Date: August 18, 2016
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: D’Angelo Dinero, Josh Matthews
This should be an interesting show as we have the first tapings under Billy Corgan’s watch. For perhaps the first time in at least ten years, we’re looking at an Impact without Dixie Carter running things so it should be interesting to see how things look for a change. We’re also about a month and a half away from Bound For Glory so it’s time to start building towards the show. Let’s get to it.
We open with a look at Lashley collecting all three singles titles.
Lashley walks up to Corgan and Dixie Carter as they talk to Aron Rex. A quick staredown ensues and Lashley keeps walking.
Here’s James Storm to open things up. Storm wants referee Brian Hebner to come out here right now. As luck would have it he’s already at ringside so they get straight to the point. James wants an explanation for why the three count at the bell last week didn’t count. We see a clip of last week’s match and Hebner is trying to get JB out of the ring instead of paying attention.
Storm has a point so he wants a rematch but here’s Corgan to interrupt. Corgan says something about winning a game in the end but Storm correctly says this isn’t football. All that matters is that Storm lost which Corgan says is because he can’t win the big one. That’s not cool with James as he pulls out a tool box and grabs a hammer. He helped build this company and he’ll take it apart limb by limb, which means ripping off the turnbuckle pad to start.
Security comes in but Storm says a wrestler doesn’t need security. He’s the only legend that hasn’t left because he cares about this company. A guard gets a Last Call and Storm gets in Corgan’s face. James will leave now but says it won’t go so well if their paths cross again. Storm leaves so Corgan suspends him indefinitely. I really, really hope this isn’t a sign that Corgan is going to be around all the time.
Moose says Eddie Edwards isn’t going to be a challenge.
Storm leaves in his truck.
Eddie Edwards vs. Moose
Moose throws him into the corner to start so Eddie changes tactics and starts speeding the match up. A dropkick puts Moose on the floor so Eddie can score with a running knee off the apron. It only works for a bit though as Mike Bennett offers a distraction so Moose can powerbomb Eddie onto the apron. Back in and we hit the chinlock before Eddie dropkicks him out of the air (close enough at least). Moose cuts him off with a hard clothesline, only to have Eddie snap off a middle rope hurricanrana. He makes the mistake of hitting a suicide dive on Mike though, allowing Moose to hit a chokebomb for the pin at 6:18.
Rating: C. This was a good way to have Moose look good in his first big singles match and that’s important going forward. Eddie is still in a weird place as he doesn’t have a partner so he’s stuck waiting to bring the Wolves back, but he’s kind of turned himself into a cool singles wrestler who doesn’t have anything to do.
Maria tells Jade that she has to beat Gail Kim or no more title shots.
Gail Kim vs. Jade
Jade spins out of a wristlock to start and gets two off a clothesline. Gail sends it outside but gets caught in a fireman’s carry gutbuster. Back in and Jade avoids a cross body, only to miss a moonsault. A fight over a small package lands on Earl Hebner but Gail grabs Eat Defeat. There’s no cover though as Sienna comes out to go after Gail for the DQ at 5:22.
Rating: D+. Egads I just do not care. I get the story here and it’s fine with what they’re doing, but it works on the assumption that the fans want to see Gail Kim rise up the roster again and win the title for a sixth time. I’d like to see these newer women go somewhere instead of just being fresh victories for Gail as right now it’s not so much of a division as much as it is “who does Gail beat this week”?
Lashley laughs at the X-Division guys (all three of them) and says he has an announcement that’s going to affect the entire division. DJZ decides that the winner of a three way match gets to challenge Lashley for the title.
Rockstar Spud vs. DJZ vs. Braxton Sutter vs. Mandrews
Everyone goes after Spud to start, leaving the other three to all try covers for two each. DJZ dives onto Sutter and Mandrews, followed by Spud teasing a dive but stopping to do something….which we don’t see as the camera cuts to the crowd instead. Back in and Spud goes after Sutter, only to have DJZ take him down with a suplex. A roll into a double DDT on Mandrews and Sutter is enough for DJZ to pin Mandrews at 4:40.
Rating: C. There were four guys in the match, they all did spots, one of them got a pin. There’s no story, there are barely any characters (Remember when Sutter came in and looked like a big deal?) and this is all for a chance to (most likely) be slaughtered by Lashley again. Why do people care about this division again?
Ethan Carter III is going to answer Drew Galloway’s challenge from last week.
Dixie yells at Corgan for suspending Storm. I’m so glad it took her forty five minutes to do this. She thinks everyone is on edge because of Lashley holding all three titles (huh?) so they’re going to deal with it right now.
