TNA Impact
October 1st, 2005

I can't tell you how much I've been waiting to review this show. For years now, I've been looking forward to an alternative on national television to go against WWE. Right now, TNA is the best shot at that alternative hanging around for a while. So let's see how they did on their first, most-hyped show.

- The show started with another tremendous promo from David Sahadi. If you haven't checked out some of his work (shown for free on the TNA website), you're missing out. It really got the blood pumping for this event, making it seem like a very special occassion.

- A promo talked about AJ Styles, introducing him to the audience before his match (also shown on the TNA website). Cool.

- Match #1: AJ Styles (the X Division Champion) defeated Roderick Strong. Strong didn't get an intro, which I was a little annoyed by, since he gets very little out of the match. Oh well, minor complaint. The two put on a pretty good match for the time limit. At one point, Styles nearly killed himself by leaping over the top rope onto Strong (and hitting the guardrail, which seems to be a little TOO close to the ring). Christopher Daniels came out during the bout and distracted Styles, allowing Strong to get in some shots. Styles came back, though, and got Strong with the Pele kick, an Asai DDT, and then finished him off with the Styles Clash. Good start for TNA; always showcase your best.

- A Monty Brown package is shown, talking about his background in the NFL. Brown then did an interview with Shane Douglas, inviting everyone to the Serengeti and warning the next "antelope" about the POOOUUUUNNNNCCCEEEE... Period!

- Raven is shown in the back beating down security. He's thrown out of the building (by orders of Larry Zbyszko).

- Match #2: Monty Brown squashed Lex Lovett. About a minute's worth of match before Brown hit the Pounce on Lovett for the win. I honestly had to check around to make sure of the identity of Lovett, since it wasn't really talked about. I know it was just to show off Brown, but I think this time could have been used better in other matches. Oh well, go Monty go.

- TNA did another video package, this time of the X Division. They're really getting a lot out of 1 hour.

- Match #3: Chris Sabin won over Petey Williams and Alex Shelley in a "Triple Threat" Match. Great to have a match like this on free tv (and possibly to be expecting them from now on). Another horrible hit on the guardrail took place from Sabin, although he did take out both opponents as well. A lot of action that's hard to describe, which is always a sign of a good match. In the end, Sabin got the Cradle Shock on Shelley for the win. Sabin didn't get to celebrate, though, as Williams attacked and knocked him out with the Canadian Destroyer. Nice way of making both men look strong heading towards the PPV.

- Larry Zbyszko has a surprise in the back, which is revealed when Tito Ortiz walked out. They went back into Zbyszko's office, with Shane Douglas shamelessly trying to listen through the door.

- Video package for 3 Live Kru. Ok, THAT one isn't on the TNA website, or at least, it wasn't the last time I checked. Maybe it is now. It was kind of weird, since it didn't follow the pattern of the previous matches. Why not a promo of Jeff Hardy before the break, then one of Rhino afterwards?

- Match #4: Jeff Hardy won, via DQ, over Rhino in the main event, when Abyss became involved. Hardy hit the Twist of Fate on Rhino (take that, Matt!), then went for the Swanton, only to be interrupted by Abyss. Hardy fought back, getting the best of Abyss, but then the double-team took him down. The lights then went out, signalling the coming of Sabu, who made the save. Hardy & Sabu cleared the ring, leaving Abyss & Rhino on the outside. Not a bad match, but I would have rather had a clean win for the main event.

- The footage of Jeff Jarrett winning the NWA World Title from Raven (with help from America's Most Wanted) was shown, with added footage of Scott D'Amore in the back talking about the plan (D'Amore's an owner of the federation where Raven lost the belt). After the footage, Jarrett came out with AMW and talked about being the champ, as well as thanking both AMW & D'Amore. D'Amore was quick to remind Jarrett that the champ now owed him a favor. The men were then interrupted by 3 Live Kru, with Konnan talking about how boring Jarrett was, leading to a brawl. 3 Live Kru then fell to the numbers when Team Canada came out.

However, things changed when Team 3-D (The Dudley Boyz) appeared and attacked, getting the 3-D on both AMW members. Funny note: Brother Ray's t-shirt had a middle finger and said "Trademark This!". Jarrett escaped a 3-D, but was then chased back to the ring by a returning Kevin Nash. Team 3-D caught Jarrett and got the Wassup Headdrop, with Nash following with a slow Powerbomb to the champ. Nash then let everyone know that he was taking Jarrett's title at Bound For Glory. Team 3-D threw in that they wanted AMW at the next iMPACT.

Summary: Not a bad start to the show, although I do wish that they had another hour to really get things rolling. It seemed to be over so quickly! Oh well, that's what PPVs are for. The X Division matches really showcased what TNA is all about. The item with Jarrett, though, just got under my skin a little bit, as I'd much rather see Raven/Jarrett again (since he WAS screwed out of the title) rather than Jarrett/Nash, with Nash simply walking in and declaring himself the #1 Contender.

Now, true, the last Jarrett/Nash match really shocked everyone by how good it was, and it's possible that it will happen again. I'm willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. I just hope that the usual issue of TNA (aka Old Veterans vs. Young Up-And-Comers) doesn't become a major factor in the coming weeks. TNA, you've got the backing of Spike TV and the support of an underground fan base. You don't desperately need "names" who may or may not still be able to go. They're short-term. Youth is long-term.

All-in-all, though, I enjoyed the show, and it left me wanting for more. Can you ask for anything else from a wrestling show?

The Accelerator