Written by: Matt Peddycord
TNA: Destination X
July 8, 2012
The current TNA champs are as follows:
TNA World Heavyweight Champion: Bobby Roode (10/26/2011)
TNA Television Champion: Devon (3/18/2012)
TNA X-Division Champion: Vacant (7/5/2012)
TNA World Tag Team Champions: Christopher Daniels & Kazarian (6/28/2012)
TNA Knockouts Champion: Miss Tessmacher (6/10/2012)
TNA Knockouts Tag Team Champions: Eric Young & ODB (2/28/2012)
Your hosts are Mike Tenay and Jeremy Borash. Tazz is said to have had family obligations.
- Mason Andrews vs. Rubix vs. Dakota Darsow vs. Lars Only – Last Chance Four Way
Sorry guys, missed the first couple minutes of this one. Rubix REALLY needs to ditch the Jigsaw gear if he’s going to remain in TNA under this name. I’m just saying. Jigsaw puzzles have nothing to do with Rubik’s cubes. Moving on. We pick up about two minutes in as Darsow owns the ring punishing Rubix with a spinning falcon arrow. Lars breaks up the pin, but then gets stretched on the mat. TAFKA Scorpio Sky breaks up that submission. Lars and Darsow fight to the floor as Andrews somersault planchas on top of them, followed by Rubix with a No-Hands Space Flying Tiger Sault, or whatever. Rubix brings Andrews back into the ring looking to finish, but Andrews takes him down into a Fujiwara armbar. When Rubix tries to escape, Andrews changes over into a Kimura. Lars breaks that up and drops Rubix and Andrews simultaneously with jawbreakers. He can’t pin anybody though. Next up, there’s a TOWER OF DOOM! Off the powerbomb, Darsow gets two on Andrews. As Darsow backs up into the corner, Rubix who was not involved in the tower of doom spot flies in with a COAST TO COAST on Darsow! Now everybody is hitting everyone with knockout moves, ending with Lars nailing Rubix with a cool headscissors that gets him DDT’d. As Rubix rolls out to avoid a pin and Darsow totally out of it on the apron, Andrews blocks that headscissors DDT and kicks Lars to stun him long enough for a TKO and the victory as Andrews takes the last spot in the tournament facing Kid Kash. (last 6:06 shown) Glad to see Scorpio Sky going over here. Pretty cool opener with some nice spots. **½
- Mason Andrews vs. Kid Kash – TNA X-Division Title Tournament Semifinals
No rest period here. Kash comes down during the celebration and gets the jump on Andrews. He throws Andrews to the floor and posts him real good before bringing him back inside. Kash place his foot on Andrews, but he kicks out at two. Tenay and Borash REALLY put Kash over as this super mean dude and it shows in the ring. Andrews mounts a quick comeback, but Kash launches him onto the top rope to take back control. He even stomps Andrews in the nuts to show how MEAN he is. His whole game plan is power moves on Andrews. At one point just to be a dick and hilarious, he does this hand motion where he unwinds the bird for the crowd. I’m sure someone has a GIF online somewhere. Double Jump Moonsault hits knees and now HERE COMES ANDREWS! Slingshot headscissors from the apron leads to a missile dropkick for two. Muay Thai knee strike from Andrews connects for 1-2-NO! After a rollup sequence, Kash catches Andrews with a knee and calls for the MONEY MAKER. When Andrews blocks, he tries for another knee strike, which Andrews avoids and rolls up Kash for the 1-2-3 to advance into the Ultimate X match. (8:08) That’s always a nice way to build up the heat. Have Kash be a real prick the whole time and then let the other guy score the quick pinfall. Keep it simple, stupid. Great advice, hurts my feelings every time. **½
Christy Hemme interviews Samoa Joe backstage. He picks Austin Aries to win since that guy beat him last month at Slammiversary. As for Kurt Angle, he’s just ten points in the BFG series. He will beat Kurt Angle by any means necessary.
TWITTER! TWITTER! TWITTER! TWITTER! TWITTER! TWITTERRRRRRRRRRRRR!
