape Match for the X-Division Title
Backstory:Bashir wants Suicide’s title to prove the superiority of the non-Americans. Kiyoshi’s basically in there to help Bashir. Lethal’s been a former X-Division title holder and would love to wear the gold again. Creed has yet to wear the X-gold. The goal of this bout is to escape…make the Xscape…the cage.
Predictions: Since Suicide has a way of disappearing and showing up somewhere else, I think he’s going to pull his magic act in this one. Kiyoshi and Creed are, sadly, just fillers for this match. Lethal and Bashir are the only two real threats to Suicide’s title. Since the “real” Suicide (KAZ) is back from his injury, this bout should be exciting and fast\paced. Bashir may appear to have escaped the cage but the lights will go out, just before he hits the floor. When they come back up, Suicide will be standing on the floor. Bashir will be livid at the trick. This might be a bit of a Bella trick (multiple Suicides).
Predicted Winner: Suicide
Predicted Grade: A+
Taylor Wilde v Angelina Love v Awesome Kong
TNA Knockouts Championship Match
Backstory: Wilde pulled the upset of the century when she rolled up Kong to win the Knockouts title. Kong eventually regained the belt, after several embarrassing losses to Wilde. Angelina Love has lusted after the Ivory Belt since it was created. Love has been bogged down as the Plastic Princess character and not taken seriously as a threat. Love has been taunting Kong for several weeks. Love actually dared to cut off several of Kong’s bleached dreadlocks.
Predictions: Ok, time to go for my “You gotta be kidding!” moment of the night. Kong should totally destroy both women in this match. I think it’s time for a shocker. Wilde has been teaming with Kong for the last few weeks. I think either Wilde or Saeed is going to cost Kong the match. I’m putting my money on Wilde to hand the title to Love, for membership in Mi Pi Sexy. Wilde is going nowhere as a face. She needs a great heel turn. This could be the vehicle to do just that.
Predicted Winner: Angelina Love
Predicted Grade: B-
Team 3D v Beer Money, Inc
TNA World and IWGP World Tag Team Title match
Philly Street Fight for World Tag Team Domination
Backstory: Team 3D went to Japan and took the IWGP World Tag Titles. Beer Money took the TNA World Tag straps. Beer Money has sent Petey Williams and Lance Holt off to oblivion in their Off The Wagon Challenge. Robert Roode and James Storm wants to establish themselves as the most dominant tag team of all time. Team 3D holds the position, now. Team 3D has surpassed teams like D-X, the Midnight Express, the Rock and Roll Express, Blanchard/Anderson and even the Road Warriors as far as championship success. After Roode and Storm attacked Balls Mahoney and Brother Runt, Ray demanded the special Philly Street Fight stipulation. The fans will be allowed to attack Roode and Storm.
Predictions: This is will be the Match of the Night. I really had a difficult time deciding on which direction to go with this one. There are a million variables in this whole thing. If this match was anywhere other than Philly, I’d go with Beer Money. I would suggest that this was a Passing the Torch match. It may still be. Roode and Storm are really going to shine in this match. I just don’t think that TNA will allow Team 3D to be upstaged by Roode and Storm. I’ve gone back and forth on this one. I’ve written out several different ending possibilities. I’ve seen Team 3D take the win in the hometown. I’ve seen Beer Money shock the world with their win. Which would be better for business? Beer Money has dominated most of the teams that they’ve faced. There’s not much further that they can go, right now. If Team 3D wins, they have the Mafia, the Guns and several other teams to face. That was the final deciding point for me. So…
Predicted Winners: Team 3D
Predicted Grade: A+
Matt Morgan v Abyss
Chamber of Blood Match
Backstory: Morgan and Abyss were a team on the rise. Morgan’s disappointment at not getting the tag belts caused him to turn on Abyss. Morgan has bloodied the Monster on several occasions. Abyss is still hesitant to unleash his evil side, thanks to Dr. Stevie (Richards). Abyss has to try an harness his inner monster and direct all the negative energy towards the Blueprint.
Predictions: It’s time for Dr. Stevie to make his first appearance, full face. He will come out during this match to try and prevent Abyss from becoming the animalistic creature that he used to be. The distraction will allow Morgan to hit the Carbon Footprint, which will bust Abyss open. The stipulation of the match is that the loser has to bleed before he can be pinned. Both men will like ooze crimson in this one. Morgan will hit the Hell-a-vator into tacks and/or glass to take the win. In the aftermath, it will be revealed that Morgan set up Dr. Stevie to destroy Abyss. I see a future Stevie v Abyss battle.
Predicted Winner: Matt Morgan
Predicted Grade: C
Team Angle (Kurt Angle, Booker T, Scott Steiner & Kevin Nash) vs. Team Jarrett (Jeff Jarrett, A.J. Styles, Samoa Joe & Christopher Daniels)
Lethal Lockdown Match
Backstory: This is yet another Frontline v Main Event Mafia match. The wrinkle in this whole match is Jeff Jarrett. Jeff has been talking with Scott Steiner over the last few weeks. They have a 20-year friendship. Scott has been trying to sway Jeff away from the Frontliners. Scott has basically shoved the whole Respect thing that twisted Sting. Through a series of matches, Team Angle will have the man-up advantage in this one. The match is an evolved version of the old War Games match.
Predictions: Since this is a minor PPV for TNA, I not expecting any turns. Jeff might join the Mafia at Slammiversary but not here. Kevin is weak link in this match. He’s going to be the one who loses the battle. Joe is going to destroy everyone in sight. He will finally get his revenge on his former mentor, Nash, by hitting an amazing Muscle Buster on a steel chair to take the final win. Jarrett will end up in an even-more “tweener” position than he is now. Jarrett will cause some near falls and be questioned by Styles, Joe and Daniels. There is going to be a situation between Joe and Jeff, after the match.
Predicted Winners: Team Jarrett
Predicted Grade: B+
Mick “Cactus Jack” Foley vs. Sting
TNA World Title Match
Backstory: Mick Foley, for some unknown reason, has decided to go after Sting. It has something to do with their old rivalry back in WCW. The reason I’m vague with this is that TNA is being that way. Foley talks about the old days, but he tends to rant to a point of babbling. Foley has attacked Sting and made his life miserable with all kinds of taunting and odd matches. Foley is trying to revive his old Cactus Jack character.
Predictions: Foley and I are the same age (43). He’s definitely on the downslide of his career. He’s bordering on obese, these days. His ring skills are rustier than nails left out in the rain. His quick wit has slowed to a crawl. Sting is also nearing the end of his career, but he’s so much above Foley. Foley will pull out all kinds of shenanigans to try and take the title. I just can’t imagine Foley winning the title. Johnny Devine or Shark Boy would have a better shot at winning the belt than Foley would. I like Foley, don’t get me wrong. I have 3 of his books on my bookshelf. We lived 3 blocks from each other (though we never met) when he worked for World Class, early on. I was at the Silver Nugget Casino the night he and Sabu nearly got lynched for going over the card tables, during a game. Heck, I usually chose Mick when I play the various Smackdown v Raw games on my Playstation 2. Still, I just can’t give this one to Mick. He’s going to lose, period.
Predicted Winner: Sting
Predicted Grade: B-
Final Grade: B
Final Thoughts: This is going to be a Hot/Cold PPV. There are going to be some fantastic matches. There are also going to be some horrible matches (see Bonaduce/Eric). All in all, TNA is going to play it pretty safe. They have to know that Wrestlemania took most people’s PPV money for the month. I have to admit that I’ll be surfing around to get the reviews but I’m not investing in this one. I might consider renting it or buying it, once it hits DVD.
— Jay Shannon