Looking at TNA this week the last thing I wanted to do was write about Bound For Glory. I just don’t have it in me to write about BFG at this point, but Jesse was all about writing about BFG, so the big paragraph following is Jesse’s reaction to BFG. What I want to talk about is Alex Shelley. I was really bummed when he left TNA, then was waiting around for Sabin before the pair of them could go to the WWE. Well, obviously some of these things have changed. Shelley took that time of waiting and went to Japan to work at NJPW. We all know how hardcore they are about wrestling in Japan, and if you don’t, go watch Foley’s Deathmatch with Funk. This week Shelley tweeted about all the injuries he’s had this past year in NJPW, and did so in such an excited and mature way. He talked about how much he’s grown as a wrestler, and as a person, and I’m just blown away by what he gave the fans who have been wondering about him since he left TNA. For so long I’ve been selfishly wishing for Shelley back, but after his tweets, I’m thrilled for Shelley as a person, and as much as I want to see Shelley, I’m okay with him being away.
With this being Thursday, just a few short hours before Impact, I thought my feelings about Sunday’s debacle of a PPV would have subsided by now, but they sadly haven’t. While I cannot stress enough that the ring work alone was worth a watch, I was left speechless Sunday night at just how horribly booked the show was. The Bro-Mans, while they looked better than ever in the ring, were clearly not ready for a tag title reign due to jobbing to EY, Joseph Park, and ODB on multiple occasions, and the fact that they went over the team of James Storm and Gunner in their first televised defense makes the former champions look like push overs, which will bode ill for them if TNA decides to thrust them back into the singles division. Kim’s revelation that she is aligned with Lei’d Tapa screams that TNA is just watching WWE programming and copying their ideas again, as we have that same sort of alliance with AJ Lee and Tamina. The only big difference here is that TNA can’t afford to have 2 Knockouts aligned together like this, as the division is only 5 members deep! The return of Abyss, while a nice surprise for the viewers, made little sense at the PPV, as there was little build for it. Magnus’ win over Sting was a great one for his career, even if the match itself was the snoozer of the PPV. But the arrogant attitude and the hints of a heel turn just irk me! Magnus just turned face 9 months ago, yet they want to turn him again? Foolish if you ask me, even if he does work better as a heel. Then we have the Ultimate X Match! TNA broke all of the taboos with it by letting Sabin win with the ladder! Sabin was in the match where Team 3D used it and created the original controversy over the use of a ladder and the ruling that it was illegal! Considering what we know now about the attendance issues, I understand why it ended that way, because they needed to keep with tight shots of they ring as to not show the emptiness of the arena, but they just threw 10 years of history out of the window! Add that with the use of the cowardly heel tactics by Sabin yet again, the very obviously called and poorly executed spots, the lack of excitement of the crowd as a whole and the numerous botches, and this match was a clusterfluff! EC3′s debut should have been on Impact, as there was no sense to having a squash match on TNA’s biggest PPV of the year. The Angle/Roode match was absolutely fantastic up until the “inadvertent” ref help. Then we got the screwy ending in which Kurt was supposedly knocked out. And while I hope that Kurt wasn’t legitimately injured here, after watching the match again I have to believe it was a work. The ref would have had the EMTs down quicker if it was a serious injury. Add that to the fact that the EMTs didn’t immobilize him, and I can’t suspend disbelief. But the saving grace for the whole night was TNA Title Match. The match had all of the excitement we expected from the rest of the night all rolled into one match. And while Bully’s video in the back earlier in the night led us to believe that we were going to see some surprises in this match, I think we could be seeing Bully go a bit crazy with his club falling around him. Granted, everyone could see it coming a mile away that AJ was going to win, but the story of the match made it a must see for TNA! But now we people who bought the PPV are going to feel ripped off, as TNA is going to give away the rematch on Impact tonight! These kinds of decisions have made me have to come to the regrettable decision that I can’t logically pay for TNA’s PPVs anymore. I paid $40 for something I will be able to see tonight for free. I paid to see booking that made Vince Russo and Jim Cornette look good. I paid to see the start of the downfall of a company, and I feel sick by it. I love TNA, but I think it may be time to let them go.
In Ring Segment > D-
Dixie went on for 12 minutes? How to kill the viewership from the start of the show! And that was X-Pac heat! This was not the way to start any Impact, and while I understand the Impact after BFG is traditionally wrestling light, but running with Dixie for the first twelve minutes of the show is just horrible! Even Bully couldn’t help her much.
In Ring Segment > B+
I know it’s really the same segment, but Bully and Anderson needed their own grade that had nothing to do with Dixie. I have to admit that I had just found my Anderson a**hole hat earlier that day and was wearing it when he came out. And then I received a package from Jesse that had a signed Anderson a**hole hat in it. I’m so excited! I love that Anderson is back, and so excited about his feud with Bully. I love how those two work together, though I’m worried that two of the best talkers in TNA in a feud together could leave others out in the cold.
