Like every other wrestling company, TNA creates a weekly preview of its flagship show, Impact Wrestling (even the ones they’re pretending are pseudo-pay per view supercards like this week’s Genesis Part 2: Electric Piece-A-Poo). And, like every other wrestling company, they don’t always tell the truth when hyping their product. Thankfully, Dave is here to try to figure what TNA is trying to say, and tell you what he thinks, so you don’t have to do either.
Programming Note: Some of this preview is copied from last week’s preview because, well, TNA was weird about advertising Genesis. Still, though, plenty of juicy, new vitriol…
Sting gets one last shot at the World Heavyweight Championship on Thursday night as he battles Magnus! However, if Sting loses, he won’t get a contract extension from TNA! GENESIS culminates in a huge battle on Thursday with Title vs. Contact as Magnus defends against “The Icon” Sting!
What This Probably Should Mean: Magnus and Sting have a match that feels more significant in both men’s careers than their bout at Bound For Glory. Sting howls and beats on his chest, but Magnus still beats him in the middle of the ring with the Texas Cloverleaf to assert himself as champion and (dare I say?) a legend killer.
What This Probably Shouldn’t Mean: The whole locker room comes down the ramp to screw Sting, turning the entire company heel. Magnus wins and becomes Ozymandias as TNA sinks into the desert.
Dave Thinks: Well, first of all, props to TNA for actually remembering the Slammiversary stipulation. All kidding aside, TNA was unwilling to put a clean finish on Magnus-A.J., electing to go with a huge schmozz in place of a match, so it seems likely we’ll see the same here. As great as it would be for Sting to go out cleanly on his back to repay TNA for all the dollars and pushes over the years, everything we know about Dixie Carter and TNA booking points in the opposite direction.
The huge Cage Match between Kurt Angle and Bobby Roode will take place on Thursday night! After Angle was removed from the arena by security on orders from TNA President Dixie Carter this past week, the much-anticipated Cage Match will finally take place this Thursday!
What This Should Mean: A long, well-worked match that uses the cage effectively, with the heel Roode content to try and escape the cage and the righteous Angle content to give Roode the beating he deserves. Roode takes a shitkicking, but rolls out of the way of Angle’s now-signature moonsault off the cage and walks out the door for the heelish victory.
What This Shouldn’t Mean: A shortcut-fest featuring ample, early blood and the Tommy Dreamer-Raven “work a side headlock on the bleeding guy forever” spot. Kurt Angle takes ten thousand unnecessary risks and is rewarded with a win he doesn’t need one bit.
Dave Thinks: These two have had a solid, sustained feud that really blossomed once TNA got past the “Kurt Angle keeps nearly killing himself” silliness. With Angle allegedly taking time off for knee surgery, this feels like a good setup for Roode to get a big win to propel him solidly into the number two heel spot behind Magnus.
A shot at the World Heavyweight Title will be on the line in the Briefcase Match on Thursday night as Gunner faces “Cowboy” James Storm! Can Gunner win the bout and keep his shot at the World Title – or will Storm get the briefcase, which he feels should have been his all along? Don’t miss it on Thursday night!
What This Should Mean: A long grudge match that features both great technical wrestling and personal-looking brawling. Gunner is elevated in the match, but Storm ultimately wins cleanly with the Last Call superkick to establish himself as a top babyface contender for heel Magnus’ World Heavyweight Title.
What This Shouldn’t Mean: A “swervy” double-turn with Storm using the beer bottle to defeat a now-blandly-babyface Gunner.
Dave Thinks: Out of all the matches on the Genesis card, this bout had the best, tightest, most logical build of all. For my money, the fate of this match rests on whether Gunner truly has a “big match guy” in him.
In a rematch for the X Division Championship, Chris Sabin will defend the gold against his nemesis Austin Aries, with Sabin’s girlfriend Velvet Sky inside a cage, meaning Sabin won’t have her to interfere on his behalf! Can Sabin retain his gold, or will he lose his title AND his girlfriend on Thursday night?
What This Should Mean: A quickly-paced, athletic match that stands in contrast to the more methodical Angle-Roode cage match, the decidedly-heavyweight Storm vs. Gunner, and the match that has a 55-year-old man in it. Aries gives Sabin a beating, but never loses sight of his actual goal: winning the X Division Title. The match includes some creative spots (once again contrasting with the more classically-inspired heavyweight cage match), but neither man takes a stupid risk for the sake of a middle-of-the-card-maybe-the-curtain-jerker-if-we’re-unlucky match. Aries looks close to victory, but Sabin beats him with a roll-up to give the X Division Title some continuity and his reign the legitimacy of a clean victory.
What This Shouldn’t Mean: Tons of over-booked gimmickry involving Velvet Sky on the outside culminating in (A) a highly-distracted Sabin being rolled up by Aries or (B) a “swerve” heel turn in which Sky tosses Sensational Sherri’s purse into the cage so Sabin can use it as a weapon. Austin Aries wins the X Division Title again, just ‘cuz.
Dave Thinks: Chris Sabin and Austin Aries are both tremendous wrestlers, but the booking of this angle has made them feel more like the stock characters in a vaudeville show than athletes fighting for what is supposed to be one of wrestling’s biggest prizes (the belt, not Velvet Sky, dummy!). It’s hard to tell what’s more offensive: the lack of an X Division or the lack of thought being put into taking care of a title belt.
PLUS, will we find out more about the mysterious new investor that recently bought shares of the company? How will TNA President Dixie Carter react?
What This Should Mean: American Wolves in a match..? Can I pretend that’s what this means?
What This Shouldn’t Mean: A combined 45 minutes of Dixie in-ring promos, Dixie backstage segments in which a camera spies on her making surreptitious phone calls, and Dixie conversations in which she demeans actual wrestlers who can do real wrestling stuff.
Dave knows this angle is stupid. Dixie is already over-pushed and over-featured, the last thing she needs is a power struggle. Also, this is may sound nitpicky, but hear me out: since TNA is privately held (as opposed to publically traded, like the WWE), how could TNA owner and president Dixie Carter not know who bought into her company? As Jim Cornette always says, “If you want to make a story line about me having sex with a donkey in Canada… MAKE SURE I’VE BEEN TO CANADA!” And having someone mysteriously investing in the company you are the owner of is pretty much the definition of “paying for the Donkey show then forgetting to apply for a passport”.
On paper, Roode-Angle and Sabin-Aries are matches to salivate over, and Storm-Gunner is as intriguing a matchup as TNA has presented in a while. Unfortunately, the “new era” of TNA has done little to instill hope that any show will be anything other than dirty finishes and tons of steaming hot shitty heel heat. On the bright side, I find it hard to believe I’ll have a worse reaction to this than Part One of Genesis!