This week’s TNA Wrestling Impact opens up with a close-up of Brooke Tessmacher’s butt as she’s walking around in the back, because TNA has class. She approaches Bully Ray, and says he has the title and her. How bad could things be? He grabs her by the hand and says they are going to the ring.
This week is apparently “Must Win Thursday”, as the final BFG Series singles matches will take place. Hulk Hogan also returns tonight.
Bully Ray and the rest of the Sons of Anarchy…er, Aces and Eights make their way down to the ring, sans Brooke Tessmacher. Ray says he’s in a really, really bad mood. As we can see, someone is missing from this ring. As you can see, his brother Devon is no longer here with them. Ray is upset, and he wants some answers right now. He’d like to hear from the rest of his brothers. He asks Garett Bischoff what happened last week. Garett says he doesn’t know, and he’s just as mad about this as Ray. Knux is next, and he says he was on the floor taking care of Rampage Jackson and Magnus. Wes Brisco now, and he doesn’t know. Finally, onto Mr. Anderson, the VP. Anderson says he doesn’t know what happened, but Devon knew what the consequences were, and it could’ve been any one of them in that position. Ray agrees that it is what it is. And it is a disappointment. The fact is, Devon has always been a disappointment. He’s always been a loser, Ray’s co-star and his sidekick. Devon did what Ray told him to do. He never needed Devon, and he never will again. He points at Tito Ortiz and says that’s the only man he needs right now. Out with Devon, in with Tito. Ray then gives Ortiz his own “cut”. Anderson is pissed, and asks if they don’t vote around here anymore. Do they just “patch” people in whenever they feel like it now? Ray says he’s the president. He’s going to do what he wants, when he wants, and no one can stop him. Anderson needs to get in line before Ray puts him in line. He then demands Brooke come out now, as he wants his hot girlfriend with him. She comes out, with Ortiz’s new vest in-hand. Ray holds the vest up, but before Ortiz can put it on, Anderson steps in and begins screaming at Ray. Ray shoves him into the corner and tells him to stay there before going back to put Ortiz’s vest on him. He rips a patch off of it, as it was apparently Devon’s vest prior to this. He tells the rest of the gang that if anyone has a problem, they can get out. What he says goes, and now he’s going to see who wins the BFG Series, as he doesn’t have to wrestle until then. One last thing, he heard his father-in-law is here tonight. Hulk, he can’t wait to see you, because what he wants to do is introduce him to the only Brooke that has ever mattered in his life.
We see Hulk Hogan entering the building earlier today.
Here are the current standings in the BFG Series: 1-Magnus (39); 2-Bobby Roode (34); 3-Christopher Daniels (30); 4-Austin Aries (28); 5-Samoa Joe (26); 6-Mr. Anderson and Jeff Hardy (tie, 24); 8-AJ Styles and Kazarian (tie, 22); 10-Joseph Park (17); 11-Hernandez and Jay Bradley (tie, 7). Just out of curiosity, but when the hell did Bradley score 7 points? He hasn’t won a damn match yet.
MATCH 1-BFG Series: Kazarian vs. Jeff Hardy
We learn the members of EGO can’t interfere in each other’s matches tonight, or they lose their spots in the series. Kaz rolls Hardy up, and Hardy counters with his own. They exchange waistlocks until Kaz rolls Hardy up for 1. Hardy splashes Kaz for 1, and now we have a standoff. You know, TNA talks about their damn fitness app more than WWE talks about the WWE App. NO ONE IS GOING TO TAKE FITNESS ADVICE FROM JEFF HARDY. Kaz begins hitting Hardy with some rights. Hardy blocks a corner whip and lands a headscissors, sending Kaz to the floor. He dropkicks Kaz through the ropes, then hits a running clothesline from the apron. Back in the ring, Hardy goes for the Twist, but Kaz counters and sends Hardy to the corner. Hardy tries to block it once more, so Kaz crotches him on the top rope. Hardy falls to the mat, and Kaz hits some mounted punches. Jumping sidekick by Kaz gets 2, and now Kaz applies a modified surfboard. Hardy fights out, but gets pulled down by his hair. Kaz hits a jumping legdrop for 2. Kaz goes for a suplex, but Hardy blocks it and hits a sit-out gourdbuster. Hardy hits some rights and a kick before popping off a flying forearm. He follows up with an inverted atomic drop, a double legdrop and a seated dropkick. Hardy applies a horrible-looking figure-4 (right up there with The Miz), and Kaz gets a rope break. Hardy goes for the Twist, and Kaz counters into a backslide for 2 before hitting a thrust kick for another 2. Hardy counters a corner whip before running into a boot. Kaz mounts the middle rope, but Hardy blocks the dive with the Twist of Fate. He goes up for the swanton bomb, which connects for 3.
