June 24, 2011
Impact: Sting's evolution continues
By BLAINE VAN DER GRIEND - The Fight Network
Tonight on TNA Impact: The evolution of Sting into something else continues as he attacks Eric Bischoff and gets put into a match in the main event with Abyss. Elsewhere, the Bound For Glory series continues with Bully Ray meeting Scott Steiner and much more.
Impact begins in traditional fashion with a recap of the events of last week. No, it’s not of Gunner pinning the World Champion, or even of the streetfight with Jarrett being forced out of the company. What is it you ask? Why it’s a reminder of the ongoing rivalry between Hogan and Sting. Epic fail!
Bischoff is then shown with Jeff Jarrett (not a typo) walking through a dark hallway. Jarrett is excited about the Bound for Glory series, before Bischoff bursts that bubble, by telling Jarrett that he’s not in it. Jarrett protests, while Bischoff reminds him that due to the circumstances of last week, he should be on his way to Mexico. Jarrett says that was all a joke (most things in this company are) and then complains that he doesn’t even like Mexican food. Bischoff says he and Hogan are both on Jarrett’s side in all of this, but the network isn’t. Jarrett says “screw the network.” Bischoff tells him that until this whole thing is straightened out, it’s adios Jeff.
I’m not sure if the last segment was supposed to be from earlier in the day, but Bischoff then comes to the ring. He calls Sting an ungrateful son of a bitch (why would Sting be so ungrateful? He only turned down an offer to appear on the biggest show of the year and then got screwed out of the World Title). Bischoff then calls Sting out to the ring. Sting comes out and apparently went a little crazy with the mascara this week, which would set the tone for the rest of the segment. Sting does a bit of a Ric Flair strut in the ring and his facial expressions suggest that he’s gone off the deep end. Bischoff says he’s not a coward, and if he has something to say, he’s going to say it to Sting’s face. He says last week, while he was taking a leak (probably on Samoa Joe’s contract), Sting decided to sneak into his office and attack Hulk Hogan. Bischoff once again says that Sting is an ungrateful son of a bitch, because he’s always treated Sting with respect. Bischoff then asks Sting what exactly he wants. Sting starts sulking sarcastically and says that Bischoff’s hurt his feelings. He then asks himself ‘what shall I do?’ which should have been asked on 2-21-11. Sting says what he’s going to do is snap Bischoff’s scrawny little neck. He says the two of them never got along, because Bischoff is a con artist (isn’t it kind of hypocritical for the guy with face paint to call someone else an artist?), a liar, a lowlife and a bunch of other names starting with “L.” He then compares Bischoff to a little cockroach and says he’s been able to spread his disease through the entire locker room and even to Hulk Hogan. Sting says he’s still waiting for the real Hulk Hogan to stand up. Bischoff says while Sting currently has his title rematch on July 14, he has the power to change all that. He says that all starts tonight, because Sting will be in the ring with Abyss, who is going to make sure that he doesn’t make it to the 14th. Sting then removes his jacket and corners Bischoff, before delivering a few punches to his ribcage. Sting then delivers the scorpion death drop. He then brings Bischoff to his feet and rubs red face paint all over his face. He then takes Bischoff down again and locks on the scorpion death lock. Overall, I thought this segment was well done.
Up next is a recap of the Bound for Glory series rankings, as we are all brought up to date, with five wrestlers (Matt Morgan, AJ Styles, Scott Steiner, Gunner and Rob Van Dam) tied at seven points a piece. I have to give them credit for these recaps tonight.
Match #1: Scott Steiner vs. Bully Ray in the Bound for Glory series
Before the match starts, they air a recap of what happened in the Bully Ray/AJ Styles match at Slammiversary (a week late). Ray goes on the offensive first with some stiff clubs to the back of Steiner, who fights back with a hiptoss. Ray delivers a slam and then a pair of elbow drops for two. Ray attempts a Bully bomb, but Steiner counters it into a belly-to-back suplex. Steiner then delivers a t-bone suplex, almost injuring both himself and Ray for two. Ray misses an avalanche in the corner and collides with the referee, and Steiner delivers an overhead belly-to-belly suplex. Steiner then applies the Steiner recliner and Bully Ray taps out (I believe the first time anyone’s actually tapped out to that move), but the referee is still down. Steiner tries to revive the ref, but this allows Ray to use the chain for the win.
Winner: Bully Ray by pinfall
Bischoff is being attended to by some of the medical staff, as he’s yelling at Abyss to take care of Sting tonight. For some reason, Gunner is in the office as well, making this very awkward. Bischoff wants Abyss to make sure that Sting does not walk out of this arena tonight (why not? All the fans usually do). As Abyss and Gunner leave, Bischoff demands an aspirin, as Anderson shows up and is all smiles. Bischoff isn’t amused and tells Anderson that this is all because of him. He says he’s the one who made sure that Anderson was able to defeat Sting at Slammiversary. Bischoff says he won the match for Anderson (good way to put your champion over). Bischoff warns Anderson that what’s happened to him and Hogan, could also happen to Anderson, and he needs to watch out.
