Two shows live head-to-head on Monday night, with Hogan and Flair main eventing the opposition show … what is this, 1996?
1) Hulk Hogan & Abyss vs. A.J. Styles & Ric Flair – 1
2) Doug Williams vs. Daniels vs. Kazarian – 4
3) Taylor Wilde & Sarita vs. Madison Rayne & Velvet Sky vs. Angelina Love & Tara – 1
4) Sting vs. Rob Van Dam – 0
5) Eric Young vs. Syxx-Pac – 2
6) Jeff Jarrett vs. Beer Money – Handicap Match (w/ Mick Foley as referee) – 2
7) Hulk Hogan & Abyss vs. A.J. Styles & Ric Flair – No DQ Match – 4
Well, Impact started off with the advertised main event. Watching Hogan selling A.J.’s pele kick like he stumbled while walking down the street was quite amusing. Then we get Sting interference, a heel turn that actually suprised me, and a bloody beat down of the faces. Match wasn’t too long, maybe two minutes but the angle coming out of it was really good. The X-Division bout served as a good showcase for first time viewers. Kazarian did some flippy stuff and there were a few double pin spots but nothing that any long-time viewer hadn’t seen before. The match ended in a confusing way. Instead of Williams pinning Kazarian, he pinned Daniels and then Shannon Moore ran down with Bischoff awarding him an X-Title shot at the pay-per-view. So Kaz loses his shot without being pinned? That doesn’t make a lot of sense. Only notable thing coming out of the women’s match was that the Beautiful People won the Knockout’s Tag Titles. Well, that and Daffney hitting Tara with the Knockout’s title belt. Other than those two items, the match was 90 seconds of awful. RVD made a suprisingly un-suprising debut when Taz gave it away on commentary by asking Tenay what he was doing at 4:20 in the afternoon, a joke and reference that was probably totally lost on Tenay. He got the pin in 9 seconds with the crowd going completely apeshit. Sting completely no-sells everything after the match and beats the piss out of RVD for about five minutes with a ball bat.
Next up, was an impromptu bout between Young and Syxx-Pac that lasted a whole minute until Young won with a piledriver. Syxx-Pac totally botched it and fell in a heap when Young tried to clothesline him over the top to the rampway. I wish he would go back to Mexico. The handicap match was bizarre as there was no angle leading up to it during the entire show until Jarrett was talking with Storm before the bout and they started brawling. And where the hell did Foley come from? He hadn’t been mentioned once on the entire show and yet he randomly appears during the Jarrett/Storm brawl and refs the match? And Beer Money are heels now? The finish was really odd where Foley handed Jarrett a barbed wire bat which was then confiscated by referee Slick Johnson who counted the fall after a low-blow on Jarrett. I think it just served as a reminder that Russo is still writing the show. The main event was a fun little bout, mainly more for novelty than anything else. I can’t believe that Hogan and Flair are still wrestling each other on my TV in 2010. Flair and Hogan both gigged, with Flair’s entire head almost soaked in blood by the end of the bout. Hogan has no mobility and could barely do anything more than throw punches and a big boot. The entire match was based around Hulk’s daughter Brooke being concerned for her dad’s health. However, triumphantly, as is the norm in every Hogan match, he hit the big boot and fed A.J. to Abyss for the pin. Afterwards, another beat-down ensues until Jeff Hardy made the save for the faces.
1) Kelly Kelly, Gail Kim, & Eve Torres vs. Alicia Fox, Katie Lea Burchill, & Maryse – 2
2) The Big Show & The Miz vs. John Morrison & R-Truth – 0
3) Randy Orton vs. Ted DiBiase & Cody Rhodes – Handicap Match – 3
4) Evan Bourne vs. William Regal – 1
5) John Cena vs. Vince McMahon, Vladimir Koslov, Drew McIntyre, Jack Swagger, Mark Henry, and Batista – Handicap Gauntlet Match – 1
Raw was quite the lackluster show in terms of match quality, with nothing garnering above a “3” and nothing besides the Shawn/Undertaker segment to start off the program worth checking out. The divas match was fine for what it was, that being another six-diva throw-away tag bout in a seemingly endless series of six-diva throw-away tag bouts on Raw. Fox falling face first to the outside and Eve locking in an armbar submission were the highlights. The tag bout was nothing but Morrison and Truth coming in and beating up the heels in order to get some interest in the tag title match at WrestleMania. The handicap match really didn’t do anything for me. These three are stuck in a direction-less feud with no clear end in sight. Clearly, nobody seemed motivated to ratchet the match up to get the audience emotionally invested in it. Plus, like the Energizer bunny, it kept going and going and going. Orton did the job and Cody and Ted posed afterward. I wish they would start going somewhere with this or all three of these guys will lose their steam. My last crap was longer than the Bourne/Regal match. Only notable thing was Bourne winning with the shooting star press. Speaking of shit, that’s the perfect way to describe the so-called “main event”. Cena and McMahon were introduced by guest host Criss Angel (side note: this guest host stuff has run its course and needs to be abolished) and then McMahon decided to make in a handicap gauntlet match. Rules were never explained and people would come down hit a move or two and disappear. Wonder if Criss Angel had anything to do with them disappearing? Mark Henry being a part of this was never explained aside from the fact that Cole mentioned that he was friends with Cena. Batista then comes down, destroys everyone, and helps McMahon get the pin on Cena in a capper to a pretty run-of-the-mill show.