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COMMENT





Samoa Joe denied at Destination X
By CHRIS SOKOL - SLAM! Wrestling




Despite an impressive tenure in TNA to this point, Samoa Joe was never given a singles opportunity to capture the NWA Heavyweight championship. His first title shot came at Destination X as he did battle with "The Instant Classic" Christian Cage. With the Impact Zone firmly behind him, Samoa Joe put on a stellar performance, however, he wasn't able to realize his destiny.

Samoa Joe has battled through many adversities in TNA. The odds have always been stacked against him. At Destination X, Samoa Joe walked into the main event with an even playing field. Christian Cage didn't have his cronies behind him to back him up, it was one-on-one. Samoa Joe entered after a Samoan ritual, complete with tikki torches. Cage followed, confidently strutting into the Impact Zone.

The match started hot and heavy, with Joe landing several hard blows on Cage. The action was so intense that it wound up in the seats with Joe tossing Cage into a wall. The action finally made it's way back to the ring with Joe in firm control. Cage quickly turned the tables, DDT'ing Joe onto the ring apron. Joe tried to fire back with a Muscle Buster, but Cage escaped and hit a reverse DDT for a nearfall.

Joe fought back to a vertical base and went to town on Cage, eventually locking in an STF and then a crossface, however Cage was able to roll through and force Joe to break the hold. Some back and forth action led to Cage getting speared off the ring apron and to the floor by Joe. Cage tried to leave, but was stopped by Jay Lethal, Sonjay Dutt, Senshi and Petey Williams. Joe hit a huge powerslam on Cage, but Rudy Charles was out of position and by the time he got back it was too late as Cage barely kicked out.

Joe went to hit Cage with a running boot, but instead caught Charles knocking him out. Joe went for another dive on Cage to the outside, but was met with a steel chair. Cage went for the cover, but realized that Charles was out cold. Cage went for another chair shot, but missed and was hit with a Muscle Buster for a near fall. Joe went for the rear naked choke, but was low blowed. Joe fought back, placing Cage on the top rope and locking in the Rear Naked Choke, he laid back and Cage rolled through, using the ropes to pin Joe down and retain the title in a great main event.

TNA DESTINATION X RESULTS:

The show began with a package hyping all the major feuds.

Match One -- Ghetto Brawl -- LAX ("The Notorious 187" Homicide and Hernandez) w/ Konnan vs. Team 3D (Brother Ray and Brother Devon)

This was just a huge brawl that wound up going all over the Impact Zone. Team 3D eventually called for tables, but the Latino Nation intervened. Johnny Rodz came down for an attempted save, but was beaten down. Another group hit the ring and fought the Latino Nation causing a gang warefare situation. With all this going on, Alex Shelley came out and whacked Brother Devon with his camera, laying him out on a table and then hitting a Frogsplash on him as Homicide made the cover for the win.

Winners Via Pinfall -- LAX ("The Notorious 187" Homicide and Hernandez)

Match Rating -- 7/10

In the back, Jeremy Borash caught up with "The War Machine" Rhino who said that he was actually fearing the Elevation X match, but said he was focused on winning it.

Match Two -- Double Bullrope Match -- James Storm and Jackie Moore vs. Petey Williams and Gail Kim

Jackie jumped Gail from behind to start things off. Nothing really special here, but still fairly solid. Storm tied up Williams at one point. Williams attempted the Destroyer on a few occasions, but with no success. On his final attempt he was low blowed by Moore and superkicked by Storm for the win.

Winners Via Pinfall -- James Storm and Jackie Moore

Match Rating -- 6/10

Leticia caught up with Scott Steiner who promised to show Kurt Angle his dominance. Christian Cage interrupted and told Steiner that Tomko was being selfish and that he needed his help. Steiner said that they were never together and that Cage was on his own.

Match Three -- Crossface Chicken Wing Match -- Senshi vs. Austin Starr

Back and forth action here, with Senshi landing several kicks on Starr. Pretty basic match with Starr getting distracted by Mr. Backlund, falling prey to a Crossface Chicken Wing. Senshi locked it in and forced Starr to give it up. Afterwards, Starr put a Crossface Chicken Wing of his own on Mr. Backlund, as security scrambled to break them up.

Winner Via Submission -- Senshi

Match Rating -- 6/10

Jeremy Borash interviewed AJ Styles who said that Rhino's ego is what caused everything and said that he would pay in the Elevation X match.

Christy Hemme came out to introduce her mystery team, but was interrupted by VKM. Kip James ran her down like usual before she introduced...The Heartbreakers.

Match Four -- The Heartbreakers (Romeo Roselli and Antonio Thomas) w/ Christy Hemme vs. VKM (BG and Kip James)

VKM showed their smarts early on, as Thomas went to hit a splash on Kip James, who moved out of the way and let Thomas crash into Roselli. Hemme tried to get involved by hitting a low blow on Kip, but to no avail as Kip pulled out a cup and shoved it in Hemme's face. Lance Hoyt then came out and took Hemme away. The Heartbreakers fought back, but couldn't get the win as BG hit Thomas with the Pumphandle Slam for the victory. Afterwards, Hoyt celebrated with VKM. Hemme hit the ring with a whip and yelled at the Heartbreakers for losing as Kip laughed.

