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Impact Coverage

Andrew’s Impact Wrestling Ratings & Analysis: 11/5/2019

After the AXS premiere we have a new Impact Champion! Let’s all celebrate with Sami Callihan!

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After the AXS premiere we have a new Impact Champion! Let’s all celebrate with Sami Callihan!

Now that Sami finally has a World Championship; what kind of world do we have to look forward to?

Will Josh Alexander have any words for Marufuji after the loss last week?

Ehh, never mind, all we care about is The Draw! Even Baby Jarvis knows it’s time for some cake!

Ratings:

  • Moose vs Willie Mack: Moose wins via Spear – ** 1/2
  • Michael Elgin vs Fallah Bahh: Elgin wins via Crossface – *** 1/4
  • Ken Shamrock vs Joey Ryan: Shamrock wins via Ankle Lock – *
  • Madison Rayne vs Taya Valkyrie (c): Valkyrie wins via Road to Valhalla – ***
  • Bhupinder Singh w/Desi Hit Squad vs Petey Williams: Petey wins via Sharpshooter – * 1/2.
  • Impromptu Extreme Rules Match: Daga, Tessa Blanchard, Rich Swann & Tommy Dreamer vs oVe: Rich wins via Roll Up – ***

Analysis:

Moose vs Willie Mack – Not a bad opening match. Moose had some great heel moments and both men brought a decent bit of aggression and athleticism. It’s also nice to see Moose get a fairly clean win over someone known to be a damn good wrestler. Aside from the weird slow sell on the dive to the outside, not a lot to nit pick in this. Decent match, helps Moose look legit and the crowd seemed mostly entertained.

-FINALLY! Alisha obviously doesn’t watch the product back after tapings, but it’s about time she stumbled onto a way to end this cringey story.

Michael Elgin vs Fallah Bahh – Fallah is on a bit of a rebuild since he’s lost some weight and starting a friendship with TJP. So going into this match, Elgin was the obvious winner, but this match did a good job at making Fallah look good. Fallah fought out of Elgin Bomb attempts, fired up out of a Death Valley Driver and just looked to have a real shot, numerous times in the match. For as dominate as he’s been, Elgin did sell the challenge, and this was really a good match. Elgin even pulls out the Crossface for the victory.

-Alisha tells Ace to skip dinner and come straight to her room. Most likely setting up Eddie to jump Ace, but let’s all act surprised when the douchebag gets what’s coming to him.

-The North cut a promo telling Marufuji that something must’ve gotten lost in translation. But open challenges from them, mean tag team challenge. So they tell Marufuji to get a teammate and next week will be a Tag Team Championship match. Marufuji and Eddie Edwards time!

Ken Shamrock vs Joey Ryan – So Shamrock comes out in sneakers and Basketball shorts, definitely not taking this seriously. He half asses the match, embarrassing Joey because he thinks he can’t wrestle. Joey does catch him with a Dropkick, which gets Shamrock’s respect, so he offers a handshake, and gets forced to grab the dong. Shamrock gets dick flipped, but fires up off that, hits 2 lariats and an Ankle Lock, then we’re done. Not much of a match, a little amusing, but I guess there’s a Ryan/Shamrock privates joke there somewhere. Hmm…20 years later and he’s still Saving Ryan’s Privates? Meh…I’ll work on it.

Madison Rayne vs Taya Valkyrie (c) – Honestly, much of the enjoyment was Callis and Mathews with their back and forth on commentary. They continue to not acknowledge that Josh and Madison are married, so the comments are hilarious. The match was very competitive, where Madison showed a lot of clever moments. Rolling through the first attempt at Road to Valhalla, managing to put herself into positions where you believed she could win the match, just generally good stuff. Bravo throwing the stuffed Pomeranian into the ring (commentary calls it Hennigan, so I appreciate the wink) to break up a pinfall. That creates the opening Taya needs to win the match. Good match, just enough interference to make sense and not feel over done.

