– This sounded like a loaded show from the get-go with Eric Young-Bobby Roode in a Submission match, Magnus-Bram in Falls Count Anywhere, Gail Kim-Angelina Love and Kurt Angle-Bobby Lashley for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship. The show – for this reason – was solidly paced and moved quickly. Some Impact shows have the tendency to feel like they will never end. Not the case here.
– The Young-Roode match was preceded by a good Young promo where he was determined to write “the final chapter” of Roode’s sad story. This book must have about 37,000 chapters. Roode’s comeback statement was all well and good, as we know to be, but this feud felt like it had ended already, but we’re not going to complain seeing these guys go at it again. Also, come on Josh Matthews, we wouldn’t quite call it Floyd Mayweather-Manny Pacquiao-esque now. Also, why announce it as a submission match in the opening video before the segment takes place that makes it sound impromptu? Yet another week of TNA spoiling its own surprises again. The match itself was pretty good – though a notch below some of their past efforts. The faulty finish with the referee was questionable logic, but at least Young came out with the win and looks good from here on out. He needed it more than Roode.
– The Wolves segment was all about an update on Eddie Edwards’ fractured heel injury at a “One Night Stand” taping and this was a good way to get them on TV and announce that Edwards would be out indefinitely. Davey Richards set a good tone defending his partner and wanting to be fighting champions, the reason for relinquishing the belts. A tough time for The Wolves, who were assumedly set on topping the Tag division for a while. The “farewell” message was also solid and set the table for a return angle whenever they choose to pick it up.
– The Lashley backstage promo had him talk about being motivated to get what he once had and it was actually a good, short promo. This didn’t come off rehearsed a bit.
– The Kim-Love match started with a good promo from Love, where she complained about being overlooked. Taz taking responsibility for crediting Kim all the time as Love pointed out was strange at best. Are they trying to make Taz in love with Kim or something? The arguments between Matthews and Taz were stupid. Worst yet, the split screen took away from the action in the ring. The match was good though after that point. Kim winning probably sets her in line for a future Knockouts Title shot.
– Nothing like some Network cross-promotion, with The Revolution and James Storm speaking how there’s always room for more to the ghost show dudes. We don’t know nor care about them and the acting was Pacman Jones bad.
– The Magnus-Bram falls count anywhere match had some good action and went all over the ringside area, as both guys took it to each other. Mickie James’ involvement in the match was expected, but set up the incredibly random appearance of James Storm, who stopped Bram from attacking her with a chair (face turn?) and disappeared. The finish was okay and Magnus got his feel-good moment of victory. Will Storm and Bram feud next? Maybe they turned Storm to give some time to a Beat Down Clan-Revolution feud? Note: the BDC were not on the show or even mentioned. No mention of The Rising either. Good, necessary break from some of the nonsense was a pleasant change of pace.
– Kurt Angle’s backstage promo put Lashley over as a good competitor and the sharpness in their first match, thus setting up this next match well.
– The backstage interaction between Magnus and James Storm had Storm say he was “looking out for an old friend” as Magnus looked confused at that statement. Will he try to seek her out for The Revolution? James has been in a non-wrestling role, so it wouldn’t make much sense. Perhaps it’s a slow face turn for Storm. Either way, it’s a little intriguing.
– The TNA World Heavyweight Championship match between Angle and Lashley was much like their first match – formulaic yet entertaining. We could actually say it was better than the first match by just a little bit. The closing minutes of the match were really good – having Angle tease tapping out and Lashley coming close to winning, both guys almost trying to finish each other off in desperation. Lashley’s look of shock sold the controversial finish and the replays seemed to back Lashley’s claims. Where will this lead? Probably a third match, but the only bad thing about it is that Lashley needs a pick-me-up victory and facing Angle won’t let that happen, because Angle is the new Champion and needs to look strong. That aside, their rivalry has been fun to watch and made for some great TV matches.
– Submission Match – Eric Young def. Bobby Roode
– Gail Kim def. Angelina Love via pinfall
– Falls Count Anywhere – Magnus def. Bram via pinfall
– TNA World Heavyweight Championship – Kurt Angle (Champion) def. Bobby Lashley via pinfall to retain
Lashley Vs. Angle
– You can fault TNA for all their past wrongdoings and chalk their Creative lack of logic to carelessness or just plain stupidity, but there are times that when they get it right, they get it right. The hype for the first-ever meeting between Kurt Angle and Bobby Lashley (for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship, no less) was nothing short of brilliant. They made this truly feel like a match worth seeing, from the hype video clips for each man, to the camera shots of them in preparation and from input from the commentary team and other wrestling talent. You had the feeling that all eyes were on this match, as this had implications for the future and the very foundation of TNA as a company. Granted, last week’s Rockstar Spud-Ethan Carter III Hair Vs. Match was a tough act to follow and while this match didn’t match that magic, it excelled in its own little way.
