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EditorialTNA Bound For Glory 2016 Review.

TNA Bound For Glory 2016 Review.



Hi everyone! Seen as no one’s posted any results or reviews, I’m here to put that right by sharing my thoughts on TNA’s biggest show of the year.

Bound For Glory 2016 (tagline: Bound for Glory… I Knew you’d come!) drew 1,100 fans to the Impact Zone in Orlando, Florida on October 2nd 2016. The commentary team consisted of Josh Matthews and ‘Pope’ D’angelo Dinero. The main card included seven matches, with all TNA Championships on the line. Jade defeated Sienna in a dark match prior to the show airing. BFG 2016 also included the first female induction in to the TNA Hall Of Fame, and the finals of the Impact Grand Championship tournament.

The show began with a shot of Maxel playing a mini piano, while his father Broken Matt played his own. Maxel’s little face lit up as his father told him he has a story to read. The story was called ‘The Great War’, and started with “Once upon a time there lived a man overflowing with broken brilliance…”. The cartoon of the story included images of the Hardy family, and the ‘Land Of Deletion’, which included a map from the land of deletion to the Zone of Impact. He went on to talk about the seven deities, other Impact Wrestling talent who were Bound For Glory.

The next chapter… “And demons dealing death from the depths of Hades itself…”, with cartoon images of Decay. “For House Hardy this would be their ultimate test…”. “To the victors of The Great War, they would have the most bountiful of glories…” (included two tag team belts with smiley faces on them). ‘Who would be DELETED?! Who would … DELETE!!!” Matt Hardy tells Maxel House Hardy will delete Decays title reign. It will be OVA!

DJ Z (c) vs. Trevor Lee – TNA X Division Championship (10:12)

Straight in to the action with a singles X-Division match. I’m glad it wasn’t Ultimate X this time, recent outings have not been so memorable. Slow burner, but competitive from the outset. DJ Z got the crowd support after a dive to the outside on Lee. A minute later, a football kick to the face of DJ Z gave Lee the advantage. Lee biting DJ Z … seems to be a theme in the company these days. First sweet spot of the match goes to DJ Z for jumping off the turnbuckle to hurricanrana Lee who was straddled on the top rope. DJ Z flew over the top rope to catch Lee on the outside. Somehow Lee managed to get back in, run the ropes, and suicide dive DJ Z on the outside. And again, DJ Z no sells, gets in the ring and flips off the second rope to land on Lee on the outside. Both laid out.

Back in the ring, Lee caught DJ Z with a flying powerslam. Lee picked DJ up on to his shoulders, DJ reversed it with a reverse hurricanrana spiking Lee on his head. After some flips and DJ trying to jump off the turnbuckle, Lee tried for a german suplex, DJ countered by falling down to the floor, Lee somersaulted over DJ to get in position to german suplex .. with a bridging pin! 2-fall. Crowd getting behind it.

A kick to the head of DJ by Lee, getting him a 2-fall. Lee reacted like he’d just accidentally ran someone over with his car. Lee tried going for his finisher, DJ got out of it, ran to the ropes, ran in to Lee who got him on his shoulders, DJ dropped down his back and flipped him over into a piledriver! With Lee out on his feet, DJ set him up for the big DDT finish. 1-2-3! And still X-Division champion.

A solid 10-minute curtain jurker, In fact, one of the better singles matches for the title in recent memory, and worthy of the X-Division. After watching, I had a feeling the rest of the night was going to be good as the talent showed what can do during a time of uncertainty. Trevor Lee is young, and looks generic, but he’s capable of putting on good matches. He needs a character so we can care to hate him, but he’s got many years ahead of him so there’s no harm. By the way … I’m grading matches from F to A+ in comparison to other TNA matches and shows. Match Grade: B

Footage aired showing Lashley and EC3 arriving earlier in the day. Drew Galloway was on hand to offer an angry promo, blaming TNA and Billy Corgan for their decision not to allow him to work the Grand Championship match with an injury. He wasn’t shy in listing his previous accolades, tag team championship, intercontinental championship, and TNA World Championship. He said ‘the only reason why Billy Corgan is buying this company is for Drew Galloway”. He also said Corgan would’ve worked one of his tours whether he was injured or not.

