Welcome to another TNA Telegraph looking back at all of the action of Impact Wrestling’s flagship show. We’re treated this week to a very good show literally from the opening moments through to the end. Yes, there are some cringe-worthy bits but all in all you won’t end up feeling you’ve wasted 2 hours of your life if you check the show out which is definitely an improvement! So sit back and relax and let’s take a look at what went down last Thursday in the Impact Zone.
AJ Styles and Christopher Daniels V Bully Ray and Tommy Dreamer – So this is going to be street-fight tornado tag match and I’m really glad we’re kicking off the show straight into a match. It doesn’t happen often enough and this is quite a big match to be opening the show with. AJ is wearing a neck brace which seems to be a pretty impractical but there you go. AJ brawls with Dreamer and Daniels takes on Bully./ AJ does a cross body from inside the crowd to Dreamer and then Daniels beats on Bully with the amazingly pliable dustbin lids. Daniels goes for the BME but Bully counters and then hits a Rock Bottom (ok, a urinage slam) and the heels end up in control working on AJ’s neck. Daniels is down on the outside for a while from a simple slam and then suddenly pops up and turns the tables and then hits the spiked piledriver on Dreamer for the win. Bit weird result given that we’re only just starting the Styles/Dreamer angle and yet AJ delivered a piledriver to Dreamer which kind of feels like it should be the finish. Anyway the match itself was a great fun way to start the show so thumbs up there.
Next up….The scorpion sit down? Taz thinks Anderson fooled everyone last week which makes me think Taz needs to spend sometime with brain training on his DS. Of course it’s Anderson in his 80’s Sting get up and he calls out Disco Inferno! Anderson proceeds to slate old school Stings get up. Disco says Anderson really is an asshole which gets a bigger reaction than Anderson’s previous insults. Still at least Anderson is being a heel which is more believable than that the fans should like him. Awesome, Disco asks Anderson why he calls himself an asshole when in fact he’s just a dick! Ahaha they brought down Anderson’s mic so Disco could say Dick again! This allows Anderson to lay out disco with the mic… did he blade? Disco’s blood looks like tomato sauce if so… The real Sting comes out and Anderson legs it. That was a very entertaining segment and Disco was very funny and Anderson pulled of being heel perfectly, I swear he;s been reading this blog and has taken on my advice ab out not jumping all over a promo like an epileptic rabbit.
Pictured: A man We’d all rather never see on TV ever again….. oh and Disco Inferno
Eric young is in the toilets with Gunner. Eric Young basically says he’ll lay down for Gunner tonight and then they give each other their titles back, he references the finger poke of doom which was quite amusing. Gunner says “You go down or I’ll put you down” this is totally the wrong line to be said by two guys in a toilet…
Velvet sky out which kills me after all the good work so far…. Sky calls out ODB. She asks why she attacked her last week… God Velvet needs to shut the f*ck up when someone else is talking. Basically ODB says her getting fired is down to Velvet without really saying why, Velvet whines about getting everything through hard work and ODB says Velvet slept her way to the top. ODB then starts to beat on Velvet until security come out. This segment was pretty flat which sucked because I’d hoped ODB would be able to pull a good angle out of Velvet Sky. I’d read earlier that this was actually a re-tape and that ODB had specifically said that it was the way Velvet looked that had caused the larger ODB to be fired which would have made more sense so I assume that Velvet was even worse in that segment than this.
We hype that Angle will face RVD for the first time this week. Pretty cool to do something like that for a TV match, it;s not really something I’ve seen done for anything not a PPV match.
We get a recap from last week of Roode getting his shoulder f*cked up by Immortal and then cut into Bischoff’s office and Beer Money. Eric insinuates that Roode won’t be fit for Slammiversary which apparently is where Beer Money are going to defend their belts. He calls storm some kind of “hillbilly Jesus” and wonders if he can work some magic on Roode uysing cow dung. Roode says he can;t turn water into wine but can’t stick his foot up Eric’s ass. Bischoff stumble pretty badly over his line but which kind of kills him saying sorry for their damn luck. Storm throws some paper across the office and says sorry for his damn paper. Bit flat but what I was happy about was that it was quick so instead of forgetting what the point was at least you got that Immortal are screwing Beer Money.
