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TNA Impact Results
September 22, 2016
Taped in Orlando, Fla.
Aired on Pop TV
Report by Mike McMahon, PWTorch contributor (@MikeMcMahonPW)
Impact opened with a video recapping last week’s show, beginning with Matt Hardy challenging Decay to “the great war” at Bound for Glory. After that, highlights of the Lashley-ECIII press conference from two weeks ago were shown, followed by Moose challenging Lashley last week.
In-arena: Jeremy Borash was giving ring announcements for tonight’s opening contest, which was a semifinal in the tournament to crown the first Impact Grand Championship.
1 — DREW GALLOWAY vs. EDDIE EDWARDS — Grand Championship semifinal match
Galloway and Edwards lock up to begin the match. Galloway tosses Edwards with an overhead belly-to-belly suplex.
After an Edwards dive outside the ring, they work their way back into the center where Galloway hits a clothesline and begins to control the match again. Galloway goes for a pin with 13 seconds left in the round, but Edwards kicks out.
Scores: Drew Galloway, 29-28
[Reax: Not sure how anyone in their right mind scores that round for Edwards. He was controlled throughout the entire match, aside from the dive.]
Edwards charges Galloway right at the opening bell and 30 seconds later, Galloway and Edwards are trading chops. With Galloway hung up on the top rope, Edwards climbs after him and hits a hurricanrana for a two count.
Galloway was stuck upside down at the turnbuckle but Edwards took too long to get to the turnbuckle, and Galloway used impressive core strength to toss Edwards.
Edwards came right back with a Boston Knee Party and then dove on Galloway, who rolled to the outside. With 10 seconds left in the round, Edwards rolled back into the ring and hit another dive on Galloway.
Scores: Eddie Edwards, 29-28
[Reax: Edwards won the round, but it was a bit more back-and-forth than the first round where Galloway dominated.]
Seconds into the match, Galloway hits a big boot for a two count.
Galloway misses a forearm off the top rope. Edwards rolls through and tries to tie Galloway up in a half crab, but Galloway took him to the mat and locked on an Iron Maiden, which Edwards reversed. Galloway powered out of it and nearly hit a tombstone, but Edwards was able to get away.
With 1:15 left in the round, Galloway and Edwards began trading chops again. They continue trading chops for 30 seconds. Galloway threw Edwards into the corner with a turnbuckle powerbomb and then hit a future shock DDT with about 10 seconds remaining in the match.
Galloway was able to cover Edwards but the referee only got to a two count before the bell rang for the end of the round, and we go to the judge’s scorecards.
[Commercial Break at 8:15]
[Q2] Back from the break, Borash is reading the scores.
Judge 1: 2-1 Galloway
Judge 2: 2-1 Edwards
Judge 3: 2-1 Galloway
WINNER: Drew Galloway via split decision.
After the match, Edwards rolled out while Galloway dropped to his knees and celebrated his win. Mathews said that, ironically, the judge who had Edwards winning the first two rounds was the deciding split and he had Galloway in the third round.
Borash entered the ring to interview Galloway, who said nothing has changed, and he is the same Drew Galloway. The fans booed, and Galloway called himself the No. 1 soldier in the company. Galloway said TNA is fixed, “much like American politics,” and it’s designed to favor certain people.
Galloway told ECIII and Lashley to have a great match, but ask for their match to go on earlier in the show, because they aren’t going to be able to follow Drew Galloway.
ECIII’s music hit and he walked to the ring. He told Galloway to tread lightly the next time he mentioned his name. ECIII told Galloway he can’t last even two rounds with ECIII’s verbal sparring, and he could beat him any time, any place.
Lashley entered the arena to his music. Mike Bennett charged the ring from behind and began to attach ECIII, who was in the ring. Lashley ran into the ring and double-teamed ECIII.
Bennett picked up ECIII and held him for a Lashley spear. Then, Moose’s music played and he ran to the ring, taking down Bennett with a double-leg and throwing some ground-and-pound. Lashley tried to break it up, but Moose tossed Lashley to the outside. Moose went for a Game Breaker, but Bennett hit a super kick and then Lashley connected with a spear.
