11.6 Impact Wrestling
The Big News: The Main Event Mafia split up. While it was a mutual parting, the members basically vowed to feud with each other. The first match in the World Title Tournament featured Jeff Hardy beating Chris Sabin in a Full Metal Mayhem match. There were about 100 pull-apart brawls between Kurt Angle and Bobby Roode, which went from being the best program in America to being something I was sick of by the end of the show. This was not among TNA's better shows.
Dixie Carter walked with her latest "big surprise" attraction---Pacman Jones. Considering Jones plays in Cincinnati instead of Dallas, which is the NFL's flagship team even though they're 1 game over .500 since 1998, I doubt if the majority of the viewers even knew who he was. They bumped into Mr. Anderson, who wanted to face Bully Ray tonight. Dixie agreed to the request, but only if Anderson agreed to bring it tonight against Ray. DeQuin Evans appeared with Jones at ringside.
A.J. Styles, supposedly out of the company, is still featured prominently in opening videos.
The Main Event Mafia came out. That includes Kurt Angle, who was in dire need of medical attention when we last saw him after having a match stopped with Bobby Roode because of the concern of a referee. He came out this week selling nothing. Why do I feel like I'm in 2008 again? Sting said the Mafia had accomplished all of their goals: eliminating Aces and Eights and making sure that Ray was no longer world champion. So Sting announced that the Mafia was breaking up amicably. Sting said they were all going in different directions. Sting said Magnus seized the moment when he eliminated Sting from the Gauntlet Match to win last week. Sting said he loved all of them, and he wanted to deal with something called entitlement, and combat those who feel like they can start out on top without having to pay any dues. I guess that was some sort of knock against Magnus without mentioning him by name. Sting hugged Samoa Joe and Angle, then gave a half-hearted hug to Magnus and left. Joe took the mic and said he's waited a long time to hold the world championship and to get it again, he would have to go through Angle and Magnus. Joe said he considered both of them good friends, but they made better enemies. Joe left. Magnus said that Angle was standing in the way to his path to glory, and if it comes down to just Angle and him, he will mow Angle down. Magnus said he had gold on his mind and aimed to become world champion, then left. Angle, left alone, said he suffered a setback when he got knocked out against Roode. Angle started to say he talked to another doctor when Roode came out. Roode said he was embarrassed that Angle wouldn't admit that he lost consecutive matches to him. Roode said if he faces Angle in the TNA World Title Tournament, he will kick his ass for a third time. Angle said he expects to meet Roode in the finals, and when he does, Roode's ass is his. Angle punched Roode and they had a pull-apart.
After a commercial, Angle waited for Roode in the ring and challenged him to come back out and fight. Again, they were pulled apart by Atlas Security, referees and the two remaining agents. Angle was hauled to the back, then ran back to the ring for another pull apart. Kazarian, Christopher Daniels, Joe and Magnus came out to keep them apart this time. At this point, they were really belaboring the point.
As Mike Tenay and Taz were running down the show, Daniels and Kazarian started mouthing off to Pacman and DeQuin Evans at ringside. Evans and Jones jumped the guard rail and started fighting with Bad Influence. Evans slammed Daniels and Jones slammed Kazarian, who went up really transparently. It was the easiest slam Jones will ever have. I'm not sure what it says for the top heel tag team to be chased away by two football players, but it got the classic hometown babyface pop.
Half-hour into the show. Zero matches. Two pull-apart brawls. I swear it's 2008.
Garrett Bischoff and Knux were backstage when Anderson approached them. He said that the best thing that ever happened to him was getting kicked out of Aces and Eights, and he urged them to both leave and set out on their own. We just saw one faction break up tonight. Is everything coming in pairs on this show?
ODB, Velvet Sky and Brooke went to a no contest in what was supposed to be a number one contender match for the Knockouts title in 9:52. Speaking of pairs, Brooke came out for the Knockouts match. ODB hit a Carpet Muncher on Velvet Sky and Brooke. Later, Brooke, who just isn't a heel, hit a Randy Savage Elbow on ODB. Gail Kim and Lai'd Tapa went to the ring, so the entire Knockouts division was at ringside. At this point, I was really missing Mickie James. The finish was weird. Brooke, the only heel against two babyfaces, hit a crossbody on ODB and Sky. Kim got on the apron to distract Sky, who barely sold the crossbody. Brooke jumped Sky, who teased In Yo Face. Then, for no reason, Kim ran in for the DQ. Kim gave Sky the Eat Defeat while Tapa hit a TKO on Brooke. ODB had a big showdown with Tapa, ending with Tapa giving ODB the TKO. Kim said she had no competition left in the company, so she issued a challenge to any woman from outside the company to face her. *
A commercial message paid for by "The Friends of A.J." aired where Styles was shown defending the TNA World Title in AAA in Mexico. He talked about defending his championship in front of all of his fans throughout the world. At that moment, Styles was shown posing with two people at an airport. Good lord. I was at Mick Foley's stand up show tonight with 250 people in a small club, and he had a longer line. Would it have killed them to at least show the crowd in Mexico where he wrestled? Which was bigger than anything he's had in TNA for years? The "Friends of A.J." is such a blantant ripoff of the NWO.
Bischoff and Knux talked backstage about Anderson's message when Ray walked up. Ray had already heard about Anderson's meeting, and he reminded them that he put together for us, not him. Knux and Bischoff took exception to that, saying Ray was all about himself. Ray reminded Knux he was president. Knux said all three of them and Taz would be voting whether to keep the club together and left. Ray told Bischoff to make sure he votes the right way.
