Thursday, 27 March 2014 20:39
3.27 Impact Wrestling
The Big News: Magnus will face Abyss, Eric Young and Samoa Joe in a four-way match next week for the TNA Title. There's already a tease of a breakup between Magnus and Abyss. James Storm and Gunner had a very solid main event with Storm doing a great job of putting Gunner over.
MVP came out and said he had made an executive decision. Magnus and Abyss interrupted him. Magnus basically said that Abyss was his property and the only time Abyss could be in the ring was when Magnus was in the ring. MVP said he wasn't going to fire Abyss for attacking him when they were chained together last week Instead, he offered Abyss a shot at the TNA World Championship. This lead to MVP ordering a three-way dance for next week with Magnus defending against Abyss and Samoa Joe. This led to Joe coming out. He was mad at MVP for making the match a three-way instead of just a one-on-one bout with Magnus. Doesn't Joe know that this company can't book unless they overbook? Magnus tried to leave, but Joe jumped him. This led to Abyss beating up MVP until Eric Young ran down to jump Abyss. Yes, that's three babyfaces against two heels. They just cut to a commercial in the middle of the brawl, and when they came back Young was in the ring with Joe and MVP. Young said he wanted to be in the three-way match next week so he could take care of Abyss. MVP said he hadn't earned a shot for the world title. Young said he had been in the company for ten years while MVP had been there ten minutes. He said some people thought he was the most entertaining wrestler in the world today. I guess those are the same people who think Mark Sanchez will be a shot in the arm for Philadelphia. That's the biggest stretch I've heard on a pro wrestling show in years, and imagine the ground that includes. Joe said Young wasn't at the head of the line, and Young would get nothing until he got his title shot. MVP stepped in and put Young in the four-way, much to Joe's dismay. Joe pie-faced Young, and Young actually scored a double-leg takedown. Joe poured down some elbows in the ground-and-pound before they were separated. Joe then challenged Young to a match. I mean, nobody brought Young as a serious threat to Joe, much less a world title contender.
Bully Ray came in and said Bobby Roode would get tables tonight. He also said his Twitter machine would return tonight.
The Wolves approached MVP and asked for a match with Abyss and Magnus tonight. MVP arranged it.
Ethan Carter the Third and Rockstar Spud (disguised in camouflage, copying a gimmick from Evolve) were in the woods searching for Willow. Why didn't they just go to the rafters like MVP did? The only way this could be entertaining would be for them to keep walking through the woods until they stumbled on Barry Windham in his Stalker gimmick. Maybe this is a forest on a separate continent where vignettes for crappy wrestling personas are filmed.
1. The Wolves defeated Magnus and Abyss via submission in 8:32. This was an attempt to resuscitate the Wolves after they have been so poorly handled over the past month. Eddie Edwards made the hot tag after a flying huracanrana on Magnus. Abyss tried to give the Wolves and double choke slam, but Edwards and Davey Richards flipped out of it and sent Abyss out of the ring with stereo kicks. Richards hit a tope on Abyss. Edwards clamped on a half crab on Magnus, who immediately tapped out. The story, which was told in February, was that Magnus would tap out in non-title matches in order to preserve himself for title bouts. Abyss took Magnus' world tile belt, acted like he was going to give it to Magnus, but instead walked to the back with it. Three weeks as a unit, and already Magnus and Abyss have dissension. **1/2
Angelina Love came out as a heel after she attacked Madison Rayne last week. Love said that Velvet Sky hadn't returned her calls all week. I vote for TNA to get all employees a better cell phone plan before they go out of business. Sky was pissed with Love after what she did to Rayne last week. Love said Sky was mediocre, vanilla and bland without her. Love talked about being at home for two years because she was blackballed. She said she had a match with Rayne tonight, and Sky had until the end of that match to pick a side.
More unfunny byplay between Spud and EC3 looking for Willow. If they want something funny, they should just replay Willow's response to MVP last week. I mean, it won't get him over, but they never get anything over. And at least it was funny.
EC3 and Spud found a small barn, which EC3 entered. As he turned his back making jokes, Willow came up from behind and kidnapped Spud, which EC3 was oblivious to. Between this and Samuel Shaw, it's like the main inspiration for the past two months of Impact are bad 80s horror films.
Ray came out. To win the fans over, they had a group of supposed fans (which looked like wrestling trainees) carry tables into the ring. Ray took credit for making sure Dixie Carter is no longer a part of TNA. He said if Roode had won the Lethal Lockdown match, Roode would have wound up just like Dixie. Roode showed up and mocked Ray's catchphrase. Ray challenged Roode to a fight, but Roode refused. Ray jumped Roode on the ramp from behind as the crowd chanted for tables. They brawled around ringside for awhile with each man teasing putting the other through various tables. Roode worked on Ray's right shoulder, but missed a Blockbuster. Ray teased a Yakuza Kick on Roode, but Roode sidestepped and Ray's leg went through a table. Ray recovered and tried to power bomb Roode, but Roode escaped. Ray made a charge at Roode, but again Roode dodged him and Ray's smashed against another table in the corner. And that was it. Sure made Ray look foolish.
