We start off with a video package looking at the events that led to the World Title Series, we go to Matt Hardy arriving at the arena earlier today, then Josh and Pope welcome us to the show and reveal the other four groups in the tournament: Group Tag Team Specialists (Matt Hardy, Eddie Edwards, Davey Richards, and Robbie E) Group Future 4 (Jessie Godderz, Micah, Eli Drake, and Crimson), Group X Division (Tigre Uno, DJ Z, Mandrews, and Manik), and Group TNA Originals (James Storm, Bobby Roode, Abyss and Eric Young).
Robbie E is taking on Eddie Edwards tonight, and we see a cell phone video of Robbie E challenging some football player named Robbie G to a match.
World Title Series – Group Tag Team Specialists: Davey Richards vs Matt Hardy
They follow the Code of Honor, and we’re off. Chain wrestling to start and Davey catches Matt with a sweet dropkick and gets him in a trailer hitch. We go to the roundtable discussion, where they both say may the better man win. Davey tries to come off the top with a double stomp, but Matt gets his feet up and connects with Davey’s jaw. They head to the apron where Matt hits a Side Effect right on the frame and sends Davey tumbling to the floor. They go back inside where Davey catches Matt with a lungblower, then they trade blows in the middle of the ring. Davey dumps Matt to the floor and takes him out with a dive through the ropes, then rolls him inside and takes him out with a missile dropkick. Davey with more kicks to Matt and the handspring enziguiri, but Matt kicks out at 2. Matt blocks the Alarm Clock, Davey counters the Twist of Fate to a backslide for 2, Matt hits the Side Effect for 2. Matt tries coming off the top and flies right into a kick from Davey. Davey with a yakuza kick in the corner, a t-bone suplex, and he comes off the top with the double stomp…but Matt rolls out of the way, hits the Twist of Fate, and covers for 3.
Winner: Matt Hardy
Great match! Matt is now one step closer to regaining the TNA World Title he never lost.
We see a video package showing the history between James Storm and Bobby Roode, and they’ll face off later on tonight!
Jeremy Borash is at the roundtable with Group X Division, asking each of them who they think is least likely to advance from their group. I’m looking at them and seeing four guys who don’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting anywhere near the TNA World Title.
World Title Series – Group Wildcard: Aiden O’Shea vs Kenny King
Okay, let’s start the count of how many people on this show are already working for other companies! We’re at 1 with Kenny King, who gets jumped from behind by O’Shea to jumpstart the match. O’Shea pounds the snot out of Kenny King and gouges his eyes, King tries to mount a comeback but can’t seem to build any momentum before O’Shea flattens him again. We go to the roundtable with Group Wildcard, and Mahabali Shera says he’s bigger, stronger, and faster than himself, while Crazzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzy Steve just honks his horn at them. O’Shea takes too long capitalizing on King and catches a cartwheel kick and a sunset flip for 2, then King hits a springboard Blockbuster for the surprise win.
Winner: Kenny King
Solid match, Aiden O’Shea looked good in his TV debut.
Eric Young is backstage saying that he controls the World Title in 2015, and he controls the fate of the title. He’s THE TNA original, he’s God, and he showed the world what a worthless freak Abyss is, and tonight, he’s going to pull his strings again and move one step closer to the title that’s rightfully his.
Davey Richards is backstage saying he doesn’t make excuses, Matt Hardy was the better man tonight and that’s all there is to it.
The members of Group TNA Original sit around the roundtable giving their thoughts on which man in the group is the least likely to advance (my money is on James Storm, unfortunately), then we go to the ring to kick their group off…
World Title Series – Group TNA Original: Eric Young vs Abyss
Young attacks Abyss before the bell, but Abyss fights back and they go at it as we go right to commercial.
We come back as Abyss sidesteps a charge from Young and dumps him out to the floor. Abyss goes out after Young and gets his eyes gouged, then Young whips Abyss into the barricade and rolls him back inside. Young comes off the second rope, right into the clutches of Abyss, who flattens Young with a Samoan drop. Abyss runs Young over with a series of clotheslines, Young escapes a chokeslam and dropkicks Abyss’ knee out, but Abyss gets a chokeslam on the second try and covers for 2. Abyss gets Janice out from under the ring and brings it into the ring, but the referee confiscates it. Young hits Abyss low while all this is going on, and hits a top rope elbowdrop for 2. Abyss fires up and hits the Black Hole Slam out of nowhere for the win.
That was kind of a surprising finish, but Abyss is now one win away from the round of 16 while EY is in the hole and can’t lose another match if he wants to stay alive in this one.
Josh is in the studio and has EC3 on Skype, and asks him to talk about what happened at Bound For Glory. EC3 says he never lost the TNA World Title, he was robbed because it was collusion between Dixie Carter and the Hardys. The World Title Series is great, but it shouldn’t be happening because he should still be the champion. Josh points out that his first match with Austin Aries didn’t end the way he wanted it to, but EC3 says that Aries didn’t beat him and he won’t beat him. Josh asks EC3 if he thinks he’s behind the 8 ball, and he says he’s not because he’s destroyed Lashley before and he’ll do it again, and the World Title Series isn’t over until he wins.
