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Impact Hardcore Justice recap & reactions: Su Yung & Petey Williams surprise returns

Impact went hardcore with their Hardcore Justice event last night (Apr. 10, 2021). The show featured a pair of surprise returns. One seemed likely, while the other was completely unexpected. Let’s break that down, along with all the other action from Hardcore Justice.

Su Yung is back in the Impact Zone. There were signs that she could have regained consciousness over Susan, and the #1 contender weapons scramble with Rosemary, Tenille Dashwood, Jordynne Grace, Alisha Edwards, and Havok would be the perfect place to unleash her fury. While Su did return, it didn’t play out that way.

Su Yung appeared during Susan’s entrance as a completely separate person. The Undead Bride beat up Susan under the cloak of smoke then took her spot in the contest.

The fight was all over the place with a hectic pace using chairs, trashcans, cookie sheets, and other goodies. Alisha was the one most involved on the attack. She used a stapler and a kendo stick. Rosemary brought out a bag of thumbtacks, but her plan backfired. She emptied them onto the floor and picked up Alisha in a fireman’s carry position. Alisha escaped to drop Rosemary onto the tacks using an inverted DDT.

Yung came over to goozle Alisha with the mandible claw as they exited off to the side. Havok and Grace hossed it up in the ring. Havok was on her way toward winning when Nevaeh ran down to throw powder in Havok’s eyes. Grace went on the attack. She had Havok down after a Vader bomb. Kaleb Konley pulled Grace off the pin and out of the ring for a superkick. Dashwood slipped in to steal the pin.

Dashwood is the new #1 contender for the Knockouts Championship. With Deonna Purrazzo successfully retaining against Jazz, Impact booked Purrazzo versus Dashwood for the Rebellion PPV on April 25.

In the opener, Josh Alexander needed a partner, so he phoned a friend in fellow Canadian Petey Williams. The appearance from Maple Leaf Muscle was a pleasant surprise. I did not see that coming at all.

Williams looked slick in the ring against the teams of TJP & Fallah Bahh and Ace Austin & Madman Fulton.

It was only a matter of time before Williams connected on a Canadian Destroyer. TJP was served.

Williams tried to follow up with a Canadian Destroyer to Bahh, but the big man was too large to flip. Bahh halted the motion and attempted a butt drop. Williams was too quick and evaded. Bahh fell to the mat, then Alexander swooped in for an ankle lock to win.

Time will tell if this was a one and done for Williams or if he will continue on the regular in the Impact Zone. Commentary put it over like there could be a potential tag team with the two Canadians. Perhaps that direction will be explored after Alexander competes for the X-Division Championship against Austin and TJP in a three-way at the Rebellion PPV on April 25.

Let’s rocket through the rest of the show.

Hardcore War: Violent by Design defeated Team Dreamer. (Full details here.) Tommy Dreamer was beat up before the match and unable to wrestle. Trey Miguel filled his spot to join Rich Swann, Willie Mack, and Eddie Edwards in fighting the foursome of Eric Young, Joe Doering, Deaner, and Rhino.

The finish came down to Mack trying to defend himself against three angry men. It did not end well for Mack. Deaner was able to crack him in the head with a trashcan lid, then Young closed with a piledriver.

Knockouts Championship: Deonna Purrazzo retained against Jazz. (Full details here.) This bout also had Jazz’s career on the line. Purrazzo overcame Jazz’s strength advantage to rally with two pump kicks, a rolling exploder suplex, and a Gotch-style piledriver. Jazz is forced to retire.

Chairly Legal: Shera defeated Hernandez. It was a big man power battle with game plans working around the stipulation of chairs being legal. The top spot was Shera superplexing Hernandez onto a pile of chairs.

For the finish, Rohit Raju came out of nowhere to hit Hernandez with a chair. Shera picked up the easy pin. Rohit claimed he did it as a friend. Shera was befuddled at first, but he seemed to be receptive to reuniting with Rohit.