Abyss met Magnus in the back and grudgingly gave him the title back. Abyss was mad that Magnus tapped out so quickly, and made it clear he didn't like losing. Magnus said he made it clear that he his business arrangement with Abyss was based on him keeping the title. So Magnus basically told Abyss he needed to lay down for him next week in the four-way, which is such a great way to tell us this was all fake. I guess I'd be crazy to care about any more matches where Magnus isn't defending the title, since he's going to quit at the first sign of weakness.
Knux (and if you missed last week's show, you would have no idea who he was or the woman he was talking to. In fact, I did see the show and I have no idea who the woman was, either) walked through the remains of a flood from New Jersey. There was a bunch of old arcade games and jukeboxes. My first thought was "There was still arcades up and running profitably in 2013?!" The woman, who I guess was Knux's old girlfriend, then started laying into Knux for not coming to their aid sooner. Knux explained he was chasing his wrestling dreams by being in the worst wrestling faction this side of the New Blood. The woman told Knux he would have to talk to his estranged father. I keep having this awful feeling the father will turn out to be the same guy who played General Rection's father so we can just go ahead and make TNA's conversion into WCW 2000 complete.
2. Angelina Love defeated Madison Rayne in 5:13 of a non-title match. Sky came out and the whole match was predicated around which side she would take. It was the standard swerve where Sky rooted on Rayne and acted like she was siding against Love. Then, Sky jumped Rayne with a DDT on the floor so Love could get the pin. This was no story where Sky reluctantly helped Love. Sky mocked Rayne and the Beautiful People are back as heels. Match itself was pretty bad. 1/2*
ODB approached Young to see if he was ready to face Joe. Young did a totally serious promo about being taken for real as a force.
Kenny King introduced himself to MVP. King wanted a match tonight. MVP said things escalated quickly and didn't have anything for him, but promised to have something lined up next week.
3. Samoa Joe defeated Eric Young via submission in 5:47. Young is supposed to be this serious performer now, but his entrance video still features his comedy persona. This was a well-executed match that told a good story. Young was out to prove himself against the toughest guy in the company. He wasn't afraid to brawl with Joe, the best brawler in the company. The problem was the crowd has seen Young's comedy routine for seven years and they haven't had time to warm up to him as a tough guy, much less one that could beat Joe. I'd love to take Young seriously in a different role. It's just hard to do after two years of doing a comedy concussion gimmick. You can tell the crowd wants to like Young, just not as a tough guy. The match ended when Joe got Young in the rear naked choke. The story was referee Brian Hebner dropped Young's arm down three times, even though Joe's shoulders were on the mat while applying the choke. They even had Earl Hebner come out and tell Brian that technically, Joe was pinned. But Joe was still ruled the winner, even though Young never quit. The X's and O's were crossed, it was just that one of the roles was miscast. ***
EC3 discovered that Spud had been kidnapped and went into another barn after him.
Just when it seemed we would escape any Samuel Shaw atrocities tonight, it reared its ugly head. Shaw went into Christy Hemme's locker room, where she slapped him. She cut out a piece of her hair and left. This resulted in Shaw being suspended for one week. OK, he attacked numerous stagehands, threatened waiters for looking at Hemme the wrong way, all without any punishment. Then he clips off a piece of Hemme's hair---that's a suspension. And if that's not enough of a logic gap for you, Shaw is facing Mr. Anderson in a Straight Jacket match next week. I have no idea how a Straight Jacket match works, but I fear that by the time TNA finishes its run, I may end up in one.
3. Gunner defeated James Storm in a no DQ match in 13:58. They had your typical ECW brawl which would have been edgy in 1995. They traded suplexes on the floor. Lots of chairs and trash can lids in the ring. Gunner hit James Storm with a Slingshot Suplex and wedged a chair in a corner. They started trading trash can shots with neither man selling any of them. Great way to get that over. Gunner hit a spear, but Storm escaped a sunset flip and catapulted Gunner into the corner where the chair was, then hit a Randy Savage Elbow for a near fall. Storm pulled out a beer bottle from the bottom of the ring, but Gunner speared him through a table outside the ring as Storm was about to climb back in. They couldn't let that spot breathe and immediately edited Gunner going for a pin. Same mistakes they made in 2007 that they never learn from. Gunner set up two chairs in the ring, with one ripped apart and gave Storm a superplex onto them. It was the same move that Gunner pinned Storm with at Lockdown, but Storm kicked out. Storm caught Closing Time, then hit two Last Call Superkicks, but Gunner kicked out in an exciting sequence. Storm brought the bottle into the ring, but Gunner had his own bottle and pinned Storm with a TKO, which is called Hager 18, I guess after the Megadeth song since Gunner is a well-known metalhead. Match grew into a good one. ***1/4
EC3 found Spud tied up in a barn that looked like something straight from the film Wrong Turn. EC3 heard echoes of Willow shouting in the distance and threatened to burn the barn down and build a parking lot over it unless he showed himself. In another horror movie cliche, Willow was right behind EC3 and started hitting him with an umbrella, then vanished. It was every bit as dumb as it sounds.
SUMMARY: Another reason why TNA is such a frustrating company. Good main events when they have time to work. It's just that the work that's being done now has already been undermined from years of horrible booking. Trying to take Young seriously now is like watching Chavo Guerrero do jobs for Hornswaggle and Vicki Guerrero. It killed any credibility he had or any potential pushes down the line. The main event was strong. Shaw and Willow are in a heated competition for worst gimmick of the year, with Willow making a strong charge with nine months to go. Unless...you know.