Bhupinder Singh w/Desi Hit Squad vs Petey Williams – This was a throw away match, where the only slightly redeeming thing was they debuted Cameron Adamson, a referee with no legs. Bhupinder tried to beat down the referee after his loss, but Petey and Cameron turned the tables. The referee pulled off a few cool things, and it was a feel good moment.

-So we get the payoff of Alisha turning the tables, Eddie shows up, Alisha wants to beat Ace with Kenny and then a make out session with his wife begins. But he has to grab Kenny. So…three way?

Impromptu Extreme Rules Match: Daga, Tessa Blanchard, Rich Swann & Tommy Dreamer vs oVe – Sami and the rest of the crew went to the ring to celebrate and be asshats. Dreamer comes out for a very mediocre “fans are the real draw” promo, which was gladly saved by the challenge. Granted, numbering off the difference in team was a little too similar to the AEW segment with Inner Circle and Cody’s crew, but hey, it got us where we needed to go.

Decent brawl which saw logical splits, with Tessa interacting mainly with Jake and Sami. Tommy had a few nice moments with the Bionic Elbow and a DDT on a chair. Madman looked like a beast, Sami nearly managed to salvage his celebration, but the bad blood with him and Rich Swann boiled over nicely. Culminating in Rich getting the Roll Up win and most likely a title shot if Sami defends successfully against Cage during Turning Point.

 

Overall Score: 6.5/10

A show that was driven a bit more by the sports entertainment than the in-ring action. We got a few decent matches, but nothing to really be shocked by. However, Alisha finally figuring it out and furthering the Suzie stuff was quite amusing. I also really like the fact that they are placing another person between the Tessa/Sami payoff.

So definitely a pretty good show, but it could be boring depending on what drives your wrestling interest.


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Andrew’s Impact Wrestling Results & Match Ratings: 1.19.2021

So Hard to Kill definitely put a few things to bed while setting up an insinuation that this AEW angle is far from over. Does Moose go right after Rich? Do more AEW stars invade? Who framed Roger Rabbit…erhm…Larry D?

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So Hard to Kill definitely put a few things to bed while setting up an insinuation that this AEW angle is far from over. Does Moose go right after Rich? Do more AEW stars invade? Who framed Roger Rabbit…erhm…Larry D?

Aside from those question, now we just get to sit back and see how Impact will start building the next few months of stories. Remember, we’ve got Rebellion in April; so that means we’ve go three months to fill!

Apparently the show gets kicked off with an answer to one of my questions! Moose and Rich are definitely not friends.

Ratings:

  • Eric Young w/Deaner & Joe Doering vs Rhino w/Cousin Jake: EY wins via Spinning Toe Hold – **
  • Kimber Lee &Susan w/Deonna Purrazzo vs Jordynne Grace & Jazz: Susan wins via Rollup – ** ½
  • Brian Myers vs Fallah Bahh: Myers wins via Charging Lariat – **
  • Private Party w/Big Money Matt Hardy vs Beer Guns (James Storm & Chris Sabin): Private Party win via Gin & Juice – *** ½

Results:

Eric Young w/Deaner & Joe Doering vs Rhino w/Cousin Jake

EY starts with a head of steam, but Rhino side steps and takes control of the match. As he whips EY in the corner, EY does the Flair up and over, runs to the other turnbuckle, gets on the top and Rhino catches him. EY goes after the eyes, then nearly bumps referee Brian Hebner, forcing him to cower in the corner, and EY hits the back kick low blow.

From there on, Rhino is picked apart, the cronies of Violent By Design interfere, grab a leg, add some punishment, and it’s all but over. Young slaps on the Spinning Toe Hold, and makes Rhino tap out.

The Good Brothers come out, mostly tooting their own horns about being the biggest draws and Biz Cliz references. A Magic Killer, a 1,2,3 and a just Too…oh thank Christ it’s Chris Sabin! Sabin points out that the Motor City Machine Guns should be number one contenders, Good Brothers say he has a point but he has no partner. Cue the James Storm music. Time to run back Beer Guns!

