TNA Impact results (2/8): Moore’s review of Alex Shelley vs. Eddie Edwards, Jordynne Grace and Trinity vs. Gisele Shaw and Savannah Evans, Josh Alexander vs. Alan Angels, Mike Bailey vs. Zachary Wentz

By John Moore, Staffer (@liljohnm)

TNA Impact (Episode 1,020)
Taped January 19, 2024 in Kissimmee, Florida at Osceola Heritage Park

Aired February 8, 2024 on AXS TV

Highlights from last week’s TNA Impact show aired. The TNA Cross the Line theme aired…

Tom Hannifan and Matthew Rehwoldt were on commentary. Jade Cheung was the ring announcer…

Entrances for the opening match took place. A random overlay graphic appeared during Chris Sabin’s entrance with eagle imagry and red, white, and blue American colors. It had the words” “In Ali We Trust… Mustafa Ali” on the top and bottom of the overlay. Hannifan noted that Mustafa Ali was “sponsoring” this match and that Ali will face Sabin for the TNA X Division Championship at No Surrender. The Good Hands made their entrance, where John Skyler had a mic for a pre-match promo.

Skyler noted that there is change happening in TNA and that change will be Sabin losing the X Division Championship to Mustafa Ali. Skyler said he’s going to give Sabin a taste of defeat when he loses to the best good hand…

John’s Thoughts: That word “Change” totally hits different after the surprising news of Scott D’Amore being released from TNA Wrestling by Anthem. Man, everytime this company finally looks like it’s going to succeed, fate swoops in and screws things up (I’m remembering my favorite year of TNA Wrestling, 2016, when their creative was amazing and they were having some big time stars really clicking, like Drew McIntyre, Bobby Lashley, EC3, Broken Matt Hardy, and others).

1. TNA X Division Champion Chris Sabin. Skyler and Sabin started with a collar and elbow lockup. Skyler got the advantage with a foream smash and a few corner strikes. Sabin escaped the corner and hit Skyler with a crossbody and armdrag. Skyler came back by tackling Sabin’s lower back into the 2nd rope. Sabin came back with a few armdrags. Hotch distracted Sabin at ringside and taclked him into the stairs.

Skyler hit Sabin with a release Suplex for a two count. Skyler distracted the referee, which allowed Hotch to throw Sabin rib first into the apron. Sabin went for a Sunset Flip that Skyler blocked. Sabin then hit Skyler with a German Suplex. Sabin hit Skyler with a DDT and leg lariat for a few nearfalls. Hotch tripped up Sabin for another distraction. Skyler hit Sabin with a Slingshot Spear for a nearfall. Sabin avoided a Skyler elbow drop. Sabin hit Skyler with a Yakuza Kick, followed by a Cradle Shock for the victory.

Chris Sabin defeated John Skyler via pinfall 7:11.

The picture-in-picture highlight replay of the match also had Mustafa Ali political imagry on it…

John’s Thoughts: Solid tune up match for Sabin. As much as I really liked what I was seeing last year when they were giving the Good Hands a bit of a winning streak and push, there is also space in the world for enhancement guys to prop up the higher card people. That said, as Jason Powell and I pointed out on the recent Boom podcast, TNA, while one of the most efficient companies out there in terms of production, they haven’t been able to prop up as much young talent as they should be and instead focusing on the 40+ year old veterans. Here’s hoping we see some pushes for people like the talented Jake Something, Rascalz, or even Cody Deaner.

Gia Miller interviewed Alex Shelley and asked him if he was risking an injury facing Eddie Edwards later in the day. Gia talked about how “The System” will have a numbers advantage at ringside and that Shelley might want to be in top shape to face Moose for the title in his obligatory rematch. Shelley said life is a risk. He talked about mentoring a lot of current superstars. He said he knows all about how teamwork works because of his many tag teams he’s been a part of.

