By Graham "GSM" Matthews
TNA World Tag Team Champions James Storm and Abyss def. The Hardys in a Six Sides of Steel Match
This has been a fun feud to watch develop in recent weeks and the match ultimately lived up to the hype. It was also perfectly slotted in the opener, as it kicked off the show on a high note (both literally and figuratively). Both teams gave it their all and their varying styles made for an interesting matchup. Matt getting pulled through the camera hole in the cage by Khoya was strange but different, and the finish was well done. Jeff's fall from the top of the cage was horrific and I surely hope he's okay. He shouldn't be taking bumps like that at this stage in his career, and this is coming from someone who hopes to see him back in WWE one day.
The Beat Down Clan Called Out Team Angle
The promos cut by MVP and Eric Young were short, sweet and to the point, which is exactly what they should have been. I also have to commend TNA for not kicking off the show with this segment; it's tempting, I know, but it's smart of them to differentiate themselves from WWE in that way. Young's involvement felt random since Bobby Roode was nowhere to be seen, but on the whole, the segment was successful in building up the main event match nicely.
Awesome Kong def. Havok in a Six Sides of Steel Match
I give credit to TNA for making this feel like a marquee match going in and building it up the right way over the last month. I don't know if Kong has been wrestling regularly since leaving WWE in 2012, but she didn't seem to have lost a step. Despite having a big fight feel, the match ultimately wasn't anything special. Some may have been disappointed by it, but my expectations weren't high given Havok hasn't produced many great matches since coming to TNA. The decisive win for Kong in addition to Havok reportedly not being on the UK tour signifies the feud has reached its end. In all honesty, I'm more excited to see Kong and Gail Kim clash against which will hopefully be sooner rather than later.
Bobby Roode def. Eric Yong in a Six Sides of Steel Cage Match
Roode and Young worked a good match, but I've grown numb to seeing them work together to the point where all their matches blend together. They've been feuding on-and-off for the last ten months; think about that for a second. That said, I liked how this bout didn't come off like a traditional wrestling match and instead like a brutal brawl between two heated rivals. The blood Young shed definitely added to it, and one can only hope that Roode's victory signaled the end of the rivalry so both guys can move on to bigger and better things.
Tyrus def. Rockstar Spud and Mandrews in a 2-on-1 Handicap Six Sides of Steel Match
Most of this match consisted of Tyrus dominating Spud and Mandrews and that's exactly what it needed to be. I don't want to say Tyrus has been terribly mishandled since debuting in TNA because he hasn't been, but he could've been better protected along the way and I'm glad he was made to look strong here. Spud and Mandrews sold his offense in convincing fashion and Spud was able to get in some hope spots along the way. The babyfaces were also made to look good since Ethan Carter III's interference cost them the match, even though interference in Steel Cage matches still feels so pointless to me. Is that what the cage was designed for, to keep people out?
Team Angle (Kurt Angle, Austin Aries, Gunner and TNA World Heavyweight Champion Lashley def. The Beat Down Clan in a Lethal Lockdown Match
Having Gunner start the match was simply asinine given his (kayfabe) arm injury. Why would Team Angle allow him to start off instead of resting up and coming out last? That aside, the layout of this matchup was extremely predictable. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but it was hard to get excited about anything that was going on because you knew exactly where the match was headed. I'm not a fan of these kind of matches because they usually don't get good until the end and this match was no exception. In nothing else, it furthered the story between the two teams effectively and it finally solidified Lashley as a babyface.
I know TNA has been doing this gimmick show for years, but to me, having every match on the show contested inside a Steel Cage lessens the gimmick of the cage. It also didn't help that some of the matches suffered from interference despite the cage being intended to prevent that kind of thing. Regardless, I enjoyed the show on the whole and it was cool of TNA to bring it to TV for the first time ever. Since a handful of feuds culminated on this show, I'm interested in seeing what new storylines develop in the weeks ahead as TNA heads overseas to the United Kingdom.