Sorry That You Weren’t Here; From Dothan, AL: TNA Impact Wrestling Live House Show
With Billy James
Hey Mayer Nation, this past Saturday I went to Dothan, AL for a TNA house show which was an amazing time. I had front row ringside seat which were amazing seats and was the first time that my niece first time sitting ringside. My wife was supposed to go with me to help me with my niece but she couldn’t go so my sister went instead and this was her first TNA house show and sitting ringside also. Before we get started, I have to say that I was really looking forward to this house show as Austin Aries and Samoa Joe were on the card. There some great matches and a crowd too. So hang on as I tell you all about the show and the amazing time that we had.
So we arrived at the Dothan Civil Center where we went upstairs to the box office to pick up our tickets where other people had to wait to buy tickets for the event. After picking up our tickets we went to the first floor where they were checking off people who bought the $65 tickets for the “Meet & Greet” at 5:30 PM. There were a few people who were in line didn’t have the $65 tickets that were blocking people who did. Anyway, Jimmy Jay came out to hype the show and the big items that were on sell at the merchandise stand which were some cool stuff. The first item was the Brown Bag special that including a t-shirt, 4 DVDs, action figure and the program book for $30, the Red Bag special which came with two action figures for $20 and a Austin Aries figure from Series 11 for $20 which you also got to go backstage to get the figure autographed by Aries plus get your picture with him also.
We first went to the merchandise stand where I bought the Brown Bag special for $30 which I got a Blossom Twins t-shirt which I didn’t even know that they had one, 4 DVDs which I gave two of them to my niece because I already had them, Shark Boy action figure and the 2013 program book. I bought the Austin Aries figure for $20 so I could get it autograph and get my picture with Aries. I was able to get the VIP pass for $50 which I brought right away so that me and my niece could go backstage during intermission.
So we went inside got in line to get autographs from the following Superstars who were setup at tables around the ring; Gunner, “Showtime” Eric Young, X Division Champion; Chris Sabin, Ethan Carter III and Gail Kim. Everyone was very nice signing autographs and letting fans take pictures. EC3 was fun as he stayed in “Heel” mode but still nice to fans. I got Gail Kim to sign my two 8x10s of her and told her that her match with Madison last Thursday was great I gave the program book I bought to my niece so she have something for them to sign. My niece was little disappointed that Jeff Hardy wasn’t there but she got over it.
After we got done with the “Meet & Greet,” we were trying to find our seats but none the ushers knew where Section C was which at that time Jimmy Jay announced that Madison Rayne would be signing autographs at the merchandise stand which we went and got in line for. Once we got there Jimmy Jay announced that for $10 you get either the Madison Rayne banner or 8×10 and you get to go round the table and get your picture with Madison. I bought the 8×10 despite already having two of them signed to have autographed for my niece and got my picture with Madison. Before I left, I congratulated Madison winning the Knockouts title for the fifth time, tying Angelina Love and Tara for the most title reigns.
At 7:00 PM, I got in line for the Austin Aries autograph session with the Austin Aries figure that I purchase and my 8×10 of Aries. While in line backstage, I shocked to see Al Snow who stopped long enough for me to get a picture of him. I told Al that how I watched him on Smokey Mountain Wrestling and remember see him and the Unabomb winning the Smokey Mountain Tag Team titles which Al gave me a smile. In case you’re wondering, you know the Unabomb better by the name of Kane in the WWE. So as the line continues to move, EC3 walks by asking what was this referring to the line which security guard told EC3 that it was for the autograph session with Aries. EC# then asked who approved it when I shouted that the “Mysterious Investor” approved it which got a laugh out of the people in line with me. So when it was my turn, Aries signed my figure and then my 8×10 then I got a picture with him. I told Aries that his match last his match with AJ Styles during the Bound for Glory Series was awesome which he said thanks and thank me for supporting him as I was wearing my Austin Aries t-shirt which was cool.
So we finally found out where Section C was which turned out to be the best seats that I’ve ever had as they were the entrance ramp was and my niece’s seat was the corner guard rail which she loved because she could slap hands with the wrestlers as they come down to the ring. I love it because I was able to take great pictures from the front and the entrance way which was cool. So before the show got started, Jimmy Jay introduced the hostess for the night; Christy Hemme which was cool. Christy did the ring announcing for all of the matches and kept the fans pumped between matches. I had seen Christy do ring announcing at other TNA house show in Knoxville, TN in 2012. Christy was nice enough to pose so I could get a picture of her but unfortunately I wasn’t able to get her to autograph my 8x10s.