Shelley said The System don’t seem like a team, but moreso a bunch of individuals that feed off each other in a symbiotic relationship. Shelley talked about No Surrender being in New Orleans and how he’s going to make Eddie Edwards his personal voodoo doll. He said when he bends Eddie’s elbow he wants Alicia to feel it. When he tweak’s Eddie’s knee, he wants Myers to feel it. When he crank’s Eddie’s neck, he wants Moose to feel it. Shelley said the thing about systems is when you take out one component, the whole thing crashes…

Tom Hannifan hyped upcoming matches…[c]

John’s Thoughts: While most of the reboot of TNA has been great, one of the things not clicking is “The System”. The System feel like a forced effort to fabricate a Four Horsemen type of faction. Only problem here, is there was no character development whatsoever to develop this faction. Four people just decided to randomly hang out together and claim they are in the main event.

Tom Hannifan plugged ticket sales for their next PPV, Rebellion on April 20th at Las Vegas…

Entrances for the next match took place…

2. Tasha Steelz vs. Xia Brookside. Tasha had some cool Egyptian themed pre match gear. Xia kicked things off with a dropkick and Frankensteiner. Xia hit Tasha with a crossbody for a two count. Tasha came back with a draping DDT. Tasha worked on Xia in the corner by stomping a mudhole. Tasha got a two count off that. Tasha worked on Xia with methodical offense. Xia rallied with forearms.

Xia hit Tasha with a meteora to the back for a two count. Xia then grinded on Tasha’s ribs during an abdominal stretch and Octopus Hold. Steelz kicked out of a rollup at two. Xia and Tasha tangled each other up in the corner. Tasha rolled up Xia with a Code Red like move. Tasha picked up the win with a hand full of tights.

Tasha Steelz defeated Xia Brookside via pinfall in 4:24.

John’s Thoughts: Good match to even up the series between these two. I’m not the biggest fan of parity booking, because it’s way overdone in wrestling. But I’m okay with this one because I thought that TNA shouldn’t have fed Tasha to Xia initially due to Tasha being such a breakout star for the company before her hiatus. They can probably have a rubber match at the next Impact Plus taping. Both women, I can see as cornerstones of the Knockouts Division. We know what Tasha can bring to the table, and what she brings is greatness. Xia is someone that can low key be a star with her perky charisma.

The show cut to Chris Bey and Ace Austin backstage cutting a promo where they hyped up their best of three series with The Grizzled Young Veterans. Ace and Bey called out Drake and Gibson for taking shortcuts. They were cut off by James Drake and Zack Gibson blindsiding both Ace and Bey. Gibson and Drake slammed a production crate shut on the arm of Ace Austin. The Grizzled Young Veterans were dragged away by security while Bey was worried about Ace and his arm…

Hannifan hyped upcoming segments…[c]

John’s Thoughts: Nice little injury angle by the Grizzled Young Veterans on Ace Austin. It puts some sort of doubt on the 2nd match of the series (though traditional wrestling bookings say that the babyfaces will even things up). I like the way the segment was acted too. It was cool seeing the traditional wrestling promo broken up by outside forces.

Sound bites aired from last week’s Frankie Kazarian heel promo about why he’s turning on the fans and Eric Young…

Frankie Kazarian was walking in the hallway wearing aviator shades. Jake Something confronted Kazarian and said he used to look up to Kazarian. Kaz said if that’s how it’s going to be, Jake doesn’t even deserve to look at Kazarian. Jake said he tried to talk to Kaz, but there are “Other” ways they can handle this (presumably a match)…

Entrances for the next match. One thing I notice about the entrances is they more often than not have a camera shot of Jade Chung announcing the match…

3. Zachary Wentz (w/Trey Miguel) vs. “Speedball” Mike Bailey. Wentz dragged Bailey to the mat by the hair to start the match. Bailey got a huge “Speedball” chant. Bailey hit Zach with a leg lariat followed by rapid kicks into an enzuigiri. Wentz came back with a right hook and a boot for a two count. Wentz draped Bailey with a sweep kick. Trey gave Bailey a right hand when Wentz distracted the referee.

Bailey gave Wentz a pump kick to knock him off the apron. Bailey hit Trey with a Triangle Moonsault heading into picture-in-picture.[c]

Bailey hit Wentz with a Tae Kwon Do axe kick combination. Wentz came back with a knee in the corner and a PK to Bailey’s chest. Bailey avoided a standing Shooting Star. Bailey and Wentz took each other out with mirror high kicks to the temple. Bailey and Wentz traded fatigued forearms. Bailey got the takedown off a leg lariat. Wentz avoided Bailey’s many chambered kicks. Wentz hit Bailey with a Half Nelson Slam for a two count.

