20 Things You Didn’t Know About Slammiversary

20 things you didnt know about Slammiversay

In spite of the numerous changes that have happened over the years, there are a few things that manage to stay the same in TNA Wrestling and one of those things would have to be: Slammiversary.

Slammiversary (much like Bound For Glory) has been around since 2005 and has provided some of the best wrestling moments and matches outside of the WWE.

With so many events to hold the Slammiversary name, there are a number of interesting and little facts that surround TNA’s Biggest Party of the Summer and will be looking a few them here with one fact for each Slammiversary, So let’s kick things off with…

20. The First King of the Mountain Match Didn’t Take Place at Slammiversary 2005

One of the most famous (or infamous) matches in all of TNA history has to be King of the Mountain: a multiple person ladder match with a few twists.

Participants have to pin or submit one another to be eligible, the person who got pinned or submitted must spend some time in a penalty box and if you’re eligible you can grab the belt, climb the ladder, hang the belt and then you win….Got it…Good.

Even though the rules make the match sound like a convoluted mess, there have actually been some good if not great KOTM matches at Slammversary, however the King of the Mountain match that occurred at the inaugural 2005 event was not the first one.

On June 2nd 2004, TNA was still doing it’s weekly pay-per-views long before they scored a TV deal with Fox Sports or SPIKE TV and the main event of that PPV was the very first King of the Mountain Match which saw Ron Killings (aka R-Truth) defending his NWA World Championship against, “The Wildcat” Chris Harris, Raven, AJ Styles, and Jeff Jarrett with Double J winning the belt for the third time in TNA which lead to his ludricously long 305 day world title reign.

Jarrett was set to take part in this match at Slammiversary ’05 but due to storyline reasons, Double J was soon replaced with Raven and the former Johnny Polo finally became fulfilled his destiny to become the new NWA World Champion.

19. The Tag Titles Wouldn’t Change Hands Again Until 2009

The semi main event at Slammiversary 2006 pitted AJ Styles and Christopher Daniels vs. James Storm and Chris Harris of America’s Most Wanted for the NWA World Tag Team titles…and the match was really great with Styles and Daniels ending AMW’s 250 day reign as tag champs.

Fan absolutely enjoyed seeing the two X Division stars become tag team champions, but little did anyone realize that this would be the last time for several years that the tag belts changed hands at Slammiversary.

Both the 2007 and 2008 PPV’s saw the tag team champions retain the gold and it was until the 2009 edition of the show when the belts finally changed hands after Beer Money became three time tag team champions with that match also taking place in the semi main event.

Bonus Fact, between 2007-09 Team 3D were in all three tag title matches at Slammiversary; Either retaining belts at ’07, failing to win them back in ’08 and losing them to the aforementioned Beer Money in ’09.

18. The Debut of the TNA World Championship

Since it’s inception in June of 2002, TNA and the NWA were synonymous with each other with the National Wrestling Alliance allowing the brand new company to use their tag team and world heavyweight titles in the early years with the belts lineage remaining in tact with all the others who held the titles.

Fast forward to May 13th 2007 and representatives of the NWA and later TNA confirmed that the partnership was coming to an end after five years. TNA management didn’t make much of an effort to tell the NWA’s board of directors about impending title changes for some time and TNA wanted to establish their own titles due the brand’s popularity.

The announcement came the same day TNA was set to have their Sacrifice pay-per-view with the NWA Tag Team and World Heavyweight titles being defended, so naturally the company kept the physical belts had the champions defend the titles anyway with both matches ending in a dusty finish.

This gave way to TNA introducing their own tag team and world title belts by the Summer of 2007 with Team 3D just given the newly created tag titles on the company’s then online web show, TNA Today while the main event of that year’s Slammiversary event saw a new champion being crowned in a King of the Mountain match.

Comprised of wrestlers like AJ Styles, Christian Cage, Samoa Joe, Chris Harris and Kurt Angle, the finish saw Wrestling’s Only Olympic Gold Medalist become the first ever TNA World Heavyweight Champion with Angle winning the belt a record six times throughout his tenure in the company.

17. The Beautiful People’s Partner was a Controversial Indie Wrestler

The second match at Slammiversary 2008 saw a six woman tag team match between Roxxi, ODB and Gail Kim versus Angelina Love and Velvet Sky of the Beautiful People and their tag team partner, Moose….No, not the football player turn wrestler but a female wrestler from Clarksville, Indiana who had appeared on TNA programming alongside the platinum blondes in the lead up to this match.

While the match itself was nothing to write home about, it is notably for the involvement of the previously mentioned Indiana native whose real name was Mickie Knuckles and whose history in pro wrestling saw her wrestle for companies like Chikara, Juggalo Championship Wrestling and Ohio Valley Wrestling.

