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Impact Wrestling - January 16, 2015
by Samoa Rowe
-From New York, NY. Our hosts are Josh Mathews and Taz.
-Josh Mathews introduces clips of the production crew for Impact Wrestling. Memo to TNA: NO ONE CARES! Just put on a good wrestling show that makes sense! These sort of DVD-extras type segments will not help you one bit.
-Bobby Roode wants a match with Eric Young. I had a feeling he would.
-The newly formed stable of MVP, Samoa Joe, Low Ki, and Kenny King make their way to the ring to talk for a while. MVP says he wanted to shake up professional wrestling and realized he needed his family, so he found fellow survivors of “crappy Floriday indies” Joe and Ki. He names the group the Beat Down Clan (BDC, LOL) or just “The Clan.” That’s a hilariously stupid name, but I digress. Eric Young joins them to put over his heel turn. He helped former enemy, MVP, because he saw that he’d do anything for his brothers, unlike that rat bastard, Bobby Roode, who was “refusing” to give Young any title shots. Just when I thought the already-long segment was winding down, MVP invites TNA World Champion Bobby Lashley to the ring, but he’s doesn’t show. Kurt Angle shows up instead and calls the BDC a bunch of thugs. Angle can’t book matches anymore, but he can make them tap out. Joe gets in Kurt’s face and gets knocked away, prompting security to rush in to prevent any further incident.
Samoa Joe vs. Kurt Angle
The match started during the break. Joe scores a takedown and targets the leg. Joe throws some jabs and delivers a dragon screw leg sweep. Joe applies a modified Figure Four. Meanwhile, Lashley is missing from his dressing room. Back to the pesky match, Angle is dishing out rolling German suplexes. Joe fires back with his enziguri, but Angle manages an Ankle Lock. Joe kicks Angle off, but Kurt rebounds with the Angle Slam for only 2. Joe hits his uranage out of the corner, but Angle counters the Muscle Buster with the Ankle Lock. Joe thrusts Angle into the referee and lands a blind low blow. Angle taps out to the Rear Naked Choke at 6:10 (shown). If TNA were smart, they would treat any Joe vs. Angle match as the second coming of the Flair/Steamboat series, but they’re not smart, so instead we get throwaway TV outings instead. **
Winner: Samoa Joe
-The BDC attempt to live up to their names on Angle, but Bobby Roode chases them off with a chair.
-Back from commercial, Roode is seated in the ring. Roode vents his frustration while some fans chant “You got screwed!.” Roode wants to know why Young would ruin a 15 year friendship (forgetting all the times Roode and Young were enemies on this very show in the past). Roode promises to make Young pay. All nit-picking aside, this was a good little promo.
-Josh Mathews and Taz pimp the TNA Unlocked show. This week, Mike Tenay talks to Magnus, a family man who treats wrestling like a business. Magnus doesn’t care if TNA lets him go, because he’d be a big player in the free market. That’s a nice difference from how WWE casts their wrestlers as cowering in fear over the possibility of losing their jobs.
-Rockstar Spud apologizes to a hat-wearing Jeremy Borash for getting him involved in his issues with ECIII. Borash isn’t too upset because hair grows back (it does?) and he knows Carter will get what’s coming to him. Wow, adults acting like adults. WHAT A CONCEPT!
-The Revolution, with new member Khoya, occupy some of the (many) empty seats in the Manhattan Center balcony to watch the Hardy Boyz face the Wolves for a shot at their Tag Team Championship.
Matt and Jeff Hardy vs. The Wolves (Davey Richards and Eddie Edwards)
I would have considered this to be a legitimate dream match at one point in time, but the novelty hasn’t worn off yet. Matt and Eddie trade holds, and Jeff quickly gets a tag and delivers aggressive stomps. Edwards shoves Jeff into the Wolves’ territory for some double team work. Jeff hurricanrana Davey into the turnbuckle, allowing the Hardyz to hit a double back suplex. It’s worth noting right now that the camera work sucks, as it’s constantly shaking and zooming in an attempt to make the match more exciting, I guess. I hate camera gimmicks, you don’t see this nonsense in real sports for a reason, just show us what’s happening as if it would be happening whether we were watching or not. Anywhoo, the Wolves arrange for stereo Tree of Woe drop-kicks to the face. Matt gets overwhelmed by rapid fire attacks from both Wolves, but manages to kick out. Davey misses a flying double stomp and Matt catches him with the Side Effect. Jeff and Eddie get fresh tags but it’s Jeff who takes control with his trademark offense. Jeff nails the Whisper of the Wind on both Wolves. The Wolves are unable to hit dives on Jeff, and Matt catches them both with DDT’s on the floor! Jeff tight rope walks on the ropes and wipes out the Wolves with a dive! THAT WAS AWESOME! Eddie survives a double team flapjack and counters the Swanton Bomb. The Wolves dish out their super-kick/Brainbuster finisher, but the cover is broken. Matt hits another Side Effect on Edwards, but gets shoved into Jeff in the corner. The foot stomp would have finished Matt, but Jeff breaks the cover with another Swanton! Jeff suplexes Davey over the ropes, leaving the Hardyz to hit Edwards with Poetry in Motion. A pair of Twist of Fates finishes Eddie at 10:05! HELL of a spot-fest and stunt show here, ***½.
