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Impact Write-Up (January 5th, 2012): Expect the Unexpected

Greetings everyone, and welcome to the recap of your Thursday night delight… Impact Wrestling’s Knockouts division. Surely you’ve all heard the phrase “expect the unexpected” before, and tonight, Impact surely gave us some rather unexpected segments, but is that always a bad thing? Match wise, the Knockouts Tag Team Titles were up for grabs as Gail Kim and Madison Rayne defended against Traci Brooks and the top contender for Gail’s Knockouts Title, Mickie James! We also had some segments featuring the four ladies above, and even one ODB… BAMMMMMMM. Let’s get started before we all lose control at the mere thought of an ODB segment.

Right before their tag team bout, we see footage shot earlier today by Gail Kim of Madison Rayne posing in her itsy bitsy teenie weenie blue decorated bikini. She beckons Gail’s approval. (Shades of our missed forgotten middle child act with Miss Karen.) Suddenly, they spot Traci Brooks lounging in the pool behind them as the two walk over and taunt her. Madison climbs into the water and starts flinging it at Traci whilst teasing her, which sparks Traci to try and get her to stop. Suddenly, she pounces on Rayne like a cheetah to its prey! Gail then hurriedly drops the camera and leaps inside the pool! She begins to dunk Traci underwater as Madison screams for her to breathe and for Gail to drown her! Mickie then leaps inside like the Tarzan to Traci’s Jane as the Tag Team Champions scurry away. Note to TNA management: Do not book your feuding Knockouts at the same hotel. You almost had a lawsuit on your hands courtesy of Traci!

We then head to the ring where the Tag Team Titles are up for grabs! Harrrrdcorrree Country and Traci Brooks make their way out first as Traci seems all business tonight due to what happened earlier. Mickie slides into the ring as the two then proceed to pose for the crowd until the still-addicting theme of Gail Kim hits and the Tag Team Champions make their way out in matching red gear. They taunt the crowd with all of their title glory, but Traci and Mickie have had enough as they attack before the bell! Traci and Gail fight on the outside, as Mickie spears Madison inside the ring. All hell has broken loose, with Traci countering an Irish whip attempt by Gail and instead, sending Gail flying into the steel steps!

Meanwhile, back in the ring, Mickie drops Madison with an arm trap neckbreaker to send the Queen Bee outside the ring. Traci rolls Gail back inside, as the challengers exchange hits, slaps, and kicks to the Knockouts Champ. Mickie proceeds to boot Madison in the stomach and send her flying into Gail as both Champions seem to be down and out… and we head to commercial break. Once back, Mickie can be seen in full control with some brutal kicks to the midsection. She follows it up with a Monkey Flip, but Madison then takes advantage until Mickie slides under a boot and snapmares Rayne. She goes to fly off the ring ropes, but Gail kicks her in the back!

Traci then runs outside the ring after Gail as Madison locks in a nice cravate. The crowd gets behind Mickie as she tries to escape, but Rayne with some knees to the face. She goes for a kick but Mickie forces her into a split and connects with a baseball slide dropkick! Gail breaks up a two count, as Traci then spears Gail inside the ring. Mickie with the bridging roll up for a near fall, but Madison then capitalizes with a clothesline for another two count. Rayne locks in a sleeper hold on the fan favorite, and the crowd attempts to do all they can to help Mickie out. This proves no use though, as Madison slams her down by the hair.

James with a quick roll up for a two count, but Madison then takes control once more with some shots to the face. Mickie crawls into the corner and Rayne chokes her with her boot, before running forward with a hip splash into a facebuster! Traci tries desperately to get the tag, as Rayne goes for the facebuster again, but Mickie throws her off. Tag into Gail Kim who destroys all hopes of a tag. She goes for a powerslam, but Mickie escapes and tags in Traci! Traci goes wild on the Knockouts Champ with some running clotheslines and a jawbreaker! She follows it up with a running set of knees to the back, before countering a neckbreaker attempt into a sick clothesline. Madison breaks up a near fall, which brings Mickie to leap off the top rope with a Lou Thesz Press. Gail then takes control with the Eat Defeat for the victory, as Madison restrains Mickie from entering to make the save. The champions retain in this hard fought bout!

Skip to 00:50

In a quest to hunt down ODB, Creepo Beard accidentally bursts himself into the Knockouts dressing room and finds Madison Rayne and Gail Kim in their gears. They begin to scream, or in Madison’s case, shriek, for him to get out, but he fails to do as instructed. He then tries to lock up with Gail (I still don’t understand why he does this every week, if someone can explain in the comments?) but she shoves him away as Madison leaps onto his back to try to take him down. He then proceeds to take Rayne off of him and stuff her in a locker! Gail eventually rushes him away and lets Madison out. The two then ask each other what the hell is wrong with him.

Later on, he finally finds ODB with photographer, Lee South. She’s decided to turn the tables on him and take some modeling snapshots! Creepo Beard again tries to lock up with him, until ODB gives him the camera back and he heads out. He then questions why ODB’s gear isn’t on because they are here to win the belts. (I’m guessing he spaced out when they lost last week.) ODB explains to him that much like March Madness, they are one and done. He attempts to lock up with her as I’m starting to question if he has some creepy lock up fetish or not, which brings ODB to toss him onto the photoshoot paper and proceed to make out on top of it!

Thoughts: A fun night for the Knockouts in my opinion. I thought the segment by the hotel pool was extremely unique and fun to give this match a little more meaning than just being thrown together. You could tell Traci wanted retribution throughout, so it was good to see that segment build up to the match. I also thought Madison shrieking “BREATHE TRACI!” was hilarious!

Onto the match itself, I enjoyed it a lot. I love that Traci brings this fire and aggression every week, and I thought they all performed great together. Mickie and Traci blended well together as a team and I loved that they took advantage before the bell rang. Not only did it show they wanted revenge on the champions, but they also were smart to know that this is a title match and you have to do whatever you can to get the upper hand against two crafty people like Madison and Gail. I hope to really see more of these four together, although I would like to see the new forgotten middle children — Velvet, Winter, and Angelina — back on TV where they belong. I feel like it’s been years since any of them appeared!

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