February 12, 2004
TNA: Mexico scores America's Cup upset
By DONNIE ABREU -- SLAM! Wrestling
I defy you to recap an X-Division match properly. The action is so quick that when you take a second to write something down, you've missed six more high spots. This week was even greater challenge than normal because we had the show many TNA fans have been waiting for: The America's Cup.
This is a one night tournament featuring four of the top American X-Division stars in TNA against four of the top high flyers from Mexico's AAA. Scheduled was a series of singles matches, a tag match and an elimination. Points would be awarded for wins. You get the idea. One of the stipulations beforehand was handed down by Don Callis last week when he threatened to fire Jerry Lynn and find him in breech of contract if his team didn't win. The first match was:
Chris Sabin VS. Juventud Guerrera
Obviously Sabin's X-Division title was not on the line this week. This is about something MUCH more important. Continental bragging rights. The match started with a brisk pace and quickly evolved into a game of "can you top this?" A series of awesome flying head scissors by Juvi, including one where he planted the champion in an almost piledriver-like finish.
My feed of the show went all screwy and I missed the finish. I found out afterwards that Sabin did in fact lose.
Winner: Juventud Guerrera
Hector Garza VS. Sonjay Dutt
This was basically a squash. The lightning-quick and pencil-thin Dutt didn't really have a chance to get going. Garza won the match with his vaunted Corkscrew plancha from the top.
Winner: Hector Garza
In a pre-match interview, Lynn talked about the fact that his team couldn't wrestle Lucha style against these guys and would have to slow things down to their pace.
Mr. Aguila VS. Jerry Lynn
As has been previously stated, Mr. Aguila used to wrestle under the names Papi Chullo and Essa Rios in the WWF. He is a guy that fans have been clamouring to see more of for years. Well they got to see more of him this week... maybe TOO MUCH! He was wearing tights with holes all over his ass exposing a red thong. I think he spent a little too much with Lita at the end of his WWF run.
With Lynn on the outside, Aguila hit that move that made him so popular on WWF Metal... the 360 flip over the corner post to the floor. The Asylum fans loved it. Aguila dominated a good portion of this match. Awesome series by Aguila as he hand sprung off four different ropes and ended in a big 360 powerslam.
A belly-to-back suplex by Lynn was the first bit of offence he had since the opening moments of the match. Spinning neck break and Tornado DDT by Lynn. Two count only. Lynn went for the Cradle Piledriver but took a Face Jam from Aguila instead. After a series if reversals, Lynn won the match with a sit out piledriver - not his normal Cradle.
Winner: Jerry Lynn
A backstage conversation was shown between Father James Mitchell and his Gathering and Jeff Jarrett. They discussed Jarrett doing a favour for them in the future since they got rid of Raven. Then Jarrett asked if they knew who the new Director of Authority was. Mitchell thought it would be Mike Tenay.
Abismo Negro VS. Elix Skipper
All these Lucha guys and Abismo Negro is the only one wearing a mask. It just doesn't seem right! Abismo with Flair chops in one corner, a whip to the other and an attempted Split Legged splash - nobody home. A quick recover and a spin kick to the back of the head by Abismo. Tenay told us that Abismo Negro has the most experience of anyone on his team, having competed for 13 years. Apparently Super Calo has been his biggest rival.
Springboard Moonsault Press off the top rope in the middle of the ring by Skipper. The match featured a ton of quick roll ups and pin attempts. Abismo sat on the top turnbuckle as Skipper did the tight rope walk and snapped off a Hurricanrana.
German Suplex into a bridge by Abismo. He kept his hands locked and hit a second one. Two counts only. Elix then with the "Prime Time Submission" a version of the Iron Octopus. Abismo slipped out and then rolled Skipper up and scored a win.
Winner: Abismo Negro
Juventud was backstage being interviewed. He had his interview translated into English. Didn't this dude used to do the colour commentary on WCW Thunder?
The tournament then moved on to Round 2 - the tag matches.
Abismo Negro and Juventud Guerrera VS. Jerry Lynn and Sonjay Dutt
Don West talked about how Sonjay Dutt had to pick up his game because he was dominated in the first round. Tenay added that many X-Division wrestlers weren't happy that the less experienced Dutt got the spot in this tournament.
Dutt was basically dominated again in this match as Guerrera and Abismo cut the ring in half and just put on an offensive clinic.
