TNA Impact Wrestling opened with general manager Hulk Hogan. He brought up Sting getting attacked last week and vowed to get to the bottom of it. He then called out Austin Aries for his decision.
Aries went over his options, but then offered a third option. He wanted giving up the X-Division Championship for a shot at the world title to be a yearly thing. If the champion wanted a piece of the world champion at Destination X, then he could have it by giving up the X-Division title.
Hogan liked the idea and the deal was made. That brought out Bobby Roode who said that the X-Division title meant nothing and that he was God’s gift to professional wrestling.
The two then brawled and Mr. Anderson came out to say that he would win the Bound for Glory Series.
This was a good way to open the show. Hogan was Hogan on the mic while Aries was great like he usually is. Roode continues to be a very good heel with his mic work and Anderson was just kind of there. The segment could have gone without him speaking.
I love what the X-Division Championship is going to become. It’ll make the title and the division important again.
With Destination X being in the middle of the Bound for Glory Series, this new concept is perfect. 12 of TNA’s wrestlers won’t be able to compete for the world title during the summer, and the X-Division will create new challengers for the world champion.
Mr. Anderson vs. Christopher Daniels: Bound for Glory Series
Mr. Anderson picked up seven points after hitting the mic check. I thought this was a good match that featured some nice back-and-forth action throughout.
The 10-minute time limit on BFGS matches are a nice touch. It’ll create some nice pacing during matches, but at the same time it could hurt the contests. Matches will seem rushed at times because of the time limit, though this match didn’t feel that way to me.
Daniels is definitely one of the most underrated wrestlers in TNA. He’s extremely talented in the ring and has progressed into a great heel over the past year.
I hope that he at least makes it to the final four of the series.
Anderson performed well, too, but I think his time at the top in TNA is over. After the BFGS, I can see him heading to the mid-card and the Television Championship at most.
Backstage, A.J. Styles doesn’t want to go through with coming clean but Dixie Carter wants to. I want them to as well. I’m been very intrigued by this storyline since it started.
Staying backstage, Brooke Hogan was with ODB, Mickie James, Madison Rayne and Velvet Sky. She wanted to know why they thought they deserved a shot at the title and they each gave their reasons.
Brooke ultimately eliminated Madison from getting a shot later on due to her having a love interest.
This is exactly what Hulk was doing at last month’s Open Fight Night with the possible challengers for the world title. I think the writers got really lazy here, especially with the reason Madison shouldn’t get a shot.
She’s in love and that makes her not worthy of wrestling? Sure, her head might not be in the game completely, but Brooke is basically saying that she’s not allowed to be in love because she’s a wrestler.
All this is doing is showing why Brooke Hogan shouldn’t be in charge of wrestlers.
Robbie E vs. Kurt Angle: Bound for Glory Series
Angle squashed Robbie, picking up 10 points due to the submission victory in the process. Robbie challenged anyone in the series and he unfortunately got the Olympic gold medalist.
Angle will without a doubt make it to the final four. Robbie on the other hand is screwed I think. What Samoa Joe was last year, Robbie E will be this year.
Robbie may win the occasional match, but he’ll end up losing every match sooner rather than later. I hope he doesn’t, though, as he is a talented wrestler. It’s just hard to take him seriously with his gimmick.
A video is then shown of the night’s Gut Check contestant, Taeler Hendrix. I have heard of her before, but I have never seen her wrestle. I was quite excited to finally see a woman get the chance in Gut Check.
Magnus vs. A.J. Styles: Bound for Glory Series
Magnus picked up seven points after Styles got distracted by Daniels and Kazarian. I thought this was a good match, though it seemed a bit rushed.
Styles and Magnus worked well together, and I’d like to see them go at it again, except in a match that lasts closer to the 10-minute time limit.
I’m glad Magnus won the match, though. It was certainly a surprise to see him in the series and I hope he gets a fair chance. With this victory over Styles, I think he will be getting one.
Would he make it to the final four? I highly doubt it. If any of these two makes it to the finals it would be Styles.
Taeler Hendrix vs. Tara
Tara picked up the victory with the Widow's Peak. I enjoyed this match as I thought it was a good one. I wish that they were given a little more time, though.
Tara was working as a heel here, screaming “You wanna be a Knockout?” at Hendrix for most of the match. I’ve always like Tara as a heel so I’d like to see go back to it. She’s been a face for too long.
I thought that Hendrix was impressive in the match against the veteran Tara. She’s very talented and pulled off a few nice moves.
The Knockouts division, while filled with talented women, is lacking. TNA has a lot of women in the division but only a few are used. A fresh face would be nice to see!
Backstage, Joseph Park ran into Bully Ray. The bully told him that if he saw Park in the crowd again, or Abyss decided to show up, it would be the last time we’d see both of them.
Bully Ray delivered a nice heel promo here. He was short and sweet, but very powerful. I like that this storyline is continuing.
Samoa Joe vs. James Storm: Bound for Glory Series
Storm received seven points after hitting the Last Call. This was a good match that had a lot of good action. This was definitely the best BFGS match of the night. Storm and Samoa Joe work really well together and it showed here.
I hope to see Samoa Joe get a fair shot this year. He didn’t win a single BFGS match last year. In fact, he had negative 10 points by the end of it. The Samoan Submission Machine is way too talented to be seen as the worst.
