Here are some quick results for the TNA house show in Louisville tonight:
Petey Williams/Sonjay Dutt were first to take on Robert Roode/Eric Young. Eric Young spent most of the match playing to the crowd and “accidentally” being out of position whenever Roode wanted to make a tag or wanted him to help cheat. The match ended when Young turned on Roode and helped Sonjay and Petey pin Roode.
Christopher Daniels was next and took on Senshi. The crowd was firmly behind Daniels, who had to take to the microphone to try and get the crowd to boo him. In the end, Daniels won by Angel’s Wings.
LAX took on the Naturals next. Surprisingly, the crowd was backing LAX, which forced the Naturals to play the heel role. The end was never really in doubt as Hernandez pinned Chase Stevens after a Border Toss.
Jim Cornette came out and addressed the crowd, talking about the Louisville Garden’s wrestling history, and how proud he was to be adding to that history. He also promised that TNA would be back in the building by the end of the year, and hinted at a possible PPV. (The PPV hint would be dropped later in the night by Jeremy Borash as well.)
After that, Cornette brought out Eric Young. (One of the referees was taping this segment, so it may show up on Impact.) Cornette asked Young who his friend was. Young finally gave in and started to whisper in Cornette’s ear when Bobby Roode’s music hit and he and Miss Brooks came out to the ring. Roode shoved Cornette out of the ring and grabbed a chair, demanding Young tell him who his friend was. As Roode prepared to clock Eric, Jeff Jarrett’s music hit. Jarrett came out and drilled Roode with the acoustic equalizer and then left with Young.
Rhino came out next for a Derby City Street Fight. One problem – his opponent was supposed to be Abyss, who wasn’t there after the beatdown he suffered on Impact. Rhino threw out an open challenge, and that brought out Doug Basham and the Damaja. After choosing to fight Doug (actually both of them) Rhino gored Doug through a table for the win.
That brought us to intermission, with LAX heading to the merchandise table to sign autographs.
After intermission, we had Jackie Moore scheduled to take on Gail Kim. It wasn’t long before Chris Harris and James Storm were sent back to the locker room. Eventually the referee gave up on trying to separate the former AMW teammates and made the match a mixed tag that Harris won after hitting Storm with the Catatonic.
Next up was AJ Styles taking on Samoa Joe. The two put on an excellent match which Joe won by muscle buster.
The main event saw Kurt Angle challenging Christian Cage for the NWA World Heavyweight title. The crowd was torn with both Angle and Cage having strong support. In the end it took interference from AJ Styles to enable Christian to hit the Unprettier to retain.
After the match, Cage and Styles were beating down Angle when Abyss’s music hit. Abyss came down and hit the Shock Treatment on Styles then got ready to hit the Black Hole Slam on Cage. Styles caught Cage’s leg and pulled him out of the ring. After that Angle and Abyss stared at each other before Abyss headed to the back.
The Inside Pulse
Overall, TNA really pulled out the stops. The entire event was extremely organized. A touch that really stood out to me was the fact that, while waiting for the meet and greet, we were told that Angle was running late and if he didn’t make it there in time they would set up a signing with him after the show. Keep in mind that we had no idea who to expect and they could have simply not told anyone and proceeded with business as usual. (The meet and greet lineup turned out to be Angle, Rhino, Samoa Joe, Gail Kim, AJ Styles, and Christian Cage.) Sending LAX out to sign during intermission was another nice way to build fan loyalty.
The booking was also well-aimed at the area. Cornette has never made a secret of his Louisville roots. Jeff Jarrett spent years in the USWA, which held shows every Tuesday night at the Gardens. Doug Basham and Damaja were OVW alumni, and well acquainted with the Louisville Garden themselves. Despite the fact that Jarrett hadn’t revealed himself as Young’s friend yet and the Bashams hadn’t debuted, it was a strong piece of booking to have all three in their “home” arena.
I also feel like I should point out that every one from Jeremy Borash to LAX to Angle and Christian were extremely pleasant and good to the fans. As far as I could tell, if there was a signing going on, the wrestlers signing stayed until everyone got their signature. In addition to that, two fans caught a shirt that was thrown to the crowd. One finally let go (despite having a stronger grip on the shirt) and let the other guy have it. As the fan with the shirt headed back to his seat, a security person headed up to Borash and got another shirt for the fan who’d avoided a fight.
Although the building wasn’t completely full, there was a very respectable turnout. The floor seats looked completely filled and the bleachers looked about half full. Kudos to TNA for a great show, and I for one am already looking forward to their next visit.