- Kenny King vs. Douglas Williams – TNA X-Division Title Tournament Semifinals
Always felt Kenny King needed to get out of ROH. Even though I don’t necessarily agree with how it was done, I’m glad he got off of that sinking ship onto something better. VINTAGE WORLD OF SPORT stuff to start from Williams. Crowd is totally into Kenny as he levels Williams with a corkscrew pescado. Back in, Kenny gets exciting with headlocks and armbars. Douglas comes back with a flying European uppercut. Williams hits a running knee in the corner and from a suplex combo, he goes for the CHAOS THEORY. Kenny sees it coming and delivers an atomic drop followed by an enziguri. A series of clotheslines lead to a Jumping Heel Kick for two. Now King hits the handstand kick and AA spinebuster gets two. Over in the corner, Williams fights off a superplex and shoves Kenny to the floor to give him a flying knee strike. Back in, King rallies back with a Springboard Blockbuster for 1-2-NO! Williams tries to avoid the CORONATION, but it’s evitable as King advances to Ultimate X. (10:34) There was no way Williams was going over here. Another solid match in a series of them. **½
Christy Hemme meets with Christopher Daniels backstage. He says when things get tough, AJ Styles is the kind of man who will lay down and give up, which will work to his advantage tonight. That’s something Daniels feels he can drink to. These guys are cutting the best promos in the mainstream wrestling biz right now.
- Sonjay Dutt vs. Rashad Cameron – TNA X-Division Title Tournament Semifinals
Since I am no way a fan of CZW, this is my first look at BLK Jeez. Quick VINTAGE X-division action to start that leads to a stalemate. Cameron disrespects Sonjay piefacing and everything. He makes him pay with a dropkick to the mush for two. They run the ropes and this time, it’s Cameron with a dropkick to send Sonjay rolling out to the floor. Somersault plancha from Cameron gets two back inside the ring. Sonjay fires back with a headscissors as Cameron rolls out to take a baseball slide through the ropes. Sonjay tries something else on the apron, but Cameron trips him up mid-jump and tosses him into the guardrail. Back in, that gets two. He puts the badmouth on Sonjay, but can’t secure the win. Sonjay comes back by delivering a bulldog onto the second turnbuckle as he lands on the second rope, then kicks Cameron back onto the second rope, and legdrops Cameron killing his throat. Mysterio splash gets 1-2-NO! Cameron avoids the SONJAY CUTTER and victory rolls Sonjay for two. Up on the top turnbuckle, Cameron channels the spirit of Super Calo with a Floatover headscissors. Cross armbreaker, but Sonjay reaches the ropes. SONJAY CUTTER connects and finishes with the MOONSAULT DOUBLE STOMP! Terrible camera angle though. I’m sure that was just in case it didn’t go well.. Anyways, Sonjay reaches Ultimate X. (7:16) At least from this match, Sabian didn’t seem to be anything too special. Another good match though as Sonjay looked phenomenal and motivated. **
Update on Jesse Sorenson’s rehab. Pretty standard rehab video. The doctors think they can get him back to 100%. Sorenson went from being on top of the world to having his dream taken away from him with one moonsault. He’s trying to stay positive though and hopes to come back soon. Next thing we know, Jesse Sorenson returns to the Impact Zone still wearing a neck brace. He thanks his family, friends, and fans for their support. He couldn’t have done it without him. Now he gets to Zema Ion. Sorensen says he hopes Zema Ion wins the X-Division title tonight so he can take it from him. He even goes as far as to say he promises to be X-Division champion next year for Destination X so he can win the TNA world title. A promise in wrestling? Sorry Jesse, but that’s not going to work.
- Zema Ion vs. Flip Cassonova – TNA X-Division Title Tournament Semifinals
Zema attacks from behind, but Cassonova headscissors Ion to the floor and levels him with a no-hands plancha. Back in, Zema avoids a standing moonsault by kicking Cassonova away mid-move. Double-knees Bossman straddle by Zema. As he elbows Cassonova to the floor, Zema delivers a baseball slide through the ropes. Back in, Zema takes time for hairspray and a moonsault hits knees. Cassonova comes back with a Corkscrew Quebrada for 1-2-NO! Looks like Cassonova went for a 630 SENTON, but there’s no water in the pool. Hostile Makeover by Zema leads to a reverse Gory Bomb for the win. (3:54) Very flippy-floppy, but short and fun. *½
Elsewhere, Christy Hemme interviews the other three guys involved in Ultimate X. Of course each one of them thinks they will win. TNA world champ Bobby Roode interrupts to tell them that basically the X-Division sucks – more specifically Austin Aries sucks. Aries will fail and Bobby Roode will still be TNA world champion. So yeah, screw you guys.
