Impact Wrestling opens up this week with the standard recap video, did you hear Rampage Jackson was in TNA again? Did you also hear that Jeff Hardy assaulted Bully Ray’s balls…and Hulk Hogan almost assaulted Bully Ray’s head with a hammer?
Welcome to Impact from the Arena at Gwinnett Center in the shadow of Atlanta, Georgia. Mike Tenay informs us that this is the Bound for Glory Series selection show as Hulk Hogan makes his entrance to kick off this week’s show. Hulk Hogan talked about almost bashing Bully Ray’s head in and having to send Brooke Hogan home. That receives a little bit of a negative reaction, not much though. Hogan announces that tonight all the members of the Bound for Glory Series will be decided. So far, Samoa Joe, Hernandez and Jay Bradley have qualified for the Bound for Glory Series. Hogan states that two men have received free passes due to winning the series in the past. Jeff Hardy comes out and bitches about being sick of hammer and Aces and Eights. Luckily for me, Bobby Roode comes out to interrupt. Roode touts himself as the “longest reigning, most dominant champion in Impact Wrestling history” and the first winner of the Bound for Glory Series. “I’m one for one, batting a thousand…and this year, I’m going two for two.” Hulk announces that next week is Open Fight Night and the fans can “call in and vote or twitter or whatever they gotta do.” The fans can vote between Jeff Hardy and Bobby Roode on which men can have the first call out. Roode sarcastically says that it’s so convenient and he’s going to call out Jeff Hardy if he’s picked. Roode states that he’s going to kick Jeff’s ass. Jeff asks Roode to kick his ass now. Bully Ray comes out and asks why everyone is so mad at each other. Bully Ray asks if it really matter who wins the Bound for Glory, because whoever wins has to face the World Champion. “You know, and you know, and daddie-o knows who the world Champion will be.” Bully Ray says that he has a bigger problem than that, and it’s with Hogan as usual. Bully Ray demands to know why no Aces and Eights members have a spot in the Bound for Glory Series. Hogan states that he’s given this a lot of thought, and Aces and Eights will have one spot and it will be determined by a Battle Royal between all the Aces and Eights member. Bully Ray calls it typical Hogan and then goes on to call everyone in the Bound for Glory Series targets before seeking Wes and Garrett on Jeff Hardy and Bobby Roode. The two former World Champions fight off the rookies, but Roode gets a cheap shot on the so-called Artist and yells that he’s Bound for Glory.
Mike Tenay hypes that Sting will announce his future in wrestling tonight and Taz tells Sting to go away. AJ Styles will face Kurt Angle in a Slammiversary rematch, and the winner will qualify for the Bound for Glory Series. And coming up next, the TNA World Tag Team Champions James Storm and Gunner will face the Bad Influence and the winners will qualify for the Bound for Glory Series.
Backstage, which is shown in widescreen now for some reason, Bad Influence is asked about their match with Storm and Gunner. Kazarian makes a joke about Storm having more partners than Taylor Swift, and Daniels stated “He should really be tested”. Kazarian makes fun of Gunners’ beard by saying that it scares the elderly. No matter which one wins, one of the members of Bad Influence will be your next World Champion. ((Jarrett’s Jab – A very odd opening segment. Hogan rambled and Hardy just sounded awkward. He dragged the “Kick my ass now” line way too long. Bully Ray went from demanding Aces and Eights be put into the Bound for Glory Series, to stating that everyone in the series was targets. The only person on point the entire time was Bobby Roode. Roode shined on the microphone and he should be fun to watch in the Bound for Glory Series this year.))
