What up wrestling fans, I'm the WrestlingNerd bringing you another written review. Today, we take a look at TNA No Surrender 2011. So, would TNA put on a good PPV or would they give you crap? Well, let's find out and start the review.
Match #1: Kid Kash vs Jesse Sorensen; winner is #1 Contender to X Division Title
Like I said in my SD review this past week, what's the point of having this match on PPV? You could have easily put this match on free TV and you would've been fine. This wasn't a bad opening contest to get you excited about the PPV, but there was nothing special about it either. I really didn't like the ending since it looked very shaky as if there was a botch. Sorensen hit a front Suplex, but the delivery looked off. Not sure what went wrong here, but this is a match nobody was really interested in since it was thrown on the card in the last second, so I can't really complain. Anyway, with that Botchplex, Sorensen wins the match and gets the next title shot. Again, what does TNA really see out of this guy? He looks way too average to really latch onto, and his stupid letterman jacket makes me think about Alex Riley for some reason, and what's the point of the football? Is he going to use it as a weapon? I know the IWC is really high on this guy, but I really see Generic Wrestler #52780th at the moment. He is young and that's his greatest advantage, but his personality makes watching paint dry seem interesting. The Impact Zone loves him, but this audience will cheer anything that moves. Well, he's the #1 Contender after tonight, so we'll see where he goes.
Winner via pinfall and NEW #1 Contender to X Title: Jesse Sorensen
Backstage scene with Kurt Angle and Hulk Hogan. Angle pretty much says he has joined Immortal in this scene. I know people will bitch about this, but the Immortal storyline has had so many swerves that nothing surprises me anymore. Plus, I just don't care. Anyway, Angle complains about Hulk not doing anything about this match while Hulk reminds him he is Kurt Angle and he can do it. Amazing how Kurt when from being a bad ass to a coward as soon as he turned heel. Is it wrestling logic? Of course it is.
Match #2: Bully Ray vs James Storm; BFG Series Match
TNA....what the f***? When I first heard of the Final Four of the BFG Series, I assumed it would work as a playoff, in which we work our way down until one man remains. In fact, I think a lot of us assumed this....but no. This acted like any other match in the BFG Series. Meaning the only way Storm would win is if he won via submission and Gunner and Roode finished with a draw or DQ. Bully had 49 points going into the match while Storm had 40. A pinfall victory would only give him 7 points, so he needed a submission win. This is such a stupid idea. Why not make it a playoff between the top four?
Why do they have to over complicate things? We had the possibility of Storm winning this match via pinfall, but since Bully would have more points, he would win. That is a flaw if I ever saw it. In fact, that is the best way to describe the BFG Series. When I first heard the idea, I thought it was pretty cool and interesting, but TNA has screwed it up left and right. This just reeks of Vince Russo's work because Russo loves to over complicate things like this. Wrestling is supposed to be simple and easy to follow, not act like a Professor Layton video game. I hated how these rules were set up tonight because not only did it ruin the BFG Series once again, but also ruined the quality of the match. Imagine if the NFL Playoffs worked like this? Imagine if a 12-4 team lost to a 9-7 team in the playoffs, but because they still keep up with the regular season standings, the 12-4 team moves on. Sounds really stupid when you break it all down. What about if Storm had less than 10 points going up against Bully? We would have had a deal where the winner of the match doesn't win jack s***. I know it's wrestling, but this is really pushing the boundaries. This confusion with the BFG Series tonight wouldn't have happened if TNA would've....oh, I don't know, EXPLAINED IT!!!
Anyway, Storm has to go for a submission because the writers suck. Storm was going for a Cross Armbreaker all night long against Bully. This match started off really slow since Bully was being a pussy by running away or doing the usual "heelish stalling" tactics. In fact, almost the first five minutes of this match was Bully running away. Yeah, that's a GREAT way to get the audience interested in this match. At some point, Bully grabbed Storm's beer and spat beer in his face. Clear example of wrestling logic since Storm was blinded and Bully almost won the match, but once that plan failed, Storm is able to see clear as day. You want to see terrible commentary? Well, take a look at this? Storm locked in a Sharpshooter and Mike Tenay and Tazz didn't know what it was. Now, I am aware these commentators can screw up the names of these moves, but this is embarrassing. How do you not know what a Sharpshooter is? There are 7 year old casual fans who know what a Sharpshooter is. Just when you think things have gotten any dumber, wait until you see the finish. The finish comes when Storm grabs the beer and accidentally spits beer in the referee's face. The ref is blinded like an idiot. During this time, Storm has the Cross Armbreaker on Bully and he's tapping out. The ref finally recovers and instead of giving Storm the win, Bully wins the match via DQ. You see all the bulls*** you get when you put the BFG points into play as opposed to making this a winner take all playoff? This ending was terrible because your winner in Bully gets nothing out of this match. Instead of looking stronger, he looks weaker. I don't have a problem with Bully cheating to win. That's what heels do, but this looks terrible when you over complicate things. Now, if you look at the standings, Bully has 52 points and Storm loses 10 points. Robert Roode and Gunner have 42 points each. Guess what happens in the next match? You're just giving away the outcome at this point. Now, I know a lot of people didn't have Gunner anywhere close to winning the title, but you're basically telling everyone not only who's gonna win, but how they are gonna win. I can't believe this overbooked crap. TNA would have been fine if this worked like a normal playoff, but they had to add this crap and it just looks ridiculous. If that wasn't painful enough, this match didn't make anyone look good. This isn't entertainment. I can't believe we are only 45 minutes into this PPV and I'm already pissed off. Not a good sign....AHHHHHHH!!!!!
