Impact Wrestling – October 7, 2015: It’s A Carter Thing

Impact Wrestling
Date: October 7, 2015
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: D’Angelo Dinero, Josh Matthews

Bound For Glory has come and gone and not a lot has changed because the World Title is now vacant. Matt Hardy won the title by pinning Drew Galloway, but Ethan Carter III fired an injunction against him for reasons that aren’t entirely clear. Therefore, tonight we’re starting a 32 person series to crown a new champion at some point in the future. In other words, we’ll be seeing a lot of matches taped a few months ago cobbled together into a competition. Let’s get to it.

We open with a stills package of Sunday’s main event, which means nothing now.

Dinero and Matthews are in the studio and throw us into a package of everything that has happened since Sunday. Ethan Carter III has gotten an injunction from a judge to prevent Matt Hardy from appearing on Impact. Why? Not important enough to explain but we’ll go with “reasons”.

Therefore, since Matt can’t appear on TNA TV, we see a video of Matt vacating the title. So yeah, we still don’t get any new details and the story is still all muddled and a way to get to the ends they need because just having Carter retain was too complicated. Matt kept talking about a controversy but there’s still no explanation of what exactly happened.

Dixie Carter talks about how the 72 hours since Bound For Glory ended have been insane. It really is insane since 72 hours ago (remember that this was recorded earlier today) would have been since Sunday afternoon, not Sunday night but we’ll just chalk that up to another reason why Dixie isn’t that bright. Dixie and Billy Corgan (who the fans are just supposed to know works for TNA) announce the 32 person series to determine the new champion. Its name: the World Title Series. Dig that creativity!

The men and women will both be involved in the series with eight groups of four each. The groups will compete against each other in round robin style matches with three points for a win, one point for a draw and zero points for a loss. There are fifteen minute time limits and the top two from each group advance to the round of sixteen, which is a single elimination tournament with no time limits.

Here’s the first group (Group UK):

Bram

Rockstar Spud

Grado

Drew Galloway

Group #2 (Group Wild Card):

Aiden O’Shea

Crazzy Steve

Kenny King

Mahabali Shera

Group #3 (Group Knockouts)

Awesome Kong

Madison Rayne

Brooke

Gail Kim

Group #4 (Group Champions)

Lashley

Austin Aries

Mr. Anderson

Ethan Carter III

Dinero and Josh make their predictions on the first four groups.

Drew Galloway talks about Sunday being the hardest night of his life. He’ll be back though.

Group UK: Drew Galloway vs. Bram

Josh says the injunction might be about Jeff Hardy hitting Carter on Sunday. That really should have been mentioned earlier as it almost kind of makes sense, but we’re 20 minutes into the show and FINALLY hearing about that theory. As usual, TNA comes off as disorganized and doesn’t bother to explain something that really should be covered earlier, assuming that’s what’s going on.

They fight into the corner to start and Bram bails to the floor. Back in and Bram bails again as we go split screen to see some clips of a roundtable group discussion from earlier in the day. I can’t stand it when this happens as it’s very distraction. Just do the audio or something as it’s not like they’re hard to tell apart.

As Bram talks about being better than the rest of the group, Drew suplexes Bram to the floor again but this time Bram sends him into the steps to take over. Back in and Bram grabs a chinlock until Galloway gets to his feet and wins a slugout. They head outside again so Galloway can send him face first into the steps over and over. Back inside and Drew’s running big boot is good for the pin and three points at 7:59.

Rating: C. Not bad here but it’s clear that we’re going to see a lot of decent to average matches with no drama until they get to the single elimination stuff. The match was fine enough and it’s a good thing that they didn’t push Bram before he went all crazy. I’m hoping we get Galloway as the new champion too, if nothing else so I can laugh at TNA for making this whole tournament when they could have just put the title on him in the first place.

Group UK Standings

Drew Galloway – 3 points (2 matches left)

Rockstar Spud – 0 points (3 matches left)

Grado – 0 points (3 matches left)

Bram – 0 points (2 matches left)

Gail Kim is thankful for the chance to be in the tournament.

Drew Galloway says Bram’s mistake was going to the floor. They’re treating this like a traditional sports event with analysis and the pre and post match interviews.

Group Knockouts: Brooke vs. Gail Kim

No title with Gail because of the taping schedule which Josh attributes to Gail being focused on the World Title. They keep the split screen stuff to a minimum here and come back to Gail monkey flipping her over, only to get caught in a pinfall reversal sequence for some near falls. Brooke grabs something like a reverse Cattle Mutilation but can’t keep the hold on.