Bound for Glory Series Qualifying Match: Bad Influence (Christopher Daniels and Kazarian) vs. TNA World Tag Team Champions James Storm and Gunner
Daniels and Storm start off the match. Storm dominates early with a tie-up and a straight right hand to the Fallen Angel. Storm runs through Daniels with a shoulder block and then follows it up with a hiptop and a suplex connects. Storm hits a knee drop and Daniels runs to the wrong corner, getting a right hand by Gunner. Gunner is tagged in and hits a double clothesline before covering Daniels for two. Daniels quickly runs to his corner and tags in Kazarian, who gets peppered with right hands and almost gets caught in the Torture Rack. Daniels grabs the legs of Gunner and Kazarian hits a springboard leg drop. Daniels tags back in and grounds Gunner with elbows to the skull. Kazarian is tagged back in and the two hit a double team stereo of kicks and elbows to Gunner before Kazarian covers for two. Gunner double clotheslines Bad Influence tags in Storm. Storm runs through Kazarian with right hands and clotheslines before hitting a neck breaker. Kazarian tries a hurricanrana, but instead gets stacked up for two when Daniels breaks up the pin. Gunner hits a high knee on Kazarian and locks him in the rack, but Daniels grabs Kazarian and throws Gunner out. Storm sends Daniels into his partner and hits Closing Time on Kazarian. Storm is hit in the back with one of the Tag Team titles and Kazarian rolls up Storm for the win.
Winners by Pinfall and Advancing to the Bound for Glory Series: Bad Influence
Crimson is backstage and the camera guy asks him why he’s here. Crimson asks the camera guy how long it’s been since he was last seen, and Crimson answers his own question by saying that it’s been 12 months. He rewords the camera guy’s original question and says no before walking through a door.
Velvet Sky is backstage with a manila envelope saying that it’s a little present for Mickie James and it will make everyone happy.
Crimson comes out and states two numbers: 470 and 12. “You see, those are two numbers you people in this arena and you people at home may know nothing about; but to me…to me…those numbers have been consuming me.” Crimson talks about being undefeated for 470 days and after one blemish, he was sent home for 12 months. Tonight he’s not consumed by numbers because he has an opportunity. “Joseph Park, come out here and dance with the devil’s own.”
Bound for Glory Series Qualifying Match: Crimson vs. Joseph Park
Crimson kicks Park in the gut and takes over easy, shoving Park before getting slapped. Park hits a hiptoss, but is taken down with a clothesline. Park is Irish Whipped into the turnbuckle and slides out of the ring. Crimson goes after him, slamming his head into the ring apron. Sliding Park back in the ring, Crimson measures Park before starting to deliver knees to the face followed by a neckbreaker. Crimson yells that this is it, but Park gets up and delivers a few right hands before getting spinebustered. Crimson stalks Park for a charge, but he misses and Park rolls up Crimson for the win.
Winner by Pinfall and Advancing to the Bound for Glory Series: Joseph Park
Backstage, Mickie James is talking to her reflection in the mirror about how nice it is for a former champion to have something for her. She asks her reflection if she’s ready and apparently the reflection says yes.
((Jarrett’s Jab – For those of you who are confused with Crimson’s outfit, he is part of a group in Ohio Valley Wrestling, which you can watch online, called the Coalition. His work has improved in leaps and bounds since the last time he was on Impact Wrestling and it’s a shame that his return was wasted like that. I hope TNA can find a role for the formerly undefeated wrestler because he deserves a second look.))
Back from the break, Velvet Sky makes her way to the ring with the manila envelope in hand. Velvet says that it seems like her friendship with Mickie James has been in the air since she lost the Knockouts Championship. She asks Mickie if she could come to the ring, and the current Knockouts Championship obliges. Mickie says that Velvet didn’t have to give her anything, and touts Velvet as the Knockout of the month and she should be getting Velvet something. Velvet hands Mickie a piece of paper that was in the envelope and explains what it is while Mickie’s trying to read the letter to herself. Velvet explains that it is medical clearance and “it’s rematch time baby.” Mickie states that “you can get fake stuff like this on the internet all the time” and Velvet says that there’s nothing fake about this. Mickie calls her over to look at the clearance date and “it says that you were cleared yesterday, but as far as I can see, your knee is still hurt today” before she kicks Velvet’s left leg and slams her head against the mat. Mickie locks in a move I haven’t seen in a long time, a modified Hangman’s Clutch! (From the Chris Hero/Kassius Ohno playbook) I can’t believe Mickie did that in heels.
Matt Morgan is pacing backstage and talks about how Sting could not beat, yet he has to qualify for the Bound for Glory Series. Just like Sting couldn’t beat Morgan, none of the three guys can beat him tonight.
