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Posted in: The Crow's Nest
The Crow's Nest - Impact Review (05/30/13) (& Slammiversary Predictions and Wishes)
By TheCrow
May 30, 2013 - 11:30:13 PM



1) Slammiversary Wishes & Predictions (05/29/13)

2) Impact Review (05/30/13)



Tonight marks the last show before Sunday's Slammiversary PPV, and being as pumped as I am for that show already, I'm really looking for Impact to deliver in a big way tonight. Historically, TNA hasn't always been great with promoting their PPVs, so I'm hoping for that to change tonight. But rambling on about what I'm hoping for isn't going to help anything, so let's get on with the show.

******


Segment 1: Aces & Eights (Backstage)

As much as I initially wanted Styles to join up with these guys, I'm now very glad that he didn't. Being pushed as the "lone wolf" character adds a totally new dimension to his character, and he'll get to stand alone instead of being overshadowed by the rest of the stable. I'm excited to see what his newest push is going to be like, especially since he seems to be the newest target of the biggest heel group in the company.

Segment 2: Bully Ray & Devon (In-Ring)

I know I'm not alone in thinking this, and I've certainly said it more than once before, but Bully Ray has got to be among the best talkers in the business right now. Not only did he just do an excellent job of hyping the Slammiversary card, but he is an absolute master of the art of putting your opponent over verbally while still remaining a heel. Running down the list of legends Sting has beaten in the past was a nice touch.

Digging the idea for this tag match tonight, as I've always been a fan of combining the participants of singles matches into tag matches to help hype the PPV. Big match to kick off the show tonight though, that's for sure.

Match 1: Bully Ray & Devon VS Sting & Joseph Park

Not surprisingly, the early part of this match was nothing more than a brawl outside the ring. Wisely, the PPV opponents were kept away from each other, with Bully taking on Park and Devon taking on Sting. But when Sting and Bully finally did meet in the middle of the ring and began to slug it out, the crowd exploded. If that's a taste of what is to come this Sunday, we might be in for a surprisingly good encounter.

The first commercial break was well placed, and when the show returned the wrestlers had finally made it into the ring, looking more like they were wrestling a match instead of just brawling. Devon mocking Hogan's poses was a nice touch, and actually got a fairly loud chorus of boos from the crowd.

It was really nice to see the team formerly known as Team 3D together again, as it reminded me what truly awesome tag team wrestling looks like. Those two have such unbelievable chemistry that even being in the ring with fairly limited workers doesn't stop them from putting on a decent match.

Big story of the match though is the continued teasing of the return of Abyss. Team 3D looked to have the match won, but Abyss' music hit and caused enough of a distraction that Sting was able to steal the win. Of course Abyss didn't actually show up, but it certainly made me interested in what's going to happen on Sunday. Will Abyss show up and help his "brother" win? Will it be revealed that Park and Abyss are actually the same person? Will some other twist happen instead? Those are the kind of questions that are making me look forward to the show this Sunday, so many different possibilities.

Winners: Sting & Joseph Park

Segment 3: Dixie Carter (In-Ring)

Big development here, with Dixie announcing that the second member of the TNA Hall of Fame will be revealed this Sunday at the PPV. It sounded like there was about to be another announcement, but Dixie was interrupted by Garett, Wes, and D.O.C. from everybody's favourite biker stable. Before they can lay a hand on her, Magnus and Samoa Joe run in to make the save. Joe cuts a brief but effective promo, and we have our second match of the night.

Match 2: Samoa Joe VS Garett Bischoff

As green as this kid is, he did a pretty solid job of selling Joe's offence as though he was legitimately getting killed. Granted it is Joe, so he very well could have been dying, but I'd like to believe Joe is more professional than that. Don't get to see much before the commercial break, but any time I get to see Garett getting beaten down in the ring is worth it.

That commercial break seems even more pointless now, as almost as soon as we return to action, the match ends in a no contest as a brawl breaks out at ringside.

Winner: No Contest

Another big development for the PPV this Sunday, as a big six-man tag match gets added to the card. Magnus, Joe and Jeff Hardy will face off against Garett, D.O.C. and Brisco. I offered my thoughts on that match in my recent predictions column, and it's nice to see more members of Aces & Eights on the PPV.

Segment 4: James Storm & Gunner (Backstage)

I've got to say, these two seem to have a load of natural charisma together. If they end up staying together as a team past Sunday, assuming that whole Crimson theory I mentioned in my last column doesn't play out, I think they could actually be a decent addition to the tag division. They're certainly something different, that's for sure.

