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TNA Impact: AJ Styles returns, Lockdown fallout
By NOLAN HOWELL - SLAM Wrestling


Bully Ray opens the live TNA Impact from Chicago. Photos by The Masked SLAM! Wrestling Photographer.


At TNA Lockdown on Sunday, Bully Ray captured the TNA World Heavyweight Championship after revealing that he is the leader of Aces and Eights. Fans and coworkers alike were shocked at the betrayal from a man who seemed to turn over a new leaf only a few months ago. Tonight on TNA Impact, Bully Ray has some explaining to do and Aces and Eights will surely be right behind him to hammer the point home to anyone who defies the gang. Also, AJ Styles returns after seeming on edge when TNA cameras filmed him in his hometown. All that and more on this week's episode of TNA Impact!

Recap of Bully Ray's reveal at Lockdown.

We are LIVE from Chicago, Ill. Todd Keneley, Mike Tenay, and Taz have the call for this week.

Chavo Guerrero and Hernandez come out for their shot at TNA Tag Team Champions Austin Aries and Bobby Roode. Unfortunately, Aces and Eights hit the ring and put an end to those plans immediately, beating down the tag team and quickly disposing of them. Devon tells the fans to sit down and be quiet, albeit in more inappropriate terms. Devon says that this is the club that is taking over and wants to introduce someone.

TNA World Heavyweight Champion Bully Ray makes his way to the ring, decked out in the Aces and Eights garb. Bully celebrates a bit with the group before taking the microphone. He asks us if we know who he is, then tells us all of the current hats he is wearing. He says that he used the Hogan family and Sting, making a fool out of every fan in the process. Bully outlines the original Aces and Eights plan and tells Hogan that Aces and Eights did in one night what the NWO couldn't do in their entire reign of terror. He challenges Hogan to come and fire the group, but says he won't. He concludes by saying that you never ride alone when you are with Aces and Eights.

Sting is backstage, infuriated by Bully's speech. He wants to get his hands on Bully Ray and goes to get Hulk Hogan to talk about it.

(Commercials)

Match One: Gail Kim & Tara (w/ Jessie) vs. Mickie James & Velvet Sky

Match starts with Gail Kim and Velvet Sky. Side headlock for Sky, but Gail Kim gets a shoulder block. Arm drags from Sky lead to a clothesline. James tagged in and Gail Kim gets a double dropkick for her troubles. Gail Kim is mounted in the corner, but James with a back elbow to knock down Tara from the apron. Enzuigiri gains James a nearfall as we hit a break in the action.

(Commercials)

We return with Tara and James in the ring. Tara working James over in the corner, but James fights back. Tara does the splits as James charges her in the corner, locking her in a tarantula stretch. Gail Kim with a little dirty offense on the outside as Tara ties up referee Taryn Terrell. Gail Kim tagged in and a double-team suplex gets a nearfall.

Gail Kim working James over in the corner a bit, but James lands a hurricanrana to put Gail's offense on hold. Double clothesline puts both ladies down. Tags are made and Tara and Sky are now the legal participants. Runnling clotheslines for Tara and a running boot to Gail Kim on the apron. Legsweep from Sky earns a nearfall as Gail Kim breaks the pin. Taryn Terrell and Gail Kim get into their typical war of words and Gail shoves Terrell to the mat. Terrell gets up and smacks Gail Kim, which will not fair well considering she is on probation from her incident with Gail Kim at Lockdown.

Mickie James with a missile dropkick on Gail Kim that sends her packing. Tara hits the Widow's Peak on Mickie James, but Velvet Sky is there and hits the In Yo' Face to end Tara's night.

Winners by pinfall: Mickie James & Velvet Sky

Recap of Aces and Eights celebrating from earlier in the night. Bully Ray celebrating with a few brews with Aces and Eights. Bully believes Hulk Hogan won't fire them and decides that he hasn't spoken to his wife in a while. He gets sent to voicemail and he has a laugh with the group as they leave a taunting voicemail for Brooke Hogan.

(Commercials)

Prior to their match, Robbie E tells Rob Terry that their match Sunday was a fluke and he will even the score tonight.

