IMPACT Wrestling Review 01/03/2013
Show kicks off with JB in the ring, announcing the TNA Wrestler of the Year. He calls out the 5 finalists: Bobby Roode, Bully Ray, James Storm, Austin Aries, Jeff Hardy. Of course, Hardy wins. Hardy grabs the mic for an acceptance speech, how is he going to voice-over this? He’s not, Aries and Roode are just going to interrupt him. He challenges them both to a triple threat at Genesis for the title. They attack Hardy with the trophy, breaking it in the process. Hardy gets the upperhand, and dekes out of the ring with the broken trophy. A nice way to include social interaction in the storyline, and set up the main event for the PPV.
KAZARIAN vs. JAMES STORM: This match came to be from a backstage skit where Storm chirped Kaz & Daniels using social networking sites and terms. Storm comes out firing, before Kaz evens the fight with help from Daniels. Kaz near-falls with his diamond cutter, before Storm is able to superkick him for the pin. Decent opening match.
Aces & Eights are backstage talking with Mr. Anderson, he wants D-Von to throw a little more fun his way. He is enjoying the girls, when DOC tells him he has to decide now. Anderson says let’s do this, and leads the way out. D-Von can’t find his bat, some foreshadowing perhaps?
DOC is in the ring on the mic, he is calling for Sting to come out. We are all waiting. He’s okay on the stick. He keeps calling for him, then a black bat drops from the rafters. It lands right in front of DOC, he gets shook. Show goes to commercial as he still calls Sting out.
CHRISTIAN YORK vs. KID KASH: This match is part of a tourney for a shot at the X-Division title. A nice little bout, with a mixture of high flying and striking. York was able to hit his Moodswing neckbrecker to advance to Genesis.
JOEY RYAN vs. HERNANDEZ: This match was supposed to be versus Matt Morgan. He came out in a sling, and said he hurt himself working out. He volunteers a reluctant Ryan to take his place. Hernandez is going to town on him, when Morgan’s arm suddenly heals. He pulls at Nandez’ leg, and then jumps in the ring to give him a forearm smash. Chavo also walks into a pumpkick, and the duo stands tall over the latinos.
Hogan is out, and calls out Bully and Brooke. Hogan talks about the code of the business, and that Bully is trying to make his own rules. It won’t work, and Hulk suspends Bully from TNA. He also tells Brooke to get the hell out of his ring too, she’s made her choice. An okay segment, decent acting from Hulkster.
A package is shown about Joseph Park training at OVW. The head trainer is giving him his first chance, which I am guessing will be a match at OVW.
MICKIE JAMES & MISS TESSMACHER vs. TARA & GAIL KIM: A tag team match that probably went longer than it shown have. The ending was Tessmacher splashing Tara from the toprope to the outside, and Mickie pinning Gail with her DDT.
KURT ANGLE & SAMOA JOE vs. D-VON & MASKED MEMBER [STEEL CAGE]: We get a preview of Lockdown with this match. So we have Joe and Angle promising to unmask a member, Sting still to return, Anderson still to make his move, and this is inside a cage. This looks good on paper, please don’t disappoint us TNA. Before the match can start, DOC attacks Angle and locks him out of the cage. It is now a 2 on 1, perfect for Sting to descend into the cage from the rafters. Joe works both guys pretty well in the beginning, before the numbers game starts to take effect. Angle manages to recover outside, nutshot DOC, and take the lock key. It’s now even teams, as Angle and Joe try go to work trying to unmask the member. They get thwarted, but still manage to get the pinfall with the Angle slam. DOC and the other members of A&E rush into the cage to commence a beatdown. Mr. Anderson is watching from outside the cage. Angle is busted open. In a flabbergasting move, Sting returns , in daylight, walking down the aisle, into the cage. Are you serious? No blackout? And not running, walking? Sting whips everyone with his bat, clearing the cage. One member doesn’t make it out, and they unmask him. Tenay announces “That’s Mike Knox from the WWE!”.
FINAL THOUGHTS: The stuff revolving around A&E really made this show. The final segment was so strong, with the exception of Sting’s entrance. Why couldn’t they have had the lights go out? The plot with Anderson reminds me of when nWo courted Bret Hart to join them. I really like that angle, and hope Anderson does end up joining. They are teasing a bit of a WWE invasion with the guys getting unmasked, which only adds to it. The world title scene had only the opening segment, and no matches. Giving the guys a rest? The Knockouts were featured prominently again this week, thumbs up. There was however, no advance in the AJ Styles storyline, not even a bit where people are looking for him. Overall, the show felt positive, and seemed to be leading to bigger things.