Impact Wrestling is holding one of their flagship events tonight (July 18). Slammiversary is scheduled to host five title fights and is teasing a ton of surprise talent. Let’s break down the storylines and make a few predictions.
World Championship: Ace Austin vs Eddie Edwards vs Trey Miguel vs mystery opponent
A new World Champion is GUARANTEED TOMORROW at #Slammiversary! Will it be @TheTreyMiguel, @The_Ace_Austin, @TheEddieEdwards or the mystery opponent?— IMPACT (@IMPACTWRESTLING) July 17, 2020
ORDER HERE: https://t.co/t3a2UxCiIb pic.twitter.com/h9EPxgpDUS
This main event was originally planned as a five-way, but then champ Tessa Blanchard and Michael Elgin were put out to pasture from future Impact involvement. Ace Austin earned his way by winning a #1 contender tournament. Yes, he was screwed by not receiving a singles shot. Trey Miguel was gifted a spot after being jumped and ineligible to compete in the tournament final against Ace. It later turned out that Ace put Madman Fulton up to the task of preying on Trey. Eddie Edwards was supposed to have a title opportunity in a three-way with Elgin at Rebellion, but that PPV was canceled then reshuffled as a TV special due to the coronavirus pandemic. Edwards chose to remain home and skip the event.
Some names to keep in mind for the mystery opponent are EC3, Bully Ray, Eric Young, and Chris Sabin. Impact has been teasing at least one former World Champ to appear, so it would make sense for that person to be the mystery man.
Prediction: Eddie Edwards. Being that Impact’s last champ turned out to be a bit troublesome, I think they reward the man who has been loyal for so long. Edwards can carry the ball and also be a stepping stone for a newly signed star to win that gold in the future.
Knockouts Championship: Jordynne Grace vs Deonna Purrazzo
Deonna Purrazzo came to Impact to be Knockouts Champion. She didn’t waste any time in attacking Jordynne Grace from behind to make a statement. Purrazzo knew her value as The Virtuosa and played it smart by not allowing a match with Grace unless it was for the title. Mission accomplished. This match could be a similar story to Jon Moxley versus Brian Cage in AEW earlier this week. The bigger person is full of rage, while the smaller person is planning to use an armbar for success.
Prediction: Jordynne Grace. The hossette is going to smash. Grace’s title reign has been hampered by the coronavirus pandemic. Through no fault of her own, her run would be considered a failure if she lost to Purrazzo. I think Impact has grander plans than that for Grace.
X-Division Championship: Willie Mack vs Chris Bey
Chris Bey has wanted the X-Division strap ever since he debuted with Impact. Bey tried to use Johnny Swinger as an edge to help defeat Willie Mack. Swinger and Mack were once partners for a few days as the Mack & Pack Connection. In the go-home episode, Swinger overheard his Finesse & Bench Press Express partner gloat about manipulating him for Bey’s own interests. Swinger quit on Bey, so Bey now has to go it alone.
Prediction: Willie Mack. Bey hasn’t been able to get the better of Mack without any help. Perhaps the absence of Swinger will force Bey to rise to the occasion, however, always bet on Mack. Plus, I think Mack is too popular to drop the title right now.
TNA World Heavyweight Championship: Moose vs Tommy Dreamer
The Impact World Championship scene was held up as Tessa Blanchard was across the border down in Mexico, so Moose crowned himself TNA World Heavyweight Champion. Nobody treats it serious, and he has been fighting for respect. The focus of Moose’s challengers are past TNA stars. After being sucker-punched by Moose for no good reason, Tommy Dreamer verbally ripped into him as a waste of talent. Moose plans to make Dreamer eat those words. There will be old school rules, which means extreme.
Prediction: Moose. There is nothing to be gained from Dreamer ending Moose’s dream. If TNA is still real to Moose, then it’s still real to me. Moose will kick Dreamer’s old ass.
Tag Team Championship: The North vs Ken Shamrock & Sami Callihan
After Sami Callihan tapped out to Ken Shamrock in a cinematic singles brawl, concessions of respect were offered. That doesn’t mean they are friends. In this particular case, a common enemy brought them together after the The North ambushed Shamrock. The North were jealous of fans being more interested in his matches than theirs. Despite having zero tag bouts as a unit, bookerman Scott D’Amore awarded Shamrock and Callihan a title shot as a slight to The North for complaining.
The big question is if Callihan can work with Shamrock. Sami openly acknowledged the possibility of turning on Ken just because he can’t control himself from being a pitiful little man.
Prediction: The North. Ethan Page and Josh Alexander have been champs for over one year. They work too well together to be taken down by a dysfunctional unit. I do think Callihan loses his cool and screws Shamrock.
Knockouts #1 Contender Gauntlet
In Impact, a gauntlet match is more akin to the Royal Rumble. The participants are Rosemary, Nevaeh, Susie (aka Su Yung), Kiera Hogan, Taya, Tasha Steelz, Alisha Edwards, Kylie Rae, Kimber Lee, Jessicka Havok, and Madison Rayne. Don’t be surprised if Angelina Love and Velvet Sky make a return here. There have been small hints that they could be present.
Alisha Edwards is the only one with no chance at winning. The rest have varying degrees of status, but they are all credible enough for victory. Kylie Rae is the favorite, since she stood tall on the go-home show. Taya is the most successful of the group. Susie is the wildcard if she can channel the skills of Su Yung. Madison Rayne is getting back in the ring after a stint on commentary.
Prediction: Rosemary. She would be a quality dark-horse to stir the pot of her storyline romancing John E. Bravo and ruffling Taya’s feathers by becoming #1 contender.
Rascalz vs ???
Dezmond Xavier and Zachary Wentz got the last-minute call for action. Who could they be facing? I’ll take the not so wild guess of Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows, especially since they officially announced signing with Impact last night.
Prediction: Good Brothers. No way they lose coming in as big money free agents.
The biggest hook for Slammiversary is the persistent tease of talent making a surprise appearance. Impact claims it will change their world. The list of suspects is quite lengthy: EC3, Eric Young, Chris Sabin, Bully Ray, Aces & Eights, Kurt Angle, Sting, Curt Hawkins, Heath Slater, Rusev, Mike Bennett, Maria Kanellis, James Storm, and Ken Anderson. I might be missing a few names.
It seems clear that there will be at least four wrestlers arriving. Anderson and Gallows may or may not be part of those four.