TNA Impact Review – May 30, 2024

TNA Wrestling May 30

This week’s TNA Impact episode was headlined by Joe Hendry facing Eddie Edwards in singles action as TNA continued to build towards Against All Odds. Plus, X-Division champion Mustafa Ali is in action along with Steve Maclin facing Mike Santana.

TNA Wrestling: 30.5.24 from MegaCorp Pavilion, Newport, Kentucky

The opening video recap focused on Ryan Nemeth and Matt Hardy beating The System last week and the post-match beatdown that led to the return of Nic Nemeth. This led to two title matches for Against All Odds.

Match #1: Chris Bey vs Ace Austin

We are straight into the opening match which pits tag team partners against each other, as the tension within this team lingers. I feel this would’ve been better had one of them turned full heel after they lose their Tag Title rematch but what do I know? Bey backed Austin in the corner early on, then they broke. He rolled Austin up for a sneaky pinfall for 2. Austin blocked a corner attack and hit an enziguiri. He hit a hard chop in the corner but missed another in the next corner and Bey struck with chops of his own. Austin sent Bey to the ring apron, but he quickly came back in with an arm drag and head scissors. Bey nailed a single-leg dropkick and got a 1 count. He hit a back elbow and got another 1 count. Austin tried a roll up for a 1 count. He tried a sleeper on a grounded Bey, who got to his feet and fought out with elbow shots then a jawbreaker. Austin side-stepped Bey and tossed him to the outside. Despite watching his cartwheel routine every single match as a tag team, Bey still couldn’t avoid it like a real idiot. Austin flipped around, so Bey slipped back in and hit him with a hard clothesline. He avoided a strike and went to the mid-section with kicks. Austin missed a springboard kick and ran into a spinebuster, from which Bey got a 2 count. Austin avoided the Art of Finesse and hit a clothesline then a single-leg dropkick. He nailed a corner clothesline and a side Russian Legsweep then a jumping legdrop. Austin hit a few knee strikes but Bey shook it off with a kick to the head. He missed a corner attack and Austin nailed a springboard kick for 2. Austin missed The Fold and ran into a cutter. Austin caught him in mid-air and went for a roll up, but Bey countered with a bridge pin to win the match after 10 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Chris Bey

Analysis: ***1/2 That was a very good match that was very even throughout. My annoyance is that they probably did it too early, but down the line they can have another match with a full blown face/heel dynamic.

Austin was annoyed post-match but still shook Bey’s hand. It looked like he was going to attack him from behind but grabbed him to open the ropes and let Bey through. The commentators sounded concerned.

Analysis: A bit of a tease for a future heel turn. I like it.

Match #2: Xia Brookside vs Steph De Lander

A match between two ladies who have more of a storyline than the actual women’s champion. Odd! SDL used her power early on. Brookside blocked a corner attack and used a head scissors but couldn’t take SDL down. SDL hit a Fallaway slam for a 2 count. She pummelled Xia with right hands on the mat. SDL backed Brookside into the corner with a chop. She hit a splash in the opposite corner but Xia blocked the next elbow attempt. Xia ducked a clothesline and used a head scissors to toss SDL into the corner. She hit a double knees against the turnbuckle and SDL bailed to the outside for a break. SDL went under the ring to get a chair but PCO was under the ring holding the chair! Brookside went for a running crossbody off the apron but PCO caught her and put her back in the ring gently. SDL and PCO argued at ringside so PCO told her to get back into the ring. Brookside rolled her up for the win after 5 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Xia Brookside

Analysis: **1/2 I was enjoying that until they made it purely about the PCO/SDL storyline which overshadows the result. Brookside gets a win after losing to Ash last week.

SDL blamed PCO for the loss after the match. PCO took out a hand-drawn heart on a piece of paper. Brookside was clapping from the ramp, instead of having the focus on her for beating a big name in the division. SDL put the piece of paper down her top and PCO was pretty happy about that.

Hannifan recapped Jordynne Grace’s appearance on NXT from this past week. It was awesome and a complete surprise. Grace faces Roxanne Perez for the NXT Women’s Championship and it looks like there will be some more TNA/NXT crossover in the future. Bring it on!

Analysis: This was fantastic and hopefully part of a working relationship moving forward. I don’t love NXT’s roster, but perhaps some main roster talent that isn’t getting much of a push can go to NXT or come down to TNA for some match ups. The pessimist in me says that the Knockouts’ Division is so bad that Grace has to go to other companies to get a decent match. Yikes.

Laredo Kid was cutting a promo in Spanish when First Class interrupted him. AJ Francis announced that on the 20th anniversary of Impact, Kid defends his Digital Media Championship against him That’s next week. Kid wasn’t impressed with that so AJ sucker-punched him and security broke up the scuffle.

Analysis: I’m not sure how they’ll book that. A Swann title reign would’ve been a better idea. I think First Class are great. Laredo Kid as champion was an odd choice when Crazzy Steve’s heel turn was going so well. He hasn’t been on TV for weeks.

