Impact Wrestling returned last night (Jan. 4) from the Aberdeen Pavilion in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. You can find the results in the live blog here.
Sydal just can’t do it
I was really hesitant when they added Fallah Bahh into the Matt Sydal/EC3 feud. This was always about Carter accusing Sydal of not having what it takes to get it done when it mattered and adding Bahh was a risk of deviating from that. But this week alleviated my worries and their triple threat Grand Championship match successfully advanced the narrative.
Surprisingly, the triple threat match worked in the three round format. Bahh dominated the first round, and he seemed to be the crowd’s favorite. EC3 won the second round with his own brand of dominance as Bahh didn’t have the gas tank to continue his success for two straight rounds. This left Sydal forced to win the third round by pin or submission if he wanted to win the title. (I assume if there was a three way tie in judges decisions, Carter would retain.)
In the very end, Sydal hit his shooting star press onto EC3 but the time JUST ran out before the referee’s hand came down for three. No dice. To make matters worse, EC3 won that round and retained his title. This left Sydal livid.
The match was entertaining and it continued to back up Carter’s point that no matter what, Matt Sydal just can’t get it done. Obviously the story isn’t finished but it was a good chapter, demonstrating EC3’s point while giving Fallah Bahh a chance to show off.
Storm’s final match (unless it isn’t)
Well, that was something. Something stupid.
Word has it that James Storm really is leaving Impact, but of course who knows what’s real and what’s a work in pro graps. If it’s real, it’s the absolutely lamest way to go out. It didn’t help elevate any young talent. The winner wasn’t even a wrestler. It was a straight up mugging that had zero entertainment factor.
Maybe this is all part of a bigger story and Storm will return in some fashion for revenge. And that may lessen how crappy this was. But it won’t completely erase it. Because they still set up the Cowboy to be a complete idiot to even take this match without proper backup. Moose was laid out backstage prior to the match, but one man isn’t enough backup. If Storm had watched Impact at all the last four months, he’d have seen that American Top Team always travels at least five deep.
The Cowboy cut a pre-match promo about how Impact has given him so much and how he’s given so much back by helping those in the locker room. And then none of those he helped came out to help him, even though he was defending the sanctity of the industry. What kind of message is that? Sure after the match they all applauded for him as he walked to the back, but they couldn’t be bothered to help him in a match where he was out numbered five to one and it would have been totally legal to lend a hand.
This wasn’t just a failure of a final segment for Storm (if this is actually goodbye). It was just a bad segment in general.
Main Event tag match
LAX won back their tag team titles from oVe last night. In what looks to be pretty much a double turn, at least for now, LAX were jumped prior to the match. Santana had to fight most of the match solo because Ortiz was so beat up from the attack.
After he survived and Ortiz recovered, the pace of this picked up and man can these guys go. These are two great teams who have great chemistry. It’s not good that there are only two tag teams in the division, but at least those two teams are very good at tag team wrestling.
It was a fun match to close the show, bookending the episode with two really enjoyable matches. Now go and get some other tag teams!
New X Division champion
The opening bout saw Taiji Ishimori defeat Trevor Lee to claim the X Division championship. It was a great opening match that received plenty of time and delivered bell to bell.
Caleb Konley tried to get involved early in the match and helped his friend/leader Trevor get an upper hand. But he wasn’t a factor in the finish. The end was just excellent athleticism from both competitors. The finish was a 450 splash, which earned the Pro Wrestling NOAH star the win.
In general, this was a strong showing for the X Division. It was a match set up by a small story told over a month and paid off in a strong match and the title change.
Fun stuff right here.
New Jersey Title Match
It turned out the world title match between Alberto El Patron and Eli Drake was taped at an indie promotion in New Jersey. Learning that was a bit disappointing because it meant the match would go from a high profile bout to more of an exhibition where the outcome was not at all in question.
We didn’t see the entire match, but the clips of it were long enough to get the idea. In the end, Drake won by using his title belt as a weapon. Alberto used that very title in the same way to Eli so that’s a nice moment of revenge there.
The Worse Park?
Chandler Park won his first match in Impact, but it was after he got his ass beat most of the time. In fact, if his opponent didn’t mouth off to Joseph Park about their Grandma Jenny, earning a punch to the face that led to the roll up, he probably wouldn’t have won. I’m still wondering if he has that darkness that Joseph has inside him. Only time will tell.
Pros of the Show:
- The three title matches inside the Impact Zone were very good
Cons of the Show:
- What the hell was that Storm/Lambert thing?
There were a ton of good matches and it was an overall exciting show. The only real bad part of the show was the Storm/Lambert bit, but that was really bad.
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