The SmarK Rant for TNA Lockdown
– Sounds like a “women in prison” movie title to me rather than a PPV, but at least it fits the gimmick tonight.
– Live, as with every other three-hour PPV they’ve done, from Orlando FL. Here’s a crazy idea to make money, guys: Charge people to watch the shows.
– Your hosts are Mike Tenay & Don West, as Mike promises that it’ll be barbaric and violent. It’s a copy of Sean Waltman’s home movies?
– Meanwhile, Kevin Nash has a boo-boo on his leg, and thus can’t be here tonight. STAPH INFECTIONS RULE~!
– Chris Candido & Lance Hoyt v. Apolo & Sonny Siaki. Candido is basically subbing for Kid Kash here, as this was a singles match between Apolo and Hoyt that got changed into a tag match. Kash would have been Hoyt’s partner, obviously, but shot off his big mouth one time too many. So indirectly, Kash being a jerk and getting fired led to Candido’s death. They start quick with Siaki getting a botched dropkick and somehow landing on Candido’s ankle, and that breaks it. Hoyt thus comes in and slugs it out with Apolo, but loses. Siaki and Apolo work Hoyt over and get two off an elbow. Candido gets taken out of the cage and attended to, leaving Hoyt alone. He pounds Siaki down and goes up for a moonsault, which gets two. Tenay suspects that Candido might be faking. I beg to differ. Hoyt sends Siaki into the cage and stampedes into him there. Back up again for another moonsault attempt, but Siaki runs up the cage and gets a release german superplex. Very nice. Hot tag Apolo, who gets a superkick for two. Hoyt manages to botch a clothesline and Apolo gets an F5, setting up Siaki’s top rope splash for the pin at 6:54. The Naturals blame Hoyt for the loss (well, in fairness, he was by himself, so it was his fault) and turn on him, thus turning him face. Nothing interesting in terms of the match, but very memorable for a much worse reason. *1/2
– Dustin Rhodes v. Bobby Roode. Roode attacks to start and gets backdropped as a result, as Tenay informs us that it’s a 2/3 falls match. Oh goodie. Roode gets a quick rollup out of the corner for the first pin at 1:04. Rhodes comes back from that crushing defeat and rams him into the cage, then sets him up in the corner and delivers Shattered Nuts. They head up and Dustin brings him down with a superplex. Roode comes back with a piledriver attempt, but Rhodes catapults him into the cage for two. These guys have very little chemistry for people who are supposed to hate each other. Roode walks into a powerslam for two. Roode rams him into the corner a few times and works him over, then knees him against the cage a couple of times. Backdrop suplex gets two. Roode grabs a headlock, but Dustin fights out of it and gets a small package for two. Flying kneedrop gets two for Roode, however. Roode goes to a chinlock, and then another one, to really crank up the pace. Dustin powers out with an electric chair and sends Roode into the cage to come back. He goes for the Curtain Call, but Roode reverses out of it and gets the Northern Lariat for two. It’s hard to take seriously anyone who uses Outback Jack’s finisher. They head up to the top and Dustin brings him down with a bulldog for the pin at 11:03 to even it up. So now they get to wrestle blindfolded, as I wish I could watch blindfolded. They do the dumb blindfold spots where they flail around the ring looking for each other while the crowd screams at them. The ref gets bumped by Roode taking a swing at nothing, and THAT’s just what we were needing, yup. D’Amore comes in with the hockey stick, but Roode thinks it’s Dustin and hits him with a chair. Then Dustin hits Roode with one and gets the pin at 15:17. Way too long and dull, just like everything else Dustin has done in this promotion thus far. *1/4
– Michael Shane v. Sonjay Dutt v. Shocker v. Chris Sabin. Goofy rules as usual, with the first two eliminations being by pin or submission, and then the winner by escape. Dutt and Sabin trade headlocks to start and it’s a stalemate. They do some more tumbling and get nowhere, so Dutt gets the spinning headscissors and Sabin gets a rana. Shocker and Shane come in and Shocker gets a bulldog and starts chopping in the corner, then gets another bulldog out of there. Dutt and Shocker team up for a hiptoss on Shane and then Dutt allies himself with Sabin, as Sabin powerbombs Dutt onto Shane for two. Shane alley-oops Dutt into the cage, however, and chokes him out to take over. Baseball slide into the cage gets two. He hits the chinlock, but Dutt fights out, only to run into a boot in the corner. Shane gets two off that. Shane sends him