2/2 Kester's TNA Impact Wrestling Live Coverage Review: Bobby Roode vs. James Storm, Gail Kim vs. Tara, and Austin Aries vs. Mark Haskins, and more
By Ryan Kester
Impact Wrestling on SpikeTV
Taped earlier in London, England.
[Q1] The show opened with a video package about TNA's presence in London complete with footage form the shows.
Bobby Roode made his way to the ring with Bully Ray. Bully Ray grabbed a mic and asked who wanted to see Jeff Hardy. Ray told the fans that he made sure that wasn't going to happen. Bully Ray said that Hardy was finished and would never be seen again.
Bobby Roode said it was good to be back in Ireland. Bully Ray corrected him on their location and Bobby Roode said, "What the hell is the difference?" Naturally, this drew a great deal of heat.
Bobby Roode put over Bully Ray briefly before running through his carious catch phrases. Roode said that although they took out Hardy, the job was not done. The crowd chanted for Devon. Bobby Roode called out the "cowgirl" James Storm. Storm immediately obliged.
Bully Ray got between Storm and Roode when Sting's music hit. Sting joined the men in the ring and said that Jeff Hardy would be recovered in time for Against All Odds. Sting said at the PPV Bully Ray, James Storm, Jeff Hardy, and Bobby Roode would all compete for the TNA title.
Sting then made two more matches, James Storm vs. Bobby Roode and then James Storm vs. Bully Ray…
Ryan's Rant: The change of venue is a great thing for TNA, and I love the set up they have in the arena. I'm not as thrilled about James Storm vs. Bobby Roode happening with s little build, but I guess TNA just doesn’t share my view on the feud's worth. Still, the London crowd is hot for the show, and it should make for a fun night of television.
Backstage, Garret Bischoff was speaking with his trainer on the phone…
Jeremy Borasch laid out the stipulations for the "Buckingham Brawl" match. The team that won a coin flip would be able to wrestle without having to tag in and out of the match. The losing team had to wrestle under traditional tag team rules. Samoa Joe and Magnus won the flip.
1. Magnus and Samoa Joe defeated Matt Morgan and Crimson in a Buckingham Brawl in 4:00. Samoa Joe and Magnus tore Crimson apart in the early going with a series of double-team maneuvers.
Crimson got the hot tag to Morgan, who wasted no time in dumping Samoa Joe from the ring and hitting Magnus with a sidewalk slam. Joe broke the hold, and Crimson ran in to spear Joe.
A short time later, Joe caught Morgan with a snapmare and Magnus hit a flying elbow for the pinfall...
Eric Bischoff was shown walking backstage... [C]
Ryan's Rant: I missed half of that match just from typing, but the action I saw was good. The men worked a frantic pace that got the crowd revved up well. Can't say I am a fan of the stipulation they chose, but it made for an interesting one-off. Does this mean we can finally stop referring to Crimson as undefeated?
[Q3] Eric Bischoff slowly made his way to the ring. When he got there, he mocked the fans for their lack of civility. Bischoff recapped his son's storyline and then he called Garret to the ring. After a few moments, Garret obliged.
Eric told Garret that his goals had become a fantasy. Eric mocked Garret's choice of trainer but he told him he would never become half the man he is. Eric referred to Garret's trainer as a coward and he said he was disappointed in his son.
Garret told his father to say those things to his trainer's face. Eric mocked his son and said there was no way his trainer would be coming out, Garret got on the phone and he looked disappointed for a moment. Eric reveled in his victory. Garret said when you are right, you're right, but when you're wrong you're damn wrong. Garret said that his trainer was in the building, and he would see Eric later on in the evening… [C]
Ryan's Rant: Ugh. I don't care about this storyline and I really don't care about Bischoff and company's extreme efforts to get his son over. Garret doesn’t have the talent to back up the push he's getting, and now we get to deal with more than one segment on a special show trying to get baby Bischoff over.
A video package for mark Haskins aired…
[Q4] 2. Austin Aries defeated Mark Haskins in 4:41. The two worked some chain wrestling to start. Haskins hit a quick flurry of offense and set up for a springboard dive, but Aries caught him with a dropkick and sent him to the floor.
Aries continued to work over Haskins until he missed a running dropkick. Haskins hit a jumping cutter for a great near fall. Haskins ascended the ropes and went for a shooting star press. Haskins missed and landed extremely awkwardly.
Aries hit a brainbuster and transitioned into an inverted STF to pick up the submission victory… [C]
Ryan's Rant: On the replay Haskins got his hands in front of him in the last possible second, but that was still a nasty angle to hit the mat at. This was a pretty good match that I wish could have gone on longer. Still, wow, that was a hell of a close call.
Taz and Tenay talked about Brooke Adams involved in the Hooters Dream Girl competition…
Eric Bischoff was on the phone attempting to get a cab when Sting showed up. Sting took his phone, told Siri to cancel the cab, and then ushered Eric back into the building…
[Q5] 3. Bobby Roode defeated James Storm in a non-title match in 13:04. The two men stared each other down briefly before locking up. Storm gained control and went for the Last Call superkick, but Bobby Roode rolled out of the ring to catch his breath... [C]
Back from the break, Taz and Tenay said next week would be a special Star Wars edition of Impact Wrestling. Please no.