Eat Defeat is broken up and they slug it out until Brooke grabs the Butterface Maker (in case you didn’t get the theme of Brooke’s character). She misses a top rope elbow though and Gail bends Brooke’s ribs around the post. Eat Defeat is countered again so Gail tries a leg lock, only to get rolled up for the pin at 6:25.

Rating: C. This was fine again but I’m scared of what’s going to happen if Brooke advances to the next round and someone who is supposed to be serious has to sell for her. I get what they’re going for by putting the Knockouts in but it feels way out of place at the same time. Kong and Kim would be one thing, but the other two feel like complete outliers. Then again they probably aren’t making it to the tournament so it’s not the worst thing in the world.

Group Knockouts

Brooke – 3 points (2 matches left)

Awesome Kong – 0 points (3 matches left)

Madison Rayne – 0 points (3 matches left)

Gail Kim – 0 points (2 matches left)

EC3 wants this to be called the Memorial Screwjob Series. He should be the champion because he got ripped off but it’s motivated him to win this thing. Carter promises to defeat Austin Aries tonight in record time. This series isn’t over until he wins.

The announcers talk about the first two matches.

Group UK: Rockstar Spud vs. Grado

In the split screen discussion, Grado and Spud argue over who the real underdog is. In the ring, Grado sits on Spud’s chest for two and drops a backsplash for good measure. A Cannonball misses though and Spud scores with a dropkick in the corner. Grado comes back with a Pedigree (not a good one either) for two. There go the straps but Grado’s ankle lock is quickly broken up.

Spud hits an overly complicated Worm for two but Grado tops him with a People’s Elbow. The running the ropes (multiple times across the ring) makes him tired though and Pope thinks this is the funniest thing he’s ever seen. Spud hits a decent chokeslam and the Undertaker cover gets two. Matthews calls this a slobberknocker as Grado escapes an AA but walks into a Stunner and the Underdog to give Spud the pin at 5:57.

Rating: D. Thanks for giving us this six minute ad that made me want to turn this show off and go watch the WWE Network. I get the idea they were going for here but I still don’t get the appeal of Grado. As Josh said in the Knockouts match, the idea here is supposed to be everyone is serious about the World Title. Instead though, we had a comedy match which was only funny at times. Pick an idea.

Group UK

Drew Galloway – 3 points (2 matches left)

Rockstar Spud – 3 points (2 matches left)

Grado – 0 points (2 matches left)

Bram – 0 points (2 matches left)

Pope picks EC3 to lose all of his matches.

Tyrus, with headphones around the side of his head to make him look even angrier, says he’s going to sit back and see who wins the Series because he’s up next. It would be interesting if EC3 wins.

Group Champions: Ethan Carter III vs. Austin Aries

Aries has Thea Trinidad with him for no apparent reason. Josh says the internet nerds are asking why Aries is here after he lost a career match. No Josh, actually we’re wrestling fans who sit around and listen to your mindless drivel as you try to be the cool announcer while coming off as the biggest tool this side of your local hardware store.

Heaven forbid we listen to the rules and stories your company presents and then expect them to follow their own ideas. No instead we’re nerds for trying to make sense of a business that you couldn’t even get into because you couldn’t beat freaking Maven and then no major company wanted to see you get in the ring so you’re stuck with this sinking ship of a company because WWE realized they could get any hack to replace you.

So after the explanation of “HAHA we don’t have to explain why Aries is back” we’re ready to go. Pope starts talking about Jeff Hardy getting involved on Sunday so I guess that’s the official reason for the injunction. Again, not that Ethan ever actually mentioned that but why waste time on something like that? Ethan cranks on a wristlock and then runs Aries over with a shoulder. Aries pops back up and forearms Carter outside, followed by a slingshot hilo to send Carter to the floor again.

Some elbows to the head (am I a nerd for knowing what an elbow is Josh? Or do I need to be a professional like you?) knock Ethan back inside but Aries dives on Tyrus when he gets too close to Thea. We take a break and come back with Aries fighting out of a chinlock until Ethan pulls him back to the mat for the same hold. We’ve got less than five minutes to go and this was the only match to have the time limit announced during the entrances. Aries fights back and gets a neckbreaker across the middle rope, followed by a suicide dive into the barricade.

Back in and another Tyrus distraction lets Carter get two off a TKO. Carter’s superplex is broken up and Aries gets two off the 450 in a surprising kickout. Even Tyrus was freaked out. Aries wins a slugout but Tyrus trips him up, allowing Ethan to grab a sitout powerbomb for another near fall. The Last Chancery goes on with a minute left but since that move never gets a submission, Carter gets to the ropes. Both finishers are countered three times each and Aries can’t get the Last Chancery as time runs out at 15:00.

