By Chris Shore
TNA Impact Wrestling on SpikeTV
Aired live from Salt Lake City, Utah.
[Q1] Dixie Carter made her way to the ring, which was decorated with a giant "Welcome Back AJ Styles." Dixie said she was wrong before, but the future of the company was a man she was proud to call her World Champion and called out "The Phenomenal AJ Styles." AJ made his entrance to a big pop from the Utah crowd.
Aj started to speak but Dixie asked him to let her finish. She said the last six weeks have been all about her motivating him to glory. She said he had been in a slump and her brilliance had turned him around and made him champion. She said AJ said she had to pay and she was ready to pay. She offered him a fancy dressing room (almost as good as hers) filled with top of the line food and drink and a watch similar to the one she gave Hogan. She claimed Hogan's was a knockoff from Craigslist.
She asked for someone to reveal her "pièce de résistance," which is special thing in redneck according to her. A nice convertible was revealed near the ramp. Dixie said it was obvious she was ready to pay. AJ asked if that's what she thought he meant. He said he was a truck guy and he didn't want to separate himself from the boys. He said she bet against him and she lost and now she was trying to make up for it.
Dixie said he was still upset from Sunday night and she admitted she wasn't very ladylike. She said she booked the rematch with Bully Ray tonight but he didn't have to do that. She said all he had to do was get on her private plane and fly out of "this God-forsaken town." Before they could say more, Aces and Eights music hit and out came Ray and Brooke…[C]
Shore's Slant: An interesting approach to where Dixie's character is going. I'm not sure how it will play ultimately. It seems disjointed from the rest of her heel work so far, but that doesn't mean it can't be saved. It does feel like Vince trying to turn Austin though.
[Q2] Ray asked Dixie if he heard her correctly and that the match wasn't happening. AJ told him to shut up because Ray wanted to hear what he had to say. He told Dixie she was crazy and he came to defend the title. Ray told him he wasn't fighting Dixie and said AJ got lucky at BFG. He said he kicked out of the Spinal Tap but Earl Hebner screwed him with his old eyes.
AJ said he was going to beat Ray tonight and then go into the crowd and ask everyone if they knew who he was. He said he would tell them he was the phenomenal AJ Styles, the World Heavyweight Champion. Ray sucker punched Styles and hit him with various objects in the ring. He setup for the powerbomb on the table, but Mr. Anderson's music hit and he ran to the ring. Styles escaped and Anderson attacked Ray until Ray ran off too…[C]
Shore's Slant: Good, hot return for Anderson. I assume he shows up again in the main event to ultimately cost Ray and spin them off into a feud. I'm not thrilled about the new champ having to be saved like that, but the crowd's reaction for Anderson was so hot I don't think it will matter in the end.
Anderson cut a promo in the ring and said he missed everyone and it seemed like they missed him. He said he really missed Ray, but he didn’t think Ray missed him. He rolled his head around and said his neck feels great. Anderson said he was at home watching the product and could tell that everyone, from the boys to the agents to the fans, were getting sick and tired of what was going on.
He started to say more, but Dixie Carter came out with security and said Anderson wasn't authorized to be in her ring. She demanded they go to the ring and handcuff him. Anderson asked her if she was into handcuffs and then said he was going to have some fun. He knocked out the first two security guards, but then gave up without a fight for the next two.
[Q3] They handcuffed him and walked him up the ramp. Dixie told them to get him out of there and they all went to the back together…Kurt Angle was shown arriving to the arena and Tenay said we would hear from him later…A video recapped how Gail Kim won the Knockouts title with Lei'D Tapa. Tapa and Kim made their entrance…[C]
Shore's Slant: I think cutting Anderson off there was a mistake. He's been turned so many times he needed to solidify this babyface run well. And while Dixie adds some heat to him, he would have done a better job on his own. I didn't hate it, but I do think it was a mistake.
Brooke made her entrance, followed by Velvet Sky and ODB…
1. Brooke and Gail Kim (w/Lei'D Tapa) vs. Velvet Sky and ODB. ODB started, but the heels argued over who should start so ODB dragged Brooke in the ring. ODB went after Kim, allowing Brooke to attack from behind. Velvet got the hot tag, but the announce team spent the time talking about the new 24/7 initiative TNA announced today. They didn't clear anything up. Kim distracted the ref and Lei'D Tapa hit her big boot on Velvet so Kim could cover for the win…
Brooke and Gail Kim defeated Velvet Sky and ODB at 3:37.
