The show started with a recap of last week when Sting called out "Jeff" by name. They cut backstage where Jeremy Borash found Steve Borden to ask what he has in mind for tonight. Jarrett had two words: Jeff Jarrett.
After the announcers quickly ran through tonight's episode of TV, the TNA World champ Samoa Joe came to the ring. Joe was escorted by security guards through the crowd into the ring. Tenay said Booker, Angle, and Christian are the challengers against Joe for the TNA Title at the PPV. Joe called out Sting. He said he doesn't care as much about the title match as getting Sting's head on a silver platter.
Kevin Nash interrupted and said he cares more about it than Joe because of his six-month investment. Joe cut him off and said when Nash put his hands on him, it all ended. Nash said he's right. He was like the father with a cig in one hand and a drink in the other hand telling Joe not to drink or smoke. Nash said he doesn't lead by example, but Joe has three guys gunning for his title at the PPV. He said he has something lined up for tonight to see if Joe is ready for the PPV match. Of note, Nash looked a bit...um...out of it cutting this promo. Joe said he'll prove to Nash and the fans that he'll keep his promise of running through all-comers. He said he's still coming after Sting once he's done with Nash's challenge.
Backstage: Lauren was with the Beautiful People and Kip James. Lauren asked Angelina Love about this "bogus" beauty pageant when she should be more focused on the Knockouts Title match on Sunday. Angelina took offense and said it's not about family, friends, or money because beauty is everything. So sad. But, a good heel line. Angelina said she'll be the new champ on Sunday, but tonight is about making an example out of Taylor Wilde.
Impact Zone: Abyss came to the ring for the opening match. Interesting new camera angle from the back of the arena to give the Zone a larger feel. Nice selection. Abyss has an open challenge again tonight, and Christian Cage answered the bell.
1 -- ABYSS vs. CHRISTIAN CAGE
Abyss quickly shook up Christian with a rear end splash in the corner after landing several body blows. Abyss followed with a lift-up slam to continue dominating one of the contenders to the TNA Title at the PPV. Abyss wanted another corner splash, but Christian moved and fired up a round of clotheslines that led to an elbow smash from the second rope for a nearfall. Christian wanted a top rope frog splash, but Kane...er...Abyss guzzled him around the neck for a chokeslam attempt. Christian slipped out initially, but Abyss got him with the chokeslam on a second attempt. West with a good question of whether this was a smart move from Christian to take the open challenge this close to the PPV. Christian then came back with the Unprettier, but Angle and Booker T stormed the ring to beat up Christian and cause a DQ.
WINNER: No Contest in 4:00. As expected, a non-finish to a match between two semi-main event wrestlers. Fine set up for the tag match to follow... (*)
Angle brought a chair into the ring while Abyss stood in the corner, but then Angle handed the chair to Abyss. He surveyed the crowd on whether to live for his old ways, but he opted to drop the chair and start attacking Booker and Angle. The numbers caught up to Abyss, though, and Booker set up Abyss for a chair shot to the head, only to have Matt Morgan make the save for Abyss. Morgan then took the mic and said he has a real problem with them trying to jump his male partner. He booked a tag match for Math Morgan and Abyss against Angle and Booker.
Impact Zone: Jeremy Borash was in the ring to introduce the Beautiful People beauty contest. Three events tonight. (1) Evening Gown. (2) Talent competition. (3) Bikini Competition. Please tell me Borash isn't in the third one. Borash then brought out Super Eric, Curry Man, and Shark Boy as the three judges for the deal. First contestant out was Angelina Love, who was accompanied by Velvet Sky and Kip James. They took their sweet time arriving on the scene, then Borash introduced Taylor Wilde as the other contestant. Everyone's favorite impartial referee, Rudy Charles, provided the escort to the ring for Taylor.
