By John Moore
Impact Wrestling on PopTV
Taped May 30, 2017 in Mumbai, India at Film City Stage 7
The intro video this week contained clips involving Low Ki and Sonjay Dutt which hyped up their upcoming X Division Championship match later on in this episode. It contained highlights from Sonjay Dutt’s first run in TNA as well as snippets from last week’s promo by Sonjay to Low Ki…
After the Indian version of the Impact intro video, Jeremy Borash introduced the show which aired taped from Mumbai, India in Film City Stage 7. Ring announcer Siddharth Kannan introduced the “Sony Six Invitational Gauntlet Battle Royal”. Jeremy Borash reminded the viewers that he and Josh were ordered not to physically attack or provoke each other or else lose their jobs…
1. Sony Six Invitational Gauntlet Battle Royal. Matt Sydal and Suicide were the first two wrestlers in the match. Suicide did this finger gun gestures. Sydal dominated the early portion of the match. Suicide came back after a basement dropkick to Sydal. Sydal quickly regained control after a spinning wheel kick. Davey Richards was the third wrestler out. Richards caught Sydal’s kick and turned it into a dragon screw. Richards dominated both Sydal and Suicide. KM came out next to his Samoa Joe theme. KM struck a deal with Davey Richards to put the boots to Sydal and Suicide. Sydal managed to tie up KM and Richards and hit them with a combined STO and legdrop.
The babyfaces had the upper hand over the heels at this point. After about a minute or two, Swoggle was the fifth wrestler out. Suicide was eliminated immediately as Hornswoggle entered the ring. KM and Richards nosold Swoggle’s chops. KM gave Swoggle the pieface. Sydal drove his knees into the chest of KM for the takedown. Swoggle tried to give Davey Richards some sumo palmstrikes which Davey nosold. Eddie Edwards was out next who quickly made a beeline for Davey Richards. Eddie clotheslined both himself and Davey to eliminated them from the brawl. [C]
Rockstar Spud was came to the ring after the commercial. Sydal kicked Spud in the hamstring causing him to yell “why?”. Swoggle tripped Spud over the back of Sydal. Spud blindsided both Sydal and Swoggle as they celebrated. KM was chillin’ on a turnbuckle as everyone else fought. Spud dominated Swoggle as he said “I never meant to pull your pants down” several times. Kongo Kong was out next. Sydal tried to springboard off the ropes but Kong pushed him midair. Kong tried to eliminate Sydal but Sydal skinned the cat. Sydal was then pushed off the apron after some resistance to eliminate Sydal.
KM ordered Kong to attack Swoggle and Spud. Spud reached back only to feel Kongo boob. Spud was easily eliminated by Kong. Kong lightly put Swoggle on the apron. Spud rammed Swoggle into the turnbuckle to eliminate him. Moose took his time to get to the ring doing his Moose dance. Moose went right at Kongo Kong but KM was able to draw Moose’s attention. Moose hit KM with his agile springboard crossbody. Kongo Kong managed to give KM the advantage. KM and Kongo Kong eliminated Moose together.
Mahabali Shera was the last entrant in the match. They cut the camera to Mahabali Shera’s father in the crowd. Kong dominated Shera as the crowd went nuts for the home country boy. Shera managed to duck a rushing Kong to send Kong over the top rope [C]
KM kicked Shera in the gut to gain the upper hand. KM put the boot to Shera in the corner and maintained pressure afterward with the middle rope. KM put Shera into position to hit a slingshot splash on Shera. Shera’s dad was shown with a smile on his face as his son kicked out of a pin. Shera discovered a new move and hit KM with an Attitude Adjustment/FU. The crowd and Shera’s dad did a Shera chant. Shera then went into his various clotheslines. KM blocked the Sky High with a boot to Shera’s gut. Shera escaped the pumphandle and hit KM with a Sky High to pick up the victory.
Mahabali Shera wins the Sony Six Invitational Gauntlet Battle Royal in approx 16:00.
The crowd went crazy for Mahabali Shera’s victory as he did his dance to his new and improved entrance theme. Shera jumped the guardrail to give his father and family a hug. Sony Pictures India CEO N.P. Singh was joined by “Impact Officials” Scott D’Amore and Bruce Prichard to present Shera with the Sony Six trophy. Josh Mathews told us that Shera calls himself “The Lion of Punjab”. The crowd continued to cheer for the country guy…
Josh Mathews and Jeremy Borash were shown from their darkened and undisclosed location in front of a Sony Six backdrop. JB was in a suit while Josh was wearing a tank top. Josh Mathews hyped the “Josh Mathews Sparring Session” as the main event of this episode of Impact. Jeremy Borash said that wasn’t the main event because Sonjay Dutt vs. Low Ki for the X Division Championship was the main event. JB cut to a Sonjay Dutt highlight vignette…
John’s Thoughts: This was pretty much your house show undercard wrestler battle royal with a few main eventers in The Wolves adding star power. It surprises me that after all these years, Shera still can’t do more than a clothesline, Body Slam, and Sky High. He did add the FU, but he still hasn’t even punched or kicked yet. That nitpick aside, they did a good job in booking around the limited Shera in this match. The reaction was huge and the story of him performing for his family in the first row was well told.