((Jarrett’s Jab – Velvet Sky was actually pretty decent. She kept her words short and sweet and Mickie has been very motivated in the past few months. Even though I dread Velvet…period…they have built up some great interest and intrigue into a rematch.))
Morgan is the only one with a televised entrance, and he’s wearing Hogan’s robe. King and Morgan start off the match. King quickly tags in big Rob Terry. Morgan pushes Terry and Terry sjoves back. Terry tries to shoulder block Morgan, but he doesn’t fall down. Morgan tries the same thing and Terry doesn’t move. Kenny King distracts Rob Terry long enough for Matt Morgan to take an advantage with headbutts and a choke In the corner. King tags Morgan’s boot and punches Terry a few time but it doesn’t faze him. King quickly tags Morgan back in and Morgan takes Rob Terry’s head off with a kick and poses. Morgan drops down on Terry while he yells “Is that the best you got?” Morgan comes off the ropes and King tags himself in again. Morgan isn’t happy at all as King hits a springboard Axe Handle. Terry gets in control with a big back body drop and Magnus tags himself in. Magnus takes off King’s head with a lariat and knocks both Terry and Morgan off the top rope. King comes off the top rope and Magnus catches him in a scoop brainbuster. Magnus drops the big elbow off the top and gets two when Matt Morgan breaks up the pin. Terry rams shoulders into Matt Morgan and King hits a spin kick on Magnus. Terry chokeslams Kenny King and Terry gets his head taken off with the Carbon Footprint by Matt Morgan. Morgan charges at Magnus, but Magnus holds the rope down. Magnus nails the Mag Daddy Driver on King for the win.
Winner by Pinfall and Advancing to the Bound for Glory Series: Magnus
((Jarrett’s Jab – Magnus gets a big win here, but I really believe that Morgan should be involved in the BFG Series this year somehow. Morgan is one of the names that I’m surprised isn’t a former World Champion and with Sting not being able to technically beat him, they already gave him a good amount of credibility. It honestly seems TNA is afraid to pull the trigger and have missed several opportunities to make him a World Champion. The Most Genetically-Jacked, Athletically-Stacked Giant Walking Today is one of the most underrated players in TNA and should be given an opportunity to finally break through the glass ceiling. Maybe 2014 will be his year.))
Back from the break and because TNA hates me, here’s Eric Young! EY thanks the camera man for coming and plugs his Animal Planet show. He talks about going to reel in Austin Aries tonight and get into the Bound for Glory Series. He then asks if this is going to air, panics, and runs into a bathroom stall.
A video highlights the media attention Rampage Jackson joining TNA got, and the confrontation he had with Kurt Angle. Backstage, Rampage is putting his chain around his neck.
Highlights of Sting’s match with Bully Ray from Slammiversary were shown and how Sting had the match won twice before he was beaten. Inside the Arena at Gwinnett Center, Sting makes his entrance and says that it feels good to be in Atlanta Georgia. Sting talks about being the first inductee in the TNA Hall of Fame last year and a lot changing over the last year. Everyone knows that Sting failed and he can no longer wrestle for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship again. At Slammiversary he sent wave after wave after him and that he can never forget that he was left by himself to fight off the world. Sting called Aces and Eights a fine-tuned a machine and just like family, and he has to go to a place he never thought he’d have to go again. He has to create a family that he can trust: His own…new…mafia. “Soon, the new Main Event Mafia will rise, and Aces and Eights will fall.”
((Jarrett’s Jab – What does James Storm, AJ Styles, Bobby Roode, Samoa Joe, Mr. Anderson and Austin Aries have in common? They’re all former TNA World Champions. I’m excited as the crowd is for the new Main Event Mafia. Unlike some people that are only looking at the negative, I’m looking at the positives. If the stable goes by the former World Championship criteria, that’s a pretty good pool of young talent there. Samoa Joe or James Storm being backed by someone like Sting would be great for their careers and could be the jumpstart they need. If it doesn’t go by the World Championship criteria, there’s a ton of young talent that can benefit from even being associated with Sting. Of course if they try to recruit Nash and Steiner back to TNA deals without any young talent, TNA deserves every bit of criticism it gets for the angle.))
