Destination America Brings More Action To The Ring Acquiring The Rights To RING OF HONOR’s Weekly Television Programming

I'd say this is probably bad for TNA…

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 27, 2015           CONTACT: Nikki Suseck | 212-548-5452 | [email protected]   DESTINATION AMERICA BRINGS MORE ACTION TO THE RING ACQUIRING THE RIGHTS TO RING OF HONOR’S WEEKLY TELEVISION PROGRAMMING   (Silver Spring, Md.) –Destination America announced today that it has signed a national broadcast deal with professional wrestling league RING OF HONOR, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sinclair Broadcast Group, Inc., bringing one of the most respected wrestling organizations to the only network dedicated to all-American entertainment. Destination America is now the one-two-punch to professional wrestling, adding RING OF HONOR (ROH) to its line-up after launching IMPACT WRESTLING in early 2015. RING OF HONOR has been delivering top wrestling matches for ten years with captivating hard-hitting stars such as Jay & Mark Briscoe, AJ Styles, Samoa Joe, The Young Bucks, Maria Kanellis, Adam Cole and Jay Lethal.  Destination America will pack on the action beginning Wednesday June 3 with the series premiere of RING OF HONOR at 8/7c leading into brand new premieres of IMPACT WRESTLING at 9/8c.   "With the electric and intense matches that RING OF HONOR provides, Destination America is the network for fans to get an entire evening of jaw-dropping entertainment on Wednesday nights,” said Marc Etkind, general manager of Destination America. “RING OF HONOR showcases tenacity, athleticism and passion and it serves as the place where America’s favorite wrestling stars are born.”   “We are very excited to be partnering with Destination America for the broader distribution of the ROH programming,” commented Joe Koff, Chief Operating Officer – Ring of Honor Wrestling.  “ROH will now reach an additional 57 million households including those in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia and other large cities where Ring of Honor is not currently airing.   ROH has a loyal fan base and is one of the fastest growing major wrestling franchises in the country.  With this great partnership with Destination America, we can continue to expand our footprint and reach while producing entertaining, original content and continuing to provide wrestling fans some of the best wrestling content available.”   RING OF HONOR will premiere on Wednesday, June 3 leading into IMPACT WRESTLING, making Destination America the home for wrestling every Wednesday evening. The first match will feature the Briscoe Brothers, Mark and Jay, as they face off with the House of Truth in the main event.  Also catch athletes of New Japan Pro Wrestling battle it out with the RING OF HONOR stars and follow former NFL lineman Moose compete against BJ Whitmer.   Since launching in 2012, Destination America has become one of cable’s top fastest-growing networks, and continues to earn telecast ratings records among key series.  In 2015 to date, Destination America has acquired over 50 million unique viewers. With top series that explore unique American cultures and ways of life – including Paranormal Survivor, Hillbilly Blood, Buying the Bayou, and BBQ Pitmasters – Destination America’s programming spans the nation from Alaska, Hawaii and Colorado to Louisiana, West Virginia and communities in between. To find Destination America, go to   About Destination America Destination America is the only network to celebrate the people, places, and stories of the United States. The inclusive network targeting Adults 25-54 is available in more than 57 million homes, emblazoning television screens with the grit and tenacity, honesty and work ethic, humor and adventurousness that characterize our nation. Destination America features travel, food, adventure, home, and natural history, with original series like BBQ Pitmasters; A Haunting; Mountain Monsters; Buying Alaska; Buying the Bayou; and Railroad Alaska. For more information, please visit,, or Destination America is part of Discovery Communications (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the world’s #1 pay-TV provider reaching nearly 3 billion cumulative subscribers in 220 countries and territories.   # # #   Please visit the Press Website at for additional press materials Follow us on Twitter at @DestAmerica Like us on Facebook at Visit us online at     Nikki Suseck Discovery Communications w: 212.548.5452 c: 347.334.2403  

TNA and Destination America’s relationship

Destination America seems to have given up on TNA. They aren't airing the May 22nd episode of Impact at all for no reason other than it's Memorial Day Weekend. 

Instead, they'll be airing Slammiversary 2014 in its place.  
Did Destination America go into this expecting TNA to draw Raw-like ratings? Will they drop TNA before the contract has expired?

​They have a really weird relationship now, it seems, with the network now basically dictating the booking of the show and general direction.  Putting it on Friday was stupid enough and now TNA is basically getting thrown under the bus by their own network.  But really, both sides had to know what they were getting into, so I feel bad for no one except the talent caught in the middle.  And yeah, I think DA is going to wish TNA well on their future endeavors by the summer if I had to guess.  ​

Destination America Expands Weekend Wrestling Lineup With Addition of TNA WRESTLING’S GREATEST MATCHES

