1/26 Kester's TNA Impact Wrestling Live Coverage Review: James Storm and Jeff Hardy vs. Bobby Roode and Bully Ray in a tables match, Matt Morgan vs. Samoa Joe, and Alex Shelley vs. Zema Ion
By Ryan Kester
Impact Wrestling on SpikeTV
Taped earlier in Orlando, Florida.
[Q1] The show opened with a video package covering the result of last week's main event.
Backstage, Jeff Hardy was attacking Bully Ray. The two brawled briefly and Hardy choked Bully Ray with a miniature broom. The fight spilled into a loading dock of sorts. Bobby Roode pulled up in a truck and he took out Hardy.
Bully Ray and Bobby Roode double-teamed Hardy briefly. They attempted to load Hardy into Roode's truck when James Storm showed up and to distract the two heels. Ray and Roode took their turn attacking Storm when Sting showed up with a bat.
Sting wasn't messing around, and he attacked both Roode and Ray with his bat until they ran for the hills. The Impact Wrestling opening montage and music aired...
Ryan's Rant: Hot open to Impact so far. I hope they keep the momentum going.
1. Tara defeated Velvet Sky and Mickie James to become the number-one contender for the TNA Knockouts Championship in 9:33. Tara took control early and went for the Widow's Peak on Sky. James broke up the attempt, however, and Sky sold on the mat while Tara and James went to work.
Tara gained control in time for a commercial break.
The show returned with Sky hitting Tara with a monkey flip. The ladies worked a rotation of one hitting a power move on another while the third woman sold. Then the selling woman would stand up to take her turn hitting a maneuver.
Sky laid out James with a bulldog and then Tara picked Sky up and hit a side slam that landed on James. Tara covered James and picked up the victory.
Backstage, Kim cut a quick promo congratulating Tara and she talked about their history together. Kim said that at Against All Odds, they would see who the bets woman is.
Elsewhere, Sting was shown walking with his bat and looking pissed... [C]
Ryan's Rant: Most of that match time was in the commercial break. That was a decent Knockouts match, but I've certainly seen better. The woman worked a very intense pace, but it was more of a spot match than anything that told an actual story and the pace caused the ladies to botch several spots. Still, I am glad to see the title picture shaken up a bit, and I look forward to seeing what Kim and Tara can do together in their coming feud.
Tenay narrated a recap of the show opening brawl.
Sting and James Storm made their way to the ring. Sting called out Bobby Roode and Bully Ray. They quickly obliged, only to attack. Sting quickly separated all four men. It didn't last long, however, and they were back to brawling. Sting attacked the heels with his bat, despite the fact that the faces started the last attack.
[Q3] Sting made the main event of the evening, James Storm and Jeff Hardy vs. Bobby Roode and Bully Ray. Ray and Roode attacked Storm and Hardy. Sting separated them again, and Bully Ray asked for the match to be made into a tables match. Sting agreed.
Backstage, Alex Shelley spoke briefly facing Zema Ion later on in the evening, and how he had to go through him to get to Austin Aries… [C]
Ryan's Rant: Every once and a while, TNA gets bitten by the brawl bug. This is one of those nights. Still, Impact has been solid so far and they have kept a good pace without things feeling rushed. I would much rather have something like this over another marathon talking segment. Still, most of the first quarter of this show has been brawls, so I hope that TNA pulls back a bit and saves anymore pull-aparts for another edition of the show.
Backstage, Eric Young was warming up. A stage crew member walked by and Young started talking to him. Winter and Angelina Love approached Young, and they started flirting with him. Winter said they were quite easy. Love attempted to knee Young in the crotch, but he was wearing a cup and she hurt her knee. ODB showed up and said she been wondering where her cup went.
2. Alex Shelley defeated Zema Ion in 4:22. The two worked some rapid-fire chain wrestling to start.
Shelley gained control first, and he worked Ion with a series of chops. Ion battled back with a springboard corkscrew cross body. Ion hit a jumping neckbreaker for a two-count. Ion raked Shelley's eyes and hit him with a dropkick.
