This week’s episode of TNA Impact continued the Hvt. Title Series, plus TNA replayed the main event of Bound for Glory to explain why the Title Series is happening…
TNA Impact Wrestling Results
October 21, 2015
Taped in Orlando, Fla.
Report by Mike McMahon (@MikeMcMahonPW)
Impact opened with a video package highlighting the results from last week as well as how the World Title Series was set up.
Announcers: Josh Mathews and The Pope introduced the show. Tonight will be matches from Group X Division as well as Group Champions and Group Future 4.
Mathews throws to the Group Champions roundtable. Austin Aries said that Ethan Carter III is copying his style, and ECIII has a good chance of going through because he has “two tons of Tyrus” to do his dirty work. Mr. Anderson said Bobby Lashley would join him in the next round and Lashley chose Mr. Anderson. ECIII started by giving compliments to the rest of the table, and then said that the person joining him in the next round would be himself after he cloned himself.
1 — MR. ANDERSON vs. AUSTIN ARIES — World Title Series round robin match
Anderson and Aries exchange holds before Anderson grabs a headlock and shoots Aries off the rope for a tackle.
Mathews cuts to a roundtable where Aries talked about his style of wrestling having some risk and risk doesn’t always pay off. Back in the match, Aries misses a missile dropkick, so that was good timing.
After more stand-up holds, Anderson drives his shoulder into Aries’s gut in the corner, but Aries moves and Anderson drives his own shoulder into the post. Aries hits a slingshot elbow for a two count.
Aries follows Anderson around the ring landing left hands and Anderson begins to return some forearm shots. Things are starting to get much more physical now, with Aries and Anderson exchanging punches, shoves, and chops in the corner.
[Commercial Break at 9:12]
[Q2] Aries and Anderson trade clotheslines returning from the break. Mathews reiterates that Anderson is in dire need of a win as the only person with no points in the group. Aries clotheslines Anderson to the outside as Christy Hemme announces five minutes remaining.
Aries his a suicide dive as Mathews says that Aries can’t afford another draw. Aries hits a missile dropkick from the top. Anderson catches Aries with a Green Bay plunge but only gets a two count.
Anderson sets up Aries on the top rope, but Aries fights him off and then hits a 450 splash, but Anderson kicks out at the very last second.
Aries off the rope, but Anderson counters with a spinning heel kick. Anderson goes up top, but Aries runs over and throws some right hands. Both men are on the top rope now. Aries tries for a superplex, but Anderson gets him on his shoulders and hits a Green Bay Plunge from the middle rope.
Anderson tries for a mic check, but Aries battles out with elbows. One minute left. Both men back on the top rope. Aries steps down and hits a brainbuster off the second rope, which gets the win.
WINNER: Austin Aries in about 14:00.
Post-match: Mathews points out that Anderson now cannot move on, as he’s mathematically eliminated. But, he’ll still have to have a match with ECIII. Mathews also said that they’ll replay the Bound for Glory main event later tonight as well.
[MM Reax: So … it doesn’t look like they have much planned for Anderson. He shouldn’t be hurt much by losing to a pair of former World Champions, but it does send the message that TNA just doesn’t quite think he’s on that level. This could all change against ECIII in Anderson’s final match, where he’ll be looking to play spoiler. It would be something to give Anderson the first win over ECIII and then ECIII has a feud against an established name who can match him on the microphone. It could also reinvigorate Anderson if done correctly.]
[Commercial Break at 9:21]
Announcers: Back from the break, Mathews and Pope wonder if Tigre Uno is the best X Division competitor of all-time (seriously, they discussed that).
2 — X Division champion TIGRE UNO vs. MANDREWS — World Title Series round robin match
Uno starts the match with a single-leg takedown. While on the ground, Mandrews reverses. Uno back up rolling through and they square off a second time. Uno and Mandrews enter a cool exchange with three rolled up pin attempts and some good counters.
[Q3] Back up, Mandrews fist bumps with Uno. Uno begins hitting a series of loud chops. Mandrews takes down Uno and hits a standing moonsault.
Standing dropkick by Mandrews and then a suicide flip — not really a dive — to the outside. Mandrews goes to the top and misses a Shooting Star Press, but lands on his feet. Tigre Uno goes for a body scissors, but Mandrews rolls through. Finally, after a series of reversals, he hooks both legs for the win.
