Friday, January 23, 2015

1/23 IMPACT Wrestling Coverage

By JSO
January 23, 2015
Manhattan Center in New York City


The Feast or Fired match kicked off the show with Robbie E, Rockstar Spud, Austin Aries and Magnus each grabbing a briefcase. Fun, chaotic match as usual. I liked that spot where Aries grabbed the briefcase first and took out everybody on the outside anyway. Interesting choices for the briefcase holders as all four guys are near the top of the card right now. The reveals for the title shots and even the pink slip are not as clear cut as you'd expect, so kudos for keeping it somewhat unpredictable.

Lashley beat Kenny King by DQ in an impromptu match following some interference from the BDC. Obviously this was more about progressing the angle than an actual match, but Lashley looked explosive against his former stablemate. The street fight should be quite a spectacle.

Gail Kim beat Havok by DQ after Havok shoved the referee on the outside. Nice continuity of Gail taking the fight to Havok before the bell. TNA is doing a fantastic job building the anticipation for the inevitable Kong/Havok match - I can't wait to see this clash.

Khoya defeated Tigre Uno with a Rydeen Bomb in a quick match. Not sure what to think of Khoya; he’s still a huge work in progress, that's for sure. If we're going by first impressions, he has a generic look compared to his stablemates, and he didn't wrestle like a "beast" despite the hype that he was unleashed. Maybe I expected Khoya to maul Tigre instead of hitting only two moves for the win.

Low Ki and Eric Young defeated Kurt Angle and Bobby Roode when Low Ki pinned Roode following a chair shot from EY. How cool is it to see Low Ki mixing it up with the heavyweights? Another win for the BDC and another loss for Roode - TNA is killing two birds with one stone by building momentum for this new stable and also priming Roode for his revenge against EY. Good stuff.

EC3 fought Jeremy Borash to a no contest. Damn, that was an awesome segment. EC3 was funny as hell, JB stood up like a man, and Mark Andrews made a splash (literally) in his IMPACT debut. Everybody played their roles perfectly, and Tyrus has more of a purpose now against two smaller foes that embarrassed him tonight.

Matt Hardy defeated James Storm with an inside cradle. So, the two technicians had a solid match this week and the two extremists will have a violent Monster's Ball next week. You gotta love how TNA is building this tag title match and showcasing the versatility of both teams at the same time.

Christy Hemme hosted the Feast or Fired reveals. Spud got an X Division title shot, Magnus got the Tag Team title shot, Aries got the World title shot and Velvet Sky got fired after Robbie E argued that she grabbed the case in the match.

This one felt a bit rushed, but still entertaining for what it was. Maybe we’ll see a little more on Unlocked, who knows? Logical picks for the title shots, and Robbie's reaction to his girlfriend getting fired was hilarious. It was a great swerve too, because this is the first time ever that a Knockout has been fired without being involved in the match. And it was Velvet Sky of all people - she is, or was, TNA's sex symbol, and the cover girl of their 2015 Knockouts calendar. Talk about controversy...

MVP and Lashley had a street fight outside the Manhattan Center to end the show. It was short but decent; maybe we'll see more bonus footage later on. This episode was loaded from top to bottom. A lot of good angles for the first 90 minutes, followed by a dramatic conclusion to the Feast or Fired and a fun brawl on the streets of NYC. The cliffhanger between Roode and Lashley with the belt was cool - you know what they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. Awesome show tonight.