Shelley started battling back and he hit an STO onto the second turnbuckle. Shelley ascended the ropes and went for a double stomp but Ion rolled out of the way. Ion went for the 450 splash, but Shelley moved. Shelley followed with Sliced Bread and he covered Ion for the 1-2-3.
[Q4] AJ Styles was backstage complaining about everyone that has turned his back on him. Styles said he was going to get to the bottom of the latest betrayal tonight.
Elsewhere, Tara spoke to the camera and she talked about the type of opponent Kim is and how she will do what she needs to secure the Knockouts Championship.
Eric Bischoff was shown walking through Garret Bischoff's gym. Eric asked his sn where the big trainer is, and the show cut to commercial… [C]
Ryan's Rant: Good match. It was a shame it got buried by a bunch of incongruous backstage segments. TNA needs to learn to slow down and let things sink in before they jump from story to story.
Back from commercial, Garret revealed his trainer to Eric, and Eric freaked out. Eric shooed away the camera man before he could get a shot of the new trainer… [C]
Ryan's Rant: Look, I don't have an issue with a promoter or former wrestler trying to get their son into the business and get them over. What I have a problem with his when that happens before their kid doesn't have the talent to back up their push, which is exactly what is happening with Garret.
[Q5] 3. Eric Young and ODB defeated Winter and Angelina Love in 6:57. Young did some of his comedy antics to start the match.
Winter finally attacked Young, so he took his pants off. Winter tagged out. I do not blame her.
ODB tagged in, and she went to work attacking Angelina Love. ODB hit the Bronco Buster. Winter distracted ODB, which allowed Love to capitalize and attack ODB from behind. Love and Winter worked quick tags while they wore down ODB. Winter locked in a rest hold.
Young slid the flask to ODB. She went all Popeye on Love and hit a fallaway slam. Winter and Young ran in the ring. Young picked up Winter and ODB picked up Love. They both performed an Airplane Spin and ODB ended hers with a Samoan Drop. ODB covered Love for the win.
Backstage, Bully Ray and Bobby Roode talked about their match later in the evening. They seemed hesitant to participate in a tables match with Storm and Hardy.. [C]
Ryan's Rant: I've said it before and I'll say it again, I'm not a fan of Young and his antics, but he has obviously won over the Impact crowd. It makes for an entertaining segment for the crowd, but Young's segments tend to drag for me.
An advert aired for TNA Lockdown.
A video package hyping the tag team championship and their current feud with Magnus and Samoa Joe aired.
[Q6] 4. Matt Morgan (w/Crimson) defeated Samoa Joe (w/Magnus) in 4:45. Joe worked some leg kicks and straight punches to keep Morgan off balance in the early going. Morgan responded by choking Joe and walking him across the ring.
Morgan hit an Undertaker-style leg drop while Joe's head rested on the apron. Morgan charged Joe in the corner, but Joe got his foot up. Joe hit a flying leg lariat. Joe threw Morgan into the corner, followed with a splash, and chained that into an enziguri for a near fall.
The two men started exchanging punches. Joe ran the ropes only a clothesline on the rebound. Morgan went to work with clotheslines. He showboated a bit, and Joe made him pay with an atomic drop. Joe jawed with Crimson while Morgan sold on the mat. Joe set up for his heel hook.
Morgan hit another clothesline and got the surprise three count.
Magnus attacked Crimson on the outside and Joe took out Morgan with a chop block. Joe held Morgan on the mat while Magus hit him with a flying elbow drop.
AJ Styles was shown walking through the backstage area… [C]
Ryan's Rant: That was a pretty good match that ended in lackluster fashion. If the idea was not to give much away, then good on TNA. I continue to be impressed by the work of Joe and Magnus, and their chemistry as a team has been fun to see.
Backstage, James Storm and Jeff Hardy were hyped about their main event tag team tables match.
