The Katz Files – Arnie Katz
My Bound for Glory Recap & Analysis!
The Kingfish Arnie Katz reports all the happenings at TNA’s biggest show of the year and delves into the meaning of it all.
We don’t yet know whether the Wrestle Nation agrees that Bound for Glory was TNA’s biggest event of the year . The show, live from Irvine, CA, Sunday, October 18, made strong statement in favor of that distinction. It was an exciting three hours of entertainment – plus a very good half-hour pre-show — after a run of uninspiring pay per views from both of the major promotions.
Bound for Glory is sure to have some detractors, because it was far from perfect. The most obvious flaw was that they messed up the timing and had to bring home the main event very abruptly. Sting-Styles still gets a high grade, but it had to disappoint those who expected a “match of the year” candidate.
Let’s look at Bound for Glory, match by match, to see what happened and why.
Jeremy Borash, seconded by Joey Petone, hosted a live pre-show that included an interesting tag team match.
Motor City Machine Guns vs. Lethal Consequences
The Story: TNA wants fans to log onto its website to see the pre-show, so it has booked the two best tag teams not in the four-way on the actual PPV.
My Prediction: The Machine Guns are likely to win, but the real interest may be on a split between the members of Lethal Consequences. Jay Lethal appears to be headed back into singles competition in the X Division – and he may turn heel in the process.
Predicted Grade: B+
Actual Match: JB announced that Thee Pope had gone home due to a family emergency. The winning team in this match would earn spots in the Ultimate X match on the pay per view.
Lethal Consequences isolated Shelley and took turn working on him. They tried several covers, but none led to a pin.
Chris Sabin got a hot tag and laid waste to Lethal Consequences. As a result of some miscommunication between the members of Lethal Consequences, Creed took a Sabin Elbow Drop and would’ve been pinned if Lethal hadn’t made the save.
Sabin rocked Consequences Creed with a Springboard Tornado DDT. A double-team move and a cover by Shelley completed the Guns’ triumph.
Actual Grade: A-
The Kingfish comments: The added stipulation made the match more compelling, but it’s a pity that TNA wimped out on splitting Lethal Consequences. They could’ve shown part of the match on iMPACT, which might’ve built fan interest in the next pre-show.
Brother Ray, flaked by Devon, gave Lauren a high-voltage rundown of the four-way tag team match for the IWGP and TNA tag team titles.
The Kingfish comments: Ray really had it turned up all the way. Is he trying to get Don West’s old job as head cheerleader?
Bound for Glory began with a montage of clips of the participants. Zack Wild, of Black Label Society, performed an instrumental version of “The Star-Spangled Banner”
After that, BfG moved quickly to the opening match, Ultimate X.
Amazing Red d. Suicide & Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley & Daniels & Homicide
The Story: This was originally to pick a number-one contender, but Don West added Amazing Red to turn it into a championship contest.
My Prediction:There’s a lot of heat among the competitors in this match. Suicide figures to be out for revenge against Homicide, but he is also embroiled in a feud against Dinero. Daniels wants the title, but he now has a grudge against Homicide after the sneak attack on the 10/15 iMPACT. Since there’s no particular reason for Amazing Red to lose, my crystal ball says he’s going to win it. Expect to see Homicide square off with Daniels and Suicide take the battle to The Pope.
Predicted Grade: B+
Actual Match: High spots abounded in this faced-paced, chaotic scramble for the belt. In the most eye-catching sequences, The Amazing Red threw Daniels out of the ring with a Springboards Tilt-a-Whirl DDT!
Homicide tried to sneak a win, but Suicide jumped up tote cable and brought him back to the canvas When Homicide tried again, Daniels yanked him down by his legs and stunned him with a Death Valley Driver. Ted took out Daniels before the Fallen Angel could capitalize on the move. Just when it looked like the champ had it won, though, Suicide kicked him off the cable!
After a combination of moves temporarily disabled Sabin, Daniels and Suicide fund themselves battling on the wobbly superstructure above the cable. Daniels dropped down onto the cable, but Suicide engaged him and both men tumbled to the mat. That left Amazing Red alone on the cable and he made the most of it. The man who certainly lived up to his name in this one grabbed the belt to retain his title.
Actual Grade: A
The Kingfish comments: Rey Mysterio could do worse than watch Amazing Red for some ideas about freshening his act.
