March 22, 2010
Destination X highlights the good, bad of TNA
By BOB KAPUR -- SLAM! Wrestling

TNA’s Destination X pay-per-view could be viewed as symbolic of the new road the company has been paving for itself since the beginning of the year. As indicated by the show’s name, there was quite a bit of focus on the X-Division. Where that was the case on this show, the road was smooth and clear. Otherwise, the road was often difficult to follow, full of holes, and in some cases, completely broken.

Nowhere was this more evident than in the main event, which saw AJ Styles defend his TNA World Heavyweight Championship against the monster Abyss. Before Jeremy Borash could even finish his introduction, Abyss attacked the champion, using his power to get the early advantage. Eventually, Styles used his aerial offense to take down the big man, as he flew over the top rope to land on Abyss who was standing on the floor. After landing a series of dropkicks, Styles started to work the leg of Abyss, reminiscent to the way his new mentor Ric Flair would set up his opponents for the figure-four leglock. Abyss eventually used his power to fight back, but a Pele kick and a flying cross body gave Styles the advantage again. Abyss blocked a Styles Clash attempt, and then catapulted Styles into the corner, ramming his head into a chair that Styles had wedged there earlier. Abyss hit a Shock Treatment, but only could get a two-count. AJ pushed out of superplex attempt, and then hit the monster with the Spiral Tap. After arguing with the referee about the count, Styles ran into a Black Hole Slam.

Ric Flair then wheeled his way to the ring, and sprayed some sort of liquid into the referee’s eyes. With the ref out of play, AJ used the belt to knock out Abyss with the belt. Hulk Hogan’s music then hit and he marched out to wheel Flair to the back, replace the ref with Earl Hebner, and apparently tell the competitors to increase the cheese factor in the closing moments of the match.

After getting over the loss of Flair, Styles’ attention went back to Abyss and he tried to win with a springboard 450 splash. It wasn’t enough, though, as Abyss kicked out with authority, all Hulked up. In tribute to his new BFF, Abyss hit the three punches, and the big boot. But rather than go for the legdrop, Abyss hit a chokeslam, sending Styles crashing through the mat. With the ring broken, and AJ seemingly out of it, the referee stopped the match, apparently ruling it a no contest, but not awarding Abyss the belt.

After the match, Flair got pulled into the ring and Hogan and Abyss sprayed him in the eyes with the mystery liquid, sending the Nature Boy crawling around on all fours. Desmond Wolfe came to the ring and Hogan and Abyss hit him repeatedly before spraying him as well. Blind, he tripped over Flair and fell headlong into the hole in the ring, in a sequence that resembled a Three Stooges routine. Flair, playing the part of Moe, then fell into the hole himself. Hogan and Abyss left the ring, apparently pleased by the overbooked finish and its aftermath, and despite Abyss having failed to win the title, to close the show.

Destination X 2010 – Detailed Results

Match 1: Brian Kendrick vs Amazing Red vs Daniels vs Kazarian

Ladder X match for number one contendership to X-Division title

A really good match that was characteristic of the great action that the X-Division can bring to the table. Kazarian was the first one to take a major pummeling, when Daniels flattened him on a ladder bridged across the apron and the guardrail. A hurancarana by Red off the same ladder bridge that saw Daniels hit the floor hard earned the night’s first “Holy S***!” chant. Red and Kaz crashed hard after getting pushed off the ladder by Kendrick. Kazarian later took a huge back body drop landing on a ladder propped up in the corner. He then powerbombed Daniels hard onto the same ladder, prompting “X-Division!” chants from the Impact Zone faithful. As Daniels scaled the ropes, Kazarian defied physics by springboarding and leaping onto the ladders, and then superplexed Daniels off the other but hanging on himself, clearing the way for him to grab the contract.

Winner: Kazarian

Match Rating: 8/10

Ric Flair came to the top of the entrance stage in a wheelchair, being pushed by Desmond Wolfe’s girl Chelsea. Flair said that he is not happy, and that Hogan and “the Abyss” would pay for putting him in a wheelchair for the first time ever.

Speaking of Abyss, backstage, Hulk Hogan was shown giving a pep talk to his new BFF, when Eric Bischoff came into the room. Hogan told Easy E to stop with his personal vendettas against Jeff Jarrett and Mick Foley and get back on track running the company. Eric said that he would close the matter with those two tomorrow night on Impact.

Match 2: Daffney vs Tara

Knockouts Title match

Wow, Daffney may be whiter than Sheamus. This one started off with some slugging before Tara locked on a Tarantula. Daffney then took control with a series of snap mares, and then clamped on a reverse headlock and a double-leg stump-puller, which she modified into a figure-four stump puller. Daffney tried to hit Tara with the belt, but Tara avoided the swing, and then hit the Widow’s Peak to retain the title. After the match, Daffney stole Tara’s spider.

Winner and still Knockouts Champion: Tara

Match Rating: 6/10

Backstage, Brutus Magnus announced that his new name is simply Magnus. Apparently this is the new trend for X-Division stars (e.g. Daniels, Kazarian), or else this is the precursor to the company bringing in Brutus Beefcake. Please, God, no.