  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                    December 22, 2014  
DESTINATION AMERICA EXPANDS WEEKEND WRESTLING LINEUP WITH ADDITION OF TNA WRESTLING’S GREATEST MATCHES     (Silver Spring, Md.) – Destination America today announced it is adding TNA WRESTLING’S GREATEST MATCHES to its weekend lineup of wrestling programming. An hour-long show, GREATEST MATCHES presents the most remarkable and unforgettable contests of iconic TNA superstars such as Kurt Angle, Sting, Jeff Hardy, Mr. Anderson, Samoa Joe and AJ Styles. TNA Wrestling’s Greatest Matches debuts with a three episode mini-marathon on Saturday, January 10 beginning at 10 AM ET followed by two new additional premieres on Friday January 16 at 9AM. TNA WRESTLING’S GREATEST MATCHES will continue to premiere in its regular time slot starting January 17 on Saturdays at 12PM.   “We joined forces with TNA because of their rich history with wrestling and have compiled an incredible anthology of TNA WRESTLING’S GREATEST MATCHES to share with our audience,” said Marc Etkind, general manager of Destination America. “We’re bringing fans and viewers together as we celebrate the wildest, the most intense, and the most jaw-dropping moments in the careers of some of the best professional wrestlers in the world with TNA WRESTLING’S GREATEST MATCHES.”   “The legacy of TNA is best celebrated by looking at the amazing moments created by our iconic wrestlers in their finest matches,” said TNA president Dixie Carter. “It’s why we are so thrilled to bring TNA WRESTLING’S GREATEST MATCHES to the ever-growing lineup on Destination America, the new home for fans looking for professional wrestling at its best.”   With a special LIVE broadcast, IMPACT WRESTLING debuts on Destination America on Wednesday, January 7 from 9-11 PM ET, televised from New York City’s legendary Manhattan Center. IMPACT WRESTLING moves to its regular time slot on Fridays from 9-11 PM ET beginning January 16 on Destination America. IMPACT WRESTLING: UNLOCKED, with announcer Mike Tenay, will kick off Saturday wrestling with premieres in its permanent (again, regular) time slot on Saturdays from 10 AM-12 PM ET followed by brand-new episodes of TNA WRESTLING’S GREATEST MATCHES at 12PM.     January Airings of TNA Wrestling’s Greatest Matches include: Saturday, January 10 ·         10 AM ET: Best of Sting ·         11 AM ET: Best of Kurt Angle ·         12 PM ET: Best of Kurt Angle Part 2   Friday, January 16 ·         9 AM ET: Best of Ron Van Dam ·         10 AM ET: Best of Mr. Anderson Saturday, January 17 at 12 PM ET: Best of Jeff Hardy   Friday, January 23 at 1 PM ET: Best of The Knockouts   Saturday, January 24 at 12 PM ET: Best of Samoa Joe   Saturday, January 31 at 12 PM ET: Best of Bully Ray     About Destination America Destination America is the only network to celebrate the people, places, and stories of the United States. The inclusive network targeting Adults 25-54 is available in more than 57 million homes, emblazoning television screens with the grit and tenacity, honesty and work ethic, humor and adventurousness that characterize our nation. Destination America features travel, food, adventure, home, and natural history, with original series like BBQ Pitmasters; A Haunting; Mountain Monsters; Buying Alaska; Buying the Bayou; and Railroad Alaska. For more information, please visit,, or Destination America is part of Discovery Communications (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the world’s #1 pay-TV provider reaching nearly 3 billion cumulative subscribers in 220 countries and territories.   About TNA Entertainment, LLC TNA Entertainment, LLC, is a privately held sports entertainment company represented by United Talent Agency and based in Nashville, Tenn., specializing in events, products, numerous TV properties, merchandise and music, as well as the management and promotion of professional wrestlers.  The roster features such greats as Jeff Hardy, Kurt Angle, MVP, Lashley, Magnus, James Storm, Bobby Roode, Austin Aries, Gail Kim and the lovely and lethal Knockouts, through its highly successful flagship IMPACT WRESTLING weekly broadcast, which will begin airing on Discovery Communications’ Destination America in January 2015. The product is the world’s most innovative experience in professional wrestling and is broadcast in more than 120 countries.  For more information, please visit     # # #   Please visit the Press Website at for additional press materials Follow us on Twitter at @DestAmerica Like us on Facebook at Visit us online at   Follow TNA President Dixie Carter @TNADixie Follow IMPACT WRESTLING @IMPACTWRESTLING    

TNA Destination X Live Thread

Matches tonight include:

Austin Aries vs. Bobby Lashley for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship
Matt & Jeff Hardy vs. The Wolves for the TNA Tag Team Championships

Also, three qualifying matches to determine the new X Division Champion:

Low Ki vs. Manik vs. DJ Z
Sanada vs. Brian Cage vs. Crazzy Steve
Samoa Joe vs. Tigre Uno vs. Homicide

The SmarK Rant for TNA Destination X

The SmarK Rant for TNA Impact – 07.18.13 (Destination X) Live from Louisville, KY Your hosts are Mike Tenay & Jeremy Borash. Bully Ray joins us, and all week long he’s only been hearing about Chris Sabin. Perhaps because he’s one of the few who haven’t been fired yet. So he brings out Brooke, and she’s all “You should move on, Mark” because it’s a SHOOT. Or something. Hulk Hogan joins them and he’s had enough of Bully. Bound For Glory Series: Bobby Roode v. Austin Aries Sadly, it appears that Aries’ mustache was unable to come to terms on a new contract and was let go. Their cheat-fu is evenly match to start, but Roode gets backbreaker to put Aries on the apron. He tries a suplex back in, but Aries escapes with knees and follows with a dive to the floor. Back in, Roode catches him coming off the top and follows with a clothesline off the apron to take over. We take a break and return with Roode in control as they slug it out on the top rope. Aries wins and follows with a 450, but it only gets two. They brawl onto the ramp as Aries dives onto him, and comes back in with a missile dropkick. They trade suplex attempts and Aries gets a rollup, reversed into the crossface by Roode. They trade near-falls and Roode gets a backslide for two. Aries blocks a spear and goes for the brainbuster, but Roode reverses out and clotheslines him for two. Aries throws the forearm and gets the brainbuster to finish at 11:48. Hell of a match right there. ***1/2 Roode is pretty upset at this and destroys a monitor and some chairs. Jesus, Dixie Carter only had two payments left on that monitor! Now the rent-a-center is never gonna take it back. Meanwhile, HOMICIDE is back. Meanwhile, new VP Mr. Anderson rallies the troops in the post-Doc era. X Division qualifier: Homicide v. Petey Williams v. Sonjay Dutt So the theme here is “X Division stars of the past”. Winner of this moves onto the Ultimate X final next week. Homicide dumps both guys and follows with a dive, but Dutt comes back with ranas. Petey slingshots in with a shoulderblock for two and wraps up Dutt with a leglock, but Homicide breaks it up with a diving headbutt. He puts both guys down with neckbreakers and sets up Petey for the Gringo Killer, but Petey reverses out. Another try hits and gets two. Sonjay hits Homicide with the double stomp moonsault to finish at 4:06. Crowd was dead for this and they weren’t clicking at all. ** X Division qualifier: Manik v. Chavo Guerrero v. Kenny King I guess this is stars of the present? King pounds Manik down and appears to squat and take a shit on him. That’s quite the taunt. Manik gets a bridging leglock on King, and then hits Chavo with a suplex while holding it. Chavo dumps Manik and hits King with a missile dropkick, and they set up a contrived spot where Chavo tosses Manik into King for a dropkick. Weak. Chavo hits Manik with the suplexes and then switches to King, but Manik finishes King with the double knees to advance. This was another one where it was kind of a big messy style clash. *1/2 The Main Event Mafia joins us, and they want to beat up Aces & Eights and drink their beer. So they head backstage where Anderson is waiting, and Angle gets kidnapped in the back of a pickup truck. Is Russo writing this again? How incompetent do the Mafia need to be for this plan to work? X Division qualifier: Rubix v. Rockstar Spud v. Greg Marasciulo Those last two might be two of the worst names in wrestling right now. And that includes a lot of NXT geeks. You’d have to think that Rubix wins this one by virtue of at least being a real wrestler and not having a name like an 80s TV jobber. Everyone hits the floor and Marasciulo takes over on Spud back in the ring, but Spud pounds away in the corner. Rubix comes back in with a low dropkick on Spud while Tenay calls this “PPV quality”. Really? This is PPV quality? Three developmental guys sent out there to die? Marasciulo comes back into the match with an impressive flip dive onto Spud, they do some more stuff, and Marasciulo pins Spud at 6:30 to advance. Don’t they have any idea how annoying it is to type that name? They should have just called him “Greg Mara” or something. These guys all looked green as fuck out there. * And this three-way experiment is a total flop and they just need to end it. So next week, in the battle of the per-appearance payments, it’s Sonjay v. Manik v. Marasciulo. And you thought Kenny King’s reign was dull. Meanwhile, Angle escapes his predicament when the slow moving truck stops at a red light or something. Mickie James is out to promote her music career, but Gail Kim interrupts and they argue over star ratings before getting into a brawl. TNA World title: Bully Ray v. Chris Sabin Sabin gets all up in Bully’s face and they throw down, which results in Sabin pounding away in the corner after some high kicks. Bully takes him down and goes to work on the bad knee, but the Mafia and Aces come down for some discourse as we take a break. An exceptionally long 5:30 break, in fact. TNA’s gotta pay some bills, except they do it six weeks late. So we’re back with Bully still working on the knee and pulling off Sabin’s boot to expose the bare knee. Sabin fights up and Bully puts him down with a clothesline, then continues destroying the knee like a big bully. Sabin fights back again, so Bully puts him down and mocks Hogan. After another lengthy beating, he misses a charge and Sabin comes back and goes to the top, but Bully brings him down with a superplex. That gets two. Sabin reverses the Bullybomb into an enzuigiri and comes back with a missile dropkick, but the ref is bumped. A second ref was supposed to run in, but he got in a contract dispute on the way to the ring and left the company. The Mafia brawls with the Aces, leaving Bully and his hammer alone, but Sabin steals it and uses it to escape the BullyBomb…and wins the World title at 20:00?!? Well that was certainly unexpected. Hope he enjoys it for a couple of weeks before Bully wins it back. Match was just Bully working the leg for extended periods. **1/4 I think in a lot of ways they would have created a bigger star by having Sabin put up the good fight and lose after a heated match, rather than basically fluking his way into the World title when he was clearly not in the same league as the champion. The Pulse I kind of hated this show, to be honest. None of the X division matches worked and I just didn’t buy Sabin as a threat, even after he won the damn belt. And what the FUCK was with that Aces v. Angle show-long storyline that led to nothing? They should fire the guy who wrot…oh, yeah, never mind.

