Mike Reviews: TNA Lockdown 2006

No real reason for this one, other than this pay per view was traditionally an April event and this is one of the few TNA shows I actually own on DVD. I can’t really remember why I purchased it either. Back in 2006 you could watch TNA events on The Wrestling Channel (A short-lived cable TV channel that showed wrestling and MMA) but I missed this event when it was on. TNA then started selling their DVD’s in England, with this I think being one of the first ones available, so seeing as I missed it the first time I decided to buy it.

I don’t think I’ve watched this show since I bought it and I have no idea what any of the story lines going in to it are either, so this should be an interesting journey for me. I’m not actually sure who was even booking TNA at the time of this show. I don’t think it was Russo because he came back later in the year. It may have been Dusty Rhodes if he hadn’t gone back to WWE yet, and if not him I think Scott D’Amore booked it at some stage possibly? If you know the answer then please share in the comments below.

Back in 2006 I was still sticking with the TNA product (I didn’t finally give up on it until a few years after this) and this was an interesting time for the company as they’d only recently secured a place on Spike TV and had also brought in Christian from WWE to be the top star of the company. As a big “Peep”, having Christian on their books gave TNA instant brownie points with me, and he’d won the title from Jeff Jarrett a couple of months prior to this show to thunderous cheers from the TNA audience.

Anyway, let’s set the way back machine 13 years and enjoy some Total Nonstop Action!

(I should point out that I poached all the pictures used here from the Across The Pond Wrestling review of the same show. Please consider giving their site a looksee)

Read moreMike Reviews: TNA Lockdown 2006

Impact Wrestling – February 23, 2016

Impact Wrestling
Date: February 23, 2016
Location: Wembley Arena, London, England
Attendance: 4,000
Commentators: D’Angelo Dinero, Josh Matthews

It’s another special show tonight as we have Lockdown, meaning everything is inside a steel cage, even if the feud might not have warranted that yet. The main event is Matt Hardy defending the World Title against Ethan Carter III in Carter’s rematch after the title was stolen away from him a few weeks back. Let’s get to it.

Read moreImpact Wrestling – February 23, 2016

Lockdown 2014

Lockdown
2014
Date: March 9, 2014
Location: BankUnited
Center, Miami, Florida
Commentators: Mike
Tenay, Tazz
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
It’s been five months
since the last pay per view so this isn’t something TNA is used to
anymore. We have a double main event tonight with Magnus defending
the World Title against Samoa Joe and Team MVP vs. Team Dixie in
Lethal Lockdown for control of the company. The Lethal Lockdown
match also has Jeff Hardy returning for the first time in a few
months. All of the matches tonight are in the cage so let’s get to
it.

We see Magnus arriving
earlier today.
The opening video talks
about being alone with your greatest enemies inside the cage.
Bad
Influence/Chris Sabin vs. Great Muta/Sanada/Yasu
Daniels and Kazarian
come out in Great Muta garb circa 1989. Sanada took the X Title from
Austin Aries a week ago in Japan. Sabin and Sanada get things going
and fight over hiptosses before Sanada grabs an abdominal stretch.
It’s quickly off to Muta to drop some fast elbows on Sabin followed
by a crossface hold. Daniels makes the save but we get the Green
Mist from Muta.
Back
to Yasuyuki

who gets taken into the wrong corner with Daniels dropping him with a
belly to back suplex, setting up a slingshot legdrop from Kaz for
two. Daniels suplexes Kaz onto Yatzu, setting up a springboard
moonsault for two from Christopher. Back to Kaz who misses a top
rope legdrop, allowing the hot tag off to Sanada.