The Beautiful People got some fun out of pretending that Lauren was actually Jeremy Borash. Madison Rayne recapped the group’s recent, spotty history.
Taylor Wilde and Sarita spoke to Jeremy Borash about the match. Sarita said that nothing is more beautiful than gold, the gold of their championship belts.
Taylor Wilde & Sarita d. The Beautiful People
Knockout Tag Team Championship
The Story: The Beautiful People were odds-on to win the tag tournament. They didn’t and now, despite the absence of Angelina Love, hope to take the title.
My Prediction: The Beautiful People will capture the title, undoubtedly with some extra-legal activity. Hat may not be the right decision, but I believe it’s what TNA will do to try to insure that fans still accord status to The Beautiful People.
Predicted Grade: B
Actual Match: The Beautiful People turned on the charm so that referee Jaime Tucker gave Lacy Von Erich a chair in the ringside area instead of making her return to the back. Lacy tried the same tactics on Earle Hebner, but the senior official still made her leave.
Sarita Dropkicked Madison Rayne into a Taylor Wilde Suplex and bridging cover.
Actual Grade: B
The Kingfish comments: This match didn’t do much for either team, unless it is the excuse for replacing Rayne with Von Erich or something like that.
Kevin Nash and Eric Young made it clear, in their interview with Lauren, that they had a deal to unite against Hernandez and allow Nash to leave with the title and the $60,000 fee from Eric Young,
Kevin Mash vs. Hernandez vs. Eric Young
TNA Legends Championship Match
The Story: This is an offshoot of the mounting hostilities between the Main Event Mafia and the World Elite. Young has soured on Hernandez due to his refusal to join the faction, but he is also antagonistic toward Nash. This is one of those matches where it really is every man for himself.
My Prediction: Eric Young and Hernandez will tear into each other, but Kevin Nash will pounce on whomever gets the worst of that exchange for the win. Look for Young and Hernandez to work at least a short feud program coming out of this one.
Predicted Grade: B-
Actual Match: While Nash didn’t actually do much to protect Eric Young, the pair did work very consistently and effectively against Hernandez.
After surviving extensive double teaming, Hernandez leveled both foes with a Wingspread Clothesline. It gave him a breather, but it couldn’t stop the two-on-one onslaught.
Young nailed Hernandez with a Cross-Body Press and then pulled down Nash’s straps. As Big Sexxy prepared to unleash his Jackknife Powerbomb, Young dealt him a low blow and covered Hernandez to steal the Legends Championship.
Actual Grade: B
The Kingfish comments: YNA couldn’t have done anything much less surprising and interesting with this match. Young’s betrayal of Nash was a given after the interview earlier in the show. The easiest way to devalue a belt is to put it on inappropriate people; Eric Young is not a legend. For that matter, neither is Hernandez.
Brutus Magnus of the British Invasion told Beer Money and the champions that all three teams should combine against Team 3D. He pointed out that Ray and Devon have by far the most experience in Full Metal Mayhem and are, therefore, the most dangerous.
Steiner and Booker T seemed interested, but Beer Money didn’t commit to the idea.
The Kingfish comments: This segment gained little for the show and, in view of later events, cold well have been skipped.
Team 3D vs. Beer Money vs. British Invasion vs. Scott Steiner & Booker T
TNA and IWGP Tag Championships
Full Metal Mayhem
The Story: Four teams have battled for tag team supremacy for months. Both titles are up for grabs, quite literally, in a four-way cage match that will let the duos go to the limit to capture championships and do bodily harm to hated foes.
My Prediction: The only teams that are on cordial terms are Team 3D and Beer Money, so this match will put them on a collision course. It will also take the title off Booker T and Scott Steiner while intensifying the feud between the Main Event Mafia and the World Elite. Just as one of the MEM boys is about to grab the title, Doug Williams will knock him down. Brother Ray will be the only one in position to stop Williams, but in doing so, he will end up taking the TNA belt.
Then Team 3D will help Beer Money capture the IWGP strap. The two victorious teams could meet in a unification match at the following PPV. The British Invasion would go into a program against the former champs, perhaps with a necessary substitution if Booker departs the promotion.
Predicted Grade: A
Actual Match: Sharmell didn’t accompany her husband to the ring. She came out during the match when Booker crashed into the guard rail and had to be stretchered to the back for treatment.