Jeremy Borash hyped up that star running back DeAngelo Williams was going to be wrestling for Impact at Slammiversary. Borash bragged about being mentioned in ESPN, Fox Sports, Bleacher Report, and other sports media outlets. Williams was shown preparing for his match at Scott D’Amore’s wrestling school in Canada. Borash cut to a Borash and Joseph Park training skit. Borash yelled at Park for taking him to a Chinese buffet rather than a training dojo. Park said even though they don’t have good Kung Fu, they have good Kung Pow. Borash said “cha cha cha Cha Chinese Chicken”. Park and Borash then quoted the Barenaked Ladies “One Week” song. Borash and Park entered hungry and left the buffet stuffed. Borash yelled “KUNG POW!!!”. Park said it was time for video study…
John’s Thoughts: I can’t quite pinpoint why, but sometimes, old non-Decay Abyss can be boring as hell; but I can’t help but laugh at Joe Park. Bonus points for quoting songs from my childhood. I love the Digimon movie!
They cut to an LAX Clubhouse cinematic. Konnan talked about Impact being in India. Konnan said it was time to have fun by wrestling around Florida independents. Konnan said it was time to drop some f*ckin’ Tag Teams and do some real G shit by taking the promoters bankroll. Konnan said it was time to take “the boys” bankroll too. Clips aired of next week where Impact was going to show footage of LAX wrestling tag teams in other promotions…
John’s Thoughts: So, are LAX picking up where the Broken Hardys Expedition of Gold left off?
A variation of EC3’s theme aired in the Impact arena as EC3 came to the ring as E-Singh-3. EC3 had an Indian remix of his entrance theme. Clips aired of EC3 whipping an Indian jobber in the back with a belt from last week. EC3 had a guy in business attire with him in the ring. EC3 said hello to India. He said he is E-Singh-3 which drew boos. EC3 handed the mic to his “translator” who translated what he said. EC3 said he was tracing his family lineage and found out that his great great great great great great grandfather was born in India, full blooded.
John’s Thoughts: Oh! That explains why Dixie Carter is so enamored with Sony Six and gives random pushes to Mahabali Shera!
EC3 said he was with the crowd. EC3 said India was a land of rich cultural history. EC3 said together Impact and India were making history. EC3 handed the mic to the translate as he held a cheesy frozen pose. Comically, the crowd gave EC3 a huge babyface pop once they figured out what he said. EC3 talked about being richer than 99.9% of the people. EC3 said he doesn’t see culture in this third world hell hole. The crowd told EC3 that he sucks. EC3 said he isn’t here to create history, but rather to destroy it. He handed it to the translator to help draw more boos. EC3 said he came here to find tranquility and zen but found anger and despair instead.
EC3 said Impact and India deserve each other because the officials in the back are just like the people in the crowd. They are dirt, they are filth, they are grime, they are incompetent, they are worthless, and they are fools. EC3 said they were covered in refuse. EC3 said amongst the trash there was one shining light and golden god, EC3! The crowd chanted “you look stupid!” at EC3. EC3 said he’s the best guy here, there, and anywhere. EC3 shoved the mic at the translator who refused to translate EC3’s heel promo. EC3 yelled at Bolo to translate. EC3 took the mic and said you India and just like Impact he was insubordinate, and Bolo will be punished. EC3 kicked Bolo to the ground and ripped the belt from Bolo’s pants. EC3 whipped Bolo with the belt. James Storm walked to the ring. Storm kicked the belt out of EC3’s hands. EC3 ducked Storm and scurried to the ramp. EC3 ripped off his Indian garb as they cut to commercial… [C]
John’s Thoughts: The babyface part was a bit weird but good in that it put the crowd in a false sense of joy only for EC3 to rip the joy away from them and go full on heel on the crowd. In Florida in recent months, even though EC3’s a heel he goes for cheers and laughs too often. This was the good ol’ Heel EC3 that made so many waves a few years ago with his stellar antagonistic promos.
