In the ideal world of Impact Wrestling, Bobby Roode would have won his match against Kurt Angle at Bound for Glory after working so hard to win the Bound for Glory series from his little deficit and arm injury. It would have been a great story to tell of hard work and persistence paying off against all odds (pun not intended) and it would have been the first definitive step in helping Roode establish himself as not only a talented wrestler, but a legit champion, and even, dare I say… the face of the company.
However, we live in the real world. In this real world where Impact Wrestling isn’t nearly as perfect as it could be, we have Kurt Angle screwing Bobby Roode out of the title, even though he didn’t need to screw him on the account that Roode didn’t try to break the pin and the ref didn’t see Roode’s foot under the ropes, and on the account that it’s Kurt frikin’ Angle and there’s no reason why Angle couldn’t have scored a clean pin on Roode despite being heel. Kurt Angle then turns around and loses the title against James Storm in less time than it takes an intoxicated Jeff Hardy to lose. (I know this is an old joke, and it’s partially useless now because Jeff Hardy is definitely back where he needs to be… there was definitely a difference between when Jeff Hardy first showed up in TNA last year and Jeff Hardy’s recent stint thus far.) James Storm then turns around and loses the title to Roode, who decided to smash the beer bottle over his head for the heel turn. When I was watching that match, I had a feeling that someone had to go heel, and I was hoping that I was wrong, because… well, I’m going to get into all of that shortly.
But yeah… I just don’t understand the logic in turning Roode heel on three counts.
First, I’m going to get Fourtune out the way. The Daniels vs. Styles stuff had already put a hole in Fourtune, which was a stable that was already losing steam once they stopped feuding with Immortal directly. Daniels is clearly still being a dillusional bad guy (a character that I’m not even sure I like for Daniels), and with this riff between Roode and Storm, Beer Money’s finished (which I think is really bad for Impact’s currently lacking tag team division), and I think Fourtune is officially finished because now they got three guys. Which is less than Four.
Maybe they should make AJ and Kaz a tag team and use them to rebuild the tag team division…
Moving on, now for the important stuff, like how this (il)logic directly effects the Bobby Roode character. You see, all that build up from the Bound for Glory series… From the injured arm to the rise to the top. From all the promos that promoted Roode as a blue collar worker. From all the fans that believed in him. All of that… that goes down the drain. Don’t get me wrong, knowing how Impact Wrestling booking works, it’s possible that Roode might be a face in a matter of months. Still, Roode is the homegrown talent that they put all this build on towards making him a champion (I know I’m repeating myself), and it was all suppose to pay off big time. Instead, not only did we not get any pay off at Bound for Glory (Impact Wrestling’s biggest PPV of the year, by the way… you know, the kind of PPV where a star can be born), but we don’t even get to see Roode further develop into what Impact Wrestling initially had planned for him.
Like I mentioned earlier, I had the feeling that one of them had to go heel, and I was hoping that I was wrong. I saw no reason that Roode couldn’t win the championship in a nice, feel good championship match, especially with Samoa Joe at the heels of that random #1 contender match. No reason in somehow catapulting Samoa Joe or some other threat into the title picture (it’s not like Impact hasn’t done it before… read: James Storm) while giving Roode his payoff, even if it’s a few weeks too late.
But if they really had to make someone go heel, why not make James Storm the heel, and have him retain? Just like that, Roode’s chase for the championship can continue, as the man who worked so hard in the Bound for Glory to get to the top gets screwed not only by Angle, but now, his best buddy. They can still play off the build up, make it really seem like he just might not get this title, extend Roode’s story, and truly establish Roode and a star and… dare I say, the face of the company, in an epic feud against James Storm.
But of course, those are just ideas. And we, unfortunately, live in reality.