Dutt finally scored with a spin and tagged in the team captain. Lynn came in quickly but was then cut down by the AAA team. A tag only a few moments later was made to Sonjay who flew in with a high cross body and a ton of aerial moves. All of a sudden, Dutt is on fire.
Dutt then kicked the legs out from under Juvi as he was on the run, but the former WCW Cruiserweight champ slid between the ropes to the outside and snapped off a hurricanrana on Lynn. Nice. Dutt followed that up with a 360 plancha over the top.
Back in the ring - an amazing INVERTED hurricanrana by Juvi on Dutt. The match broke down to the point where all four men were in the ring trying to score quick pins. With Juvi down and Abismo on the top rope, Lynn tossed Dutt up onto the masked man to hit a hurricanrana into a roll up. Dutt did that, but Abismo rolled right through and picked up another win.
Winners: Abismo Negro and Juventud Guerrera
A backstage interview was then shown where Sabin and Skipper talked about how the tournament isn't over yet. Skipper then wondered how different things would be if he had his boys, Chris Daniels and Low Ki in his corner.
Chris Sabin and Elix Skipper VS. Hector Garza and Mr. Aguila
The match started out like all the others - quick reversals, stiff kicks and a lot of speed. Garza showed his athleticism by jumping to the top rope - no hands - and leaping off. Whatever move he was trying to hit didn't work though as Skipper turned him inside out with a big clothesline.
Winners: Sabin and Skipper
Third Round - Elimination Match
Each elimination in this match is worth two points.
Hector Garza eliminated Sonjay Dutt with a Standing Moonsault. Tournament Score: TNA 3 - AAA 7. Elix forced Abismo Negro to tap out to the Prime Time Submission. Tournament Score: TNA 5 - AAA 7. Sabin eliminated Garza. Tournament Score: TNA 7 - AAA 7.
Nice move saw Aguila hold Elix in a surfboard type hold while Juvi came off the top with a springboard legdrop. Aguila then flew across the ring and crushed Skipper with a shooting star press and pin. Tournament Score: TNA 7 - AAA 9.
Sabin hit the Cradle Shock and Juvi kicked out QUICKLY and aggressively before the two count came! Wow, that should catch Juvi some heat. A huge Juvi-Driver planted Sabin right on his head. Pinfall. Tournament Score: TNA 7 - AAA 11. Lynn came in as the final member of his team and quickly pinned Aguila. Tournament Score: TNA 9 - AAA 11.
The match came down to Lynn and Juvi. Juvi tried a single leg crap, a version of the STF and the WORST-looking figure four ever. Somewhere Ric Flair wept. Lynn turned it over and reversed the pressure. F5 by Lynn. Two Count. Juvi Driver on Lynn - but JL rolled the right shoulder. The other members of Team TNA stood at the top of ramp chanting "Jerry, Jerry, Jerry". Juventud then pulled off a HUGE move - a new inverted variation of his finisher that he calls the 911 Juvi Driver. 1-2-3! BIG UPSET as Team AAA pulled off the win.
Winner: Juventud Guerrera ... Tournament Winners: Team AAA by a score of 13-9.
Immediately following the win, Jarrett walked into the ring with a mic and asked Tenay who the new director of authority in TNA would be. Tenay denied having any inside information. Jarrett threated to fire Tenay if he didn't tell. Tenay's response was "You don't have the balls to fire me, Jarrett!" So, of course JJ did it. He fired TNA's play-by-play man. We better not have Tony Schiavone on the mic next week!
Just a quick sidebar - Callis was the one who won total control over TNA two weeks ago - so why is JJ the one firing guys? If they want to do the real-life thing like the WWF did years ago when they finally admitted that Vince McMahon wasn't JUST an announcer - then fine. But none of that has actually been verbalized on the air. Strange. The other part that really bugs me is the show featured a couple of possibly match-of-the-year candidates and took me back to what I have always loved about TNA - ACTION. Then the show ends with a horrible storyline and more Jarrett.
Not a great showing by the X-Division champion - which is weird. You'd think they would want to showcase him a little more. They pushed Juventud big time tonight which may not work out in their favour if he's not on another show until August. If they have worked something out with the Youth Warrior and he's going to be starting a title run against Sabin - then great. It makes perfect sense.
If you missed the show, I'd recommend ordering the replay and seeing these matches for yourself. I certainly haven't done them justice.
Anyway. That's TNA folks.
Pre-Order WWE Divas in Mexico DVD
Donnie Abreu is a Toronto-based writer who has been blessing SLAM! Wrestling with his presence for many, many years now.