TNA Blog Zone is back on Wrestling News World with the second IMPACT Wrestling broadcast from Glasgow, Scotland. Things picked up from start to finish, so let's get right into the show's main points and matches.
THE ARRIVAL OF MVP & THE WOLVES WHILE ERIC YOUNG/ ABYSS BATTLE IT OUT
As I've stated before, I've never seen The Wolves perform in a wrestling ring. Based on their looks, their walk and overall reputation, I know it's going to be special seeing them perform. Just walking with MVP at the start of the show set a tone, their tone, on what is to coming. We move onto a brawl backstage with EY and Abyss that transitions into the Monster's Ball Match as the opening contest. Everyone has always given props to Eric Young and people tend to forget that the man is a solid professional wrestler when you remove the comedy and beard. I will say that last night, Eric Young more than proved that he could work his tail off when he's given the spotlight and shined greatly. Clearly the match of the night and a brutal one at that. Not too long of a contest, but the bumps and extreme of it was very much on display. Very happy for Eric Young for really putting himself out there again and kudos to Abyss as well. As for a winner, Abyss goes over Eric Young which makes sense for this story. This was the best moment in the Joseph Park/ Eric Young/ Abyss saga, and I hope we continue this way to finally out the Joseph Park character to rest and we have the extreme monster Abyss return for good.
BOBBY ROODE WANTS HIS TITLE SHOT AGAINST MAGNUS
We move on to Bobby Roode and Dixie Carter. As per story, Dixie promised Roode a title shot at Magnus if he helped Team Dixie. In doing so, he basically earned that right but because of the new investor(s), Dixie's hands are tied and a match is set up where Bobby Roode would face Samoa Joe for the number one contender's spot. I'm all for this route that TNA is taking with Bobby Roode and Samoa Joe. In the case of Roode, this has the potential to place him exactly where he needs to be on a weekly basis to get that title shot, whoever the champion may be at that time, and possibly win the prize. This is interesting in the sense that if Roode were to become champion, he will have some very interesting interactions with Team Dixie and Magnus in particular. Later on in the night, before Roode's match, we already saw the tension between himself and Magnus, so this could be a very fun story as it plays out. Joe is getting his much deserved spot in the TNA title picture after a very long hiatus. I've never been a hardcore fan of the Samoa Joe character, but the man can work dynamically, holds your attention and though I'm not a hardcore fan, I support him very much. He should be TNA champion again. I do enjoy watching Joe in his latest run as he being given the ball and is running with it. Keep it up Joe, it's your time!
IT'S OVER WHEN CHRIS SABIN SAYS IT'S OVER!
I believe it was our own Alex Barie who asked if anyone truly cared about this particular storyline with Chris Sabin and Velvet Sky. I can see both sides of the coin with this one, but I think the storyline falls flat more than it elevates any of the two involved. Sure, Chris Sabin faking a marriage proposal and going full on heel jerk is a way to draw heat, but it's just a complete difference in persona from when he returned from injury and became TNA World Heavyweight Champion. I'm not bashing heel Sabin, I just feel he could have been a different kind of heel after his title run against Bully Ray. Velvet, who really is talented, is a victim of booking and continually looking like the hurt girl who doesn't know what to do with herself and always gets into bad situations. She needs a proper spot and needs to return to the Beautiful People persona that she continually rocked with Angelina Love.
BULLY RAY'S TRAVELLING FUNERAL PARLOR
Carrying a coffin designed for Mr. Anderson, Bully Ray took it upon himself to destroy the next person he see's and place them inside of the coffin. Unfortunately, Curry Man was the guy and was made an example of. I like the new direction Bully is heading, but I still feel like it's becoming more of the old Aces & 8's Bully Ray than a darker Bully Ray. Anderson was not on last night's show, but the story was progressed and Bully Ray had his time to make his impact. I will say; however, that it wasn't as impactful as anyone would have hoped. The new investor storyline is the focal point of the show now, but other stars are leaving their mark on the night. Why hasn't Bully Ray in recent weeks?