He
cleans house until Bad
Influence hits a quick High/Low for two. Daniels takes Sanada down
for a second but a hot tag brings in Muta to really clean house with
dragon screw leg whips all around. The Mist puts Daniels down and
there’s the Shining Wizard, setting up a moonsault from Sanada for
the pin on Daniels at 9:22.
Rating:
C. Not a bad match and a good
choice for an opener, but it’s also a good example of what’s wrong
with the all cages gimmick. The cage added absolutely nothing here
and there’s no reason for the cage to be there at all. The fans
reacted well to the Japanese guys so it certainly wasn’t a terrible
idea.
Here’s
Spud to introduce Dixie as real royalty. She calls herself a real
queen, unlike that stupid King James. Dixie rants about how MVP and
the people have driven her to do something she’s going to regret.
She built this company into the international success that it is.
Earlier this week she went to New York to get a little insurance
policy to ensure victory tonight. Jeff Hardy walked out on this
company and therefore breached his contract. Therefore, he’s banned
from the building tonight and now we can enjoy the rest of the show.
Velvet
Sky and Eric Young are answering internet questions. Eric thinks
everything changes after tonight.
We
recap Shaw vs. Anderson. Shaw is obsessed with Christy Hemme and
Anderson is protecting her from harm. Samuel thinks this means
Anderson is preventing him from being with Christy and has been
attacking him as a result.
Mr.
Anderson vs. Samuel Shaw
This
is escape only. Before Anderson comes out, Shaw climbs to the top of
the cage and says if Christy doesn’t come out, he’s going to
professionally end it all. Before he can jump though, Anderson comes
out and points out the obvious: the cage isn’t high enough to do a
lot of damage. All that will do is break his ankle and make Shaw
look even goofier. Anderson offers to beat Shaw up a bit and then
take him somewhere really high to jump.
We’re
finally ready to go with Anderson taking over for a few moments but
running into a boot in the corner. Christy
is at ringside now. An
early Mic Check is blocked but Anderson takes him down with a
gutwrench suplex. Shaw
chokes Anderson in the corner but can’t quite get over the cage.
Anderson goes after him but gets rammed face first into the cage a
few times and knocked down to the mat. Shaw still can’t climb fast
enough though and Anderson runs the corner for a belly to back
superplex.
Shaw
sends him face first into the cage but Anderson sends him into the
cage door, knocking it open and drilling Earl Hebner in the process.
There’s the Mic Check to Shaw and a second one sends him face first
into the buckle. Anderson calls him a frickin weirdo and climbs the
cage but Shaw reaches through a hole in the cage and pulls Christy
in.
Shaw
starts crawling on the mat ala Kevin Sullivan at the 1988 Great
American Bash. Anderson makes it to the floor but there’s no
referee. Mr. gets the key from Hebner and opens the door for the
save but Shaw hits Anderson low and chokes him out before leaving for
the win at 10:12.
Rating:
C. I liked this a lot more than
I was expecting to with Shaw getting creepier and creepier every
week. The longer this story goes the more likely it seems that
Christy joins Shaw at some point, but it doesn’t have quite the
impact since she and Anderson are just friends. Not much of a match
but the story and characters are good. It’s very nice to see someone
like Anderson go from one feud right into another like people did
back in the day instead of just floating around and doing nothing at
all.
Team
Roode isn’t sure what the insurance policy is and argue about who
will own what percentage of the company after they win.
We
quickly look at Ethan Carter III injuring Kurt Angle, putting Kurt
out of the match tonight.
Here’s Ethan who has
issued an open challenge for Angle’s spot. Ethan talks about growing
up wanting to be the best and to beat the best. In 1996, Kurt Angle
was the best and Ethan took him out twice now. The fans say he can’t
wrestle but Ethan comes back with chants of “I’m very good” and
“I disagree.” By the way this is our third promo tonight and
it’s getting clear that they’re stalling, despite having eight
matches. He asks anyone to come out here but warns the fans not to
hijack this show.
Ethan Carter III vs.
Bobby Lashley
Well that’s a surprise.
Ethan insists that Lashley isn’t on the roster but Bobby powerslams
him down and hits a big spear. There was no bell so it wasn’t a
match, meaning Ethan is still undefeated.
Kenny King’s King of
the Night promo.
Magnus says he’s all
alone tonight but he’s used to that. He has to battle against Joe on
his own tonight and he’s fighting a lone crusade. Something doesn’t
sit well with him tonight because everyone is talking about what Joe
