TNA Impact Wrestling: Complete Preview, News and More for May 23

Donald WoodFeatured ColumnistMay 22, 2013

PERTH, AUSTRALIA - NOVEMBER 24:  Hulk Hogan enters the stage prior to his bout against Ric Flair during the Hulkamania Tour at the Burswood Dome on November 24, 2009 in Perth, Australia.  (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images)
Paul Kane/Getty Images

There are just two episodes of TNA’s Impact Wrestling left until June’s Slammiversary pay-per-view, and the excitement around Thursday’s show, combined with the build to the next marquee event, has fans everywhere ready for the upcoming action.

Not only will Bully Ray and Sting likely find a way to get face-to-face before the night is over, but this action-packed episode will also feature AJ Styles possibly joining Aces & Eights, Kurt Angle squaring off against Mr. Anderson and the return of the infamous Suicide character.

With this much exciting action scheduled for Thursday’s Impact Wrestling from Tampa, hardcore and casual TNA fans alike can’t afford to miss a second of the build to June’s mega PPV.


Where: USF Sun Dome, Tampa, Fla.

When: Thursday, May 23 at 8 p.m. ET

Watch: Spike TV


AJ Styles and the Aces & Eights

According to Hulk Hogan, Kurt Angle, Mr. Anderson and AJ Styles will make the full heel turn and join the Aces & Eights this week on Impact. With so much focus on the gang already—Devon is fighting Joseph Park at the PPV, Angle is fighting Anderson and the world title is around Bully Ray’s waist—there are doubts that Styles will join Aces & Eights Thursday.

Question on Everybody's Mind: Is AJ Styles Joining Aces and Eights?

As much as TNA wants the fans to believe he is going heel, there is little doubt in my mind that Styles will end up Pele-kicking a member of Aces & Eights in the face before also attacking one of the good guys. The longer Styles stays as the mysterious character, the better he will be received from the fans.

While most believe Styles will turn down the cut, Bully Ray says he has AJ's vest ready:

Hype Meter: 4 out of 5 Sting vs. nWo Storylines

Styles is one of the most talented workers in TNA, but if you feel like you have seen this storyline before, it’s because this is heading down the exact same road Sting was on when he became The Crow version of Sting and teased joining nWo.

With Styles fighting Angle at the next PPV, expect him to prolong the decision to join the gang while remaining a tweener closer to the heel side in order to keep the intrigue surrounding the matchup. How TNA plays this angle out on this week’s Impact will have major long-term ramifications.

TNA News: Impact’s Ratings Continue to Plummet (Wrestling Inc.)


The Build to Slammiversary

Not only will wrestling fans be treated to Sting vs. Bully Ray for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship at Slammiversary, but the rest of the card for the event is shaping up to be just as thrilling. With the focus Thursday on building the rest of the card before the final go-home show, the fans should have a clear picture of what the PPV will look like by the time this episode is over.

Question on Everybody's Mind: Will Impact Help Build Interest for Slammiversary?

The fact that the card is shaping up to be even better than Lockdown or Genesis already has fans genuinely excited for the June 2nd show. Add in the intrigue of who James Storm will select as his tag team partner Thursday and what the status of Abyss will be, and there is no question that the excitement is building.

Even TNA president Dixie Carter is excited about Thursday's episode:

Hype Meter: 4 out of 5 Tri-Monthly PPVs

The decision to move to four major PPVs each year was a smart business move for a company still trying to make its mark on the industry, and the success of Thursday’s Impact will directly affect how well this event is received. In order to get wrestling fans interested and keep them involved enough to order the PPV, TNA must make this the most interesting show of the year. With a roster full of talent, that shouldn’t be an issue.

TNA News: President Dixie Carter Wants to Work with WWE (Digital Spy)


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