Hey guys and girls, my name is Joel “Chrononaut” Geraghty, a 26-year-old lifelong wrestling fan. I was a huge WWF/E fan for most of that time, until last year when TNA debuted on SpikeTV. I had already lost most of my interest in the WWE product, but couldn’t imagine not watching wrestling every week, so TNA really reignited my love for this business, as corny as it sounds. I’ve been doing TNA recaps on Scott Keith’s blog as well as my own for a couple of months now, and I was asked if I’d be interested in doing the same here on Inside Pulse. I jumped at the opportunity, so here we are. I am always interested in hearing any type of feedback, be it positive or negative, so feel free to drop me an email. With that out of the way, let’s get to the show!
The Chrononaut Chronicles: TNA iMPACT! — Thursday, August 10, 2006
– A video recap of last week’s LAX and Jarrett angles opens things before we go to Jeremy Borash outside Jim Cornette’s office, where Eric Young is camped out. Literally, with a tent and everything, as he waits for his big meeting. Eric asks JB’s advice on power ties and has a big gift-wrapped box, declaring it “Christmas in July” until Borash informs him it’s August. Young looks confused as we go to the usual Impact opening.
– Rhino roars to the ring to talk about the Falls Count Anywhere three-way with Samoa Joe and Monty Brown this Sunday at Hard Justice. The War Machine steps out to ringside and states that he might just Gore his opponents over the border into “Little Mexico” a.k.a. the Spanish announce position. Rhino then takes us on a tour of the Impact Zone, going through the crowd, and says he’ll be able to do whatever he wants on Sunday, but the Alpha Male blindsides him and tosses him into a guardrail before heading to the ring and promising to show why he is the top of the food chain. Joe’s music interrupts the PPPOOOOOUUUUUUNNNNNNCCCCCEEEE line and they slug it out as Rhino comes in and the brawl rages until TNA Security flood in to keep the three warriors separated. Good way to build up the potential for a wild, unpredictable brawl.
– The first part of a video feature on the Sting/Jarrett feud takes us back to New Year’s Eve when the announcement of Sting’s return to TNA was made by Christian. Oddly, we skip over the actual tag match at Final Resolution and go to January 28, when Sting announced that he didn’t want to taint his memory and said goodbye. According to the voiceover, Jarrett doubted Sting’s sincerity. Um, what? Actually, Jarrett was convinced Sting was gone; Eric Young was the one who kept saying Sting wasn’t really gone. Oh well, whatever.
– Kevin Nash & Alex Shelley & Johnny Devine vs. Chris Sabin & Jay Lethal & Sonjay Dutt
During the introductions, Brother Runt is shown up over the entrance tunnel holding a “COME GET ME ABYSS” sign. Shelley asks to start for his team, but Sonjay snaps off a huracanrana, an armdrag, and a drop-toehold, followed by a somersault splash and a standing moonsault across the back for a two-count. Dutt tags Sabin as Shelley tags Nash, who suddenly gets something in his eye and sadly must tag out to Devine. Sabin drop-toeholds Devine and dropkicks him as we go to break. When we come back, Lethal gets two on Devine after a double Russian legsweep from he and Sabin while Runt is now in the rafters holding a sign that reads “HARD JUSTICE TONIGHT!”
Devine turns the tables on Lethal and Nash is more than happy to tag in now that Jay is in trouble. Big Kev sideslams Lethal for two and knocks Dutt & Sabin off the apron before tagging Shelley, who dropkicks Lethal in the head as Nash holds him in a backbreaker. Lethal nails Shelley with a heelkick off the middle turnbuckle and tags Sonjay while Alex tags Johnny. Sonjay unloads on Devine and dropkicks Nash’s knee, then decks him with an enzuigiri. Devine whips Dutt to the ropes and Sabin makes the blind tag, so Sonjay ducks a clothesline and goes over the top to wipe out Shelley on the floor while Sabin plants Devine with the Cradle Shock for the 1-2-3. Well, I guess he’s not winning on Sunday. Jerry Lynn watches from the stage as the X Division babyfaces celebrate.
– Chapter Two of the Sting/Jarrett saga covers Sting’s family being videotaped, causing him to return at Destination X for revenge. Jarrett says Sting came back to fight for his family, but on Sunday, JJ is fighting for his career.
