TNA Maximum iMPACT! Tour 2011 – Manchester, England (28/01/11)

TNA 2011 UK Tour

TNA 2011 UK Tour

TNA house show report (Courtesy of PWTorch)
January 28, 2011
Manchester, England at M.E.N. Arena

TNA had a good crowd. I was there in November for Raw, and the crowd was obviously not as big as that show, but it was still a pretty impressive crowd for a TNA event.

Jeremy Borash entered and got the crowd pumping. He was in top form and hosted the evening splendidly. I was in attendance with my friend who wasn’t a wrestling fan and it was interesting to see his POV on the night as well.

(1) Shannon Moore beat Mark Haskins in a #1 contender match to the X Division Title. Great opener with a lot of action and some dives to the outside. This Mark Haskins guy looked great. Haskins lost the match, but put on an excellent performance. My buddy thought it was good action with a lot of high-flying moves, but he wasn’t totally into it.

(2) Mickie James beat Angelina Love in a #1 contender match to the Knockouts Title with Tara as special referee. Nice match. Tara was great, as she was really enjoying her role as ref. The match was pretty nice. Nothing majorly exciting, but there was a great spot were both Angelina and Mickie rolled on the ground and rolled over Tara, then she stood up triumphantly. Mickie got the win and at the end of the match just randomly snogged Tara. It was very unusual, but no one complained. As Tara left, she kissed some little boy in the audience, which was cute. My friend thought this match was one of the best of the night. There were some daft spots that kept him entertained.

Ref Earl Hebner came down to the crowd and got the ‘You Screwed Bret’ chants. He whipped out shades and a t-shirt saying ‘Damn Right I Did.’ It was funny and the chants were very tongue-in-cheek. Many cheered Hebner for his legendary history refereeing pro wrestling. My friend thought it was horrible he was making fun of the Montreal Screwjob situation and thought he was quite low.

(3) X Division champion Kazarian beat Chris Sabin to retain the TNA X Division Title. This was probably the best match of the night for me. Kaz and Sabin went back and forth with great moves, a lot of diving to outside, and the action was on our side of the arena. It was an excellent bout and made me wish we could have Shelley on tour as well. Kazarian pinned Sabin and the crowd really showed appreciation for the match. My friend really enjoyed this match and, by this point, was in the swing of it.

(4) TNA tag champions Beer Money (James Storm & Robert Roode w/Ric Flair) beat Magnus & Douglas Williams to retain the TNA World Tag Team Titles. The crowd went nuts for Beer Money. They were pretty cold for Doug and Magnus, which was a real shame for the Brits. The match was pretty good with loads of pandering to the fans. The crowd loved Flair. He made a short speech, but everyone went nuts. It was bit sad because here’s a guy who was going to leave the tour, then decided to stay on, and all he did was a few ‘whooos’ and a strut and people went mad for it. That’s all he had to do and it was enough to keep people on his side. I did enjoy Doug Williams’s work. Half-way through the match, he declared betrayal from his country because people booed him. He was great. Beer Money had a few beers from fans and got the win. It was a great way to end the first half of the show, with everyone buzzing. My friend thought Beer Money was great fun, but Flair was a disappointment, expecting more from Flair.

[Intermission. During the intermission, Dixie Carter was at the back signing stuff and getting photos taken. Very interactive.]

(5) “The Blueprint” Matt Morgan & “The Freak” Rob Terry beat Jeff Jarrett & “The Pope” D’Angelo Dinero. Terry was a big surprise (literally). It was a good match, but nothing spectacular. Pope was great with the fans and seemed to be loving his heel role. Some people nearby cheered him and he told to keep quiet. Jarrett cut a promo at the start of the match and really riled up everyone. People chanted ‘you sold out’ at him. Morgan barely did anything in the match, but he finally tagged in and squashed Pope and Jarrett to get the win. My friend thought it was entertaining. He thought The Pope stood out and was really great to watch.

Dixie came out to plug TNA’s new U.K. TV deal on Challenge TV. She came in with two children and thanked the fans. There was a loud “Thank you, Dixie” chant, which rung loudly in the crowd.

(6) Rob Van Dam & TNA World Hvt. champion Mr Anderson beat Jeff Hardy & Matt Hardy in the main event. Van Dam got a huge pop, Matt got some slack for his weight gain (I couldn’t really see much gain), and Jeff got a good response. The match was very good, though Matt seemed to be lackluster. He over-sold some moves, but RVD was on fire with Rolling Thunder and monkey flips. He was great and so was Jeff. There was an odd altercation in which Jeff spat at Anderson on the ropes and Anderson got pretty pissed, so he ran in and smacked Jeff on the back saying, ‘Sorry.’ Odd moment. After this little spat (no pun intended), Anderson spat right back at Jeff, then Jeff right back at Anderson. The final moments saw Anderson get the win and then Anderson announced RVD and him as the winners of the match. Then, they shook hands with fans and left. This match was far better than their bout three weeks ago on Impact. At the close of the night, fans started to leave and JB stayed on signing programs offered by fans near the front.

Overall, the show had good, solid matches, fun segments, and was very fan interactive. There was something for everyone. My highlight was the main event or Kaz and Sabin, but I definitely enjoyed JB, Hebner, and Dixie as well. My friend enjoyed this show even more than his night at the Raw TV taping in November.

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About Ray Mullan
Ray Mullan is a longtime wrestling fan and Owner/Editor of TNA UK . Also a contributing writer to a number of other online wrestling media including 1Wrestling.com, Wrestle Zone UK & Lords of Pain.

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