wrestling / TV Reports

The SmarK Rant For NWA-TNA – September 17 2003

September 18, 2003 | Posted by Scott Keith

The SmarK Rant for NWA-TNA – September 17, 2003

– Well, my computer adventures continue, as I bought a new 120GB drive to replace my aging 60, partially to free up space, mostly to see if having that 8 meg cache really makes a difference in speed. So far, yes. I’m actually finding games load faster and files transfer faster. Anyway, this lead to my least favorite thing…a fresh install of XP to clear out the clutter from the other drive. I was gonna ghost it over, but I figured it’d be better in the long run to start clean. Unfortunately, while it gets rid of the crap accumulating in the registry, it also means I have to reinstall all my major programs and hope to god that my ATI TV tuner card won’t crash my GeForce video card (and vice versa), as it often does. Which is why my next video card will be from ATI. It also means that my Word dictionary, which I’ve spent the better part of two years filling with wrestling terms and names, is now back to square one and I’m gonna have to “add to dictionary” every time I type something like “spinebuster” or “powerbomb” again. But hey, it gives me something to do in between wrestling shows, I guess.

– After last night’s Joe Schmo, I’m starting to wonder if maybe the paranoid people AREN’T on the right track after all wondering if the whole thing’s a work. I felt really bad for Matt, but maybe that was the intention? I can’t shake the feeling there’s something else going on here.

– Live from Nashville, TN.

– Your hosts are Mike Tenay & Don West.

– Big week for TNA, as they’re coming off the one-cent PPV and really need to hook future viewers bigtime this week.

– Opening match: BJ James & Ron Killings v. America’s Most Wanted v. Kid Kash & Abyss v. Slash & Sinn. Winner gets a title shot next week. Storm starts with Slash and AMW double-team him for two. Harris slugs away, and Storm gets a neckbreaker and a legdrop for two. Slash & Sinn get a double backbreaker for two. Sinn tosses Storm, but Harris defends him from interlopers. Back in, Sinn gets two, as does BJ James, who tags himself in. Pumphandle slam is reversed to a superkick by Storm, however. Kash tags himself in and gets two on BG. Kash gets a missile dropkick for two, but Killings comes in with an axe kick. James holds Kash for a Truth spinkick, and the shaky-legs kneedrop gets two. Kash ducks Killings and brings in Abyss, but Truth is ready to give it a go. Everyone comes in with quick tags as they hold off Abyss with an armwringer, so Kash slaps Abyss around to motivate him. That pisses him off enough to allow him to destroy everyone, until AMW hit him with a double-team spear that puts him on the floor. AMW follows with a pair of pescados, while Kash hooks up Killings for the Moneymaker in the ring. Terry Taylor makes the most unwelcome comeback in, well, weeks, running in to hit Kash with a low blow, and 3 Live Cru are YOUR #1 contenders at 7:16. Match was kind of a mess. *3/4 I also hope that TNA isn’t interpreting their goofy opening match heat as serious title contender heat, because fans aren’t going to buy them in that role. Still, they at least have a direction to go with the tag titles, which is more than the WWE can say.

– Roddy Piper now joins us to fulfill the show’s senility quotient. “Heard any good Roddy Piper jokes lately?” he asks. Yeah, I heard one about how a guy was dumb enough to go on HBO and trash the only major wrestling company in North America, thus burying his own career. Stop me if you’ve heard that one before. He claims to not be crazy and rambles about how all the doors have been kicked in and this is the only place that will take him, but boy howdy he’s glad to be here regardless. Huh? TURN DOWN THE CRAZY KNOB, TURN UP THE SANE KNOB. He rambles about his kids discovering his drug habit from the internet, although he claims not to have a drug habit here, even though that’s the whole crux of his argument against the WWE and he went on national TV and said he had one. Mercifully, Vince Russo interrupts (and when would THOSE words ever come out of my mouth?) but now the interview REALLY starts to go downhill, as Russo makes reference to Piper saying stuff he knew nothing about (that makes two of us – what the hell are they talking about?) and that one of them has to go and Don Callis will make the decision. I’d settle for both of them spontaneously combusting from the sheer force of ego friction. However, apparently if Russo leaves, so does AJ Styles and the NWA title. What are they, lovers? This whole segment was something out of Heroes of Wrestling, and I’m pretty sure Piper contradicted his own arguments about being drug-free by actually cutting this promo.

