Impact Wrestling returned late last night (Nov. 15) from the Sam’s Town Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Let’s get to it.
Tessa Blanchard def. Ray Lyn with the Buzzsaw DDT
Afterwards, Tessa cuts a promo on Taya Valkyrie, saying she’s making excuses for not taking the title from her. And that she’s a better KOs champion than Taya will ever be. She wonders if Taya will ever know what it’s like to be anything else besides Johnny Impact’s wife.
Taya Valkyrie marches to the ring and Tessa slides out. Were Loca grabs a mic and let’s the champ know she’s going to defend the title on Jan. 6 at Homecoming against her.
Well they’re going to stretch this feud to the next PPV, which is 7 weeks away.
That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but Impact hasn’t done a great job keeping feuds interesting for that long. The next two month will be interesting to see how they keep it exciting, if they can.
The characters are there. Tessa continues to deliver. She’s impressive in that ring, which tonight’s squash illustrated, and she exudes confidence. Taya has the same sharp attitude. The characters are there. The creative will need to be there as well in order to make this title match, which should be very good, feel special.
LAX def. KM and Fallah Bahh
After the match, in the clubhouse, Ortiz razzes Santana about getting outwrestled by Fallah Bahh. They ask about the OGz then transition into asking Konnan about defending their titles against the Lucha Bros. Konnan says “Not right now” and leaves.
KM and Fallah’s quest to impress Scarlett Bordeaux continues to come up empty.
Their match with LAX was a blast. Watching Konnan’s boys try to figure out Fallah Bahh while Fallah continued to pull out impressive moves for a man his size was very entertaining.
We’re at the point that KM and Fallah could take a step up from “team that loses in a strong effort.” They’re good enough to be in a legit tag title feud or even be champions. That’s how good a job the promotion has done putting this team together then building them up. It’s time to put them in a legit feud that they can win.
That LAX/Lucha Bros match looks like it will happen. However, Konnan doesn’t want it, which is an intriguing wrinkle. Does he \ think his boys can’t beat the Lucha Bros? Does he not want his four guys going to a war that could turn ugly given the competitive nature? I’m curious to find out.
Eli Drake cuts a promo calling himself the last of a dying breed. He’s sick of people who look like everyone else getting into the business. He’s sick of people trying to be flashy or using weapons instead of wrestling. He claims his voice is as dangerous as any weapon.
He’s interrupted by Tommy Dreamer. Dreamer states that hardcore isn’t weapons. It’s a mindset. It’s a work ethic that existed before Eli Drake was born. He keeps referring to “skinny jean millennials like yourself” when talking to Eli. He claims that when Drake insults hardcore, he’s really insulting the fans because Dreamer is representing those fans.
This looks like it’s going to turn into a match but Eli decides to roll out and wait for another day.
I’ve been continually impressed with how they use Dreamer in Impact. Tommy is one of those guys I never think I have a desire to see, but Impact finds a spot that always makes me think “Yeah, this works.”
When Tommy walked out tonight, I thought the same thing. “This is a good spot for Dreamer.” But unfortunately, his promo was too much of a mixed up mess.
His continued zinger at Drake was that he’s a “skinny jean millennial.” It’s an insult I’m not a fan of in general, but it also doesn’t fit here. Eli is out here claiming he’s the last of a dying breed. He claims he’s old school like no one else that’s currently around. Calling him a millennial isn’t an insult then. Drake doesn’t look at himself as a millennial. He looks at himself as someone who’s part of a dying breed. That’s the opposite of millennial.
Then Dreamer made the point that insulting hardcore was insulting the crowd because these fans made him and all his ECW brethren. But a quick look in that crowd, I saw more people who were closer to skinny jean millennial than old school wrestling fan.
Add in the fact that Dreamer was stumbling more in his delivery, which is something he doesn’t often do, and this didn’t come together.
It’s not a feud killer by any means. He still fits the part. Tonight’s segment just didn’t fit what Drake is doing.