Bailey hit Wentz with a Spanish Fly powerslam for a two count. Wentz rolled up Baily with a handful of tights for a nearfall. Bailey hit Wentz with a few chambered kicks and a cyclone kick. Trey tripped Bailey off the top rope which allowed Wentz to hit Bailey with the UFO Cutter (Sliced Bread into a Cutter) for the win.

Zachary Wentz defeated Mike Bailey via pinfall in 11:36.

Trey Miguel and Zach Wentz gave Bailey mounted punches after the match. Trent Seven then made his entrance. Hannifan noted that Seven and Bailey call themselves “Speedball Mountain”. Seven gave Wentz a chop and took down Trey with a DDT. Steve Maclin ran out and beat down Seven and Bailey. “The Wanted Man” Nic Nemeth ran out and cleared all three heels from the ring with superkicks.

Nemeth raised Bailey and Seven’s hand to have the babyfaces stan tall. Nemeth has new entrance music which sounded like it either may or may not have been performed by the former WWE in-house band, Downstait (Downstait did a lot of music for the WWE wrestlers around the 2000s. They did Dolph’s “I came to show the world” theme)…

John’s Thoughts: A much needed win for the Rascalz after both of them eating losses to Nic Nemeth in recent week. Yes, it was by cheating, but the cheating felt fresh because we didn’t get their usual spray paint can finish that are overdone in Rascalz wins. It looks like Bailey and Seven are going to be the men to even up the numbers against Maclin and the Rascalz. I’m liking this faction warfare more than anything involving The System because there’s actual character and storyline development here over a series of weeks.

A Big Kon vignette aired where he was hyping himself as the strongest big man in TNA…

Trinity (at this point, already back on WWE television) and Jordynne Grace were shown walking through the hallways heading to the ring…[c]

Entrances for the next match took place. Gisele Shaw carried her giant plastic X to the ring…

4. Jordynne Grace and Trinity vs. Gisele Shaw and Savannah Evans (w/Jai Vidal). Evans no sold initial forearms to start the match. Evans tackled Grace into the corner. Grace came back with a big boot. Evans and Shaw blocked each other’s suplexes. Grace hit Evans with a top rope assisted suplex. Trinity tagged in. Evans rallid with headbutts. Trinity slammed Evans’s fce on her knee and tagged in Grace.

Vidal and Shaw swarmed Grace on the apron. Shaw slammed Grace by the hair to the apron. Evans hit Grace with a DDT for a two count. Shaw tagged in and worked on Grace with methodical offense while cutting the ring in half on Grace. Evans and Shaw used quick tags to keep the numbers advantage and isolation offense. Grace used a clothesline on Shaw to make the tag to Trinity. Trinity caught Evans with a Disaster Kick. Trinity hit Evans with a crossbody for a two cont.

Trinity matrix dodged a clothesline from Evans and mocked Evans by doing a little bit of booty shakin’ while in a Judo plank. Trinity hit Evans with the Rear View booty strike. Shaw broke up the pin. Trinity and Grace cleared Shaw from the ring. Trinity hit Evans with a Code Red and did a smooth transition into Starstruck for the submission win.

Trinity and Jordynne Grace defeated Savannah Evans and Gisele Shaw via submission in 6:37.

Trinity and Grace danced to Trinity’s theme after the match. Both of them had ring gear that glowed in the dark under the blacklight…[c]

John’s Thoughts: A fun tag team match to leave the fans happy with the face team going over. One little nit pick, is Gisele Shaw’s 50-50 booking rears its head again. Every time it seems like she’s getting pushed, she ends up getting quickly pulled back. A bit surprised that they had Trinity go over it what (I think) should be her last TNA match, but I thought her last match was her last and she got this one in at a subsequent taping. In other news, I wonder how Scott D’Amore’s departure will effect the roster, and might we see more people exodus. I say that here because Gisele Shaw is, at last to my last knowledge, in a public relationship with D’Amore (but thankfully, I don’t think there was a conflict of interest there). I wouldn’t blame her if she left the company. Same for a lot of the roster who are grateful to Scott. I wouldn’t be surprised if they leave. Scott was also the person who set up Jordynne Grace appearing in the Royal Rumble, and that was noticibly not mentioned at all this week due to Scott’s recent release.

