Source: Talon of TNAsylum.com
The show opened with a July 4th themed logo. Executive Director of TNA, Kurt Angle walked to the ring. Angle said tonight they celebrate TNA’s freedom as there will be no more BS or backstabbing. Kurt called Earl Hebner to the ring. Hebner came out wearing his casual attire. Kurt handed Earl a referee T-shirt saying he was now re-instating him.
Angle pulled out a cheat sheet for his matches tonight. Kurt first announced EC3 vs Bully Ray in a Tables Match. There will be a 3-Way Tag Title Match pitting The Wolves against DJ Z and Jessie and The Menagerie. Gail Kim will challenge Angelina Love for the Knockouts Title. Finally, Eric Young will challenge Lashley for the World Title. Angle was about to leave when Samoa Joe headed to the ring.
Joe sarcastically praised Kurt’s hiring. Joe said it was a big hunk of bullshit. Joe said Angle was no different from his predecessors and he knows it. Kurt covets the World Title so it will only be a matter of time until he books himself in a World Title Match. Angle said for the past eight years, he put up with the same BS as Joe did. Joe clarified that Angle was bought and brought here. Joe tore his way into the company.
Angle told Joe that his problem was that one day he comes in and kicks ass but the next he half-asses it. Joe told him not to question his dedication to wrestling. While Angle was winning medals, he was rebuilding pro wrestling. Joe said he was pro wrestling. Angle was excited and said that was the Joe he wanted to see. Joe told him to be careful what he wishes for.
Reaction: Angle was quick and to the point here. This is what a person in his role should be. I loved Joe’s fire in his promo. He cuts a good promo but just like Angle has said, he has been off and on regarding his wrestling. Here’s hoping that Joe regains whatever momentum he had early on in his career.
MVP was on the phone backstage. Bobby Roode walked up. The two were about to fight when Kenny King ran in and attacked Roode out of nowhere. MVP choked Roode with one of the crutches. MVP and King walked off but not before King took one last shot.
Roode was backstage favoring his shoulder when Kurt Angle walked up and asked what happened. Angle apologized with what just happened. Roode thanked him for bringing him back. Angle wanted to know if Roode needed to go to the hospital. Roode wanted a match tonight. Angle and Roode left to find Kenny King and MVP.
The Wolves vs The Menagerie vs Jessie and DJ Z
World Tag Team Championships
The Freak wore a Bane-like mask. Knux and Freak sent DJ Z flying outside the ring onto everyone else. Freak showed some nice strength early on. The stilt clowns were dressed like Uncle Sam. The Freak accidentally clotheslined Knux. Moments later, The Wolves hit Jessie with the Alarm Clock to retain the Tag Titles.
Reaction: Short match to give the Wolves the win. Nothing much more to it than that. Freak showed some nice strength in his “first match.”
Bobby Roode and Kenny King were being held apart by Kurt Angle. MVP ran his mouth. Kurt was going to make Roode vs MVP but MVP said he couldn’t go due to his injury. Kenny King kept running his mouth. Kurt made a Street Fight between Angle and King tonight.
Roode has lyrics in his theme again. Bobby grabbed a mic and called out Kenny King. King came out with MVP and asked if he really wanted this. King said since they already injured his shoulder, now they could injure his neck. Both men headed down but Kurt’s music hit. He then sent MVP to the back while the Street Fight began.
Bobby Roode vs Kenny King
The two brawled in the crowd early on. Roode tossed King over a barricade about seven feet below. Roode backdropped King at ringside in a cool spot. The bell finally rang after several minutes of brawling. Hmm.
King brought a chair into the ring. He went for the Coronation but Roode fought out and hit the Roode Bomb onto the chair for the victory on King.
Reaction: While the official match time was only a few minutes, the brawl in the crowd was really a part of it. Fun but short Street Fight. This stuff between Roode and King definitely isn’t over.
EC3 was interviewed backstage. He asked how much more Bully had to go through. He called himself the Hardcore American Icon.
Bobby Roode talked about running through Kenny King, MVP and eventually Bobby Lashley to become World Champion.
Austin Aries sat by Kurt Angle backstage. Aries talked himself up. Aries said MVP held him down. Aries said MVP never gave him his rematch for the X Division Title. Kurt reminded him about Option C, saying Aries thinks he will use it again. Kurt said Aries would get his X Title Match next week. Kurt then said that he and Aries needed to eventually have that match to see who was the greatest wrestler alive. Aries liked the idea.
Reaction: Kurt is a straight-forward authority figure. So far, so good. I like the tease of an Angle vs Aries match down the line.
Brittany was in the ring and called out Madison Rayne. Madison jumped to conclusions and talked about a match. Brittany said that she (Brittany) was wrong. Brittany said the Knockouts Division can be difficult to navigate through. She said Madison tried to warn her and she wanted to say that she was sorry. Brittany said she looked up to her and wanted to be just like her. Madison said if Brittany truly learned something, she would be there for her. The two hugged in the center of the ring.
Brittany said the real lesson she learned was to never meet here hero because they always disappoint. Brittany clotheslined Madison. She hit her with a Reverse DDT outside the ring. Brittany sat on the apron and stared down at Madison.
Reaction: The story makes sense. Brittany was let down by meeting her hero and turned bad on her. Madison plays a very good motherly figure. She has been good since she returned.
