Notes In Observance – TNA Impact Wrestling 2/2/17: Night Of Open Fight

Photo courtesy of Inside Pulse.

By Nicholas Jason Lopez


“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.






(Aired 2/2/17)

Night Of Open Fight 

– Welcome to the one night in TNA Wrestling where various employees can challenge (or “call out”) others for intense quarrels or whatnot. “Open Fight Night” still remains a cheesy take on “Open Mic Night” and whenever it’s uttered, it’s hard to not automatically think of 2012. Hulk Hogan, Bully Ray and Brooke Hogan much? Anyways, they combined OFN with the former “Feast Or Fired” in that the briefcase holders had the right to challenge for any belt of their choosing. Or most of them. We’ll get to that shortly. To start things off, we got some kooky close-ups of the case holders – Jeff Hardy, Trevor Lee, Eli Drake/Tyrus and The DCC. Talk about close-ups. This just looked plain bad.

– Out came TNA World Tag Team Champions The Broken Hardys, as the hook was to see who Jeff would pick. We got some lovely “Broken” adjectives like “Night Of Open Fight” (it influenced this title) and they spoke about a “teleportation mechanism” in their quest to become the best tag team in time/space in an “International Expedition.” That actually sounds epic AF. Perhaps this will be the justification for their match against ROH World Tag Team Champions The Young Bucks. With no signs of stoppage, they even name-dropped The New Day and The Wyatt Family. From what it sounded like, they’d go to WWE and challenge them. Right. Anyways, Jeff chose the World Title and summoned TNA World Heavyweight Champion Lashley. Makes sense. They even gave Lashley new music apparently. Solid, natural promo as he’s back into that comfortable “cocky Champion” role. Long story short, challenge accepted. The match easily could’ve been a main event and actually should’ve been. The pace was calmer than we expected. That steel step powerbomb spot was sold by Jeff like a king. Nice heel touch with Lashley’s “Delete” mocking. They gave some hope spots for Jeff, but he also sold his other injuries. Jeff began to do Jeff things, but Lashley remained a force as he kicked out of two Swanton Bombs. Jeff found some momentum again as he pulled off a dropkick off the steel steps. Solid story to the finish, as Jeff’s daredevil ways did him in, as he missed a plancha attempt and landed on the floor. Lashley waited under the ring and threw him in for a spear that ended it. Post-match, Eddie Edwards confronted the Champ for what we assumed would be that rematch clause. The “Triple B” stuff was confusing. Lashley acknowledging that Edwards had “one more chance” was just more fact than anything else. Of course it’s one more chance. It’s a rematch. Duh. At least we know we’ll get one more Edwards-Lashley encounter out of this.

– We saw Tyrus/Drake backstage as they continued to intimidate the cameraman, a nice reference to a previous segment where Drake went off on other employees physically. They wouldn’t mention who they’d challenge and kept it a mystery. Kind of hard to believe that it’d really “shock the world,” but okay.

– In a different backstage room, TNA Knockouts Champion Rosemary tried to get Brandi Rhodes to join her decayed squad. Not sure what she sees in Rhodes as a member, but we’ll probably get a match out of this. Homegirl definitely didn’t feel the invite and Rosemary didn’t feel the rejection. We’ll need way more to get excited.

– Time to dive further into the wicked world of Aron Rex and Rockstar Spud. How fabulous is it? Not sure, but we got a decently funny video package only for the image of two grown men relying on a golf cart to get around. Spud had to make sure the ground was covered in a carpet before Rex could walk it. There’ll be way more of these, so hold your breath.

– Sienna came out with Maria as we learned she’d take on Brooke. Guess this was tied to Sienna’s past attack on Brooke. We’re okay with that. Points for continuity and the idea of Brooke feuding with Maria’s appetizing. They had Madison Rayne on commentary again of course. Based off that feud idea, Brooke wasted no time as she made a beeline right for Sienna. Hearing the commentary rambling only had us thinking how bad a name “The Lady Squad” is. Sounds too much like old ladies. Better names were surely around. They used Maria for a chase spot to set up a clothesline by Sienna that missed the mark bad. The only good thing about this match was the finish, which was Maria’s classic heel tactics, as she physically pushed Brooke off the top rope to lead in to the Silencer for the three. At least they made Sienna look beastly before that as she powered out of Brooke’s extended stretch hold.

– Typical DCC promo, but not in the style of robotic voices at a news desk. Instead, we got snippets from the three members, namely James Storm, as he promised to “make a few calls.” Whatever that entails.

– Back to Rex – ha ha ha. The joke was that Rex thought he had extensive media appearances and they were actually “lower” than the big names. We were halfway tuned out. There was also something about makeup.

– DCC came out with the delusional promo that they ran the place. They also tried to make that “We’re in the ass-kicking business and business is booming” catchphrase spread since it was the second time we heard it in five minutes if you count that promo backstage. With Jeff already competing, the Tag Titles were off the table, so their challenge went out to Decay in a Falls Count Anywhere match. Random. Essentially a hardcore spotfest. We wish they spread this out from the Women’s Monster’s Ball last week, since it also featured tacks and a barbed wire board. As far as memorable moments, we’d point to Crazzy Steve’s barricade leap, Kingston taking the chokeslam onto the tacks and Abyss taking a beer bottle over the head, beer spit in his face and a Last Call that landed him onto the board. In the end though, it was a spike piledriver off the apron on Steve by Bram that ended it. Entertaining, but a repetitive deal.