The announce team hyped the debut of EC III for next…
Shore's Slant: Forty minutes before the first match and then it's a meaningless Knockouts tag match? Good thing wrestling matters.
[Q4][C] Backstage, the BroMans said they were going to have a "cele-bro-tion" later…Ethan Carter II made his ring entrance. Christie Hemme started the intro three times. Not sure if that was an accident or his gimmick. Dewey Barnes, another string bean of a guy, was his hand-picked opponent…
2. Ethan Carter III vs. Dewey Barnes. The match started as a squash, but Barnes hit a sudden missile drop kick for two. Carter kicked out and hit Dean Ambrose's finisher for the win…
EC III defeated Dewey Barnes at 2:35.
Post-match, Carter did his "I'm a Carter. The world needs us," gimmick to little response from the crowd…[C]
Shore's Slant: This is going to take a little while to get over, but I think it has legs, especially if Dixie can find her character and have them work together.
[Q5] A video recapped the Sting vs. Magnus match. Backstage from earlier, Sting and Magnus spoke. Magnus apologized for not showing Sting enough respect. Sting said they were cool, but he wasn't sure if he passed the torch or lit a fire under Magnus or both. He said either way they were cool. Magnus said it was Sting's world. He was just living in it and they shook hands…
Shore's Slant: What the f*** was that? That didn't make a bit of sense! I don’t know whether I passed the torch or lit a fire under you? Is Sting getting senile? Holy crap that was bad.
A video recapped the Bobby Roode vs. Kurt Angle match. Angle made his entrance and Tenay said he had torn cartilage in his knee from the moonsault at the end of the match. Angle said last weekend was tough to forget. He said he appreciated what everyone had to say about him at his Hall of Fame dinner, but he refused the award because he had so much more to prove. He said when the time comes he will take his place in the Hall of Fame.
Angle transitioned to the match and said he knocked himself out on the last move. Before he could say more, Bobby Roode's music hit and he stormed to the ring. He got in Angle's face and then asked for a mic. Roode said it was pathetic listening to excuse after excuse. He said the real reason Angle turned down the hall was because he knew he couldn’t beat Roode. Roode said it was a good call because he beat Angle in the middle of the ring, clean.
Roode said for two years he had a feeling of failure in his gut because he lost to Angle for the title two years ago, but now it was Angle's turn to feel that way. Angle said Roode might be a bad SOB, but he wasn't better than him. He said he wasn't there to make excuses; he was there to challenge Roode to a match right now.
Roode acted like he was about to fight and then said he couldn’t, or rather Angle couldn't. He pulled a piece of paper out and said Angle wasn't medically cleared to wrestle. Roode said as much as he wanted to kick his ass tonight he simply wasn't allowed to. Angle said it was true that the doctors wouldn’t let him wrestle, but they didn’t say anything about a fight. He punched Roode and agents ran out to break it up…
Backstage, Ray told his final two lackeys to go to the jail and make sure Anderson didn't post bail. He said while they were gone he was going to impose his will on "that redneck." Knux and baby Bischoff left…
Shore's Slant: Good talking segment from Roode and Angle. I hope Angle isn't on the shelf for long as it would kill the heat they have. I'm assuming that the gang boys bail out Anderson as payback to Ray, but that's total speculation on my part.
[Q6][C] Backstage, Dixie was on the phone with a lawyer based on what she was saying. She said she needed it immediately and then thanked the person…BroMans made their entrance and I was momentarily deafened by the sound of channels changing. There was a table with food and party favors on it in the ring, along with a DJ. Robbie said he was "DJ OH!" Please kill me…
Robbie tried to cut a promo about how huge their win was but the crowd gave them a "You can’t wrestle" chant. Before he could say much more, James Storm's music hit and he and Gunner came to the ring. Storm told "DJ Anus" to get out of the ring. He drank their champagne and said next week they were getting their rematch and they would take the titles back. He started to say his catch phrase, but Bad Influence's music cut them off.
Kazarian said they were petitioning to get a title shot as well. Daniels mocked beer and champagne. Storm took his drink and then Gunner threw it into Daniels's face. Kaz attacked and the two heel teams beat up Gunner and Storm. Eric Young and Joseph Park ran out and helped. Daniels hit Park with the bottle and busted him open. Park turned into Abyss and killed Jesse, who was the only heel in the ring as the others split. Park chased Bad Influence to the back to end the segment…
Shore's Slant: That was terrible. I don’t know what else to say about it. It was just a mess of gimmicks.
