Date: June 8, 2017
Location: Film Studio 7, Mumbai, India
Commentators: Jeremy Borash, Josh Matthews
This is a special show as it’s the first of four episodes to be held in Mumbai, India. We’re less than a month away from Slammiversary and now the main event seems to be set in stone as GFW World Champion Alberto El Patron will face Impact Wrestling World Champion Lashley in what is likely a winner take all match. Let’s get to it.
We’re in India for perhaps the biggest Impacts ever so LET’S HAVE THE FIGHTING ANNOUNCERS! Bruce Prichard says there’s no physical altercations before Slammiversary or they’re both fired, no matter who starts it. You have all these titles and all these stars and big names and you pick THIS to start things off? Honestly, if this is what they have for their biggest or second biggest story, this company is more delusional than I thought.
The opening video takes a long look at traveling to India and how important this is. I mean, it’s not as important as Borash vs. Matthews but it’s certainly important.
Here’s Alberto El Patron to open things up. He talks about all the titles he’s won around the world but there’s one left for him to win. At Slammiversary (which he can’t pronounce), he’ll be the undisputed Impact Wrestling Heavyweight Champion. Cue Lashley to say that’s not happening because he’s unlike anything Alberto has ever faced. Tensions are teased but here’s Bruce Prichard again to cut them off. He thinks they should both defend their titles right here tonight with the Slammiversary spots on the line. They don’t find out their opponents until the matches start.
Bruce Prichard ignores a tag team called the Mumbai Cats.
X-Division Title: Caleb Konley vs. Low Ki
Low Ki is defending and wearing the suit again. They take turns driving each other into the corner with Ki getting the better of it off some kicks. A legsweep sets up a backsplash for two on the champ as the fans are VERY noisy here, in a good way. More kicks stagger Konley but he manages to send Ki outside for a suicide dive. Back in and Low Ki hits a running dropkick to knock Konley into the corner, followed by a Warrior’s Way to the back for the pin at 6:35. Low Ki is bleeding a bit from the eye.
Rating: D+. I’m still not a fan of Low Ki and the all kick/feet offense gets annoying in a hurry. The match itself was nothing special and it was clear that we’re just waiting on Sonjay Dutt to come out for the big grandstand challenge. That’s the logical move to make so this was really just a way to get us closer to that match.
Post match, here’s Sonjay to speak some of the native language and say how ironic it is for Low Ki’s eye to be busted open. He wants a title shot and remembers fighting Low Ki in the Elk Lodge in New York City fifteen years ago. Now there’s no Hit Squad behind Low Ki but Dutt has 1.4 billion people behind him. The match seems to be set.
Video on Rockstar Spud vs. Swoggle.
Davey Richards vs. Vikus Kumar
There’s no Angelina Love so Davey is even angrier than usual. The kicks start in again with Davey driving him into the corner and then sending Kumar to the floor. A dive misses but Kumar misses a moonsault, setting up the ankle lock to make Kumar tap at 2:44.
Post match here’s Ethan Carter III to whip Kumar with his belt. James Storm makes the save.
Prichard (third appearance in about 40 minutes) is in the back with Eli Drake, who thinks Bruce cost him the Grand Championship last week. Chris Adonis comes up and says the two of them deserve the World Title shot tonight. Bruce will consider it, so we’ll be seeing him again later.
Video on the TNA Hall of Fame.
Josh promises a sparring session next week.
Swoggle chases Spud down the aisle and into the crowd.
Video on Mahabali Shera, who gets to come home to his country. We see him with a crowd doing the Shera Shake. I mean, none of the fans are doing it but maybe they can’t remember if it’s the Shera Shake or the Shera Shuffle. To be fair, the announcers couldn’t remember either.
Joseph Park comes to see Jeremy Borash at his office to train. Park says fighting is in his family’s blood. One day his grandfather Jebediah Park took on George Hackenschmidt in a bare knuckles fight. Park: “And he almost beat him!” They’re off to train.
Impact Wrestling World Title: Lashley vs. ???
Lashley is defending against…..Moose. They trade shoulders to start until Moose runs the ropes for a spinning crossbody and two. It’s way too early for the spear though and Moose nails a bicycle kick. That’s fine with Lashley as he muscles Moose over and out to the floor. They head outside with Lashley sending Moose into the barricade.
