By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Good opening segment involving Bobby Roode, Jeff Hardy and Aces and 8s. It offered nice aftermath from the Final Resolution pay-per-view and created a hook for the rest of the show as to who paid off Aces and 8s. Everyone played their roles well here and it was a successful segment to kick off the show.
Fine match with Velvet Sky defeating Madison Ranye. I appreciate the effort Sky put into changing her ring attire, but her in-ring skills haven't changed a bit. She's not horrendous in the ring, but this match certainly wasn't anything special.
Decent tag team match with Wes Brisco and Garrett Bischoff defeating Robbie E and Robbie T. The former tandem didn't come off as badly as originally expected and they worked well with the Robbies. Brisco pinning Robbie T felt like a monumental moment, so it helped establish them as a credible tag team. The attack on Kurt Angle from Aces and 8s at ringside was nicely done and it can be used to explain the actual injury he sustained at Final Resolution.
Great tag team match with TNA World Heavyweight Champion Jeff Hardy and James Storm defeating D.O.C. and another member of Aces and 8s. The crowd was hot for this match the entire time and Aces and 8s picked up some great offense early on. Despite how good they looked in this match, it was a shame to see them lose again. They had an excuse to win with the other members interfering, but they can't be taken seriously in the eyes of the fans until they start winning matches.
Strong promo from AJ Styles. It came off a bit confusing because what he was saying indicated he was in fact turning heel, but the crowd response didn't show that. However, his actual delivery of his lines was spot on and filled with great emotion. Styles is in desperate need of a character change after being stale for so long and I look forward to witnessing that change in coming weeks.
Fun match with Kenny King defeating X-Division Champion Rob Van Dam in a non-title match. Unlike their Final Resolution encounter, this match felt like it told more story, especially given how the commentators mentioned the fact that King idolized Van Dam in his glory days. The action was still well wrestled and the finish with King using cheap tactics to score the victory was an excellent way to continue the feud in the right direction. I felt that King's heel turn (if one can call it that) came a bit early, but only time will tell as to whether it gets drawn out in subsequent weeks.
Nice match with Bully Ray defeating Jesse. Going into this, I was expecting a complete squash, but we got some pretty hard-hitting action instead. Sure, it was rather brief, but it was a fun clash of styles while it lasted. Jesse didn't come off as a complete joke in this contest as he has in the past, and Ray sold effectively for Jesse when necessary.
Entertaining segment involving Austin Aries and TNA World Heavyweight Champion Jeff Hardy with Aries explaining his recent actions. I found it strange that Roode was nowhere to be seen here, but the promo still went well without him. Hardy held his own on the mic while Aries executed his lines to perfection. I'm not sure why they're going back to the Hardy vs. Aries program so quickly, but it could very well lead to something next week, so I'm intrigued to see how this unfolds.
Overall, a pretty good show that had its fair share of solid action and successful continuation of various story-lines. It didn't rush into things, but it also gave us a few things to look forward to in the weeks ahead. They did a great job of hyping matches for next week's show, so I'm extremely interested as to where things go from here.
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