Impact Wrestling on Destination America
Wednesday, December 16
Universal Studios, Orlando, FL
This was essentially a recap show with a couple of new matches.
Matt Hardy recapped his road through the World Title Series and they re-aired most of Matt Hardy vs. Davey Richards.
World Title Series All Star Match
Group Future 4 (Crimson, Eli Drake, Jessie Godderz and Micah) vs. Group X-Division (Mark Andrews, Manik, DJ Z and Tigre Uno)
The match started with some exchanging of holds before team X-Division hit a triple team suplex followed by a dive sequence. Godderz teased a dive but flexed instead. Drake cut off an Andrews dive allowing Team Future 4 to take control. Drake and Crimson argued allowing Andrews to make the tag to Tigre Uno. Drake’s whole team abandoned him allowing all the X-Division guys to wail on Drake before Andrews hit a Shooting Star Press to score the win. A perfectly solid little match. **1/2
They aired Lashley vs. Aries from a few weeks ago as well as a video feature on Lashley. This was followed with a montage of EC3 lifting heavy things in a gym plus an EC3 interview.
World Title Series All Star Elimination Match
Rockstar Spud vs. Eddie Edwards vs. Mr Anderson vs. Bobby Roode
This was worked under tag team rules so only two men were allowed in the ring at the time. Josh Mathews brought up that time Bobby Roode destroyed Spud months ago and it never went anywhere. Eddie hit a big dive on Roode before we had a weird little comedy bit between Anderson and Spud. Spud sent Anderson out the floor with a head scissors and followed with a dive onto all three men. Edwards eliminated Spud with a backslide soon after. Anderson and Roode tried and failed to double team Edwards. Anderson and Roode then came to blows but Edwards walked into a Mic Check and was eliminated.
Roode hit a spinebuster for two and transitioned into a crossface. Anderson rolled Roode up to escape. Anderson hit the Green Bay Plunge for two. Both men exchanged finisher attempts before Anderson rolled up Roode. Roode kicked out and once again transitioned to a crossface giving Roode the win. This was another fun match. Roode and Anderson have good chemistry. ***1/4
They aired an interview with Angle about the World Title Series. They recapped Eric Young’s route to the Semi-Finals and replayed Young’s match vs. Bobby Roode. They then replayed EC3’s match with Mr Anderson followed by a montage of EC3 working out by a pool, discussing the World Title Series and berating a pool boy.
They closed the show with a Final Four Roundtable where they judged one another, mocked each other and promised to win. The highlight was EC3’s inability to say the word losing. It was perfectly solid scene setting.
Final Thoughts: There were presentation elements of this show that they should take forward – notably the deeper character profiles. Just not so many on a single show coupled with a couple of meaningless matches – that combination adds up to a show that felt like filler. This show largely achieved what it set out to achieve though, even with limited content.
And so after 49 episodes (and a replay of Slammiversary 2014) TNA’s run on Destination America unceremoniously comes to an end. The potential they had on Destination America still exists on Pop. It is once again a chance for a fresh start. It’s once again an opportunity to learn from past mistakes (and there are copious to learn from) and for the first time in two years start moving the company forward again. It is once again one last chance. TNA forwent that last chance on Destination America in favour of staying the same course. And the results were obvious from January and happened even quicker than expected. They surely cannot believe that what happened in the last year was anything other than a direct result of their own actions. Things need to change.
The January 5th show should provide a simple litmus test. The show will feature the Semi-Finals and Final of the World Title Series – which means the main event of the show is highly likely to be Matt Hardy vs. EC3. If that match descends into the same nonsense as the majority of 2015 EC3 title matches then it will be clear nothing has changed. If that is a straightforward match then there may be some hope for TNA yet. If not, TNA will be looking for a new television partner sooner rather than later.