The end to last night’s heavyweight championship match at Impact Wrestling: Hardcore Justice is still resonating with the TNA faithful, as Tito Ortiz truly made his presence felt. Though not the swerve heard ’round the world, the ramifications of Tito’s actions will be discussed until the questions are answered by the man himself next week or in the coming weeks ahead. Bully Ray is the world champion again, making Ortiz not only a marked man in the eyes of the Main Event Mafia, but also making him the man who made the most impact on Impact Wrestling.
For all intents and purposes, this is how #August1Warning should have been. A man making his way to Impact Wrestling to make a statement and making that statement by changing the course of the world heavyweight title picture. If this were to have happened on August 1st, or if Tito’s debut were changed to August 15th (#August15Warning), it would have been the debut wrestling fans would have appreciated much more. Though the question of why Tito Ortiz would be raised, the audacity of the moment would have equaled the anticipation of the big reveal.
At this point, are we to assume that Tito Ortiz is now a member of the Aces & 8′s? It would certainly point to a resounding yes; however, a betrayal may not necessarily mean a new member for the Aces. Ortiz and Rampage Jackson have a scheduled pay-per-view bout in the fall of this year, so it would make more sense to book this as Tito Ortiz making the decision to strike Rampage and betray The Mafia by himself only to fuel the fire for the Bellator MMA bout. Aligning, but not joining, with the Aces & 8′s wouldn’t hurt Tito’s stay in Impact Wrestling until the MMA pay-per-view bout as he will be involved with credible professional wrestlers to further wrestling storylines. Though people will still destroy the decision to have another MMA athlete on the program, one cannot deny that TNA is looking to utilize Tito Ortiz the right way while he is in TNA Wrestling. This is the first time this author can agree that both a wrestling story is progressing along with an MMA story; showing how the partnership between TNA and Bellator can be successful if done right.
Despite acknowledging the professional wrestling aspect in regards to last night’s events, this may be more advertising for Bellator MMA than it is for Impact Wrestling. What Impact Wrestling will have to do at this point is immediately begin to shape up the world title picture with Bully as the champion. Even though the WWE holds the “anything can happen” moniker, TNA should address how uncertain a given situation is and tout the company’s ability to surprise at any moment. TNA should also use this to study on how to truly build properly going forward, from the build of #August1Warning to the actual August 1st event to how the twist ending on last night’s Impact Wrestling: Hardcore Justice could have been the right way to go from the very beginning.
When it’s all analysed, said and done, like it or not, Tito Ortiz was the man who took the ball and ran with it at the very end and left the impression of the night.
HONORABLE MENTION: BOBBY ROODE, KAZARIAN AND CHRISTOPHER DANIELS
Bobby Roode, Kazarian and Christopher Daniel certainly receive honorable mention for last night’s dominance in the BFG Series Ladder Match and Tables Match. The rub Kaz and Daniels have received from Bobby Roode is playing dividends that everyone can be happy with. All three are delivering in their promise to take the BFG Series by storm heading into No Surrender next month and into the Bound for Glory pay-per-view in October. What should be looked at is how these men will interact as the series closes. Also, should these men be involved in the final #1 contender’s match at No Surrender, how much of a partnership will there still be? Until that question is answered, expect more dominance from the trio.
Who do you feel made the most impact last night at Impact Wrestling: Hardcore Justice? Sound off below!
NOTE: Though comments and discussion are encouraged, we ask that spoilers for next week’s Impact Wrestling broadcast are not provided in the comments area in consideration of your fellow readers who do not wish to be spoiled. Thank you.
Follow me on Twitter: @RealRicSantos