Impact Wrestling – March 29, 2016: Hardys, Hardys Everywhere
Date: March 29, 2016
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Josh Matthews, Drew Galloway
It’s a big night this week as we have Jeff Hardy getting a World Title shot against champion Drew Galloway. On top of that we’ll probably be looking at the fallout from last week’s big gauntlet match, as well as maybe having the Knockouts Title match between Gail Kim and Jade. Let’s get to it.
We open with a recap of last week’s gauntlet match with Jeff Hardy eliminating his brother Matt for the win.
Here’s the Matt Hardy Brand to open things up. As expected, Matt is livid about losing the match last week and calls it an injustice. He wants and demands a title shot tonight because Jeff doesn’t deserve one. This brings out Maria and Mike Bennett with the latter talking about how he deserves the title shot because no one wants to see Matt as champion again.
Maria and Reby almost get into it before the guys talk about their lack of respect for each other. Before any punches can be thrown though, here’s Ethan Carter III to interrupt. Ethan pitches a show about the Matt Hardy Brand being the Three Stooges before praying for Mike Bennett’s career. That’s enough for Mike as he yells at Ethan, only to have Matt cut them off and challenge Ethan to a fight against the entire Matt Hardy Brand, including Reby. Ethan says game on.
Ethan Carter III vs. Matt Hardy Brand
Tyrus throws Ethan around to start and it’s quickly off to Spud, who crawls away at the first threat of violence. It’s back to Tyrus who breaks up some right hands in the corner with a nice hot shot. Spud and Tyrus take turns on Carter with Matt coming in for a few cheap shots in the vein of Bobby Heenan. Carter finally fights back against Matt but has to deal with Tyrus instead of hitting the 1%er. Spud gets caught in a cobra clutch, which draws in Bennett for the DQ at 6:28.
Rating: D. Boring stuff here with Matt following a simple formula but not being all that interesting. That sums up the Matt Hardy Brand as a whole: they’re doing all the right things as heels but there’s almost no interest. Carter is doing really well in the face roll but he needs someone better to work off. Like say, Bennett for example.
Post match the Brand beats Carter down until Beer Money comes out to clear the ring. They heard a fight going on and would love to get in on that so let’s make this a six man tag.
Matt Hardy/Tyrus/Mike Bennett vs. Ethan Carter III/Beer Money
This is joined in progress with Storm working over Bennett until Tyrus pulls James off the apron. Tyrus starts working on the ribs and goes simple by burying the point of his elbow into James’ back. James tries to bite the hand to escape and takes Bennett down for the hot tag to Roode. Bobby starts cleaning house as everything breaks down with Carter chasing Bennett and Maria up the ramp, leaving Storm to Last Call Tyrus. Both heels get suplexed but Tyrus gets in a heart punch, setting up the Twist of Fate to put Roode away at 6:07.
Rating: C-. Standard six man here with Carter and Bennett leaving Beer Money, as in the Tag Team Champions, to get pinned in a standard tag match. You can also tell that they’re running low on ideas as they used one story to carry a fourth of the show. It doesn’t help that it’s not the best story on the show but that’s standard for TNA.
Gail Kim isn’t happy with what Maria pulled last week so tonight it’s Madison Rayne vs. Velvet Sky for the #1 contendership. I guess Jade lost the shot?
The BroMans can’t believe they’re back together when Eli Drake comes in to laugh at them. Jesse says he has an idea.
Velvet Sky vs. Madison Rayne
#1 contenders match. Velvet puts on a headlock to start and Madison gets annoyed, causing things to get a bit heated. A clothesline gets two on Sky but some Skylines (I’ve heard worse) put Rayne in trouble, followed by a bulldog for two. Not that it matters as a quick jackknife rollup gives Rayne the pin at 3:35.
Rating: C. This is another match we’ve seen so many times before and it’s really hard to care about the same women who just pop up every few weeks for a filler match like this. The Knockouts division continues to need a lot of fresh blood, which it seems we might be getting with Jade and Maria. The match was fine but nothing I never need to see again.
Velvet raises her hand post match.
Drew Galloway talks about needing to do something special to beat Jeff Hardy tonight.
Pope gets in the ring with something to say. People have been noticing that he’s been getting more physical lately because Pope has to be the man that he is inside. A few weeks ago he stood up for his announce partner and Lashley doesn’t seem cool with that. Cue Lashley who tells Pope to apologize and go sit down because he’s not a man anymore.