Backstage: Allie was talking to someone on the phone, trying to arrange something for Maria. We find out it’s a public workout. Maria interrupts and said this is very important to her. Maria tells Allie she wants to show Gail Kim she’s the most dominant champion.
Video: Highlights of Eli Drake and Aron Rex are shown as they talk about why they want to win the Grand Championship, as well as talking about their first-round opponents.
[Commercial Break at 8:29]
[Q3] Back from the break, Bennett is gloating about what he and Lashley just did. He asked Lashley if they just became best friends? Lashley said he has no friends and what happened out there was all him. Bennett said he knew that Lashley would beat ECIII at Bound for Glory. Bennett said he’d also beat Moose’s ass at Bound for Glory, and after that, maybe Lashley would give him a title shot, because they’re friends.
Tonight: Mike Bennett & Lashley vs. ECIII & Moose
In-arena: Eli Drake and Aron Rex are out for their Grand Championship semifinal match.
Prior to the match, Drake cut a promo. He told Rex not to get too chatty. Rex said that, as far as those insults, he could have eaten alphabet soup and “crapped out better insults.” Rex said insulting Drake would be like picking on a small child, so he decided he would just tell the tale of Eli Drake. He said that once upon a time, an out of work chippendale’s dancer and a chipmunk got together, and nine months later “this came out.”
Mathews said that their match is up next.
[Commercial Break at 8:39]
2 — ELI DRAKE vs. ARON REX — Grand Championship semifinal match
The bell rings and Drake starts with a kick to the gut and a side headlock to gain control early. Drake and Rex go back and forth trying to gain control early in the match, trading and countering headlocks and holds.
Rex gets Drake to the mat and covers him for a two count with about one minute left in the round. Rex hits a spinebuster with 10 seconds left and tries for a submission but Drake doesn’t roll over.
Scores: Aron Rex, 30-27
During the start of the round, Mathews plugs Bound for Glory and then more television tapings following the pay-per-view.
Drake has control of the round one minute in, holding Rex on the mat. Drake hits a neckbreaker for a two count at the 1:30 mark, which was broken up as Rex gets his foot on the bottom rope.
Drake has Rex down and plays to the crowd before hitting a big standing elbow. Pope said the 5-6 seconds Drake played to the crowd before the elbow may have cost him a pin.
Scores: Eli Drake, 29-28.
Very early in the round, Drake gets rocked by a huge clothesline from Rex that Pope said he calls The Revelator, and Rex scored the pin.
WINNER: Aron Rex via pin.
Backstage: Decay said that Bound for Glory will see the Hardy’s destruction. As they are cutting their promos, Vanguard 1 approaches. A laughing hologram of Senor Benjamin pops out of Vanguard 1, and it flies away before Abyss can grab him.
[Commercial Break at 8:54]
Backstage: The roving reporter catches Aron Rex. As he starts talking, Drew Galloway enters the room and said to relax. Galloway said that they have a chance to make history. Galloway said there can only be one, and it’s Drew Galloway, and Rex said Galloway would be the man to go to the hospital.
Video: Cody Rhodes is introduced to TNA. He’s walking through a field in a suit and then climbs into a sports car. Rhodes said that all of his roads lead to Bound for Glory. TNA isn’t calling him Cody Rhodes, but instead he was booked as just “Cody.”
In-arena: Decay is coming to the ring as Josh Mathews is going crazy about Rhodes’s signing. Mathews also only refers to him as “Cody.”
[Reax: Clearly, this is a big get for TNA. When the long list of WWE talent was released earlier this summer, Rhodes and Rex were the two names people were most interested in, and Cody has done a tremendous job promoting himself for the independents and now TNA.]
Rosemary has the mic and she’s screaming for Matt, Jeff, and Reby, telling them that they don’t know what they have done. She said Decay is not afraid of them and they are sick of their games.
