The cleaning of the Knockouts continues as Roxxi a.k.a. Nikki Roxx, who in reality wasn’t even under contract but worked the New Years Eve show, has been told to take a hike. This is the second time she was released, the first being when she was involved in a backstage scuffle with fellow TNA Knockout Rhaka Khan, who at the time was dating Kurt Angle and had the political advantage, which upset a lot of folks because Roxxi was not at fault. Our friends over at QCW Radio interviewed her last summer, which can be heard here. Don’t forget to cover your nose when you hear this one.
In addition, Sean Morley, the former Val Venis, has been removed from the TNA Roster Page. Morley wrote on this facebook that he was given the go after accepting dates for CMLL. Morley was one of the many former WWE talents brought in on January 4th and since coming in, has cleanly pinned Christopher Daniels and Jeff Jarrett, who former champions for TNA (the latter of which happened on last night’s Impact).
In addition to that, TNA dropped Traci Brooks earlier this week.
The first TNA PPV of the Hulk Hogan era is in the books and is getting all sorts of mixed reviews all throughout the interwebs. GG and I were the only ones who got to see it from FGB, so here are our thoughts:
Thumbs in the middle
Best match – Kurt Angle vs. AJ Styles
Worst match – Tara vs. ODB
I don’t mind sacrificing great wrestling to push angles if you deem them important first off. But none of the stuff they pushed as huge was really all that big. Ken Anderson was a huge let down. There were only two matches that were really good. I liked Desmond and Pope because it was something different. It was long and had some boring spots, but it was easy to follow and they told a good story. Angle and AJ was good, but not great. I don’t like AJ as a heel or as a Ric Flair like character. It looks like something that’s doomed to fail.
Also, Daniels losing to Morley was terrible. That kind of stuff is a what makes people change the channel and what doomed WCW. I give them a bit of a mulligan because they don’t have their stuff together, but also can’t give this anymore than a thumbs in the middle.
Thumbs in the Middle
Best match – The Pope vs. Desmond Wolfe
Worst Match – Tara vs. ODB
We saw a bunch of changes, including a new set, ramp, and now FOUR-Sided ring. But these are NOT necessarily the changes I hoped for with Hogan and Bischoff in control. The “WWE jobbers” as I call it were put over way too often, with Ken Anderson flopping in his victory over Abyss and the former Val Venis botching in HIS win over Chris Daniels, who by the way was MAIN EVENTING the last two TNA PPVs and having classic matches in both. Some good stuff though was the main event and the awesome Pope vs. Wolfe match, which I think stole the show. At first I was lukewarm to the idea of AJ Styles as a heel, then I realized he’s too short and not believable as a bad guy. I’m a wrestling fan and I’m supposed to BOO AJ Styles and Ric Flair? Huh? Big mistake. There were a LOT of mistakes made on this show, and some small improvements… so it’s gotta be in the middle.
In the early 1990’s when Ric Flair came to the WWF after a long career wrestling for the NWA, Bobby “The Brain” Heenan was his financial adviser at the time. However, Heenan was also the color commentator alongside Gorilla Monsoon. Heenan had a great way in getting Flair over. He would say that since Flair was an outsider to WWF, people were trying to hold him down. Hence the phrase, “Be fair to Flair”. What does Ric Flair and Bobby Heenan circa 1992 have to do with Wrestlemania XV? Well, there’s a man named Mick Foley who had a dream of main eventing Wrestlemania and that man named Mick had a great 4 months in late 1998 and early 1999. He helped The Rock get over big time as a heel and also won the WWF Championship belt for the first time. He and the Rock had some very good matches, but for some reason (probably because they saw Rock vs. Austin as a better money making match), Mick Foley was left out in the cold come Wrestlemania time. Soon before Mania, Foley dropped the belt back to The Rock and was then put in a feud with the Big Show. At the time, the Big Show was actually looked upon as a main eventer, so it wasn’t that large of a step down. However, after working with the Rock and Austin for much of 1998, match-wise it was a major step down. Their Wrestlemania match was awful, (maybe one of the worst matches of Foley’s career) and the feud didn’t really do anything for either guy. Why the long segue from Ric Flair to Mick Foley? Because at the time, I was reminded of Heenan’s phrase while Foley was getting passed over. So I simply added Foley’s name and created my own. Be Fair to Foley. For some reason, the WWF didn’t listen to me.
Wrestlemania was a large disappointment in my eyes mostly because of the short term booking. The top guys were stretched way too thin and the matches seemed to be put together at the last minute. (Hey, sounds familiar to this year’s booking.) The two saving graces were the match pitting Shane McMahon and X-Pac, and the main event between The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin.