Just a quick note, I will be going on vacation for a week starting on Tuesday so unless I am able to write up reviews this weekend, there will not be any TNA or WWF stuff from me until for a little while.
September 18, 2002
Goldylocks is backstage and starts off by explaining the rules for the tag-team “Gauntlet for the Gold.” It’s a battle royal in which there is an entrant every 60 seconds and the last two men that are left will be joined by their partners for a tag match and the winner will be awarded the tag-team championships. Scott Hall joins Goldylocks and says he has a great partner, which is Sean Waltman. He quickly says hi before walking away with Hall. Waltman left the WWE just a few weeks before this aired so appearing on this PPV isn’t that bad of a score for NWA-TNA.
Your hosts are Don West and Mike Tenay
They run down the card, including Ron Killings vs. Jerry Lynn for the NWA-TNA World Heavyweight Championship as West states how
Goldylocks in a pre-taped interview from earlier today is with Lawler in the parking lot. He is waiting for Jeff Jarrett. Lawler sees Jarrett and tries to attack but Jarrett stops him and says that he knows what this is about. He said he never touched his girlfriend April and that she is playing Lawler. He tells Lawler how he is the only one that he can trust. This feud has been terrible and no one cares at all.
Back in the arena, Jarrett’s music hits and he comes out. He says that he doesn’t want any more games or suspense and orders Bob Armstrong to come out with his masked surprise and if he doesn’t, he will go into the back and “beat the depends” off of him. He sure does make a for a witty heel. Jarrett heads back as a camera follows him but the Masked Bullet shows up and beats the piss out of Jarrett. They brawl back towards the ring. In the ring, The Masked Bullet does all of the Road Dogg’s mannerisms before grabbing the mic and saying “Oh, you didn’t know” before unmasking and revealing the Road Dogg, to the surprise of no one. He says seven years ago in
, the Roadie walked out of the WWF with his supposed friend, Jeff Jarrett. He then says it was nearly career suicide but he kept going and joined D-X. After declaring that he will find a partner and enter the Gauntlet for the Gold,” he reveals that he will now go by “BG James” and that the “G” stands for “get it, got it, good.” James was really out of shape here but the crowd responded well towards him. Still, this is a feud that is only slightly better than Lawler/Jarrett, which apparently ended during a parking lot conversation. Nashville
Goldylocks is with Jorge Estrada & Sonny Siaki. She questions Siaki on his motives and he stops himself from speaking in the third person and puts over the Flying Elvises, stating how his time will come later. He comes off as insincere but Estrada seems to be believing him. He then talks about the X-Division and that they should all support Jerry Lynn in his match against Killings tonight. Its pretty obvious that Siaki is gonig to interfere in that match.
Kid Kash vs. AJ Styles
Before the match, Styles grabs the mic and says the only thing supporting
tonight will be his jockstrap. He then stumbles over his words before telling Lynn that their feud isn’t over yet. According to Tenay, Kash is the master of the hurricarana. The two start off by countering each other’s moves in the typical X-Division over-choreographed fashion. Tenay mentions that Low Ki is returning to NWA-TNA next week. Okay, he was gone from the last live show but has been appearing regulary. Kash dropkicks AJ off the apron then slingshots out and catches AJ with a rana. AJ kicks Kash and gets a moonsault block off of the apron. In the ring, AJ with a springboard missile dropkick that gets two. Kash catches AJ with a boot after a charge and gets a twisting senton for two. Kash with the high-angle Boston Crab then drops an elbow, for two. Kash blocks a spinning heel kick but AJ blocks the Moneymaker and drops Kash outside with a spinning neckbreaker. AJ runs off the apron and gets a tornado DDT. He rolls Kash in and gets two. Crowd is firmly behind Kash, who bounces AJ’s head off the turnbuckle with a headscissor takedown. German suplex gets two. AJ ducks a clothesline and gets a very sloppy Phenomenon for two. AJ beats on Kash but ducks his head and gets kicked. Kash with a double springboard hurricarana then gets a tornado DDT for two. AJ goes low with a dropkick then gets his kip-up into a rana for two. Discus clothesline gets two. They have a chopping battle that AJ wins. Dropkick to the back of Kash’s head gets two. AJ lands on the apron after a backdrop and springboards in but Kash dropkicks him right in the balls in mid-air. Holy shit did that look painful. Clothesline by Kash but misses a double springboard crossbody. AJ goes up top but Kash crotches him. Kash climbs up but AJ blocks the Frankensteiner and gets the Styles Clash from the second rope for the win (9:56) **1/4. Lynn
Thoughts: Some nice moves on display but there was no flow, or even any selling that occurred in this match. Kash looked fine but he seems to switch from face to heel each week. That is another problem TNA has, they have a roster full of tweeners.
