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TNA Lockdown PPV 2014: Team MVP vs. Team Roode In Lethal Lockdown, The Most Difficult Booking Decision In TNA History

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Last year going into the annual Lockdown PPV event, the show was a make-or-break event for the company’s number-one stable in Aces & Eights. While Bully Ray winning the TNA World Heavyweight Championship in the main-event and declaring himself the president of the club was exactly what the group needed, the Lethal Lockdown match involving the Aces left their foundation discredited. It was a tough choice to give Team Sting the victory over allowing the biker gang a much-needed win, but that booking decision wasn’t anywhere near as difficult to make than this upcoming one.

This year’s edition of the same match-type isn’t necessarily about faction warfare but about the never-ending struggle for power within TNA. On one side there is the arrogant, purposely ignorant and all around hated Dixie Carter who is struggling to maintain her control as she’s opposed by the company’s newest investor in MVP. In an attempt to gain majority rule of management, MVP propositioned this match to determine whom is the supreme administrator of Impact Wrestling.

Team MVP

Unafraid of fighting for himself, MVP leads his team into his hometown of Miami with one motive behind his back: he must win to better TNA and allow the professional wrestling industry to continue to prosper. At his side, he has the duo that’s been there for him since his rise as an investor in The Wolves.

Davey Richards and Eddie Edwards, having already gained the TNA Tag Team Championships once, have bitten into the tag team division and will not let their grip go until they dominant all of it. This was only made possible thanks to MVP granting them immediate contracts rather than putting them through a tryout process like Dixie Carter mandated. For that, The Wolves will remain loyal to their leader and will fight beside him inside the steel cage.

Only one week remains until Lockdown commences and MVP is short one man after unsuccessfully recruiting the sought-after Austin Aries. It has been heavily rumored that Jeff Hardy, a man vanquished away by Dixie Carter’s actions, will return as a hero to dethrone the current regime and “shine light on this kingdom”. However, this possibility seems bleaker than it originally did as Hardy still hasn’t made an announcement of his allegiance nor has he appeared – appeared in his own skin that is.

The mysterious character named Willow The Wisp has arrived in his stead and his debut approaches but will it happen at Lockdown? Is this new, disturbing and deformed version of Jeff Hardy on MVP’s side at all? We’ll have to wait and see but this team only has one more week to add a fourth man to their cause or they’ll be going into the biggest match of their TNA careers shorthanded.

Team Dixie Roode

Obviously not able to compete in a wrestling match, let alone one wrapped in steel, Dixie Carter has bestowed Bobby Roode as her team’s captain –  but at a price. Unwilling to work with her in any capacity, Carter pleaded with Roode to lead her team until she eventually gave him an offer he simply could not pass up on:

Bobby Roode – TNA Co-Owner.

When the words “10 percent” were uttered to him, Roode stopped in awe of the proposition. Being so frustrated he was set on retiring from wrestling altogether, Roode changed his mind in moments knowing the change it would bring his life and the future he so wishes he can make better. He’s been The Leader Of The Selfish Generation and The It Factor Of Professional Wrestling, but he’s never had a more golden opportunity than now.

This is no longer about championship gold but rather, this is a chance for him to right the wrongs he believes he’s committed and shape the company the way he envisions it. He doesn’t care for Dixieland’s theatrics or arrogance; what he desires is so much more important and it could change everything for him. It’s no longer about being selfish and getting what’s his. This is about redemption for Bobby Roode.

At his side, he has his former tag team partner and often times arch-rival in Austin Aries. The duo formerly known as Dirty Heels reunited this past episode of Impact Wrestling when Aries, via a vicious discus elbow strike to MVP’s temple, declared his allegiance to Roode’s cause. But just as it cost Dixie to gain Roode’s services, the addition of Aries will come at a price as well.

Either Aries will demand half of his teammate’s potential ownership percentage or he’ll make demands that must be met for his loyalty; no matter the asking price, it will most likely be met since he’s such a effective and talented member to have on your team.

Bringing up the rear, unfortunately, are The Bro Mans. Nothing against both Robbie E and Jessie Godderz, as they are two underrated members of the roster, but they are an anchor for the team rather than a difference maker as Aries would say. After picking up a win on Impact Wrestling and even regaining the TNA Tag Team Championships at Wrestle-1’s Outbreak One Night Only Special event, these two might not be such a bad additional after all but they still are very flaky.

With this being the biggest match either of The Bro Mans have competed in, it’s hard to say if they really fit the mold Roode was calling for but it remains to be seen if they’ll indeed hold their own weight. Roode may regret creating that stipulation that forced their addition to his team but perhaps he’s destined to fail regardless of his partners. That brings us to why this match’s outcome, possibly out of the twelve years the organization has been in existence, will be the toughest booking decision in its history.

The Consequences And The Rewards

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The rewards for either team winning is boundless as both outcomes can prosper wondrous stories. If MVP is victorious, it’ll change everything we’ve known about TNA since Dixie showed her true colors upon AJ Styles‘ exit. If Roode’s team prevails, we will see a unique storyline that either has never been done before or hasn’t been done in quite some time – a wrestler, with kayfabe ownership stake in the company, competing against others and mandating his own rules and regulations as he goes.