Kon was backstage looking for Santino Marella. I guess authority figures in TNA don’t get offices. He bumped into Jake Something, who was not impressed. Kon asked if Something was going to do something about it. Cody Deaner got between them. Something wanted a fight and Kon challenged him for next week. Kon said that Something shouldn’t listen to Deaner because it didn’t work out for him.

Analysis: Big man match for next week. That should be passable.

Match #3: Sami Callihan vs Jonathan Gresham

Gresham had a slightly different mask this week and a grey goatee it seemed. Let’s see if he can shake an effort out of Callihan tonight. Gresham tried to bite Callihan’s arm early on. Gresham targeted the left arm but Callihan broke free, looking concerned. Callihan tossed Gresham over the top rope and chopped Gresham around the ringside area. He started talking to the camera so Gresham started choking him out from behind as we went to a commercial break.

(Commercial break)

They were still fighting on the outside as the action returned. Callihan missed a chop against the post and smashed his hand. Gresham rolled back into the ring and Sami followed him. Gresham raked the eyes of Callihan and hit a forearm shot to the head but Sami got his foot on the ropes. The commentators kept playing up the fact that the referee hand a mask and gloves on due to Gresham’s deadly poison ink. Gresham went for a German suplex from the ring apron. Callihan blocked it with elbow shots and hit a hard forearm. He nailed the Cactus Driver 97 on the ring apron! Gresham was completely out of it on the floor but Callihan took far too long to send him back into the ring. Gresham came to and they met in the centre of the ring. He nailed a headbutt and a few chops but Callihan wasn’t fazed and hit a Death Valley Driver for 2. Callihan’s chest was bright red from all the chops. Gresham countered the Cactus Driver with an enziguiri. He started coughing to signify that the ink was coming but Callihan could see it and cut him off with a right hand. Callihan had ink all over his hands and looked worried. The referee panicked so Gresham nailed a low blow and a sunset flip pin for the win after 9 minutes of TV time.

Winner by pinfall: Jonathan Gresham

Analysis: *** I’m sure there will be plenty of people who don’t like this storyline but, as I’ve written before, it’s different and a push for Gresham so I’m okay with it. Callihan still isn’t impressing me since his return. He just seems there and that’s about it.

Gail Kim sat down with Gisele Shaw. Kim’s acting is really bad. Shaw said she needed a break after losing another title match. Her faction also imploded. Kim asked what Shaw’s motivations were. Shaw was a bit stumped but agreed to return next week.

Analysis: This is pretty lame. I would’ve just preferred her to return and attack someone.

Frankie Kazarian was backstage and forced Gia Miller to say his nickname ‘The King of TNA’. That was it.

Match #4: Steve Maclin vs Mike Santana

This is an Under Siege rematch. Maclin has been kind of lost in the shuffle again since re-signing. They could’ve pushed this out until Against All Odds instead of it getting lost in the shuffle of a pretty decent show this week. They brawled on the outside early on. Maclin suplexed Santana into the ring apron and hit an elbow drop to the floor. He tossed him inside the ring for a backbreaker and a 2 count. Santana slipped out of a scoop slam attempt and nailed a cutter. He kipped up and fired up the crowd. Santana nailed an uppercut in the corner and dodged a spear attempt. He nailed an enziguiri and a suplex for 2. Maclin ducked a clothesline and nailed a shot to the back of the neck. He hit his corner spear and a powerslam for 2. Maclin wanted a superplex but Santana tossed him off face-first into the mat. Santana hit a nice Frog Splash for a close nearfall. He rushed at Maclin, who sent him to the outside. Back in the ring, Santana hit a superkick and then a suicide dive to the outside. Maclin quickly recovered and nailed a diving crossbody through the ring. All of a sudden, Trey Miguel and Zac Wentz hit the ring and took out Maclin. The match ended in a no contest after 10 minutes. They turned their attention to Santana and beat him down too. Wentz nailed Maclin with a superkick.

Result: No Contest

Analysis: ***1/4 They were building to a nice match with high intensity until the finish that actually worked well on two fronts: firstly, it continues the Maclin/Rascalz story and secondly, no one looks weak by taking a loss. Maybe Santana and Maclin will team up to face Wentz and Miguel?

There was a video recap of Tasha Steelz beating Jody Threat last week. There was some tension between her and Dani Luna. Lars Fredriksen was giving them a pep talk. He said that Luna would face Steelz next week to make up for Threat’s loss.

Analysis: TNA are even stupider than we all think if they break up the only other team in the Knockouts tag team division. Just don’t.

Match #5: Non-Title match: Mustafa Ali w/ Campaign Singh vs Leon Slater

There was a recap of how they quickly set this match up backstage. Naming him Campaign Singh is actually hilarious and I rate it highly. I’m not sure if he’s at the level needed to support Ali to be taken seriously but I’ll give it a try. Slater has been impressive in his few TNA appearances. Ali hit a few shoulder blocks early on to show his experience. He missed an enziguiri and Slater caught him with a kick. Slater nailed a handspring back elbow to take Ali down. Ali used the ropes to hang Slater up. They battled on the stage and Slater whipped Ali into the steel ring post. He hit a crazy diving senton from the ramp to the floor.

