Date: December 5, 2013
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Tazz
It’s a big night tonight as we have the semi-finals of the world title tournament. The two matches scheduled are Jeff Hardy vs. Bobby Roode in a tables match and Magnus vs. Kurt Angle in a last man standing match. The winners will face off in two weeks for the title in a gimmick match to be announced. At this point the question is who gets to face AJ Styles when he returns for the champion vs. champion match. Let’s get to it.
The opening video looks like a scene out of a post apocalyptic thriller with a WAY higher budget than TNA usually has. It’s another recap of the tournament.
Here’s Kurt Angle with something to say. Last week was Thanksgiving and he’s very thankful for his health, his family, and the fans’ support as he tries to get into the Hall of Fame. Winning the title is the path for him to prove himself and Austin Aries gave him the fight of his life in the last round. However, now he has to face Magnus so the Brit needs to come out here.
Angle asks Magnus what happened last week when Magnus left him alone four on one. Magnus talks about getting hurt in a match against Samoa Joe and getting into the tag match anyway. Magnus hurt his knee and that’s all there is to it. Angle says champions fight through injuries and he has a knee injury at the moment to prove it.
Kurt asks Magnus if he has the heart to be a champion. Magnus says he does along with the hunger to go through everyone he has to in order to become champion for the first time. He’ll prove that to Angle tonight. Angle says they may be friends, but he has to go through Magnus, Hardy and Roode to become champion.
This brings out Roode who says he has the killer instinct you need to be a world champion. We’ve already seen what Roode will do to Storm to become champion, so next up is Jeff Hardy. If he’ll do that to Storm, imagine what he’ll do to Hardy. Roode says Magnus will never be a world champion. Magnus goes for Roode but Angle holds him back. Hardy comes out to start the tables match right now.
TNA World Title Tournament Semi-Finals: Jeff Hardy vs. Bobby Roode
Tables match. The fans are naturally behind Hardy who starts off with some right hands and the legdrop between the legs. Hardy sends him into the corner and dropkicks Roode in the back before bringing in a table. Bobby uses the breather to get in a shot of his own and sets up the table in the corner. A clothesline puts Hardy down but he stops a charging Roode with an elbow in the corner. The comeback is very short lived though as Hardy’s Whisper in the Wind only hits mat. They fight to the apron and Hardy kicks Roode in the face, putting both of them through the table and sending us to a beak as this is figured out.
Back with the match continuing and Roode in control, only to be caught by a quick Twist of Fate, knocking him onto the table. Jeff goes up for the Swanton but Roode rolls off the table before Jeff jumps. That’s cool with Hardy as he dives over the table and hits the Swanton anyway to keep control. Hardy loads up a superplex but gets crotched on the top rope in a counter. Roode tires to suplex him over the top and through another table at ringside, only to be kicked in the chest to put Roode through the table at 14:00.
Rating: C. This was fine. Roode is pretty solidly in the JBL role as his resume is strong enough to make a win over him mean something but he’s not likely to be the top guy ever again. Jeff is a good face to send into the title match as he’s over with the fans and still able to put on good matches.
Ethan Carter III gets his makeup applied and says he’s calling out a first ballot Hall of Famer tonight.
AJ’s agent has sent Dixie a letter saying the title will be back soon.
Ethan Carter is here to call out a legend who has been in the ring with the likes of Andre the Giant, Hulk Hogan and Bret Hart. Therefore, here’s his opponent: Earl Hebner. Hebner says he isn’t a wrestler but Carter says his aunt is Earl’s boss. There’s even going to be a special referee: Earl’s son Brian. Carter says Earl is going to lay down so his worthless son can count 1-2-3. Earl won’t do it so Ethan threatens him until he does it.
Ethan Carter III vs. Earl Hebner
Ethan takes his time and puts a finger on Earl’s chest for the pin at 48 seconds.
Carter makes Brian roll Earl out of the ring and raise Ethan’s hand.
We recap the Bad Influence vs. Park/Young feud and Bad Influence trying to convince Park that he’s Abyss.
We see Christy and Sam Shaw on their date. Christy gets up for a second and Shaw is somewhat obsessed with a knife. The waiter comes for the check and Shaw threatens to gouge his eyes out if he catches the waiter looking at Christy again. Christy comes back and they leave quickly.
Video recapping AJ going around the world to defend the title.
Dixie gets a delivery: flowers. The note says it’s from a fan so Dixie yells at the aide who delivered them.
Roode says he should be in the title match because you shouldn’t lose a wrestling match for falling through a table.
Dixie gives a speech to some of the roster. She has a new great idea: Feast or Fired. It’s TNA’s version of MITB. There are four cases: one containing a world, tag team or X-Division title shot each and the last containing a pink slip. You get a case, you win whatever is inside of it.
Here’s Bad Influence with an envelope containing some results. Before they can go into it, here’s Joseph Park to interrupt. Park gets serious and tells them they need to stop because they’ve won. Maybe Park never should have been in TNA and maybe he’s just an attorney. Kaz thinks that’s funny and says they have information. Park snatches the envelope from them and rips it up. Daniels thinks it’s funny and Kaz says all that proves is Park can rip apart an envelope.