WINNER: Tigre Uno in about 8:00.
Up Next: The Bound for Glory main event will re-air.
[Commercial break at 9:36]
Back from the break, Mathews recaps Aries’s win over Mr. Anderson from earlier.
Backstage: Aries is being interviewed. He said it doesn’t get any easier. First it was ECIII on a draw — he said five more minutes and he wins — and tonight it’s Mr. Anderson. Aries said that people ask him how he stays motivated, and it’s simple, he demands it out of himself. He said he’s his own biggest fan and harshest critic.
Later: ECIII vs. Bobby Lashley.
[Q4] Announcers: Mathews shows the Group Champions standings, where Aries is at the top but Lashley can re-take the lead with a win over ECIII tonight. Mathews then throws to the Bound for Glory main event.
[Commercial break at 9:54]
Back from the break at 9:59, Mathews reintroduces the Bound for Glory main event as it continues.
After the replay, Mathews said that this was how the World Title Series was set up as clips of Hardy celebrating his World Title win were playing.
Backstage: ECIII was asked about his match with Lashley tonight. ECIII called what happened at Bound for Glory a travesty. He said what hurts the most is that he thought he was in a company that believed in him and he thought his family was in his corner. He said he does this for himself now. No one else. Tonight, he said that his back is up against a wall against Lashley, and that makes him lethal. He said that makes him an animal. ECIII again said that the World Title Series isn’t over until he wins.
Announcers: Mathews and Pope go over the format for the series again. Pope said that there is never a night off in the World Title Series. Mathews asked Pope if he has identified a “group of death,” and Pope said no, but he always bets on the guys who have been to the top before.
[MM Reax: Really slow show thus far, with what feels like a lot of filler. From replaying the BFG main event to recapping the standings and then even going over the format — again — it’s possible there isn’t enough content to fill the next several weeks and this show is slowing down the pace in an effort to help stretch out the shows.]
[Commercial Break at 10:10]
Back from the break, a promo aired for a new Jeff Hardy DVD, including matches and exclusive interviews.
Announcers: Mathews said two groups are flying under the radar. Group Wildcard and Group Future 4. Mathews asked Pope of those eight wrestlers, who advances and Pope picks Mahabali Shera and Jessie Godderz in Group Future 4.
3 — JESSIE GODDERZ vs. CRIMSON — World Title Series round robin match
TNA picked up this match in the middle of it, as Godderz had Crimson in the Adonis Crab. He got the submission.
WINNER: Jessie Godderz via submission.
[Q6] Post-match: Godderz gave five reasons why he’ll advance to the Round of 16. (1) The Adonis Crab. (2) He’s a two-time Tag Team champion. (3) He has succeeded at everything he’s done. (4) He’s not just all talk. (5) He’s the man.
4 — ELI DRAKE vs. MICAH — World Title Series round robin match
Another recap only, with no full match shown.
WINNER: A double count-out.
[MM Reax: So they seem to be filling a lot of time, and then instead of a full matches between Crimson and Godderz as well as Drake and Micah, they just showed highlights of the finish. The BFG replay aired as the show transitioned to the 10:00 hour, so considering not many people bought BFG compared to how many watch Impact, maybe it’s smart in an attempt to snag some viewers. The strategy makes sense. But, it felt odd watching a replay and then basically skipping two new matches.]
Still to come: ECIII vs. Lashley.
[Commercial Break at 10:20]
Back from the break, Pope and Mathews are playing a game of swipe left or swipe right, where Pope picks whether or not he thinks that someone will go through to the round of 16 or not. Pope predicts that Lashley pins ECIII tonight.
5 — MANIK vs. DJ Z — World Title Series round robin match
They start with a test of strength and Manik takes control early. They start by working some wristlocks. Pope talked about wrestling someone with a mask and how Manik is at an advantage because you can’t read his emotion.
Manik has a reverse chinlock applied. He shoots D.J. Z to the rope for a tackle. Now D.J. Z comes back with some arm drags and a dropkick. In the corner, Manik stomps down on Zema.