10-Man Bound for Gold Gauntlet match; where the winner could choose any championship match of their choice (15:19)

2 men start. New entrant every 90 seconds. Graphic says “Winner gets future world title shot”. Jessie Godderz starting with Rockstar Spud. Clearly no rules as Spud low blows Jessie. Next up is Spuds nemesis Braxton Sutter who goes right for him. Jesse and Braxton decided to team up on the smaller man. “And that is just a fact of life!” Eli Drake enters. Braxton fell out of the ring after missing Eli to be eliminated. Spud and Eli worked Jessie over til Robbie E entered. Bromans teamed up to claim the ring for themselves. Robbie turned on Jessie and tried throwing him out, Jesse survived, every man for himself. Baron Dax in. Nothing interesting til Grado entered, as he walked in to Rockstar Spud who was willing to throw him out after being in the ring only four seconds.

Grado shrugged it off and kept his party mood going as he wandered off. Basile Baraka up next. In quick fashion, Baraka, Robbie E, and Baron Dax were eliminated before Tyrus entered. Former tag team partners Tyrus and Spud stared each other out. Spud tried to form an alliance, but Tyrus was having none of it. Spud tried to give a thumbs up, but Tyrus reversed it to a thumbs down before eliminating him. Shera entered as the 10th and last participant. Shera and Tyrus fought for a while, Shera tried to slam Tyrus but Eli stopped that by striking him in the back. Shera tried going after him, but Eli pulled the rope down and suckered him in to falling out of the ring. Jessie came seriously close to throwing Eli out. He elbowed Eli in the face on the outside, Eli fell backwards, and luckily his feet hanged on the second rope preventing him from being eliminated. Jessie and Tyrus tried to eliminate each other, Eli recovered and dumped them out. Eli celebrated the win with an ecstatic reaction.

Happy Eli got the win, he is a star in the making. However, this gauntlet was the toilet break of the show. Not much heat to it, not much wrestling or finishers, just guys trying to throw each other out. Bit of a waste, but at least it got ten guys on the show and gave Eli Drake an opportunity. That is … if TNA don’t forget about it like they did with Tyrus. Match Grade: C-

Next up was an interview with Gail Kim’s husband Robert Irvine. He stated how happy he was for his wife getting the HOF induction and would be there to support her. Maria Kannellis-Bennett and Mike Bennett showed up to ruin the interview. Irvine told them straight that they were not going to have a good night, predicting Mike to lose to Moose, and Maria losing her title to Gail.

Moose vs. Mike Bennett (10:09)

Bunch of American Footballers on the stage for Moose’s entrance. How can he lose after that? But what I like about Moose is his look is deceptive, he doesn’t look like the kind of guy who can fly around the ring and deliver perfect drop kicks. He’s young in the business, having only been wrestling for a few years. Match starts with Mike escaping to the outside and being chased by Moose, before Mike found the advantage back in the ring. Mike tried to headbutt Moose, but likely came out worse. Perfect dropkick by Moose. Fighting on the outside, leading to Moose launching Mike in to the turnbuckle pole.

Somehow Mike comes back from that and drops Moose on the ring steps. Back in the ring Mike keeps working Moose over. Moose no-sells his chops, delivers some of his own, bounces off the ropes but is brought down by a dropkick to the legs. Leg lock by Bennett on Moose, working on chopping the big guy down by weakening his left leg. Moose suplexed Mike in to the turnbuckle to get some time to recover. Powerbomb and senton splash gets Moose two. The two changed strikes in the middle of the ring. Big boot by Moose, followed by a flying splash from the top rope which Bennett countered in to a “cutter”.

Mike and Moose fought near the turnbuckle, Moose picked him and crashed down to the mat with a sitting powerbomb, followed by the discus clothesline. 1-2-3 Moose wins. A good match, but Mike’s attempts at weakening Moose’s leg was all but forgotten after a few moves. At least it had build and accomplished something. Match Grade: C+

Aron Rex vs. Eddie Edwards – Impact Grand Championship (15:00)

Edwards coming off a losing effort to DJ Z for the X-Division title was not a good sign. Drew Galloway was replaced by Eddie due to injury, which killed any build. At least with Drew it wasn’t going to be a formality. In tough circumstances you have to make decisions, and in this case I don’t blame them for getting someone with the caliber of Eddie to jump in. Making the rounds five minutes instead of three was a good idea. The tournament matches were decided with 3 rounds of three minutes, with three judges deciding which wrestler would win each round. Pinfalls and submission could end the match in any round, and if the match went the distance the winner would be decided by the judges. Rex answered Jeremy Borash’s questions in a backstage interview.

First Round – Eddie used his intensity and athletic ability to rock Rex throughout. Scoreboards showed Eddie winning 30-27.

Second Round – What I hate about this concept? If it’s going to the last round, the guy who lost the first round will win this 95% of the time. If they don’t .. it means they have to win the match by pin/submission in the last round. This is the drawback of having three rounds. As expected, Rex was aggressive from the second the bell rang.