Match Two: Robbie E vs. Rob Terry

Robbie E with some cheap shots before Terry ducks him. Hip toss and gorilla press from Terry lead to a splash in the corner. Terry puts Robbie E up for a suplex and brings him down with a powerslam. Spinebuster variation from Terry puts Robbie E down.

Winner by pinfall: Rob Terry

Rob Terry has a little "bro-down" in celebration after the match.

Sting is shown walking in the office of Hulk Hogan, who does not look pleased in the least.

(Commercials)

Bully Ray and Aces and Eights have raided the merchandise tables and they are upset to see none of their products. They decide that someone will pay the price for this and select from a book, seemingly excited for their random choice.

Hulk Hogan and Sting meet in the office. Hogan is upset with Sting, saying that he knew who Bully Ray was all along. Sting asks Hogan not to fire any of the Aces and Eights gang, but Hogan wants nothing to do with Sting, sending him off abruptly while stating that there is no trust between the two anymore.

The announce team gives us a rundown of all of tonight's events and what is to come, most notably the return of AJ Styles.

(Commercials)

Sting walk around backstage before he is confronted by the TNA World Tag Team Champions. Bobby Roode and Austin Aries give him a little sarcastic greeting, saying that it must be the pits to be dressed down by Hogan. the group blames Sting for Bully Ray and Aces and Eights essentially running TNA. Sting gets upset and says that he just wants to fight tonight. Bobby Roode is seen slowly backing away and Austin Aries says Roode is ready to beat Sting down, but turns to find no one by his side. Sting says he is fighting Aries tonight.

AJ Styles set to appear. His music hits, but nothing doing. The crowd is confused and Bad Influence's music hits. The team comes out decked out in Road Warriors garb, complete with facepaint. Kazarian says that Styles may disappoint, but they will not as they bring back Throwback Thursday. Kazarian says they are paying homage to the second best tag team ever. Christopher Daniels says that they are real tough guys, unlike the tag team they are portraying and the crowd that is watching. Daniels christens them the "Legion of Boom" and declares, "oh, what a tush!"

"Cowboy" James Storm hits the ring and he doesn't take kindly to the group mocking Hawk and Animal or AJ Styles. He tells the team that the guys they are portraying were bigger and "more over" than they will ever be. Storm wants a fight with one of the two men and we have ourselves a match.

Match Three: James Storm vs. Christopher Daniels

Storm in control. Hip toss and tossing Daniels from corner to corner. Bodydrop from Storm. Daniels tries to use a timeout to get a cheap shot, but Storm clobbers him with a haymaker. Kazarian on the apron, but him and Daniels have a meeting of the minds courtesy of Storm. Rollup from Storm only gets a nearfall.

Right hand from Storm, but he is tripped up by Kazarian. Daniels stomping Storm down in the corner and sends him hard into the opposite corner. Daniels with a few knees to the stomach and locks in a gut wrench. Headbutt to the midsection from Daniels and he hits a split-leg springboard moonsault for a nearfall. Storm turns it around with a clothesline and an inverted atomic drop. Eye of the Storm misses and Daniels goes for a BME, but lands and gets a bit of Closing Time. Kazarian distracts Storm from landing a Last Call, but Storm gets another Closing Time.

Winner by pinfall: James Storm

Kazarian and Christopher Daniels beating down James Storm. AJ Styles hits the ring and clears the team out. Storm struggles back to his feet, but Styles with a right hand that sends him back to the mat. Styles looks disturbing as he exits.

Recap of Wes Brisco's upset victory over Kurt Angle at Lockdown.

Kurt Angle looks to be making his way to the ring, but Wes Brisco challenges him in the hallway. Aces and Eights come up from behind and put Angle down.

(Commercials)

Joseph Park in the ring. Park wants to let the crowd know how happy he is to have gathered a few wins. He wants the crowd to know the highlights of his life, most notably being in a ring in front of his hometown. He talks about his time at Cub and Blackhawk games as a child, but is cut off by Matt Morgan.

