wrestling / TV Reports

411’s TNA Impact Wrestling Report 12.29.11

December 29, 2011 | Posted by Greg De Marco


Championship Roll Call:
TNA TAG TEAM TITLES: Crimson and Matt Morgan

Reminders for tonight:
-I am spoiler free!
-I actually like TNA Impact!
-I intend to have fun!

Opening Promo: Madison Rayne & Gail Kim call out Tara & Brooke Tessmacher
An opening promo for the Knockouts? Yes please! Madison insinuates that Tara & Brooke are diseased. I’d take my chances. Madison suggests Tara & Tessmacher screwing her. I’d take my chances. Madison fires them as the crowd of 300 sounds like 30,000! Laying the canned heat on a little thick, eh? Madison fires Tar a& Tessmacher.

AND…Sting has something to say about this!

Madison tries to tell Sting he’s too busy and she’s “got dis.” The canned heat is HORRIBLE tonight! Sting informs Madison that she is powerless, which leads to a screechfest between Sting & Madison. Gail has to defend her “world title” tonight. (Wouldn’t it make more sense to give Tara & Tessmacher the title shot they deserve?) Hardcore Country brings Mickie James to the ring as Tenay asks who is more deserving than Mickie. Someplace Velvet is raising her hand. Sting threatens a woman as we head backstage.

Scott Steiner & Abyss backstage
Steiner says they have “two down” and they are the best team. They’re continuing in the Wildcast Tag Team Tournament TONIGHT!

[Commercial Break: Mmmmm…..tacos!]

More knockouts are decking the halls. Hey, at least it gets Velvet on the program, right?

Wildcard Tag Team Tournament Semifinal Match
Scott Steiner & Abyss vs. AJ Styles & Kazarian

This match makes me hope Joe & Magnus kill Young & ODB. Steiner and Kazarian start as Big Poppa Pump talks trash to AJ. Steiner with the early control, and prohibits Kazarian from connecting with a crucifix. Nice spin kick allows Kazarian to take control, and he makes the quick tag to AJ. Tenay & Taz do not reference Arn & Tully or the Midnight Express. AJ nails a sweet dropkick on Steiner, making Randy Orton jealous. (And someone is currently typing a comment about me being too sarcastic. Sorry buddy!) Abyss in, and he simply tosses AJ to the —like a ragdoll! Taz likens AJ running into Abyss to running to a brick wall, and it seems very accurate. AJ comes back with, but Abyss is quick to cut him off. Steiner in, and a belly-to-belly to AJ gets a near-fall. AJ comes back with a sunset flip for two of his own. Steiner sends AJ over his shoulder with a beautiful Suplex, and dares AJ to get back to his feet. AJ nails the Pele ‘ kick out of nowhere, and the crowd goes mild. A real audience would have popped for that!

The fresh men are tagged in, and Kazarian tries to take advantage of his speed and agility to get Abyss off of his feet. A jumping DDT finally puts Abyss down, but only for two. Kazarian reverses a chokeslam attempt into a roll-up for two, and Abyss floors him with a big right. Even Steiner is surprised by it, and Steiner tags in impressed by his partner. This if course leads to Abyss turning on Steiner with a black-hole slam, allowing Kazarian to score the fall.
Winners: AJ Styles & Kazarian (Kazarian pin on Steiner, 6:00ish, **1/2)

[Commercial Break: Sara McLaughlin wants you to join ASPCA in a very effective commercial.]

Wow a reviewer on 411 that’s not gonna give a WWE biased review of Impact. A-mazing!
Hardcore country was looking hardcore bangable…
Posted By: Smash Bro (Guest) on December 29, 2011 at 09:13 PM

I couldn’t agree more, Smash Bro! And Mickie James might be making an appearance in tomorrow night’s Wrestling 5&1. Just sayin…

Bully Ray & Abyss in the ring, joined in progress
Bully Ray thinks Abyss’s actions are deplorable. They got him girls, and this is how he repays them. Oh, they also help him win matches, since Wrestling Matters. Bully asks what Abyss wants, and Abyss responds by telling Ray he wants to face him in a one-on-one at January’s Genesis pay-per-view Broadcast LIVE from…The Impact Zone. (Womp Womp WompWomp) If Bully Ray beats Abyss, he’ll return to Immortal. Ray says he will beat Abyss, and accepts the match at Genesis. Abyss—cutting his most effective promo ever—adds that it will be a Monster’s Ball Match on the PPV.

That actually sounds entertaining.

