Chris Sabin and Frankie Kazarian have a rivalry dating back to 2003. During the TNA days, they wrestled over the X-Division Championship and in a Battle of the Futures classic. The rivalry reignited when Sabin called out Kaz to celebrate 20 years of Impact. They danced one more time a few weeks back, but it was ruined by Honor No More invaders. Sabin and Kaz needed to know who was better, so the main event of Thursday night’s Impact Wrestling was dedicated to them.
Sabin and Kaz tore the house down in an excellent match. Don’t take my word for it. Praise from Gail Kim says it all.
This match was pure wrestling and magic. Every wrestler right now in this current generation should watch this match and learn. Storytelling, pacing and connecting the audience ….. things that make matches memorable. Thank you to you both https://t.co/7qhB7Ky7pr— Gail Kim-Irvine (@gailkimITSME) July 1, 2022
Impact released the full match for your viewing entertainment. Enjoy.
The match started in a skillful stalemate. Sabin was the first to gain an advantage. He hit a Victory Roll driver then focused on damaging Kaz’s knee. Kazarian rallied with a bridging fisherman’s suplex then worked to tenderize Sabin’s spine. The action spilled to the outside. Kaz clobbered Sabin with a swinging reverse STO into the ring post. Kaz connected on a slingshot leg drop for the first close pinfall.
As the match progressed, a game of cat and mouse commenced. Sabin baited Kaz into a leg drop only to duck out of the way. When Sabin went for a suicide dive, Kaz had it scouted and clocked Sabin in the air. Kaz hit a slingshot DDT, but Sabin kicked out on the cover.
The match went back and forth with the familiarity between both men telling the story. Kaz leaped for a slingshot plancha. Sabin blasted him with a superkick mid-air and followed for a tornado DDT on the floor. Back in the ring, Sabin was on the apron waiting to strike with a springboard attack. Kaz pulled the ropes sending Sabin into the air to take a cutter. Sabin kicked out to continue the match.
Kaz made the mistake of letting his emotions take control, and that nearly cost him the match. He talked trash as Sabin was on the mat like a sack of potatoes. That was a ploy for Sabin to pop up for a Cradle Shock finisher. 1, 2, kick out by Kaz at 2.9. Kaz was able to execute a superplex, however, Sabin hooked the leg on the landing for a roll-up. Kaz barely escaped in time.
For the climax, the exhausted warriors dug deep into their energy reserves for a slugfest in the center of the ring. Blows were thrown with fury. Superkick by Sabin. Dropkick by Kaz. Jumping kick by Sabin. Kaz ducked a clothesline to explode for a German suplex. Sabin fired up to deliver a crushing clothesline. That contact stunned Kaz long enough for Sabin to execute the Cradle Shock finisher for victory.
If that was the final chapter between Sabin and Kazarian, then it was well worth the wait.
How do you rate that match from Chris Sabin and Frankie Kazarian?