Johnny Impact def. Matt Sydal with Starship Pain
Killer Kross walks out after the match. He states he’s not here to fight. He has come to realize that he is not the agent of change he thought he was. But then maybe Johnny is. He tells Johnny when the champ needs assistance because of all the people gunning for him, call him. He will assist. He puts his hand out for a handshake.
Johnny takes the mic and says he doesn’t trust him. He doesn’t want him near him, his wife, or his dog. He declines his offer.
Interesting turn of events right here.
Instead of coming out to beat up the man he lost to or ask for another title shot, he comes offering protection. It’s a different path to take. Maybe it’s because the Vegas crowd was behind Kross (he’s from Vegas) so they opted to book it anticipating a favorable crowd. Whatever the reason, the change for formula is appreciated.
Johnny was wise to turn him down. Killer Kross is a dangerous man. He’d be dumb to trust him. Now, I hope they continue to buck tradition and not go with a shunned Killer Kross attacking Johnny. It’d be nice to see Johnny start to consider the offer when he realizes he could benefit from the protection.
The match that preceded the more noteworthy part was entertaining. Matt Sydal is caught in a pretty ugly skid right now. This week, he lost even with Ethan Page getting involved.
Su Yung def. Heather Monroe with the mandible claw
After the match, Su continues the attack until Kiera Hogan makes the save. That’s when Allie comes out, dressed all in black with makeup around her mouth. She stares down Kiera when Su Yung attacks Hogan from behind as Allie just watches. Su then leads dark Allie out with her.
We’re full blown dark Allie now, dressed in all black with some makeup. (Though that makeup was more Rosemary-esque than resembling Su Yung.)
My guess is they will run a couple months of this angle and then finally have Rosemary return for the save? Maybe?
Full blown Su-controlled Allie can be interesting, but I’ve tired of this story awhile ago and this small turn isn’t enough just yet to get me back. Perhaps seeing more of dark Allie could change my mind, but it wasn’t enough tonight. That’s a potential issue when you run a story for this long.
Brian Cage def. Sami Callihan with the Drill Claw to retain the X Division championship
After the match, Cage grabs a mic and claims he’s cashing in option C at Homecoming for a shot at the world title. He leaves the title in the ring.
We got a fun main event this week that looks to be the last of Cage’s X Division title run.
When it came to this belt, he never put anyone over in the sense he lost, which is a bit disappointing. Callihan hung with Cage better than anyone which is a psuedo-rub, but this was all about Cage.
Now let’s talk Option C and why Cage can do that now.
Though, I don’t actually know why he can do that to be honest. Option C, created by Austin Aries many years back, allows the champion to exchange the X Division title for the right to fight for the world title at the Destination X special. But Homecoming isn’t Destination X. Perhaps they look at this show as the spirit of Destination X because it’s called Homecoming, implying going back to their roots? Or can he just do this any time he wants?
The lack of clarity of this lessened a moment that should have been an “Oh damn, it’s on” moment. Instead it was a “Wait, he can do that?” moment.
Now they build to Johnny vs. Cage, which will likely be Cage’s big Impact title win about a year into the company. And they can hold a tournament to crown the next X Division champ.
- Apparently there’s a team called the Rascalz coming to Impact. They introduced them in a video where they were doing a That 70s Show parody, smoking pot with Dezmond Xavier. It was not at all funny.
- Eddie Edwards tried to attack Moose, and it looks like his wife may have committed him. Three men in scrubs, one who injected something in Eddie’s neck, took him away so it sure looks that way.
- Scarlett Bordeaux took a fan who tried to fight a dude in the parking lot for her and turned him into topless security wearing a blond wig. You know, standard Scarlett stuff.
- Gama Singh got upset Rohit Raju for looking forward to Thanksgiving.
This was another solid episode tonight, with some intriguing spots but at the same time, still lacking a really great story.
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