A lot of times when a baby face wins the World Championship they usually encounter a monster heel challenger and have to fend them off in some dangerous matches. Off the top of my head, Ric Flair defending against Vader in WCW circa 93-’94, or Steve Austin defending against Kane and/or Undertaker in ’98.
The same can be said for when Christian Cage won the NWA-TNA World Championship at Against All Odds in February 2006 when he pinned Jeff Jarrett. It wouldn’t take long for the monster Abyss to step up and issue a war to the ever popular, Christian Cage.
On the March 18th edition of Impact it was noted that Abyss was the number one contender for the NWA-TNA World Championship. The previous night, Cage was attacked by several men, including Abyss, at Destination X after defeating Monty Brown, so he was out of action for a little while.
The following week on Impact, James Mitchell and Alex Shelley stalked Christina’s wife with their video camera and Mitchell smelled her hair like a real creep. They warned her to not call the cops before leaving the scene. Mitchell and Abyss were interviewed on the April 1st edition of Impact regarding the stalking of Christian’s wife. They were happy to have put fear in the family and Mitchell was mad that Christian left to make movies instead of defending the championship like a real champion. They show another video of Abyss attacking Christian Cage at his house and attempting to drown him in his pool but Mitchell reminded Abyss that he can’t beat a dead man to be the champion.
On the April 8th edition of Impact, Christian returned to television by attacking Abyss during a match with AJ Styles. Cage would officially accept the challenge for Lockdown and asked Abyss if he was ready to die in the cage, because he is. The final Impact before Lockdown saw Cage interviewed one last time before the meeting with Abyss inside a steel cage. Cage said that Abyss made the feud personal and that he had never wanted to kick someones ass more than he did right now. He continued saying he knew Abyss was a monster, but didn’t know he didn’t have a set of balls. Cage believes he saw fear in the eyes of Abyss. James Mitchell cut Cage off saying they filmed his wife so he would lose focus and thus become a former champion. This led to Abyss attacking Cage with a chain after hitting the Black Hole Slam.
Their first of two pay per view matches took place on April 23rd at NWA-TNA Lockdown 2006. The match only went fourteen minutes, but it is a pretty good match and showed that Cage could excel to the main event level. Cage was able to win the match after countering a choke slam and hitting the Un-Prettier onto thumbtacks. Despite the victory, Abyss would take possession of the championship.
The Impact following the pay per view on April 27th, Cage attacked Abyss following a match against Rhino and issued a challenge to get his championship back for Sacrifice to take place on May 14th. It would be yet another violent stipulation as Cage wanted a Full Metal Mayhem match which consists of tables, ladders, chairs and chains!
Abyss still has possession of the championship when Cage dove off a ladder to take Abyss out on the floor and security. They were held apart by security fairly quickly, though. That took place on the final Impact before Sacrifice took place.
Cage and Abyss would blowoff their feud in the Full Metal Mayhem which lasted just over sixteen minutes. As you might have expected, it is a hardcore brawl with plenty of weapons used. However, Christian is able to retrieve the championship and regain possession of the championship to end his feud with the Monster Abyss.
The feud between Christian Cage and Abyss in 2006 is an underrated feud between two of the best TNA talents that the company had to offer. The feud helped catapult Cage into the main event scene and Abyss was still very much a credible heel challenger who was working very well in the violent stipulations. The context of the feud at the beginning was perfect and James Mitchell being the mouthpiece for Abyss greatly helped the feud.
Having the feud start off with the stalking of Christian’s wife felt rather fresh at the time and served a great catalyst for the two men to be feuding. The segment were Abyss nearly drowned Cage to show how far he would go for the NWA-TNA World Championship put him over very well and sympathy and concern for Christian’s survival and title reign was executed very well.
For a feud that lasted two months, it was continually the best thing on TV for TNA at the time and we got two violent matches on pay per view to settle a serious issue. This is the kind of feud I enjoy watching and reliving.
What are you memories of the Christian Cage vs. Abyss feud in 2006?
Thanks for reading.
31-year old currently living in Syracuse, New York. Longtime fan of the New York Mets, Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Vikings. Avid fan of professional wrestling and write reviews/articles on the product. Usually focusing on the old school wrestling.