For an easy to navigate archive of my TNA reviews, just visit Total Nonstop Ziegler!
Municipal Auditorium – Nashville, Tennessee – April 15, 2012
Mike Tenay and Taz are on commentary.
MATCH #1: Lethal Lockdown – Team Eric vs. Team Garett
Garett Bischoff volunteered to go first for his team, because he thinks he’s got something to prove. His first opponent is Gunner, a man he has had problems with in the past. Garett strikes first with a dropkick off the second rope. Gunner cuts him off with a hard clothesline. He dominates his much less experienced opponent right up until the time the clock runs out. Bully Ray is the next man out. Things do not look very good for Garett at the moment. Even so he tries to fight back but just gets clubbed down. Finally the sides are even when the TNA X Division Champion Austin Aries makes his way out. Aries goes right after Ray and gives Garett a much needed breather. He tries the IED but Ray cuts him off with a big boot. Aries fights back as Team Eric goes back on the advantage when Kazarian comes out. AJ Styles is next up to even the sides. He has issues with Kazarian and begins to settle them by slamming the cage door on his head. Styles is a house afire for a bit. Christopher Daniels is next out for Team Eric to give them another man advantage. They use it quite well, and then Mr. Anderson comes out swinging. Team Eric is completed by team captain Eric Bischoff, who really enjoys helping his teammates abuse his son. Finally Rob Van Dam makes his way out and the teams are complete. RVD cleans house with kicks and a Rolling Thunder on Ray. The ceiling lowers and weapons are in play. Team Garett is dominating here. Styles and Aries bring Bischoff out to the middle of the ring and Aries bodyslams him. That goes nowhere. Styles and Kazarian fight on the top rope and then climb the ceiling to the middle of the ring. Guess how that ends? Styles knocks Kazarian down and follows him with an elbow drop. RVD hits Kazarian with the Five-Star Frog Splash. Ray creams Styles with a big boot. RVD kicks a chair back in Ray’s face. Daniels hits RVD with Angel’s Wings. He goes for the Angel’s Wings on Garett, but Garett is able to counter it to a modified Ace Crusher. Eric hits his son with a kendo stick to break up the pin. He wears Garett out with the stick. Everybody besides Eric has been down for a while. Eric foolishly gloats and Garett recovers long enough to blast him with a guitar to get the pin at 25:59. Now Eric Bischoff is gone from TNA. I’m glad they did this as an opener, because the ending was extremely anti-climactic. For the most part the match was an okay garbage brawl, but no one really cares about Garett Bischoff versus his daddy.
MATCH #2: TNA Tag Team Title Match – The Motor City Machine Guns vs. Samoa Joe & Magnus
Joe and Magnus have been the Champions since 2.12.12, and this is their fourth defense. Magnus and Alex Shelley start the match. They go back and forth a bit, feeling each other out. I Think these are two awesome teams, by the way. Shelley makes the tag to Chris Sabin, and they double-team Magnus to take advantage. Magnus is able to make the tag to the big powerful Samoan. Sabin uses his quickness and lands a kick to the side of Joe’s head. Shelley tags in and hits an ax handle off the top rope. Joe clobbers him and makes the tag. Magnus tags in and the momentum continues to shift back and forth. Joe and Magnus keep Sabin isolated and wear him down. Sabin catches Joe with a tornado DDT and makes the tag. Shelley is a house afire. The champs try to cut him off on the top rope but Sabin pulls Joe down with a powerbomb. Shelley knocks Magnus down and hits a double stomp off the top rope for two. The Guns pull out more double-teams and go for the Skull & Bones but Joe grabs Sabin in the Choke! Shelley hits Magnus with Sliced Bread #2 but Joe breaks the Choke to break up that pin. The Champs try their snap mare / flying elbow drop finishing move but Shelley avoids the elbow drop. Shelley tries Sliced Bread #2 on Magnus again but this time Magnus slips out of it and hits a Michinoku Driver. Joe then hits Shelley with a senton with Sabin on his back! The Champs then hit the snap mare / flying elbow drop to get the pin on Shelley and retain the titles at 11:19. These two teams showed great chemistry and I would have like to see a longer program between them. For essentially a throwaway title defense this was pretty good.
