The Thursday, July 18 edition of TNA Impact! Wrestling, which aired live from Louisville, Kentucky, opened with a group of X-Division wrestlers standing on the entranceway and promoting the main event between Chris Sabin and Bully Ray for the World Heavyweight Championship.
Ray came out to the ring to a loud chorus of boos from the crowd. The World Heavyweight champion expressed frustration about the attention Sabin had been receiving coming into the special X-Division pay-per-view. Ray turned his focus to Brooke Hogan and called her out to the ring.
After Brooke told Ray that she plans to move forward with her life, Hulk Hogan interrupted and angrily shouted back at the World Heavyweight champion, telling him that everything will end on Impact! Wrestling.
Suddenly, Kurt Angle and the rest of the Main Event Mafia appeared on the entranceway screen, informing Ray that they will be fighting off all the members of Aces & Eights.
Match No. 1: Bobby Roode vs. Austin Aries
Your winner via pinfall: Austin Aries.
In a rematch from last year's Destination X pay-per-view, Aries and Roode displayed another terrific battle inside the ring.
With the win, Aries picks up seven points in the Bound for Glory Series. Meanwhile, Roode is now 0-4 in the series and showed disappointment after the match by destroying a screen on the announcers' table and throwing chairs into the ring.
Entertaining match to start the show on a high note.
Match Rating: 3.5/5.
Match No. 2: Homicide vs. Petey Williams vs. Sonjay Dutt
Your winner via pinfall: Sonjay Dutt.
This was a solid match with some very impressive work by all three wrestlers both inside and outside the ring. Dutt deserved another opportunity to showcase his talents in next week's Ultimate X match and TNA granted him that chance.
It was also good to see Homicide back in TNA, as he did not disappoint.
Match Rating: 3.5/5.
Match No. 3: Kenny King vs. Chavo Guerrero vs. Suicide
Your winner via pinfall: Suicide.
Instead of using the Suicide character, the announcers elected to use his other name, which was "Manik." Another fun match. The triple-threat features have been exciting to watch and have kept the crowd going strong.
Match Rating: 3/5.
The Main Event Mafia, led by Sting, made their way to the ring. After the group excited the crowd and called out Aces & Eights, Mr. Anderson appeared on the entrance way and invited them backstage. Samoa Joe took control of the microphone and led the Main Event Mafia backstage to fight Aces & Eights.
Backstage, a brawl erupted between the Main Event Mafia and Aces & Eights. After locking up Sting, Magnus, Rampage Jackson and Joe in a room, Angle was taken away in a black pickup truck before a commercial break.
Match No. 4: Rubix vs. Rockstar Spud vs. Greg Marasciulo
Your winner via pinfall: Greg Marasciulo.
This was a very nice feature by TNA. Three younger wrestlers were given a chance to shine in the spotlight and display their talents. This was another enjoyable match to watch.
Match Rating: 3/5.
Mickie James came out to the ring and began to brag about her latest musical project. After continuing to credit herself, Gail Kim interrupted James and told her she was on another planet. Kim slapped James, which resulted in a brawl around the ring, which was broken up by security.
Match No. 5: Chris Sabin vs. Bully Ray
Your winner and new World Heavyweight Champion: Chris Sabin.
TNA pulled off the same exact move when Aries defeated Roode last year for the World Heavyweight title at the Destination X pay-per-view. With the stunning victory, it appears that TNA could be getting ready to ramp up a potential feud between Ray and Hogan and Sabin heading into Bound for Glory as the World Heavyweight Championship.
This was a very exciting and intense match that picked up greatly in the end after Ray dominated the majority of the battle. TNA has really put a new focus on the X-Division by featuring Aries and Sabin defying the odds and winning the World Heavyweight Championship.
Match Rating: 4/5.