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TNA IMPACT RECAP  
Sting vs. Steiner? The Dudleys at the Bingo
Hall? What Year *is* This?
June 9, 2006

by Chris "Lucky" Lopez 
Exclusive to OnlineOnslaught.com

 

Hey there, kids. If you’re tuning in surprised to not see good old Jason in here for you don’t worry because you’re not alone. Imagine my surprise when Jason contacted me and I realized that it wasn’t days before a PPV that I had forgotten to send him predictions for. Instead I was recruited to fill in with recapping

duties this week seeing as how he has a life and important things to do. I can only presume that he came to me because he knows I’m the only TNA guy longwinded enough to never pass up an opportunity to rant for a little while in a high profile forum. Either that or everyone else already said no. However it may have come about I will be your recapper for this week and the best of luck to me. If I suck, don’t worry because Jason should be back next week and I’ll once again be relegated to once a month trying to figure out which X Division star wins for no particular reason and predicting against all my intelligence that THIS is the month when Jarrett gets pinned clean. First major difference between Jason and me? I laugh at Nash “tripod” jokes.

I’m really only typing this much because I presume I’m supposed to try and sneak my way past the advertisement… but who knows if I’ve gotten there? So I guess it’s about time for our show. We’ve got 2 forty-year-olds each wrestling their first legitimate one-on-one match in about 2 and a half years. Should be interesting if nothing else.

We open with a quick video recap of last week’s Raven/Jarrett match and some clips of Steiner/Sting interactions. That cuts direct into a short Sting promo which sends us right to Steiner in the back with Jarrett and Jeremy Borash. Nothing of note said, everyone’s just ready for the match. This, according to Borash, will be happening right after the opening video.

KING OF THE MOUNTAIN QUALIFIER: SCOTT STEINER VS. STING

Steiner with lots of backstage priming and posturing and he continues to win me over by coming out with Gail Kim rather than Jarrett. Sting out with much the same backstage antics and TNA is devoting a rather uncommon amount of time to the entrances and pre-match antics here. Only about 5 minutes and pretty conventional for WWE but somewhat uncommon for TNA (I’ve even heard people complain about the shortness of entrances from time to time). The match finally starts with a lock up and Steiner takes control. A few chops before Sting reverses it with his own strikes and kicks. After a minute or so if this Sting decides to take the match to the floor. Sting starts with a chair shot and then begins dragging Steiner around ringside randomly slamming his head into things before dropping him throat first across the railing. Sting heads back to the ring and is quickly followed by Steiner who manages to catch him with a low blow back kick to even things off as we head to commercial.

Back from commercials and Steiner is in control. Clotheslines, elbow drops, and a belly-to-belly suplex. Steiner locks Sting in a crossface for a minute or so but gives up on it (just as Don West says he won’t let him go) and goes with a release suplex. Steiner moves Sting up to the top rope and heads up for the superplex until Sting fights him off and sends him down by biting him in the head. Top rope clothesline puts Sting pretty solidly in control. A couple of clotheslines, a dropkick, splash off the middle rope, and 2 count. Sting sets Steiner up in the corner and goes for the Stinger Splash but the ref predictably gets in the way and goes down. That gives Kim a reason to jump on Sting’s back where she is quickly tossed aside. But that gives Jarrett the chance to hit the ring and drop Sting with a Stroke. Referee Slick Johnson (he of the douchey shorts) hits the ring to count the pin as Steiner drapes an arm across Sting but its just 2. Steiner is back up and nails Sting with the inverted suplex. He then tries to roll it into another but Sting manages to catch him with the inverted DDT first. Sting with the pin but Jarrett attacks the ref and we’ve got a DQ.

After the match Steiner and JJ express their anger by beating down Sting. Ron Killings is out to even the odds and takes both men down. Then it’s Abyss out to take on Killings and he gets dropped with an Axe kick. Oddly the crowd went from quite muted during most of this match to pumped for Killings/Abyss. But Jarrett’s recovered and the heels have the 3-on-2 advantage until Christian is nice enough to complete the circle and clear the ring. And the crowd is chanting Killings’ annoying new catchphrase rather than rooting for Christian or Sting. The heels are retreating, all except Steiner who heads to the announcers’ table and declares that he’s not leaving. Christy Hemme then arrives with one of those commercial bumpers and sets things up for us. “Scott Steiner’s not leaving and Samoa Joe’s up next. Stay tuned.” It’s a minor role but it really does work.

