Impact Wrestling returns from Nashville, TN for tonight’s episode.
Opening video focused on the attack on Rich Swann at the hands of Eric Young, with the question on whether Swann will be able to get cleared to wrestle for Bound For Glory. In addition, it recapped last week’s Motor City Machine Guns vs. Ace Austin and Madman Fulton main event that led to the interference of The North and The Good Brothers, setting up tonight’s Fulton vs Gallows match. Finally, they showed ECIII burying the TNA Championship belt for good.
Show opened with Moose complaining to Scott D’Amore that he hasn’t done anything to deal with the ECIII situation and that Moose is booked to wrestle at an undisclosed location. Moose is just asking for management to do things right.
ECIII cut a promo on Moose telling him that he is learning and coming closer to controlling his own narrative. Still a lot of ambiguity, but I’m still hopeful it ends with a Moose and ECIII tag team.
Taya Valkyrie & Rosemary defeated Tasha Steelz & Kiera Hogan and Havok & Nevaeh
All three teams have been feuding in one way or another for months. Taya and Rosemary have defeated the other teams in tag team matches while the other team interfered, and thus now they are all involved in the same contest. One particular detail about this feud is that Rosemary needs Havok’s aid to bring back James Mitchell back to life so he can carry out her wedding with John E. Bravo.
Story of the match was that Steelz and Hogan avoided getting in the ring, allowing Havok and Nevaeh to cut off Taya, who became the babyface in peril. Steelz and Hogan only tagged in when Taya was at her weakest, but as soon as Taya made a comeback on them, things turned around, and now it was the teams of Taya/Rosemary and Havok/Nevaeh trading tags to work over the heels.
Eventually, chaos spilled out, with all women getting involved. Towards the end, Hogan hit a dive on Havok, followed by Taya with a plancha. But either due to timing or just missing their spot, neither properly caught Taya, who just went straight to the floor.
Finish saw Rosemary spear Steelz and hit the double underhook sitout bomb for the win.
This was pretty good given the teams. Hogan and Steelz have been good since they came together but Rosemary is the one that has shown the most improvement in the last month.
At this point, we know the Rosemary and Bravo wedding is in two weeks, but we don’t have a match for any of these teams for BFG; however, with this win, it seems that Rosemary and Taya can move on towards setting up the wedding episode.
- Josh Matthews and Madison Rayne ran down the card for tonight and Bound For Glory, updating with the new matches announced during the week, including Eddie Edwards vs. Ken Shamrock, Moose vs. ECIII, and the Call Your Shot Gauntlet.
- Backstage, John E. Bravo berated his wedding crew for going over budget on the wedding preparations. Fallah Bahh, his best man, arrived and confirmed he had not secured any money. As we know from last week, Bahh did indeed steal money from Hernandez, and Crazzy Steve figured it out, and thus called him out on it. Defensive, Bahh challenged Steve to a match tonight. No reason why Bahh suddenly wants to keep the money.
- Rosemary approached Havok about getting her help to bring back Father James Mitchell. Havok told her that it had taken a lot to kill Mitchell and that she had done it for a reason, to which Rosemary said that jeopardizing her wedding could break the time continuum for some reason. Havok offered Rosemary a match next week, in which if Rosemary wins, Havok helps her bring back Mitchell. A literal life or death stipulation.
Crazzy Steve defeated Fallah Bahh
Bahh came out tightly gripping the money roll like if it was a forbidden treasure. His whole demeanor screamed Gollum and the one ring. Steve came out and tried to get the referee to find it and for Bahh to lose the t-shirt, but failed.
This wasn’t much of a match. Steve kept trying to grab Bahh's money and Bahh responded by using his strength to toss him away and save himself. Steve tried to choke out Bahh, but was unsuccessful.
In the end, Steve managed to tear off Bahh’s t-shirt, revealing the money roll, and as Bahh went to cover it, Steve rolled him up for the win. Not particularly good, but at least it was short.
With the reveal, we should expect Hernandez to come after Bahh and potentially the whole wedding crew.
- Rhino met with Heath in the locker room. Rhino told Heath that he felt sorry for what happened to him last week, so he had gone around and pulled some strings to get Heath a spot at the Call Your Shot Gauntlet, and if either Rhino or Heath wins, Heath can get a contract with Impact. Rhino told Heath to get ready since they have a match later tonight.
D’Amore entered and told Rhino that he was a good friend, and brought up that Rhino agreed that if neither wins, Heath is gone, and Rhino will give up his own contract.
This stank of a heel turn by Rhino, but that last detail from D’Amore really clears it off and somewhat telegraphs the finish to the CYSG at Bound For Glory.
Kaleb with a K came out to introduce Tenille Dashwood, announcing that she will be entering the Call Your Shot Gauntlet, as will all the participants of the following match.
Hernandez, Cousin Jake, Alisha Edwards, Rhino, and Heath defeated Tommy Dreamer, Brian Myers, Tenille Dashwood, Johnny Swinger, & Cody Deaner
Matthews confirmed that the participant order was picked at random and thus we now have Myers and Dreamer in the same team, who have been feuding for the last couple of weeks.
Stipulation of this match is that the winning team will have a five way match next week, where the winner will earn the #20 spot at the Call Your Shot Gauntlet at BFG.