Backstage, Bully Ray was saying “over my dead body.” Bully said EC3 proved he was tough at Slammiversary. He said EC3 was even luckier because of Spud and Dixie, otherwise he wouldn’t have walked out alive. Tonight, EC3 goes through a table…next.
MVP stood with Lashley backstage and talked him up. He called Lashley the most dominant champion in TNA history. MVP questioned why Kurt would throw the “gazelle to the lion” when Lashley destroys EY. He hopes Kurt won’t hold them responsible for what happened to EY tonight.
EC3 vs Bully Ray
Bully Ray (and his tattoo) was in control early on slamming EC3’s head into steel steps. The domination continued as Ray got the tables at ringside. EC3 got the advantage and grabbed a steel chain, using it on Bully. Bully was going to Powerbomb EC3 through a table but Rockstar Spud came out of nowhere and low-blowed Bully. The two beat down on Bully.
All of a sudden, Rhino returned to TNA. He looked like he was going to attack Spud but ended up Goring Bully Ray. EC3 did the money sign. Moments later, EC3 put Bully through the table with the Spinebuster. The three celebrated in the ring.
Reaction: I am happy to see Rhino back in TNA. He is a veteran but is also relatively young. He had a pretty good career in TNA. The feud between Bully and Dixie reminds me of the Tommy Dreamer vs Raven feud. They kept adding components to keep the two apart. Its the same case here. EC3, Tommy Dreamer and now Rhino. Who is next?
Bobby Roode gave Eric Young a pep talk backstage. EY was doubting himself. He reminded Roode that he was 0-3 against Lashley. Roode talked up Young. Nobody thought he was going to be World Champion, would hold onto it as long as he did. Young said Lashley was bigger in every way except for the heart. Roode said he would be in EY’s corner.
Reaction: That EY promo really put over Lashley as dominant. Roode looks to be the guy down the road. My guess is that if Lashley retains tonight, he will eventually run into Roode.
Rhino spoke backstage about not owing anyone anything.
Gunner spoke with Samuel Shaw, Shaw said it felt weird to be back. Shaw needed to issue a few apologies. Mr. Anderson walked up and said “you have to be kidding me.” Anderson called him a creepy bastard but Gunner defended him. Gunner said Anderson knows what he (Gunner) is about so he should just give him a chance. Anderson said if Shaw has really changed, he wouldn’t have an issue talking to a friend of his.
They walked into Christy’s locker room. Christy asked what Shaw was doing here. Shaw told Christy that he was a different person. He apologized and asked for her forgiveness. Shaw then walked out.
Reaction: I liked that segment. Anderson came off as a villain. My guess is that Shaw really changed but Anderson will keep doubting him. The question is whether Shaw will go back to his dark side?
The Beautiful People were with Brian Stiffler. Brian worried that he went too far at Slammiversary. The girls flirted with him. Angelina told Brian that it was a very important match and they needed Brian in their corner. Brian said he went to Earl and demanded to be the referee for this match. They patted him on the butt as he left.
Reaction: There is no reason Stiffler should be the referee for the next match. I am hoping something prevents that from happening.
Kurt Angle walked up the Brian Stiffler and told him that he wasn’t refereeing the next match. He was making TNA look foolish. Brian Hebner was made referee.
Reaction: You go Kurt. Stay on top of your game.
Knux told The Menagerie that the old man was looking for his money. The Freak and Crazzy Steve didn’t understand. Knux said they had a lot of work to do.
Angelina Love vs Gail Kim
Angelina tried flirting with the referee but he wasn’t having any of it. Velvet kept interfering for Angelina. The referee caught Velvet guillotining Gail so he sent her to the back. As Gail was climbing the top turnbuckle, Angelina connected with the Botox Injection sending Gail hard to the outside. The referee was counting Gail out but Angelina stopped him saying she wanted to pin Gail.
A second Botox Injection was countered followed by Eat Defeat by Gail. Gail pinned Angelina to win the Knockouts Title once again. Gail is a 4-time Knockouts Champion.
Reaction: When Velvet was sent backstage, the match really heated up. It looks like TNA is heading to another Taryn vs Gail match, this time for the Knockouts title. It is a relatively fresh match so I don’t have a problem with it.
Kurt Angle was excited for TNA’s history. Kurt said every title would be up for grabs next week except for the World Title. He announced a 20-man Battle Royal with the winner earning a title shot.
Lashley vs Eric Young
World Heavyweight Championship
TNA showed clips of EY’s three losses to Lashley. MVP accompanied Lashley to the ring so Bobby Roode came out to support EY.
MVP and Bobby Roode both interfered early on leading to Earl Hebner ejecting both from ringside. EY used his speed to maintain his advantage on Lashley. Lashley sent EY outside the ring hard. EY “tweaked” his ankle on the way down and favored it heavily. Lashley targeted the ankle for the remainder of the match.
EY fought through the pain with a Missile Dropkick. EY fought off a Superplex and hit the Top Rope Elbow for a two count. EY went for the Piledriver but braced due to his Ankle. Lashley hit the Powerslam and followed up with the Spear to successfully retain the World Title.
Lashley celebrated his victory as the show came to a close.
Reaction: Nice, clean victory for Lashley here. He got put over in a big way. I like TNA having a villain champion that is dominant. I would just have him run through his opposition until someone like Bobby Roode steps up. You don’t need extra shenanigans for his matches.