As long as there is a clear and decisive winner at the end of this cage match, a positive storyline will be created that will continue to intrigue fans. It’s a true win-win situation and TNA should be applauded for creating a match that allows for a great outcome either way it’s booked. Unfortunately, it’s been so well crafted that now deciding between which story direction to take is certainly a daunting task.

If Team Roode wins, then Dixie remains in charge – which she is arguably great at since she’s a heat magnet – but that removes MVP as an authority figure and it’ll force him to just be another plain wrestler. In that scenario though, Roode’s character would be even more enthralling than it already is as will Aries’ if he indeed does ask for his own share of ownership. The Dirty Heels being together again, this time with a stake in the company, would be a great story to tell.

However, that result only benefits possibly two men and will keep things the way they are. Nowadays, refreshing your storylines after six or so months would be very welcomed and having Dixie removed from power would differentiate this time in TNA Wrestling from every other period before it. Having MVP in-charge would be a breath of fresh air that will separate the company’s direction away from what it was previously with the likes of Hogan, Sting, and Eric Bischoff being in control. With those men gone and a new revolution occurring within the organization, losing MVP at this stage will just be more of the same and that certainly isn’t what TNA needs right now.

Again, there is unfortunate consequences for the above result as well; that being, Dixie’s removal from power. Most would assume that MVP winning would decimate Dixieland and it’ll certainly be a big blow to them. However, it is one that they can afford at this stage and there’s always the possibility of re-engineering all of the member’s characters to make up for the loss. While she has her often unfair critics, Dixie can remain as a television personality by staying at Magnus‘ side and remaining as his valet/adviser per-say. Rockstar Spud can continue to follow the duo around and be their comical assistant until he gets his own story to take from there.

As teased already, Ethan Carter can branch away from his Aunt D thanks in-part to his conflicts with Magnus. His feud with Angle will take him places and honestly, being tied down to do his Aunt’s bidding will arguably only hamper his continuously increasing momentum. A feud with someone like Anderson would continue to solidify ECIII as a high-level star for the promotion.

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The only real victim, and the most unfortunate one, if Team MVP wins is oddly enough Samoa Joe. The creative staff might not be so keen on giving the Miami crowd and the audience at home what they paid to see as they have failed to do for years now when these decisions need to be made. We could see the feel-good moment of MVP gaining ultimate control but we might also see Joe getting screwed out of his rightful world championship just to keep the (apparently, on purpose) incredibly weak  Magnus going as champion.

Quite frankly, Magnus could use the loss just to rebuild him character and his stature as a credible competitor as he’s practically a joke – which is obviously a ploy for the audience to hate him more. He could easily win it back at a later date in the year and given his youth, he’ll end up being a multiple TNA World Heavyweight Champion by the time his career ends. Joe, with all the momentum at his back and after all his struggles to climb back to where he is now, needs this victory possibly more than any other wrestler has in a long while. The fans, whom have been clamoring for Joe to become what his potential so clearly shows, desperately need to have him win as well.

If Team MVP wins, though, Joe will be cheated out of the main-event and we’ll get a somber ending to the show. Thankfully, there’s always time for him to win it if he continues to look so strong in his journey to dethroning Magnus. Just don’t expect to see both wonderful occurrences happen, the company has always had the reputation for never giving the fans everything they want when the moment is right.

Despite all of that, when the Lethal Lockdown match commences, you will see an entertaining clash between eight very talented performers who will be fighting for unique causes that the fans can get behind. Also, when the bell rings and it’s all over, we’ll get to see the company take a positive direction with their overall story-arc no matter whom is victorious.

It’s going to be the toughest decision TNA’s creative staff has ever made before and it could impact TNA Wrestling for years to come when it’s all said and done, inside the steel cage at Lockdown.

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More LOCKDOWN PPV Match Previews:

James Storm vs. Gunner, TNA vs. WRESTLE-1, Gail Kim vs. Madison Rayne

Stay tuned to Wrestle Enigma for more TNA LOCKDOWN match previews, breakdowns, analysis, predictions, and all-around hype surrounding the event!

About Jacob Stachowiak

Wrestling writer since October 2011. I'm not gay or anything but I'd go down on AJ Styles if he asked me to.
  • Charlie G

    Really good preview/breakdown, Jacob. Am personally hoping for a clean sweep by the good guys at Lockdown, which always seems unlikely :|

    Either way this match goes, it should definitely provide some interesting storyline to follow. Team Dixie wins, Dixie’s reign continues over TNA & now Roode and Aries get a cut too. MVP wins, all the Dixieland BS is over…. maybe.

    Lethal Lockdown this year has, probably, the highest stakes than any other. It should be a fun, great match to watch but Y U gotta question the mighty Bro Mans, Jacob!?!?!

  • Wake Chambers

    Excellent read, Yakub. Probably my fave so far I’ve read of your stuff.

    I’m not sure which scenario is more fun to think about occurring. I definitely like the prospect of ownership taking place among an active wrestler, particularly dirty heels like Aries and Roode.

