Impact Wrestling Report for Jan. 31 - TNA Hits Manchester
Blaine van der Griend / February 1, 2013 - 11:24am
As Impact hits the air from Manchester, England, it’s announced that Dixie Carter will have a big announcement, regarding the future of Impact Wrestling later tonight.
Kazarian and Christopher Daniels come out to the ring in kilts and face paint, saying that they are going to pay homage to the real warriors of the UK, the Scots (this earns a ton of boos). Daniels says he knows that the fans are booing because of the fact that Jeff Hardy is still champion (this man is awesome). He makes a bunch of excuses for not winning the title last week, and he adds that when he finally wins the World Title, he is going to come back to this country to defend it, because he says there is nothing easier than beating the English. As Daniels continues to mock the crowd, he is interrupted by the familiar (or maybe unfamiliar) music of Magnus. Magnus says the reason that Daniels is not the World Champion is because Jeff Hardy beat him like he owed Hardy money last week. He then calls Daniels and Kaz a couple of disrespectful muppets, who are in need of a good slap. Magnus says since the two of them are so down on England and claim that they want to fight an Englishman, they can fight him. Daniels accepts the challenge and he and Kaz start to double-team Magnus, who quickly fights back and clears the ring of the Bravehearts. Magnus then picks up the microphone and says something about how his lifelong dream was almost taken away from him by the group known as Aces and 8s. With that in mind, Magnus calls out the man whom he says orchestrated the whole plan, Devon (it’s Open Fight Night by the way).
Match #1: Magnus vs. Devon in a non-title match
Magnus takes the fight to the floor in the early going, and sends Devon into the guardrail multiple times. He then grabs someone’s drink and uses it to nail Devon in the face. Devon gains the advantage with a low blow, as Magnus comes through the ropes. Devon drops a leg on Magnus and then proceeds to mock Hulk Hogan with the hand-to-ear taunt. Devon misses a flying headbutt off the middle rope, which allows Magnus to catch his breath. Magnus attacks with a flurry of offense. He then delivers a Michinoku Driver, as two Aces and 8s members run in for the DQ finish, but they are quickly thrown out by Magnus.
Winner: Magnus by disqualification
Up next is a video package, with footage of Joseph Park’s journey from lawyer to wrestler.
Bully Ray is in the back with Brooke Ray. Brooke tells Bully that her father will be here tonight. For some reason, Bully Ray takes offence to this (I’m not sure what this was, but I think I missed some of it).
Joseph Park is in the ring. He says it’s been a tough decision for him as to who he is going to call out. Before he gets there, he is interrupted by the Robbies. Little Robbie says that the last thing that Park is, is a wrestler. He then calls Park a hamster (I bet his cage didn’t have an exercise wheel). Robbie tells Park that he’s just like everyone in the UK, and is a hamster. The crowd starts getting behind big Robbie, as he’s the hometown boy, so little Robbie tells big Robbie that he’s much better than them. Robbie goes on to say that it’s open BRO night and that he is calling out Park. Park accepts, and the match is on.
Match #2: Joseph Park vs. Robbie E.
Robbie gets the early advantage, but Park fights back with a hip toss and an arm drag. Robbie fights back and comes at Park with a flying clothesline off the middle rope for two. Robbie charges at Park in the corner, but Park avoids him, which leads to Robbie landing groin-first into the middle turnbuckle. Park then starts hulking up and delivers a belly-to-belly suplex, which he follows up with a big splash off the middle turnbuckle for the win.
Winner: Joseph Park by pinfall
As Impact returns from commercial break, Hulk Hogan is shown arriving to the arena.
