Tuesday, August 9, 2011

8/7/11 Hardcore Justice

Brian Kendrick vs. Alex Shelley vs. Austin Aries (X-Division Title): Kendrick with new funky music. Aries plays the "smart" role and lets the other two guys fight each other first. Good stuff from Aries when he actually got down to wrestling. Fun really began when all three got involved. Aries really let loose with moonsaults and all that jazz. Nice mat wrestling between Kendrick and Shelley. Last Chancery from Aries! Tried the Tower of Doom spot, but Kendrick slipped, so Aries improvised well. Nice win by Kendrick with the Sliced Bread #2. ***

Tara & Miss Tessmacher vs. Sarita & Rosita (Knockouts Tag Team Titles): Sarita still wearing the mask which makes her look like Abyss' sister. Liked Rosita's second-rope hurricanrana. One of the best women's matches I've seen in a while. Fairly good crowd reaction throughout, at least for a Knockouts match. *1/2

Pope D'Angelo Dinero vs. Devon: Pope wanted to lay down but Devon wanted none of that. Not a bad match here, but I thought the Knockouts match had a bit more skill involved with the movesets. A bit of a lame finish. The storyline continues. *1/2

Winter vs. Mickie James (Knockouts Title): Mickie rockin' the short skirt ring gear tonight, so John Canton (pro wrestling writer of The John Report, a great site I must say) musta loved that sight. Apparently Tenay can say "bitch" on the show because it's a PPV and because it's part of the name of Angelina's finisher ("Break-a-bitch," was it?). Nice use of "mist" by Winter, although it's not as cool as when guys like Muta did it. Angelina interfered too much for my liking, sorry. Otherwise, it was fine. *1/4

Crimson vs. Rob Van Dam: BFG Series match here for first place. Figure as long as they keep hyping Crimson's undefeated streak, I doubt the guy is losing much anytime soon unless it's setting up a major storyline. I like how RVD takes some time to re-position people so that he actually would hit that split-legged moonsault on his opponent (while someone like John Morrison might neglect that and miss the target more often than not). Crimson kicks out of the Five-Star Frog Splash...and not as big a reaction as I would have wanted. And Jerry Lynn interferes to cost RVD the match?! Um...well, that was unexpected and lame at the same time. Obviously it will probably lead to a Lynn/RVD storyline. RVD loses points and Crimson gains points. Oops. *1/2

Abyss, Scott Steiner, & Gunner vs. AJ Styles, Daniels, & Kazarian: Six-man tag team mayhem here. To me, a slightly above average match, mainly because of AJ and Daniels. Liked Gunner and Daniels going through that table, as well as AJ's springboard Pele on Abyss. Otherwise, largely indifferent toward this one. *1/2

Bully Ray vs. Mr. Anderson: Good match here, better than I thought would occur at the PPV. Liked the cutter from Bully Ray as Anderson came off the second rope. Unfortunately, it seemed like the crowd was still pretty dead. And it largely failed to really keep my attention. Ouch. *3/4

James Storm & Bobby Roode vs. Hernandez & Anarquia (Tag Team Titles): Roode still nursing the shoulder and now Storm with a bad back. Storm's back musta felt a bunch better during the match because he hit that top-rope hurricanrana. Crowd definitely into this one. Decent finish with the Last Call superkick. **

Kurt Angle vs. Sting (World Title): Sorry, I'm not buying that Angle is still 240 pounds (according to what the Tale of the Tape said). That's probably the weight Angle was at when he debuted in WWE...I'd guess he's really around 210 or so right now. Split chants here. Crowd is the hottest it's been all night. Seemed like Angle's leg gave out a bit during the middle of the match, might have done a bit of improvising there. Sting using the Angle Slam? Come on, it's just an Angle Slam...people always kick out of that now! Sting using the Ankle Lock now? Sweet. Crowd really getting more into it. Angle with the Scorpion Death Lock! Brian Hebner took a nice hit with the Angle enzugiri. And with the ref down, here comes Hogan! Angle takes the chair away -- only to nail Sting with it. Angle Slam gets three. Angle heel turn maybe? ***1/2

Final Thoughts:
To me, this was a largely disappointing PPV. The X-Division opener was good, but I felt could have been a bunch better. I really couldn't get into any other match but the main event. Angle/Sting was clearly the match of the night for me. Do I care how many world championships Angle's won? Nope. But he's definitely still one of the best I've ever seen. No Surrender is TNA's next PPV...on September 11. I'm probably gonna care a lot more about college football and NFL football than this. ** (mainly because we had two decent matches bookending the card)

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