Impact: Sting deals with Aces and Eights
NOLAN HOWELL - SLAM Wrestling
Tonight on Impact, there is a chance for all of these proverbial powdered kegs to explode, especially with Sting's return to TNA to try and finally bring down Aces and Eights.
The broadcast is live from the Impact Zone in Orlando, Fla. We are greeted by the three-man booth of Todd Keneley, Taz, and Mike Tenay.
Jeremy Borash in the ring and introduces the five finalists for the 2012 Impact Wrestler of the Year award. James Storm, Bully Ray, Austin Aries, Bobby Roode, and TNA World Heavyweight Champion Jeff Hardy all make their way to the top of the stage. Borash begins to announce the winner of the award, but not before Aries and Roode head down the ramp to accept the award. The two bicker down the ramp, but Jeremy Borash announces Jeff Hardy as the 2012 Impact Wrestler of the Year.
The crowd chants Hardy's name and he is hyped, thanking the fans. Roode steps in the ring in disbelief, claiming Hardy is lying if he thinks the crowd's approval is more important than his title belt. Roode is livid, but Austin Aries steps in the ring to make his case for the award. Roode and him getting intense, but Jeff Hardy eases tension by telling the men that he will take them both on in a triple-threat match at Genesis. Hardy claims that this is the year of the enigma and Roode and Aries proceed to put the boots to him. Aries and Roode going at each other in trying to attack Hardy. Roode picks Hardy up and locks his arm while Aries picks up the trophy. Hardy ducks out and Roode gets hit in the stomach with the trophy. Hardy hits a Twist of Fate on Aries and leaves triumphantly with his trophy.
Keneley, Taz, and Tenay preview tonight's show before we head backstage to get some thoughts from James Storm. Kazarian and Christopher Daniels cut him off and proceed to do their best Storm impression. Storm isn't impressed and challenges one of the two to a match after the break.
James Storm vs. Kazarian
Before the match, Christopher Daniels gets on the apron to pull the bait-and-switch. Kazarian attacks Storm from behind and the match begins.
Kazarian stomps Storm down and chokes him with his t-shirt. Kaz attempts to send Storm outside, but Storm skins the cat and gets a Thesz Press. Storm sends Kazarian outside. Daniels tries to help out, but Storm comes down with a crossbody. Daniels distracts Storm and allows Kazarian to gain the advantage. Back inside and Kazarian gets a nearfall. Sleeper in for Kaz. Storm hits Closing Time on Kaz. Storm with a boot and side Russian legsweep. Storm up top and lands an elbow drop for a nearfall. Kazarian regains control on Storm with the help of Daniels. Another Closing Time and Storm looking for the Last Call Superkick. Daniels distracts him, but is sent packing. Kaz goes up top, but comes down on a Last Call to give Storm the win.
Winner by pinfall: James Storm
Aces and Eights in their clubhouse and Devon laying the charm on Mr. Anderson. They want Anderson to join the group tonight to combat Sting. Anderson seems somewhat interested.
Kenny King backstage with Kid Kash. King says he has been watching Kash since the days of VHS and predicts they'll both win to meet in the finals of the X Division Tournament.
Video package recapping the rivalry between TNA and Aces and Eights is shown.
D.O.C. enters the ring. He invites Sting to join the party. He keeps calling for Sting and is tiring of waiting. A bat drops from the rafters and D.O.C. frantically calls for Sting to show himself.
Brooke Hogan is asked when she last talked to her dad. Brooke replies that she will be talking to him tonight.
X Division Tournament: Kid Kash vs. Christian York
Kash takes control early. York sticks him with forearms and clotheslines that send Kash outside. Kash with a knee to the stomach outside and rolls in. Hurricanrana on the outside by Kash. Both men exchanging high-risk offense in the air. Kash eats a huge boot and is on the wrong end of a half-nelson suplex. Kash regains control and tries a moonsaul from the top, but lands on the knees of York. The men exchange numerous nearfalls. Mood Swing from York puts Kash down for the count.
Winner by pinfall: Christian York
Backstage, TNA World Tag Team Champions Hernandez and Chavo Guerrero talk about how confident they are in facing Joey Ryan and Matt Morgan.
Hernandez vs. Joey Ryan
Hernandez was scheduled to face Matt Morgan, but Morgan explained how he injured his arm lifting weights and said Joey Ryan will be willing to take on Hernandez.
Ryan starts with a sneak attack, but Hernandez easily using his power to punish Ryan. Hernandez tries to go off the ropes and Morgan hooks the leg, having suddenly been cured. Ryan off the ropes and Hernandez with the huge shoulder block. Morgan is in and clobbers Hernandez with a discus clothesline.
Winner by disqualification: Hernandez
Morgan puts Chavo Guerrero down with a Carbon Footprint and the team stands tall over the champions.
