The road to November's Over Drive continues on Thursday's Impact Wrestling as the tournament to crown a new X-Division Champion begins.
In the first two quarterfinal matches, former champion Trey Miguel takes on Alan Angels on the main show while Black Taurus faces Laredo Kid on the BTI pre-show. This will be Angels' first appearance since debuting against then-champion Mike Bailey in July.
The tournament will conclude at Over Drive with the finals. Frankie Kazarian officially relinquished the belt last week in exchange for a World title shot.
In a trios grudge match born out of a match last week, Knockouts Champion Jordynne Grace will team with former champions Mickie James & Taylor Wilde against former Knockouts Tag Team Champions Deonna Purrazzo & Chelsea Green and Gisele Shaw.
After a win over Jason Hotch last week, Joe Hendry will look to win his second straight since returning to Impact when he challenges Raj Singh.
Black Taurus (w/ Crazzy Steve) defeated Laredo Kid in an X-Division title tournament quarterfinal to advance
Taurus hit a DDT bomb from the top rope, followed by a fireman's carry into a piledriver for the pin and win. He faces the winner of next week's Yuya Uemura vs. PJ Black quarterfinal.
The show started backstage where now former Impact Tag Team Champions The Kingdom confronted Scott D'Amore and threatened legal action after last week's title loss to Heath & Rhino and subsequent beatdown from PCO. They said that Maria was hurt, it was unacceptable how they were treated, and that they were never wanted in Impact.
D'Amore said he was sorry about Maria and that he wanted them here, but they needed some common ground. They agreed that he wouldn't put them in a situation like that again...because they were fired. He then walked away and The Kingdom's Impact run officially came to an end.
Trey Miguel defeated Alan Angels in an X-Division title tournament quarterfinal
Miguel began his quest to regain the X-Division crowd while Angels was making his return to Impact for the first time since making his debut in July.
As expected, this was a good opener between two fast paced wrestlers. Miguel continues to be a standout for the company who has earned a World title program at some point. It appears Angels will be sticking around for a while which is another solid roster addition for Impact.
Miguel thought he had the win at one point after hitting a top rope meteora, but it only got a close two count. Angels later thought the same after a half-and-half suplex and big frog splash for two. Miguel got the pin and win to advance after a high kick and lightning spiral to end a pretty great match.
Miguel will face the winner of next week's Mike Bailey vs. Kenny King match.
- Chris Bey & Ace Austin went looking for Bully Ray and found him with Tommy Dreamer. Austin thinks Bully Ray jumped him in the locker room last week which took him out of their tag team match. Bully Ray said it was Moose and when Bey advanced, Dreamer told him to hold back which Bey didn't like. This led to a challenge for a match later in the night.
- Gisele Shaw was beaming with VXT over their efforts two weeks ago over The Death Dollz. Tonight, they really want to say goodbye to Mickie James and want to send her packing into retirement with a loss. Apparently, the win or retire stip applies to tag team matches?
Rachelle Scheel defeated Tasha Steelz (w/ Savannah Evans) by DQ
Steelz laid out Scheel with a kick right off the bat followed by a cutter. She then walked out of the ring, grabbed a mic and wasn't happy with the competition. She told Evans to get in there and finish the job. Evans laid her out for the DQ, followed by a power bomb. This feels like a holding pattern post-Killer Kelly feud until they figure out what's next.
- The Motor City Machine Guns congratulated new tag champions Heath & Rhino. The MCMG reminded them of their commitment of a title shot which Heath was down with. He suggested they go to management and they did.
A TV break later, Matt Cardona & Brian Myers were also waiting for management. As they got into a shoving match about who would get the shot, D'Amore busted out and said it would be Alex Shelley vs. Cardona tonight.
Chris Bey (w/ Ace Austin) defeated Tommy Dreamer
The Impact faithful weren't happy with this on the docket when they saw the spoilers and I tend to agree. Like Miguel, Bey is an upper tier talent and I hope he gets the opportunity given his recent extension.
Bully Ray came out to support Dreamer even though he earlier asked him not to unless Austin got involved. There's a storyline here with Dreamer telling Bully Ray no one trusts him with Bully Ray trying to convince people he's on the level...even though he doesn't seem that way.
