The Weekly Wrestling Wrap-Up #20

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NOTE: Due to time constraints and technology issues, the writer had to use the YouTube clips for this section.

The Stories
= Bully Ray opened the show by coming out with only Brooke Tessmacher. He blamed the problems he’s had within the Aces & Eights, and Mr. Anderson specifically, on Hulk Hogan, which brought him out. Hogan welcomed the fans to the No Surrender special event. He built up Bound For Glory, but then told Bully Ray to worry about defending his belt. Bully blamed Hogan again for the problems he’s had, saying that Mister Anderson would do the right thing, but Hogan reiterated his statement. Mister Anderson came out, noticeably without his Vice President tag. Bully basically said, “I told you so,” and then said that Mr. Anderson had to apologize to end things. Anderson said he was out of line, and that he couldn’t wait to get out of line again that night. He sucker punched Bully, sending Bully running, and Hogan made the match Last Man Standing.
= Manik and Hulk Hogan talked about having a title match for the X-Division championship. Dixie Carter then came in and told Hulk that Bellator had pulled Tito Ortiz and Rampage Jackson off of Impact Wrestling.
= Aces & Eights were backstage, and Bully Ray went on a rant on the three remaining members about how he wanted them to do the right thing. The three men barely reacted.
= E.G.O. apparently involved themselves in the main event, but there was no mention of it on the YouTube video. AJ Styles got on the microphone and talked about how he was grateful for the fans’ support. He then basically gave Dixie Carter an ultimatum – talk to him, or have a huge problem revealed.
= During the title match, Aces & Eights (well, the remaining three members) came out and attacked Mr. Anderson after teasing that they would turn on Bully Ray. As Anderson was being rolled off on a stretcher, Bully grabbed it, flipped Anderson off the gurney, and whipped Anderson with his kutte. He then gave Anderson a piledriver on to the stage.
= TNA TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS James Storm & Gunner came out and made an open challenge. Storm said that it doesn’t matter who the opponents are – they need to step up, shut up, man up, and drink up. That brought out Hernandez & Chavo Guerrero. Chavo noted that he and Hernandez won the tag team titles about a year ago. He noted that the two champions had some good qualities, but he and Hernandez were better. He then noted that Storm and Gunner would lose any match between the two of these teams. Gunner got on the microphone, said that he likes to fight, and agreed to the match. He then said that if Chavo and Hernandez got involved in anything beyond that match, they would have the titles smashed in to their faces.
= ODB and gave an interview about her upcoming championship match against Mickie James.
The Wrestling
Bound For Glory Series Semi-Finals: AJ Styles def. Austin Aries via pin fall with a backwards Styles Clash off the second rope
Bound For Glory Series Semi-Finals: Magnus def. Bobby Roode via pin fall with a flip over double leg pin
Last Man Standing for the World Heavyweight Championship: TNA WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION Bully Ray def. Mr. Anderson via ten-count after spearing Anderson through an upright table
Bound For Glory Series Final: AJ Styles def. Magnus via pin fall with the Spiral Tap 630 senton

What Worked= Allowing most of the show to focus upon the Bound For Glory Series was the right call. With two of the matches in the series going in to the double digits, and the championship doing the same, that was basically an hour of the show that focused solely on decent wrestling matches. With AJ winning a hard-fought battle while Magnus eked out the victory in the semi-finals, there was plenty of possibility presented that Magnus would be the one to win the whole shebang, in spite of only getting four matches instead of six, losing one match via DQ, and having the Aces & Eights as a constand side concern. It added to the drama, and made AJ’s victory that much sweeter.= As usual, the story of the World Heavyweight Championship was a big part of the show. I found Bully’s increasing paranoia to be a little over-the-top, but still perfectly in character. I found it odd that we didn’t get a segment where Anderson tried to rally the troops, but then again, I think that that was intentional.= The non-tournament focus upon the secondary titles was a nice change of pace. By that, I mean that all of the titles got mentioned on the show, all three titles have matches upcoming where the belts will be on the line, and there was promo time dedicated to all of them. It’s a huge change from recent weeks, where the Tag Team Titles were a joke and the X-Division title was basically non-existant.Needs Work= AJ Styles just came back to being the guy that loves to perform for the fans and win their approval, so I can forgive him for forgetting himself a bit. However, straight-up threatening Dixie Carter toes the wrong side of the line.= Chavo Guerrero was a freaking genius for doing all of the talking for his team, if Hernandez has the same skills on the microphone as Gunner. Telling off Chavo for sticking their noses in the champions’ business when they basically said that they were open for business was outright stupid.= The E.G.O. involvement in the main event was so pointless that they didn’t even bother to mention it after Styles won the tournament. If you have something that inconsequential that happens in your main event, perhaps you shouldn’t bother doing it.