Up next is the first of three highlight packages to introduce the new X-Division stars who will compete in a 3-way dance tonight with the winner qualifying for Ultimate X at Destination X. This one is for Shiima Xion.
Match #2: Velvet Sky and Miss Tessmacher vs. ODB and Jackie
The first thing out of the announcers mouths before the match starts is that ODB and Jackie are not currently under contract to Impact Wrestling (so why do they have a match, when there are so many more talented guys and girls in the back who don’t?). Velvet grabs a microphone and showcases the only thing worse than her in-ring ability (or lack thereof). She says that due to what happened last week, her and Tess have taken it upon themselves to petition to the Impact Wrestling head offices, that they allow ODB and Jackie to compete against the two of them in a match tonight (first of all, how have ODB and Jackie been getting in the building for the last few weeks? And secondly, if it were as easy as a petition, wouldn’t Samoa Joe have a match every week?). Anyway, after they tell the “bitches” to bring it, ODB and Jackie come out through their own private entrance where all the stagehands hang out. The match starts with all four wrest…wom…knockouts brawling on the outside. ODB gets sent into the steps by Velvet. This match is a train wreck from the get-go. Tess is being worked over in the heels corner, when Velvet gets the bright idea to go and attack Jackie on the other side, just when Tess is fighting out of the heels corner, but Velvet’s not there to tag (what an idiot). Tess comes back with a spear on ODB. Velvet then gets a hot tag and cleans house with clotheslines. She takes down both ODB and Jackie with a double clothesline. Tess then tackles ODB out of the ring, with ODB screaming “Oh my God! You suck!” (Highlight of the night by a mile). Then for the incredibly, unbelievably stupid finish, the ref gets distracted, as Jackie delivers a LOW BLOW on Velvet for the win (are you f---ing serious!?!).
>Winners: ODB and Jackie by pinfall
Up next is the second X-Division highlight package for Federico Palacious.
Tara is then set to interview herself backstage. She says she finally has a one-on-one match with the queen bee on July 14, and can’t wait to destroy her. Madison interrupts and says that she’s going to give Tara one last chance to get out of this match, because if not, it’ll be her last. She then orders Tara to beg for forgiveness and slaps her for her refusal. Tara then picks up the queen and plants her into the wall. She then yells “you’re mine bitch!”
Beer Money is backstage and Storm is confronting Roode about competing in the match, arguing that he’s still not at 100 per cent. Roode says this may be his only chance to be a World Champion and he’s not throwing away the chance to fulfill his dream.
Scott Steiner is going on a rampage in the Immortal locker room, complaining about Bully Ray using the chain on him. All the Immortal guys are trying to calm him down. Ray then says that Steiner would have done the same to him if the roles had been reversed. He then offers Steiner a spot in Immortal to avoid an ass kicking. Steiner throws the chain down and says he’ll think about it.
Match #3: Crimson and Matt Morgan vs. Beer Money Inc. in the Bound for Glory series
This match doesn’t make any sense. It’s a tag match, but the only man who can get any points is the guy who gets the deciding fall (what’s the point of adding tag matches to this series?). For some reason, Roode starts the match, despite not being 100 per cent. He delivers a snap neckbreaker on Crimson, but hurts his shoulder on the way down. Storm is then in with Morgan, who tries the series of reverse elbows in the corner, but Storm ducks all of them and then hotshots Morgan, following it up with a codebreaker and then a neckbreaker for two. Morgan comes back with a discus lariat for two. He then finally delivers the reverse elbows to Storm, as Tenay announces that next week, it’ll be Gunner against AJ Styles in the series. Crimson applies a cravatte and delivers some knees to the head of Storm. He then turns it into a swinging neckbreaker for two. Morgan comes in and delivers a falcon arrow for two. Storm fires back with a backstabber. Roode then comes in and delivers a flying forearm. Morgan tries a chokeslam, but Roode counters into a fujiwara armbar. Crimson breaks that up and Storm takes him out. Beer Money deliver a double suplex on Morgan and deliver their salute. Roode then connects with a blockbuster, but his shoulder is still having problems. Despite that, Storm still instructs Roode to elevate him over the top rope with a backdrop onto Crimson, which even Taz said was pretty stupid. Morgan takes advantage of Roode’s shoulder problems with the carbon footprint for the win.
Winners: Matt Morgan and Crimson by pinfall
So Morgan is now in the lead with 14 points. Remember Crimson gets no points here, because Morgan got the fall, which is pretty dumb.
Abyss is now walking through the hallway, quoting lines from the Art of War. He says Bischoff gave him a mandate to take Sting out, and he plans to do it (not his exact words, but this makes more sense than what he said).
