Inside Hulk Hogan’s office, Hogan shows off a rundown of plans for tonight’s show and says its the usual format that the wrestlers assembled before him are all familiar with. He talked about the momentum of the company and the performers and said that since he’s jumped on, things have moved at such a pace that they can’t present and format wrestling the way they always have.
Hogan has the four wrestlers in his office try to convince him why they should get to face Roode tonight for the World Title. Bully Ray about his toughness and how he can intimidate anyone and is the closest to the type of wrestler that Hogan went to war with back in the day. Styles said he is the longest reigning champ and wanted Roode stopped. Angle said that he’s had more singles titles than anyone but Styles said that the only ones he recognizes are the ones in TNA. Jeff Hardy sat there silent and said he’d let the fans decide. In the end, Hogan told Bully that it wasn’t going to be him since he’s only been a singles star for a year. Ray asked him if that was his final answer and Hogan said it was. Ray said, Eric was right about you, and walked out.
Gail Kim talks about being the most dominant women’s champion in the company’s ten year history, and states that she made this division and is the division. Gail tells the crowd that she is the most important person in this company and the problem she has is that the TNA Knockouts Tag Team Championship is being held by a man and a “so-called woman” OBD. Gail snaps at Madison for looking in her compact mirror and says that “right now this about the titles, not about the guy.” In spirit of Open Fight Night, Gail calls out Mr. and Mrs. ODB.
ODB and Eric Young vs. Gail Kim and Madison Rayne
Gail ties up with EY and catches him in an arm wringer which he reverses. Gail gets a side headlock applied, and EY reverses into one of his own too. EY locks in a bear hug and ODB yells at him to let go and she tags in. ODB lays in some forearm shots and then a breast bump. Gail bails the ring and the Knockout Tag Team Champions pose as we head to commercial.
Gail goes for a quick cover on ODB and gets two. A quick replay of what happened during the break occurs before Madison Rayne tags in and hits a straight kick to the head of ODB. Madison gets a two count when she covers and Gail gets tagged back in. Madison takes her time getting out of the ring which leads Gail to scold her. ODB hits a spear and Madison gets tagged back in as well as Eric Young. Madison hits a few shots to the back but EY no-sells them. Madison slaps him, but EY drops his shorts and body slams both Madison and Gail. ODB yells at him to put his pants on and ODB gets tagged in. ODB hits a running power slam for two. Gail is lifted in a fireman’s carry but fights out. ODB goes for a Fallaway Slam, but Madison grabs ODBs legs and keeps them down for the win.
Winner by Pinfall: TNA Knockouts Champion Gail Kim and Madison Rayne
((Jarrett’s Jab – I still hate the fact that Hogan gets to choose the challenger. I think of the four he chooses should actually wrestle for the spot, it makes the whole idea more credible and doesn’t make Hogan look so evil by trying to pick the best person to take the belt off of Roode. I also hate that I had to sit through a match where Eric Young wrestled women.))
Hogan is on the phone and asks them if they are on their way and says that he will see him soon. Hogan tries to be cool by saying Holy Shiz.
Rob Van Dam talks about how focused his is about becoming the new TNA Champion and being a good role model for the fans. He says he has unfinished business and calls out Gunner. During Gunners entrance, we see footage from Genesis when Gunner took RVD on the shelf for three months
Rob Van Dam vs. Gunner
Gunner is dropkicked off the apron to start this match. Gunner tries to come back with some clubby blows to the back and ramming RVD’s head into the ring apron. Gunner grabs a chair and throws it in the ring. Referee Earl Hebner puts it in a corner and RVD hits a spin kick. Rolling Thunder connects, but a kick in the corner does not and Gunner uses RVD’s hair to slam him to the mat. Several right hands and a shoulder tackle later, Gunner covers for a two count. Van Dam fights back with some rights to the abdomen of Gunner. Gunner looks to get the upper hand, but that doesn’t last long when RVD hits a spin kick and then one with a chair. Van Dam goes up top and surprisingly hits the Five Star Frog Splash to the other corner of the ring for the win.
Winner by Pinfall: Rob Van Dam
The Direct Auto Insurance Impact of the Night is the amazing Five Star by Van Dam. Tenay says that Hogan has narrowed the World Title Contenders to three and ponders who will face Roode tonight. And with that, we head to commercial.
The Television Champion Devon comes out the ring and reminds everyone that Hulk Hogan gave him the chance to defend the TV Championship every week. Joseph Park is shown in the audience for a brief moment before the camera shines back on Devon. The TV Champ talks about Garett Bischoff eliminating him in the Battle Royal last week and says that lady luck was on his shoulder. He calls him out to see if it’s still with him.
