Thursday, 14 June 2012

TNA Slammiversary 2012 Review

TNA Slammiversary X Review By Phil Allely TNA brought in the big guns and pulled out all of the stops to celebrate its tenth anniversary at Slammiversary X. The night saw titles change hands, quality matches, a Hall of Fame announcement, big name stars and a surprise appearance by a WWE champion. Hulk Hogan opened proceedings to a huge ovation, hyping up the nights event and making the opening bout between Austin Aries and Samoa Joe an X Division Title one. Despite the size and power advantage this was a crisp looking match with some big bumps and high risk moves. Joe looked set to net himself another X title to add to his collection, but the resilient Aries was able to nail a brain buster to retain his belt. Up next was the returning Kid Kash versus Hernandez. Kash fared reasonably well against his much larger opponent and hit some decent weakening blows to him, however ‘Supermex’s’ size and power proved to be the deciding factor, Hernandez taking the win after a big top rope splash. The oddball tag team of Devon (TV Champ) and Garrett Bischoff then faced the combo of Robbie’s E&T in a fair, but un-exciting scrap. Bischoff showed improvement here and Devon proved to be a fine partner to cover the cracks. After some back and forth trading of control Bischoff distracted T to allow Devon the chance to pin E for the popular win. The triple threat battle for the World Heavyweight Title shot on Impact saw Mr. Anderson battle Jeff Hardy and Rob Van Dam. The trio of former champs worked beautifully together and highlighted the talented roster TNA has to utilise. Amidst the frantic near falls and brutal moves the result seemed to be anyone’s, however it turned out to Anderson who proved the most hungry to gain a title shot, nailing a ‘mic check’ on RVD to pick up the win. Crimson’s year-long winning streak ended quickly next at the hands (well boot) of Cowboy James Storm. Storm took to the ring like a man possessed, swiftly taking Crimson down, nailing a ‘last call’ super kick to a huge crowd response. Dixie Carter brought out the TNA roster next and announced Sting as the first inductee to the Hall of Fame. The challenger for the World Title seemed genuinely moved by the reaction from the live crowd and promised to make it ‘show time’ later. The Knockouts Title changed hands next as Miss Tessmacher wrestled the gold away from Gail Kim in Tessmacher’s home state of Texas. The ladies worked hard to maintain the momentum and crowd energy levels throughout this average knockouts encounter. A blocked ‘eat dirt’ and swift roll-up on Kim ended this one. Bully Ray bullied Joseph Park throughout their match (of sorts) next. A very one-sided affair this saw Abyss’s storyline brother absorb some stiff shots from Ray before an Abyss imposter appeared and blasted the bully through a table to allow Joseph the win. To the shock of all in attendance Hulk Hogan brought out (current WWE IC Champion) Christian to speak to them. Billed as Christian Cage the former TNA star praised the company and its fans for everything they have done. Dream team AJ Styles and Kurt Angle took on Tag Team Champions Kaz and Daniels next in an epic encounter for the belts. This one never let up, each man stepped up their game here and unleashed their best and boldest moves throughout. Angle and Styles overcame the near-falls and double-teams eventually to pick up the titles, following a nice flurry of moves Styles took out Daniels to leave Kaz prone for an ‘ankle lock’. The rejuvenated Sting’s attempt regain the world title from Bobby Roode saw the veteran step up his game and gain a level of revenge on the cocky heel. The match itself was a fair back-and-forth one, with champ and challenger trading control in and out of the ring. Roode eventually relied on a beer bottle to retain his treasured gold. Busting Sting open in the process the champ grabbed an opportunistic win to keep his longest title holder run going. A bloody Sting gained a measure of revenge post match with post match beat down on Roode around the stage area. Slammiversary was one of the best PPV’s from TNA to date and perfectly encapsulated all that is good in the company, there were minimal infuriating booking decisions here and run-ins were non-existent. The matches on the whole were above average and showed that even though the company is still trying to find its niche, there is light at the end of the tunnel. If they pick up that ball and run with it TNA/Impact Wrestling can go all the way given the opportunity.

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