4/5/16 – Andrew Berg – @WrestleRosters
Lashley def. The Pope in a Street Fight
Lashley’s recent run as a selfish heel started when he began to antagonize the TNA announce crew. He baited Pope back into the ring and they finally collided in a street fight in this week’s main event. Pope cut a strong promo before the match about how he belonged in the ring and looked good in the match. He used a kendo stick to do most of his damage and even put Lashley in a vulnerable position. He climbed to the second rope with the kendo stick, but as he came off, Lashley hit a sudden spear. He got the pin and continued his attack with two more spears.
As the beating continued, EC3 walked to the ring to force Lashley to stop. Mike Bennett and Maria responded and came to the ramp. Bennett said he would wrestle EC3, but not this week, which spurred EC3 into an attack. Bennett tried to use Maria as a human shield and they continued the brawl backstage and into the parking lot. Bennett hit EC3 with a tire iron and drove away. Both of these rivalries make sense and revolve around solid wrestling. What is possibly even more encouraging is the way the angles piggybacked on one another. Just brushing up against one another makes both of these rivalries more interesting and less predictable.
-Jeff Hardy used an impressive Swanton from the top of a cage to Eric Young on a table to pick up the win in their grudge match. Hardy said in a promo later in the night that he remains focused on Drew Galloway’s TNA Title despite his loss last week. I always appreciate a title picture with more than a couple of competitors, so both Hardys, EC3, Lashley, and Tyrus (who hinted at a challenge later in the night) makes it more fun to watch.
-Beer Money brawled with The Decay after a cryptic promo and offered to prove their tag team superiority with a gauntlet match next week. Pre-taping episodes is a challenge for any wrestling company, but the widespread reporting that Young and Bobby Roode have both left TNA makes this program anticlimactic.
-Maria manipulated Gail Kim into facing both Jade and Madison Rayne and then used a shot with the title belt to help Jade get the win and the Knockouts Title. The tension between Gail and Maria is solid. The question is whether their issue will be resolved in the ring.
-Billy Corgan told Al Snow that he is suspended for a week for attacking Grado and breaking his arm. He also instructed him to apologize for his actions. If you ask me, Snow did not go far enough. By the way, why would the TNA “brass” care about breaking Grado’s arm if he was already fired anyway?