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Hard Justice 2006
August 14, 2006

by Jason Longshore
OnlineOnslaught.com's TNA Pinch Hitter


The live pre-show kicks off with Jeremy Borash and Christy Hemme. Either the crowd is exceptionally jacked, or they’ve boosted their crowd mics because they’re really loud. While Borash and Christy are talking, Alex Shelley interrupts. He informs us that Kevin Nash injured his neck teaching the 840 Splash to Tito Ortiz at the UFC Dojo. Borash and Christy are a wee bit 

skeptical, but it’s going to Shelley v. Sabin tonight to become the X Division #1 contender.

Ron Killings defeats A-1 with his trusty axe kick. A-1 looks like he stole his trunks from the Hollywood Blondes archive. Cassidy Riley makes his return to TNA, teaming with Sonjay Dutt. They defeat the team of Jimmy Jacobs and El Diablo. No intro for Jacobs and Diablo, so the result wasn’t really a shock. I know pink is in now and all, but Jacobs can’t be serious with the pink crotch padding, can he?

After some video packages, they come back to the ring where Borash is talking and Christy is sitting on the turnbuckle. Nice shot TNA cameraman, although I would like to feed Christy some Twinkies.

I’ve really had enough of Sting’s maniacal yelling during his interviews. Spike his drink with some Ritalin or something, please. They replayed the Sting v. Jarrett soap opera series during the pre-show, just to make me dislike the build for the match even more.

The PPV proper opened up with a by-now-standard cool video package. Negative points for hitting me in the head with anvils though.


Devine has some pretty cool entrance music. Young has an army of misfits following him to the ring. Devine channels Chris Jericho in his prematch mic work, telling Young that the fans can’t save him. Poor Eric looks like he might cry. A “Super Eric” chant tries to get him back into it, but Devine controls the match. He hits a sweet hiptoss/multiple knee smash combo. Devine follows that up with an even sweeter springboard inverted DDT out of the corner for a two count. Slick Johnson looks up after the count and you can see all sorts of stuff falling out of the rafters. The crowd chants “The roof, the roof, the roof is on fire!” as a crapload of fire extinguishers go off.

The arena is full of smoke and fire extinguisher spray and you can’t see much of anything. Don West compares it to the Fog Bowl NFL game between Philly and Chicago years ago. They cut to the cameras at ringside and you can start to see a little. The crowd chants, “You can’t see us.” Young improvises a few blinded punches. They try to finish the match now that they can see a little bit. Young tosses Devine with a powerbomb. Devine whips Young into the corner, and Eric does the Flair Flip. He goes to the top, shoves Devine off, and hits an elbow drop for two. Eric gets the win with a sweet Wheelbarrow Neckbreaker.

Post-match, you can see the fire extinguisher residue all over the ringside area. Tenay keeps complaining about his tux being dirty. Earl Hebner comes out of the crowd and chokes Slick Johnson. Security pulls him off, and Larry Zybysko tries to calm him down. Hebner starts yelling about how Slick cost him his job. Earl says if he’s going down, Larry and Jarrett are going down with him. Tenay and West completely miss that Hebner said Jarrett’s name, I guess Mike was thinking about his dry cleaning bills.

They show Jarrett and Sting arriving at the arena. Christian drove Sting to the building, how nice.

Tenay tells us that they’re replacing the mat due to the fire, West gives the fans props for still being so into the opening match. They keep the camera on Tenay and West as they give a super-extended remix preview of the tag team #1 contender’s match. After the dissertation, Tenay tells us that they’re going to show us the Sting v. Jarrett preview video again.

They show the whole package, in its entirety, ending with the bumper graphic of the two participants in the match. Except, there’s no sound at all, and it’s followed by a “Technical Difficulties” graphic. Then, the video package starts all over again. After the first section, a “To Be Continued” graphic comes up, and they repeat the first part all over again. This is followed by the rest of the package for a second time in a row. I hated the package the first time I saw it on Impact, now I’ve seen 3 times in less than an hour.