Bobby Roode took control of Storm and hit a release suplex for a near fall. Roode went to work on Storm's midsection.
The two exchanged strikes briefly before Roode tried going to the top. Storm punched Roode and hit a huracarana for a near fall. Storm followed with a backstabber. Storm ascended the ropes and hit an elbow drop for a great near fall.
Roode took Storm to the mat and locked in a crossface. Storm managed to roll to the ropes and Roode was forced to break the hold. Roode went for the fishermen's suplex, but Storm managed to fight him off. Storm went for Eye of the Storm, but Rode rolled out and hit his fishermen's suplex for a near fall.
Roode retrieved his title belt and went to hit Storm, but Storm caught him with a codebreaker that Tenay called Closing Time. Storm set up for Last Call but Bully Ray ran out and grabbed Storm's planted foot. Roode hit Storm with a spear and got the 1-2-3.
[Q6] After the match, Bully Ray and Bobby Roode went to attack Storm but Sting ran down and chased the heels off… [C]
Ryan's Rant: Good match. I still hold that giving this match away this early was a colossal mistake on TNA's part, but the London fans just got a treat. One of these days Roode really needs to win clean or his title reign will be easily played off as a fluke and he will have gained nothing from his run.
4. Tara beat Gail Kim in a non-title match in 4:50. Tara hit an early flurry but Kim quickly took control. Kim choked Tara out on the ropes.
Kim continued her offense before locking in an inverted single-leg Boston crab. Tara battled out and made several attempts at offense only to take a straight kick to the gut from Kim. Kim went up top and flew but Tara got out of Kim's way.
Tara ran through her offense. Madison Rayne got in the ring and attempted to strike Tara but Tara moved out of the way. Madison Rayne inadvertently struck Kim, with Earl Hebner staring right at the entire exchange, but the match continued.
Tara hit the Widow's Peak for the win…
Garret Bischoff was shown walking backstage…
Ryan's Rant: What the hell was that? The match was good right up until the clunky finish. I look forward to more from Tara and Kim, but Hebner just looked like an absolute moron.
Garret Bischoff made his way back out to the ring. He thanked the fans for having his back before introducing his trainer. Instead, his father's music played and Eric Bischoff made his way to the ring with Gunner.
Eric said that his spies have reported and they knew that garret's trainer wasn't in the building. Almost immediately, Hulk Hogan's music played and he made his way to the ring. I wonder what he's doing out there.
Hulk Hogan played to the crowd for a bit before joining the three men in the ring. Hogan and Garret Bischoff took turns punching Gunner. Gunner rolled out of the ring and sold on the floor. Hogan and Garret turned to Eric, who quickly rolled out of the ring. Eric was screaming "I'm his father!"
Hogan shook Garret's hand and the two men celebrated for the crowd. As the show went to break, Tenay hyped an interview with garret Bischoff and Hogan. Yay!.. [C]
Ryan's Rant: I crapped on this earlier, and this has done nothing to change my mind. This looks like the long road to another Hogan match, which I could not be more against. Garret is getting overexposed here, which is ultimately going to do more harm than good for his career.
Garret Bischoff and Hulk Hogan were shown backstage. Hogan said that Eric Bischoff had crossed the line. Hogan said that Eric could run but he could not hide. Garret said that his father didn't believe him, but he found out quick. Hogan said that the Hulkamaniacs would bring Eric to his feet and Eric would pay.
[Q8] Hogan said that TNA's birthright was to be great. Hogan said they were on the cutting edge of being the greatest company of all time. He said they were this close and he was perfectly happy being the hood ornament for the company…
Ryan's Rant: TNA has been doing a lot of good as of late. Seeing Hogan stand there and declare that they would be great makes it feel like they just got set back by about two years. Every time someone in TNA says something like this, it automatically makes the company feel bush league.
5. James Storm defeated Bully Ray in 13:49. Storm's torso was taped. Bully Ray immediately went to work on Storm's bandages and Storm recoiled from the strikes. Bully Ray tore Storm's bandages off and he hit a body slam.
Bobby Roode slowly made his way to the ring... [C]
Sting made his way to the ring carrying a cricket bat. Bully Ray locked Storm in a bear hug. Storm battled out and ran the ropes but Ray caught him with a big boot. Bully Ray continued to target Storm's midsection.
[Overrun] Storm started to rev up the crowd and he started to battle back. Bully Ray caught Storm with a sidewalk slam for a near fall. The referee got bumped, and Bobby Roode got in the ring. Sting quickly followed and chased him off.
Bully Ray looked as Bobby Roode and wondered why he wasn't helping him. Ray turned around and ate the Last Call from Storm. Storm covered Roode and got the pinfall victory.
Ryan's Rant: Good match to close Impact. James Storm earned a lot of sympathy from Bully ray's extended beating, and the crow could not have been hotter for everything Storm did. The title picture feels crowded at the moment and I feel like Bobby Roode vs. James Storm is getting wasted in the process.
Overall, this was a pretty good edition of Impact and it was a lot of fun to see TNA in a new venue. I didn't care for three separate segments focusing on Garret Bischoff, but the rest of the show was entertaining. I am dreading the Star wars themed Impact next week as wrestling and Star Wars are two worlds that really have no business mixing with one another.
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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