James Storm is about to hit the catch phrase…and wait, Big Money Matt Hardy’s music hits with Private Party? Ohh…we’re getting more AEW cross over. Hardy goes for a Hardy Math moment, and it’s mediocre.  He does make plenty of references to old Impact gimmicks, moments and it’s decent enough as the greedy heel manager.

Matt Cardona interview in typical older Zack Ryder style of just trying to prove himself. I’m anticipating a Myers v Cardona match soon since he made not so veiled shots at Myers’ new persona.

Kimber Lee &Susan w/Deonna Purrazzo vs Jordynne Grace & Jazz

Jordynne and Jazz really do beat down on Kimber and Susan for the better portion of the match. Susan showed a lot of personality being the Karen/Cornette whatever you want to call her. She makes Kimber hold the tag rope, she holds the rope and just gets smarmy and sarcastic in her mannerisms. Susan really shined getting over this character and Kimber was mostly there for the match.

The finish came with Susan begging, Jazz getting cocky and then Susan shoving her into Deonna with the Knockouts title while the referee was distracted. Susan gets the Rollup win!

This was a clever way to write off Taya with her setting up Larry D to kill Bravo, and the little reference Tommy makes were amusing, and the Rosemary moment was honestly a little touching. I’m just happy they didn’t kill another person.

Khan is still cringe to watch do whatever he thinks acting is, but my main takeaway is apparently it only costs 100 dollars for ad time during Impact? I SMELL an Opportunity!

Rich calls out Moose, for the inevitable “let’s do it now” talk. Moose tells him it’s on his time and not on Rich Swann’s time. Rich acts calm, and then snaps. We get a small scuffle, which ends with Moose missing the Spear into Rich hitting a Phoenix Splash to look good at the end of the segment.

Brian Myers vs Fallah Bahh

Myers had his issues getting anything going against Fallah, but Fallah stood his ground, built up momentum knocked Myers head off and went to go for his signature “No No No”. Since Myers Always Uses His Head, Myers moved into the finger and acted like he was poked in the eye. The referee was distracted, Myers shoved him off, Punt to the little Bahhs, Charging Lariat, and Myers gets the win.

Interview segment with Ace Austin and Fulton, they mock Josh Alexander and Matt Cardona. Ace reuses his tweet of Always Ready for Catering, and just play the cocky/jaded heel who deserved better. Josh Alexander gets sick of hearing it and trades words before Fulton and Ace attack him. Cardona makes the save and we look have set up Cardona & Alexander versus Fulton & Ace for next week, most likely.

Private Party w/Big Money Matt Hardy vs Beer Guns (James Storm & Chris Sabin)

Fast paced as expected, but early on we see Tony Khan and Jerry Lynn walk out to sit at ringside and watch the match. Storm didn’t slow down too much, which is surprising since aside from his brief stint back in Impact at the end of 2020, we saw him tagging with Eli Drake in much slower, less workrate dependent matches.

Private Party were their usual high flying, fun having, break dance inspired flourishes to some offense we’ve seen for years. Beer Guns had a cool tandem move with Sabin Sunset Flipping from outside in, Quen rolled right into the Backstabber from James Storm. Lots of signature spam, a few dives, highlighted by a nice Fosbury Flop from Quen.

Sabin looked to be setting up for the finish, when Jerry Lynn hops the familiar guardrail, grabs Sabin’s foot while Matt Hardy distracted the ref; and Private Party hit Gin & Juice for the heel tactic upset! Interestingly, Private Party still comes off as great babyface kids who are being swindled by scummy adults. So they aren’t playing heel, but everyone around them is doing it for them.

 

Overall Score: 7.5/10

For only having four matches, the highlights from Hard to Kill segued nicely into current segments, and the show felt very full and active. We managed to squeeze in most of the roster, a few AEW guest appearances, and writing off a character without murder or sci fi fantasy shenanigans for the first time since Austin Aries just walked off after a loss.

