Impact Wrestling Final Thoughts
March 8, 2016
By: Josh Boutwell of Wrestleview.com
Kurt Angle’s TNA Career has officially come to a close, for now at least, and for the last decade Kurt has given his body to TNA and to the fans. For that and for everything else Kurt has done in his career I have to thank him. Kurt Angle has literally given his body to the thing he, and all of us, loves: pro wrestling. Kurt has had a lot of ups and downs in his life and his career, and he has had a slew of his own personal demons but he has absolutely been one of the best professional wrestlers in the history of the business. In his time in TNA he has had some of the most incredible matches in the companies history and some of my all time favorite matches have involved him (namely the Iron Man Match with Joe, the Steel Cage Match with Joe at Lockdown in ’08, and the amazing Last Man Standing Match with AJ at Hard Justice in 2008). Kurt will always be strongly associated with his time in WWE but as a fan I will remember him even more for his run in TNA where he really did give his all for the company. You never heard stories about Kurt refusing to put over young guys and it always seemed like he enjoyed working with newer and younger talent just as much, if not more, than with the older stars that TNA would bring in. Hopefully down the line we get to see Kurt in TNA again, maybe as an on-air authority figure or even a commentator, but Kurt damn sure needs to be an agent somewhere at some point. His time in the ring isn’t quite up as he has said he just isn’t ready to quite retire completely from the ring but I think it is pretty safe to say that it is very close to being the end for him as an active wrestler and we all just want to see him live the rest of his years as safely as possible. You’ve done enough, Kurt and we all love and appreciate you for it.
Now to what I think was the best episode of Impact all year and that is saying something because these first three months of 2016 have been three of the strongest months in TNA’s history. The opening ceremony with Kurt was terrific and very well deserved for Kurt.
The King of the Mountain Match was fun and everybody worked hard with Havoc and Ospreay taking the biggest bumps. That match is not for everyone and I know a lot of people really can’t stand it but I have always liked that match and it is obviously very unique to TNA. I liked that Bram teamed up in the match but also when it came down to it beat the hell out of each other with no problems. That is their characters and that is exactly what you would expect those characters to do.
Jade and Gail had another terrific match with each other and boy the series of matches those two are going to have is going to be something else. Jade really got a chance to shine in the match and Pope really put over on commentary that there is no way this is the last time we have seen Jade-Gail. I’m really excited about the feud these two can have, but it is very obvious that below those two TNA really has to revamp the Knockouts. Much like the X-Division, which has a very strong top two, it needs to be built around those two knockouts.
Mike Bennett and Maria were terrific again as was Galloway and that feud continues to simmer.
I was almost cringing the entire time Beer Money and The Wolves were facing each other as I was waiting for the injury to happen to Davey, but despite that the match was unbelievable and really just makes me feel disappointed as a whole. Because I am almost sure that we were in for a series of classics between those two, reminiscent of the series that The Wolves had with 3D and the Hardyz or the series Beer Money had with the Machine Guns years ago. TNA is obviously going to have to call an audible now with the tag teams as it seemed that The Decay was going to be doing an angle with Jimmy Havoc and Beer Money was going to long term feud with The Wolves. Now both Havoc and Davey Richards are injured severely and it kills those two programs. The safe bet would be The Decay challenges for the Tag Titles which I think is probably what they will do, but TNA needs to bring in more depth for this division like the Knockouts and X-Division. That is really my biggest concern for TNA across the board, depth. Eddie can add some much needed depth to the X-Division and I really want to see TNA get behind him in a solo push which they did not do when Davey fractured his leg in 2014 and had to miss time. The match was really good this week and was actually my match of the night but the fans really didn’t seem to know who they wanted to root for in the match until the finish.
Angle-Lashley was terrific again and both guys busted their asses as you would expect. It wasn’t as good as the last Angle-Galloway match was but I would say it was on par with Angle-Roode from last week. You could tell the fans just really didn’t want to see Angle lose but it really needed to happen, and the full blown heel turn came at the end (it was something they have been teasing for a while now). Lashley looked like a monster after the match but as monstrous as he looked EC3 came off like equally a bad ass as Lashely decided to fight another day rather than throw down with EC3 like he did the rest of the guys that ran out. EC3-Lashley could be a pretty epic rivalry if they build it up nicely.
– Promo/Segment of the Night: Angle Farewell/Bennett
– Match of the Night: Beer Money vs. The Wolves (****)
– Overall Grade: A