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The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: TNA HardCORE Justice 8.8.2010

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Well...that was something else.

Quick Results:

- The FBI (Tracy Smothers, Little Guido, and Tony Luke) with Big Sal defeated Kid Kash, Simon Diamond, and Johnny Swinger when Guido pinned Diamond with the Sicilian Drop.

- 2 Cold Scorpio defeated CW Anderson with an inverted 450 leg drop.

- Stevie Richards defeated PJ Polaco with the Stevie Kick. 

- Three Way Dance: Rhino defeated Brother Runt and Al Snow. Runt eliminated Snow with an Acid Drop, but was Gored by Rhino.

- Team 3D (Brother Ray and Brother Devon) defeated Axl Rotten and Cajones (formerly Balls Mahoney) after powerbombing Kahoneys through a flaming table.

- Raven defeated Tommy Dreamer with the Evenflow DDT. 

- TNA World Heavyweight Champion Rob Van Dam defeated Sabu with the Five Star Frog Splash

The Good

  • Al Snow / Stevie Richards / Hollywood Nova - Awesome backstage promo that took a ton of jabs at the potential legal ramifications of Hardcore Justice. The fake Meanie wearing a BW2.O shirt was pretty funny as was Snow asking Nova where his scooter was and Nova's response, "In a warehouse in Stanford, or in a toilet bowl, where your career would be if not for Head." The Lupus cameo was the cherry on top of a very entertaining backstage skit.
  • 2 Cold Scorpio - 2 Cold still has it despite being 44 years old. The dude can flat out perform. He kind of fell off my radar once he went over to Japan but it is great to see that he can still work an awesome match. All of his high spots were so crisp and precise. The 450 back flip leg drop was a thing of beauty. He is one guy I would like to see show up in TNA because he could definitely put on some great matches with most members of the X Division. 
  • Where Are They Now? - I actually liked these quick vignettes. Pretty cool to see what some of the people who couldn't make it (or had the self-respect not to show up) thought about Hardcore Justice. Love the Philadelphia accents from Meanie, Gary Wolfe and Francine. 
  • JOEL GERTNER~!  - What more needs to be said? As Mike Tenay said, he hasn't lost his touch: "It is I, the bacon in her eggs. The man for whom she begs and the face between her legs...the lyrical miracle, the sexual intellectual and the quintessential studmuffin, Joel 'Lady Gaga advocates celibacy...what an absolute disgrace...if she won't let me stuff her muff then I'll just poke her face' Gertner. Back together tonight with my running buddies, my colleagues in chaos. Ask the tag teams that they've decimated, they all know why they're so decorated. They are the biggest, the baddest, the sickest and most vicious, the most extreme, hardcore tag team in the wrestling business yesterday, today and forever. From New York City, at a total combined weight of 569 pounds, they are the Dud....TEAM 3D"
  • Extreme Light Saber Battle - I laughed.
  • New Jack / Jeremy Borash / So Cal Val - A surprisingly low key and lucid backstage segment from New Jack. To Val: "What up white girl? You know what they say about black men? Once you go get bad credit." To JB: "I guess that makes you my bitch." I laughed some more.
  • Rob Van Dam vs. Sabu - I want to make it clear that I don't think this match was good in the sense that it will be looked upon fondly in the future but it was good considering the expectations going into the main event. Sabu has a lot of miles on his engine but he still delivered a watchable match. Certainly not to the level of some their past battles but okay nonetheless. Sabu did get a lot of offense in on the champ which makes me wonder if that will play into RVD's match with Abyss on Thursday night.

The Bad

  • I Remember... - Are we supposed to care what AJ Styles, Angelina Love and Matt Morgan think about ECW? You went to school in Hawaii but lived at the Jersey Shore, Mr. Morgan? Jesse Neal went to see a show in Kissimmee, FL?

  • Tony Luke / P.J. Polaco / Cajones / 'The Original Era' / 'That Hardcore Company' / 'The Philadelphia Promotion' / The Van Assassin - I understand that TNA had to tip toe around the use of ECW and some of the trademarks that the WWE now owns but c'mon, son. There were a ton more examples that really demonstrated just how third-rate this pay-per-view was.
  • The Final Showdown Between Tommy Dreamer and Raven- How many times has this feud come to a head and then been reignited? Too many times is the correct answer. Dreamer beat Raven in a Loser Leaves ECW match, became an ECW Tag Team champion with Raven when he came crawling back from WCW, feud with Raven again after they lost the belts, feuded with him AGAIN in the WWE, defeated him in a Loser Leaves Raw match, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. Their match was essentially every match they ever had in ECW except much, much slower and not nearly as captivating. The reason why the feud originally worked was because Tommy could never, ever pin Raven so once he scored that first victory at Wrestlepalooza '97 the feud was over. The only entertaining spots were the barbed wire cross face that Dreamer applied to Raven and Dreamer's DDT despite being handcuffed.
  • The Wrestling - Outside of Scorpio/CW Anderson and RVD/Sabu the wrestling just was not pay-per-view quality. It wasn't offensive by any stretch of the imagination but it certainly not worth $34.95. One Night Stand still had the novelty of being the first real reunion so even if some of the action was substandard it was okay because it was all about celebrating the legacy of ECW. The novelty has long since worn off making this pay-per-view feel like one last money grab for some of the old timers. 

The Ugly

  • Simon Diamond - Man, he got big. Real big.
  • The Extreme Dance-Off - It was a dumb gimmick 15 years ago. It definitely has not aged well.
  • Bill Alfonso - Another guy who hasn't aged well.
  • Brother Runt's Place of Residence - Billed from New York City? I thought he lived in Dudleyville! Oh yeah, that's right...
  • The Gangstas' Awful Theme Music - Obviously TNA isn't going to pay the licensing for "Natural Born Killaz" but their knock off version of it was God awful. The Gangstas and the Dudley B.., I mean Team 3D, hugging it out to end the segment was bizarre. The lack of an original Nintendo Entertainment System in New Jack's trash casn was also disconcerting. Definitely one of my favorite original ECW weapons ever.
  • Sabu...bald?!? - The hair was part of his mystique. Now it's gone. Wow.
  • What, you can't tell time? - One of the little details I loved about the original ECW was that time of the fall was always announced. Very small, I know, but still a glaring omission for me.

Thursday Night better be awesome because I really can not believe that TNA pretty much put all of their storylines on hold for this. The most entertaining aspects of this professional wrestling pay-per-view had nothing to do with wrestling at all. This event perfectly exemplified everything that is wrong with TNA. It was cool to see some of these guys and I am glad they got paid and hopefully some of the boys will be able to get more work because of this but I truly am in disbelief that someone thought this would actually be a good idea. "The Whole F'n Show" should have been tonight and HardCORE Justice should have been Thursday night. Two thumbs and two big toes DOWN. 

Hopefully tomorrow night's go-home RAW for SummerSlam will cleanse my wrestling palate.

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