After the package ends, they cut to Borash and Tenay standing outside the building. There’s fire trucks all over the place, and we learn that the fire marshal has evacuated the building. Tenay keeps bitching about his tux. They replay the incident, showing the fire in the lighting rig over the ring. It looked the extinguishers were having a hard time reaching where the fire was. Don West jumps in, trying to give an update, but Tenay and Borash keep going. They finally let him tell us that they’re about to start letting people go back in. West wonders who’ll be rattled by what happened, while Tenay just keeps talking about how it’s live TV and anything can happen. They show the empty arena, with staff trying to clean up the ringside area. West mentions that changes might have to be made to the card, but they’re not sure yet.

Eric Young shows up to make sure that everyone knows it wasn’t his fault. West teases him, saying that his match might not even count now. Young says that he and “Uncle Jeff” have solved the problem.

Monty Brown shows up to kill some more time. He talks some trash about Fat Joe and Rhino. Monty sings a song about Fat Joe and his cheeseburgers, and then rips off Three 6 Mafia’s “Stay Fly” song. I’m just glad he didn’t do anything with Fat Joe’s “Lean Back,” I hate that song. Monty did bring back the hippo-phant line, which earns him negative marks.

To continue the insanity, Shane Douglas and The Naturals show up next. He talks about dealing with adversity, and gives George W. Bush props. I guess we know who Shane voted for last time around, eh? He basically gives The Naturals a pep talk, hyping them up for their match.

They throw it to Borash, who’s backstage now, with Alex Shelley. Shelley is upset that Borash is skeptical about Nash’s injury. The black “Kev” armband on Shelley is brilliant. Devine wheels Nash out, and he says it’s a dark day for him. He can’t live his dream of becoming the X Division #1 contender. Kev is going to support Shelley though, and offers him his dog tags in a show of support.


These two have faced off so many times, they’re very evenly matched in the early going. Sabin gets a two count with a missile dropkick. He keeps up the pressure, even mocking Nash’s pose. Shelley rakes the eyes to switch the momentum. A bulldog and a slam are followed by the Shelley-sault for two. Sabin tosses Shelley to the floor, and follows up with a suicide dive. They head back to the ring, but Shelley neutralizes Sabin with the dreaded crotch claw. Sabin comes back with an enziguiri and top rope leg drop for a two count. Shelley comes back with a top rope atomic drop, and then hits a crazy tilt-a-whirl armbreaker into an armbar. Sabin is able to get the ropes, and then he cuts Shelley off on the top rope. Tree of Woe followed by the hesitation dropkick by Sabin. Shelley comes back by biting Sabin and hits a modified back cracker. Shell Shock gets a two count. Nash slides in a chair, but Sabin blocks the Sliced Bread #2 attempt. Sabin hits his own version of the Van Daminator, and follows up with a Cradle Shock to win.

Borash is backstage with Abyss and James Mitchell. Mitchell says that Runt should have listened to his brothers and stayed out of trouble, instead it appears he’s been listening to Raven. Interesting, I wonder where this is headed.


Runt comes out with a Mohawk and tie-dye TNA shirt, nice nod to the old days. Runt scores early with a couple of head butts to the midsection, but bounces off Abyss on a flying cross body attempt. Abyss press slams Runt into the crowd, who don’t surf him around the building. Runt comes back with a sweet Acid Drop across the guardrail. Runt gets some chairs while Raven watches on. The ref tries to stop Runt with the chair, but Abyss has already wedged the other chair between the ropes in the corner. He’s finally getting better at doing that. Runt ends up getting slammed head first into the chair and wearing it like a necklace. Abyss gets all fired up and hits his silly charge in the corner. Abyss sets Runt on the top rope, but Runt is able to connect with a steel chain punch. He then follows with the double stomp off the top for a two count. Senshi cries in the back about gimmick infringement. Runt follows up with another Acid Drop, but only for a two count. Runt gets whipped into the ref in the corner, and then Abyss accidentally splashes the ref. Mitchell gives Abyss the thumbtacks, and he sets them up. Abyss pushes Runt’s face into the tacks, followed up by a kick to the back of the head, smashing Runt’s face into the tacks! Runt tries to come back, but gets flap jacked onto the tacks chest first. Abyss then hits a stationary Black Hole Slam in the tacks to end it. Holy crap, Runt is insane!

Raven poses as Abyss is leaving the ring.

Rhino cuts another insane promo with Borash. He’s definitely got “crazy” down to a science at this point.