(Commercial break)

Slater was still on top as we returned from the break. He took it to Ali with right hands in the corner. Ali recovered and sent Slater crashing face-first into the mat. He tried a pin but Slater powered out at 2. Ali choked Slater out in the corner with his foot. He distracted the referee so Singh could continue choking Slater out. Ali hit a rolling neckbreaker for 2. Slater tried a surprise roll up for 2. He hit a running cutter and went to the top rope. Ali cut him off but Slater still hit a crossbody to the outside. Ali recovered and hitting a suicide dive through the rope to take Slater out against the barricade. Back in the ring, Ali set up for the 450 but Slater moved. Ali nailed a German suplex but missed a kick in the corner. Ali went for a diving cutter but Slater caught him in mid-air with a neckbreaker. He finally covered Ali but only got a 2 count. Slater wanted to take Ali to the top but got slammed down hard on his head. Ali dragged him to the corner and smashed his head against the ring post. He nailed the 450 for the win after 8 minutes of TV time.

Winner by pinfall: Mustafa Ali

Analysis: ***1/4 That was an exciting match that gave Slater a good rub and continued the run of very good matches that Ali has had in TNA. He is the best thing about the show at present.

Next week on the 20 year anniversary show:

* TNA Knockouts’ Championship: Jordynne Grace (c) vs Allysin Kay
* TNA Digital Media Championship: Laredo Kid (c) vs AJ Francis
* Speedball Mountain vs Mustafa Ali & Campaign Singh
* Gisele Shaw’s in-ring return
* Kon vs Jake Something

Analysis: Not a bad lineup but nothing must-see or that big that fits a 20-year celebration.

The commentators ran down the Against All Odds card. I still can’t get over the fact that Mike Bailey isn’t facing Mustafa Ali but hopefully they’re holding that off for Slammiversary.

Match #5: Eddie Edwards w/ Alisha & Brian Myers vs Joe Hendry

Hendry got a great ovation as always. He’s a real man of self-promotion and I hope he gets a proper push as the year goes on. Hendry made fun of Edwards’ hair in a pre-match promo. The Nemeths came out to make sure Myers didn’t interfere. Hendry hit an early stalling suplex for 2 and we went straight to a break.

(Commercial break)

Edwards was in control as we returned to the action. He beat down Hendry with right hands. Hendry caught Edwards’ arm as he went for a chop. Edwards blocked a corner attack but Hendry burst out of the corner with a clothesline. He caught Edwards with a Fallaway Slam that sent Edwards to the outside. Hendry hit a clothesline then tossed Edwards back into the ring. Hendry hit a cutter for 2. He hit an uppercut but Edwards bounced back with a clothesline. Edwards scaled the turnbuckle but took too long mouthing off at the Nemeths and Hendry cut him off. Edwards hit a headbutt to knock Joe down. Hendry rushed back with a super Fallaway Slam for a close nearfall. Great spot there. Hendry went to the top but Edwards caught him with an enziguiri. He nailed a superplex and bounced right up into the Tiger Driver for a very close 2 count. Edwards set up for the Boston Knee Party but Hendry caught him in mid-air and nailed him with the Standing Ovation for the win after 10 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Joe Hendry

Analysis: ***1/2 That was a very good main event, made better by the commentators putting over Hendry as a top talent. Tom Hannifan is up there with Michael Cole as the best commentator for the big moments in matches and calling them with emotion.

Moose was backstage looking for Matt Hardy. Why has he waited 7 days since the last Impact show to find him? Hardy showed up and called him Moose’s destiny. I still can’t take him seriously with his laughter and hair. They came to blows and Hardy bashed Moose’s head into a locker a few times. Moose tossed him against a roller door and nailed Hardy with a steel chair twice. Moose put the chair over Hardy’s neck and tossed him into the door then smashed the chair with another chair repeatedly. Hardy slumped to the ground and Impact went off the air.

Analysis: Another beatdown by a member of The System over Hardy. He got one moment to shine last week and now it’s back to Moose dominating. They need to make us believe he can beat Moose, not just because he’s Matt Hardy the wizard but because he can match it with Moose.

Final Rating: 7.25/10

Thankfully, it was a much better show than last week. Five of the six singles matches were in the 8-10-minute range and only the ladies missed out with a 5-minute match but some storyline progression nonetheless. The main event between Hendry and Edwards was probably the pick of the bunch. No new matches were made for Against All Odds. Wouldn’t it be fun if some NXT talent showed up?

The next TNA monthly special is Against All Odds on June 14th. Here’s the card so far:

* TNA World Championship: Moose (c) vs Matt Hardy
* TNA Tag Team Championships: The System (c) vs Nic & Ryan Nemeth
* TNA X-Division Championship: Mustafa Ali (c) vs Trent Seven

Any feedback or comments are welcome. My email address is in case anybody wants to get in touch with me and my Twitter/X handle is @thomok6 as well. Thanks for reading!