What’s up, everybody!? Most of the time, we scour the internet looking for the best set of house show results to share with you great fans. However, for the Asbury Park house show I was actually in attendance with my roommate, my buddy, and my younger brother (and about 1,200 other TNA fans) so here are some results and notes on the show directly from me!
Attendance: I’m not the best estimator of attendance at these types of shows, but I would suggest there might have been about 1,200 fans in attendance. When I went to the Asbury Park house show in 2008, there might have been half as many people there so to more than double the amount of attendees in two years shows tremendous progress in this fan’s eyes. When the official attendance numbers come out, I’ll report them here.
Excitement: While the action in the ring was mediocre at best (the house show two years ago had more exciting action), the fans seemed into almost every big move from the start of the show through its completion. I’ve been to two TNA house shows and a TNA pay-per-view thus far and I think that this crowd (comprised mostly of younger fans and their families) were the most “into” the show that I’ve seen for this company. Frankly, they were more into the show than the people at the iMPACT! Zone ever seem to be (and why is there always a high pitched girl screaming in the iMPACT! Zone? Somebody shut her up already!)…
Acoustics: Just like two years ago, I found the acoustics in Convention Hall completely over modulated and hard to understand. For some reason, all of the wrestlers and knockouts that opted to use the sound system also opted to yell into the microphone which, to my ears, resulted in an electronic muffled sound that had way too much reverberation on the output. No one normally writes about these things, but for me it was such a pronounced pain in the neck that I felt compelled to put it on here.
Pictures: Coming soon in another post – I’m going through them (I took over 300 pictures) and weeding out the crappy ones (about half). When I have the pictures weeded out and uploaded, I’ll place a link to them right here. Update: If you’re looking for pictures from this house show, then click here!
Sightings: My buddy, roommate, and I met Jeff Hardy at The Beach Bar which is connected to Convention Hall and overlooks the Atlantic Ocean and Asbury Park’s southern beach. It was about as brief a meeting as you could imagine – he walked by, shook our hands, and went on his way. In my view, he was shorter than I thought he’d be; all of these online listings show him at 6′ 1″ or 6′ 2″ tall and I’d say he’s maybe 5′ 9″ or 5′ 10″ at most. Either that, or he was incredibly slouching when my buddy, roommate, and I met him (and I don’t think he was slouching).
This match was a pretty strong show opener and it got the crowd excited. I admit that I didn’t get a chance to really watch the full match because I was looking for my brother, roommate, and buddy during this match, but I did manage to see The Amazing Red jumping around like a crazy person. Brian Kendrick also had a few good moves, too. Red took the match in the end.
Winner: The Amazing Red
I’m pretty sure that Angelina Love took on Sara Del Rey in this match, though I didn’t catch her name and I can’t see facial features too well. The match wasn’t so bad and in my humble opinion I think that the action in this match (and the one following) was among the best on the entire show, period. Angelina Love was quick and smooth with her moves, as always, and Sara Del Rey certainly did the JAPW organization proud in her loss. The winner of this match was awarded with a title shot against Knockouts Champion Madison Rayne.
Winner: Angelina Love
As soon as Angelina Love beat Sara Del Rey, Madison Rayne came out and beat the hell out of her to begin their match. Apparently, the match was “supposed” to take place later in the night, but Madison Rayne took the opportunity to beat up on a weakened Angelina Love and eventually beat her in about 5 or 6 minutes. Overall, though, it was a good match and even though Angelina Love was fresh off of her match with Sara Del Rey, she did a good job fighting back against a fresh Madison Rayne.
Earl Hebner was the referee (he received a decent reaction when announced to the crowd) and this match ended with a spot where he happened to catch Madison Rayne in a swooning position and the crowd egged him on to kiss her (which he did). Then he did this weird dance that got the crowd going. Angelina Love was laughing at it until Earl went up to her and smacked a kiss on her, too. More dancing after the kiss, of course, Madison Rayne used the distraction to roll up Angelina Love for the win and Earl Hebner did a little more dancing out of the ring area.
Winner: Madison Rayne
Lots of “Woooooo!” hollers from the audience for Jay Lethal, who was way over with his home state crowd. I would say that next to the Knockouts, Jay Lethal was among one of the most “over” guys on the night’s card. Lots of good back and forth action in this match that ultimately saw Jay Lethal pick up the victory. Jay Lethal did some of his Ric Flair impressions by strutting a little bit on the ring apron before the match started and chopping Desmond Wolfe throughout the entire contest. I would have liked to see these guys fight for another five minutes or so.
Winner: Jay Lethal
Kurt Angle came out and thanked the audience for coming to the show. He said that people in attendance may be WWE fans, but he’s here to tell everyone the truth – that TNA is better (mixed reaction from the fans, but mostly in agreement). He was holding a can of some type of energy drink in his hand during the entire promo, which he eventually tossed across the ring on his way out. Nothing major to report here.
The most annoying part of this match was that Jeff Hardy seemed to thank every single fan that had their hand out during his introduction. Seriously, his entrance might have lasted almost ten minutes – they had to restart his music. Abyss did a good job of playing the monster heel, which is a role that I think he is more naturally suited for than the Hulkamaniac shtick. Jeff Hardy brought some fan signs in the ring before the match started – not sure what they said but you can check them out after I post the pictures.
Not much to say about the match here. Both men did their signature moves and Jeff Hardy eventually won by hitting The Swanton. After the match, Jeff Hardy took one of the cameramen’s camera and went around ringside taping the fans (I assume this is for TNA Today on TNAWrestling.com and YouTube.com).
Winner: Jeff Hardy
Before the Intermission began, Don West came out and hyped his brown bag special and his super duper exclusive Ric Flair t-shirt that “you can only get here tonight and nowhere else!” During the break, Angelina Love had a line for autographs that literally wrapped around the entire inside of the arena. My buddy said that they were going for $10 each, so TNA and Angelina Love definitely made some money off of her signing autographs. There were hundreds of people in line to meet her – it was pretty nuts. My group and I took the opportunity to get up and go to the other side of the arena during the intermission.
Team 3D was extremely over with this crowd. After they were introduced, the “E-C-W” and “We Want Tables” chants were deafening. So… this match became a tables match. The action was crazy to start this one as Brother Ray beat the hell out of Jesse Neal in the ring and Brother Devon took it to Shannon Moore on the outside of the ring. At one point, Brother Ray ran into the back and came back with a shiny new steel garbage can, with which he promptly smacked Jesse Neal in the head. After some posing, Jesse Neal took the garbage can and cracked it over Brother Ray’s head completely bending and destroying the can.
Once the match got along a little bit, Team 3D hit their “What’s Up!” headbutt to the balls before the crowd yelled for Brother Devon to get the table, which he did. And once the table was set up in the ring, it wasn’t too long before Jesse Neal went directly through it and Team 3D picked up the win. Funny note from after the match – Brother Ray asked Brother Devon to get some kids to give pieces of the ring to and he went up on the stage to grab a kid, but the kid was horrified and grabbed his Dad. Brother Devon tried to tell him what was going on, but in the end settled for a different kid off of the stage and a kid from the front row. Team 3D posed for pictures and thanked the crowd as Brother Ray said he was heading to Bar Anticipation in Belmar to find some Jersey girl (he used other words) for the night.
Winner: Team 3D
Rob Van Dam was easily the most over guy on the card tonight, thanks in part to his entrance theme which encourages the fans to chant and yell for him. Both of these men looked good during the match, but A.J. Styles may really be taking his new heel role too seriously since he stalled the beginning of the match by about ten minutes (which was probably longer than the entire action part of the match). It was a bit excessive.
The match came to a head when A.J. Styles missed his flying punch from the top rope and Rob Van Dam hit his Rolling Thunder which set him up for the Five Star Frog Splash. At some point, A.J. Styles went to hit his Pele Kick and I have to tell you – it didn’t look so good. Anyway, Rob Van Dam picks up the win and the show comes to an end.
Winner: Rob Van Dam
After the show was over, Rob Van Dam stayed around and posed with fans in the ring with the championship belt for $20 per each group. This is the same thing that Kurt Angle did after the Asbury Park house show two years ago.
A final comment – the interwebs sometimes say how TNA’s house shows are the most profitable part of their business. Well, after attending my second TNA house show I can clearly see why. These people (led by Don West) sell, sell, sell! They are selling t-shirts, DVDs, autographs, meetings with the wrestlers, etc. TNA shows really have a type of fan interaction that you don’t get at WWE shows, but it would admittedly be hard for WWE to pull off this type of interaction with 15,000+ people at their shows. Overall, I thought it was a fun show even if the action in the ring was mediocre at best.