Gail Kim w/ Lei’D Tapa & Tessmacher vs Velvet Sky & ODB > C
I can’t say it was a great match, but wasn’t horrid. Sad that the four active Knockouts in TNA were all at the ring together, but the Division has completely fallen apart. I can’t saying bringing Tapa up to TNA was a great idea, as she’s really reckless and I fear that she’s more dangerous than many think. That Tapa is more of a worry to me than the work in this match should show just what I think of the young woman.
Winners – Kim & Tessmacher (3:36)
Backstage Segment > F
What? Bromance sucks!
EC3 vs Dewey Barnes > D
EC3 looked a bit rough in this match. Actually, I thought the jobber did a better job of showing his character than EC3. Dewey was the epitome of a jobber, and made the segment that much better for it. I worry about EC3 and him being Dixie’s ‘nephew.’ This is a great way to bring heat on him from word go, but what we saw from Michael Hutter as Bateman in the WWE was so much better than what we’ve seen from him as EC3. Hopefully things get better, because from where I’m sitting, they can’t get a lot worse.
Winner – EC3 (2:43)
Backstage Segment > B
Not the best segment between Sting and Magnus, and I am expecting more from them going forward.
In Ring Segment > B+
Why did Angle go to the ring in gear when he’s not cleared to wrestle? To me that seems strange, but then again, he could be geared up to wrestle in next week’s episode. If that’s the way it is, then TNA needs to rethink how they do things. There’s no way that a wrestler should not be cleared one week, but wrestle the next when the whole thing is one live taping. It’s not a smart way to do business in my eyes.
I will say that I loved Roode’s intensity. That man, when he’s on, really sells. He’s watched and learned well. He was good back in the early days of TNA, but now he’s spectacular. The more he grows, the more I see him as a young Triple H. This segment really showed that side of him. I’m loving this feud, and can’t wait to see where it could go.
Backstage Segment > C+
Bully is who Bully is. Not sure if that’s good or bad right now.
In Ring Segment > B
Someone in TNA needs to stop with all this talk. I know they’re going with light work, but they should have the best talkers in the ring, not Bromance! They just cannot carry the crowd in any way. Thank goodness for Storm and Gunner coming out for the save, and then Daniels and Kaz!
I miss the World Tag Team Champions of the World! Champagne is for pretentious posers? And appletini isn’t? Just the color of that drink makes my stomach turn, but Daniels makes it work. While I’m not thrilled that Bromance now carry the TTC, I like that the Tag Division is getting pushed again. Fingers crossed that this is the start of something lovely.
TNA WHC – AJ Styles (c) vs Bully Ray > A-
This was a fantastic match, as expected, so rather than talk about how great it was, I want to throw in a few comments made in the Open Thread Party during this match that caught my attention.
I maybe the only one that thinks about stuff like this but AJ is the only one in TNA’s history to be a World Champ every time they had a different design including the when they had the NWA title as well. Not sure why I even thought about that?
And he is one of two men to have held the TV Title under each of it’s names!
He’s had 19 title reigns in TNA, does anyone know if that’s the most? I’d assume it was.
And yes, AJ has held the most titles in TNA, and ever iteration of the TNA WHC, other than Hardy’s special (read ugly) belt. He’s also one of two who has held the now TV Title under every name it’s had. Shockingly, EY is the other. The only other person to hold the TNA WHC in all iterations is Sting, but AJ was TNA’s first Triple Crown and Grand Slam Champions. I’m not sure about him leaving TNA with the TNA WHC right now, ala Punk, but that’s what TNA creative thinks they need to do right about now. I don’t understand why they can’t come up with something of their own, but they have been following in WWE’s creative footsteps a lot recently.
Winner – AJ (13:36)
In Ring Segment > B-
Dixie ending the show on mic, just how she started it. Lucky fans! AJ did help this segment a lot, and played to the fans well. Between wiping his bum with the contract and taking the keys from Dixie he handled himself well, but it was taking the WHC to the fans, and the way he drove off holding the strap high that sealed the deal. It was a very different leaving from Punk’s even though it is the same storyline. Hopefully things will work out for AJ and TNA with this storyline, but I will admit I’m quite worried at this point.
I apologize for this being so late. We had to leave early Friday morning so Stacy could get to a convention on the coast. I planned on posting the BZ when we got there, but the bed in that hotel room was the most comfortable I’ve ever felt, and I fell asleep until dinner. I completely forgot that I hadn’t posted, and by the time I got home Saturday night I was late getting my HIAC Predicts done for Jesse! So I got those finished and got up today (Sunday) and got this together for you before HIAC starts. I hope you enjoy the BZ, and will join us for the WNW HIAC Live Blog to talk about the WWE, TNA, and everything else wrestling!
Queen of WNW
KB, Jesse, Congested Thoughts & David Jr.