What up wrestling fans, I'm the WrestlingNerd bringing you another written review. Today, we take a look at TNA Impact Wrestling 5/31/12. With TNA having a new time slot and the show being live, how does it measure up? Let's find out and start the review.
Match #1: Robert Roode vs Sting; Lumberjack match
We open up the show with a match. There isn't a whole lot to say about this match. I kinda like how there is a force field around that right that separates the faces and the heels. Sorry, but crossing that line could be hazardous to your heath, so we gotta stay on one side or the other. What the hell am I talking about? Considering the age difference between Roode and Sting, the match was okay. The finish comes when Sting locks in the Scorpion Death Lock and gets Bobby to tap out. That's right, your world champion, who has defeated people like James Storm, AJ Styles, and RVD, loses a senior citizen. Honestly, I'm not surprised they did this. Sting just made his return and they want to at least make him look credible, but it does make the champ look bad. I know people want me to complain about this spot, but I honestly don't care since I knew they wanted to roll with Sting/Roode at Slammiversary. After the match, Hulk Hogan shows up and makes the title match for Slammiversary. I like how Tazz and Tenay referred to it as a blockbuster announcement. More like predictable news.
Winner via submission: Sting
Bully Ray come out and calls out Joseph Parks. Joseph is sitting in the audience. Ever have Déjà vu? Joseph is actually sitting in the exact same spot as last week. What, did he reserve it for life? Joseph comes down to the audience and Bully says he wants to fight. I feel like we've been here before? Have we been here before? Okay, so they finally change it up a little from last week when Joseph actually grabs Bully. Wait, Bully left Abyss for dead? So, is Abyss missing again? Oh, I don't know. Bully threatens to sue, so Joseph backs away. Bully calls him and Abyss a coward. That's when Joseph puts on his big boy pants and wants to fight. Bully decides to make it Slammiversary. I don't have a good feeling about this. Then again, maybe they secretly cloned Abyss and both Abyss and Joseph will show up at the same time. Why do I bringing that up?
Match #2: Austin Aries vs Chris Sabin; X Division Title
Since Alex Shelley is in another castle (Or possible company), Sabin is given a X Division title match. This match was really short, but effective. It ended when Sabin went for the Cradle Shot, but A Double countered into a roll-up victory. So, Austin goes from defeating Bully Ray to….this? Don't you think this is a slight push in the wrong direction? I guess that's what happens when you're above the X Division.
Winner via pinfall: Austin Aries
In a short backstage scene, Hogan names Tazz the third judge of the Gut Check. Some rumors have been flying around for a few weeks, but it appears that it may be true. Rumors have been flying around that Ric Flair is done with TNA. Considering they already replaced him in the Gut Check, it seems that Flair is most likely done with TNA. I'm gonna take this time to remember my favorite Flair/TNA moment….
Oh, that never gets old. Flair is more of a pigeon than actual pigeons. Anyway, the Gut Check committee talks about Joey Ryan's fate. I honestly don't know what Bruce Prichard is talking about. Of course Joey's gimmick is over the top. It's pro wrestling. If it isn't over the top, it isn't pro wrestling. Then again, we are dealing with Ron Burgundy, here.
Dixie Carter comes out to make a special announcement. What, is she pregnant with AJ's child? Noooo, it turns out that Brooke Hogan is running the Knockouts division. Oh, and they are making a TNA Hall of Fame…..WHAT? A TNA Hall of Fame?
Oh, so this is how former/non-WWE guys are gonna get in the HoF. What the f*** is this madness? When I first heard this, I thought it was a joke. Well, it turns out that this is real……and super ridiculous. Okay, the company being around 10 years is something to celebrate (Come on. At least try to be fair), but TNA is not ready for a HoF. Oh, I kinda got off-track and forgot to talk about Brooke. I listen to Dixie's speech and there was something that I couldn't help but laugh at. She said that Brooke has been surrounded by all the greats in the wrestling business. Didn't her father run around as Mr. America at one point? Oh, and they also talk about how they want to showcase the KOs in a smart and beautiful way…..
Yeah, I think I made my point. That's it. I'm done. I quit….
I don't know about this move. Brooke has done very little in the wrestling business to earn a job like this. Let's be honest. She pretty much has this job thanks to her father. Oh, and conquering the entertainment world? She's also here because he has conquered nothing. How did that singing career turn out? Yeah, about as successful as previous American Idol winners. Then again, can't judge a book by its cover. I'll give her a chance.
Match #3: Devon vs Jeff Hardy; TV Title
There was an online poll to determine who will get the TV Championship match. Hardy didn't seem to give a crap that he was going for the TV Title. Then again, it's being held by Devon, so Hardy's reaction is actual genuine. The match only lasted for a few seconds and it ended when Robbie E and T interfered. See, this is how you make fan voting completely unnecessary. Then again, I'm not sure what's worse? TNA taking a piss on the fan votes with the interference, or the fact they at STILL rolling with this Devon/Robbie E garbage. Even though they are using the TV title more, this title is failing.
