By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Michael Bennett and Ethan Carter III Interrupted Matt Hardy
Didn't Hardy and Bennett have an alliance toward the end of Hardy's Ring of Honor run a few years back? I didn't expect them to acknowledge it, but Bennett seemed to allude to it in his promo, which was cool. They had a decent back-and-forth, but EC3's mic work was questionable. He's always been a great talker, but he hasn't clicked on the mic just yet as a babyface. He's far better as the silent badass. Of course, this segment served as a fine transition into the subsequent Handicap match.
Ethan Carter III def. Matt Hardy, Tyrus, Rockstar Spud and Reby Sky in a 4-on-1 Handicap Match by Disqualification
I'm rarely a fan of intergender matches, but thankfully, Reby didn't get physically involved like I thought she would. Otherwise, this was a pretty standard Handicap match, so it wasn't really exciting. The crowd rallied behind EC3 as he battled up against the odds, but it proved to be worthless once Bennett got involved and it turned into a six-man tag team match, thus leading me to believe this was merely designed to be a time filler.
Matt Hardy, Tyrus and Michael Bennett def. Ethan Carter III and World Tag Team Champions Beer Money
After seeing EC3, Hardy and Bennett for the first half hour of the show, including them in this contest was overkill, but it was a well-wrestled matchup for what it was worth. I'd assume Beer Money are headed for a feud with Tyrus and Hardy and/or Spud, explaining why they were beaten here. As has been reported, Bobby Roode has since left the organization, so I wasn't shocked to see him take the losing fall.
Velvet Sky def. Madison Rayne in a No. 1 Contender's Match For the Knockouts Championship
Wait, so that Triple Threat match between the members of The Dollhouse last week was completely pointless? It was bad enough that the match was absolutely awful, and now the ending result is irrelevant. How wonderful. This match wasn't much better because Sky has hardly improved at all in her time as a wrestler, but it was passable at best. I've heard rumors recently that Sky could also be on her way out of the company once her contract expires, so I don't see her capturing the championship when she eventually contends for it.
D'Angelo Dinero Called Out Lashley
I was hesitant about this program at first because I felt it was a demotion for Lashley (who deserves credit for doing some of the best work of his career lately), but this was a strong segment that changed my mind. I enjoyed Dinero as a wrestler and never understood why TNA relegated him to the role of a commentary once he returned to the company. He and Josh Matthews are a terrible combination, so here's hoping this leads to a full-fledged in-ring return for The Pope.
The BroMans def. King of Mountain Champion Eric Young and Bram
I wasn't thrilled to see The BroMans back together to begin with a few weeks ago, and now I'm expected to take them seriously as babyfaces? The crowd didn't respond too favorably to them as fan favorites because it simply doesn't work. Consequently, I had zero incentive to cheer for either tandem in this match and I couldn't have cared less. The tension teased between Young and Bram should lead to them going their separate ways sooner rather than later.
Shane Helms Made an Offer to Eddie Edwards
Following Davey Richards' injury, I was interested to see how Edwards would be utilized and if he would fade off into obscurity, but I'm very happy that he apparently isn't if this segment was any indication. I like the pairing of Helms and Trevor Lee, but we haven't seen enough of them on TV since Lee won the X-Division Championship. However, this storyline with Helms and Edwards is intriguing to me and I have my fingers crossed that Edwards will be going after the title in the near future.
TNA World Heavyweight Champion Drew Galloway def. Jeff Hardy
The way Matt Hardy talked about the bout all night had me feeling that there would be interference, so I was relieved that didn't end up being the case. Instead, we were treated to a very good match from Galloway and Hardy, though I must admit that none of the nearfalls down the stretch were remotely suspenseful nor did it have that big fight feel. TNA should have spent more time building up the match, but that aside, the in-ring action was excellent.
I appreciated how two major matches (Jeff Hardy vs. Young inside Six Sides of Steel and Galloway vs. Matt Hardy for the TNA title) were made official for next week's show at the conclusion of this episode. The main event was solid, but the rest of the show didn't do much for this viewer aside from the pleasantly surprising segment with Lashley and Dinero. If you missed this episode, I'd hold out until next week where we'll have those two matches to look forward to.