WINNER: Jeff Hardy, who picks up 7 points and moves into 4th place with 31.
We see everyone from Aces and Eights in the back, sans Bully Ray. Garett throws a fit about Ray’s feelings towards Devon, wondering if he feels the same way about them. Anderson asks if they voted on not voting at some point. Wes says he knows this is Tito Ortiz they are talking about, but that doesn’t mean he should just walk in and get a spot. Knux says they all have had to vote on everything. He wasn’t sure about voting in Anderson as the VP, but his vote worked out fine. Voting works. Anderson says if this keeps up, they will have a vote, and Ray won’t be happy. No one man is bigger than the club.
MATCH 2-Best-of-3-Falls Match to determine a new #1 contender for the Knockouts Championship: Gail Kim vs. ODB
Kim hits a double-leg takedown and gets a 1-count off a jackknife. ODB shoulders her down for 1 as well. Kim gets sent to the corner, but slides to the outside and hits a sunset flip. ODB blocks it and tree slams her into the corner. ODB hits a delayed vertical suplex for 2. She blocks a corner charge and goes for a headscissors, but Kim blocks it and sends her face-first into the mat. She begins working on ODB’s right leg until ODB kicks her away and rolls her up for 2. Kim blocks a kick and hits a leg DDT. She drags ODB to the apron, slamming the leg into it before getting back in the ring. ODB fights back with punches until Kim kicks her in the leg. She applies a modified version of the scorpion deathlock, then sits down tight on the hold. ODB can’t get to the ropes, and taps out. Kim picks up the first fall as we go to commercials.
Back from the break, Kim is working on the bad leg in the corner. She draps it across the middle rope before hitting a cannonball onto it. ODB tries to block a charge, but Kim blocks that block and hits a leg stunner. She goes for her submission once more, but ODB counters into a small package for 3.
Kim immediately goes back on the attack and applies a legbar before dragging ODB to the ring post for the corner figure-4. Kim breaks the hold at 4, continuing the match. Back in the ring, she begins slapping ODB in the corner. ODB manages to kick her away, then fights her off from the knees. ODB gets back to her feet and hits a short-arm clothesline for 2. ODB goes for the Bam!, but her knee gives out on her. Kim clips the knee and applies a stretch muffler, but ODB gets to the ropes. Kim goes for Eat Defeat, but ODB counters into a fireman’s carry. Kim countesr into a sunset flip, but ODB rolls through and applies a modified deathlock of her own, and Kim taps.
WINNER AND NEW #1 CONTENDER: ODB. I like both of these women and they are great performers, but this match really had no flow to it. I’ve definitely seen them put on better performances.
AI stops Velvet Sky in the back, asking about the match that just happened. Sky compliments ODB, then says she’s rooting for her. She also says the Knockouts PPV will be next week, the division is red-hot right now, and there will be a lot of surprises. AI asks why she wasn’t at Hardcore Justice, and she says she had personal issues. AI brings up her relationship with Chris Sabin, which is legitimate. Sky says they keep their relationship private and separate from business.
We see Bobby Roode and Christopher Daniels are in the locker room area. Christopher Daniels says Hulk Hogan is changing things on his first night back, preventing the members of EGO from helping each other out in the series. Roode tells Daniels to not focus on what happened with Kaz earlier, and concentrate on what will happen later tonight. Roode has a chance to solidify his position in the final four. He has AJ Styles tonight, and Daniels has Austin Aries. They just need to take care of business. Daniels is pissed that Aries turned down their offer, and he’s going to take care of the problem right now.
Jeremy Borash is standing by with Austin Aries. He asks about Aries not joining EGO. He stands alone, and if you want something done right, you do it yourself. The Main Event Mafia offered the same opportunity, and he turned them down. He’s counting on himself to win the series. AJ Styles was offered the same opportunity and took it. He hopes AJ gets to the finals, because when Aries and AJ are in the ring together, it’s magic. Daniels interrupts the interview and says Aries needs to stop talking about AJ and stop talking about the finals. Aries made a huge mistake turning EGO down. Aries questions Daniels “gentleman” qualities, and Daniels says he’ll knock Aries down flatter than Miley Cyrus’ ass. Aries says he’ll slap Daniels so hard, he’ll start growing hair on his bald head again.
AI stops Hulk Hogan and asks about Bully Ray winning the title. There is no comment. Hulk then says he’ll address everything later tonight, and also has a huge announcement, brother.