Of note during the match, Pope and Mathews talked about Shane Helms shaking Tigre Uno’s hand at BFG. They also wonder why the X Division Title is now green.
[Q7] D.J. Z is now in control and hits a cross-body from the top rope, but he rolled through on the pin. Back up, Zema bounces off the second rope for a flying elbow. He goes for a tackle, but misses and Manik tries to lock in a cross arm-breaker, but he can’t lock it in all the way.
D.J. Z back up to the top rope, but he gets caught with a boot coming off the top. Manik goes to the top for a frogsplash, but D.J. Z moves. D.J. Z just leaps into Manik’s arms and he tosses him up for a kick to the face and scores the pin.
WINNER: Manik in about 6:00.
Post-match: Manik celebrates. Mathews then throws to a video package highlighting past matches between ECIII and Bobby Lashley.
[MM Reax: They didn’t have a lot of time, but this was a good match. They started with some good wrestling working some simple holds and then transitioned into some high-flying moves and then into some more physical strikes at the end of the match.]
Up next: ECIII vs. Bobby Lashley.
[Commercial Break at 10:34]
Back from the break, Mathews said that there will be matches from Group Knockouts next week, including Gail Kim vs. Awesome Kong.
6 — ETHAN CARTER III vs. BOBBY LASHLEY — World Title Series round robin match
[Q8] Before they make contact, ECIII bails to the outside in order to talk to Tyrus. Back in the ring, Lashley has ECIII in the corner and he’s landing the 10 Punches. ECIII looks like he’s in real trouble early. Lashley tosses ECIII to the outside.
[Commercial Break at 10:46]
Back from the break, ECIII is hammering Lashley on the outside. Mathews said that Lashley followed him to the outside after tossing him there before the break, and ECIII took control while cameras weren’t rolling.
ECIII dives off the apron, but Lashley catches him and plants him on the mats on the outside of the ring. Out of nowhere, Tyrus attacks and Lashley’s head smacks off the ringpost.
ECIII rolls Lashley back into the ring. ECIII goes for a cover, but Lashley kicks out, and ECIII responds with rapid-fire punches to Lashley’s head.
The crowd begins to get on Tyrus and it’s honestly a little distracting. ECIII throws Tyrus to the outside and Tyrus slams Lashley on the outside. ECIII heads out and rolls Lashley back into the ring as Mathews says there are five minutes left.
ECIII has Lashley locked in a modified Camel Clutch. Lashley tries to power up and he falls backwards, dropping ECIII to the mat. Lashley locks his hands and hits a German Suplex. Lashley now charges ECIII in the corner. Lashley scoops up ECIII, but ECIII rakes his eyes to counter.
After some trading, Lashley has ECIII in a rear-naked choke. Tyrus grabs ECIII’s foot from the outside and puts it on the rope to break the hold. ECIII hits a splash in the corner and he climbs the turnbuckle for more punches as they reach the two-minute warning.
Lashley has ECIII in his grip and hits a powerbomb. Lashley hits a spear but Tyrus pulls him by the foot out of the ring. Lashley back in and goes for a cover and ECIII kicks out.
Lashley has ECIII on his shoulder and Tyrus enters the ring with a chair. Lashley hits a spear and the referee is checking on Tyrus as ECIII hits the One-percenter on Lashley for the win.
WINNER: Ethan Carter III in about 14:00.
Post-match: Mathews and Pope can’t believe what they saw. ECIII and Tyrus limp to the backstage area as the show goes off the air.
Next week: Matt Hardy vs. Robbie E., James Storm vs. Abyss, and Gail Kim vs. Awesome Kong.
[Final Thoughts: The episode just did not measure up to the first two World Title Series episodes. The focus was on the in-ring matches again, which was good, but this show felt like a lot of filler. Next week’s show seems to be stacked, so maybe that was by design. They replayed the BFG main event instead of airing either of the first-run matches they had only highlights from. That was likely done to make sure there were some marketable names in the ring as the hour clicked over, but it still made the show feel very forgettable. There was too much recap, and after two really solid episodes the last two weeks, some of the steam was lost this week. That said, next week’s program does seem to be loaded with some big matches, so perhaps this was an effort by TNA to let the audience breathe before a big episode next week.]