By Graham "GSM" Matthews
MVP Interrupted TNA World Heavyweight Champion Bobby Roode
Per usual, Roode cut a solid promo recapping his title win from the week prior. MVP's interruption was expected since Lashley still has his championship rematch, but it was interesting to see MVP proclaim himself as the new No. 1 contender instead and make mention of the fact he was originally supposed to be world champ before he got hurt. It gave viewers something to look forward to for the remainder of the night and nicely teased tension between MVP and Lashley.
The Hardys def. X-Division Champion Samoa Joe and Low-Ki in the Finals of the Tag Team Tournament
This tag team tournament hasn't had much meaning since it started and thus there wasn't a lot of emotion attached to this matchup, but it was well-wrestled and I can't complain. It wasn't nearly as fast-paced as I thought it would be earlier on, but they picked it up down the stretch and delivered a fun final few minutes. The Hardys were the logical team to win, but haven't we already seen them face off against The Wolves many times before?
Samuel Shaw Attacked Gunner
I didn't care for this story when it first started and I care even less for it now. Gunner has fallen far since his feud with James Storm from earlier this year and Shaw feels like a lost cause at this point. I don't mind his pairing with Brittany, but the first night of their act was... odd. I don't at all look forward to the pending feud between Shaw and Gunner because neither guy intrigues me in the slightest.
Devon and Tommy Dreamer def. Bram and Magnus in a Hardcore Match
We've seen so many hardcore matches in TNA in recent months that I grew tired of them months ago. This match was no different than the rest and I couldn't have cared less about it as a result. All four guys tried hard, but there's only so much Devon and Dreamer can do at this point in their respective careers. The worst part of it all was that the ex-ECW veterans went over. All I ask is, why?!
Ethan Carter III Interrupted Rockstar Spud
It was strange to see Spud not acting as scared as usual, but his newfound aggression was welcome and it's a nice extra layer added to his character. It also helped the fans rally behind him even more big time. He showed fire when confronting EC3 and Eric Young was apparently the only babyface in the locker room as he came out to save Spud and Jeremy Borash. Did we not just see this tag team match a few weeks ago?
Knockouts Champion Havok def. Gail Kim
I've enjoyed the build-up of Havok as the Knockout division's top monster heel, but she hadn't had a memorable match until now. This wasn't a stellar contest by any means, but it was the best we've seen from her to date. Of course, a lot of that can be attributed to Kim and her excellent ability to carry anyone to a good match. They told a solid story and Kim sold her arm injury well, protecting her in defeat.
TNA World Heavyweight Champion Bobby Roode def. MVP
Both guys are great workers, but there's only so much they could do in 10 minutes. Why not give them more time? The title never once felt in jeopardy. Yes, it made Roode look like a fighting champion and the two worked well together, but it felt like another match instead of the big deal it should have. If nothing else, Lashley came across very well afterward when he laid out Roode and teased tension with MVP. If he breaks away from MVP, hopefully he can find another mouthpiece so he stays silent. That's the role he's most comfortable in.
While there were some aspects of the show I didn't like (Shaw/Gunner and the hardcore tag match), it was a good episode on the whole. It was made newsworthy by the two title matches and both were entertaining enough that they held my interesting. I'm also looking forward to the great match The Wolves and The Hardys are bound to have next week. However, is any of this really worth caring for when you know that TNA will cease airing original episodes for the remainder of the year in two weeks?