Date: July 4, 2013
Location: Orleans Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Taz
We’re in Sin City tonight for a taped Independence Day show. The main story is Austin Aries stole the X Division Title last week and as of this moment gets to challenge Bully Ray two weeks from tonight at Destination X. Other than that we’ll have a lot more buildup towards Bound For Glory in the BFG Series as points continue to be accumulated. Let’s get to it.
We open with the usual recap of last week’s show.
Here’s Austin Aries to open things up. A lot of people like him, a lot of people boo him, but now everyone has to respect him. He’s the man who initiated Option C last year and this year he’s the man who is going to cash in the X Title for another shot at the world title. Aries demands Hogan get out here right now to make the cash in official.
Cue Hogan who says that Aries is the man who initiated Option C and then won the world title (where have I heard this before?). He brought the division to new highs but last week he brought it to new lows. Aries committed the greatest sin of all: gimmick infringement. Therefore, tonight Austin has to defend the title against Chris Sabin and TJ Perkins, now known as Manic. Manic is in the same attire as Suicide, but without the word Suicide on his chest.
Kazarian says he’ll beat either version of AJ Styles he faces tonight.
Bound For Glory Series: Kazarian vs. AJ Styles
Kaz and Daniels come out dressed as Sigfried and Roy, with Kaz promising to make the world title appear around his waist in October. Styles knocks Kaz to the floor at the bell and hits a baseball slide to take him down again. Back in and AJ misses a forearm in the corner so Kaz can pound away on the mat. AJ comes back with a hard clothesline as Daniels is holding a stuffed tiger and wearing a blonde wig while playing cheerleader. The springboard forearm gets two on Kaz but Kaz dropkicks AJ down to get himself a breather. Not that it matters though as the Calf Killer makes Kaz tap to give AJ ten points at 4:02.
Rating: C. This was a nice little match as AJ continues to hone in his new character. The Calf Killer looked great and AJ can still fly as well as anyone else in the company. This is a pairing that has worked for years but I’m not exactly looking forward to Daniels vs. Styles #845 when they’re paired together in the Series.
Chavo gives Hernandez another pep talk.
Mickie James is in the ring with a ladder. She talks about having to climb the ladder to success and brags about being a country singer and being pursued for commercials. So Taryn and Gail can go out and break a leg and everything else, because they’ll never be as great as she is. Mickie is going to be Knockouts Champion of the century and will destroy whomever she faces for the title.
The Gut Check judges debate Ryan Howe vs. Big O. Howe gets to face the judgment.
The Main Event Mafia says the fourth member is revealed tonight.
Bound For Glory Series: Jay Bradley vs. Hernandez
Bradley takes over with a headlock and sends Hernandez to the ramp. SuperMex shoulders him in the ribs and hits the big dive over the top to take over. The over the top backbreaker gets two but Bradley comes back with a backbreaker of his own. Chavo tries to get in and the distraction lets Hernandez hit the big shoulder for the pin at 3:13.
Rating: D. This was barely anything at all with Bradley just being a warm body out there. I don’t know why TNA thinks fans care about Hernandez and Chavo as the fans go nearly silent during their interactions. They’re not interesting and the eventual match between the two isn’t going to draw any interest. Not much to see here.
Aces and 8’s talk about the X Title match tonight and Ray suggests no one should win it.
Bro Mans vs. Gunner/James Storm
Non-title here. Robbie and Jesse jump Gunner to start and take over for a bit, only to have Gunner clothesline Robbie down. Hot tag brings in Storm to clean house and backdrop Jesse onto Robbie’s crotch. Gunner tries a sunset flip attempt on Jesse but Robbie breaks it up, only to eat the Last Call. A Rock Bottom backbreaker (Irish Curse) puts Jesse down again but it’s a powerslam/neckbreaker combo from the champs to get the pin for Storm at 2:59. Basically just a squash but it was something of a mess.
Jeff Hardy is ready for Joseph Park tonight and hopes he doesn’t have too much Abyss in him.
Here’s the Main Event Mafia with something to say. They’re here to destroy aces and 8’s and to ensure that Bully Ray loses the World Title. Sting brings out Samoa Joe to be the force of change in the new Mafia. Joe says that with Angle and Sting at his back, he’s going to run through the BFG Series and earn his shot at Bully Ray for the world title. Angle says he put Joe in the Mafia because of the grueling matches they’ve had over the years. As for the fourth member, he’s another man who is rising up the charts in TNA: Magnus.