is going to do to him. No one has asked what Magnus is going to do
to Joe. Tonight, Joe bows down to the reign of Magnus.
Manik vs. Tigre Uno
Pin/submission to win
here. Tigre Uno is Extreme Tiger from AAA. They trade some very
fast wristlocks to start before they both go for dropkicks and crash
to the mat. Back up and they miss each other a few times until Tigre
dropkicks Manik down. Manik comes out of the corner with a
headscissors before throwing him to the top rope, only to have Tigre
catch himself on the cage. A moonsault gets two on Manik but Tigre
misses a charge and goes flying into the steel.
Manik gets two off a
belly to back suplex and drives some knees into Tigre’s back.
There’s a surfboard hold from Manik and he drops Tigre backwards for
two. Manik gets two more off a dropkick and a backbreaker gets the
same. Tigre comes back by jumping up to the top rope and coming down
with a hurricanrana.
A spinwheel kick and
running DDT drop Manik again but he can’t get a sunset bomb off the
top. Instead Manik dropkicks him in the back and gets two of his own
off a sitout powerbomb. They trade standing switches and Tigre tries
a capture suplex, only to drop Manik down onto his head. A quick
Sabretooth (moonsault into a 450) Splash is enough to give Tigre the
pin at 7:48.
Rating:
C+. Take two guys and let them
fly around the ring for eight minutes. It worked every night in WCW
and it’s going to work every single time you use it in wrestling.
Tigre Uno looked good out there and will be a nice addition to the
division, bringing the roster up to what, five people? Good stuff
here but this show needs something that matters soon.
We
recap Gunner vs. Storm. Gunner took the Feast or Fired briefcase
from him and Storm was livid, eventually turning on Gunner to cost
him the World Title match against Magnus. Tonight it’s last man
standing.
James
Storm vs. Gunner
New
music and long tights for James tonight. They start fighting on the
ramp and Storm gets in a good shot early. Gunner rams him into the
cage and suplexes him on the floor before going to get some chairs.
He throws three
of them into the cage but Storm sends him into the steps to slow
Gunner down. Storm sends him into the cage and slams the cage door
on Gunner’s head. He demands a count and we get the opening bell
followed by a four count.
Storm
wedges a chair into the corner and takes Gunner down with a jumping
DDT for five. Gunner tries to get up but gets choked down by a tag
rope and dropped throat first across the top rope. James ties the
rope around Gunner’s throat and ties it to the rope but Gunner rips
it away, only to be taken down by a low blow. Gunner no sells some
ramming into the buckle and rams his own head into the same buckle
for good measure.
Some
running knees including one to Storm’s head have Storm in trouble and
Gunner pulls the top of the steps into the ring. A hard shot to
James’ head gets eight but he comes back with a quick Closing Time
(Codebreaker) before ramming Gunner into the chair in the corner.
James blasts him in the back with the chair but Gunner is getting
that look in his eyes. He fights up and scores with a spear and an
F5 as the fans think this is awesome. Storm tries to grab the chair
but Gunner stands on it to thwart the Cowboy’s plans.
Gunner
slams him down again and goes up, only to have Storm throw the chair
at Gunner’s head on the way down for seven. Another hard shot to the
back gets five and Storm sets up some chairs in the ring. He loads
up the Eye of the Storm but Gunner gets to the ropes in the corner.
Both guys climb to the middle rope and ram each other into the cage
until Gunner superplexes him through the chairs for the win at 12:02.
Rating:
B. Good but not great last man
standing match here as they beat a lot of tar out of each other.
Gunner getting a win over a former world champion on pay per view
isn’t going to hurt anythin gbut I just don’t see a top level guy in
him. The ending spot and chair pelting spot looked good and the
match was a lot of fun, which is what matters here.
We
look at Dixie’s promo again because that’s what we do in TNA.
Team
MVP is ready for revenge but don’t like the idea of being patient.
Richards wants to get Aries for injuring his shoulder but MVP tells
him to keep his composure. MVP promises to unleash the Wolves and
the hunt will be on.
We recap Gail Kim vs.
Madison Rayne. They used to be best friends but titles came between
them. How many times has TNA used that story for this division in
recent years?
Knockouts Title: Gail
Kim vs. Madison Rayne
Rayne is defending.
Gail quickly takes her down to start and chokes with a boot but
Madison gets a quick rollup for two. Kim fakes her out on a middle
rope cross body and tries to leave, only to have Madison get above
her and use her legs to ram Gail’s head into the cage. Madison gets