Fwd: Destination X world tittle match

I posted my idea to have AJ Styles circumvent his BfG ban by trading in the X-division tittle and people seemed to like it, so my question for you-The all mighty guru of wrestling Scott Keith-is

A) does the idea have any merit to you
B) If you are in charge and are running the storyline do you have AJ win the tittle quick then defend it for months so he is strong going into the match, chase it for months on end not quite winning it (screw jobs or bad luck) just to capture it in time for the payday of 2 subsequent chase angles
I was under the assumption that this would be the loophole they'd use as soon as I heard the original stipulation.  

The SmarK Rant for TNA Destination X 2012

The SmarK Rant for TNA Destination X 2012 Live from Orlando, FL Your hosts are Mike Tenay & Jeremy Borash Opening match: Mason Andrews v. Rubix v. Dakota Darsow v. Lars Only Winner of this immediately faces Kid Kash in the X title tournament. WWE viewers may be confused because these are all new people being showcased in a meaningful match. Rubix and Andrews clear the ring and Andrews gets dumped by a low dropkick, but Only comes back in with a flying headscissors. Only controls Smash Jr. with armdrags, but Repo Kid hits him with a spinning backbreaker and drops an elbow and leg for two. Only rolls him up for two. Rubix comes back in with a bodypress on Blacktop Boy for two, but charges and gets splatted. Dakota “Hole In One-Half” Darsow gets a front suplex for two, and I’m pretty much out of jokes about his name. Rubix clears the ring again and suplexes Andrews back in, but Mason changes his momentum off the irish whip and hits the other guys with a dive. SWEET. Rubix follows with his own and they should probably just give this dude a job already. They can just deduct the cost of Only’s bus ticket back to the high school gym they found him in, to save money. Back in the ring, Only gets a goofy indy-riffic neckbreaker on both Andrews & Rubix and goes to a facelock on Andrews, but Darsow breaks it up. Andrew charges and misses, and Only goes up, but Darsow cuts him off and we get the TOWER OF DOOM spot. That gets two for Darsow, but Rubix flies in with a springboard dropkick. The crowd picks Rubix as their favourite and everyone slugs it out, leading to finisher trading sequence. Only is left against Andrews, and Andrews hits him with a diamond cutter for the pin at 8:20 to advance. Total spot-fu, but this was fun and different and I enjoyed it. *** I kind of hope they hire Darsow so I can keep making fun of him, but WWE might be a better fit for him so they can use his heritage to….AHAHAHAHAHAHA, sorry, I couldn’t even finish typing that sentence with a straight face. Mason Andrews v. Kid Kash Winner of this advances to the finals. Kash immediately attacks and sends him into the ringpost. That gets two and Kash throws chops on the ropes, but Mason comes back with dropkicks and a crucifix for two. Kash drops him on the top rope and puts him down with kicks for two, and a drop suplex gets two. Elbow from the middle rope gets two. Kash flips him off and gets two again, and then cuts off a comeback with a clothesline and drops an elbow for two. Kash goes to a top wristlock and slugs him down to cut off another comeback. Kash goes up and misses the moonsault, and Andrews finally gets his comeback. Elbows and a dropkick and Kash misses a blind charge, allowing Andrews to hit a flying headscissors and missile dropkick that suffered from a bad camera angle. Pump kick/knee gets two. They trade sunset flips and do the pinfall reversal sequence, but Andrews rolls him up for the pin at 8:05. Good basic “underdog v. veteran” match with no fancy stuff to keep the story simple. **1/2 Kenny King v. Douglas Williams Doug takes him down with a headlock and they work off that to start, with Williams getting a sunset flip for two. King comes back and slugs away in the corner, and he blocks a rollup for two. King with a backslide for two. Doug offers a handshake and then CHEATS TO WIN, dumping King off a cheapshot, but Kenny hits him with a dive for his troubles. Back in, King slugs away and they go back a headlock to keep it basic, and King fires off some armdrags to control. Williams fires back with a flying elbow out of the corner and clotheslines him to set up another heat segment on King. Kenny fires back with a sunset flip for two. I like that Williams is working a more slow and deliberate style so that King looks better with his sudden offensive flurries. Williams gets an atomic drop, but King hits him with an enzuigiri and they’re both down. King makes the comeback with clotheslines and a high kick for two. Spinebuster gets two. Williams evades him in the corner in a neat spot and they fight to the top, but King bumps to the floor and Williams follows with a high knee from the top. Back in, that gets two. King comes back with a springboard clothesline for two. Williams rolls him up for two, but King gets the ropes to break. They go back up and King escapes him, then hits the uranage for the pin at 10:32. Again, simple and effective to get King over. *** Meanwhile, Chris Daniels and his APPLETINI talk to Christie Hemme about tonight’s match with AJ Styles. Sonjay Dutt v. Rashad Cameron Sonjay with a dropkick for two, but Kirk Cameron quickly dumps him and hits a dive. Back in, Rashad Evans gets two and throws chops in the corner. Sonjay blocks a charge and snaps off a headscissors to put Candace Cameron on the floor, but Phylicia Rashad chokes him out on the ropes when they head back in. Ahmad Rashad with a bodyscissors and he chops away in the corner, but Dutt bulldogs him into the corner and guillotines him. Dutt with the springboard splash for two. Dutt has just improved SO much since his sprinkler days. Larry Cameron comes back with a rollup for two and a flying headscissor takedown into a cross armbreaker, but Dutt makes the ropes. James Cameron goes for the finish, but Dutt reverses into his own DDT and goes up to finish with the MOONSAULT FOOT STOMP at 7:09. Holy FUCK is that move badass. How does he DO THAT?!? Cameron Diaz was game here, but Dutt is just THE MAN right now and he made him look bush league. **1/2 Jesse Sorenson gets a video package, with a doctor who actually says “Oh yeah, he broke his neck, but I think he’ll be fine” instead of the usual thing where they play up his career-ending injury. If it was James Andrews his diagnosis would be to tape it up and work through it. And indeed, Jesse joins us in the ring for a promo, which is more promos than he ever got on Impact when he had a neck in one piece. He does a good speech about how he’ll be back soon, and that he hopes Zema Ion wins the X title