Austin Aries vs. Chris Sabin (TNA X Division Title Match)
The show started off with Aries coming to the ring with a good pop from the crowd as Christy announces that this match is for the TNA X Division title. Sabin came to the ring by himself with no Velvet Sky. It was a good solid match with some great action. Early part of the match, Sabin would bail out of the ring when Aries started getting some heavy offense. Sabin was able to get some offense in when he tripped Aries on the top ropes causing Aries to go head first into the ropes. Sabin then tied Aries up in the ring corner stomping the crap out of Aries. Aries was able to come with a nice missile drop kick from the top rope and later a running drop kick onto Sabin in the ring corner. Toward the end of the match, Aries went for the brain buster but Sabin was able to block it and pushed Aries into the ring corner. This allowed Sabin roll Aries up and get the win with his feet on the ropes and retain the X Division title. After the match while Sabin was rubbing the win in, Aries caught Sabin in the brain buster and held the X Division title above his head to the cheers of the crowd before putting the belt down and head to the back. It was great to see Aries vs. Sabin live because they are two great talents.
Winner & Still TNA X Division Champion: Chris Sabin
Gail Kim vs. Madison Rayne (TNA Knockouts Championship Match)
Before the match started, Gail got on the mic telling Madison that she got lucky this past Thursday when Madison beat her for the Knockouts title. Gail then tells that she has two choices, left now and forfeit the Knockouts title or she beat Madison so bad then her baby wouldn’t be able recognize her. Madison acted like she was leaving but turn off and knock Gail to the mat. Madison then hits bulldog on Gail and goes for a rollup but Gail is able to kick up. Gail catches Madison dropping Madison head first on the ropes. Gail then starts to stomp on Madison in the ring corner before locking in a body scissors on Madison in the middle of the ring. The matches back and forth until Gail attempted Eat Defeat but Madison blocking and hit the Rayne Drop for the win and retains the Knockouts title. I had seen Gail vs. Madison back in 2012 in Pensacola, FL but the roles were reverse as Gail was the Knockouts Champion while Madison was the challenger. It was great to see them wrestle again.
Winner & Still TNA Knockouts Champion: Madison Rayne
Ethan Carter III vs. “Showtime” Eric Young
EC3 came down to the ring bragging about being a Carter and how the world needs more Carters while calling Dothan Mobile which got lot of heat from the crowd. Christy quickly corrected EC3 who said “Who cares.” EC3 then goes on to issue an open challenge to anyone in the back which is answered by “Showtime” Eric Young. Young comes down to the ring and tries to lock up with referee before the match starts. Young rocks EC3 working on EC3 with a scoop slam and then several punches in the ring corner. EC3 finally comes back locking in a sleeper on Young grounding Young to the mat. EC3 is able keep Young in the sleeper for several minutes but Young is able to get out of the hold and hits a belly suplex on EC3. However EC3 trips Young on the top ring corner and hits the One Percenter to get the win the dismay of the crowd. Believe it or not there was a guy sitting two seats to my left who was cheering for EC3 and even bought an EC3 t-shirt. The match itself was ok but EC3 was over big time as a “Heel” and was getting great heat from the crowd
Winner: Ethan Carter III
Bully Ray vs. “The Samoan Submission Machine” Samoa Joe
Samoa Joe came down to the ring ready for action with fans starting to chant “Joe’s Going To Kill You!” I was taking pictures of Joe coming to the ring, Bully Ray came running to the ring and knocked Joe out with his steel chain. Bully got Joe into the ring and forced Hebner to start the match and count the pin giving Bully the first fall. Hebner starts a 10 count which after the count, Bully goes for another pin attempt but Joe kicks out to the dismay of Bully. Bully continues to beat on Joe but Joe is able to come back and roll Bully up to win the second fall to the dismay of Bully. After the second fall, Bully and Joe trade punches until Joe accidently knocks Hebner down and Bully nailed Joe with the steel chain while Hebner was down. Bully goes for the pin attempt and the win but to Bully’s surprise, Joe kicked out. Joe is able to make a comeback and gets Bully into the Coquina Clutch, forcing Bully to tap out giving Joe the final fall and the win.
