Tna-Genesis 2011TNA Genesis 2011 Pay-Per-View Review
By Phil Allely
TNA have a few huge hurdles facing them at present, the absence of Hulk Hogan (due to more back issues), Jeff Hardy’s upcoming drug hearings and biggest of all the lack of any UK TV time at all for the company (due to Sky takeover of Virgin Media and end of Impact! home channel Bravo). TNA’s upcoming January tour fo the UK could feel the bunt if they are not careful too. Fortunately The standby option of watching for free on TNA’s website does help with that somewhat.
Genesis needed to be something very special indeed and with only a few minor faults, it provided surprise appearances, title changes and some thoroughly enjoyable and exciting match-ups.
Kicking things off Kazarian (representing Immortal & Fortune) took on fellow high flyer and risk-taker Jay Lethal in an entertaining and dangerous X Division Title scrap. Kazarian though proved to have the upper hand in this one and stole the belt from Lethal after nasty looking reverse ‘tombstone’, notching up the first win of the night for the invading factions fronted by Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair.
Next up the two ladies who rank high in the rejuvenated Knockouts Division Mickie James and Madison Rayne faced off for Rayne’s cherished women’s singles strap. The talented James was more than able to carry the ever-improving Rayne to a great bout. Tara’s interference and a ‘loaded’ glove shot by Rayne sealed James fate however and Madison held on to her gold one more time.
Anytime the two best combos in the wrestling business (in this writers opinion) meet in the ring it is a special thing, throwing the TNA World Tag Team belts into the mix make that even more special. Tag Champs the Motor City Machineguns against Beer Money had so many high spots it’s hard to pick them out. Sabin/Shelley and Roode/Storm blend together so well they make pure wrestling poetry when they meet. The duos had an amazing match, but for man of us watching the writing was on the wall, Beer Money were going to take the title back and leave ‘the Guns’ as the hungry ex-champs. The finish however did swing the balance in Beer Money’s favour, Sabin hitting Shelly in error with a kick, allowing Roode to make the cover and take home the title for his team and again notch a win for Fortune/Immortal.
The most decorated tag team in wrestling (Team 3D) continued their implosion as Brothers Ray and Devon took their annoyance out on their (storyline) sibling. The arena and ringside area became a war zone for this encounter, both not wanting to give up and unleash much pain on the other. The brutal blows, cheap shots and more all leading to Brother Ray finally pushing the tamer Devon over the edge and the ref disqualifying him, leaving Ray the winner by default.
The pair even continued post-match trading low blows and stiff shots.
AJ Styles being genuinely injured led to Abyss taking his place against Television Champion Douglas Williams. No matter how much the UK’s Williams worked here he had to realise that this was not going to be his night. Abyss took control form the start, beating Williams about the ring and unleashing all manner of hard-hitting moves on him. Williams had some flurry’s of retaliation, but even as they took effect a run/hobble-in from Styles saw Abyss take another belt home for the Immortal/Fortune collective.
The following encounter was shaded in secrecy and suspense from the get go, former TNA Heavyweight Champion Rob Van Dam was about to face a handpicked opponent by Immortal’s Eric Bischoff. When it was stated that RVD was going to get Hardy )of course World Champ Jeff Hardy was off the card) we thought we knew what was coming, but what we got was his brother and former WWE superstar Matt Hardy (sporting a new look). This was a wonderfully heated pairing, both men have faced each other before and both have something to prove as former champ and TNA new boy respectively. After some near falls, trademark moves and great interaction the end came controversially, Hardy striking a ‘twist of hate’ and pinning RVD as his leg lay under the ring rope.
Jeff Jarrett and the returning Kurt Angle put forth a vicious at times MMA challenge brawl next, the pair exchanging holds, moves, offensive and defensive holds. Angle even bladed to pump up the adrenaline. The match though ended as a no contest as round three ended and a bloody Angle and Jarrett beat other about the ring. Jarrett teasing a bloody Angle about his retirement and the return of his former wife (and Jarrett’s current one) Karen.
The main event was designed to determine the number one contender for Jeff Hardy’s World Heavyweight Championship. Mr Anderson (fresh off his enforced concussion based sabbatical) squaring off against the hugely imposing Matt Morgan. Anderson was on fine form and showed no signs of his recent injuries. He and Morgan swapping the advantage, exchanging potential finishing moves and trading the odd near fall. Luckily after a longish and arduous match the talented Anderson was able to pull off a quick roll-up to win the match and challenge the TNA Champion somewhere down the line.
That opportunity then came out of the blue as Eric Bischoff turned up to say that Anderson’s chance at the gold would be now, Bischoff hoping that an exhausted Anderson would be no match for a fresh Hardy.
After such a night of wins and triumphs for Immortal and Fortune, perhaps Bischoff had pushed his luck too far with this additional match for Mr Anderson.
Hardy and Anderson’s brief match saw both unload some of their trademark moves and run-ins from Mick Foley, Matt Hardy, Bischoff and RVD. All of which led to a nice Anderson ‘mic check’ to pin Hard and net himself his first world crown.
Genesis was a superb opener in TNA’s 2011 PPV assault and one that proved that the company do have a great product and roster on hand to get it over. The lack of UK TV coverage may have a knock on effect on the upcoming tour (which we will cover in depth here soon, plus there’s an exclusive interview with new champ Mr Anderson as well). But as we all know TNA enjoy being the underdog with the big heart and they always seem to bounce back. Anderson as champ is a good move and opens up a wealth of new main event feuds and unfinished rivalries for the company as 2011 progresses.