The other three teams did target Ray and Devon at the opening bell, but their separate interests soon asserted themselves. Beer Money had to move quickly to prevent the British Invasion from grabbing both belts in a daring bid to end the match quickly.
Scott Steiner really took it to the representatives of the World Elite. He uncorked a FrankenSteiner on Doug Williams and then a Suplex from the middle rope on Brutus Magnus.
Team 3D charged back into the match, swinging chairs at the heels. They then subjected first Williams and then Magnus to the Dudley Death Drop! When the fight spilled into the ringside area, Zach Wilde helped Brother Ray by giving Brutus a chairshot.
Steiner came up behind Team 3D and smashed them with a chair. He went up the ladder, but Ray and Devon toppled it so that Big Poppa Pump went through a ringside table.
Devon got the IWGP belt just before Rhino invaded the match and attacked Brother Ray and the Brother Devon. Team 3D had one belt, but Rhino stopped them from getting both straps.
Just when it seemed as though the members of Beer Money would both get to the top of a ladder to claim the TNA title, Brutus Magnus caught Robert Roode from behind. James Storm’s Sunset Flip from the top took Magnus back down to earth with extreme prejudice. Williams took out Storm with a chairshot.
Robert Roode followed Magnus up a ladder only to have Rob Terry barge into the fight and hurl him through a ringside table! That left the way clear for Doug Williams to climb the ladder and pull down the TNA World Tag Team Championship belt.
Actual Grade: A
The Kingfish comments: And so the IWGP belts return to their rightful owners. The future looks like British Invasion versus Beer Money, though they might first face Steiner and another MEM member.
ODB d. Awesome Kong & Tara
TNA Knockout Championship
The Story: Holding onto the belt may prove a lot harder for ODB than winning it from her former boyfriend. Here she’ll face two former champions, each of whom is fully capable of snatching the coveted Knockout World Championship.
My Prediction: In predicting this match, the key factor is what TNA wants going forward. Two of these three women are likely to continue as a program with the title at stake. The best match-up might be Tara-Kong, so I’m looking for Tara to regain the title.
Predicted Grade: B
Actual Match: The announcers pointed out that ODB had defeated each of the challengers in singles competition.
When Tara and ODB combined forces against Kong, she took them out with a Wingspread Clothesline. They worked together until ODB broke up Tara’s attempted pin on Awesome Kong.
Tara tried to tangle ODB in the ropes with the Tarantula, but she took too much time. Both women suffered at Kong’s hands. Tara escaped Kong’s clutches only to become embroiled in a fight with ODB. ODB got Tara out of the way, but she then had to face the wrath of Kong ODB somehow lifted Kong on her shoulders and executed a Fallaway Slam, but it didn’t lead to a pin.
After a brush with security, Tara returned to the match only to be kicked out of the ring by Kong! Kong scored with a Splash from the top, but Tara broke up the attempted pin.
Kong finally hit the Implant Buster on ODB, but the champion raised her shoulder in time.
Raisha Saeed came down the ramp and slid a chair into the ring. Awesome Kong kicked it back to her. They repeated it a second time. This gave ODB time to recover. She planted Awesome Kong right on the chair and pinned her to retain the Knockout Championship.
Actual Grade: B+
The Kingfish comments: It could be that this is the beginning of a feud between Raisha Saeed and Awesome Kong. Both women seemed to be playing it that way.
Matt Morgan told Lauren that what was at first business had become personal.
Bobby Lashley vs. Samoa Joe
The Story: Two of TNA’s strongest fighters have been heading for this confrontation from the moment Lashley first appeared in TNA. The Boss wants to make a major statement, while Samoa Joe plans to put the newcomer in his place.
My Prediction: TNA has great hopes for Bobby Ashley, which is why they will have Samoa Joe put him over in this match. Lashley will finish Joe with something like a Full Nelson. Samoa Joe will take a post-match tongue-lashing from Angle, which will start Samoa Joe’s babyface turn.
Predicted Grade: A-
Actual Match: Lashley did a Leapfrog to a Spinebuster to set up an Armbar submission. Joe had the defense for it and escaped with minimal damage. Samoa Joe tried much the same thing with a Leg Bar, but Ashley was far from ready to tap.
Samoa Joe launched a barrage of kicks, one of which caught referee Earl Hebner. Joe used the distraction as an opening to attack Lashley and eventually hit him with a Suicide Dive into the ringside area. He smashed Ashley’s bandaged ribs against the side of the ring, twice.
