7/11 Shore's TNA Impact Wrestling live coverage: Joker's Wild Gut Check challenge, Gail Kim vs. Taryn Terrell in a ladder match, new Mafia member revealed
By Chris Shore
TNA Impact Wrestling on SpikeTV
Taped on 6/29 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Shore's Slant: Please note, there is a huge storm coming through my area. We lost power for a few minutes last night in a smaller storm. If I suddenly disappear, you now know why.
[Q1] The recap video covered the MEM, Chris Sabin, and Bully Ray storylines. Backstage, Bully Ray told the IQG that he wanted to talk about his wife, Brooke Hogan. He said he understood that people need to move on, but she had a lot of gall to announce her engagement. He said she could move on when he told her to move on.
Aces and Eights made their entrance and Bully Ray harassed Mike Tenay and hugged Taz. Ray said he wanted address Sabin first. He said Sabin could cash in and face him for the Heavyweight Championship. He Sabin "Jr." and "Little man" and suggested he should keep his title. He said he did bad things to little people like Sabin.
Next he said they would vote in a new VP tonight, which was family business. He called out the Main Event Mafia and answered "no" to the MEM challenge. The mafia music cut them off and the MEM came to the stage. Kurt Angle said next week they were going to eliminate every member of Ray's gang, and then Ray would be all alone during his title match.
Sting took the mic and said their newest member was a "heavy hitter" and Ray would find out who it is before the end of the night….The announce team hyped the Joker's Wild tournament…[C]
Shore's Slant: A heavy hitter huh? Imagine how useful that guy could have been when Sting was getting his ass-kicked by Aces and Eights! Seriously, the MEM logic is so bad it took away from what was otherwise a very good opening. They should have never had Sting putting the group back together based on a beat down that none of these guys bothered to step in on the first time. It's stinking up everything around it.
On the stage, Jeremy Borash and Christy Hemme announced the Joker's Wild tag teams. The ultimate winner will earn 25 points in the BFG series. The first team was Jeff Hardy and Joseph Park.
[Q2] The next team was AJ Styles and Samoa Joe…
1. Jeff Hardy and Joseph Park vs. AJ Styles and Samoa Joe in a Joker's Wild qualifying match. Park and Styles started off. Styles ducked Park and kicked him in the leg. Hardy tagged in and there was a more traditional start to the match. Hardy took the heat from both Joe and Styles. Park got the hot tag and tried a comeback, but Joe hooked the rear naked choke for the win…[C]
AJ Styles and Samoa Joe advanced to the gauntlet match of Joker's Wild at 4:36.
Shore's Slant: I'm ambivalent about that match. The structural problem with the BFG series is that the early matches, even gimmicked to death and worth 25 points, don't come across as important. This is especially true when you have main event talent beating each other in sub five minutes.
Taryn Terrell was shown backstage stretching out. It wasn't nearly as suggestive as that sounds. JB and Christie announced the next teams…
[Q3] 2. Jay Bradley and Hernandez vs. Mr. Anderson and Magnus in a Joker's Wild qualifying match. Anderson and Magnus played tag to start the match before it finally settled on Magnus and Bradley. Magnus went for a quick tag, but Anderson acted like he had something in his eye. Magnus took the heat and tried for another tag, but Anderson dropped to the floor. Magnus hooked a surprise roll-up on Hernandez to win for his team without Anderson ever stepping in the ring…
Mr. Anderson and Magnus advanced to the gauntlet match of Joker's Wild at 3:56.
Backstage, Austin Aries complained about getting screwed last week. Roode whined about losing all three matches in the BFG series so far. Bad Influence strutted in and made a Vegas joke about betting on them. They left for the last Joker's Wild match…[C]
Shore's Slant: I liked the story they told there, and this is a perfect example of what I have been saying they should do. The first Joker's Wild match was flat. This had a totally different subtext because of the tension between Magnus and Anderson. That's all they need to do. The fact that they are BFG matches don't carry enough weight yet, so do more. You can see it coming in the next match as well.