The Main Event Mafia make their way out, sans Magnus, who was unable to attend this taping for personal reasons. Rampage Jackson starts the promo, which is just awful. He has something to get off his chest. Tito Ortiz “cheap-shotted” him with a hammer to the back of the head two weeks ago. He’s not going to wait for the Bellator fight. Every chance Jackson sees Ortiz, he’s going to stomp a mudhole in his ass. The rules are different here, so Ortiz better watch out. Samoa Joe says Cleveland, OH is run by the Mafia tonight. One week ago, things weren’t going their way. A week ago, they were outnumbered, outmanned and outmaneuvered. When Sting went backstage for one of the boys to fight, the boys cowered. Then, when they entered the ring, one man stepped up to the plate, walked the aisle and did right thing. Horrible promo by Joe right there. That man is AJ Styles. Sting says AJ put his career on the line to battle with the MEM, and anyone doing that gets a spot in the MEM. If AJ wants it, he’s got it, and now they want to thank him publicly. AJ once again comes out to his new crappy music, only to have it switch to his old, much-better entrance theme. AJ says he appreciates the MEM being out here, but he needs to do this by himself. The MEM leave him be, and now AJ is in the ring alone. He’s sure everyone has questions, and he’s got answered. When it comes to last Thursday, the biggest question is, is he the newest member of the MEM? While he respects what their doing, he’s worn the suit and tie before, and it’s just not him. It’s not their fault. Over the past year, AJ has developed trust issues. Maybe it was his two best friend stabbing him in the back. Maybe it was the guys in the truck airing all of his dirty laundry without asking whether it was true or not. Maybe it was just him realizing that this is just how the business is, and the only man AJ Styles can trust is Alan Jones.
To make himself clear, he is with no one. People have also asked why he changed. His perception of the business has changed. However, he is still the best in the world. Although he loves what he does in the ring, he has to understand that this is just a job, despite what everyone thinks. Everyone’s had that one job that sucks, getting shafted despite being the hardest-working person in the company. For what? AJ has realized that he deserves better. He tells Dixie Carter he’s been the go-to guy since day one, and for what? So she can bring in the “next big star”, who will ultimately fail? Or maybe that next big thing that she’ll forget about in short order, leaving AJ to pick up the pieces, bail her out and put TNA back on his shoulders? There are so many times this past year he prayed Dixie would just fire him so he wouldn’t have to quit. But he stayed here and did his job because like most of these people, he has a family to take care of. That’s his job, so he didn’t quit. Instead, he came into the ring and started tapping people out. Over the next couple of months, something clicked in his head. He likes being the dependable guy who can deliver the goods, the guy who can steal the show. He likes sending fans home happy because they got their money’s worth. Can he still be the go-to guy? You better believe it. Can he still carry the company? You’re damn right he can. So now, the question is, can he win the BFG Series and become the new World Champion? Before he can answer his own question, Bobby Roode makes his way out. That match is up next.
MATCH 3-BFG Series: AJ Styles vs. Bobby Roode
Honestly, that may have been the best promo of AJ’s career, and he made a lot of good, legitimate points. Anyway, a lock-up starts the match, and the two immediately break it. Another lock-up, and this time, Roode applies a side headlock, turning it into a hammerlock. AJ counters into a roll-up and goes for the Calf Killer, but Roode rolls to the floor right away. Back in the ring, Roode clubs AJ down and throws him to the corner for some chops. AJ counters an Irish whip, goes into a crisscross, then runs into an elbow. He recovers with a chop to the chest and follows up with a dropkick that sends Roode rolling to the floor. AJ hits a running moonsault from the apron. Back in the ring, AJ hits a backbreaker, then applies a modified camel clutch. He breaks the hold and goes for a standing rear chinlock. Roode breaks it by ramming AJ into the corner. AJ goes for a tornado DDT, but Roode throws him off, then catches AJ with a spinebuster. Roode hits a jumping kneedrop for 2, then hits another knee to the spine. Roode hits a suplex for another 2, then begins driving his knee into AJ’s back before applying a modified surfboard. AJ gets to his feet and breaks the hold with elbows and punches. He hits a series of strikes, ending with a discus clothesline. Roode pulls himself up to his feet in the corner, and AJ hits a jumping avalanche. Up top, AJ goes for a dive, but Roode avoids it. AJ lands on his feet, and Roode turns around into a standing spinebuster by AJ. AJ hits a Lionsault and goes for the pin, but then rolls Roode over the submission instead. Roode kicks him away, and AJ comes back with the Pele. He calls for the Styles Clash, but Roode backdrops him to the ramp outside. AJ lands on his feet, shoulders Roode and goes for the Superman. Roode counters into the Bowflex, but AJ gets his foot to the ropes. Roode pulls him back to the middle, and AJ rolls over into a pin for 2. Roode goes in for the Payoff, and AJ rolls through into the Calf Killer. Roode gets to the ropes as well, so AJ drags him to the middle. He goes for a spinning toe hold, but Roode kicks him off into the corner. He goes for the Payoff once more, and AJ counters into a small package for 3.
