Last week’s main event of Impact on POP saw Matt Hardy defeat Ethan Carter III to capture his second TNA World Heavyweight Championship in a Last Man Standing match. However, in victory, the roles of these competitors seemingly reversed. Having been pushed as the company’s top babyface throughout the World Title Series, Hardy turned his back on the fans by attacking EC3 with a hammer that his wife, Reby Sky, pulled out of a diaper bag, You can’t make this stuff up, folks. Post-match, Hardy, Sky, and their new-found companion, Tyrus, celebrated as the show went off the air. TNA has already announced three bouts for tonight’s broadcasts, including the annual Feast or Fired match, a triple threat match for the X-Division Championship, and a singles match between Awesome Kong and Velvet Sky.
This episode of TNA Impact was taped at the Sands Bethlehem Event Center in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania earlier this month. The show opens with an unidentified employee interviewing Jeff Hardy in the parking lot. The interviewer asks for Jeff’s response to his brother’s actions last week, to which he replies: “I’ve been trying to call Matt all week, and there are definitely some things that need to be said. So, I’m going to go paint my face and say what I need to say to the new World Champion, Matt Hardy.” The interview is followed up by a video package showcasing highlights from last week’s main event. Jeff comes out to resounding “Hardy” chants, and mentions that he was shocked by Matt’s actions. Having not been in the building due to a knee injury he suffered during the first half of last week’s show, he was unable to confront his brother about the situation. He then proceeds to call out Matt, whose theme song now begins with the phrase: “I am iconic!” Matt’s music plays for about a minute until he appears at the top of the entrance ramp with Reby Sky, their son, Maxell, and Tyrus. Jeff calls this a family issue, and Reby berates him for getting injured whilst he and Matt were the World Tag Team Champions. She then says that Matt “does not need him anymore.” Afterwards, Jeff calls Reby, Tyrus, and Matt [expletives], and Matt demands that he apologize. Matt claims that he is now “better than he’s ever been,” and Jeff further expresses his displeasure with his sibling’s actions. They agree to go their separate ways before Matt claims that he will be the greatest World Champion in the history of the industry. Jeff announces that he has been cleared to compete, and requests a World Heavyweight Championship match tonight.
(Feast or Fired Match) Drew Galloway vs, James Storm vs. Bobby Roode vs. Rockstar Spud vs. Robbie E vs. Aiden O'Shea vs. Eli Drake vs. Grado vs. Bram vs. Chris Melendez vs. Eric Young
Before the match, we get a series of short backstage promos from the competitors. 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 a King of the Mountain Championship match. Several competitors compete in the Feast or Fired match, but you must leave if you claim briefcase. Later, TNA will reveal what was inside of each briefcase. Feast or Fired matches are often wacky and chaotic, and, as such, I do not feel competent enough in my abilities to dish out a star rating for this contest. Rockstar Spud, Aiden O’Shea, and Chris Melendez make their POP TV debuts tonight. Eric Young and Bram have been targeting the recently re-formed Beer Money of Bobby Roode and James Storm over the past few weeks. Jessie Godderz and Eli Drake have also been teaming recently, although they lost every match they’ve had together as a unit. This featured a lot of brawling, and was an all-around sprint of a match. The eventual winners (and loser, depending on the distribution of cases), were Drew Galloway, Eli Drake, Grado, and James Storm.