Winner via DQ: Bully Ray
Match #3: Mickie James vs Winter for the KO Championship
This worked like a basic women's match. Angelina Love would interfere from time to time. Amazing how Earl Hebner does nothing to send Angelina to the back. Yeah, chalk that one up on account of wrestling logic. There was a point where Winter was about to use the championship belt, but the ref intercepts it. The match didn't end after this either, which makes that exchange entirely pointless. How many times do I have to watch a TNA match where the referee CLEARLY sees the interference, but does nothing? It just looks really bad when you see it on TV. The finish comes when Winter does her blood spit and she wins the title again. Are you f***ing kidding me? Winter had the belt two weeks ago and you had her lose the title only for her to get the belt back? Why do a title change two weeks ago if you change it again? None of this makes any sense. And I can't believe all of this overbooked crap. Now, I'm starting to get really f***ing mad now. Why can't this creative staff pick a direction and just stay with it, not change it over and over again? These consistent title changes don't make the show more exciting, it just makes the belts look more pointless. Then again, you have Eric Young walking around with the TV Title, so are you really surprised? This is one of those times I wish I was doing audio reviews so you can hear my frustrations at this moment. TNA......why?
Winner via pinfall and NEW KO Champ: Winter
Match #4: Mexican America vs Pope and Devon for the Tag Titles
Oh God, no!!! As if TNA hasn't overbooked enough matches tonight, we come to a Mex America match, which is almost the recipe for overbooking s***. As you would've guessed, Sarita and Rosita interfere every ten seconds and really make this match hard to watch. Again, I am fine with heels cheating, but can we be a little more organized and creative? TNA has thrown way too much bulls*** in a short amount of time. By this point, you just want to change the channel. In fact, why didn't I do that? At some point, Pope and Devon did a double spanking on Rosita and Sarita, which sounds like something that would happen at Bill Clinton's house. The finish comes when Rosita interferes for the twelve millionth time. She holds down Pope's legs, thus not allowing him to kick out. Mex retains the titles....
Seriously, we are around 80 minutes into this program and I want to shut it off. Okay, I do have some good news. The evening would get better after this. Still, a PPV shouldn't start off this slow and horrible. Mex winning was predictable and I wasn't surprised by the outcome. This tag division in TNA is going downhill in a hurry. They need to either bring back Ink Inc or someone since there are no teams left. In fact, the tag division in TNA has taken a lot of steps backwards in the last year since it was one of the brighter spots on the show. TNA needs to get this division on track sooner rather than later.
Winner via pinfall and still Tag Champs: Mexican America
Match #5: Samoa Joe vs Matt Morgan
Not the great match, but considering what I've seen tonight, I'll take it. This was an ok match between the two. An okay back and forth match between the two and went on for quite a while. A pretty underrated contest. The finish comes when Morgan hits the Carbon Footpoint for the clean win. I was a little surprised by this. It seemed they were going somewhere with Joe with taking out the BFG competition, but he loses like this? Just seems like creative had an idea, but quickly bailed on the idea. It just doesn't add up. Plus, it would have been better for Crimson to take out Joe as opposed to Morgan, but Crimson/Joe did happen in the year, so it makes sense to not do that again. I am not sure where Morgan goes after this, but the win does help his stock. I would be really shocked if Joe actually resigns with this company once his contract expires.
Winner via pinfall: Matt Morgan
Backstage interview with Robert Roode. He talks about winning the BFG Series and finally rising to the top. James Storm is in the background and says even though he lost, he is sticking behind his tag partner and knows the fans will support him. Excellent promo by Roode. Ok, we had a passable match and a good promo. Ok, now THIS is a little more like entertainment. Let's see if they can continue this.
