March 4, 2012
Matt Peddycord
The Powerdriver Review

NWA-TNA X-Division Champion Low-Ki vs. AJ Styles vs. Jerry Lynn – Ladder Match (8/28/02)
Ki and Lynn trade chops while Styles grabs a ladder. They finally stop and go to the floor to meet AJ. Lynn takes a ladder shot and Ki kicks the ladder on Styles. They leave Lynn on the floor and head back into the ring. Low-Ki kicks AJ down and then goes after Lynn who is on the apron. Lynn tries that legdrop on the apron spot I hate, but Low-Ki avoids it and kicks Lynn through the ropes. Low-Ki is the BEST. Springboard enziguri connects on AJ, but then Lynn delivers a nice tilt-a-whirl backbreaker on Ki. Crowd chants “we want ladders” as Lynn applies a surfboard on Low-Ki. Ki tries to escape, but AJ comes by and bulldogs him out. Lynn hits a suplex on Styles and grabs a Boston crab. Ki kicks Lynn in the chest to break the hold, but Lynn DARES him to do that again. Oh yeah, he kicks him again. Lynn still has the hold locked in, so Low-Ki slaps the mat and kicks Lynn a third time to complete the combo and finally break the hold. Styles gets whipped into the corner for a rolling kick! With Low-Ki in total control, he whips Lynn into the corner and then gives AJ the Krush Rush into Lynn! Low-Ki now tries to bring a ladder into the ring, but Styles regroups and baseball slides the ladder into Low-Ki. Styles makes a scaffold out of the ladder by placing one end on the guardrail and the other on the ring apron. Styles looks like he wants to give Lynn a Spiral Tap off the ladder, but Low-Ki chops some sense into him. Now all three guys are on the ladder. Lynn brings them both down by crashing their heads down onto the ladder. Lynn can now get the belt. Styles grabs hold of the folded-up ladder, so Lynn baseball slides the ladder into AJ to send him away. Lynn finally goes up for the belt, but Low-Ki is there to kick him down. Low-Ki folds the ladder up and leans it up against the ropes, as AJ’s back in the ring and starts dishing out the forearms, but then he turns around into a clothesline from Lynn. They trade blows until Low-Ki charges and falls right into a double-hiptoss onto the ladder! Lynn sets the ladder in the corner and whips AJ in, but Styles flips off the ladder and tries a tornado DDT. Lynn blocks *that* and gives Styles a release Northern Lights suplex into the ladder! Low-Ki then kicks Lynn square in the mouth. Low-Ki wants the Tidal Wave, but Lynn catches him in a powerbomb position. Lynn starts to run with him, but then Low-Ki snaps off a headscissors to send Lynn into the ladder! AJ runs Low-Ki down with the ladder and starts to climb as we get another pop-up AJ Styles interview that cuts into the match. AJ touches the belt, but Low-Ki is there to punch him down. He then trips up AJ in the “ladder of woe” like we saw with Jericho in the Money in the Bank match at WrestleMania 24. Instead of grabbing the belt like an intelligent person, Low-Ki gets down and gives Styles the Krush Combo until he just collapses to the mat. Low-Ki heads up again, but now Lynn is there to stop him with a back suplex off the ladder. AJ makes a ladder climb attempt, but Low-Ki grabs him by the tights. Whoops. They both fall to the mat. Lynn climbs up and gets the ladder turned over to send him flying into the turnbuckle. AJ hits the Quebrada DDT on Low-Ki. Now Lynn goes after Styles as Low-Ki tries a springboard enziguri, but Styles ducks and Lynn catches Low-Ki for a sit-out powerbomb. Styles and Low-Ki both bring ladders in the ring. Lynn gets knocked off, as Low-Ki punches Styles down across the top of the ladders to apply the Dragon Clutch! Lynn climbs up the middle ladder while Low-Ki and Styles are on the opposite ladders. He pushes both ladders over, but Low-Ki manages to balance himself with his foot on the top rope and gets the ladder back on all fours. AJ’s not as lucky – he falls all the way out to the floor. Huh, another ladder spot that we saw at WrestleMania 24. Who says WWE isn’t paying attention to TNA? Lynn and Low-Ki are now fighting on the same ladder! Lynn smashes Low-Ki’s face onto the top of the ladder and gives him a CRADLE PILEDRIVER OFF THE LADDER! Holy crap. That does it for Low-Ki. Lynn climbs back up the ladder and grabs the belt to win his first of two X-titles. (19:28) Excellent ladder match. It’s hard for these things to still be entertaining when you’ve seen so many of them even in 2002, but they pulled it off nicely. ****¼

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