AJ Styles made his way to the ring. Styles said he asked "Why?" two weeks ago. Styles said he saw the footage of his match last week and he noticed Christopher Daniels ordering Kazarian around. He wants to know why Daniels has control over Kazarian.
Daniels and Kazarian quickly made their way to the ring. Kazarian looked upset. Daniels talked about how Styles was once again in the ring crying and complaining, Daniels said it happens every time Styles faces adversity.
[Q7] He said if complaining doesn't work, Styles resorts to throwing tantrums. Daniels said it wasn’t going to go down that way this time, and he said that Kazarian doesn't owe Styles a thing.
Styles threatened to attack and Daniels mocked him for throwing another fit. Styles said he was going to turn his back and let Kazarian take his head off. Styles sulked in the ring. Kazarian didn't want to attack, so Daniels attempted it. Styles caught Daniels with an enziguri.
Styles asked for Kazarian to enter the ring, shake his hand, and then everything would be forgotten. Kazarian got in the ring and Daniels screamed for Kazarian to stop. Daniels said Kazarian knows why he won't shake Styles' hand, and he ordered Kazarian to leave the ring. Kazarian quickly obliged.
Daniels told Styles that he's put his hand son him for the last time. Daniels said he wanted Styles to face Kazarian. Daniels then ordered Kazarian to go to Sting and ask for that match.
Ryan's Rant: Kazarian could not look more like a lost puppy if he tried. Interesting segment and it kind of made me laugh. I'm pretty sure that wasn't the intention, but everything Daniels said about the Styles character complaining rang hilariously true. I'm interested to see where this storyline goes, and I am definitely looking forward to the match between Styles and Kazarian.
[Q8] 5. James Storm and Jeff Hardy defeated Bobby Roode and Bully Ray in a tables match in 13:57. Hardy went after Bully Ray, and James Storm went after Bobby Roode. All four men brawled on the floor, and the match was displayed via a split screen to show both brawls at once.
Bully Ray went for an early suplex attempt to put Hardy through a table, but Hardy wrapped his feet around the ring ropes to save himself. Storm and Roode brawled up the ramp… [C]
Back from commercial, Bully Ray dropped a chair on Hardy's back. Storm spat beer in Ray's eyes and Hardy threw Roode into a steel post. Hardy brought a table into the ring.
Roode and Hardy tried to put Roode through a table with a double suplex, but Ray moved the table out of the way before Roode went crashing through it. Moments later, Ray tried to put Hardy through the same table with a back body drop, but Storm intervened and moved the table out of the way.
Roode set the table up in the corner and threw hardy towards it, but Hardy rebounded and attacked Roode. Ray charged Hardy and tried to hit a big boot, but Hardy moved and Ray put his foot through the table. Storm hit ray with a codebreaker.
Roode tossed a new table into the ring and quickly set it up. Ray put Hardy's head against the steel post and punched it repeatedly. Roode laid Hardy on top of the table and Ray ascended the ropes. Storm took Ray out. Roode attacked Storm and set up for a superplex.
Hardy rolled off of the table and Storm fought Roode off. Hardy hit the Twist of fate on Roode. Hardy held Roode on the table and Storm hit an elbow drop to win the match.
[Overrun] Bully ray entered the ring with a steel chair and he blasted both Hardy and Storm several times. Ray grabbed a new table and tossed it into the ring. He cleared some space, set it up, and grabbed Hardy. Bully Ray sat on the top rope, lifted Hardy, and powerbombed him through the table.
Roode and Ray celebrated while trainers ran out to attend to Hardy.
Ryan's Rant: That was a good enough tables match. It got a bit long in the tooth, but that likely has to do with how much we saw these four men brawl this evening. Overall, this was a good edition of Impact that was hindered by how much they tried to shove into one episode. There was plenty of action and enough to make the show go by quickly, but the lack of focus and time to digest what was going on left me exhausted by the end. I'll have more to say tomorrow in my Rundown of this show. Thanks for reading.
If you have any questions or comments or just wish to chat with a fellow wrestling fan about whatever, then feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow me on Twitter at @TheRyanKester.
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