Slammiversary IX featured The Final Battle between Kurt Angle and Jeff Jarrett in a No. 1 contender’s Match for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship with Angle’s Olympic Gold Medal on the line, Sting vs. Mr. Anderson for the TNA World Title, Gun Money (James Storm and Alex Shelley) vs. The British Invasion (Brutus Magnus and Douglas Williams) for the World Tag Team Titles, Abyss vs. Brian Kendrick vs. Kazarian for the X-Division Title, Mickie James vs. Angelina Love w/Winter for the Knockouts Title, Bully Ray vs. AJ Styles in a Last Man Standing Match, & more…
With another PPV come and gone, let’s steam roll through with a new segment called “What worked, and What didn’t?”
Mr. Anderson the New TNA World Champion:
With weeks and weeks of Mr. Anderson mocking Sting’s old school ring attire, and calling Stinger a joke, I expected some vindication. The match started out great with Anderson talking on the microphone and Sting coming up from behind and shouting out “Anderson” before starting the onslaught there. I didn’t even mind them fighting through the audience (even though Sting already did this same spot during his match last month with Rob Van Dam). The point of the match that didn’t work was Eric Bischoff showing face.
Can we just get through one show without seeing Bischoff?
Just before Bischoff showed up, Jackson James replaced Brian Hebner who took a bump. If there was a Tough Enough for referees, Jackson James would have been in the Bottom Three. He’s the main reason why this match didn’t work. When Mr. Anderson went for the low blow, James was in clear view of the incident and instead of disqualifying Anderson, he grants him the 3-count.
In the words of Bill DeMott: This guy is geener than goose s–t!
On another note: Can Mr. Anderson win the title without outside interference?
Kurt Angle the No. 1 Contender for the TNA World Title:
With Karen Jarrett out of the picture, Angle and Jarrett finally had their one-on-one wrestling match. Was this encounter better than Angle’s battles with Desmond Wolfe, AJ Styles, Mr. Anderson, or even Jeff Hardy? No, it wasn’t and that’s the bad thing about it. The importance of becoming the no. 1 contender, or even the possibility of relinquishing the Olympic gold medal was never emphasized, it was treated like a grudge match.
The wrestling was great with Kurt executing the three-Germans and Jarrett connecting with The Stroke from off the middle ropes. Even the final moments of the match when Jarrett grape-vined the Ankle Lock, Kurt was only seconds of tapping out. Angle managing to find a counter to his own submission proved that he is a master of the hold (let’s not boost his ego too much, or else he’ll start Twitter-hacking). Then the finality of it all, Jarrett tapping out with both hands as Angle locked in the grape-vine Ankle Lock.
Let’s just hope that Angle and Anderson can rekindle their magic storytelling.
Bully Ray steals Styles’s Momentous Night:
This match — more than anything — should have centered the spotlight on AJ Styles as the company’s way of saying “Here’s our guy.” Instead, Bully Ray kicks Styles through a set to earn the victory. Even the audience had to call that “bull s–t.”
The match had a great build up, Bully Ray is probably one of the best talkers they have on the roster, and when he emphasized that this would be a last MAN standing, I was ready to see Ray make Styles look like a million bucks. On the contrary, he made Styles look like a chump.
The match was building towards a satisfying victory for Styles, but turned into another match where the ending didn’t correlate with the match.
Mickie James retains the Knockouts Title:
What the heck was with that finish? Mickie went for her standing tornado DDT, and Angelina fell sideways. Even Taz commented on the failed connection of the finisher. Mickie was wise to pick up the victory any which way she could.
Earl Hebner — I commend him — did a great job of keeping Winter from interfering for the majority of the match.
And Still World Tag Team Champions:
There was nothing surprising about this match, since we already got to see James Storm and Alex Shelley team up in a match against Mexican America for free on Impact Wrestling. Sure, there was the moment when Storm accidentally sprayed Shelley with beer where The British Invasion looked to win their second Tag Titles, but Magnus and Williams couldn’t get the job done. Rather than looking like a seasoned tag team, The British Invasion made a lot of rookie mistakes.
With Robert Roode injured and unable to defend the belts with his partner, The British Invasion should have gone over as the new champs since they can actually defend them.
Has Abyss won the war?
Channeling Sun Tzu’s Art of War, Abyss divided and conquered in order to retain the X-Division Title. Didn’t have much expectations for the revival of the X-Division, especially with the Destination X PPV scheduled for next month.
A no. 1 contender’s bout between Brian Kendrick and Kazarian would prove to be a great match, if only Bischoff is smart enough to book it. Since Kendrick is the leader (or mouthpiece) of the short-lived X-Division Revolt or Riot act, he would do well with the role of X Title holder because he also embodies the spirit of the X-Division.
Crimson earns respect:
Whether Crimson could be the next Samoa Joe is up for debate. Frankly, this feud would have been better if 1) Samoa Joe hadn’t already been on a losing streak, and 2) Crimson and Joe had been featured in higher profile segments on Impact Wrestling.
The code of honor being reached at the conclusion of the match was a nice touch, definitely a decent bout, but where do they go from here?
Matt Morgan wins:
Scott Steiner was recently interviewed for the “Wrestling Matters” segments on Impact Wrestling, and he metaphorically describes being there as the handcuffs being off in terms of being able to say what he wants. Believe me, that is not a good thing. There is a reason why other promotions would minimize his mic time, he cannot piece together a sentence if a protein bar depended on it. We’ve all heard him botch up a promo and then cover it up by flexing. Matt Morgan picking up the victory is not a surprise, it’s how Steiner still wrestles that proves to be the phenomenon.
That’s it for this post. If you feel that some things worked or didn’t work that wasn’t mentioned please jot them down in the comment box, or send me a line on twitter. My twitter handler is WrestlingTimesX. There are also some nifty share buttons on the bottom: Spread the word!