Unsurprisingly, this was a competitive match. After Dreamer hit a superplex, Moose came out to confront Bully Ray about his accusations of taking out Austin. Moose then tripped Bey as the referee was distracted by Dreamer hanging on the ropes, but Bey thought it was Bully Ray. Bey eventually picked up the win off the Art of Finesse off the second rope.
Dreamer can work these matches in his sleep, but I don't necessarily need to see them in 2022.
- The Impact Plus flashback was from Slammiversary X when Bully Ray defended the then-TNA World title against Sting in a weapons match. This was during the Aces & Eights era. Let's move along.
- Aussie Open cut a promo saying they still want a shot at the Impact Tag Team titles and issued an open challenge for next week.
- Dreamer was with Bully Ray and told him to relax and calm down. That didn't go well. He said he wanted to do things the right way and has been trying, but it's not working. No one trusts him. Dreamer said things are fine and it's all good. Bully Ray said he would take Moose out the next time he gets involved and was still pacing when Dreamer left.
Matt Cardona defeated Alex Shelley
Cardona jumped Shelley as he was getting into the ring and it was on. Because of both men's extensive careers, it felt like we have probably seen this a few times over the years. Au contraire: it's only happened twice -- tonight and a November 2021 GCW show.
As you might expect, this was a quality wrestling match between two veterans. Myers got involved several times, including putting Cardona's foot on the bottom rope off a Shelley pin attempt. Myers ran in the ring and got double teamed by the MCMG (in front of the ref no less), eventually getting dispatched to the outside.
The last few minutes saw both get near falls through a handful of tights, a DDT on the Digital Media title belt, and Radio Silence. Things broke down and Shelley got thrown into the ropes where Myers was waiting with a belt shot, leading to a Cardona roll-up for the win.
Cardona and Myers beat down the MCMG after the match, leading to Heath and Rhino emerging to take them out. I see a three-way for the titles in the future.
- World Champion Josh Alexander was chatting with Rich Swann and Gail Kim came up. She reminded him to not trust anyone and to watch his back. Coincidentally, Steve Maclin ran from behind and pounded Alexander. Frankie Kazarian just happened to be there for the save. Alexander wondered how that could be and Kazarian said he wants the champ at 100%. Alexander then offered up an opportunity to take Aussie Open's open challenge which Kazarian liked.
Joe Hendry defeated Raj Singh
Hendry already feels very lived-in with this character which is a compliment. The song just fits perfectly. Hendry picked up a quick win with the Standing Ovation (chokeslam bomb). Do you believe?
- Eric Young and Deaner were talking to someone off camera about Young's match against Sami Callihan next week. He hopes that person's eyes would be open next week.
- Gia Miller talked to Eddie Edwards about the standing of Honor No More after last week. He said it was no more with nothing left to salvage. She asked about Alisha and he wanted to keep it private, later saying he would have done everything the same over the last year given how it ended up. He said the poison pill was PCO and that he's going to pay for what he's done.
Knockouts Champion Jordynne Grace, Mickie James & Taylor Wilde defeated VXT & Gisele Shaw
Commentary confirmed that a loss here would indeed end James' career which seems unfair considering the odds, but I digress. I also didn't expect James' career to end on a late-October edition of Impact so it kinda gave the finish away.
This match featured the current champion and four other Knockouts Champions so this was quite the affair on paper. As much as people complain about AEW's women's division, Impact has done a nice job with their roster with good wrestlers, good face/heel dynamics, and storylines that make sense.
After a competitive first half leading into the break, Chelsea Green, Deonna Purrazzo and Shaw took over on Wilde. After a hot tag to James, the story of this potentially being her last match took center stage on commentary.
Things broke down in the final few minutes with lots of moves and near falls. VXT got a close near fall off a gnarly looking Blockbuster. That led to James alone with VXT & Shaw. Shaw got the Knockouts title and started posing which got her taken out by Grace. As VXT was about to finish James, Wilde took out Purrazzo and James hit a big DDT on Green to get the win.
The Last Rodeo continues.
- Kenny King vs. Mike Bailey X-Division title tournament quarterfinal
- Sami Callihan vs. Eric Young
- Aussie Open vs. Frankie Kazarian & Josh Alexander
- BTI pre-show: Yuya Uemura vs. PJ Black X-Division title tournament quarterfinal