Scott’s Impact Wrestling Recap 5/23/13

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AJ Styles (photo courtesy of Impactwrestling.com)

Impact Wrestling
May 23, 2013
Tampa, Florida

TNA gives a shout out of prayers to those in Moore, Oklahoma and a number for the Red Cross. We then get a recap of last week’s show. Todd welcomes us to the Sun Dome on the USF campus. We open with the Impact General Manager, Hulk Hogan. The live Tampa crowd actually gives him a pretty good pop. This is the last 8pm Impact tonight, as next week it goes back to the old 9pm slot. Hogan’s pumped and tonight is special. He mentions a myriad of places that have “Hogan” in the title, like he owns the place. Well, he probably does. There is a dark point tonight though, as it’s officially proven that AJ Styles will be joining Aces & Eights tonight. Hogan says that’s a small grain in the big beach of TNA, and the rest of TNA is family. His main bro is the #1 contender, and with that out comes Sting. We’re ten days away from Slammiversary. Hogan’s happy with what he’s doing for the family, but he’s puzzled by the stipulations. No more title shots ever? It doesn’t have to go down that way. Sting says change nothing, because it has to be that way. Sting is fumbling through the promo because he’s so pumped up, and he says if he can’t take the title from Bully Ray, he doesn’t deserve title shots. Hogan says it doesn’t have to be this extreme. With that, out comes Bully’s wife and Hogan’s daughter Brooke. She says no one should have to take responsibility for her dumb mistake. She’s made a mistake and she feels like she’s ruining things. She decides to resign as head of the Knockouts division. Hogan says this is a mistake, but before Brooke can continue, out comes our World Heavyweight Champion. Bully Ray says why is everybody whining about blame and guilt. Bully says none of this is their fault, it’s his fault. He’s taking the blame for Hogan ruining the company, and for Sting being stabbed in the back. Bully Ray says he’s calling the shots and he’s running the show, JACK. He does however, blame Brooke. She made Bully fall for him. He says day and night he thinks of her, and he still loves her.

We get another vignette for Suicide, who’s in the triple threat X-Division title match at Slammiversary with Kenny King and Chris Sabin. He’s up next.

X-Division Champion Kenny King joins the guys at the broadcast booth.

X-DIVISION MATCH: Joey Ryan vs. Petey Williams vs. Suicide
Kenny King says Petey Williams has only one move. Haha that’s funny. So the website said last week that Suicide is in the match, but Todd says the WINNER of this match gets the final slot with Sabin and King. What the hell? Awesome move as Suicide gives Petey an Abdominal Stretch while giving Ryan a toe hold. Suicide wins by pinning Ryan with some sort of reverse atomic drop move. That was a fun match, and quick. So (as I had already said), Suicide joins Kenny King and Chris Sabin June 2 in Boston.

Backstage Chris Sabin asks James Storm if he can be his tag partner in the 4-way at Slammiversary. Storm says Sabin has other things on his plate and he will decline for now.

After the break Brooke corners Bully Ray and asks if he means it when he says he still loves her. Bully says he does. From there, Velvet Sky is taping her knee up when Mickie James comes in and asks if her knee is ok to wrestle tonight. Velvet says Gail Kim will not make her hide.

MATCH: Sam Shaw vs. Alex Silva
This is a matchup of past Gut Check winners. However before Silva comes out, the twang plays and Brisco, Bischoff and DOC from Aces & Eights enters. Brisco says he took Silva out in the back and will give Shaw a good night. The three nomads come in and beat Shaw down in the ring. While they’re beating him down Magnus comes out. The nomads flee as Magnus hits the ring.

He grabs a mike and says something isn’t sitting well with anybody and that’s this gang attack. Magnus has known Shaw since wrestling camp and now its personal. Magnus says Brisco doesn’t deserve to be in this Gut Check tourney and instead gets him, now.

MATCH: Magnus vs. Wes Brisco
Magnus dominates early and beats the piss out of him. Brisco takes control with grapple moves. Magnus catches Brisco in mid-move and hits a reverse suplex. Magnus goes to the top rope but Brisco catches him. They battle on the ropes, but Brisco hits the deck. Eventually Bischoff and DOC comes in and work Magnus over to force the DQ. Suddenly the returning Samoa Joe comes out to clean the ring and save Magnus.

At Slammiversary the announcement will be made of the next inductee in the TNA Hall of Fame after Sting went in last year. From there the Aces & Eights meet with beers and tonight AJ Styles will not let them down.

We have a piece on Kurt Angle visiting New York City to see a couple of wrestling meets to raise money to bring wrestling back to the Olympics.

MATCH: Kurt Angle vs. Mr. Anderson
These two have become the landmark TNA feud of the past few years. Out of the break and AJ Styles has arrived at the arena. TNA needs to continue working on their production. You don’t go to break before a match, and let the match start during the break. It was back and forth early, then Anderson took control. Angle goes on a nice run and hits a German Suplex for two. These two have great chemistry, even though I haven’t seen all the matches between them. During the match AJ Styles comes out to the Aces & Eights entrance, and Taz shows him to Angle, which distracts Kurt enough for Anderson to hit a low blow and get the victory.