Dixie was backstage screaming on the phone to someone upset about something that aired, presumably the "Friends of Styles" commercial. Ethan Carter the Third walked in. Dixie said she wanted him to choose his opponent tonight. EC3 said Dixie had picked two world class opponents for him to choose from, and he was worried that his undefeated string would come to an end. Dixie got in the "We're the Carters, and the world needs us" line.
Bischoff and Knux was in the ring for the Aces and Eights vote. Tax went in the ring, and Ray followed. I guess Brooke doesn't get a vote. Bischoff accused Ray of being the one who tore the group apart. Before they voted, Anderson came out and said he was just there to watch. Bischoff voted to dissolve the group and took off his cut. Ray tried to sweet talk Knux to no avail. Knux also wanted out and took off his cut. Ray figured there would be a tie since Taz would vote for him, and the tie goes to the president, so Aces and Eights would stay alone. Taz took the mic and said Ray needs to pump the breaks. Taz said Aces and Eights had been rolling through Ray's agenda, and Taz said he was done. Taz removed his cut. Ray ordered Taz to put the colors back on. Taz said "make me." Bischoff and Knux left. Crowd chanted for Taz. Ray told Taz again, who refused. Ray blamed it all on Anderson. This led Anderson to challenge Ray to a No DQ match on November 21st in the live return to Orlando for Turning Point. Ray dropped Stone Cold Steve Austin's name and told Anderson he couldn't believe that Anderson forgot Austin's very first rule. Then Anderson and Knux ran back down to jump Anderson to show the breakup of Aces and Eights was all a ruse. Ray whipped Anderson with a chain and repeated the Aces and Eights catchphrase. A pretty good angle, but it was running thin by this point since almost the entire show consisted solely of angles.
Roode came to the commentators table and ordered Angle to come back out. This somehow transitioned to EC3's match as Roode vanished.
2. Ethan Carter the Third defeated Dewey Barnes in 2:22. Yes, we just saw this match two weeks ago. EC3 now has parted hair and looks like a muscular version of former UFC fighter Mike Ricci. Tenay is actually listing the house show results for EC3 like he's Goldberg, noted he's now 4-0. This got heat, although I'm not sure if it was the right kind. Dewey Burns got some more offense, including a swinging neckbreaker before he missed a missile dropkick. EC3 pinned him with the One Percenter. For TNA's sake, I hope this gimmick doesn't go the way of Robert Griffith the Third's 2nd season with the Redskins. *
Joseph Park was backstage eating leftover Halloween candy when Daniels and Kazarian walked up. They started bullying Park and poured his candy over him. Eric Young showed up and challenged them to a tag match. Even Bad Influence was lame on this show.
3. Bad Influence defeated Eric Young and Joseph park in 5:35. Kazarian and Daniels were wearing black armbands in memory of Roland Alexander. Young looked good during the shine. Park got the hot tag, which led to Daniels and Young brawling on the floor. Daniels sent Young into the steps. Daniels picked up the ring hammer. Referee Earl Hebner stopped Daniels, who threw the hammer down. Daniels picked up his appletini, and as Park had Kazarian up for an Airplane Spin, Daniels threw the drink into Park's face. Kazarian pinned Park with a crucifix. *3/4
Jeff Hardy now has a "Plurality of Worlds" CD that's being marketed by the company, along with several of his lithographs.
Angle came back out for the third time and challenged Roode. Instead, Austin Aries showed up. Aries, who will face Angle next week in the first round of the TNA World Title Tournament, said Angle needs to be concerned about him, not Roode. Aries said he knows Angle is a cyborg, but he's a wrestling machine. Dixie popped up on the screen and gave the Wheel of Dixie a spin to determine which stipulation Angle-Aries would be fought under, and it landed on a Submission match. That's a stip that should help Aries and Angle, so there's that. But does every first-round match have a stipulation, or just random ones whenever Dixie feels like it? Roode came back out to brawl with Angle for the third time. No reaction from the crowd because these two had long worn out their welcome, with another taping still ahead. Security broke them up again.
4. Jeff Hardy defeated Chris Sabin in a Full Metal Mayhem match to advance in the first round of the TNA World Title Tournament in 11:00. Hardy clotheslined Chris Sabin off the apron and the weapons came into play within minutes. They opened with a tug of war with a ladder, which Sabin won ramming Hardy into a corner. Sabin hit a high-angle spinning neckbreaker onto a ladder. Hardy recovered to backdrop Sabin into a ladder draped into the corner, and followed with a stiff trash can shot. Hardy broke the leg of a table while trying to get it in the ring, so he got another table and threw it in. Hardy teased a power bomb into the table, but Sabin used a huracanrana. Hardy tried the Whisper in the Wind, but Sabin crotched him and leveled Hardy with a chair across the back. Sabin with a baseball slide drop kick into the corner with a chair. Hardy used a chair on Sabin's back as he was posing, then used the chair for Air Hardy and clotheslined Sabin out of the ring. Outside the ring, Hardy put Sabin on the table. Hardy went for a plancha onto the table, but missed. Hardy landed badly. In the ring, Sabin set up a table and put Hardy on it. Sabin went to the top rope, but Hardy got the knees up. The table shattered anyway. Hardy hit the Twist of Fate on Sabin, set up a ladder in the corner and jumped off of it for the Swanton and pin. It was your standard stunt show devoid of psychology. ***
SUMMARY: This was an example why TNA just can't grow. There's no World Title Tournament bracket. All we know is Angle-Aries next week. They resort to a Full Metal Mayhem match on this show, because....I guess that's what was popular during the boom period, so it will work here. Except we've seen it before. There's no growth there. Bottom line: the show had less wrestling. And when that's the case, Impact simply isn't as good a show.
Sent from Rod's Pad.