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TNA Victory Road 2006 PPV Review

Posted in In My Head by Jack at 09:23, Jul 18 2006

After a few weeks off, it?s PPV time once again. This week TNA submits it?s Victory Road show into an increasingly crowded wrestling PPV lineup. With three major competitors to deal with, (RAW, SmackDown, and ECW), not to mention the various bi-monthly and special presentation promotions that also run shows, now more than ever, TNA cannot afford to present the public with a mundane, or uninspired performance. Will this outing stand out in a sea of wrestling programming, or will it blend into the rest of the wrestling landscape? Let us walk the Victory Road and see where it leads us.

The show opens up with a nicely done video package featuring Jeff Jarrett, the briefest camera shot of recent www.inyourheadonline.com guest So-Cal-Val, and then its straight to the ring for the first match of the night.

Match 1 ? Diamonds in the Rough vs. The Naturals
Shane Douglas introduces the ?new? Naturals, who come to the ring sporting new tights and slightly shorter hairstyles. Despite the modified look, there really was no change to the Naturals in-ring style. With the exception of one or two moves, we saw the same Naturals we saw months ago. Both the Naturals and the Diamonds in the Rough put on a competent display of wrestling, although nothing in the match was above par. The Naturals were able to secure victory, but did so in a match that had a ?free TV? feel.

We are then greeted by Mike Tenay and Don West who run down the remaining matches on the card. They are followed by a long and mediocre Christian Cage interview, and a Monty Brown vs. Rhino video package.

Match 2 ? Monty Brown vs. Rhino
As a wise orange man once said: ?It?s clobberin time!?. This match was an all out brawl, with both Brown and Rhino forgoing technique in favor of fisticuffs. Each man gave an energetic performance throughout the match, although they rarely did anything other than exchange punches, or accidentally hit the referee with their signature moves. They eventually moved the fight into the stands which resulted in a double disqualification. Once again we were given a decent match, but one that should have been on Impact not a PPV.

Up next is an interview with LAX, followed by a nice video package recapping the LAX storyline of the past few weeks.

Match 3 ? LAX vs. Ron Killings and Sonjay Dutt
In what must have been a new wrestling strategy, Ron Killings sought to wear down his opponents by going into an extended rap session during his entrance. He went on for so long, that it prompted comments such as: ?Can we talk now??, and ?We?re getting the long version.? from Tenay and West. Unfortunately, Killings?s entrance was the only unusual thing about the match. Once the bell rung we were presented with standard fare, which resulted in LAX getting the win with the help of an assist from Konnan. Again this match, (much like those before it), wasn?t bad, but did not rise above the level of the typical Impact performance.

Next, Scott Steiner stumbles through a promo before we are taken back to ring side for the disbanding ceremony of Team Canada. In what I can only describe as a brilliant piece of mic work, Scott D?Amore bids farewell to each of the members of Team Canada. One by one, he gives them a heartfelt goodbye and they leave the ring. In the end there was only D?Amore and Eric Young left. Eric however did not get a pleasant sendoff, as D?Amore blamed him for the breakup of Team Canada, and berated him to the point that he made Eric remove and return his Team Canada jacket and pants. The crowd quickly rallied to Young?s side, foreshadowing a face turn and a comedy angle we are sure to see more of in the weeks to come. The Team Canada spot was followed by short interview with Senshi.

Match 4 ? Senshi vs. Kazarian
Kazarian marks his return to TNA with this match, and the two started out using a very realistic, and intriguing style. Unfortunately, Senshi maintained the upper hand a little to long during this bout, and his slow methodical style began to sap the energy from the crowd. The only ?boring? chants of the night were heard during this match, though they were quickly shouted down by other fans who had a higher tolerance for the pacing of the contest. Allowing Kazarian to get in more offence would probably have prevented this, and perhaps next time Senshi will be a little more ?giving? with his opponent. The match ended when Senshi hit his top rope double foot stomp to get the pin. Although the slow pacing didn?t sit well with some, this was still a solid match, though once again it did not have a PPV feel.

Next up was an interview with Larry Zbyszko, followed by a video package documenting his feud with Raven.

Match 5 - Larry Zbyszko vs. Raven Haircut Match
In what turned out to be a short match, Larry Zbyszko got in most of the offence in this match, concentrating his efforts on Raven?s legs. However as one might have expected, Raven quickly turned the tables on Zbyszko, hitting his DDT to get the win. After the match Zbyszko fled the ring but was carried back to ringside and taped to the barbers chair where Raven and even Don West put the clippers to him. There wasn?t much ring work here, but the point of this match was to see Zbyszko get his head shaved, and everyone was certainly entertained by Raven?s barber impersonation.

We are then taken to a goofy interview with Nash, Shelley and Devine before the start of their match.

Match 6 ? Nash & Shelly w/Devine vs. Sabin & Lethal
In a shocking departure from what he have come to expect from Kevin Nash, he actually incorporated an technical hold, in the form of an arm drag into the match. So rare is such an occurrence, that the crowd broke out in a sarcastic ?that was awesome? chant. There was some other comedy presented by Nash and crew throughout the match, and as usual, Sabin got in a number of impressive moves himself. A nice and unique pinning combination from Sabin allowed he and Lethal to win the match.

Up next is an interview with Team 3D and a video package showing the past few months of their feud with the James Gang.

Match 7 ? The James Gang & Abyss vs. Team 3D and Runt.
Say what you will about Team 3D, but when it comes to bringing a crowd to it?s feet, these guys are magic. This match quickly broke down into a brawl that took place all over the area, and even saw Runt tossed ?ECW? style into the crowd, who attempted to bodysurf him back to ring side, (I say attempted because they dropped him once he neared the guard rail). Though there was very little ?wrestling? here, the pace was quite fast, and there was always something exciting happening somewhere in the arena. The Black Hole Slam from Abyss ended the night for Team 3D however, as Runt was put through a table and pinned. We have just had our first standout match, but the show is almost over.

An AMW interview, and video package is shown next.

Match 8 AMW & Gail Kim vs. A.J. Styles and Christopher Daniels & Sirelda Tag Team Title Match
Team 3D got the crowd started in the previous match, and the participants in this contest certainly keep things going. In what was a fast paced match which saw the women mix things up with each other, as well as with the men, both teams put on an entertaining show. Both AMW and Styles and Daniels got in their signature moves, and even found time to hint at an impending breakup of AMW. AMW was defeated after a series of miscommunication in the ring finally lead to their defeat.

Match 9 ? Sting vs. Scott Steiner vs. Samoa Joe vs. Christian Cage
How do you have a four way match with only one real heel? Easy, you have Jarrett come out and blind Sting by throwing gasoline in his eyes, forcing him out of the match in order to receive medical attention. This allowed for the typical 3-way formula of two men wrestling while another ?recuperates? on the outside. But fear not Sting fans, near the end of the mach, and bandaged one eyed Sting returned to the ring to get the win. None of the participants really shined in this match as they were all hampered to some degree by the format, resulting in yet another average match.

This show proves that the road to victory is indeed long, hard and full of pitfalls. While Team 3D vs. the James Gang and AMW vs. Styles and Daniels delivered in spades, the rest of the show was rather bland. Although TNA can take solace that there wasn?t a bad match on the card, they must know that they will need more that two good matches on a PPV to keep their viewership up. Overall this show felt like an extended Impact taping and just isn?t worth buying, so save your money, (I hear there?s a midget wrestling show later this month).

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