– We start with Team 3D’s music. As Brother Ray and Devon came to the ring presumably for a match, Mike Tenay broke down the card tonight. Tenay promised us Sting’s partner. Ray took the mic. He said they’ve been fighting warriors since they stepped into the TNA ring. Ray said he doesn’t understand why upper management decided that A.J. and Daniels are receiving a tag title shot over them. Hey, I’d like to know the same thing. Boos from the crowd. Ray qualified his statement, complementing A.J. and Daniels on being the future of the business. Ray said they are the greatest tag team in wrestling history. (Didn’t Foley cut a similar promo before turning?) Ray said they deserve a tag title shot before A.J. and Daniels. B.G. James and Kip James interrupted. Kip wore a cut-off t-shirt. B.G. apologized for interrupting the interview, but he needed to make sure he heard Team 3D right about calling themselves the most distinguished tag team in wrestling history. B.G. said Team 3D has never beat them before. Ray reluctantly confirmed that until he reminded B.G. that they beat B.G. and Kip for their first WWE tag titles. B.G. compared selling out MSG to Team 3D scratching and clawing for 350 people in a bingo hall. Ray said B.G. and Kip couldn’t get over in a Bingo Hall. “Getting over” has no relevance in the context of a wrestling storyline on a wrestling show. Of course, it’s a shoot, brother, in TNA. Ray called B-52. B.G. said you just sunk my battleship. Everyone had a good laugh. It’s all good fun. They booked themselves in a tag team match at the Sacrifice PPV that could be advertised “1999 ECW vs. DX”. A slap was exchanged to create tension for the PPV.
1 — CHRIS SABIN vs. PUMA (w/Shocker) — Second round World X Cup tournament match
Puma rocked Sabin early on with a dropkick. Tenay said three points hang in the balance for this singles match.
Sabin delivered a double-foot dropkick to the side of the head out of the break. Puma countered a whip to the ropes into a single leg crab. Puma released then dropped knees to the arm. Puma hit a slingshot dive to Sabin’s abdomen from the apron. Jerry Lynn, Jay Lethal, and Sonjay Dutt were shown on the entrance ramp watching. Team Canada watched from the opposite end. Sabin hit a springboard dropkick after making his comeback. Puma ducked a clothesline, dropped Sabin onto his back, and applied a modified Sharpshooter. New Japan were shown watching from the stage. Minoru! Sabin made another comeback then hung Puma in the Tree of Woe. Sabin delivered a flying dropkick in the corner. Sabin hit the Cradle Shock for the win.
WINNER: Chris Sabin in 7:00 of TV time. USA – 5 points. Mexico – 2 points. They put good effort into establishing the importance of the World X Cup by having all involved parties watching. It will be interesting to see if the wrestlers in the ring held the audience.
– Team Canada and AMW were backstage. Jackie was randomly crying. Gail ushered her out of the locker room after Harris told Jackie there’s no crying in wrestling. Larry Zbyszko interrupted. He said he needed help with Raven. D’Amore said he would help him out with A-1. D’Amore asked Zbyszko if he can still book matches. Zbyszko hoarsely said he could. D’Amore told Zbyszko to book Raven in a match with A-1 at the PPV and his problems would be solved.
– Jeremy Borash was backstage with Team USA. Alex Shelley interrupted. He set up a video tape. They went to Alex Shelley’s interview with Kevin Nash. Nash said his contract runs through October 7. He said TNA should do a lot more with him considering how much effort they’ve put into Sting. Nash said he wants to go after TNA’s pride and joy, the X Division. Nash said he wants to destroy TNA’s identity – the X Division – so he can become TNA’s identity. He said he would be the hottest commodity in wrestling by the end of his contract after going through the X Division. He said he could take out every single X Division wrestler “night after night after night” if you lined them up. Nash said he wants to see the X Division guys back up the claim. They went back to the locker room. Sabin asked Shelley why he didn’t defend the X Division. Shelley said the camera missed a few shots and he defended the X Division. Dutt spoke up and asked Shelley if Nash was really going to be at Sacrifice. Shelley confirmed and guaranteed that Nash would be there. (Smart way to advertise Nash at the PPV in the context of the storyline.) Dutt said he would meet Nash head-on at the PPV and not back down. Lethal and Sabin took off, leaving Shelley there. Very much improved from last week’s Nash interview segment. They went to ringside. Tenay and West discussed Nash’s Sacrifice appearance and the answer from the X Division. 100 times better reaction from Tenay this week. Not all up in arms, but strong in tone. West was good too saying the X Division knows they are the future and they plan on backing it up at the PPV.