Winner: “The Samoan Submission Machine” Samoa Joe
Gunner vs. Magnus (TNA World Heavyweight Title Match)
This match was good but was slow at most points as early in the match as Magnus would bail out of the ring when Gunner was getting any offense. Far as action wise, there were some good spots including Gunner hitting a Slingshot suplex, shades of Tully Blanchard. Magnus was not as he hit a nice suplex on Gunner. One point during the match, Magnus was ramming Gunner’s head into the turnbuckle which didn’t phase Gunner. As Gunner looks like he’s going to beat Magnus, EC3 comes down to the ring and distracts the referee which allows Magnus to knock Gunner out with the TNA title allowing Magnus to pin Gunner for the win. After the match, EC3 stays around ringside bragging about Magnus being still the TNA Champion when Gunner grabbed EC3 and hits the side slam leaving EC3 laying in the ring.
Winner & Still TNA World Heavyweight Champion: Magnus
It was now time for intermission, so my niece and I went to get in line to go backstage where we got to meet the following Superstars; Bully Ray, “The It Factor” Bobby Roode, TNA Champion; Magnus and “The Samoan Submission Machine” Samoa Joe. I got Bully Ray to sign my 8×10 and book. Roode and Magnus sign my book as I had no 8x10s of them while I got Joe to sign my two 8x10s while got my niece to get my book signed too. All four were real cool and nice but my niece asked why Roode, Bully Ray and Magnus didn’t smile which I told her because “Heels” don’t’ smile. I congratulated Magnus on being the TNA Champion and he deserved it which he really does. When I met Joe, I told him that this my first time getting to meet and that I hope that he gets a title run in 2014 which Joe said good things are coming.
Bobby Roode vs. “The Cowboy” James Storm (Steel Cage Match)
So it’s was now time for the main event which is a steel cage match as this house show was the Road to Lockdown tour. Bobby Roode comes down to the ring checking out the cage before entering the cage. Storm comes out next to a huge pop from the crowd as Storm gets into the cage. Roode and Storm stare each other down before locking up as the two were trying to feel the other out. The action was damn good with the match going back and forth. Roode one point during the match hit a hard spin buster on Storm and then went to pin Storm who kicked out. Storm went for the Last Call couple of times but Roode is able to avoid it. Roode and Storm make full use of the steel cage ramming each other into the cage. Several times during the match; Roode tried to escape the cage by climbing out of the cage and through the door but Storm was able to stop Roode from escaping. Storm finally gets the win when Storm hits Closing Time followed by Last Call. Good match as Roode and Storm know how to put on a good match. I saw Roode and Storm wrestle each other in Knoxville, TN in 2012 and it was a damn good match.
Winner: “The Cowboy” James Storm
After the match, Storm started to head to the back when Jimmy Jay asked the crowd if they wanted to continue the party which everyone were yelling “Yeah.” Jimmy asked Storm if he still wanting to party which Storm said “Hell Yeah!” Storm came back to the ring. Storm then told the crowd that he’s going to tell TNA management that they need to do a Impact Wrestling TV taping or even a PPV from Dothan which I serious doubt it as the Dothan Civic Center is not that big but it would be extremely cool if they did. Jimmy Jay then tells everyone the after show photo op is for $20 you can get your picture taken by ringside with “The Cowboy” James Storm. Those who have the TNA replica belts or bought the VIP pass get the photo op for free. So me and niece got in line which my sister left as she had to get home. So when it was our turn, I told Storm that this was my fifth time seeing him wrestle live and it never gets old which Storm said thanks.
Well it was a great show and we had a great time. All the matches were great and I got see some stars that I have never seen wrestle before like Magnus and EC3 while getting to see my favorites like Samoa Joe, Madison Rayne, Gail Kim, Bobby Roode, James Storm, Chris Sabin and Austin Aries.. I ended up getting a total of 15 autographs between my 8x10s, book and the Austin Aries figure. I got my picture with everyone including Austin Aries which was just an awesome moment. Lot of people I talk to was their first time to a TNA house show as TNA had never been to Dothan before and people were amazed with the fan experience you get at a TNA house show. So to all the TNA Haters out there, get off your asses and try going to a TNA house show as you will not be disappointed.
Stars of The Night
- “The Cowboy” James Storm
- “The Samoan Submission Machine” Samoa Joe
- Madison Rayne
Hey don’t forget to check out the rest of my pictures from the show at https://www.facebook.com/WrestlingDebate/photos_albums
Don’t forget to check the weekly Making An Impact reviews And Wrestling Debate Podcast with myself and John Mayer. Also you can email me with questions or comments at firstname.lastname@example.org. And check me out at http://www.facebook.com/wrestlingdebate.