by Joe Thunder - January 12, 2013
Welcome to Thunder And Lightning’s first preview column of 2013! Because the TNA pay per views will only be live four times in 2013, we will only be doing previews for those shows(can’t predict taped stuff when we already know the outcome). Let’s get right down to business!
Devon vs. Joseph Park
JT: Abyss vs Devon. Think we see a black hole slam in this one? Me too. I really don’t have a whole lot to say about the Aces and Eights storyline anymore, only that I’ve grown tired of it. There’s been no tease of their actual leader being revealed anytime soon(rumored to be Eric Bischoff) and the group has no direction besides “destroying” TNA. Why not go for some more gold? I predict Park to get the win in this one just because he needs to prove himself as a “trained” wrestler. Confidence Points: 5
ML: Joseph Park has been stuck in this “wanting to become a wrestler” storyline while Devon has won back his TV Title. The Aces & Eights storyline has effectively become irrelevant by poor booking and the lackluster storyline finally fizzling further out of relevance. TNA needs to find a way to recreate this storyline and make it mean something again by trying to add the element of importance into it. Joseph Park’s “Rocky” storyline I believe will come full circle and come to a close with this match.
Confidence Points: 3
QuickNote: Interference will factor into this match which will effectively “unleash the monster” in Joseph Park(Abyss).
James Storm vs. Christopher Daniels
JT: This one hasn’t been built on much of a story, but the segments leading to it haven’t been entirely awful either. Both guys can wrestle a great match, and that makes me optimistic. Daniels should have been World Champion by now and James Storm should’ve had the belt for longer than a week. I would predict Daniels to win with help from Kazarian, but James Storm doesn’t seem to lose too often on pay per views. Storm wins again when Kaz interference backfires. Confidence Points: 5
ML: After the AJ Styles and Daniels 100-year feud came to end in December, TNA did a good job at putting two of their best talents in a feud to help keep them in the spotlight. Storm has been one of TNA’s hardest workers and Daniels is one of the most underused and underrated wrestlers TNA has. This match has the potential of being the Match of the Night if they’re given enough time to work a good contest. Look for Kazarian to try and somehow get involved in this match.
Prediction: James Storm
Confidence Points: 4
Sting vs. Doc(Director of chaos)
JT: Sting’s big return leads to a match with…Doc. Really? I don’t see TNA making too much out of the man formerly known as Luke Gallows, and I also don’t see Sting performing at a level where he is in the main event of many more shows. For me, this adds up to Sting getting a quick win without much of a story. Confidence Points: 2
ML: I must say that Sting facing DOC is extremely underwhelming and very lackluster booking by TNA. DOC isn’t even the “VP” or the TV Champion of Aces & Eights and Sting is supposed to be a “savior” for TNA. Seems like TNA is clinging, or attempting, to keep this storyline from becoming a disastrous fail. This match will not end up being the saving grace for the storyline since Sting is leagues better than Luke Gallows, even at 52 years of age.
Confidence Points: 5
QuickNote: Sting will NOT lose his “big return” match.
Gauntlet Match For Knockouts Title #1 Contendership:
Gail Kim vs. ODB vs. Miss Tessmacher vs. Mickie James vs. Velvet Sky
JT: The knockouts matches haven’t been anything special lately, but they’re still head and shoulders above WWE in terms of their female athletes. To me, the winner of this thing is obvious for a couple reasons. First, all these ladies have had their shot at Tara but one. Second, she just came back recently. Velvet wins. Confidence Points: 5
ML: This match should be interesting considering the talent of the Knockouts here. Madison Rayne’s absence from this match is a little baffling to me, but I’m sure there is a good reason for it. Mickie returned after a three month hiatus; she won a Battle Royal but failed to capture the Knockouts Title. ODB it seems has been on the cusp of always getting a push, but never progressing further towards that push. Gail Kim has had two dominant reigns and Miss Tessmacher is the most recent former Champion. Velvet Sky is returning from a long hiatus from the company.
Prediction: Velvet Sky to become the Number One Contender
Confidence Points: 4
QuickNote: The surprise winner would be ODB and I was close to picking her but I feel TNA is too lazy and too predictable to follow any other formula than the “wrestler returns, push to the title” formula that Mickie James just recently went through. That’s why I picked Velvet Sky.
X-Division Tournament Finals:
Christian York vs. Kenny King
JT: This match won’t get enough time to showcase the amount of talent these two possess. It will be excellent wrestling, and I predict that it’s Kenny King’s time to challenge for the gold(again). Confidence Points: 5
ML: Both matches to qualify for this finals match were relatively lackluster and slow-paced. King and Ion’s match was a disappointment in terms of the talent and capabilities each possess; they should have been able to put on an excellent match. Kid Kash has been very lame as of late and relatively boring in his last few matches and Christian York looked more like a rookie than a 10+ year veteran in the ring. TNA better hope that York and King have better chemistry than the two previous matches had.