– Borash is still outside Cornette’s office with Eric Young when Larry Zbysko shows up and announces that Jay Lethal has been added to the X Division Title match at Hard Justice, making it a three-way. Cornette emerges from his office and makes sure Larry added Lethal like he told him to, then tells JB to keep the cameras around for Eric’s meeting later. Cornette goes back in his office after a funny look at Larry’s Bischoff wig and Slick Johnson arrives to ask Larry the age-old question: “Toupee, or not toupee?” Pointless. Either find Slick something to do or drop it.
– Homicide vs. Christopher Daniels
Moody Jack Melendez performs Homicide’s ring intro in Spanish as Konnan accompanies him. They run off the ropes early on until Daniels armdrags Homicide and hits the heelkick before curb-stomping Homicide’s face into the mat and choking him with his own shirt. Homicide bails out to ringside and throws a chair in the ring which Daniels picks up. The ref tries to pull it away as Homicide comes in and blindsides the Fallen Angel to gain control, popping him with a spinning back-elbow for two. Homicide tosses Daniels to the floor, where Konnan attacks him while the Notorious 187 distracts the ref. Konnan rolls Daniels back in and Homicide gets two before slamming the co-NWA Tag Team Champion with two vertical suplexes and a Falcon Arrow, Three Amigos style.
Homicide goes to the top, but Daniels slams him to the mat and clotheslines him in the corner as Runt is shown with his sign in the crowd. STO gets two for Daniels, but Homicide flips out of a back suplex and Cuts him for two. Daniels fights back and goes for the Angel’s Wings, but Homicide blocks it so Daniels drops him with the reverse STO and locks in the Koji Clutch. I love that hold. Konnan distracts the ref while Hernandez runs in and hurls Daniels with the overhead throat toss, which is now called the “Crackerjack”. Homicide sells the shoulder as he covers Daniels for the three-count. Afterwards, the ref runs in fear as LAX assault Daniels until A.J. Styles runs in with a chair and whacks Homicide & Hernandez. A.J. rips off his neckbrace and doesn’t show any signs of pain (sigh) as he attends to the Fallen Angel.
– The third part of Sting/Jarrett takes us back to the Lethal Lockdown match, then to Sacrifice, where Sting chose “the future of TNA”, Samoa Joe, as his partner against Jarrett & Steiner. Jarrett points out that Sting found out that night he couldn’t trust many members of the TNA roster as Joe left him to get beaten down after the match.
– Abyss vs. Shark Boy
It would be cool if Runt had mugged Shark Boy in the back and came out in Sharky’s costume to get at Abyss, but alas, there’s Runt setting up a ladder on the stage to watch the action, holding a “Why Wait Until Sunday?” sign. The distraction allows Sharky to jump on the Monster’s back, but Abyss doesn’t waste much time in squashing him with the Black Hole Slam.
Afterwards, James Mitchell says that Runt must think he’s pretty funny and orders Abyss to get him, but Runt leaps off the top of the entrance tunnel and flattens the Monster on the ramp. That was a pretty wild dive. Abyss brings Runt to the ring on his back and grabs him by the throat as Raven watches from the bleachers, but Runt bites the Monster’s hand to escape. Abyss presses Runt overhead, but the former Spike slips out the back door and plants Abyss with the Acid Drop. Yes, Tenay actually called it that.
– The next part of the Sting/Jarrett story takes place at Slammiversary, where Jarrett won the NWA Title and made clear that he is “the most hated man in wrestling”. Man, you’d almost think Jarrett was trying to put himself over as well as Sting in these segments.
– The final chapter in the saga takes us back to Victory Road, where Sting “astounded the world” by returning after Jarrett blinded him with gasoline to win the Road To Victory. Sting says he’ll have Christian and Jarrett will have Steiner at Hard Justice, as the voiceover tells us that Sting is finally set to fulfill his destiny this Sunday after an eight-month journey.
