TNA Impact comes waltzing back into our lives tonight (Feb. 20, 2014) from Manchester, England, on its overseas tour, featuring Magnus defending the heavyweight title against Gunner, who is cashing in his "Feast or Fired" briefcase.
Also scheduled for the show: New matches will be announced for the Lockdown pay-per-view (PPV), The Wolves take on Bad Influence, Madison Rayne vs. Gail Kim in a Knockouts Street Fight.
To follow along as it all goes down come right back here at 9 p.m. ET to hang out with all your favorite folks from this neck of the woods when the show airs on Spike. Hanging out here is guaranteed to enhance your viewing experience.
Enjoy the evening, Cagesiders!
RESULTS AND LIVE BLOG
Broadcast is live.
A video package opens the show hyping the Magnus vs. Gunner title match for tonight. Pretty good video, all things considered.
Pre-tape with Dixie Carter and Magnus arguing over something, though they won't reveal what. Magnus: "Just so you know, if you go down, I'm not going down with you".
Magnus and EC3 aren't getting along right now but Magnus tells him they need to cooperate or everything will end before it even begins. That's the lead in for Dixie and Magnus coming out to the ring for the customary opening promo.
Magnus wastes no time bringing out MVP.
Talking points early center on Magnus telling MVP that he doesn't care if MVP spent nine years in prison, it wouldn't compare to nine minutes in the ring with the champion. That's a pretty good line, actually.
"I don't care how much money you've got, I will make an example of you", Magnus finishes with.
MVP dumps on Magnus having self esteem issues. You know, because he brings up being champion all the time. He wouldn't need to do that if he was secure in his abilities and status among the top stars.
Cut right to the point, though: MVP wants an answer on his proposal from last week.
And a "YES" chant breaks out. Beautiful.
Magnus accepts the challenge.
They go back and forth for a minute before Magnus threatens to make MVP his "beeyatch". MVP warned him not to beforehand and once he did, a brawl broke out. EC3 ran out to make the save and they cut to backstage where The Wolves were being held back by security and Rockstar Spud from coming out to even the odds.
They overthrew security, of course, and Gunner ended up being the guy to run down.
That led to the heels running out but they were confronted by The Wolves. Magnus pushed EC3 into the good guys and ran away. EC3 took a kick to the gut and that's the opening segment.
Bobby Roode tells us he's got something to say but he won't say it to cameras backstage, he'll make sure he says it to the world.
EC3 runs to the back and confronts Magnus about "literally throwing me to the Wolves". This leads to a brief argument between the two in which the champ tells Carter that he should continue to have Magnus' back because it's what in the best interests of his "Aunt D".
EC3 recognizes this as Magnus showing his true colors and sarcastically says he'll have his back.
Samoa Joe comes out and says he didn't come here to watch a title match like the fans did, he came here to fight. And because he has to wait for the winner of Magnus vs. Gunner, he wants anyone with the guts in the back to come down and dance.
The Bro Mans and Zema Ion answer the call.
So it's a 3-on-1 handicap, one Joe totally went for.
Samoa Joe vs. Bro Mans & Zema Ion
It's a beatdown early, in favor of Joe, but the heels take over because THAT DAMN NUMBERS GAME. You know how it is. Still, Joe eventually overcomes. The finish saw him hit a suicide dive to the Bro Mans and return to the ring to choke out Ion for the win.
Joe def. Bro Mans & Ion
Backstage, we see Christy Hemme innocently talking to a member of the road crew. She's laughing, though, and when she walks off, Samuel Shaw arrives -- you know, because he's stalking her -- and chokes out the road crew member before throwing him into the wall.
Bobby Roode backstage talking to James Storm. Roode is saying he's going through some things right now. He's reflecting on his career, saying he never felt like he could trust anyone.
He's acting like he wants to hang 'em up.
Storm wonders what he's saying.
Roode says they have a lot of history but all the bad stuff is on him. He can't erase the bad, of course, but the Beer Money stuff was special. "I know now looking back that at the end of the day, you were the only guy I could trust."
Storm laughs and wonders if Roode has been in his beer. "It's a lot stronger here in the U.K., you know."
He implores Roode not to do what he's going to. Gives him a big pep talk about the business being hard but they knew it going in and they just gotta keep humping the road and take responsibility for their own actions.
Roode gives him a hug and says thanks before walking away.
Austin Aries finds MVP backstage and they're cordial. MVP immediately goes into his pitch. He needs an anchor for his team at Lockdown and he wants that man to be Aries.
"Anchors drag things down, I put things over the top."
MVP keeps pushing. He'll get control of the company if he wins and Aries demands a promise for future considerations. MVP says changes will be made if his team wins and he takes over.
Aries says he'll think about it and get back to him.
Video package builds to the Knockouts Street Fight, non-title.
Madison Rayne vs. Gail Kim
Rayne gets it going by rushing Kim right after she comes out. Lei'D Tapa, by the way, decided to watch this and not do anything about it, despite the fact that "anything goes", as the announcers continually informed us.