Susan is going to be a bigger joy to watch than Susie, I’m nearly positive. Matt Hardy and Jerry Lynn toying with their old Impact/TNA ties and coming in to purposely try and destroy Impact has something artistic about it. I still hate everything about Tony Khan, and yes I know the gimmick seems to be the smarmy smug rich kid who thinks he’s a nice guy but is just a toolbox. But I just don’t enjoy his portrayal, he’s trying far too hard and being too over the top, so it’s a cringe induced hatred not a character hatred.

Fire and Flava Fest next week should be great! Brian Myers starting an angle with Eddie Edwards will be quality wrestling. Oh and yes, if it involves Josh Alexander, I’m all for it; so the Ace Austin story should be great. I’m a sucker for good technical wrestling badasses *waves at Minoru Suzuki*.

All in all, damn good show with a little bit of everything. Great way to follow a PPV.


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Andrew’s Impact Wrestling Hard to Kill Results & Match Ratings: 1.16.21

Three title matches, the return of Decay, Barbed Wire Massacre and a main event with Kenny Omega. Impact Wrestling’s Hard to Kill definitely sounds like it’s got a little bit of everything. Check out how it went!

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So the news that made many people cry a few days ago, was that Alex Shelley would be out of the main event. He went out of his way to film a response/promo/apology so fans knew it was something non-pandemic related, so that was an effort that wasn’t necessary, though appreciated.

Aside from losing it’s “Dream Match” luster, we get Moose as a replacement, which could really work for the cold calculated persona he’s taken on after his EC3 encounter. We also get to crown Knockouts Tag Team champions for the first time in seven and a half years. Let’s also not forget, this could end up being Taya’s swan song from Impact, so we should expect a good match but no Wera Loca victory.

Let’s see if we get any surprises!

Ratings:

  • Decay (Rosemary & Crazzy Steve) vs Tenille Dashwood & Kaleb: Steve wins via King Kill 33 @8:55 – * ½
  • Old School Rules Match: Violent by Design (Joe Doering, Eric Young & Deaner) vs Tommy Dreamer, Rhino & Cousin Jake: EY wins via Piledriver @9:55 – ** ½
  • Knockouts Tag Team Title Finals: Fire & Flava (Kiera Hogan & Tasha Steelz) vs Nevaeh & Havok: Kiera wins via Face the Music @8:40 – ***TITLE CHANGE!!
  • Ace Austin w/Madman Fulton vs Matt Cardona: Cardona wins via DQ @2:30 – N/A
  • X Division Championship: Manik (c) vs Rohit Raju vs Chris Bey: Manik retains via Ole Cradle @13:50 – *** ½
  • Knockouts Championship: Deonna Purrazzo (c) w/Kimber Lee & Susan vs Taya Valkyrie w/ Decay: Deonna retains via Venus de Milo @11:40 – *** ¼
  • Ethan Page vs The Karate Man: Karate Man WINS…Fatality – 200 Stars
  • Barbed Wire Massacre: Sami Callihan vs Eddie Edwards: Eddie wins via Diehard Flowsion @18:50 – *** ¾
  • Moose, Rich Swann &Chris Sabin vs Kenny Omega, Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows: Kenny Omega wins via One Winged Angel @20:30 – ****

 

Results:

During the last few moments of the Countdown, Madison Rayne officially retired from wrestling and from Impact Wrestling. Not sure how long she’ll stay a house wife, but good for her. She did great to actually prove to people she was a decent wrestler since her run during the WOH tournament, she was a fun commentator, so good for her.

Decay (Rosemary & Crazzy Steve) vs Tenille Dashwood & Kaleb

The weird thing about this match was the dynamic between who was involved and what went on.  Crazzy Steve showed a very high work rate in this match, with his strikes and moves looking fantastic. But Rosemary got exposed a bit on still being less than 100% with the knee and generally sloppy on a lot of spots.

