Impact Wrestling – October 6, 2016: Howl With Me
Date: October 6, 2016
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: D’Angelo Dinero, Josh Matthews
It’s the start of a new era for TNA as we’re straight off Bound For Glory with the big story being Lashley holding onto the TNA World Title. Other than that we have new Tag Team Champions with the Hardys defeating Decay in the Great War and the first ever Grand Champion in Aron Rex. Everything starts fresh tonight so let’s get to it.
We open with a montage from Bound For Glory.
Here’s Lashley to open the show with a smirk on his face. Lashley brags about how he beats everyone in the company and is the man around here because of this belt on his shoulder. No one can beat him but here’s Aron Rex to interrupt. Rex used to be smart so he’s going to try to do the math. Grand Champion sounds a lot better than World Champion so Rex sees himself as the man around here.
A fight is teased but here’s Gail Kim to interrupt. TNA would make her World Champion in a heartbeat so I shouldn’t be surprised by this one. Gail says it’s 2016 and the women are changing the game around here so she’s the face of the company. This brings out Matt Hardy with Reby and Maxill (no Jeff and Matt has both belts) to say TNA is now a broken company. Preach it brother.
Matt is always ready to delete (repeat five times) but here’s DJZ to give us all the titles in one ring. DJZ mentions something called Team X Gold but Lashley cuts him off and says he’s got a fight coming up and doesn’t have time to waste with second rate title holders. Now it’s Billy Corgan coming out with Aiden O’Shea (Remember him?) to congratulate all the champions.
All of the champions will be in competition tonight (Matt: “WONDERFUL!”) and Lashley doesn’t care who he’s facing tonight. All the titles will be on the line tonight, except for DJZ because he helped to introduce Team X Gold. Wait are they having X-Division Tag Team Titles? For the love of all things good and holy, WHY??? Anyway Lashley is given three options to face tonight but first up it’s Team X Gold.
Trevor Lee/Andrew Everett/Marshe Rocket vs. DJZ/Mandrews/Braxton Sutter
Everett and Mandrews start things off with Mandrews hitting a moonsault into a basement dropkick. Rocket, a good sized guy, comes in and kicks Mandrews in the face to take over. It’s off to Lee vs. Sutter with Braxton getting in a kick to the face until Rocket comes back in with a powerslam. DJZ comes in for some clotheslines on Rocket but the champ gets kicked in the face. It’s quickly off to Everett, who moonsaults into raised boots. A quick tag off to Mandrews sets up a shooting star press to pin Everett at 5:27.
Rating: C. Oh sweet goodness TNA what are you doing? I get the idea here (capitalizing on the success of the Cruiserweight Classic) but my goodness could they come up with something a little better than throwing six guys out there with little to no connection and having a match?
Normally I would ask if they had learned anything from WWE’s mistakes in the cruiserweight division but of course they haven’t because they think it’s a good idea to have a full six man tag division when they can barely do a singles division. Rocket looked impressive here and has star power but this is just more stuff that doesn’t solve the problems the X-Division already has (no stories, no characters etc.)
One of Lashley’s potential opponents is Moose, who says Lashley is scared of him.
It’s time for Fact of Life with Eli Drake and now he’s got a set outside the ring. Drake brings out Ethan Carter III, who had a rocket shoved so far inside him you would think he’d spit out rocket fuel. Eli won’t let Ethan talk as he comes up with ways to call Ethan a loser. Ethan says he lost at Bound For Glory and says his passion has been replaced by anger. If Drake pushes the button one more time, Ethan is going to eviscerate him and he even gets on his knees to beg Drake to hit it again.
Drake shoves the button away and talks about getting into TNA because of something called the Rising. He’s been hearing about how he’s not in Ethan Carter’s league because Carter has been handed every opportunity. That’s it for the interview, which means we don’t get an explanation for how Drake grew a full head of hair and a beard in four days.
Maria Kanellis yells at Allie over screwing up on Sunday. Sienna and Laurel Van Ness talk Maria out of firing her because they need someone to carry their bags. Sienna will get the title back tonight and Allie better not mess it up.
Eddie Edwards says Lashley sees him as the easy match so please pick him to give Lashley the easy title defense.
Video on Gail Kim’s Hall of Fame induction.
Knockouts Title: Sienna vs. Gail Kim
Gail is defending and Madison Rayne is on commentary (with her husband Josh Matthews). Sienna knocks Allie into Gail to knock her off the apron before driving the champ back first into the apron. They head inside with Gail escaping the AK-47 but getting caught in a reverse powerbomb for two. Gail ducks the Pounce and rolls Sienna up to retain at 3:04.
Rating: D+. This match sums up so many of the problems in TNA in one match: a lack of emotion. There’s no reason to care about Gail other than she’s been here for a long time. There’s no reason to care about Sienna because she had the title and then lost it after doing a total of nothing as champion. Combine that with a nothing match that gets no time and what is there here to get excited over? The problem is that’s the case with the majority of what TNA does and it gets really tiresome.