Josh Mathews was hyping himself up for his public sparring session. Jeremy Borash cut to a clip from catering. It was a comedy Swoggle and Spud skit. Spud and Swoggle were eating. Spud joked about Swoggle’s size and brought up how he didn’t mean to pull Swoggle’s pants down. Swoggle thought the opposite. They bickered against each other for beating each other with hammers. Spud said he would see Swoggle in the gauntlet. The Mumbai Cats were sitting in catering with them. Spud said he hates short people. Spud rubbed Spud’s head in Spud’s food plate…
Josh Mathews made his entrance for his public sparring session. Jeremy Borash talked about Josh Mathews being out of the ring for 15 years and brought up Josh’s history as a wrestler on Tough Enough. Josh Mathews said he and Scott Steiner were going to eviscerate and abolish Jeremy Borash and Joe Park from Impact Wrestling forever. Josh bragged about Steiner’s return drawing over a million views on YouTube. Josh called the backstage officials stupid for banning him from attacking JB until the PPV. Josh talked about getting a handpicked opponent for this show. Josh said his opponent was from the Indian Olympic Team, a Bollywood star, and a 2012 Cricket Champion.
Josh said his opponent was Sandeep Dhaka. Jeremy Borash said he never heard of this guy. Josh’s opponent, a local wrestler, walked out and high fived the fans. Even though he was a bit short and had a gut, the guy was muscular. Compare him to the Indian Author of Pain, or Jeff Cobb as far as body frame, and with a gut.
2. Josh Mathews vs. Sandeep Dhaka. Sandeep locked in a headlock to start. Josh hit a hip toss to dominate early on. Josh then hit a drop toehold and toyed with Sandeep on the ground. Sandeep recovered as Josh received You Suck chants. Sandeep then hit Josh with a few armdrags and a dropkick which proves he knows more moves than Mahabali Shera ever did. Josh yelled at Sandeep for not making him look good. Josh called for a test of strength and instead low blowed Sandeep (in front of the referee who didn’t DQ him). Josh tripped Sandeep and hit him with a nice looking Swanton Bomb. Josh Mathews locked in the Steiner Recliner on Sandeep to pick up the submission victory.
Josh Mathews defeated Sandeep Dhaka via submission in 2:25.
Josh refused to let go of the hold after the bell rang. The hometown hero, Mahabali Shera walked out for the save. Josh sold fear. Josh cowered at the feet of Shera. Josh tried to go for a cheap punch but Shera put Josh in position for a body slam. Lashley walked out to save Josh as Shera tried some kind of move (?) on Josh. I’m not kidding or trying to rag on the guy, Shera had Josh in an awkward move position. Lashley saved Josh and hit Shera with a clothesline. Josh Mathews locked in the Steiner Recliner on Mahabali Shera. Alberto El Patron ran out to run off Lashley and Mathews leading into the break… [C]
John’s Thoughts: I know the guy hasn’t wrestled on television in about 15 years, but Josh actually looked pretty good for the limited action we saw from him. His hip tosses were clean and he could hit one hell of a Swanton Bomb. They did say at one point that he modeled his wrestling style after Jeff Hardy. He was also the runner up in Tough Enough so I shouldn’t be too surprised that he did well. Sandeep was green, but the hometown hero thing works for both him and Shera. Overall, it was a good segment aside from the “Only in TNA” moment with the ref not DQ-ing Josh even though he clearly saw the ball kick.
Mathews joked about not being out of breath (which I think was a joke referencing how the commentary was post produced). They cut to more Jeremy Borash and Joe Park training. Joseph Park was simulating his upcoming match with action figures. Park apologized because he couldn’t find a Josh Mathews action figure so he had to use a Magnus action figure. Borash insisted that they watch tape. Park argued that as a lawyer, visual aids like action figures were more effective. Park referenced Steiner’s crazy Samoa Joe match promo from back in the day. Park then showed Borash the Steiner math promo on YouTube. Park said he wondered how Steiner ever got over because his promos suck. Park and Borash then watch Steiner as the crazy ring announcer when he was with the Main Event Mafia.
The two then got freaked out watching Steiner destroy people in the ring. They said Steiner has no heart, soul, or compassion. Park said Steiner was built like a “Shit Brickhouse”. Borash corrected Park by saying that Steiner was built like a “Brick Shithouse”. Park said he’s a “Shit Brickhouse” because of how tough he is. JB started to doubt himself after watching more Steiner video. Park said Abyss taught him to face his fears head-on. As Park tried to inspire Borash they were both freaked out when skype rang and it was Scott Steiner on the other side…
Back to Impact, Trevor Lee made his entrance. Braxton Sutter came out to the ring with Allie.