tonight so he can beat him for the belt. What a concept. The heel does something bad and they use it to set up a program. See, now Jesse actually has something to DO besides “Guy who used to play football in high school.” Now he’s “guy who had a broken neck and wants revenge.” Sure, both make him about the same level as Buff Bagwell, but you could do worse. And Zema comes out for his match and continues to NOT FEEL SORRY about breaking his neck. Zema Ion v. Flip Cassanova Ion attacks Flipper to start and chops him in the corner, but Flip flips and hits a dropkick, or flipkick, then flips into a headscissors. Ion bails and Flip flips into a dive. He should have FLIPPED him off for good measure. Back in, Flip flips into a standing moonsault, but lands on Ion’s knees and flips into the corner, allowing Ion to take over. This guy just gets on my nerves. Flip McFlippity, not Ion. Ion is annoying but at least he doesn’t embody every indy worker cliché in the book. Ion hits his own dive and stomps him into the ring, then pauses for a hairspray break. Chekhov’s gun, baby. Or Checkhov’s hairspray can, I guess. Flip flips on him for two and goes up, missing a flip, and Ion finishes with a Gory Special into a faceplant at 4:00. Flip can fuck off back to the indies now and hopefully never return. *1/2 Meanwhile, Christie interviews the X-division contenders and they drop some quick promos before Boddy Roode interrupts and calls them all losers. Bound For Glory Series: Samoa Joe v. Kurt Angle Crowd is split here and Joe fights for a headlock to start and goes for the choke quickly, but Angle reverses to the anklelock, and Joe escapes that. I love that both guys are submission specialists and therefore GO FOR SUBMISSIONS because it’s more points. I’m also enjoying that Joe gets pushed and therefore becomes motivated and justifies his push as a result. Maybe ROH should hire Russo and then fire him, too. Joe slugs him down in the corner and adds the boot rubs, then dumps Angle and hits the suicide dive. Back in, Angle gets a cheapshot and stomps a mudhole in the corner, but Angle blocks a muscle buster attempt and busts out a missile dropkick of all things. Joe fights back, but Angle catches him with a belly to belly for two. Angle goes to a rear chinlock and Joe fights up, but Angle tries the pop up superplex, which Joe blocks with a flying leg lariat for two. Angle fights back, but Joe hits him with an atomic drop and senton for two. Powerslam gets two. Joe floats into the cross-armbreaker, trying for the submission win again, but Angle reverses into the anklelock and then the rolling germans. Sure, suplex the 300 pound dude around the ring on a bad neck, why not? He might be crazy but you can’t fault him for lack of effort these days. Joe escapes the Angle Slam and punts him in the face, but Angle reverses the muscle buster into the anklelock. Joe rolls out of that and catches him on a blind charge with the uranage, and this time he gets the muscle buster for two. He tries the choke, but Angle reverses to the anklelock again and he’s got in the middle. Joe does a cool reversal into the rear naked choke, as the camera catches the “Joe-Ism” motto on his wrist tape. Is that a Street Fighter Alpha reference? Because if so, KUDOS. Angle escapes and hits the Slam for two. The straps are down and he goes for it again with time running out, but Joe reverses to the choke again and hangs on until the ref calls for the bell at 14:35 when Angle can’t respond. So that’s 10 points and the lead for Joe, but Angle revives and complains that he didn’t tap. That’s quite the technicality. These two are obviously motivated and having fun right now, and I say MORE OF THIS! **** Last Man Standing: AJ Styles v. Christopher Daniels Daniels pauses for some stretches outside the ring, because conditioning is important, and then pokes AJ in the eyes. AJ is all fired up and slugs away in the corner, so Daniels ducks out again and they brawl on the floor, as AJ is clearly upset about being accused of fathering a crack baby. If this is what it took to get him motivated again, I would have done it months ago. They head back into the ring and AJ gets the high dropkick and throws kicks with MUSTARD before pounding Daniels down with elbows. Suplex into the corner elicits a smile from me because they guys love their artform. Styles misses a splash and Daniels throws chops in the corner, but AJ throws them HARDER because he’s a MAN and not a big pussy like CM Punk has become. Daniels slugs him down and they head out for supplies, as Daniels brings a chair in, but AJ comes back with a dive off the chair…and misses. Daniels suplexes him onto the chair and breaks the damn thing, giving us our first count of the match. AJ is up before 10 and Daniels clotheslines him to the floor and introduces him to the stairs in between arguing with the front row. AJ is bleeding this is wrestling and blood is awesome sometimes. Like now. Daniels adds a suplex on the floor and preps the stairs for nefarious purposes, but AJ fights back until Daniels kicks him in the face to stop him. Back in, Daniels takes a run at him with the chair, but AJ springboards with a forearm, knocking the chair back into Daniels’ face, and oh yeah we’ve got double blood. Selling toys is wonderful, but sometimes you just want to watch guys who hate each other kicking each other in the face and bleeding all over the ring. Because we’re WRESTLING FANS, not members of a Universe. They fight up the ramp and AJ continues kicking his ass, but he charges and they clothesline each other. They slug it out and AJ hits the enzuigiri and tells the ref not to count because he’s not finished kicking ass yet. He sets up for the Clash, but Daniels backdrops out. They fight by the screen and AJ hits his moonsault DDT off the railing, and this time the ref does count Daniels down. Despite AJ’s orders to stay down, Kazarian comes out and throws Styles off the ramp and allows Daniels to recover. AJ beats the count at 8 and they continue fighting into the crowd, as Daniels retrieves a table. He goes for the Angel’s Wings, but AJ backdrops Daniels into Kazarian, hits the Pele, and then finishes Daniels with a Styles Clash off the ramp and through the TABLE! HOLY SHIT! Daniels is dead, AJ is your winner at 17:34. How are they gonna follow THAT?! ****1/2 This was AWESOME. Two men kicking the shit out of each other for HONOR. AJ was WRONGED and he put Daniels through a fucking table to prove his point. Because that’s what real men do in wrestling. Meanwhile, speaking of real men, Austin Aries is ready to challenge for the title. X Division title, Ultimate X: Mason Andrews v. Zema Ion v. Sonjay Dutt v. Kenny King Ion makes the quick