Deaner was cutting a promo backstage. His beard was looking slightly longer than it has been recently. Deaner said he’s a man at a crossroads. AJ Francis quickly interupted Deaner and offered his services as a heavy hitter. Deaner assumed that AJ was just there to ask for help against Joe Hendry. AJ asked Deaner not to “say his name”. Say his name and he appears! I believe in Joe Hendry! Clap clap. A wild Joe Hendry appears!

Hendry told AJ that no one likes AJ. Hendry then went to his smartphone to look at what people are saying about AJ on social media. Hendry read one comment that said AJ Francis is like raw suage rotting under the sun. Another said that AJ should be in jail for his crimes against good taste. Hendry read off more mean comments. AJ chuckled and put on his sunglasses. AJ talked about how he almost killed Hendry with a chokeslam the last time Hendry talked trash. He said the message didn’t come through last time and he’ll take a different approach. AJ walked off. Hendry gave Deaner a friendly pat on the chest. Deaner told Hendry not to touch or talk to him again…

Big Kon made his entrance and no longer has any references to The Design in his presentation. His enhancement apponents were already in the ring…

5. Big Kon vs. Richard Adonis and Ori Gold in a handicap match. Kon smashed one guy in the corner, and turned the other one inside-out with a lariat. Kon hit the guy in the pink trunks with an Iron Claw Chokeslam for the quick win.

Kon defeated Richard Adonis and Ori Gold via pinfall in 0:32.

Kon grabbed the other guy by the neck and “snapped his neck”. Kon then went back to the pink trunks guy. PCO’s elaborate entrance started. He still needs to be wheeled out and revived by doctors and jumper cables for some reason. Kon actually attacked PCO and tossed around the orderlies. PCo got out of the gurney and the two men traded right hands, where they brawled to the ring.

Security ran out to separate both men. Both big managed to clear away the security guards. The guards man attempt to stop them again. Kon chokeslammed one guard to a few guards at ringside. PCO dumped Kon to ringside, but Kon landed on his feet. Kon hit a bunch of Security guards with a suicide dive. The big men continued to brawl. Kon managed to slam PCO to the mat. Kon did an L pose for some reason (seriously, for some reason he’s T posing in the shape of an L for dominance). PCO did the Undertaker sit-up and the two big men brawled to the back…

Entrances for the next match took place. Alan Angels attacked Josh Alexander in the middle of his entrance. The referee separated both men in the ring. The referee rang for the bell when Josh said he was okay to go…

6. Josh Alexander vs. Alan Angels. Angels thought he landed a successful chopo on Josh, but Josh no-sold it and tossed Angels around the ring a few times. Josh was finally able to take off his tracksuit. Josh toyed with Alan a bit. Angels landed a right hand which fired up Alexander. Alan raked Josh in the eyes to send him to ringside. Alan hit Josh with a dive to ringside and a frogsplash in the ring.

Both men traded rapid fire pin attempts. Josh put Alan in an Ankle Lock. Angels made it to the bottom rope for a break. Angels caught Alexander with a kick. Alexander dodged a spin kick and took down Angels with a right hand and backbreaker. Alexander put Angels in an Ankle Lock for the submission win.

Josh Alexander defeated Alan Angels via submission in 3:53.

As Josh was heading to the back, “a fan” jumped the barricade and attacked Josh Alexander. The “fan” tossed Alexander into the steel steps. This man took off his face mask and cap to reveal that he’s Matthew Rehwoldt’s old Vaudevillan tag team partner Simon Gotch. Gotch ran to the back from the crowd…[c]

John’s Thoughts: A quick and harmless win to this mini-program they have Josh and Angels in. Just like Cody is the main protagonist of WWE, Trick Williams is the main protag of NXT, Swerve Strickland is the future protag of AEW; Josh Alexander is the protagonist of TNA, so there’s no shame in losing to the top babyface. That said, I’ve seen a lot of Alan’s work and hope he gets a push one of these days because he’s talented. The Gotch attack was well done as the mask and cap did a really good job hiding the identity of this “fan”. On another note, Josh Alexander is someone who really credits Scott D’Amore with his career. I wouldn’t be surprised if he ends up leaving if allowed. If he is allowed to leave, AEW or WWE better snatch him up because this guy by himself will elevate the in-ring quality of the company he goes to (he’s so good that Brandy Rhodes cut a promo about him to trash talk Ethan Page that one time).

