Impact held the Victory Road special event in White Plains, NY on September 9, 2023. The show featured Trinity dishing out payback on Eddie Edwards, Josh Alexander rumbling with Steve Maclin, Tommy Dreamer winning a title to keep his career alive, and more.
The funnest moment of the evening came courtesy of Trinity. She was defending the Knockouts Championship against Alisha Edwards, but Alisha had help with her husband as backup. Eddie Edwards proved his value the night before by slamming Trinity through a table at the contract signing during the Impact Wrestling TV show.
When it came time for the bout, Trinity rolled solo despite Eddie’s presence looming large ringside. Trinity dominated early, then Eddie caused distractions for Alisha to take control. Trinity rallied, but an errant head kick popped the referee when Alisha ducked. Trinity didn’t see it at first and transitioned into the Starstruck submission. Eddie entered the ring to break the hold with force. He attempted to slam Trinity through a table on the outside, but Frankie Kazarian and Traci Brooks made the save. Trinity had the last laugh with a flying splash onto Eddie through the table. Hell yeah! It looked like Kaz was grinning the whole time holding Eddie in place.
The champ handled business in the ring to finish Alisha on a buttbuster.
On paper, Trinity versus Alisha was a total mismatch, however, Impact formulated the fight into amusing entertainment. The ref bump opened the door for chaos, and Trinity delivered with the cold dish of sweet revenge on that flying splash to Eddie. Good times.
Let’s run down the results from the rest of the card top to bottom.
Josh Alexander defeated Steve Maclin. This main event was finally in play after injuries delayed their previous showdown. Maclin focused on damaging the surgically repaired arm of Alexander. That pain didn’t stop Alexander from executing ten consecutive German suplexes. Maclin went back to his strategy, and it paid off when Alexander couldn’t grip tight on an ankle lock and other signature maneuvers. Down the stretch, Maclin gained the upper hand in an exhausted exchange of fisticuffs. After two suplexes, he wearily climbed the corner. Alexander put his boot up to block a flying headbutt. The Walking Weapon seized the moment for a C4 piledriver to win. Alexander set it up pretty sweet. Maclin had his hands up to block the application, so Alexander kicked him in the knee. Maclin’s hands went down out of reaction, then Alexander grabbed him for the finisher.
Impact Hall of Fame. Mike Tenay and Don West were announced as the newest members. The induction ceremony will take place at Bound for Glory on October 21. (Full details here.)
Impact World Tag Team Championship: Rascalz retained against Motor City Machine Guns. MCMG worked the legs to great effectiveness. The champs were desperate, so they went the cheating route. It backfired when Chris Sabin hit a DDT to Trey Miguel on the tag title belt. 1, 2, new champs? Nope. John Skyler of the Good Hands pulled the referee out of the ring.
Once order was restored, Sabin scooped a roll-up. Trey kicked out with force sending Sabin into the ropes. Zachary Wentz was waiting with the spray paint to blind Sabin. Trey scored a roll-up to win.
Anything Goes: PCO defeated Bully Ray. Bully wanted to make sure PCO didn’t show up, so he ran him over in a car earlier in the evening. When PCO didn’t stay down, Bully poured gasoline on the monster backstage, but PCO spit the liquid back into Bully’s eyes. Bully tired to bail from the arena before the match, however, Director of Authority Santino Marella blocked his path.
The match was a wild fight with tables, ladders, chairs, trashcans, and a cheese grater. PCO grated Bully’s balls. Bully sent PCO crashing through tables four times, but the monster wouldn’t die. Bully had enough and tried to run away. Santino was there again blocking his retreat on stage. Bully slapped Santino, so Santino struck with the Cobra.
PCO rallied to chokeslam Bully through a table. PCO landed a twisting senton onto a table, but the wood didn’t break. PCO used an Irish whip sending Bully into that table in the corner for the winning pin.
Jordynne Grace defeated Deonna Purrazzo. Grace utilized aggressive power in her return to the ring, while Purrazzo relied on strategic technique. The match escalated into heavy moves with piledrivers and powerbombs. Purrazzo snatched a limb for an armbar, but Grace was able to escape. The Juggernaut clobbered the Virtuosa with a flurry of strikes. A spinning backfist and a lariat set up a Grace Driver for victory. That was Grace’s first win against Purrazzo in Impact after losing the previous four matchups.
Impact Digital Media Championship: Tommy Dreamer defeated Kenny King to win the title. The stipulation was career versus title. Dreamer had momentum for a DVD and a piledriver, but King kicked out on the cover. Dreamer found inspiration in Terry Funk to go for a moonsault. Sheldon Jean hit the ropes before Dreamer could take flight. As the referee ejected Jean, Heath ran in from behind for a Wake Up Call on King. Dreamer finished the job with a DDT. (Full details here.)
Crazzy Steve defeated Black Taurus. Taurus went on a run of heavy offense. Steve pleaded for mercy. Taurus was conflicted about hurting his old friend. When Taurus turned his back, Steve attacked from behind. Steve tried to stab Taurus in the eyes with a fork. When the referee confiscated the foreign object, Steve gouged the bull’s eyes instead. Steve finished with a flying DDT.
Knockouts tag Team Championship: MK Ultra retained against Shawntourage. Gisele Shaw and Savannah Evans were working well as a unit, then Evans hit a big boot to Shaw’s mug by accident when Masha Slamovich moved. After some tussling, Slamovich gained the upper hand on Evans with a head kick and the Snow Plow driver.
X-Division Championship: Lio Rush retained against Kushida. Rush was having his way, then Kushida turned the tide by catching a suicide dive for the Hoverboard Lock kimura submission.
Kushida slapped the hold on again inside the ring. Rush struggled to escape and took a lot of pain. He eventually positioned for a roll-up, so Kushida had to release when kicking out. Rush was slick with tricks. He blocked a punch and shoved Kushida’s hand into hitting the referee’s face. The ref reacted by turning his back, so Rush struck Kushida with a low blow. The frog slash sealed the deal for victory.
The free pre-show featured a pair of bouts.
Ace Austin & Chris Bey defeated Moose & Brian Myers. Moose and Myers kicked ass for much of the match. Moose sent Bey into the Roster Cut lariat finisher from Myers, but Bey ducked low and scored a roll-up on Myers to win. Ace held Moose’s legs from the outside to prevent him from breaking the pin. Score a sneaky one for ABC.
Alan Angels defeated Guido Maritato. ECW veteran Little Guido answered the open challenge. Angels played possum using the referee as a shield to rake Guido’s eyes and finish with the Angel’s Wings. (Full details here.)
Victory Road was a solid show. Even though the action was good, there were too many cheap finishes for my liking. Josh Alexander and Steve Maclin had the best contest as the main event. It was a strong wrestling match with both men fighting to exhaustion. The storytelling with Alexander’s arm added drama to a match many assumed he would win.
Jordynne Grace versus Deonna Purrazzo and Lio Rush versus Kushida are also worth watching as quality wrestling contests. Grace was a powerhouse triumphing over her nemesis, and now she should be positioned to make a run at the top again to challenge Trinity. Kushida’s applications of the Hoverboard Lock were slick, and Rush sold them well making me question if he would submit.
Tommy Dreamer had a feel-good moment in victory, however, I would have preferred to see him win more on his own for such big stakes. Heath’s help was warranted, but it also softened the moment of Dreamer rallying to win. Kenny King was pretty much handed to him on a silver platter.
Share your reactions to Victory Road.