By Graham "GSM" Matthews
The Beat Down Clan def. The Rising in a 4-on-3 Handicap Elimination Match (Loser Faction Must Disband)
While the match was relatively solid from an in-ring standpoint, it was difficult for me to care about who would win for a few reasons. Firstly, this feud between the two factions has been boring to me since its start and I couldn't wait any longer for it to reach its end. Secondly, I want both of them to disband, so I was pulling for a double disqualification of some kind that would give us that result, but no such luck. Of the two, I'd rather see The Rising disband seeing as how Galloway is a star on his own without the dead weight. That said, though, they told a good story of Galloway battling against the odds only to fall short of victory in the end.
James Storm and Khoya Interrupted Magnus and Mickie James
I assumed the Storm/James/Magnus saga was over at Slammiversary, but apparently not. I don't know if that's supposed to be a good thing or a bad thing, but it leaves me wondering why they bothered to continue to have Magnus work the tapings if they knew his final TNA match would be at Slammiversary that Sunday. I hated the feud before, but now that Mickie is smart enough to realize Storm was manipulating her the whole time, it has a different spin on it. Admittedly, I'm slightly interested in seeing what woman Storm recruits to join The Revolution. Could it be HAVOK?
The Wolves def. The Dirty Heels in a 30 Minute Iron Man Match in Match #5 of the Best of Five Series to Win the World Tag Team Championship
As I mentioned when this began back in May, this whole best of five series between The Wolves and The Dirty Heels reminded me of the amazing matches Beer Money had with The Motor City Machine Guns over those same titles back in 2010. I said last week I didn't think there was a way they could top Full Metal Mayhem in the fourth match, but they found a way to do just that with an Iron Man match. You couldn't have found two better teams to contest such a stipulation, either, and I really liked how they waited up until the very end to give The Wolves their first win. It made that final minute or so super suspenseful and although it was the logical result with Austin Aries on his way out of the company, it made for a cool moment for The Wolves. They've been in TNA for less than 18 months and they're already three-time World Tag Team Champions? Damn!
Knockouts Champion Taryn Terrell def. Awesome Kong and Brooke in a Triple Threat Match
Regardless of the promotion, multi-person matches (i.e. Triple Threats, Fatal 4-Ways, etc) tend to be hit or miss, but this match managed to fall right in the middle. It wasn't the greatest match we've seen from the Knockouts lately, but everyone held their own and put together a nice little match that saw Terrell avoid most of the in-ring action only to return to the ring and win the match. I was surprised to see Terrell pin Kong to win, but maybe this leads to her moving into a full-fledged feud with Brooke over the belt. On another note, Gail Kim being revealed as the women behind the recent video packages was disappointing; why not use that opportunity to debut a new Knockout?
Ethan Carter III def. Kurt Angle to Win the TNA World Heavyweight Championship
This was the biggest match TNA could have done right now and they were successful at capturing the big fight feel in this bout. I wish we would have heard more from the competitors throughout the night, but the awesome entrances of both men made this feel like a true main event. They definitely delivered in having an excellent match where EC3 didn't look out of place in the ring against the future Hall of Famer at all. It was slightly formulaic at times with both men predictably kicking out of each other's finishers, but it created sweet suspense down the stretch. I could have done without all the ref bumps and the Tyrus interference toward the end, but it didn't ruin the match for me. It was really cool to see TNA go all the way with EC3's push by giving him the belt. He is more deserving of the title win and why WWE passed on him is something we may never know.
Needless to say, this was far better than Slammiversary from this past week because it featured matches that made sense and weren't thrown together at the last second. On a show called "Bell to Bell," it would have been wise to cut that talking segment with Magnus, Mickie James and James Storm, but at least it furthered their feud. Although this was an above average episode, they should have held these matches on pay-per-view. It's one thing to not have many shows and hold on these kind of editions during the slow season, but days after your second biggest PPV of the year was a bit ridiculous. I originally thought it was done because they wanted a ratings boost, but I later learned this show drew the lowest rating of any TNA show on Destination America so far this year, so that's no excuse.