Josh Boutwell previews TNA Slammiversary 2016

TNA Slammiversary 2016 Preview
June 12, 2016
By: Josh Boutwell of

TNA returns to PPV this Sunday with the annual “Slammiversary” headlined by a Hardy Boyz Full Metal Mayhem Match and the culmination of the volatile Lashley-Drew Galloway feud. TNA hasn’t held a live PPV since January’s “One Night Only: Live!” and this probably the last PPV of the year until October’s “Bound for Glory.”

Mahabali Shera & Grado vs. The Tribunal w/Al Snow
In March Al Snow made his return to TNA TV by attacking Mahabali Shera and Grado backstage in a vicious assault. Snow saw Shera and Grado as the walking embodiment of what was wrong with the wrestling business in 2016, as a goofy comedy act that hadn’t “paid their dues” in the business, and claimed that he would run them out of the business completely. Grado and Shera have each gained a semblance of revenge over Snow, Shera even pinned Snow in a singles match, but a few weeks ago a new tag team hit the scene and helped Snow beat Grado in a Hardcore Match. It was revealed that this tag team, known as The Tribunal, had been brought in by Snow to help him take out “the trash” in 2016. The Tribunal consists of French wrestlers, Baron Dax and Basile Baraka, who had previously worked for the WWE’s NXT developmental territory. The Tribunal made their in-ring debut on this past week’s episode of Impact in a Ten Man Tag Team Match teaming with The Decay and Eli Drake to defeat Shera, Grado, Bram, and The BroMans. This will be The Tribunal’s PPV debut against Shera and Grado as they look to end this rivalry with the comedy team and look forward to the Tag Team Titles.

TNA King of the Mountain Championship
Eli Drake (c) vs. “The Chesterfield Plague” Bram
At Feast or Fired back in January Drake won a shot at the KOTM Title at any time he wanted. He held that shot all the way until the 05/31 Impact where Drake cashed in his shot against Bram after Bram had just been defeated and further assaulted by Lashley. Drake also pinned Bram this past week on Impact in a Ten Man Tag Team Match and now Drake will have to defend his KOTM Title for the first time against the former champion Bram.

TNA X-Division Championship
Fatal 4-Way Match
“The Carolina Caveman” Trevor Lee (c) w/Shane Helms vs. “The Skywalker” Andrew Everett vs. “DJ Z” Zema Ion vs. Eddie Edwards
The last few months the Shane Helms led Helms Dynasty has been running the X-Division while Zema Ion and Eddie Edwards both have been attempting to overcome the stacked odds to try and gain X-Division gold. These four men had an exciting Ultimate X Match last month and the combination of Lee and Everett were too much for Zema and Edwards to overcome. Despite that there has been a few instances of tension between Lee and Everett, and that could come to a head here if Everett decides to try and win the title for himself. That dissension could end up being the chance that either Ion or Edwards needs to win the title from the “Carolina Caveman.” Shane Helms will certainly do his best to keep the Helms Dynasty together and the title in his camp.

TNA Knockouts Championship
Jade (c) vs. Sienna
TNA has had a slew of big powerhouse Knockouts in its history but unlike other monsters like Awesome Kong, Havok, Alpha Female or Lei’D Tapa their newest powerhouse Sienna is much different in the sense that she is much more athletic to go along with the power. With that said she towers over the rest of the Knockouts and was a very well accomplished Indy wrestler in American known as Allysin Kay before Maria brought her into TNA to be her new enforcer. Sienna immediately targeted both Gail Kim and the current Knockout Champion, Jade, as they are currently seen as the two best female wrestlers in TNA. This will be Sienna’s first shot at the title in which Jade has held since April. Jade has clearly been the best in-ring performer in the Knockouts for some time now and this feud could end up being the new era version of the Gail-Kong feud from years ago, but maybe even better since Sienna is better in the ring and the match will certainly be in a different style. In my opinion Jade vs. Gail is still the best possible feud to come out of the Knockouts and could be a feud that TNA can do for years but it is certainly nice to see TNA rebuilding the Knockouts depth with competent performers.

