6/30/11 Impact Wrestling Recap

Jul 1, 2011 - by Jason Graening

Sting dark attitude change is recapped with highlights of his confrontations with Hulk Hogan and Eric Bischoff is aired along with Sting using Abyss’ barbed wire glove on him during last week’s main event. The Impact Wrestling intro then hits as we see Hogan backstage with Scott Steiner. Hogan is thanking Steiner for joining Immortal and Steiner says it’s time to kick some ass once again.

As Steiner leaves, Hogan hears Sting’s voice off in the distance as he is on a video monitor backstage. Sting says the show is about to start and asks Hogan if he is nervous. Sting then faces the camera and he is in full out Joker makeup as Hogan’s music hits. Hogan then makes his way out to the ring as the announce team welcomes us to this week’s show.

Hulk Hogan comes out and says that Sting has a date with Hogan coming up real soon and Hogan says he will take care of him on his own time. Hogan then calls out Mr. Anderson, who comes down to the ring with the TNA World Championship over his shoulder. Hogan tells Anderson that they need each other and tells him that he can either join Immortal or walk out a face Sting by himself in two weeks. Hogan warns him if he chooses the ladder, he will not only lose to Sting but he will lose all of his cockiness in the process.

Anderson takes Hogan back to Slammiversary and says he dominated Sting and won the championship all by himself. Hogan says it was Eric Bischoff who handed Anderson the title to Anderson on a silver platter, simply because they cannot have Sting run around as the top guy in the company. Hogan tells Anderson that he owes them one, but Anderson says he doesn’t give a damn what they did as he is taking all of the credit for the victory at Slammiversary.

The two are interrupted by some commotion going down on the big screen as we see Sting take out Abyss, Gunner, Scott Steiner and Bully Ray with a baseball bat. Sting yells at the screen and says he wants to have a little chat with Hogan tonight. The lights then go out in the Impact Wrestling Zone as Sting’s music hits. The lights return and Sting is standing behind Hogan as he takes him out at the back of the knee with a bat.

Anderson leaves the ring as Sting grabs a microphone and says thanks for him leaving the ring since he wanted a moment with Hogan. Sting turns his attention to Hogan and he tells him that he has been trying to get though to him. Sting says he wants to get to the real Hulk Hogan and takes him on a trip down memory lane. Sting breaks open a huge bottle of vitamins and takes a few himself and shoves some down Hogan’s throat.

Sting then begins to put Hogan in a Scorpion Death Lock as Immortal begins to limp their way down the entrance ramp. Bully Ray tells Sting to step away from Hogan and says that he is tired of Sting making a mockery of Hogan. Ray goes on to call Sting a bully and says that their paths have never crossed, so tonight it is going to be Sting going up against Scott Steiner. Hogan then jumps in and says that he will never be embarrassed by Sting again and before the end of the night, he will wipe the smile off of his face.

The announce team takes over and tells us that tonight’s show will feature limited commercial interruptions. They then hype the main event of Sting taking on Scott Steiner before switching gears to the Bound for Glory Series.

We see footage from live events where James Storm and Crimson picked up seven points each in Columbus, OH. Gunner also earned seven points in Fort Wayne, IN, while Crimson picked up 10 points for a submission victory over D’Angelo Dinero. Finally, both Storm and AJ Styles picked up another seven points each in Troy, OH, on Saturday night.

The Bound for Glory Leaderboard is shown and Crimson has a slight lead with 17 points, with Gunner, Matt Morgan, AJ Styles and James Storm close behind with 14 each. Rob Van Dam, Scott Steiner and Bully Ray all have seven points and the Pope, Robert Roode, Devon and Samoa Joe have yet to score any points. Tonight, AJ Styles will take on Gunner in a rubber match and Samoa Joe will face Devon.

Match 1: Devon vs. Samoa Joe (Bound for Glory Series Match)
The match starts and Joe goes right for the rear naked choke but Devon is able to reach the ropes. Joe then takes Devon down with a kick to the back of the head and he continues to wear his opponent down until Devon connects with a spear. Devon takes Joe down with a series of strikes before slamming him down onto the mat. Devon then picks up a near fall after connecting with a shoulder block but Joe is able to fight his way back into the match.