- Samoa Joe (“Ranked = #2″ with 27 pts) vs. Kurt Angle (“Ranked = #4″ with 20 pts) – BFG Series Match
This is definitely one of my favorite rivalries in TNA history. Finishers are teased to start. Joe pushes Angle back into the corner to escape a front headlock and pounds him down onto the mat. Face wash ensues. Joe backdrops Angle to the floor and levels him with an Elbow Suicida. Back inside, Joe counters a cross-corner whip and charges Angle with a forearm smash followed by an enziguri. MUSCLE BUSTER is blocked and Angle delivers a missile dropkick. Joe fights out of a rear choke, but charges into a Belly to Belly Suplex. WOOO! Angle wants the Pop-Up Superplex, but Joe shoves him down and drills Angle with a flying leg lariat for two. Now Angle flies down into an inverted atomic drop and then gets booted down for a running senton splash for two. Joe hits the Snap Powerslam and changes over to a cross armbreaker, but Angle escapes and grabs the ANKLELOCK. Joe kicks him off, but now Angle has the BALLS to deliver a Hat Trick of Germans. ANGLE SLAM gets countered with an armdrag and then Joe kicks Angle in the face. Again, the MUSCLE BUSTER is countered, but this time into the ANKLELOCK. Joe kicks Angle away again and then catches Angle with an STJoe. This time the MUSCLE BUSTER is successful. Cover, 1-2-NO! Now here comes the Dramatic Trading of Finishers. However, it’s Joe who finishes off Angle with the COQUINA CLUTCH. (14:38) Angle never tapped, but he wouldn’t respond to Hebner. That submission victory earns Joe ten points and now puts him in the lead over James Storm. Nothing epic and didn’t need to be. These two could produce a good match in their sleep. It sounds crazy, I know! ***½
- AJ Styles vs. Christopher Daniels – Last Man Standing
Daniels attempts to get Memphis on AJ to start by stalling on the floor. Once he draws AJ out to the floor and into the ring, he spits a big loogie in his face. Classy! That fires up AJ and they go to the floor to FIGHT. They just beat the heck out of each other out there. Inside, Styles delivers the best dropkick in the biz. After AJ kicks on Daniels a bunch, he cranks up the violence with a nasty suplex into the corner. Jumping knee drop from AJ misses and Daniels catches him with a quick Michael Hayes jab to slow him down. Now Daniels finds a chair and brings that into the ring. It gets set up in the middle of the ring as AJ punches back on Daniels. He tries to spring off the chair and splash Daniels in the corner, but Daniels moves and uranage slams Styles on the chair! YEEOUCH. AJ is up at six, but then Daniels knocks him to the floor. Some ringside fans are really giving Daniels some trouble. I LOVE IT. I believe AJ might be blading right here. Anyways, now Daniels pounds the bloody cut and delivers a suplex on the floor. Back inside the ring, Daniels runs at Styles with the chair and gets kicked away. Now AJ can hit the Springboard Clothesline and Daniels brings up the chair up to get that knocked back in his face. Kind of a silly spot like the Van Daminator. Why would you bring a chair up to your face to block a move? To the floor, AJ runs Daniels face into the steps, which busts him open too. AWESOME. Now AJ backs Daniels up the ramp, but they wind up doing a double-clothesline spot on the concrete. AJ ends a slugfest with an enziguri and calls for the STYLES CLASH, but Daniels backdrops him away. Still using part of the staging, AJ manages a Quebrada DDT, which looked brutal. Just as ref Brian Hebner is up to eight counting AJ, Kazarian charges in and runs Styles off the stage. Now the count is on AJ. He gets up at the eight-count. Looking to finish off Styles for good, Daniels sets up a table by the edge of the stage and calls for ANGEL’S WINGS. Styles winds up shoving Daniels off into Kazarian who is still standing by. Pele Kick to Daniels! Now AJ hits the STYLES CLASH OFF THE STAGE AND THROUGH THE TABLE! It’s come to whoever makes it to their feet first will win. Once Hebner reaches the ten count, AJ manages to hold himself using the guardrail while Daniels is still lying on the floor to give AJ Styles the win. (17:41) Another one of my fave TNA rivalries. Maybe I just have 2005 TNA on my mind, but this is the type of brawling I like without thumbtacks and whatever else sick household item Abyss can find by just beating the crap out of each other with their fists. This made sense and made the table spot feel important because it meant something and wasn’t just another spot you’ve seen that has been done a billion times over the past fifteen years. ****¼
Christy Hemme meets with Austin Aries. He says the X-Division title meant a lot to him, but what is in front of him is even greater and that’s the TNA world title. Aries calls Roode out for winning his matches with beer bottles and belt shots while he has been winning matches with Brainbusters. He refuses to be a champion like Bobby Roode and wants everyone to be proud of him once he wins the gold. He will change the course of the professional wrestling industry. He will prove why he is the Greatest Man That Ever Lived.
