Impact Wrestling – July 28, 2016

Impact Wrestling
Date: July 28, 2016
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: D’Angelo Dinero, Josh Matthews

Tonight is still about finding a #1 contender for the World Title as we have the semifinals of the Bound For Glory Playoff with four people still possibly advancing to fight Lashley. Speaking of Lashley he now holds both the TNA World and X-Division Titles so we’ll have to see what he does with both belts. Let’s get to it.

We open with a recap of last week’s first round to get us to the final four.

Here’s Matt Hardy for his match but first, Matt summons Brother Nero to the ring, meaning we get to hear Reby say OBSOLETE over and over again. Matt commands Jeff to help him win his match tonight despite THAT NOT BEING PART OF THE STORY. We’re still not ready as Matt growls at Ethan like an intoxicated gorilla. Ethan says nothing, including Senor Benjamin or Vanguard 1 bringing a dilapidated boat to the ring and dropping it on his head. Matt: “You are nothing more….” Ethan: “MY PROMO IS NOT OVER!!!” Carter says this man is Jeff Hardy and he is a relevant creature.

Bound For Glory Playoff Semifinals: Matt Hardy vs. Ethan Carter III

Matt bites the hand to block a chop so Carter goes with a middle rope dropkick, only to have Ethan tweak his ankle. A belly to belly suplex lets Matt kick at the leg but Ethan kicks him out to the floor for a dive. That just hurts his ankle again though and Ethan has to break out of the Twist of Fate. A Stinger Splash looks to set up the TK3 but Matt kicks the ankle again. The second TK3 works but Reby throws in the hammer. The referee is distracted by…..I think Jeff but Matt gets caught with the hammer anyway. As the referee takes it away, Ethan takes his own boot off to knock Matt out, followed by the 1%er to advance at 7:30.

Rating: C. The ankle injury worked fine but there’s still much insanity going on with the Matt vs. Jeff feud. Thankfully it seems to be wrapping up at Bound For Glory but why am I supposed to believe that it’s the final match? It’s kind of hard to buy that when they’ve already done the FINAL match. Oh and again: there’s no reason Jeff is Matt’s servant. Owning Jeff’s intellectual property doesn’t mean he has to do everything Matt tells him, even in TNA’s odd world.

Madison Rayne is annoyed at Maria and Allie so they give her Gail Kim tonight.

Post break, Matt yells at Jeff and promises to make it worse.

Madison Rayne vs. Gail Kim

No entrances. Gail gets an early two off a backbreaker but Madison knees her in the ribs and a kick to the head gets two. An enziguri gets the same for Madison and there’s a slide into a clothesline against the bottom rope. Back up and Gail hits a quick Eat Defeat for the win at 4:59.

Rating: D+. These two have fought several times over the years and it’s really not interesting to see them do it again as we build towards Maria vs. Gail Kim in what should be a one sided slaughter. Madison isn’t the most intriguing character in the first place as she’s really just that person who used to be important but time has passed her by.

Mike Bennett and Moose are ready to destroy Lashley.

Rosemary and Bram meet in the woods and we get a flashback to Rosemary looking normal. When she was younger (as in early 20s) she had a cat. One day the cat got sick so she took it to mama, who told her everything would be ok. Then her Mama threw the cat in a trashcan to make Rosemary crazy like she is today. Back to reality, Bram thinks Rosemary is a little weird but they stop to look at a barn. It’s always a barn.

Moose vs. David Star

David is sat on the top rope for a dropkick out to the floor but Star comes back with a running dropkick. A pop up apron powerbomb ends Star’s run though and probably most of his career at the same time. Back in the and the Gamebreaker (basically a Rainmaker but with a discus lariat but without pulling Star in, making the spin rather pointless) ends Star at 2:22.

Post match here’s Lashley to come after Moose. We come back from a break with Mike Bennett pulling Moose back from Lashley and asking who wants to see this match. Eh not yet though as Bennett wants Moose to wait because Bennett needs him in the corner for the playoff match later.

The two of them leave so Lashley says he’s already got two titles but he wants all the singles gold. This brings out DJZ to suck up a bit so Lashley says DJZ can pick the match type for the X-Division Title match (remember that DJZ became #1 contender at Ultimate X). DJZ picks a ladder match and it’s on right now. Thankfully there are ladders ready just in case Lashley allowed DJZ to pick a stipulation.

X-Division Title: Lashley vs. DJZ

Lashley is defending and it’s a ladder match. DJZ gets thrown around to start but scores with a middle rope back elbow to the jaw. Lashley throws the ladder out of the ring because he can so they head outside with DJZ hitting a flip dive off the announcers’ table. Back from a break with Lashley crushing DJZ with a ladder and no selling a baseball slide to drive the ladder into his chest.

Back in and the Dominator plants DJZ but he’s still able to dropkick Lashley off the ladder. That’s not enough for the climb though as Lashley lifts up the ladder and DJZ at the same time (Pope: “That’s not something you’ll see in the X-Division.” Except for right now, when we’re seeing it in the X-Division.). DJZ grabs a quick tornado DDT to plant Lashley but he slams DJZ off the ladder and retains at 12:38.