Monty is wearing full tights under his trunks, maybe he’s allergic to fire extinguisher residue or something. They brawl to start, shockingly. Monty scores with a plancha to Rhino. Joe follows up with his patented suicide dive. Joe beats on Rhino until Monty shows up with a trash can and puts an end to that. Joe comes back by punting the trash can into Monty’s face. He sits Monty down on a chair next to the guardrail and hits his Ole Kick. Rhino comes back with the insanity, blasting Joe with a cake pan and a kendo stick. Joe and Rhino both look like their heads could explode at any time. They brawl into the crowd, with Joe hitting the Ole Kick on Rhino against the bleacher wall. The wall gets smashed. Monty sprints over and dives over the guardrail on both of them. They take turns throwing each other into the wall, smashing it to bits. Monty uses part of the wall as a weapon. Rhino and Monty brawl up into the bleachers. Joe enters the battle with a crutch. Joe also uses a chair and an umbrella to his advantage. I half expect Don West to get used as a weapon in a minute. They’re back to the entrance area now and Rhino suplexes Monty on the ramp. He then hits the belly to belly uphill on Joe, who lands hard. Joe blocks a Gore attempt. Monty scores with his butterfly suplex on Rhino downhill. The ref slides down the ramp to make the two count.

Joe comes after Monty now, and Monty replies with a freaking dropkick. I don’t remember seeing that before. Rhino hates dropkicks and blasts Monty with a trashcan lid. Back in the ring, Rhino hits a spinebuster on a chair to Joe. They fight it out on the top, until Joe hits a sunset flip powerbomb on Rhino on the chair. Monty yanks Joe out of the ring and slams him into the announce table. I keep waiting for the day when TNA allows their announce table to get broken, it still has never happened. Monty goes for a table, which allows Joe time to recover. They fight up to the top of the entrance ramp, with Monty hitting a neckbreaker. Rhino blocks the attempted Pounce. Rhino sets up two tables off the side of the stage against the wall. He goes for the Gore on Monty, but misses and crashes through the tables and the wall! Joe grabs Monty and they fight halfway down the ramp. Joe lines Monty up and hits the STO off the ramp, through the table Monty set up earlier, to end the match.

Joe grabs a mic and yells about how he got the fight he was looking for. He’s pretty excited, as are the fans, after that carnage.

Borash is backstage with Zybysko. Larry won’t admit to any knowledge of what Hebner was talking about. Slick shows up and they all argue like little girls. Zybysko says he’s calling Cornette to get Slick fired.


The crowd chants “She’s a man,” much to Sirelda’s dismay. The most meaningful thing that happened in the match was Tenay announcing that the tag team #1 contender’s match wouldn’t take place tonight. Gail eventually won after about five minutes of back and forth action.

Steiner is backstage with Borash. He talks about his university education, and says he has to dumb things down for the white trash in the crowd. Unfortunately, Canadian white trash is even dumber than American white trash, so Christian can’t understand him. Steiner is my hero.


Williams hits a sweet slingshot hurricanrana on Lethal early. Senshi comes flying out to clobber both of them. Lethal tries to come back in the ring, but Petey leg drops him on the apron. Senshi drops Petey with a sweet flying basement dropkick. Lethal misses a moonsault on Petey. Williams locks in a leg lock submission, but Senshi kicks him out of it. Senshi and Petey take turns beating on Lethal for a minute, until Senshi sees his opening and kicks Petey. Senshi hits a spin kick on Petey and goes up top. Lethal recovers to block it. Senshi goes after Williams off the top, but misses. Lethal pulls himself up and hits a double dropkick. Lethal hits his hiptoss/carwheel combo, but hits a double basement dropkick this time. Lethal hits a German suplex with a bridge for a two count on Senshi. Petey comes back with a side Canadian leg sweep on Lethal. Lethal counters the Canadian Destroyer with another German with a bridge for a two on Petey. They all three go for pins now, with roll ups a plenty. Senshi hits a standing double stomp on Petey for a two count. That looked painful. Williams comes back with a sharpshooter on Lethal, until Senshi breaks it up with kicks. Lethal comes back with a release suplex on Senshi, but Petey breaks up the pin. Lethal drops Petey with a spinning kick, but comes up empty on the Flying Headbutt off the top. Petey kills Lethal with the Canadian Destroyer. Senshi levels Petey with a nasty kick though, and he scores the pin on Lethal.