Before she showed up in TNA, she made her name in the Independent Wrestling Association Mid-South where she became their inaugural women’s champions and competed in various regular and hardcore matches alongside names like LuFisto, Mayumi Ozaki, Sara Del Ray and Mercedes Martinez.

Not long after her match at Slammiversary, Knuckles was signed to a contract with TNA while also working dates for IWA, unfortunately after two more matches she never returned to TNA after an incident on a June 21st 2008 IWA show.

Mickie Knuckles took on an untrained competitor named Mike Levy which resulted in Levy getting demolished by Mickie with stiff shots and then given a massive beatdown by a few wrestlers from backstage including promoter, Ian Rotten. This incident along with a leg injury during a match and an unsuccessfuly first surgery led to TNA releasing Knuckles from her contract though she would return in 2016 losing a dark match to Laurel Van Ness aka the future Chelsea Green.

16. Jarrett’s Only Loss in King of the Mountain

Due his wife passing from Breast Cancer in 2007 and taking a more behind-the-scenes role in the company, Jeff Jarrett hadn’t competed in TNA as much as use to and that includes missing Slammiversary and the two King of the Mountain Matches that occurred in ’07 and ’08.

Things changed by the time Slammiversary 2009 rolled around as the Founder of TNA took part in his first KOTM match since 2006 to take on TNA Legends Champion AJ Styles, Kurt Angle, Samoa Joe and reigning TNA World Champion, Mick Foley.

While some may remember this match for the shocking and nonsensical heel turn by Samoa Joe, this match is also notably for the simply fact that it marks the only time in King of the Mountain history that Double J didn’t come out on top,

Well at least there will be another chance for Jarrett to win KOTM at Slammiversary 2010, right?

15. First Slammiversary with No King of the Mountain Matches

The Hulk Hogan/Eric Bischoff era of TNA saw many of the matches, wrestlers and other things that made company so special disappear at that was evident at Slammiversary 2010.

After a surprise return and even more surprising heel turn by ‘The Icon’ Sting on the March 8th 2010 edition of IMPACT! Sting would cause mayhem in the locker room and beatdown a host of wrestlers leading to this first time ever meeting between Sting and Rob Van Dam for the TNA World Championship.

This marked the first time in Slammiversary history that there were no KOTM matches on the card and this continued to be the norm until the match returned on two different occasions at Slammiversary 2015 and 2022.

It also became the first time the main event of Slammiversary was a straight up singles match for the title, but even more history would be made in the main event the following year.

14. Angle vs. Jarrett: Slammiversary’s First Non World Title Main Event

One year after failing to win back the TNA World Title at Slammiversary, Sting entered the 2011 version of the event as the champion…only to lose it in a rubbish bout with Mr. Anderson thanks to some interference from Eric Bischoff and some screwy B.S. towards the end.

Had the show ended there it would have been disappointing, but this wasn’t the final match on the card but rather the semi main event; The actual main event was Kurt Angle and Jeff Jarrett wrestling each other for the last time with Kurt’s Gold Medal and the chance to become number one contender for the world title at stake.

Not only did this mean that another singles match closed out Slammiversary but it was also the first time the world title didn’t main event the show…In fact there have only been three times the world title didn’t main event Slammiversary, but more on that later.

13. Slammiversary’s Largest Attendance Figures

There have been a few times in which TNA have had events that been considered the largest in company history like Bound For Glory 2007 & 2008 which had 4,000-5,500 fans to Lockdown 2007 & 2013 which had 6,000-7,200 fans in attendance, but when it comes to TNA’s biggest party of the Summer, there is one event that has set the precendent for biggest attendance numbers.

At Slammiversary 2012 (TNA’s 10th Anniversary) the show took place at the College Park Center in Arlington Texas where the event drew in a 5,000 attendance figure inside a building that could hold 6,000.

While the following year’s event would see a decrease in attendance, the show still pulled in around 3,800 people so not to bad…and Speaking of the 2013 Slammiversary.

12. The Publicity Around Last Knockouts Standing Match

Gail Kim’s feud with former WWECW General Manager turn TNA Referee turn wrestler, Taryn Terrell has become the stuff of legend in recent years due in no small part to this match at Slammiversary 2013.

The first of its kind in mainstream pro wrestling, the Last Knockouts Standing match became the talk of the wrestling world for a period of time; In fact, Vince McMahon was reportedly so inspired by the match that he wanted the same level of physicality for the upcoming Divas Title bout between Kaitlyn and AJ Lee at their Payback PPV.

On top of that, TMZ were also fascinated by the match so much that they talked with Taryn Terrell a few days after the pay-per-view where she brought up the bruises she suffered and how overwelmed she was with all the praise she got.

Further proof if needed, that TNA was still able to grab the wrestling and real world’s attention, but all the right reasons.