Angelina took her trip around the ring first in the evening gown. West tried to play a serious fashion commentator looking at Angelina's poise in the dress. Taylor then pranced around the ring. This was quite awkward. Kip looked clueless, which he plays so well. Borash then went to the judges on the winner. Curry Man was mesmerized, but picked Angelina. Sharkie went Wilde. Super Eric, in deep thought about nothing, surveyed the audience before going with Taylor. Wilde wins this round. And they have two more rounds to go with this.
Backstage: Lauren brought in Sonjay Dutt to discuss So Cal Val's love on the line this Sunday. Dutt said this is all he's ever wanted and the opportunity comes at No Surrender. He said he doesn't care that he ruined Lethal's love or life because it's all worth with it when he gets Val. Dutt said his father was one of the most successful men in India and his dad told him to always have more than the next guy, even if the next guy is your friend. Dutt stared into the camera and maniacally said, "No Mercy." Nice promo.
Karen's Angle: Tonight, it's Karen with Sting. Well, hopefully nothing offensive here. Sting was Steve Borden here. Borden said he's demanded respect for the whole business. Karen asked Borden about contemplating retirement a while ago. He said he was ready to walk away, but he had the nagging question of what would happen to wrestling if he left. Borden said that before he leaves, he wants to bring respect back to the business. Basically repeating his promo from a few weeks ago about Styles attacking Angle and Joe attacking Booker.
Karen said the younger guys in the back are tired of the veterans not stepping aside. Borden ripped off his sunglasses and said he knows what it's like to be the "j-brone" and the quiet guy in the back with no say. His voice jumped up a notch as he said he wants to beat respect back into the young guys backstage. Karen closed by asking about Jeff Jarrett. Borden said he doesn't know where Jarrett stands, but he's very interested to find out. Karen closed with a pleasant thank you to Borden for being here. Wow, a Karen's Angle where someone doesn't get beat up.
Ringside: Tenay and West broke down the PPV line-up for Sunday, then A.J. Styles came to the ring with a mic in hand. Styles said Frank Trigg needs to get in the ring right now. He said Trigg should be getting the piss beat out him right now. Cut to break.
Impact Zone: Trigg walked to the ring with a cocky smile to answer Styles's challenge. Trigg sarcastically thanked Styles for the words, then reminded Styles he's a professional mixed martial artist who hurts people...on purpose. OK, that was a horribly scripted line. Trigg said in his world, they don't have pinfalls, only Knockouts and Tapouts. He challenged Styles to an MMA fight at the PPV. Styles accepted, then they shook hands. Trigg mocked Styles's handshake, then Styles slapped him across the face. Trigg with a takedown on Styles, then security intervened to separate them.
Backstage: Lauren was with Christian Cage, who wasn't too happy about what happened earlier. He said it's fight or flight right now. Christian said he might not be the biggest, strongest, or fastest, but he always fights. He said he won't yell and scream or yap at the mouth because the point is that it's going to take a lot to keep the Instant Classic down and away from the main event at the PPV. Christian said this PPV is in his backyard - one hour away from where he got hooked on wrestling flipping channels. He quietly, yet passionately described his humble beginnings from working for $10 in his first professional match to coming full circle on Sunday when he becomes World Hvt. champion. And if you don't know, now you know. Heck of a strong promo. No yelling and screaming, just to the point.
Impact Zone: Now back to the Beautiful People beauty pageant with the same contestants and judges. Now is time for the bikini contest. Borash said he ensured that they are wearing regulation bikini wear. The random classic music hit, then Taylor pranced around before revealing her red, white, and blue sailor bikini. Angelina and Velvet choked back gasps. Angelina then took her position to some stripper music. West said this probably isn't the first time she's done this. Tenay with a sophomoric comment that the only thing missing is a stripper pole.
Angelina decided to leave the ring and head to the judge's table to give them a closer look. Angelina then slowly removed her robe to show off a heart-stopping blue and white bikini. Curry and Sharkie were in desperate need of oxygen. More lame comments from Tenay and West here, as they tried to pull Jerry Lawler's act unsuccessfully. Borash went to the judges with Super Eric picking Wilde. Curry and Sharkie then went with Angelina. So, it's even at 1-1 leading to the talent competition.