ZEMA ION CASHES IN AND LEAVES A LITTLE LIGHTER
The next impromptu contest is Zema Ion challenging Austin Aries for the X-Division Championship by cashing in his Feast or Fired briefcase. In street clothes, Austin Aries got the job done to retain and looked great in his match. Zema Ion looked great too and the beat down given to Aries by Ion before the match was made was a good way to showcase his vicious streak. Ion can go if given the opportunity and though a loss was had, he wasn't hurt by it. If they build on this, it can be an entertaining feud. Or, they can move Ion along in the X-Division while Aries moves on to his world title aspirations. It will be interesting to see where we go next with Aries, the X-Division Championship and the world title picture. As far as Ion, is nothing comes of this, he's stil with The BroMans and should be featured prominently along side the tag champs.
KURT ANGLE VICTORIOUS OVER MAGNUS WITH A PRICE
In a match made earlier in the night by MVP, Magnus would face Kurt Angle in a non-title match. Though Angle was victorious by disqualification due to interference by Ethan Carter III, he paid the price with a beating courtesy of EC3. We all knew something would happen in this matchup and EC3 was just the right guy to do it. The thing to notice about this story playing out is just how good EC3 looked beating up on Kurt Angle. He's proven his charisma and attraction with the squash matches earlier during his TNA debut, but he is swimming with the sharks now and holding his own pretty well. Going from Sting to a possible feud with Kurt Angle should be humbling for EC3 outside of the TNA storyline and should be taken full advantage of. I don't think a championship of any kind should be placed on EC3 just yet, as we need more aggressiveness and more character development to showcase the real EC3 with the volume cranked all the way up. The match itself was not as long as it could have been and was really not meant to showcase the skill and ability of Magnus or Angle. Story progression involving Team Dixie and their shared goals was what was important here.
SAMOA JOE DEFEATS BOBBY ROODE
Samoa Joe is the number one contender after defeating Bobby Roode in the main event. This makes the most sense as there really needs to be a top babyface in TNA. Bobby Roode will have his time, we know this, but Samoa Joe needs to have his moment against Magnus for the title. Some may say that it's obvious Magnus will retain at Lockdown in March, but this is TNA, and nothing is too predictable. Ask Chris Sabin when he defeated Bully Ray. Ask Magnus when he submitted Sting at Bound for Glory. Samoa Joe can absolutely take the gold at Lockdown and the story can be built upon how Team Dixie has lost their stroke and are now struggling to return to prominence while also dealing with their own internal conflicts. There are multiple avenues creative can take this story and so far, so good. Just keep an eye on Bobby Roode.
MVP AND DIXIE CARTER - CLEARING THE AIR AND STOPPING THE PARTY
Throughout the night, we've seen Dixie Carter stress over MVP's arrival. We've seen Rockstar Spud try to play peacekeeper in the ring earlier in the night and inviting MVP to meet with Dixie in the back. He does and asks to take things out to the people. We close the night with MVP essentially laying down the law and proclaiming that change is coming and the party's over for Dixie Carter and company. The story between MVP and Dixie is progressing at a very good pace. MVP looked good last night in his role as investor and Dixie Carter was showcased properly as well. It wasn't too much Dixie Carter, though she was on screen many times in the night, but it still wasn't at an alarming rate. What everyone should do, especially the naysayers of this story, is give it time. Let MVP play out his character and let Dixie Carter play out hers. The initial hype from internet fans is down some after the big reveal, but keep with it and you may be pleasantly surprised about what you may see in the coming weeks.
RATING AND FINAL THOUGHTS: B-
Giving this a B- because, it felt like TNA from months ago where the first hour is talk heavy and the second hour is wrestling heavy. However, overall, I felt there was alot more talk than in-ring action. There was a balance without a doubt and storylines need to be progressed in order to build towards in-ring matches, but I do wish some segments were cut short or even removed to showcase more wrestling. A very entertaining night hands down when you look at the grand scheme of things. I'll be rewatching last night's show as a fan instead of a wrestling analyst/ writer to really take in the story and prepare.
An interesting thing that was noticed last night on Twitter were two separate individuals praising how the storylines in TNA have been consistent lately and done very well. I agree that since the new direction, we've been keeping up with things nicely. The only gripe is still some stars not being featured as regularly as they should, but that could be an ongoing thing we'll just have to deal with until TNA is established in it's new direction.
Thank you for reading the TNA Blog Zone by yours truly and sound off below on your thoughts of the show. Until next time, as Zema Ion would say, BurBurBurrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!
Loved Villain Or Misunderstood Anti-Hero,