Konnan talks trash to Borash backstage to lead us to…


Daniels gets the better of Hernandez in the early going. Homicide tags in, and AJ demands a tag as well. Intense brawl at first between the two. They trade hurricanranas, and Hernandez comes in to eat an AJ dropkick. Daniels tags in and they double team Homicide. AJ tags back in and continues the assault. Homicide is able to knock AJ out to the apron, and follows up with a sick neckbreaker/DDT through the ropes. Hard to tell what it was exactly, but it looked painful either way. Hernandez tags in and the beating is on. Hernandez tosses AJ with a half-nelson release suplex. They end up on the floor and Homicide comes through with an insane twisting suicide dive. I don’t know how he made it through the ropes twisting like that, very impressive. Konnan gets in on the action with the cheap shots on the floor. They keep working AJ’s neck. AJ blocks a suplex by Homicide and comes back with one of own, dropping Homicide gut first over the top rope. Daniels gets the hot tag, and he is the proverbial house of fire. Alright, probably a bad choice of cliché tonight, sorry. A split legged moonsault on Homicide gets a two count. Daniels follows up with a second one on Homicide, this time on the floor. Hernandez follows up with an insane dive onto both of them. AJ is finally up and hits a picture perfect springboard shooting star press on the group of them. Everybody’s in the ring at this point. Hernandez saves a pin on Homicide. LAX hits the Doomsday Bulldog on Daniels, but AJ makes the save. Hernandez suplexes both AJ and Homicide off the top rope in your Tower of Doom spot of the night. Daniels comes off the top, but gets caught with the Cracker Jack by Hernandez. AJ hits an enziguiri on Hernandez, followed by his Asai DDT for a two count. Daniels hits the Blue Thunder Driver on Homicide and everybody’s down. AJ hits the Pele on Hernandez. Daniels hits his Rock Bottom on Homicide and AJ goes to the top. Konnan knocks him off the top. AJ and Daniels come back with their leg sweep/clothesline double team move to get the win and retain the titles.

Christian is backstage with Borash and talks some trash about Steiner and Jarrett. He’s not impressed by Steiner since he hasn’t won a fight in a while. He says Sting deserves the title tonight and that Jarrett wants the title for the wrong reasons. He says it will be the start of a new era for TNA tonight.


They brawl in the ring shortly, but decide the floor is better. Sting slams Jarrett into the announce table and hits him with a metal fan. Jarrett gets tossed over the rail and we’re into the crowd. Christian and Steiner follow them through the crowd as the brawl is on. Sting grabs a towel from somebody in the crowd and hits the dreaded Double Ear Pop of Doom on Jarrett. That Stinger is quite dastardly, eh? Back to the ringside area, Sting douses Jarrett with water. I don’t think that quite makes up for the gasoline though. Back in the ring, Sting goes to the top and Steiner blasts him in the knee with a chair. Christian goes after Steiner, and eats an overhead belly to belly suplex on the floor. Jarrett works over the leg like Ric Flair on crack, setting up the Figure Four. Sting eventually reverses the hold, after Christian got the crowd clapping for him. Sting and Jarrett trade shots in the ring. A Stinger Splash attempt misses, and a Stroke attempt is countered. Sting hits the Scorpion Death Drop, but Steiner pulls out the ref. Christian brawls with Steiner on the outside. Steiner slides the belt into Jarrett, but he swings and misses. Christian hands it to Sting, who nails Jarrett with it. Jarrett was able to get his foot on the ropes. The ref is completely in over his head at this point, Steiner blasts Sting with the chair again, but he falls head first into Jarrett’s crotch. Christian and Steiner brawl in the ring at this point. Christian blasts Jarrett with the chair and the ref tosses both him and Steiner from ringside. Sting whiffs on a dropkick and Jarrett locks in the Scorpion. Sting escapes and locks in the hold himself, but Jarrett gets to the ropes. Jarrett side steps another Stinger Splash, but the ref eats it instead. Jarrett hits a low blow and the Stroke. Steiner comes back with the gee-tar. Steiner holds Sting and Jarrett goes to the top. Christian comes back and knocks Jarrett off with Sting’s bat. Steiner gets tossed to the floor. Jarrett gets slammed down. Sting goes to the top rope, but gets smashed with the gee-tar by Christian. Oh noes, shocking swerve that NO ONE saw coming! Jarrett gets the pin to retain.

