Impact Wrestling – December 29, 2011 – Not Their Best To Close The Year Out

Impact Wrestling
Date: December 29, 2011
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Tazz

It’s the last show of the year and we have one more Impact after this before we get to Genesis. Unless my memory is off (and it very well may be), there are only two matches set: D-Von vs. Pope and the title match. There are a lot of other matches which you can pretty much assume but I don’t think they’ve been named yet. I’d expect a lot of that tonight. Let’s get to it.

We open with a video about the Knockouts situation.

Gail and Madison come to the ring with the latter demanding Tara and Tessmacher get out here now. She says that she needs to get rid of the diseases that Tara and Tessmacher carry around with them. And they’re both fired. Cue Sting and Madison kind of panics. She says she has this under control but Sting says it’s not over until he says it’s over. Madison doesn’t have a legally binding contract like Karen had so she has no power. They get into a funny shouting contest and Gail has to defend against Mickie tonight.

Steiner tells Abyss that they’re the best team out there. Abyss agrees that they’re a team. Ok then.

Wildcard Tag Title Tournament Semi-Finals: Abyss/Scott Steiner vs. AJ Styles/Kazarian

Kaz vs. Steiner start us off but Scott yells at AJ before the match gets going. Nothing happens there so it’s off to the Grand Slam winners. AJ uses strikes and avoids the power. Steiner cheats a bit and Shock Treatment gets no cover on AJ. Steiner comes in and beats on AJ some more but AJ hits a Pele to counter.

Double tag brings in Kaz vs. Abyss in I guess a rematch from the X Title match earlier this year. Man that sounds like forever again. Kaz fires off whatever he can including a springboard tornado DDT for two. Chokeslam is countered into a victory roll for two. The second attempt at a chokeslam puts Kaz down and Abyss knocks AJ into the barricade. He brings in Steiner…and hits him with the Black Hole Slam to send the former Fourtune guys to the finals at 7:50.

Rating: C-. Not a bad tag match but I couldn’t get into it for the most part. Abyss turning on Steiner isn’t really all that shocking and it’s good to see a team that makes sense going to the finals of this thing, although I have a feeling the wacky team is going to wind up winning the thing, because that’s what TNA thinks is the right idea.

Ray comes out to yell at Abyss post match and we take a break.

Post break Ray yells at him and says he’s tired of Abyss being a bully to him and Steiner. Abyss grabs him by the throat and Ray asks him what it’ll take to get him back into Immortal. Abyss wants Ray one on one at Genesis. If Abyss loses, he’s back into Immortal. Ray goes to leave but Abyss stops him. The match is Monster’s Ball.

Sting is with Kurt in the back and they talk about the incident last week in Tennessee. It’s Angle vs. Storm at the PPV and Kurt is getting a tuneup match tonight. It’s with RVD.

Flair and Gunner say Gunner will be great. Gunner is in action later tonight. Flair looks really old. Gunner is looking to put someone in an ambulance tonight.

Anthony Nese vs. Zema Ion

It’s the final match in the series and it’s contract on a pole. Well what else would it be? Aries is in on commentary here. The winner of this joins Aries, Kash and Sorensen. According to Aries, Ion has pole experience while being an exotic dancer. Both guys tease going for the pole but it turns into your regular “I go for the pole, you stop me then you go for the pole and I stop you.”

They go to the floor where Nese takes over. Nese goes for the contract but Ion saves. Ion goes for the contract but Nese saves. Nese hits a German off the top but hangs himself in the Tree of Woe. He goes for the contract again but gets shoved into the barricade. And then Ion gets the contract at 4:33.

Rating: D+. Ok then. I mean really, ok then, let’s go to the next match. There’s nothing interesting here at all and now we have a new challenger. There’s nothing different about these two other than Ion has messier hair. The matches were ok and that’s about it. I don’t know what the point of this being a series but whatever.

Gunner vs. Douglas Williams

Total dominance for awhile by Gunner and then they go to the floor. Gunner shoves the referee and it’s a DQ at 1:38.

Williams takes the DDT on the concrete post match.

Roode’s family still doesn’t like him.

Here’s Roode who says it’s no shock that he’s selfish. His friends and family have all turned their backs on him, but tonight he’s brought one of his friends here. This name is Tracy and they’ve been friends for over twenty years. Tracy stands up and gets an ovation for some reason. Roode apologizes for not answering his calls and texts lately. Tracy has been brought here tonight to say whatever he wants.

He talks about how everyone is missing him and wondering where Roode has been. His wife wants to know where he is and his kids want to know why Tracy is driving them to hockey practice. Bobby can still come home. Roode says that back in high school, Tracy was his lackey. Roode says his family’s fifteen minutes of fame are up and goes to leave, then he beats Tracy up. Jeff runs out for the save.

Eric and ODB have more “comedy”.