11. MVP was Suppose to Win the TNA World Title

At Slammiversary 2014 the main event saw Eric Young defend his TNA World Heayweight Championship in a triple threat Steel Cage match between Austin Aries and Bobby Lashley after the latter two won qualifying matches earlier in the night to get this oppertunity.

The match itself is an underrated classic when it comes to Slammiversary main events, but it almost didn’t happen they way that it did; During a 2020 interview with the Table Talk Podcast, Bobby Lashley revealed that MVP (Lashley’s manager and heel authority figure) was suppose to face EY for the world title at Slammiversary.

Even more surprising, MVP was scheduled to win that match and become the new world champion, however he was working with an knee injury in the lead up to the show and things got so bad that the former United States Champion needed surgery and thus plans for MVP to become TNA Champion was shelved.

10. Jarrett is the Only Person to Wrestle in Two Non World Title Main Events

As we’ve previously discussed, Jeff Jarrett took on Kurt Angle in the first ever main event in Slammiversary to not include the world title, well fast forward four years later and Double J again is in the main event but this time in a King of the Mountain match for the King of the Mountain Championship.

While the idea of Jeff Jarrett in the main event of a pay-per-view in 2015 is insane to think about, it’s even more insane to realize that he won the KOTM match which by the way included names like Bobby Roode, Eric Young, Matt Hardy and Drew Galloway/McIntyre…Absolute madness.

Despite that, Jarrett does hold the record for being the only person to wrestle in two Slammiversary main events with the world title nowhere in sight…I am not kidding about that last part either as this is the only Slammiversary with no world title match in the history of TNA’s Biggest Party of the Summer…TNA in 2015 was a weird time folks.

9. Abyss: Slammiversary’s Championship MVP

By Slammiversary 2016 “The Monster” Abyss was not only the one half of the TNA World Tag Team Champions as part of Decay but he also achieved something no other wrestler has been able to do at TNA’s Biggest Party of the Summer.

That achievement is that Abyss is the only person in TNA history to have wrestled at Slammiversary for the X Division, World Title, Tag Team and Mid Card championships throughout his career.

He take part in two King of The Mountain matches for the NWA World title at Slammiversary 2005 and 2006, he retained the X Division championship against Frankie Kazarian and Brian Kendrick at Slammiversary 2011, he defeated Devon to become the Television Champion at Slammiversary 2013 and finally in 2016 he and Crazzy Steve retained the World Tag Team titles over Jessie Godderz and Robbie of the Bro Mans.

An impressive feat from one of TNA’s greatest performers.

8. The End of the Orlando Era

One of the locations that have become synonymous with Slammiversary over the years has to be Universal Studios aka the IMPACT Zone in Orlando Florida; The venue was not only TNA’s home during TV tapings but it also was the home of many PPV’s with Slammiversary taking place in the IMPACT Zone at least seven times.

The first two took place inside Universal Studios before taking the event to places like Tennessee, Mississippi and Michigan in 2007, 2008 and 2009 respectively. They would re-emerge inside the IMPACT Zone for the 2010 and 2011 show before taking the PPV to areas such as Texas and Massachusetts.

It wouldn’t be until the mid 2010’s when TNA hosted Slammiversary in the IMPACT Zone three years in a row from 2015-17, making the 2017 edition of TNA’s Biggest Party of the Summer the last one to take place in Orlando Florida.

7. First Ever Sold Out Slammiversary

It took the company 13 years after the very first Slammiversary to finally make the show a sell out…Better late than never I guess.

Under the new regime of Don Callis and Scott D’Amore, things would change and for the better as Slammiversary 2018 proved; Not only was the show a rousing success for the company but it also was the first in the event’s history to have sold out the arena. 

The event took place at the Rebel Entertainment Complex in Toronto Canada which can hold up to 2,500 people as it’s capacity and TNA managed to sell the arena out which was shocking to the critics as this was a year after the last event which was followed up by a disastrous merger between the company and Global Force Wrestling in 2017.

2018 was comeback year for TNA Wrestling and the results of this event certainly showed things were going in the right direction.

6. Tessa vs. Sami Became the Main Event the Day Before 

It might be hard to believe know considering she’s fallen off the map in mainstream wrestling, but Tessa Blanchard was a bona fide superstar and the late 2010’s was easily the highest point in her career.

In addition to winning the Knockouts Championship and getting Gail Kim out of retirement for one more match, Tessa also feuded with Sami Callihan for much of 2019 into early 2020 with their best match arguably being at Slammiversary 2019.

However did you know, that this bout between Tessa and Sami wasn’t initially going to be the mian event and the decision to make it the final match on the card was actually made the day before the event.