Joe takes Devon down and puts him in a leg lock submission but Devon is able to reach the ropes yet again. Joe is showing signs of frustration and puts Devon in a cross armbar after hitting a snap slam, however, Devon again puts his foot on the rope. Joe tries for another submission hold but Devon counters and slams Joe down to the mat and picks up the pin fall to pick up seven points. Joe is upset at himself for losing the match and his second loss in the series.

The Pope is backstage with Devon’s two sons and he tells them that they have something to be proud of. Pope says he wants to congratulate Devon on his win and asks the two boys where their mom is at.

We peek into Immortal’s locker room as Scott Steiner is yelling at Bully Ray for volunteering him to face Sting tonight. Steiner says he would have liked some notice and Ray says he has been taking care of Sting for the past 20 years and tells him to take care of business tonight.

Kazarian meets up with Samoa Joe and says he is better than this and says he wants to bring it out of him as security step between them. Joe begins a profanity laced taunt on Kazarian and calls him a coward before telling Kazarian to meet him down the street.

The announce team recaps the Destination X qualifying matches where Austin Aries and Zema Ion won their matches to earn a spot on the pay-per-view to win an Impact Wrestling contract. The next qualifier takes place tonight as Low Ki, Matt Bentley and Jimmy Yang give their thoughts on the past careers in TNA and tell us why they have come back.

Match 2: Matt Bentley vs. Jimmy Yang vs. Low Ki (Destination X Qualifier)
The bell rings as all three begin to go at it and Low Ki picks up the first near fall over Bentley. Bentley recovers and dives at Low Ki but ends up going out to the floor. Yang begins to work over Low Ki and picks up a near fall after hitting a cross body block from the top rope. Bentley enters the ring sends Yang out to the floor before picking up a near fall on Low Ki. Bentley then puts Low Ki in a headlock before dumping him over the top rope with a clothesline.

Bentley follows Low Ki out to the floor as Yang dives over the top rope and onto Low Ki on the floor. Yang then rolls Low Ki onto the floor and the two trade pin attempts in the middle of the ring as Bentley takes time to recover on the floor. Low Ki hits Yang with a series of kicks before hitting the Warrior’s Way. Bentley comes into the ring and Low Ki takes him out with a kick and picks up another near fall.

Bentley then takes both Yang and Low Ki down with a neckbreaker and a DDT at the same time. Bentley then hits Low Ki with a superkick for a near fall as all three competitors are out on the mat. Bentley then heads to the top rope and goes for a cross body block but Yang counters with a gut buster. Yang then heads to the top but misses with a corkscrew splash. Low Ki then climbs to the top and hits Yang with the Warrior’s Way and picks up the pin fall to advance to Destination X.

A preview for Destination X is aired with the X Division wrestlers giving their thoughts on the show and the division itself. Kurt Angle even says the X Division takes it to another level, while Mike Tenay talks about how the division has been overshadowed as of late and the talent will finally get their time to shine. The talent then talks about Ultimate X and how dangerous it is and how Destination X will highlight what is great about the company.

Madison Rayne is in the dressing room and is looking for her lip gloss as Winter and Angelina Love walk in. Angelina actually speaks as Madison tells them not to touch her stuff before leaving the room. Winter then says that she is going to make Mickie James squeal like a mouse tonight and will do it again at Hardcore Justice. Angelina then says that their relationship is no longer synthetic and that its real since Winter appreciates her and how it’s all about the Knockouts Championship and it’s not going to end with Mickie.

A cellphone video is aired where we see Samoa Joe and Kazarian go at it in a bar room brawl. Joe sends Kazarian through a table before people start to break it up. Joe screams that this is his world before leaving.

Hulk Hogan is walking backstage and taping his fist as he thanks Sting for snapping him out of his stouper. Hogan says he didn’t forget who he was but just forgot how to act. Hogan says he will show Sting how to get hurt and says it won’t be any laughing matter.