Match 3: Magnus vs Rob Terry

TNA Global Championship match

Terry is indeed a physical phenomenon, and can be impressive if used in very small doses. That formula worked here, as this was pretty much a squash with Terry hitting a bunch of power moves and winning in about a minute.

Winner and still Global Champion: Rob Terry

Match Rating: 5/10

Match 4: Generation Me vs Motor City Machine Guns

Ultimate X match for number one contendership to the Tag Team Championship

This was a very good match, with both teams moving at lightning speed to hit blink-and-you-miss-it offense. One highlight saw one Buck brother hit a flying dropkick through the ropes but hang on, blocking the view of the Guns so they couldn’t see the other brother come flying over the top for a double-whammy. Many highlight reel moments involving the ropes and the cables, including Jeremy getting speared down and landing hard in a failed attempt to grab the X. Later on came a sequence that saw all four men face-planted with a series of moves that defy description. Sabin won a race to the centre of the cables, and, after kicking Jeremy repeatedly to drop him to the mat, pulled down the X to win the match.

Winner: Motor City Machine Guns

Match Rating: 9/10

Backstage, Jeremy Borash interviewed Scott Hall and Syxx-Pac who said, in their drunken slurs, that the contracts were as good as theirs. Waltman had a good line, saying that they would beat Crosby and Stills in addition to Nash and Young for the big money deals.

Match 5: Eric Young & Kevin Nash vs Scott Hall & Sean “Syxx-Pac” Waltman

Hopefully Eric Young got a bonus for this one, as he did all the work for his team, taking a beating from Hall and Pac for the majority of it. After an extended beatdown, Hall and Pac used spray paint in the face of Young, blinding him. He fought out of trouble and finally made the hot tag to Nash. Or, the cold tag, as the case may be, since Nash didn’t lay one finger on his opponents, instead turning on Young and hitting him with a power bomb. Nash allowed his Wolfpac buddies to continue the attack on Young for a while before they pinned him, thus earning their contracts. After the match, they added insult to injury, by spray painting a body outline around the fallen Young.

Winners: Scott Hall and Syxx-Pac

Match Rating: 5/10

Match 6: Doug Williams vs Shannon Moore

X-Division Championship

Maybe the crowd died out after the last match, but this one didn’t seem to have any crowd interest. Perhaps it’s because of the way they threw this one together without any buildup. Never really noticed this when he was with the British Invasion, but Williams has a really good old-school style, with some rugged moves, but nothing too flashy – kind of reminiscent of Finlay or William Regal. Moore eventually got fired up, and hit some quick moves to stagger Williams, leaving him prone for a moonsault off the top to the floor. Williams then went under the ring for a brick, and cracked Moore in the head with it, knocking him prone for the three-count. After the match, Williams condemned the X-Division style, saying that acrobats and high-fliers should be in a circus not a wrestling ring. He then compared Moore to a clown, and to prove his point, grabbed a ringside fan’s purse, and used her lipstick to paint Moore’s face. That was simply tremendous, and Williams has moved up my list as one of my favourite characters as a result.

Winner and still X-Division Champion: Doug Williams

Match Rating: 7/10

Match 7: Hernandez & Matt Morgan vs Beer Money Inc.

TNA Tag Team Championship match

The story in this one is whether Hernandez and Morgan would put their recent differences behind them and focus on defending their titles. The lack of chemistry between the two was palpable throughout, while Beer Money were able to use their experience to ground Hernandez. Morgan kept berating the performance of his partner during the match, though Hernandez kept pulling his own weight. Hernandez avoided a beer spit to the face that blinded Morgan. With his partner out of his face, Hernandez was able to take out James Storm and cover him for the pin, retaining the titles. After the match, Morgan exploded on his partner, hitting him with the Carbon Footprint, and then posed with the team’s belts over his fallen partner.

Winners and still Tag Team Champions: Hernandez & Matt Morgan

Match Rating: 7/10

Backstage, Kurt Angle burned a picture of Mr. Anderson, saying that he would do the same to the real McCoy in the ring.

Match 8: Kurt Angle vs Mr. Anderson

This was the complete opposite of an X-Division match, very ground-based and slow-paced. Angle mainly held the advantage by using his ground skills and technical acumen. After some further mat-based offense, including an ankle lock submission attempt, Angle hit a frog-splash, but was unable to hold Anderson down for three. A referee bump saw the official unable to make the count after Anderson hit Kurt with his own Angle Slam. With the ref down, Anderson got Angle’s warrior medal from out of the corner, and approached Angle with evil intentions. Kurt was expecting this, however, and ducked the shot, and instead used the medal to slice open Anderson’s forehead. Angle then woke up the referee so he could see Anderson tap after Kurt slapped on the ankle lock.

Winner: Kurt Angle

Match Rating: 6/10

Match 9: Abyss vs. A.J. Styles

TNA World Heavyweight Championship match

Winner: No contest?

Match Rating: 6/10

Overall Show Rating: 6/10

Bob Kapur is going to start calling everyone by their last names only. E-mail him at bobkapur@hotmail.com.


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