Kaleb and Tenille definitely tried to add comedy and their quirky personalities, but the fact that we saw a lot of sloppiness, Steve working his ass off and just comedy spots or gimmick spots too often; this was a giant mess of a match. It also didn’t help that D’lo and Striker are still getting used to each other, so the announcing was distractingly bad.

It can only get better from here!

Old School Rules Match: Violent by Design (Joe Doering, Eric Young & Deaner) vs Tommy Dreamer, Rhino & Cousin Jake

This starts the same way every Tommy Dreamer match starts, with a brawl and weapon use.  This wasn’t a terrible match, but it’s really not anything worth going deeply in to. EY did the flair corner to top rope spot, which ended with Dreamer hitting him with a cookie sheet. We had a Tower spot in the corner, with Joe Powerbombing a Suplex, and it landed right into Dreamer’s face.

Doering got to look like a beast when the entire team took the chairs to him, and he still fought back, ending up in control. Dreamer introduced tacks, then we saw the Signature/Finisher spam which ends with EY breaking up the pinfall and hitting Cousin Jake with the Piledriver.

Again, decent enough, but nothing really special.

Knockouts Tag Team Title Finals: Fire & Flava (Kiera Hogan & Tasha Steelz) vs Nevaeh & Havok

Oh, Brian Hebner is back for this match. Slightly surprising.

Kiera and Tasha try to start fast, but the bigger women over power the smaller team and throw them around a little bit. Havok beats up on both of them, Neavaeh comes in to keep up the momentum, but eventually Tasha and Kiera start making a comeback. We see Fire and Flava go for a lot of quick spots, fast tags and trying to spin around the larger women, but they just get taken for a ride more often than not.

It’s not until Kiera hits a High Round Kick, followed by Tasha with the Springboard Neckbreaker actually takes Havok off her feet. Nevaeh tries to make a save and get things back on track, but Tasha picks her leg, Havok gets wiped out after a great Super Kick from Kiera, Tasha and Kiera use some tandem attacks on Nevaeh, then Tasha slows down Havok as Kiera hits Face the Music and we have new Knockouts Tag Team Champions!

Ace Austin comes out to declare himself into the X Division Triple Threat to make it a 4 way! D’Amore comes out, says he can have a match, just not the title match. Matt Cardona comes out.

Ace Austin w/Madman Fulton vs Matt Cardona

Ace tries to go at Cardona before the ring jacket is off, but Cardona absorbs some offense and then fires back a bit. Fulton gets in the way quite often during this match, so the finish is a little telegraphed. But right as Cardona starts building momentum; Fulton slides in to cause the DQ.

Decent enough way to protect Ace and give Cardona quick win.

X Division Championship: Manik (c) vs Rohit Raju vs Chris Bey

Rohit went after Manik to try and prove his point that it’s TJP. Bey seemed dead set on finding a way to win, and as we expected in an X Division match; there were a lot of spots, but they all made sense. Rohit does manage to take off the mask, but TJP painted his face under the mask, so it still throws off Rohit. TJP strings together a few moves, goes for the Mamba Splash, but gets caught by Bey with a Cutter. Bey then hits a Double Art of Finesse, but his brief moment of not knowing who to pin, caused the pinfall breakup.

Rohit almost won the title back after his call back to hitting his Tiger Knee after a Mamba Splash but Bey kicked out. Haymakers get thrown, Rohit hits the Dragon Stomp on Bey, and looks to finish things, but TJP slides in for the style of Cradle he’s used a bit lately, and retains his title after a fun, hard fought match.

Knockouts Championship: Deonna Purrazzo (c) w/Kimber Lee & Susan vs Taya Valkyrie w/ Decay

Early on all of the seconds get kicked out, with the beauty of the situation being that Susan pulls out her phone and says she’s filming the whole thing. So Susan, really may be a middle aged transformation of Su Yung. Susan might as well be named Karen.