3. Trevor Lee vs. Braxton Sutter (w/ Allie). Trevor Lee attacked Braxton Sutter before the bell. “Only in TNA” does this mean that the timekeeper should ring the bell. Lee gave Sutter his punt to the chest on the apron. Lee then attempted a deadlift German Suplex pin. Lee put the boots to Sutter as he roared to the crowd. Trevor Lee went to ringside to intimidate Allie. Sutter recovered and brought Lee back in the ring. Lee and Sutter exchanged forearms and uppercuts. Sutter grounded Lee with a power slam. Sutter then hit Lee with a Pump kick. Sutter won with a swinging fireman carry slam.
Braxton Sutter defeated Trevor Lee via pinfall in 2:06.
Allie went in to the ring to celebrate with Sutter as Josh Mathews cut to highlights from the match. Sienna’s theme cut them off. Sienna had Laurel Van Ness with her. Sienna made fun of Sutter for wearing a beanie in India when it’s hot outside. Sienna mocked Allie for being pure and innocent. Sienna asked the crowd why Allie attacked her and Laurel with a weapon? Sienna proposed that Allie actually be a wrestler and she challenged Allie to a tag match between her and Laurel vs. Allie and Rosemary for next week. Sienna talked about how Rosemary can’t be trusted and how her last two friends got destroyed. Sienna questioned if Rosemary would even show up next week. Jeremy Borash hyped the tease for Rosemary showing up as well…
John’s Thoughts: Impact gets a thumbs up for a singles X Division match. Impact gets a huge thumb down for their treatment of Trevor Lee. I agree with Jason Powell on this one. Lee’s going to leave TNA one day, go to another company, become a star, and Impact is going to take all the credit for starting his career. Look at what Mark Andrews is doing in WWE and Progress compared to being on Impact every week. TNA had Okada, Samoa Joe, Naito, and the Young Bucks all on the same roster at one point.
Low Ki was shown gearing up in his Agent 47 video game cosplay. Ki talked about Sonjay living in a dream. Ki said you don’t mess with a professional and there’s a reason he’s a five time X Division Champion. Ki said he’s willing to sacrifice everything that’s required to be X Division Champion. Ki said he didn’t want to be the responsible party who ended Sonjay’s career. Ki said he knows Sonjay is reveling in the eye for an eye situation but a mere scratch isn’t stopping Low Ki the same way it stopped Sonjay. Josh Mathews advertised a Moose promo for after the commercial… [C]
A Slammiversary hype ad aired. It included blurbs from Lashley, Matt Sydal, Magnus, and others…
Moose made his way to the ring. The Indian fans really loved doing the Moose dance. Moose said two weeks ago he defended the Impact Grand Championship against a dummy named Eli Drake. Moose barely got into his promo before he was interrupted by Eli Drake who came out to the ramp with Chris Adonis/Masters. Eli Drake called out to India several times and told them to shut up because they were dummies. He got good heat from that. Drake said Moose makes it a point to miss the point.
Drake said he thinks of a couple of things, like when he’s been fed BS from start to finish in Impact Wrestling. Eli Drake called Bruce Prichard and his friends a bunch of goofs. Drake called Moose a cross eyed halfwit. Drake complained about thinking that he beat Moose two weeks ago and Bruce Prichard was in Moose’s pocket. Drake said Moose’s face was so up Bruce’s keester that Moose can tell what kind of curry Bruce ate today. Moose called Eli Drake a dummy. Moose said he’s not good at back and forths. He asked the crowd if they want to see Moose beat up two bitches at Slammiversary and they should say “Moose” if they want to see it. Adonis grabbed a mic and said he has Eli Drake and he have each other’s back while Moose is alone. Drake and Adonis overpowered Moose for a bit. Moose fended them off sending the two retreating. Moose said he was revealing who his partner is going to be next week…
John’s Thoughts: I don’t remember this from the spoilers, but is the partner going to be Deangelo Williams based on a segment we got a few months ago involving Williams and Gary Barnidge? Anyway, Drake was as good as usual, but having Chris Masters hanging along seems unnecessary. He comes off as a groupie trying to feed off of Drake’s talent. Moose is stuck in a tough spot since he was actually in an intriguing feud with Cody [Rhodes], but Cody leaving forced them to put Moose into this random feud.