We’re back from some booze and porn commercials to see Steiner in the ring. Chasyn Rance is headed out for a match but Steiner makes it clear that he should head on back unless he wants “to die.” Rance seems to know better and chooses to live. Steiner is calling for Larry Zbyszko but instead gets Samoa Joe. Joe of course doesn’t hesitate to get in the ring and Steiner with the good old chestnut “Don’t you eyeball me, boy!” And then a pieface. Joe shakes it off and gets the warning and pieface a 2nd time. That’s enough and we get a brawl. TNA’s security opts to get out here quick and in full force this time and quickly separates the two (besides the occasional slip in defenses). You’ve seen it before.

Tenay kicks us to a new Paparazzi Productions where Kevin Nash is sitting across from Alex Shelly and his nifty presentation tablet. This time he’s got his 3 Step Plan mapped out (strangely in the form of a pie graph) for his conquest of the X Division. Silly Sabin walked right into his trap for Step 1. Step 2 comes tonight when he and Shelley will scout Sabin during his match and then Step 3 is Nash’s warm-up. This leads to Nash turning the page and impressing Shelley greatly with his use of a felt marker. Next week we have Nash’s X Division debut against a “Chris Sabin-like” wrestler. Nash puts it to Shelley to find a Sabin “clone” in style, size, and ability. He needs him for his big “Size Matters on a Pole Match” next week. Just to make things a little more random Shelley pulls out a Joey Lawrence “Woah!” for the heck of it.

After another round of commercials Borash is chasing down Larry Z to ask about Steiner vs. Joe. Everyone wants it at Slammiversary but Larry says it’s just not that easy. Douche ref Slick Johnson catches up just then to let Larry know that a decision will be made on Steiner/Joe by the end of the show. Larry can’t figure things out by then but it doesn’t matter since “the new face of TNA management” is here tonight and he’ll make the decision.

SONJAY DUTT VS. JERRELLE CLARK

If you’re wondering what the point of this match is Konnan is headed over to the announcing table to distract us. We quickly remind everyone that the LAX and the Spanish announcers (of which Konnan is one) are on strike because of the unfair practices of TNA. Dutt is in control of this match but TNA makes it clear that the match doesn’t matter by constantly letting us WATCH Konnan speak. Why is the spanish announce table in the dark corner? Where’s the food? The X Division is just a rip-off of lucha libre (I guess Konnan is allowed to do the same exact rant he did 3 years ago). Even the 6-sided ring is ripped off from Mexico. Meanwhile Clark has taken control of the match and drops Dutt with a head scissors takedown. He locks Dutt up in the ropes with an octopus kinda hold as Tenay tries to convince us that the match matters. Dutt has now taken back control after the ref broke up the hold and nails Clark with a springboard dropkick. This gives Tenay the chance to counter Konnan’s “racist” claims with the fact that Dutt is of Indian descent and has had tons of opportunities and success in TNA (and thus Dutt’s citizenship once again jumps based on TNA’s needs). Konnan declares him a “modern day Uncle Tom” and somehow during all of this Clark has managed to take control back. But “Mr. 630” misses a 630 degree splash. Dutt with the running shooting star and the pin. I’d feel worse about not following this match at all but this was a straight spot fest that became almost impossible to follow with the constant distraction of cuts to the announcer table. As Konnan splits he lets it known that “if you’re Latino, the LAX has your back.” That would probably be a bolder statement if LAX didn’t constitute pretty much all the Latinos in TNA. I think Shenshi might be Hispanic.

We’re headed to commercials but before that we notice Nash and Shelley headed out to ringside. Nash is making some plans but all that I can notice is the crazy tie die shirt that Nash is sporting.

In a connection I imagine I wasn’t supposed to make we’re back from commercials as Team 3D are at “the Arena” where they last sported similar tie die gear. “The Arena” is of course Philadelphia’s ECW Arena, only it’s not called that anymore even if TNA was willing to call it that. Brother Ray recites some rock lyrics and then goes to the disingenuous pandering. He’s comparing the ECW Arena and its fans to the Impact Zone and TNA fans. Some of their claims might be defendable but this isn’t one of them. Ray assures the James Gang that they’re going to bring some “old school violence” from Philly to them and Devon hammers the point home with an old school “Thou shall not mess with… Team 3D” (with even Devon sounding like he got caught on the name change). The guys then drop some matches and reveal that they’ve spelled “3D” out in lighter fluid. Decent punch line to a very poorly considered promo.