Pope talks about getting into this business at the same time as Lashley, which means he wants to fight right now. Lashley gets in and the brawl is on with referees not being able to hold them back. Pope sidesteps a spear and Lashley goes to the floor, allowing Pope to hit a BIG dive off the top. Security still can’t break them up so we cut away. I’m not a Pope fan by any stretch but this was really good.
Another video on last week’s gauntlet.
Jeff Hardy is used to being the underdog.
Matt Hardy hates the main event.
Jeremy Borash has taken over for Pope on commentary.
Here are Eric Young and Bram with Eric talking about how awesome he is and blaming Bram for the elimination last week. Everyone wants to be him so he’s watching Jeff win the World Title tonight so he can take it away from him later. Cue the BroMans for our third unannounced match of the night.
BroMans vs. Bram/Eric Young
The BroMans clean house to start until Bram stomps Robbie down in the corner to take over. The beating doesn’t last long though as Jesse gets the hot tag and starts to clean house. Bram holds Eric but eats a right hand from his partner. Jesse knocks Eric into Bram and it’s the BroDown to put Young away at 4:28.
Rating: D. Storyline instead of a match here and there’s nothing wrong with that. The BroMans are a fun enough act to be a low level tag team but more important to me here is the fact that Bram and Young seem to be splitting. I haven’t cared for Young in years and I’m glad Bram might be getting some spotlight for a change.
Grado and Mahabali Shera are ready for the celebration (and dancing) when Al Snow jumps them and breaks Grado’s arm. Yes, AL SNOW is now getting a feud. That’s how bad things have gotten.
Here are Trevor Lee and Gregory Helms to call out Eddie Edwards. Helms praises the Wolves for being amazing and revolutionary but thinks it’s time for his in ring debut. He’s been a champion around the world and beaten some of the best of all time so how about they get together and win the Tag Team Titles? Eddie has a week to make his decision.
Pope wants to fight Lashley with no rules next week.
TNA World Title: Drew Galloway vs. Jeff Hardy
Hardy is challenging and gets a headlock takeover out of the corner to take over early. Drew comes back with an overhead belly to belly and Hardy is already in trouble. The champ is sent outside for a dive from Hardy and we take a break. Back with Jeff getting two off a Twist of Fate but taking too much time going up and getting superplexed down.
The Claymore gets two and they head up top for what looked to be a super powerslam from Drew but Jeff reverses into something like a hiptoss. That looked to be a bit botched but it was good enough. Another Twist and the Swanton get two on Drew so Jeff sends it outside and puts Drew on the steps. The Swanton hits knees though and it’s a quick Futureshock to give Drew the pin at 14:18.
Rating: B-. Another pretty good main event here with Jeff being a good first victory for Drew, but they certainly didn’t hit a special level. It’s good that they’re getting Jeff out of the way early though as he’s one of those guys who is always going to be near the top of the roster so thankfully Drew can focus on someone new.
Apparently that new means Matt, who comes out to say that he was hoping Jeff won but he’ll settle for taking the World Title from Drew next week. Drew is ready to fight right now but here are Bram and Eric Young to help beat him down. That earns them a double Claymore and Jeff hits Matt with a Twist of Fate. Next week, Jeff wants Young in Six Sides of Steel.
Overall Rating: D+. I didn’t hate the show and they’re definitely making sense with the stories but it’s really hard to get behind a roster with Gregory Helms, Tyrus, Matt Hardy and Al Snow getting so much air time. The storylines are put together well enough but nothing has a spark. There’s nothing going on that I look forward to (though Pope vs. Lashley looks good) and a lot of that is due to how much we see the same people.
Look at the ending: MORE Hardys and more Bram/Eric Young. I get that they’re low on talent right now but they really need to get some fresh bodies in there, especially with Roode and Young leaving at the end of this taping cycle. The Hardys are all over this show and I’m really sick of them. Drew is a good choice for the young face champion but the show is all about Matt and Jeff and that’s been old. Freshen things up a bit, even if you have to hire some new low level names. You never know what you might find in there and it might help things out a bit.
Ethan Carter III b. Matt Hardy Brand via DQ when Mike Bennett interfered
Matt Hardy/Tyrus/Mike Bennett b. Ethan Carter III/Beer Money – Twist of Fate to Roode
Madison Rayne b. Velvet Sky – Jackknife rollup
BroMans b. Eric Young/Bram – BroDown to Young
Drew Galloway b. Jeff Hardy – Futureshock
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