It's go-home night. This is the final show going into Bound for Glory on Sunday.
AJ Styles and Bully Ray comes to a head. Who will get the advantage before their title match on Sunday? And will Dixie Carter try and influence the outcome in one way or another? She tried to pay off AJ and send him home, but AJ says he can't be bought.
The card finalizes and all the stories lead to San Diego on Sunday.
Show Open, Taped in Tulsa, OK on 10/10/2013
Dixie opens things up, with Atlas Security holding a briefcase. She gets little reaction. She compares herself to Michelangeo and that draws a "Dixie Sucks" chant. She cuts a rambling promo that says she is there to evaluate everyone. Dixie no-sells a Hulk chant then says she put a bounty on AJ Styles of $50,000 to have him taken out of the Bound for Glory main event and make this his last night in TNA.
She says once that happens AJ won't be in the main event at Bound for Glory and she would find someone to replace them. She puts herself over for being the best at giving people opportunities and making them rich. Bully Ray's music hits and he comes out with Brooke. He says he isn't on Team Dixie, but he'll take the $50k to get rid of AJ and face her choice of opponent at Bound for Glory.
Magnus' music hits. There's two really odd edits - I guess the truck's cat did them. Magnus says if Dixie thinks this is how to do things, it's no wonder that the people are chanting Dixie Sucks. Dixie gets upset, and Magnus challenges Ray to a fight for free.
Ray puts Magnus over, then calls him a fraud and smoke and mirrors. He says Magnus doesn't have a tough bone in his body and he's a loser. Ray calls him the biggest disappointment he has ever seen after lifting Magnus up by his chin. Magnus throws a punch, and Ray rolls out. He accepts the challenge for later.
Dixie is still trying way too hard. Less is more and she needs to learn that. Better yet, she can get off TV. And those edits - yikes! Bad, bad production and on a taped show leading into your "biggest event of the year"...um, not good.
We see Kurt Angle walking backstage.
Ray puts over Knux and Garrett for what they did last week. He tells them to take care of business tonight and collect the bounty. He tells them if they need him just give the signal and he will be there.
Well, they lost in a terrible match so I'm not sure why Ray put them over. And Obvious Setup is Obvious.
Match #1 - Robbie E. vs. Hernandez vs. Christopher Daniels vs. Eric Young; four-way match for the right to go last in the Tag Team Gauntlet Match at Bound for Glory
The heels work over Hernandez until he gets the hot tag to EY. EY starts a comeback until Daniels and Robbie shut him down. Daniels shoves Robbie down when they turn on each other. EY hits his finish on Daniels, but Robbie shoves him away to get the win.
Oh crap. I do hope this is NOT the built-in excuse to get the BroMans in the tag title match. I don't think that's your best match for the card - I think it's Bad Influence.
AJ is walking and talks to the cameraman when he gets attacked from behind by Jesse. AJ fights him off and admits it will be a long night.
AJ Styles comes out and calls out Dixie for putting up the bounty. He says after he wins the title at Bound for Glory, he will make her pay. He tells everyone who wants to try and collect that he isn't going to run and hide. He tells them to come and get paid. Aces and Eights music plays and Knux and Garrett come out. They beat AJ down until Storm and Gunner come out for the save. Storm gets in AJ's face but smiles at him. AJ heads to the back.
Simple, to the point, and solid. AJ falls into the trap of trying to hard at times also, but he did well here.
Match #2 - Knux (w/Garrett Bischoff) vs. Gunner (w/James Storm)
Basic power match early on. Garrett distracts Storm then waves to the back. Storm spits beer in his face and Garrett sells it like he got shot in the face with acid. Gunner tries the Gun Rack but Knux kicks away and follows with a cross body block. Knux calls for Ray, but Ray stands him up. Gunner hits a spear for the win.
That match could have meant so much more but it fell so far short of what it could be for two powerful guys in the promotion hook it up. And why did they call for Ray when they were never in trouble? Really odd.