2 — ABYSS (w/James Mitchell) vs. CHASE STEVENS
Prior to the match, James Mitchell cut a promo about possessing the NWA Title. Weapons were inside the ring. Abyss smashed Stevens into a trashcan in the corner. Abyss set up a table. Abyss sent Stevens through the table for the easy win. Poor Stevens.
WINNER: Abyss in 1:00. Good use of the weapons to give a visual for the NWA Title match at the PPV.
– After the match, Christian ran to the ring and rammed a ladder into Abyss. Christian set up a ladder in the ring and flew off the ladder onto Abyss and security. Christian and Abyss exchanged worked punches as security tried to hold them apart. Lashley-Finlay set the bar too high.
– We saw a video package recapping the Game Show with Jarrett and Sting. They focused on the potential tension between Steiner and Jarrett as Steiner told Jarrett to take the deal the previous two weeks.
– Sting came out for the “moment we’ve been waiting for,” according to Tenay. Buff, Rick, and Luger were behind Sting. Jarrett was already in the ring with Steiner. Sting confused everyone explaining that Jarrett now has the choice of Sting’s partner. Sting entered the ring and asked for music. Jarrett cut off the music. He said he’s made a career out of reading people’s faces. “I’m the smartest man in professional wrestling,” Jarrett said. I’m not touching that. Jarrett said he knows Sting is out of choices. Jarrett said Sting can’t get Hogan, Hall, Nash, or Savage. Jarrett demanded to know Sting’s partner right now. Sting brought out a card. Jarrett went back to the ’70s for Let’s Make a Deal. Sting was despondent to set up the big pay-off. Jarrett thought he had it all wrapped up. Sting quickly changed from despondent to very excited to introduce Samoa Joe. Jarrett had the look that he just saw a ghost. The crowd popped. Sting pointed to the entrance. Samoa Joe came out with a great smirk. Jarrett’s jaw dropped and he slowly backed out of the ring Steiner. Tenay said Jarrett and Joe would finally meet in the ring. Joe stormed to the ring and stared down Jarrett. Sting held up a “Joe’s gonna kill you” t-shirt. Sting was almost too despondent here, but Joe’s actual introduction was very good. Jarrett sold it well. Enjoyable pay-off.
3 — AMERICA’S MOST WANTED (CHRIS HARRIS & JAMES STORM w/Gail Kim) & BOBBY ROODE (w/Scott D’Amore) vs. RHINO & A.J. STYLES & CHRISTOPHER DANIELS
Tenay and West couldn’t stop talking about Joe teaming with Sting. “Can you imagine that payoff?” Tenay asked about Joe facing Jarrett in the ring. West said he thought about it two weeks ago when Jarrett and Joe stared each other down. Tenay continued to put over the possibilities of Joe vs. Steiner and Joe vs. Steiner. Tenay created a good visual. The match began with Storm and Rhino. Roode tagged in and pounded away on Rhino. Daniels ran over Storm before going to commercial.
[Commercial Break. The voice-over man said May 19!]
Styles tagged in out of the break. Tenay said he’s counting down the hours until Sacrifice and he’s looking forward to Joe and Sting. Styles was caught in the heel corner. D’Amore had to get his obligatory camera time attacking the babyface. Roode set up Styles for a superplex, but Styles fought off. He hit a flying smash off the apron. Rhino took a lukewarm tag. He hit a spinebuster on Storm for a nearfall. The action broke down. Styles hit a sweet soccer kick on Roode out of nowhere. Storm followed suit with a superkick on Styles. Jackie Gayda ran to the ringside area with the coffee AMW asked for at the top of the show. Gail and Jackie argued. Storm tried to interrupt, but Jackie tossed the coffee in his face. He stumbled backwards into a Gore from Rhino for the win.
WINNERS: Rhino & A.J. & Daniels in 9:00 of TV time. Formula tag match that allowed Tenay and West to talk about Joe and Sting teaming together, which really is the selling point of the 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.