climb first and has to fight off all three guys, and they combine for a TRIPLE DROPKICK on him. Dutt hits King with a flying headscissors and climbs, but Ion shoves him and King down. He gets rid of Andrews and climbs again, but King saves and hangs him in the Tree of Woe, then suplexes Andrews into Ion. Nice. King and Dutt slug it out on the apron and King kicks him to the floor and pops right to the cables, but Sonjay knocks him down and adds a standing moonsault, but overshoots and messes up his shoulder in the process. The refs give the X sign (apropos I guess) and Dutt disappears. The others carry on as Ion climbs and gets halfway to the belt, but the others pull him down and King hits a legdrop on him. King goes up and Andrews brings him down with a backdrop suplex. King whiffs on a dive on Ion, but Andrews hits both of them as a result. Mason gets back in and climbs for the belt, but King spears him off the cables. Dutt actually returns and climbs the scaffolding like a crazy person, while King and Andrews meet in the middle at the belt and take each other out. Ion and Dutt bypass the cable and climb to the top of the scaffolding itself, fighting in the middle there, but Ion pulls out the HAIRSPRAY OF DEATH, blinds Dutt, and claims the X title at 8:40 to piss off the crowd. Yeah, he might be annoying, but now you’ve got the Dutt program for a couple of months and then the Sorenson program at Bound for Glory, so I can see why they did it. Not the best Ultimate X match because it was pretty short with guys who didn’t have the experience, but it didn’t need to be, luckily. ***1/4 Ion cuts a funny heel promo afterwards, thanking Jesse for breaking his neck and making the title win possible for him. TNA World title: Bobby Roode v. Austin Aries Aries offers a high five and then DENIES Roode. Bet he did that to Steve Austin and that’s why he was cut from Tough Enough. They trade wristlocks and Roode puts him down, but Aries gets a side roll for two. He rolls into an STF attempt, but Roode escapes and gives him a little slapping for some mental warfare. Aries rides him to the mat and gives him the slaps right back, then slingshots in with a splash and an elbow for two. They work off the headlock and Aries dropkicks him out of the ring and follows with the double axehandle from the top. Back in, Aries misses a missile dropkick, allowing Roode to take over and choke him out in the corner. Suplex into a kneedrop gets two. Roode goes to the chinlock and Aries fights up, but Roode elbows him down again. He goes up and misses a kneedrop from the middle. Aries comes back with kicks into an atomic drop, and he tries for the Last Chancery, but Roode makes the ropes. Aries dumps him and follows with the suicide dive, but this time it proves to be apropos as Aries hits the railing. Back in, Roode gets a suplex for two and goes to a bodyscissors, then cuts off a comeback attempt with a knee to the gut. He whips Aries into the turnbuckles not once, not twice, but THRICE and follows with a fireman’s carry into a faceplant for two. Aries elbows out of a bearhug, but Roode puts him down with a clothesline for two. I think it’s really cool that the front rows are all standing because they want AA to win so badly. Roode puts the badmouth on him and Aries gets fired up, and they slug it out with forearms. Aries gets a spinning forearm to put him down, showing some awesome fire, and he clotheslines Roode to the floor and this time he hits his dive. Back in, Aries with the missile dropkick, but he runs into a Roode powerslam that gets two. Roode tries a spear, but Aries catches him with the Last Chancery, which Roode reverses into the crossface. Aries reverses into his own submission again and the crowd is hanging on everything, but Roode pokes him in the eyes to break. Roode spears him into the corner and follows with a superplex, but Aries hits him with knees while hanging in mid-air, and comes down with a 450 that misses. Roode hits the spinebuster for two, and I thought that might have been it. Roode sends him into the post to set up the crossface again, and the crowd is freaking right out about this. Aries tries to roll out, but Roode hangs on. The current WWE finish is that Aries taps here because he’s a spunky cruiserweight who just can’t hang. Aries finally fights and makes the ropes, so Roode grabs the belt, but the ref cuts him off. This allows Roode to go low for two. Roode stops to argue the cadence of the count, and Aries hits him with the dropkick intot he corner and goes for the brainbuster, but Roode escapes and the ref is bumped. Roode gets the belt again while Aries revives the ref, and Roode puts him down for two. That was an awesome near-fall. Aries’ last-moment kickout was tremendous timing. Roode gets frustrated now and Aries cradles for two off a suplex. Roode charges, hits the post, and Aries hits the brainbuster for the pin and the title at 22:30, and the crowd goes APESHIT. Like they were all hanging on the edge of their seat and just EXPLODED with relief when Aries actually won the damn thing. So hey, even if they reverse this next month, they’ve made a new star by having Hogan endorse him and then pulling the trigger at exactly the peak of his popularity. I LOVED this. The middle was a bit slow, but if I was watching live I would have been losing my mind at the end along with the crowd. ****1/2 The Pulse What an amazing palette-cleanser after RAW. Here’s a quick personal anecdote for you: A couple of days ago I smashed the back of my head into an open tailgate on a van through circumstances too banal to relate here. Basically I’m Homer Simpson and that’s what happens to me. I have a hard head so I wasn’t concussed or anything, but I messed up my neck and pinched a nerve in it, resulting in me laying around the couch in pain most of Sunday with a blinding headache and stiff neck. Finally after the various drugs, hot and cold treatments, and attempts at massaging it away, I woke up this morning, went to work, and suddenly felt my neck crack out of nowhere while walking around, and the pain miraculously disappeared as fast as it came. Anyone who has endured the same type of thing knows the wonderful feeling of relief that comes when the body suddenly fixes itself like that. To put it in wrestling terms, RAW was the pain in my neck tonight, and this PPV was the wonderful crack that made me feel better again. Yeah, the first half kind of dragged and the indy guys pretty much suck, but I can’t think of a better series of matches than the last four that I’ve seen all year. I loved this show so, so much. I hope they keep doing this until they get 2.0s and 30,000 buys per show, because I’ll keep pimping them until they do.