Magnus, also rocking a suit, comes out to a solid reaction. He praises the other Mafia members and Joe in particular for putting him on the map last year. It’s not just about the Mafia, but about the Mafia’s mission: putting an end to Aces and 8’s. Sting challenges Aces and 8’s to a fight at Destination X and guarantees a winner in the X Title match tonight.
Bound For Glory Series: Jeff Hardy vs. Joseph Park
Jeff grabs a headlock to start but bounces off Park in a shoulder block attempt. A dropkick works a bit better and Hardy takes Park down with a headscissors out of the corner. The Twisting Stunner looks to set up the Swanton but Park rolls away at the last second. Park isn’t sure what to do so he slowly whips Jeff from corner to corner and crushes him with a splash.
Off to a chinlock for a few moments until Jeff fights up and hits his usual stuff. A low dropkick gets two but the Twist of Fate is countered into a Samoan drop. The middle rope splash connects for two but Jeff comes back with the Twist of Fate to put both guys down. Hardy’s leg hitting Park’s face busted his lip open though, meaning it’s a Black Hole Slam for the referee, earning a DQ at 8:07.
Rating: C. This was better than I was expecting but the Park character has pretty much hit its limit. It’s been the same idea for months now and there aren’t many other places you can go with it without incorporating more Abyss into it. Thankfully they’re not treating him as anything special in the Series.
It’s time for Gut Check with Ryan Howe. Al Snow says no so Howe gets to Kick Out in thirty seconds, but the fans won’t stop booing him. Danny Davis says the booing has changed his mind because Howe didn’t stop what he was saying, so it’s a yes. Bruce Pritchard says Howe got a reaction from the audience, but it’s a no.
Doc and Anderson argue over who is the next VP of the club. The vote is next week but Ray yells at them for wasting time.
Video on Gail Kim vs. Taryn Terrell in a ladder match next week.
Next week there will be three Joker’s Wild tag team matches in the BFG Series.
X-Division Title: Austin Aries vs. Chris Sabin vs. Manik
Aces and 8’s are watching in the crowd. Aries is put in the Tree of Woe to start and Sabin nails a delayed dropkick to his face. A sunset flip gets two on Manik but Aries is back on his feet, only to be thrown out to the floor. Manik hooks an Octopus Hold on Sabin but Aries comes back in for the save. The masked man hangs onto the ropes and avoids a charging Sabin to send Chris out to the floor. Aries sends Manik to the floor as well and gets two off a middle rope dropkick to Sabin’s back.
A forearm to the back of Sabin’s neck puts him down on the ramp but Sabin blocks the brainbuster into a front suplex. Aces and 8’s come to ringside and try to pull Manik to the floor. The masked man dives on Doc and gets powerbombed down onto the floor for his efforts. Cue the Mafia to get rid of the bikers as we take a break.
Back with Manik being taken out on a stretcher as Aries hits a belly to back suplex on Sabin on the apron. Aries rolls Sabin up three or four times in a row for two each but Sabin comes back with rapid fire chops to the chest and a choke in the corner. A running boot to the chest gets two for Sabin but Aries drives him back into the corner. The running dropkick is countered by a boot to the chest, but Sabin misses another kick in the corner, banging up his knee in the process.
Aries goes after the knee and hits the running dropkick in the corner, but the brainbuster is countered into a small package for two. The brainbuster is only good for two so Aries hooks the Last Chancery, but Sabin grabs the rope to escape again. Aries can’t hit the 450 so Sabin connects with Hail Sabin but THAT just gets two. Another Hail Sabin is countered into a victory roll for two but Sabin pops back up with a discus forearm to put both guys down. Aries sends him into the corner for another running dropkick, but Sabin catches him going up and hits Hail Sabin from the middle rope for the pin and the title at 16:11.
Rating: B+. The stuff with Manik was just kind of there but things got WAY better after it got down to a one on one match. Imagine that: a showdown between two guys is better than a spot fest between three guys. Who would have guessed that? Anyway, this was a tremendous match and that finish looked excellent.
Sabin says he’s the next world champion to end the show.
Overall Rating: B-. The main event was awesome but it was the only thing on this show that was above average. Everything else on the show just wasn’t all that good, as it was a bunch of filler stuff before we can get to Louisville for Destination X. That being said, the main event was one of the best matches we’ve seen in a LONG time int his company, which makes the rest of the show worth it.
AJ Styles b. Kazarian – Calf Killer
Hernandez b. Jay Bradley – Shoulder Block
Gunner/James Storm b. Bro Mans – Powerslam/neckbreaker combo to Godderz
Jeff Hardy b. Joseph Park via DQ when Park gave the referee a Black Hole Slam
Chris Sabin b. Austin Aries and Manik – Hail Sabin from the middle rope to Aries
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