by Thomas Keister
Universal Studios Orlando played host to TNA's Victory Road pay-per-view Sunday, July 19, 2009, featuring a packed line-up with five championships on the line.
The opening contest had Angelina Love attempting to regain the TNA Knockouts title from newcomer Tara. While the Beautiful People's numbers game would not play a factor, there would still be controversy, as referee Slick Johnson made the three-count to award the strap to Love, missing the champion's foot on the rope! Tara argued to no avail, but gained a moral victory, superkicking Johnson and unleashing her pet tarantula Poison upon him, much to the crowd's delight! Rounding out the undercard, Matt Morgan defeated Daniels in a dominant showing, and Abyss gained a measure of revenge on his former "therapist" Dr. Stevie by bloodying him and using his own stun gun on him en route to success in their no disqualification match-up.
Kevin Nash strikes Gold for the Mafia
The midcard kicked off as Team 3D looked to defend the IWGP Tag Team titles against The British Invasion's Brutus Magnus and Doug Williams, with the massive Rob Terry in tow. Team 3D ultimately relied on experience, as well as blown interference by the Brits, to retain the title, but would have to contend with Shiek Abdul Bashir and Kiyoshi. In true 3D fashion, the venerable tag team put Bashir through a table to put an end to the run-in.
Victory Road's throwaway match came at the halfway point, as the Mafia's Sharmell and former reality show personality Jenna Morasca gave the audience a chance to hit the restrooms. Morasca scored a win in her TNA wrestling debut, thanks to a KO shot from her trainer, Awesome Kong, but Kong would not take well to being slapped by the Mafia's new financial benefactor, laying her out with a big splash.
Kevin Nash made his way down the ramp to face off with AJ Styles for the Legends Championship at a crossroads, not only facing the prospect of being fired from the Mafia should he lose, but his own statement that nothing short of a title win would result in his retirement! While Styles fought gamely against the size disadvantage, Nash turned a lapse in Styles' gameplan to hit a big-time chokeslam for the win and his first championship in TNA Wrestling!
Angle bats clean-up for the Mafia's Grand Slam
Beer Money, Inc had a daunting task in their World Tag Team title defense against the Mafia's Scott Steiner and Booker T, as both challengers have Hall of Fame caliber resumes, with or without their legendary tag team exploits. Roode and Storm showed the moxie that has propelled them to three World Tag Team titles, but a distracted referee gave the vets the chance they needed to bring home the Mafia's second championship win of the evening!
With the mystery of Samoa Joe's advisor solved on the previous Thursday's Impact!, there was nothing left but for both men to come out swinging. It was a back and forth affair through much of the match, but the emergence of Taz in Samoa Joe's corner spurred Joe to fight on, capitalizing on a failed top-rope effort by Sting to force a submission.
Main event action saw Kurt Angle defend the World title against Mick Foley. While the crowd chanting for Angle at the opening bell was an early surprise, neither wasted any time in taking the action outside the ring. Tenative-looking at times, Angle battled an often-tenacious Foley to near-exhaustion, submitting the Hardcore Legend with an ankle lock to retain the title and drive home the Mafia's ascent to power in TNA!
by Thomas Keister