Date: August 20, 2014
Location: Manhattan Center, New York City, New York
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Taz
It’s the debut on Wednesday and we’re getting closer and closer to Bound For Glory. Not that you would know that after watching Impact this year as nothing has been mentioned about it, but to be fair there are still several weeks to go. This is also the Hardcore Justice special, meaning expect a lot of weapons matches tonight. This is different from the previous New York show because….uh….oh because this one has a name. Let’s get to it.
Abyss vs. Bram
Stairway to Janice match, which means Janice is hanging above the ring but you win by pin. It’s a brawl to start and Bram is quickly suplexes onto a ladder in the corner. They head outside with Bram getting punched in the face a few times but he comes back with some trashcan shots to take over. Abyss posts him and pulls out a few barbed wire boards for some fun in the ring. Bram is already busted open.
The greedy fans want fire but get Abyss trying a chokeslam onto the wire board. Bram elbows out of it and nails Abyss in the head with a trashcan lid. Abyss stops an attempt at Janice with a chokeslam and it’s time for the tacks. Bram fights back again but misses a charge and goes flying through one of the wire boards in the corner.
The masked man goes up but Bram shoves the ladder over, sending Abyss through the other board. Janice is pulled down but Bram clears out some of the weapons before going after Abyss. Another chokeslam is countered but Abyss nails the Black Hole Slam to put him into the tacks. Bram somehow pops up and hits Abyss in the ribs with Janice for the pin at 8:28.
Rating: C+. It’s a good, violent brawl but I’ve seen these brawls multiple times in the last few weeks, which makes it kind of hard to care again. I like that they’re pushing Bram this hard as he’s got a future to him, but his time with Magnus needs to end soon. They’re holding each others’ singles pushes back as neither guy is able to rise up with the other there. Bram has a ton of potential though.
Ethan Carter III didn’t like being in jail and says those responsible will pay.
Magnus and Bram meet in the back and Magnus says he’s going to outshine Bram tonight.
Here are Ethan, Spud and Rhino with something to say. Ethan rants about Dixie being put through the table before moving to last week. Angle had the three of them arrested but Ethan says thank you for that. The night made him realize that justice against Bully Ray must be swift and severe, but that’s not the end of his problems. Ethan hired someone from the streets and paid him handsomely, but that mercenary failed him.
Rhino looks around with a goofy blank look on his face. Ethan yells at him but Rhino shouts him down and says he’d rather be poor than listen to Etha.n’s nonsense. Carter doesn’t like being spoken to like that and slaps Rhino in the face. The beatdown is on and it’s actually Ethan getting the better of it. Ethan even shoves Spud down and glares Rhino down.
Joe says he and Low Ki have a legacy written in blood and they’ll go at it again next.
The Hardys are back together to prove that they’re still the best team in the world today.
Video on Joe and Low Ki’s history.
X-Division Title: Low Ki vs. Samoa Joe
Joe is defending and the fans are split over who to cheer for. The champion takes him into the corner but gets caught in a cross armbreaker over the ropes to slow him down. They chop it out until Joe runs him over with an elbow to the jaw. Joe chops him down for two but Low Ki comes back with kicks of his own. They don’t do much other than sound good though as Joe kicks him in the face and gets two off the backsplash.
Joe tries to load up the MuscleBuster but gets kicked in the face and nailed with a top rope double stomp to the back. Low Ki scores with a running dropkick in the corner for two and the fans think this is awesome. We get Joe’s transitioning submission sequence but Low Ki makes the ropes to break the STF. Joe blasts Low Ki with a clothesline and fires off some knees to the chest. Ko comes back with an enziguri out of the corner for two of his own. Joe blocks the Ki Crusher and plants him with the MuscleBuster for the pin to retain at 8:00.
Rating: B-. I really don’t get what the fans saw as awesome in this one. It was a good, hard hitting brawl but it’s nothing that hasn’t been done before. Both guys are New York favorites though so the crowd got a bit carried away with the match. There’s nothing wrong with that and the match was indeed good stuff.
The Hardys go to see Team 3D.
Samuel Shaw and Mr. Anderson brawl in the back before their I Quit match begins.
Mr. Anderson vs. Samuel Shaw
This is an I Quit match for no apparent reason and they start at the entrance with Shawn choking with a cord. Anderson slams him into the ramp to escape but Gunner comes out to stare him down. Shaw sends Anderson into the steps and grabs the mic from the referee. Shaw: “SAY YOU QUIT!” Anderson: “YOU QUIT!” They head inside with Anderson scoring with a clothesline but Shaw stays on him. Off to a camel clutch on Mr. but he fights up and sends Shaw shoulder first into the post. An armbar makes Shaw quit at 5:42.
Rating: D. Another gimmick match for the sake of having a gimmick match. The ending may be simple but at least it’s something that makes sense. I’m not sure where this Gunner vs. Shaw vs. Anderson feud is going and I’m not sure what I think of it. It’s nice to see something happening at least.
Team 3D says the Hardys have an idea and need to see if the third piece is in.