into the cage again, but Dutt counters this time and takes him down with a headscissors and makes the tag to Sabin. Sabin’s attempt at a rana is countered by Shane, however, with a trip to the cage. That gets two. Sabin comes back with a tornado DDT off the cage, however, and Shocker comes in. He gets two and dropkicks the knee, then gets a cradle for two. Shocker charges and hits boot, and all four of them do a weird submission on each other. That just looked weird. Sabin powerbombs Dutt into the cage and onto the mat for two, but Shocker breaks it up. Why? Shocker takes Sabin down with an F5 for two. He slugs away and misses a boot, so Sabin gets the enzuigiri and Dutt hits him with a 450 for two. Shane breaks it up. Even West and Tenay admit he was crazy to do that. Dutt tries the rana on Shane, but gets sent into the cage and superkicked as a result, and Shocker drops an elbow on Dutt for the pin at 10:55. Shocker powerbombs Shane and gets a backbreaker, then goes up, but Sabin catches him with a northern lights superplex for two. Shane and Sabin go up together next, and Trinity follows them into the cage to help Shane. She moonsaults everyone off the top of the cage. Tracy, the other chick, comes into the cage to help too, but gets destroyed by Shane, who then walks into Sabin’s Cradle Shock and gets pinned at 14:00. So now the winner has to escape. Sabin and Shocker pull each other off the cage and both get crotched as a result. Back up to the top of the cage and they fight up and out, and then both fall out and Sabin hits the floor first, giving Shocker the win at 15:33. Dumb finish, good car wreck match. ***1/4
– Tables match: Jeff Hardy v. Raven. It’s a tables match in a cage, which makes it more extreme, I guess. Hardy swings some chairs at Raven to start and goes for the leg, then follows with a dive into the corner. Another one misses, however, and Raven introduces him to the cage a few times. Raven boots him into the cage and uses the DROP TOEHOLD OF DOOM to take Hardy down, and pounds away. The DDT would normally finish, but you have to put the guy through a table to win, so he puts Jeff against a table and then misses a charge. This allows Hardy to make the comeback with a suplex and he legdrops a chair on Raven and rams him into the cage to draw blood. It’s kind of scary how into the Raven character that I, and many other people, were back during the two-hour PPV era when he was effectively booked as a babyface against Jim Mitchell’s crew. Compare and contract to the boring and generic “evil heel” stuff he’s done as of the Orlando era and it’s no wonder that he’s going nowhere. Anyway, they fight up to the top and Raven gets a sloppy bulldog, but Hardy gets the Twist of Fate and makes another comeback for no particular reason. He sets up a table and Raven ends up on it. Jeff goes up to the top of the cage and then, SHOCKINGLY, misses the swanton and goes through the table. Since it took him 5 minutes to get up there after all the posing and preening, it’s no wonder Raven moved. Raven takes over and also climbs the cage, but Hardy knocks him down as they continue throwing everything out there with no rhyme or reason to it. Raven goes low and hits him with a piece of table. Jeff suddenly decides to pop up and go out of the cage, which makes no sense, but Raven opens the door to block and Jeff falls on it. Is he trying to climb out? Jeff jumps back in and lands on Raven’s foot in an EXTREME version of that stupid spot I hate so much, and even the crowd boos it. Raven sets up some tables, because a DDT didn’t keep Jeff down but god knows lifting a foot in the air is deadly, and the referee helps him out with setting up a bit stack of tables. Well, that’s considerate. They fight up the cage again and Raven lands on the tables, put into a coma by a back elbow, and Jeff legdrops him through the tables for the win at 14:02. I have no patience left for Jeff Hardy: Hardcore Icon. *