We are shown a replay of Sting announcing that he’s creating a new Main Event Mafia.
Bound for Glory Series Qualifying Match: Eric Young (with ODB) vs. Austin Aries
After some staling and EY mocking Austin Aries, the two finally tie up and Aries wrings the arm. EY reverses it to an armbar and Aries applies a headscissor to get out. The two reach a stalemate and Aries applauds. Another tieup and Aries applies an armwringer before EY flips into a reversal. Aries does the same and takes EY down before spinning around on him and posing in the corner. EY goes after Aries and Aries gets out of the ring. For some reason ODB gets in the ring and EY spins around on ODB, smacks her rear and mocks Aries corner pose. EY sends Aries head first into the turnbuckle and clotheslines him for one. Aries slides out of the ring and yells at ODB, but EY pulls him to the apron. Aries rakes EY’s eyes and uses his boot to choke Young. Aries picks up EY by the beard and uses the top rope to choke him before using the middle rope and coming down with an elbow and a planca for two. Aries again uses the beard to crank back on EY’s head. Two knife-edged chops by Aries connects before EY hits one of his own followed by several right hands. Aries sends EY to the corner, and Young flips over the top rope and does a strut on the apron. Aries attempts the same thing when EY sends him into the corner, but EY knocks him off the apron and hits a dive for two. EY goes to the top rope, and Aries shakes the ropes, hits the IED and the Brainbuster for the win.
Winner by Pinfall and Advancing to the Bound for Glory Series: Austin Aries
Bully Ray is backstage, and tells DOC that Hogan thinks he has the club right where he wants it, but the issue is done and settled. Bully asks each member if they agree and every member agrees except for DOC, who does with insistence from the club.
((Jarrett’s Jab – That was absolutely ridiculous on so many levels. To start with, one half of the Knockout Tag Team Champions, comedy wrestler Eric Young had a competitive match with the longest reigning X Division Champion in history and former World Heavyweight Champion Austin Aries. Second, Austin Aries had to actually waste his time and make TNA’s equivalent to Santino Marella look good, and EY will just disappear for months doing his Animal Planet show. Third, Aries looks weak heading into the Bound for Glory Series, and that’s not good for a former World Champion. ))
Chris Sabin talks about the past two years of his life being well documented. When he tore his knee last year, he had seven matches, and one of them was against Austin Aries. He can’t help but think about what if he hadn’t torn the second ACL, had won the X Division Title last year, and was able to cash it in for a World Title shot. It’s all well and good though because he’s now a five time X Division Champion, but he doesn’t know whether to cash the belt in or not.
Bound for Glory Series Qualifying Battle Royal: Devon vs. Wes Brisco vs. Mr. Anderson vs. Knux vs. Garett Bischoff vs. DOC
The six circle the ring to start the match. After a little bit of stalling, Anderson points his finger like a gun and “shoots” Wes Brisco. Wes acts like he was shot and goes over the top rope. Anderson does Hogan’s “You” bit and tells Garett to “come here brother.” After spinning Garett around the ring, Anderson tosses Garett over. Knux puts up his fists and Anderosn points at the sky and uses his finger to poke Knux over. Anderson tells Devon to get the tables and Devon hops over the top rope and looks under the ring skirt before laughing and telling Anderson “you got me!” Now just Anderson and DOC are left in the ring. Anderson tells DOC to go over the top rope, and DOC teases going over before getting back in the ring. Devon and Knux hop on the apron to scold DOC. Anderson yells DOC to “get your ass over the top like everyone else. Do you think you’re frickin’ special?” Doc punches Anderson and Anderson manages to get him over the top rope. Devon freaks out and Anderson starts yelling at DOC too.
Rampage Jackson finds Kurt Angle warming up and asks him what he meant when he said he would face Rampage when he was ready. Kurt explained to be a wrestler that Rampage would have to train and compares it to him coming into Bellator and thinking he could beat Rampage overnight. Kurt states that he can’t wait to see Rampage’s next fight, and Rampage states that he can’t wait to see Kurt fight AJ tonight.