This was chaotic, a lot of comedy and really quick spots to try and get everyone in for a short time. Most of the in-ring action came from Hernandez beating up Dreamer, but thankfully, Heath and Myers had a good short run at the end that led to Swinger blind tagging himself in, only to get the Wake Up Call from Heath for the win.
- Backstage, Callihan teased Eddie Edwards, distracting him from Ken Shamrock, who attacked him from behind, and once again went after Edwards’ ankle.
- Jimmy Jacobs interviewed Eric Young about his attack on Swann. EY said that his match at Bound For Glory was unconfirmed at this point and asked Jacobs why Impact thought that it was smart to have Swann miraculously recover and put him back in the ring with the man that caused all the damage to begin with.
Kylie Rae defeated Kimber Lee (with Deonna Purrazzo)
After the attack on Susie by Purrazzo and Lee at Victory Road, Kylie Rae is out to get some revenge for her friend. In the same vein, commentary sold it as Purrazzo using this match to get Kimber Lee to weaken or completely take out Rae before their BFG match.
Rae was super fired up for this match; she wasn’t smiling as usual. She controlled the first half of the match, going for submission attempts and strikes on Kimber Lee, but it wasn’t until she went for a rana from the apron that Lee blocked her and with an apron bomb, turned the match around.
Lee worked over Rae’s head for a while, at one point dropping her with a delayed vertical suplex for a near fall. Rae eventually made a comeback, hitting the Kylie Special for a two count. Lee got another good near fall with a sitdown powerbomb, but at the end, Rae locked in the smile to the finish to make Lee submit. Really good match, great action and the correct amount of heat headed towards BFG.
After the match, Kylie Rae didn’t release the STTF, allowing Purrazzo to attack her from behind. They brawled a bit until Rae nailed Purrazzo with a superkick and cleared the ring.
Prior to the next match, Anderson and Gallows cut a promo saying that at first, they came to Impact for the money, but they've realized that they like it, and that they’re the best, but to be the best, they have to hold the Tag Team championships. They promised that they would walk out of BFG the new champions.
Doc Gallows (with Karl Anderson) vs. Madman Fulton (with Ace Austin) ended in a double countout
This was a scary hoss fight, it was more of a brawl than anything else. Within a minute Fulton hit snake eyes on Gallows and they spilled out to the floor for a brawl. They punched and kicked each other around and up the ramp and neither cared when they were counted out.
After the commercial break, we got confirmed that Impact management have restarted the match under No DQs rules.
Doc Gallows (with Karl Anderson) defeated Madman Fulton (with Ace Austin) in a No DQ match
We picked up the match as Fulton and Gallows brawled around the ring, Fulton found a led pipe, while Gallows carried a chair. They then proceeded to hit each other with everything they could find, chairs, metal signs, golf clubs, and whatnot.
Fulton was in control for most of the match, destroying Gallows, but it wasn’t until Fulton tried to con-chair-to Gallows against a chair locked between the turnbuckles that Gallows dodged, sent Fulton head first into the chair, hit a double handed chokeslam on a bed of chairs and picked up the win.
This was great for what it was. Weapons matches are not the best in empty arenas, but this was so brutal that I completely forgot the lack of fans. No sight of the Motor City Machine Guns or The North, but it’s been weeks of all eight men being involved in the same ring, so it was a nice chance of pace to allow two men to fight each other.
- Matthews and Rayne ran down next weeks’ card, including the Call Your Shot Gauntlet #20 spot match, Callihan vs Eddie Edwards, Rohit Raju, Chris Bey, & Jordynne Grace vs Willie Mack, Trey Miguel, & TJP, all competitors in the BFG X-Division Scramble match for the title, and finally The North vs The Good Brothers.
- Eric Young came down to the ring to demand answers on the status of his Bound For Glory match. He hijacked the rest of the show until someone confirmed that Swann had given up.
We saw D’Amore finish the call with either Swann or Dr. Foreman then headed to the ring to deal with Young.
Out in the ring, Young demanded that D’Amore confirm the cancellation of the World title match at Bound For Glory. D’Amore said that Young had done additional and substantial damage to Swann’s leg. After a lot of trash talk by Young, D’Amore told EY that the match is still on because as per medical assessment, Rich Swann’s recovery is ahead of schedule and would be cleared for Bound For Glory.
Irate, Eric Young jumped Scott D’Amore and proceeded to break his ankle. Rich Swann then appeared and laid out Young with a cutter. Young retreated as Swann held up the Impact World title.
This was the perfect execution of the cocky heel getting swerved by the clearance of the valiant babyface, but they couldn’t hold off on Swann’s return and thus ended up spoiling any questions on Swann’s status and making us wonder why Swann didn’t confront Young earlier.
- Before the show ended, we saw Moose finally find ECIII, who told Moose that he was a fraud, whose personality was just a combination of all his idols.
ECIII and Moose started brawling on a bridge, but it ended with ECIII knocking down Moose and laughing at what Moose had become, someone who could be easily beaten.
Moose recovered and attacked ECIII with his fists, leaving him all bloodied up. He walked away with the TNA title as ECIII laughed in the background. This was a bit of the payoff we’ve waited weeks for, but being so close to BFG now, I don’t know what else we can expect for the pay-per-view.
Final thoughts --
Overall a good show building up heat for Bound For Glory.