Impact Wrestling – September 23, 2015

Impact Wrestling
Date: September 23, 2015
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: D’Angelo Dinero, Josh Matthews

Well the invaders are gone and now it’s time for the build to Bound For Glory, which is going to take place in the next two weeks because that’s all the time we have left. The big story is now Ethan Carter III messing with Jeff Hardy while we wait for a new #1 contender to be crowned. The show basically resets tonight after the GFW guys are gone so let’s get to it.

We open with a recap of last week’s Lethal Lockdown. It still sucks.

The roster is around the ring as Team TNA and Dixie are in the ring. Galloway thanks Dixie for the chance and talks about how this is their platform to show how much they love wrestling. Dixie makes a five way match for the #1 contendership later in the night. However, Dixie isn’t done yet. There’s one man who is outside of the family now and she wants him out here right now.

Cue Eric Young, who says he has an iron clad contract with TNA but he hedged his bets anyway. There’s nothing Dixie and company can do about it, but Dixie thinks the people around the ring might want to do something. She brings out Sgt. Chris Melendez, who has lost to Eric every single time as Josh points out.

Sgt. Chris Melendez vs. Eric Young

Lumberjack match. Young throws him to the floor to start but the lumberjacks let him back inside. Back in and the fans chant USA as Young is still in full control with a chinlock. Young keeps destroying him with some knees in the corner as Josh hypes up Kurt Angle returning at Bound For Glory. A horrible Samoan drop puts Young down but he pokes Chris in the eye. The prosthetic leg to the face looks to set up the piledriver but instead puts Chris on top for a superplex. Chris shoves him off and hits a missile dropkick for the pin at 5:25.

Rating: D. So here’s the lesson: if you go to war and get your leg blown off, you’ll get to come back to a wrestling promotion that almost no one watches and be one of the least interesting wrestlers of all time before eventually beating an upper midcarder, which will be treated like the most amazing moment in history. Boring match again, because neither of these two are anything worth watching.

The lumberjacks come in to celebrate because they’re easily entertained.

The Dollhouse talks about hurting Gail Kim tonight. Jade is thrilled to get the chance. Rebel and Belle are told to go prove their worth to Taryn.

Ethan Carter III tells Jeff Hardy to do what he says tonight or get fired.

Lashley is done with defending TNA and is ready to go to Bound For Glory.

The announcers talk about the elimination match tonight. Josh looks like a tool with his flannel shirt and sleeve tattoo.

Knockouts Title: Gail Kim vs. Jade

Gail is defending but Jade jumps her to start. A hurricanrana gets two for the champ but a German suplex gets the same for Jade. Some chops in the corner have Gail in trouble (Pope: “Look at the chest of Gail Kim!”) until she comes back with her corner cross body and the Figure Four around the post. Another hurricanrana is countered into a Batista Bomb to give Jade two, only to have Eat Defeat retain Gail’s title at 4:24.

Rating: C-. The match wasn’t bad but they gave away the ending at the beginning by showing the Gail vs. Kong graphic for Bound For Glory. You think they can afford to make a second graphic for a single match? Gail was her usual solid but dull self here and Jade did her normal stuff to make for a watchable match, even if it was hard to care about because Gail sucks the energy out of any segment she’s involved in.

Rebel and Marti run out to beat down Gail but Velvet and Madison make the save. Gail is left alone so here’s Awesome Kong for the staredown.

Rockstar Spud, with Kong’s music still playing, says he and Ethan are welded together so tonight they fight again for the World Title.

X-Division Title: Tigre Uno vs. Kenny King

Time for your monthly defense of the worthless title against the latest opponent who has already left the promotion because they have nothing to do for him. King is also 0-2 since coming back so naturally he’s getting a title shot. Kenny shoves him around to start but Tigre comes back with some kicks to the head to knock King outside, followed by a corkscrew dive. King kicks Tigre out of the air and gets two off a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. A high cross body gets two for the champ but King kicks him into the corner again. Tigre grabs a quick tornado DDT though and the springboard splash retains the title at 5:29.

Rating: C. Fun little match but as I said, this means absolutely nothing. The X-Division might have actually died worse than anything else in TNA in the last two years, which really covers a lot of ground. The match happens and then we’re done talking about it again for weeks. There’s a chance we’ll get another title match at Bound For Glory but odds are it’s some big multi-man elimination match with no story. That’s the major problem for Uno: other than the stupid Donald Trump thing, he hasn’t had a story in the three months that he’s been champion.

We recap Jeff Hardy being hired by Ethan Carter III against his will. Notice that Carter has said Jeff needs this job to pay his bills. Translation: TNA doesn’t pay you when you’re hurt, even if you’re appearing on TV.Sp

TNA World Title: Ethan Carter III vs. Rockstar Spud

Carter is defending and has Hardy and Tyrus in his corner. Spud last won a match… August or so? Spud chops away in the corner but the champ stomps him down to take over. Some running forearms put Carter down in the corner as well but the Underdog is countered into a powerbomb for two. Spud grabs the leg to block the 1%er and an enziguri puts the champ down. Not that it matters as a quick facebuster sets up the 1%er to retain the title at 5:36.

