Looks like no one was in the mood to cover Impact last night, so here's to nothing:
Impact Wrestling 7.6.2012, LIVE from the Impact Zone in Orlando, FL.
There's fireworks to open the show! I don't remember having them before!
Bully Ray heads out to make a big announcement - he's going live on Twitter! He even tweets live from the ring! He turns his attention to Joseph Park, calling him out. Park obliges and Ray accepts the challenge for next week. Ray claims to be bigger and badder, but Park wants to hear none of it and cuts him off. Ray backs off but reveals a twist - the No Holds Barred match next week will be without Abyss-ference as Ray has gotten a restraining order against him. If Abyss interferes, he will rot in jail for the rest of his life. That confuses Park long enough for Ray to lay him out, which is odd, because Park is a lawyer and should be able to see through that. Apart from that little niggle, I've enjoyed what I've seen of this feud, simply because these two seem to know their characters inside-out. 1 for 1.
Austin Aries meets Hogan, and promises to return the X-Division title tonight. Hogan says Aries must perform, and they shake hands on that. Elsewhere, AJ Styles answers accusations that he is the father of Claire Lynch's child, while Dixie Carter has no comment.
Match 1: TV Title: Devon v Crimson: Crimson tries an early rollup but Devon is awake and kicks out of it. Crimson HEELS it up with a pin in the corner with his feet on the rope IN CLEAR VIEW of Earl Hebner. Hebner's gotta be blind not to see that. Devon retaliates with a spear but runs into a clothesline. Crimson pins with the tights but Devon still kicks out, leading to an argument. Devon takes advantage of the distraction and the Spinebuster finishes in about 2 minutes. 1 for 2. Nothing match, though it is good to have the TV title defended week in and week out. Post match, Madison Rayne heads out to plant a kiss on Hebner. I must've missed that storyline.
Chris Sabin is out to talk about his latest knee injury, saying that his friends have suggested he find something else to do in his life. Even his doctor doesn't think coming back from a second ACL reconstruction is a good idea. Before he can get too far into his promo, though, Bobby Roode interrupts because he is disgusted with the ENTIRE X-Division. He says the sight of Sabin on his crutches, fighting back tears, is DISGUSTING! Haha. Roode is in full-dick mode today. He says there's no reward for the risk that the X-Division takes, bringing up Jesse Sorensen's broken neck. Then he kicks the leg out! Oh, Bobby. Roode stomps away on the knee until Aries saves and Roode bails. 2 for 3. Fantastic work from Roode.
Match 2: X-Division Tournament Qualifier: Dakota Darsow v Flip Cassanova: "Flip Cassanova?" Really? That just screams Indie. Dakota Darsow is Barry Darsow's son and has wrestled in TNA before. Darsow has the early advantage before Cassanova lives up to his name with what looks like a convoluted backflip atomic drop. Darsow slows him down with a dropkick but Flip just won't stop flipping. Darsow winds up on the outside and eats a springboard corkscrew dive. Darsow reverses a bodypress but splats on a moonsault. Flying bulldog and what was supposed to be a 450 Shooting Star Press (but got botched hideously) finish for Cassanova in 3 minutes. 2 for 4. I love me some flips, that is no secret, but this was just flips, no context. They looked like they might kill each other, and not in a good way.
Backstage, Ms. Tessmacher comments on Gail Kim's efforts to make the title match happen next week and suspects her to be suffering from a bout of yellow fever. She doesn't forget to hype the upcoming tag match, however!
Match 3: Madison Rayne and Gail Kim v Ms. Tessmacher and Tara: Rayne jumps Tessmacher and she gets caught in the heel corner and worked over. Gail gets a clothesline for two but Tessmacher fires back and evades a crossbody. Hot tag to Tara, and she DOMINATES Madison. Seriously, Madison gets NOTHING. Suplex and a side slam get two for Tara, but Gail breaks up a Widow's Peak attempt. Heel miscommunication lays Gail out, however, and Tara gets it on the second try. Tessmacher tags in with the Final Cut for the pin in 3 minutes. 3 for 5. Compressed but fine.
AJ Styles joins us to complain about everyone lying about the situation he finds himself in. Daniels and Kazarian interrupt, with Appletinis (and this segment WINS), to point out that Styles has a habit of impregnating "junkie whores." Yikes. Daniels knew there was something amiss, and now he claims to have proof. AJ calls him a prick, and that, predictably doesn't sit too well. Styles reveals that the match at the PPV will be Last Man Standing, and Daniels cannot win because he is no man. Ooh, them's fighting words! 4 for 6. Forget all the soap opera, give me that old-school hatred and that match at the PPV.