Rating: C-. This was fine even though the ending was obvious. There were some Undertaker vs. Jeff Hardy tones here so the story worked but it was only as good as a DJZ match could get. I still really don’t like the idea of the X-Division being a prop for the World Champion to use. It was bad enough when Seth Rollins did the same thing to the US Title last year and I’m fairly convinced that this is a copy of that story. Eleven months is long enough to copy something right?

Ethan Carter III and Drew Galloway want to fight each other in the finals.

Bram and Rosemary look at the barn and Rosemary asks if it matters. We go to the flashback again with Rosemary talking to a tree about some guy named John. Rosemary writes in a journal and signs an R in her own blood. This keeps cutting in and out with pictures in her Decay attire and is all over the place like the Final Deletion style videos. Back in reality, Bram says it doesn’t matter if we hear about these old things because they’re here now. To be continued.

It’s time for Fact of Life with Eli Drake. Eli calls Lashley a cross eyed halfwit and says you can’t just go around collecting titles like this is Pokemon Go. He likes the odds of putting Lashley’s two titles against his one but here’s James Storm to interrupt. Drake says he was calling out contenders and not a drunk. Storm brings up the DQ in their match and offers Drake another beer. Eli pulls out a jug of water but Storm kicks it out to the floor. Storm: “WATER SUCKS!”

That’s still a no so Storm makes parent sex jokes, earning himself a bunch of dummy’s. Drake will give him another shot but if Storm loses, he can’t have any more beer, can’t ride the Boozer Cruiser and can’t use that stupid country song. So…..he wants Storm deleted? Storm takes a swig of beer, drinks the one he had for Drake, and says it’s on. A belt shot misses but Drake gets in a low blow and Blunt Force Trauma.

Tyrus is still ready to fix your problems.

Grado calls Tyrus to try and get his help against the Tribunal but he and Mahabali Shera have no money. There’s a match next week.

Decay beats the BroMans down in the back and there’s a match up next.

Tag Team Titles: Decay vs. BroMans

Joined in progress with only Raquel at ringside. Decay is defending and this is Monster’s Ball just because. The champs are in control and pouring tacks out onto the mat as this is one sided so far. Jesse gets slammed down would rather grab a chair than follow up. Robbie ducks a double clothesline so Robbie can springboard in with a double clothesline of his own as the challengers take over.

Abyss gets a chair dropkicked into his face and a double spear sends him through a barbed wire board. Jesse grabs the Adonis Lock with Steve’s face in the tacks but Abyss breaks it up and throws him through a table at ringside. Cue another barbed wire board and Janice (of course) but Raquel sneaks in with a low blow to save her buddies. Robbie drops Janice though and a chokeslam onto the barbed wire retains the titles at 6:50.

Rating: C. If you’ve seen one of these you’ve seen them all, save for the pretty cool Adonis Lock onto the tacks spot. This was another gimmick match for the sake of having a gimmick match though and that gets really old in a hurry. It was fun enough and a violent (by TNA standards) brawl but almost nothing we haven’t seen before.

Bound For Glory Playoff Semifinals: Mike Bennett vs. Ethan Carter III

Moose jumps Galloway during the entrance and powerbombs him onto the apron. Drew still says ring the bell because disqualifications cannot possibly happen before the bell. Bennett slowly beats him down until Drew grabs an overhead belly to belly to get himself a breather. A quick cutter gives Mike two and he throws Galloway outside. They head outside with Bennett going chest first into the bottom of the ring (as in the wood that holds it up) for two.

Drew tries Futureshock but spins Mike around first. That’s not enough though as Bennett slips away and punches the referee by mistake. Cue Moose to take Galloway out with a middle rope Sky High but Bennett only gets two. Now it’s Carter to go after Moose and send him into the steps, only to miss a kendo stick shot which hits Galloway by mistake. Moose pulls Carter to the floor, leaving Mike to hit the MIP for the pin at 7:46.

Rating: C. WAY too messy near the end but they got the point across. In theory this should set up Galloway vs. Carter at Bound For Glory but I can’t imagine they’ll do Bennett vs. Lashley at Bound For Glory. Of course there’s always the big multi-man match that wrestling companies love so much and would be as big of a mess as you can get.

Overall Rating: C-. The show was fine but it really does show how weak they are once you get out of the upper midcard. Gail Kim is still a boring face of the Knockouts, the X-Division is a prop, Decay is still doing the same things they’ve been doing and the idea of Grado/Shera vs. the Tribunal again makes me very drowsy. Storm vs. Drake does sound good though so not all hope is lost. If nothing else, well done on having six matches in a week, which is hard for any tow hour show to pull off. Finally, they seem to have dropped Dixie vs. Corgan for now, though I can’t imagine it stays gone.


Ethan Carter III b. Matt Hardy – 1%er

Gail Kim b. Madison Rayne – Eat Defeat

Moose b. David Star – Gamebreaker

Lashley b. DJZ – Lashley pulled down the title

Decay b. BroMans – Chokeslam onto a barbed wire board

Mike Bennett b. Drew Galloway – MIP

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