2:20 left on the clock … the lights in the Impact Zone died, leaving everyone in darkness. Luckily Rex had Edwards in a leg submission, so they kept it locked in for a while til someone turned the spotlights on. A little embarrassing to have these issues during the biggest PPV of the year, but it’s happened before so I’m not surprised. With 56 seconds remaining, the lights came back on and the crowd popped! Scoreboards showed Rex winning 30-27.

Third Round – Ok, so this is where it gets serious. Either there’s going to be a pin/submission, or it’s going to a split decision. After a close round, they kept fighting each after the clock reached zero. The fans chanted “let them fight”. The wrestlers and the fans were disappointed as it was going to the judges decision. And yeah … they announced the judges ratings, but the on-screen graphics showed it as 30-27 to Rex (after they told us the first judge decided Rex)… when really it was a split decision with Rex winning 29-28. The ratings on the screen did not match up with the announcement.

Aron Rex is the first Impact Grand champion. He told the audience to “stay tuned” as the hard work was just beginning. I’ll say a title is as good as those who hold it, and I think if used correctly the title could be something to remember, but details need to be ironed out. In a clock structured match, they need to play to that … if they don’t it’s like refusing to use weapons in a hardcore match. Also three rounds, with five minutes, still doesn’t feel long enough to emphasize the competition. It should be about conservation and stamina as well … and three rounds of five minutes doesn’t give that. The wrestlers should not have the energy to continue fighting frantically after the last round goes the distance. Match Grade: B-

Gail Kim’s Induction

Some surprise returnees!. First up was Christy Hemme who showed her love for Kim and her career. Next up was a pregnant Taryn Terrell, who reminded us of their battles and how much she loved working with Gail. Next up was a much slimmer Awesome Kong, looking casual. A nice surprise considering she’s been released twice for altercations with talent. Pretty good of TNA and Kong to come to an agreement on that, as the history between Kong and Gail Kim is what I consider the real ‘women’s revolution’ in wrestling. Dixie up next, to a negative response. Until she started talking, and like the others she put the focus on Gail Kim’s induction.

You could tell she was a little choked up in her acceptance. A huge moment of validation for her contributions to women’s wrestling. A video package in her honour included peers commenting on her career, including Billy Corgan, Josh Matthews, Madison Rayne, Simon Diamond, Jade, Al Snow, and Dave Lagana. Gail accepted she is not known for talking on the microphone, explaining why she had a few sheets of paper with who to thank; as she had a lot of people to thank.

She thanked those who trained her, and all the agents and producers. Some names included Fit Finlay, Scott D’Amore, Simon Diamond, Dutch Mantel, Dixie Carter, Jeff Jarrett, her husband Robert Irvine, Trish Stratus, Victoria, and especially Molly Holly who helped her to get in the business, and showed her how to be a good person at the same time. Dixie Carter awarded her with a HOF watch. Gail hugged Christy, Taryn and Kong before thanking everyone for supporting her career. A good-feel moment which I’m really glad happened in the ring live. Absolutely deserves it, and she’s not done yet.

“Over 2000 Career wins, 5x Knockouts Champion, longest single reign 232 days (703 overall), 350+ televised wins, 1st ever Knockouts Champion, 16 years active, 84% win percentage.”

The Hardys (w/ Reby Hardy) vs. Decay (c) (w/ Rosemary) – The Great War for the TNA World Tag Team Championship (22:28)

Let the craziness begin! The hype video was easily the best of the night as it blended the moments together in to one hilarious/cringing package depending on your personal taste. Firstly, I have to explain that the gimmick of the Hardys is one that is meant to suck to some degree. They are not taking this seriously, and neither should we. It’s wrestling, they can do anything, it’s not like other shows don’t explore and push limits.

It’s cheesy, but it’s good cheesy. Creativity is something TNA has lacked for many, many years, so it’s a good change of pace to enjoy something wacky and unpredictable. Having Reby and Maxel involved gives a family atmosphere to this gothic feud of insane characters. Does it traumatize Maxel? No, I don’t think so. He’s got no reference to be afraid of anything, and I like to think as an adult he would look back on these times and love the fact he was involved.

It began with Reby Hardy in a long red dress playing Matt Hardy’s theme on the piano. I have to admit, I was surprised she can play it so well. Matt entered and got the “Delete” chants going. Jeff came out and sang “I fade away and classify myself as obsolete. Jeff went to raise his arms as Matt tried sneaking past him.. and was accidentally smacked in the face. The fans were really vocal now, and a “Delete Section” could be seen in the audience. Reby finished up on the piano, and the fans applauded. Enter Decay.