pulled off the cage and down to the mat in a crash for two but she’s
still able to make a save as Gail tries to leave.
Kim bends her over a
knee for a backbreaker but Rayne stretches her legs up for a kick to
the head. Madison sends her face first into the cage and drops her
with some forearms and a low dropkick. Both girls climb the cage but
Gail brings her down with a neckbreaker in a big crash. Madison
makes a save to prevent an escape but gets leveraged into the cage
for two. They both climb again and Gail is sent down, setting up a
top rope spear for the pin to retain Madison’s title at 8:55.
Rating:
C. Madison is getting better in
the ring and is of course very nice to look at so the match wasn’t
all that bad. The cage added something with the collisions here but
it’s still nothing that blew me away. The division is dying for some
fresh stories but that’s been the case for years now.
Joe
says he’s dominated the last few months to earn this shot. He once
considered Magnus to be a brother but now Magnus has thrown that away
for the quick and easy path to the title. Joe will make the pain
tangible and bash it into Magnus’ skull over and over again.
We
recap Joe vs. Magnus which was already covered in Joe’s promo.
Magnus was part of the Main Event Mafia but joined Dixie Carter to
become champion. Tonight it’s knockout or submission only to win.
TNA
World Title: Samoa Joe vs. Magnus
Magnus
is defending. Joe gets in the first offense with a hard kick to the
thigh but the champion takes him down with a headlock. In a unique
move, Joe grabs a wristlock and headbutts Magnus’ hand before putting
on a hammerlock. A hard back elbow to the jaw drops Magnus again and
Joe peppers him with right hands in the corner. Joe chops him down
in the corner and hits the Facewash.
Magnus
avoids the running backsplash and hammers away before raking Joe’s
eyes. The champion misses a charge and goes into the cage so Joe
rams him face first into the steel over and over. The ramming draws
blood and Joe goes right after it but misses a charge, allowing the
Englishman to send him face first into the steel over and over. Now
Joe is busted open and Magnus locks on the Figure Four.
Joe
turns it over but Magnus immediately lets go and puts on a camel
clutch. That’s powered out of as well but Magnus slaps on a sleeper.
Joe picks him up into the air and drops Magnus down onto his back,
putting both guys down. Magnus loses a forearm slugout but gets a
boot up in the corner to stop a charging Samoan. Joe comes right
back with a slam and the backsplash followed by a cross armbreaker.
Magnus
rolls out and heads up top and shoves Joe down before dropping the
big elbow. Joe gets back to his feet and wins a slugout with his
hard slaps before crotching Magnus down on the top. There’s the
MuscleBuster and the Koquina Clutch but Abyss’ hand comes up through
the ring and pulls Joe through the mat. After a few seconds, a
furious Joe slowly comes up through the ring and chokes Magnus in the
corner. Abyss comes up through the hole and hits Joe in the stomach
with Janice before a Black Hole Slam sets up the Koquina Clutch from
Magnus for the win at 19:28.
Rating:
B-. Well the Authority has its
Kane now. I don’t think it was a big surprise that there were
shenanigans at the end but the question was what would happen. Abyss
being the corporate monster gives him something to do but it’s not
exactly something new. Then again, this is TNA where we have to have
an evil alliance on top of the company because that’s almost all they
know how to do.
Post
match Eric Young asks Abyss what he’s thinking but Magnus says get
him out of here.
Dixie
sends Spud to get the insurance policy.  Roode comes in and says
he’s nervous but Dixie says there’s insurance.  They tell each
other not to screw this up.
We
recap Lethal Lockdown with both teams fighting for control of the
company.  Aries swerved MVP to join Team Roode but MVP brought
back Jeff Hardy to even things out.
Team
MVP vs. Team Roode
MVP,
Wolves, Jeff Hardy
Bobby
Roode, Bro Mans, Austin Aries
It’s
Lethal Lockdown, meaning WarGames and
the winner gets control of TNA (Roode is fighting for Dixie and
gets 10% ownership if his team wins).
Two men start for five minutes followed by a member of Team Roode
(due to winning a match on Impact) enters for a two minute advantage.
After two minutes a member of Team MVP enters to even things out for
two minutes. This alternates until all eight are in when a roof with
weapons is lowered and then it’s one fall to a finish, including
pins.
Aries
and the hometown boy MVP
get things going with MVP kicking Aries in the face. Austin comes
back with a bulldog and the Last Chancery before laying on the ropes.
A missile dropkick doesn’t work as MVP catches him in an exploder