Match 3: Winter/Angelina Love/Madison Rayne vs. Miss Tessmacher/Tara/Mickie James
This match is being contested under elimination rules. The bell rings and Mickie takes Winter down to start the match before grabbing Winter’s belt but the referee takes it away. Tessmacher is tagged in as Angelina and Winter work her over for a bit before Winter eliminates her with a bridging suplex. Tara comes in and takes Winter down before hitting a standing moonsault for a near fall. Winter comes back and picks Tara up onto her shoulders as Angelina comes in and nails Tara with a superkick. Winter goes to cover Tara but Madison tosses Winter through the ropes and covers Tara for the pin fall.

Mickie is the final one left for her team and she takes Madison out with a spin kick and picks up the pin fall to eliminate Madison from the match. Winter and Angelina then team up against Mickie as the referee tries to restore some order. The two continue to work Mickie over, though, and Angelina hits a back cracker on Mickie as they both go for the pin fall. Winter won’t allow Angelina to cover her as they have a small disaggrement, which allows Mickie to recover.

Mickie takes Winter down with a hurricanrana and then hits Angelina with a neckbreaker to pick up the pin fall and eliminate Angelina from the match. Mickie then connects with a DDT on Winter to pick up the pin fall to win the match. Mickie leaves the ring with the Knockouts Championship as Winter glares at Angelina for losing the match.

Gunner is in the locker room and talks about getting into the ring against AJ Styles one more time tonight as they both hold one win over each other. Gunner says his game plan tonight is to prove to Styles and everyone else that he is the better man and he says there is no stopping him.

A video package featuring Brian Kendrick and Abyss is aired. Kendrick says Abyss has been corrupted by Hulk Hogan and Eric Bischoff and says he knows he will deal with a lot of pain at Destination X for his chance to take the title. Abyss promises to rip out his heart and then the X Division will officially be dead.

Jeremy Borash is in the ring and promotes the Destination X pay-per-view before saying that we will be witnessing the official contract signing for Destination X. Christopher Daniels and AJ Styles come down to the ring where a red carpet has been rolled out and a table is set up. Before signing the contract, Styles asks Daniels if he is sure that he wants to do this. Daniels responds by signing the contract and says he hasn’t been more sure of anything in his life.

Styles says he worries about this becoming personal between them and Daniels says it’s not about them, but about the X Division and taking it to the next level. Daniels promises to shake the hand of his best friend once the match is over. Styles then signs the contract to make the match official, however, they are cut off by Jerry Lynn’s music.

Lynn makes his way down to the ring and says isn’t about who built the X Division and it’s a group effort about wrestling and entertaining the fans. RVD’s music then cuts them off as he comes out to the ring and tells them that he was called a pioneer many years ago and how they were all trying to be like RVD, the whole f’n show. Lynn asks if RVD remembers going at it for a year straight and how the fans named Lynn the new f’n show.

Daniels steps between them and says that none of them ever created the X Division, but they perfected it. Daniels then suggests that if he and Styles go at it and RVD and Lynn face off, it may be the best pay-per-view of all time. He then suggests giving the fans a little treat next week with a four corners match with the four of them. RVD immediately says that he’s in, and the rest agree to the match next week.

As Styles is leaving the ring, Gunner attacks him from behind and sends Styles into the guard railing. Gunner then clears the ring as Styles recovers and goes after Gunner but he runs out of to the floor. Earl Hebner is in the ring and wants their match to start and Hebner calls for the bell.

Match 4: AJ Styles vs. Gunner (Bound for Glory Series Match)
The match is taking place on the red carpet as the two go back and forth in the opening moments. Styles takes control of the match and takes Gunner down with a back drop but Gunner is able to stall his momentum by hitting a running knee. Gunner picks up a near fall and goes for a powerbomb but Styles counters and hits Gunner with a Pele kick. Styles then dropkicks Gunner out to the floor and connects with a flip dive over the top rope.

