Josh’s Final Impact
March 29, 2013
By: Josh Boutwell of Wrestleview.com
Another city down in Impact on the road and Jonesboro seemed really hot and the atmosphere was great. I initially was a little worried when TNA first announced towns like this, but it seems like it was really hungry for wrestling and it showed. They are really building up the show in Corpus Christi and that is a great thing, but I almost feel bad for Jonesboro. You know they’re probably sitting there going “damn, that Corpus Christi show sure sounds great”, but you have to build towards big Impact’s like that when there is only 4 PPV’s a year. It also makes certain episodes of Impact feel special and will make the atmosphere there that much bigger.
The opening segment with Hardy and Bully Ray was good and set the table for the rest of the show. I really, really enjoyed the Aces & Eights segment backstage where Bully Ray was kind of getting in Mr. Anderson’s ear to talk him up, then Anderson showed it was working by losing his mind. It shows Ray as truly the leader and a puppeteer kind of with Ray wanting Anderson to hurt Hardy before the big title match. The match with Hardy was really well worked and they had one of their better matches. As soon as Hogan said Hardy could pick the stipulation, I thought Ladder Match, but adding the Full Metal Mayhem (TNA’s version of TLC) made it that much better. Ray and Hardy were part of the Ladder & TLC Matches in WWE that really revolutionized Ladder Matches and Tag Team wrestling at the time, so this will be a treat.
The tag match was really, really good and Chavo/Hernandez set up some really cool spots during the match as well with Hernandez looking extremely impressive, but when you’re in there with Bad Influence, how can you not? I was disappointed at first that Bad Influence didn’t win, but when they announced the title match would take place in Corpus Christi in two weeks, it led me to believe the Bad Influence/Dirty Heels program they set up will go on after that and likely into Slammiversary.
It was really good to see Petey Williams back in TNA and I truly hope he is here to stay because he is one of my favorite X-Division wrestlers and who doesn’t miss the Canadian Destroyer? That 3-Way should be fun next week.
Adam Pearce & Magno is something I’m really looking forward to. These are the types of guys I want to see on Gut Check. It doesn’t have to be two guys that have been in the business for 3 months. It can be veterans that haven’t gotten a shot in TNA or WWE. I’m obviously a lucha mark, so I’m really hoping he gets the contract, but I’m pretty confident Pearce is getting that spot (he was at the Chicago tapings 2 weeks ago backstage I think). TNA has talked about for a long time at wanting a Hispanic wrestler to appeal to that demographic and also a masked wrestler to market. Magno is the best of both worlds being Hispanic, but also an English speaking Hispanic, as well as being a great luchador. I just doubt that TNA pulls the trigger. I mean Eric Bischoff doesn’t have great experience in marketing masked luchadors (he had probably the best essemblence of cruiserweights ever in WCW and some of the most popular masked luchadors ever in Rey Mysterio Jr., Psicosis, Juventud Guerrera, Super Calo, La Parka, etc, but never sold a single mask from them and Rey was the only one that even got a t-shirt), though I know he doesn’t make all the decisions. I guess there is hope both may get contracts as well.
The Taryn/Gail segment went okay, but obviously is building towards a tag match with Tara & Velvet involved. Seeing Velvet & Terrell together really made me think they could make a good Beautiful People Pt. 2 if they both turned heel.
AJ Styles seems to be taking on more and more Crow-Sting characteristics with him showing up in the crowd. I’m really digging this angle and AJ is selling it with his facial expressions (or lack thereof). The 6-man tag that followed it was really good too with good time given. Aces & Eights continue to look strong since Lockdown.
The Sting/Hogan confrontation was done pretty well with Sting starting to show more and more frustration over Hogan not forgiving him. It really seems like they may be building towards a Sting-Ray or Hogan-Ray (I really hope not) match.
Another strong showing from TNA on the road and hopefully this continues. My only gripe would be that there were just 3 matches, but I can’t gripe too much when all 3 were given good time and they progressed several storylines at the same time.
– Promo/Segment of the Night: Storm/AJ
– Match of the Night: Hernandez & Chavo vs. Bad Influence
– Overall Grade: A
Until next week… PEACE!
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