[Q7][C] Ray and Brooke made their entrance, followed by Styles. Jeremy Borash started old school ring introductions for the match, but Ray cut him off. He got in AJ's face while doing his intro and AJ attacked to start the match…
3. Bully Ray (w/Brooke) vs. AJ Styles for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship. Styles had his ribs taped up as AJ pounded on him. AJ charged at Ray. Ray went for a back drop, but AJ landed on his head instead…[C] Back from commercial, Ray concentrated on the ribs with slams and a bear hug. AJ punched out and they traded blows. AJ had a flurry of offense off the exchange and tried to lift Ray but his ribs gave out. Ray hit a fall away slam for two.
[Q8] Ray went to the top and went for the senton but AJ rolled out of the way. AJ went for the 450, but Ray moved out of the way. Ray set AJ on the top and AJ fought back. He went for a tornado DDT, but Ray tossed him away and Styles landed on Hebner for the required ref bump. AJ hooked the calf killer and Ray tapped out at 12:00.
AJ broke the hold when Ray tapped and checked on Hebner. Ray grabbed the chain and hit Styles, followed by an Ace Crusher for an extended two from a wobbly Hebner. Ray grabbed the chain and setup again. Anderson ran in from nowhere and pulled the chain away. He hit a hangman on Ray and then AJ hooked a crucifix rollup for a very slow, and somewhat anti-climactic, pinfall…
AJ Styles retained the TNA World Heavyweight Championship at 13:36.
Post-match, Anderson showed he still had handcuffs on one hand. Ray rolled to the floor and they weakly brawled around the ringside area until security rushed them all to the back. Dixie appeared on the screen and said she had a contract full of her money for Styles and she was headed to the ring…[C]
Shore's Slant: Ugh. Did we have to do the ref bump. This was never going to be as good as Sunday, but couldn’t we have done all this without the friggin ref bump? I'm so sick of every title match requiring a ref bump. GET OVER IT TNA! OK, that's out of my system. A pretty good match with a mess of an ending and a terrible brawl with Anderson and Ray. That was really bad.
Dixie finished her entrance and said she thought all the things she gave AJ earlier was what he wanted but her strategy was off. She said she had a contract for AJ with more zeros in it than he had ever seen. She said she was going to give him the car anyway as a signing bonus. She said she wanted him in TNA and asked him to put all their mess behind them and move forward together. She said that was real and handed him the contract.
AJ looked through the contract and said it was an amazing contract by a horrible human being who uses people to pad their bank account and to buy homes and cars on the blood, sweat, and tears of every person who stepped in that ring. He said she didn’t believe in him months ago and he didn’t have a contract. He took the contract off the clipboard and whipped his ass with it.
He asked her if she really thought "making her pay" was about the money. He said money couldn’t fix her problem. He said he was taking the title from her and leaving. He said he was taking it "to them." He snatched the keys from her hand and said on second thought he would drive her car. He walked to the back, got in the car, and drove away to close the show…
Shore's Slant: OK, Dixie and AJ continue to be terrible together. Neither of them has the charisma to pull anything off. Couple that with the fact that this is a direct rip-off of the CM Punk storyline, no contract and all, and this does not have a very good start. Still, they have an opportunity here to have some fun with this that WWE didn't take advantage of, so I'm not going to hate on it. We'll see where it goes next, but the plan better be solid because as I said, neither AJ nor Dixie has the chops to carry this angle.
All in all a good storytelling edition of TNA that was super light on the in-ring stuff. There were problems, of course, but it was a good follow up to Bound for Glory that benefited exponentially by a very hot Salt Lake City crowd. I don’t know that they did enough to capture any new fans or encourage old ones to return, but it could have been much, much worse. Jason Powell and Will Pruett will have more tomorrow. Thanks for watching along tonight.
Questions? Comments? Anyone, anyone? Let me hear from you. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet me @TheShoreSlant with whatever is on your mind.
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10/24 Shore's TNA Impact Wrestling live coverage: Fallout from Bound for Glory with new champions, Bully Ray vs. AJ Styles in a rematch for the TNA Championship
Oct 24, 2013 - 08:00 PM
Oct 24, 2013 - 08:00 PM
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