– Despite the annoying Bro-Mans backstage promo that had Robbie E “depressed” over losing to Brooke (Shake it off Robbie, barely anyone watched), TNA did a decent job of toning down said annoyance by keeping the duo to DJ Z and Jesse Godderz, who actually had better chemistry than the Godderz-Robbie E team. Who knew? Angelina Love remains with them, but doesn’t really gain much from this situation either. Shouldn’t she be vying for the Knockouts Championship?
– The Ultimate X Tag Team Championship match between The Wolves, Jesse Godderz/DJ Z and The Great Sanada/Manik was the expected glorified spot fest that it sounded like on paper. While everyone had their moments to shine, The Wolves were the only team that looked like they had a real chance of winning and won the match before the action became stale.
– Austin Aries has always given a good promo and he had purpose being that he had his briefcase in the hands of the Beat Down Clan. Him calling them out was good for this reason. Low-Ki and Samoa Joe representing the BDC also worked here. That said, why on earth would Aries put up his earned World Title briefcase shot to get a shot at a lower Championship that he’d be due a rematch for anyway? The match between him and Joe had some time to turn into something decent, but had “BDC antics” written all over it, with Low-Ki attacking Aries to cause the DQ. Kudos to Taz for the technical hold pointers, which upped the ante in the action’s importance. Aries ended back up with the briefcase, but the moment was quickly and rightfully overshadowed by Spud’s surprise cash-in of his X-Division Title briefcase. That was great, because it gave Spud new direction and a new feud with the BDC. You can even throw Aries into things too.
– Magnus’ brawl-styled clobbering of Bram was a great follow up of last week’s segment. Even Mickie James looked good while beating on him. This raised their personal feud up a notch and felt necessary at this point in their blood rivalry. Only complaint possibly here was that this directly followed the Spud cash-in and we had no time to really digest anything, though this helped helped give the show an “unpredictable” feel, despite being taped a while back.
– The three-way Knockouts Championship match between Awesome Kong, Gail Kim and Taryn Terrell was okay, nothing too special. Why Terrell continues to get the nod over Kim/Kong is beyond us, because she still feels like a vague paper champion. She says she seeks to “validate her reign,” but we still don’t know much about her besides she always ends up winning. She is becoming the Knockouts John Cena. We hope TNA sees this and tries to fix it soon, because the longer she stays Champion, the more damage her character hurts from it this way.
– The James Storm promo put over the no DQ match and his “coin toss” talk was interesting in his own James Storm way. Who can deny the creepy whistle?
– Angle’s comments towards the upcoming match had him put over Lashley as a monster and that he was eager to show he was still one of the best in the business. Good promo.
– The Storm (w/The Revolution)-Matt Hardy No DQ match was a decent weapon fest, as the story was Hardy fighting off all of The Revolution, eventually falling victim to the match rules. Storm’s postmatch promo put over his desire to have Matt join Jeff in the hospital, as we assume happened, with all those brutal shots and camera cutaway. Being that Jeff “returns” next week, it was a good way to set that up.
– The TNA World Heavyweight Championship match between Lashley-Angle was a great match given lots of time for both guys to wear each other down, with Angle’s German suplexes and Lashley’s sudden bursts of energy. That said, it took four Angle Locks to finish Lashley off and the win was a pleasant surprise, as it seemed Lashley had the momentum going with the belt again, but Angle on top of the mountain in TNA opens up some new possibilities.
– Tag Team Championships Destination X Match – The Wolves (Champion) def. Jesse Godderz/DJ Z (w/Angelina Love) and The Great Sanada/Manik to retain
– Austin Aries def. Samoa Joe (w/Low-Ki) via DQ
– X-Division Championship Match – Rockstar Spud def. Low-Ki Champion) via pinfall to become new Champion; Briefcase Cash-In
– Knockouts Championship – Taryn Terrell def. Gail Kim, Awesome Kong via pinfall to retain
– No Disqualification Match – James Storm (w/The Revolution) def. Matt Hardy via pinfall
– World Heavyweight Championship Match – Kurt Angle def. Bobby Lashley (Champion) via submission to become new Champion
Give It Away
– The opening video highlighted Gunner and Drew Galloway outsmarting the Beat Down Clan to help Bobby Lashley regain the World Heavyweight Championship against MVP, which carried on his momentum as we’d see on the show with a lot of early focus on Galloway “at home.”