Rating: D+. Another quick match that has no time to go anywhere because they have to fit every single thing they can into a single show. There was a time when this match was fun but that was when it was given more than five minutes and an obvious ending. This was more about a quick title defense for Carter, which is fine, but the World Title shouldn’t be on the line in a short match in the middle of the show.

Post match Tyrus beats up Spud even more but Jeff refuses to give him a Twist of Fate. Matt Hardy tries to intervene but Tyrus takes him down. Jeff won’t hit his brother but hits Ethan instead. This story continues to go nowhere because Jeff can’t wrestle, though it still wasn’t the most interesting feud in the first place.

Ethan is going to fire Jeff later.

The Revolution is in the ring with James Storm getting in Abyss’ face. Abyss yells at Storm and says he’s his own man and a TNA original. If Storm ever gets in his face again, Abyss will knock him back to Tennessee. Abyss walks out so Storm calls Khoya out again. Manik says Khoya’s name is Mahabali so Storm shoves him down. Manik still won’t call him Khoya but stops Storm from hitting him. The mask comes off and Manik walks away as well. Cue Sheera who wants to fight Storm right now. Storm says ok but then walks away.

Galloway talks to the Wolves but it’s about being singles wrestlers tonight. All three are cool with that.

There’s going to be a four way Ultimate X match for the X-Division Title at Bound For Glory. No opponents are announced yet. I’m as shocked as you are: a multi-man title match with no story whatsoever, just like almost every title match.

Bram vs. Eddie Edwards vs. Davey Richards vs. Drew Galloway vs. Lashley

Elimination rules and the winner gets the title shot at Bound For Glory. It’s a big brawl to start until Bram and Galloway have a staredown. Lashley comes back in to clean house but gets sent outside. The Wolves get suplexed by Bram but come back with a double suicide dive. Back in and the Wolves start kicking away at Bram, capped off by a double top rope stomp for the elimination.

We come back from a break with Lashley lifting Davey up for a delayed vertical suplex which no one can break up. Why they would want to break it up isn’t clear but I’d assume it’s because logic has no place in a Wolves match. Eddie slaps a half crab on Lashley and Davey adds a cloverleaf on Drew. Those go nowhere and a spear from Lashley and Future Shock from Drew take out the Wolves. Down to Lashley vs. Galloway with Lashley taking over off some chops. A powerslam gets two for Lashley and he unleashes the suplexes. The spear hits buckle though and Drew’s big boot sends him to Bound For Glory at 14:43.

Rating: C-. Well that happened. It’s a meaningless five way with no personal animosity and no one that stood all that high above the rest. As usual, TNA has no idea how to build to a match other than Dixie coming out and announcing it. This was ten minutes of average wrestling with little drama and no reason to cheer for anyone in particular. If Drew wins, fine. If Lashley wins, fine. Bram wasn’t going to win because he’s a violent man and the Wolves aren’t winning because they’re a team. What was left to care about here?

Ethan and Tyrus are back to call out Jeff for his firing. Jeff throws the sign down and talks about living to create and how the creatures don’t live in Ethan’s reality. Ethan talks about Jeff having no other form of income and orders him down on his knee to kiss the World Title. Jeff gets on his knee but quits instead of reciting Ethan’s speech. Ethan says Jeff is fired and this show is over.

We get a preview for next week to end the show.

Overall Rating: D. This company feels like an indy promotion. You establish some characters and have a main title picture, but the rest of the show is spent having random feuds and matches with no real story to them. Wrestlers come and go, no one really gets over, the feuds mean nothing, and then they move on to their next program. The wrestling was just there as usual, meaning it was nothing all that interesting but it was passable for the most part.

This company needs a complete overhaul but that’s not possible when they don’t even know how long they’ll be on TV. Here’s the most telling thing for me: their top stars (arguably) are the Hardys. Matt has been defeated by Ethan twice now and Jeff can’t wrestle. Those are your big draws? A failure and an injured guy? And we’re heading into the biggest show of the year?

TNA’s biggest issue right now (aside from no one watching their show and impending cancellation) is connecting with their audience. Everything is all about caring for people who had stories before. Take the GFW story for example. Why shouldn’t I like the GFW guys? Because Jarrett was an outsider, who still owned part of the company? I have no reason to care about TNA and I have no reason to care about most of the stories they’re telling right now.


Sgt. Chris Melendez b. Eric Young – Missile dropkick

Gail Kim b. Jade – Eat Defeat

Tigre Uno b. Kenny King – Springboard splash

Ethan Carter III b. Rockstar Spud – 1%er

Drew Galloway b. Bram, Davey Richards, Eddie Edwards and Lashley – Big boot to Lashley

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