– NWA World tag titles: America’s Most Wanted v. Eric Young & Petey Williams. This is a strap match in addition to the cage. AMW abuses Young on top of the cage to start, but A1 hits Harris with a belt on the floor, leaving Storm alone in the cage for the time being. Williams hammers away on Storm, who is bleeding already, while A1 beats on Harris outside. Williams does the patriotic choke on Storm and Young pounds him down, and they double-team him with a clothesline. Young chokes away and Williams sends him into the cage, which gives Young two. They choke Storm down with the American flag, but Storm fights back with an enzuigiri on Williams, and Harris finally escapes A1 and tries to fight into the cage, but Eric Young cuts him off. Storm meanwhile comes back with a powerbomb on Williams and presses him into the cage, then fights back on Young with one of the straps. However, 2-on-1 odds overwhelm him again and Williams gets a tornado DDT for two. Harris catapults A1 into the cage outside and finally gets rid of him, then climbs into the cage to get involved. He comes in with a double clothesline on Team Canada from the top, and hits Williams with a full nelson slam and Young with a spinebuster. He suplexes Williams into the cage, and then to the mat for two. Williams fights back with a russian legsweep and Young heads up. Williams puts Storm in a Sharpshooter, and Young drops an elbow from the top rope, allowing Williams to get two. Williams tries the Destroyer to finish, but waits too long and gets speared by Harris for two. Young tries a superkick on Harris, but gets caught with one by Storm as a result. Death Sentence looks to finish, but Williams breaks it up and brings the hockey stick into play. He nails Harris with it for two. Next dirty trick: Powder. Of course it gets kicked back into his face, blinding him, and Eric Young takes a Canadian Destroyer as a result. And that’s enough for AMW to finish Williams with the Death Sentence at 15:10. This was pretty fun with as good of a finish booked as I’ve seen in quite some time, although all the gimmicks got a little silly after a while. ***
– X title: Christopher Daniels v. Elix Skipper. They trade headlocks to start and it’s a stalemate, but Daniels misses a charge into the cage, as does Skipper, and they trade more reversals and no one gets anywhere. Daniels stops to brag and gets punched by Skipper, and Elix goes back to the headlock again. Daniels reverses to his own and they start trading shoulderblocks, which Skipper wins. Daniels throws some chops on the cage, but Elix is into it and hits him with a butterfly suplex and a gut wrench for two. Backdrop suplex sets up a legdrop for two. Daniels comes back with a fireman’s carry into the cage to take over, then goes to work on the now-injured shoulder. Funny spot as he makes Elix wave, then starts choking. Skipper tries fighting back one-handed, and adds a dropkick, but Daniels takes him down with an armdrag and knees him into the cage, shoulder-first. He gets two off that. Northern lights suplex is bridged into a cross armbreaker, but he quickly abandons that and goes back to the choking again. He pounds Skipper down and follows with a hammerlock slam, and that gets two. He goes to a standing armbar and then releases for a high kick to the shoulder, but Skipper takes him down with a spinebuster. Skipper fights back with clotheslines and a spinkick, and a kick to the back gets two. Skipper dodges a charging Daniels with the Matrix dodge, and hits him with a belly to belly and goes up for an Alabama Jam, which gets two. He tries a neckbreaker, but uses the bad arm and Daniels is able to counter and moonsault him for two. Daniels goes up to finish, but Skipper crotches him on the cage and tries to follow with the cagewalk rana. Daniels, however, wisely hides behind the referee, and Skipper opts for a high cross onto both guys instead. He gets two off that. The shoulder betrays him again on a tilt-a-whirl and Daniels tries the Wings, but Skipper counters to the Sudden Death, and Daniels again counters to the Angel’s Wings to finish at 15:32. I really liked this, as it provided a nice change of pace with some bigtime babyface selling instead of the usual cage spots tonight. Good stuff. ***1/2
– Lethal Lottery: Sean Waltman starts out with Jeff Jarrett, as they battle for 5:00 and wait for the next member of the heel team to join this. Sounds familiar. They go into the crowd and do the usual trashcan and cookie sheet spots. Onto the announce table, as Waltman gives him a spinkick, but Jarrett brings him into the ring and hits him with a garbage can. I also have to stop and point out that Waltman is dressed like an aging hair metal singer tonight, probably with blood alcohol level to match. You can just see him wailing on “Round and Round” at some point. So anyway, after Jarrett pounds on him like his name was Peter Brady or something, Waltman comes back and sends JJJ into the cage a few times, but misses the broncobuster. I know that if I’m in an intense, weapons-filled battle with the heavyweight champion, the first thing that I want to do is thrust my crotch into his face, because 9 times out of 10 it results in a pin. And now the pain continues, as The Outlaw