The two begin to fight on the floor before returning to the ring where Gunner takes control of the match. Gunner hoists Styles on his shoulders but Styles is able to escape and connects with an enziguri on Gunner. Styles then slams Gunner onto the canvas and heads out for a springboard but Gunner pulls Hebner in the way and ends up crotching Styles on the ropes. Gunner then hits Styles with a powerbomb and covers as Hebner makes a very slow three count. With the win, Gunner has gone up to the top spot with 21 points.

A video package highlighting the past Ultimate X matches is aired and features music from Red Jumpsuit Apparatus.

Sting is somewhere backstage and says it’s the wrong place, wrong time for Scott Steiner and the right place, right time for the Stinger. The main event match with Sting taking on Scott Steiner is coming up next.

A video package recapping Velvet Sky’s recent run in with ODB and Jackie. ODB talks about putting women’s wrestling on the map and how they are there to clean it up. Velvet is in the dressing room and talks about being bullied all her life and having to fight for everything she wanted to accomplish. Velvet warns ODB and Jackie that she isn’t as weak as she once was and says next week’s handicap match is important to her since if she beats them they will never be allowed back on Impact Wrestling again.

On top of that match next week, the announce team hypes next Thursday’s show that will feature Crimson taking on Robert Roode in a Bound for Glory Series match and the four corners match between RVD, AJ Styles, Christopher Daniels, and Jerry Lynn.

Mexican American makes their way to the ring and Hernandez says he wants some answers to some questions. Anarquia takes the microphone says that Hernandez is mad because everyone is accusing them of being liars, cheats and criminals. They want to know why they aren’t a part of the Bound for Glory Series but gringos like Beer Money are. He says they are the best tag team in Impact Wrestling and they are going to raise more hell because nothing is impossible.

They are cut off by the British Invasion as they come out to the ring. Magnus says they are foreigners in this country as well but they are proud of where they are and where they are from. Magnus says what he doesn’t like is people coming from another country and expect to have things handed to them without earning it. Magnus continues to say that they haven’t earned anything since they haven’t been through the British Invasion.

Magnus then challenges them to a match to find out who the real #1 contenders to the tag team titles are and tells them to leave the girls at home. Rosita then spits in Magnus’ face as Mexican America begin to assault the British Invasion but the ring is cleared by Rob Terry.

Footage of the Jarrett’s in Mexico City is aired. Jeff Jarrett says the King of the Mountain is riding high once again and Karen Jarrett says they bought gifts for every member of Immortal. Jarrett says he has a very special gift and they will have reason to celebrate. Jarrett says he will be home soon but they still have one more week in paradise.

We peek into Immortal’s locker room where Bully Ray is congratulating Gunner on his victory over AJ Styles. Ray says he has been on a roll as of late and that they should just hand him the TNA World Championship and gives Gunner the rest of the night off. Ray then tells Abyss to get down to the ring so they can have Scott Steiner’s back but Abyss won’t leave because he can’t find his mask.

Match 5: Scott Steiner vs. Sting
Scott Steiner attacks Sting as Jeremy Borash was doing the formal introductions to get this match underway. Steiner takes Sting down with a belly-to-belly suplex to pick up a near fall before he continues to work Sting over. Sting finally takes Steiner down with a big boot to the face and then connects with a series of fists before dropping Steiner with a face plant. Sting then tries for a Stinger Splash, but Steiner catches him and slams him down to the mat for another near fall.

Steiner then tries to lock Sting in the Steiner Recliner but Sting counters and puts Sting in the Scorpion Death Lock. Steiner manages to make it to the ropes and rakes Sting’s eyes before taking him down with a t-bone suplex. Both slowly make their way to their feet and Sting is able to counter Steiner’s offense with a Scorpion Death Drop to pick up the pin fall and win the match.

After the match, Sting grabs some face paint as Bully Ray runs out to the ring. Ray is clotheslined a couple of times for his troubles and takes a Stinger Splash as Mr. Anderson runs out and takes Sting out with a low blow and a Mic Check. Anderson leaves the ring as Ray and Steiner double team Sting in the middle of the ring. Hulk Hogan’s music then hits as he makes his way towards the ring as Steiner and Ray hold Sting in the ring.

