Previously on Impact Wrestling
Most of the Bound for Glory (BFG) series participants were in the ring when Hulk Hogan announced that Jeff Hardy had won a fan vote to call the first shot on Open Fight Night. Jeffrey Nero picked Bobby Roode, inciting a brawl between the ten men in the ring.
Those two concepts were the order of the night, as Mr. Anderson called out and defeated Joseph Park, Austin Aries got called out and defeated Jay Bradley, Hernandez asked for and lost to Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian called out and was pinned by Magnus.
Backstage drama centered on the Aces & Eights lobbying for a Vice-President between Anderson and D.O.C., Bully Ray pining for his wife and Sting recruiting his new Main Event Mafia (MEM). Only one of those angles had any real advancement.
Mrs. Ray herself, Brooke Hogan, addressed the Knockouts before being whisked away from the drama by her dad. ODB and Eric Young are no longer Knockouts tag champs, and Gail Kim vs. Taryn Terrell will rematch in a ladder match on Impact in Vegas later this summer.
Samoa Joe and
Broody McBrooderson AJ Styles battled to a 15 minute time limit draw. In the main event, the Charismatic Engima took down the It Factor via twist of fate in a disappointingly brief match.
And then to close it out, Sting revealed that he had renewed his MEM alliance with Kurt Angle. The news terrified TNA World Champ Bully, even though his group has dealt with both of the old men many times over.
(NOTE: This show was taped last week for broadcast tonight. Previews are spoiler free, but results are available here)
Peoria, IL - part II.
BFG action continues with announced matches featuring Magnus vs. Roode and Anderson vs. Joe. It's only a week in, but every match - and series point - counts.
Who else will join the cause of the Icon and battle alongside Kurt Angle against the Aces & Eights? Another announcement is being teased by the Stinger. Will it be anyone who we haven't seen before or in a while?
Brooke made a Knockouts title match for tonight's show, and Mickie James will defend her crown against the wounded former champ, Velvet Sky.
Gut Check returns, as more guys you've never heard of compete to be seen on Spike TV once or twice a year.
And a match with huge implications considering that the Destination X-themed pay-per-view (PPV) caliber episode of Impact (phew - that's a mouthful!) is on the horizon: X-Division champion Chris Sabin will defend his title in a triple threat against Kenny King and Suicide in a rematch from Slammiversary. The winner will have the option of cashing in the strap for a title match against the President of Aces & Eights for his belt!
Expect to pop for:
Mickie James. I think I may have featured the Mickster here not too long ago, but I don't care. She's working one of the best heel characters in the game right now, and is the first thing that comes to mind when I pose the question to myself, "self," I say, "what are you looking forward to about this week's Impact?"
Thinking that all of your competitors are beneath you is a tried and true rudo gimmick, but in the case of Hardcore Country, it's also kind of true. She's certainly better than Velvet Sky, the woman she's been feuding with for the last couple of months. Well, Mick doesn't think she's feuding with her, because she doesn't see her as a challenge, but...that's why it's a great character. Here's hoping that tonight is the blow off to their program and she can move on to fresh faces (Terrell) or better workers (Tara or Gail).
Actually, they need to restock the Knockouts ASAP, because the champ is going to run out of challengers pretty quick.
I mean, how many women were out there for the "State of the Knockouts Address" last week? Five?
The heat is on:
Gut Check. Seriously, we're still doing this? When the concept's biggest success is a guy who had an entertaining couple of weeks as the designated referee for women's matches (did they ever bother to resolve the Joey Ryan - Gail Kim flirtation?)...what's the point?
Jay Bradley looked okay against Aries last week, but there's no reason to think that he'll be around for more than the couple of months that they need him to job in the BFG series - because even Ryan and Christian York and Taeler Hendrix can't get reliable screen time on this show. And are we really going to take him seriously after he comes in last or next to last in the tourney and then disappears?
They've never been able to determine what Gut Check was supposed to be doing for them. Unknowns and veterans of the independent scene haven't been able to get over with the concept's weird amalgam of shoot and work, reality and scripted. I hear they have a good product in Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW), but I haven't found time to catch up - even though the shows stream for free.
And it's not like they just blow this thing off in five minutes! Between bumpers and promo videos and matches and the infernal in-ring interviews and deliberations, this will be 20 - 30 minutes of programming time that you could use to build a few guys on the roster into believable threats and develop a couple of compelling stories.
But TNA is more focused on telling the same stories for months at a time with past-their-prime workers. I'm all for building for the future, but not like this.
Impact burned off my excitement about the BFG series with a weird show last week. Can they regain their footing tonight?
Sound off in the comments. I'd love to hear what folks are looking forward to, because I had a hard time getting excited about this show (I haven't read spoilers, maybe something wonderful happens).
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