Prediction: Kenny King
Confidence Points: 4
TNA X-Division Title Match:
Rob Van Dam vs. Winner of X-Division Tournament
JT: I predicted Kenny King to be the opponent of RVD here, and I predict that Kenny King steals the gold from RVD to start the biggest year of his career. If TNA is smart, they’ll reward King for his hard work since he jumped ship from ROH and make him the champion that he deserves to be. He and RVD can build towards a huge rematch at Lockdown if they book it right. King wins the gold. If by some chance York is facing RVD instead of King, then RVD retains. Confidence Points: 5
ML: The Kenny King/RVD feud has been slowly progressing over the last few months. King has shown heel tactics in order to gain wins over his opponents and Christian York’s popularity and booking indicates that he’s a face. TNA officials seem to have high hopes for York but I don’t believe he’s quite there yet to contest for the title. King is ready, despite that dud of a match with Zema Ion to get here. I’m glad the X-Division is being featured on this PPV with two matches.
Prediction: Kenny King to win the X-Division Title; RVD to retain if they book Christian York to win against King.
Confidence Points: 3
QuickNote: If York wins, look for King to distract or interfere in the title match in order for York to lose to set up a King/York feud.
TNA World Tag Team Title Match:
Chavo Guerrero and Hernandez vs. Matt Morgan and Joey Ryan
JT: Joey Ryan and Matt Morgan are two guys that I feel could excel as singles competitors. Both of them are loaded with talent and both could carry themselves in upper mid-card to main event level matches. For me, TNA really dropped the ball with Morgan because he could have been World Champion that had excellent rivalries with guys like Storm, Roode, and now Aries and even Bully Ray. That aside, TNA is doing what they can to make tag teams seems important, and that isn’t saying much since the only other “teams” on the roster are bad influence and the two Robbies. I’m sure I could be forgetting someone, but obviously TNA doesn’t care enough to make me remember their roster all too well. Hernandez and Chavo are a good complement for each other, and I like them as a team. I don’t know what direction TNA will go here for certain, but I’m predicting Joey Ryan and Matt Morgan to win the tag team titles. Confidence Points: 3
ML: I’m over this Hernandez and Chavo title reign; I’ve been over it for a while now. They don’t make good champions and their title reign hasn’t been anything special. Their gimmicks are overused, as we’ve seen Mexican America before. Joey Ryan and Matt Morgan’s gimmick are different but mesh well together so they make a good tandem. Morgan and Ryan having been chasing the titles for a while and this feud has had an element of partially being worthwhile.
Prediction: Matt Morgan & Joey Ryan to become NEW Tag Team Champions
Confidence Points: 4
Elimination Match – TNA World Title:
Jeff Hardy vs. Bobby Roode vs. Austin Aries
JT: I honestly have no idea how TNA is going to book this. The match itself should be excellent, but I could see Jeff Hardy dropping the title in order to challenge one of these guys at Lockdown just to win it back(pointless, but good for pushing the face to a big victory in March). If this match delivers the way it should, viewers who actually pay for this should go home somewhat pleased. I predict Hardy to retain the gold, and that’s only because TNA needs to prove to everyone that Jeff Hardy is good enough to defeat both men at once. Confidence Points: 5
ML: The best looking match on the card and, in my opinion, possibly even Match of the Night. Roode and Aries are excellent and have great chemistry together, Hardy is the wild card in this match. Roode and Aries will probably end up teaming up on Hardy before eventually turning on each other. Look for Hardy to possibly have his superhero moments in this match since TNA has been booking him as “Super-Hardy” as of late. With Hardy’s contract expiring soon and no word on him re-signing with the company it’ll be interesting to see what TNA decides to do.
Prediction: Bobby Roode to become NEW World Champion
Confidence Points: 2
QuickNote: Look for a feud to escalate between Roode and Hardy. What I would do if I was TNA is have the feud come down to a “Loser Leaves TNA Match” between the two in March, if Hardy doesn’t re-sign with the company.
Final Thoughts: Bully Ray isn’t on the card, but I’d speculate some interaction between himself and the Hogans. I don’t want to see that garbage on a pay per view, but I don’t see TNA doing this show without a Hogan appearing on it. For me, this card feels like one of the most lackluster in recent memory. Doc, Devon, Joseph Park(the character, not abyss)…these guys just don’t excite me. Where the hell are Joe and Magnus and the rest of the X-Division? Yes, I’m complaining. I’m optimistic that TNA can still pull out a good card because of the X-Division, Knockouts, and the Main Event(also the added bonus of Storm/Daniels). Here’s hoping they deliver the goods!
There you have it. Make sure to leave your predictions below! Thanks for reading!
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