A mysterious man, who claims that he is NOT a coward, leaves Hulk Hogan a note and a Dead Man's hand (not a real hand, 4 cards, aces and eights). The note says "See you next week" in barely-legible handwriting. Hogan is unnaturally calm about the all this.
Meanwhile, Jeff Hardy is prepping for his big BFG Series match against James Storm tonight.
Match 4: X-Division Tournament Qualifier: Kenny King v Lars Only: King, of course, is an ROH star. I have no idea who Only is. Kenny gets an armdrag early but gets caught in the ropes and nailed with a crossbody. Only gets dumped and nearly forgets to catch Kenny on a dive, so Kenny kicks him in the head back inside and nearly pins him. Kenny splats on a springboard legdrop, allowing Lars to come back with a rana on the outside and a badly botched neckbreaker(?) attempt. Poor Kenny has to sell that. They fight on the top, and Kenny brings him down with the Royal Flush (looked SICK) to finish in 5 minutes. 4 for 7. King did a great job getting himself over, but Lars was not a competent opponent for the showcase that I think they wanted.
Kenny King promises that he's not here to play games. Aries comes by to congratulate him.
Match 5: BFG Series: Jeff Hardy v James Storm: The crowd, though split, are WAY into this thing. They fight over headlocks, and Hardy nearly lands a Twist of Fate. Storm almost catches him with the Last Call. They tease the finishers some more but Storm misses a charge to wind up on the outside. Back from commercial, Hardy is in control but it doesn't last too long. Storm dumps him in the corner but Hardy comes back with his atomc drop-legdrop thing for 2. Storm brings him down from the turnbuckle with a spinning inverted DDT for 2, but gets backdropped over the ropes. Jeff slingshots onto him, but into the codebreaker! Awesome! Back inside, Storm controls with a lariat but runs into the mule kick in the corner. Hardy heads to the top but misses the Swanton, and Storm doesn't miss his flying elbow. Storm wants to finish with the Last Call, but Hardy can barely stand. Storm takes his time to stand him up but Hardy was playing possum and catches him with the Twist of Fate for the win in 14 minutes. 5 for 8. They overcame a shaky start, the crowd was going NUTS, and the stuff after the commercial is pretty damn good.
Updated BFG Standings: 1. Storm 36 2. Joe 27 3. Magnus 14 3. Hardy 14 5. Angle 10 6. Anderson 9 7. Pope 7 7. RVD 7 9. Daniels 5 10. Bully Ray 0 10. AJ Styles 0 10. Robbie E 0
Hogan heads out to get the X-Division title from Austin Aries. Bobby Roode interrupt instead to mock Hogan, Aries, and the X-Division. Roode says Hogan has done nothing but give false hope and make false promises to Aries. On Sunday, he will MAIM Aries. Aries objects to that, promising that he will be Heavyweight Champion come Sunday. Aries wants to fight Roode RIGHT NOW but Roode wants none of that. Aries wants to prove that he's not scared. Hogan is happy to just let this unfold in front of him. Roode tries to sneak attack Aries with his title, but Aries ducks and nails Roode with HIS! Aries stands tall to end the show. 6 for 9. Good, old-fashioned PPV buildup right here. Everyone played their parts well enough, and Roode is just on a roll!
Wrestling Counter: 27 minutes.
A little light on wrestling this week, but that is understandable as it's a go-home show before the PPV. They did a fine job hyping Destination X, and it helps that the card is fantastic. There's a lot of good things going on with TNA right now, and it's no surprise that the show is turning out to be very entertaining more often that not. Also, no sign of the Bischoffs!
The storyline with Rayne is she had a crush on someone on the roster and everyone figured it was on Garrett Bischoff, but alas it's Hebner. I didn't see a lot of this show, but what I saw the pretty good. Roode is just the man right now and his promo on Sabin and the X division was fantastic as he came off as the biggest prick in the world and drew tons of heat. I'm looking forward to a eventual feud with Sabin as well as loving Roode's feud with Aries. The first X division match was horrid and really everything that's wrong with indy wrestling. Imo neither guy belongs on TV. I'm a big Kenny King fan and TNA made a good pick on a guy who's contract with ROH is up. Epic fail by ROH putting a title on a guy whose contract was coming up. ROH and their fans are going crazy, but I fail to see what King did was bad. Verbal agreements mean nothing. Hardy Vs Storm was good, but I hate seeing Storm job so soon after returning, but he couldn't go undefeated in the BFG series. Good closing segment between Roode and Aries. Very strong finish. All in all, another good show. Aries and Roode have not gotten a ton of air time to build their feud, but last night they did and really shined. Aries probably won't win on Sunday, but he is deserving of a run with the title sometime in the not so distant future.