Sting & Kurt Angle backstage
Sting claims he was entertained by Angle last week, and he suggests a wrestling match this week. Angle asks who Sting has in mind, and he says it’s someone who knows how to kick. Angle buries the X-Division by suggesting two opponents from the smallish division. Sting implies that RVD once kicked Angle’s face in, and our Olympic Hero says now. Sting makes the match anyway, and Angle does a great job of selling the pairing by being so upset.

Up next! Zema Ion vs. Tony Neee in the rubber match! Unfortunately, Vince Russo couldn’t resist the urge to put the contract on a pole…

[Commercial Break: 5 Hour Energy commercial, immediately followed by GameFly commercial. Makes sense. Then the girls book a trip on Hotwire, since their men are playing videogames all night.]

Even more knockouts are decking the halls! Not only does it get Velvet on my TV, but Winter, too!

Ric Flair & Gunner backstage
Flair says he wants to make Gunner the biggest name in wrestling, and plans to do it by seeing Gunner spend people to the hospital. Gunner promises that someone is leaving in an ambulance, for the third time. Because Gunner is a killer. And The Man. Woooooo!

Best of Three Series: The Rubber Match (Contract is on a Pole)
Zema Ion (w/horrible canned heat) vs. Tony Nese (w/no heat)

That’s a commentary on the crowd, NOT the wrestlers. Both are amazingly talented. Austin Aries is on commentary! Business is about to pick up, friends. Aries insinuates that Ion was a pole dancer, and Tenay remind us that Kid Kash & Jesse Sorensen exist (despite not being used on TV to hype the PPV match). Aries says that three challengers are nothing for him as Nese unloads on Ion with a nice offensive series. Taz sells the concept of the match, pointing out that you need to effectively wear down your opponent in order to get the contract. Aries reminds us that he’s the Greatest Man That Ever Lived as Ion takes over.

Ion backs Nese into a corner, but Nese sends him over the top. Nese & Ion fight on the outside as Aries points out that you need to take less risks in this match, because one false move and your opponent is up that pole in a flash. Nese makes the first attempt at the contract, and Ion barely gets him down in time, Ion now climbs over Nese, but Nese sends him flying to the mat with a top rope hanging German! It gets a replay, which was well deserved. Aries asks if the pole was greased to increase the level of difficulty. Ion sends Nese to the outside, and retrieves the contract. Well, that came out of nowhere, and had nothing behind it. This was the worst of the three matches in the series, unfortunately.
Winner: Zema Ion (contract retrieval, 5:00ish, **)

Later tonight: RVD-Angle! James-Kim! On RAW!

[Commercial Break: Don’t you think that if someone wanted an X-Box, they’d have one by now? PajamaGram’s patent on the Hoodie-Footie has apparently expired, as we now have Forever Lazy! No man is wearing that. A guy might, but no man will. Good thing it has zippered hatches, for “when duty calls.” Adam Corolla often says that if they have to “double the offer” they mean it’s pure crap and you shouldn’t waste your money. Forever Lazy doubled the offer. Yep.]

Douglas Williams vs. Gunner(w/Ric Flair)
Tenay lists Williams’s extensive TNA resume, making me wonder why they don’t use him enough, and why he’s about to be fed to Gunner.

Williams immediately takes Gunner down, but Gunner beats him up in the corner. Gunner continues the onslaught on Williams—getting downright caveman-ish. Flair just watches, almost upset that the match isn’t over yet. Williams counters with some European upper-cuts, showing that Randy Orton should look him up while he’s out of action. Gunner floors the ref, and it’s over.
Winner: Douglas Williams by D (Gunner shoved the ref, 2:00, *)

Gunner continues the brief onslaught on Williams, including a Flair kick to the balls and a DDT on the floor.

Bobby Roode speaks, next!

[Commercial Break: A Frito Burrito? Has anyone had this? It doesn’t sound good. But probably better than a 10-Minute Commercial for the 10-Minute Trainer. H-O-T-W-I-R-E, Hotwire.com!]

Prior to Bobby Roode’s promo, we get a video package focusing on Roode’s change of heart after being screwed at Bound For Glory, and his family’s reactions to it all. I guess they can’t reach him, despite him being off for weeks at a time! It’s Roode’s time, Roode’s era. I’m down.

