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Impact: Hulk-a-mania running wild!
By BLAINE VAN DER GRIEND - SLAM! Wrestling


Just four days away from the official move to Monday night, both Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair prepare for their in-ring returns, the Pope is still pimpin', Mick Foley learns etiquette and Jeff Jarrett sticks it to the boss.

This week’s show starts off right where they left us last week (disappointed) with a highlight package, focusing on the attack of Hulk Hogan last week, at the hands of AJ Styles and Ric Flair, to set up the big tag match for Monday night.

The title of this episode is “never say never” (in TNA, that’s not a good thing).

The show finally gets underway and the champ has decided to grace us all with his presence. AJ and Flair come out, escorted by the usual bevy of beauties. Flair says he’s overwhelmed by what transpired last week. He says AJ proved once again that he is in fact, the man. He says after having a week to think about it, he now knows what he has to do. Flair says he feels the need to apologize for their actions last week and says he wants to offer Hogan a present to make up for it and give back to TNA. He immediately calls out Hogan, who answers the call, but Hogan isn’t alone, as he has Abyss by his side. Flair is a little jumpy when he sees Abyss out there, and says he wants to assume that this is going to be a peaceful conversation. He says both he and AJ would like to apologize for their actions last week, because it was a result of bad judgment on their part. He then offers Hogan one of his “ladies of the night” as a peace offering (isn’t that illegal in Florida? And I thought Pope was the one who’s pimpin’). Hogan says he has no interest in anything that Flair wants to offer him, because the minute he signed with TNA, he promised Dixie Carter and he promised the fans that he would never lace up his boots again. But Hogan says after last week, everything changed. He says for next week’s move to Monday nights, he and Abyss are going to start the celebration by taking Flair and AJ to school. Hogan then says the only question that’s going to be on everyone’s minds is “whatcha gonna do…” and he lets Abyss take it from there with “…when Hulk Hogan and Abyss-a-mania run wild on you!?!” Flair takes exception to that and says a couple years ago, he retired from wrestling for good and he always wanted to leave on a high note, which he did. He continues that there’s something that he wants just as much, if not more, and that’s to beat Hulk Hogan on national TV. AJ then throws in his two cents, requesting that Hogan put the brakes on. He says he respects everything that Hogan has done for this business and he may have been the king of wrestling back in his day, but times have changed, and AJ Styles is now king. He then questions the integrity of Hogan to put his good name up against the best in the business today. Flair and AJ then leave and say they’ll see Hogan on Monday. But then along comes Bischoff to crash the party, getting into babyface mode once again. Bischoff says he hates to rain on their parade, but AJ’s got some business to take care of tonight. He then orders AJ Styles to put his World title on the line against Abyss, Pope and Desmond Wolfe in a 4-way dance.

JB is backstage with Desmond Wolfe, attempting to get his reaction to this big news of a title match tonight. Wolfe cuts an outstanding promo, borrowing a line from the Sound of Music, saying that every time God closes a door, he opens a window. Wolfe says bollocks to that, because those open windows can get very breezy (excellent!). Wolfe says anybody who knows him, knows that he will do whatever it takes to win. He then compares the alliance of AJ Styles and Ric Flair to that of Lou Thesz and Ed “Strangler” Lewis and says Flair is always saying to be the man, you gotta beat the man. Wolfe takes exception to that and says if AJ is the man, he can be the man without beating the man, because if he were to get a victory over that “window licker” Abyss or Pope Dinero, he will be the man (get this guy a title right now!). Chelsea then speaks for the first time ever and says she lusts after the ring around Abyss’ finger. She tells Desmond that he shouldn’t be the only one to leave here with gold tonight and she wants that ring. Wolfe tells her to consider it done and then tells the viewing audience that whatever Chelsea wants, Chelsea gets (suddenly I hear a whip being cracked).

Jeff Jarrett enters Bischoff’s office and brags about how last week, he heard rumours that TNA produced the best burgers ever. Bischoff is surprised that Jarrett’s recent demotion didn’t seem to bother him. Jarrett says he has thick skin and is ready for anything Bischoff can throw at him, because he’s not leaving. Jarrett then tells Bischoff to get back to business and start putting him in actual matches (wait, this is a wrestling company you say?). Bischoff then goes off topic, saying when he arrived here earlier, he couldn’t help but notice how filthy the men’s room was as he passed by and said the toilets just weren’t flowing very well and he immediately thought of Jeff Jarrett as the man for the job. Bischoff then gives Jarrett a plunger and tells him to get to work. Jarrett says he plans on being the best janitor this company has ever had (his parents must be so proud).

Match #1: Motor City Machine Guns vs. Generation ME vs. Beer Money Inc. vs. Matt Morgan and Hernandez

The majority of this match was monopolized by Generation ME and the Machine Guns, which is not the worst idea TNA has thought of in the last few weeks. The Guns go on the double team offensive first as Shelley delivers an inverted atomic drop to Jeremy, followed by a low dropkick by Sabin to the patella. Shelley then sprints across the ring and runs into inverted camel clutch position, as Sabin delivers another low dropkick to the face (what a team!). Generation ME would not be outdone though, as Jeremy positions Sabin’s feet on the middle rope and delivers a neckbreaker, but holds the position, with Sabin’s feet still on the ropes and his neck on Jeremy’s shoulder, as Max comes in with a hilo. Hernandez is in next and elevates Jeremy with a military press, with a series of repetitions (I guess he missed a day at the gym this week) and then just drops him all the way down. Super Mex then tries his slingshot shoulderblock, but Morgan tags himself in, which didn’t sit too well with Hernandez. Morgan delivers a double chokeslam to Generation ME and then has a word with Hernandez, as if to say “top that.” But Morgan takes his eye off the ball for a second, allowing James Storm to drill him with a superkick, and Roode gets the win with a schoolboy.

Winners: Beer Money Inc by pinfall

After the match, Morgan and Hernandez argue some more.

Bischoff has now summoned Sean Morley (his former chief of staff) and Slick Johnson to his office. He says Morley is just the man he was looking for. He says he’s booked Morley in a match tonight, which will be falls count anywhere and his opponent will be Jeff Jarrett. He then tells Morley he can find Jarrett in the men’s room (and I thought it couldn’t get any worse).

Jarrett is then shown mopping the floor of the men’s room (TNA’s entire writing team need to start wearing stupid helmets).

Kurt Angle approaches Hogan in his office (apparently he and Bischoff have separate offices now). Angle asks Hogan if he’s sure he wants to go through with this match on Monday. He says Hogan’s too important to this company to go out there and possibly injure himself. Hogan says he appreciates Angle’s comments, but he needs to understand like everyone else that this may be Hogan’s last shot (how many times were supposed to be his last shot?). Angle and Hogan then shake hands and Angle tells him to be careful out there.

It’s now time for segment one of Mick Foley’s course in etiquette. The “headmistress,” for lack of a better word suggests to Mick that he should concentrate on keeping his jacket buttoned when he walks around, but unbuttoned when he is seated. She then observes Mick’s walking skills, or lack there of, as Foley just does a strut across the room. She then suggests that Mick may want to consider a haircut. Foley says people have told him that he has gentle eyes, so he avoids haircuts, so as to not give out that secret (smart plan). This was actually funnier than I thought it would be, but still a waste of Foley.

Sean Morley and Slick Johnson are now shown approaching the men’s room. They enter and Morley calls out to Jarrett, who answers, but is met by a right hand. Morley proceeds to beat the daylights out of Jarrett (in the washroom of all places) Morley works over Jarrett’s shoulder by slamming the washroom door into it several times and then finally this “match?” mercifully ends (what will they NOT think of next?).

Christy Hemme is standing by with the Pope, to get his reaction on the title match announcement for tonight. He says it’s a known fact and she can relate that whenever the Pope starts on top, he usually ends on top, but Dick Flair and his little piece of nature crap AJ Styles are nothing but thieves. He says the Pope has surely seen better days, but he is here and he is here to fight and he knows his doctor can’t be too happy about that. Pope says he digs where Hogan is coming from with this 4-way dance tonight and says in regards to his upcoming title match at Lockdown that there is no time like the present and why wait for tomorrow, when he can get his today. Great promo!

Match #2: Doug Williams vs. Big Rob Terry

Williams starts things off with a slap. Terry gets angry and delivers a military press slam and then applies a bearhug, which Williams bites his way out of, only to fall victim to a spinkick and then a spinebuster for the win.

Winner: Big Rob Terry by pinfall

Brutus Magnus comes out to ruin the victory party with a sneak attack and he and Williams doubleteam their former comrade.

Jeff Jarrett is in the trainer’s room to get his shoulder popped back into place. Bischoff interrupts and Jarrett gets irate, saying he’s had enough of this. He says he wants an actual match in the ring. Bischoff says if Jarrett wants it so bad, he can have it, but he hopes Jarrett’s shoulder heals quickly, cause his next match is tonight. Jarrett then calls Bischoff a pri#@

Meanwhile, in etiquette school, Mick Foley is getting a lesson in table manners.

Kurt Angle’s music then trumpets throughout the arena, but instead of Angle, we get Mr. Anderson disguised as Angle, with a food tray attached to a chain around his neck, with the word “loser” written on it, which I guess would symbolize Angle’s warrior metal. Anderson, as Angle, says he’s the greatest wrestler in the world, but he’s also the most injury prone wrestler in the world. He then says he just recently broke his neck for the 17th time, as he was tying his shoe. Anderson then points to the symbolized war metal, saying he wears this piece of crap to gain sympathy from the fans, who actually think that he gives a damn about the troops. The real Kurt Angle has then had enough, as he makes his way to the ring. Angle beats Anderson out of the ring, but as he follows him to the outside, Anderson confiscates a fan’s drink and tosses it in Angle’s face, giving him the upper hand. Anderson then mocks Angle by taking down the straps and delivers Angle’s own Angle slam to the Olympian. Anderson then repossesses Angle’s war metal and goes AWOL.

