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Between the Sheets #97 (May 24-30, 2003)

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Kris & David are guestless as well as under the weather this week as we discuss the week that was May 24-30, 2003. We talk about all the craziness backstage in TNA between the Jarrett clique and the Russo clique. We then go over all the many promotions in Japan at the time and even some England/Australia stuff as well. We then discuss the scene in Mexico before going to the US Indies which saw some interesting shows in IWA Mid-South & Mid-American Wrestling. Finally, we close with WWE featuring some fun clips starring Vince McMahon & Zach Gowen. We were sick but soldiered on and we hope the show is up to our normal standards!


0:00:00 TNA

1:01:26 Japan: AJPW, NJPW, NOAH, WJ, Zero-One, Michinoku Pro, Osaka Pro, Toryumon, WMF, Kageki, K-Dojo, Arsion, & Gaea

1:52:18 Commonwealth: WWA, All-Star, & MXPW

2:04:46 Classic Commercial Break

2:10:19 Housekeeping & The Amazon Game w/ Greg Allman tribute

2:44:01 Mexico: AAA, EMLL, IWRG, & Monterrey

2:53:17 U.S. Indies: Chikara, HWA, NAWA, Memphis, IWAMS, MAW, Rev Pro, UPW, Potpourri, & Hook ’n’ Shoot

3:39:54 OVW & WWE


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Confirming the Chikara show discussed here was the Anniversary show.


A little more background on the Punk vs Hamrick match. Punk had a head injury on the NWA -TNA PPV the Wednesday before. This brought back memories of his fractured skull the prior year. Therefore, the show starts with Punk coming out and saying he isn't going to be able to wrestle. This brings out Hamrick who was making his IWA-MS debut and he swears that they will have a good old school technical wrestling match where he won't go after the head. The reason this is my favorite of the Hamrick stunts where he pulls this spot is that he really got the crowd invested and bought in. They are politely clapping along as they do the first minute or two of chain wrestling and up to the injury. When the "injury" happens everyone in the crowd gasps and stuff is perfect like Ian mouthing FUCK as Punk motions for him to come into the ring. Of course, not only did Hamrick create a ruse but he also gets up and Yakuza kicks Punk right in the head which he promised not to. Prazak on commentary is great here and when Ian returns he is all sorts of pissed off. The match from there is a fight and a great bit of back and forth. I am inclined to agree with Bix that this is at least Punk's most underrated match as it is a wonderful piece of wrestling storytelling. In fact, this IWA-MS show overall (Spirit of 76) is probably my favorite IWA-MS show period that wasn't a KOTDM or TPI night. The Axl turn on Ian in the main is also well done and has Patti going after Axl in a great moment.

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As someone who was at the ROH show with Jeff Hardy in 2003, I think the majority of the hate toward him was that he was considered one of those WWE castoffs just coming into the company looking for a quick pay day. With the exception of Raven (helped to be an ECW guy) and Dusty most former WWE/WCW guys were treated like shit by the diehards. it was funny because he was booed immediately, jumps into the ring to go to the top rope, and slips badly. After that it was hopeless.


Makes you wonder if the 2002 - 2005 Ring of Honor kind of crowd would have shit over the Broken Hardys stuff this year in ROH because it was created in those "sports entertainment" companies.

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