Christian just leaves, as Jarrett looks confused at first. Then he realizes he’s still champ, and that’s all that matters to him.


· We’ll go backwards this time. That main event was utter crap. They telegraphed the Christian turn so much leading up to it, but then tried to pull back with the booking of the match. In the end, it made Christian’s actions during the match make no sense whatsoever. If he wanted Sting to lose, why did he keep brawling with Steiner, knock Jarrett off the top rope with Sting’s bat, blast Jarrett with the chair, etc.? It just seemed like they realized how overboard they were going with the telegraphing, and overcompensated with the booking of the match.

· It would have made much more sense for Christian to get his shots in at Steiner and Jarrett, but for him to have just stood there when Jarrett was going to blast him with the gee-tar. Then, at least Christian could have cut a promo to say that Sting got what he deserved. I wonder what the explanation is going to be now.

· Sting is dumber than Canadian trailer trash (in Steiner’s IQ book) for actually trusting Christian in the first place. If HHH is the smartest man in wrestling, and Jarrett is the most hated, then Sting is definitely the dumbest.

· Because of his stupidity, and the general way he’s been booked, it was hard to have any sympathy for Sting after losing the match. I’m almost hoping they just have Christian go over Sting at Bound for Glory, and then that’s it. I don’t know what else you can do with him at this point.

· I hope we see a different formula match when Jarrett eventually faces Samoa Joe. The guy can wrestle, but I don’t think he had a whole lot of options with his opponent tonight.

· I don’t ever want to see the Sting/Jarrett video package again, I nearly broke something when they replayed it AGAIN before the main event.

· Great match for the tag titles, especially the closing five minutes or so. Hernandez was especially impressive, I didn’t know he was that good. LAX are truly great heels and I hope they don’t just get jobbed out.

· The X Division title match was very good, but suffered from following the Falls Count Anywhere match. The crowd was so jacked for that triple threat that it hurt their response for this one. The guys got going towards the end though. I’m looking forward to a Senshi/Petey one on one matchup at some point.

· Jay Lethal looked like he was either going to burst into tears or wet his pants on the bumper graphic for the match. Poor fella…

· I demand that Steiner get mic time on every TV and PPV show. His explanation of the trailer trash IQ scale was awesome.

· Why didn’t they cut Gail v. Sirelda? Would anyone have been upset, or even noticed?

· I loved the Falls Count Anywhere match. Monty was especially impressive to me, I really wasn’t sure if he could keep up with the other two guys. There were so many huge moves, I don’t know where to begin. Great fun to watch.

· Runt is certifiably insane for taking the thumbtack bumps. The stomp to the back of the head was especially sick.

· I’m curious to see what’s up with Raven, I’m always down for some Raven v. James Mitchell promo battles.

· Sabin v. Shelley was fine, but nothing more.

· I’d love to really know what the deal is with Kevin Nash and his mysterious medical issues he always seems to have.

· I can’t complain too much about the way they handled the fire situation. I don’t know what else they could have done that quickly. I wish they had started bringing the wrestlers out a little earlier to get involved. West’s adlib on Young, saying that the match might not count was hilarious to me. I think I was the only one, but I liked the return of Monty’s cracked out promos. It went a little long, but what can you do when you’re on the fly like that.

· Shane Douglas giving the President props was a big “Eh?” moment.

· I hope Tenay was able to take up a collection for his dry cleaning bill, he was so devastated by the stuff getting all over his tux. Bonus points to West for actually trying to keep the show going while talking about how things might affect the wrestlers.

· Great job by Young and Devine to just continue after something that crazy happened. I’d love to know what was going through their minds. It was funny to see Young improvise the blinded punches.

· The crowd redeemed themselves for most of their stupid chants with the “The roof’s on fire” and “You can’t see us” chants.

· Maybe TNA can turn this into an angle. “Who started the fire?” could be TNA’s version of “Who was driving the Hummer?”

Weird, weird night overall. Falls Count Anywhere was my match of the night, with the main event being the worst. We’ll see where we go from here with Impact on Thursday. Until then…


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

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