– Borash is on the scene outside Cornette’s office for the big meeting. Eric Young presents Cornette with a Wendy’s meal and a bottle of Tennessee whiskey, but James E. reminds him he’s from Kentucky so Eric produces Bullet Bourbon bottled in Kentucky. Finally, Eric pulls out a “hand-crafted” tennis racket with the initials “JC” in what Eric claims are real diamonds. Cornette isn’t impressed with the gifts (what a prick) but he’s all about opportunity, so he books Eric against Johnny Devine at Hard Justice because the Paparazzi are starting to tick him off. Cornette warns Eric he better not lose, as Slick Johnson interrupts and takes Cornette away because the main event is about to begin.
– Scott Steiner vs. Christian Cage
Jim Cornette joins Tenay and West for his “brainchild” of a main event and shows why he should be on commentary every week. Steiner easily shoves Cage down when they lock up, so Christian uses his superior agility and rolls up Steiner for a one-count. Steiner blocks a monkeyflip and presses Christian overhead, but he slips out and tries for the Unprettier. Big Poppa Pump pushes him off to the corner and eats an elbow as Christian bites his forehead and charges, but Steiner tosses him over the top. Steiner assaults Cage on the floor as we go to break. When we come back, Steiner drops the flexing elbow and stops the pin to do pushups instead.
Belly-to-belly gets two, but Christian comes back with a flying clothesline off the ropes for two. Christian drops Steiner with the inverted DDT for another two and drop-toeholds him throat-first across the middle rope, then stands on the back of his neck to choke him on the rope. Steiner catches Christian in an overhead belly-to-belly and charges into the corner, but runs into a pair of boots and Christian covers him with his feet on the ropes for two. Christian goes to the top, but Steiner meets him up there and slams him down with a super Samoan Drop before locking in the Steiner Recliner. Steiner pulls him away from the ropes, so Christian bites his way out and goes for the Unprettier, but Jeff “Of Course” Jarrett runs in for the disqualification and inadvertently hits Steiner.
Christian pounds away on Jarrett and hooks him in the Unprettier, but the NWA Champion pushes him off toward Steiner, who kicks him in the junk. Jarrett stomps Cage’s knee and applies the Scorpion Deathlock, but the lights go out and when they come back on, Sting has Jarrett trapped in the Scorpion instead. Sting releases Jarrett to go after Steiner as Cornette does a tremendous hard sell of the “war” that the Hard Justice main event will be and putting over the NWA World Title as the richest prize in wrestling. Sting clears the ring and Christian presents him with the NWA gold as we go to a video package hyping this Sunday’s Hard Justice lineup to close the show.
Afterthoughts: A solid, more wrestling-oriented offering this week, although I think the main event was booked totally wrong. There should have been no pin attempts; it should have been both guys beating the hell out of each other to eliminate the other man from the PPV. If Christian turns heel and allies himself with Steiner and/or Jarrett (please God, no) I guess it will make sense, but as it was, it didn’t. The video features throughout the program and Cornette on commentary did a great job of putting over Sting/Jarrett as an epic culmination of their eight-month feud, and the LAX/Phenomenal Angels buildup has been great. Rhino’s promo did a good job of stressing the Falls Count Anywhere stipulation. On that note, here’s the lineup for Hard Justice courtesy of TNAWrestling.com and my predictions, courtesy of myself, can be found in this weekend’s Rasslin Roundtable…
– NWA World Heavyweight Title: Jeff Jarrett (with Scott Steiner) vs. Sting (with Christian Cage)
– NWA World Tag Team Title: Styles & Daniels vs. LAX
– TNA X Division Title: Senshi vs. Petey Williams vs. Jay Lethal
– Falls Count Anywhere: Rhino vs. Samoa Joe vs. Monty Brown
– X Division #1 Contender: Chris Sabin vs. Kevin Nash
– Tag Team #1 Contenders: AMW vs. James Gang vs. Naturals vs. Bentley & Kazarian
– Runt vs. Abyss
– Eric Young vs. Johnny Devine
– Gail Kim vs. Sirelda
I actually like this lineup more than Victory Road and I think the tag title, X Title, Falls Count Anywhere, Runt/Abyss, and even the four-way tag all have potential to be great matches featuring different styles. Hell, with the right booking and all the buildup behind it, even Sting/Jarrett could be a really good “old-school” style main event. I’ll be ordering it as usual. Thanks for reading, and see you in the future.