Ethan Carter III is in the ring and calls out Galloway to give him an answer. Drew doesn’t think he’s going to get what he wants, which is a chance to set things right. Carter surprises him by accepting but here’s Aron Rex to interrupt. Rex says the entire universe has been watching Impact in the last few months. I could have sworn there were more than 350,000 people in the universe, or at least in the USA. Rex thinks both of them should have a fair shot so he’s going to be the guest referee in their match.
Eli Drake says he made the King of the Mountain Title but Lashley cuts him off. Lashley doesn’t need a catchphrase but Drake says he’ll be taking any of those titles he wants. The champ really isn’t interested and leaves, only to run into Sienna, who tells him to not be cute.
Jeff Hardy is looking at ladders but Matt says he’s had a deletion telling him that there will be no jumping off a ladder tonight. These ladders are obsolete and Jeff agrees, shoving all of them over.
Here’s Eli Drake for a match but first he has something to say. Drake isn’t happy with having to see a bunch of James Storm vignettes before he just lost his match. He wants to hear Lashley’s announcement right now but gets interrupted instead.
Mahabali Shera vs. Eli Drake
Shera slams him down to start and drops an elbow for two. Drake easily shrugs off everything Shera throws at him but misses an elbow drop of his own. The Sky High is broken up though and Blunt Force Trauma ends Shera at 2:38.
Lashley won’t tell the bosses about his announcement.
Here’s Lashley for his promised announcement, accompanied by people carrying the King of the Mountain and X-Division Titles. Lashley has accomplished his goal and wants Dixie and Corgan out here right now. He says he has all the power because he’s a businessman in addition to being a great wrestler. The bosses suck up to him but Lashley says he’s going to unify the belts together and name himself the undisputed champion of wrestling. Dixie freaks out and says he can’t do that and Corgan drops the President card.
Lashley calls the King of the Mountain Title garbage and throws it down. As for the X-Division, Lashley ripped its heart out and there’s no reason for him to defend the title against any of them. That title is dropped as well, sending Dixie into her best Stephanie McMahon impression as she talks about respecting the company. Lashley doesn’t care and walks out, saying he’ll see them at Bound For Glory. Corgan says not so fast because next week there’s a #1 contenders battle royal for a World Title shot. I really wouldn’t mind if those titles went away. It’s not like they’ve meant anything in years anyway.
Corgan says there will be a new X-Division Champion. And that champion will be treated like a big deal for all of a month before the title falls through the cracks again.
Tribunal vs. Hardys vs. BroMans vs. Helms Dynasty
Ladder match with the winners getting a Tag Team Title shot against Decay at Bound For Glory. Jeff throws in a ladder and we’re at a break 12 seconds after the bell. Back with everyone not named Matt brawling all over the place and Matt yelling at Jeff on the outside. Matt pulls the ladder from the ring so the Tribunal finally starts beating him up. A double baseball slide sends the ladder into the Dynasty as things start to slow down.
Jeff dives at the Tribunal but leaves it a bit short, sending him mostly crashing onto the floor. Matt and Everett fight over a ladder but Matt has to stop and bite Trevor’s hand. A lot of biting ensues before Matt goes after Raquel, only to have the BroMans beat him down. Baraka goes up but seems to be scared of heights, allowing the BroMans to make another save.
The BroDown off the ladder drops Dax but Matt freaks out again and screams at the announcers. That goes nowhere as the Dynasty beats up the BroMans. Jeff comes off a ladder in the corner to knock Everett off the ladder in the ring, resulting in another big crash. Matt climbs up and gets the contract at 14:08.
Rating: C+. This really wasn’t that surprising as they’re the only team doing anything at the moment. I’m fine with Matt and Jeff doing their weird thing in the midcard instead of being the focal point of the show as it means they’ll be kept to one place and not all over the place. This was pretty much your standard multi-team ladder match and that’s about all you could expect.
Overall Rating: C-. There’s enough watchable stuff on here but I was mostly just bored. Very little here felt like must see TV and the low levels of Ethan Carter III and Mike Bennett really showed. Instead we had Lashley talking a lot (not a good idea) and various other uninteresting acts. It’s not a bad show (they’ve done way worse in recent weeks and months) but the energy was really lacking tonight.
Moose b. Eddie Edwards – Chokebomb
Gail Kim b. Jade via DQ when Sienna interfered
DJZ b. Rockstar Spud, Mandrews and Braxton Sutter – DDT to Mandrews
Eli Drake b. Mahabali Shera – Blunt Force Trauma
Hardys b. BroMans, Tribunal and Helms Dynasty – Matt pulled down the contract
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