As we focus on the actual match, Deonna starts slowly picking apart Taya. Going after her left arm, then her left knee and just trying to apply submission and weaken different limbs. Taya was able to push back and have her own submission attempt moment. Taya went for an STF, but the submission game isn’t her wheelhouse.

Deonna was able to pick her apart, counter a pinfall attempt and keep Taya grounded long enough to work in some holds. The normal Fujiwara didn’t get her submit, so Venus de Milo followed up and Taya verbally submitted.

Ethan Page vs The Karate Man

Since this is cinematic or at least green screen, I won’t rate this as a real match. But it was amazingly entertaining. Dragon Ball Z references, Karate Kid, and Mortal Kombat references, it was just amazing.

Barbed Wire Massacre: Sami Callihan vs Eddie Edwards

Interesting pacing to get across the familiarity, twisted respect and love for punishment between these two. We saw Barbed Wire Tables, Chairs, Baseball Bats, Kendo Sticks and even an…N64 Controller!

Sami took a ton of punishment, but the story was basically playing with Eddie’s emotions to bait him into bad dives, and openings for Sami to move out of the way, or sneak in a barbed wire shot. Eddie hit a Blue Thunder Bomb on a barbed wire chair, Sami hit an Avalanche Piledriver through a barbed wire table, but none of this was enough. If anything, the Piledriver just pissed Eddie off.

Going for the callback that started it all, Sami tries to hit a Barbed Wire Chair into Eddie’s face with a Barbed Wire Bat, but Eddie hits a low blow to get a moment. Sami tries to bring himself up with a chair, Eddie hits the Boston Knee Party, then the Diehard Flowsion for the win!

Eddie hasn’t hit that Flowsion in a long time. I did appreciate Sami paying homage to Cactus Jack and Striker acknowledging Jun Akiyama and Mitsuharu Misawa on commentary though.

Moose, Rich Swann &Chris Sabin vs Kenny Omega, Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows

The early onset is interesting. Karl Anderson and Chris Sabin start off and there’s some solid technical counter wrestling, and it’s fast paced action. Moose and Gallows come in to do a big boy showdown which worked fairly well, where Swann and Omega had a brief lockup before the Brothers come in to start heeling it up.

We get a lot of Japanese tag stylings, from the triple team that Team Impact pulls off, to the way the Club breaks up any type of momentum with their own train attacks into the corner. Moose looked amazing in this match. He went toe to toe with everyone, pulled off great moves like a Standing Moonsault, leaped to the top rope for a Spanish Fly and was a really good teammate, regardless of his issues with Rich Swann. Hell Swann and Moose even hit a Doomsday Device variant together. Small aside, I did like seeing Chris Sabin pull off Cradle Shock, which just doesn’t happen often enough anymore.

Omega almost has the match one on Rich, but the only one able to break it up was Moose, and he did so. Omega went into V-Trigger spamming mode to wipe out Moose, rock Rich and then a One Winged Angel won the match for the Bullet Club former members.

 

Overall Score: 6.75/10

Well this started off pretty bad, but at least it built upwards. The main even had a lot of fun wrinkles which increased the storytelling, psychology and overall enjoyment of the show. Hell even when Callis nearly jumped into the ring to break up a pin on Kenny was a good little nugget.

As I said in the weekly coverage, this is probably Taya’s final match, or at least one of the last, especially since they logically moved Rosemary back to Decay with Crazzy Steve. Eddie and Sami had a hell of blood feud and it was nearly cathartic. Let’s also not overlook the fact that Tasha and Kiera actually won the Knockouts Tag titles. I almost thought they wouldn’t win just because they are so charismatic and attractive without the titles, where Havok and Nevaeh don’t exactly have electric personalities. But I’m ecstatic that Kiera finally has a title in Impact!

With the pretty awful start for the wrestling and the commentary, which put the show behind the eight ball; but it did recover fairly well. Not nearly as good as Genesis, but it managed to keep the stories rolling and end on an interesting note. A pretty good show after all was said and done.

 


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