Bound For Glory: The teacher beats the student

For the second PPV in a row, Miss Tessmacher defends the TNA Knockouts Championship against former Tag Team Championship partner, former friend and mentor Tara.

The Background
• On the episode of Impact Wrestling following her successful defence of the title at No Surrender, Tessmacher was attacked by Tara and left laying following a Widow’s Peak.
• The veteran later made it clear that she was given focus by her new “Hollywood boyfriend”.
• In between the two PPVs, Tara has shown a more aggressive and selfish side, beating ODB to gain the number one contender spot again, and sacrificing her partner Gail Kim to win a match over Tessmacher and ODB.

The Match
• Tessmacher started quickly, trying to get an early pinfall with attempts at a crucifix and jackknife cover, but Tara scooted out of the ring, then used referee Taryn Terrell as a human shield to stop the titleholder from getting to her.
• Tara took the advantage by throwing Tessmacher out of the ring, and exacted a sustained beatdown on the outside, before continuing the attack inside the ring with clubbing forearms and chokes in the corner.
• The Knockouts Champion managed to turn the tide with a floatover DDT and a move which looked like a side Russian legsweep into a clothesline. She also managed a successful jumping hurricanrana from the top, much like Lita used to do to male wrestlers during her heyday.
• A Tess-Shocker attempt was thwarted when Tara grabbed the rope, but the titleholder had another attempt to put her mentor away with a top rope elbow, but was way off the mark and took too long to climb to the top. A Widow’s Peak later, and we had a new Knockouts Champion.
• After the match, Tara introduced us to her “boo”, Jesse Godderez – a contestant on Big Brother whose nickname is Mr Pec-tacular. Fans chanted “who are you?” at the newcomer as he and Tara made out in the middle of the ring.

Thoughts
• While better than their match at No Surrender, this still didn’t feel heated enough for a grudge match. I never got the feel that Tessmacher really hated Tara for turning on her, but she tried to convey that at times, so I have to give her credit for that.
• However, some of her pinfall attempts were really sloppy, and that top rope rana – while brave – wasn’t that aesthetically pleasing. At least it went according to plan, even if it didn’t look that graceful.
• Tara’s Knockouts Title win makes her a five-time champion, equaling the record set by Angelina Love.
• Putting the Knockouts Title match after a hot Tag Team Title match was a pity, as the burnt out crowd didn’t generate much enthusiasm for the contest, even with the background and extra heat compared to their match last month, which was pretty bland and boring.
• Tara’s “Hollywood boyfriend” was a letdown, but that’s the point, I guess – even Mike Tenay on commentary had no idea who he was, but Tazz was overly enthusiastic for it. Considering Tara’s a heel, it is fine for her to overstate the credentials of her new squeeze, though this is TNA hiring another reality TV star who will likely do nothing for ratings or drawing money, following in the footsteps of Survivor winner Jenna Morasca, as well as Jersey Shore‘s Ronnie, J-Woww & Angelina Pivarnick.
• Overall, the match was better than last month, but I still expected more from it. This storyline may continue with Tara being smitten and deluded by her new other half – let’s hope that as it does, fans start to get more emotionally involved with it, and the matches get slicker. The quality of matches between the two is going in the right direction, but it’s not there yet.

- Lee Burton