Though the promotion has its critics, the TNA Lockdown show from Miami on Sunday night was very entertaining. It featured a stellar Last Man Standing match, a memorable Knockouts bout and the return of Bobby Lashley.
The TNA Championship match between champion Magnus and Samoa Joe lacked the punch it needed at the end, but it didn't entirely ruin the show.
Here’s a look at the results, the Twitter reaction and the overall grade for each match.
Great Muta, Sanada and Nakanoue Defeated Bad Influence and Chris Sabin
Perhaps the best aspect of this match was simply seeing the legendary Great Muta wrestle. Some wrestling fans might be too young to remember his days in World Class Championship Wrestling, but I go back like Terry Gordy and Iceman King Parsons. Seeing Muta still doing his thing was a treat.
Scott Fishman of the Miami Herald knows where I’m coming from:
Of course, Muta’s team won.
Samuel Shaw Defeated Mr. Anderson by Escaping the Cage
Shaw’s angle is a lot like Mark Wahlberg’s character from the movie Fear. It’s one of the better gimmicks in the business right now, and Shaw plays the role very well.
The object of Shaw’s stalker tendencies are focused on Christy Hemme. Mr. Anderson tried to be her mic-controlling knight in shining leather, but he couldn’t get it done. Despite landing two Mic Checks on Shaw, the insane suburbanite saw the tables turn his way.
Somehow, Hemme wound up inside the cage with Shaw before escaping to continue the interesting angle on another day.
Ethan Carter III (EC3) Gets Surprised by Bobby Lashley
The alphanumeric acronym stood in the middle of the ring and issued his open challenge. It was emphatically accepted by Lashley, a former TNA Championship series winner and WWE United States champion.
As MMA Supremacy points out, Lashley's return followed a trend set by Brock Lesnar and Dave Batista:
Bobby Lashley at TNA Lockdown. Past 2 yrs, Brock Lesnar, Bobby Lashley & Dave Batista have all gone back to Pro Wrestling after MMA stint.— MMA Supremacy (@MMASupremacy) March 10, 2014
If nothing else, Lashley looked in as great a shape as ever. He moved decently—considering—and received a nice pop from the crowd. We’ll see what comes of this potentially big development moving forward.
Tigre Uno Defeated Manik by Pinfall
Tigre Uno's debut went over well.
This was a nicely worked match between two high-flyers. Uno had a pretty exciting debut with the promotion, and his finisher was phenomenal.
He calls it the Sabretooth Splash, and it looks like it bites. For those who haven’t seen it, take a look at it below:
The Ghost Hunter might be a prisoner of the moment with this comment, but it's certainly one of the most dangerous:
Gunner defeated 'The Cowboy' James Storm in a Last Man Standing Match
This was one of the best matches of the night for sure. It featured several brutal maneuvers, including a superplex from the top rope through two folding chairs. A few of the moments drew the “this is awesome” chant, and it was well-deserved.
It’s been a pretty nice feud between Gunner and Storm. If this is the end, then it was punctuated nicely.
Dome Pondering believes this match stole the show. I’d tend to agree.
Lockdown was entertaining. Gunner/Storm stole the show. The international flavor was cool. Magnus/Joe was head scratching, and LL was fun.— Dome Pondering (@DomePondering) March 10, 2014
Knockouts Championship Madison Rayne (c) Defeated Gail Kim by Pinfall
If any of the WWE Divas ever had a match like this, there would be less criticism for that division. In any case, this was one of the more exciting ladies matches you’ll see.
Rayne and Kim went all out with high-impact (no pun intended) maneuvers that you usually don’t see from the ladies. Rayne finished it off with a spear from the top rope.
No one can dispute the effort these two put in to entertain the fans. Monkey Business showed respect to Kim and Rayne's effort:
Finally back to having some good Knockout matches!! Great job Madison Rayne and Gail Kim!! #TNALockDown— Monkey Business (@MonkeyzBizz) March 10, 2014
World Heavyweight Championship Magnus (c) Defeats Samoa Joe by Submission
Thanks to Abyss, Magnus retains his title. The big man appeared after a fairly entertaining back-and-forth deal with Joe and the champion.
The clear highlight of the match was a Muscle Buster from the top rope. Joe tried to choke out Magnus, but Abyss made his appearance from underneath the ring to drag Joe out of sight.
While this might sound awesome, it was more cheesy than anything. Having Abyss appear was OK, but the whole Freddy Krueger deal was a bit much. Many of the fans agreed.
Jason Rivera of Asked talks about the decrease in crowd energy:
You can hear the energy of the TNA Lockdown crowd LEAVING. No boos, no enjoyment. That is not promising. #Lockdown.— Riv (@realjasonrivera) March 10, 2014
When Abyss finally showed himself completely, he laid Joe out with a spiked bat. Magnus put his rear-naked choke on Joe’s “lifeless” body. The challenger was ruled unconscious by the referee, and Magnus left the cage victorious.
Lethal Lockdown: MVP, The Wolves and Jeff Hardy Defeated Bobby Roode, Austin Aries and The BroMans
The main event was pleasantly chaotic. Bully Ray was announced as Dixie Carter’s insurance policy, special-guest referee. Things didn’t exactly work out as planned.
It wouldn’t have been right unless the Bully got a little physical with the participants.
What was the best match of the night?
Bobby Roode got into an altercation with Bully Ray that led to a Rock Bottom. MVP took advantage with a running kick to Roode’s face. He subsequently pinned him to get Team MVP the victory.
We're not totally sure if this means a face turn for Bully Ray, but then again, he does whatever he wants.
The Bottom Line
The pay-per-view was entertaining, but the TNA Championship match needed a more plausible climax. Because it was such an important part of the show, the ridiculous outcome knocked some of the shine off the show.
Still, it was an overall success with some memorable matches and individual performances. Hopefully, we’ll see more pay-per-views from TNA like this in the future.
Show Grade: B+
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