1. LAX vs. Senshi and Elix Skipper – Ultimate X Match – 7
2. Eric Young vs. Jimmy Rave vs. Lance Hoyt vs. Havoc vs. Shark Boy vs. Petey Williams vs. Kaz vs. Alex Shelley vs. Chris Sabin vs. Sonjay Dutt vs. Kip James vs. BG James vs. James Storm vs. Robert Roode vs. Chris Harris vs. Junior Fatu – Fight for the Right Battle Royal – 4
3. Tyson Tomko and AJ Styles vs. Ron “The Truth” Killings and Rasheed “Consequences” Creed – 5
4. Jay Lethal vs. Christopher Daniels – 6
5. Stiener Bros. vs. Team 3-D – 2 out of 3 Falls Table Match – 4
6. Gail Kim vs. Roxxi vs. Jackie Moore vs. Tracy Brooks vs. Christy Hemme vs. ODB vs. Angel Williams vs. Talia Madison vs. Shelly Martinez vs. Awesome Kong – Gauntlet Battle Royal – 3
7. Christian Cage vs. Samoa Joe – 7
8. Abyss vs. Raven vs. Black Reign vs. Rhyno – Monster’s Ball – 2
9. Sting vs. Kurt Angle – 4
The show started off hot, with a fiery Atlanta live crowd, and thrilling opener. The audience was eating up all of the bumps and signature spots, and the performers were definitely feeding off their energy. Elix is patently inconsistent, but didn’t look bad here, and Senshi is always going to deliver. The second bout featured three stipulations, each directly leading into eliminating down the group involved, eventually culminating in a singles bout with Roode and Young. Despite itself, this was pretty fun, thanks in large part to the exceptional work from guys like Shelley and Kaz. The tag bout was real good, with newcomer Creed holding his own, and kept me compelled.
Lethal and Daniels was real solid, treating it like a big match, and it was good for Lethal to have someone with some veteran presence in there to lead him to something not just interesting, but actively good. The tables match featured tame crowd brawling, on top of disappointing table spots themselves. One table “accidentally” broke, but since the Stieners were booked to win, they didn’t acknowledge it whatsoever. Scott Stiener was the only guy who stood out at all. The women’s match was a real laugh, with most of the girls being indiscernible from each other, and nothing of real note, save for the elimination of gargantuan Awesome Kong, where her gladiatorial battle armor lifted up and we saw her cringe-inducing chest bared.
I dig Joe as much as the next guy, but his last year of stuff, largely five-minute TV matches, has failed to impress. This was him in classic Joe form, bringing the battle to Christian, and doing all of his signature shit, like diving to the floor and hitting a barrage of open hand slaps. This was arguably the best match of the show. I thought the Monster’s Ball was a monstrous piece of shit. It was the same tired, clichéd, passé hardcore garbage that’s so damn hackneyed. And, even the hardcore elements weren’t done well, like Raven’s sloppily executed elbow drop through a table, and tame weapon shots. I was thoroughly disappointed in the main event, too. I was anticipating a classic match – what I got was an overbooked, overblown, veritable mess. Russo’s fingerprints were all over this. Keep an eye out for this big-time botch, as Sting’s supposed to block Angle’s baseball bat shot, but doesn’t properly, and ends up taking it to the face (which he ignores) and starts bleeding the hard way during his triumphant winning sequence.