1. Kendrick v Aries was an excellent choice for an opening match and, as it turned out, my match of the night. I know some others have said other matches were better, but for me, this was it, and so it opened the show brilliantly.
2. Does anyone sell a DDT better than Austin Aries?
3. Karen Angle is the WORST actress outside of pornography or Roger Corman movies.
4. RVD v Jerry Lynn was as good as I was hoping for and came in second in the match of the night stakes. Okay, not as good as some matches from these guys Iâ€™ve seen, but still well worth it at the time. Two good matches to start a PPV â€“ good to see!
5. Samoa Joe / Matt Morgan / Crimson was technically okay (just), but felt like a disjointed mess. Bully Ray / Mr Anderson, while better than I thought it would be, was also a mess. Joe looks more unmotivatedÂ than ever before, Morgan looks like he hasnâ€™t learnt anything in years, Crimson looks lost and Anderson looks like a reject from Tough Enough (and his senton botch was the stupidest thing in a long time). Only Bully Ray looks any good, if not a few steps slow. And thusÂ the good match streak stops at 2.
6. The womenâ€™s match could have been okay, but the whole Karen Angle thing made it almost unwatchable. It was ruined by the referee refusing to count pinfalls, being so blatantly biased and just looking lost in there. And then the Traci Brooks stuff. She wasnâ€™t a ref. So this win doesnâ€™t count, right? Itâ€™s going to be bait and switch, the Dusty finish at Impact, right? Not that the in-ring action was brilliant, but it just made it all seemâ€¦ a mess. Yuck.
7. Okay, probably the worst Christopher Daniels/ AJ Styles match Iâ€™ve seen. That doesnâ€™t mean it was awful, it just means these two can do so much better. Disappointing is probably the best description here. Not sure what was going on here, but something did not â€˜clickâ€™. Were they told not to upstage the matches following them? Whatever it was, donâ€™t care.
(Interesting factoid â€“ if you consider the Cena/Punk-Punk/DelRio stuff from Summerslam as one match â€“ and I do â€“ Hulk Hogan v Sting is the 150th PPV match of 2011.)
8. The Hardy/Jarrett stuff was not a PPV segment. It was an Impact bit. Why was it on Pay Per View? Mind you, the same could be said for a lot of stuff in WWE as wellâ€¦ But, hey, the crowd got into it.
9. As far as matches go, Hulk Hogan vs Sting was freakinâ€™ awful. The post-match shenanigans, though, were what the match was about. But it does bring up 2 things: First, that crowd popped HUGE for Hulk turning a face. I mean, bigger than anything TNA have ever had before. Ever. Christ, I smiled and I knew it was coming! And I fear that wrestling, being essentially an entertainment-based pursuit (playing to the crowds), will see that and put a world title on him. Donâ€™t believe me? Watch Royal Rumble 1994. Hear that crowd popping for Diesel â€“ a heel â€“ to cheer him when he was eliminated, not because he was eliminated? Well, the back stage guys did, and thus world titles, the Outsiders, the Fingerpoke of Doom, the â€˜putting over the X-Divisionâ€™, the current CM Punk interferenceâ€¦ that all came from that crowd reacting so positively to his monster booking. Just saying. Second, some people praised this match because Hogan took 3 bumps. Well, no! Apart from Sting selling every weak move and half-arsed attack like a pro, there was nothing to praise in this match. The crowd ate it up, it was pure sports entertainment AFTER the bell, and there was an awesome feel-good moment. I felt good about the moment, and Iâ€™m a jaded old cynic! But this match was terrible. Stingâ€™s run of craptastic main events just keeps on keeping on.
(PS I rate Sting v Hulk Hogan higher than Sting v Mr Anderson and Sting v Jeff Hardy, for what itâ€™s worthâ€¦)
10. While I would have liked Roode to have gone over Angle, really, he wasnâ€™t going to do it in his first try. But there was something about this match that felt off, like they couldnâ€™t quite get it together. Kurt seemed off; his eyes were not focused, he kept looking around, he seemed not with it. I do NOT mean he was impaired, but it was like he had something else on his mind. And he seemed legitimately injured at the end of the match. Shame. It was not a bad match â€“ in fact, it was reasonably good â€“ but it felt like it could have been so much more.
Â Finally: I rated this PPV as less than Heck in a Cell. In fact, there have been 20 PPVs this year, and this ranks by me at number 11. Right in the middle. And that just about sums it up – right in the middle.
Tags: 10 Thoughts, 2011, AJ Styles, bound for glory, Hulk Hogan, Kurt Angle, mr anderson, PPV, Robert Roode, Samoa Joe, Sting, TNA