The match started with all three members of Decay doing the mist on Reby, leaving it a three-on-two. Reby escorted out. Crazzy Steve gained the advantage on Matt, and then called to Rosemary for a table. That didn’t manage to happen, so he got a garbage can instead. Steve held the can to Matts face, while Rosemary climbed on the turnbuckle, she leaped off and dropkicked it in his face. A pin attempt on the floor .. this is The Great War so of course falls count anywhere. Back in the ring Abyss was with Jeff, and a stapler. Abyss tried but Jeff countered in to a roll up, but was unable to roll him over due to his size. Abyss leaned down and stapled Jeff’s forehead!

Matt turned his attention to Abyss as they fought to the backstage area. Steve and Rosemary focused on Jeff. Abyss threw Matt in to some chairs. They found a dark place with a dustbin which Abyss put Matt in, but not for long. Steve and Jeff fought to the backstage area, a storeroom filled with ladders and other hardware. Jeff found a blue box with the words “Lake Of Reincarnation”, which he tried to reach before Steve could stop him. Back to Abyss and Matt fighting in front of the Orlando Resort logo. Again, back to Steve and Jeff, and Steve has the lake of reincarnation box. He tipped the water over Jeff.

The referee appeared and Steve grabbed him, but when he got back to Jeff he had disappeared. Abyss and Matt slugging it out in the parking lot. Pumpkins being thrown at Steve! Jeff reappeared with his purple WWE attire. Abyss and Matt fighting over a car. Rosemary appeared to help Steve with Jeff .. who put a pumpkin on her head. Steve told Rosemary to go help Abyss with Matt. How does Rosemary know where these guys are? lol. Rosemary showed up with Janice and handed it to Abyss. A random ‘broken’ fan showed up in a truck and challenged Decay, but Rosemary kicked him in the balls before throwing him in to a bush.

Back to Crazzy Steve and .. Willow! Abyss and Rosemary put Matt in the truck and intended to take him away. Matt recovered and somehow gained the power of fire (I don’t know why!). He threw a fireball at Janice, and declared that she’s ‘too hot’. Matt was able to get Janice off Abyss and throw it off the moving truck .. leaving her to burn on the grass alone. Matt and Abyss continued to fight as Rosemary drove them back to the Impact Zone.

After getting out, Vanguard 1 appeared and delivered the Poison Mist to Rosemary. “Moneyshot. Boo-yah.” Back to Willow destroying Steve in the ladder/pumpkin storeroom. A pinfall only got two for Willow. They fought back in to the Impact Zone. Huge “TNA” chant from the crowd as a sign of appreciation. Willow ran back there to get a giant ladder. Steve managed to counter Willow and threw his body at him. I sure like it when he laughs hysterically as he sells pain. Matt and Abyss back in the Impact Zone now. After disappearing under the ring, Willow disappeared and Jeff Hardy returned in his place. Must be a lake of reincarnation box under the ring.

Hardcore time! Bag of thumbtacks introduced by Abyss. Also two boards with a bed of barbed wire. Matt gave Abyss a twist of fate, Jeff hit a swanton, and still couldn’t put him away! Matt poured the thumbtacks on to one of the barbed wire boards! Side Effect on Abyss in to the barbed wire and thumbtacks! Matt went for the pin … but Rosemary was slow and broke up the pin too late, clearly botching it. Matt scared Rosemary to the ring apron, Reby appeared and powerbombed her hard through the table on the outside! Jeff started to dismantle Steve by putting a chair on his neck and giving him a twist of fate. Matt put Steve on two tables, Jeff set up a giant ladder, Matt got on the mic and said he would like Jeff to “indulge in his addiction this one time”, so Jeff threw himself off the ladder on to Steve. 1-2-3 and NEW Tag Team Champions, Broken Matt Hardy and Brother Nero! The Hardys celebrated with the tag team titles, even Maxel who got an ovation for his contribution.

All of this stuff reminds of the crazy days of the Attitude Era where anything was possible. I love fantasy, and I like it more when a company doesn’t take its storylines too seriously. It’s been a fun ride, one I didn’t get on board with right away … but once I realized it was designed to be illogical, I stopped being cynical and embraced it. The Great War was super wacky fun which may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it certainly had a story and entertainment value. I’ll remember this PPV for The Great War, it stole the show, and long may it continue.

