TNA Hardcore Justice 2012 – A show of two halves

TNA Hardcore Justice

Date:                   12th August 2012

Venue:                Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida

Commentators:   Mike Tenay, Tazz

We are firmly on the Road to Bound for Glory now, with this pay per view another stop in that road for all the wrestlers. Three Bound for Glory Series matches with special stipulations added to them; a rematch for the World Title from Destination X between Aries and Roode, as well as the whole Aces & Eights Gang angle in the mix, this pay per view looks good on paper. Let’s begin.

The intro to this show gives a horror film feeling, which I like a lot. The horrors of the BFGS. Could have been better, could have been worse.

Match 1: Chavo Guerrero/Hernandez defeats Kid Kash/Gunner

Chavo’s pay per view debut for TNA here and this is a result of Kash and Gunner interrupting Chavo’s debut on IMPACT a few weeks ago. Oh and Hernandez helped Chavo out, so here we are. The whole purpose of an opening match is to wake the crowd up and get them into the show. This match failed to do that in all aspects. It was boring, formulaic and it showed with the crowd being dead for most of this. Boring match with the frog splash ending this for Chavo/Hernandez. Rating: D

Match 2: Falls count anywhere Bound for Glory Series match: Rob Van Dam defeats Mr Anderson; Magnus and Pope Dinero

Aces & Eights attacked Pope before the match (interesting there), making this match a three way dance essentially. Yes that’s what they call triple threat matches outside WWE in case you didn’t know. This match showed Magnus and Mr Anderson on their own is a plain boring matchup, as there was more action involved with RVD in it. In that sense, RVD winning the match makes sense and was the right move here, but it made for some dead spots in this one. At least the falls count anywhere stipulation was used well enough. Rating: C-

Match 3: TV Title: Devon (c) defeats Kazarian

A bonus match for us and it answers my question (in my head) about whether Kazarian would feature here. This came about from a belt shot by Kaz to Devon in his and Daniels tag title defence on IMPACT last week, so this was about as last minute as you could get. Short match but it amazingly woke the crowd up a bit, which surprised me a little. A few near falls here for both men but the spinebuster ended this for Devon to retain his title. How long has he held that belt for? 6 months? Who is going to end his reign as champion? Rating: C

Match 4: TNA Knockouts Championship: Madison Rayne defeats Miss Tessmacher (c)

And yes, Earl Hebner was the referee for this match, who Madison had a crush on for a number of weeks now. Guess how this match went down? Rayne won by holding the ropes but Hebner didn’t see it, to crown a new Knockouts champion. This was a smart decision for the storyline here, but as the crowd was dead for the winning pinfall and the match itself, does anyone even care at all? Rating: C

Match 5: Bound for Glory Series tables match: Bully Ray defeats Jeff Hardy; James Storm and Robbie E

Wait, so Pope Dinero got attacked by A&E earlier, but Robbie E didn’t, so we have to out up with him here? Well that sucks! Robbie E even botched moving a table out of the way so Bully didn’t get suplexed through it by Storm and Hardy. He went through the edge of it, so the referees waved it off. Awkward moment there. Apart from that, A&E interfered fully in this match, aiding Storm by saving him from Hardy and then Bully Ray (They even gave him a thumbs up).  Bully ended up powerbombing hardy through the table for the 20 points. Good match here which used the tables stipulation well, but it also builds on the story of A&E aiding Storm very well. Best match of the night so far. Rating: B-

Jeremy Borash says no-one has an idea where Aces & Eights are hiding or coming from. Maybe try security cameras to see them?

Match 6: X Division Championship: Zema Ion (c) defeats Kenny King

This match seemed a bit obvious in its outcome, but it was a solid enough effort from both these guys, especially Kenny King. He is a future X Division champion in my eyes at the moment and a great credit to the division in TNA. Although we have seen a lot of this stuff before, sometimes you just need to go back to basics for a good match, and that’s what both men did here. Back and forth action had me guessing on who would win but Ion picked up the win after some near falls. Rating: B-

Match 7: Bound for Glory Series Ladder match: AJ Styles defeats Samoa Joe; Kurt Angle and Christopher Daniels

The winner was the first man to grab the 20 point envelope above the ring. Now, considering the four talents in the ring for this match, what did you expect for a match? Ok, it was not as great as it possibly have been, but it was a great match full of bumps and use of the ladders. Daniels was more or less used as a piñata throughout the match, even being trapped between the ladder rungs, while AJ Styles grabbed the envelope by springboard from the ropes to the ladder right in front of Samoa Joe. The look on Joe’s face after the match was priceless, but it says how important the BFGS is to all the wrestlers. Creative ending for AJ Styles and a great match to get the crowd into. Rating: B

We got a promo on Austin Aries risking it all (including the X Division title he surrendered last month) to have one shot at the World Title. He beat Roode for the title at Destination X last month and has been called a fluke champion since by Roode. Tonight is the rematch, with the special stipulation that neither man who loses this match, will receive a rematch for the title.

Match 8: TNA World Heavyweight Championship: Austin Aries (c) defeats Bobby Roode

Ok this match needs to be broken down a little bit. First of all, the fact Aries got the win was a bit surprising, as I was predicting Bobby Roode would main event Bound for Glory against my BFGS pick James Storm in a grudge match. No rematch for him after this loss, so that looks to be out of the window. Secondly, WAY too much stalling at the beginning of the match, as Roode channelled his inner Memphis to annoy AA. And thirdly, after a double pin between the both of them, the match got restarted, as I dreaded a WrestleMania 27 re-run (look at John Cena and The Miz). Rollup got the win for Aries, but the match didn’t feel as good as the original at Destination X. It felt a little overbooked by the end of it all, but otherwise this was your average TNA main event. Rating: C+

Overall: C This pay per view is a tale of two halves. The first half was average and boring, with even the live crowd giving near to zero reactions at times. The second half the show was miles better and showcased several good to great matches. The main event was average and a repeat of last month’s at Destination X, but that is the norm with this company, so I can look past that. If you ignore the first half of this show, it’s a great show to watch, with the best match being the ladder match by far. Solid show, if nothing too spectacular, on the Road to Bound for Glory.


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