We get a video showing Bad Influence at Park’s law offices to find them completely empty. They ask the secretary who says the offices used to belong to a doctor but he moved out months ago. Daniels shows her Park’s business card and apparently the law offices closed about 13 years ago.
Back in the arena, Daniels wants to know what Park has been doing for thirteen years. Park gets nervous and again asks them to drop this. Kaz spits at Park and calls him a liar before the beatdown commences. Eric Young makes the save and tells Bad Influence that if they keep knocking on the devil’s door, the devil is going to answer. Young makes a tag match next week but Park isn’t sure.
Sting gives another of his speeches to Magnus and says he’s looking forward to the main event tonight.
Dixie’s main assistant Spud is told the delivery man is here.
Bromans vs. James Storm/Gunner
Non-title. Zema Ion is DJ for the champions and gets in a great line with “Ladies remember these names because you’ll be screaming them later!” Storm throws Jesse around with ease to start before it’s off to Gunner for the same on Robbie. Zema keeps playing sound effects on the turntables. Gunner pounds away on Robbie in the corner but Jesse’s interference lets the champions take over. Jesse gets two off a dropkick but Gunner pretty easily tags out to Storm. The superkick lays out Jesse but Robbie spits beer at Gunner. The tattooed one goes into a rage and he knocks the referee down for the DQ at 4:50.
Rating: D+. This was about advancing the Gunner/Storm split which doesn’t quite work when they were only a team for about seven months. Storm really needs to get out of the tag division because there’s absolutely nothing left for him to do there. Gunner could get a nice rub out of this though.
Sting tries to go in to see Angle but Spud stops him. Sting makes fun of Spud’s job title and is told that Dixie wants him out. If Dixie wants him to leave, come tell him to his face. Spud goes to see the delivery man and Sting wants to know what’s going on around here.
Gail Kim and her husband say don’t send her any more challengers until you have someone good.
Chris Sabin is looking in a mirror while Velvet Sky checks her hair. It’s Sabin vs. Aries next week for the X Title. Velvet asks if she looks good and Sabin picks up the belt and says they look good.
Gail Kim vs. Laura Dennis
From what I can find, Dennis is an indy wrestler named Cherry Bomb who has worked in Shimmer, CZW and ROH. Gail runs her over to start and sends Laura into the corner for a running cross body. Kim talks a lot of trash but gets slapped in the face. Some clotheslines put Kim down and a running forearm gets two but Gail gets some feet up in the corner. Eat Defeat gets the pin at 3:02.
Rating: D. We need to get to Tapa crushing Kim already so we can stop caring about either of them at all. These one off girls aren’t helping the division’s major problem at all but it’s better than seeing the same matches over and over again. This was just a squash though which doesn’t do anything for anyone.
Post match Gail hits another Eat Defeat but before Tapa can beat up Dennis again, ODB comes out for the save. Tapa is knocked to the floor and ODB slaps her chest.
TNA World Title Tournament Semi-Finals: Kurt Angle vs. Magnus
Last man standing. Angle takes him into the corner to start but Magnus counters into an armbreaker followed by a headlock. Back up and Magnus pounds away to drive Angle into the corner, only to have a double clothesline put both guys down. They slug it out some more and we take a break.
Back with…..Dixie receiving the package she’s been waiting for all night. We go back to the arena to see Angle taken down by something we don’t see for a five count. Angle comes back with five Rolling Germans but Magnus gets up at five. Kurt spears Magnus to the floor but both guys are up by 8. Magnus tries to get back in but has to elbow out of the German suplex off the apron.
The elbow drop off the apron has Kurt in trouble but he gets up at nine. Back in and Angle hits a quick snap suplex but misses the moonsault. Magnus picks him up and hits a modified Rock Bottom (arm around the ribs instead of the chest) and the top rope elbow gets nine. Angle accidentally takes out the referee before hitting the Angle Slam. Cue Roode with a clothesline to the back of Kurt’s head and an Attitude Adjustment. Magnus gets back up but Angle can’t make the ten count at 15:23.
Rating: C+. Not great here but it could have been much worse. Angle is great in the role of guy you can throw out there for a good match and to put someone over at any time. It wasn’t a great match but it advances Roode vs. Angle which needs to end after the next match. Good match here but not great.
Hardy saves Angle and wishes Magnus luck with a handshake.
Dixie opens the box and finds a toy belt.
We get a video from AJ, saying Dixie needs to come to Georgia if she wants the belt back.
Overall Rating: B-. This was one of TNA’s better shows in a long time. The matches were good, but more importantly than that the stories felt like they were important and got the time that they needed to develop. Nothing came off as stupid or like a waste of time and those are things that have been plaguing TNA for months now.
Jeff Hardy b. Bobby Roode – Hardy kicked Roode through a table.
Ethan Carter III b. Earl Hebner – Hebner laid down for Carter
Bromans b. Gunner/James Storm via DQ when Gunner shoved the referee
Gail Kim b. Laura Dennis – Eat Defeat
Magnus b. Kurt Angle – Angle couldn’t answer the ten count
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