By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Solid segment to kick off the show featuring Hulk Hogan and Bully Ray. It established the TNA World Heavyweight Championship match for Lockdown and the night's main event. I'm not huge on Ray being in contention for the title at this point in time, but as long as it leads to him winning the strap and subsequently turning heel, I'm completely content with it.
Entertaining eight man tag team match with James Storm, Joseph Park, Hernandez and Chavo Guerrero defeating World Tag Team Champions Bobby Roode and Austin Aries as well as Daniels and Kazarian. The exchanges between all eight competitors was enjoyable and everyone was able to get in their signature spots. This match didn't hold much significance, but it was fun for what it was worth.
Brief match with Rockstar Spud defeating Robbie E. Although it didn't last long, Spud had a nice showing against Robbie E and showed a great deal of potential. It was a good win for him and I hope he is utilized once TNA travels back to the states. The post-match angle with the two Robbies seemed to be foreshadowing an inevitable split, which the live England crowd loved given his roots to the country.
Decent Elimination Fatal 4 Way with Velvet Sky defeating Tara, Gail Kim and Miss Tessmacher to win the Knockouts Championship. The action was well paced and Sky's in-ring skills were limited for the most part. Although Sky may not be the division's best worker, I'm glad she's the new title holder since Tara hardly treated the belt with any importance during her reign. Here's hoping Sky is given a longer reign with the belt this time around rather than dropping it a month from now.
Fine match with Samoa Joe defeating Garrett Bischoff by disqualification. Bischoff scored some offense on Joe, but the rest of the bout was practically a glorified squash. Wes Brisco's interference was predictable, but it help set up his match with Kurt Angle at Lockdown next month.
Good match with Rob Van Dam successfully retaining his X-Division Championship against Kenny King. The action was pretty standard, but nothing out of the ordinary. This would have been a perfect time to have King win the strap, especially since he's more than deserving and ready for a run with the title. RVD is hurting the division more than he's helping it at this point, so I truly hope he drops the title sooner rather than later.
Smart booking by having Aces & 8s defeat Sting and Bully Ray in a Handicap match. I was disappointed to hear earlier in the night that Hulk Hogan would be wrestling in the main event, so it was nice to see that they worked around that by having him getting attacked prior to the bout. The match itself was nothing special, but it's great that Aces & 8s scored the victory given the fact they've been losing so consistently as of late. I'm intrigued as to whether Bully Ray ends up joining the stable or not, since that might be what the group needs to get back on track.
Overall, a good show that featured some solid action, progression of story-lines, and a nice title change. With Lockdown being in a few weeks, they did an effective job of building towards that event as well. It saddens me that this was TNA's final show in the United Kingdom for at least another year since England has always been such a great crowd, but I look forward to TNA going on the road on a permanent basis in just a few short weeks.
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