After a wild week from the Sands Casino in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, TNA’s Impact Wrestling will head back to the Lehigh Valley for another taping in front of the raucous crowd.
For the casual TNA fans who grew tired of the lackluster reactions from the fans in the Impact Zone, the return to the road has created a buzz amongst wrestling fans, and the reactions Impact Wrestling has been getting are genuine.
This show feels even more exciting when the fans care.
With a new TNA World Heavyweight champion in Bobby Lashley and several marquee storylines taking shape, here is all the vital viewing information for this Thursday’s action-packed episode of Impact Wrestling.
Where: Sands Bethlehem Event Center; Bethlehem, Pennsylvania
When: Thursday, June 26, at 9 p.m. ET (pre-taped)
Watch: Spike TV
Bobby Lashley and the TNA World Heavyweight Championship Scene
In one of the most shocking moments in recent TNA history, former WWE Superstar and TNA’s big free-agent signing Bobby Lashley defeated Eric Young last Thursday to win the TNA World Heavyweight Championship.
Lashley is not the best worker, and he struggles at times on the mic, but with MVP and Kenny King flanking him and the heel authority figure calling the shots, this is the perfect way to give the title to the bad guys despite the knee injury MVP is dealing with.
Impact Wrestling fans should expect a celebration on Thursday.
Question on Everybody’s Mind: Who Will Crash Lashley’s Party?
There are many fans who don’t like Lashley as the world champion, but he has the look and the experience in the business to be a viable No. 1 star for a short time. The process of taking the belt off him begins this week when the good guys crash the world title party.
While Samoa Joe, Austin Aries and The Wolves made it their mission to keep MVP and his stable in line last week, it will likely be former world champions Eric Young and Bobby Roode who come out to ruin the festivities.
Young had a solid run with the title, but the change was necessary. The hope is that the company gave the belt to Lashley as a way to both appease him for signing with the company and as a way to transition the title from Young to Roode.
Hype Meter: 5 out of 5 Intriguing Main Event Storylines
One of the biggest complaints that fans have about WWE or wrestling in general is the lack of intriguing storylines. While TNA draws plenty of criticism, the company is building angles that the fans want to invest their time and emotion in.
MVP has done a great job as the dastardly heel, and his work should only get better now that he has the title in his group. With Kenny King doing most of the wrestling, MVP holding the mic and Lashley being the brute force, this stable is looking stronger than ever.
The faces have teamed up in the past and were forced to wrestle each other, so the good guys need another strategy. Whether it’s Bully Ray, Tommy Dreamer or even Eric Young, the good guys must find a way to get some authority of their own to even the odds.
TNA News: Impact TV Ratings Climb an Impressive 32 Percent, via Marc Middleton of Wrestling Inc.
Tommy Dreamer, Monsters Ball Tag Match and More
Speaking of Dreamer, the ECW legend cut an amazing promo last week and proved he could still be a valuable asset to the company. After taking a low blow from Dixie Carter, TNA fans should expect to see Dreamer out again looking for vengeance.
Add in the fact that Bully Ray did not wrestle or play a major part in last week’s show, and there is a good chance that Impact Wrestling could get hardcore when both Dreamer and Bully hit the ring together. Let the "ECW" chants begin.
Question on Everybody’s Mind: Which Team Wins the Monster’s Ball Tag Match?
One of the most exciting matches in TNA is the Monster’s Ball match. With hardcore elements (tables, chairs, barbed wire and more), this style of bout is usually the most brutal and the most bloody.
Abyss and Willow make for an interesting tag team, but they have been afterthoughts behind the tandem of Magnus and Bram. With the news that ImpactWrestling.com has already announced that Jeff Hardy is coming back, this should end in a victory for the English duo.
Bram and Magnus are really taking form as an elite tag team in the company. The Wolves should be looking over their shoulders.
Hype Meter: 3 out of 5 X Division Uncertainties
TNA’s Destination X edition of Impact Wrestling is approaching fast, and Sanada is the company’s X Division champion. In his role, Sanada has been very good, but he does not look strong enough to be a legitimate contender against a guy like Bobby Lashley.
Sanada will defend his title on Thursday against an unnamed opponent. The hope is that the company has something big up its sleeve in the form of a returning star or that even the innovator of "Plan C" Austin Aries could win the title.
While hot-shotting the title to a different person before Destination X is not the ideal way of booking, it could make for an exciting moment if Aries or even possibly a guy like Samoa Joe walked into the free-per-view with a shot at the world title.
TNA Rumors: Backstage Morale up Due to Live Crowds, according to Wrestling Observer Newsletter (via Wrestling Inc).
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