Live Fan Report From TNA’s Hammerstein Ballroom Show

Nick Paglino

Thanks to Ryan for sending in this live report:

Tropical Storm Hanna posed a serious threat, but ultimately I was able to brave her torrential rains and successfully cross the line tonight. With soggy jeans and a smile in my heart I was entertained by a night of Total Non-Stop Action. Unfortunately for TNA, they had a bit of trouble selling tickets to the show, as ROHâ<80><99>s old stomping grounds the Grand Ballroom saw each section of seats comprised of about five empty rows. Thankfully, though, a good time was had by all who did attend. Jeremy Borash was our host for the eveningâ<80><99>s festivities and he did his best to keep the crowd hyped, continually promising backstage passes that ultimately led to them bringing backstage to US! The highlight of this was unquestionably the complete failure of a grown man to enter the ring, taking a hilarious bump as he was about to get his picture taken with Kurt Angle. Spot of the night. Anyway, on to the matchesâ<80>¦

1. â<80><9c>Black Machismoâ<80> Jay Lethal defeated â<80><9c>The Guruâ<80> Sonjay Dutt. For the record, Dutt is jacked beyond belief. These two, no strangers at this point, delivered just whatâ<80><99>d you expect here: a fun, fast-paced, short opener to get the crowd pumped for the event. Dutt landed a picture-perfect moonsault for a near-fall, but soon after fell prey to the Lethal Combination, followed by the flying elbow drop, which gained the victory for Black Machismo.

2. Awesome Kong defeated Roxxi and Traci Brooks in a one-fall, three-way Knockouts bout. Kong went over following an Impant Buster on Roxxi and an Awesome Bomb on Traci onto the prone body of Roxxi, at which point Kong pinned both of her adversaries. This was another short match, but filled with enough awesomeness from Kong to keep it entertaining

3. â<80><9c>Showtimeâ<80> Eric Young defeated Johnny Devine. This complete comedy match was filled with such hijinx as Young donning the ref-shirt to officiate an impromptu contest between Devine and Earl Hebner (who received instant â<80><9c>You screwed Bret!â<80> chants upon first appearing tonight) and an appearance by Super Eric, who was able to pin Devine to win this epic contest.

At this point, Team 3D made their way out to a huge, hometown pop from the NYC faithful, but unfortunately they proceeded only to bore us. They stated that their TNA contract was about to expire and that they would sign either with TNA or â<80><9c>that other company.â<80> They were nice enough to let us decide where they should â<80><9c>end their career.â<80> Surprisingly enough, the crowd wound up choosing for them to stay with TNA! No buys.

4. In a â<80><9c>Monsterâ<80><99>s Ballâ<80> match, Abyss defeated Rhino. Ah, the requisite â<80><9c>Canâ<80><99>t see shit!â<80> match of the night. These two went all around the building before winding up back in the ring, wherein plunder was produced. After plenty of garbage-can shots to the respective heads of each man, Abyss survived the GORE~! and finished Rhino off with the second of two Black Hole Slams. They couldnâ<80><99>t produce any tables here since Bubba had promised them for later tonight, so they were forced to use some standard-variety plunder, which prevented the match from becoming too exciting.


5. X-Division Champion â<80><9c>Maple Leaf Muscleâ<80> Petey Williams defeated Consequences Creed. In the first of three title bouts tonight, these two X-Division stars put on quite the match, although, as per usual, it didnâ<80><99>t last very long at all, going around seven minutes. Petey played the face role here, as he drew plenty of â<80><9c>Letâ<80><99>s go Petey!â<80> chants throughout. He hit Creed with his awesome diving hurrancanrana to the floor and ultimately put Creed away following a Canadian Destroyer from out of nowhere.

6. TNA World Tag Team Champions Beer Money Inc. (with Miss Jackie) defeated Team 3D. While technically not a tremendous match-up, these two teams entertained tonight with plenty of comedy thrown into a heated-affair. Chants included â<80><9c>Brokeback Mountain!â<80> â<80><9c>You suck dick!â<80> and the old-standby, â<80><9c>EC â<80>~dub!â<80> A definite highlight came when Jackie entered the ring and took a bump, after which the heels wound up in such a position where it looked like Roode was banging Jackie from behind while she performed fellatio on Storm. Cross the line! She was also instrumental in the finish to the match, hitting a low-blow on Bubba, prior to his being rolled up from behind for the fluke victory for the heels. Afterwards, Team 3D delivered on their promise of putting someone through a table, as the planned-attack by Beer Money backfired, and Jackie wound up taking a powerbomb through a table.

7. TNA World Champion Samoa Joe defeated Kurt Angle, Christian Cage and Booker T in a four-way elimination match. In what seemed to be a trend tonight, this match was perhaps too short. In fact, Booker lasted only five minutes before being pinned following Joeâ<80><99>s snap-powerslam. You read right. What a poo-putt. The match got a lot better at this point, with Cage, Joe and Angle delivering a ton of high-impact moves to each other, highlighted by a Tower of Doom spot and a double-Ankle lock by Angle. Christian was eliminated when he dove off the top at Joe, but got caught with an Ace Crusher. Angle and Joe then went characteristically counter-crazy, going non-stop for about five more minutes until Joe was able to put Angle away with the Muscle Buster to retain his title.

Despite the lack of both long matches and The Beautiful People, this was a fun, if somewhat lightweight, show. Itâ<80><99>s hard to go from the ROH shows in the building with their millions of near-falls and high-spots to a show like this, but if you adjust your expectations, there is plenty of fun to be had. Also, it really did feel like we were seeing some big stars in the main event. Creed, Traci, Lethal and Young came out for autographs and pictures afterwards, and the line to get a picture with Angle was absolutely huge and still quite long when I left the show.

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