Maria and company come out to beat on Gail. With Sienna holding Gail, Maria says her rematch will take place next week in a No DQ match. Madison is downright annoyed over this. I mean, she’s not going to do anything about it but it’s certainly ruffled her feathers.
Ethan Carter III is the third option and doesn’t think Lashley will pick him. If Lashley wants a real fight though, pick him.
Tag Team Titles: Hardys vs. Decay
This is a Wolf Creek Cage Match, meaning a weapons cage match with a win by escape only and a name tied into one of Pop’s shows. It’s a brawl to start with Jeff stapling Abyss in various places. Steve climbs the cage and gets a grappling hook of all things to pull at Matt’s mouth. A kendo stick shot to the back puts Matt down but the Hardys come back with shots of their own.
Matt grabs a CHAINSAW to knock Steve down but Abyss cleans house again. Rosemary stops Jeff from escaping and we get another catfight on the floor. The video freezes for a few moments and comes back on a commercial. We come back from a break with the next segment and no mention of who won. According to TNA’s Twitter, the Hardys won at we’ll say about 9:00.
Rating: D. Lack of an ending aside, this was a really boring cage match with Josh talking about Wolf Creek every few seconds. The problem is when you take away the Final Deletion stuff, Matt and Jeff are two middle aged wrestlers who don’t have anywhere near the spark they used to have, leaving us with really dull matches.
Here are Cody and Brandi Rhodes for their big formal introduction. Cody talks about how the game is changing and lists off some things from Bound For Glory. He talks about the list (a list of things he wanted to do in wrestling) being his guiding light with names like Mike Bennett making him want to keep going.
After a quick Brandi chant, Cody says maybe he should have put the TNA World Title on the list because that’s the Queen’s jewels and the Master Sword. This brings out Mike Bennett and Maria with Bennett not being pleased with Cody being handed a title shot. When Mike got here, he was told that people aren’t just handed title shots so he was ready to earn it. Mike mentions the idea of fighting Cody and that’s enough for the man without a last name. The brawl is on the Bennett bails in a hurry.
Post break Cody says he wants Mike Bennett next week.
O’Shea stops Maria from going into Corgan’s office and calls her toots. Corgan has a message for her though: if she loses her title rematch next week, she’s out of power in the Knockouts division.
Grand Championship: Aron Rex vs. Baron Dax
Rex is defending and we’re back to three minute rounds. The champ gets a headlock to start but walks into a pair of neckbreakers. Josh calls this controlling the action because TNA likes to brand the simplest of things because WWE does it and that means it’s a good idea. We hit the chinlock on Rex before Dax hammers away to end the first round. Baron wins the first round and he’s in early control of the second as well. Rex elbows him down and grabs the Royal Arch (Edgecator, though it sounds like a big McDonald’s sandwich) for the submission at 4:18.
Rating: D. So the five minute rounds were just for Bound For Glory and not for the rest of the title matches? But hey, at least we get TEAM X GOLD, which is supposed to be entertaining for whatever reason. This isn’t an interesting concept and I was hoping they would drop it soon enough but let’s just keep it going no matter what because TNA needs to evolve the business by having Rex beat a tag team jobber in four minutes.
Rex says this is changing the business.
Lashley and the three potential opponents come out for the main event. Lashley takes his time and goes over each opponent before picking……Eddie.
TNA World Title: Lashley vs. Eddie Edwards
Lashley is defending but misses a spear at the bell. A release German suplex flips Eddie over though and a delayed vertical suplex makes it even worse. Eddie’s hurricanrana is countered with a powerbomb but he gets in a few kicks to the face. Now the hurricanrana brings Lashley off the middle rope and the champ is in trouble. The Boston Knee Party misses but Eddie sends him outside for the suicide dives, only to miss the third one and crash into the barricade. Back in and the Boston Knee Party out of nowhere gives Eddie the title at 7:50.
Rating: C+. This didn’t have time to go anywhere but it’s a really entertaining moment and that’s more important. Eddie getting the belt is a good idea, though couldn’t they have done this at Bound For Glory where it would have felt more important? Or, you know, not have had Eddie lose on Sunday? At least it felt important and big though while giving us something fresh. As long as they don’t change the title right back, this should be find.
Next up on Pop: Wolf Creek. Why do I have a feeling the choice for the title isn’t a coincidence?
Overall Rating: C-. Main event aside, this show did very little to fix TNA’s major issues. I still have very few people to care about around here and it’s not really getting much better. Between the new Grand Championship division and apparently an X-Division trios division (because reasons), it feels like they’re just throwing stuff out there. There’s really no main event story and there hasn’t been anything personal around the World Title in a long time. You need something people can connect to because average wrestling isn’t going to cut it these days. It’s not a bad show but very little I can connect to.
DJZ/Mandrews/Braxton Sutter b. Trevor Lee/Andrew Everett/Marshe Rocket – Shooting star press to Everett
Gail Kim b. Sienna – Rollup
Hardys b. Decay – Hardys escaped the cage
Aron Rex b. Baron Dax – Royal Arch
Eddie Edwards b. Lashley – Boston Knee Party
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