TEAM CANADA (BOBBY ROODE, A-1, AND ERIC YOUNG) VS. CHRIS SABIN AND THE JAMES GANG

Scott D’Amore is out with the troops and he’s in a sweat suit and perspiring quite a bit in preparation for his match at Slammiversary. Of course a Twinkie falls from his pocket when his partner Roode turns his back and it earns a talking too from the Canadian Enforcer. The good guys are out and BG James is into his decade old (semi revised) shtick and throws some threats towards Team 3D. They’re “coming to the bingo hall to make it famous.” Then Kip James says something gay. It’s BG and A-1 to start the match and BG goes into his routine. Punch, punch, shimmy, punch. Shimmy, shimmy, shimmy, knee drop. With BG’s offensive set all but exhausted he tags in his “brother” while A-1 brings in Roode. Lockup between the two men and Roode with the cheap shot out of it. But Kip James has a move set too and he wants to get through it as quick as possible. Shoulder tackle, shoulder tackle, dropkick, hip toss, press slam. It seriously feels like the James Gang exercising every move they know. With Kip out of ideas its Sabin’s turn to hit the ring while Eric Young comes in from the Canadian side. Sabin with the head scissors takedown but is then distracted as Nash and Shelley appear on a production lift in the crowd rising to a good vantage point to scout this match. We head to our last commercial break as Sabin gets blindsided and tossed into Team Canada’s corner.

We’re back with Team Canada firmly in control over Sabin. I’d make the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express reference but I can never remember which is which. The Canadians are trading tags and beating down Sabin as Nash and Shelley continue to watch from on high. A 2-count for Eric Young but no dice. BG is making himself useful but riling up the crowd and it leads to Sabin forcing Young over and making the tag. But the ref doesn’t see and while he’s getting the James Gang out the Canadians retake control. Tenay confirms for us that next week we’ll get Nash’s X Division debut (with no mention of what a “Size Matters on a Pole Match” may be). Roode has control with a slam on Sabin and a high knee drop off the middle rope. Then he moves to a rest hold allowing Sabin to try for a comeback. Roode blocks it though and A-1’s in the ring. A-1 with a backbreaker and tags in Young who nails the Macho Man elbow drop off the top rope. He goes for the pin but the James Gang break it up. Sabin’s finally got a guy his size in the ring so now he gets to pull off a comeback. Kick to Young’s gut and he follows it up with an enziguri. Kip James gets the hot tag and takes down all the Canadians. Young is thrown out of the ring and then proving me unfair Kip nails Roode with a tilt-a-whirl slam. Now everyone’s in the ring and Sabin cuts through them to nail Young with a suicide dive through the middle ropes. Roode and Kip are alone in the ring and Roode is setting James up for a shot with the Canadian flag when Rhino hits the ring. He stops Roode and the two get to brawling out of the ring and to the back. That leaves A-1 alone in the ring and severely outnumbered. Famouser from Kip and a tag to Sabin as he nails the top rope leg down and covers for the pin. Kip takes this opportunity to further contribute with some simulated masturbation with the flag pole while Sabin trash talks a retreating Nash.

We’re seemingly headed off the air when Christy Hemme gets a ring entrance. She dances down to the ring and heads into the ring. But apparently that was just so she could pull off a split on the apron. She then pulls an envelope suggestively from her boot and hands it over to a frazzled Don West. Don then takes awhile to reveal to us that “the new face of TNA management” will be at Slammiversary in 2 weeks (which I thought we already knew). He also lets us know that Scott Steiner will be taking on Samoa Joe at Slammiversary, and reminds us that it was 1 year ago at Slammiversary when Joe debuted and began his dominant streak. As I worry about the potential symmetry of that point Tenay and the crowd go wild as the show ends, but not before that music video recap of the night that I still can’t decide if I hate or not.

Steiner/Sting wasn’t good but it wasn’t horrid either. It was just there. Crowd was dead but its probably good that this opened an Impact rather than being in the last hour of a PPV. Both guys showed they could handle a 10 minute match, though, and that’s probably the important thing since their money matches are vs. much more capable men. Overall the show felt underwhelming if satisfying. This was a show to build up to Slammiversary. KOTM is set, Steiner/Joe, Nash is headed to the X Division, and we were reminded of the Rhino vs. Roode/D’Amore match. The 3D pettiness towards WWE/ECW has now worn thin though and a lot of the show was what we’ve been getting as of late (Nash and Shelley, Larry Z losing power, Jarrett/Steiner vs. Sting). Still, I’ve liked what we’ve been getting as of late so it felt perfectly acceptable given story development and a good run of shows. Next week we get Nash being silly and a final push for all the matches so hopefully TNA can finish off doing a rare strong storyline build for the PPV rather than just a match driven one.

BROWSE THE OO FEATURES ARCHIVE

Jason Longshore is your second-most-favorite wrestling fan/writer from Atlanta, GA.

 


  
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