Crazy moments, awesome start, brutal finish, everything you need to be entertained by a tag team title match. Props to all involved, including Decay .. Crazzy Steve and Rosemary, who showed they can mix it up and be a threat to the Hardys. Most importantly, it looks like they enjoy the gimmick and telling stories. Hopefully more fans will see past the insanity and appreciate the fact they are trying something different while everything has been done before. Match Grade: A

Gail Kim vs. Maria Kanellis Bennett (c) (w/ Allie and Mike Bennett) – TNA Knockouts Championship (5:19)

Glad they put this between The Great War and the main event. I don’t want to go in to the match too much as it was short. Maria tried to get out of it by claiming her hand was broken again. Allie stated she was contracted to do so, which caught the ire of Maria. After further refusal, Maria caught Gail off guard. The match started and Maria tried to do what she could. Her husband Mike Bennett appeared and they cheated at every possible opportunity. But Gail was able to figure it out and managed to nail Maria with the Eat Defeat. A five-minute match is not worthy of the Knockouts Championship title … all these weeks of build didn’t mean anything as Maria was nothing in the end, but at least Gail is back on top where she belongs. To win the belt for a sixth time on the same night as her Hall of Fame induction is icing on the cake. Match Grade: D

But we all know why it happened. Mike Bennett expressed his opinions over TNA screwing him over ever since he arrived. Cody and Brandi Rhodes entered, looking excited to be there. Brandi stood up to Maria after she told them to “go back to WWE”. They started fighting, so Cody and Mike went at it. Cody struck Mike with the sweetest disaster kick ever. Mike and Maria ran off scared while Cody picked Brandi up on his shoulders as they celebrated a successful debut at Bound For Glory. Nice to see them looking ready to mix it up.

Lashley (c) vs. Ethan Carter III – No Holds Barred match for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship (16:11)

The build for the main event wasn’t as good as it should have. It didn’t paint EC3 in a strong enough light, to have him pass out to a simple hold the week before didn’t give me the impression he was about to become champion again. Complimenting his opponent, EC3 billed Lashley as the most dominant champion ever, which is something you don’t say as it’s a confession of inferiority. I said before the match I wouldn’t be surprised if Lashley won as he’s been a roll and carries the title well.

After EC3 was announced … SPEAR by Lashley! I swear … that is one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen him do, and I’ve watched him since the WWECW days. Lashley stood in the middle of the ring posing as he made Borash announce him. During the match, there was a lot of dominance from Lashley, throwing EC3 around in a similar manner to Brock Lesnar. Took a while for weapons to be introduced, starting with Lashley failing to strike EC3 with the title belt. Lashley tried for another spear, but EC3 beat him to it with a spear of his own. EC3 picked Lashley up on his shoulders on the ring steps, and tried dropping him … but Lashley put his leg down and made it look terrible.

Chair frenzy! Lashley found one and killed EC3s back with repeated hits. Lashley tried the same hold which put EC3 out the previous week, but EC3 managed to hold on to the referee and get out of it. Three German Suplex on Lashley; a tribute to Kurt Angle. One Percenter on Lashley for two. EC3 hit Lashley with the chair once.. then put it down for no reason at all. EC3 put Lashley on the turnbuckle, trying to set up a super one percenter, but Lashley pushed him off. Lashley leaped off the turnbuckle and speared EC3! 1-2-3 Lashley retains the World Heavyweight Championship!

A good ending, but it was difficult to care as the build wasn’t great and the match could certainly not reach the heights The Great War did. Honestly, it felt like The Great War should’ve been the main event. Still, not a travesty, I wasn’t upset over Lashley winning as it makes him the “dominant” champion TNA is looking for. It’s going to take something big to take it off him, and that’s not a bad thing, it’s a good thing!

Match Grade: B-

Conclusion – I had no expectations for this PPV. The past few years, Bound For Glory fell below what I expected. So I’m pleasantly surprised to say I enjoyed it overall. Every PPV has fillers, but even those were good. The booking made sense, the show got better throughout, and crescendoed with Jeff’s crazy ladder spot. The rest of the show was acceptable, but it was hard to follow and the crowd were somber for the main event. I’m glad an announcement regarding the future of the company didn’t happen as it would’ve taken the emphasis off the talent.

There were a few botches, and technical difficulties, but overall Bound For Glory 2016 delivered as a special event. It didn’t feel like an extended episode of Impact, every match turned it up a notch and I didn’t see anyone slacking. It had a bit of everything, but some of the mid-card matches suffered due to lack of time. One of the better BFG’s lately, without a doubt. A year ago, I never would’ve imagined Matt, Jeff, and Decay stealing the show. Fun times for TNA … but will it last? The fight for survival continues, and as a wrestling fan … I hope they sort something ASAP so the talent can focus on the job and be around for another 14 years. Thanks for reading. PPV Grade: B

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