AJ Styles comes to the ring and says that we are only three weeks away from Destination X, and he just couldn’t sit back and not be a part of it. AJ says this is the first time ever that Impact Wrestling is putting on an all X-Division pay per view. He says he’s happy to be home in the X-Division once again. Styles announces that for one night only, the six-sided ring will be resurrected at Destination X. He says nobody can take away from some of the former X-Division competitors such as Elix Skipper, Kid Kash, Low-Ki and Jerry Lynn. Before Styles can continue, he’s interrupted by Samoa Joe. Joe says he doesn’t disagree with AJ that Destination X will indeed be exciting. He says that AJ is probably the one guy who pioneered the X-Division. But Joe says the X-Division didn’t get hot until he got here. He says AJ might be the heart of the division, but Joe gave the division its balls (thanks for the anatomy lesson). Fourtune’s music then plays and I’m confused at this point, until Daniels comes out (they couldn’t use his own music?). Daniels says he needed to join in on this discussion. He then agrees with AJ and Joe that they should give the fans the match they all want to see one more time. He then says it should be Daniels vs. AJ Styles one-on-one (who didn’t see this one coming?). The fans start chanting “What about Joe?” (I can almost guarantee that Hogan and Russo had a great laugh about this in the back, as they say “Joe who?”). Daniels asks AJ what he thinks, and AJ keeps looking at him and then at Joe and reluctantly accepts. Joe then mouths the word “coward” at AJ.
After the break, Kazarian confronts Daniels about what just happened, and says that Fourtune is supposed to be a group. Daniels says it’s no big deal and it’s all about the spirit of competition. He tells Kazarian that he’s reading too much into it. Daniels then walks away and Joe shows up, as he’s got nothing better to do. Joe calls Fourtune a bunch of housewives and says he needs to make sure that those gals get on the same page, which would make for compelling TV. Kazarian warns Joe that he might smack him upside the Charlie Brown head of his. Joe then attacks Kazarian and leaves him lying (that didn’t work out).
Up next is the third X-Division highlight package for Dakota Darsow (son of Barry Darsow of Demolition fame).
Match #4: Shiima Xion vs. Frederico Palacious vs. Dakota Darsow in a 3-way qualifying match for Ultimate X
Darsow starts posing on the ropes and gets knocked to the floor by the other two. Xion hits a DDT on Palacious for two. Darsow then hits a suplex on Palacious, followed by a kneedrop and a legdrop for two. Xion drops Darsow with a missile dropkick. Palacious then ends up on Xion’s shoulders, but he gets pancaked off and then Xion delivers a modified shoulder breaker to Palacious. Palacious makes a comeback with a tope on Darsow. Xion meets his opponents on the outside with a corkscrew moonsault, which almost ended up in distaster, as Palacious had to run to the danger zone to catch him. Back in the ring, Darsow hits a traditional moonsault on Xion, but Palacious breaks up the pin with a double foot stomp off the top rope. Palacious then tries a superplex on Xion, who blocks it and drops Palacious on the arena floor. Xion then hotshots Darsow and hits him with a 450 splash for the win. Sloppy match, but at least the best of the three is moving forward.
Winner: Shima Xion by pinfall
Rob Van Dam cuts a promo backstage that he’s very excited about the Bound for Glory series. He says he’s equally excited about the Destination X pay per view, as he was X-Division before there was an X-Division. As he says this, Jerry Lynn walks in behind him and asks “don’t you mean WE were X-Division?” RVD looks shocked to see Lynn back. This was almost identical to the segment last year, when these two were supposed to meet at the ECW reunion show.
Match #5: Mickie James vs. Winter in a non-title (I think) streetfight
The match starts backstage, as Winter attacks Mickie, who attempts to fight back and we see some of Jeff Jarrett’s guitars hanging in some storage area backstage (so that’s where they come from). Winter then starts using a weight belt, as they finally make it into the Impact Zone. Mickie delivers a Thesz press off one of the steel platforms, as the two knockouts tumble down the ramp. Mickie then delivers a unique hurricanrana off the railing, the same way she uses the ropes for that spot. She delivers a missile dropkick to Winter in the ring, but as the referee is easily distracted, Angelina Love sneaks in and delivers her crank neckbreaker into her knee on Mickie, allowing Winter to roll into the cover and take the pin.
Winner: Winter by pinfall
Match #6: Abyss vs. Sting in a non-title match
Sting doesn’t wait for any introduction, as he spins Abyss around into a right hand. He then takes the monster down with a couple of shoulderblocks and clotheslines him to the outside. Sting charges at Abyss, who moves and Sting collides with the ring post. Abyss delivers a chokeslam for two. He then grabs the book from his ring attire and starts reading it in the middle of the f---ing match. He then reached back into his bag of tricks and pulls out a glove wrapped in barbwire (Sting must think he’s back in 1992. I don’t see any snake though). Before Abyss can use it, Sting clotheslines him down and then hits the stinger splash, followed by the scorpion death drop for two. Sting then uses the glove on Abyss for the DQ finish, despite the referee fully being aware that Abyss brought the glove into the ring, which is f---ing stupid.
Winner: Abyss by disqualification
After the match, Sting busts Abyss head open with the barbwire, as Anderson comes down the ramp to get a closer look. Sting starts taunting Anderson, while continuing to bludgeon Abyss.