TNA Impact! Wrestling: Hollywood Hulk Hogan Returns to Take on Aces and Eights
The Aug. 23 edition of Open Fight Night on Impact! Wrestling opens with a video of the entire Aces and Eights group on their motorcycles heading into the Impact! Zone. Another video is shown recapping the group's recent attacks.
Sting, Kurt Angle, Austin Aries, Bully Ray, Devon, Jeff Hardy, AJ Styles and more of the TNA wrestling roster come out to the ring. Sting calls out Aces and Eights to the ring. The live audience begins to chant Hulk Hogan's name. Sting invites James Storm to the ring to join them.
Storm began to talk about what kind of destruction Aces and Eights have caused in recent weeks. Quickly after Sting again calls Aces and Eights out to the ring, two members head towards the ring.
After a quick beat down of the two Aces and Eights members, Sting continued to demand the rest of the group to come out. However, one member tells Sting they are in major trouble throughout the show.
After commercial break, Miss Tessmacher makes her way to the ring. She then calls out Tara to face her in the ring.
Miss Tessmacher vs. Tara in a Knockouts singles match.
Your winner via pin fall: Tara. This match got slightly better after a few early botches by Miss Tessmacher. I was hoping to see a better quality match from these two wrestlers.
Match Rating: 2.5/5
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Robbie E. vs. Rob Van Dam vs. AJ Styles in a triple threat Bound For Glory Series match.
Your winner via pin fall: Robbie E. A surprising win for Robbie E, as he had his best wrestling match in recent memory on Impact! This was a pretty solid three-way match with plenty of action. With the win, Robbie E picks up seven points.
Match Rating: 3.5/5
Jeff Hardy vs. Robbie T in a singles match.
Your winner via pin fall: Jeff Hardy. Hardy called out Robbie T because of the problems he has caused in recent weeks by interfering in his matches. This was a pure power vs. technical match and it worked out decently.
Match Rating: 3/5
In the ring, Jeremy Borash introduces Styles to the ring to find out the results of his paternity test with Claire Lynch. Styles begins to apologize to everyone involved in this situation and says if he is indeed the father of Lynch's baby, he will accept the responsibilities. After Borash introduced Lynch to the ring, Kazarian and Christopher Daniels instead makes their way out.
Kazarian begins to fire back at Styles, telling him he is at fault for many things. Daniels takes over the microphone and announces Lynch could not be at the Impact! Zone due to a complication at a Florida hospital. Suddenly, a woman, whose name is Grace, enters the ring and takes the microphone from Daniels.
Grace, who is Lynch's attorney, reads a statement written by Claire. Grace announces that the whole plan by Daniels and Kazarian were to blackmail him, even faking her pregnancy. After Grace and Borash leaves, Styles takes out Daniels and Kazarian.
Backstage, Sting meets with Aces and Eights. Sting then tosses his black bat to Hulk Hogan, who takes out all three members of the group with one swing.
Kris Lewie (TNA Gut Check contestant) vs. Gunner in a singles match.
Your winner via pinfall: Gunner. In his Gut Check match, Lewie showed plenty of power but his lack of experience helped Gunner come up with the victory. Overall, Lewie did not look too bad in his try out match.
Match Rating: 3/5
Mr. Anderson vs. Bully Ray in a Bound For Glory Series match.
Your winner via pin fall: Mr. Anderson. That was an excellent match to watch. Plenty of action in the ring.
Match Rating: 4/5
Sting, Angle, Hardy and more of the TNA roster come out to the ring. Sting calls out Aces and Eights to the ring. After waiting, Aces and Eights come out and begin to brawl with the TNA roster. As the brawl continues, backstage footage is shown of Hogan, Storm and Styles taking out more members of Aces and Eights.
Glad to see Hollywood Hulk Hogan return?
As the brawl continues, Aces and Eights begin to take control in the ring. Austin Aries, who is outnumbered in the ring, gets his right arm placed on a guardrail and slammed by a chair shot. Bully Ray emerges and makes the save, as most of the members of Aces and Eights leave the Impact! Zone on their motorcycles.
Overall Impact! Wrestling Rating: 3/5
My quick take on Impact! Wrestling:
That was one of the wildest brawls to end a wrestling show. Impact! Wrestling delivered on mainly another solid show focused on what Aces and Eights will do next.
Overall, the show featured some solid wrestling matches to watch. The best match of the night would have to be the main event, which featured Mr. Anderson and Bully Ray. The three-way match between Rob Van Dam, AJ Styles and Robbie E was also another solid one to watch. Robbie E, who is out of the Bound For Glory picture, shocked wrestling fans with pulling out a surprising victory.
TNA did right by putting to rest the AJ Styles and Claire Lynch storyline. I am excited to see Styles be involved in something else, but this storyline was not as bad as first thought.
As for the ending of the show, the wild brawl was exciting to watch. As the brawl continued, it seemed Aces and Eights began to grow even larger as a group with more members appearing. I enjoyed the back and forth feature by displaying shots both inside and outside the ring.
With Austin Aries getting his right arm slammed hard by a chair shot and no Bobby Roode, this raises the question as to whether he is the person behind Aces and Eights.
There was also one big return on Impact! Wrestling.
Hulk Hogan made his comeback to TNA television but rather wearing his trademark red and yellow gear, Hulk was dressed in black. He even had his beard dyed in black, signaling that he is back as that character of Hollywood Hulk Hogan. Hogan looked strong in his return, as he battled with members of the Aces and Eights backstage.
Having Hogan back in his nWo-style character works well in this situation. Hogan expressed plenty of angry emotions towards Aces and Eights for their actions on his daughter, Brooke, and his new look helps him once again return to that character he was successful with for many years. Hogan did a nice job on his return to TNA television.
It should be an interesting week ahead for Impact! Wrestling.
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