Goldylocks is in the locker room with Buff Bagwell. He refers to himself as Buff, then changes his mind and says he is Marcus Bagwell. He asks for another chance and says that Marcus Bagwell started him in the business. BG James cut-ins and says that he knows of Bagwell and will give him a second chance by being his partner in the Tag Team Gauntlet, because he has received multiple chances as well. Bagwell accepts and they hug it out. Lame.
Jeremy Borash is on the entrance ramp and introduces Dustin Diamond. He asks him what he thinks of TNA. Diamond says it’s great in about several different ways. He brings up Celebrity Boxing and how he beat Ron Pollilo (Horshack from “Welcome Back Kotter.”) and asks if he will wrestle in TNA because of this. Diamond calls Borash a pip-squeak and Borash says that he should fight West, who says he gets paid to announce. West goes over to Tiny the Bell Keeper, a short, obese man and says that he should wrestle. West motivates him by asking if he wants to be a bellkeeper for the rest of his life. West was actually good in trying to convince Tiny that he should wrestle. Diamond says that he will beat Tiny and Borash asks for the boxing gloves as Tiny looks shocked. I'm pretty sure that no one cares to see this bout.
Goldylocks is with the Hotshots. They state how they gave up their spot in the Gauntlet to give the young teams a chance. Chase Stevens can’t cut a promo to save his life. Its not like O'Reilly is great or even good at them but Stevens makes him look like Ric Flair by comparision. Goldylocks then states how they were the tenth tanked team and booked into a three-way tag between Derek Wylde/Jimmy Rave & Ace Steel/CM Punk, so they couldn’t give up their spot. They leave and Disco Inferno comes in and asks her if she has seen Brian Lawler, referring to him as a puppet. He argues with Goldylocks and berates her before leaving. Two shitty segments that were rolled into one. Thanks, Russo.
Keeper vs. Dustin Diamond Bell
The rules are three one-minute rounds. West is the timekeeper. Diamond shoves Tiny before the bell. Tiny with a haymaker but Diamond ducks and hits him in the gut. He punches him again then sets him up for a overhand, which knocks him down. As the ref counts to five, Diamond’s music hits and the ref gets up to ten (0:36).
Thoughts: At least it was short. This had no appeal, even as a novelty attraction.
Derek Wylde & Jimmy Rave vs. Ace Steel & CM Punk vs. Hotshots
The loser from the match will be eliminated from the Gauntlet for the Gold. This is Punk’s TNA debut and he looks to weigh about 175 lbs here and is wearing shorts. West refers to him as a “possible X-Division player.” He starts off the match with Stevens and grabs a side headlock. He messes up a Mexican armdrag and Stevens backs him into the corner. Punk counters a slingshot and gets a crossbody block. Stevens fires away but Punk makers the tag after almost killing Stevens with a tilt-a-whirl slam. Steel with a delayed vertical suplex as Tenay mentioned how he trained Punk. Steel with chops then apparently tags Wylde, who tries a rana but gets caught by Stevens and powerbombed. Tag to O’Reilly and he runs into a very sloppy looking rana. Rave tags but gets taken down from behind by Stevens as he runs the ropes. Slam by O’Reilly then he follows with a springboard moonsault, getting two. Handspring back elbow smash by O’Reilly who poses then tags Stevens. They double-team Rave for a minute as a “Hotshots suck” chant breaks out. O’Reilly tags back and hits a delayed vertical suplex for two. Rave gets a small package for two but is clotheslined back down immediately. Slam but Rave gets the knees up on a moonsault. Rave manages a super kick as both men are down. Tag to Punk who almost whiffed completely on a springboard dropkick. He barely hit his ankles. Backbreaker by Punk but Stevens shoves his partner out of the way and gets a clothesline. The match breaks down as Steel is tossed to the floor. Rave is sent to the outside after a backdrop from O’Reilly, who misses a twisting pescado. Punk dives out and gets a swanton on O’Reilly. Wylde dives out with a twisting press but fell short and hit the floor hard. Stevens tries to dive out but gets clotheslined by Steel. He puts Stevens up in the Gory Special then turns into a neckbreaker for the win (7:10) *. The Hotshots are stunned then throw a temper tantrum in the ring.
