Impact Wrestling returned last night (May 24) from the Impact Zone in Orlando, Florida. You can find the results at the live blog here.
Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop
Eddie Edwards is nowhere near done with Sami Callihan.
Despite defeating him in a street fight last week, he attacked Callihan again this week. Sami was at ringside for the Crist brothers’ match against Aerostar & Drago. With his wife following, screaming at him to stop this, Eddie attacked the Crists and then Sami with a kendo stick. He then pressed the stick against the neck of Callihan and choked him out. Officials tried to remove him but had a difficult time prying off the rabid wolf.
Finally, a large crew of security pulled him off while he wife screamed at him “It’s over!” but he wasn’t listening. In fact, he then attacked security with the kendo stick.
I’ve been enjoying what they’re doing with this story a bunch, and this is no different. Sami Callihan is still a despicable SOB. It wasn’t too long ago that he attacked Don Callis. But Eddie has completely gone off the rails.
This story has been going on for about four months now, which is a good amount of time for a pro-graps feud nowadays. But they’ve done a really good job pacing it well and not spamming the matches. After Callihan broke his eye socket, he and Eddie have only wrestled twice.
Now we’re on to another chapter of the story. Or maybe it’s a new story entirely. Eddie Edwards, always a true blue babyface, has embraced the dark side. He’s ignoring his wife. He’s attacking officials. If it weren’t Sami in his crosshairs, he’d be a heel at this point.
Eddie told his very angry wife backstage later that it’s not over yet. After what Sami did to him, to them, it can’t be over. Alisha accused him of acting just like Sami before storming off.
Does that give us a hint of what’s next? Will Eddie fight Sami one more time? And if they do, will either man enter as a babyface?
Jimmy’s getting attacked!
The main event was the match between Kongo Kong and Moose. However the bigger story was the fact that Jimmy Jacobs wasn’t with Kong. We learned after the match that he was attacked by the mysterious “X” attacker prior to the match.
Kongo Kong was still impressive without Jacobs, but it wasn’t enough. There were times he seemed to look for him for guidance before remembering Jimmy wasn’t there. He even tried to take a count out win after brutalizing Moose outside the ring. Taking a count out is something we don’t see when Jacobs is leading the charge.
And most importantly, Jimmy wasn’t there when Kongo was in trouble. When these two fought off site a couple weeks ago, Jimmy ended up hitting Moose with a chair when his monster looked to be in trouble. The match ended in DQ but Kongo was saved a pinfall defeat. That didn’t happen this week and Moose ended up defeating Kongo, dealing him his first loss since joining with Jacobs.
The match itself ended up being pretty good for the main event spot. I’m not the hugest fan of either of these two. Moose is definitely talented but is missing that something that has me feeling “This is a top guy.” Kongo Kong can move well given his size, but all the interest and charisma really stems from Jimmy Jacobs, who’s doing great work in the role.
Despite that, this was a really enjoyable hoss fight. And with the added “Where’s Jimmy?” wrinkle, it all worked pretty well.
On the Snide
LAX continues to lose.
This week, they lost to the Cult of Lee. It’s a match we’ve seen before, but this had a different twist. That twist was Konnan is still missing. Because of that, LAX couldn’t beat a team they handled fairly easily months back when Konnan was still in their corner.
I appreciate the fact that their losing streak has become a plot point. Often, after losing a title, that person or team ends up lost in the shuffle. Instead, this losing streak becomes a plot point. What do these guys need to do in order to get back on the winning side? Because right now, they’re hurting. And the more they lose, the more it’s in their head.
We learned a little more later in the evening when Eddie Kingston entered the clubhouse. Apparently, the Mad King is a member of LAX, running the New York branch. He told the boys that Konnan was jumped but he’s safe and Homicide is with him. But word is getting out regarding their losing streak and they need to fix that.
It’s great to see Kingston back in Impact. He didn’t really get to have a great run last time, being saddled in a pretty feckless DCC stable. This role in LAX could suit him very well.
Now Santana and Ortiz have even more pressure to step up and they can either wilt under pressure or rise to the occasion.
Matt Sydal defeated El Hijo de Fantasma to retain his X Division title.
The match itself was fine, but I couldn’t help to be disappointed.
For one, while Matt Sydal does what he can to maintain his obnoxious spiritual personal in the ring, it’s loss the spark it had. He still wins clean so he’s not a heel in that respect. And he doesn’t get to cut the promos that display how obnoxious he is in this persona. In that sense, he’s kind of going backwards.
On the other side of the ring was Fantasma, who is a great wrestler himself, but has zero character in Impact Wrestling. I heard that some of his story was cut recently when Alberto was released, so that’s unfortunate. But no matter the reason, he’s just a talented luchador with zero characterization in this promotion.
So dispute putting on a crisp match, there wasn’t enough to leave a lasting impression. I either need more character from the competitors, which is usually the best way to go, or a match that is just the straightest fire, which is a lot to ask from any two wrestlers.
Don’t Let the Darkness Consume You
Half way through the show, I was a bit miffed that all the big matches next week were getting little more than the video packages. And at that time, they hadn’t even mentioned the Knockout’s title match.
Then they showed this video and I LOVED it.
Allie was channeling her inner darkness so much that SHE’S WEARING ROSEMARY’S PAINT! And all of this at the chagrin of Rosemary, who left a message from beyond the grave telling her friend not to give into the darkness.
This also illustrates something that I think Impact has been doing very well. They take their characters through changes. Allie watched Rosemary get removed in a coffin. That may have been her fault for not listening to Rosemary’s warning. So of course she’s going to respond in a way that could change her. She felt the power of the mystical darkness. Now she’s responding in kind.
The Right to Fight Cage
Dezmond Xavier defeated Petey Williams to earn the right to face the undefeated Brian Cage next week.
This match was really good as the men clicked very nicely. While you could argue having to face the dominant Cage isn’t much of a prize, for these competitors, they’d surely relish the chance to be the man to finally beat Cage.
We’ve seen plenty of examples of Cage moving like a cruiserweight in a heavyweight’s body. So I fully expect his match against Xavier next week to be very very good.
Pros of the Show:
- Eddie is losing his mind
- Allie’s letting the darkness in
- LAX losing has become a good story
Cons of the Show:
- The lack of characterization (and the lack of heeling from Sydal) left the X Division title match as somewhat forgettable
While most of their major stories, outside Eddie vs. Callihan, didn’t get much time tonight, the ones that did ended up doing well. While I was left underwhelmed with Sydal vs. Fantasma, every other story they told this week wasy good. I appreciate how characters changing in response to certain events has become something Impact has really focused on.
Sound off below.