    I think there is a potential interesting scenario if MVP wins in addition to what you already pointed out. If Roode loses, doesn’t he take it out on Dixie? I’m wondering if Team Roode loses he might end up costing Magnus the belt somehow during the main event, leading into the feud they have been teasing for awhile now.

    I don’t know if all of MVP’s power will be gone if they lose. He would only forfeit any wrestling operations powers. I would think he could use other sorts of powers, since he is still a part owner. Maybe he could use talent relations powers, his firing and hiring abilities, and taking advantage of contract details, and other such things to get under Dixie’s skin. That could be interesting too.

    It truly is an unpredictable match, and I’m looking forward to it that much more.

    • JacobStachowiak

      I’m glad you liked it, Wake. Can’t wait for your NXT ArRival debut.

      As a fellow lover of the incredible team that was Dirty Heels, I’m glad you see the potential benefit in them being in control – though I think everyone (with a normal amount of sense and intelligence) thinks either scenario will breed good things.

      I definitely should have brought up how if Roode loses, clean or screwjob, he’ll definitely turn face completely and start making Dixie’s life hell. I’d be all for a Magnus vs. Roode feud; that’d be really awesome to see and I’d love to root for Roode (at a time when the company wants you to do such).

      It’s extremely unpredictable and TNA deserves some praise for crafting this match together.

  • Ryan Frye

    This is such an interesting match, probably the most interesting on the card. TNA has done a great job making this match so important and unpredictable. Either way, though, we’ll have an interesting story heading out of LockDown.

    Exiling MVP from his position of power so quickly would be disappointing, particularly after the build he was given. He’d suddenly just be another wrestler, who would basically be stuck in the upper-midcard with very little chance at advancement up the card. He wouldn’t be nearly as interesting of a character, although the interactions with Dixie, Roode and possibly Aries would become intriguing, with how they treat him and how he responds.

    Team Dixie winning means more of the same of what we had pre-MVP, which is mainly frightening due to the interference-laiden title matches that were Magnus vs. Styles & Sting. I don’t want to see any mess like that ever again, but on the flip side, Dixie is a heat magnet that should remain on TV (though in a limited role) no matter the result. And we’d have Bobby Roode and potentially Aries in positions of power, which would be incredibly interesting to see unfold.

    And we also have the effect it’ll have on the world title match later on in the night. You’re probably right in saying that the same side won’t win both matches, and that’ll create an interesting dynamic between either Dixie and Joe or MVP and Magnus.

    TNA has been so good at adding all this depth to their storylines recently. All these wrestler’s characters like Roode, EC3 and Shaw have had so many layers to them, as has this storyline heading into LockDown. I have no idea what’s going to happen, but it’s certainly got me hooked.

    Nice article, Jacob.

  • Felixtaker

    One thing that I’m afraid of about this event is the handling of Willow and Jeff Hardy. I think they can’t eliminate the original Jeff Hardy of their map, just to replace him by his alter-ego. And I hope the babyface Hardy will be the one to help Team MVP in Lethal Lockdown, not Willow.
    I really don’t know how this all will be handle, and I’m half-afraid and half-excited about that development.

    • JacobStachowiak

      At least you’re half-excited by the possibilities with Willow and Jeff hardy cause I’m just afraid of what will happen with it. I’m not the biggest Jeff Hardy so I’ll cringe seeing him regardless but in this role, if it’s just ordinary him, I’ll be cool with it.

      If it’s Willow….yeah, that’s gonna be a really weird as hell way to debut him. If it’s Willow that shows up instead, Team MVP might end up losing because of him. I don’t know, there’s a lot of possibilities but he’s honestly the biggest (and probably only) drawback of this entire match.

  • Felixtaker

    Very excited, and even more after that good read.

    But what if the two Main-Events are won by the faces ? MVP takes control of wrestling operations in TNA, Bobby Roode and Austin Aries get cheated and could fight against him (maybe, forming their own “Heels Only” club), Samoa Joe becomes World Champion once again and Magnus slowly separates himself from Dixie Carter (adding higher tensions with EC3, who could win his match against Angle out of nowhere). What about that ?

    • JacobStachowiak

      Glad you liked it. I’m always super excited for the Lethal Lockdown match as I’ve been the last two years. Really loved Garrett vs. Eric’s one and really liked Aces/Team Sting as well. This year should be even better.

      I’d mark out so damn much for Aries and Roode just having their own little club like what EGO pretty much but expanded with Aries in it, focusing more on them as a duo rather than Roode being top dog with Bad Influence as his buddies.

      I think Ethan will win just to kill off Kurt for a little while. Then again, Angle is Angle and him winning would make logical sense. It’s a toss up but either way, whoever wins is good.

      I’m really really really hoping Joe wins. I don’t care who wins the Lethal Lockdown match (as both outcomes are good) but I desperately need Joe to be champion. I lost my favorite wrestler Styles to this Dixie/Magnus crap and I need this to make up for it.

  • Alex Steel

    Definitely excited for this. MVP winning makes the most sense to me, but Roode having a stake in the company creates more interesting storytelling potential. Either way, I just hope it’s a very good show with numerous memorable moments.