Worst: Big Lady, Small Plates
I can only hope this is to bring back Ivelisse in some sort of revenge capacity, because while Lei’d Tapa may have been adequate, she was also awkward, unconfident, and incredibly frustrating. Last week, Ivelisse got the win via submission while Lei’d Tapa held her shoulders mere inches from the ground. Instead of tapping, all she had to do was drop her supporting leg and use her size to get the pin on Ivelisse. It wasn’t well spotted and made her look weak, and like she had no ring awareness whatsoever. Ivelisse is a heck of a lot better than she was on Tough Enough or FCW or NXT or whatever, and she could make a real name for herself in TNA. She’s been looking good in the last Shine PPVs, and the Knockouts division needs someone who can learn and grow and be a good match for someone like Gail Kim. Her ‘rana last week was beautiful, and looked a million times better than anything Tapa did. Just because people are booing Lei’d Tapa doesn’t mean that she’s over as a heel like Jay Bradley, it means they legitimately do not want to see her wrestle again, or cut another weakbutt promo. Her asking us to imagine what she could accomplish in two more years doesn’t make me look forward to watching her work out the kinks on TV, it makes me think that even she knows she’s not ready for this. If she’s gonna stick around, even with Velvet Sky’s terrible everything, she’s got a steep learning curve, and I’m not sure she can keep up.
Best: Heels rule, Chavandez Sky drools
Not getting to see the heel trio’s entrances was definitely a disappointment. It’s pretty much a given that any time they dance on down to the ring, Kazarian and Daniels make my heart grow three sizes. Any worsts I get ready to write up seem to magically disappear in a haze of Ring General medals, appletinis, and homemade Kazmania shirts. That said, I enjoyed this match a lot more the second time I watched it. It wasn’t the best thing I’ve ever seen, and it’s disheartening that a lot of my bests end up being because they’re completely adequate, but Kazarian, Daniels, and Gail Kim managed to make this six-man tag a lot of fun. It also helps that they’re super good at what they do.
Chavandez wasn’t total hot garbage for a change, and Hernandez’s suicide dive looked good, but man, Velvet Sky… Now, a lot of you seemed to interpret my criticism of her lazy and poorly executed moves as hatred, which should be cleared up here and now. I don’t “hate” Velvet Sky. I don’t “hate” any of the ladies in the Knockouts division. When you are paid to perform a job you should make sure you are putting your best effort into everything you do, especially when it involves the physical safety of others. Yeah, those create-a-wrestler streaks are pretty bad, but it genuinely doesn’t matter what she looks like, or how many people will rush to her defense because she has a certain kind of aesthetic that appeals to a certain amount of people. You can be attractive and still be a good wrestler. You can be unattractive and still be a good wrestler. It doesn’t matter what you look like when you’re throwing clotheslines that look as bad as hers. If you don’t care enough to make any sort of improvement after ten goddamn years, well guess what – you’ve walked through that door once, you can walk through it again. There are many, many talented female wrestlers who would be happy for a steady paycheque and to show off their skill at something they have a passion for. If you’re just going to be a placeholder, or someone who likes rubbing their butt on a camera, put on some stripes and jump around with Taryn Terrell and let people who have some respect for themselves and what they do get in the ring, and stop wasting my time.
Hoooo boy. Magnus. That was…not a thing you should be doing on television. Sting is beaten, bloodied, and understandably upset. Can he trust his team? Can he trust anyone? Magnus responds with “I dunno, I can’t even trust myself sometimes, but this is war, and tonight I show the world who I am.” Um….not really helpful. That doesn’t answer whether or not you can be trusted. You’ve been around for ages. We’ve seen you. Some of us have even seen you as the Ring Ka King champion (though all of us should, because Ring Ka King). Last week he was treated like some young gun, not a guy who has been wrestling for their company since 2008. He’s teamed with and feuded against Samoa Joe who is right there. You were great in Ring Ka King, Magnus. You are not great here. Much like the theme of the night, you are ruining the narrative with your piss poor execution.