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The Stories

August 31, 2013
= Truth Martini was heavily involved in the TV Title match, distracting the official, having a quick word on commentary, and stuffing a page from the Book of Truth in to Brian Fury’s mouth after the match.
= Mark Brisco cut a quick promo about how he was not a casualty of the war with SCUM. He said that he had medical clearance to compete, and that Adam Cole had better be ready for a whuppin’ (sic).
= In the ring, Michael Elgin came to the ring and claimed credit for giving Nigel McGuinness the idea for the title tournament. He then told the entire field that they had to worry about him. That brought out Kevin Steen, who called Elgin a liar because Elgin knew that he can’t beat Kevin Steen. Steen noted that Elgin could not beat him in the past, and it wouldn’t happen in the tournament. Elgin said that that defeat happened ten months ago. That brought out Michael Bennett with Maria at his side. Bennett said that the other two men were the past of the company, while he was the future. Before he said anything else, Tommaso Ciampa came out and got in the faces of all three men. He then said that he was the next ROH World Champion. Security came out to clear the ring.
September 7, 2013
= There weren’t any. They went straight to the tournament and never looked back. Unless you consider recapping BJ Whitmer’s injury a story.

The Wrestling

August 31, 2013
Television Championship Match: ROH TELEVISION CHAMPION Matt Taven (w/ Truth Martini & The Hoopla Hotties) def. Brian Fury via pin fall after an inverted DDT
WORLD TITLE TOURNAMENT: Karl Anderson def. ACH via pin fall after the Ace Crusher to advance
WORLD TITLE TOURNAMENT: Adam Cole def. Mark Briscoe via pin fall with a Jay Driller to advance
September 7, 2013
World Title Tournament: Tommaso Ciampa def. Silas Young via pin fall with a back breaker power bomb to advance
World Title Tournament: Michael Bennett (w/ Maria Kanellis) def. BJ Whitmer via referee stoppage after a piledriver on the apron
World Title Tournament: Michael Elgin def. Paul London via pin fall with a spinning power bomb to advance

What Worked

August 31, 2013
= They really allowed the TV title match to shine, even with the World Title tournament as the main part of the show. It really made Matt Taven as somebody that was holding on to an ROH title even though he cares more about the spectacle of wrestling than actual wrestling. I also like the call of letting Taven keep the title, since you may be able to build a different rivalry for him this way.
= As usual, the Tale of the Tape and the Code of Honor are great little details to the show. Kevin Kelly pointed out how it’s almost automatic these days, stating that as a big positive, and I agree.
= There are times where I complain that Ring of Honor tries a bit too much to present parity between competitors, but tonight, it worked. If you’re going to have somebody in a title match, and involve people in a tournament for the top title, they had better look competent.
September 7, 2013
= The entire show focused upon the title tournament. It really elevates the title, especially with how the company has brought in special attractions to build up the credibility of the field. Two of the matches were great contests with fitting ends, and it is clear that Elgin is the man to beat.
= Speaking of the Michael Elgin/Paul London match, how in the world is London not employed in a larger company? The man can go, he’s managed to vary his move set over the years, and the crowd clearly loved the guy. I get that ROH has him as a special attraction instead of a regular performer, so they can’t really give him victories too often, but he really deserves another shot in the WWE.

Needs Work

August 31, 2013
= The replay of the beat-down that sidelined Jay Briscoe for nine months (that sounds coincidental, doesn’t it?) and put Mark Briscoe out of action since just before the steel cage match that ended SCUM felt somewhat redundant.
= Truth Martini really shouldn’t have been on commentary at all, especially considering he jumped on for only about two minutes before once again turning in to the leader of Matt Taven’s fan section.
September 7, 2013
= It would seem that some Ring of Honor workers are incapable of learning from the mistakes of others. With an object lesson about not doing big moves on to the apron in the building, Whitmer and Bennett still apparently thought that a piledriver on to the apron was a good idea. Bennett probably has a lot of people in the back giving him grief for the botch, but BJ probably had to agree to it. Paul London probably saw what went down and thought, “How stupid can you be?”

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Nicholas Villarreal

Game Review/News Editor at iGame Responsibly
Nicholas Villarreal is a seasoned writer on the staff of iGame Responsibly, covering breaking news, as well as game reviews.

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