ERic Young is backstage raving about how the world is against him, but this is one battle in the war and he always wins in the end. Abyss says that Eric Young got his tonight, and Bobby Roode and James Storm will meet the same fate because the monster Abyss is back.
World Title Series – Group Tag Team Specialist: Robbie E vs Eddie Edwards
Eddie and Robbie start off working holds on the mat, but Robbie drills Eddie with a back elbow and covers for 2. Eddie takes Robbie’s knee out and drills him with a shining wizard knee for 2. Eddie charges Robbie in the corner, but Robbie moves and Eddie runs his shoulder into the ringpost and falls to the floor. Robbie takes Eddie out with a dive, then rolls him back in and quickly goes on the offensive with a hard clothesline for 2. We go to the roundtable where Matt Hardy says Robbie is the least likely to advance from their pool, and he knows that Robbie realizes that deep down. They wind up out on the floor and wipe each other out with a double clothesline, then they head back in where Robbie hits Hertz Donut for 2. Eddie drills Robbie with a leaping enziguiri and a backpack driver for 2, then catches Robbie in the Achilles lock on the kickout. Robbie escapes and hits a deathdrop for the win.
Winner: Robbie E
Well, that was a bit of an upset! In all fairness, this was a pretty good match and Robbie really got to show what he can do as a serious competitor. They follow the Code of Honor and Eddie rolls out of the ring so Robbie can have his moment.
We see a video package showing Bobby Roode’s history as the TNA World Champion and his recent victory for the King of the Mountain Title, then Roode is backstage saying that he hasn’t forgotten about his quest to regain the World Title, and that starts tonight. He’s in a group with four guys who built this company from the ground up, have won more gold, and created more memories than anyone else in the hsitory of the company. He and James have a lot of history and know each other better than they know themselves, they’ve both changed, and tonight’s match will be determined by who wants it more.
Robbie E is backstage saying that people laugh about Robbie E, but people forget he’s a two time Tag Team Champion, a former X Division Champion, and he proved he’s a great singles wrestler tonight. Eddie Edwards says Robbie surprised a lot of people tonight and he poked fun at him leading into the match, but he regrets it now. They’re going to do battle again and it won’t go the same way twice, but he got the better of him tonight.
Josh and Pope talk about stuff, then Jeremy Borash sits down at the roundtable with the Future 4 and they talk about their personal issues with one another and pick who’s coming to the next round with them.
World Title Series – Group Wildcard: Crazzzzzzzzzzzzzzy Steve vs Mahabali Shera
From what I’ve seen Crazzy Steve is a way, way better worker than the gimmick lets him show, but I have to wonder if even he can get a watchable match out of this guy. Steve wants a test of strength that he handily loses as the announcers talk about how the circus he was a part of went out of business. Shera runs Steve over with a shoulderblock, then hammers him with a clothesline in the corner. Steve escapes a running powerslam and catches Shera with a dropkick. He hits the ropes and runs right into a sky high from Shera for the win.
Winner: Mahabali Shera
Jesus, Shera really, really sucks. He was out of place for at least four or five spots in that match, and looked like he potatoed Steve on as many spots.
We see a video package looking at Storm’s path trying to recapture Beer Money since losing the World Title, and how he cobbled together a group of misfits to form the Revolution before they eventually turned on him.
Josh and Pope talk over the standings in the World Title Series, and hype next week’s Lashley vs EC3 and Aries vs Kennedy matches. We see a video package hyping how crazy Bobby Lashley trains to be a superior athlete, and then it’s main event time!
World Title Series – Group TNA Originals: Bobby Roode vs James Storm
Storm tries to play to Roode by doing his half of the Beer Money cheer, but Roode isn’t going for it, so they tie up and methodically feel each other out before Roode rolls over Storm with a clothesline and sends him out to the floor as we go to commercial.
We’re back, and Storm is working Roode over with hard forearm shots before running into a back elbow from Roode. Roode goes up in the corner for the ten punch count, then drills Storm with a dropkick to the face. Storm powders out to the floor, suckerpunches Roode when he reaches through the ropes, but Roode reverses a whip and sends Storm crashing into the barricade. They head back inside where James Storm mule kicks Roode in the ding ding, then locks him down with a rear chinlock. Storm hits a series of elbowdrops and a legdopr for 2, then it’s back to the chinlock. We see the five minute countdown clock appear on screen, but a quick look at the clock on my cable box tells me they don’t have enough time to hit the time limit. Roode hits a spinebuster for 2, then hits a Blockbuster for 2. Storm hits a real low flying headscissors, drills Roode with Closing Time for 2, and he gets a chair from ringside to part Bobby Roode’s hair. Roode kicks Storm and gets ahold of the chair, my video skips for some reason, and it cuts to Roode hitting a Perfectplex for the win.
Winner: Bobby Roode
Great match, likely the last between the former Beer Money partners.