In a documentary for TNA’s Hard To Kill 2020 event, Tessa Blanchard mentions how she and Sami were suppose to be the semi-main event for Slammiversary and the world title match between Michael Elgin and Brian Cage would be the main event.

Eventually a decision was made instead to have that the world title match be the semi-main event and Callihan vs. Blanchard would close out the show; Concerns about Cage’s ability to wrestle with an injured back could’ve been seen as a factor for this sudden change in the card although, considering how amazing the world title match and the main event ended up being I doubt both Cage and Elgin were upset by this decision.  

5. The Originals Plans For Tessa Blanchard

Tessa Blanchard’s departure from the company in the Summer of 2020 didn’t really hurt the company or the momentum going into that year’s Slammiversary as the show was great despite having no fans.

As it turns out, there were plans for the third generation had she been able to appear on this show as reports from the time mentioned that the Good Brothers were suppose to attack Tessa following the match as Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson wanted to get as much heat as possible during their first night.

This attack by the Good Brothers could of also been used as way to write off Tessa from the company as her contract was already expired by this point and if the two parties couldn’t reach an agreement this could be a way to get rid of her onscreen.

Sadly, when communications between Tessa and the company fell apart, she was stripped of the title and then fired from the company which led to management changing plans ever so slightly with the Good Brothers coming out after the main event and attacking Madman Fulton and Ace Austin turning the duo babyfaces instead of heels.

4. Havok and Rosemary Make History on the Preshow

Wrestling preshow matches are often designed to get you excited about the upcoming pay-per-view in a last ditch effort to get you to buy the show and in the last couple of years TNA has produced some incredible preshow matches.

One such match would have be the Knockouts Tag Team Title match between Decay’s Rosemary and Havok versus Kiera Hogan and Tasha Steelz of Fire N’ Flava on the Countdown to Slammiversary in 2021.

The bout was roughly nine minutes, but it was more than enough to show off the athleticism and chemistry between these two teams with the finish seeing Rosemary and Havok becoming the brand new Knockouts Tag Team Champions.

This made TNA’s resident sinister knockouts the first wrestlers in company history to have won championship gold on the preshow; While this has happened a number of times since (most notably with the Digital Media Championship), this is an impressive feat for two of the company’s most recognizable stars.

3. The Lackluster Hype

The 18th edition of Slammiversary marked 20 years of the company’s existence, so naturally figures from past showed up to a great reaction, the crowd were electric and the in-ring action for the most part was soild.

It’s unfortunate that the company didn’t put much effort into promoting the show as any fans who were watching the product at the time will tell you. Outside of a vague commerical that doesn’t disclose anything about the show, the company didn’t really do much to get new fans interested.

The buyrates and attendance figures for this event really show how a lack of proper hype can really sabotage things as the company only got around 1,200-1,400 buys, which was surprising better than the 2021 event and that show had Kenny Omega vs. Sami Callihan for the world title in the main event.

Attendance wise, the show attracted 526 people which as you imagine wasn’t great and it ended up becoming the first non pandemic event by the company to not be a sell out. The backlash from all of this by fans eventually led to Lou D’Angeli (aka Sign Guy Dudley in ECW) being hired to led the company’s promotional departure until his departure from TNA in June of 2024.

2. The Uptick in PPV Buys

Take everything I said about the buyrates of the previous year’s event being disappointing and prepare to watch the company improve on it by the time of the 2023 edition of the show.

According to reports, the buyrate for Slammiversary 2023 ended up doing over 4,400 buys which is 3,200-3000 more than the 2022 event and might go down as the best buyrate to happen to Slammiversary in recent memory.

The attendance for this show also increased as well with reportedly 1,500 people showing up which is a massive correction by the company, but there is a chance that the 2024 event could also see an increase in attendance figures, which leads me to…

1. Slammiversary ’24 has Done the Best Ticket Sells for TNA in 10 Years

The company’s rebranding/return to TNA has seen the company do great business when it comes to PPV buys (hello, Hard To Kill) and it’s also seen tremendous growth in subscribers to the TNA Plus App (hello, Against All Odds).

That said, the 20th edition of Slammiversary is doing great in terms of ticket sells thanks in no part to the efforts of TNA’s resident French Canadian wrestlers: Mike Bailey and PCO.

With the event taking place at the Verdun Auditorum which has a capacity of over 4,000 the company has (as of the timing of this article) managed to sell around 2,300-2,500 tickets and that’s before you realize that only one match has been announced for the event.

To make things even better, it’s been reported that this is the best the company has done in ticket sales…since 2014!!! With reports of the company adding even more seats as sales continue to flourish.

While it maybe too soon to predict a sold out event, if the following numbers continue to do well then we might just see even more good news in TNA’s future.

So that’s it, what fact about TNA’s Slammiversary event did you find the most interesting? Share your thoughts down below.

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