One week before Genesis, it’s an Impact that will surely change TNA forever. The long awaited showdown between Magnus and A.J. Styles to determine TNA’s true World Heavyweight Champion didn’t disappoint while ending the debate over the true owner of TNA wrestling’s most coveted prize.
– World Tag Team Champions The Bro-Mans defeated Joseph Park and Eric Young
– Samoa Joe vs. EC3 was ruled a no-contest
– Kurt Angle defeated Bad Influence in a cage match
– Bobby Roode defeated Sting in a cage match
– World Heavyweight Champion Magnus defeated A.J. Styles in a no-disqualification match to become the undisputed champion after interference from Rockstar Spud, EC3, The Bro-Mans, Bad Influence, and Bobby Roode
Tonight’s historic Impact opens with a deadly serious Dixie Carter. Begrudgingly allowing A.J. Styles a chance to face Magnus tonight, Dixie orders him to the ring so he can sign his one-night-only contract. Sign it now and get your match tonight. That’s all the Phenomenal One needs to hear.
With his version of the TNA World Heavyweight Championship slung over his shoulder, A.J. Styles enters the ring, takes the microphone, and says…nothing. Carter cuts him off before he can get a word outand demands a signature on the contract. It’s winner take all tonight and the Prez is going to do it in style, so to speak. Your match with her World Champion will be a no-disqualification match, ensuring that your phenomenal departure from TNA is done via stretcher. What do you think of that? The TNA Original is not impressed.
“Oooo. So graphic. Oh gosh. Hey, let me give you some credit. You have a lot of confidence in that paper champion of yours. But then again, you had a lot of confidence in that other champion. You bet against me and you both lost at Bound For Glory. I guess you Carters never learn.”
A.J. loves the idea of becoming the undisputed TNA World Heavyweight Champion. He revels in the thought of a world without “stupid Dixie Land Matches”. Then, he makes one final promise before making the match official. If Dixie tries to send her regime to the ring, he’ll have back-up of his own. Ha! Now it’s the Queen of Dixieland who’s unimpressed. She mocks his friends and assures him that they won’t be there to save him. Why? Simple. She owns them.
Styles takes exception to this and begins to lay into Carter about her lack of understanding. She doesn’t get it. According to A.J., the TNA World Championship never had as much respect as it did when he took it on his world tour. In fact, “if that paper champion could take his head out from under your skirt, he could figure it out.”
Yeah. He said that. Needless to say, the newly crowned TNA World Champion rushes to the ring immediately and tells Carter to leave the ring. She complies and Magnus turns his attention directly to Styles. He reminds him that the last images we had of the heroic A.J. is him leaving in a cloud of dust. It’s fitting because, according to the new Big Thing in TNA, your time is done. Good run, former champion, but Magnus is the best there is today. With that, he bids him farewell.
Before the crown jewel of Team Dixie can take his leave, Styles lets him know one last thing. You both might be holding the same Championship belt, but only A.J.’s is built on blood, sweat, and tears. It’ll all be settled tonight – no disqualification.
Even haters have to admit that the Bro-Mans have been fighting champions. They showcased it again tonight against Joseph Park and Eric Young. Unfortunately, the tag action didn’t last long as the video screen suddenly came on mid-match and showed O.D.B. getting pummeled by Gail Kim and Lei’d Tapa backstage. Young rushed off to help his wife and our tag encounter turned into a two-on-one. Despite being two people mentally, Park is still but one person physically. The advantage was too much and lead to another successful defense by the Bros. Robbie made the cover after a successful Bro-Down and it was all over but the shouting. As Zema Ion would say – berp, berp.
After the bell, Jesse and Robbie grabbed a piece of the ringside guard rail and slid it into the ring. That’s when they hit a second Bro-Down on Joseph, bouncing his head off the metal barricade. The brutal shot was made worse by the image of the attorney’s skull bouncing off the bar. Not a good night for Joseph Park or any of the voices in his head.
Speaking of tag teams, it seems like just yesterday that Gunner and James Storm were on the same page. That can’t be said today. Storm calls his former (?) partner to the ring so he can get a few things of his chest. James gets egos. He gets jealousy. But he also gets how the World Heavyweight Championship can tear apart tag teams. It happened with America’s Most Wanted and Beer Money. Now, it’s happening again thanks to the Viking’s Feast or Fired case. You know the one, partner. It’s the one you stepped over the Cowboy to get. You want to climb the ladder of success, Gunner? Well, how about taking it literally and settling things in a ladder match? Put that case above the ring and fight like a man. Fight? That sounds good to Mr. Intensity. The two men shake hands and we have ourselves a match. Gunner vs. James Storm in a ladder match for the Feast or Fired case. All that’s left is to iron out the when and where…and it’s on.
