By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Maria def. Gail Kim, Velvet Sky, Madison Rayne, Marti Bell, Rebel and Knockouts Champion Jade in a Ladder Match to Gain Control of the Knockouts Division
Having the women kick off the show was a nice change of pace, but that's about the only positive thing I can say about it. For those who have ever lobbied for a women's Money in the Bank Ladder match, this is essentially what it would be. It wasn't nearly as bad as I expected it be, but I still don't see why it was necessary to crown a leader of the Knockouts division. That was when the division was at its worst five, six years ago when Karen Angle and Brooke Hogan were at the helm. You had to know Maria was going over given her character and how she was the sole non-wrestler in this match.
Tyrus and Rockstar Spud Attacked TNA World Heavyweight Champion Drew Galloway
I like how Galloway has come off like a fighting champion so far during his reign and how his ultimate championship clash with Lashley is the bigger picture in all of this. He came off well here, as did Tyrus, but does anyone see him as a legitimate threat to the title? He's been booked like an afterthought these past few months, and although the attack certainly helped, I doubt it was enough. Meanwhile, Spud's new crazy character isn't clicking with me. It feels far too forced and is very distracting as a result.
X-Division Champion Trevor Lee def. DJ Z and Eddie Edwards in a Triple Threat Match
The fact none of the three competitors received televised entrances was enough to make me not care about the match. The X-Division Championship has been largely neglected as of late, and the focus seems to be on just about everything else (Shane Helms, Andrew Everett, etc). The match was fine for what it was, yet forgettable. Speaking of Everett, I don't know much about him, but that splash off the top rope, whatever the hell it was, was absolutely incredible.
King of the Mountain Champion Eric Young Attacked Bram
It was about damn time Young and Bram were split up because they're bound to be more successful on their own than together, but of course Young's actual departure from TNA served as the catalyst and they'd probably still be a tandem otherwise. Bram should have gone the face route a while ago, but better late than never I guess. I've never been the biggest Young fan, but he was awesome here and I assume a title match between them is only inevitable.
Ethan Carter III Challenged Mike Bennett to a No Disqualification Match at Sacrifice
Is it just me or has Bennett been outshining EC3 on the mic in every one of their encounters? That's not to say EC3 is a bad talker because he's actually quite great. He's still trying to find his footing as a babyface. Bennett is simply too tremendous of a talker. I loved his logic of already having beaten EC3 once and therefore not having any need to wrestle him again. They set up their No Disqualification match for next week very nicely and I'm highly anticipating it after this strong verbal exchange.
Al Snow def. Mahabli Shera
I assume the whole purpose of this program is to get Shera over with the audience in the end, but I'll go on a limb and predict that it won't based off how Shera isn't that good, at all. He is still very green and I don't understand TNA's fascination in pushing him. Perhaps they want a top Indian star, but he hasn't proven to be a worthy investment thus far. Additionally, I have zero desire to see Snow wrestling regularly in 2016. He remains in spectacular shape, but a win over Snow means nothing. Just ask Joey Ryan from Bound for Glory 2012.
World Tag Team Champions Beer Money Saved Gail Kim From Decay
Decay have done a fantastic job in coming across as creepy in recent months and this was more solid work from them. Apparently Beer Money are the only babyfaces on the roster because no one else cared enough to attempt to save Kim. It seemed like a lot for a tag title match (didn't they just get a shot last week?), but I appreciate that it was a different way of getting there than by having the challengers beat the champs in non-title action which is typically the case.
Jeff Hardy vs. Matt Hardy in an "I Quit" Match Ended in a No Contest
Obviously, this was shades of their "I Quit" match from Backlash 2009 (which was exactly six years ago this month might I add), but I was happy they switched it up a bit by brawling outside the brawl and utilizing the extreme environment more than they did in their initial encounter. They've always worked well together as opponents and this matchup was no exception. As someone who hates "I Quit" matches for the referee shoving a mic into the faces of the combatants every ten seconds, I was also glad the referee didn't drag down the bout by constantly asking Jeff and Matt if they quit and instead it was done sparingly. It wouldn't have been a Jeff Hardy match without a big spot and it certainly paid off with Jeff doing a dive off somewhere high and onto Matt through a table. Hmm, where have I seen that before? I didn't mind the non-finish because it gives the feud alive and they can have a Full Metal Mayhem match to blow it off eventually.
This was a very talk-heavy show, more so than I would have liked, but most of the segments were successful in building toward something on next week's Sacrifice special. Thankfully, this didn't feel like a filler edition of Impact Wrestling because of the heavily hyped main event that met my expectations. The whole show wasn't worth watching, but definitely seek out the "I Quit" main event and the talking segment with EC3 and Bennett.
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