Naturally, Tapa interfered later on a spot on the outside that saw her drive Rayne into the ring, crushing her back. Kim would hit her usual spots and eventually pick up the victory.
Kim def. Rayne
Not a great match. Very little heat.
Now we've got Hemme looking at pictures of Mr. Anderson's kids and Shaw sees this and gets really upset before walking away.
Video package tells the story of Gunner with a big lean towards his military background mixed in with his want and desire to be a pro wrestler. This is really well done, complete with an interview with his dad where he gets emotional and talks about his father never seeing him succeed but how great it is that he gets the chance to see his son do well.
Storm and Gunner have a moment backstage talking about the match tonight. Gunner says he'll be doing it for everyone who never got the chance and all that good stuff.
Storm tells him he needs to do it for himself too. "This is your moment ... live it for you."
Gunner says he's going to win the heavyweight title tonight but after that he wants to use the other briefcase so they can get back what's theirs, the tag team championships.
Now we get Roode coming out looking somber.
He's working babyface here talking like he's about to announce he's retiring. They're responding to him well and treating him like they love him.
He tells us if we think he's been bad in front of them, it's been a lot worse backstage. He's ruined friendships and destroyed lives and he hates himself now. He can't do this anymore. He has to walk away. He can't do it anymore and he's sorry.
"This is my last day as a professional wrestler."
The crowd actually chants "no", like they don't want him to leave.
He gets emotional and thanks everyone in the crowd. Before he can leave, in tears, Dixie Carter's music hits.
"Bobby, you do not get to decide when you leave. You have a TNA Wrestling contract and I'm the one who says when you can leave."
He says he doesn't want to be here anymore and he's done.
"You don't get to make that call. Jeff Hardy, Sting, AJ Styles; I didn't want any of them in my company. All they did was cause problems. But Bobby, I need you. TNA needs you."
Roode wonders why.
Dixie apologizes to him and brings up how much she's been dealing with lately. He doesn't care. He doesn't want to hear it because he's decided he doesn't want to be here anymore.
Carter is really desperate now. She needs a captain for her team at Lockdown, someone who is going to want the victory as bad as she does and she wants him to captain the team.
Again, he wonders why.
She offers him 10-percent of the company. The match is so important that she will give him 10-percent ownership of TNA if his team wins.
He wants clarification. Does a win mean they become business partners?
"No, it means you own 10-percent of TNA."
Roode still isn't buying in.
Dixie keeps pushing and Roode starts to turn. The offer is proving too tempting for him to pass up.
"You have a deal."
The crowd boos this. Roode tells Dixie if she tries to screw him over he'll dedicate the rest of his life to destroying hers.
Jeremy Borash does an interview with some random German cat and in the background Samuel Shaw attacks Mr. Anderson. In the process, Christy Hemme ends up slammed against the wall, knocking her out.
Anderson is knocked out too and the cameras catch Shaw picking Hemme up and walking away. No one tries to stop him. Because why would they? He only just knocked a woman out and kidnapped her.
Now this is just stupid.
Backstage, Bad Influence campaigns for a spot on Roode's team to win the 10-percent stake in the company. He isn't up for just putting his buddies in the match because there's just too much at stake.
So he tells them to go win their match and he'll consider it.
Bad Influence vs. The Wolves
They weren't given a ton of time to work with but the match was good with The Wolves going over.
Wolves def. Bad Influence
Cut backstage to Shaw carrying Hemme and he lays her down on a table. He goes in for what appears to be a kiss but she wakes up and wonders what the hell is going on.
She's still dazed, though, so he takes advantage by laying her back down. Just then he notices the camera and starts toward it before they cut away and the commentators wonder what's going on.
The heavyweight title match is next.
Magnus vs. Gunner
They tell us this match will be contested under "Magnus rules", which means no disqualifications or count outs. Taz comments on how convenient it is that this breaks to us just now.
Yeah, this is why we can't get into this matches, TNA.
The match is slow as hell. It doesn't take long before Magnus signals to the back for the cavalry to come help him win the match. Instead, Storm and The Wolves come down wagging their collective fingers.
No smoz this time ... right?
Naturally, EC3 and Bro Mans come out after a bit more wrestling, leading to the babyfaces and heels fighting each other off all the way up the ramp. That leaves Gunner and Magnus in the ring alone.
Gunner hits a powerbomb and flying headbutt but before the referee could count three, Rockstar Spud showed up to put Magnus' foot on the rope.
Yep. That's about right.
Storm gets back out to even the odds once again and we're back to one-on-one. Gunner hulks up by smashing his own head into the turnbuckle. He hits a few big spots before Spud comes in to cause a distraction. Storm gets in to throw him out and encourages Gunner to come off the top rope.
When he does, Storm hits the Last Call superkick and Magnus pins Gunner to retain the title.
Magnus def. Gunner
Storm mean mugs Gunner while Magnus bails with the title.