By order of Dixie Carter, Samoa Joe found himself in a battle against her nephew Ethan Carter III next. In one of EC3’s toughest challenges yet, the brash newcomer attacked Joe early and tried to maintain an advantage to the end. When he couldn’t, Rockstar Spud created an ending of his own. From the outside, Dixie’s Chief of Staff grabbed the Samoan Submission Machine’s foot just as he was about to hit the Muscle Buster on a dazed Ethan. Enraged, he sprung at Spud and tossed him to the ground. From behind, Carter savagely cracked Joe with a wrench. That was it. The referee had no choice but to rule the match a no-contest.
With one week until his steel cage match at Genesis against Bobby Roode, Kurt Angle has an open challenge. Step into the cage tonight and feel his wrath. Whoever wants to accept may do so, but it won’t matter. As Angle explains, all he’ll see is Roode. TNA’s IT Factor seems to like that idea. As Kurt takes the ring, Bobby shows up on the ramp, removes his robe, and…
Tells him he’ll have to wait. Sorry, pal. No Bobby Roode for you tonight. Instead, you can fight his friends – at the same time. Ladies and Gentlemen, Kazarian and Christopher Daniels, known as Bad Influence to many and a bad night for Kurt Angle. Ring the bell.
For most, a two on one disadvantage against Bad Influence would be the beginning of the end. But for a beast like Kurt Angle, it’s another opportunity to amaze his doubters. Amaze he did as the Olympic gold medalist stood toe to toe with both Kazarian and Daniels. Although the Appletini-sippers managed to keep Angle on the defensive for a good portion of the bout, he refused to stay down. After hitting Kazarian with a top rope German Suplex that sent him flying into his own partner, Kurt was on fire. He nailed his Olympic Slam and scored the pin. This was definitely a time where it paid to be Roode – after all, he managed to avoid that beating.
After cleverly ducking out of the previous match, Bobby Roode is on cloud nine backstage…until he walks into Dixie Carter’s office. The TNA President asks Roode if he’s ready for his cage match tonight. Bobby appears confused until learning that he’s been signed for a different cage match altogether. This one is against Sting. Needless to say, the IT Factor is not happy with this development, but the woman who signs his checks urges him to be a “team player”. What else can he do but agree? For those keeping track, this is one of those times where it doesn’t pay to be Roode.
True to form, Bobby Roode showed no signs of apprehension when the time came to step into the cage with Sting. He took it straight to the Icon and dominated most of the opening minutes. When the Stinger got his second wind, though, things turned sour. Roode was taken down and eventually locked in the Scorpion. That’s when Rockstar Spud arrived and tossed a baton to Bobby through the cage. The IT Factor used the weapon to smash Sting in the stomach and back. With the Hall of Famer semi-conscious on the mat, Bobby had a clear path through the cage door and on to victory.
Then, it was time. In possibly the most important match in TNA History, World Heavyweight Champion Magnus took on the man who never lost the TNA World Heavyweight Championship A.J. Styles. While many assumed the no-disqualification stipulation might lead to some interference, no one was prepared for the lengths Dixie Carter would go to in order to save her Champion. EC3 and Rockstar Spud were the first to appear. With Mag watching from the outside, the two members of Team Dixie attacked the thorn in Aunt Dixie’s side unimpeded until Sting finally ran down for the save. The Carter clan went scrambling and, once again, things were one-on-one.
That doesn’t last long. The Bro-Man and Zema Ion were the next up for Magnus. Suddenly the World Champion, who had valiantly demanded this match last week, was okay with getting a tainted victory. Arrogantly covering Styles, the Brit expected an easy pin fall and was shocked when it didn’t happen. Luckily, A.J. still had Sting in his corner, if no one else. The icon again chased the Dixie Landers away and, once more, things were one on one.
But then Bad Influence arrived. Yup. Yet more Team Players were here to join the beating. Kazarian and Christopher Daniels tore into A.J. and left him easy prey for another cover by Dixie’s Champion. It appeared that the powers that be had thought of everything…except a disgruntled official. Incensed by all the interference, Earl Hebner refuses to count and leaves the match – even pushing Spud down in the process. Just as he’s about to walk up the ramp, he’s confronted by Dixie Carter, who orders Earl’s son, Brian, to enter the ring and his replace his father.
As he does, Magnus attempts to run in from behind, A.J. catches him in a Calf Killer. Everyone prepares for Mag to tap out but that’s when Kazarian flips the script by attacking – wait for it – referee Brian Hebner. The official goes down and, even as Styles keeps momentum, there’s no one there to count. Earl runs back to the ring, but doesn’t manage to hit the mat for an A.J. three count before he too is pulled out by the Bro-Mans. Still, the Phenomenal One is on a roll.
So is Bobby Roode though. The “Team Player” sprints to the action and quickly begins ripping apart Styles. With A.J. finally down and out, Dixie marches out with a third referee and this one makes the all important three count. The match is over. The decision is final.
It was chaos and turmoil, but ultimately it was all legal. Magnus ends the debate. He is your World Heavyweight Champion and, one week before Genesis brings us a new day, the era of AJ Styles has come to an end.