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Impact Wrestling preview (Oct. 18, 2018): Controversy

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@ImpactWrestling

Impact Wrestling returns tonight (Oct. 18) from the Melrose Ballroom in Queens, New York. It is the fallout show from their Bound for Glory pay-per-view (PPV) and is the first episode from the most recent set of tapings.

Advertised for tonight:

  • Brian Cage (c) vs. Rich Swann for the X Division title
  • Allie vs. Alisha Edwards
  • Trevor Lee vs. Ethan Page
  • Scarlett Bordeaux opens her open challenge to everyone

Now as per usual, here are our five questions about Impact tonight:

1) How do they handle the Aries fallout?

The most notable thing coming out of the PPV last Sunday may not even been a planned story. (Or maybe it is. Work or shoot, y’all!) Austin Aries pretty much no sold Johnny Impact’s finisher after getting pinned and losing the title. Then he shouted to Don Callis “You screwed me!” and flipped off the fans while walking out.

Fans still don’t really have a clue about what happened and even folks with insider sources don’t have a concrete answer. (I’ve heard work that kind of turned into a shoot, unplanned to the point they needed to rework the tapings, and Aries playing an unpredictable character on the indies. A wide range.)

Impact hasn’t leaned into it, which lends credence to the idea of a shoot. (Or is that intentional as well? See how this gets?) But if it were a work, they’d say something. There’s nothing out there. My understanding is Austin wasn’t at these last tapings at all. Or even mentioned. That doesn’t mean they won’t address it on a backstage video so spoilers don’t leak prior to air. It also doesn’t mean it’s not all part of a long work or a real thing that will be turned into a work.

Whatever it is, the most interesting thing coming out of Bound for Glory may very well not be mentioned on the show.

2) So who’s Johnny’s next challenger then?

If Aries isn’t around, then who’s Johnny Survivor going to feud with?

Here are some ideas:

- Pentagon Jr.: Pentagon Jr. never got a rematch for the world title he lost to Aries months ago. They have experience working each other in Lucha Underground too. However, I think it’s more likely that Pentagon sticks with his brother and maybe makes a run at LAX’s tag gold instead. That’d be some feud.

- Brian Cage: Eventually, Cage will be champion. But I don’t think it’s right now. He just got pinned by Sami Callihan in a tag match at the PPV. More likely, he’s entering into a feud with Sami and oVe.

- Kongo Kong: A long shot, but Johnny never actually pinned Kong to end that feud. That ended because the monster fell into a pool. (Seriously.) That’s enough fuel for Jimmy Jacobs to demand a title match. The first feud for a champ is usually one they win. Leaving the legit contenders for later and starting with Jimmy Jacob’s charge isn’t a bad idea.

3) Was Rosemary’s BFG appearance a one time thing for now?

Rosemary returned... kinda... at the PPV. It wasn’t in front of a crowd but instead a pre-taped segment about Allie venturing into the Undead Realm in order to save Kiera Hogan.

Allie fought her way through undead bridemaids with a hatchet and even seemed to take out Su Yung. But the undead don’t stay dead in the undead realm... I think. They recovered to prevent their escape until Rosemary appeared to stall Su’s army and allow them to get out.

It was great to see Rosemary, though the whole video was a bit much for me. That type of video doesn’t require fully healed ring shape in order to tape though. Rosemary’s participation in that doesn’t mean she’s ready to hit the ring and Red Wedding women.

I hope it means it’s soon though.

4) Knockouts title rematch, please?

This isn’t a question as much as a request.

Tessa Blanchard and Taya Valkyrie stole the show at Bound for Glory. This match was excellent. Let’s see it again.

But let’s not just see it again. I don’t want a rematch tonight for rematch’s sake. Give us the build to the match that wasn’t there on the way to BFG. And then let them tear it up again.

5) Is Eli Drake going to have some direction these tapings?

They haven’t had anything for Eli Drake lately.

It’s not that he hasn’t been on TV. He’s important enough for them to find time. But in the last couple months, he was part of the Grado/Joe Hendry story and then started his pretty pointless open challenges.

Sunday’s open challenge, when he made pretty easy work of James Ellsworth before getting beat up by Abyss, didn’t hint at anything more for the Namer of Dummies.

Do these open challenges continue until someone of note steps up? Or is there something else in the works for E-Li Drake?


Impact Wrestling returns tonight at 8 ET on Pop TV. Who’s watching?