Roode heads to the ring for a…

Robert Bobby Roode In-Ring Promo
The Champ Is Here! He says that a lot of people have expressed their opinions on him, including his family and friends. I give credit to the Impact Zone crowd here, they briefly gave some heat to a homegrown talent! Roode says people are calling him selfish, and he agrees. He’s the leader of the selfish generation, and he flew his friend in from Toronto so he can come into Roode’s world. Tracy Kaleski is Roode’s good friend of over 20 years, a man who was in Roode’s wedding. He’s a professional lacrosse player, and he’s in the crowd. Roode flew him in, but couldn’t get him front row seats? Oh, I forgot, TNA only gives those to the models they hire as extras.

Roode apologizes for being busy—since he’s the world champion. But now is Tracy’s time to talk, and Roode’s all ears. Tracy informs everyone that he doesn’t know who Roode is anymore, as he was the least selfish person he’d ever met. This isn’t the Bobby Roode he knows. He misses his buddy Bobby. As do Bobby’s wife, kids, and parents. Tracy is driving Bobby’s kids to practices, leading me to wonder what else he’s doing with a certain member of Bobby’s family. Bobby informs him that he doesn’t need to come, as he has a $25,000 piece of gold over his shoulder. You can own one of your own at Wildcat Belts!

Roode says that Kaleski was his lackey in high school, says his parents were never around for most of his life—they just want his money. Roode says his sister has been invisible for 35 years, and yells at Tracy for even mentioning his kids. What about your wife, Robert? He says their 15 minutes of fame aer over, and Tracy touches Roode in an inappropriate way. Roode then attacks his friend, and The Charismatic Enigma is out to make the save!

Roode isn’t happy, but thinks better of a confrontation. I think that was actually effective, even if predictable. At least we didn’t get a brawl. Roode avoiding the fight sells the fact that Hardy pinned him last week (even if Tenay & Taz were too busy to bring it up).

Eric Young & ODB backstage
They talk motivation and strategy. ODB drinks and says they’re on the same page, and Young says they’re in love. ODB seems to acknowledge the relationship, but points out that it’s a “rasslin relationship,” and refuses a kiss.

Still to come: RVD-Angle, Kim-James! You’d think TNA would have promoted those matches ahead of time…

[Commercial Break: It’s Buffalo Nickel Time! Notice how they didn’t double the offer. Suck on THAT, Forever Lazy!]

Kurt Angle backstage
Angle is still upset because RVD once worked sloppy against him. It’s a conspiracy! C…O…N…Spiracy! Ninja Please! Angle is a wrestler, better than Van Dam & James Storm. He’s the greatest wrestler of all time. He simply asks that they wrestle him.

Wildcard Tag Team Tournament Match
Samoa Joe & Magnus vs. Eric Young & ODB

Nice highlight package of Joe & Magnus winning their first round match “last week.” Eric Young approaches Mike Taney as he & ODB enter, but decides to go to the ring as we throw it to the B-roll (thanks, Tenay). The winners of this match face AJ Styles & Kazarian in the finals, and this spoiler free guy right here is pulling for Joe & Magnus! ODB is starting with Mr. Mickie James, who definitely looks like a star.

ODB sizes him up, then levels him in the face. Magnus misses the clothesline, and then takes a ride on the motorboat! Eric Young reluctantly tags in, and has to strip before entering the ring. He spears Magnus, and is a house-a-fire getting a near-fall following a textbook belly-to-belly. Joe tags in and takes over, getting my team on the right track. Taz sells the Joe-Magnus pairing, making me hopeful for their future. Don’t burn me, Taz!

Joe gets two on Young, and floors him with a clothesline for a second near-fall. Trademark Joe short, quick strikes in the corner, but Young counters with a flying forearm. Magnus makes the save, bringing ODB into the ring. She drinks some liquid courage to face Joe, but gets sent into the corner by Magnus. Muscle Buster on Eric Young ends it.
Winners: Samoa Joe & Magnus (Muscle Buster on Young, 6:00ish, **1/2)

The finish is your Direct Hit of The Night, brought to you by DirectGeneral.com.

Kim-James is still to come, and RVD-Angle is next! The Knockouts in the opening segment AND the main event? Wow…

[Commercial Break: More Frito Burrito, More Forever Lazy. (And I go back and fix my Lazy Forever errors from before).]

Mickie James backstage
Mickie cuts a HORRIBLE backstage promo about her match with Gail, focusing on her movements. The anonymous interviewer asks Mickie if she has different gear for the match. OH…he said A different gear. Okay. Mickie seemed distracted, as if someone was standing naked behind the cameraman. That wacky Abyss!

