Bracing For Impact: The Champ Who Wasn’t There
Jan 6, 2014 - by Andrew Davis
The moment we’ve all been waiting for is drawing near. On this week’s Impact , we will all witness the match that ends the debate. TNA World Heavyweight Champion Magnus will wrestle the man who never lost that championship, A.J. Styles, in the bout to settle things once and for all. Today, two men claim to be the top titleholder in TNA. After Thursday, only one will be the real World Champion.
So now the all-important question. Who do you want to see win?
Before you answer, realize that the question isn’t “who are you cheering for” or “who will probably win”. Those are different things altogether. The most important question is who you want to actually see win the match and be TNA World Champion after the night is over?
The simple answer might be A.J. Styles. The Phenomenal One gave everyone the heroic story they were hoping for when he dethroned Bully Ray for the World Championship and then rejected Dixie Carter’s dismissive attitude towards his future. Everyone clapped and laughed as he rode off into the sunset with the top honor in TNA over his shoulder.
Then what happened? After the new champion had screeched off in a cloud of dust, what did we have? No World Heavyweight Champion – that’s what. We were left with an angry Dixie Carter orchestrating wins for people she felt safe around. Why? Because of A.J. Styles, that’s why. He’s the one who planted the seed of distrust in our seemingly friendly TNA President. His betrayal left her with no choice but to take it out on the TNA roster.
Was A.J. Styles there to stop that? No. He was in Japan or Mexico or wherever else proudly defending the TNA World Heavyweight Championship. It was admirable and something most fans applauded from afar. The reason they had to applaud him from afar was because he stopped coming to Impact.
Then there’s Magnus. The former fan favorite bravely fought through the Championship Tournament to crown A.J.’s replacement. It wasn’t until the final bout that he opted for a cheap rise up the ladder as he joined Team Dixie. Keep in mind, none of this deviated from what the long-time “up and comer” had been saying openly for years. He would make his breakout moment happen any way possible. The real issue most took was with his arrogant attitude following the victory.
But does that really matter? At the end of the day, are his rude remarks and snide glances worse than the prospect of a champion who refuses to return to Impact? Isn’t it worth more to have a “villain” as the World Heavyweight Champion than a popular yet absentee globetrotter?
While it may seem to be a case of choosing the lesser of two evils, an exchange happened on last week’s Impact that might be a light at the end of our tunnel. When Dixie Carter tried to disallow her handpicked champion from accepting Styles’s challenge, he stood his ground. The new titleholder informed his boss that if she didn’t allow it, he’d leave as well. In that brief moment, the Magnus we all remember returned. It reminded us that he’s still in there and might one day regain some humility.
Even if that never happens, though, at least Magnus is still here. He’ll be here next week and he’ll be here next month and he’ll be here until he loses the championship. He’s fought his whole career for the honor and will never abandon it. It might not be popular, but it needs to be said. For that reason alone, you should want Magnus to win on Impact. Every fan of TNA should.