TNA World Tag Team Championships
The Decay (c) w/Rosemary vs. The BroMans w/Raquel
TNA’s tag team division has been ravaged over the last year with teams (or members of teams) leaving TNA, breaking up, or injuries. At one point TNA had Team 3D, The Hardyz, and The Wolves involved in an incredible 3-Way feud that seemed to put the Tag Division back on the map. Since then 3D returned to WWE, Hardy Boyz split up after Jeff had originally been out for nearly a year with an injury, Davey Richards blew his knee out, Dirty Heels broke up after Aries left TNA, The Revolution split up after James Storm left, and then Beer Money reunited after Storm returned to TNA only for Roode to leave just a few months later splitting Beer Money up again. All of these losses caused The BroMans to reunite and The Decay to come together with the aid of Rosemary. The Decay has completely revitalized the careers of both Abyss and Crazzy Steve as one of the most intriguing acts in TNA. They have completely dominated the Tag Team Division since coming together. The return of the BroMans has been far better than their heel run as both Robbie and Jessie are much better in the ring as babyfaces, especially Jessie showing off his freaky athleticism that he doesn’t get to do much of as a heel, and their new “guru” Raquel has looked to lead them back to Tag Team gold. The gorgeous Raquel showed what she could do for the team a few weeks ago when she helped BroMans defeat Tyrus and Rockstar Spud in a #1 Contenders Match by keeping Tyrus preoccupied by bending over repeatedly. Yes, it was that simple and if she her bend over you will understand why.

NOTE: This match will no longer be taking place on the PPV due Maria continuing to battle a broken hand injury.

Gail Kim vs. Maria Bennett
Ever since Maria and her husband came into TNA Maria has set her sights on taking over the Knockouts division. Maria won the right to be the “Leader of the Knockouts” by winning a Ladder Match a couple of months ago on Impact. She has targeted Gail as Gail has been known as the “Face of the Knockouts” for years while Gail has repeatedly challenged Maria to “put up or shut up” and face her in the ring. Finally, Gail gets her chance to face off against Maria, but there is no doubt Maria will have some tricks up her sleeve in this match and someone should keep an eye on her personal “assistant” Allie during the match.

Ethan Carter III vs. “The Miracle” Mike Bennett w/Maria
“The Miracle” has been on a huge streak of success since joining TNA earlier this year and back in April Bennett ended EC3’s nearly three year long unpinned streak by pinning EC3 clean on Impact. Ever since that moment EC3 has been on a quest for his rematch with Bennett, but Bennett first made EC3 go through a gauntlet of challenges which included a Steel Cage Match with Rockstar Spud, Street Fight with Tyrus, and a match with former rival Matt Hardy before EC3 ever got this opportunity. The seeds for this feud were actually planted way back in January after Bennett debuted in TNA when the two crossed paths backstage and teased a future rivalry even though they were both heels at the time. The feud has become very personal between the two and the culmination is sure to be electric between the two at Slammiversary.

Full Metal Mayhem Match
“Charismatic Engima” Jeff Hardy vs. “Broken” Matt Hardy w/Reby Sky
No feud in TNA has garnered the attention that the “Broken Matt vs. Brother Nero” rivalry has garnered in quite awhile. Much of it has come because of the oddball segment a few weeks ago that ended up going viral online after the fact. The two have been feuding against each other for the majority of the year and the rivalry has already included a wild Last Man Standing Match and multiple Willow’s appearing as mind games for both Jeff and Matt. One of the coolest moments happened this week when Matt was in the ring and the lights turned out on him. When the lights came back on pretty much the entire front row of fans were wearing Willow masks which caused Matt to freak out. A bunch of Willows then walked out, much like Matt had used against Jeff earlier in the feud, only for Jeff to run out after Willow appeared on the big screen. Jeff and Matt always go all out with insane bumps in these types of matches and Jeff will look to steal the show here as he always does. If you are a new viewer to TNA the Full Metal Mayhem Match is TNA’s version of Tables, Ladders, and Chairs with anything that has “steel or metal” being legal to use in the match. I believe before they gave it the Full Metal Mayhem name TNA first called it the Tables, Ladders, Chairs, and Chains Match.

TNA World Heavyweight Championship
Tapout or Knockout Match
“The Chosen One” Drew Galloway (c) vs. “The Destroyer” Lashley
At Slammiversary we will see the culmination of what has possibly been the best build for a Main Event feud in the history of TNA. Galloway and Lashley have been killing each other for nearly three months and this feud has involved two of my favorite segments of the year. First, Lashley blindsided Drew Galloway at a local gym in Orlando as Drew was cutting a promo on Lashley and the two had a brutal fight that ended up spilling into an MMA cage in the gym. A few weeks later the two were involved in a Lumberjack Match that ended in a massive brawl that involved almost the entire TNA locker room including about ten different dives from different wrestlers including Galloway. It has been a brutal feud with neither guy being willing to back down from the other, even the heel Lashley, and the match which is being booked as a “Knockout or Tapout Match” could end up being one of TNA’s best matches of the year. It may have not garnered the attention or gone viral like the Hardyz feud but Galloway vs. Lashley has been unquestionably the best wrestling feud leading into this event.

“Slammiversary” takes place live on PPV tonight at 8:00 p.m. Eastern (7:00 CT) and we will be providing live coverage here on and Twitter via @wrestleview.