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TNA Impact Review: Last Man Standing

TNA Impact Wrestling Review 1/19/16

In tonight’s main event, Ethan Carter III defends his TNA World Heavyweight Championship in a Last Man Standing Match against Matt Hardy. The show opens with Jeff Hardy, who is concerned that his brother’s career may come to an end. Matt says that he feels like he has let his family and fans down. Matt thanks Jeff for sticking with him, and calls himself “the premier wrestler on this planet.”  Tyrus comes out and says that he will make the Hardys’ dreams a nightmare. He then challenges Jeff to a match, which Jeff accepts. Before the match begins, we head to a commercial break.

Jeff Hardy vs. Tyrus

Tyrus cornered Hardy and delivered several shots to the midsection. Hardy went for a Whisper in the Wind, but slipped and fell off of the ropes. Tyrus trapped Hardy’s left leg in the ropes and stomped on it until the referee broke the count. Tyrus slammed Hardy’s leg on the ring post and then went to grab a steel chair. Referee Steve Stifler attempted to stop Tyrus, but he was pushed out of the way. Tyrus was disqualified, and Jeff Hardy was declared the winner. Tyrus attempts to further injure Hardy’s leg, but Hardy is able to send him packing after a Twist of Fate.

Next, we get a quick video package for the yearly Feast or Fired gimmick.  If you’ve never seen one of these matches, four briefcases are placed on poles. Inside the briefcases are a pink slip, World Heavyweight Championship match, a World Tag Team Championship Match, and an X-Division or King of the Mountain Championship match. Several competitors compete in the Feast or Fired match, but you must leave if you claim one of the randomly distributed briefcases. Later, the company reveals what was inside of each briefcase. This year’s competitors are Drew Galloway, James Storm, Bobby Roode, Rockstar Spud, Robbie E, Aiden O’Shea, Eli Drake, Grado, Bram, Chris Melendez, and Eric Young, and the match will take place on next week’s edition of Impact on POP.

We get a backstage promo from the TNA World Tag Team Champions, The Wolves. They mention that they have defeated some of the best tag teams in the world, and proceed to challenge Beer Money. Crazzy Steve interrupts, and someone who appeared to be Abyss attacked The Wolves from behind.

(TNA Knockouts Championship) Gail Kim vs. Awesome Kong

Awesome Kong makes her way to the ring, accompanied by  The Dollhouse of Jade, Marti Belle, and Rebel. Kong will be facing Gail Kim for the Knockouts Championship. Kong earned this title shot by defeating Madison Rayne, Jade, Marti Belle, Chelsea Green, Deonna Purrazzo, and Rebel in a battle royal at TNA One Night Only: Live a few weeks ago; a match that many pundits consider an early candidate for Worst Worked Match of the Year, Josh Matthews mentions that these women have had wars in the past, also stating that Kim was the first TNA Knockouts Champion, and Kong was the second. I’m personally not a fan of Matthews’ commentary, but it was abundantly clear that he did his research prior to this contest, for which I commend him. Much like their previous affairs, this contest saw Kong dominate early on. She went for a splash, but Kim was able to roll out of the way and lock in a modified Armbar. Gail rolled up her for a near-fall, only to be leveled by a Clothesline. Kim hits a Tornado DDT and plays to the crowd a bit before taking out the other three members of The Dollhouse at ringside. They trade shots in the center of the ring until Kim hits a Neckbreaker, for what I can only was a near-fall, since the camera cut away to Jade, who climbed up on the apron. Marti Belle and Rebel try to take out Kim while the ref is distracted, but The Beautiful People make the save. Back in the ring, Kim hits an Eat Defeat on Kong to retain the Knockouts Title. It’s mind-boggling to think that Earl Hebner is still reffing matches in 2016.

Beer Money vs. Eli Drake & Jessie Godderz**

Beer Money comes down to the ring and call out Bram and Eric Young. Instead, they are greeted by Jessie Godderz and Eli Drake, who are their opponents tonight. Drake says  that it’s “not 2006,” and “Beer Money’s time has passed.” Storm and Roode take it to Drake and Godderz on the outside .The bell rings, and Storm is able to keep Godderz down for a two-count. Drake pulls Storm out of the ring and assists Godderz by weakening him in their corner. Storm hits an STO and makes the hot tag to Roode. Drake rushes the ring, but Roode lays him out. Roode catapulted Godderz into a DDT from Storm, and you could audibly hear him yell “catch him!” Beer Money hit the D.W.I. on Godderz for the win. Backstage, Reby Sky and Matt Hardy are shown with their son, and insist that Jeff see a doctor about his knee.

Next, we get a video recapping Kurt Angle’s match with Drew Galloway last week. Angle says that his match with Galloway was a “five-star match.” The match was very good, but I don’t think it ever came close to reaching that level. He thanks the fans, and makes it clear that he is looking for a new challenger. Former TNA World Heavyweight Championship Lashley comes out, and says that he respects Angle more than anyone else in the business. Lashley calls the match that they had in 2015 the single best and worst day of his career. Lashley challenges Angle to one more match, and Angle accepts.

Michael Bennett vs. Pepper Parks

Maria Kanellis introduces “The Miracle” Michael Bennett, who is facing American independent wrestler Pepper Parks. Bennett pins Parks after hitting a Michinoku Driver. After the match, Bennett cuts a quick heel promo, stating that he plans to build “a kingdom of miracles.”

We get another backstage promo with EC3 and Tyrus. EC3 vows to retain the World Heavyweight Championship.

(TNA World Heavyweight Championship) Matt Hardy vs. EC3

Hardy goes after EC3 right out of the gate. EC3 kicks Hardy outside of the ring, and they brawl for awhile. EC3 chops Hardy, and drops him directly on the barricade before sending him into the ring steps. Shortly thereafter, EC3 suplexes Hardy on the ramp and proceeds to set up several tables. Hardy attempts to send EC3 through the tables, and Ethan wobbles on the apron. Matt hits a few Leg Drops, and we go to a commercial break.  Afterwards, we learn that Hardy used a ladder to gain control throughout the commercial break, effectively keeping EC3 down for a count of six. Hardy hits a Side Effect, and goes under the ring to get another table. EC3 hits a splash off the top of a ladder, sending Matt through the table. Matt gets back on his feet and delivers a Twist of Fate. Matt hits another Twist of Fate off of the apron, sending EC3 through a table. EC3 beats the count at eight but immediately falls back down. Hardy rolls him into the ring and grabs a plethora of  chairs from under the ring. Hardy’s displaying a lot of heel tendencies here. He delivers yet another Twist of Fate while a chair is wrapped around EC3’s head, but EC3 makes it to his feet by a count of seven. Matt attempts to knock EC3 out with a hammer, but EC3 stops him with a low blow and delivers a One-Percenter. Tyrus comes down to the ring and lays out EC3. EC3 goes after Tyrus, Hardy hits him with the belt, and wins the title. I’m not sure why they would do a double turn after pushing Matt as a top babyface during the World Title Series. After the match, Matt cuts a promo saying that he did all of this for himself.

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