Segment 5: Hulk Hogan & Brooke Hogan (Backstage)

I've been pretty against Brooke being a part of TNA from the outset, but the thought of her taking on an "old lady" role in Aces & Eights and turning against her dad is certainly an interesting possibility. Looking forward to seeing if that happens.

Match 3: Christopher Daniels, Kazarian, Bobby Roode & Austin Aries VS James Storm, Gunner, Hernandez & Chavo Guerrero

To no surprise, the early part of this match (and the accompanying commentary) focused strongly on the return of Gunner. He dominated Daniels, scared away Aries, then proceeded to toss Roode around the ring before finally tagging somebody else into the match. I have a sneaking suspicion that we're going to be seeing a big push in Gunner's near future, assuming he keeps up his momentum past Sunday.

Also, I think Storm may be more injured than he's letting on. He didn't really get involved in this match, even when every other participant was brawling on the outside he remained up on the ring apron, and didn't even take off his shirt after his entrance. Plus, his leg was pretty heavily bandaged up. Granted this episode of Impact was taped last week, but I really hope he's in match-ready shape before the PPV.

The match itself was actually quite good, and it certainly did its job in getting me looking forward to the Tag Team Championship match on Sunday. Every team got to look strong (aside from Storm, since he didn't really do anything) and it's really built a sense of "anybody could win the belts" for the PPV. I've got to say that I was quite impressed with Gunner in this match, and it's pretty clear that he used his time away from the main roster wisely. He pulled the win out for his team, with a torture rack submission no less. Really looking forward to see what comes next from this dude.

Winners: Storm, Gunner, Hernandez & Chavo

Segment 6: Aces & Eights (Clubhouse)

Bully Ray quickly reads his boys the riot act, hyping up Anderson's match with AJ tonight as well as every A&8 match on the PPV, even saying that he's going to have something for Mike Knox to do, before declaring "war" on Impact Wrestling. It looks like TNA is starting to book some tension amongst the members of Aces & Eights, but I don't think it's going to amount to too much just yet. It's way too early to start any major splits in the group. Eventually, sure, but not just yet.

Segment 7: Mickie James (In-Ring)

I may not be Mickie's biggest fan, but even I can't ignore the reaction she's getting right now. I can't believe how long it's been since she's actually held this belt, and considering how Velvet Sky wasn't doing a whole lot with it anyways, maybe it was time for a switch. Mickie seems to have a bit of an edge with her character right now, calling Velvet out to the ring to discuss the "controversy" over how Mickie won the title.

Mickie definitely cut a bit of a heel promo there, even making excuses for why she couldn't give Velvet her rematch at Slammiversary. I'm actually excited to see if she'll turn full-blown heel, even though the Knockouts Division is rather overloaded with heels right now, because having her return to more of a psycho character would be a breath of fresh air. Even when Gail Kim came out and attacked Velvet, Mickie stood there and watched.

Oh, apparently we have a match right now? Alright, that came out of nowhere. Lots of PPV promotion matches tonight, which is kind of nice to see. TNA has been notorious for not properly building their PPVs, but they seem to be doing an excellent job of promoting Slammiversary so far.

Match 4: Gail Kim & Kenny King VS Taryn Terrell & Chris Sabin

Not much of a reaction for Sabin during his entrance tonight, which came as kind of a surprise to me. The crowd has been pretty hot all night too, adding to the weirdness. Hoping for more on Sunday, that's for sure.

Sabin really doesn't look to have lost a step in the ring since being away. If anything, I actually think this may be the best he's looked in a long time. He looks stronger and more sure of himself, which has got to be a hard trait to have considering his recent streak of serious injuries.

Not really much to this match aside from showcasing what Sabin can do. It was pretty short, and really just a standard "hey let's put all the participants of these PPV matches in the same ring" match. Suicide and Sabin staring each other down over the X-DIvision belt was interesting to me, as it really made me even more confident that we won't be seeing King walk out with the gold on Sunday.

Winners: Chris Sabin & Taryn Terrell

Match 5: Mr. Anderson VS AJ Styles

Lots of time left in the show when this match started, so right off the bat I was assuming that we'd be seeing a match that would have ended up on PPV had Styles not been pre-occupied with Kurt Angle.