We get a video of Pope saying he doesn’t know what Devon’s issue with him is as we recap him kissing Devon’s wife. Pope assures Devon he is still his brother. I’m all for having Pope back on our screens but rehashing the Devon angle after, what, 5 or 6 weeks does not thrill me.
That cuts to Angle with Matt Morgan. Angle says he “picked” Morgan as he’s the most dominant force in Impact Wrestling. He picked him? Are we booking in the playground football team style now? Angle spends the segment telling Morgan about the threat from Karen and then to concentrate on Jarrett… bit of a manual breathing activated moment.
“Kurt, why are you not checking out my sweet giant yo-yo skills?”
Morgan v Jarett – Jeff and Karen out first and then Morgan. Jeff sets up a chair for Karen right at ringside and Earl Hebner spends like a minute making them move the chair back about 6 feet. Jeff tries for an aggressive start but Morgan takes control. Matt does his “corner elbows” spot which always looks like he’s rubbing himself againast his opponent. Big fallaway slam for a near fall nd Jeff manages to get the crutch from Karen and hits Morgan with it and then hits The Stroke…. I say hits but in fact Matt sells this by landing on his forearms clearly stopping his head getting anywhere near the mat. Jarrett goes for the pin but Morgan kicks out which gets put over by Tenay and Taz. Morgan does a chokeslam/Atomic Drop and then hits the Carbon Footprint. Karen at ringside hits Hebner with her crutch to stop him counting which apparently isn’t a DQ in Impact Wrestling…. Steiner comes out and drops Morgan allowing Jerrett to pick up the win. Not the greatest match you’ll ever witness but Morgan was made to look pretty impressive and I’m behind anything that means we get more Steiner mic time.
“Oh God, the air is so hard… hey look a peanut!“
Hogan on the way to the ring and we get a little replay of the announcement of Foley as the network exec, Bischoff killing the X Division and Abyss winning the X Division title.
EB is in the ring and he’s very happy about something. He says that Hulk “won” in new york against Foley and the network execs and gives Hulk a big build up before he calls him out. Hogan comes out and says the network execs agreed he was the man to steer Impact and that it’ll be clear sailing from now on. He also congratulates Bischoff on killing the x-division. So hogan is back in total charge then? What was the whole point of having Foley as the network exec?
Guess we’ll find out as Foley comes out being described as the “network consultant” by commentary… ruined slightly by Foley calling himself a network executive seconds later. Foley says he talked to the network execs (didn’t we just hear that?) and that the x division is staying as it was what TNA was built on and he’s going on the road and will be getting new stars and there will be an Ultimate X match in July at Destination X. Haven’t we barely announced the Slammiversary card so far? We’re already promoting an event we’re nearly 2 months away? Bischoff says Foley has no say on PPV since he’s a network consultant for the TV network only. Foley says the network pays to promote the PPV so it’s on which is the most retarded logic ever. Hogan tries make Foley have a title match against Abyss. Kendrick out with some really odd promo about God talking through him with the other 4 guys who apparently are the only people in the X division. Brian wants Abyss instead of Foley. Hogan agrees but says the blood is on Foley’s hands.
AAAGGGGHHHHHH!!! Winter promo alert! evacuate! It’s like sitting through all of Titanic next to a friend who missed the first half hour and so asks you who people are and why they are doing stuff for the next 3 hours.
Winter V Mickie James – Quick match thank all that is holy and Mickie hits the jumping DDT for the win. Winter is “busted” open in the mouth by James’s DDT (the move that drops you on the top of your head) which causes Love to attack her. I think I’d have had Love actually cause the DQ rather than let Winter lose and then have it. James must have cracked elbow on the steel steps at some point as she’s got quick a deep looking cut there.