Television Champion: Devon (c) vs. Garett Bischoff
A tie-up starts the match and Devon gets the early advantage with some chain wrestling and a side headlock. Loud “Devon” chants as he hits a spinning shoulder block. Another tie-up and this time Garett Bischoff gets the advantage with Devon not even attempting to get out. Devon gets the advantage again and whips him with across the ring. Devon gets a side headlock and Robbie E and T attacks him.
After the two Robbie take their turns with Devon, Garett Bischoff starts to defend Devon and after a double team clothesline in the corner, the two gentlemen in cardigan sweaters retreat. ((Jarrett’s Jab – Just what you’d expect of a Garett Bischoff match, a very basic match with interference.))
Hogan says that this is going to be tougher than what he thought. Hogan states that one person is outside of the ring, Bully Ray. Hogan talks about Angle being tough and losing weight for the Olympics, Jeff Hardy is called a professional since came back. Angle tells Hogan that if he wants to pick someone that the fans love, pick Hardy; if you want the most athletic guy, pick AJ; but if you want someone that can get the job done, pick him.
The video piece about Abyss that aired last week aired tonight and Bully Ray makes his entrance. Ray states that Hogan must not know who he is because he was the first eliminated. Ray says that he’s pissed off and will take it out on the fans and talks about Joseph Park in the audience. Ray asks where Park is and Joseph looks scared. Ray tells him that he’s sick and tired of seeing him every week and tells him to get in the ring. The fans chant “YES” at Park as he heads to the ring. Park gets a mic and tells Ray that he is not a wrestler or a fighter and he never been in a fight. Park says that he’s intimidated and wants space. Ray gives it after Park says that he’s intimidated again. The fans start chanting “YES” again and Park says that all he wanted was answers about his brother’s disappearance. Ray tells him to knock the bass out of his voice. Park says that over the years, he’s represented a lot of defendants and he learned to look in a man’s eyes and can tell when he’s guilty. The fans decide to chant “GUILTY” and according to Article 10, Section 6 of the US Constitution he’s allowed a fair and speedy trial by a jury of his peers. After asking the fans if Bully Ray is not guilty (with only Bully Ray raising his hand) the fans found his guilty. Ray punches him the stomach and declares himself Not Guilty. Tenay says that he crossed the line, while Taz says that Joseph Park needs to stop barking up the wrong tree.
A video piece airs about Independent Wrestler Joey Ryan (or Joey Hollywood in Ra Ka King, TNA’s India promotion) and his Gut Check tonight. Ryan mentions getting the call while he was in Disney Land and how he never had a national spotlight. ((Jarrett’s Jab – I have really high hopes for Ryan, mostly because he’s trended on twitter within the first twenty minutes of the show with zero mention, and almost every tweet I see has him mentioned))
Jeremy Borash explains Gut Check and introduces Joey Ryan’s opponent, The X-Division Champion Austin Aries.
TNA Gut Check: TNA X Division Champion Austin Aries vs. Joey Ryan
Ryan hits a shoulder drag and poses in the corner. Aries claps and they tie up again with Aries hit a drop toe-hold and posing himself. Ryan looks pissed and shoves him. Aries slaps him and hits several forearm shots before Ryan goes to the floor. Aries his a cross body to the outside. Ryan makes it to the ring and crotches Aries on the top rope for two. Ryan hits a few right hands and Aries pulls Ryan’s chest hair to get up and eats a drop kick. Ryan covers for two and then tries it again for another two. Aries starts hitting forearms again and knocks him to the ground. Aries goes for what looks like a running corner drop kick, but Ryan goes to the floor. Ryan goes to the ring and eats a drop kick. Ryan hits a version of a pump handle suplex I hadn’t seen before. Ryan goes up top and misses, but Aries hits the corner drop kick and the brain buster for three.
Winner by Pinfall: Austin Aries
((Jarrett’s Jab – Now that Impact Wrestling is going live, ironically starting next week, I hope they announce the winner of the Gut Check that night…you know, while the competitor is still fresh in people’s mind. Joey Ryan looked impressive while wrestling Aries, unlike Alex Silva last week that faced Robbie E. For people to believe into these independent talents, they need to look impressive against big names in TNA. Ryan did that tonight, and I hope future Gut Check participants do the same.))
Bobby Roode makes his entrance for his main event match. The two possible challengers, AJ Styles and Kurt Angle, make their full ring entrances. Hulk Hogan then makes his entrance and hypes both men by saying that either of them could be the next World Champion. Hogan puts over Angle and Styles’ impressive resume, and says that because AJ knows the champ better than anyone, AJ gets the shot. AJ and Angle hug and Roode yells “I’m Going to Make History!”
