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Impact Wrestling - January 9, 2014

Impact Wrestling
Date: January 9, 2014
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Tazz

Reviewed by Tommy Hall

This is the final taped show in a long series of them as we're closing in on Genesis next week. The main story tonight is the World Title unification match between AJ Styles and Magnus which has had a full week's worth of hype. On top of that, Kurt Angle has an open challenge to anyone willing to step inside of a cage with him. Let's get to it.

After the opening recap, here's Dixie in a sweater and skirt that belongs on a 22 year old. She doesn't want to put up with this nonsense tonight so AJ needs to get out here and sign this contract. AJ comes out but Dixie goes into a long rant about how the contract is for one night only and the match tonight is going to be No DQ. She wants Magnus to leave AJ bloodied and broken and carried out on a stretcher tonight so he'll be out of her life forever.

AJ says she must have a lot of confidence in her champion, just like she did at Bound For Glory when she bet against AJ and lost. Before signing, AJ says there are boys in the back that hate Dixie just as much as he does and they don't mind coming out here to help him tonight. Dixie says those people weren't there for him over the last 11 years like she was when she was feeding his wife and kids.

She owns those people and will be the one to break AJ Styles. AJ says Dixie doesn't get wrestling because it's supposed to be about two wrestlers but Dixie keeps screwing it up. The belt got respect when AJ won it while the paper champion was hiding under Dixie's skirt, so here's Magnus to keep this segment going.

Magnus asks Dixie to leave the ring and gets in AJ's face for calling him a paper champion. The last image anyone had of AJ is him running away, just like he'll be doing after Magnus gets done with him tonight. Magnus leaves and AJ talks about how it took eleven years to get him to the title, which is the kind of hard work Magnus doesn't understand.

Post break Dixie tells Gail Kim and Lei'D Tapa to make sure they take care of something.

Eric Young/Joseph Park vs. Bro Mans

Non-title. Dixie is shown in the back telling the Bro Mans how serious this is. I have a bad feeling about a running theme tonight. Eric starts fast with Robbie and tries to do a Flair strut after being sent into the corner but instead slides through his legs for a sunset flip. A belly to belly puts Jessie down and Eric loads up the top rope elbow but we see Gail and Tapa beating up ODB in the back.

Eric runs off to help, leaving Joseph to get double teamed. Park gets beaten down into the corner but runs both champions over with shoulder blocks and slams. Robbie's cross body just bounces off Park so he chop blocks Park down instead. The Bro Down (Hart Attack) is good for the pin at 3:27.

Rating: D+. This was more about the story than the match as it seems Dixie has recruited the Bro Mans and Gail Kim and Tapa. It's probably better that was as we haven't had a heel stable in all of six weeks around here. The match was nothing to see and the less Eric Young I have to see, the better.

Post match the Bro Mans remove a piece of the barricade and put it in the ring, setting up a Bro Down on Park onto the steel.

Joe goes into Dixie's office (fourth appearance in 25 minutes) and says he'll have AJ's back tonight. Dixie says Joe has a match with Ethan Carter III tonight, but Joe says Ethan's blood is on Dixie's hands tonight.

Eric carries ODB to an ambulance, sending Sting off to find Dixie.

James Storm is in the ring and wants to talk to Gunner right now. Gunner comes to the ring and Storm talks about being part of some of the best tag teams ever in wrestling history. You have to check your ego if you're going to be part of a team, but if loving the fans chanting Cowboy means you have a big ego, he has the biggest ego of all time. The world title has split up Beer Money, America's Most Wanted and now the two of them.

Gunner says Storm can keep his ego because he has the case. Storm knew the risk he was taking in Feast or Fired and Gunner played by the rules. James says let's hang the case up one more time because Gunner can't do it again in another match. They shake on it and I think we have either a briefcase on a pole or a ladder match, presumably for next week.

Ethan Carter jumps Joe in the back.

We come back with Ethan and Joe slugging it out on the stage before Joe punches Ethan down the ramp.

Ethan Carter III vs. Samoa Joe

They ight into the ring and we get a bell with Joe taking over with his usual stuff. The backsplash gets two and Carter is knocked into the corner for the enziguri, only to have Carter come out with a dropkick to the knee. Ethan goes after the knee as the fans tell Carter he can't wrestle. Joe breaks up something off the top and goes for the MuscleBuster, only to have Spud grab Joe's leg. The distraction lets Carter get in a shot to the knee for contest at 2:50? Shouldn't it be a DQ?

Carter hits Joe's knee with a wrench to really put him out.

Angle promises to wreck anyone who gets in a cage with him tonight because he'll be seeing Bobby Roode.

We recap all the injures tonight.

Joe refuses to be taken to the hospital but is forced to go.