Chris Sabin gets excited about winning the $50k and being in the main event of Bound for Glory. He says he will go collect then go buy Velvet something nice. Velvet tries stopping him but he runs off.
Knux and Garrett complain about Ray not coming out to help them when they called. Knux says it's going to be interesting the next time Ray wants their help. Garrett agrees.
We get a recap of Lei'D Tapa attacking various Knockouts. Tenay and Taz give some hype to the Knockouts match.
Gail Kim asks Brooke if they can work together if Tapa attacks them again. Brooke tells her that she isn't helping anyone and walks away.
We get hype for the Ultimate X match at Bound for Glory.
Chris Sabin is sneaking around looking for AJ. He asks a security guard, and he doesn't know. Sabin bumps into Samoa Joe and Joe tells him he's in the wrong part of town. He understand why Sabin wants to collect but his priorities are wrong. He tells Sabin he has to survive Joe twice, and maybe he could collect the bounty. Sabin acts scared and backs off.
Sabin's character is so bad. When I look at him right now, he looks like The Miz. The heel turn is fine, but it just isn't working at the moment.
We get a recap of the opening segment and they show Magnus getting ready backstage.
Match #3 - Chris Sabin (w/Velvet Sky) vs. Samoa Joe
Sabin uses a thumb to the eye and attacks Joe, but Joe beats him up. Sabin rolls out and hugs Velvet but Joe grabs his hair and pulls him back in. Sabin ducks an elbow then hits some chops that Joe no-sells. Sabin grabs Velvet and goes to leave, but instead uses her as a shield to hit a DDT. Joe barely beats the ten count.
Sabin hits some offense but Joe starts a comeback. Sabin bites him (yes, bites him) to stop the run and hits a tornado DDT. He tries to roll up Joe but Joe counters to the rear naked choke. Sabin taps immediately.
Afteward, Austin Aries runs out and hits Joe with a missile drop kick. Jeff Hardy runs out and attacks Aries, then sets up a ladder. Sabin pulls Hardy off the ladder and Manik runs out. He hits a cross body from the ladder to Aries and Sabin. Manik's music hits to end the segment.
I guess the point of that match was to hype Ultimate X, but geez it felt like it buried Sabin. He didn't get in much offense, and tapped before Joe had the hold locked in.
Bad Influence is trying to put the boots to AJ, but he fights back. He grabs a fire extinguisher and sprays them with it to escape.
Wow, the edits are just bad tonight. They aren't AS bad, but they're not good...looks bush-league.
We get another look at Ethan. He's doing a photo shoot somewhere. He looks to the camera and says he will be at Bound for Glory and be there to make "Aunt D" proud.
Is he Dixie's Nephew? This is just going to be terrible...
Match #4 - Magnus vs. Bully Ray (w/Brooke)
Magnus is up to the task with Bully early, showing that he can match his strength. He goes up top to try a move, but Ray knocks him down to take control.
Out of break, Ray works methodical offense and plays to the crowd. Magnus dodges an elbow and starts a run, hitting a top rope elbow for two. Ray grabs Earl Hebner and pulls him in the way of Magnus for the ever-popular TNA referee bump spot.
Ray grabs his chain and wraps his hand up. Sting runs out and stops Ray from using the chain. Hebner recovers from his bump and yells at Sting. That gives Ray a chance to drop the chain and hits a low blow on Magnus to pick up the win.
Afterward, Magnus complains to Sting. Sting tells Magnus he was trying to help him, and offers a handshake. Magnus kind of half-shakes and leaves with Sting following him.
Nothing to write home about, but nothing bad either. That finishing sequence was just odd with Hebner chewing out Sting like he did. TNA just continues to cast their referees as idiots.
Kurt Angle is heading to the ring for a promo.
Magnus rages at Sting for what happened in the ring. Magnus says he wants to prove he can do this alone. Joe walks up and tells Magnus to walk it off. Sting tells Magnus he will be alone at Bound for Glory and Magnus agrees.