Austin Aries and Bobby Roode are in the ring. Aries says that the two of them are the two most valuable men on the Impact roster, and they are tired of being robbed. He continues that he and Bobby Roode are now on the same page, and that they are going to start collecting all of the titles between the two of them. He goes on to say that they are going to start by winning the easiest titles that they can by capturing the Tag Team Championships from Chavo Guerrero and Hernandez. Roode compares Chavo and Hernandez to the fans in England, calling them a couple of wankers. The champs interrupt and Chavo says that to be the best tag team in TNA, you have to actually be a tag team. Aries reminds Chavo that Roode beat Hernandez last week, to which Chavo responds that he cheated. Chavo says that since this is Open Fight Night, he suggests that they fight. Aries ups the ante by challenging Chavo to put a title shot on the line if he beats him tonight. Chavo accepts.
Match #3: Chavo Guerrero vs. Austin Aries
Chavo hits a baseball slide on Aries, which knocks him backwards into Roode on the outside, which was a cool spot. Aries fights back and drives a flying elbow in a seated Chavo’s back, off the middle rope. Aries thumbs Chavo in the throat and then delivers a back body drop. He then heads upstairs and starts mocking the Guerrero family with Eddie’s taunt, but then misses a frog splash. Chavo delivers the three amigos and tries the frog splash himself, but Roode provides a distraction, allowing Aries to deliver a corner dropkick and then a brainbuster for the win.
Winner: Austin Aries by pinfall
Aries and Roode then argue about which one of them is responsible for winning that match.
Bully Ray is in the back, as Brooke informs him that her father is here. They then walk off to find him.
Kurt Angle is backstage with Samoa Joe, Wes Brisco and Garrett Bischoff. He says all he wants is to have piece of Mr. Anderson tonight. Joe says that Aces and 8s tried to get the advantage on him the last time they had a cage match, and he’s going to make sure that that doesn’t happen tonight with Angle. Brisco and Bischoff tell Angle that they have his back, to which Joe tells them that nobody needs their help and that he told them last week that they aren’t going to be riding his jock. He then gets in the two youngsters faces and tells them that he will handle it. Joe leaves and Brisco asks Kurt what his problem is. Angle says that Joe is just being Joe and that they shouldn’t worry about it. He then dismisses Bischoff and Brisco so he can get ready.
Up next is a quick recap of what’s been going on between the newlyweds Bully Ray and Brooke Hogan and their history with Aces and 8s.
Bully Ray and Brooke come out to the ring. Ray begs and pleads with Hogan to lift his suspension so that he can legally get his hands on Aces and 8s. He says thus far, nobody has been able to get Hogan to do it, but he knows the one man who can convince Hogan is Sting. Ray starts chanting Sting’s name along with the fans, which leads to Sting coming out to join the Ray’s in the ring. Sting says he doesn’t know if he has the stroke to get Hogan out here, but he knows that the people do. Sting then gets the people to chant for Hogan. Hogan finally comes out to the ring. Sting says Hogan needs to make things right with Bully Ray right now. Hogan says he always does the right thing, and adds that whatever happens between himself and Brooke, she’s still his little girl, and when the wedding came, he did the right thing and walked her down the aisle. He adds that when it comes to family, he always does the right thing, and therefore, he is reinstating Bully Ray. Hogan then goes on to make a tag match for next week, featuring two members of Aces and 8s against Sting and Bully Ray, which he also makes a table match. Hogan then shakes hands with Bully Ray to end the segment.
Dixie Carter delivers the announcement in the back, that Impact Wrestling will be taken on the road starting in March, at the Sears Center in Chicago.
Velvet Sky comes to the ring and says she has something to get off her chest (but she spent all that money). She says she’s going to call out the two people responsible for her not being the Knockouts Champion. She then goes on to call out Jessie Godderz and Tara. The power couple doesn’t hesitate to answer the challenge, but Velvet informs them that the challenge is not for a handicap match. With that, she introduces her tag team partner, James Storm (what a serious drop for this guy).