Matt Morgan calls out Hulk Hogan for all of his mistakes, saying his biggest is having Joseph Park as a member of the TNA roster. Morgan taunts Park and says he will start eliminating Hogan's mistakes one-by-one. He advises Park to get out of the ring. Park steps out and Morgan tells him to leave Chicago while he's at it. Park says they never turn down a fight in Chicago and he is ready to throw down. Morgan says they'll do it on his time and leaves the ring, only to blindside Park with a Carbon Footprint. Morgan says he will take on Park in a match next week.

(Commercials)

Bully Ray again with his gang in their clubhouse. Bully Ray challenges Hulk Hogan to fire them, saying they'll come to him if they want. Bully Ray is ready to take over the show.

Recap of Bully Ray's betrayal at TNA Lockdown.

Match Four: Austin Aries (w/ Bobby Roode) vs. Sting

Feeling out process to beging. Aries gets the advantage with a hammerlock and a takedown, playing for the crowd. Sting not looking impressed with Aries showboating, but Aries with a kick to the stomach to lock in a side headlock. Sting carries him to the corner and sits Aries in his posing position, only to start unloading strikes. Stinger Splash misses and Aries moves outside to talk to his partner.

Action moves back inside and Sting unloads right hands. Inverted atomic drop and Sting on a roll, but Bobby Roode drags him outside. Sting beating Roode down and hits a Stinger Splash. Aries up top, but Sting relinquishes the hold he has on Roode and Aries comes down on his own partner with an axhandle smash. Sting playing to the crowd as we break.


Austin Aries, half of the TNA tag team champions.

(Commercials)

We return with Sting in control, but Aries sends him outside. Aries now in control with strikes to the head. Sting lands a few strikes of his own and sends Aries outside with a clothesline. Roode up on the apron taunting Sting and the referee has seen enough, ejecting Roode and chasing him up the ramp. Sting wanting to go outside, but Aries kicks the rope and hurts the leg of Sting. Suicide dive to the outside by Aries.

Action moves back inside and Aries grabs a nearfall. Elbow drop earns another nearfall for Aries. Aries keeping the older legend grounded and unloading kicks to the rib cage. Jabs from Aries lead to a snapmare. Aries with a missile dropkick from the top to the back of Sting for a nearfall. Running kick to the back of Sting, but the legend once again kicks out and Aries is frustrated.

Aries working Sting in the corner with body shots. Sting fighting back and the men going blow-for-blow. Aries ends this with a dropkick to the knee of Sting. Aries working the legs for yet another nearfall. Sting trading blows yet again and tries a dropkick, but Aries holds the ropes as Sting falls to the mat. Aries looking for the Scorpion Death Lock, but he can't decide which leg to feed through. Sting kicks him away and starts striking, putting Aries down to the mat with a clothesline. Aries escapes a Scorpion Death Lock and moves to the apron. Aries with a hangman's neckbreaker and a missile dropkick follow up. Sting is not effected and catches Aries posing. Gorilla press almost gets Sting a Stinger Splash, but Aries escapes the corner and gets a running dropkick of his own. Sting up for the Brainbuster, but he comes down and hits the Scorpion Deathdrop for a nearfall.

Sting hits the Stinger Splash and locks in the Scorpion Death Lock. Aries in pain, but Aces and Eights hit the ring to save him from the pain.

Winner by disqualification: Sting

Aces and Eights lay Sting out and Bully Ray starts talking trash, calling out Hulk Hogan.

(Commercials)

Hulk Hogan makes his way out and he is furious. Hogan says that Aces and Eights are not going to be in power for long, as he has now commissioned the entire TNA locker room to challenge the gang. A brawl breaks out between the roster and Aces and Eights. Aces and Eights down initially, but the TNA locker room becomes overwhelmed and the gang takes control.

Bully Ray asks Hulk Hogan if this is memorable enough, then begins to whip every man in the ring with his signature chain. Bully Ray slowly making his way down towards Hulk Hogan. Bully says Aces and Eights just killed Hogan's army and asks what his "dad" is going to do now. The gang stands triumphant as the show ends.

RELATED LINKS

  • TNA Impact in Chicago Photo Gallery

    Nolan Howell can be reached at nth993@gmail.com for any questions or comments. Click here to follow Nolan on Twitter.