Rating: B. I had a really good time with this one and it was cool to see Carter kick out of a big move instead of having to be saved as usual. The ending sequence with the counters was really good, but I had a hard time trying to shake off Josh’s lines at the beginning. Aries being back is a good thing, even if he’s just filling in a spot.

Aries gives Carter a brainbuster after the match.

Group Champions

Austin Aries – 1 point (2 matches left)

Ethan Carter III – 1 point (2 matches left)

Mr. Anderson – 0 points (3 matches left)

Lashley – 0 points (3 matches left)

Pope says getting a draw and one point is like getting zero points.

Mr. Anderson is glad that he’s in the toughest group. He’s all in against Lashley tonight.

Aries says Carter knows what the brainbuster feels like and it’s his first loss if he ever feels it again.

Group Knockouts: Madison Rayne vs. Awesome Kong

An early Implant Buster doesn’t work for Kong so she throws Madison across the ring. As the split screen gives us some rare talking from Kong (the seas will boil with her rage it seems), Kong throws Madison in a Torture Rack before just dropping her. Madison comes back with a missile dropkick for two but the Implant Buster ends Rayne at 4:12.

Rating: D. Total squash here with Kong looking dominant like she should have. Madison is still good in the ring but it takes a different kind of opponent to give Kong a threat. They were smart to keep this short here and it made Kong look like a real threat, assuming she can stay healthy.

Group Knockouts

Brooke – 3 points (2 matches left)

Awesome Kong – 3 points (2 matches left)

Madison Rayne – 0 points (2 matches left)

Gail Kim – 0 points (2 matches left)

Lashley is glad to be in a tournament because he’s gotten here in tournament style competition. Mr. Anderson is victim #1 tonight.

Matt Hardy talks about what a great moment Sunday night was but now it’s all gone. He’s entered into the Series and will start competing next week. So…..Carter’s injunction didn’t get rid of Matt and now he has to go through a bunch of people instead of someone he’s already beaten twice to get the belt back. Bad business sense is a bad family trait for the Carters.

Group Champions: Mr. Anderson vs. Lashley

Lashley takes him to the mat to start and we’re in a break just a few seconds after the bell. Back with Lashley suplexing Anderson with ease but the spear can’t connect yet. The split screen has Lashley and Anderson saying that they should both move on and then fight in the round of sixteen. Lashley charges into the post to give Anderson two and it’s time to work on the arm.

Anderson dropkicks Lashley’s leapfrog out of the air and it’s time to go back to the arm. A single arm DDT gets two and it’s back to the armbar. Back up and Lashley fires off some clotheslines with the good arm, including a big one in the corner. There’s a spinebuster as we have less than five minutes to go. The spear still can’t connect though and Anderson hits a pair of Regal Rolls. Anderson tries a third but Lashley rolls out and hits the spear for the win at 12:16.

Rating: C+. Not a bad main event style match here and I’m glad to see Lashley get a win for a change. He’s been falling further and further down the card in recent weeks and it’s nice to see that switch, even for one night. You have to think he and Carter are the two moving on from this group as Anderson is little more than a main event jobber.

Group Champions

Lashley – 3 points (2 matches left)

Austin Aries – 1 point (2 matches left)

Ethan Carter III – 1 point (2 matches left)

Mr. Anderson – 0 points (2 matches left)

Overall Rating: C+. You know I didn’t hate this. They’ve actually got a good idea going here and the presentation worked well. I could go for them jumping back and forth between the two sets of groups from week to week, as there are going to be six matches per group for eight groups or forty eight matches. That should cover them for seven or eight weeks as there won’t be a twelve minute intro and a full time limit draw every week.

TNA did a good job of presenting this and it should get a lot better once they get down to the final sixteen and a more traditional tournament. This felt like a bigger version of the Bound For Glory Series but more structured and that’s not a bad thing. It could be far worse and I can live with the idea of this getting us to a new champion. Of course that’s assuming you ignore all the flaws in Ethan’s plan and the fact that TNA got themselves into this trouble in the first place. Good show and a good way to get started on the latest tournament they have to run to fix their latest gaffe.

Results

Drew Galloway b. Bram – Running boot

Brooke b. Gail Kim – Small package

Rockstar Spud b. Grado – Underdog

Austin Aries vs. Ethan Carter III went to a time limit draw

Awesome Kong b. Madison Rayne – Implant Buster

Lashley b. Mr. Anderson – Spear

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