Winners Via Pinfall -- VKM (BG and Kip James)

Match Rating -- 6/10

WHAT YOU THINK
What did you think of TNA's Destination X?
It was great - 22%
It was okay - 15%
It was terrible - 17%
Didn't see it - 46%
In the back, Leticia and Christian Cage found Abyss in his cell. Cage gave Abyss a picture of James Mitchell. He told Abyss that after he was done with Sting that he could come out and help him take care of Samoa Joe. Abyss came towards Cage and went to punch him, but instead pounded fists with him. Ha, ha.

Match Five -- Two out of Three Falls Match for the X Division Championship -- Chris Sabin (C) vs. Jerry Lynn

They started off with some back and forth action, before Sabin hit the high road and led Lynn on a chase around the ring, baiting him back in and taking control. Lynn fought back and hit a Tornado DDT for the pin and fall number one.

Fall One Via Pinfall -- Jerry Lynn

The action spilled to the outside with Lynn diving over the guardrail into Sabin. The match made its way back into the ring with Lynn getting a near fall. Sabin countered with a powerbomb/pinfall combination with his feet on the ropes for the pin and the second fall.

Fall Two Via Pinfall -- Chris Sabin

Tons of near falls and reversals here. Lynn looked to have things going his way when someone with a Sting mask jumped the rail and distracted him. Sabin took advantage of the distraction and hit the Cradle Shock for the win.

Fall Three Via Pinfall -- Chris Sabin

The individual hit the Angels Wings on Lynn and revealed himself to be Christopher Daniels. He then whacked Sabin with the X Division title and walked off. Daniels is now sporting some symbol on his face, very interesting.

Winner and STILL X Division Champion -- Chris Sabin

Match Rating -- 7/10

Jeremy Borash was in Jim Cornette's office as he hyped Lockdown. Christy Hemme stormed in and told Cornette she still had some surprises up her sleeves. She brushed Cornette with her whip and walked off as Cornette pondered using her as his secretary. He wanted to know if she took dictation. O...kay.

Match Six -- Elevation X Match -- "The Phenomenal" AJ Styles vs. "The War Machine" Rhino

Styles and Rhino danced around a bit, before Styles made his way up the structure. Styles was very confident while Rhino struggled to get up. Lots of near drops here with both Rhino and Styles grabbing onto the steel beams to avoid falling down. Styles at one point, slipped inside the beams and rested while Rhino looked around for him. Rhino eventually found him and they went back and forth, punch for punch. Styles tried to use some powder on Rhino, but had it slapped back in his face. With Styles disoriented, Rhino hit the Gore and knocked Styles down, but not off. Styles grabbed onto the beams and dangled. Rhino then stood over him before stomping on his hands and letting him drop.

Winner -- "The War Machine" Rhino

Match Rating -- 7/10

A package was shown hyping the Scott Steiner/Kurt Angle feud, leading to...

Match Seven -- Scott Steiner vs. Kurt Angle

Angle started off with a headbutt to Steiner early on the busted him open. Angle then followed up with some punches and a clothesline that sent Angle over and out. Steiner tried to fight back, but was hit with an Olympic Slam for a nearfall. Angle then locked in an Ankle Lock, but Steiner fought out. Steiner was able to get the Steiner Recliner locked on Angle, but he fought out and hit another Olympic Slam. He went for another Ankle Lock, but Steiner fought free. The match ended when Angle went for a sunset flip off the top rope, but Steiner held on to the ropes to avoid going down. After a bried struggle Steiner came down and was pinned, giving Angle the win.

Winner Via Pinfall -- Kurt Angle

Match Rating -- 6/10

In the back, Jeremy Borash caught up with Samoa Joe who said that he was going to take the NWA Heavyweight Championship.

A package was shown hyping the Sting/Abyss feud, leading to...

Match Eight -- Last Rites Match -- Sting vs. Abyss

There were candles, tombstones and a casket hanging from above. Sting was all over Abyss for the early going, until Abyss whacked him with a candle stand, busting him open. The casket was then lowered as a "Fire Russo" chant erupted out in the Impact Zone. Abyss placed Sting in the casket, but couldn't shut it all the way. Sting came back with a Scorpion Deathlock forcing Abyss to tap out, but no submissions could be counted. Sting then took a tombstone and cracked it over Abyss' face with a baseball bat, he threw Abyss into the casket, but couldn't shut it fully. Abyss came out and hit a chokeslam on Sting onto the casket. He then took another tombstone and placed on two chairs and went to suplex Sting off the top rope through the tombstone, but Sting fought back, using a candle stand to whack Abyss off the ropes and through the tombstone. He then brought Abyss over to the casket and threw him in, shutting the lid for the win.

Winner -- Sting

Match Rating -- 7/10

A package was shown hyping the Christian Cage/Samoa Joe feud.

In the back, Christian Cage was screaming at Leticia about not having any backup. The Great Muta and an interpreter walked in. Cage greeted Muta and talked about them both being champions. He made the wrong move asking Muta if he was doing take- out delivery as a new career. Muta yanked off his mask and spit mist at the lockeroom doors as Cage ran away.

Text Messaging Results: Christian Cage wins: 52% -- Samoa Joe wins: 48%

Match Nine -- NWA Heavyweight Championship Match -- "The Instant Classic" Christian Cage (C) vs. "The Samoan Submission Machine" Samoa Joe

Winner Via Pinfall and STILL NWA Heavyweight Champion -- "The Instant Classic" Christian Cage

Match Rating -- 8/10

Overall Event Rating -- 7/10

Chris Sokol is from Long Island, NY and thinks that TNA should do a Text Messaging Poll on whether or not Russo should be fired, but judging by the Impact Zone, it looks like the results would be pretty obvious.