Match #6: Robert Roode vs Gunner in a BFG Series Match
Based on TNA's rules, Roode and Gunner have to win via submission or else Bully wins the tournament. Yeah, I don't like these rules, but we might as well move forward before I have another relapse. This was a very technical match as Roode and Gunner were each trying to get a submission hold to win this match. This was an ok match. The finish comes when Roode locks in a Crossface and wins the match. With Roode's win, he's tied with Bully. After the match, Eric Bischoff comes out and says because Roode and Bully are tied, they will have another BFG match between Roode and Bully and the winner is the #1 Contender to the World Title. This isn't really much of a surprise since I already assumed there would be a meeting between the winners of the BFG matches tonight, but I don't want to go down that spiral again.
Winner via pinfall: Robert Roode
Match #7: Brian Kendrick vs Austin Aries for the X Division Championship
There was a lot of high spots in this match. Really, this wasn't a bad match. I wouldn't call it amazing since I am not high on highflyer matches, but the match was entertaining to say the least. Second best match of the night in my book. At least Aries is a more balanced wrestler since Kendrick relies on the high spots to make an impression. The finish comes when Aries hits a "low blow" (I say it like that since it didn't come off well on PPV) and Aries hits a finisher for the win. I think it was the Brainbuster, but something about it looked off compared to how Aries hits the move. Botch or miscommunication? Really, I just don't care anymore. So, we have a new X Division champ. I think this was the best move since Aries is the most entertaining person in the X Division and thus should get the title. I don't really care what happens to Kendrick after this since he isn't interesting enough to see on TV anytime soon. Kendrick can always audition for the Wheel of Fortune if things get tough.
Winner via pinfall and NEW X Division Champ: Austin Aries
Match #8: Bully Ray vs Robert Roode; winner takes the BFG Series and is the new #1 Contender to World Title
Despite all the bitching and moaning I've done on the BFG Series, I want it understood that I thought it was a excellent idea. I was very interested in the concept, but it just wasn't executed very well since there was a lot of flaws with the whole concept. These matches should take place on free TV, not in house shows. This concept works better if each wrestler gets the same number of matches. This concept works better if you don't have tag team matches since being on the winning team doesn't give you points. Another flaw in the BFG Series is I don't remember seeing too many of Roode's matches during the tournament and it would have helped if ALL the matches were on Impact. Thus, we see Roode's comeback and people would really be supporting him. The crowd was really behind Roode during the match, but this moment could have been a lot bigger if planned correctly. If TNA plans on using the BFG Series for next year, they need to polish a lot of things, but it's still an interesting concept. Bully is doing a lot of showboating in the early going so he can play with the crowd. Again, who would've thought Bully Ray would be TNA's best heel? He's also not a bad worker. He really worked the crowd over and really got people to hate him and love Roode. That's the marks of a good heel since as a fan, you hate Bully. I can vouch for that since I hate Bully as a fan at times. Bully deserves just as much credit as Roode for tonight's performance. I never thought I would praise the work of Bully/Bubba Ray considering this guy was an overrated tag team star, but I have to give credit where it's due. This was a pretty good match, damn good. In fact, this was my vote for Match of the Night. The finish comes when Roode hits the Double R Spinebuster for the clean win. I like Roode winning cleanly, but wasn't big on the finisher. A Spinebuster is really more of a set up move as opposed to a finisher. I would like to see Roode add a better move as his finisher. Outside of that, this was the best choice creative wise. Roode has been teased for breaking out into something huge for a while and it seems like his time has finally come. I would like to see TNA push Roode hard this next month to really get people behind him. I also didn't like how TNA ended this scene. The entire PPV was being built to the BFG Series winner, but when it happens, nobody makes a big deal out if it and there's no celebration for the guy. Some people would think TNA is going overboard with giving Roode an excessive celebration, but this guy has been in tag team wrestling for most of his career and this is a big deal in the career of Roode, so I think a celebration wouldn't have hurt. This is just a nit picky area I have with the end results of Roode's victory. This was the best move TNA could make since a guy like Crimson is not ready for a title match. I got more to say about Roode in this review, but we have one more match to talk about. Oh, and I'm aware TNA is calling him Bobby Roode. I personally like the name Robert Roode a lot better. Sounds more bad ass.