Angle rants about facing RVD later tonight.

Wildcard Tag Team Tournament Semi-Finals: Magnus/Samoa Joe vs. ODB/Eric Young

Eric locks up with Tenay on the way to the ring. See it’s funny. Eric and Magnus start but ODB comes in before there’s any contact. There’s no contact as both circle the other in a flirty manner. Magnus’ face goes into her boobs and Joe is like “dude, the pay better be worth this.” Tag off to Eric who strips and comes in. Remember when Joe says Eric was all awesome at Turning Point 07? I don’t think this is what he intended. Joe comes in and has a decent mini-match with Eric. ODB gets launched to the floor and the MuscleBuster sends Joe and Magnus to the finals at 5:14.

Rating: D+. The comedy here wasn’t funny, but it’s Eric Young who does the same nonsense every week. To be fair though, the guy can’t get over without a CRAZY comedy gimmick so he has to do this. Not much here and I have a feeling the random pairing will beat the normal team to get the shot because that’s how TNA works. Nowhere near as bad as it could be though so it’s not much of a complaint.

Mickie says the title match will be interesting.

Kurt Angle vs. Rob Van Dam

So the girls are main eventing? Ok then. Basic stuff to start as neither guy has much of an advantage so far. Rob kicks a lot and hits Rolling Thunder for two. Kurt snaps off a belly to belly for the same and a regular suplex gets two also. After a quick chinlock Van Dam takes over again with some clotheslines. Kurt gets in a shot and tries a superkick but Van Dam takes him down. Five Star misses and there’s the ankle lock. And here’s Storm to superkick Angle for the DQ at 5:17.

Rating: C-. Nothing special at all here but the ending was something that needed to happen. That’s going to be a great match once it happens at Genesis and I can live with Storm losing if they have a third match. Not bad here but they needed a few more minutes to get something special going, which to be fair wasn’t the idea here.

RVD isn’t thrilled with Storm coming out there.

Angle isn’t either.

Storm says he’s coming for Angle.

Knockouts Title: Mickie James vs. Gail Kim

Mickie grabs a rollup for two almost immediately. Thesz Press hits and Mickie takes over. Mickie sends her to the floor but misses a baseball slide. A neckbreaker hits though and we take a break. Back with a slugout on the floor won by Gail as they go back into the ring. Gail grabs the arm for some cranking.

Mickie fights back but Gail hooks Inoki’s Octopus Hold. I can’t say I’m complaining about the visual. Mickie rolls into the ropes so Gail tries it again but it doesn’t work as well this time. Ok so maybe it does. After she gets done with that, a missile dropkick gets two for the champ. Eat Defeat is countered and Mickie hits a kick of her own to put both chicks down. Mickie makes her comeback and goes up but Gail heads to the floor. Mickie tries a Thesz Press to the floor but leaves it short so it doesn’t look that great. Her knee is hurt so a masked chick runs in, hits the Rayne Drop on Mickie and Gail get the pin at 14:17.

Rating: C. FAR better Knockout match than the Knockouts or Divas have done lately but still nothing all that great. I’ll give them points for having something else in the main event but the ending kind of sucked, especially given what’s shown post match. Not sure why they went with this to end the year but whatever.

Post match, yep that’s Madison with facepaint.

Overall Rating: C-. I won’t say the show was bad tonight, but it didn’t click for me. Things ran well and the storylines are pretty logical, but for the most part they’re not grabbing me which is probably more preference than anything else. The problem is mainly on top as Roode still comes off as a midcard guy in the main event. Not bad, but not something I was able to get into.

Results
Kazarian/AJ Styles b. Abyss/Scott Steiner – Kazarian b. Steiner after a Black Hole Slam from Abyss
Zema Ion b. Anthony Nese – Ion grabbed the contract
Douglas Williams b. Gunner via DQ when Gunner shoved the referee
Samoa Joe/Magnus b. ODB/Eric Young – MuscleBuster to Young
Gail Kim b. Mickie James – Pin after a Rayne Drop from Madison Rayne

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2 comments

  1. Jay says:

    I only caught the 2nd Hour of this Impact as I was watching this past year’s Royal Rumble and Im glad I did. Angle/RVD was alright but not the Classic they tried to hype it up as. Gail/Mickie wasn’t bad but as usual in a TNA Main Event they have to have a run-in and have the Heel stand tall at the end. I am just so numb to Eric Young its amazing to me even at times. He is just not funny and I agree KB I bet Joe is thinking about that Promo from 2007.

    RAW was clearly better once again to close out the year. I hope Smackdown is just as good.

    [Reply]

  2. Muffin Top Merkley says:

    If memory serves me right, Eric Young was able to get over when he was rocking the “Don’t Fire Eric” gimmick. That seemed to be a good role for the guy as it wasn’t completely stupid and not funny.

    [Reply]

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