Going into July and the Destination X event TNA can hold there head up high, despite ratings not showing it the quality of product has been top notch most of the time with some great matches, promos and invasions.
TNA has done a great job transforming the product in recent months, mainly since Vince Russo has parted ways with the company, for the most part the product feels fresh, this may just be down to the Bound for Glory Series and the X Division Championship tournaments but at the minute the stupid angles seem to have been cut down.
|Claire Lynch clogging up TV time|
Another reminder of this is Madison Rayne crushing on a mystery wrestler which is just dragging the Knockouts back into Diva territory by taking away the strong independence the division is known for, there is nothing wrong with pairing wrestlers up, just look at EY and ODB, but don't reduce a former KO Champion to a giggling teenager.
Joseph Park's character still remains to entertain, but we all know he is Abyss and the sooner this reveal is made the better, hopefully the challenge laid down to Bully Ray on Impact (28/06) will bring about the end of this angle and match where Park's reveals the secret we all know. As much as Abyss has done in TNA the business seems to be at a point where supernatural situations and parts unknown are not needed any more, with more realistic characters such as Aries and Roode taking president which leaves the Abyss character looking dated and more of a throwback to the early TNA years, hopefully the coming weeks will blur old and new although has the damage been done with two separate characters already?
Sting remains off air since his beat down on Impact (14/06) by three masked men, although just a tool to take The Icon off TV for a while and get him out of the feud with Roode we are still left with the fact three guys jumped the barriers and no one came to the rescue, no security stopped these men and not one of the wrestlers praising Sting for being the first inductee to the HOF cared that he was being taken out!
The Bound For Glory series is under way and is more structured than last year, whilst annoying that some of the matches have been over in a matter of minutes in typical television matches its good to see random matches that actually matter. Samoa Joe is making up for his poor outing last year with a number of submission victories with the crowd behind, a match with Kurt Angle taking us back to 2007 is on the Destination X card which is making the event a must watch.
|Ryan gets in Taz's face|
Gut Check continues and is very hit and miss, it is a good way of getting new talent on TV but seen as Alex Silva hasn't actually appeared on Impact since is it worth while? Silva and Taeler Hendrix have both wrestled previously in OVW so were likely on there way to having a shot on Impact at some point anyway.
The highlight of Gut Check so far has been Joey Ryan, since getting turned down in May he has started posting videos on YouTube against TNA and on Impact (28/06) invaded the Gut Check segment holding up a sign saying '87% of people can't be wrong' in reference to the percentage of people who voted for him to get a contract. This work has been the biggest talking point so far and hopefully will launch Ryan who could be this years Austin Aries.
|high flying X Division action|
With Aries trading in his X Division title for a shot at the Heavyweight Championship the mad scramble to become his replacement has started with independent wrestlers taking part to qualify for a tournament taking place at Destination X. Doug Williams, Kid Kash and Zema Ion get automatic spots in the first round as they are the only people left in the X Division following last years reboot and hopefully Mark Haskins may make an appearance as he to is still on the books. 'The original playa from the Himalaya' Sanjay Dutt returned after three years to book his spot at the ppv as did Rashad Cameron (Sabian). The matches on display on Impact showed the X Division style off and the crowd were lapping it up, it's just a shame that most of these wrestlers such as the losing pair of Rubix (Jigsaw) and Mason Andrews (Scorpio Sky) will likely not be seen in the division again, much like last years fan favourite Jack Evans; if TNA wants the X Division to be a weekly talking point again then these high flyers are the way to go! This week's Impact has some more qualifying matches to look forward to, although no one has been announced it's exciting to see who will come down to the ring!
Hulk Hogan said the TV Title was to be defended every week on Impact, Devon said he was a fighting champion, so where is it?
Finally, this week sees Angelina Love and Shannon Moore leave TNA, both have had great moments in their careers but have recently been given little opportunity to shine, we wish them best in their future endeavours.
Photos by: Lee South and Impact Wrestling (@LeeSouthPhoto) (http://www.facebook.com/ImpactWrestling/photos)