Winners: The Hardy Boyz
-Bram talks about the upcoming Feast or Fired match (ugh). Bram plans on winning and feasting, not at all scared about getting fired.
-MVP and Kenny King talk strategy together backstage. Eric Young tells them to watch what he does to Roode.
-Ethan Carter III asks the production team to let him play with the camera controls. Tyrus helps him intimidate the crew members and takes over the head set. ECIII starts mocking Jeremy Borash over the radio, which is actually a pretty great heel tactic.
-TNA Champion Bobby Lashley finally arrives backstage.
Eric Young vs. Bobby Roode
Young meets Roode in the aisle and they immediately start brawling. After a commercial break, Young seems to be in the driver’s seat as they fight through the crowd. Also, during the break, Lashley refused to talk to a reporter. Young tosses Roode over the guard rail and repeatedly attacks the head. Young tosses Roode and some chairs into the ring and props a chair in the ropes. Roode counters with a back drop and nails a spinebuster. Young retaliates by driving Roode into the propped chair and nails a Piledriver onto another chair! That’s enough for the Eric Young victory at 5:34 (shown). Huh, a heel won a match quickly by using vicious attacks within the rules of the match. This is so refreshing in an age of run-ins and distraction finishes, **½.
Winner: Eric Young
-The BDC shows up to mock the fallen Roode. MVP doesn’t think anyone will visit Roode in the hospital, just like how Roode didn’t visit Young when he was in hospitalized.
-X Division Champion Austin Aries warns the BDC not to back him in the corner.
-ECIII and Tyrus are roaming the hallways of the Manhattan Center.
-Brooke Tessmacher is interviewed about her return last week. Brooke calls Robbie E a classless douche bag and claims she carried their team on The Amazing Race.
Brooke Tessmacher and TNA Knockouts Champion Taryn Terrell vs. The Beautiful People (Angelina Love and Velvet Sky) with The Bro-mans
The Beautiful People and Bro-mans take a group selfie before the match, which is amusingly displayed on the screen as the bell rings. Brooke and Angelina square off in an aggressive back and forth exchange. Brooke catches Velvet with a drop toe hold and sets her up for Taryn to continue with a rolling neck breaker. Once again, the camera work is driving me nuts, old ROH DVDs were easier to watch. Taryn wipes out the Bro-mans and Beautiful People with a dive off the top rope. Flying clothesline by Terrell, but Robbie E distracts Brooke, who gets rolled-up by Sky at 2:25. A very entertaining two and a half minutes.
Winners: The Beautiful People
-The lights go briefly to signal Awesome Kong’s arrival. Kong knocks down both Love and Sky, and nails the Implant Buster on Love. DJ Z foolishly confronts her and eats a choke slam. Jessica Havok storms to the ring for another confrontation, but security breaks them up.
-ECIII ambushes Jeremy Borash in an office and wants to know if he’ll wrestle him next week. Borash says he isn’t a wrestler, but ECIII says that he’s a big part of TNA, and no one came to help him last week due to a lack of respect. Borash gets fired up and agrees to fight Carter.
-Manik signals a camera crew to follow him into the Revolution’s lair. James Storm cuts another Bray Wyatt knock-off promo, introducing Khoya from India. “Khoya” means “lost” but now he’s been found. Storm even whistles in a Wyatt-esque fashion to end the segment. This needs to stop yesterday.
TNA X Division Championship:
Austin Aries © vs. Low Ki (with The BDC)
Low Ki shows more aggression than last week by shoving Aries into the corner and delivering stiff blows. Aries backdrops Low Ki over the ropes, and Ki takes a bad spill to the floor. Aries builds steam with a nice clothesline and spinning elbow drop. Ki breaks the Last Chancery in the ropes and blocks the Brainbuster. Aries tosses Ki to the floor but doesn’t get the chance for a dive. The story so far is that Aries is avoiding the ringside area due to the BDC, and I like it. Low Ki retakes control with chops, but Aries returns the favor. Discus punch by Aries and running drop-kick, but Ki blocks the Brainbuster. Atomic drop and overhead suplex by Aries, and he reapplies the Last Chancery. The BDC distract the referee from seeing Low Ki tap out! Aries retaliates by wiping out the BDC with a suicide dive Kenny King trips Aries on the top, allowing Low Ki to hit the Ki Krusher to regain the X title at 6:47. Great in-ring action here, and the cheap finish is acceptable as they’re establishing the BDC, **½.
Winner and new X Division Champion: Low Ki
-After the commercial, the BDC and Eric Young are basking in their glory in the ring. They’re finally joined by Bobby Lashley, who’s been MIA all evening. MVP talks about what a great champion Lashley is but then gets carried away taking credit for his success. Lashley cuts MVP off, reminding him that the title only belongs to him. Basically, Lashley doesn’t want to be a part of this group, choosing to be his own man. MVP insists on a hug, which is, you guessed it, a set up for a beat down from the BDC. Everyone holds Lashley in place for MVP to smash the title belt in his face. It’s kind of funny that it only took one week for a member of a new stable to dissent, but I actually like the storyline possibilities coming out of this angle.
Final Thoughts: Dammit all, I actually liked this show. There’s plenty to nitpick (camera work, hot potato title changes, James Storm playing Bray Wyatt) but I enjoyed all the matches for what they were and am curious to see where the major angles are going. That makes for a generally positive viewing experience. Thumbs up.
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