JB and Hemme handled the final pairings. Bet you can't guess how that turned out. My power actually flashed after they announced the first team, so I missed all the pre-match and the first few moments of the match…
3. Christopher Daniels and Austin Aries vs. Bobby Roode and Kazarian. Everybody worked a series in the ring before it settled on Roode vs. Aries. Roode tried to dump Aries to the floor, but Aries landed on the apron and took out Kaz.
[Q4] Aries kicked Roode and went for his senton, but Kazarian dragged him to the ground and slammed him against the apron…[C] Back from commercial, Kazarian tried to pin Aries, but Daniels pulled him off. They argued for a minute and Daniels went to the apron. He blind tagged a recovered Aries and went after Kaz. Kaz hooked a small package and Roode stopped Aries from breaking the pin for the win…
Bobby Roode and Kazarian advanced to the gauntlet match of Joker's Wild in about 10:00.
Backstage, Aces and Eights went to caucus to pick the new VP…The Knockouts were shown heading towards the ring…[C]
Shore's Slant: Just an OK match, but again, the subtext of the split teams gave the match more meaning, and I like how they used the split. I don't think this is the beginning of anything with Bad Influence, but it does lay seeds for more frustration in the BFG series going forward for the team.
[Q5] Backstage, Hulk Hogan tried to engage Brooke on the Bully Ray topic and she dodged it over and over by saying she needed to take care of business. Hogan told her to take care of all of her business…
Backstage, Ray said they got rid of the problem named D-Lo. Ray said Anderson and Doc both claimed they were the best man for the job. Ray said he wasn't going to vote and would leave it up to them. They voted, and tied 3-3 with Knux getting the deciding vote. He picked Anderson, which pissed off Doc. Knox said it wasn't about him, it was about the club. Doc dismissed him…
Mickie James made her entrance and sat at ringside. A clipboard with a contract was hanging above the ring…
4. Gail Kim vs. Taryn Terrell in a ladder match to become the number one contender for the Knockouts Championship. Kim attacked before Taryn could get in the ring. Taryn fought back and tossed Kim over the top rope to the ramp. She followed with a nasty looking spear through the ropes, and somehow Kim ended up in control. Woah, did my cable skip? That was weird.
Kim brought a ladder into the ring and Taryn grabbed the other end. They played tug-of-war and Taryn let go. She hit a drop kick on the ladder to drive Kim into the corner. Taryn set up the ladder and started to climb. For some reason, Kim pushed the ladder over when Taryn was on the second rung. Kim hit a very unbelievable body scissor to drive Taryn into the ladder. She went to the floor and tried for the corner figure four, but Taryn kicked her away…[C]
Shore's Slant: Not a good start to this match.
Back from commercial, both women were on the top of the ladder and did the double fall spot. Terrell covered first and dropkicked the ladder into Kim. Kim locked her legs around the ladder, so instead of moving her legs, Terrell went for a new ladder. Kim woke up and set the ladder up in the middle of the ring, and Taryn set hers across from the ladder to the second rope. Taryn laid Kim across the ladder and went to the top rope, but Kim rolled off, leading to huge heat.
[Q6] Kim stopped Taryn and hooked the corner figure four, but through the ladder instead. Terrell pulled Kim off the ladder next and started to climb. She sold the knee to allow Kim to recover and then hit a cross body from the top of the ladder. Taryn put Kim back on the ladder and climbed up. She went for an ace crusher, but Kim shoved her away. Terrell grabbed her and hooked a Dragon sleeper. Kim grabbed Taryn's hair and tied it to the ring rope. No, seriously. And somehow, Taryn couldn't get free so Kim won…
Gail Kim defeated Taryn Terrell in a ladder match to become the number one contender for the Knockouts Championship at 15:09.
Backstage, Sting got a phone call from the fifth member of the Mafia…[C]
Shore's Slant: That has to be the lamest finish to a match since the Finger Poke of Doom, and at least that was an attempt at a swerve. This match started poorly, turned very good after the break, and ended with a fart. Seriously, anyone with long hair knows that a simple knot like that will not hold with hair. So stupid.