Kurt Angle and Samoa Joe telling Wes Brisco and Garrett Bischoff that they will not need to help tonight in their steel cage match with Aces and Eights.
Knockouts are shown warming up for a match later in the show.
Video package recapping the Bully Ray saga with the Hogan family and Austin Aries.
Hulk Hogan makes his entrance and strides towards the ring. Hogan says that he wants to take care of business between Bully and Brooke. The couple oblige the Hulkster and make their way to the ring. Hulk says that he has seen Bully doing good things in the back for his fellow wrestlers, but something has never sat well between the two. He wants to know why the couple tried to conceal their relationship. Bully says that it is all on him and that he should have told Hulk about the relationship. Hulk says Bully has broken the proverbial code between wrestlers and that the old rules have gone out the window. Hogan suspends Bully without pay. Brooke is shocked, but Hogan tells her to get out of his ring as well.
A video update of Joseph Park's training in OVW is shown.
Gail Kim & Tara (w/ Jesse) vs. Mickie James & Miss Tessmacher
Gail Kim starts with Miss Tessmacher. The ladies go back and forth. Monkey flip from Tessmacher, but Tara with a cheap shot to stifle her momentum. Tara is brought in and is using the power offense to render Tessmacher ineffective. Mickie James is in and takes out Tara. Gail Kim and Tara are sent outside and the two have a meeting of the minds courtesy of James and Tessmacher. James is brought down by the double-team offense with referee Taryn Terrell's back turned.
James is still being worn down by Gail Kim and Tara when the break ends. Tessmacher is brought in and lands clothesline after clothesline on Tara. Tara evades a stinkface with the help of Jesse. Taryn Terrell's back is turned once again and Gail Kim with a cheap shot on Tessmacher. Tara back inside and she works the hurt Tessmacher. Gail Kim in and she gets a monster gutbuster on Tessmacher. The team still using dirty tactics, knocking James off the apron to prevent a tag. Tara is brought in and continues the power offense. Many nearfalls on Tessmacher, who refuses to give up. Mickie James and Gail Kim are brought in. Tara tries to get involved, but is sent outside. Tessmacher takes Tara and her beau out with a crossbody on the outside. Mickie-DT on Gail Kim puts her out.
Winners by pinfall: Mickie James and Miss Tessmacher
Aces and Eights talking about a plan of action to keep their identities concealed.
ODB tells us that Eric Young will be back after he is done rehabbing at home.
Recap of the night's events prior to the main event.
Roode and Aries talking to Hulk Hogan in his office. The two want a singles match, but Hogan turns the tables on the group and tells them they will team up next week against Hardy and a tag team partner of his choosing.
Steel Cage Match: Aces and Eights vs. Kurt Angle & Samoa Joe
D.O.C. with a sneak attack on Kurt Angle before the match starts, locking Joe in with Devon and a masked member of the group. D.O.C. taking care of Angle on the outside. Joe in control inside, landing jabs at will. Joe downs both members and tries to escape, but Aces and Eights take control. The masked man accidentally clotheslines Devon after Joe ducks away. Devon takes out Joe before any more damage can be done. Devon locks the arm of Joe and the masked man unleashes a bevvy of right hands. The process repeats, but with Devon throwing the punches.
Joe begins to fight back with a boxing attack, but Devon rakes the eyes and Joe is put down with a big boot from the masked man. Devon toying with Joe, but Joe with a palm strike. The gang again gets control. Angle trying to rip the door off, but Devon kicks the door into his face to take him out yet again.
Joe with a flying knee from the top rope on Devon. T-bone suplex on the masked man lands for Joe. All men are down and Angle attempts to scale the cage. D.O.C. tries to prevent this, but Angle lands a low blow and unlocks the cage door. Angle with a clothesline on Devon. Angle up top and a missile dropkick on the masked man. The masked man almost has his mask taken off, but D.O.C. distracts Angle long enough for Devon to shove him into the cage. Angle busted open and the masked man lands a sidewalk slam. Devon on top, but misses a headbutt.
Joe capitalizing with a dropkick to the masked man and all four men are down and out. Angle bleeding profusely, but he manages to land the trio of German suplexes on Devon. He gets one on the masked man. Atomic drop from Joe on the masked man is followed by an Angle Slam.
Winners by pinfall: Kurt Angle and Samoa Joe
Angle wants the mask, but the entire Aces and Eights gang rushes the cage. The gang lays a beating on Angle and Joe. Mr. Anderson cageside now. Sting has arrived with his signature baseball bat and takes care of business. Sting drops the entire gang with the bat. All members escape the cage, except for the masked man that just participated in the match. They want the mask and they get it.
Mike Knox is revealed as a member of Aces and Eights.
He escapes the cage and the gang scurries to the back as the winning team and Sting celebrate in the cage. Broadcast ends with the group exchanging congratulatory gestures.
Nolan Howell can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions or comments. Click here to follow Nolan on Twitter.