The best part of this transformation of AJ Styles is the fact that he's obviously committing to it 110%. Everything from his look, his walk, his in-ring style and just the way he carries himself… it's all coming together perfectly to fit with this new, darker AJ Styles. The one semi-negative thing as I see it right now is that the crowd seems unsure of what to think of him, and understandably so. On one hand, he's the guy that is fighting Kurt Angle this Sunday, but on the other hand he's the guy who is taking on a member of Aces & Eights tonight. So long as Styles remains consistent with being a lone wolf, I don't think that confusion is going to be an issue, but for it to work as well as it deserves to, he has to be careful not to sway too far to either side.

Even Anderson seemed to step up his game for this match, playing up the fact that he felt personally offended by Styles rejecting the invitation to join Aces & Eights. For as much crap as that man takes, I think he's adapted well to being a member of this stable. He's got partners to mask any shortcomings he has, and he can go back to working the more aggressive style, which he's always been better at.

I think I was spot on when I said this was going to be a PPV quality match, as that's exactly what it ended up being. Both guys were going hard, couple of big spots, and more than a handful of near-falls. If it weren't for the fact that Styles vs. Angle is going to be a far better match than this, I'd say this should have made it to the Slammiversary card. Excellent warm-up for Styles though, and even better, it is a great way to reintroduce him to the fans to showcase his new character. It's too bad the match didn't end clean, because I was actually enjoying it.

Winner: AJ Styles (DQ)

Not surprisingly, a massive TNA vs. Aces & Eights brawl broke out to end Impact tonight, highlighted by a face-to-face meeting between Sting and Bully Ray in the middle of the ring.

Overall, that was a very solid episode of Impact. Every match served a purpose to help hype the PPV this Sunday, and in a lot of cases left me unsure as to what the match results would be. Aces & Eights stood tall at the end of Impact over the fallen body of Sting, really helping to sell just how big the main event of Slammiversary was going to be. I was already likely to watch the show, but now I'm looking forward to it even more.

Well done, TNA. Well done indeed.

******

Get In Touch With Me

Email: lopcrowsnest@aol.com

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Skype: thecrowlop

************************


***WARNING*** The following column may contain spoilers from this week's episode of Impact. If you don't want any surprises "ruined" for you, kindly click the back button on your browser of choice and return to this page at approximately 11:00 PM EST this Thursday. You have been warned.

In less than one week, TNA will air it's third live PPV of the year, Slammiversary. This will be the 11th time a show has aired under the Slammiversary banner, and while the show itself doesn't really have any unique significance anymore after the demise of the King of the Mountain match, TNA's new, smaller PPV schedule has, by default, made every live PPV that much more important. Without a PPV every few weeks, TNA is being forced not only to improve the quality of the average weekly Impact broadcast, but also the quality of each PPV. The way I see it, there is now very little room for throwaway matches, and the creative team really has no excuse to not book each PPV card well given how much longer they have between shows to build feuds and stories.

That being said, this is still professional wrestling, and you can never count on logic to pay off every time.

At first glance, I wasn't totally sure what to make of the Slammiversary card this year. Aside from one or two matches, the card seems to be missing that all important "it" factor. It seemed to be one of those cards that would be acceptable in a normal 12-month PPV rotation, but when there's only 4 live shows a year, I expect a little more. But, because I try to remain optimistic most of the time, I decided to really think about the card, and when I did I realized it was actually very well put together. Sure, I could still argue that there isn't much of a blockbuster main event, but the card does have one thing: consistency in its booking. Every match on the card has a real, logical reason for being there, and there is, to me at least, no feeling of stuff being randomly thrown together. I would argue that this is as important, perhaps more so, when it comes to putting together a good quality PPV as it gives the viewers a reason to care about the match outcomes.

I'm actually looking forward to Slammiversary, and also what is going to come afterwards. There are a lot of potentially interesting storyline developments that could occur after the PPV, and that is exactly what a good PPV should do: make you look forward to the next show.

But for now, it's time to take a look at my wishes and predictions for Slammiversary. Will I have better luck this month? I guess we'll see in a few days.

******





Now that Taryn Terrell has been officially added to the roster as an active wrestler, it's about time she has her first test in the "big time". She's going up against one of the top names in the Knockouts Division, and while I'd prefer the Knockouts Championship to be getting some attention on the card, this match makes perfect sense from a booking standpoint. These two have been feuding for some time now, and with Terrell being established as the newest Knockout on the roster, this becomes a classic tale of "old school vs. new school". Gail Kim represents the forces of darkness, Terrell is the shining light that aims to vanquish the evil.