– The first segment with the BDC angry with Galloway was decent. Kenny King was pretty good on the mic, but he sounded too much like he was rapping. His old character had a confidence swagger on the mic that was kind of gone here. MVP sold his anger perfectly, even in the way he walked slower than the rest of his mates to the ring. Low-Ki was quite angry all episode long, which worked. Someone should check his blood pressure. Galloway coming out of the crowd was unique, but this likely wouldn’t have worked in America the way it did over there. The “Stand Up” bit was an interesting take on things, but does Galloway have the charisma to pull it all off? He has decent mic skills, but this gimmick perhaps called for someone bigger. Either way, Galloway is running with the spotlight on him and making the most of it. This set up the match with him and King pretty well also.
– The Galloway-King match was decent in the way that it had that impromptu street fight feel with both men in street clothes, but some of the work was sloppy, which maybe added to the “roughness” of the fight, but there were times this looked like a badly choreographed action movie scene. Galloway did need to win here and that happened. You had to expect the BDC to try to ambush Galloway after the win, but he smartly high-tailed it back to the crowd. Low-Ki was like a little hound dog out there. Perfect booking there.
– The in-ring segment with Bobby Roode, Kurt Angle and Eric Young was a short preview of their match later on. Given the three sides of the match, it was good to see the guys not eager to wait. This match was well-hyped all night and could’ve gone all the way entertainment-wise if not for their own network advertisements (see below).
– The hype video for the Taryn Terrell-Awesome Kong match pretty much summed up things so far, but we couldn’t really believe Terrell had a chance and it’s good the broadcast team said the same.
– It was only about time before James Storm tried to recruit Bram in The Revolution, which is good because it gives Bram a direction for his character all while he feuds with Magnus.
– Gee thanks, Destination America for giving away the result of the three-way match as now we pretty much know Angle wins. Would it kill you guys to wait until after the episode is over to play commercials that give away results of ongoing episodes? What point would there be to watch the three-way match now?
– The Angle hype video was decent, but the spoilers undid all of the questions asked in the video.
– The Bram-Matt Hardy match had good action while it lasted. Bram has been looking strong and Hardy was someone who could also make him look good. Bram’s brutal side was also emphasized here. Magnus finally coming back for revenge was good. His comeback promo was also pretty good as it sucked up to the home crowd and passionately described his anger towards getting full revenge. Next week’s match should be good.
– The Rockstar Spud-Mr. Anderson segment on Spud determined to “end it tonight” had to be good news. This feud has dragged out a bit too long, always a problem with TNA.
– Galloway’s backstage promo was pretty good in following up the match with King. He didn’t add anything new, but it’ll be interesting to see if Galloway takes on the BDC member-by-member to get to MVP, being that he is the brainchild of the BDC, which apparently highly offends Galloway as a wresting fan.
– The Spud-Ethan Carter III segment was preceded by the hair-obsessed hype video that just explains why this feud needs to end. Spud had one of his best nights ever on the mic and stood his ground against Carter in a more than memorable way. The “hair vs hair” match stipulation was predictable, but hopefully this will end everything.
– The Knockouts Championship match between Terrell and Kong was going good and seemed to lead to a Kong victory and Terrell’s fight was good here, but the DQ was lame. The postmatch attack by Kong on Terrell almost called for Gail Kim to come out, which happened and the brawl between the two was well-done and only a matter of time.
– The Tag Team Championships match between James Storm/Abyss and The Wolves was good down the stretch. The Wolves looked really good here with about six suicide dives in the whole match, even clipping Matt Hardy at one point. The Wolves getting the belts back was a good call in probably their best outing in TNA this year. Hardy being happy for The Wolves as Champions was about right and it’ll be good to see the program of Wolves-Hardys once again. You have to imagine The Revolution wants their rematch sooner than later, which also adds to things.
– The triple-threat main event of Roode, Young and Angle was entertaining as everyone gave it their all and the chair coming into play was cool. Again, the big problem was that we already knew Angle would win because of the stupid ads halfway through the show. The standoff between Lashley and Angle was a cool moment though Roode looked awkwardly in the background.
– Drew Galloway def. Kenny King via pinfall
– Bram def. Matt Hardy via pinfall
– Knockouts Championship – Taryn Terrell def. Awesome Kong via DQ to retain
– Tag Team Championships – The Wolves def. James Storm/Abyss (w/The Great Sanada, Khoya, Manik) to become new Champions
– Triple-Threat World Heavyweight Championship Number One Contender’s Match – Kurt Angle def. Bobby Roode, Eric Young