TNA rolls on on the road to Sacrifice in about a month. Magnus is going to be defending that championship before then though. Of Abyss, Eric Young, and Samoa Joe, will one of them be able to wrestle the gold away from Magnus, or will he continue on to Sacrifice? Also, will Gunner extract some revenge on James Storm for beating up his dad last week?
Show Open, taped in Orlando, FL on 3/15 and 3/16
They recap James Storm attacking Gunner and his dad.
MVP comes to the ring, with a recap of the end of last week's show. MVP addresses Abyss, saying he came to TNA to ensure talent got over on talent, rather than alliances. He says he needs to make an executive decision. Magnus' music cuts him off.
Magnus comes out with Abyss. He says that before MVP says anything wrong, he needs to know Abyss works for Magnus, not TNA. Magnus says that Abyss is under his control, not MVP, and the only way Abyss will be in the ring is if Magnus is. MVP says that's fine and tells Abyss if he puts his hands on MVP again, he will show him the "most vicious predator."
MVP asks if Abyss wants to be the world's ugliest valet or a TNA Championship shot. Magnus objects, but MVP says that Magnus will be in the ring at the same time so they would be side by side. He makes it a three-way by adding in Samoa Joe and makes it official for next week.
Joe comes out and complains about having a fair chance to face Magnus and now working a handicap match. MVP says it's a triple threat and Magnus won't be able to control Abyss. Joe says MVP is about to have a hard time controlling him. Magnus goes to leave, but Joe attacks. MVP waits a moment, but then jumps Abyss. Eric Young runs in and attacks Abyss and the brawl goes to commercial.
Bizzare brawl. MVP waited, then jumped in then Eric Young runs in from nowhere? Also feels like they're blowing through the Abyss/Magnus union pretty fast but I guess that will play out. The talking itself was fine.
After the brawl, EY demands a slot in the title match to face Abyss and so Joe gets a fair shot. MVP tells EY he hasn't earned it yet. EY runs down his titles and says that some folks call him the most entertaining wrestler in the world today.
Joe tells him no one doubts the work EY had put in but he's not at the head of the line. He says until MVP delivers what he wants, EY gets nothing. MVP says it's supposed to be an even playing field, and since EY is willing to step up, he will make it a four way. Joe shoves EY, and EY tackles him. They brawl but the crowd doesn't care. MVP calls for officials to separate them. Joe grabs a mic and demands to face EY in a match tonight, which MVP books.
EY can work, and he has talent and his comedic work is alright too. But he doesn't belong in the main event picture and the live crowd didn't react much either.
Bully Ray holds up his phone and says his Twitter is back. He says Bobby Roode messed with him and now he will get lots of tables.
The Wolves grab MVP coming through the curtain and asked for a match against Magnus and Abyss. MVP sets it up.
Out in the woods, Ethan Carter III and Rockstar Spud are looking for Willow.
Carter was too quirky in WWE to make sense, and it's going to go there tonight I would guess.
Back in the woods, EC3 talks up Spud, and Spud's too scared to find Willow.
Match #1 - The Wolves vs. Magnus and Abyss
The Wolves get early control, but Abyss makes a blind tag and attacks both men. Out of break, Magnus works on Edwards. Davey takes the hot tag and takes out Abyss then goes after Magnus. Abyss comes back to the ring, but the Wolves dispose of him again. Eddie gets the tag back in, Davey dives on Abyss outside to keep him out and Eddie locks Magnus in a single crab. Magnus taps immediately.
Magnus waves off the Wolves as Taz reminds us his title was not on the line tonight. Abyss isn't happy and he grabs the belt from the table. He walks over to Magnus but refuses to give him the belt.
A lot happened here, but there's some good. The match was decent. Abyss is the last guy I want to see work a match, but it was well done. Taz put a good touch in his commentary of pointing out why Magnus tapped fast. I like that logic and it worked for me. But overall it does feel like the Abyss/Magnus pairing will split fast.
Angelina Love comes to the ring and calls out Velvet Sky. Sky tells her she's upset that Love attacked Madison. Angelina says she did it for Velvet because Velvet is soft without Angelina. She says Velvet had style and swagger in the Beautiful People and now she doesn't. Velvet says things have changed. Angelina tells Velvet she has. She tells Velvet to pick a side before Angelina is done facing Madison tonight, and she should pick based on what she wants, not what Angelina says.
To this point these two have only talked, so it cools my feelings about what's going on here. It seems obvious that Velvet will join Angelina later in the show. A good attempt though.
We get a recap video of the history between Storm and Gunner.
EC3 and Spud are still in the woods looking for Willow. They find a barn, but Spud won't go in. EC3 mocks him then goes inside. Spud is standing outside, and Willow drags him away. EC3 realizes Spud is gone and hollers for him, but all he gets in return is a Willow laugh in the distance.
We get more recap of the story between Gunner and Storm.
Bully Ray makes his way out ot a good reaction. He waves toward the back and people bring all sorts of tables out and set them up around the ring. Tenay refers to them as fans and they exit after the tables are up. Ray asks if there's enough tables. He says he wanted more but this was all they had. He asks "do you know who I am?" and says he is the guy who got rid of Dixie Carter. He tells Bobby Roode that he saved him from becoming another Dixie and wrestling doesn't need another owner like Dixie Carter.
Admittedly, I gave that a standing ovation.
