The SmarK Rant for TNA Impact – 07.19.12
Live from Orlando, FL
Your hosts are Mike Tenay & Taz
Hulk Hogan update: His hip surgery is being used as a cover for the AA88 attack. Kayfabe, brother!
So it’s Open Fight Night, and Tenay clarifies that the highest point getters get to issue the challenges, which is a point that was bugging Bryan Alvarez on the last couple of radio shows. I find it really cool that a company is willing to LISTEN TO THE FANBASE and change. And away we go…
James Storm cuts a promo on Bobby Roode, noting that he doesn’t care if Roode is champion or not, because he still wants to kick the crap out of him either way. And he’s pretty disgusted with the Aces N Eights, and hopes Hogan gets well soon, DAMMIT. That’s one angry well-wishing.
James Storm v. Kurt Angle
Sadly, our mystery men have laid out Angle in the back as well, so we don’t get this one.
Samoa Joe v. The Pope
Joe’s gotta be running out of matches, which is probably why we’re getting down to the dregs for him. Joe pounds on Pope in the corner, but Pope chases him out after winning a slugfest. Joe protests to the ref, so Pope chases him out and punts him to take over. Back in, he throws some knees in the corner, but Joe slugs back until Pope hits an STO for two. Pope with a Rings of Saturn, but Joe makes the ropes. Pope keeps firing away with elbows on the mat in Joe’s guard as they do an MMA thing, but Joe catches him with an MMA armbar and makes him tap at 3:20 for 10 points! Ha, I like that finish. Live by the bullet, die by the bullet. **
Meanwhile, Jason Hervey questions Bobby Roode about whether he’s behind the Aces N Eights.
Jeff Hardy v. Robbie E
Jeff mule kicks him and drops a leg, but falls victim to distraction from Rob Terry. Robbie does nothing with his advantage, as Hardy gets a legdrop for two, but Terry yanks him out to slow him down again, and Robbie gets two off that. Jeff comes back with the Whisper for two and Robbie bails, so Jeff follows with a dive and misses. He finally goes after Terry and beats him back to the dressing room, resulting in Robbie E WINNING?! So he gets 5 points for the countout. I guess he had to win sometime. *1/2
Meanwhile, Eric Young and ODB return from the void, trying to work on their marriage.
Gut Check Challenge: Sam Shaw gets to cut a promo before his challenge, but the Aces N Eights rush out and beat the crap out of him. I think it would be awesome if the judges critiqued his beatdown next week. But man, they’d better have a MASSIVE payoff for this angle.
Mr. Anderson v. AJ Styles
Anderson works on an armbar to start and switches to a headlock, but Styles takes him down with a top wristlock. AJ slingshots in with a bodypress for two and goes back to the headlock, but Anderson clotheslines him for two. We take a break and return with AJ getting his big dropkick for two and dropping a knee for two. Anderson with a neckbreaker for two. AJ tries a slam and Anderson rolls into a cravat in a nice reversal. AJ tries to fight out and Anderson hooks it again, but AJ comes back with a sloppy rana and slingshots in with a forearm for two. Anderson reverses the Styles Clash and gets a rollup for two, and the Regal Roll gets two. AJ counters the Mic Check with an enzuigiri, but Anderson takes him to the top for a superplex that gets two. They fight for the Clash and Anderson rolls him up for the pin at 13:00. Not much in the way of chemistry here, but it was a technically good match. *** Anderson gets 7 points, and then to add salt to the wounds Claire the Addict shows up with INCRIMINATING PHOTOS of their night of debauchery. The photos seem pretty clear, but last week Claire was smoking in one of her backstage segments, so I’m guessing there’s not actually a baby.
Rob Van Dam v. Christopher Daniels
RVD gets a quick dropkick in the corner, but Daniels catches him with an elbow. Rob with a northern lights suplex for two and an abdominal stretch into a bad leglock submission, but Daniels makes the ropes. I would have just laughed at him until he let go, but that worked too. They fight on the floor and Daniels takes over in the ring with a rear chinlock. They slug it out and Rob wins with a high kick, into a rollup for two. Superkick and Rob monkey flips him to set up the frog splash, but Daniels moves. Rob keeps coming with a spinkick into Rolling Thunder, but Daniels moves again and pins him with the ropes at 4:41. Gotta love Daniels’ celebration for the world’s cheapest win. **1/4
Meanwhile, Austin Aries feels that Roode is the one who is the fluke, not he. And also, he found playing cards in Roode’s robe.
Meanwhile, Joseph Park offers Garrett Bischoff some legal representation.
Magnus v. Bully Ray
They brawl before the bell rings and head in to start, with Magnus getting a lariat. Bully puts him down with a big boot and whips him into the corner for two, but misses a splash. Magnus makes the generic babyface comeback and gets a backdrop suplex for two. Bully misses a big boot and hits the turnbuckle, allowing Magnus to hook a Cloverleaf, but Bully makes the ropes. Magnus with a Michinoku Driver for two, but he goes up and misses a big elbow, allowing Bully to finish with a Bubba Cutter at 4:46 for 7 points. **
Next week: Chavo Guerrero!
Bobby Roode v. Austin Aries
Slugfest to start and Roode stomps him down, but Aries catches him with an armdrag and quickly gets the facelock. Roode wisely makes the ropes, so Aries tries the brainbuster and Roode fights away from that, too. Roode tries the crossface and they fight to the floor, where Aries gets a sledge off the apron and we take a break. Back with Roode catching him with a spinebuster for two and going to the chinlock, but Aries fights out until Roode elbows him down again. They slug it out and fight for a submission, and Aries gets a legsweep for two. Last Chancery in the middle, but Roode makes the ropes and gets a spear for two. They head up and Roode wants the superplex, but Aries knees out of it and follows with a missile dropkick to make the comeback. Corner dropkick, but Roode reverses the brainbuster into the crossface. Aries breaks out and they head out, where Aries hits the suicide dive…and the Aces N Eights return for another beatdown at 13:00. Roode thinks this is hilarious, until they beat the shit out of him, too. Isn’t that always the way? ***
Another good show, nothing earth-shattering, but it continues to be watchable and consistent and that’s all you can ask.