– We saw Maria/The Miracle approach Braxton Sutter. Update – Maria forced Sutter to propose to Laurel Van Ness or else something would happen to dear Allie. We’re with it. It was also funny to hear Miracle brag to Sutter about the killer bachelor party he’d throw him. It’s building to something good for Allie.

– TNA Impact Grand Champion Drew Galloway made his entrance as he wanted to defend his belt. He put over being a fighting Champion, even though commentary showed us his last two matches against Moose where he won with low blows. The thing’s that Galloway still rings as a babyface despite the company’s attempts to keep him heel compared to Moose. They had Moose come out and argue for a rematch as he explained how low blows did him in. We saw Galloway change the subject and grant a match to the fierce Rob Ryzin. The gist of it was that Galloway stalled against a future encounter with Moose, but was still strong enough as a Champion to easily dispose of Ryzin with the belt on the line. Story’s fine, just wish they’d let Galloway be that lead babyface again.

– Backstage, Trevor Lee and Gregory Shane Helms were in the shot. Helms put over OFN like it was Christmas and hyped that Lee would speak and make his formal challenge. After that, they really replayed the entire Galloway-Ryzin match.

– Galloway was approached backstage by the interviewer about that Moose rematch and he reiterated again that Moose lost twice and was past news. We like that they take Galloway’s former face motivations and use that for his heel logic. At least they’re smart about it.

– Lee/Helms made their entrance and sure enough, Lee’s challenge was for TNA X-Division Champion DJZ. Surprise surprise. They previously attacked his leg and it was still injured. Lee wanted a Ladder match to put the icing on the cake. Sure, why not? On commentary, Josh Mathews made one of the most horrendous comebacks ever – “Pope, you take a shortcut every two weeks when this company pays you!” and it was like, what? The action was alright as they opted for the story that put sympathy on DJZ. It was kind of laughable that the idea was that a healthy man on two legs couldn’t beat an injured man on one in a ladder match. Watch DJZ still somehow win this. DJZ hit the ZDT off the ladder, but that wasn’t enough. The advantages were too much for DJZ as Helms slid Lee a chair and he used it to knock DJZ off the ladder in the leg and placed it over him to climb to the belt. With that, Lee was once again Champion. Will that mean a Division shakeup? Time will tell.

– We got a repeat of earlier as Drake/Tyrus again hyped up their “surprise.” Did we really need that in there? We got it.

– So, the overall purpose of these silly “Day In The Life” segments were to build to a Robbie E-Rex match next week. All that trouble for that? The only thing memorable here was the way Rex flexed his rings in Robbie’s face. That remains the only element untouched with Rex.

– Drake/Tyrus made their dramatic entrance as we’d see what all the hubbub was about. Sure enough, they called out Ethan Carter III, who was recently injured. Tyrus ripped on his old and crippled appearance. They goaded EC3 to show off his bruises, even one that was alarmingly purple situated on his ribs. Drake held nothing back as he attacked him and beat on him. The only times EC3 was able to avoid Drake were with the bat swings, but the majority of this was EC3 punishment. They opted for the “surprise finish” as EC3 pinned Drake for three with a jackknife cover. Grueling encounter, but not exactly comeback of the century material. Post-match, Drake connected with the bat shots and an inverted DDT. The lights went off and came back on to reveal DCC. They surrounded Drake/Tyrus and it appeared maybe they saw a new light. Nope, attacked EC3 instead. They did attack Tyrus/Drake after that and gave EC3 a spike piledriver onto the steel chair. More confusing than anything else. This felt like a sad attempt to make DCC a top heel stable. We’ve been through it with Main Event Mafia, Fortune, Aces And Eights and now these gentlemen. We’ll guess that Drake/EC3/Tyrus form a “common enemy” alliance? Odd considering that these guys basically tore EC3 to shreds prior to that, but the dynamic between Drake/EC3 will be the true intrigue.






Quick Results

  • TNA World Heavyweight Championship – Lashley (Champion) def. Jeff Hardy via pinfall to retain 
  • Sienna (w/Maria) def. Brooke via pinfall 
  • Falls Count Anywhere – The DCC def. Crazzy Steve/Abyss (w/Rosemary) via pinfall 
  • TNA Impact Grand Championship – Drew Galloway (Champion) def. Rob Ryzin via pinfall to retain 
  • TNA X-Division Championship – Ladder Match – Trevor Lee (w/Gregory Shane Helms) def. DJZ (Champion) to become new Champion 
  • Ethan Carter III def. Eli Drake (w/Tyrus) via pinfall 

About Nicholas Jason Lopez

Just a 29-year-old Brooklynite. Nothing more, nothing less. Currently a freelance journalist with two websites - Pro Wrestling Opinion and The Music Bugle - he has also been published on sites such as The Bensonhurst Bean, Sheepshead Bites, Review Fix, College University of New York Athletic Conference, Dying Scene, Brooklyn News Service, All Media NY, and Yahoo Voices. He has also interned for The Home Reporter/Brooklyn Spectator based out of Brooklyn, NY.

Posted on July 26, 2017, in TNA/Impact Wrestling and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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