Abyss is in Hogan’s office, trying to convince Hogan not to go through with this match. He said last week, when he saw the blood trickling down Hogan’s forehead into Abyss’ hands, it was heartbreaking. Hogan says when he gave Abyss his Hall of Fame ring, he passed on his power to Abyss, so that Abyss would be able to protect him (huh?). Hogan says what happened to him last week was not Abyss’ fault. He says it was because he was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Abyss then respects Hogan’s decision and walks off.

Earlier in the day, Angelina Love was shown at a photo shoot, where she was attacked by The Beautiful People, as Lacey and Madison held her in place, while Velvet viciously whipped her with some sort of strap.

Back to the present, Angelina comes out to the ring and orders Velvet Sky to come out and face her, saying she’s not leaving until Velvet comes out. Velvet answers the call, but is met in the runway by a vengeful Angelina who basically destroys Velvet and then she grabs the strap, attempting to do some whipping of her own, but Madison and Lacey come out. Madison catches a lash across the back, but Lacey drops Angelina with the ugly stick and once again TBP hold her in place, as Velvet lashes away.

Bubba the love sponge then makes his return to Impact, confronting Hogan about his decision to wrestle. He says Hogan made a promise to all of his loved ones that he would never get in the ring again. He says he’s concerned that Hogan could end up in a wheelchair. Bubba says Hogan needs to think about his family (what family?). He says Hogan has nothing left to prove. Bubba then storms off.

Back at the etiquette session, Foley is now being given greeting tips. When asked what he would say to a young lady to end the night, Foley responds that usually a guy would sneak out the back door (that was pretty funny). Foley then ends the session with a hug and almost kills the tutor in the process.

A video package is shown to highlight the ongoing saga between Kevin Nash, Scott Hall and 6-Pac. It’s then announced that Nash and Eric Young will deliver their thoughts on what happened last week on next week’s Monday broadcast (this has to wait a week?).

Match #3: Tomko vs. Jeff Jarrett

Bischoff is shown watching on a monitor as the match goes on. Tomko starts targeting Jarrett’s injured shoulder in the early going, but Jarrett fights back with an enzugiri. Tomko then drops him with a single-arm DDT. He tries a powerslam, but Jarrett swings himself into a DDT and then delivers a sunset flip out of the corner for the win, much to Bischoff’s chagrin.

Winner: Jeff Jarrett by pinfall

Bischoff is then apparently in a pleasant mood, as he speaks with Hogan about his decision to wrestle. Hogan says it’s something he needs to do, so Bischoff says whatever he decides, he’s behind him 100 per cent.

Match #4: AJ Styles vs. Desmond Wolfe vs. Pope D’Angelo Dinero vs. Abyss in a 4-way dance for the TNA World Heavyweight title

Pope is limping his way to the ring, to sell the effects of the attack on him a couple weeks ago by AJ and Flair. Yet for some reason, he has to start the match. AJ attempts a figure-four, but Pope kicks his way free and tags Abyss, who AJ doesn’t want any part of, so he tags Wolfe, who tries a sunset flip, but Abyss counters with a sit-down splash. Abyss then delivers a sidewalk slam. Later in the match, Pope connects with a one-two punch combo on AJ, but Flair provides a distraction, allowing AJ to deliver a chopblock. Flair then delivers a chair to Pope’s ankle and AJ applies the figure-four. Pope would not submit, so referee Mike Posey had no choice but to stop the match (funny how neither of the other two competitors attempted to break the hold).

Winner: AJ Styles by submission

After the match, Flair and AJ went after Pope’s ankle again, this time with Desmond Wolfe sharing the beat down. Abyss tries to make the save, but the numbers are too much for him. Flair then grabs the barbwire bat from under the ring, which brings out Hogan who intercepts it from Flair and lays Flair out with it, busting him open in the process. Hogan says he’ll see them in four days. Pope then says why wait for four days when they can get the party started right now. Security holds everyone back as the show goes off the air.

Final thoughts:

Four matches! Are you serious TNA! Ordinarily I wouldn’t mind, because less is more, but there was nothing that happened on tonight’s show to make anyone want to tune into Monday’s show. The Mick Foley etiquette session and Jeff Jarrett in the washroom with Sean Morley were both ridiculous. I just got the feeling that nothing on tonight’s show, besides the stuff with Flair and AJ and Hogan and Abyss will lead to anything. TBP segment was okay and I really did enjoy both Pope and Wolfe’s promos, but they do have a pay per view coming up soon and I feel as if nothing on tonight’s show built towards that. I thought it was supposed to be all X-Division by the way. Where is the X-Division? Anyway, not as bad as last week, but still not at the level that they should be. 3 out of 10.