- Mason Andrews vs. Kenny King vs. Sonjay Dutt vs. Zema Ion – Ultimate X Match
No matter who wins, you get a fresh new X-Division champion. No one in this match has ever held the belt. Zema Ion pisses the others off by being obsessed with his hairspray, so they give him a VON ERICHS-STYLE TRIPLE DROPKICK! While Andrews goes to the floor with Ion, Sonjay headscissors Kenny and goes for the belt. Ion shoves both Kenny and Sonjay to the floor, but turns around into a missile dropkick from Andrews. He comes back with a tornado DDT on Andrews and heads to the corner, but King sets him up in the tree of woe. Now Andrews tries a tornado DDT on King, but he blocks and tosses Andrews off into Ion. Sonjay goes to stop Kenny from trying for the belt, but takes a handstand kick on the apron. Kenny starts heading down the cable when Sonjay brings him down to the mat with a springboard dropkick. Running SSP on King lands Sonjay funny on the ropes and he has to go to the back to seek medical assistance. Now Zema goes down the cable, but gets pulled down by Andrews and King. Andrews stops Kenny up top with a back superplex. Once again, Zema goes for the belt and gets pulled down this time into an inverted atomic drop. He rolls to the floor again and baits out Kenny for a corkscrew pescado, which he misses. Even so, he forgets about Andrews who wipes them both out with his own version of a corkscrew plancha. Now Andrews goes down the cable, but Kenny takes him down with a springboard spear! Sonjay Dutt has returned to the match. Meanwhile, King and Andrews meet in the middle of the cables where the belt is at. Both have their hands on the belt, but both of them crash and burn at the same time. As for Zema and Sonjay, they both start climbing the scaffold. Once they meet in the middle and stand on the cable, Zema shoots hairspray into Sonjay’s face as he blindly falls to the mat. That allows Zema to grab the belt with no trouble to become the X-Division champion. (8:49) As much as you may dislike Zema Ion or whatever, I like that finish. It’s about the only way he could win an X-Division championship in my opinion because to me, he doesn’t look like the quintessential risk taker like the other three in this match. They went balls to the wall and failed. He used his brain. This needed more time, but that could have something to do with what happened to Sonjay. I’m not sure though. Afterwards, Zema Ion dedicates his title win to his haters and most of all Jesse Sorenson while some rude fans chant “TRANSITION” at him. Haven’t you learned anything over the past ten years? If it’s that obvious to book, TNA won’t do it. **¾
- TNA World Heavyweight Champion Bobby Roode vs. Austin Aries
Just shows how over Austin Aries is right now in TNA. Essentially only four weeks of build and this is what everybody is wanting to see. They feel each other out to start. Aries trips up Roode and grabs a chinlock, but Roode escapes and slaps Aries on the head a bunch ala Scott Hall. Aries takes Roode back to the mat where Aries spins all around Roode and then slaps him on the head. He pulls an Eddie Guerrero hopping up in the corner until Roode charges. From there, Aries snaps Roode’s neck on the top rope and delivers a tope followed by a big jumping elbow drop for two. Headlock to headscissors as Aries escapes and delivers the dropkick. Roode rolls to the floor and takes a Randy Savage double ax handle from Aries. Back inside, Roode sidesteps a missile dropkick and the tide has turned. Suplex and a knee drop gets two. After a chinlock, Roode misses a flying knee drop. LAST CHANCERY by Aries, but Roode finds the ropes. Now Aries goes old school and runs Roode’s eyes across the top rope. He kicks Roode to the floor, but Roode avoids the Heat Seeking Missile. Back in, Roode hits a spear for two. Gourdbuster