Lashley’s chinlock doesn’t last long and Moose comes back with chops, followed by a dropkick to knock the champ off the top. Back from a break with Moose getting two off a running dropkick. Moose hits his own spear with Josh freaking out at the near fall. I’m not sure why he’d be so worried about the pay per view main event changing as it’s been done three or four times now.
Lashley is right back up with a superplex but the spear is countered with a big boot. They’re trading big shots here and it’s making for a pretty entertaining slugfest. The sitout chokeslam gives Moose two more but the Game Changer misses. Lashley spears him down to retain at 16:30.
Rating: B-. Good power match here but Lashley continues to be little more than a dragon who holds a title. Then again, Alberto is hardly that much better of an option and with Lashley having held the title for so long, you can only get so interested in either of their matches. Moose losing isn’t the worst thing in the world as he lost to someone higher up on the ladder so it’s hardly devastating.
LAX celebrates having both sets of Tag Team Titles.
Video of Spud traveling to India.
Knockouts Title: Laurel Van Ness vs. Rosemary
Laurel, still in the wedding dress, is challenging and has Sienna in her corner. Sienna starts fast and sends Rosemary into the post so Laurel can stomp away. Rosemary pops up and stares at Sienna, causing a collision on the apron. A rollup retains the title at 1:59.
Post match Allie runs in with a kendo stick (because Allie is Bayley, but “WWE IS ALWAYS RIPPING TNA OFF!!!” – TNA fans.) for the save.
KM asks Bruce (hey there he is again) for the title shot and does his “you’re lying” schtick.
JB and Park train. It’s funny you see. JB: “We’re screwed. We’re dead.” Park wants to teach JB how to be an X-Division wrestler by diving into a pool. Park: “Pretend that water is Josh Matthews!”
Global Force Wrestling Title: Alberto El Patron vs. Chris Adonis
Adonis is challenging and has Eli Drake in his corner. Drake offers an early distraction and Adonis sends him outside as they brawl into the crowd. That goes nowhere, though to be fair we couldn’t see anything while they were walking so for all I know, it was a Scrabble tournament. Back to ringside with Patron, who is wrestling in a shirt for some reason, getting caught in the Adonis Lock while in the ropes.
We take a break and come back with Adonis still working on the back with a cannonball and camel clutch. Alberto fights back again with some clotheslines but walks into a spinebuster for a delayed two. To be fair the guy barely ever wrestles anymore so asking him to remember to cover is probably a big request. Since he hasn’t learned anything, Adonis puts Alberto on top and gets pulled down into the armbreaker over the ropes. Alberto gets in a few more kicks and the top rope double stomp retains at 12:48.
Rating: C-. They had a match, Adonis used power, Alberto kicked and worked the arm and then the champion retained. If you really want to do something exciting for the main event of your first TV show in India, I really don’t know why you would pick Adonis for this spot but why would you do something that makes sense when you devote that much time to Bruce Prichard segments and Spud vs. Swoggle?
Drake and Adonis beat El Patron down with Lashley watching from the ramp. Moose runs in for the save to end the show.
Overall Rating: C-. This episode really illustrated a lot of the problems that the company has and the majority of them are with their storytelling. This week’s episode focused on Swoggle vs. Spud, the battling World Champions who have half a personality between the two of them and the stupid announcers, who have been fighting for the better part of three months now. That really does feel like the top story in the promotion right now and if they think that’s going to be the thing that sparks interest among the masses or even casual fans, they’re in for what shouldn’t be a big surprise.
On top of that, we had a World Title match on the grand stage of an international TV taping and CHRIS MASTERS is in the main event. He never did anything significant in WWE and now he’s main eventing here, despite not really doing anything other than showing up. I have no idea why we’re stuck sitting through these guys but at least there’s some hope. Dutt vs. Low Ki will be a huge upgrade next week though so it’s hardly like they have no hope on the horizon.
Low Ki b. Caleb Konley – Warrior’s Way
Davey Richards b. Vikus Kumar – Ankle lock
Lashley b. Moose – Spear
Rosemary b. Laurel Van Ness – Rollup
Alberto El Patron b. Chris Adonis – Double stomp
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