Roode Awakening, Paul Gets Punk’d

Nick Paglino

by Mark Madden

So…the main events at Impact’s “big” PPV, Bound For Glory, are:

*Hulk Hogan (58) vs. Sting (52).

*Bobby Roode vs. Kurt Angle for the Impact heavyweight title.

Uh…lotsa luck selling THAT.

I like Bobby Roode, but I don’t sense Impact Nation is wetting its pants looking to see Roode win the world title and reach the next level. A veteran wrestler recently told me he sees Roode as a latter-day Arn Anderson: Solid in every sense of the word, but not quite top-shelf. An excellent supporting player, but no more.

The Impact heavyweight championship means nothing. Witness six title changes this year alone.

The Bound For Glory series was compromised when Crimson was removed from the competition via worked injury. Wrestling logic holds that Crimson is now a ready-made No. 1 contender. That might be true if the BFG series was an established concept, and if Crimson were an established talent. But it isn’t, and he isn’t. Impact compromised a nearly foolproof gimmick, the winning streak, by diluting Crimson’s record with draws and other inconclusive finishes.

That’s the most maddening part of Impact’s booking: IT’S ASSUMED THAT WE’RE STUPID. Witness Traci Brooks banging Bischoff in an attempt to get the Knockouts VP job when it had only recently been revealed she’s married to Kazarian.

Where’s Kazarian’s response? How’s he feel about being cuckolded? About his wife, literally, being a whore?

We’ll never know. We’re supposed to FORGET that Kazarian and Brooks are married. We’re STUPID, and it’s ONLY WRESTLING.

Moving on, is there ANY DEMAND WHATSOEVER for Hogan vs. Sting? It’s no dream match. It previously occurred in WCW. Are we supposed to forget that, too? Sting’s heretofore foolproof gimmick has been diluted by his lame Joker shtick, and Hogan can barely walk. What’s at stake, control of the company? Maybe the LOSER should get that.

Wrestling is simple: Start at Point A, get to Point B, and give the people what they want. Impact can’t even accomplish that.


I am ASTOUNDED that Raw holds the audience it has left despite SO LITTLE ACTION. The amount of talking is OVERWHELMING.

That said, the go-home segment with Paul Levesque-McMahon and C.M. Punk was BRILLIANT. Excellent back-and-forth, with a whole lot of ribbing on the square. When PLM called Punk an undersized Internet darling, you know HE MEANT IT. When Punk says he still isn’t seen as legitimate world championship material, you know HE MEANT IT.

I’m curious to see where this goes. Kind of weird that Punk laid out PLM to end the segment. Is Punk the heel? If so, what about the idea of Kevin Nash, spurned by PLM, returning as Punk’s bodyguard?

I love and respect Bret Hart, and I understand the value of using him in Canada, where he’s a legitimate national sports hero. But, even given his physical limitations, there’s got to be a better way to use him besides putting the sharpshooter on a ring announcer. And Del Rio is right: Hart needs to sharpen his look a bit. Be the Hitman.

Mark Madden hosts a radio show 3-6 p.m. weekdays on WXDX-FM, Pittsburgh, PA (105.9). Check out his web page at Contact Mark by emailing

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