– Casket Match: Sonny Siaki v. D-Lo Brown. In an interesting twist on the match, the casket is in the ring and can be used as a weapon. D-Lo attacks and rams Siaki into it and slams the door on his head. Into the casket, but Siaki fights out. D-Lo dropkicks him and sets up the casket in the corner, where Siaki gets whipped into it. Siaki drops D-Lo on it, however, to take over. He drops the casket onto D-Lo, but D-Lo comes back with a backdrop and some clotheslines. Back to the casket goes D-Lo, however, and Siaki slams it into his back in the corner. D-Lo comes back with a spinebuster onto the casket, and a frog splash onto it as well, but Jamal of all people runs in to wipe out D-Lo with a flying splash, giving Sonny the win at 5:22. What is this, the Federal Jobber Relocation program or something? *1/2

– Nosawa, Chris Sabin & Michael Shane v. Juventud Guerrera, Eric Young (listed as “David Young” on screen) & Frankie Kazarian. Apparently Teddy Hart has again talked himself out of a job, which amazes me because they’ll refuse to book Teddy for being a jerk, but they’ll sign EDDIE FATU, (the guy who got into a barfight with a cop and threatened to kill his family), just because he happened to be on WWE TV for a few months. Juvy starts with Shane and overpowers him for two. He chops away and they fight over a rollup, but Shane kicks him down. Nosawa comes in and Juvy dropkicks him and chops some more. Young criss-crosses with Nosawa and gets a sunset flip, but Nosawa rolls through with a dropkick and Kazarian comes in for a double-team armdrag and splash. He stays on the arm, but Shane pulls him out and gets a cheapshot to make Kazarian YOUR face-in-peril. Sabin gets a leg lariat for two. Shane comes in with a DDT attempt, but Kazarian fights out, so Shane gets a neckbreaker from the middle instead, for two. Sabin comes in and Kazarian kicks him down, but the heels cut off the tag. Kazarian fights them off with a double springboard elbow, and heel miscommunication allows the hot tag to Juvy. Double bulldog, and he reverses a Sabin powerbomb attempt into a rana. Juvy hits Nosawa with a dive, setting off the usual trainwreck spot, which finishes when Sabin gets his insane springboard plancha. Back in, Sabin and Juvy reverse off a suplex, until Juvy gets the Drunk Driver, but Shane knocks him off the top. Sabin gets a Cradle Shock for two. Next, Shane superkicks Juvy, and powerbombs Kazarian, but brawls out with Juvy. Nosawa kicks the crap out of Young, who comes back with a wheelbarrow neckbreaker. Sabin hits Young with the belt, but Shane gets the pin at 9:14. I HATE that stupid beltshot finish. It’s like bad finish night, moreso than usual. The match never got going and would have been better served as a tag match or three singles. **1/2

– Meantime, Christopher Daniels preaches to the choir. Literally. You’d think one cult leader per promotion would suffice. Maybe the union will step in.

– Jeff Jarrett comes out and bitches about his lack of a title match, petitions on behalf of Piper, and threatens Daniels. Thanks for coming, Jeff.

– Simon & Swinger v. Mad Mikey & Shark Boy. Man, Shark Boy is lost at sea right now, pun intended. They almost had it so right with the New Jack team and Shark Boy being the constant face-in-peril while New Jack stands on the apron and cuts promos. Swinger pounds Mikey to start, but gets faceplanted. Mikey does a bottom-rope walk (“Pre-School!”) and Shark Boy gets a dropkick. Swinger comes back with a hotshot and Simon comes in, but a rana gets two for Shark Boy. Shark Boy & Mikey get a double-elbow for two. Simon superkicks Mikey for two, and Mikey is face-in-peril. Double-team sideslam gets two and Swinger chokes away. Simon Series gets two. Swinger pounds away and ducks an enzuigiri, but Mikey tags Shark Boy. He cleans house and gets a backslide drop for two. He tries to bite Simon’s ass and gets mulekicked for his troubles. Simon bails and Shark Boy opts to go after Swinger in the corner, and gets the Dead Sea Drop for two. Mikey takes care of Gilberti, but leaves Shark Boy alone, and the Problem Solver reels him in at 4:54. Standard stuff. **

– Meantime, Jarrett does battle with the minions of Daniels (they seem more like disciples to me, or even goons) and tosses one of them off a balcony, through a table. My hero.