Video package: They focused on Awesome Kong's quest for violence. It seems nothing can stop this beast's rampage, except for ODB. They described her as the only woman who is man enough to stand up to Kong.
Impact Zone: Awesome Kong came to the ring for a bimbo brawl for the second match of the show. Yes, we're an hour into the show with four minutes of in-ring action. Roxxi then came out as the competition for Kong.
[Q5 -- second hour]
2 -- AWESOME KONG (w/Raisha Saeed) vs. ROXXI -- Bimbo Brawl
Kong quickly went on the attack here. She nearly smashed Roxxi with a shopping cart, then Roxxi tried to fight back as they went to a commercial early in the second hour.
They returned from break with Kong doing a number on Roxxi, only to accept a series of trashcan lid blows to the head. Roxxi then followed with a kick to the chest that knocked over Kong for a nearfall. Plenty of offense for Roxxi here. She then casually picked up Kong, who fired off a smashing clothesline. Kong delivered a scoop slam onto a chair, then she went to the second rope and missed with a big splash. Roxxi followed with a pin, but Kong kicked out. Roxxi made a mistake of arguing with the ref, then Kong chucked the chair into Roxxi's head that opened up a cut on Roxxi's forehead. Kong decided to put her out of her mercy with an Awesomebomb on Roxxi for the decisive pin. Just a nasty cut on Roxxi, who was spilling blood all over the mat.
WINNER: Kong in 7:00 with TV. Roxxi had good offense to keep Kong honest, but that cut on the forehead was a bit much. (*)
Afterward, Kong and Raisha wanted to inflict more punishment, but ODB made the save after Kong took forever to set up another Awesomebomb attempt. Kong then bailed from the ring to fight ODB another day. They fight at the PPV. ODB then took out her frustration on ref Slick Johnson and his moustache with a chair shot to the back that knocked Slick out of the ring.
Backstage: They showed Samoa Joe walking in anticipation of Kevin Nash's challenge.
[Commercial Break. An advertisement aired for WrestleMania 25 tickets here in Hurricane Ike country. Tix on-sale Sept. 20.]
Impact Zone: Jeremy Borash was in the ring to hype Nash's challenge for Samoa Joe. Johnny Devine was already in the ring ready for a trip to the beach. Samoa Joe then came to the ring ready for the challenge.
3 -- SAMOA JOE'S KEVIN NASH GAUNTLET CHALLENGE
Devine tried to attack Joe, but Joe quickly cut him off and nailed a Samoan Drop for the decisive pin for the first challenge victory. Lance Rock then came out with Christy Hemme and Jimmy Rave to provide the second challenge. Rock missed with a top rope splash after Joe did a classic nonchalant side-step before running off Rave and Hemme from distraction. Rock then found himself in the rear naked choke and he tapped out to Joe. Nash clapped, then Joe stared back at him with a tough stare.
Time for the third challenge from Nash. Borash slowly built it up, then brought out Tomko. Joe didn't react much, with Nash intently looking at Joe's reaction. Tomko slowly made his way to the ring with a big grin, then Joe and Tomko traded blows to start things off. Tomko then tried to come back with a Nash powerbomb, but Joe flipped him over on the mat and caught Tomko with an E. Honda front slam out of the corner. Joe then nailed the Muscle buster in center ring and made the cover for the decisive victory.
Afterward, Nash slowly entered the ring and delivered the Scott Hall double arm extension to Joe for an "old school" acknowledgement. Nash then took the mic and said Joe proved him wrong. He said Joe is more ready and he feels sorry for those SOBs in Toronto. Nash said he's taught Joe all he knows and he's on his own now. Nash shook hands with Joe, then they embraced in center ring. Joe looked a touch emotional, then Nash leaned down to kiss him on the forehead. Nash slowly left the ring with the camera following him all the way out the tunnel as Joe watched from inside the ring. Joe then saluted the crowd before holding up the TNA Title belt for everyone to see.