Match #4: Jessie Godderz and Tara vs. James Storm and Velvet Sky in a mixed tag team match
Storm pretty much has his way with Jessie, as he plants him in the corner with snake eyes, and follows up with a huge right hand. Godderz fights back and delivers a leg drop, but Storm responds with the backstabber. The Knockouts enter the ring, with Velvet delivering a flying headscissors. Storm then comes in and takes Jessie down with the ‘Closing Time’ facebuster. Velvet then plants Tara with ‘In Yo Face’ for the win.
Winners: James Storm and Velvet Sky by pinfall
Up next, we get a reminder of what happened last week in the final segment, where Jeff Hardy was attacked by Aces and 8s, after a distraction by Tazz. Tenay says that Hardy’s knee has been taped up and they will have more information on his injury next week.
Hulk Hogan and his daughter Brooke are interviewed by the Reaction crew. Hogan says Ray really isn’t a bad guy, and since he’s now family, Hogan is always going to take care of his family (riiiight). He says he’s decided to give Ray a wedding present by letting him tear apart Aces and 8s next week.
Next, we get a video, focusing on Kurt Angle’s history with Mr. Anderson, with footage from their previous cage match at Lockdown 2010.
Mr. Anderson tells the Reaction crew that Aces and 8s have shown him more brotherhood than anyone in TNA for the last two and a half years that he’s been here.
Kurt Angle finds Samoa Joe on the floor backstage, as he has apparently been taken out. Joe is struggling to get to his feet, but can’t quite do it, as he is in pretty bad shape.
Match #5: Mr. Anderson vs. Kurt Angle in a steel cage match
Wes Brisco accompanies Angle to the ring and immediately locks the cage from the outside, as soon as Angle enters. Anderson attacks Angle right as soon as he enters the ring. Angle fights back with a missile dropkick. He then delivers a German suplex. Anderson retaliates with a steamroller for two. He then sends Angle into the cage a couple of times. He goes to send Angle into the cage again, but Angle reverses it and hits the Angle slam for two. Anderson tries to climb over the top, but Angle follows him up there. They trade fists while standing on the top rope, until Anderson drops back down to the canvas and tugs on Angle’s legs, causing him to be crotched on the top rope. Angle fights back with an Angle slam off the top rope, but only gets two. Anderson delivers a low blow and hits the mic check for two. Angle powerbombs Anderson out of the corner for two. He then applies the ankle lock for the tap out.
Winner: Kurt Angle by submission
After the match, an Aces and 8s member climbs over the top of the cage. Wes Brisco opens the cage door and climbs in, only to lock it again. The Aces and 8s member faces Angle and then unmasks, to reveal himself as Garrett Bischoff. As Angle goes after Bischoff, Wes Brisco chopblocks him. The two rookies then double team Angle to end the show.
This wasn’t a great show by any means, but on the plus side, it was one that I’ll probably forget by next week. I haven’t been a fan of these Open Fight Nights since they started, and it seems like they just keep getting worse. I don’t know about Bobby Roode and Austin Aries as a tag team, and I think it’s a huge step down for those two. Speaking of stepping down, what the hell is TNA doing with James Storm? He’s almost fallen off the radar since they dropped the ball with him at last year’s Lockdown. But a mixed tag match? Seriously? He suddenly has to take a back seat to Velvet Sky (there’s a line there that I’m not going to touch). The main event was good, but not nearly as good as their 2010 match. Anderson looked like a complete bum in that match. He looks like he’s just let himself go. He was a guy who TNA ruined right off the bat, and I don’t see how they can possibly repair the damage they’ve done to him. To be fair though, at least half of the blame falls on Anderson as well. The guy just looked like a ‘90s jobber in this match; like another Brooklyn Brawler. I actually kind of liked the closing angle, first of all, because it was the closing angle, so it’ll be the most remembered one. Also, even though neither of them work well individually, I think Garrett Bischoff and Wes Brisco could actually be a great heel tag team of two young, cocky rookies. Bischoff especially had some great facial expressions in that closing segment. The rest of the show was kind of a blur; it was neither good nor bad, but just forgettable. 4 out of 10.