James Storm and Gunner have been attacked by whiskey bottles. Sting sees them and goes through the door to find Dixie (5th appearance) for a good yelling about the events tonight. She says this is a dangerous business but Sting says she can be turned back. He asks what happened to her but Dixie yells at him for trying to be Dr. Phil. Sting has a match tonight with an unnamed opponent.

Kurt Angle vs. ???

In a cage with an open challenge. Angle waits and gets.....Bobby Roode? He doesn't come to the cage though because he's got a mic. In seven days Angle is going to lose inside the cage and his Hall of Fame induction will be gone forever. Roode says Angle can get him in the cage next week, but for tonight it's two on one.

Kurt Angle vs. Bad Influence

Daniels goes through the door as Kaz tries to climb the cage. Angle puts Christopher down and goes after Kaz, only to get crotched on the top. Daniels sends Angle into the cage as Kaz comes in with a top rope ax handle to give Christopher two. Angle is rammed back first into the cage as Bad Influence keeps up their double teaming. He grabs a small package on Daniels but Kaz grabs the referee to prevent a count.

A spinning springboard legdrop gets two on Angle but he pops up with the suplexes for everyone. We get Germans, belly to bellys and more Germans before Kaz breaks up the Angle Slam on Daniels. Kaz tries to leave but gets superplexed down, landing on Daniels in the process. Angle sends Daniels hard into the cage before the Angle Slam pins Kaz at 6:11.

Rating: C+. Kurt Angle just knows how to have a good cage match. The good thing here is that Bad Influence can lose over and over again but keep coming back through their hilarious antics. The match with Roode next week is going to be great as those two have the chemistry to have an awesome match every time they're out there.

Dixie (6th appearance) says leave the cage up. Bobby Roode comes in and is told he has a cage match tonight. Roode assumes it's with Angle but it's against Sting. Bobby freaks out as you would expect him to. Dixie promises to have him covered.

Angle is having pictures taken with some fans when Al Snow comes up in a car, saying Angle has to get to the airport for an emergency.

Bobby Roode vs. Sting

In a cage as well. I didn't hear a bell but Sting takes him into the corner, only to be taken down by a shoulder block. Sting blocks being rammed into the cage but Roode does the same. A Stinger Splash hits Roode's feet and Roode gets two off a clothesline. Sting won't let Bobby go through the door and stops a charging Roode with a boot and elbow to the jaw.

Roode comes back with a spinebuster for two but Sting breaks up another escape attempt. Sting slams him off the top in classic fashion before ramming Roode into the cage a few times. A pair of Stinger Splashes sets up the Death Drop and Deathlock but here are Ethan and Spud to interfere. Spud distracts the referee, allowing Spud to send in a baton so Roode can lay Sting out and escape at 7:10.

Rating: C-. This was mainly just killing time until the interfering ending but it wasn't that bad for the most part. Tonight is a one story show and it got old about half an hour ago. Sting works best in quick bursts like this and the match wasn't bad due to how short it was. Still though, two cage matches not combining to go fifteen minutes isn't something I can get behind.

Earlier today, Mr. Anderson entered a funeral home to finish this with Ray.

We recap Ray trying to set Joseph park on fire last week.

Anderson is in the funeral home where Aces and 8's were laid to rest. Ray is sitting in the corner with his sunglasses on and Anderson says let's finish this. Bully says if he wanted to finish this, he would have done it last week with the lighter. That's too forgiving of him though because he wants this to last. He says there's something in his other hand that doesn't smell as nice (lighter fluid?) before talking about Anderson taking everything from him.

Ray wants his loneliness to encompass Anderson's life. Next week is Genesis, or the beginning, but it means the end for Anderson. He talks about Anderson throwing the Aces and 8's colors in the coffin and tells Anderson to go look at what's in there now. Anderson goes to look and gets ad before turning back to see Ray gone. We see what appears to be baby clothes in Anderson's hands.

We recap the attacks tonight.

Sting comes into Dixie's office (7th appearance tonight) and says it takes more than that to put him down. Dixie says it's contract season and implies that she'll pay Sting to side with her.

We recap the AJ vs. Dixie situation and hype the main event.

We run down the stacked Genesis card.

TNA World Title: AJ Styles vs. Magnus

No DQ and both guys are champion coming in. Magnus immediately goes to the floor and does it again for a second time in less than ninety seconds. No contact yet. Magnus gets back in but here are Ethan Carter and Spud to jump AJ before any contact is made. AJ fights them off and superkicks Magnus in the ribs but Carter breaks up a Styles Clash attempt. Sting finally comes out for the save but doesn't do anything as AJ saves himself. Magnus bails to the floor and we take a break.

Back with the two champions still not making contact as the Bro Mans and Zema Ion come out to jump Sting and AJ and giving us six run-ins in less than eight minutes. Zema DDTs AJ and the Bro Down gets a delayed two on Styles. Sting comes back in as Magnus just chills at ringside. The Brit finally comes back in and AJ quickly loads up the Clash, only to have Bad Influence make the save and lay him out with a powerbomb/neckbreaker combo.

