TNA IMPACT Wrestling Wrestlers of the Week 2.13.14
By Neil Borenstein
Each week here at 1wrestling.com, I will select three of the top wrestlers from TNA’s IMPACT Wrestling and present them to you in inverse order as the show’s Wrestlers of the Week. In choosing the show’s top three superstars, performances from that week’s IMPACT Wrestling and any relevant preceding programming – such as Pay-Per-Views – will be taken into consideration.
TNA IMPACT Wrestling Wrestlers of the Week for February 13, 2014
3. Gunner — for holding onto his World Heavyweight Title shot briefcase and grabbing the one for the tag straps as well in a winner-take-all, case vs. case match alongside James Storm:
For all the talk about Samoa Joe holding No. 1 Contender status to the TNA World Heavyweight Championship, it was somewhat forgotten that Gunner also possesses a shot at that very title whenever he so chooses. Because of claiming the briefcase with a World Heavyweight Title shot inside, Gunner is entitled to an opportunity at the top prize in TNA, and apparently he’s not looking to hold out much longer on cashing it in.
The top of the IMPACT Wrestling broadcast involved some talk between Dixie Carter’s crew and MVP, who stood on the entrance ramp with Joe. After MVP announced that Joe and Magnus would have the title match at Lockdown, Gunner joined the party and reminded everybody that he, too, was chasing the championship. And he told Magnus that he would cash in his briefcase next week.
Since things can never be that cut and dry, Carter upped the ante and told Gunner he would be defending the briefcase this week against her nephew, Ethan Carter III. At that point, MVP matched her stipulation by putting the World Tag Team Championship briefcase that ECIII possessed on the line in the match as well, in what would be a case vs. case ladder match.
MVP warned ECIII that any interference in his favor would be met with equal interference from MVP, which ended up being the case. When Magnus got involved in the contest, James Storm ran down for the rescue. MVP then made this a tag team bout, pitting Gunner and Storm, who recently patched up their partnership, against ECIII and Magnus in a case vs. case, winner-take-all contest.
After putting Carter on the ladder with a double hip toss, the duo of Gunner and Storm started to work toward a conclusion. Storm set up the ladder in the middle of the ring, while Gunner put ECIII on his shoulders for a Gun Rack. Magnus ran in to save his partner, kicking Gunner in the midsection and then sending him to the floor. Storm noticed this and chopped Magnus against the ropes, following with a closeline that sent the both of them to the outside.
Carter was left alone in the ring and positioned the ladder underneath the briefcases hanging above. But then he noticed Gunner on the apron and charged at him, only to get caught and slammed to the mat by the big man. Gunner then delivered a diving headbutt off the top rope, before climbing the ladder and pulling the briefcases down and off the hook to secure the victory.
Now, not only does Gunner have his shot at the World Heavyweight Championship that he will cash in next week on IMPACT Wrestling, but he also secured a World Tag Team Title Match for himself and Storm, which should only further solidify their burying of the hatchet and moving forward as a cohesive tag team.
2. Samoa Joe and The Wolves — for combining in The Wolves’ TNA in-ring debut to defeat The BroMans:
Because of the victory by Gunner that granted James Storm and him the TNA World Tag Team Championship opportunity, The BroMans were just a bit irked that their standing agreement with Ethan Carter III to hold off on cashing in the briefcase no longer stood. Jesse Godderz, Robbie E. and Zema Ion confronted Rockstar Spud in the back about it, and while he promised Dixie Carter would take care of it, MVP stepped in to handle business instead.
He told the three-man group to get down to the ring, where they would square off against The Wolves’ Davey Richards and Eddie Edwards in their TNA debut, as well as a mystery partner that would soon be revealed. That partner was Samoa Joe, who made this challenge for The BroMans all the more daunting.
There was very little doubt which way this match would go, and it would serve as an incredible way for The Wolves to make a solid first impression against the current tag team champions and for Joe to get a good warmup as his match against either Magnus of Gunner gets closer.
When Joe looked for the pinfall off a snap slam to Ion, Robbie E. and Godderz interrupted the count, prompting Richards and Edwards to get into the ring. The Wolves sent the tag champions to the outside, before hitting the ropes and leaping out with dual suicide dives.
Meanwhile, Joe charged at Ion in the corner of the ring, catching a boot to the face. Ion rolled out of the way of a closeline and ran back in at Joe, getting caught and slammed to the mat with an STO. As Ion stumbled back to his feet, Joe snapped on a rear naked choke and dropped down for the grapevine for an almost immediate tapout.
The Wolves made sure to point to the BroMans as a sign of their desire to hold the World Tag Team Championships, while Joe continued to look all fired up as the momentum builds for the Samoan Submission Machine. It’s paying off quite handsomely to be aligned with MVP right now.
1. Mr. Anderson — for stuffing Bully Ray into a coffin and slamming the lid shut to attain victory in the latest of their grudge matches:
The rivalry between Bully Ray and Mr. Anderson has been a long and intense one. What started out as an internal biker club struggle has become incredibly personal between the two, and they were looking to put an end to it all this week on IMPACT Wrestling. Nothing says finality more than a Casket Match.
Ray, who consistently brought up Anderson’s wife and newborns and even went so far as to call Mrs. Anderson during the broadcast, perhaps went a little too far and gave Anderson the right amount of motivation to push through for the victory.
Anderson, who was bloodied during the contest, looked to be in especially bad shape when he took a shot to the midsection with a steel chair before being sent through a table with a powerbomb. Ray then moved Anderson to the casket, where he stepped inside and looked to deliver a piledriver. While Ray took some time to throw up the horns and taunt, Anderson stepped out of the casket and delivered a Mic Check that landed Ray face-first into the casket. Anderson then grabbed the lid, which had previously broken off, and slammed it on top of Ray to close out the contest with a victory.
Maybe these two are finally done; we’ll have to wait and see to find out. But perhaps the most important match of their feud went Anderson’s way, who defeated Ray in a match he proposed and did so in defense his family.