5th April 2012 TNA Impact Wrestling Review

We kick off the same way as always on Impact, with a replay from last week. This time, it’s the final segment where Hulk Hogan agrees to take over.

Sting and Dixie Carter are in the ring with everyone on the roster outside the ring, before Dixie introduces Hulk Hogan. Hogan says it’s nice to be back in charge and thanks Sting and Dixie. He says how there will be new segments and ideas put in motion soon, before saying he has matches for Lockdown. First off is Crimson v Matt Morgan, as expected. Hogan then says it’s been difficult following who is number 1 contender to the Knockouts Title, so sets up a challenge match to see who will face Gail Kim at the PPV. When Hogan wants to talk to Eric Bischoff, Ric Flair pipes up saying he isn’t there, causing Hogan to tell him “get Eric here”. Bobby Roode appears, to Hogan’s displeasure. Roode says he isn’t late, but on schedule, before reminding Hogan how he dealt with Sting. Hogan says how he’s in charge, and says the fans want to see Mr Anderson vs Bobby Roode tonight. He then turns to Kurt Angle and talks about the Olympic Gold Medallist’s refusal to fight Jeff Hardy at Lockdown. Hogan agrees…because the match is going to happen right now.

So we come back from a break, into Jeff Hardy vs Kurt Angle. Angle didn’t really get much offence in, as Hardy controlled most of the match. Angle also got cut on the top of the head, not quite sure how. Hardy tried to go for the Swanton to end it, but Angle grabs the ref to shield himself. After Brian Hebner gets away, Angle tries to low blow him but Hardy blocks it and goes for a Twist of Fate, only for Angle to avoid it and leave, getting himself counted out. OK match, nothing special.

As Angle makes it backstage, Hulk Hogan applauds and tells him he won’t be able to run and hide next time, as Angle will face Hardy at Lockdown. It then cuts to Ric Flair on the phone, telling Eric Bischoff to get to the building.

Bully Ray is asked who he thinks will win between Bobby Roode and James Storm. He says he’s sick of hearing about them both, and he’ll be the next World Champ. For now, he’s off to the ring to discuss a smaller problem by the name of Austin Aries.

So Bully Ray comes to the ring and says he is confused why a small boy would want to piss off a big bad man like himself. Tells Aries he’s eaten bigger chicken wings and took bigger craps than him. A-Double doesn’t wait any longer and turns up, taking the mic and hitting Bully Ray on the head with it. A brawl breaks out, but as Aries lays punches in on the second rope in the corner, Bully counters with a HUGE powerbomb.

Joseph Park is shown backstage in the cafeteria, searching for Abyss. He’s checking those silver trays that keeps food warm…how or why would Abyss be in there??

AJ Styles is up next, for his prediction on Bobby Roode and James Storm. He says he knows both guys well, but reckons Storm has got the edge. The Tennessee Cowboy appears and thanks him for that. Tells AJ that Hulk Hogan has suggested a tune up match, and asks AJ to face him. Styles agrees, informing Storm “I’m quicker than Roode”, to which Storm tells him “if I can hit the Last Call on someone as quick as you, I can do it to Roode too”.

Second match of the night is the Knockout Challenge, featuring 6 former Knockout Champions: Mickie James, Tara, Winter (yay!), Angelina Love, Madison Rayne and Velvet Sky. Now, I’m sure this was supposed to be an elimination style match, but when Tara tried to pin Winter, everyone else broke it up. This turned into a good match with the combo of those in ring changing often, before the usual routine of everyone hitting their finisher. We got left down to Velvet and Mickie and Velvet hit the In Yo Face to win. I liked this, and I’m fine with Velvet winning.

Mr Anderson is asked for his prediction on Lockdown, and tells the camera the same thing will happen then, that will happen tonight: Roode will get beat. The World Champ appears with his security and offers Anderson a chance to walk away otherwise he’ll get hurt. Anderson offers to fight right now, but Roode refuses, hiding behind security.

Short clip of James Storm and Jeff Hardy at the Academy of Country Music Awards. Storm looked proper pimpin’, he wore his white suit much better than someone from that other company.

