Monday, October 30, 2023

21 Years Ago In TNA #19 - It Ended On A High Note, At Least (October 30th, 2002)

Another edition of NWA-TNA... yay?

This show didn't leave me with much to say and yet some stuff is going forward. We're finally picking up on this mystery Mr. Wrestling III dude as I count down the weeks to this project coming to a close, as he is addressed by both Jeff Jarrett and Ron Killings. Scott Hall has an impassioned interview with Mike Tenay talking about wanting to finally win the big one, which leads to a NWA title match with champion Ron Killings, who retains the title despite the interference of Mr. Wrestling III. And the match was the second match up, following an opening match between Kid Kash and Tony Mamaluke that could almost be considered a throwback to the ECW days.

NWA Tag-Champs AMW retain the titles in a 3-way over the two teams they beat in previous shows, only to get ambushed by the James Mitchell-led team of Slash and Brian Lee... well, that should be fun. Bob Armstrong, still posing as an NWA official as though that means something, announces that a champion could lose their title on a DQ or count-out, thus eliminating the champion's advantage, as it were. Amazingly, it's a rule change that I recall actually sticking up until 2006 because it was a technicality that ended up with a fuck finish at a later TNA PPV down the road.

We have a tournament to crown another no. 1 contender, with BG James defeating a Harris boy and Sonny Siaki defeating Jerry Lynn to advance in the tourney, while Jeff Jarrett beat on a bloodied Curt Hennig after several backstage attacks in under a minute to supposedly advance, except not really because they're getting a rematch next week. Eh.

The show does end on a high note, however, with the main event being an amazing match between X-Division champion AJ Styles and Amazing Red, with Styles ultimately winning. Not one of the greatest matches in the history of our sport, but a great spotlight of two young guys who seemed poised to have a great future in this business... well, one of them will, at least.

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