After his Abdominal Stretch had little effect on Lashley, Joe applied an Arm Breaker, but this, too, fell short of a submission.
Lashley scored with a T-Bone Suplex, but Samoa Joe came back with two Urinagi Suplexes. Lashley brought him tot he mat and clamped on a Side Choke. The ref ruled a submission and awarded the match to The Boss.
Actual Grade: B
The Kingfish comments: “MMA vs. TNA” shows the pitfall of picking a tagline without considering its meaning. It portrays Lashley as an outside when he is the one who the fans need to support.
That’s two big losses (and a revised facial tattoo) for Samoa Joe. Guys on his level rarely take two defeats like this, so it’s likely that TNA has some radically different idea for him in the near future. Either that or he isn’t considered at the main event level any more.
When MB tried to reminisce with Mick Foley, the Executive Shareholder said that they would have many good times in the future, but not tonight.
Abyss vs. Mick Foley
Monster’s Ball Match
The Story: They were friends until a series of mishaps enraged Foley and caused him to turn on his protégé and accuse him of gimmick infringement. Abyss admits to some emulation of Foley, but insists that he, too, has bled for the business. Now they will collide in the ring in what could be the bloodiest match of the year!
My Prediction: I planned to order a pizza during this match, but second thought counsels a different choice. This match should probably carry a special warning for the faint of heart. To me, this looks like one of those torch-passing matches. That translates into a hard-fought match that Abyss wins. They might even pour it on and have Foley say that he concocted the whole thing just to help Abyss overcome his inferiority complex.
Actual Match: B+
Actual Match: Foley attacked Abyss on the ramp as the Masked Monsters walked to the ring. Mick ht hid former friend with his barb wire bat . He then climbed the scaffold near the upper stage and dropped onto Abyss so hard that the victim went right through the ramp! Dr. Stevie, the special guest referee, patted Foley on the back approvingly as they sauntered back to the ring.
Abyss came back strong. He threw a garage can full of weapons into the ring and then heaved Foley back inside, too. When Foley tried to hit Abyss with the trashcan, Abyss took it away from him and used it a couple of times.
Abyss set up a barbed wire board between the guardrail and the ring apron and positioned a second one in the center of the ring. He tried to send Foley into the latter, but Mick hit a DDT that slammed abyss into it! Foley hit Abyss with the barb wire bat a coupe of times, causing red to flow from under the mask.
Abyss threw Foley into a barb wire board leaning against a turnbuckle. He charged right in after him – and hit noting but barb wire board. Dr Stevie helped sandwich Abyss between both boards. Foley dropped an elbow, but couldn’t get the pin.
Dr. Stevie handed Mick Foley a black bag that contained tacks. It turned out that, tough Abyss was not allowed to use the tacks against Foley, nothing prevented Mick from making use of them.
Nothing, however, kept Abyss from dropping Stevie onto the tacks, which he proceeded to do Daffney handed Foley a taser. It sparked up nicely when he used it on Abyss. By the time a replacement referee appeared, Abyss had recovered enough to foil the cover.
Mick put on the sock and Clotheslined Abyss. Dr. Stevie pulled Jaime Tucker from the ring.
When Daffney tried to directly interfere, Abyss threw her into the barb wire board! Dr. Stevie removed his striped shirt and attacked. Abyss executed a Black Hole Slam into the tacks. Then Abyss slammed Foley into the barbed wire board.
Abyss covered Foley and used Dr. Stevie’s limp hand to count the fall!
Actual Grade: A
The Kingfish comments: It was sick, but it was great. If there’s such a thing as passing the torch, this was probably it. Maybe this will finish this storyline and let Abyss goon to fight a more meaningful feud.
Jeremy Borash asked Kurt Angle why he seemed so confident. The Olympic gold medal winner felt that only the time limit kept him from defeating Styles on the previous Thursday.
Kurt Angle d. Matt Morgan
The Story: Matt Morgan spent months jumping through hoops in an attempt to gain a place with the Main Event Mafia. Somewhere along the way, he smartened up and figured out how Kurt Angle manipulated him for Kurt’s own benefit. Now they meet in the ring with an enormous score to settle. Can power eat ring savvy? This match will tell that story.
