Kester's TNA Impact Wrestling Rundown: Bully Ray regains the TNA Title, Tito Ortiz turns on the Main Event Mafia, and Booby Roode and Bad Influence make their presence felt in the Bound For Glory Series
By Ryan Kester
Bully Ray and Chris Sabin
TNA made the right call to move the title back onto Bully Ray. He's easily the top heel in the company, and there's simply more stories to be told with Ray holding the title right now then there are with Sabin. I would say that the first title loss hurt Ray and Aces and Eights considerably, but I am confident that Ray can regain the requisite amount of heat to make people forget about that loss between now and Bound For Glory.
If nothing else, it's disappointing that Sabin's first run with the TNA Title had to be wasted on this story. Sabin was hamstringed as a babyface by having to cheat to win the big prize, and he was only hindered further in the subsequent weeks by being treated as a background piece to the continuing Bully Ray and Aces and Eights vs. Main Event Mafia story. I hope that Sabin finds his way back into the TNA Title picture when the rest of the main event clears up, but TNA is going to have to try harder with a second run for him than they did with his first.
Tito Ortiz and Rampage Jackson
I'm willing to give Ortiz and Rampage a bit of leeway when it comes to their work in TNA; it's obvious they are fish out of water when it comes to wrestling promos and ring work. There's going to be some growing pains as they get used to the style, and TNA has done them little favors by tying their presence to the main story of the company.
That being said, the promo exchange from both men last night and Ortiz' show-closing turn were lackluster. TNA has not done enough to give these men proper characters for the interactions between them to matter, and the heel turn lacked any real meaning because TNA gave fans no motivation for being invested in a babyface Ortiz to begin with.
I understand why both men are in TNA; it's to help Spike and Bellator promote a fight between the two for later in the year. I simply ask that the storytelling and booking between then and now be entertaining, and last night left a lot to be desired.
Bound For Glory Series
TNA, with the two Hardcore Justice gimmick brouhahas, has managed to even the Bound For Glory Series playing field. It's a bit odd to see that come about with a new heel faction working the system, but this does provide TNA the opportunity to start focusing on the Series more than the main event faction battles.
Speaking of the new budding faction, one has to hope that TNA has more in mind for the group than beer bottle and appletini splash finishes. I'm perfectly alright with heels cheating to win, but TNA has a history of getting carried away with those finishes to the point that it stops drawing heat. Less is more when it comes to those spots, and TNA already went to that well twice on one show.
Last night's show was a better edition of Impact than we've had in the previous weeks. We were treated to several entertaining matches that delivered great in-ring action. The TNA product still has several problems it needs to work out, but it was refreshing to get a show that had had a better energy than previous weeks.
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.
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