The show opens with a video on the Bischoff family feud, before we see Garrett arrive at the arena. He’s asked about Ric Flair’s comments, and just repeats he appreciates the warning from Flair, but it won’t stop him from being there. Bugger.
Eric Bischoff comes out to the ring with Gunner and Ric Flair. Eric talks about how he’s disappointed about having to do his family business in public. Mentions how he asked Sting for a tag match, where Gunner and Garrett get to choose their own partners. Eric says no one will want to tag with Garrett, but the entire locker room would want to tag with Gunner. This brings out Kurt Angle. He says he wants to do it, as he doesn’t like Garrett, due to how Garrett doesn’t respect his own father. The fans are chanting for Jeff Hardy, so it feels obvious to them who will be the 4th person in the match.
Sting is shown in a bathroom, putting on face paint while acting crazy, talking about his match with Bobby Roode at Victory Road. Eric Young appears and wants permission to give ODB a surprise in the ring tonight. Sting says ODB would want jewellery, gold, a title shot….and offers a Knockout Tag Title shot. EY reels off women who ODB can tag with, till Sting says it will actually be Eric tagging with her. Sting puts facepaint on EY and tells him to leave, before going back to acting crazy.
Time for the first match of the night as we see Gail Kim and Madison Rayne take on ODB and Eric Young for the Knockout Tag Titles. Despite their problems the past few weeks, Gail and Madison were on the same page, and spent the majority of the match keeping ODB in and beating her down. She finally tagged in EY, who did a double airplane spin to the Champs. ODB knocked down Madison and rolled out the ring, and they fought, till ODB got thrown into the stairs. Madison took a title and hit EY on the back, knocking him against Gail, causing EY to fall on her and pin her for the win!! EY stops the celebrations to propose to ODB…who then proposes to him and he accepts! Crazy, funny segment, and an OK match too.
Back to the parking lot as Joseph Parks is shown arriving, as he is here to talk to TNA workers. At this point, I didn’t realise who he was…
Bully Ray discusses what he did to James Storm last week, and says Storm won’t make it to Lockdown. Also asks Sting to do the right thing. Another backstage video, as Austin Aries is on his phone reading an email from Sting, which tells A-Double that he is defending his title against Zema Ion tonight. Aries says it’s a bad business move, giving away a money match for free. Aries says he’ll defeat Ion, and then not even appear at the PPV.
That links us into the X-Division title match, and Zema Ion getting his title shot. I liked this match, it was enjoyable despite being short. Both guys acting cocky, and Ion trying to injure Aries the same way he did it to Jesse Sorensen, only for Aries to avoid it and roll in the ring. Ion tried to cheat again, and grabbed his hairspray. After the ref avoided being cornered by both guys, Zema tries to use the spray, Aries ducks, takes the can from Ion and sprays him in the eyes, getting disqualified. Expected some kind of scrappy end, so they could repeat it at the PPV.
Joseph Parks goes into see Velvet Sky and introduces himself as Abyss’s brother (didn’t register in my mind he was Abyss’s brother when he said Parks earlier, still didn’t realise who he really is at this segment). He asks her about Abyss’s disappearance and she has no idea where he is.
Bully Ray comes out, referring to himself as “Calfzilla”, which I found amusing. He repeats what he said earlier, how he took out James Storm, should now be the #1 contender, and calls out Sting. The Insane Icon comes down to the ring and tells Bully how he’s not able to set up a match with the Champ. Sting winds up Bully by getting him to constantly say he wants Bobby Roode, and then finally agrees to make the match for right after the break. After the break, we see Roode arguing how he can’t defend his title right now…but Sting says no one mentioned it was for the title, as Roode still has to face Storm at Lockdown. Whole segment was funny to me.
Bobby Roode tries to get out of the match, but Bully Ray won’t allow it. Back and forth match between these two, Bully hit two big back body drops. James Storm gets involved and runs Bully out the ring, before hitting the Last Call Superkick to Roode. Decent match, wouldn’t mind seeing them face off again at some point.
Garrett is shown taping his wrists, and says the stakes are high. He won’t reveal who his partner is, but he’s confident in him.
Joseph Parks goes in to meet Crimson and Matt Morgan. Same with Velvet, they don’t know what happened. It finally dawns on me now…it’s Abyss unmasked! Strange angle, but I’m intrigued to see where they go with this. Anyways, as “Joseph” leaves, Crimson says that it doesn’t matter who’s fault it was at losing the titles, they’ll beat their opponents tonight, and become number 1 contenders.
Again it links into the tag match between Crimson and Matt Morgan against the team of Robbie E and Robbie T…or as I call them, Robbie E.T.! Robbie T and Crimson spent the most time in the match, which surprised me considering they’re the weakest links for both teams. Morgan finally got in and took down both Robbies, before hitting the Carbon Footprint on Robbie E. Crimson tagged himself in and picked up the win, to the annoyance of Morgan. Makes sense to have them win, and win like this. Causes more problems and can tell they’ll split soon. Meanwhile the losers can phone home to complain about this defeat 😉
AJ Styles in a video filmed earlier in the day, says he has a way to deal with his former friends, Kazarian and Daniels…and they won’t like it at all. We then see Gunner and Kurt Angle backstage. Gunner says he’s pleased to have a former World Champion and a “machine” as his partner, while Angle says it doesn’t matter who Garrett gets, as they’ll both be off to the hospital.
AJ Styles comes out to talk. Says he’s proud of what he’s accomplished in the 10 years at TNA, and discusses the allies and friends he’s made along the way. Daniels and Kazarian appear on the ramp. Daniels says that he was AJ’s closest friend, but while AJ made it to the top, Daniels just got punished or fired. Kaz tells him that AJ is hated because he is trustworthy and gullible, and that the problem isn’t with all these allies who turned on him, but with AJ. AJ comments how he won’t be associating himself with friends anymore but with a real….”ASSSSSHOOOOOOLE” is heard over another mic, and Mr Anderson is back! All 4 brawl in the ring, before Styles and Anderson clear ring.
Garrett Bischoff is shown opening a dressing room door, and asking his partner if he is ready, before heading towards the ring. It’s time for the main event.
Kurt Angle and Gunner are out first, followed by Garrett Bischoff….and his partner, Jeff Hardy. Angle looks surprised, must be the only one as I think everyone else expected this. A “Gunner sucks” chant was heard, which for me was wrong, it should be “Garrett sucks”. Garrett stayed on the apron for a lot of this match. Angle and Gunner kept Hardy grounded, which worked, taking his main offense out. He finally broke away and tagged in Garrett. To me, his moves looked a bit awkward, especially the flapjack he hit on Angle. Gunner and Angle try to double team him, but as Garrett is irish whipped to the ropes, Hardy tags himself in, Garrett hits a double clothesline and Hardy delivers a Swanton Bomb to Angle to pick up the win and close the show.
Was an OK show this week. Bit too much Bischoff, would have rather they cut back a bit on this, and given more time to Aries/Ion and Roode/Bully. Both of those matches were good, but I feel a bit disappointed with how much time they were given. Glad to see Mr Anderson back on TV, and while I’m not a fan of Abyss, really do want to see how they play this Joseph Parks stuff out. While I’ve seen complaints about Eric Young winning a Knockouts Tag Title, I don’t mind. Those titles don’t mean a lot, and haven’t for a while. Gives something more to the ODB/EY storyline, and helps with the Gail Kim/Madison Rayne split.
Thanks again for reading this week, and would love to read your comments and thoughts on this.
@GoofyVillain of @TheTopRope crew
EDIT: Having given it some thought, decided to add this. It’s a photo of Joseph Parks, Abyss’s “brother”.