– NWA World title: AJ Styles v. Jerry Lynn. In a rare gaffe from Tenay, he notes that Lynn can become the fourth person to hold both the NWA and ECW World titles, after Douglas, Terry Funk and Sabu, when actually he’s the FIFTH – Steve Corino also did the deed. They slug it out to start, and trade wristlocks. Lynn clotheslines him and they trade flips in the corner, but Lynn gets a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for two. They fight over a suplex, and then trade inverted DDT attempts, but Lynn drops AJ on the top rope and guillotines him to the floor. They brawl out there and AJ slides under the railing and launches off it, but lands on Lynn’s knee. Lynn stops to go after Trinity, however, and gets catapulted into the stairs for his troubles, opening up a SICK bladejob. AJ gets two back in the ring, and cuts off a comeback with an elbow. Tornado DDT is blocked with a northern lights suplex into the turnbuckles by Lynn. Jerry slugs back and gets a backdrop. TKO gets two. AJ sidesteps him into the corner, but Lynn reverses a rana with a powerbomb for two. Piledriver is stopped by Trinity, and AJ gets a whiplash and brainbuster for two. Lynn blocks the Styles Clash with an Emerald Frozen looking thing for two. AJ gets a chair and goes low, and a neckbreaker on the chair gets two. Styles Clash finishes at 9:03. Usual good match between these two. *** Russo immediately calls out Don Callis for his decision (why is it his decision anyway?), but gets Dusty instead. Dusty speaks up for AJ’s duty to the NWA title and how he should stick around and turn on Russo, because when he wakes up in the morning, that burning smell is DESIRE. And here I thought it was Jimmy Dean sausage. AJ teases turning on Russo, but as a true student of the master, feigns in one direction with the baseball bat before hitting Dusty. Russo should have that patented. The beatdown goes on forever before, who else, Stone Cold Jeff Jarrett makes the save.

– Meantime, Callis chooses Russo, and Piper is ejected. Good riddance.

– Hair v. Hair: Raven v. Shane Douglas. Big staredown to start, and they slug it out, and Raven backs off. Raven tosses him, but Shane evades him and starts an armbar, only to be slugged down. They fight over a lockup and tumble out, where Shane hits the railing. A few times. They fight in the crowd and Raven legdrops a chair onto his face, and then has fans hold chairs for more punishment. Back to the ring, Raven slugs away and locks in a cobra clutch. He picks the weirdest stuff to pull from mothballs and try to get over. Douglas fights out and sidesteps him, putting him on the floor again. Shane slugs away, but Raven fights back with a Russian legsweep into the railing. Raven keeps pounding him and goads him into charging, resulting in Shane hitting the stairs. ROID RAGE! That draws blood. Douglas goes low to take over, and gives him a nasty shot into the stairs, drawing blood. Back in, Douglas with the rolling necksnap and abdominal stretch, but Raven reverses to the cobra. Douglas goes back to it, but Raven hiptosses out. Another try, but Raven reverses, so Shane hiptosses him to the floor. Back in, Shane chokes away…and barfs on the mat. Yes, he’s so gassed that he can’t even do 10 minutes without throwing up his dinner. And the camera guys couldn’t even switch angles in time, so we got the FULL view of it. How do you make THAT sound the least bit badass? Raven slugs him down and gets a chair, but Shane uses his trusty chain for two. Man, he’s been keeping that thing in his boot since 1993, the smell alone should be enough to knock the guy out. Raven comes back with the DROP TOEHOLD OF DEATH for two. Bulldog on the chair gets two, as Shane is clearly immobile. Raven with a nice superkick for two. Slash pulls the ref out as the overbooking begins anew, and the ref is then bumped when Raven bulldogs Douglas. Sinn superkicks Raven for the beatdown, but Julio & Punk finally save once a table gets involved. Douglas sets up the table, but Raven DDTs him for two. They head up top and Douglas throws him through the table for two. Shane gets ANOTHER table and puts Raven on it, but when he goes up, Raven pops up and DDTs him, off the top, through the table, for what would be a sure pin if the lights hadn’t gone out. I HATE that finish. HATE IT HATE IT HATE IT. Not to mention it’s ripping off Rock-Hogan II, one of the worst matches of the year. Vampiro appears as the Mystery Man (give him two weeks before he flakes out and leaves again), DDTs Raven, and Shane gets the pin at 16:51, moments after Tenay and West were screaming about how they didn’t do cheap screwjob finishes in TNA. As promised, Raven is shaved bald by Jim Mitchell, and he presses hard enough to draw blood. Yuck. This was, shall we say, not what I was looking for from this match, as they went for the WWE Main Event Style circa 1998 instead of the Memphis Brawl circa 1986. I’m thinking that Raven was shooting for Jerry Lawler v. Austin Idol with Tommy Rich under the ring, but Shane is no Austin Idol, and Vampiro isn’t even Tommy Rich. **1/2

The Bottom Line:

A decent show, but sadly the string of blowaway shows ends at 6, as bad finishes and questionable booking sink this one. This was pretty much the same stuff as we’re getting in the WWE right now, and they should keep shooting for the “alternative” label. Ironically, the WWE themselves is doing just that on Smackdown later tonight with an all-wrestling show. Wonders never cease, I guess.


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