Eric Young’s bachelor party, and it is going wild!! Oh my, out of control with….candy, lollipops and nerds playing a Fantasy Baseball Draft. ODB turns up with chicken wings and a beer keg, kicking out the nerds. EY tells her there’s no other Knockouts at the party as she is the only woman for him, and ODB tells him that after they’re married, every night will be like a bachelor party for him. Seriously these are funny segments.

James Storm is set for his tune up match with AJ Styles. The Phenomenal one dodges an early attempt at the Last Call. They both dodge each other’s moves, showing how well they know each other. AJ tries for the moonsault into reverse DDT combo but Storm ducks it and hits the Last Call out of nowhere to win. Very enjoyable match between two top guys. Afterwards Storm asks Bobby Roode to meet him next week in a face to face, before he kicks Roode’s teeth down his throat.

Hulk Hogan is talking with Sting, and tells him to go home and rest, as he needs him at 100%. Sting tells him it won’t be easy, and Hogan suggests he’ll put on a nurse’s outfit if that will help. Sorry for putting that image into your head. So, Sting says call him if it gets crazy…I think by the Hogan comment, it’s already got crazy.

James Storm is in his dressing room with Montgomery Gentry, the guys who did Storm’s theme. He tells them he’ll hit the showers then they’ll all go for beer. As he leaves, Bobby Roode comes in and introduces himself to Montgomery Gentry. They say they don’t care, it’s all about Storm. Roode spits water in their face and leaves, as security holds back the band.

Mexican America in action next as they take on the returning duo of the Motorcity Machine Guns!! It was great to see the duo of Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin back, and considering Sabin’s been out for a year, he didn’t show any signs of ring rust. The Guns hit aerial assault after aerial assault, before picking up the win with their Skull & Bones finisher. Afterwards, Sabin got on the mic saying they want 1 thing: TNA Tag Team Titles. That speech was short and sweet, like Sabin’s haircut!

Eric Bischoff finally arrives and Ric Flair meets him at the car, saying Hogan is out of control and on an ego trip. “He’s making matches for Lockdown and telling people what to do”…oh, how dare the GM do that! Anyways, Eric says they have control and will put Hogan in his place.

Hulk Hogan makes his way to the ring, to call out Eric Bischoff. Easy E comes out onto the ramp and tells Hogan he isn’t a leader, more like an opportunist. Hogan replies that Eric is a leader of blowing hot air, but suggests that if Eric feels he’s a leader, he’ll lead a team at Lockdown against a team picked by Garrett Bischoff. Whoever loses leaves, but if Eric loses, he also can’t use the name “Bischoff” anymore. Eric isn’t happy, but agrees.

A short video showing James Storm preparing for Lockdown, and showing his family speaking on the issues between the former Beer Money team-mates.

This brings us onto the main event of Mr Anderson against Bobby Roode. Security were banned from ringside. Short match, which sees a ref bump. Roode grabs a beer bottle from a fan at ringside, and smashes it over Anderson’s head. The ref turns and counts it. Now, what I don’t get, is the ref lying in the glass as he counted, didn’t he think that was weird? James Storm comes out followed by Hulk Hogan, chasing Roode out the ring. Hogan says as GM of Impact, he is reversing this decision, awarding it to Mr Anderson as the show ends.

If anyone else watched this, you’ll know exactly what I’m going to say here: Too much Hulk Hogan. Surely he didn’t need to appear in 5 different segments? Just felt over the top seeing him on the show time and time again. They were doing good giving more TV time to talent like Bobby Roode, James Storm, Bully Ray, Austin Aries plus many more, and now slip back into the form of before, putting Hogan and Bischoff all over the show. Also seems a few are being used as bit part players, when should be used better (i.e. AJ Styles, Daniels, Mr Anderson). On the plus side, I’m glad to see Velvet Sky is number 1 contender, and delighted the Motorcity Machine Guns are back.

Thanks for taking the time to read this.

@GoofyVillain of @TheTopRope crew