Do I expect this to be a technical classic that will turn even the most hardcore haters of women's wrestling into super fans? No. I expect this match to be watchable, but I also believe that Terrell may still be a bit green to deliver a high-calibre match, even with an opponent like Kim. The thing that's going to really make this match interesting is the stipulation of "Last Knockout Standing". This feud has been pretty heated from start to finish, and this is a perfect way to conclude it. TNA desperately needs a fresh face in the Knockouts Division, and while I'd prefer it to be somebody like Taeler Hendrix, Terrell will have to do for now.

What I Wish Would Happen: Taryn Terrell wins
What I Think Will Happen: Taryn Terrell wins



The entire execution of TNA's "Gut Check" has been flawed from the outset. The whole purpose of showcasing these "rookies" on Impact was to help introduce the fans to some new faces, but out of everybody that appeared in those segments, who has really gone on to have much success? Wes Brisco has been the most successful of the bunch, and his run so far has largely been a flop. None of the winners have really been used in any big way, which has caused the fans to give them no reaction when they DO appear. I am 100% in favour of something like "Gut Check" being around, but the execution needs to be far better.

Luckily, it seems as though TNA has at least partially recognized this, and has decided to give at least some of the male winners something to do. The final two competitors in a brief tournament were awarded with this PPV match, with the winner receiving a spot in the upcoming Bound For Glory Series tournament. You know, the one that awards the winner with a shot at the World Heavyweight Championship.

Both of these guys can certainly "go" in the ring, so I can absolutely see them both sticking around on the roster. Sam Shaw proved that he could carve out a nice name for himself in the X-Division at TNA's X-Travaganza event, and I could see Jay Bradley competing at the mid-card level almost immediately. Having not seen a huge amount of work from either man, my prediction for who will win is based on very few impressions. Personally, I think Shaw is the more colourful and charismatic of the two, but Bradley is easily the more versatile worker. Even with one of them getting a spot in the BFG Series, I would be absolutely shocked if either of them even came close to winning, so really that stipulation doesn't enter into things too much. It really comes down to who TNA wants to give the big rub to first. Not an easy choice, so I'm just going with my gut.

What I Wish Would Happen: Jay Bradley wins
What I Think Will Happen: Sam Shaw wins



Ever since it was announced, I've been totally against the whole "every X-Division match will have at least 3 competitors" rule. I think it's stupid, unnecessary, and takes away so much potential from real one-on-one feuds. This match is a perfect example. I would love to see a feud between Chris Sabin and Kenny King, but instead I have to sit back and watch as Suicide is brought back from the dead and awkwardly inserted into the match. Why is he needed? What's wrong with a one-on-one feud? Or if they insist on having these triple threat encounters, why not just use one of the wrestlers they already have?

But this is the hand I've been dealt, so I'll have to play it out.

I love the Ultimate X stipulation as it usually provides some pretty amazing spots over the course of the match. Thankfully, as much as I dislike the new X-Division rules, the three guys in this match are more than capable of putting on something special. Suicide is being portrayed by a new wrestler (T.J. Perkins, who has appeared in TNA before as PUMA) and is probably going to be doing the crazier stunts, leaving the bulk of the match in the very capable hands of King and Sabin. Sabin is finally back after what feels like forever, and I think TNA is ready to resume the push it looked like he was going to get before he was re-injured last time. With news that TNA is going to be bringing back the whole "X-Division Champion can cash in his belt for a shot at the World Heavyweight Championship" concept, that totally changes how the outcome of this match gets predicted.

I can't just be thinking about who is going to be the X-Division Champion after the show, I need to be thinking about potential #1 Contenders to the biggest prize in the company. Suicide could possibly be a nice addition to the X-Division as an enhancement talent, but I could not see him ever holding the "big one". King, as talented as he is, isn't quite ready to get bumped to that next level. There's still a lot he can accomplish outside of the main event, and despite being the oldest wrestler in the match, he's young enough to get it all done and build a future for himself. Sabin has done everything there is to do in TNA, aside from become World Champion, and you'd be hard pressed to find a wrestler who has remained as over as Sabin as for as long as he has. I think it's finally time to test Sabin in a different role, and that all starts with giving him the belt.

What I Wish Would Happen: Chris Sabin wins
What I Think Will Happen: Chris Sabin wins



This one is pretty hard for me to pick, because TNA has actually done a solid job of making me believe in multiple outcomes. Devon hasn't done a whole lot as Television Champion recently, but I'm willing to overlook most of that due to his involvement in the ongoing Aces & Eights storyline. With the group finally being booked to look like a force to be reckoned with, it's easy enough to believe that Devon could retain his belt. On the other hand, the constant Abyss return teases have me curious. Will it be revealed, once and for all, that Joseph Park and his "brother" Abyss are actually the same person? Will TNA continue to treat them like separate characters? Will Abyss even return as a character full time, and what will his future look like? Park has been a great sympathetic character, playing the bashful "aw shucks" guy for some time now, but has recently started letting some of that Abyss-like nature shine through.