Crimson shouldn't be wrestling fast paced matches on live TV. His quick pin attempts were awful. The Madison storyline is dumb, as expected.
Overall, the Sabin/Roode segment was good. Roode was great. Sabin was a bit underwhelming while speaking, considering the content, but was fine after that. His promo showed how big of an asset Shelley's mic skills were to MCMG. Does that mean Sabin will be back next week or on the PPV to announce whether or not he "retires?" It'd be strange if he didn't. I hope he's not involved in the PPV finish.
I thought Darsow was maybe the worst guy TNA brought in for the last DX so I was disappointed to see him back. Flip was the personification of every bad Indy wrestler stereotype and the worst guy they brought in this time. That match was spotty, sloppy, and just downright bad. Given how many good-great guys there are on the Indy scene and overseas, the guys they brought in as a whole are disappointing. I see someone joining Sabin and Sorensen on the shelf soon if Flip, Zema Ion & Mark Haskins start getting booked in matches together. Actually, someone may get injured if Flip advances to Ultimate X.
I was pleasantly surprised to see Kenny King. It's too bad he didn't get a better opponent. That match had quite a few rough spots. The X matches the past 2 weeks have been very Indyriffic. That's not a good sign for the division's future. Them bringing in no one I see carrying that division to something good or being close to Aries' level is also troubling. I guess it's a moot point since given TNA's history, the X Division will likely go back to only making TV for 3-5 minute matches every other week shortly after the PPV.
Storm/Hardy was a good little TV match.
They did more tonight to hype Angle's TV match next week than his PPV match on Sunday. Amazing. On a semi-related note, did any of the established guys in the X tournament make TV this month? Was their inclusion in the tournament even announced on TV?
The last segment was good and a strong final piece of build for Roode/Aries. Everything with those two this month has been solid. I'm really looking forward to that match.
Originally posted by BrianCrimson shouldn't be wrestling
I'm gonna stop you right there.
Originally posted by BrianFlip was the personification of every bad Indy wrestler stereotype and the worst guy they brought in this time. That match was spotty, sloppy, and just downright bad.
I agree with all this, but yet I completely enjoyed his repeated attempts to murder Dakota Darsow by throwing his own ass at Darsow at full force.
Originally posted by BrianOn a semi-related note, did any of the established guys in the X tournament make TV this month? Was their inclusion in the tournament even announced on TV?
They were mentioned as being part of the tournament, but so briefly that I wasn't sure what they were actually doing until I saw the card on the Observer site. Ion was in the Ultimate X match where Sabin got hurt - I don't recall seeing Kash or Williams in the past month (but I did miss last week's show due to a DVR snafu).
No Jay Lethal, I call shenanigans. It was nice of them to give Sabin some time to actually talk about the injury instead of him being mysteriously gone like the last time. I can't see Aries winning this thing. All the promo stuff Hogan shitted on at BFG last year with Roode is happening with Aries.
Minus the stupid need to even employ Hebner, making him Madison's crush is even stupider. She could really help one of those X-Divison guys no on really gives a shit about. The rest of the show as pretty good from what I saw. Hardy is super over with the fans even though he is a train wreck. I can see him replacing Storm as their choice for the BFG which would be stupid for the IWC, but apparently good business for TNA, if he shows up sober that day.
The Wee Baby Sheamus.Twitter: @realjoecarfley its a bit more toned down there. A bit.
Originally posted by lotjxNo Jay Lethal, I call shenanigans. It was nice of them to give Sabin some time to actually talk about the injury instead of him being mysteriously gone like the last time. I can't see Aries winning this thing. All the promo stuff Hogan shitted on at BFG last year with Roode is happening with Aries.
They couldn't bring in Lethal because he's under contract with ROH unlike Kenny King. I am surprised and disappointed that Petey Williams wasn't brought in though. I thought Hogan really put over Aries very strongly and even showed some ass for Roode these past few months.
Pretty bad show considering this is supposed to be one of the "big four" shows of the year. It seemed more of a "super" TV show than a PPV. Some good matches here and there, but nothing really memorable at all. Long vs.