The crowd chants “Delete! Delete!’ and Abyss tells them to shut up. Abyss said that Decay would destroy what’s left of the Hardy legacy during the great war, and that would be beautiful. Crazzy Steve takes the mic as the crowd chants, “Obsolete!”
Steve said Vanguard 1 was a welcome invitation. He said they embrace the great war and welcome it with open arms, because they know that once it’s over, everything will belong to Decay.
Matt Hardy is in the crowd. He said that all of what the Hardys have is magic, and they want his magic to decay. Hardy said with the entire world as a battle field, he will bludgeon them again (or, “ageen”), and again, and again, and again, and again, and he will delete Decay’s tag team title reign.
On the other side of the building, Jeff Hardy said he has embraced being broken. He said the great war will twist Decay’s fate. Abyss will no longer be beautiful, Steve will no longer be crazy and Rosemary won’t be rosey anymore.
Hardy said they will fade away and classify themselves as obsolete.
Rosemary said they don’t fear fate, and they don’t fear anything because they are the death dealers. Rosemary said that they are tempting fate tonight, because there are only two Hardy brothers and three of Decay. Rosemary said the Hardys are bound for decay.
Matt Hardy said that was a delightful threat. Hardy said that Decay is bound for glory. At that point, the lights go out and when they come back on, Abyss and Steve are tied to the ring posts with straps and Reby is in the ring, she hits Rosemary with a spear and then pummels her on the mat.
Reby tries for a Twist of Fate, but Rosemary breaks free and rolls out of the ring. Reby takes a mic and said the worst thing Rosemary could do is mess with a mother and her child. Reby said that next week, in this ring, Rosemary’s mother will be the one left without her baby. Matt’s music plays as Matt and Jeff raise the tag team titles.
Backstage: Moose is talking to ECIII about their match tonight. ECIII told Moose that tonight, Moose has the chance to whoop everyone’s ass. ECIII said that tonight, Lashley is his, but after that, Moose can have him. Moose tells ECIII that doesn’t work, because he beats up who he wants, when he wants.
[Commercial Break at 9:12]
Back from the break, X-Division champion D.J. Z is introduced for a title defense. D.J. Z said no one knows how much it means to be X-Division champion again. He said the last time he held the title, he was immature and didn’t appreciate it, but he’s done a lot of growing up, and now things are going to be different.
D.J. Z said he would be the champion the people deserve, and he’ll be a fighting champion. D.J. Z challenged anyone hungry in the back to come out and try to take it from him. Out comes Trevor Lee, who comes to the ring with Andrew Everett.
3 — X Division champion D.J. Z vs. TREVOR LEE — X Division championship match
The match starts fast and furious, as most of these do, but after about 45 seconds, Lee slows it down with a reverse chinlock.
The match rolls to the outside and D.J. Z hits a dive, taking out Lee and Everett on the outside. Lee hits a missile dropkick off the top rope and then a back elbow followed by a springboard back elbow off the second rope.
Everett distracts D.J. Z, grabbing his ankle, and that allows Lee to get back on the offensive. D.J. Z hits a ZZT out of nowhere for the win.
WINNER: D.J. Z retains at 3:54.
After the match, Everett attacks D.J. Z and Lee soon joins to double team. Eddie Edwards runs in to make the save. Edwards grabs a mic as D.J. Z gets his arm raised.
“D.J. Z right here,” Edwards said. “Z, everyone knows we’re boys. We travel together, stay together and party together. You are the definition of an X-Division athlete. You are what this division is all about. You say you’re a fighting champion, and you’re a man of your word, so how about next week, on Impact, me and you for that title?”
D.J. Z said he knows all the people want to see it, and he can’t think of anyone more deserving, so of course he accepts. Edwards and D.J. Z shake hands and Edwards gave D.J. Z the ring to celebrate his win.
[ Reax: Really good match between Lee and D.J. Z. I’m a fan of Lee, especially how his style isn’t just all flips and somersaults. He brings a different dynamic to the very athletic X Division. The announce team did a nice job getting over his strength, too. Edwards vs. D.J. Z is an intriguing match next week. It seems like a match that might be better saved for Bound for Glory.]
