6/17/15 – Andrew Berg – @WrestleRosters
EC3 def. Lashley
Impact started with a contract signing between Kurt Angle and EC3 for their upcoming World Title match. It was a change of pace from the normal contract signing brawl because they actually kept their hands off of each other to build some anticipation for the match. Angle acknowledged EC3’s talent, but said that he doesn’t understand the enormity of the match and needs to learn how to lose. As part of the contract, they agreed to let one another pick opponents for their tune-up matches to follow.
EC3 faced Lashley later in the show at Angle’s instruction. The match revolved around a series of ref bumps, which distracted focus from the wrestling. After the first referee went down, Tyrus attacked the second and third ones to allow him to help EC3. With the third ref down, Lashley speared Tyrus. Meanwhile, EC3 recovered and hit Lashley with a chair, and then with the One Percenter. Earl Hebner, who was the original referee, made it back into the ring and counted three to give EC3 another win and maintain his undefeated streak. Despite all of the hijinks, the match was relatively entertaining.
Eddie Edwards def. Bobby Roode
The Tag Title series took a break as Roode faced Edwards in a singles match. Roode continued to work his new, classic heelish persona. He used Davey Richards at ringside as a distraction for the referee and got Austin Aries to give him a chair. When he tried to hit Edwards with the chair, he swung and missed. Edwards rolled him up with a schoolboy and got the pin.
I thought the match was a fun interlude in the Tag Title series between the Wolves and the Dirty Heels. It helped the story because it reestablished Roode and Aries as the heels in the program after there was some blurriness between the teams at the start. I also think it makes sense to keep these four wrestlers together as long as possible because they are going to have good matches in most situations. They also used the situation to build anticipation for their next match by making it Full Metal Mayhem.
-TNA put together a brief Dusty Rhodes tribute to honor the late legend who spent some time with the company in its formative stages. It was not of the same caliber as the tribute by WWE, but since WWE owns the tape libraries for most of Dusty’s career, that’s no surprise. It was a nice acknowledgment nonetheless.
-Magnus fought his way through security to get his hands on James Storm. Fortunately for Storm, Mickie James did not die when he threw her off of a train platform. Undeterred, he has continued to insult their family and kicked a stroller off of the ramp (although it turned out to hold a doll rather than Mickie’s son. The train track incident was so absurd that this program is beyond saving.
-Awesome Kong teamed with Brooke to face Marti and Jade from The Dollhouse. It was an odd couple pairing to be sure, but they worked reasonably well together. Kong’s chokeslam set up a Brooke elbow drop from her shoulders to get the win and earn title shots for both of them.
-Abyss broke out his Joseph Park character for a hardcore match against Bram. Park put together a nice run, but Bram speared him through a table in the corner of the ring for the win. The Park character has never done it for me and I’d prefer to see Abyss as part of James Storm’s Revolution.
-Eric Young’s precipitous fall down the Impact card continued when he warned Chris Melendez about the danger of their upcoming match. Melendez stood up to him, but it’s hard to get too excited about that match.
-Jesse Godderz freaked out and beat up DJ Z before cutting an arrogant promo. He said that he was the star in the Bro Mans, which is a pretty irrelevant accomplishment. Robbie E eventually made the save to a reaction of total indifference from the crowd. With so many talented wrestlers on the TNA roster, it’s unbelievable that guys like Chris Melendez and Jessee Godderz get so much time on TV.