This week I’ve read a lot of interesting stuff about TNA. Rumours of the Carter family wanting to sell the company, AJ styles defending the World Title in other companies, and more recently Bully Ray invading Tommy Dreamers promotion (House of Hardcore) to challenge him to a match on the next One Night Only.
Dixie Carter tweeted this week that tonight’s Impact would see an appearance of a former world champion. What she didn’t tell us however, is that he’d be from a different sport. Turns out that she was talking about an American Football player called Adam ‘Pacman’ Jones. As I’m not a follower of the sport, I’m not sure if this is a big deal or not.
The show starts with Dixie walking, arm in arm with said athlete, until they run into Mr. Anderson. He asks to face Bully in a match, and she considers it.
The Main Event Mafia come to the ring to a loud reaction, but I can’t help but wonder why they’re still around. They haven’t been a proper unit for a month or so now, so it doesn’t surprise me when Sting announces that they’re putting the stable on the shelf for the time being. Sting tells Kurt Angle and Samoa Joe that he loves them, but not Magnus, and leaves. The now former team-mates talk about the World Title Tournament, and then leave the ring, leaving Kurt to speak on his recent losses. Roode comes to the ring and tells Angle he will beat him for the third time soon enough. They brawl as we go to commercial, as referees and security enter the ring. As we come back, Angle challenges Roode to come back out, which he does and they get split up again two more times, fighting to the point Magnus, Joe and Bad Influence have to come out to pull them apart.
As Mike Tenay and Taz run us through the card for tonight, we see Bad Influence getting in the face of Pacman and his mate, shoving them hard into their seats. The footballers then jump the rail, chase the wrestlers into the ring, and scoop slam them both as the crowd go mental. Even though I love BI, this had definitely been practiced beforehand and went perfectly.
Backstage – Anderson tells Knux and Garett to leave Aces & 8’s. I want the storyline to end, but neither man gets enough of a reaction to carry on without it.
VELVET SKY VS BROOKE TESSMACHER VS ODB
Velvet and Brooke have an arse competition for the crowd, until ODB attacks them with her boobs, and follows it up with a double Bronco-Buster. Great start. I actually enjoyed this match, it didn’t feel as rushed as usual. Interesting spot with ODB and Velvet both getting a Single Leg Crab on Brooke, which caused Taz to say ‘well, ODB knows about crabs’. Knockouts Champion Gail Kim and Lei’D Tapa come to the ring, watch for a bit, and then get involved when Velvet went for her finisher. They take out all three women, and Gail lays down a challenge to any female wrestler OUTSIDE of TNA to try and beat her, and if they do they’ll get a title shot. If this leads to bringing indie wrestlers in, I’m completely into it.
We see a promo package of AJ Styles Title defence in Mexico’s AAA promotion. We’re told it’s brought to us by ‘friends of AJ’. I thought that was a nice touch, as WWE have fired, and then banned Big Show, but he still gets entrance music, his titan-tron video and even new merch when he turns up.
Backstage – Knux and Garett are backstage discussing Anderson’s suggestion, until Bully joins them. He basically tries to stop them leaving, until Knux says they’re going to vote on it, right now.
Backstage – Dixie is on the phone, saying she’s being humiliated by AJ. Ethan Carter III appears to cheer her up, and says he’s chosen his opponent for tonight.
The Aces are in the ring, including Taz. Garett was decent on the mic, I was getting ready to cringe, but he did his part perfectly well. Garett and Knux vote on ending the group, and take off their kuttes. Knux says he doesn’t need the colours anymore, probably forgetting he’s wearing an Aces t-shirt that he didn’t take off. Taz decides to leave too, showing us how much weight he’s put on in the last few years, the guy is massive now. Bully says ‘for a guy who respects Stone Cold Steve Austin so much, you didn’t think about something’ which calls for Knux and Garett to return and attack Anderson. Bully whips him with his chain whilst shouting ‘DON’T…TRUST…ANYONE’. Kind of cool, but at the same time I don’t think they should be referencing stuff like that.
Bobby Roode interrupts Taz and Tenay at the commentary desk, screaming for Angle to fight him, and then runs to the back.
ETHAN CARTER II VS DEWEY BARNES
Dewey gets a chant in the opening seconds, but it doesn’t help him getting mostly squashed. EC3 is still giving away too much offence.
Backstage – Bad Influence run into Joseph Park, and bully him as he eats left over Halloween candy. Eric Young makes the save, and suggests they have a match tonight.
BAD INFLUENCE VS JOSEPH PARK & ERIC YOUNG
Standard face-heel tag team match, with each man showing their specific niche. EY continues to be one of the most underrated wrestlers in the world, completely solid every single time, totally reliable. The pinfall came when Daniels threw his appletini into the eyes of Park, who got rolled up by Kaz. Hopefully this means BI have realised not to make Park bleed, as everyone on the roster should have by now.
Kurt walks out, demanding to fight Roode (he was looking for you earlier mate, must’ve missed him backstage). Austin Aries heads out, because the two of them will be fighting next week in the first round of the tournament. Dixie appears on the big screen, with her stipulation wheel. It lands on Submission, which sounds really good to me. Roode runs past AA and knocks him over, and attacks Angle. AA then attacks Roode, but gets pushed out of the way by Kurt. THEN AA attacks Kurt, and security swarm on the three of them. Three way feud would be brilliant.
FULL METAL MAYHEM – JEFF HARDY VS CHRIS SABIN
No Sabin-Velvet tonight, wonder if they’re dropping that. This is basically TNA’s version of a TLC match, but they don’t realise tables are made of wood. No bother. Sabin has started wearing tatty knee length shorts, that make him look like a 13-year old mosher, not a fan. Not saying everyone should be in speedos, but he looks really unprofessional. As Hardy was trying to get a ladder into the ring, he ripped one of the legs clean off, and looked absolutely furious.
After missing a splash through a table on the outside, Sabin had the upper hand. This led to a very strange spot where Sabin attempted to splash Hardy through a table, but Hardy got his knees up…who was it supposed to hurt more then? Hardy still went through?
The ending came with Hardy winning after a swanton from the top of a ladder, which looked painful for both men. I thought Sabin should have won this after doing something super scumbag-y, he needed the win more than Hardy. Genuinely thought there would be more of a story told in this match, seemed a bit meaningless.
As always you can contact me with any thoughts, or even if you just want to chat about wrestling at @jrholberry on twitter.
Thanks for reading.