Luke Gallows defeated Black Taurus. Karl Anderson and Crazzy Steve were ringside. Taurus was on a roll in the hoss fight, so Anderson hopped onto the apron. Steve ran over to pull him down. That was enough of a distraction for Taurus to take his eye off the prize. Gallows hit him with a superkick then a two-handed sitdown chokeslam to win.

Sami Callihan defeated Sam Beale. Callihan cut a promo in the ring to teach Trey a lesson about passion. Callihan isn’t a bad guy. He just wants the best for people and to teach Trey how to harness his anger into success. Passion is about taking what you want. Callihan wanted to be on Hardcore Justice, so he’s out here to make it happen. Callihan extended an open challenge.

Beale came out to accept and was promptly squashed. Callihan took his time inflicting pain. An exploder suplex on the floor and a package piledriver earned victory.

The show also had a few bonus matches, of sorts. XXXL confronted James Storm and Chris Sabin in Swinger’s Palace casino. Larry D and Acey Romero wanted a match, but Storm was too drunk. He proposed a drinking game instead. Also, Cardona rolled in. Johnny Swinger wouldn’t accept payment in action figures. The minor argument was made into a match by Dreamer.

Crate American Bash: Matt Cardona defeated Johnny Swinger. There were crates with mystery prizes atop each ring post. The idea was surprise goodies to be used within the match. The first was a framed photo of Scott Hall. The second was a mousetrap on Swinger’s fingers. Cardona went to the third crate but closed it with a smile. Swinger opened the final crate to retrieve brass knuckles. Cardona ducked a loaded punch to run off the ropes and connect on a leg lariat to win.

Afterward, Cardona took his crate to the back with him. That would end up being revealed in the hardcore blindfold match.

Blind Games: Jake Something defeated Brian Myers. This was a hardcore match with both men wearing a black sack over their heads. Myers worked low as an effective strategy to find objects and attack. Jake was unloading numerous short-arm clotheslines in succession when Myers grabbed the referee to put in harm’s way. With the referee down, Myers peaked from his mask to hit a pair of superkicks. Cardona came down to the ring with his crate. He slid it to Jake to bash Myers in the head. Action figures spilled out. Jake continued with a Black Hole slam to win.

Back to the shenanigans with XXXL, Storm, and Sabin. They were all super drunk and competed in beer pong. Storm threw the ball in Larry’s face, then Storm and Sabin beat up XXXL.

Overall, Hardcore Justice was a decent, fun show with surprises and drama that should please most fans of the Impact vibe. There was hoss excitement between Gallows and Taurus, Shera and Hernandez, as well as Grace and Havok. The blindfold match was fairly quick and delivered hijinks for a lark. The opening X-Division tag bout had flash, the Knockouts Championship contest had skill, and the Hardcore War had violence. One thing Hardcore Justice lacked was an insane moment living up to the show’s moniker.

I could have done without all the extra material with Storm, Cardona, and Callihan. That was TV fluff. A tight two-hour show would have been more palatable, especially on a day with The Grandaddy Of Them All in Wrestlemania.

Thinking about cutting Callihan’s segment made me wonder why it was there in the first place. Conspiracy theory time! What if Trey actually took Callihan’s lesson to heart and was the one to attack Dreamer? Nobody acted like Violent by Design was behind the dirty deed. That means a mystery is afoot. If Trey wanted to be on the card, time was running out. Trey could have sabotaged Dreamer knowing full well that he would be the likely replacement chosen by EVP Scott D’Amore. That would fit into Callihan’s message about passion.

I have mixed feelings about Dashwood becoming #1 contender. Her current persona hasn’t risen to demonstrate her full abilities in the ring. The social media influencer has been more on the comedy and shortcut side. The match with Purrazzo has equal chance at stealing the show and being a dud. A no nonsense Dashwood could rock the house. The aloof lady with Kaleb Konley by her side gives me zero reason to believe she will dethrone the Virtuosa.

For best match, my vote goes to Purrazzo and Jazz. The Hardcore War had fun moments of chaos, but the lack of Dreamer lost its emotional edge. While the result of the Knockouts match was never in doubt, Purrazzo’s style of playing chess is always intriguing.

Share your thoughts on Hardcore Justice. What was your favorite match? Who stole the show?

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