TNA World Heavyweight Championship: Bobby Roode (c) vs. AJ Styles
Roode powers out of a tie-up, but walks into a shoulder block and covers for a one count. Tenay talks about AJ being the current record holder for the longest TNA World Title reign and dangling a carrot in front of Styles. Tenay says that this is a Pay-Per-View quality match (That has main evened two pay-per-views last year) as Styles hits an impressive drop kick and Roode slides to the floor again.
Back from the break, Styles whips Roode into a corner and hits a jumping forearm, but misses it the second time he tries it. Roode pushes Styles left-shoulder first into the ring post and to the floor. Roode goes to the outside and throws the left shoulder into the post again before tossing him in the ring and covering him for two. Roode picks up Styles and puts him in an arm wringer before DDTing the arm to the ground. Roode cinches in an armbar and taunts the fans in attendance. Roode cinches in the armbar again as the fans start an “AJ Styles” chant. AJ is able to get to his feet and break the hold and use his right arm to hit a few right hands. Roode hits a clubby blow to the left arm, but Styles ducks down during a charge and Roode goes flying over the top rope and to the floor. Styles hits a cross body to the outside and rams Roode’s head into the ring post. AJ looks up to the ramp and the hesitation costs him as he gets hip tossed back first into the steel steps. Roode throws him in the ring and gets a two count. Hogan is shown on a split screen and told that his guest has arrived as we head to another commercial break.
Roode hits a delayed vertical suplex on Styles and a knee drop for two. Roode tries a variation of the camel clutch before cinching in a variation of the surfboard. AJ is able to counter the submission, but Roode is one step ahead of the Phenomenal One by countering the springboard forearm. AJ rams his forearm into the midsection of Roode and hits the forearm for two. Roode takes AJ to the top and hits clubby blows along the way. AJ shoves him off the top and hits a missile dropkick for a close two count. Roode goes for the Pay Off, but AJ kicks the leg. AJ goes for the clash, but Roode counters that and hits the spear for two. Roode cinches in the crossface, but AJ rolls him up for a two count. AJ goes for the —, but Roode reaches the ropes. AJ starts kicking the left leg and then his head of Roode before trying the clash again. Roode counters into a spine buster and then hits the payoff for two. The frustration of Roode shows as AJ starts to get to his feet. Roode goes for the Payoff again, but AJ fights out and hits the Pele kick. AJ looks over his shoulder and Roode gets the knees up for the 450 and gets the pin.
Winner by Pinfall and STILL TNA World Heavyweight Champion: Bobby Roode
Christopher Daniels and Kazarian are shown on the ramp mocking AJ Styles for losing. Replays of the finish are shown Bobby Roode says that he is officially the longest reigning World Heavyweight Champion in the history of Impact Wrestling and calls for his Champaign. SoCal Val hands him two glasses and a bottle and Roode invites Hulk Hogan to the ring to celebrate with “your champion.” Roode pours both glasses as we head to yet another break
Roode calls for his confetti and Tenay angrily states that “He’s even named it!” (The Celebration of Domination) Roode dances around the ring before Hogan’s music hits and he walks up the ramp. Roode is shown making confetti angles in the ring. Hogan calls his reign very impressive and says that he’s glad he isn’t a betting man and had the deck stacked against him. Hogan said he didn’t know how good he was and Roode hands him a glass of Champaign. Hogan congratulates him and lets him know that he’s glad he called him out there and shakes his hand. Hogan said Roode has done things he never saw coming and that the hard work has just begun. Hogan reminds Roode that he is the Impact Wrestling champion and someone else wants to congratulate him and Hogan apologizes for his late arrival.
The lights go out and when they come back on, Sting is standing behind him. Sting starts hitting rights and lefts before hitting the Stinger Splash and clothesline. Hogan begs Roode to not leave, and states that Impact Wrestling starts at a new time next week and next week, he has something that he can’t run from anymore. Hogan says that next week the show will start off with a lumberjack match between Roode and Sting! Roode starts screaming to the sky on the ramp and the camera zooms in on Sting to close the show.
((Jarrett’s Jab – Good match from AJ Styles and Roode, and the second match this year he’s actually won with his finisher, the Payoff. I’ll go out on a limb and say that’s the second match he’s won since winning the championship with his finisher. I saw Sting coming from a mile away, and I’m dissapointed. I really hope that either Storm or Styles gets to face Roode in Arlington at Slammiversary, if for nothing else, rewarding the TNA originals on their ten year anniversary. That’s it for Open Fight Night tonight, be sure to check with TNAStars for all of your TNA news and remember that Impact Wrestling starts an hour early starting next week!))