10 January 2014

The Spectacle that was Magnus vs AJ Styles

This might come across as hyperbole but I'm being quite sincere when I say that last night's main event was one of the biggest spectacles I've ever watched in pro wrestling.  It was the sort of segment that reminded me why I love pro wrestling so much.  In fact, in no other industry can you witness such an event. Of course, there were those who were outraged, OUTRAGED, that TNA had the gall to simply not conform to what those in the industry believe pro wrestling to be.  Some called it overbooked.  By the way, the term "overbooked" is the most misused word in the pro wrestling lexicon.  It's often used by the "experts" to denigrate a match or segment, once again, because it doesn't fit in their narrow view of what pro wrestling is.  Or because they simply didn't get it.  Last night was a perfect example.  Those who dismissed the segment as overbooked, completely missed the nuances of the storyline.

Let me be clear...Magnus vs AJ Styles was not overbooked.  It was booked appropriately in order to tell the story of Dixie Carter desperately trying to prevent AJ Styles from leaving her company with the world title belt. It simply made no sense to let Styles and Magnus wrestle for even a second and risk Styles pinning Magnus with one or two moves, which the Phenomenal One is quite capable of.  A quick Pele Kick to the head and a Calf Killer later, and the belt is on its way to Ring of Honor.  Dixie Carter and her allies were not going to allow that to happen.  Under the circumstances, it was a fitting end to the AJ Styles vs Dixie Carter feud...for now anyway.

One aspect of the segment that's not getting enough attention is the Bobby Roode factor.  I absolutely loved how, in a match that featured two world champions, TNA set it up so Roode was ultimately the one true star.  You knew the moment Bobby Roode came down to the ring that the match was over. He destroyed AJ Styles and cemented himself as the new face of TNA, in my eyes.  Is Roode aligned with Team Dixie? I'm not sure but Roode didn't want Styles leaving the company with the belt just as much as Dixie Carter so they shared a common goal.  In the end, it wasn't Team Dixie who ended AJ Styles' career. It was Bobby Roode.  And it was an exceptional job by the TNA writers.

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