MATCH #3: TNA Television Title Match – Robbie E vs. Brother Devon
Devon has been the Champion since 3.18.12, and this is his first defense. E attacks right away and tries to keep Devon on the mat. Every time Devon tries to fire up E cuts him right off. I’m surprised E is dominating like this in the early going. E goes up top and Devon knocks him down on his crotch. Devon unleashes a flurry of offense now and crushes E in the corner. He hits a spinebuster to get the pin at 3:24. That belonged on TV.
Robbie T comes in and attacks the TV Champion and they lay him out. I think this led to a three-way match on the next pay-per-view but I’m not certain.
MATCH #4: TNA Knockouts Title Match – Velvet Sky vs. Gail Kim
Kim has been the Champion since 11.13.11, and this is her fifth defense. She has Madison Rayne in her corner. Rayne distracts Sky right away and Kim attacks before the bell. Kim tries a suplex but Sky counters with an inside cradle for two. Sky keeps up the pressure with a series of pinning combinations for two-counts. Kim cuts her off and goes to work. Sky fights back with her terrible offense. Kim responds with a missile dropkick for two. She wears Sky down for a bit but then misses a charge in the corner. Both women are down. They get up and trade strikes. Sky wins that battle and unleashes a flurry of offense, including a nice headscissors and a basement dropkick. She follows with a bulldog. They take the battle to the top rope and Sky hits a Sunset Bomb! Kim luckily reaches the ropes. She tries to escape through the door but Sky tries an O’Connor Roll. Kim rolls through that . and grabs a handful of tights to score the pin at 7:25. That was surprisingly decent given Velvet Sky was in it.
Ric Flair and Hulk Hogan
Flair comes out unannounced and makes fun of the crowd for a bit. He says he’s pissed off at Hulk Hogan for ending Eric Bischoff’s career tonight. They exchange threats and Hogan knocks Flair out with a punch. Do the fans in the Impact Zone need to see these two that bad? This was a pointless segment.
MATCH #5: “The Blueprint” Matt Morgan vs. Crimson
For the life of me I don’t recall who is the heel and who is the babyface amongst these former Tag Team Championship partners. Crimson tries escaping early so I’m guessing it’s him. Morgan takes the early advantage and has a chance to walk out the cage but he decides to put more hurting on his opponent. That proves to be a mistake as Crimson attacks Morgan’s knee. Crimson keeps Morgan on the mat and continues to wear him down. He hits a spinebuster for a two-count. Morgan fights back with a discuss clothesline and both men are down. Back on their feet Morgan is firmly in control now. Morgan hits a nice back suplex. He crushes Crimson against the cage with a cross body block. Morgan goes for the Carbon Footprint but Crimson avoids it. Crimson tries to escape over the top of the cage but Morgan brings him back in. They fight on the top rope and Morgan gets knocked down on the top rope right on his crotch. Morgan’s leg is trapped in the ropes now and Crimson takes the opportunity to escape the cage and win the bout at 8:00. These two have zero chemistry and this was a rather dull, plodding, TV-style match.
MATCH #6: Kurt Angle vs. “The Charismatic Enigma” Jeff Hardy
Angle takes the first advantage and tries to keep Hardy grounded. That’s always a good game plan if you’re Kurt Angle and you’re facing Jeff Hardy. When Hardy tries to build some momentum Angle cuts him off with an eye gouge. Hardy hits the elevated dropkick in the corner and stomps Angle down in the corner. He tries to build momentum but Angle is able to whip him face-first into the cage. Angle commences to putting a beating on Hardy, and it looks like the Charismatic Enigma is busted open. Hardy fights back and sends Angle into the cage and flies at him with a clothesline. Both men get to their feet and Hardy is on a roll. Hardy hits Whisper in the Wind (sort of) for a two-count. He uses a headscissors to send Angle face-first into the cage. Hardy follows up with a version of the Twist of Fate but ending it with a Stunner rather than an Ace Crusher. He goes up top and Angle brings him down with an Angle Slam! Angle covers and only gets two. Angle climbs up and Hardy pulls him down. Hardy goes up and hits a reverse splash I guess is the best way to describe it. Either way it only gets two. Hardy tries to escape out the door but Angle pulls him back in with the Ankle Lock. Amazingly, Hardy reverses to an Ankle Lock of his own! Angle escapes it but Hardy hits the Twist of Fate. Hardy goes up top and hits the Swanton Bomb. He hits another Swanton Bomb and this time covers but only gets two! Angle pulls Hardy’s face into the cage. He hits an Angle Slam for another two-count. The straps come down but it’s Hardy who hits an Angle Slam this time! Hardy’s shirt comes off and he goes up to the top of the cage to hit another Swanton! That’s enough to get the pin at 14:51. That was a well worked cage match between two pros. They built well to the finish, which was the requisite big spot from Hardy. Good stuff here.