Winner via f*** up: NOBODY!!!
We get an update on James Storm. He still seems to be taking the defeat pretty hard. In fact, he was almost implying "retirement". No…..no…..NO!!!. Eh, he'll be fine.
Time for the Gut Check….eh. Al Snow votes Daniel Bryan, while Bruce and Tazz vote anti-Daniel Bryan. Bruce felt that Joey being in the indies for ten years speaks for itself. Yeah, I'm sure CM Punk and Daniel Bryan would like to have a word with you. Joey got a chance to deliver a promo, but Tazz felt it wasn't good enough. The Gut Check has gotten off to a pretty bad. I don't see how Joey doesn't get a job, while Alex Silva manages to pull down a contract. So, I guess charisma is a bad thing in TNA? It doesn't bother me that they declined on Joey, but by accepting Silva, they already set the standard. The voting/evaluation for both segments don't add up and it doesn't make a whole lot of sense. It's just a mess.
Now that I'm on this subject, I might as well talk about a particular dirt sheet that has been talked about for the last couple of weeks. Most of you know that I don't like dirt sheet reporting and I normally try to stay away from it, but I think I have to bring it up. The dirt sheet talks about Flair going off the script and approving Silva getting a contract last month. Apparently, TNA didn't want Silva to get a contract, but Flair changed his mind and it effected everything. I don't really buy this dirt sheet because it shows many levels of stupidity. Let's go ahead and say Flair did go off-script. Well, all Bruce and Snow had to do was say "no" and it's automatically fixed. It isn't like Snow and Bruce are rookies here. They have been around the business long enough, and they should know if somebody screws up, they should try to save it. This rumor can also show how stupid TNA is. The first Gut Check evaluation was taped. Okay, so if Flair screwed up, all TNA had to do was re-shoot the segment. See, this is why I don't buy this dirt sheet. TNA has made some dumb decisions over the years, but would they really be stupid enough to offer someone a contract they had no intentions of using? It would be interesting to find out if this dirt sheet is true or not. I don't think so because it sounds like totally bs, but I'm also convinced that TNA would sign a guy that they will never us. So far, Silva has not made any appearances for this company since the evaluation. There you go, dirt sheet readers. I only wanted to bring it up because I knew I would be slammed with all these comments regarding Flair/Silva/Gut Check.
Match #4: AJ Styles vs Christopher Daniels
Out of all the action tonight, this was probably the best match to watch. Still, I have seen better AJ/Daniels matches, but I'm willing to let it slide because of time constraints. AJ hits a reverse DDT for the victory. I liked that finisher. After the match, Kaz and Daniels attack AJ. Kurt Angle comes out for the save. Kurt starts to control everything, but the bad guys take down Kurt. They pull out those plastic tie-downs and tie Kurt to the ropes. Oh no, the budget ran out in TNA. They are so short on money that they can't even afford handcuffs. I'm sorry, but that was pretty stupid. It didn't even work since Kurt was able to break free. Plastic…..NOT my one weakness!!! They eventually smack Kurt with the title belt to take him out. Makes you wonder why they didn't do that in the first place. Oh, the wonders of live TV. Once Kaz and Daniels take out both AJ and Kurt, they play a phone conservation between AJ and Dixie. It appeared they were making plans to meet up, but they need to keep it a secret to Dixie's husband. It's a secret to everyone. The show ends with Dixie screaming to shut off the production. So, how did Kaz and Daniels get a hold of a phone conservation between AJ and Dixie? Did they hack a phone? I'm starting to think Kaz and Daniels have a career in the FBI with skills like this. Anyway, the plot thickens between AJ and Dixie……and I really mean "thicken". It wouldn't be a WrestlingNerd review without a bad joke.
Winner via pinfall: AJ Styles
For the first live Impact of 2012, it was pretty uneventful. Not a whole lot stood out from this episode. The only part I really enjoyed was the ending. Everything else seems…..blah. I also didn't like most of the segments for tonight's show. The last couple of weeks were actually going well for TNA, but I kinda felt they took a couple steps backwards this evening. Parts of the show didn't seemed planned out. This is the advantage of doing taped shows. TNA clearly hit some rough spots here and this is something they need to re-evaluate. It wasn't the worst thing I have seen out of TNA, but I think you would want people to come back and check out next week. The show was so "okay and mediocre" that it might not even be worth another look. At least, that's what newcomers are saying. I personally can't recommend this one. The last couple of weeks have been fair and promising, but this seemed like a failed experiment. That's gonna do it for the review and I hope you enjoyed it. As always, tell me what you thought of my review or tonight's show. I will see you guys and girls on the next WrestlingNerd show. See you next time.