The face of “I could not care less about this” and she’s actually in this angle.
Abyss is backstage with another art of war quote which at least for me is really not working. Kaz smacks him over the head from behind with something and takes Janice away.
Abbys v Kendrick – Have to love Christy Hemme announcing Abyss from Parts Unkowan.. The match was better than it sounds on paper but Kendrick was pretty easily dispatched here and it did seem like Kendrick was going to be the focus of this angle so I assume someone else will come in to take the title from Abyss. I guess this is where this angle kind of falls down. The x division isn’t a weight limit thing except in the minds of the fans. That expectation means that whoever beats Abyss for the title, who probably isn’t going to be one of the high flying guys, could make the pay off could slightly neutered if the new champ doesn’t resemble what the fans think of a X division guy is.
Another RVD/Angle promo with a lot if emphasis on the new “Wrestling Matters” tag line they are using.
Angle backstage and Angle basically bigs up RVD before there match. I’m impressed actually, the small segments that happen repeatedly do a much better job than the huge wordy segments that was the staple of Impacts previous. Bar the Women’s match earlier I’ve not been bored once.
TV championship – Gunner V Eric Young. Bit of chatting at the start reminding us the EY says he’ll do the job (and Gunner actually uses the work job here) so Gunner does the finger poke of doom on EY but Eric rolls him up and is the new TV champ. Very funny and my love for EY grows every time I see him on TV.
It’s not quite The Ultimate Warrior at WM6 but it’ll do me!
RVD V Angle – Jeff and Karen on commentary. RVD out first and Angle second. Jeremey Borash reminds us twice that this is the main event, I personally don’t feel saving Borash for the final ring announcement actually makes that much difference plus I find Borash ridiculously creepy. He he Karen says she hopes we get a replay of a couple of weeks ago and RVD removes a couple of Kurt’s teeth. Quick start to the match with trading a few holds, Angle elbows RVD right in the mouth but RVD hits Rolling Thunder and Angle goes to the outside. More counters and some kicks from RVD but Angle turns it round with a big belly to belly suplex. Angle takes things down to the mat for a bit and RVD fights back with a kick from nowhere and takes control again. Ooh Angle hits a massive release German that RVD flips through onto his belly! Kurt goes for the Angle slam and RVD counters with a DDT. RVD goes to the top but Angle with a belly to belly from the top but RVD kicks out. Angle locks in the ankle lock for a good minute or so but counters out and goes for the 5 star frog splash but misses and Angle catches him with an Angle Slam for the win. Great match, not stellar but this is TV so I’m not upset that this wasn’t a full on 5 stars. The show ends with Angle sharing a staredown with Jeff on the rampway.
Blimey, where have TNA been hiding these shows? If you take out the knockouts from this show it was a massive leap forward in terms of quality in both the matches and the promos and pre taped stuff. It really felt action packed, very little felt forced or dragged on longer than it needed to and lots of little bits shifted into place with 2 weeks until Slammiversary. I really feel that if this the next gear that TNA has shifted into then it could be looking good for them to be taken a bit more seriously by people. It may not result in massive spikes in the viewing figures but that will only come if they can shrug off being the joke competition to the WWE.
Perhaps the one thing I think they could do a little better is remind us of ALL the feuds they are running on every show because the tendancy is that other than the top 2 feuds everyone else seems to get one week on and one week of. For example we got no Joe/Crimson or Maddison/Tara this show and we had no Steiner/Morgan last week. Personally I think that’s bad practice as it takes 2 minutes to have a quick backstage interview or brawl or even just a little video package to remind us of stuff. Oh and I;d rather they killed the Knockouts division as the only two in ring performers I have any time for are Tara and Mickie James. Maddison does a good job on the mic but she’s awful in the ring and the Knock out tag team belt is probably the most useless belt in wrestling at the moment.