Great-ing Gimmicks of the Past: The Kings of Wrestling vs. Randy Savage

Great-ing Gimmicks of the Past: The Kings of Wrestling vs. Randy Savage – TNA, 2004

History


In November of 2004, TNA was preparing to launch monthly pay-per-views instead of their previous weekly model. The main event was selected to be Jeff Jarrett defending his NWA World title against Jeff Hardy in a ladder match. However, shenanigans were in the offing. Scott Hall had come out and announced that Kevin Nash (despite being promised) would not be there that night. Hall was later shown as allied with Jarrett.

After a promo where Jarrett said that Hardy would get nowhere without Nash in his corner, the match was on. Still, despite the odds, Hardy fought back and held his own against both Jarrett and Hall. The crowd went nuts when Nash finally came out with a guitar over each shoulder. However, Hall, Nash, and Jarrett each smashed a guitar over Hardy’s head, and then Jarrett climbed the ladder and grabbed the belt.

Afterward, Nash grabbed a microphone and informed the locker room that they were taking over. That brought AJ Styles out, who was quickly overwhelmed. The 3 Live Kru was next, only for BG James to get jackknifed and Ron Killings to get hit with the Outsider’s Edge.

Then the cameras cut to the back, where Randy Savage was seen getting out of a limo. Savage headed to the ring and stared down Hall, Nash, and Jarrett as the show ended.

(After the show, events unfolded that would affect the storyline. Savage had released a rap CD called “Be a Man,” where he had called out Hulk Hogan. Hogan was at Victory Road and tried to calm things down with Savage before offering to step out back with him so they could settle things. Savage immediately quit TNA for an “unsafe work environment” and went home.)

On the following Impact, Nash, Hall and Jarrett came out. Nash named the group the Kings of Wrestling, and then announced that they’d run Savage out of the company. Jarrett then offered anybody a shot at them.

In the main event, AJ Styles and Jeff Hardy were facing the Naturals. After Styles and Hardy won the match, Nash and Hall came out onto the ramp. Jarrett slipped through the crowd, hopped the rail, and nailed Styles and Hardy with guitar shots. That brought Hall and Nash in, who hit their finishers on the fallen Styles and Hardy. Afterward, America’s Most Wanted, Chris Sabin, Sonjay Dutt, the Amazing Red, Shark Boy, and D-Ray 3000 headed to the ring to make the save.

The next episode opened with the Kings attacking Shark Boy, D-Ray, and Red backstage.

Jarrett then defeated a wrestler named J-Rocc as Hall and Nash joined Mike Tenay and Don West on commentary. After the match, we saw a limo pulling into the parking lot.

In the main event, Kid Kash, Michael Shane, and Frankie Kazarian defeated Sonjay Dutt, Sonny Siaki, and Hector Garza after Kid Kash clocked Siaki with a coconut. That brought Shark Boy out to protest the call. The Kings came out and attacked Shark Boy, Garza, and Dutt. After that, Styles, Hardy, and Savage hit the ring. Savage clocked Jarrett and challenged the Kings to a match at Turning Point. Jarrett grabbed a microphone and accepted.

The main event on the next episode of Impact had Scott Hall taking on AJ Styles. Hall, of course, had Nash in his corner. Nash soon got involved as he clotheslined Styles from behind to give Hall a two count. Jeff Hardy tried to help Styles but only served to distract the referee. In the end, Jarrett blasted Styles with a guitar to hand the win to Hall. Afterward, Savage came out leading all of the company’s faces to rescue Styles.

The following episode of Impact ended with video of Styles and Hardy lying in the floor backstage, the victims of an assault.

That brought us to Turning Point, and the Kings weren’t ready to concede anything going into the match. After Pat Kenney (Simon Diamond) and Johnny B. Badd had defeated the New York Connection (Glenn Gilbertti (Disco Inferno) and Johnny Swinger), we cut backstage. The video showed the Kings stuffing Savage into a car which then sped away.

In the semi-main event, we had the Kings now against Hardy and Styles. Hardy and Styles fought hard, but they were soon overwhelmed by the Kings. Suddenly Savage appeared at the top of the ramp and ran to the ring. He was tagged in and pinned Jarrett for the win.

And that was that. Savage left again after Turning Point, reportedly because TNA would not agree to have him defeat Jarrett for the title (despite the fact that Savage had agreed to lose the belt back a month later).

Analysis

On the surface, it appeared a perfect plan for TNA. They bring in Hall and Nash, two wrestlers at least partially responsible for the mid 90’s boom. Hall and Nash were also fondly remembered for the New World Order.

TNA then added one of the most famous wrestlers from the 80’s and 90’s in Randy Savage. Savage still had the ability to pop the crowd as the Impact Zone went nuts when he made his debut.

However, there was also something that TNA wasn’t banking on. Savage could be unpredictable.

Problems started showing up immediately as Savage stormed out following the Hogan confrontation. To TNA’s credit, they tried to put a spin on the situation as best they could by having the Kings announce that they’d run Savage out of the company.

Savage’s return also provided a great visual as he headed to ringside to save Hardy and Styles with half the locker room following him. It showed that the locker room was willing to rally around Savage to fight back the Kings (a lesson that WCW never learned with the NWO).

Unfortunately, Savage again pushed to win the title. The problem was that at this point in time Savage was 51 years old, and TNA was not willing to put the belt on him. The end result was that Savage walked and TNA kept going. The Kings themselves would not last much longer, as the group collapsed following Nash’s title shot against Jarrett at February’s Against All Odds show.

Where are they now?

Jeff Jarrett remains with TNA. Although he has not appeared on screen since May’s Sacrifice PPV, he continues working backstage with the company.

Scott Hall vanished from TNA after the Kings of Wrestling dissolved. He has only recently come back into the wrestling spotlight as he is now competing for Carlos Colon’s World Wrestling Council in Puerto Rico. Hall is the current WWC Universal Heavyweight champion.

Kevin Nash remained with TNA after Hall left as Nash and Sean Waltman joined forces to battle Jarrett’s faction Planet Jarrett. In April of 2005, Nash suffered a staph infection and was sidelined until October. He returned and feuded with Jarrett, only to be hospitalized for chest pains the day before the Bound for Glory PPV.

Nash returned again in December for a short overseas tour, but made his full return in April of 2006. Nash was now allied with Alex Shelley, and he was feuding with the X-Division. Nash remains with TNA today and is currently managing the Motor City Machine Guns (Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin).

Randy Savage has not been seen in the wrestling world since Turning Point. He is reportedly set as a cast member on the next season of VH1’s Surreal Life.

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