A replay aired of Simon Gotch attacking Josh Alexander (he apparently is also allowed to go by his WWE name too)…

Tom Hannifan and Matthew Rehwoldt checked in from the commentary table. Hannifan grilled Rehwoldt a bit about his former tag team partner coming out of nowhere. Rehwoldt claimed he knew nothing and was just as surprised as everyone else. Tom Hannifan ran through the Februrary 23rd TNA Plus No Surrender card.

Hannifan sent the show to the commercial narrator who ran through the following segments for next week: Chris Bey and Ace Austin vs. Zack Gibson and James Drake for the TNA Tag Team Championships, Crazzy Steve vs. Rhino for the TNA X Division Championship, Jake Something vs. Frankie Kazarian, Moose vs. KUSHIDA, and an appearance from Ash by Elegance (f.k.a. Dana Brooke)…

Entrances for the next match took place…

7. Alex Shelley vs. Eddie Edwards (w/Alisha Edwards). The crowd Eddie with “Eddie Sucks” chants. Graphics on the bottom of the screen aired to advertise matches for the New Japan on AXS show. Eddie and Shelley started the match at a stalemate during the chain wrestling. Both men then traded aggressive chest slaps and shoulder tackles. Shelley’s last tackle managed to get Eddie on the mat. Shelley hit Eddie with a modified rolling sobat. Alisha grabbed Shelley’s leg to prevent a suicide dive. Eddie took down Shelley with a chop heading into picture-in-picture.[c]

Eddie caught Shelley with a chop back from the break. Alisha grinded Shelley’s face on the bottom rope while Eddie distracted the referee. Shelley fired himself to his feet as Eddie went at him with precision chops. Shelley and Eddie traded clotheslines and no sells. Shelley took down Eddie with a Dragon Screw. Shelley gave Eddies hands an an enzuigiri. Shelley hit Eddie with a modified Dragon Screw. Shelley then put Eddie in the Figure Four Leg Lock.

Eddie got to the bottom rope for the break. Alisha distracted Shelley again. This allowed Eddie to hit Shelley iwth a chop. Shelley escaped a backpack stunner and gave Eddie a chop block. Shelley bocked a Gamengiri and gave Eddie an elbow to the elbow, followed by a Blockbuster. Shelly dropped his body weight to block a Tiger Driver. Eddie hit Shelley with a PK to get a fired up one count out of Shelley.

Shelley hit Eddie with a thrust kick combo. Eddie reversed Shell shock into a rollup for a two count. Shelley reversed a Boston Knee Party into a rollup for the win.

Alex Shelley defeated Eddie Edwards via pinfall in 14:14.

Brian Myers ran out and put the boots to Shelley. Shelley crumpled to the mat to avoid a Roster Cut. Kevin Knight and Kushida ran out to clear The System from the ring. Moose was nowhere to be found. The show ended with Shelley’s theme playing while the babyfaces stood tall…

John’s Thoughts: A good in-ring bout between two Ring of Honor legacy veterans. Reason I bring up Ring of Honor is the booking of The System. The System are being booked similarly to Honor No More, also involving Eddie Edwards, in that so far out of the gate they are getting demolished by the babyfaces while eating a ton of losses. They’re supposed to be the big Horseman-esque faction, but so far they are just a bunch of random singles wrestlers that lose more often than they win.

As I continue to say week in and week out for the last couple of years, Impact Wrestling comes at it again with one of the most consistent, efficient, and enjoyable weekly television shows in all of pro wrestling. Unfortunately today (I’m reviewing this show on Friday) there is a nebulous fog hovering over the company after their heart and soul Scott D’Amore got relieved from his duties. Since they had a full card announced for next week, my guess is that they have a lot of material in the can? That said, who knows what this company might look like in two weeks. I hope that after worse close calls that this isn’t the thing that finally gets rid of TNA. I really pray that because TNA has become a true bastion and true alternative in the wrestling landscape.




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