(TNA X-Division Championship) Tigre Uno vs. Mandrews vs. DJ Z
Next, we head to the ring, where Tigre Uno will defend his X-Division Championship against Mandrews and DJ Z. While Mandrews has never held the X-Division title, DJ Z secured the gold for a ninety-eight-day period in 2012 before losing it to Rob Van Dam at that year’s Bound For Glory pay-per-view. Tigre has held the title since the June 24, 2015, edition of Impact, when he defeated Low Ki and Grado in a three-way elimination match. I loathe the name “Mandrews,” but I am quite fond of the competitor and athlete. His in-ring style is utterly awe-inspiring, and even in 2016, he’s still able to do things that people have never seen. Mandrews and Tigre exchange kicks while DJ Z plays it safe in the corner. Tigre sends Mandrews and DJ Z flying out of the ring with several arm drags and dropkicks. Tigre attempts a suicide dive, but his attempts are thwarted by DJ Z. Before DJ Z can deliver offense, Mandrews grabs his foot. Mandrews is unable to seize this opportunity, and DJ Z is able to regroup by hitting a step-up missile dropkick on Tigre. Following that up with a springboard back elbow on Uno, DJ Z goes after Mandrews, who hits a hurricanrana and atomic drop before rolling him up for a near-fall. Mandrews gets the better of DJ Z with a dropkick of his own, at which point he rolls Tigre back into the ring. Tigre grounds DJ Z with a single-leg Boston crab, but DJ Z was able to roll up Mandrews for another two-count. Still maintaining his grip on DJ Z, Uno locks in a Gory Special on Mandrews. DJ Z escapes and rolls out of the ring, also allowing Mandrews to recover. Mandrews sends Uno out of the ring with another armdrag, then looks to go for an outside dive before DJ Z unsuccessfully rolls him up once again. DJ Z hits a lariat for another nearfall before noticing that Uno has made his way back to the ring apron. After ensuring that Mandrews is in his fall-radius, DJ Z dropkicks Tigre, sending him crashing back to the floor. DJ Z hits a somersault plancha on Tigre, but Mandrews levels both of them with a moonsault. Mandrews grabs a skateboard, rides it down the ramp, and delivers a running (skating) headscissors to DJ Z. In the center of the ring, Mandrews goes for a standing moonsault, but Tigre rolls out of the way. DJ Z then jumps through the ropes and DDT’s Uno before delivering an inverted frankensteiner to Mandrews for another near-fall. Mandrews and DJ Z attempt to suplex each other off of the top rope, but Mandrews is able to push him off, sending him to the outside. Tigre manages to make it to the top rope and hits Mandrews with a La Mistica to retain his title. After the match, Shane Helms comes out and challenges Tigre to a match next week.
Backstage, Awesome Kong is shown with the other members of The Dollhouse. She says that she should be the Knockouts Champion, and vows to bring gold to the group.
When we return from a commercial break, Eli Drake and Jessie Godderz are conversing in the locker room area. Drake is worried that he will be the unlucky Feast or Fired briefcase, but Godderz reassures him.
Yet another backstage promo is shown, this time with Matt Hardy, Tyrus, and Kurt Angle. Angle claims that Matt is tarnishing his family name. Matt doesn’t care because he’s building his own brand.
Awesome Kong vs. Velvet Sky
Quick squash match.
Next, the contents of the four Feast or Fired briefcases are revealed. They drug the reveals out over several segments, but the winners were as follows:
- King of the Mountain Championship match – Eli Drake
- World Heavyweight Championship match – Drew Galloway
- World Tag Team Championship match – Bobby Roode (Beer Money)
- Pink slip – Grado
The Wolves vs. Abyss and Crazzy Steve
A mysterious, painted woman comes out and introduces Crazzy Steve. Steve reveals that Abyss is the man that helped him attack The Wolves, and a brawl ensues on the ramp. When we come back from a commercial break, a tag team match is joined in progress. As the painted woman made her way to the ring, Steve spit mist in Richards’ eyes, forcing the referee to call for the disqualification. Post-match, they beat The Wolves down, and stole their World Tag Team Championships.
Editor’s note: The woman was Rosemary, also known as independent wrestler Courtney Rush.
(TNA World Heavyweight Championship) Matt Hardy vs. Jeff Hardy
Before the match began, Eric Young interrupted and declared himself the true number-one contender to the TNA title. During Young’s promo, Matt attacked Jeff from behind. After Young, Bram, and Matt put the boots to Jeff, Beer Money ran in to make the save. Furthermore, Steve and Abyss joined the party. Angle attempted to even the odds, but was laid out by Tyrus, and a subsequent belt shot from Matt. Young and Bram set up a table, which Young puts Jeff through after a Piledriver off of the apron. Jeff is then stretchered out of the arena and promptly placed in an ambulance. This was TNA’s unnecessarily convoluted way of writing Jeff Hardy off of TV before their annual tour of the United Kingdom.
Not a good show in the slightest. There is no way I could possibly sugarcoat that statement. TNA often gets a bad reputation, and rightly so, but this episode of Impact was the weakest POP TV episode to date.