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TNA Impact Wrestling Hits
Devon promo: This is not an endorsement of making Devon the only current face of the Aces & 8s faction. That's not working. Rather, this is simply an acknowledgement of Devon cutting a solid promo until either he forgot what he was saying or the TNA crew was late coming to the ring following that awkward stretch of silence. Either way, Devon was solid on the mic while he was talking, and the fact that he's listed as Sgt. At Arms shows that he's at least third in the Aces & 8s pecking order. In other words, there are members higher than him on the food chain, meaning bigger names should be revealed in the weeks ahead.
A.J. Styles vs. Kurt Angle vs. Christopher Daniels: A good three-way match that furthered whatever the current storyline is involving Styles and Angle. I'm beginning to think that TNA is contractually obligated to book Styles in singles programs with either Daniels or Angle and no one else. As much as I enjoyed the match, the stipulation that the winner would earn the right to lobby for a title match didn't add anything to the match.
Matt Morgan with Hulk Hogan: Morgan showed strong intensity when he backed Hogan against the wall and told him off while standing nose to nose with him. Hogan's maniacal laughing did more harm than good as it took me out of the moment of seeing him caught off guard. I suppose the idea is that Hogan liked Morgan's intensity, but they could have waited a week for Hogan to make that same point. Meanwhile, I'm not quite sure what the point was of having the ultra intense Morgan with the comedy undercard heel Joey Ryan. I can't say I've seen enough to say it won't work, but I am skeptical.
Samoa Joe vs. Robbie E: A quick and decisive win for Joe. The match didn't do anything for the Robbies, but this is the type of dominating performances that people want to see from Joe until they find the right opponent for him.
Chavo Guerrero and Hernandez vs. Kid Kash and Gunner: A minor Hit. The new tag champions were more over with the Impact Zone crowd than they were at Bound For Glory, and the match was solid. As always, I feel the need to complain that TNA could do more with the Kash and Gunner team.
TNA Impact Wrestling Misses
Sting vs. Devon: This was so flat. It really did feel like I was watching two veterans having a decent indy show match at a local armory. The intensity simply did not match the vibe that was set with the early brawling between Aces & 8s. Fans are having a hard enough time buying Devon in his current role based on the early feedback, and showing that he would have lost decisively to Sting had it not been for outside interference didn't help his cause. TNA didn't do its own Hall of Fame any favors last night by throwing Sting right back out there. They played the HOF video package, but there really needed to be some words from Sting and more hoopla surrounding his induction. He wasn't even introduced as a Hall of Famer heading into the main event. It just felt like business as usual.
James Storm and Bobby Roode: It seemed like everyone was ready for TNA to turn the page on this feud following their bloodbath at Bound For Glory. Storm was over with the live crowd during his promo, but they were deflated by Roode coming out to the point that there was only a minor reaction to the segment ending super kick. By the way, they had a very entertaining match at the pay-per-view, but Roode was really laying it on thick when he claimed it was one of the most physical and bloody battles in the history of the wrestling business.
Jeff Hardy doesn't eat cookies: I enjoy watching Hardy wrestle, but the man should be deported for that comment. I'm now convinced he's a communist spy. Putting that aside while I conduct a thorough investigation, the decision to hold Hardy's apparent Mexican flag themed confetti party on Impact rather than at the pay-per-view didn't click with me. I'd rather see that occur at the pay-per-view when people are amped up about the title change. WWE can get away with it because people are still buzzing about a title change when Raw airs 24 hours later. There's just too much time in between TNA pay-per-views and the Impact Wrestling television show. I do like the way Austin Aries explained why he's not going for the immediate rematch. His logic that he would wait for Hardy to crumble under the pressure plays into Hardy's reputation while further establishing the intelligence of the Aries character.
Tara and Jessie: This feels like something they had in mind for Madison Rayne, yet they gave it to Tara for some reason. Her Hollywood lines are comical, but Jessie's first two appearances haven't packed a punch. He's like a mini Robbie T for the Knockouts division. I want to like this because I've always enjoyed Tara's in-ring work, but the addition of Jessie to her act tells me that we're going to see more heel comedy spots than good in-ring work from the veteran of the division.