Kurt Angle vs. Rob Van Dam
Tenay does a great job here, referencing Taz’s past with both men, as Taz breaks things down in great fashion. See what happens when you care? Headlock by RVD on Angle to start, but Angle escapes and keeps things at a slow pace by heading outside. Fifteen years ago, RVD would have gone over the top and hurt himself. But he’s the veteran now, giving advice to The Young Bucks. Back inside, RVD’s kicks are too much for Angle, but the ring general is able to avoid the pinfall. Rolling Thunder gets two, and RVD pounds on Angle in the corner.

Angle counters with a nice overhead belly to belly, following up with a snap suplex that gets two. Taz & Tenay break down Angle’s pin attempt, and continue to impress me here. Both men are down, but the ref doesn’t get near ten before RVD takes over. Two clothesline send Angle down, and but Kurt thwarts the monkey-flip and counters with a backdrop suplex. Kurt takes the strops down, setting up for a Last Call Superkick. RVD counters, but misses the 5-Star Frog Splash. Angle locks in the Ankle Lock, but James Storm is out to land a knockout blow with the Last Call. That does it for this one!
Winner: Rob Van Dam (DQ, 7:00ish, ***1/2)

Angle is out in the ring as we get a replay of the finish. Storm stands on the ramp with a well places Genesis on the Dixie-Tron in the background.


[Commercial Break: Time to knock back a few 5-Hour Energy! Or is the plural Energi?]

Rob Van Dam, Kurt Angle & James Storm backstage (separately)
RVD isn’t sure what went down, but he thinks he can hang with Angle. Kurt Angle says the Last Call isn’t a wrestling move. Storm says he doesn’t like people messing with his family. Another way he & Roode were different.

TNA Knockouts Championship Match
Mickie James vs. Gail Kim (champion)

Jeremy Borash handles the super special ring announcing in honor of Friday’s UFC 141 event. Overeem vs. Lesnar? WHO YOU GOT, JB! JB informs is that this is for the Knockouts Ladies Championship. You see, he has to make that distinction because Robbie E currently holds the Knockouts TV Championship. Gail leaves the headlights on, even though it’s bright in the Impact Zone. Earl Heber is YOUR referee. Mickie goes for the quick roll-up as we’re off to a quick start!

Mickie follows up with a Thesz press, and stays on the offensive. Taz focuses on their wrestling history; Tenay prefers to talk about political unrest backstage. And they keep arguing about it as Gail & Mickie are working their asses off, hitting a neckbreaker on the floor.

[Commercial Break: UFC 141 prelims. Live! Free! On Spike! For The Last Time!]

We’re back with Mickie & Gail doing battle on the floor. Mickie is slow to get back into the ring, but beats the count as Gail goes ahead and drags her back in. Kim lays the boots to the country-music recording artist. The product if Highland Springs High School (Go Springers!) has to dig deep to kick out. Mickie regains control, but Gail takes the advantage back with a double ax handle. Gail Kim locks in an Octapus, Tenay: “Right out of the Inoki playbook!” There ya go, Mike! James makes a brief escape, but Gail Kim goes back to the well with the ‘Pus again. Mickie tries to escape—can’t—so she reverses into a roll-up that Kim escapes.

Gail maintains the advantage, blasting Mickie with a shoulder block into the corner. Another near-fall and Gail is getting frustrated. Mickie reverses the EatDeFeet, nailing Gail with a kick of her own. Both women are down. Mickie sidesteps a charge from Gail, sending the champ into the corner. Multiple clothesline as Mickie starts to picture Gail as Trish Stratus. V-Grip? No. Mickie up top, but Gail takes a powder outside. Mickie dives from the top to the floor, and both women are down! We get a replay of that dive, and Mickie is now walking gingerly on her right knee. That might be legit. A masked female attacks Mickie, nailing James with an EatDeKnee. That’s enough for Gail Kim to score the pin.
Winner: Gail Kim (interference-based pin, 12:00ish, ***)

We see the masked assailant hiding under the ring, but it’s actually Madison Rayne in face paint.

With that, Impact Wrestling comes to a close!

And I give it a thumbs up.
DeMarco’s Knee-Jerk Reaction: We just saw a well-constructed edition of Impact Wrestling that advanced storylines for the Genesis PPV, presented a great Knockouts match in the main event, was a little too heavy on the run-ins (including one in each of the final two matches), and made me get excited for the finals for the Wildcard Tag Team Tournament. As much as I hate when they tape a whole month’s worth of TV in just a handful of days, it sure does make for a product that exhibits direction, continuity and builds to the upcoming PPV. I’ll have more thoughts in an upcoming 4R’s!

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