iMPACT Wrestling new era, will it include the X division? + rantBy pintnoir · · 4 Comments
So we finally know the final four going into Destination X, Austin Aries vs Zima Ion vs Lowki vs Jack Evans. Liking the pedigree of this match and what could be had. Also we have the following matches to look forward to..
Douglas Williams open challenge
Ultimate X number one contenders match Shelley vs Moore vs Robbie E vs Red
Jerry Lynn vs RVD
Samoa Joe vs Kazarian
Styles vs Daniels and
Abyss (c) vs Kendrick
From looking at this the pay per view looks good not great but good. The 35 dollar price tag considering that there isn’t any build up and it seems that this event was thrown together from the last month with really no build up (outside of the nostalgia matches and the contract four way) and that includes the Abyss championship reign against Kendrick considering he’s dominated Brian time and time again. But we have what we have. For all purposes this seems more like a specialty PPV booking on nostalgia and just moving the belt onto (maybe) another person and to feud with whoever wins the Ultimate X match (here’s hoping for Shelley, who is long over due).
I want to believe that the recent interview with Brian Kendrick is a work and him not shooting on the situation over in Dixieland. Where the buy rates of this PPV will determine whether or not the division is retired and the belt is merged ROH style with the World title, we really need this to work as fans of the product. We really don’t want to see a company who takes everything that made it different and unique, from the ring to the more beefed up divisions (Knockouts,X and Tag teams) and watch it become a mirror of Vince’s wrestling philosophy.
What philosophy? you may ask?
McMahon teaches that cruiser-weights are too dangerous and costly to have. So simply merge them in with the heavyweights in the hopes that like Rey Mysterio, Eddie Guerrero, Chris Jericho and Benoit they persevere and eventually win the title.
Women do not make good wrestlers. Their job during the Attitude Era where to entice, and shock with their sexuality not there wrestling moves. And in a friendlier environment they are there to give fans a chance for a bathroom break.
And finally the TAG TEAM Division is dead. Essentially the only purpose of a tag team is to find the marketable wrestler of the two and jettison the other when the time is right. Making the belts set pieces to be worn at random.
That also brings to mind the Ultimate X match for the number one contender ship, we have a deserving man Shelley taking on Shannon Moore, Amazing Red and the so out of place Robbie E. Why is Robbie E and not Max or Jeremy Buck part of the match? to me if TNA wants to use Robbie put him against Eric Young. Those two fighting over the television belt only makes sense, they have talent but are mired in comedy jobber ville. Let me take you folks back to a time when WCW had their Television title champion the Disco Inferno defending his belt against Alex Wright, the German dancer, both men were humor material at best when first brought in but bonded with fans and put on some good matches even when the booking required dance offs and forced tag matches, we still saw them go one on one with each other over the belt and the fans were behind it. Put Robbie against Young, so we could finally have the belt defended without watching Young bounce from one humorless situation after another (besides the Wayne Arnold confrontation). Give us the Bucks, or even OKada, Kiyoshi someone who can actually wrestle that style to build to a feud worth watching.
If the X division falls we know the knockouts and tag team is not far behind. It usually works like dominoes one falling after the other. So here is to Sunday (day before my birth) and the return of the X division in all its splendor and its hopeful place in iMPACT for years to come. Where it deserves to be.
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I've been telling my wrestling fan friends that they should all order the ppv, regardless of their feelings about TNA in general, for those very reasons. We even had a chat here on BWF as to whether or not the presentation of an all-X-Division ppv, after all the years spent talking about doing so, might not be a deliberate plan by the powers-that-be in TNA. Give the X-Division a show, promote it even more poorly than TNA usually does, then use the low buyrate numbers to justify the official death of the X-Division and the release or complete lack of focus on those wrestlers associated with it. When we talked about it, I had really hoped that such a situation would prove to be a "what-if," but my worst fears appear to have been realized.
One article pointed out something that has long gnawed at me. The writer said that, even in the glory days of the X-Division, TNA has never clearly defined what the X-Division is. What does it really mean? The slogan used to be "It's not about weight limits, it's about no limits." Ok. In practicality, it was a lightweight division, featuring mostly guys 6' and under, weighing less than 230 pounds. Yes, Abyss is the champion now, and Samoa Joe was involved in some of the X-Division's finest moments, so the X-Division clearly can't be a division based purely on weight. Some viewed it as a division based on wrestling style, with a focus on athleticism and techniques from all over the world. The problem there is that the implication is that this "style" is not effective in the regular and heavyweight scene. If TNA can't define the X-Division, they certainly can't promote it. How do YOU think that the X-Division should be defined? I honestly don't know.
I would promote it as the evolution of the cruiser-weight division.
I think DG makes a good point here, with the lack of clarity as to what the X-Division is. To step beyond the realm of weight class, what else have we seen in a division that defined it? Was there ever REALLY a hardcore division? And is that imply the use of weapons exclusively? I see where you are going with this… pintnoir leans towards a cruiserweight angle, and true, with Joe and Abyss involved, that seems odd. But we've seen men and women cross over alongside gender-based groupings, so there is room for flexibility here. I don't really have an answer, personally, but I do like the question.
I hate being a pessimist, but I have this bad feeling that Destination X will easily trump the 8000-12000 PPV buys of the current average TNA, but not garner enough to make the difference. I hope I'm wrong (and will be happy to admit it later).
With the inclusion of Joe and Abyss it does seem odd but I look back at Hugh Morris or Bam Bam Bigelow and what could of been if they had been allowed to invade the division making it more interesting. Hence why I believe the X division, even with its X games inspired title, could have easily meant it represented a non discriminating environment where any wrestler no matter weight, as long as they had amazing wrestling ability could enter the title chance. Similar to Dean Malenko who was mat based, he still added to the cruiser weight legend.