WINNER: AJ Styles, who picks up 7 points and moves him into 5th place at 29 points.
Christopher Daniels is in the back (wearing steampunk goggles for some reason) and says everything has led to this point. He has to beat Austin Aries to get into the final four, and he’s going to do just that.
JB is in the back and says there has been no comment from Hulk Hogan, but after the next match, Hulk will be out in the ring to explain everything that has been going on.
MATCH 4-BFG Series: Christopher Daniels vs. Austin Aries
The two lock-up, and Daniels backs Aries into the corner before applying a side headlock. He shoulders Aries down and hits a bodyslam before grinding his forearm into Aries’ face. Aries avoids a corner whip and rakes Daniels across the back and chest. He takes Daniels down with a full-nelson then spins himself around. He looks for the Last Chancery, but Daniels slides away. Daniels charges in, and Aries avoids it before hitting a deep armdrag into an armbar. Daniels counters with a headscissors, and Aries escapes before hitting a low dropkick for 2. He goes for the pendulum elbow, but Daniels slides to the floor. He avoids a baseball slide and goes for a split-legged moonsault onto the floor. Aries gets back in the ring as Daniels lands on his feet. Aries charges in for a suicide dive, which is blocked by a kick to the head. Daniels gets back in the ring and pins Aries for 2 as we go to commercials.
Back from the break, Daniels hits a split-legged moonsault for 2, then connects with a Final Cut for another 2. He applies a chinlock/armbar combo, but Aries fights out with elbow strikes. Daniels counters an Irish whip with an abdominal stretch, but Aries reverses it into his own, grabbing the top rope for leverage. Daniels breaks the hold and goes for the standing uranage. Aries rolls through, and the two collide off simultaneous clothesline attempts. Both get back up and trade strikes. Aries dominates, sending Daniels to the corner, where he hits a big chop. He follows up with a running elbow and a beautiful back suplex. Aries hits the pendulum elbow for 2, then calls for the brainbuster. Daniels rams him into the corner, but then gets hiptossed to the floor. Aries hits the suicide dive, then rolls Daniels back in the ring. Aries climbs up top, and Daniels avoids a dive. Aries lands on his feet, but gets caught with a blue thunder bomb for 2. Daniels sets Aries up for the Fall From Grace, but Aries fights his way out of the corner, mounts the top rope and hits a missile dropkick. He follows up with a running corner dropkick and goes for the brainbuster. Daniels escapes and counters into the Last Rites for 2. They trade forearm shots to the head, and Aries dominates before getting hit with a big boot and a palm strike. Aries recovers and hits a dropkick against the ropes before connecting with the brainbuster for 3.
WINNER: Austin Aries, who picks up 7 points, moving into 2nd place with 35.
We see Bully Ray, Tito Ortiz and Brooke Tessmacher in the back. Ray says he sometimes feels bad about what he’s done to Hulk Hogan, but then realizes he was always right and doesn’t feel so bad. He tells Ortiz he needs to watch out for Mr. Anderson, and make sure he doesn’t do anything stupid.
Hulk Hogan makes his way out and says it sounds like everyone missed him while he was gone, brothers. Well, you know, he’s been a busy guy the last couple weeks. While he’s been taking care of business, the TNA stars went crazy with Hardcore Justice. At the end of the day, it feels great to be back with TNA, rocking with the fans, brother. Now, onto the first order of business, that being the BFG Series. He asks for the leaderboard to be shown on the big screen, brother. We see the board, and the top four are Magnus, Austin Aries, Bobby Roode and Jeff Hardy. On September 4th, everyone will be in St. Louis at No Surrender. However, he’s got some changes. When he met with Spike executives, they decided the series deserves one more match, brothers. Next week, there will be a gauntlet match for 20 points, and everyone has a chance to step up and make it to the final four (except for the guys that can’t, no matter how many points they score, of course). Now, onto the next order of business…
Sting enters the ring, and they brawl. Guess TNA forgot about Sting not ever getting another title shot ever again. Sting hits a clothesline, sending Ray to the floor.
End of show.
Hey, remember that part where AJ Styles said Dixie Carter never sticks to anything she does? Guess Hulk Hogan wasn’t listening.
Dustin Nichols is a freelance writer, and you can keep track of all of his work on his Facebook page, which can be found at www.facebook.com/DustinNicholsWriter. Oh, and if you like bodybuilding, check out his mom’s official site by clicking the banner below: