Impact Wrestling – July 5, 2016: A Cry For Help

Impact Wrestling
Date: July 5, 2016
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: D’Angelo Dinero, Josh Matthews

We have arrived. Tonight is the FINAL (Like really the final. We’re not lying this time.) match between Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy, which naturally is being held at Matt’s house in North Carolina instead of in the arena. The idea is the loser can never use the Hardy name again, which would be the second time this stipulation has been in place. Let’s get to it.

We open at the Hardy compound with Matt and Reby holding a birthday party for their son Maxill. Matt’s gift is expunging the enigma from the family tree and restore honor to the Hardy name. The final deletion takes place tonight at sunset and the gardener is told to prepare the battlefield.

Here are Maria and Mike Bennett to open things up. Mike wants everyone to take notice of the greatest X-Division Champion of all time ever (his words). Bennett has been near perfect since he got here so now it’s time to turn that record into gold. He asks someone to come out here so he can cash in the X-Division Title so here’s the returning Dixie Carter, a full two weeks since she was last here. She says Option C is in effect tonight but Bennett has to defend his title first. Since the fans want one more match before next week, let’s have Bennett defend against the entire X-Division in Ultimate X.

X-Division Title: Mike Bennett vs. Eddie Edwards vs. Mandrews vs. Andrew Everett vs. Rockstar Spud vs. Trevor Lee vs. Braxton Sutter vs. DJZ

I think that’s everyone and it’s Bennett defending in Ultimate X (title hung above the ring, climb across the ropes to get to it). DJZ dives over the top to take out Edwards and Everett, leaving Sutter to pull Spud down from the ropes. Spud slaps him in the face but a kick to the face might have knocked Spud’s tooth out. Either way it means he’s out of the match to calm things down a bit.

Bennett stops Sutter but gets kicked in the head but Eddie kicks him in the head, meaning it’s time for everyone to hit something, leaving everyone down so we can have a highlight package three minutes in. Trevor pulls DJZ off the cables and throws him with a German suplex. Lee charges into a spinebuster from Bennett, who tries to jump up and get the title without having to climb across.

Eddie hurricanranas him down before taking out Lee and Helms with a suicide dive. Everett dives on all of them, followed by Sutter and DJZ doing the same. Mandrews goes above the cables to moonsault down onto a bunch of people, leaving Bennett alone in the ring. He still can’t climb though so he grabs a ladder, which Eddie baseball slides back into him. Bennett comes back in with the ladder but Eddie kicks it over and wins the title back at 9:45.

Rating: B-. This was a bit better than the normal Ultimate X matches but I would have preferred seeing a regular match instead of this big mess but that’s all you can hope for in the X-Division these….well it’s been years instead of days. Eddie getting the title shot is interesting, but the name “Chris Sabin” would be the first thing I’d think of.

We see Ethan Carter III and Drew Galloway getting into a fight after last week’s main event.

King of the Mountain Title: James Storm vs. Eli Drake

Drake is defending and is quickly knocked out to the floor to start before Storm pounds in some right hands in the corner. Eli comes back with some choking on the ropes and a powerslam. It’s already time to bring in the title but Storm comes back with a Sling Blade and Closing Time. Last Call sends Drake outside where he hits Storm with the belt for the DQ at 5:24.

Rating: D+. Nothing wrong with setting up a bigger rematch down the line and these two had some good chemistry on the mic together last week. Drake is just a step above the Honky Tonk Man where he doesn’t deserve the title over people he’s keeping it from and that means he’s interesting to watch, which is something TNA needs.

We get a trailer for the Final Deletion, which includes Jeff jumping out of a tree and shooting fireworks. This is going to be……something.

We look back at Ultimate X. It was only half an hour ago and we’re already recapping it?

Eddie says he’s going to cash in Option C.

Jade vs. Marti Bell

Street fight and Jade charges to the ring to start things off. Marti brings in the cookie sheet but gets taken down in slow motion for some right hands. Some sheet shots knock Jade back and bicycle kicks a trashcan lid into her chest. Jade pops back up and goes off with a kendo stick before putting a trashcan over her head. The package piledriver is countered with a backdrop so Marti gets her baton. Jade busts out some nunchucks to disarm her with ease, followed by the package piledriver onto a chair for the pin at 5:45.

Rating: C-. The violence wasn’t bad here but this is a really dead feud. Hopefully this wraps things up though as Jade and Marti aren’t interesting characters and I’m still not sure why I’m supposed to care about these two fighting. Jade’s title reign crippled anything she had going and Marti just came back after not doing anything for months, meaning this isn’t the most interesting feud almost by definition.

We go to Jeff’s house where he’s cutting the grass into shapes. Now it’s inside where Jeff plays some guitar….and then go to Matt’s vision which looks like the Terminator. A drone is seen flying outside the window and various miniature planes attack Jeff, who fends them off with his guitar. A red hologram of Matt comes out of the drone to say tonight is the final deletion. The drone (apparently called Vanguard I) flies away so Jeff chases after it on his motorcycle before we cut to Matt, who rides around on a lawnmower to destroy the art in the yard. I’m actually in awe and that’s not a good thing this time.

Mike Bennett and Maria are in the ring to complain about the title change earlier in the night. Maria wants Dixie to come out here right now but gets Billy Corgan instead. Maria immediately sucks up to him but Dixie comes out to interrupt. Dixie tries to calm Maria down as she shouts about how one of them have to leave.

Things finally calm down with Dixie saying she isn’t going anywhere while Mike and Maria try to manipulate everyone. Mike says people tune in to see them so Dixie needs to face reality. Maria starts her ME OR YOU until Corgan shouts at her to stop. Billy is sick of hearing this nonsense and if Mike and Maria want to quit, he’ll hold the door open for them. Bennett says they’re not quitting and promises to ruin Destination X next week.

Back to the compound with Matt telling the gardener to pour gasoline on the ring because it takes a lot of fuel to delete someone.

Decay vs. BroMans/Raquel

Before the match, Godderz says that he and Raquel have been keeping a secret from Robbie because he can’t keep secrets. In honor of Big Brother After Dark debuting soon, here’s a video of Rosemary kissing Bram backstage. I’m not sure what that has to do with Big Brother After Dark and I’d be more curious to see if they actually wanted to be associated with TNA.

The women brawl to start until Jesse takes over with a dropkick. That’s fine with Abyss who comes in and throws Jesse around before cranking on his neck. The hot tag brings in Robbie as everything breaks down. Steve dives into the Adonis Lock but Rosemary makes the save. Raquel dives off the apron to take Rosemary down. Abyss tries to chokeslam Steve onto Robbie but only hits the mat, setting up the BroDown for the pin on Steve at 4:53.

Rating: C. I like the BroMans and Raquel more every time I see them and it should be interesting to see what happens if they get another title shot. Decay continues to be a team that is living WAY beyond its means and is far more entertaining than I ever thought they should have been. I can’t imagine either of these teams will be holding the belts after the Wolves come back but it’s fun while it lasts.

Here’s Eddie Edwards to announce his decision. Eddie talks about how important this is but Lashley comes out to cut him off. Lashley talks about how great of a tag wrestler Edwards is but he has no idea what he’s getting into. Eddie says he’s been through the wars before, including breaking his elbow and winning a ladder match the next day.

That’s not enough for Lashley who brings up all the careers he’s destroyed. Option C needs to be changed a bit because Lashley wants to make it title for title next week. Eddie agrees that the smart move would be to just keep the X Title and leave but he wants to make history so it’s title vs. title. Lashley wants to fight now but the spear is blocked by a running knee to the face. Edwards holds up both titles and Lashley doesn’t get back inside.

Final Deletion trailer again.

We get a split screen sitdown interview with Ethan Carter III and Drew Galloway. Ethan calls Drew a hothead and needs to look in the mirror to see the problem. Drew says he does that every single day and he knows Ethan isn’t the man he is. All Drew wants is the title and Ethan is someone standing in his way. A challenge is thrown out for next week and Ethan accepts.

Matt Hardy vs. Jeff Hardy

This is outside and in the dark in somewhat rickety looking ring. Before the match, Matt tells the referee (who he makes sure is licensed) to count the pin or call the submission. Matt plays the violin (given to him by Antonio Stradivari, who died in 1737) to summon the enigma. Jeff rides up and Matt tells him to prepare for his deletion. We come back from a break where the gardener reads us a statement saying not to try this. It’s in Spanish but it’s a nice gesture.

They trade punches to start and the longest stretch without the camera cutting is about four seconds. Jeff superplexes Matt (slow motion) and gets two off a splash before pulling out what appear to be shutters covered in ivy. Matt goes through those for two as we have music playing instead of commentary. Matt takes over with a kendo stick to the back as this is only a match in the loosest of terms.

We’ve got a ladder less than two minutes in with Jeff being knocked back into the corner and choked with the rungs (Matt: “DELETE! DELETE! DELETE!”). The Side Effect onto the ladder is countered and Jeff hits a Twist of Fate before taking his shirt off. The Swanton gets two and Jeff puts the ladder on the middle rope. That’s not enough though as he climbs into a tree (yes a tree) and dives off, hitting only the ladder on the way down. That only gets two so Matt hits him with a chair and pulls out a firework cannon to shoot at Jeff, who blocks it with a trashcan lid.

Since that didn’t work, Matt pulls out a rake and calls for Brother Nero. Jeff has his own fireworks to shoot at Matt, who hides behind a metal boat as the music switches from something resembling classical to rock. Jeff turns the boat over but gets caught in a sleeper because after fireworks, of course you use wrestling moves. They fall into the water and Jeff disappears with Matt saying he’s been flushed. Jeff pops out of the water in full Willow gear and chokes Matt with the umbrella until the gardener comes up with a stun gun to knock Jeff out for the pin at 7:27.

Actually not so fast as Matt takes the mask off and it’s….the gardener. Jeff pops back up and knocks Matt into a dirt pit for more choking but lets go when he sees a massive Hardy logo. Jeff climbs onto that as we go to a Wyatt style montage of the birthday party. Reby hands Matt a candle and he sets the symbol on fire to knock Jeff off for the pin at 9:36.

Rating: N/A. No rating since this had nothing to do with wrestling and was heavily edited throughout. Normally I would explain something stupid here but do I really need to? This was Matt and Jeff shouting LOOK AT OUR BRILLIANCE and Dixie being stupid enough to let them do whatever they wanted. Words don’t describe this one well enough but I hope Matt and Jeff financed this themselves because TNA is broke enough that they can barely afford to pay their production staff but they can have this…..thing which probably cost a small fortune.

Matt poses to end the show as the symbol burns behind him.

Overall Rating: D+. You know what I thought of here? Wrestlemania XII. It’s a show where the card where the entire show is cut in two with the main event being one thing and everything else being the opposite. The first hour and forty minutes of this show were actually entertaining and set up Destination X pretty well with some interesting matches and storylines.

Then the second half is a cry for help. This was Matt and Jeff climbing onto something high up and screaming REMEMBER US! WE USED TO BE COOL AND NOW WE’RE ALL GENIUSES AND STUFF! I don’t know if this is TNA trying to come up with something new and cutting edge but how many more people is this going to draw?

Let’s say it’s an explosion and gets them up to 400,000 viewers. What then? More of the same stuff that has driven people away time after time because that’s how TNA works. This was basically the Attitude Era in a nutshell: little to do with wrestling, an attempt to get people to talk but at the end of the day it’s a big mess that people watch like it’s a car crash. This was certainly something entertaining but it wasn’t wrestling. If that’s what TNA wants to do then so be it, but if this is the best they’ve got, I’m really scared to see where they go next.

Results

Eddie Edwards b. Mandrews, Andrew Everett, DJZ, Trevor Lee, Mike Bennett, Braxton Sutter and Rockstar Spud – Edwards pulled down the title

James Storm b. Eli Drake via DQ when Drake used the title belt

Jade b. Marti Bell – Package piledriver onto a chair

BroMans/Raquel b. Decay – BroDown to Steve

Matt Hardy b. Jeff Hardy – Pin after Jeff fell off a Hardy symbol

Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews and pick up my new book on NXT: The Full Sail Years Volume II at Amazon for just $3.99 at:

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6 comments

  1. Jerichoholic94 says:

    Umm. What the hell was that?!

  2. Jay H (the real one) says:

    That may be one of the best overall thoughts you have ever come up with. All I thought when the Final Deletion thing was done was that’s it? For some reason I expected a little more but it just left a hollow feeling after all the hype they had done in the week leading up to it. I get what they were going for and it was different to generate a little buzz since TNA is pretty much a dead brand at this point.

  3. Not really M just someone pretending to be M says:

    That sounds like the greatest TNA episode of all time. I understand if you being someone who’s had to sit through some seriously TNA patches of TNA happen to hate it, but my god. As an outsider who doesn’t watch wrestling that often the whole thing you described sounds like something out of a really insane anime like JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure. This better get blown up on social media because I need to see it.

  4. Bloodbuzz Bunk says:

    This whole Hardy feud seems like someone showed Matt some Chikara shows or a handful of Lucha Underground episodes and he convinced Jeff that this was the future and they were gonna make it mainstream. Problem with that is that those promotions are built around their niche concepts and have lots of young in ring talent and writing talent to maximize the concept. The Hardys are just being indulgent and TNA is letting them high jack a third of their shows basically because they can’t figure out how to promote the rest of their talent outside of Carter, Galloway, Bennett, Lashley, and Drake. Perhaps it’s because those five guys understand their characters well enough to be interesting. Seriously other promotions have done more with less talent and opportunity than TNA so this travesty of Hardy v Hardy shouldn’t be a surprise at this point.

  5. Isaiah Morrow says:

    If you had to give a rating to The Final Deletion, what would you rate it KB?

    klunderbunker Reply:

    If you’re talking quality, D. If you’re talking entertainment, B+.