Hogan begins the hit Sting with his taped fist before he grabs Sting’s bat. Before Hogan can use the bat, Kurt Angle’s music hits as he runs out to the ring and clears the ring. Hogan and Angle stare each other down as Hogan says Angle crossed the line and Impact Wrestling comes to a close.

Quick Results
– Devon defeated Samoa Joe by pin fall in a Bound for Glory Series match.
– Low Ki defeated Jimmy Yang and Matt Bentley by pin fall in a Destination X Qualifying match.
– Mickie James won a Tag Team Elimination match by pin fall over Winter.
– Gunner defeated AJ Styles by pin fall in a Bound for Glory Series match.
– Sting defeated Scott Steiner by pin fall.

Starman’s Thoughts
Tonight’s show featured limited commercial interruption and TNA tried to cram as much as they could with the little extra time they had. Overall, I have to say this was a solid show that did a good job at hyping the Destination X pay-per-view and the huge July 14th show that Sting called “Midsummer Nightmare.”

The opening of tonight’s show was very long but it was decent in setting up the main event and furthering Sting’s decent into madness. Sting is now wearing a complete version of the Joker’s makeup from The Dark Knight, and I’m sure I’m in the minority in thinking this, but I think Sting is fitting great in his new role. Yes, it is a complete rip off (but so was his Crow makeup that he has worn for the past 15 years), and there seems to be new life in his character. While I don’t think an aging veteran nearing the end of his career should have such a big role in the company, he is making the most of it and it has been entertaining to see Sting open up in a new way.

When the Sting/Hogan saga wasn’t in the spotlight, tonight’s focus was either on the Bound for Glory Series or the Destination X pay-per-view. I have to give TNA credit for keeping their fans up to date with the live events recaps and showing us how competitors are scoring points that aren’t televised. The matches that were televised tonight were decent and I am glad they are getting a little time to develop. I have to say that I was surprised with the outcomes from both BFG Series matches as I felt that both Samoa Joe and AJ Styles would go over their opponents. I guess Gunner has been on a roll as of late, plus it is still early for the rest to make up points. It’s just too bad that Joe can’t earn points in bar room brawls.

I really enjoyed the Destination X hype on tonight’s show. This show is already shaping up to be a good card, and could very well be one of the better pay-per-views that TNA puts on this year. As it was said tonight, the X Division put TNA on the map and there is a good mixture of old rivalries, new faces, grudges and friendly matches going on to make it more than a simple nostalgia event. I don’t think I have been nearly as excited as I am for this pay-per-view in quite some time and TNA did a good job in adding to that excitement with tonight’s qualifying match and the well produced video packages.

Not everything was great on tonight’s show, though, and my main issue as of late has been the fact that Mr. Anderson, the TNA World Champion, hasn’t been featured nearly enough. It’s almost like Anderson has become an minor afterthought that has been pushed aside for Destination X, the Bound for Glory Series and the Sting/Hogan angle. What made matters worse was how Sting just disregarded Anderson in the opening. It does fit in with Sting’s new persona but it doesn’t look good as a whole when a person who is challenging for the top title of the company doesn’t give the champion much thought when they are in the ring together.

I am happy to see that the zombie Angelia Love is gone and she seems to be back to normal. I didn’t like the explanation, though, and it seemed like it was pretty much just dropped. I can’t blame them since it wasn’t the greatest storyline to begin with, but I wonder if they actually had this all thought out before this happened or if they finally realized how dumb this all was and decided to move forward with it all.

I enjoyed the exchange between Mexican America and the British Invasion. What Magnus had to say was logical considering all that was involved and gave a little backstory to a midcard angle to decide the next team to challenge for the Tag Team Championship.

I was under the impression after watching last week’s show that Jeff Jarrett would be gone from television for a while. It looks like I was wrong as it seems that he will be back a lot sooner. I was hoping to have him gone for a lot longer.

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