The show opens with a great video montage with text from Sir Winston Churchillâ€™s speech, â€œSure I am that this day we are masters of our fate, that the task which has been set before us is not above our strengths, that its pangs and toils are not beyond our endurance. As long as we have faith in out cause and an unconquerable will to win, victory will not be denied us.â€ cut in with scenes from events leading up to the PPV.
Jeremy Borash is with The Angle Alliance as they discuss trying to get Jim Cornette give them the advantage in tonightâ€™s Six Sides of Steel match, instead of the Unlikely Alliance, who won it fairly on iMPACT! Fans have had the chance to vote on it since Thursday, and they say Referee Earl Hebnerâ€™s call should stand by a count of 54% – 46%. AJ, however, is only concerned about why Karen Angle isnâ€™t there. Kurt tells him to worry about the match, not Karen.
Announcers Mike Tenay and Don West are at ringside to welcome fans.
#1 Contenders 3 Way Tag Team Match
The Motor City Machine Guns, Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin
LAX, Homicide and Hernandez with Salinas
The Rock n Rave Infection, Lance Hoyt and Jimmy Rave with Christy Hemme
Stipulation: Winner of the bout becomes the new #1 contender to the TNA World Tag Team Championship.
There was so much action in this wild and wooly match that I canâ€™t possibly report it all, so Iâ€™ll go with the highlights. Sabin and Homicide start off fast with a rapid fire series of holds and reversals, and when Sabin tags in Shelley, they double team Homicide for a bit. One of the most impressive feats in the match was Hernandez holding big Lance Hoyt upside down for several minutes for a hesitation suplex, while all kinds of mat and aerial mayhem goes on around him. Kudos to Hoyt as well, for staying straight and upright the entire time.
The match features an astonishing variety of double team moves by Sabin and Shelley. Highlights include a teamwork stepladder drop kick by Chris Sabin off Shelleyâ€™s back, into Hoytâ€™s face, and big Hernandez flying gracefully over the top rope onto Hoyt on the floor, landing on his feet; and a tope con hilo by Homicide.
Rave and Hoyt take every opportunity to stay in the ring, in hopes of getting the pin, and for much of the match they tag in and out, keeping Alex Shelley in and working him over. Finally Shelley tags in Hernandez, who cleans house with an impressive series of power moves. Rave goes for cross body block, but Hernandez catches him and delivers an emphatic sit out power bomb. Pandemonium ensues as everyone is in the ring for a while. LAX win when Hernandez hits Jimmy Rave with the Border Toss and gets the pin.
Johnny Fairplay and Joel Anderson from Survivor are shown at ringside.
Jeremy Borash reminds fans again about the poll over whether to overturn Hebnerâ€™s decision.
X Division Championship Match
â€œBlack Machismoâ€ Jay Lethal (C)
â€œMaple Leaf Muscleâ€ Petey Williams with Scott Steinerâ€™s Freak Rhaka Khan
Ring girl SoCal Val is also at ringside, applauding her man â€œBlack Machismo.â€ New TNA Referee Brian Hebner (son of Earl) is calling this match.
Both of these men are anxious to return the X Division to its former glory in TNA, and they pull out all the stops in this match, starting off with a breathtakingly quick series of holds and reversals with several near falls. The fans are hot with dueling chants throughout the match. Lethal hits the double ax handle off the top but gets only two. He sends Petey out of the ring and into the rail, then nails him with the double ax handle off the top again, but this time Rhaka Khan, who is quite a bit taller than Lethal, stands intimidatingly between him and the ring until the ref tells her to step aside. When he gets back in, Petey grabs him and slams him hard into a ring post, then goes for the pin, but he gets only two.
Now Williams has the advantage and follows up with a spinning neck breaker, again getting only two. As the ref checks on Lethal, Petey poses and flexes his pecs. They battle on with more near falls, and Petey works on Lethalâ€™s arm. Lethal goes to the floor, and Petey launches himself over the top rope to hit a perfect hurricanarana on Lethal on the floor. Petey keeps wearing Lethal down with a front face lock. Lethal makes a comeback with an inverted atomic drops and a series of fists, and the match picks up speed again with lots of quick exchanges, reversals and near falls. Lethal reverses an attempted Canadian Destroyer into a full Nelson reverse suplex, but still gets only two. Williams locks in a sharpshooter, but gives it up when Lethal wonâ€™t tap.
Lethal gets Williams with the Lethal Combination and goes up for the flying elbow, but as Rhaka Khan distracts the ref, Scott Steiner runs out and pushes him off the top. Petey hits Lethal with the Canadian Destroyer, but Val pulls the ref out of the ring and tells him about Steiner. Petey gets Rhaka Khan to force Val away from ringside, just by intimidating her, but Sonjay Dutt comes out and gets between Khan and Val. Petey finally gets the refâ€™s attention back and goes for the pin, but it all took too long. Jay Lethal pins Petey Williams with a small package and retains his title.
Crystal asks the Unlikely Alliance whether they think Cornette will reverse Hebnerâ€™s decision. Joe says it doesnâ€™t matter, because they are united. Christian says thereâ€™s no question he won, but Cornette has made some questionable calls, but it doesnâ€™t matter to him either, because they will win. Nash says all that matters to him is that at Lockdown, itâ€™s Joe and Angle in a cage for the title. He might even start the match, and really surprise Angle.
Tag Team Match
Frankie â€œKazâ€ Kazarian and Eric Young
Black Reign and Rellik
Eric Young believes Black Reign and Rellik are real monsters, and heâ€™s afraid of them. Kaz has been trying to get Eric to overcome that, but so far, Eric keeps running away and leaving Frankie to face the two men on his own. Kazarian starts off with Rellik, while Eric stands nervously on the apron. When Eric gets tagged into the ring to face Black Reign, the fans cheer him on, so he battles of a little while, but then tags out quickly. Kaz ends up being punished by Black Reign and Rellik, as Eric runs away when Kaz tries to tag him in, but the fans keep cheering for Eric.
Eventually Eric runs away from the ring and leaves Kazarian on his own to take the beating. Kaz does manage to make several comebacks and get in some good offense, but two on one is just too much. Suddenly, a trumpet fanfare plays, and Super Eric (Eric Young in a masked super hero costume) makes his entrance and goes to town on the monsters. Kaz and Eric win when “Super Eric” loads both Black Reign and Rellik onto his back and gives a Death Valley Driver to Black Reign and Rellik at the same time, then pins Black Reign.
They cut to Jeremy Borash and The Angle Alliance arguing with Jim Cornette, trying to bully him into changing Earl Hebnerâ€™s decision. Team 3D join the argument, complaining about their Fish Market Street Fight tonight.
TNA Knockouts Championship Match
Awesome Kong (C) with Raisha Saeed
The strategy of Gail Kim and ODB is to team up against Kong to take her out as much as possible, and then wrestle each other while she is out of the way. At first they have little success, as they try to slingshot Kong, but instead she slams them into each other and then double clotheslines them to the mat. She goes for a double avalanche, but ODB steps aside, so only Kim gets it. ODB attacks Kong with drop kicks, fists and feet, and tries dumping her over the top rope to the floor, but canâ€™t quite make it till Gail Kim goes up top and adds a leg drop to take Kong the rest of the way to the floor.
Kim hits a sunset flip on ODB but gets two. ODB goes for a pin of her own, but Kim bridges up and out. Next ODB tries for a firemanâ€™s carry slam, but Gail escapes and powers her down, then goes up top. Instead of hitting ODB, Gail goes for a cross body block on Kong on the floor, but Kong catches her, walking around with Gail until ODB makes a suicide dive onto both of them. ODB rolls Gail in for a near fall. They continue battling each other until Gail dumps ODB to the floor and Kong returns to the ring.
Gail charges Kong but gets manhandled. Gail makes a comeback and they brawl until Kong slams Gailâ€™s shoulder into a ring post and she drops to the floor. ODB comes back at Kong, but she misses with an enzuiguiri and Kong takes over with a series of power moves. Gail returns, and both women begin teaming against Kong again. ODB pulls out her flask and gives some to Gail too. Both women go up, and they hit Kong with double missile drop kicks. The fight continues, and at one point both women pin Kong at once, but she still kicks out. Kong splashes Gail, but ODB stops the pin. Kong hits the implant buster on ODB. She tries for the splash but ODB rolls out of the way. ODB gets a near fall with a Thesz press off the middle rope, but when she tries to follow up, Raisha Saeed grabs her ankle from outside the ring and trips her. ODB grabs Saeed, but Kong comes up from behind and grabs her. Kong gets the pin with an Awesome Bomb on ODB.
They cut to Rhino on top of the Elevation X scaffold, talking about the danger of the match, and asking James Storm if he will get up again after he falls.
Jim Cornette is in the ring, as the fans chant his name. He says he is sick and fed up with Team 3D. If they make weight tonight, they donâ€™t have to weigh in anymore, but if they donâ€™t they are fired. Then he talks about Angle complaining about Hebnerâ€™s call, and says that they studied the tapes from all angles and in slow motion, and it did turn out that Angle hit the ground first, but wrestling has always gone by the refâ€™s decision, and not by videotape replay. He asks the fans is they want him to overturn over 100 years of wrestling tradition, or do they want him to tell Angle to suck it up and get over it. The fans overwhelming cheer for Angle to have to get over it, so Cornette decrees that is the final decision.
Fish Market Street Fight
Shark Boy and Curry Man
Team 3D, Brother Ray and Devon with Johnny Devine
Stipulation: If Team 3D can’t make weight for the bout, they will be fired from TNA Wrestling. TNA Management Director Jim Cornette has decreed that Team 3D will not be fired if they lose the bout – only if they can’t make the weight.
They really do have whole fish in ice on tables at ringside, plus oars, nets and fishing poles. Curry Man gets up on the announce table and dances as he makes his entrance. The fans and even Don West all dance with him. Brian Hebner is in the ring already, and Earl enters with the scale for the weigh in of Team 3D. Brother Ray asks the fans if they really want them to be fired, and the fans say yes. Ray says that he and Devon are not fat, but all the women in Virginia are fat. Devon makes weight. Ray does breathing exercises before stepping gingerly on the scale, and Earl announces he made weight too. Johnny Devine gives them snack cakes and chocolate, but Shark Boy and Curry Man go for quick roll ups, spoiling their fun. 3D kick out.
This hardcore match is played for laughs, with the wrestlers slapping each other with fish and selling it as if they were steel chairs. At one point, Curry Man gets a fishing pole, puts a snack cake on the fish hook and uses it to lure Brother Ray back into the ring. Even Mike Tenay gets into the spirit with puns like â€œHoly mackerel!â€ Curry Man catches Brother Ray in a net, and later on, Johnny Devine snares Shark Boy in a fish net. Ray throws fish at Curry Man, and then starts throwing fish into the crowd, but the fans throw them right back.
Ray and Devon set up a table next to the ring. Johnny Devine gets involved with his kendo stick too, taking out Shark Boy so the other two can do a wassup on Curry Man with a large fish. Devon goes for a head butt on Curry Man, but he rolls out of the way. Ray tries for the back splash on him, but Curry dodges that too. Shark Boy returns to the ring and hits 3D with a double clothesline and cleans house on them.
As Shark Boy brawls with Devine outside the ring, Ray and Devon double team Curry Man. Devon goes up for the wassup, but Shark Boy slams him with a fish from behind and knocks him off the top. Curry Man rolls through and reverses on Ray, so Shark Boy comes off the top with the fish for the wassup on Ray. The brawl continues with more near falls. Ray gets a trash can, but Curry Man grabs it and hits Ray with it twice. Johnny Devine tries to blind Curry Man with the white powder, but he hits Brother Ray instead. Shark Boy hits Devine with the stunner, and Curry Man launches him out of the ring through the table on the floor. Shark Boy and Curry Man win when Ray, still blinded, helps them give Devon the 3D, allowing Shark Boy to pin Devon. They celebrate with Johnny Fairplay and Joel from Survivor and the other fans as they leave.
After the match, Joel gives Brother Ray the â€œFear the Finâ€ sign, and Ray shoves him back into his chair. Joel comes back at Ray and is removed by Atlas Security (Yes, the security crew from the old ECW Arena). Fairplay follows and leaves with him.
They cut to Jeremy Borash with Kurt Angle and AJ Styles. AJ is still wondering why he hasnâ€™t heard from Karen Angle in 10 days, and Kurt tells him to just shut up and concentrate on the match already. After Kurt leaves, Borash tells AJ that Karen has a â€œbombshellâ€ to drop at iMPACT! on Thursday.
Stand By Your Man Strap Match
Booker T with Traci Brooks
Robert Roode with Payton Banks
Stipulation: If Booker T wins, Traci Brooks gets to lash Payton Banks 10 times with a leather strap. If Roode wins, Banks gets to put the strap to Brooks.
Roode tries to avoid getting the strap attached to his wrist, but finally Referee Andrew Thomas gets the strap fastened. Booker tries to reel Roode in, but Roode bails to the outside and they have a tug of war until Booker finally pulls Robert in and gets to unload on Roode with fists and kicks. Booker uses the strap to choke Roode too. Roode manages to get the advantage and uses the strap to whip Booker. Booker goes up and Roode manages to dodge and wrap the strap around Bookerâ€™s leg for a while. He uses the ropes to choke Booker too. Booker recovers and the men trade punches in the center of the ring. They continue to brawl and trade power moves like the spine buster that Booker slams Roode with.
Ref bump. Traci sees Payton Banks with handcuffs and runs over to take them away from her. Traci throws them to Booker, but Roode low blows Booker and grabs the cuffs himself. Robert uses the handcuffs like brass knuckles to knock out Booker T and gets the pin. Booker argues with the ref, but the guys from Atlas Security take Booker out so Payton Banks gets her chance to hit Traci 10 times with the strap. Robert Roode gets up in Traciâ€™s face and screams at her the whole time Banks is whipping her. When Banks is supposed to stop, she doesnâ€™t, and keeps on whipping Traci, until Traci gets the strap from her. The Roode comes in and straps Traci, until Sharmell runs out with a strap of her own and beats first Roode, then Banks, the ref, Atlas Security, the announce desk, Dave Penzer and finally Jim Cornette before Security takes her away.
They cut to Crystal Louthan, who tells James Storm that heâ€™s stupid for agreeing to the Elevation X match. Storm says heâ€™s nervous, but he knows he is going to win, and Rhino will fall. Heâ€™s so serious about this, that he hasnâ€™t even had anything to drink today. Heâ€™s going to take a six-pack up with him to celebrate after he wins.
Elevation X Match
â€œThe War Machineâ€ Rhino
â€œThe Cowboyâ€ James Storm with Jackie Moore
The man who falls from the two ton structure and hits the mat is the loser.
Storm does indeed take a six-pack up to the top with him, and sets it in the center of the X. Once Rhino is at the top, Storm climbs down, saying heâ€™s not going to do it, so Rhino takes the cans of beer and throws them down at Storm. one at a time. Finally Rhino decides to climb down and get Storm.
Rhino grabs Storm and bashes him twice into the ring rail. Then he throws a table in to the ring and goes back an bashed Storm into the ring steps. Rhino throws another table and a trash can into the ring as well. Rhino tosses STorm into the ring and sets up one table in the corner. Storm comes back at Rhino and tries to put him through that table, but Rhino counters and tries to do the same to Storm. The Cowboy gets leverage off the ropes to nail Rhino with a kick to the head and then sets up one of the tables in the ring. Storm slams Rhino in the head with the trash can and sets him on the table, but Rhino gets up and goes after Storm, hitting him with a belly to belly suplex.
