I didn’t get to watch Impact last night, but I saw the tournament bracket this morning:
1: Jeff Hardy vs. Chris Sabin (Full Metal Mayhem)
2: James Storm vs. Bobby Roode
3: Austin Aries vs. Kurt Angle
4 Magnus vs. Samoa Joe
5. Winner of 1 vs. Winner of 2
6. Winner of 3 vs. Winner of 4
7. Winner of 5 vs. Winner of 6
This is how I see this thing going:
Jeff Hardy will beat Chris Sabin because it’s Jeff Hardy, it’s Full Metal Meyham, and Sabin needs to worry about X-Division. Plus a win for Jeff against the champion might secure a future title shot for later, just in case Jeff doesn’t win this tournament and needs booked elsewhere.
I see Bobby Roode winning his match because Storm is caught up in the tag team division right now. It’s great for his fans to get a taste of Storm going for the main title again, but I don’t see it happening. I don’t watch that much TNA, but from what I saw Roode’s star seems a little higher as far as single competition goes than Storm’s right now.
Austin Aries defeats Kurt Angle to continue this “no finish” storyline they have going on with him. All it takes is one well-placed brain buster followed by something similar to what happened at Bound For Glory, and everyone will be fearing Kurt Angle’s glory days are gone.
Lastly, Magnus will defeat Samoa Joe simply because Magnus seems to be in the calm before the storm right now. After his match with Sting, there is some interesting personal development in the Magnus character, and that alone is why I am tuning into Spike TV on Thursday nights.
To review, my First Round winners are as follows:
Jeff Hardy def. Chris Sabin
Bobby Roode def. James Storm
Austin Aries def. Kurt Angle (by TKO)
Magnus def. Samoa Joe
My Second Round prediction looks like this:
Jeff Hardy vs. Bobby Roode
Austin Aries vs. Magnus
In Round Two, I see Jeff Hardy going over Bobby Roode. If Angle is carted off after his match against Aries, with this Wheel of Dixie stipulation thing, that match could be made Last Man Standing, during which Roode could cost Angle the match by interfering. That would give Roode something to brag about, seeing as he eliminated two of his all-time rivals from the same tournament, and now he’s halfway to the gold…but of course Jeff Hardy stops all of that in its tracks, because he’s Jeff Hardy and that’s what he does.
Next, Magnus will defeat Austin Aries. If this match actually happens, I will spare no expense to make sure I see it! Magnus has grown on me lately (but that’s the whole point, right?), and Austin Aries is “The Greatest Man That Ever Lived”, so those elements have “must-see” written all over this contest. I just wonder what the stipulation could be. Aries will likely go in as the heel here, and Sting will probably float around somewhere trying his best to encourage his protégé. Magnus will win this one but we could easily see a major heel turn here. This match could easily lead off the tournament matches for the night as a method of cementing a heel turn for Magnus and disappointing Sting in some fashion would be to have him attack Jeff Hardy following Hardy’s win over Bobby Roode.
Jeff Hardy vs. Magnus
Obviously, without a doubt, this match is a huge boost for Magnus. Magnus goes in with a size advantage along with any damage done to Hardy at the hands of Magnus following his match against Roode (which could be a Tables Match in which Hardy wins by putting Roode through a table only to be sent through a table himself by Magnus – just an idea on that). Any this match would be for the World Championship so of course there is the chance that Styles would return to defend the title against the winner of the tournament. I feel like one of two things could happen:
- If Magnus turns heel, as I believe he should, then AJ could return to sign the contract because either he realizes that it does no good to walk away from his problem when he could just as easily face them head on and fight the beast that is Dixie Carter from within, or maybe he is forced to resign since he took the belt with him or he is tracked down using the car he stole from Dixie, I don’t know. Another option I considered was that he could come back with help from, for example, the founder of TNA, Jeff Jarrett.
- On the other hand, AJ Styles could return as the bad guy who “sells out” to Dixie and signs her contract. This would keep Magnus face and when Magnus defeats AJ Styles for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship on the Thanksgiving Special (One week after the Turning Point special), then the crowd would be behind Magnus so much no one would know what to do with themselves.
Regardless of whether Magnus turns heel to face Jeff Hardy or stays face the whole way, he will become TNA World Heavyweight Champions by the end of the month. AJ Styles may come back to decide an official champion similar to the way Punk and Cena did for SummerSlam, but that sounds like a Pay Per View worthy match. TNA’s next Pay Per View is not until January, which is fine because I think having Magnus turn heel in this storyline with Sting would be great because we could have Sting put his career on the line in a match against the champion (seeing as he can’t challenge for the World Title anymore due to the stipulation in his match against Bully Ray at Slammiversary – assuming TNA cares about continuity) whom he feels responsible for sending down the current path of gold, glory, and eventually moral corruption.
TNA’s Knockouts Division is sub-par at best. The X- Division is getting back to its roots, but it has a long way to go. The Tag Team Division is looking strong, but most of the tag teams – minus the current champions – look like they could jump into any other title picture at any given time, except I don’t know about James Storm running after the X-Division title any time soon, but it could happen. If I’m not mistaken, I think the only thing Storm needs to complete the Triple Crown is in fact the X-Division strap. AJ’s walkout and the subsequent World Championship Tournament could really turn some heads for TNA. I’m just glad they’ve pulled back the reins on Aces and eights, at least for now. That group was the reason I couldn’t watch TNA for a while. I never imagined that I would be looking forward to an episode of Impact Wrestling, much less write a blog post about it, but here I am, and (I hope) this is going to be a lot of fun.