The X Review: TNA Destination X 2012

TNA Destination X 2012
July 8th, 2012
Impact Wrestling Zone, Orlando, Florida
Attendance: Unknown at this time

Welcome back everyone to another edition of the X Review with tonight’s
TNA PPV coverage! I’ll be your host tonight for what looks to
be one of the best TNA PPV offerings in quite some time with a stacked
card focusing on X-Division action and classic TNA rivalries like Kurt
Angle vs. Samoa Joe and AJ Styles vs. Christopher Daniels. Of course the
big match tonight is the World title match pitting Bobby Roode against
challenger Austin Aries, but the whole show looks solid on paper and
there’s been a great build to the event, so enough with the preambling,
let’s start this bad boy!

Your hosts are Mike Tenay and Jeremy Borash

Last Chance X-Division Tournament Qualifying Match
Rubix vs. Mason Andrews vs. Lars Only vs. Dakota Darsow

Hmm, no Taz on commentary tonight. This match pits all of the guys who
didn’t advance in the last few weeks together in one match for one last
shot at entering tonight’s X-Division tournament to crown a new champ.
Rubix (or Jigsaw as CHIKARA fans know him) starts off snapping a
headscissors on Lars Only before bailing, allowing Lars to work a few
armdrags on Darsow. Darsow smashes Only’s head over his knee and elbows
Rubix off the apron. Minor “We love Jigsaw!” chant from the Orlando
faithful as Rubix hits a cross-body off the top on Darsow. Falcon Arrow
from Darsow is broken up by Only and finally Mason Andrews (Scorpio Sky
to longtime PWG fans) returns to the fracas. Now the fans are chanting
for Rubix again as Andrews ducks Rubix and wipes out Darsow and Only
outside the ring with a huge tope con hilo. Rubix follows up with a huge
suicide moonsault out of the ring to take out all three men moments
later! Back in the ring Andrews works a nasty armbar on Rubix until Only
breaks it up and hits an awkward double STO move on Rubix and Mason.
Andrews takes out Darsow with some stiff low kicks and tries for a
superplex on Only in the corner but instead all three men do the
powerbomb/superplex tower of doom spot and as soon as they’re done with
that Rubix hits a springboard dropkick to take out Darsow and ignite
another HUGE “Rubix” chant. Seriously, this crowd is vocally and clearly
behind the guy and it’s obvious they’re familiar with his background,
so hopefully the boys backstage are taking note of this. Rubix hits a
kick on Darsow but then eats a codebreaker from Only. Andrews counters
into a TKO/stunner combo on Only moments later and picks up the surprise
win at 8:23. They probably should have called an audible and put
Rubix over after the huge reception for him but Andrews/Sky is a very
talented guy who has long deserved a break in this business so I can’t
complain seeing him win here. The match itself was just what you’d want
out of an X-Division opener, quick and spotty but fun and they didn’t
blow their loads early, saving momentum for later. I like it. **3/4

X-Division Title Tournament Match
Kid Kash vs. Mason Andrews

And moments later former X-Division champ Kid Kash runs down to the ring
to kick start our first official tournament match, giving Andrews no
time to rest at all. Kash tries a cocky pin inside the ring for two.
Total domination early from Kash as he overpowers Andrews with a few
nifty suplex and slam variations, making sure to trash talk him all the
while to firmly establish himself as the heel here. Kash works over
Andrews arm, doing a great job of eliciting heat from this crowd in and
old school Southern kind of way, just working simple holds over, wearing
Andrews down and never letting his mouth stop running all the while.
Finally Andrews is able to get something going with a few dropkicks and a
headscissors out of the corner. He only grazes Kash with a missile
dropkick for a two count but then nails him with a running knee to make
up for it moments later. Both men do the rolling bridge spot and then
Andrews counters a knee strike attempt into a roll up for the upset pin
on Kash to advance at 8:09. This was worked at a much slower pace
than the opener but it worked because of that as Kash does a great job
as a retro Southern heel displaced in the X-Division. Simple stuff,
building up heat for the upset win by Andrews and they’ve quickly made
him out to be an underdog favorite for the tournament tonight. **1/2

Backstage Christy Hemme is with Samoa Joe, who gives props to Austin
Aries before promising to defeat Kurt Angle tonight “by any means
necessary” to earn 10 points in the Bound for Glory series standings.
Atleast I think he said 10 points. And then JB plugs Twitter. Always
with the damn Twitter.

X-Division Title Tournament Match
Douglas Williams vs. Kenny King

King, whose still technically one half of the ROH tag team champions
much to Cary Silkin’s chagrin (and also an original Tough Enough
competitor), looked impressive in his Impact debut and Williams is one
of the most valuable members of the X-Division thanks to his classic,
grounded technical game. Douglas dominates early with some trademark
hold-for-hold grappling while Borash makes World of Sport references on
commentary. Crowd seems behind King here as he takes out Williams on the
floor with a twisting pescado. King shows some wrestling acumen of his
own with a floatover into a headlock after a rope-running sequence.
Williams hits a big clothesline but King rolls him up for a near fall.
Suplex from Williams and he teases going for the Chaos Theory but King
sees it coming and counters into a stiff enziguri. Spinebuster gets King
another two count. Both men fight to the top rope where Williams sends
King flying out to the floor before taking him out with a high knee from
the top! You don’t see that too often. King responds with a springboard
neckbreaker back inside the ring but again Williams kicks out. King
hits a TKO into a spinebuster to pick up the win and advance at 10:37.
Another slower paced match to start but King looked great once again
and Williams did his usual admirable job on the losing end. King also
had to be considered a favorite going forward tonight with some of this
momentum. **1/2

Backstage Christopher
Daniels explains what kind of man he is and more importantly, what kind
of despicable man AJ Styles is. And that’s something we can drink to.

X-Division Title Tournament Match
Sonjay Dutt vs. Rashad Cameron

It’s great to see Sonjay back in TNA but man, I had really hoped we
would never have to be subjugated to a BLK Jeez match on a real,
bonafide PPV. Armdrag exchange to start and both men seem evenly matched
as JB hypes how over Dutt was during his recent stint in India with
Ring Ka King. Dutt bails out and Cameron wipes out him with a nice
suicide dive. Back inside Dutt fires off a hurricanrana and then nails
Cameron with a baseball slide dropkick out of the ring. Cameron slows
things down with some heel work on Sonjay in the ropes while the fans
vocally get behind Dutt. Dutt hits a slingshot guillotine legdrop on
Cameron then springboards in with a splash for a two count. Headscissors
from Cameron out of the corner and he rolls into an armbar submission
briefly on Dutt before getting in referee Earl Hebner’s face. Sonjay
blocks a DDT and then finishes Cameron with the moonsault into a
doublestomp at 7:16. This seemed almost like a squash for Sonjay
at times though Cameron/Jeez did get to a chance to work a decent amount
of heat from the crowd during the match here. Weakest match so far
tonight but still perfectly adequate and solid for the time and spot
allotted. **1/4