Jacqueline attacks Rhino, and then climbs up the scaffold. Rhino waits a bit to tie his hair back, and then follows her. Storm then climbs up behind Rhino as Storm climbs up out of sight of Rhino, but after Jackie scoots across and climbs back down, Rhino looks around and sees Storm. They face off with Rhino standing in the center, motioning to Storm to come out. Rhino sits with his legs wrapped under the scaffold and slaps and toys with Storm. Storm slips part way off but recovers. They stand and trade blows and Rhino nearly falls, but catches himself.
Hanging on with one hand, they trade blows. Storm rakes Rhinoâ€™s eyes to blind him and then climbs inside the scaffold and hides, drinking a beer. When Rhino recovers, the fans tell him where Storm is. The Cowboy wonâ€™t come out, so Rhino removes the board over him, and Storm spits beer into Rhinoâ€™s eyes. Storm tries fighting out, but Rhino knocks him off balance and Storm is crotched on the beam. Storm fights to hold on, but Rhino knocks him off the scaffold and through the table set up in the ring below, to win the match. They bring out a stretcher and a neck brace to carry Storm to the back.
Six Man Tag Team Match
The Unlikely Alliance: â€œThe Instant Classicâ€ Christian Cage, Kevin Nash, and Samoa Joe
The Angle Alliance: Kurt Angle, AJ Styles, and Tomko
The Angle Alliance are down one man for the first five minutes, so Styles and Tomko come out first without Angle to face their three opponents. AJ and Tomko stall getting into the ring, so Joe and Nash go after them to force them in. Christian gets his chance for payback, and goes at AJ as they trade a flurry of punches. AJ misses his inverted DDT, but Cage connects with a corkscrew elbow for two. AJ tags in Tomko, and Christian greets him with several hard chops. Tomko tries for an overhead slam on Cage, but Christian escapes and rolls up Tomko for a two count. Tomko slams Cage and gets two.
Cage forces Tomko into his corner, where Nash and Joe hold his arms so Christian can lay in a series of punches to his gut and even choke him. AJ rushes in to help Tomko, but Christian turns around and catches him with a vicious spear. Joe tags in and hits Tomkoâ€™s head like itâ€™s a punching bag, then whips him across the ring and kicks him in the side of the head. Nash tags in next and continues the punishment. AJ manages to tag himself in and hits Christian with the spiral tap, only to get a choke slam from Nash.
When itâ€™s time for Angle to enter, Joe goes up the ramp to meet him. Kurt enters deliberately at first and then charges down the ramp at Joe. They meet and exchange punches, then brawl into the ring, where they brawl some more. Cage hits Angle with a frog splash and gets two. Angle throws Christian out of the ring and AJ comes off the apron and slams Cage into the announce table. They return to the ring where AJ continues to work on age, then tags in Tomko, who punishes Christian, who fights back with knife edge chops until heâ€™s caught and slammed by Tomko. Cage kicks out at two, so Tomko tags in Angle, who goes for the ankle lock, but Cage reverses and pins Angle for two.
Finally Cage tags in Nash, who cleans house on all three until AJ delivers a drop kick to his kneecap and lays him out. Nash tags in Joe, who hits Tomko with a knee and then catches AJ in mid air and power bombs him. Joe goes for the muscle buster on AJ, but Angle runs in with the low blow. PelÃ© kick from AJ on Joe, and Angle gets the Olympic slam. Tomko covers but gets two. Christian comes back for the Unprettier on Angle, and Nash heaves AJ over the top to the floor. Joe and Tomko square off until Joe locks in the Kokina Clutch and Tomko submits. The Unlikely Alliance wins.
This was another very good PPV from TNA, and it ran just a few minutes short of three hours. Itâ€™s well worth buying the replay.
Remember iMPACT! will air live from Orlando on Thursday, March 27 on SpikeTV.
TNAâ€™s next PPV is Lock Down on April 13 in Lowell, MA at the Tsongas Arena.
— Karen Belcher
Courtesy of ProWrestlingDigest.com