scores another nearfall. Aries fights out of a waistlock, but Roode catches him with a knee and works the ribs in the corner. Aries charges into a variation of a Flapjack for two. Back to the waistlock. Aries escapes, but then eats a clothesline that turns him inside out for two. Now Roode starts to disrespect him, which makes Aries get FIRED UP. They trade blows ending with a discus forearm from Aries. He clotheslines Roode to the floor and delivers the Heat Seeking Missile. Back inside, the missile dropkick connects this time. He wants the IED, but Roode catches him in mid-air for a running powerslam for two. Roode looks for the spear, but Aries avoids the blow and locks in the LAST CHANCERY. Roode counters to the Crippler Crossface, but then Aries escapes and reverts back to LAST CHANCERY. Roode looks like he might tap, but rakes the eyes instead. I mean, they’re right there! He goes for a superplex, but Aries blocks mid-move and knees Roode in the head. He lands back on the top turnbuckle and ear claps Roode down to the mat. 450 SPLASH misses, but Aries rolls through and charges into a Double-R Spinebuster. Cover, 1-2-NO! Roode sends Aries shoulder-first into the ringpost and locks on the Crippler Crossface again. Every time Aries tries to maneuver himself towards the ropes, Roode makes a transition. Aries eventually does make the ropes though. Since he didn’t get the win there, Roode goes out and brings the belt into the ring. While ref Brian Hebner takes the belt away from him, Roode low blows Aries for 1-2-NO! Rood shoves Hebner, so Hebner shoves Roode. Meanwhile, here comes Aries with the IED! Aries looks to the crowd as he sets up for the BRAINBUSTER, but Roode had it scouted and flips out before shoving Aries into Hebner. Now here comes the belt shot. Roode drags Hebner over to Aries as he covers for the slow 1-2-NO! Roode wants the PAY OFF, but Aries counters into a small package for 1-2-NO! He goes for another spear, but Aries sidesteps and flips back Roode for a punt to the top of his skull! That knocks Roode silly and sets him up easily for the BRAINBUSTER for the 1-2-3! (22:40) LUGER WON THE TITLE! LUGER WON THE TITLE! Sorry. All of Orlando (AND THE WORLD) goes completely insane over Aries. I’m usually pretty good at calling finishes in main events, but I wasn’t sure they would actually pull the trigger on Aries. I’m certainly glad they did. Does this remind anyone of Luger v. Hogan in 1997? Everyone knew the big match was Sting v. Hogan (in this case, the big match being Storm v. Roode), but the moment of Luger winning the belt was still pretty huge. As much as everybody is loving Aries right now, I can see the world title going back to Roode pretty soon though. I wouldn’t say as quickly as this coming Thursday night or anything, but within a month’s time I would suppose. Honestly, I don’t want to have it figured out. I just want to let it unfold. As for the match, Austin Aries looked like the freaking man here. At some points, this was a total broomstick match with good psychology. He’s just more athletic, more intense, and just plain better than Bobby Roode right now. ****¼
Final Thoughts: This PPV showcases the best of TNA in the X-Division. There was solid encounter after solid encounter. Nothing sucked here and you got two STELLAR matches with a show ending that can remind you of why you love professional wrestling. Also, Joe v. Angle! What’s there not to like? The Ultimate X left something to be desired, but the rest here more than makes up for it. Thumbs up for another great TNA PPV.
34-year-old currently living in Syracuse, New York. Long-time fan of the New York Mets, Chicago Bulls, and Minnesota Vikings. An avid fan of professional wrestling and write reviews/articles on the product. Usually focusing on old-school wrestling.