Thoughts: Bad match. Most people, Punk included, didn’t seem like they even belonged wrestling on television. Those reading this are probably interested in how he did here but it was bad. I think he messed up more spots than anyone else in the match. Although, he was the most charismatic of the bunch. Lots of botched spots and sloppy sequences contaminated this match. Ace Steel probably stood out the most if I had to pick someone. Rave & Wylde were the two most generic indy wrestlers TNA has had on their shows at this point. This was also the last appearance of the Hotshots in TNA as O'Reilly quit a week or so due to travel issues.
Goldylocks is out back with Chris Harris and James Storm. They say that tonight is their night and Harris says it doesn’t matter if Storm acts like a cowboy. He leaves and calls Storm “Buckeroo,” which makes him happy. Storm's character here and the one from current TNA is like night and day.
Borash is in the ring and welcomes out Scott Hall and Syxx Pac, which is Waltman’s name in TNA. The usual catchphrases from Hall as he reminisces about first meeting Syxx Pac in 1993 and jokes about how he beat a jabroni named “Razor Ramon.” He says that Waltman makes him love wrestling and that he will “work for free” if he is in the ring. Waltman says the “bad shit” people have heard about him is probably true and that he is back to wrestling, no longer a sports entertainer. He then says the will probably get fired from TNA then they are jumped by Ron Harris and Brian Lee but gain the advantage and Hall hits Lee with the Razor’s Edge. The segment was designed to introduce Syxx Pac to TNA and did an alright job in doing so here.
Goldylocks is with Brian Lawler, who is pacing around frantically. She asks him about his girlfriend and Lawler asks where she is and forgets that the Gauntlet for the Gold is tonight before screaming at Goldylocks about this being a “life or death” situation. The Lawler stuff is horrible and no one cares at all.
Borash is in the ring and welcomes Hermie Sadler, who is wearing his Kangol backwards and sporting a goatee. He is interviewed by Tenay, who essentially kisses his ass about his involvement in NASCAR and praises is match against Killings a few months ago. Tenay then invites him to sit out for the next match
Bruce comes to the ring and Sadler says he doesn’t understand why Bruce beats up women. Bruce once again brings up Tenay and asks him about his wife, saying that he wants to kick her ass. Bruce challenges people from the crowd and calls out a blond lady as Borash has he sign a release. Bruce calls her a fat hog
Miss NWA-TNA Title and $5,000 Open Challenge
Bruce vs. ???
The blond doesn’t get a name. Bruce opens the ropes for her but immediately beats her down. Bruce gets a suplex and finishes by powerbombing the woman for the win (1:02). After the match, Sadler questions Bruce’s motives and runs in to save the woman from a beating. He hits Bruce with an inverted atomic drop.
Thoughts: Bruce being Miss TNA is another awful angle. No one cares and there isn’t any appeal to this at all. Also, adding Hermie Sadler to the mix isn’t going to help things either.
