TNA made their debut tonight in Roanoke Rapids, NC and I would not have missed it for the world. It is the first time that I can remember a wrestling coming coming to my hometown. I purchased the $75 VIP ticket so I got in 2 hours early for an autograph signing. Everyone kindly signed their photos in a program that could be purchased for 30 bucks in the Don West Brown Bag Deal which came with a T-Shirt, A Sting Action Figure, and 4 DVDs. Some of the wrestlers were friendly than others. Out of the ones that showed up, Samoa Joe and Velvet Sky seemed to be genuinely happy to be there. What ticked me off was the fact that the only way you could get Jeff Hardy’s autograph was to purchase another $30 action figure and I ain’t got time for that.
TNA Gutcheck Match
Hang Time defeated Dirty Hector
The show started out with a dark match featuring a home town hero called Hang Time. This was a match to get the crowd pumped up and to showcase some new talent. The match was very basic and if this was a Gutcheck for the show, I do not think either guy would have been signed. They didn’t seem to have that “it factor.” Hang Time defeated Dirty Hector, a Pueto Rican star with a flying crossbody in about 5 minutes.
Christy Hemme came out to be our official announcer for the evening. She is one beautiful woman. The only other thing I have to say about her are two simple words, DAT ASS!
Kenny King defeated Zema Ion
This was the first match on the official card and it was the best match of the night in terms of wrestling. Zema and Kenny hit some big moves to get the crowd into the match. Kenny King played the face in this match and the crowd loved him. He seems like a superstar that could play either a face or heel and be damn good at it. Kenny King won with the Royal Flush.
TNA Knockouts Championship Match
Velvet Sky defeated Gail Kim
This was your standard women’s match. They got about the same amount of time that would be given to a televised Divas match which is a bit sad. Velvet is TINY in person and you can tell they put a bit of make up on her for her photoshoots to make her look younger. Gail Kim is even lovelier than she is on television and was nice in the autograph line. She was sick and did not want to give me her cold so instead of a handshake, she gave me and elbow bump. A funny moment accured with Gail would not start the match because Velvet rubbed her crotch on the rope. Velvet won via the In Your Face.
Wes Brisco w/ D’Lo Brown defeated Christian York
Christian York made a believer out of me tonight. This guy has everything needed to be the TNA X-Division Champion and even the World Champion. Out of everyone there together, I think York busted his ass harder than anyone. Wes Brisco played the cocky heel with D’Lo acting as his manager. D’Lo distracted the referee allowing Brisco to hit a low blow for the win.
TNA World Tag Team Championship Match
Austin Aries and Bobby Roode defeated Magnus and Samoa Joe
Out of all of the match tonight, this one was the most entertaining, but not because of what went on in the ring. Aries and Storm got into an argument with an old lady and another fan. They crowd loved this! Aries and Roode are the Laurel and Hardy of professional wrestling. Samoa Joe and Magnus are a good team but I think they would be much better off by going solo. Aries won for his time with a small package and his feet on the ropes.
Joseph Park defeated Robbie E.
Before the match started, Robbie E did a little dance routine and challenged Park to do something better. Park, and I shit you not, did the Harlem Shake. At that point, I was rooting for Robbie E for the first time in his career. Park’s character seems a bit more confident now. The match came to an end when Park hit a splash off the middle turnbuckle.
Team 3D defeated Jeff Hardy and Kurt Angle
This was originally scheduled to be two singles match and I thought it was made into a tag match for the Hardy’s team could pull off the win. Before the match, Bully Ray cut a heel promo and this man can draw heel better than anyone in the business right now. When Hardy came out, the place ERUPTED! He went into the crowd and people were following him around like the pied piper. A cool little moment happened when I did the V1 symbol of his brother and he looked right at me and did it back. The match itself was decent but not main event caliber. TNA made a horrible decision, let Team 3D win, and it sucked the life out of the room. A ref bump occurred and the Ace’s and Eight’s came out and attacked Jeff and Angle leading to Team 3D getting the win. After the match was over, the beatdown continued until Magnus, Christian York, and Joseph Park made the save. The Aces teased fighting again but just left, leaving the crowd deflated.
After the match was over, if you paid an extra $20 you could get into the ring and get your picture taken with Jeff, which was a good idea for some little kids considering how badly the show ended. I did get my picture taken with him and I thanked him for coming to my small town.
Overly I would say this was a fairly disappointing show for me. 5 of the major stars that I wanted to see did not appear. I paid $75 and I didn’t get to see 5 of my favorite stars. There was no A.J. Styles, no James Storm, no Mickie James, no Kaz, and no Christopher Daniels. Getting to meet and get your picture taken with Jeff Hardy is nice but it is not worth the price of admission.
Report by: Michael Grooms