Backstage: Allie is holding up her bare hands as Maria practices jabs. Maria said she hopes Allie doesn’t mess up this public workout. Maria said Allie does nothing right, and Allie asked if she remembered when she laid down for her to win the Knockouts Title? Maria said Allie is stupid, and tonight, everyone will see how great Maria is.
[Commercial Break at 9:28]
Back from the break, another “Fixer” promo for Tyrus airs.
In-arena: Maria enters the building with Sienna and Allie for her public workout. Maria yells at Allie and tells her to get out of the way. She told Sienna she deserves a title shot, and will get one soon. Maria called herself the greatest Knockouts Champion ever, as the crowd chants for Allie.
Maria said that tonight is about her. As the crowd keeps cheering for Allie, Maria snaps and makes her sit in the corner. Maria tells “stupid” Allie to bring out her opponent. Allie brought out “the toughest, biggest opponent” for Maria, and someone whose name we don’t learn is coming to the ring.
The bell rings and Mathews said this isn’t a match. She kicks her opponent in the gut and tries to talk to the referee about her wrist brace while Sienna chokes out Maria’s opponent.
Maria then comes back in and covers the girl for a three count. Mathews said this opponent isn’t the caliber of Gail Kim. Maria said she feels great and she’s the best champion ever. She demanded Allie to bring out her next opponent. Allie said she didn’t have another opponent, because she was told to get the easiest one possible.
Maria said she never wanted the easiest opponent and told Allie she should fight her. A woman in a mask then comes to the ring and Maria said Allie did remember, but Allie said she had nothing to do with this. Maria tells Allie to get out of the ring and she’ll take care of this.
The woman in the mask looks clumsy as she comes to the ring. Maria hides in the corner as the masked woman throws some kicks. Maria grabs a waistlock but the masked woman rolls out. Maria yells at Allie asking why she did this? Allie said she didn’t do this.
The masked woman removes the mask and it’s Gail Kim. Sienna runs in and Gail hits Eat Defeat on her as Maria and Allie scatter up the ramp.
[Reax: There was almost no pop for the Gail Kim reveal, as it seemed like almost everyone knew it was her to begin with.]
[Commercial Break at 9:40]
Back from the break, the Cody Rhodes vignette airs for a second time.
Josh Mathews runs down some of Bound for Glory’s card, including:
-Decay vs. Matt & Jeff Hardy
-Mike Bennett vs. Moose
-Gail Kim vs. Maria
-The debut of Cody Rhodes
-Aron Rex vs. Drew Galloway for the Grand Championship
-Lashley vs. ECIII for the TNA World Title
In-arena: Mike Bennett, Lashley, Moose, and ECIII make ring entrances for tonight’s tag-team main event.
4 — MOOSE & ECIII vs. MIKE BENNETT & TNA World Hvt. champion LASHLEY
As soon as the bell rings, Bennett bails out of the ring and leaves Lashley to fight Moose and ECIII. They double-team Lashley fairly easily at first. Bennett is on the outside watching the match while ECIII and Moose continue the double-team.
Lashley rolls to the outside, Bennett tries to talk to him but Lashley looks unhappy as he walks away.
[Commercial Break at 9:51]
Back from the break, Bennett hits a cutter on ECIII and tags in Lashley, who begins steamrolling ECIII’s ribs in the corner with shoulders. ECIII’s ribs are taped up, as they were last week, stemming from the fight after the press conference two weeks ago.
Bennett back in as the legal man and he’s squeezing ECIII’s ribs. Bennet hits a spinebuster for a two count. Lashley held ECIII in the corner and Bennett went to throw a forearm, but ECIII ducked and Bennett hit Lashley.
ECIII tags in Moose and Moose headbutts Bennett twice and then charges him with a splash in the corner. Moose goes upstairs and hits a crossbody off the top rope for a two count. Moose levels Lashley with a big boot.