Goldylocks is with Jerry Lynn. She asks him about his title match with Killings. He says it is a great opportunity and goes on until Killings comes out and asks
if he that is what he calls “Honky-Tonk.” Tells Lynn that he is the best and the belt means everything to him. He then tells Lynn he needs to commit a homicide if he wants to take the belt away from him. The best backstage segment of the night, not like that’s saying much. Lynn
NWA-TNA Tag-Team Gauntlet for the Gold
Brian Lawler is #1 and Tenay says that his partner is the Disco Inferno. James Storm is #2. Lawler crotches Storm as he comes in but plays to the crowd, allowing Storm to fight back. Suplex by Lawler and he backdrops Storm, who lands on the apron then hits Lawler with a missile dropkick. Joel Maximo is #3 and the crowd does a “S-A-T” chant. He and Storm try to take out Lawler. Derek Wylde is #4 and hits Joel with a springboard dropkick and a tilt-a-whirl headscissors before getting tossed over the top rope by Lawler. Joel gets eliminated by Lawler after eating a superkick. Storm tries the Hanging Noose but Lawler shoves him off top and he is eliminated. Lawler is in the ring by himself and dances around until Buff Bagwell enters at #5. Buff hits a few clotheslines and a neckbreaker, all in slow motion. He follows with some posing and yells in the camera then beats on Lawler in the corner as Kobain enters at #6. He clotheslines Bagwell then works on Lawler. Bagwell then hits Kobain and gets a backdrop. Lawler goes low on Bagwell and orders Kobain to attack then jumps him shortly afterwards. Ace Steel is #7 and works on Kobain. Lawler tries to eliminate Bagwell and bites his forehead and nose. Jorge Estrada is #8 and is met by Steel. Not a whole lot going on as Brian Lee is number #9 and beats on Steel. Still not much going on as Syxx Pac enters as #10. He kicks Kobain then beats on Lee. He looks good out here as he is going after everyone. He eliminates Kobain with a chop then gets the Bronco Buster on Lawler. CM Punk is #11 and his partner Ace Steel gets tossed over the top rope by Pac as soon as he enters the ring. Punk and Estrada go at it as does Lee and Bagwell. Jimmy Rave enters at #12 and takes down Punk with headscissors as he an Estrada double-team Punk, who Tenay is calling Ace Steel. Ron Harris enters at #13 and beats the piss out of Estrada and almost tosses him out but then does so with the help of Lee. Harris then throws Punk over the top rope as Lee does the same to Rave. Bagwell tries to charge at them but gets backdropped to the floor and eliminated. Syxx Pac then tosses Lawler from the top and to the floor just as BG James is announced as #14. He fights off Lee and Harris for a bit but gets beat on in the corner. Syxx stomps on Lee and tries to get him over the top rope. Jose Maximo is #15 and tries a crossbody but Harris catches him and tosses him over the top rope. Lee and Harris hit Pac with the H Bomb. They try it again but Pac gets a double clothesline. Lawler distracts Pac, allowing Harris and Lee to eliminate him. Slash is #16 and goes towards BG James. All three men beat on James as Sonny Siaki is #17. He gets a neckbreaker on Slash and stomps away. Disco Inferno is #18 and stalls on the apron before going after Siaki. Harris then beats on him as Slash works on Siaki in the corner. Scott Hall enters as #19 and goes after Lee then Harris. Lee is on the top rope then gets down. Hall backdrops Harris to the floor as #20 Chris Harris comes out and goes after Lee. Slash is eliminated off camera and Siaki is elminated by Disco after he side steps a charge. Boy, did that look lame. Hall and James beat on Disco. Hall tosses him but he lands on the apron only to get shoved off and eliminated. We are down to the final four: BG James, Scott Hall, Brian Lee and Chris Harris. James and Hall go to lockup but Lee runs over and eliminates both men, leaving he and Chris Harris as the last two men (23:00) **1/2.
Thoughts: Not that bad for a battle royal, actually. The action flowed nicely. Besides Bagwell, no one really embarrassed themselves either.
NWA-TNA Tag-Team Championship Match
Ron Harris & Brian Lee vs. Chris Harris & James Storm
Harris beats on Lee but his taken down by a big boot. Harris beats up Storm on the apron and his chokeslammed. Jarrett then runs out and attack BG James as the camera foucs on that for a bit. Both Harris and Lee beat on the Wildcat as Storm is crawling to the ring. Harris knees Storm off of the apron as Lee is now the legal man. Harris fires away but misses a charge and gets clotheslined, which gets two. Funny moment as West says how there are too many “Harris’s and James’s out here.” That is very true. Ron tags in and they get the H-Bomb on the Wildcat. Storm runs in and escapes the H-Bomb and runs wild until he is caught with the H-Bomb. Ron sets up a table and puts Storm on top. Lee tries to powerbomb Harris onto his partner but Harris counters with a rollup and gets the pin (4:57) ½*.
