June 17, 2015
IMPACT this week opened with a contract signing between Kurt Angle and EC3. Moments after ROH's contract signing, it was interesting to compare the two. I loved when EC3 ran through the list of names that Angle has beaten using their nicknames. It only elevates Kurt for when EC3 beats him for the title. The list includes Heartbreak Kids (HBK), Texas Rattlesnakes (Steve Austin), Cerebral Assassins (Triple H), Electrifying Men (The Rock), Next Big Things (Brock Lesnar), Ayatollahs (Jericho), Nature Boys (Ric Flair), Rated R Superstars (Edge), Dead men (Undertaker), Immortals (Hulk Hogan), guys you can't even see (John Cena), Submission Machines (Samoa Joe), Phenomenal Ones (AJ Styles), Charismatic Enigmas (Jeff Hardy), Icons (Sting) and Kings of Mountains (Jeff Jarrett). That is quite the list right there.
This sets up uncertain fate where Angle and EC3 got to choose each other's opponents for the next few weeks. Angle logically went with one of his toughest opponents in Lashley. Josh Mathews has a point of possibly killing some of the buzz going into this championship match by risking EC3's undefeated streak. The EC3 vs Lashley match is interesting but from a sports-perspective, if could damage your big money match.
*It was very classy for TNA to air that Dusty Rhodes tribute. Dusty spent a few years in TNA (around 2003-2005) and was a Director of Authority. My best memories of him in TNA were sitting in the back of a pick-up truck with Traci and Trinity. Dusty is a legend in the wrestling business and he will be missed. My heart goes out to his family, friends and fans.
*The Roode vs Edwards match was a solid way to set up Match 4 of their series. Saying Austin Aries wasn't there to get out of a match tonight, only to have him show up later is perfect heel shenanigans. The match between Roode and Edwards was good. I would like to see Edwards develop a solo finisher. Maybe he could use that Backpack Stunner.
Next week will be a Full Metal Mayhem Match. It should be epic and will be a hard one to top. I am hoping this goes to five matches but what kind of match is there that feels bigger than Full Metal Mayhem. After seeing Lucha Underground this week, I would be all for a 30-minute Tag Team Iron Man Match at Slammiversary.
*It was nice seeing Joseph Park back since the Abyss character is so stale. With that said, this wasn't the best version of the character. As said in the comments, I would like to see Park cleaned up a bit (shave, haircut and his teeth back in) and have him return as an authority figure.
Bram looks like a star on the loose. I like his mission to go after past IMPACT stars. I am curious to see who we will get next. This match was a no DQ which meant Park went through a table. What is next for Bram?
*Taryn Terrell continues to excel in those backstage segments. She is great in her villainous role. I love the creepy music playing in the background and the neon colors everywhere. Its so distinct. The offer of double or nothing seemed like a good way to evade Kong and Brooke from any future matches.
The actual Knockouts tag team match of the Knockouts vs Booty and the Beast was solid. It seems like Awesome Kong feels less like a monster and is more humanized. She had a different look tonight wearing tights instead of her gladiator outfit. The two worked well together earning both Knockouts Title shots, likely on July 1st in a 3-Way Match.
*The vignette of the hourglass, candle etc where it ended with "for the wicked, play time ends" was as intriguing as hell. Whoever it was, they were wearing a leather hood over their face. My guess goes to Havok, but who knows at this point? Nice work from TNA here.
*I am sorry but I am not at all interested in Chris Melendez's character right now. I don't think he deserves the spot in the feud with Eric Young. He is still green and plenty of other guys have done way more in wrestling for the spot. I respect what he has done as a soldier, but that doesn't mean he should get pushed in wrestling. For tonight's show, Melendez did handle himself well and did cut a good promo. Eric Young continues to be excellent in 2015. My hope is that he runs through Melendez next week so he can move on to someone else.
*Jessie Godderz deserves a lot of credit for how excellent he has been since the Bro Mans break up. His intensity and fire were excellent during the show. He got the logical victory over DJ Z with his Boston Crab. The Pope called him a "Modern Day Adonis" tonight and called his crab the "Adonis Crab." I think TNA should run with the nickname as it is a way to brand Godderz. Pec-tacular doesn't really work as well. Robbie E made his return and got some good shots in. These two will go at it at Slammiversary.
*This was the third straight week of Josh Mathews and The Pope on commentary. Mathews teased that they would be together again next week. I am all for this combination. While I would rather have Pope as a wrestler on the roster, I like his mic skills. He seems to have toned down the catchphrases that he was using the first few tryouts.
*The James Storm and Magnus segment was very eh for me. It was a bit too over-the-top. The involvement of the doll and everything just didn't work. With that said, I am excited as hell to see them go at it during Slammiversary. They should get a no dq stipulation like an "Unlocked Match" as JSO suggested in his live coverage.
*Its time for my off-topic "Rant of the Week." TNA announced this week that they were bringing back the King of the Mountain Match at Slammiversary. It hasn't been seen since 2009. Personally, I felt that KOTM has that big-time match feel. With the World Title being defended on July 1st between Angle and EC3, my guess is that rules the match out. I also don't see it being for the Knockouts Championship or Tag Titles either. It could be for the X Division Championship BUT I am hoping for something bigger.
My hope is that it is for a title shot at the World Title during the Summer. While I don't know all of the participants, I would have Lashley, Eric Young, Mr. Anderson and Matt Hardy involved. The fifth man could be anyone you want.
One of my criticisms though is that TNA is keeping the KOTM Match the same way it was before. In my opinion, the King of the Mountain Match is way too convoluted in its current form. You have qualifiers, penalty boxes, reverse ladders etc. What I would do is simplify things by just making this a "Reverse Ladder Match." From the get go, everyone is allowed to try and grab the belt and hang it above. It would be different from MITB as everyone would focus on bringing the contract up the ladder instead of the other way around.
*I wasn't a fan of the main event between Lashley and EC3 due to the overbooked nature of the match. This would have been a good opportunity to get EC3 some momentum heading into his championship match. Tyrus was way to involved for my liking. I don't know why the referees wouldn't disqualify EC3 when Tyrus was clearly interfering. I am wondering if EC3 chooses Tyrus to face Kurt next week as he seems to be his go-to guy.