Winner via pinfall and NEW #1 Contender to World Championship: Robert Roode
There was a short backstage interview with Rosita. A lot of people don't know this, but her father was actually in the Twin Towers on that day ten years ago. He was unfortunately one of the victums in the September 11th attack. She talked about her father and how it effected her family and such. Yeah, TNA completely broke kayfabe here, but this was the classy move. I applaud TNA in letting Rosita (aka: Thea Trinidad) talk about this. There was a tribute in the beginning of the PPV as well in regards to the date. Anyone who was effected by this tragedy, you have my thoughts and prayers.
Match #9: Kurt Angle vs Mr. Anderson vs Sting for the World Championship
Sting and Anderson worked together to take out Angle in the early going, but Angle would of course fight his way back. This was an okay match for the most part. I remember a spot where Anderson did a spinning kick and Tazz referred to it as "A channeling Chuck Norris". We need more of Tazz's random lines on this show considering Mike Tenay makes the show boring with his commentary. A lot of near falls in this match. The finish comes when Hogan shows up in the audience and sprays something into Sting's eyes. Sting gets back in the ring and grabs the ref since he cannot see. Angle takes advantage by hitting Angle Slam and retains his title. The show ends with Angle and Hogan celebrating. So, this pretty much ensures Sting vs Hogan at BFG. Yeah, I don't want to see it and I know a lot of people who will cringe and want to break something when they see this match, but it's going to happen and you're just going to have to accept it. I would also assume this makes the title match at BFG between Kurt Angle and Robert Roode. I think it's a great idea. I would like to see TNA push this match hard from now until the PPV. You have given Roode the green light, so you should show you're serious about Roode's singles push. I personally think Roode should win the title at BFG, but we will take about that on another day.
Winner via pinfall and still TNA World Champ: Kurt Angle
If you completely ignore the first hour or the first four matches of the PPV, then this would be considered a passable PPV. Still, that first hour of the PPV really killed the show in more ways than one. Once you get passed that, there was still some good matches and development with TNA's version of WrestleMania. What also hurts this show is all the outside interference. TNA went way overboard with the overbooked matches tonight. In fact, there was not one, not two, but THREE matches in which someone got something in their eyes. Damn TNA, do you think that was enough? One was enough and two was pushing it, but three times is basically saying your creative department isn't CREATIVE enough to think of a different outcome. There was five matches that ended in a "screwjob". I understand it's wrestling and screwjobs are going to happen, but five out of nine matches on your card isn't a good balance. Even if you get passed the first hour and the flaws of the BFG Series, the rest of the show felt like a glorified TV taping. Then again, a glorified TV taping for TNA would actually be a good thing considering how Impact tends to fair out. I really can't recommend this show because it didn't seem that special at the end of the day. This was advertised as a PPV and it just didn't feel like one. If I have to grade this PPV on a scale of 1-10 and 5 being average (I don't do decimal points since decimal points are for people who cannot make up their minds), I have to give this PPV a 3 out of 10, meaning it was well below average. And to be honest, I think I am being very generous with that score. When only the BFG Finals, X Division Title, and Morgan/Joe are matches I would watch a second time, that's a problem. While the opener and Gunner vs Roode was ok, they really fall into the category of average and would have been ok if this was free TV, but this was PPV and you expect better. If TNA would have polished up on some of the outcomes and made things a lot simpler, this would have been a underrated evening of wrestling. At the end of the day, TNA went a little too far with things and that hurts the score and quality of this PPV. I'm not even sure this is better than Hardcore Justice since both showings fall in the same category. If you want to watch this PPV, I definitely can't recommend re-ordering the PPV. I can't even say it's worth a DVD buy. I would say it's worth a DVD rental or something on Netflix. Still, if you watch the show, I strongly recommend skipping the first hour of the show. I am not joking since it will make you go Freddy Kruger on the world. There was some interesting things after tonight. We do know Roode is the #1 Contender to the world title. If TNA continues pushing Roode, it will make for a great series of events. I have to think with Winter being the champ....again, it will lead to Velvet Sky challenging for the belt at BFG. Still, why the title change two weeks back? Aries will have a match against Sorensen in the near future. I don't think Jesse is ready for a title match at BFG, but I wouldn't be shocked to see TNA give him this golden opportunity. There is some interesting things to check out the next couple of Impacts after tonight, so I have to at least give TNA credit in that department. Still, the PPV quality wasn't very good tonight and it needs work. That's going to do it for the review and I hope you enjoyed it. As always, tell me what you thought of my review and tonight's show. If you hated this review.....it's your fault. I will see you guys and girls on the next WrestlingNerd show, see you next time.
WrestlingNerd's Official Score of TNA No Surrender: 3 out of 10
WrestlingNerd's Favorite Match: Bully Ray vs Robert Roode