JB and Tenay bring us back to Against All Odds in February this year
and the tragic neck injury to Jesse Sorensen before introducing a video
package to update us on Jesse’s recovery. After the video package
Christy Hemme introduces Sorensen himself who gets a nice reception from
the fans as he comes out with a neckbrace on (I’ll take a neckbrace
over paralysis any day, yes sir). Big Welcome Back chant for Jesse and
you can see his mom crying in the front row. He talks about how scary
the injury was but tells us he knows that God wanted him to be a
professional wrestler and thanks the fans and his family for the
support. Finally Jesse gets to Zema Ion, the man who caused his injury,
ad he tells him that he hopes he wins the title tonight so that he can
come back and take the belt from him. Jesse promises to be the
X-Division champion next year at Destination X 2013 and that he’ll cash
in that title to become the World champion. This was nice but I hope
that wasn’t the big surprise Dixie tweeted about having in store for us

X-Division Title Tournament Match
Zema Ion vs. Flip Cassanova

Of course Ion’s match is next so he and Jesse do a staredown during his
entrance. Flip Cassanova/Kendrick might be familiar to more diehard
indie fans but isn’t anything too special to be honest. He doesn’t like
Zema’s cocky attitude to start so he sends him to the floor and takes
him out with a tope. He tries for a back senton but Zema blocks with his
knees. Cassanova is sent to the floor and Ion takes him out with a
dropkick. Zema misses a moonsault back inside and Cassanova makes him
pay for it with a springboard corkscrew moonsault. Flip misses a
shooting star press back senton and eats the back-flip into a knee from
Ion before Ion finishes him with what I can only describe as a reverse
Gory Bomb at 3:55. Well that really was just a squash match this
time, which makes me think they may be serious about pushing Ion for the
eventual return feud and blow-off with Sorensen going forward, which I
like. Quick and fun but really just a blow-out for Ion. *3/4

Backstage Christy Hemme is with Mason Andrews, Kenny King, and Sonjay
Dutt who are excited about their X-Division shot when suddenly Robert
Roode walks up to interrupt and mock them for being excited about the
X-Division title. He says the X-Division and Austin Aries will both fail
tonight and he’ll walk out with his World title intact.

Bound For Glory Series Match
Samoa Joe vs. Kurt Angle

The first match these two had together in this company might be my
favorite TNA match ever, so I was very excited to see that these two
were being matched up again after a few years tonight (not counting
their recent Impact match, which was solid). Crowd is hot for this one
with dueling chants to start (this crowd has been great all night, where
has THIS Impact Zone crowd been hiding at?). Joe quickly evades some
hold attempts by Kurt to start and gives him a look as if to say “Yeah,
I’ve seen this from you before and I know what to do”. Headlock from
Angle is countered by Joe into the corner, where he lays in big right
hands. Joe back drops Angle over the top rope out to the floor and then
wipes him out with a tope suicida moments later. Back in the ring Joe
hits a spinkick on Angle in the corner and sets up for the Muscle
Buster, but Kurt comes off the top with a dropkick before he gets a
chance to attempt it. Belly to belly suplex from Angle and Joe fights
back with a boot and a back senton. Angle grabs a hold of Joe’s waist
and hits his trademark trio of rolling German suplexes though. Angle
looks for the Angle Slam but Joe counters and sets up for the Muscle
Buster, but Angle counters out of that into the ankle lock on Joe! Sweet
countering there and Joe slams Angle to the mat when he foolishly
charges in on him in the corner. Joe hits the Muscle Buster, but Angle
kicks out at two. They kind of treated the Muscle Buster very
nonchalantly there. Joe tries for the rear naked choke but Angle
counters into the ankle lock and really syncs it in until Joe manages to
counter into the Coquina Clutch! Kurt manages to power out of the hold
though into the Angle Slam, but Joe kicks out just in the nick of time
at two. Again Angle tries for the Angle Slam but Joe counters into the
Coquina Clutch and Joe is really wrenching away on the submission now,
adding pressure and strain to the hold until Angle simply passes out and
Hebner calls for the bell to award Joe the match at 14:37.
Another simply fantastic match in the long running series between these
two men, and they totally did the right move by having Joe go over here
as it seems like they’ve finally realized how valuable he can be to them
as a main event player again and a true “TNA original” as it were. All
kinds of slick countering and psychology in this one, just like you’d
expect, and the finish leaves the door open for a rematch down the line.
With this win Joe is now atop the Bound For Glory Series leaderboard. ***1/2

Last Man Standing Match
AJ Styles vs. Christopher Daniels

Even though it was a bit harebrained you have to keep props to TNA for
atleast attempting a dramatic soap-like angle with some actual intrigue
to it, even if it did fall flat on it’s face. I love Styles and Daniels
but I hope this is the last they wrestle each other for a very long
time, because we’ve seen it ten billion times. So make this one the
bloody, wild blow-off boys please and thank you. Daniels stalls early
for some cheap heat and then just spits in Styles face. Daniels gets
sent into the steel guard rail outside the ring as both men begin
brawling now. Back in the ring AJ hits a dropkick and then suplexes
Daniels into the corner turnbuckle. Haven’t seen that from AJ in awhile.
Daniels blocks a whip into the corner and just pokes AJ in the eye in
true slimy heel fashion before grabbing a steel chair from outside the
ring and tossing it inside. Styles stumbles out of the ring and Daniels
hits him with a knee. Back in the ring Daniels sets up the chair and
then hits a reverse STO on Styles through the chair! Nasty. Outside the
ring Daniels slams AJ into the floor and now AJ is busted open and
bleeding from the forehead. Daniels sets up the steel steps but winds up
tossing AJ into the ring instead to try and waffle him with a
chairshot. AJ blocks that though and then hits a springboard forearm
onto Daniels while he’s holding the chair! Outside the ring AJ tosses
Daniels into the steps ferociously like a lawndart and now Daniels is
busted open too. Both men brawl up the ramp now and thy wind up wiping
each other out with a double clothesline as both men are bleeding on the
ramp while the crowd cheers on in a great, visceral image. Pele kick
from AJ. AJ finds a bit of stage equipment just high enough to climb
onto and then does his usual moonsault into a reverse DDT spot on
Daniels in a very clever variation on a classic Styles move. Suddenly
Kazarian comes running out and sends Styles flying off the ramp onto the
concrete the hardway. You had to know it was only a matter of time
before Kaz got involved. AJ makes it up at an 8 count from the ref but
gets sent into the guardrail by a pissed off Daniels who then promptly
retrieves a table from underneath the ring and sets it up back near the
rampway. He brings Styles back onto the ramp and sets up for the Angel’s
Wings, but AJ blocks it with a low blow and hits the Pele kick again.
Styles then grabs Daniels and hits the Styles Clash off the stage
through a table! Styles barely makes it back to his feet at the ten
count while Daniels stays down to give AJ the big win at 17:42.
This was the best match these two have had together in years and was a
suitably brutal and heated fight, just as it needed to be given the
angle going in. In simple terms this with two highly professional
veterans of their craft finding new ways to make the same old formulas
fun and exciting. Hell of a match. ****

The internet polls have picked Aries to win tonight, which makes sense
from a kayfabe sense given all of Aries’ momentum. Backstage Christy
Hemme is with the man himself, who talks about how he was beating people
with brainbusters while Bobby Roode was beating people with beer
bottles. Aries says he’s going to walk out the new World Champion and
change the industry.