is next into the match and it’s 2-on-1 for a couple of minutes. The rejects from 1998 WWF battle it out and Sean dropkicks Jarrett off an alley-oop from Outlaw, but a well-timed trashcan lid puts him down again. Touche, Billy, touche. Jarrett uses the deadly cookie sheet as the clock counts down to DDP’s entrance, and he’s so rushed to save Sean that he stops to pose for his pyro. He uses a kendo stick on the heels and threatens to deliver some actual realistic offense, but sadly the stick breaks and DDP falls victim to another cookie sheet. Damn you and your cooking utensils, Outlaw! So the heels take over and Monty Brown is last in for the heels, armed with a baseball bat. Well, that’s more like it. The heels proceed to beating the crap out of the helpless babyfaces, although there’s an awful lot of standing around involved. Much of Waltman’s involvement with the match, in fact, has involved laying around and selling. BG James is the mystery man, replacing Kevin Nash tonight, and he uses a trash can for bad purposes. Soon it’s down to him and Outlaw, but Waltman breaks that up before they can touch. Bronobuster for the Outlaw! Another one for Monty Brown! If there’s one thing I don’t wanna do to a big black dude, it’s that. And indeed, Sean gets pounced for his troubles. DDP gets the Cutter on JJJ for two. Outlaw tries the dumbasser on DDP, but Waltman breaks it up. DDP and James work Brown over, but both get pounced at the same time, and Brown gets a sloppy powerslam on Waltman for two. I should also point out that between DDP, Waltman and James, you have what is basically an audience of Nascar fans. Waltman gets a victory roll on Brown for the pin at 15:40. This match needed more New Jack. 1/2*
– AJ Styles v. Abyss. Winner of this gets Jarrett next month. AJ dives out of the cage at Abyss and gets a rana on the floor to start, then slides under the railing and gets another one. This dude is awesome. They slug it out on the floor, which goes not so much with the good for AJ, but Abyss whips him at the railing and he JUMPS it, into the crowd, and then springs back from a riser onto Abyss at ringside. Good god put the title on this guy and let him run with it this time instead of pulling a HHH on him like last time. Abyss hammers on him into the crowd, however, and they head up the stairs, where AJ fights back with stiff kicks. Abyss goozles him and tosses him into the fencing at the top of the stairs, however. Back down we go and Abyss rams him into the cage, then slams the door on his head when he’s trying to get into the ring and actually start the match. That’s one of the best cage door sells I’ve ever seen. AJ gets up, so Abyss does it again. The lesson: Stay down. AJ starts bleeding and Abyss pounds on the cut and brings his trusty thumbtacks into the ring. And now the match actually starts, as Abyss wedges a chair into the corner and brings his chain into play, too, choking AJ down with it. AJ fights up, so Abyss gives him a big boot and AJ does the somersault sell. Abyss wraps the chain up in the corner and tries to send AJ into it, but he fights him off, so Abyss lets him charge and then tosses him onto the chain instead. A crazy press slam into the cage follows, as AJ is wrestling for 14 guys tonight and bumping like Chyna at home with Waltman. Abyss goes to the neckvice and then presses him into a faceplant, as AJ is just selling everything tonight. Another press attempt is countered into a tornado DDT on the chain. That’ll work. Enzuigiri and flying headscissors mark the comeback, and they have their only mis-step thus far, as AJ tries a moonsault and Abyss misses his cue. AJ comes back with a german suplex for two. He tries the Styles Clash, but Abyss counters and tries a chokeslam, which AJ reverses to a rollup for two. Corner clothesline, but AJ gets too fancy and walks into the black hole slam, and Abyss gets two. He goes for the bag of tacks and dumps them on the mat, but AJ spins out of a slam on them. Abyss opts for a powerbomb instead, but AJ reverses to a piledriver on the tacks. That gets two. AJ goes up , but Abyss truly thinks outside the box by tossing the ref into the cage to knock him down. That’s BRILLIANT. Abyss brings the chain up to the top of the cage and tries to hang AJ up there, but only gets a choke out of it. He goes for a chokeslam, but AJ reverses to a powerbomb from the top of the cage, onto the tacks, and it’s goodnight Irene at 11:38, plus another 5 minutes or so of brawling before the bell. Now THAT was a brawl. **** AJ Styles is the f*cking MAN right now and can do anything, I think.