Backstage members of Aces and Eights yell at DOC and at least half of the beginning is censored. Bully Ray tells them all to knock it off and says that Hogan is doing to the club, what the club has been doing to TNA. Anderson tells DOC if someone else’s name was drawn, he would have been jumping over the top rope. DOC complains about trying to step up like Anderson and Devon have been doing. Bully says that he respects the passion, but they had a plan out there. DOC manages to change the subject to AJ Styles and how Styles clocked him with a hammer a few weeks ago and wanting to step up by “taking his ass out.” Bully tells him to get it done.
Bound for Glory Series Qualifying Match: Kurt Angle vs. AJ Styles
AJ gets a great reaction during his entrance from his home state. They also heavily edited his entrance theme “Evil Ways (Justice Mix)” by Blues Saraceno including cutting out the first verse and shortening the intro, which is a very smart move. This is the rematch from Slammiversary and Angle backs AJ into a corner as soon as the bell rings. Standing switch and an arm wringer on Angle before AJ applies the side headlock. AJ hits an amazing dropkick on Angle after Angle shoots off the ropes. AJ drops down an elbow to the shoulder of Angle and a flying forearm in the corner. AJ hits a backbreaker on Angle as Taz talks about his methodical style. Angle gets whipped in the corner before fighting back with some right hands. AJ gets a chop and a suplex before kicking Angle’s abdomen. Angle fights back with a right hand before getting suplexed hard into the turnbuckles. Rampage Jackson is shown watching the match backstage as we take our last commercial break!
Back from the break and AJ Styles is dominating Kurt Angle with a chinlock. Mike Tenay reminds everyone that the winner of this match will claim the last spot in the Bound for Glory Series as AJ hits a baseball slide on Angle that sends him on top of the commentary desk. AJ goes for a slingshot dive, but Angle moves and AJ lands on his feet. Angle catches AJ in a Belly-to-Belly suplex and we get a replay of the sweet move before Angle rolls AJ back in the ring. Angle hits a backbreaker for one. Angle cinches in a chinlock on AJ but AJ manages to break out before getting caught in a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. Angle gets another one count before applying what Taz calls a reverse gutwrench, which looks more like a reverse bearhug. AJ elbows out of it and the two start trading right hands. AJ hits a combination of right hands, backfists, kicks and a lariat to get Angle off his feet. AJ continues to assert his dominance with kicks and shoulder blocks before hitting the springboard forearm for a close two count. Taz talks about more Aces and Eights member needing to be in the Bound for Glory Series as Angle hits the three german suplexes. Angle goes for the Angle Slam, but AJ reverses into a DDT for another close two count. We are shown a replay of the great counter and Taz talks about Angle’s neck problems. The crowd starts a “This is Awesome” chant before AJ misses a splash in the corner and eats an Angle Slam for two. Angle shows signs of desperation before taking the straps down and applying the Ankle Lock. AJ reverses into the Calf Killer. Angle rolls through into the Ankle Lcok and AJ counters and it sends Angle into the corner head first. AJ nails a spin kick and Taz mentions that Angle lost his mouthpiece earlier and AJ may have been aiming for the jaw. AJ goes up top and Angle tries a suplex from the top. AJ lands on his feet and Angle is DDT’ed right into the coner. DOC and Knux for AJ, but collide into Angle. AJ sends DOC to the outside and Angle sends Anderson out of the ring. AJ quickly rolls up Angle for the win.
Winner by Pinfall and Advancing to the Bound for Glory Series: AJ Styles
Anderson, Knux and DOC attack Angle, but Rampage Jackson comes to the ring and almost hits DOC with the chain. The two manage to keep the three Aces and Eights member out of the ring as the show closes.
((Jarrett’s Jab – I’m not going to complain about the match quality between AJ Styles and Kurt Angle, but when the LED ribbon around the arena tells you to order the replay of Slammiversary, why give away one of the best matches on TV. AJ gets his win back and advances into the Bound for Glory Series. This year should be really interesting with some big names like Jeff Hardy and Bobby Roode involved, former World Champions in Mr. Anderson, AJ Styles and Austin Aries, and then some rising stars like Magnus, Daniels and Kazarian. I still believe that Joseph Park should have lost and unless they have a plan to get him out of the series, it could damage his character.))