Thoughts: It’s nice to see that they put the belts on Storm & Harris here but they didn’t exactly make them look strong. Harris doesn’t care to sell for anything and the rollup win just screams that it was a fluke.
Tenay and West hype up Harris & Storm as the new tag-champs. Camera cuts to the locker room as BG James is bleeding profusely with a referee applying pressure with a towel and James’s father, Bob Armstrong, standing around.
Tale of the tape between Jerry Lynn and Ron Killings
NWA-TNA World Heavyweight Championship Match
Jerry Lynn vs. Ron “The Truth Killings (Champion)
before the bell. Back elbow smash by Killings and he yells at the crowd. Lynn ducks an attack in the corner and fires away. Tilt-a-whirl headscissors by Lynn and he beats on the Truth in the corner. Backbreaker gets two. Killings charges and Lynn sends him into the turnbuckle with a drop toehold. He then nails Truth in the nuts and apologizes but gets tossed outside shortly afterwards. Killings with a baseball slide then hotshots him off of the table. Lynn is busted open on his forehead and Truth goes on the attack. An awkward sequence leads to a sideslam by Killings, which gets two. Lynn is wearing a crimson mask at this point but manages to get a sunset flip. Killings goes back on the attack. Lynn gets hit with a leg lariat then is tossed outside. Killings punches Lynn around but gets whipped into the guardrail. He then slams Lynn ’s head off of the steps and opens up his forehead. Back in the ring, Killings stomps on Lynn then puts him in a surfboard. After switching go-behinds, they mess up a big boot spot and then repeat it, getting Killings a two count. Axe kick gets two. Lynn manages to get a cradle for two but gets clotheslined down by Killings. Lynn gets a crossbody for two then clotheslined down again as AJ Styles is standing ringside. Kid Kash, Flying Elvises and the SAT’s come down ringside as well, showing support to Lynn . Back suplex by Lynn Lynn and both men are down as the crowd is chanting loudly for . He gets a few clotheslines then a legsweep for two. He signals for the cradle piledriver but Killings counters with a backdrop. Lynn then counters a suplex attempt with a DDT as the ref is paying attention to the other wrestlers. He goes up top but gets crotched by Sonny Siaki and that allows Killings to get the consequences for the win (12:26) *3/4. The rest of the wrestlers chase Siaki up the ramp. Lynn is then helped to the back by the refs. Lynn
Thoughts: They tried, but the match just wasn’t very good.
went all out but Killings isn’t very strong on offense and the two didn’t seem to be on the same page. I did like the idea of the other X-Division wrestlers coming out to show support and having Siaki turn on Lynn and the entire X-Division fits his character. A Lynn/Siaki feud is a lot more refreshing than another Styles/Lynn match. Lynn
West hypes next week: Jeff Jarrett vs. BG James, Syxx Pac vs. Brian Lawler, and the return of Low Ki. BG James comes out with a mic and blows off Killings, who attacks him as a result. Jarrett runs in to beat on James but Hall and Syxx Pac run out and beat on the heels to close the show.
Final Thoughts: The first half of this show was horrendous but the Gauntlet for the Gold was decent and at least the main event, while not good, wasn’t embarrassing. The angles of Bruce as Miss TNA and Lawler’s girlfriend are just horrible. Jarrett ended is month long feud with Lawler over a parking lot conversation then went right back into a feud with BG James. I mean, the Lawler stuff sucked but ending it the way they did made the whole thing seemed like an even bigger waste of time. The Russo stuff is just overwhelming. Cramming all sorts of shit into a backstage segment just makes it so you forget what happened 30 minutes ago. The budget cutbacks are also notable as there were a lot of indy wreslters that didn’t belong on TV at all.