WINNER: Joe in 7:00. That certainly felt the culmination of a long journey of screaming promos, annoying Joe, frustrated Nash, and distraction-filled matches. It definitely seemed like Nash walking off into the sunset after trying to bring Joe to his level of mental superiority. Nice segment focused on the ass-kicking Joe we want to see. (*)
Impact Zone: With a crown sitting ringside, Borash brought in Wilde and Angelina for part 3 of the beauty pageant. Sure seems like this is ending with Wilde winning and Team Beautiful People beating up Wilde. We'll see. Borash said it's time for the Talent Competition. He said Angelina's talent will be an oral presentation.
Velvet said this will consist of three parts. First part was a lame knock-knock joke. Angelina said she has a hidden talent no one knows about. She stretched out a description of a poem she wrote just for Taylor about nailing the Baylor football team. Never in my wildest dreams did I think Baylor would make it on a wrestling broadcast. But, the content of this is pretty juvenile, aimed at a very stunted maturity level. Third part was Angelina and Velvet singing row row row your boat. Painful. Borash then swung it over to Wilde to perform on the drums. She did a brief number that excited the crowd slightly.
Borash sent it to the judges with Curry voting for Angelina, Sharkie for Wilde, and Super Eric with the final decision of Wilde. Borash hugged Wilde while BP freaked out. Wilde accepted the crown, ribbon, and long-stemmed roses before Kip started yelling at Wilde. Wilde smacked Kip, then Angelina and Velvet started beating up Wilde. Kip fended off the judges, then Rhino stormed the ring to make the save the damsel in distress.
Impact Zone: Booker T and Sharmell came to the ring first for tonight's main event. Tenay hyped the four-way TNA Title match at the PPV, then Kurt Angle came to the ring. The uncontrollable Matt Morgan came out, then Abyss for the default babyface team. Morgan needs to watch some Batista tapes - just the ring intros - to understand how to be a superstar big man who deliberately works the crowd in the palm of his hand. Morgan is just too hyper.
4 -- BOOKER T (w/Sharmell) & KURT ANGLE vs. MATH MORGAN & ABYSS
Abyss landed a big boot on Angle in the opening two minutes, but Booker broke up a pin attempt. The action broke down with Morgan and Abyss in control as they cut to break.
Angle and Morgan were squaring off out of the break, then Morgan no-sold a punch and landed a scoop slam on Angle. From behind on the apron, Booker smashed Morgan in the back to cut him off, then Angle and Booker started working over Morgan in their corner. Abyss took the hot tag at 9:00, then the action broke down. Booker ran into a Black Hole Slam from Abyss, but Abyss was too worn out to make the pin. Suddenly, Team 3D came to ringside and smashed Abyss in the head with a chair. Angle then covered Abyss for the pin. Afterward, Morgan freaked out while Angle and 3D celebrated on the floor.
WINNERS: Angle & Booker in 10:00. Basic pre-PPV main event with interference to lead into the PPV. Silver lining, as it seems every month, is that the babyface(s) have a reason to seek comeuppance. (*1/4)
Rafters: They showed Sting walking in anticipation of the final segment of the show.
Impact Zone: Sting came to the ring five minutes prior to the top of the hour to close the show. He wants to know how to order the PPV on Sunday. Actually, he wants to talk to Jeff Jarrett. Sting told Jarrett to come out wherever he is. He said he has no problem with Jeff, but he needs to know if Jeff has a problem with him. Sting suggested a Roundtable to talk about it. We need a host for that. Sting offered Joe a spot at the Roundtable, then Joe's music hit. Joe called out to Sting from the rafters and asked if he's really disrespectful or if Sting is just insecure. He welcomed Sting to No Surrender, and closed with a parting shot that he won't be coming alone.
Jeff Jarrett's music hit, then Jeff was shown standing on top of the entrance tunnel. Typical wardrobe for Jeff, who was shown standing with guitar raised in the air. And end show. They then closed with a recap video to hype the PPV on Sunday.