I like how Anderson’s cut says “Asshole”. Backstage James Storm is coming to the ring to announce his Slammiversary partner.

Back from break and Gail Kim is pissing and moaning about not getting a Knockouts Title shot when Taryn Terrell comes out of nowhere and starts beating the crap out of her. Some fat dude breaks it up.

We get a video package recapping James Storm’s career as a great tag team wrestler. In the arena the World Tag Team Champs Chavo/Hernandez are at the broadcast table. Out comes my #1 favorite TNA guy, the Cowboy. He says there’s a lot of beer drinkers in Tampa tonight. He says the Tampa women love a good tag team…wrestler. He’s interrupted by Bobby Roode and Austin Aries. Roode says the four years he was in Beer Money was the worst of his career and life. He does says breaking a beer bottle over Storm’s head to win the TNA Title was a moment in history. We then get interrupted by Bad Influence. Daniels runs down the other teams, as Chavo tries to cut a promo but he’s totally terrible. Why are they still here, and worse why are they champions? Kaz tells Storm that turning down the BI invitation was dumb. They also say Storm’s partner is irrelevant. We then get the return…of Shark Boy? Hogan mentioned him earlier in the night, and he’s still doing the Stone Cold gimmick. Honestly that is pretty funny. He makes his pitch to be Storm’s partner when Robbie E comes down to make HIS pitch to be Storm’s partner. Hell Storm, pick me! I’ll definitely go beer for beer with you. He comes up with tag team names with “Bro” in them. Then out of nowhere Gunner comes into the ring from the crowd. Storm picks Gunner. That’s a great pick and a badass tag team.

Backstage Joseph Park is asking Sting about “getting the strap” against Devon at Slammiversary. Next week Sting needs a partner to face Devon and Bully Ray. He asks for Abyss, but he’ll take someone “close”.

The guys at the table go over the Slammiversary card:

TNA CHAMPIONSHIP, NO HOLDS BARRED: Bully Ray © vs. Sting
IF STING LOSES, HE GETS NO MORE TITLE SHOTS

KURT ANGLE VS. AJ STYLES

TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP, FATAL FOUR WAY: Chavo/Hernandez © vs. Aries/Roode vs. Bad Influence vs. James Storm/Gunner

X-DIVISION CHAMPIONSHIP: Kenny King vs. Suicide vs. Chris Sabin

LAST KNOCKOUT STANDING: Gail Kim vs. Taryn Terrell

KNOCKOUTS CHAMPIONSHIP: Velvet Sky © vs. Mickie James
This is Mickie’s second shot in a few weeks. There’s rumors Mickie is turning heel, but it hasn’t happened yet. Really analyzing the announcers, Todd is so stiff. He uses way too many words, and at times sounds like he’s being fed lines. I’m thinking he needs to go. Velvet usually is on her game, but tonight she seems out of sorts. This match was great a couple weeks ago, but tonight they’re off. Taz just called Velvet’s footwear “big Berzerker boots”. That’s awesome. Velvet’s knee is injured and she makes it worse. Mickie hits the DDT and pins Velvet clean. Mickie James is your new Knockout Champion. Mickie just leaves the ring, and not looking at her fallen friend Velvet, whose knee is definitely hurt.

We get a video package on the return of AJ Styles over the past couple of months. Backstage the Aces & Eights toast their newest patch-in. We return from break and out comes the full club and a new cut. Bully went to the WWE school of promo cutting, meaning it always starts the same. He says no one member is more important than the other. As much as D-Lo has been a disappointment, Mr. Anderson has been an asset. Tonight is not about one current member, it’s the one man that they are about to initiate. AJ comes out, and Bully says everybody wanted you back, but you know where the power is. Bully knows AJ doesn’t drink, but he wants to toast and drink as a sign of solidarity. AJ toasts the beer and drinks it. Bully says his heart belongs to Jesus but his soul belongs to the club. Anderson give AJ the cut. He looks at it, but before he can put the cut on, out comes Kurt Angle. Kurt says to AJ that he knew the day would come, but he wanted to see it with his own eyes. Kurt says his TNA legacy has gone right down the crapper. Kurt says join these scumbags and at Slammiversary he will get his ass kicked. AJ puts the cut on and is hugging Bully Ray. DOC throws Angle into the ring from behind and beats him down. Bully gives AJ a hammer and AJ cracks Kurt in the knee. The club goes towards one side of the ring, but then AJ starts swinging the hammer at DOC, Knox and a couple of other guys, drops the cut and leaves the ring. Apparently AJ Styles does indeed walk alone. Bully Ray is furious and we are out.

SCOTT’S TAKE: No real standout matches tonight, with three long promos at the beginning, middle and end. We do have a title change but no heel turn (totally) for Mickie James. Slammiversary is shaping up to be a decent show.

Scott’s TNA Top 5:
1) Bully Ray
2) Sting
3) Devon
4) Chavo/Hernandez
5) Kenny King

 

Author: Scott Criscuolo

Scott Criscuolo is a co-founder of the Place to Be, co-host of the Place to Be Podcast, and was in the radio business for 10 years. He loves all things pop culture, and someday he will be the ghost writer for Triple H's autobiography. Send Scott an email