suplex and the Ballin Elbow but Aries takes him out before it lands.
Aries hits a running dropkick but MVP slams him down and hammers
away. Austin escapes an arm hold but misses an elbow drop as Robbie
E comes in for the advantage after four minutes.
MVP
immediately drops him on his face but Aries gets in a cheap shot and
the heels take over. A top rope ax handle puts MVP down and E drops
a middle rope elbow to the face. They talk trash to MVP until Eddie
Edwards ties things up. Eddie cleans house as you expect a fresh man
to do in a Lethal Lockdown match. DJ Zema Ion tries to interfere but
gets knocked off the cage wall in a big bump. The good guys control
for a bit until the clock runs out with Jesse Godderz giving Team
Roode a 3-2 advantage.
The
Bro Mans take over without much happening until Davey Richards and
his bad arm ties things up. Davey of course gives his team the
advantage again with the fast paced double team offense as the
WarGames formula is firmly in place here. Stereo half crabs have the
Bro Mans in trouble until Aries clotheslines the Wolves from behind.
Roode and his awesome sleeveless coat makes it 4-3. The captains go
face to face until Roode takes MVP down with a spinebuster.
The
heels take complete control until the clock comes on and it’s Willow
(Jeff Hardy’s new gimmick, which
looks like a black and white
Ultimo Dragon mask and really high pants)
to tie things up and complete both teams. He
comes in as the lights are out and dives off the top of the cage. If
they don’t want us to know he’s Hardy, they might have wanted to give
him a full body suit to cover the big green tattoo. Thankfully Taz
and Tenay drop hints about who it is as the roof with the weapons
lower…..and here’s Dixie.
She
introduces the insurance policy as the special referee: Bully Ray.
As in the guy that spent a
year and a half trying to destroy her company. Team MVP waits for
Ray at the door but Team Roode jumps them from behind. The weapons
are brought in with Ray finding a table under the ring. Dixie
sits in a chair on the stage to watch the carnage as it’s all Team
Roode. Bobby puts Davey’s bad arm in the Crossface with Bully asking
if he wants to give up and talking trash at the same time.
Team
Roode all has front facelocks on their opponents but a triple
backdrop breaks them free. Richards is broken out quickly and MVP
makes sure to hit the Ballin Elbow on Roode. The weapons are used
more extensively and Willow loads up a powerbomb on Aries but throws
him face first into the cage instead. Robbie is tied up in the Tree
of Woe as Ray is just standing in the corner watching. The Wolves
set up a trashcan in front of Robbie’s face for an AWESOME double Van
Terminator.
Aries
is sat in a chair and kicked over and over until he grabs Richards
for a BRAINBUSTER THROUGH THE CHAIR. Willow breaks up the save but
Aries puts him on a trashcan, only to have Willow move before the 450
only hits the can. A Twist of Fate and Swanton gets a very delayed
two on Aries as Roode makes the save and sends Willow into the cage.
The table is set up in the cage but Ray gets in the way of the Roode
Bomb to MVP. Ray and Roode stare each other down until Ray gives him
a Bully Bomb. MVP hits a quick Drive By on Roode for the pin at
26:53.
Rating:
B+. The match started slowly
but those big spots at the end were great. MVP winning is the right
call and fairly obvious (I don’t believe heels have EVER won Lethal
Lockdown) but at least there was some drama in there. I don’t get
the point of having Hardy be Willow if they’re going to just
acknowledge he’s Hardy in a costume. Good main event and a match the
show needed.
Dixie
and Spud go to the cage but Spud pulls her away from Ray. Bully puts
Roode through a table to end the show.
Overall
Rating:
B. The show was
entertaining but the ending didn’t do much for me. The New York
thing was pretty obvious if you thought about it long enough and
Lethal Lockdown was the same as it always was. Overall
it wasn’t bad, but like everything else with TNA it didn’t feel like
it made things better.
The
company is still in the same place: a promotion with a not bad story
but nothing all that exciting because it’s most of the same guys just
being rotated into different spots with about one new guy being added
to the main event every year. At
least the Authority is broken (for now) and we don’t have some evil
owner. Then again this is TNA so I give them until June to have
Dixie back on TV and in power.
Results
Great Muta/Sanada/Yasu
b. Bad Influence/Chris Sabin – Moonsault to Daniels
Samuel Shaw b. Mr.
Anderson – Shaw escaped the cage
Tigre Uno b. Manik –
Sabretooth Splash
Gunner b. James Storm –
Superplex through two chairs
Madison Rayne b. Gail
Kim – Top rope spear
Magnus
b. Samoa Joe – Koquina Clutch
Team
MVP b. Team Roode – Drive By to Roode

Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:

http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Hall/e/B00E6282W6

TNA Lockdown Thread

Here is the card:

STEEL CAGE WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
Magnus vs. Samoa Joe
STEEL CAGE LETHAL LOCKDOWN
Team MVP (MVP, Jeff Hardy and The Wolves) vs. Team Dixie (Bobby Roode, Austin Aries, The BroMans) 
STEEL CAGE KNOCKOUTS CHAMPIONSHIP
Madison Rayne vs. Gail Kim 
STEEL CAGE MATCH: LAST MAN STANDING
Gunner vs. “Cowboy” James Storm
STEEL CAGE MATCH
Mr. Anderson vs. Samuel Shaw 
STEEL CAGE MATCH
Manik vs. Tigre Uno 
STEEL CAGE MATCH
Bad Influence & Chris Sabin vs. The Great Muta, Sanada and Nakanou


Also, ECIII has issued an “open challenge” on Twitter. 

For the Blooooog – TNA Lockdown looks….pretty good. Wait. What?!

Hey Scott,

Big fan of the blog, blahtyblahblah.

I've only seen a handful of Impacts of the past couple of months and read the results here and there but taking a gander at the card for Lockdown and it actually looks really good:

Team Dixie vs Team MVP for control of TNA
Magnus vs Samoa Joe for the World Title
Kurt Angle vs EC3
James Storm vs Gunner
Madison Rayne vs Gail Kim for the Knockouts title
Mr Anderson vs Samuel Shaw
Bad Influence and Chris Sabin vs Great Muta, Sanada and Tigre Uno.

With the exception of the 6 man (which doesn't need a story just turn those guys loose), everything is the payoff to a storyline,  part of a character's development or plays into a story that will continue.

TNA always gets knocked for throwing stuff together haphazardly but all of this makes perfect sense.  It actually looks like something worth watching.

Thoughts?

I have literally not given a second of thought to TNA since I stopped watching it last year.  

Cucch’s Book Review: “Countdown to Lockdown”

To quote the author, of all of Mick Foley’s memoirs, Countdown to Lockdown…is the most recent…

Mick Foley’s books are generally a cut above most other wrestling tomes, primarily because Mick writes them without a ghostwriter filtering what he has to say. Also, Mick is a college graduate who is very articulate and has a very good feel for wordplay. Don’t get me wrong, he is far from Tolstoy or Orwell, but in the spectrum of wrestlers who author their own memoirs, well, he is the closest thing to those great authors we are likely to see.

Countdown to Lockdown resembles closely the format of Mick’s previous work, “The Hardcore Diaries.” It is basically a journal of Mick’s thoughts detailing his run in TNA, and the buildup to his Steel Cage match with Sting at TNA Lockdown 2009. The journal entries are interspersed with full chapters describing some other life events from the mind of the man formerly known as Mankind.

Mick Foley is a pretty smart fellow, so he realizes immediately that a great deal of wrestling fans who are reading this book will not be very interested in, say, his missionary work in Sierra Leone, or his almost creepy infatuation with Tori Amos. To that end, Mick has included for each chapter something he calls the “Wrestle Meter.” Basically, each non journal entry, the actual chapters of the book, are rated 0-10 on this WrestleMeter, with ten meaning that the chapter is all about wrestling, zero denoting there is no wrestling content whatsoever. I am someone who enjoys Mick’s literary works more than most, so I have read the whole thing, but the meter does help a casual wrestling fan who wants nothing but wrestling content steer away from the other subjects and life experiences Mick describes. I would implore you to read the whole thing, but I would not begrudge you if you skip the chapters on, say, his missionary work (good stuff), childhood dalliances (getting a tattoo to impress a girl), or his infatuation with the music of Tori Amos.

As I mentioned earlier, this book describes the period of Mick’s life where he parted ways with the WWE and joined the roster of TNA. Now, I know many fans were turned off by Mick’s TNA run, and I don’t blame you. I am a HUGE Foley fan, and I wasn’t exactly inspired by Mick’s efforts there initially. But after reading the book and taking in to account everything that Mick describes, I find myself with a better understanding and enjoyment of his TNA run, via the benefit of YouTube. The meat and potatoes of the book are Mick chronicling his thoughts and psyche surrounding his angle with Sting, and the resulting match at Lockdown. Its different in the sense that this isn’t WWE Mick is talking about anymore. He describes how creatively vindicated he felt leaving WWE and crafting a storyline in TNA with one of his all time favorite opponents, Sting, including a now infamous (in some circles) promo where Mick Foley interviewed Cactus Jack. (Wrap your head around that one.)