Josh made a segue to the continuation of the Jeremy Borash and Joseph Park training skit. Borash and Park were freaked out about knowing that Scott Steiner was on the other line on a skype call. Steiner was doing football training in the skype call. Park called Steiner “Mr. Pop Pop” until Borash told Park to call him Mr. Steiner. Steiner was in his awesome rant mode. I think Steiner compared lawyers to stepping in dog shit and pulling corn out of teeth. He’s hard to understand sometimes. Park and Borash tried to apologize and asked for the match to be called off. Steiner called them dead men at Slammiversary. Park told Borash they were dead. Steiner said Park was a lawyer with a fat ass and he hates fat asses. This was a reference to a promo Steiner cut on Team 3D about hating “Fat Asses”. Steiner said he was going to beat the fat asses on July 2nd. Borash and Park walked out of the room scared. Steiner said he notices that Borash gained weight and now has a fat ass and he hates fat asses… [C]
John’s Thoughts: I’m not sure why they couldn’t have this be in the ring since it was tough to decipher from the Skype call, but Steiner promos are hard to decipher sometimes anyway and that’s part of the fun. We got more of Steiner’s greatest hits with him referencing his famous Math and Fat Asses promo.
Sonjay Dutt came out first to a very favorable reaction. Low Ki came out in his Agent 47 Hitman video game cosplay. for the title match. Jeremy Borash brought up how Low Ki came up in the X Division with other pioneers of the division like Jerry Lynn and AJ Styles…
4. Low Ki vs. Sonjay Dutt for the Impact Wrestling X Division Championship. Low Ki pressured Sonjay in the corner and punched Sonjay in the gut. Low Ki ripped off the eyepatch from Sonjay’s eye. Sonjay dodged a few Low Ki moves and hit him with a huracanrana and armdrag leading into an armbar. Low Ki tried to get to a vertical base but Sonjay maintained the chickenwing. Low Ki fought through Sonjay with a powerful lariat. Sonjay pushed off Low Ki when low ki went for a dropkick. Sonjay then hit Low Ki with a baseball slide on the outside.
Low Ki cleared the way and pushed Sonjay over the barricade. This is a No-DQ match? Low Ki went for a fisherman suplex but Sonjay kicked Ki off the bleachers. Sonjay hit Low Ki with a moonsault from the bleachers. Low Ki hit Sonjay with a front Suplex leading into commercial. [C]
Low Ki kept Sonjay down with a running forearm. Low Ki locked in a body stretch on Sonjay as the crowd sang a song to rally up Sonjay. Sonjay escaped and hit Ki with a pump kick. Sonjay hit a cool springboard side Russian legsweep which drew a “this is awesome” chant. Sonjay hit Ki with a roll through front dropkick. Sonjay went for Sliced Bread #2 but Low Ki escaped and hit a springboard roundhouse. Low Ki revved up and hit his signature rolling roundhouse. Low Ki fought Sonjay on the top rope. Sonjay went for the superplex. Sonjay pushed off Sonjay. Sonjay came back with a tiger knee which set up Low Ki for a successful Suplex. Sonjay picked up a nearfall from the high impact move.
Low Ki blocked a sunset flip and hit Sonjay with a double footstomp from the ring. Low Ki set up Sonjay for what looked like a modified Kinniku Buster. Sonjay escaped with a tornado DDT. Sonjay went to the top rope and hit Low Ki with a regular splash for the victory. Huh?
Sonjay Dutt defeated Low Ki via pinfall in 11:48 to become the new Impact Wrestling X Division Champion.
Sonjay Dutt sold being excited for his title win. The babyface locker room entered the ring led by Mahabali Shera. The crowd started to calm down a bit by this point as Eddie Edwards tried to get them hype again. The babyfaces sprayed some champagne to close out the show.
John’s Thoughts: The match was really good up to the abrupt ending. Sonjay didn’t win with a cool sequence or a high impact move. He won with a regular splash, which could be fine, but it was a bit uneventful for the story they were trying to tell. I’m not sure if it’s just me, but I also felt it was too soon to put the belt on Sonjay. Just like a lot of X Division Champs before him, Low Ki was starting to put together a credible championship reign with some dominant wins. This also seemed to be a bit too much pandering. The crowd was hot for Dutt during the match but seemed to be a bit more tame during his celebration.
This was not really an offensive show, but the show was light for the most part in wrestling. We got a house show battle royal, a few squashes, one with Josh Mathews and one with Trevor Lee jobbing, and a solid X Division Main Event. Jason Powell should be by soon with the Impact Wrestling Hit List and his member exclusive audio review.
The new edition of the Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell and guest Todd Martin on his background, attending pro wrestling events in Japan, the NJPW G1 Tournament, why lucha libre companies haven't been as successful as NJPW in the United States, AEW optimism, covering pro wrestling and MMA, and more (68:57)...