TNA X-Division Title Ultimate X Match
Mason Andrews vs. Zema Ion vs. Kenny King vs. Sonjay Dutt

I love the influx of fresh talent into the company lately and that we’re
about to get to see this match on PPV. JB makes a very sly comment
about King being a “TNA exclusive”, hardy har har. Zema is quick to try
and climb the ropes at the bell but he eats a trio of dropkicks from all
three of his competitors instead. Dutt hits a ‘rana on King while
Andrews hits a missile dropkick on Ion. Ion counters with a tornado DDT
and then gets to be on the brunt end of King suplexing Andrews into the
corner in a neat spot.King hits a cartwheel kick on Dutt and then
springboards up to the X ropes to try and make a grab at the title, but
Dutt springboards into the ring and spears him off the ropes in mid-air
and follows up with an elbow drop just for good measure. Ion tries
shimmying across the X ropes as well but gets yanked down by Andrews and
King. King hits the springboard legdrop on Ion but then eats a top rope
back suplex from Dutt. King misses a tope outside the ring but moments
later Andrews takes out both King and Ion with a corkscrew moonsault.
Andrews shimmys across the X ropes again but King hits a nice
springboard spear in mid-air to break up that attempt. Now King and
Andrews are both shimmying across the X rope to the middle, where they
drop off with a huge neckbreaker! Meanwhile Dutt and Ion have climbed
past the ropes onto the steel structure above the ring! Suddenly  Ion
sprays Dutt with his hairpsray and Dutt flies from the structure all the
way down to the ring mat, allowing Ion to unhook the belt and become
the new X-Division champion at 8:47! This was wild, fast, furious, and
nearly impossible to cover move-for-move. I can’t believe they didn’t
give it more time to develop as a match but what we got was absolute
balls-to-the-wall craziness in the best way possible and this seems to
cement the whole Ion/Sorensen angle going forward. ***1/4

After the match Ion is getting a ton of heat from the fans when he
dedicates his win to Jesse Sorensen (while some absolutely incredibly
unbearably annoying smarks in the front row scream “TRANSITION!
TRANSITION!” at him to let him know he’s only a transitional champion)
to wrap up this whole thing.

TNA World Title Match
Robert Roode
© vs. Austin Aries
Kudos to TNA for doing an incredible job of hyping and building up this
match for the main event tonight and even if Aries walks out without the
title tonight he’s clearly been put over onto another level and with
how they’ve built the X-Division up again it’s like they have a perfect
feeder system to create main eventers for themselves going forward. To
say Aries is over here would be like saying Madison Square Garden was
fond of Hulk Hogan in the late 80s, it’s a gross understatement. Aries
wants to lock up with Roode but he wants nothing to do with him at the
bell before grabbing a hold of Austin’s wrist and going to work a
wristlock. Aries works his own hammerlock and then outclasses Roode for a
big pop. He hits the tope con hilo into the ring on Roode but then gets
caught in a side headscissors as he tries for a side headlock. Aries
does his trademark headstand and then dropkicks Bobby in the face,
sending him to the floor where he wipes him out with a Macho Man like
double axe handle smash off the top! Back inside Roode hits a nice
vertical suplex and a knee drop. Roode misses a knee drop  from the
second rope and Aries goes to work with a few kicks before attempting
for the Last Chancery, but Roode gets the ropebreak. Roode gets sent to
the floor and and Aries goes for his trademark heat seeking missile tope
suicida but Roode has him scouted and gets out of the way, leaving
Roode to faceplant into the steel guardrail! Great psychology there.
Back in the ring Roode hits a back suplex,and then sends Aries into the
corner for a nasty case of whiplash against the turnbuckle. This has
been a perfectly crafted match so far, I must say. Roode hits a sitout
Samoan Drop on Aries and then nearly takes his head off with a big
lariat. Aries responds with a huge discus forearm of his own and he has
the eyes of a madman as he clotheslines Roode out of the ring and
successfully connects with the heat seeking missile outside the ring!
Back inside Aries hits a missile dropkick off the top but Roode responds
with a running powerslam. Aries counters a spear into a Last Chancery
briefly but Roode counters that into a crossface and Aries simply
counters back into the Chancery again. That was quite the incredible
display of stamina and strength by both men. Roode tries for a superplex
but Aries knees him in the head in mid-air and then sends him to the
mat and comes off with the 450 splash, but he misses it and instead
walks right into the spinebuster from Bobby Roode! Roode cranks on a
crossface on Aries afterwards and is really working the hold over on him
until finally Aries gets the rope break. Behind the ref’s back Roode
low-blows Aries and tries to get the cheap pin, but thankfully Aries
kicks out. Roode gets in the ref’s face and then Aries hits him with the
dropkick in the corner. He goes for the brainbuster but Roode counters
out and sends Aries into the ref, bumping him. Roode then nails Aries
with the title belt and drags the referee over to count the pin…but
Aries still kicks out at two!  This man isn’t mortal! Aries gets a
nearfall off a cradle then kicks Roode in the head and HITS THE
sure they’d really pull the trigger here but damnit give them credit
they did it Aries is now a made man in TNA. The match itself was
absolutely stellar, a combination of Southern psychology and the hard
hitting indy style Aries made his name off of, but throw in the story
and emotion of it all and everything here was just firing off on all
cylinders. Hands down our TNA Match of the Year thus far, no doubt about
it. ****1/2

After the match Aries celebrates with the World title as confetti flies
down on him and the crowd continues to chant his name all night long. We
close out the show with Austin Aries as our new World Champion.

Bottom Line: Tonight
we truly saw what TNA is capable of when they make smart booking
decisions, hire fresh and hard working young talent, and build up
logical, long-term angles and stars. Destination X has officially
catapulted into the heavyweights of gimmick PPVs these days and I’m so
happy to see all of the investment TNA is putting into this PPV and
division each year going forward. Nevermind the fact that we got several
absolutely stellar wrestling matches on tonight’s show trumped by one
of the flat out best wrestling matches I’ve seen all year with a fresh,
over young face going over in the main event. This delivered in every
way I thought it would and alongside that Silva/Sonnen fight made this
weekend a hell of a good time for buying PPVs, easy and enthusiastic
Thumbs Up tonight.

Score. 9.0/10

Thanks for reading! For more of my reviews and the most extensive archive of match ratings on the web check out my blog: X’s Wrestling Review