Backstage, Sting finished talking to the fifth member and they went to meet him…
AJ Styles vs. Magnus vs. Anderson vs. Samoa Joe vs. Kazarian vs. Bobby Roode in a Joker's Wild gauntlet match for 25 BFG points. Two men start and a new man is added every two minutes. Eliminations are over the top rope until the final two, at which point it becomes a regular match. Styles and Magnus started and wrestled to a stalemate. Kazarian was out next to another boring two minutes.
[Q7] Samoa Joe was out next, and that led to a MEM team attack. Kazarian charged at Magnus, who dumped him over the top rope for the first elimination. Kazarian was eliminated at 5:24…[C]
Shore's Slant: Keep in mind the commercial break is longer than the time left before the next entrant, so my times reflect TV times and not actual times. This is always true, but it seemed worth saying here.
Back from commercial, Anderson had been added during the break, and Bobby Roode entered almost immediately. He was the final entrant. Roode tried to eliminate Styles. Styles stopped him only to be knocked off the apron by Anderson. AJ Styles was eliminated at 11:50. Joe hit a clothesline on Anderson and both men flew over the top rope. Samoa Joe and Anderson were eliminated at 12:50.
Roode immediately attacked and hooked a crossface. Magnus powered out and hooked a cloverleaf until Roode made the ropes. Magnus went to the top rope, but Roode caught him there. Magnus shoved him down and went for the elbow. Roode moved and rolled Magnus up. Magnus kicked out into a pinning position and the ref awkwardly counted three…
Magnus eliminated Bobby Roode at 16:51 to win the Joker's Wild match. Magnus ears 25 BFG points for the win.
[Q8] Hulk Hogan was shown heading toward the ring…[C]
Shore's Slant: What was up with that ref count? He seemed as surprised as the rest of us at the finish. Weird. This win gives Magnus, like, 632 points. I wonder what story they are going to tell with him. I doubt it's "dominate winner from start to finish," so I wonder. It might be a heel turn if his lead falls apart. Finally, the BFG series gets some meat!
Hogan made his entrance and pandered to the crowd. He hyped Destination X for next week and called out X Division Champion Chris Sabin. Sabin cut a promo about overcoming adversity and said he was cashing in his belt. He started to hand the belt over to Hogan when the Aces and Eights music played.
Bully Ray came to the ring with a mic and said Sabin must live in a fantasy world. He said he was a bad person and he did bad things. He said if Sabin cashed in he would get his little ass kicked. Sabin told him to shut the hell up. He said Ray must have a bad memory and that was why he was asking people if he knew who he was every week.
Sabin said he was the guy who ended Team 3D by pinning Ray. He said he was the only guy who had kicked out of Team 3D's finisher. He said he might be the underdog, but he had been one before and come out on top. He said he was going to kick Ray's ass and then stand over him and asked if he knew who Sabin was. He said he would be the world heavyweight champion.
Ray said Sabin wouldn't just be fighting hi, he would be fighting the whole family. Aces and Eights came out, and immediately the MEM music played. Sting and crew walked out and said Sabin would face Bully alone because the four of them plus their newest member would make sure of it. He introduced Rampage Jackson as the newest Mafia member to close the show…
Shore's Slant: Holy crap. Sabin and Bully were great there! It started clunky for Sabin (Hogan gave him a lame and awkward endorsement), but he found his voice quickly and played off Ray, who was brilliant yet again, perfectly. In fact, I'm more than a little annoyed that the exchange got overshadowed by the Jackson announcement. The guy isn't even interested in wrestling yet, and has publicly said so, so why even bother. Let Sabin and Ray feud. Please.
Impact was all over the map this week. There were things to like a lot and things to hate a lot, and I do think the good outweighed the bad. But not by much. BFG is finally getting some teeth to it, so hopefully things continue to improve. Jason Powell and Will Pruett will have more tomorrow. Thanks for watching along tonight.
Questions? Comments? Anyone, anyone? Let me hear from you. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet me @TheShoreSlant with whatever is on your mind.
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