Moose tags ECIII back in. Moose charged Lashley but Lashley pulled down the top rope and Moose goes flying to the outside. ECIII follows up with a clothesline over the top rope. Bennett is the legal man. He tries to hit the MIP on ECIII but ECIII counters and hits a sunset flip for the win.
WINNER: ECIII & Moose at 10:15.
After the match, Moose attacks Bennett on the outside and fights him up the aisle and to the back. Lashley runs in the ring and attacks ECIII, who starts to fight back and a brawl is breaking out. Security rushes the ring to separate them. ECIII gets away from security, as does Lashley, and they charge each other again.
Trevor Lee, Andrew Everett and D.J. Z run into the ring to help separate Lashley and Lashley. The locker room begins to empty to help the officials separate them.
Billy Corgan walks out onto the ramp. He said that this behavior is not what anyone wants. Corgan said next week, Bound for Glory starts three days early. Corgan said that ECIII and Lashley will each captain a team next week in a Lethal Lockdown match, and the winner will pick the stipulation for their Bound for Glory title match.
The show ends with Lashley and ECIII staring at each other while the wrestlers continue to separate them.
OVERALL REAX: It was an interesting decision to have ECIII get the heat in this match and then have Moose come in with the hot tag, although in the end, ECIII did end up getting the actual victory.
There wasn’t as much Billy Corgan or authority figures on this show. In fact, Corgan didn’t show up until the final segment making the announcement for next week’s main event.
TNA doesn’t have many big pay-per-views to build to. There’s two per year. In June, they did a nice job building to a crescendo at Slammiversary and the build here has been similar.
It feels as though many of these big feuds are coming to a boiling point. Rex-Galloway could just be starting, but Lashley-ECIII and Hardys-Decay definitely feels like there is some finality there, with everyone moving on to new things after Bound for Glory.
Moose is clearly being positioned as the next challenger for the World Title. Things could change, but that would lead me to believe they’re inclined to keep the World Title on Lashley at Bound for Glory, maybe with someone costing ECIII the title and allowing him to spin off into a grudge feud, which takes him out of the title picture.
Cody, as he’s being called in TNA, has a unique contract that will allow him to also make other televised appearances for ROH, among others. He’s going to be someone that TNA should use moving forward, because he has a lot of steam right now, but they also probably need to be careful.
I wouldn’t be surprised to see TNA book Cody’s story arcs to have a beginning and ending with each set of television tapings, therefore guaranteeing he doesn’t leave in the middle of a storyline to sign an exclusive deal somewhere else. It also protects TNA from any tapings Cody may miss due to previous commitments or just other commitments to other promotions.
Still, Cody could be a real needle-mover for TNA. He’s not going to bring the show from 400,000 viewers to one million, but he gets them some attention. He’ll get them even more attention if he’s booked correctly and doesn’t just blend in with the rest of the roster.
TNA has often been criticized as being a “lite” version of WWE, and if you look at their main storylines right now, they’re made up almost exclusively of former WWE talent — Moose and Mike Bennett being the real exceptions.
Despite that, guys like Drew Galloway and ECIII have a TNA homegrown feel to them. Even Aron Rex, in his limited time on the show. Rex is a good example of how this is working, with his character being vastly different than what we saw in WWE. He’s not a character at all, really. He’s himself, with a different name.
That needs to be the route TNA takes with Cody. It’s going to feel new no matter what they do, as long as if what they do isn’t Stardust. Cody hasn’t been Cody in a wrestling ring for a very long time.
The vignette introducing him was well done and gave us some insight into his character. He was wearing a designer suit and jumping in a fancy sports car. In some ways, it’s what Ric Flair’s character would be doing if he were in his 30’s in 2016. That could be the road they take.
To your point of TNA consisting mainly of WWE castaways: look at some of the current titleholders in WWE, and who their biggest NXT stars are. Almost everyone is a “former (company name) star.” That’s how it was during the Monday night war, and I for one welcome this. It’s good for wrestlers and fans to have options.