Triple H, October 2011:

“When I grew up, I hated Hogan. I thought he was terrible and didn’t like to watch him. I was like Punk in a way. I liked the Steamboats and Flairs and the ones that could go. Would I be right in saying that Hogan was the wrong guy to go with, and they should’ve changed directions and gone with Steamboat because he was the better wrestler? Ludicrous.” - Triple H. October, 2011.

2014 TNA Lockdown

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Old School was here.

TNA World Title: Elimination Chamber: Austin Aries d. Jeff Hardy/Bobby Roode/Great Muta/Chris Sabin
X Title: Davey Richards d. Samoa Joe
Tags: Seiya Sanada/Extreme Tiger d. Bad Influence
Number One Contender: James Storm d. MVP (w/Angle)
Eddie Edwards d. Ken Kennedy (w/Bubba)
TJ Perkins (w/King) d. Yasufumi
Gunner d. Sam Shaw
Magnus/EC3 d. Bro Mans

TNA is divided into factions.

The American Wolves come into Lockdown on top; Richards/Edwards came in at the prior show, joining Aries as he regained the title.  Richards is immediately paired with Joe - think of real world Joe/Angle upon Kurt's debut.  The Wolves are tweeners.

Joe's in the Horsemen, along with Roode and, now, Storm - the Horsemen are now the babyfaces in the company (particularly so given what's about to happen here).  Storm will be in a number one contender's match.

The heels are Future Endeavors, Kurt, Jeff, and Bubba - during the build they tease a new member - and who winds up revealed is Kennedy, gone for several months with injury.  But that's a swerve, as later in that same show is the debut of MVP, who has some type of impactful run in.  He meets Storm in the number one contender's match.  MVP main evented Wrestlemania, a fact he drops whenever possible.

Bad Influence are babyfaces.

And in this build we add a new faction, Puro, it's Muta and his crew.  Sanada and Extreme Tiger get a tag title shot.

The main is the debut of the Elimination Chamber structure; it was on the booking sheet for a down card match at 30 for awhile, but I decided I'd save it and TNA gets to steal the idea.  The gimmick here is whomever is eliminated last not only leaves town - but his whole faction leaves town.

I see armed guards around the cage during the match to prevent interference.

Much discussion about who each faction will choose, Aries is the champ, so he goes in, Angle and Bubba are both injured, Angle still wants to go in and MVP gets his rhetorical power over by reasoning him down to allow Jeff to do it.  Roode's the only Horseman free, Sabin the member of BI free - Daniels is willing to give up the tag belts so he can go in, but Kazarian convinces him they can't do that, it doesn't show enough confidence in Sabin. There's enough explanation about a leaving faction forfeiting title shots or belts that we can reasonably think anyone might be the team that loses.

Okay, from the bottom up:

Magnus/EC3, cocky team, beats Bro Mans, comedy team.
Gunner, bearded babyface, beats Shaw.
Perkins, who along with Kenny King is a cocky team, beats one of Muta's guys Yasufumi.

We then get to the battles of the factions - Eddie Edwards wins his TNA PPV debut, going over Kennedy.

Storm gets the highest profile singles win of his career, beating MVP to become the number one contender - that tears it for Future Endeavors, and they leave Storm for dead postmatch.

Muta's guys take the tag titles from Daniels/Kazarian.

Richards and Joe rip it up; there's a generational battle here, this needs to be the big workrate match of the night.  Richards takes it.

So - the title match.  The dominant story is its everyone against Jeff - there are no more cross faction alliances, but Future Endeavors is the group everyone likes least (save Muta, he doesn't much care) and so Jeff is constantly at a disadvantage - but when it appears that he might be eliminated, he gets saved - because its the last fall whose team leaves town, not the first - and what everyone wants is Future Endeavors to be gone.

Throughout the match, shots of all of the factions in separate areas of the back.

Eventually, Angle says "this is bullshit" and decides to act, coming to ringside - although not breaching the perimeter of the police, getting Jeff's attention - and quickly convincing him to quit the match and be the first elimination.

Muta's second, Roode is third - and as you'd expect, because you know who leaves, Aries pins Sabin and Bad Influence is forced to leave TNA.  The Wolves, as they did at the last show, end with a massive celebration, sweeping the night - and Daniels/Kazarian/Sabin leave TNA.

Slammiversary runs when real world BFG airs (if it airs) several months from now; I'll be back in a month with Summer Slam.

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