TNA: In the Zone for 6/15/06
In a word, uninspiring. I write this column, usually hyped from watching what I consider the best wrestling show on television. I love watching workers that put on matches for the sheer joy of what they do. I love good Heels that know what it means to make people hate them, and faces that are loved by all. I love insane spots and sound technical wrestling. I love chair shots. I love submission moves. I love the physical intensity, and the comedy, that comes out when two or more guys get in the ring and really work it out.
Thus, it is with a heavy heart that I tell you that you can’t expect any of that from TNA this week. There was action, but it was the kind of Paint by Numbers action that I have come to despise. You might say that despise is too strong of a word to use, but I don’t think so.
So this week I am not going to talk much about the matches I don’t really think that ANY of them were all that important. They sure as hell weren’t monumental. Instead I’m going to tell you my opinions on a few things. I figure that is you are reading my column, you do so because you like my opinions, and want to hear more. (Either that or you think I’m an asshole, and want to hear more!)
This week we get Captain Charisma out first thing. Not to wrestle, but to cut a promo saying again what he has said before. He will be the first champ to retain in the King of the Mountain match. Well, as there have only been two in the past, I can’t say that I find a discernable pattern in those events. Sure, the champ going in has yet to retain, but I don’t see the need to make such a big deal about it. Sting comes out, and Cage asks him if he’s just there to steal his thunder. Funny, I don’t ever remember seeing Christian on Thunder. Sting assures him that he is only in TNA to take out Jarrett.
Joy. If anyone can keep Jarrett off of my TV, I’ll appreciate it.
So, what needs to happen here? Are we working towards a Sting/Christian confrontation? They both claim to respect each other. Are the TNA fans ready for this sort of Face versus Face action? I hope so, because the only way to pull this mess out is to allow these two to go at it after Sting wins the title in the KotM match. One way to showcase these guys would be an hour long Iron Man match, during which Sting passes the torch to Cage, dropping the title back to him. I like Cage as champ, but would like to see him face some real challenges. Abyss was a joke, even with all of the extra stuff they threw in with Alex Shelley, and the stalking.
Next we get the Diamonds in the Rough versus the Naturals. The DitR win via a chain shot, causing Andy and Chase to drop another match, and fall further down the ladder. That’s okay, though, because the true story here isn’t this match. Like I said at the beginning, Uninspired is the word of the day. TNA has dumbed Elix Skipper down to the point that I don’t even see the spark in his eyes that he used to have in XXX. I really think he might not even care anymore. Gone are the days of walking the tops of cages. Also gone seems to be the signs of personality we had from Simon. Put him back on commentary, hopefully in place of Don West.
As I said, the match here wasn’t the story. The story was Shane Douglas, the Franchise. Shane comes out, and gets the crowd fired up. He gets the Naturals fired up. He pulls the Chris Candido card, and gets ME fired up. He even takes his shots at the new ECW. He claims that he’s going to lead the Naturals back to the top of TNA.
Again I ask, what needs to happen here? First off, as I said, Simon Diamond needs to get on the mike. The guy has skills in the ring, but as a manager, he isn’t using them anyway. He can do SO much more at the announce table. Next is Skipper. He needs to turn HARD on David Young. A “Being held down” storyline would be compelling, and probably too close to the truth. And the Naturals? Well, let’s just see where Shane is planning to take them.
As an aside, we saw more of the LAX “Border” angle in this match. Note to TNA Management: Pull the trigger on this shit, or make it go away.
The promo for Samoa Joe versus Scott Steiner looked good. Too bad Scotty can neither hold a candle to Joe’s talent, nor wrestle the kind of match that he could ten years ago. I have no suggestions for this one. It is what it is.
I’m not even going to talk about Nash versus Mr. X beyond the fact that they are WASTING my favorite TNA guy. Shelley had better pay this off by showing his loyalty to the X-Division.
You know, it’s pretty bad when the clips from the House show are the best wrestling we’ve had thus far.
The last match is an 8-man tag team match. Bobby Roode, Monte Brown, and America’s Most Wanted versus AJ Styles, Christopher Daniels, Raven, and Rhino. I really like that AJ and Daniels are sporting matching trunks. Nice nod to tag team continuity. Raven limps to the ring, but still somehow manages to be the guy in there I would least want mad at me. This match doesn’t really showcase any of the guys in it. Each combatant gets to hit at least on of his spots, but no one really gets the chance to shine. The Pounce gets the win for Monte and Company. Woopty F’n Doo. This was actually really boring, with the most everyone painting the picture by numbers.
My opinions here? First, no more 8 man action. PLEASE! An AJ Styles heel turn when they fail to take the titles would be awesome. That cocky bastard deserves to have a run as the company’s top heel. Sting takes out Jarrett for at least 2 months, and AJ gets to run with the ball. AJ and Monte versus Daniels and the Truth… Think about it. Raven needs to start surrounding himself with followers again. He is obviously hurt, and needs someone to carry his burden, even if for just a little while. The Bobby Roode push needs to end. This guy impresses me NOT AT ALL. AMW just needs to get back to regular tag action. Maybe a feud with, I dunno, some Canadians?
We get a preview of Slammiversery. I won’t be watching it. Sorry. Maybe the next PPV will hold more promise.
Oh, I almost forgot. One guy really impressed me this week. If he can get out of the role of interviewer, and bring back the passion that he did this week, Shane Douglas will most definitely be In The Zone.
TNA, please get it back, huh?