It’s really not a great time to be a TNA fan. I know a lot of fans have spent years saying the sky is falling in TNA, but in this case it really does seem to be the case. They’re facing their second cancellation in about a year and there’s no word yet of where they might wind up after February. However, this Sunday they’re airing a full three hour pay per view with their biggest show of the year: “Bound For Glory 2015”. Today we’re going to take a look at this year’s main event and how it might be the best match TNA has put together in years.
2005 – Rhino (substitute for Kevin Nash) b. Jeff Jarrett to win the World Title
2006 – Sting b. Jeff Jarrett to win the World Title
2007 – Sting b. Kurt Angle to win the World Title
2008 – Sting b. Samoa Joe to win the World Title
2009 – AJ Styles b. Sting to retain the World Title
2010 – Jeff Hardy b. Mr. Anderson and Kurt Angle to win the vacant World Title
2011 – Kurt Angle b. Bobby Roode to retain the World Title
2012 – Jeff Hardy b. Austin Aries to win the World Title
2013 – AJ Styles b. Bully Ray to win the World Title
2014 – No World Title match
There have been eleven men who have wrestled in the eight main events of Bound For Glory over the years. The title matches have been dominated by veterans with Sting, Kurt Angle, AJ Styles and Jeff Hardy being involved in all but one of them. The only time these people lost in the main event was to each other. Bound For Glory main events have never been a place to create new stars.
However, that is finally changing this year as the main event is a three way match between Ethan Carter III (32 years old), Drew Galloway (30) and Matt Hardy (41. Ok so they’re not all spring chickens). Jeff Hardy is still around, but this time he’s just a guest referee. Carter is coming in as an undefeated champion and very well may be the second person under the age of 40 to retain the title in the main event. It’s also a chance to make Galloway into the new star the company could be built around as he’s young but also a veteran, which is a rare combination.
This year’s main event also presents a far better story. You have three distinct personalities with different reasons to want to win, aside from being champion of course. Let’s take a look at each one.
Ethan Carter III – Carter comes in as champion and has been undefeated since debuting at “Bound For Glory 2013”. It’s one of the longest winning streaks in wrestling history and Carter is playing one heck of a rich heel as his aunt Dixie had propped him up for over a year. Carter takes great pride in being rich, undefeated and champion, regularly saying that he’s in God Mode.
Drew Galloway – A newcomer to the company, Galloway only debuted with TNA back in January. Galloway got off to a hot start by forming his group the Rising which went to war against MVP’s Beat Down Clan. This feud went on for a good while until Eli Drake turned on Galloway, ending the war with the Clan but starting a new war with Galloway. This continued Galloway’s reputation as a man who would fight, which made him perfect to captain Team TNA against the invading Global Force Wrestling roster. Galloway led his team to victory and then earned the World Title shot as a result.
Matt Hardy – Finally we have the old war horse himself. Hardy has been feuding with Carter for a few months now and has caused his brother Jeff to be forced to work for Carter. The show is in Hardy’s home state of North Carolina and Jeff has been appointed guest referee after Carter fired him. This is the idea of all the planets aligning for Hardy one more time to finally win his first World Title.
Despite Hardy being added to the main event with three minutes to go in the final episode of “Impact Wrestling” before “Bound For Glory 2015”, all three make sense in the match and have a good to very good chance of leaving as champion. The match itself should be good as well with Carter always playing a good scavenger, Galloway supplying exciting offense for someone his size and Hardy there to hold the whole thing together.
This is also the first show since “Bound For Glory 2009” to have a challenger (or challengers) who didn’t win a tournament or series of matches to earn their shot. “Bound For Glory 2011-2013” all had the Bound For Glory Series and “Bound For Glory 2010” was main evented by a tournament final three way dance. Instead, just for a change, Galloway and Hardy both won matches to earn their spots. Well, to be fair Galloway won the tag match for himself and Hardy so Hardy really hasn’t done anything but at least it’s a good story.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, it’s a chance to try something new on top. As mentioned, TNA is in trouble at the moment and the World Champion is going to be the focal point of the company as they go through this very dark time. After years of trying to have the same group of people on top, it might be time to try something fresh. Maybe that’s sticking with Carter who has only held the title a few months. Maybe it’s Galloway, who would be one of the youngest champions in the history of the title. Or maybe it’s Hardy, who would be the latest veteran to hold the championship.
This year’s Bound For Glory main event may not be the best wrestling match of all time or the most dramatic, but it might be the most important main event they’ve ever had. While it’s possible that the title and show are long past saving (and they probably are), this could be TNA’s chance to set up something new going forward. They need someone to point to as a future star who the company could build around going forward and for once there’s a chance that it won’t be an old star who has seen his better days. It’s one last chance to hope for TNA, even though they have a long history of letting their fans down.
So who wins? This depends on how you want to look at it. If you look at it from a good storytelling perspective, the best idea would be to go with Galloway, who has been built up as a new star for months now and has the potential to be a big star. On the other hand, Carter has been treated as TNA’s biggest project for a long time now and there could be a very long reign in his future. Finally there’s Hardy, who is probably the worst possible outcome as it would be more for the live crowd and going back to the same stale ideas that TNA has had for years now.
I’ll go with Galloway, but don’t put it past TNA to go with the worst possible option.
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