As for Storm, he’s way ahead of everyone else with 27 points. The Gauntlet Match last week certainly helped him in a big way.
I think it’s obvious that Storm will be winning the series, but I hope that they don’t book him too strong. By that I mean he shouldn’t every single match. I want to see this year’s series kept more even than last year with no clear cut winner.
Backstage, Styles told Dixie that it had to be done because he can’t focus. Good, I want it to be done as well. I like this storyline, but things need to be revealed!
Staying backstage, Brooke Hogan eliminated ODB because she’s too focused on Eric Young taking his pants off in the ring.
Really, that’s your reason for eliminating ODB? Could we get someone who knows something about women’s wrestling in charge of the division please?
I was waiting to pass judgment on Brooke being in charge until she actually started doing something and giving her a carbon copy of her father’s segment from last month isn’t gaining her any points.
Her reasons for eliminating Knockouts are actually causing her to lose points with me.
Bully Ray vs. D’Angelo Dinero: Bound for Glory Series
Dinero picked up the seven points after a distraction from Abyss. I thought this was a decent match as the main focus of it was the Bully Ray/Abyss feud. The match itself saw the bully dominate the first half then Dinero dominate the second half.
With Bully Ray’s storyline with Abyss, I don’t think he should have been put in the series this year. I have a feeling that Bully Ray will be losing the majority of the matches thanks to Abyss in some way.
Dinero looked good in the ring, though, after being away for so long. He’s another underrated talent who deserves a bit of a push.
I don’t think he should be world champion, but I think he would make a great television champion. Hopefully he doesn’t disappear again after the BFGS like he did last year, though.
Backstage, Hulk Hogan was with Rob Van Dam and Jeff Hardy. He said that they were the stars of TNA and that they were the favorites to win the series.
With this segment, Hogan just buried the entire TNA locker room. RVD and Hardy may be stars, but they aren’t the only ones on the roster, Hogan.
Miss Tessmacher vs. Mickie James: Knockouts Championship
Tessmacher retained her title after a sunset flip. This was actually a good match. Tessmacher isn’t the best wrestler in the world, but she’s certainly gotten a lot better over the years.
She held her own against Mickie in this match. At the same time, Mickie may have just carried her so well that she was made to look like a star.
I’m confused, though. This was advertised as a fatal four-way match for the title. Last I counted there was only two women in the ring.
With as many matches as they booked for this show, I don’t think they anticipated how much time it would take up to feature that many so they had to cut it down.
After the match, fans saw some nice close ups of Mickie as she had a crazed look in her eyes. I haven’t seen that look since her storyline with Trish Stratus in 2005-2006.
The return of a crazy Mickie James? I’m definitely on board for that! Mickie is in desperate need of a fresh start, and a heel turn will do just that.
Rob Van Dam vs. Jeff Hardy: Bound for Glory Series
Hardy got the seven points after a nasty looking Twist of Fate. Seriously, it looked like Hardy snapped Van Dam’s neck in two.
This was an overall good match that featured some nice action, including a missed 450 Splash by Van Dam. I can’t remember the last time RVD did something different so it was quite cool to see.
These two have wrestled each other so many times that they know one another in the ring very well. They have an advantage there since they’re able to pull off a good match every time they face off.
I can see one of them making it to the final four, though I’m not sure which one. Since they are “TNA’s biggest stars,” they’ll both probably make it.
The show then came to a close with A.J. Styles and Dixie Carter attempting to come clean about their situation. Dixie tried to talk but Styles convinced her to just leave.
Some woman then showed up and entered the ring. She was going to tell the truth for them. She told everyone that she was a drug addict and that they were helping her get clean. They were keeping it a secret, though, and that led to Daniels and Kazarian freaking out backstage.
Daniels then came out and Styles beat him down. Even Kazarian couldn’t do anything as Styles just took down both of them.
So they were helping a drug addict get clean and were keeping it a secret? I don’t get it.
When she came out a few thoughts crossed my mind. At first I thought she was some kind of love child between them, but then I realized she was older than 10 years old. Styles’ wife? Apparently not.
I don’t get the secrecy behind the situation. Wouldn’t you want people to know that you were trying to clean up your act? I don’t know, this just confuses me.
From the reaction Daniels gave backstage, it was obvious that he knew the truth the entire time and that he was just skewing the information to make it look like an affair.
That part I understand as Daniels was trying to ruin Styles’ life knowing that he would never reveal the truth, which he wasn’t going to.
I’m going to have to go back and watch the segment again so I can better understand what happened. Then hopefully it’ll be better explained next week.
Overall I thought this was a decent episode of Impact Wrestling. I think they tried to pack way too much into two hours and it blew up in their face.
Some of the matches were good, but others felt rushed. Eight matches is too much for a two hour show, especially when you’re including a number of backstage segments and two in-ring segments.
The closing segment didn’t really help matters as it just confused me as I was watching it. I’d imagine that they’ll explain it better next week, but there wasn’t much clarity here.
There was also zero explanation as to what happened to Sting last week. Last week’s episode ended on quite the cliff hanger and they didn’t even follow up on it.
It wouldn’t have fit anyway as there really was just too much for this one episode.