Gail Kim was rambling about defending against any number of Knockouts when Angelina Love attacked her.
Angle makes Kim vs. Angelina in a last Knockout standing match.
Roode is standing outside a cage and talks about being stuck out of the title hunt for six weeks. Tonight he’ll win the cage match and become #1 contender.
Here are the Hardys to talk about wanting to become the top team in tag team wrestling again. They’re back because the fans want them to be, but they need Team 3D out here right now. Bully asks if the Hardys know who they are and the fans want to see them fight one more time. Ray knows both teams want to be Tag Team Champions, meaning they need the Wolves out here right now. Cue the Wolves for the required “we respect you” speech. They’re willing to put up the titles anytime and anywhere.
Mike Tenay is at Dixie Carter’s house. Dixie says she has a broken back and rib from going through the table. She says she lost the war to Ray and says she’s going to focus her efforts on business outside the ring. We haven’t seen the last of the Carters and they never forget.
We look back at James Storm training Sanada into his new protege. The Great Sanada will be revealed next week.
Knockouts Title: Angelina Love vs. Gail Kim
Last Knockout standing and Gail is defending. Gail chases her around to start and lays her out with a clothesline on the floor. They head inside where a clothesline in the corner rocks Angelina, only to have her come back with a Downward Spiral. Gail is right back up as Velvet hands Angelina something made of metal.
A dropkick knocks Angelina to the floor before she can nail Kim, but Sky gets in a shot to the champ’s back to put her down. Gail ducks a charge to send Love into the apron but both are up at six. Sky interferes again to break up a DDT on the steps, sending Gail face first into them instead. Back in and Gail blocks a suplex and puts on a Hartbreaker on the post.
Velvet interferes AGAIN and Hebner has no issue with any of this. Gail whips Angelina into the barricade but falls down herself. She picks up a chair but goes after Velvet, allowing Angelina to hit the Botox Injection to drive the chair into Kim’s face. Back inside and Velvet tries to interfere again, only to get sent to the floor. They head to the ropes and Gail hits a super Samoan drop onto the chair to retain at 8:15.
Rating: C. I liked it when Velvet would stay out of it, but unfortunately that was very rarely the case. Gail really needs some fresh competition in the division as we’ve seen these matches so many times that just adding a gimmick to it doesn’t really make things better. The match was fun but it’s so overdone at this point that it doesn’t work for me.
Angle makes a Tag Team Title series between Team 3D, the Wolves and the Hardys. The first team to gain two wins is the Tag Team Champions and whoever wins the match gets to pick the next stipulation. It starts next week.
MVP talks about Lashley replacing him at Slammiversary. Lashley has run through a bunch of challengers already, so whoever wins this #1 contenders match doesn’t really matter.
Bobby Roode vs. Eric Young vs. Gunner vs. James Storm vs. Austin Aries vs. Magnus
No pins, submissions or elimination and it’s the first man out wins. It’s a brawl to start and the fans are almost entirely behind Aries. People try to escape and are pulled down and there isn’t much to talk about before we go to a break. Back with Magnus pulling Storm back in and getting caught in Roode’s Crossface. Aries puts Gunner in the Last Chancery and Young puts Magnus in a Sharpshooter.
Eventually people let go and try to climb but it’s Storm hitting a Last Call on Roode and Gunner hitting a spinebuster to put James down. Gunner goes for a climb but Aries makes the save. Now it’s Aries going up but Magnus knocks him off the ropes. This is all over the place and kind of hard to call. We get double Towers of Doom out of opposite corners with Gunner and Aries taking the worst of them. Roode and Young climb out at the same time and there’s a split decision at 11:55.
Rating: D+. Like I said, this match was so insane and all over the place that it was hard to get into anything. The problem is it kept the match with no story and everything all over the place. The controversial ending is fine but at the end of the day, Roode needs to get the shot, preferably at Bound For Glory. At this point there is no top face in TNA and it’s becoming an issue.
The wrestlers and referees argue to end the show.
Overall Rating: C. This show wasn’t bad but it was hitting its head on a thick ceiling. I’m really not a fan of having gimmicks for the sake of having gimmicks and that’s what a lot of this show felt like. There’s enough good wrestling and action on it to carry things through, but the stories aren’t very interesting.
We’ve seen the Beautiful People vs. whoever is champion many times before and Gunner vs. Shaw vs. Anderson is starting to go in circles. Throw in Abyss having a hardcore war and this feels like Impact’s Most Mediocre Hits. The tag series should be awesome, but I have a feeling it’s going to overstay its welcome by the end. Good show, but as usual it was trying too hard.
Bram b. Abyss – Janice to the ribs
Samoa Joe b. Low Ki – MuscleBuster
Mr. Anderson b. Samuel Shaw – Armbar
Gail Kim b. Angelina Love – Middle rope Samoan drop onto a chair
Bobby Roode and Eric Young b. Gunner, James Storm, Magnus and Austin Aries – Roode and Young escaped the cage at the same time
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