By Graham "GSM" Matthews
TNA World Heavyweight Champion Bobby Lashley Calls Out Moose
There is little doubt that Lashley has been TNA's MVP throughout 2015 as a heel, but I'm beginning to fear that they're on the verge of turning him babyface in order to feud with Moose and/or Mike Bennett. Thankfully, the main event later on showed he is remaining a full-fledged heel for now (which he absolutely excels at), and maybe a tweener turn could work, but turning him face would be the worst way to kill the hot momentum he has had going lately. At any rate, this was a jam-packed opening segment that furthered the Lashley/Moose feud, added an extra stipulation to the main event, and led into the subsequent match between Bennett and Jeff Hardy.
Mike Bennett def. Jeff Hardy in a Bound for Glory Playoff Match
While I would have held off on the first ever in-ring meeting between these two because it is one of the few big matchups TNA can do at the moment, I would hardly count this because it had barely gotten underway before Bennett won in decisive fashion. Furthermore, Jeff was "injured" coming into the contest, so Bennett was on offense throughout and it was perfectly in line with his character to take advantage of the injured Charismatic Enigma.
Matt Hardy def. James Storm in a Bound for Glory Playoff Match
This was obviously more of a match than its predecessor, and as much as I enjoy Storm, Hardy was the real highlight here. He has mastered this "Broken" character and it's his mannerisms that make his matches all the more entertaining. That was the certainly the case with this contest as Storm was a fine foil for Hardy's craziness and led to a logical win for Hardy.
Drew Galloway Confronted Ethan Carter III
As I've stated multiple times before, EC3 is much better when he's serious as opposed to silly, so he has been a treat to watch during this program. Galloway showing extra aggression as well has been a breath of fresh air for his character, but I'm still confused as to who I'm supposed to be cheering for and what the end-game is. I'd rather see Galloway turn since EC3 is starting to find his footing as a face, but I suppose time will tell.
Ethan Carter III def. King of the Mountain Champion Eli Drake in a Bound for Glory Playoff Match (Non-title)
Drake continues to impress me with his excellent heel work on the mic and having the crowd in the palm of his hand. He's a pretty passable wrestler to boot, but the biggest problem he has at the moment is that he doesn't have many credible wins under his belt. Thus, it was difficult to view him as a legitimate threat against the formerly undefeated EC3, despite how long the match went. I didn't care too much about Drake eating a non-title loss simply because that belt means next to nothing, anyway.
Maria Addressed the State of the Knockouts Division
When you see the entire Knockouts division in the ring at one time, it really hits you how depleted the division is. Maria and Allie aren't full-time active competitors, so that leaves only five or six other women. Similar to the X-Division, there's talent there, but no one except for Gail Kim has true character development. Therefore, I couldn't care less about any of the stories they're trying to tell, and what stories are those anyway? Are Maria and Kim still feuding? I'm not too sure anymore. Oh, Madison Rayne is heel again for the thousandth time. Wonderful.
Drew Galloway def. Bram in a Bound for Glory Playoff Match
This was easily the best of all the Bound for Glory Playoff matches because Galloway and Bram have excellent chemistry against each other. Their hard-hitting styles mesh together very nicely and it surprises me we have yet to see a real rivalry between the two. The ending outcome was never in doubt, but Bram had a solid showing versus the former world champ and I'm warming up to his Rosemary love storyline more and more by the week.
TNA World Heavyweight Champion Lashley def. Eddie Edwards in a Six Sides of Steel Match to Win the X-Division Championship
The road in getting to these Destination X world title matches is never smooth, but somehow, the matches are always a treat. This matchup was no exception as Lashley and Edwards perfected the dominant monster vs. plucky underdog dynamic. And for once, the steel cage actually did hold off interference! Granted, we received it afterward instead, but I could not have been happier that Lashley and Edwards actually ended in clean fashion. Even in defeat, Edwards came out of this looking fantastic and I truly hope his singles push isn't over despite not being champion anymore. Lashley holding both belts can be fun as long as it's executed properly.
I was confused regarding the rules of the Bound for Glory Playoff matches and didn't realize it was a tournament until halfway through the show. I had mixed up with the Bound for Glory Series, which was ran completely different. The matches didn't light the world on fire, but next week's semi-final matches should be good. The main event was the best thing on the episode for me, and it is well-worth seeking out.