I've made it pretty clear in the past that I'm no fan of Abyss, but at this point in time I think TNA either needs to bring him back (ideally in place of Park, or as a dual-personality kind of thing) or get rid of both characters altogether. There's only so much Park can accomplish with his current gimmick, and it's starting to grow a bit stale. Devon, as little as he's done with the championship, is at least a fairly credible champion, and with the belt is able to contribute to the dominance of his stable.

Personally, I think it's too soon to take away Devon's prize. The stable is just starting to gain some serious legitimacy, and even though the Television Championship isn't the most prestigious thing in the world, it's still a symbol of the control that Aces & Eights has over the company. If TNA really wants to bring Abyss back, and it's looking an awful lot like that's exactly what they want to do, it would actually be easier to do if Park lost the match, in my mind anyways. Have Park dominate, only for Aces & Eights to cost him the match (or give him just a DQ win). During the attempted beatdown, either Park "Abyss' up" and puts on the mask, or somebody else runs to the ring dressed as Abyss and helps Park turn the tables. Park gets to look strong, Aces & Eights gets to look strong and keep the gold, Abyss returns, and an easy rematch/storyline continuation is accomplished. Wins all around. Call it a cop-out all you want, but in this instance I think it's the best possible booking choice.

What I Wish Would Happen: Park wins, Devon retains
What I Think Will Happen: Park wins, Devon retains



We have now reached the spoilers portion of the column I mentioned earlier. Tomorrow night on Impact, this particular match will be announced for Slammiversary.

Each of the three members of Team TNA have a personal reason to want revenge on Aces & Eights. Magnus has been receiving something of a push lately, and recently came to the ring on Impact to protect his friend Sam Shaw from an A&8 beatdown (and apparently joined some kind of brawl on the Impact that will air tomorrow night). Joe has been pretty involved in the affairs of the heel stable on-and-off from the outset, and Hardy of course is still feeling the sting of losing his World Championship to Bully Ray. Sure, it's a Teddy Long-esque booking choice, but that doesn't keep it from making perfect sense.

I want to apply the same logic to this match as I did to the previous one. Aces & Eights is finally appearing to be a legitimate stable that is not to be messed with, and they need a strong showing at this PPV. I don't care if they fight dirty, but in this match especially, they need the win. Devon is a champion, Bully Ray is THE champion, but what do D.O.C., Bischoff and Brisco have? They have a leather vest and an association with higher calibre wrestlers than themselves, that's it. While I personally believe that Aces & Eights should have been put into the Tag Team Championship match at Slammiversary, this will do for now.

But as history has shown us with Aces & Eights, what should happen isn't always what does end up happening. It's hard for me to pick a winner here. Part of me wants to be skeptical and assume that, defying all logic, TNA is going to give "the good guys" the win. But that hopeful part of me wants to believe that TNA is going to do what they should and let the "bad guys" take the big win. That's a hell of a rub for these three lesser members of the stable, beating out some of the top names in the company. I may end up regretting my pick, but here it is anyways.

What I Wish Would Happen: Aces & Eights wins
What I Think Will Happen: Aces & Eights wins



I'm still a bit sad that Shark Boy didn't end up getting brought into this match as James Storm's partner, but Gunner will have to do. I'd been wondering if/when we would be seeing him back on Impact, and while I don't totally understand this return, I'm willing to give it a chance. Gunner had started to impress me before he disappeared, and if this pairing with Storm is going to be more than a one time thing, I'm going to be very interested to see what's in store.

I'm tempted (but not 100% committed) to make a "bonus" prediction here and say that Chavo and Hernandez are going to be eliminated from the match first. The Tag Team Championship is basically a prop at this point, but having them around the waists of these two black holes of charisma is not helping to change that. Chavo and Hernandez are a decent enhancement team, but they do nothing for me as champs, and if TNA wants to make the tag belts worth anything again, they need champions that the fans are actually interested in. Enter James Storm.

Storm is, and has been for some time, one of the most over guys on the TNA roster. Sadly he got screwed out of a proper push to the main event, but his popularity is still as high as ever. Storm was always at his best as a tag guy anyways, so having him return to the scene full time is great news for me, if that is how it ends up. Is Gunner the first guy I would have chosen to be his partner? Absolutely not. But it was a truly unexpected surprise when it happened, and it could end up working out well. I'm willing to give it a shot, and I urge you all to do the same.