Earl Hebner refuses to count so Dixie and Brian Hebner get us to ELEVEN people coming out for this match. Bad Influence goes High/Low on AJ for two and Brian gets yelled at. Sting lays out the Bro Mans with a double Death Drop on the floor before putting Ion in the Deathlock. AJ fights back against Bad Influence as Sting comes in to help even more. We're down to Magnus vs. AJ with Styles getting the Calf Killer, only to have Kazarian take out the referee.

Kazarian monkey flips AJ into Daniels but AJ clotheslines him down and Peles Kaz. Now the Styles Clash takes out Magnus but there's no referee. Earl Hebner hobbles back out (we'll call that #12) to count two before AJ dives over the top to take out Bad Influence yet again. AJ goes up top but Bobby Roode makes it #13 by shoving Styles into the ropes. Three AA/DVDs lay AJ out for about the fifth time, giving Magnus the pin (thanks to referee #3 and the fourteenth person added to the match) and the undisputed title at 15:47. Sting was being held back by most of the heels in case you were wondering.

Rating: D. So they spent all night hyping up the match before going full Russo on it. That's what we spent months and months building to? The match was definitely energetic but we really had to spend all this time setting up Dixie with her corporate champion? Assuming AJ leaving isn't a HUGE swerve, this was one of the biggest wastes of time I can remember in years.

Dixie and Magnus pose to end the show.

Overall Rating: D+. The Angle and Ray/Anderson stuff was good but WOW the rest of it got on my nerves in a hurry. This was one of TNA's biggest problems flaring up all over again: putting everything on one idea and going full blast with it until the fans are sick of the story. Genesis looks stacked but man alive this show got annoying fast. Dixie just doesn't do it for me as the top heel and the lack of planning with AJ basically makes everything since the summer a waste of time.

Bro Mans b. Joseph Park/Eric Young – Bro Down to Park
Ethan Carter III vs. Samoa Joe went to a no contest
Kurt Angle b. Bad Influence – Angle Slam to Kazarian
Bobby Roode b. Sting – Roode escaped the cage
Magnus b. AJ Styles – Magnus pinned Styles after a Death Valley Driver from Bobby Roode

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  1. After the opening recap, here's Dixie in a sweater and skirt that belongs on a 22 year old.
    I was wondering why she looked younger and better looking tonight.

  2. The main event was the biggest cluster fuck I've seen in years, this puts WCW 2000 to absolute shame on the train wreck scale!

  3. Until this show, I never really understood what "overbooked" meant. I'm always one to give TNA credit where it's due -- I actually loved how they built to the tournament final with Magnus, Hardy & Gunner all riding the face/heel fence -- and I keep rooting for them to get it right, but this was just wrong.
    I get the idea with taking out all of the good guys to stack the deck against AJ, but there were still a few faces unaccounted for who now just look like dicks for not trying to help AJ. Where was Austin Aries? Hernandez? Manik? Even if the end result is still the same and the heels get the best of AJ, you could at least give somebody other than Sting a rub for trying to help AJ. And really, James Storm is supposed to be TNA's version of Steve Austin, and he gets taken out for the rest of the night by a bottle? They could have at least had Storm stagger down the aisle and try to help, even if he gets beat up too.
    The crowd was into the match and it was high-energy, but after a while it just made the heels look weak when AJ is taking everybody's finishers multiple times and keeps kicking out.
    And now what do we make of every heel on the roster being down with Dixie? Was this just a one-night alliance that will be forgotten next week? Is this gonna happen every time Magnus defends his title? Did every heel agree to take out AJ simply because they all hate him, or because Dixie paid them off, or because they're afraid to get fired, or what? Even when WWE does its Corporation/Authority angles, they keep it to a small to mid-sized stable; it's not every bad guy aligning with Vince/HHH/etc. just because they're bad guys.

  4. I'll be completely honest- I understand why people will hate the title match between AJ and Magnus, but I thought it actually worked really well. Yes it was overbooked, but in this instance it fit into the storyline they were telling of Dixie trying to take the title off of AJ at all costs. There was the show long storyline of wiping out AJ's friends. Then they used the tweet at the beginning of the match to frame it as a plan that has been in the works.

    Then Dixie has all her minions just assault AJ over and over with only Sting trying desperately to help AJ in the match. Even when Hebner tries to bail on it she brings out his son threatening him, and then has a third ref ready to go when all else fails.

    I hate overbooked schmozzes as much as anyone but in this context it all fit. As a side note- I would venture they felt AJ would be back when they taped this match and thus wanted to really make it a screwjob so he had motivation to come back and win and that is why they didn't do a 30 minute sendoff match or anything like that.

  5. I'll agree that it fit the story they were telling last night. The problem for me was it wasn't an interesting story in the first place, as it looks to be another heel stable.


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