My Prediction: Kurt Angle is very likely to meet AJ Styles for the TNA World Championship at the November pay per view, so this match could well end the Morgan-Angle feud, at least for now. It makes me think that Matt Morgan could shock the fans by beating Angle, perhaps with some help from AJ Styles. That would sharpen Angle-Styles, while paving the way for Angle-Morgan down the road. Failing that, it will end inconclusively, perhaps a “No Contest” or Double DQ.
Predicted Grade: B
Actual Match: Matt organ used raw power to negate Kurt Angle’s wrestling maneuvers. This allowed The Blueprint to dominate the early part of the match.
Kurt threw away the wrestling textbook when he jumped off the ring apron at Matt Morgan. The seven-footer caught him and ran him into the ring post. Back inside the ring, Morgan went to the top turnbuckle and connected with a Lariat. Angle beat the ref’s final count.
Morgan reversed the Figure-Four Leglock and the official broke it.
Morgan hit a Fallaway Slam, but Angle reversed his Chokeslam and almost pinned Matt. Morgan signaled for the Hellevator, but Kurt beat him to the punch with three German Suplexes.
Morgan stopped Angle in mi-charge with the Carbon Footprint, but he again averted a pin. Angle anticipated what might’ve been another Carbon Footprint and instead gave Morgan an Olympic Slam! He couldn’t turn it into a pin, though. Angle tried an Anklelock, but Morgan rolled out of it. Morgan hit the Hellevator, but Angle raised a shoulder just as the referees hand was about to slap canvas for the third time.
Angle suckered Morgan into approaching him carelessly. Still, a second Olympic Slam couldn’t keep the big man down,
Kurt Angle went to the top for a Moonsault. Matt Morgan rushed up behind the MEM leader and took him onto his shoulders. Before Morgan could start his move, Angle went into a Victory Roll that pinned the stunned Morgan.
After the match, Angle helped Morgan to his feet and raised his hand along with his own.
Actual Grade: A-
The Kingfish comments: The post match seemed really out of place after the way they promoted the feud. We won’t know until iMPACT whether this is the start of an Angle-Morgan alliance or just a shoot moment in the show.
This was Morgan’s best match But then, he was in there with Kurt Angle.
AJ Styles d. Sting
TNA World Heavyweight Championship
The Story: Sting could have won the title at No Surrender, but chose to let Styles make the pin and claim the win. The Phenomenal One subsequently offered Sting the chance to fight for the title. Sting declared that he still has the passion, which is what brings these two topflight professional wrestlers to the championship ring.
My Prediction: TNA had Sting vow to quit, but I thought there might be a little wiggle room; a noble defeat might justify continuing since he was competitive. I‘m especially suspicious about the rumors of Sting’s retirement that surfaced just before TNA announced this match. Kurt Angle will end the match by attacking Styles and then, after the champs wins by DQ, assault Sting, too.
Predicted Grade: A
Actual Match: Friendship didn’t prevent these two proud warriors from going at each other with everything they could muster. AJ scored with a Bodyslam to a Kneedrop, but Sting rolled free. Styles hit an Enziguri and then a Suplex, but the fancy moves brought him no closer to victory.
AJ’s our-of-ring fly misfired, bur so did Sting’s charge across the ringside area, which Styles moved out of the way. The Phenomenal One lined up the challenger for a Piledriver or possibly a Styles Clash, but Sting reversed and spiked the champion into the canvas with a Piledriver of his own!
Sting went for the Scorpion Death Drop, but Styles Snap Mared out of it. The Icon tried again and this time pulled off the Death Drop! Styles broke the count in time.
Sting applied the Scorpion Deathlock. The referee asked if Styles wanted to quit, but the champion screamed, “No!” Then he kicked Sting off him.
Sting put AJ on the top turnbuckle, bur AJ’s Headbutt ended that plan. And when Sting approached him along the ropes, Styles blasted him with a Pele!
AJ Styles hit a Springboard Cross-Body Press from the apron and covered for the pin.
Actual Grade: A-
The Kingfish comments: The match ended rather abruptly, most likely due to acute time pressure. It wasn’t the Match of the Year, but both men turned in fine performances.
After the match, Styles called Sting back and turned over the ring to him. The crowd chanted for him and begged him not to retire. He claimed he had not made up his mind.
Predicted Grade for Bound for Glory: A-
Actual Grade for Bound for Glory: A-
That’s all for today! I’ll be back on Monday with my recap and analysis of Bound for Glory on Monday. Hope you’ll join me then – and, please, bring your friends.
— Arnie Katz