Let’s look at some more of the early TNA years of Impact Wrestling with TNA No Surrender 2005. This event took place on July 17th and features Raven defending his NWA World title against “The Monster” Abyss!
Remember Apolo? He was this impressive Puerto Rican wrestler who picked up wins in TNA and looked like someone they could use but his momentum started to slow then he no-showed a PPV and was released.
Anyway, he teamed with Sonny Siaki—someone who looked to have a bright future in the business—against David Young and Simon Diamond.
This match was pretty much a breather between the first two bouts and the Samoa Joe-Chris Sabin bout. Nothing special here, really.
Another bucket-scraper was the street fight between 3 Live Kru’s Konnan and Ron Killings and the team of Monty Brown and Kip James.
I dig the 3 Live Kru combo of Konnan and Killings (and Killings and James) more. I always felt there was some chemistry there and all three are ridiculously charismatic.
However, these matches involving Gunn sans B.G James were getting old fast. TNA definitely had a story going at the time but it wasn’t that interesting nor was it all that memorable.
Fortunately, it was a brief match.
TNA No Surrender 2005 had America’s Most Wanted against Alex Shelley and Matt Bentley as the opener. As a match, it was—and I’m going to use this word again—solid.
Actually, the show had more solid and above matches than skippable ones. It’s a forgettable match but in watching the show, it’s a nice opener and wouldn’t be out of place in the middle of the PPV.
The qualifier for the Super X Cup featured Sonjay Dutt, Elix Skipper, Mikey Batts (remember him?!), and Shark Boy. First off, Dutt and Skipper are there so I’m good to go.
Secondly, everyone did what they needed. I was never big on Shark Boy but I can’t say “Get him the hell up outta here!” It was an above solid match that had the right place on the card.
The trios match between Team Canada and the team of Lance Hoyt and The Naturals wasn’t bad at all. Hoyt wasn’t that impressive at this time. What a difference fifteen years makes, right?
I can’t even complain about how long it ran because it’s a six-man tag match. The Naturals were a team that could mix it up with most teams and they delivered something solid with Team Canada.
Chris Sabin was coming off a hot 2004 and was kind of still in the mix in 2005. He was still delivering good matches but 2005 was the Styles-Joe-Daniels show in the X Division.
Still, he showed Samoa Joe how the X Division is done in this match…and Joe showed him that he was going to steamroll almost everyone in the division.
A very good, almost great match was Styles vs. Sean Waltman. A lot of Waltman’s best 2000s TV and PPV matches were in TNA but this was the best.
He was facing the future of wrestling and not missing a step at all. There was also some interesting backstory here with Lynn being the guest referee.
He was Waltman’s regular rival in the early 90s and Styles’ rival and partner at the start of TNA. It was a match that had levels to it that the other exotic-tier bouts lacked.
The X Division Championship bout between champion Christopher Daniels and Petey Williams was dope. Perfect amount of time for an extremely athletic match.
Again, this was another very close match of the night but it’s just below Styles vs. Waltman.
In the fourth place spot in Raven defending his NWA World title against Abyss in a brutal dog collar match. TNA knew how to use Raven and Abyss in matches.
As a whole, Abyss wasn’t used to the max but he was showing up to deliver in hardcore matches. For Raven, this was like breathing air. He could do a brawl or hardcore blindfolded.
This was an expected high-quality carnage match and Raven has shown that he was the NWA World Champion that TNA and the fans needed in this match.
He was a fighting champion—if things were Raven’s rules.
TNA No Surrender 2005 Verdict: Exotic-Tier (9/10)
This PPV was just awesome. I want to say a PPV shouldn’t be this good but who would say that for a show you have to pay for, right?
Four out of the nine aired matches were good-to-great and only two were stems. That’s not bad at all! We’ll have to see if TNA keeps it up for Sacrifice 2005.
Below, you can watch A.J Styles vs. Sean Waltman from Impact Wrestling’s official YouTube but you can catch Joe vs. Sabin there as well!
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