Impact Wrestling returned last night (Jan. 3) from Sam’s Town Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. It is the last time they’ll be on Pop TV. Let’s get right to it.
Willie Mack, Rich Swann, & the Rascalz def. oVe, Ethan Page, and Matt Sydal
Callihan attacks Mack post match with a bat and then oVe delivers the All Seeing Eye through a table. Rich Swann checks on his friend, and it looks like Sami is about to attack him too but then just walks away.
This match started out as the spottiest of spotfests, settled into a traditional tag for a bit as Trey Miguel play face in peril, and closed out as a spotfest.
It’s great if you love the movez, but that’s always been the least important to me so this topped out at “fine” for me. The tag match was random outside the fact that the Ultimate X competitors were involved. The curious issues between Swann and Callihan was ignored during the match itself.
Those issues were addressed after the match, but it would have been nice if it was alluded to by the competitors during the action.
The unknown relationship between Sami and Rich Swann carries some intrigue and can lead somewhere exciting. So that part of the post match angle did add intrigue. Though I wondered why no one from the winning team couldn’t have helped Mack. The Crist brothers recovered quickly enough, and they were on the losing end.
Eli Drake cuts a promo talking up an Impact conspiracy. He claims Abyss isn’t going to show up after what he did to Joseph Park.
Tommy Dreamer interrupts the promo and attacks Eli Drake with a chair. Dream puts Eli’s head in the chair but then the lights go out... and Raven is there?! Eli is trying to get them to fight but then they both punch Eli and pose together.
What the hell was this? THIS is how you build up Eli Drake before his big match against Abyss? Wow.
This was a bad segment. Drake’s promo was fine. He’s a good promo. But then bringing Dreamer out, who was already a bad part of this feud with his horrible skinny jean promos, sent it down hill. Drake already beat him. That was it.
Raven is a fun pop for the crowd but then they both take out Drake, which again, makes him look like a chump before his Monster’s Ball match.
Just a botch of a segment right here.
KM & Fallah Bahh def. the Desi Hit Squad as Scarlett Bordeaux watches on.
I hope Impact realizes that any talent caught up in any story swooning over Scarlett Bordeaux isn’t going to be taken seriously. If they’re fine with a team like KM and Fallah Bahh being shoehorned in the comedy role, then that’s fine. But if they want us to believe a team like the Desi Hit Squad can be a legit threat one day, this isn’t the way to go about it. Rohit Raju waving at Scarlett mid-match like a love sick teenager is something that takes time to overcome.
Hell, it was tough to take the referee of this match seriously since he stared at Scarlett Bordeaux midmatch for a good minute on Thanksgiving.
Dark Allie (w/Su Yung) def. Kiera Hogan.
Su Yung and Allie continue attacking Kiera post match until Jordynne Grace makes the save!
Kiera Hogan really showed some anger and aggression in this match, which was fantastic. The story called for it, so it was the appropriate reaction. At the same time, she looked even better because of it. Kiera had a really good 2018 and she will only continue to improve.
The Jordynne Grace save after the match was a fun moment. She hasn’t been in Impact for long, but she has a look and a presence about her that promises big things. I can see her and Tessa having a great world title feud down the line.
I’ll admit, part of me worries that having Jordynne Grace step up to help Kiera means we’ll be waiting longer than I’d like to see Rosemary again. However, since they announced a tag match between these sets of two at Homecoming, fingers cross that’s still a possibility.
In a backstage segment, Trevor Lee demands a match to prove his worth.
Killer Kross def. Trevor Lee.
After the match, Kross grabs a mic and wishes Johnny Impact good luck at Homecoming, though questions he will do what it takes. Then Kross walks to the time keeper and tells him he needs to do everything he orders him. Kross then takes a cinderblock from under the ring and forces the time keeper to hold it against Trevor Lee’s head as Kross holds Lee up in the corner. Then he punches the cinderblock, breaking it on Trevor’s head.
Well, that’s the end of Trevor Lee in Impact. It’s been fun, dude. We’ll surely see you elsewhere soon.
Killer Kross is still trying to affect Johnny Impact’s match at Homecoming, but it has been such a minor aspect of the story that I don’t think of it when I think of the title match. It almost feels like its own thing. If Kross does get involved in the main event, it won’t feel like an angle fully earned just yet. It’d be better if they play it out after the PPV with perhaps Johnny questioning if he really should be listening to Kross
The Lucha Bros def. Brian Cage & Johnny Impact
Pentagon Jr. pins Johnny Impact in the finish after Brian Cage accidentally hits Johnny with a clothesline.
Impact and Cage argue post match. Cage tries to leave but Johnny pulls him back and they start fighting. Impact’s incompetent referees try to break it up but they’re quickly dispatched. Next comes security, who do a better job but not good enough. Finally the locker room is sent out to hold them apart.
The main event itself was fun. There’s a lot of talent there and they work well together.
The build for the tag team title match was actually done more in backstage promos for both the Lucha Brothers and LAX. (LAX’s promo was actually very good. Those two don’t need Konnan to talk for them.) This was more about the world title match.
The post match angle was predictable and, unfortunately, didn’t feel earned. Pull apart brawls are fun, but this feud never felt personal enough to warrant one. I didn’t watch this thinking “Man, these two hate each other” but instead “This seems a bit excessive.”
Their match at Homecoming will be good. But it doesn’t feel personal. It doesn’t have to, but let’s not pretend it is.
An OK go-home show, but nothing special. Main event was fun, but nothing added to the matches already booked on this show. The Eli Drake segment actively detracted.
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