Mick basically loved his time in TNA, but had one big disappointment. You see, Mick realized he was not the same performer he had been only a few years earlier, never mind his 90’s heyday. He has also stated in past volumes that he is a lousy cage match performer. So he approached the TNA higher ups with a concept for a different, custom made cage. No wire mesh, none of that. He wanted the old school big blue bar WWE style cage, but one fitted with platforms near the top where he and Sting could exchange a flurry of fisticuffs and, presumably, where Mick could perform a dive onto a prone Stinger. Well, TNA was going to try, but, alas, they couldn’t afford it and Mick (like every other performer not named Foley) would have to deal with the standard cage.

Along the way, we are again introduced to Mick’s family, his wife and children. There is a chapter in the book where Mick describes his family being filmed for a potential A and E series along the lines of “Hogan Knows Best.” Unfortunately, his family was a little too bland, didn’t provide enough fighting firepower. So Foley’s series was never green lighted, as A and E instead opted for “Billy the Exterminator.” The crazy thing about these chapters on his family is, as a longtime fan, realizing how old Dewey and Noelle are now, and the adolescent phase of their life that they are experiencing. There is actually one very uncomfortable passage where Dewey is going on his first date, and, with Mick driving him there, with Noelle in the car, Mick tries to describe the old “Yawn, throw your arms out, and land with your arm around the girl’s shoulder” move. Dewey counters with the “Dick in the Popcorn” gag made famous by Mickey Rourke in the 1982 film “Diner.” Noelle, blissfully unaware, asks both Pops and Big Bro what that exactly entails. Suffice to say, it is very awkward, especially for those who have kept up with Foley’s books through the years.

Now, while most of the book details Mick’s TNA run, there is also a good amount that describes the end of his WWE run. Namely, the chapters on Mick’s brief run as a color commentator on Smackdown. THIS is the true attraction of the book, as Mick was not thrilled with WWE’s treatment of him during this time period. Did I say WWE? Sorry, I meant VINCE MCMAHON. Most of us are privy to what happens on the announcers headsets by now. I mean, Michael Cole is basically Vince McMahon’s ventriloquist doll. Well, Mick spent a lot of time and considerable effort into preparing himself for this gig, taking it very seriously. He was having a fine time of it….until one night where Vince started screaming unnamed expletives in his ear and basically undressing Mick via the headsets…in the middle of a PPV. This chapter is powerful, and well written, as Mick basically describes the battle between literary folk heroes “McMagical” and “McFoley” , the chapter comically named “The Magical Headsets.”

Mick also relays a couple of chapters to the biggest, most horrific tragedy in wrestling history: The Benoit murder-suicide. Mick was having a particularly hard time finding flight and airfare to the Vengeance: Night of Champions PPV on June 24, 2007. Honestly, had Mick not mentioned it here in the book, I would have never remembered that he was in the main event of that show in a 5 way match. He relays that he said in the locker room that night that something must REALLY be wrong with Benoit if he misses a PPV. Hours later, he would realize how prophetic those words were, as he, along with most of us, soon realized the horror of what happened in Georgia. He writes a couple of chapters detailing the drug problem that has infected wrestling for years, but not in a traditional sense. These chapters might not be everyone’s cup of tea, as Mick tends to get a little preachy on this stuff (see Foley is Good) and he eschews what most people assume about the drug problem in wrestling. While he doesn’t dismiss it, he sort of plays devils advocate with the subject, stating in one breath that it is a problem, while outlining benefits and rationales for using painkillers and performance enhancers.

As a quick aside to the Benoit chapters, Mick also expresses his pure hatred of the Mr. McMahon death storyline. He basically echos my, and probably most reading here, frustrations with that insidious, stupid angle. He also gets the best description, from Vince himself, on the angle that best describes the vacuum WWE Creative lives in: “Mick, its not Vince McMahon who is dead, its MR.MCMAHON who is dead. Our fans will realize that.” REALLY? I am not even going to touch that, you, fair reader, digest that tripe.

By now, I hope I have given you a fairly good (and detailed…and long, I know I know) synopsis of Mick’s latest literary venture. But by no means have I given everything away….quite the contrary, I have left out a shitload of what is included here. As always, I just like to give people an idea, a taste, if you will, of what the full course is like. Countdown to Lockdown is a good book, but it isn’t “Have a Nice Day.” I think it is better than “Foley is Good” and right on par with “The Hardcore Diaries.” All in all, I would highly recommend reading it, and, after doing so, retrace Foley’s TNA run through the glorious resources provided on the internet. Its a solid piece of work from a solid human being.