MATCH #7: TNA Knockouts Tag Team Title Match – Rosita & Sarita vs. Eric Young & ODB
Young and ODB have been the Champions since 3.8.12, and this is their second defense. ODB attacks Rosita and Sarita right away, because she’s mad at them for trying to seduce her husband, which I think they did just to irritate her. Girls are so catty. Anyway, ODB dominates and Eric Young acts like a total doofus. The challengers take control and wear ODB down. Rosita and Sarita get ODB in a compromising position so they go hit on Young again. ODB drinks some liquid courage and is sort of a house afire. She hits Rosita with a TKO for the pin at 4:26. That was not so good but a necessary match to cool the crowd off between Angle / Hardy and the main event. Also, as of this writing (March 5, 2013), this is the last TNA Knockouts Tag Team Title defense.
MATCH #8: TNA World Heavyweight Title Match – James Storm vs. Bobby Roode
Roode has been the Champion since 11.3.11, and this is his ninth defense. Storm has been built up as the biggest babyface ever, and this is pretty much his hometown. He attacks Roode at ringside before they even make their way into the cage. Storm throws Roode around ringside and looks like a man with something to prove. He spits beer in Roode’s eyes and slams him of the announce table. Roode fights back and they both try to slam each other into the cage. Storm whips Roode into the barricade. He tries to use a steel chair but Roode avoids it and hits a Northern Lariat right into the cage. Roode grabs the six-pack of beer and sets it aside for later. Storm is already busted open. They finally make their way into the cage to start the match officially.
Roode is firmly in control and the crowd is oddly silent. Storm tries to fight up but Roode viciously cuts him off and continues the assault as Storm’s poor wife watches on from the crowd. Roode whips Storm into the corner and then runs right into an elbow. Storm tries a charge but Roode clobbers him with a clothesline for a two-count. Roode continues to wear Storm down and trash talk him at the same time. Finally Storm fires up and unleashes a flurry of strikes and kicks. Roode tries to flee but Storm will have nothing to do with that. Storm tries the Eye of the Storm but Roode slips out and instead Storm hits a catapult into the cage. He throws Roode into the cage again and I think Roode is busted open now. This time Storm hits Eye of the Storm for a near-fall. Roode catches Storm off the ropes with a spinebuster for two. Storm avoids a charge and hits a Codebreaker and a lungblower for a two-count. Roode backdrops Storm into the cage and both men are down. The Champion tries to crawl out the cage but Storm brings him back in. Roode locks on a Crossface and Storm rolls his way to the ropes. They fight up on the top rope and Roode tries to climb over Storm to get over the cage. Roode kicks Storm down and gets over the top but Storm is able to zip back up there and pull him in. They resume the fight on the top rope and slam each other into the cage. Storm wins the battle and sends Roode crashing back to the mat. He jumps off the top rope right into a Codebreaker and he begins tuning up the band. The crowd finally wakes up. Roode pulls the referee in front and he takes the Last Call. Roode makes outside referee Earl Hebner give him a beer bottle. Why would Hebner do that? Roode then smashes the bottle on Storm’s head. Hebner gets in the ring to make the count but Storm kicks out! Storm hits a Last Call from out of nowhere! Both men are down. They rise back to their feet and Storm his another Last Call and this one sends Roode crashing through the door and to the floor, effectively giving the match to Roode at an official time of 19:10. What a kick the balls to the entire audience. They built up James Storm as the conquering babyface, and then they book the match with him bleeding early on and needing to overcome adversity, only to lose the match by being stupid? If there was ever a time to do the obvious ending, THIS was it. The match was going along really well until the bullcrap with Hebner and just the finish itself. James Storm is now TNA’s version of Lex Luger, and to this day he still hasn’t recovered from this idiotic defeat.
Tags: Bobby Roode, James Storm, Jeff Hardy, lockdown