By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Great opening segment. Devon immediately turned the crowd against him with his strong promo. While I have never been a major fan of Devon as a singles competitor, he works much better in this role a part of Aces and 8s. Sting's promo was also well done and set up the main event nicely. I realize some people are against the idea of Devon being the leader of the stable, but they'll be glad to know he isn't since it was revealed that he is third in command of the group.
Brief match with Samoa Joe defeating Robbie E to retain his TNA Television Championship. It was nothing special, but still a decisive win for Joe. I'm glad to see they are following through on their promise to have the TV title defended every week on Impact as they should, and there's no guy better than Joe to feature more prominently.
Good match with ODB defeating Tara. They have the potential to put on a much better match (as we saw a few weeks ago on Impact), but it seems as if Tara's new boyfriend gimmick might stand in the way of that. Jessie from Big Brother is no one noteworthy, but I appreciate Taz trying to make an effort to make him seem like a big deal. It was certainly strange to see Tara lose her first match since capturing the Knockouts title a week ago. Nonetheless, I strongly expect this to lead to an ODB/Young and Tara/Jessie feud, possibly over the Knockouts Tag Team Championships (which sadly still exist).
Fine match with TNA World Tag Team Champions Chavo Guerrero and Hernandez defeating Kid Kash and Gunner. It was basically what you'd expect from the two teams and nothing more than that. It was mostly to establish Chavo and Hernandez as credible champs, so the match was successful in that aspect. It's a relief that Chavo didn't make a mention of Eddie for the first time since he arrived in TNA.
Solid segment between new TNA World Heavyweight Champion Jeff Hardy and Austin Aries. These are the kind of promos we should've seen going into Bound For Glory. Regardless, Aries is much more entertaining in his heel role and carried Hardy to a good segment. It was a nice title celebration for Hardy and although I'm not a huge supporter of the newest title design, it's probably only temporary and makes sense since Aries was ranting about Hardy is being given special treatment.
Entertaining match with Kurt Angle defeating Christopher Daniels and AJ Styles to qualify for next week's Championship Thursday. All three have excellent chemistry which allowed them to work some fun spots. I really hope this isn't foreshadowing a heel turn for either Styles or Angle, as we've seen them feud countless times in recent years. However, if they don't feud, I'm not sure where either guy goes from here.
Strong promo between James Storm and Bobby Roode. As much as I enjoyed it, this is what we should've been seeing weeks ago to make their Bound For Glory match feel more meaningful. That being said, their BFG Street Fight was the perfect conclusion to their feud, so I surely hope they don't continue the feud going forward. It feels like they don't have any definite plans in line for either guy at the moment, hence why they had this one-off promo.
Decent match with Sting defeating Devon via disqualification. I know some may argue we shouldn't be seeing Devon taking on Sting in the main event of Impact Wrestling in 2012, but it made sense after what happened on Sunday. The action was fine for what it was, but the finish and post-match brawl was extremely predictable. It wasn't bad by any means, but it wasn't all that exciting. I understand we're only days removed from Bound For Glory, so they couldn't do any more big reveals just yet, but I hope they don't tread water with this story-line for much longer.
Overall, a good show that featured some strong segments and solid action. However, it felt like something we would've seen on the road to Bound For Glory rather than a fresh start. Not many new rivalries are starting to develop, so I hope that starts to occur next week.