I think that a large portion of the match is going to see Bad Influence and Roode and Aries fight it out, with Bad Influence being eliminated out of nowhere. I like the idea of Roode and Storm making it to the finals of the match, and I REALLY like the idea of those two teams feuding after this PPV. The underlying motive can be a feud between Storm and Roode, both of them wanting to prove that they were the superior partner in Beer Money.

However, there is another possibility floating around in my mind. At the recent Joker's Wild "One Night Only" PPV event, Gunner teamed with another TNA wrestler that hasn't been seen in quite some time. A man that certainly has a personal beef with James Storm, as he was the man that ended this man's undefeated streak. Of course, I am referring to Crimson. Could this return by Gunner just be a convenient way to bring Crimson back and form a tag team on the main roster? I think it's certainly a possibility, especially with the ONS factoid, and as much as I'd love to never see Crimson on Impact again, he clearly has (or had) some fans on the booking team. Storm could find another partner (SHARK BOY PLEASE) and still rejoin the tag division with an instant feud to enter into. Bam, easy booking. Gotta go with my gut on this prediction and hope for the best. It's not ideal, but if done properly could actually work out well.

What I Wish Would Happen: James Storm & Gunner win
What I Think Will Happen: Chavo and Hernandez retain



If this match doesn't end up being Match of the Night I'm going to be very surprised. These guys work very well together, and I'm interested to see what this new, more aggressive AJ Styles can do. The "lone wolf" persona is nothing new in the world of wrestling, but it is something new to the character of AJ Styles, who has mostly played a fan favourite during his time with TNA.

I think that this re-invention is a sign that TNA is ready to push Styles in a big way again. In case you forgot, Styles is unable to compete for the World Heavyweight Championship until Bound For Glory later this year. What happens to be starting relatively soon? The Bound For Glory Series tournament to determine who gets the World Title shot at that very PPV. I think TNA wants him built up before that starts, and what better way to start that build than have him defeat Kurt Angle?

I really want to see Styles succeed with this new character, because he has been in dire need of a reinvention for some time now. How long can he continue to play the "golden boy" of TNA that never seems to get a real shot at the top of the card? The guy is incredibly talented and incredibly over with the fans, and has proven to TNA that he is a loyal employee. Once the Aces & Eights' initial run dies down and it's time to crown a new World Champion, TNA needs a guy that they know can step into the role and keep the momentum going. AJ Styles is that guy, and his return to glory starts this Sunday.

What I Wish Would Happen: AJ Styles wins
What I Think Will Happen: AJ Styles wins



This one's going to be short, because I've already talked at length about this match in another column. Basically, I see no way that Sting walks out of the PPV with that belt. Were it not for the "no holds barred" stipulation, I would likely predict that Sting wins by DQ, thereby technically allowing him to compete for the World Heavyweight Championship in the future. Also, in 99% of other cases with stipulations like "Wrestler X has to win or he can never compete for the belt again" I would vote in favour of Wrestler X winning, just because that's a pretty wild stipulation. Sting, being a semi-retired wrestler anyways, really has no business competing for that belt anymore, but his presence in this particular match absolutely serves a purpose:

When Bully Ray wins, he gets to lay claim to being the guy that, for all intents and purposes, ended the World Championship career of one of the industry's greats.

Think about that for a minute.

That's a pretty big rub to give to another wrestler, and, if Ray does win, it will show me that TNA is 100% serious about him as a main event staple. On top of that, it will stand as the greatest victory of the Aces & Eights stable to date. Sure, Bully Ray winning the belt in the first place was huge, but think about how big THIS win would be in a kayfabe sense. One of the group's biggest rivals will no longer be able to challenge the leader for his gold. Ever. Sure, there will be other challengers, but Sting will no longer be an issue in that department. Say what you will about him, but Sting is still a big deal in kayfabe.

Easiest pick of the night by far, and I'm going to be shocked and VERY disappointed if I'm wrong here.

What I Wish Would Happen: Bully Ray retains
What I Think Will Happen: Bully Ray retains

******

There you have it folks, my official wishes and predictions for Sunday's PPV. What do you all think? As always, I look forward to hearing your own thoughts and predictions. Until next time, however, thanks for stopping by.

******

Get In Touch With Me

Email: lopcrowsnest@aol.com

Twitter:

Skype: thecrowlop

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