The announcers run down the Bound for Glory card.
Kurt Angle comes out and gets a mic. He puts over Bobby Roode but says he made things personal when he rained on Kurt's parade for the honor of being inducted in the Hall of Fame. He says Roode might be great but he will never be Kurt Angle. Roode's music hits and he comes out. He says he doesn't want to be Kurt either, especially today. He says that ten years ago, he wanted to be like Angle because he was the "be all, end all" of pro wrestling, but Roode is that guy now.
Roode tells Angle he interrupted his hall of fame ceremony and he deserves it more than Angle. Roode talks about how Angle beat him at BFG in 2011, but Roode used that to wake up and become the longest running TNA champion in their history. Roode says that at Bound for Glory he will be Bobby Roode and beat Kurt Angle. Angle asks Roode how he could win when he will be tapping out.
Roode bops him with the mic, but Angle goes for the leg for the ankle lock. EGO runs out for the save, and the three gang up on Angle. After they beat Angle down, Roode sends the other EGO folks to the back and locks the crossface on Angle. Angle taps, and Roode gets a mic and tells Angle he will tap again on Sunday.
This is probably going to be the best match of the night on Sunday, but the feud isn't there yet. To be fair, Angle is just coming back from his rehab stint, but still, this feud needed a couple more weeks.
JB is in the ring with Dixie Carter and her security goons. He introduces Bully and AJ for their contract signing for Sunday. Borash holds the contract up, but Ray grabs it and signs right away. He gets the mic and says that it's real simple, AJ can't beat him. He says that AJ doesn't have the brain in his head, the heart in his chest, or the thunder in his fists to beat Ray.
Ray talks about Flair beating up Dusty Rhodes and Dusty's "hard times" promo when he returned. Ray says that for the last year and a half he has put the wrestling world on hard times. He talks about his accomplishments as champion, concluding with running Hogan out of the company and putting him on hard times. He says that on Sunday, he will put AJ and his fans on hard times. He says he will send AJ back to the trailer park, with no title or contract and his family will probably be gone.
AJ tells Ray it was a good story, but Ray isn't Flair and he's not Dusty. He calls Ray a big dumb bitch and AJ says Ray has no idea who he's getting in the ring with. He says he has everything to lose and everything to gain. He says he is the most dangerous and intense man Ray would ever face in the ring. He says he will win the title and make him pay, then signs the contract and shoves the mic to Ray.
Ray says he has changed his mind and the title won't be on the line. He says he will cash in on the bounty. He shoves the podium at AJ and tries to hit him with the chain, but AJ ducks, grabs the briefcase and hits him with it. He opens the briefcase and dumps the money on Dixie and the guards, then jaws at Ray from the ramp as the show ends.
First off, DVR is sweet to allow those of us who have mass unexpected schedule shifts to catch up on their live coverage.
This closing segment was a bit of a mess and the closing visuals were just not good going into Sunday's pay per view. The credit to this segment is that it focused on the title and not on Dixie Carter or anything like that. That's what it needs to be. They spent so much effort muddling the main event scene with Hogan's departure and Dixie Carter's emergence as a heel authority that the title got lost in the whole mix. There were better ways to do these things than sacrifice the title picture, which needed to be the focus.
I swear the interns edited this taped show. It was ridiculous with the editing going the way it went. It jumped all over the place.
This wasn't a bad show, but again, it did nothing for Bound for Glory. I have no better feeling for the "biggest event of the year" than I did before this show tonight. The biggest thing to me is how this show didn't really advance stories going into the pay per view. Why was Knux fighting with the tag champions when he's not involved in that situation? Magnus is fighting Bully Ray for...what reason? Nothing got advanced, maybe Sting's interjection did a little for his match with Magnus but very little.
We will have live coverage of Bound for Glory starting with the pre-show at 7PM EST and the pay per view at 8PM EST. We'll bring you all the fallout on Thursday night as well. Be sure to join us then!