Ray asks the fans how many tables they want to see Roode go through. Roode comes out and says he was the guy who spit in Dixie's face before it was cool, and he tricked Ray into coming to Nashville for a beating. He rips off Ray's gimmick and Ray orders him to get in the ring. Roode says he runs things and decides when and where. Ray says he decides when and where and the fans say now. Roode says it won't happen, and turns to leave.
Ray attacks him from behind and drags him to ringside. He beats up Roode and puts him on a table. Roode moves, and Ray misses his chop and hits the table instead. Roode goes to work on the hand. He throws Ray into the post and sets up a table. Ray cues a piledriver, but Roode dumps him into the ring.
Ray battles back and tries to kick Roode on a table. Roode moves and Ray gets stuck in the table. Once free, Ray teases the table spot again. Roode escapes and dodges Ray, and he takes the table. Tenay tries to keep heat on Ray by saying Roode only merely survived.
I really liked this. Roode was a dumbass for turning his back, but this was well done. Even Tenay's weak line at the end didn't really kill this segment. He could have said just about anything else though because that stuck out pretty bad.
Backstage, Abyss has the title. He pops off at Magnus for losing earlier and says he hates it. Magnus says he better get used to it because he had to do it again next week. He asks Abyss what he will do when he fires him, and when Abyss didn't answer Magnus storms off.
Magnus showed some good believability there. Abyss was fine, I just hate his heavy breathing thing and he didn't do that here. Good segment.
Knux is shown talking to a woman in some pretty short shorts. Knux looks over some damage of arcade stuff while there's pictures of the area flooded. The woman gets on Knux for chasing his dream while they struggle to get by. They cut to a different shot and the woman tells Knux to talk to his dad before they talk.
Match #2 - Angelina Love vs. Madison Rayne
Angelina gets attacked by Madison and she attacks fast. Velvet walks out to watch. Angelina dumps Madison to the floor and Velvet encourages her. Angelina yells at Velvet for it. Madison dumps Angelina to the floor and Angelina continues to yell at Velvet. Madison hits her with a baseball slide and throws Angelina back in the ring. The official argues with Angelina, so Velvet uses the distraction to kick Madison and hit her with a DDT. She throws Madison in and Angelina covers for the win.
Afterward, Velvet laughs and celebrates with Angelina.
Yeah, this was the expected result from the earlier promo, but it still felt lacking a little.
Backstage, ODB tells EY to be careful, and EY says he's tired of people not taking him seriously.
Kenny King makes his return, and asks MVP who he is working with tonight. MVP puts him off to next week. King isn't happy but understands.
Match #3 - Samoa Joe vs. Eric Young
Joe is in the ring, EY makes his entrance. Tenay really tries to put over EY in a serious way.
EY works aggressively early and tries to get a top rope elbow. Joe hits a corner slam instead. Joe locks on the rear naked choke (which looks pretty sloppy) and grapevines the legs to choke out EY.
Afterward, Earl Hebner comes out and tells Brian Hebner that he made the wrong call. Joe had his shoulders on the mat while Brian was checking on EY. They walk to the back, and Joe looks confused.
This started out well, but it fell apart. A lot of people are going to be hard pressed to buy in for EY right now even with the bad call. The officials looked pretty bad with the in-public correction too. It DID move us in a direction to see EY more seriously though, so it has that to its credit.
EC3 walks up to a shack, and he says "Nobody gets left behind!" He pulls off his jacket and runs toward the house.
They show a video where Sam Shaw backed Christy Hemme to a corner and cuts off a lock of her hair. Tenay says Shaw got suspended for tonight and says that he will face Anderson in a straight jacket match. Willow and Bully Ray will team up to face EC3 and Bobby Roode in a tables match.
Match #4 - James Storm vs. Gunner; No Disqualification, no count out, must be a winner
Gunner attacks Storm on the ramp to get things going. Storm has new tights that look like he got them from AJ Styles. Gunner throws weapons in the ring and throws Storm in, but Storm hits him with a DDT. Out of break, Gunner hits a suplex for a near fall, then sets up a chair in the corner. They trade trash can lid shots to the head. Storm hits a slingshot that sends Gunner to the chair, then hits a backstabber. Storm goes out for another weapon but takes a spear when he gets on the apron. Both crash to the floor and through a table.
Gunner sets up a good chair and a broken chair. He hits a superplex through them for a near fall. Storm slips his way out of the Gun Rack and hits two Last Calls for a near fall. Storm goes out for a beer bottle, but Gunner finds one first. He hits Storm with the bottle and hits Hanger to get the win.
Very entertaining. This should be the jumping off point of this feud, which hasn't been well written but for last week's segment. This was the high note, so go out here. Gunner kicking out of the double superkick spot was a bit much for me - my one criticism of the match.
At the shack, EC3 walks through the building. He finds Spud tied to a bed, crying. EC3 yells for Willow to come out, and he appears. He beats EC3 down with his umbrella, pops it open and leaves it there. EC3 yells about Willow playing games to close the show.
For those of you who don't mind wrestling shows doing this kind of stuff, this was well done. Well shot. Sometimes, though this stuff drives me nuts. You have a camera man there sometimes, and sometimes you don't. That kind of kills it for me. Shaw addresses a cameraman earlier, pointing out he has a camera, then you get EC3 getting attacked and has no help. Odd.
This was a good show though. There were things about it that didn't add up, but nothing was rotten. The stipulation matches for next week feel random, but I'm willing to let this play out and give it fair opportunity. We'll all find out together next week. Join me for coverage of some form, right here on Ring-Rap.com!