12 August 2013

Shelbin Swerve: TNA Laconisms Volume I

lac·o·nism  noun   \ˈla-kə-ˌni-zəm\
1  : brevity or succinctness of style or expression
- Kurt Angle's rehab stint couldn't have come at a worst time but it's imperative that he conquer his real life demons before he can conquer those in TNA.  During his leave, the company must decide whether or not to choose someone to replace him in the Main Event Mafia.  If they opt for the former, it'd be a good opportunity to think outside the box and choose a talent whom this spot would benefit greatly.  A talent such as, let's say, Kenny King.

- For accuracy purposes, the wrestler formerly known as Suicide will, from now on, be referred to as the following: TJ Perkins as Manik.  It's a gimmick that's much more elaborate than some care to admit but, thankfully, I'm detecting a sea change in the attitude towards this wonderful character.  TNA has essentially taken a gimmick that was much too risky to continue to use and brilliantly transformed him into a vulnerable young man whose mask is a form of escapism.

- It was only a few months ago when the wrestling community eagerly awaited the return of AJ Styles.  We were all on pins and needles, if you will.  Upon his return, we all marveled at the lone wolf, disgruntled by his status in the company he helped build.  It was clear from the get-go, he fought for no one.  Not for Dixie Carter.  Not for TNA.  Not for the Aces and 8s.  No one.  Unfortunately for AJ Styles, no one also seemed to care.  As a result, it appears the writers have pressed the reset button.  A once disgruntled employee has suddenly metamorphosed into the ghost of Kevin Nash's past.  Oddly enough, while his actions outside of the ring have made him look virtually unrecognizable, it's been a different story inside the ring, where we've seen glimpses of the old AJ Styles.

- Jeff Jarrett appears to have returned to TNA management in some capacity, although his official position has not been confirmed by the company, nor has his return for that matter.  Some have speculated that Jarrett will take over Bruce Prichard's former role as VP of Talent Relations.  If this is the case, I'm hugely in favor of it.  I think it's imperative that TNA begin to restore some of the traditions, on-screen, that were lost during the Hogan/Bischoff era, and there's nobody who can facilitate this plan better than Jeff Jarrett.

- Let me be clear.  I'm not at all advocating the return of Vince Russo in my statement above. 

- It's been two months since James Storm and Gunner won the TNA tag team championships and not a single time have they defended those belts.  Yes, they've wrestled the newly-formed Bro Mans twice but neither time were the titles on the line.  One has to wonder why the writers are stalling the Storm/Gunner title reign.  Could it be that TNA are waiting for the Bound for Glory Series to conclude?  It would stand to reason that those who don't earn a world title shot at BFG will be available to form tag teams, just in time to compete for the tag team titles in San Diego.  I'm not so sure, however.  I sense that TNA are in the process of negotiating a new deal with a tag team.  Many of you will assume I'm referring to the American Wolves.  They could very well be that team.  The latest rumor is that Davey Richards and Eddie Edwards are finishing up with Ring of Honor on August 17th.  It's anyone's guess, I suppose, although I can't help but feel that the new tag team will be one of the following: the Young Bucks or the Briscoes.

- And lastly, a growing amount of fans seem to think that Bully Ray will defeat Chris Sabin this week simply because of the stipulation that Ray can not compete for the TNA world title ever again with a loss.  I have a feeling that many of those fans made a similar proclamation about Sting prior to his match against Bully Ray at Slammiversary.  They were wrong then and I believe they are wrong now.  I suspect that the outcome of the world title match at Hardcore Justice will have very little to do with the stipulation.  It will come down to whether or not TNA have enough faith in Chris Sabin's ability to generate any buzz going into the company's biggest show of the year.  I admit, that's a huge leap a faith and one that even I am not sure I'd be willing to take.  But it's a necessary one.  It's one that TNA has to take in order to begin establishing their own identity as a company.  I respect Bully Ray as a performer but he built his legacy elsewhere.  Chris Sabin, on the other hand, built his in TNA.

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