August 12, 2015
The execution was solid, seemingly building to a Jeff Jarrett vs Eric Young match down the line. EY attacked Jeff leading to GFW forces and TNA forces brawling in the ring. Unfortunately, they cut to commercial in the middle of the brawl.
One thing I like about this is that we are getting some new faces. TNA's roster is very small and because of that, you constantly have to introduce or evolve characters. The GFW stuff brought us Chris Mordetzky, PJ Black, Trevor Lee, Brian Myers, Lei'D Tapa, Sonjay Dutt, Royal Red and The Jarretts. I see a lot of potential in many of these names.
With that said, I also liked how they built a GFW vs TNA rivalry over pride. Jarrett claimed this wasn't an invasion. I think both companies would benefit by having a long-term working relationship which includes a talent exchange and interpromotional shows. It would be like ROH's relationship with NJPW just more prevalent.
*Awesome Kong vs Lei'D Tapa was what you would expect; two beasts in a battle of goliaths. They protected both with the double countout. Royal Red held his own on the mic introducing the Queen of Rings, Lei'D Tapa. Its kinda refreshing seeing an actual manager on TNA television. My one gripe is TNA's choice for Tapa's theme. They had two cool themes to choose from (used by Tapa in the past) but went with a generic and forgettable theme. The only GFW theme that stood out to me was PJ Black's.
*Rockstar Spud and Bobby Roode's promo was okay. Roode needs direction now that he lost his tag team partner and it would make sense that he would be pissed off and call out Rockstar Spud. I like Roode putting himself over by saying he isn't Austin Aries and if Spud were in the ring against him, it would be Spud's career that would be over. Speaking of Spud, his purple suit was boring. I expect more out of him. His underdog character works but I do get tired of the victim promos. Will we be getting Spud vs Roode?
*Lashley vs Godderz was a sloppy match at times, especially the finish. Its interesting to see both Jessie and Mordetzky going by the "Adonis" nickname but one clearly looking the part over the other. This match could have been cut in favor of a Robbie E pretape explaining his addition to the main event and a little more time for the opening brawl.
*Drew Galloway was laid out backstage. The number one suspects in these attacks should be the ones benefiting the most: GFW.
I always find the Dixie/Jeff pretapes as uncomfortable. I don't get the sense that Jeff respects Dixie. He constantly puts himself over, doesn't give eye contact and plays it off like she doesn't know things. She on the other hand comes off as sympathetic but naive for not connecting the dots about who are behind the attacks.
*The EC3 segment was a good way to move the story forward regarding his feud with Matt Hardy. My guess is that the endgame is EC3 vs Jeff Hardy but it looks like Matt will get another opportunity before that. Matt did a good job putting over EC3 in this segment. BTW, TNA needs to immediately make EC3 "God-Mode" shirts and put them on ShopTNA pronto.
*The tag team match was the highlight of the night for me. Its good to see the Wolves back on TNA TV after the crap with the Hernandez fiasco. Trevor Lee impressed me here with his wrestling. That deadlift german suplex was impressive. While I am not too into Lee's look, I would like to see him continue with TNA down the line. This was a fun match.
*This was the first show with the new production company. The most noticeable thing was the banners along the wrestler's entrances (clawmarks for the Wolves etc.). The crowd seemed to be mic'ed better and were much louder. Also, the camera shots were much less jittery.
*Tigre vs Sonjay was too short to be good. The hurricanrana on the outside was a cool spot. I wish these two would be given more time to tell a good story. Its hard to imagine that Sonjay has never held the X Division Title, especially with how many times the title has been passed around.
*I liked the stuff with Mr. Anderson. This is a good midcard feud to help feature Bram. Next week at Turning Point, they will face off in an Open Mic Challenge. By how the match was described, it sounds like a Stairway to Janice Match just with a mic instead of Janice. We shall see.
*Turning Point being next week is a prime example of TNA's identity crisis. On posters, this show is being presented as a PPV with unique graphics and logos. On IMPACT, it was being presented as another episode of IMPACT Wrestling. I'd like to think its the latter since having another PPV just two weeks after No Surrender is ridiculous. Turning Point should be good though with Bram vs Mr. Anderson, Gail vs the Dollhouse and PJ Black vs EC3 for the World Title.
*While the King of the Mountain Match had some good action, it felt rushed and was riddled with issues. There wasn't an explanation about why Robbie E was in the match. A pretape would have elevated him. A bunch of pins took place within the first thirty seconds. Robbie E pinned PJ Black clean (a TNA midcarder pinning a feature GFW star). Some of the wrestlers looked confused by what they needed to do. The final moment of PJ Black signaling a top of the ladder 450 Splash only to do it from the third rung was weak.
With that said, Lashley was a beast. Robbie looked good in the match. EY looked like a demented person. PJ Black reminds me of AJ Styles and is a person I would like to see more of on IMPACT Wrestling over the next year. He got the rub in this one by winning the match. He will face EC3 next week at Turning Point. Overall, this match had its moments but was very messy in general.