By John Moore
Impact Wrestling on PopTV
Taped May 2017 in Mumbai, India at Film City Stage 7
The intro video of Impact wrestling was a hype video for Slammiversary. It had words from EC3 and Konnan about the importance of the PPV. Jeff Jarrett was shown offering Don West a chance to call the Slammiversary PPV. Some wrestlers as well as Karen Jarrett gave their thoughts on the upcoming event…
Josh Mathews checked in on commentary. Jeremy Borash was in the ring for a contract signing. He had Bruce Prichard with him. Borash said there were four matches having the contract signing. Impact quickly cut to the important parts of the contract signings. Sienna and Rosemary were first. Sienna said Rosemary was dumb and that Rosemary was not in her head is was the other way around. Sienna said Rosemary spits mist while Sienna spits fire. Rosemary called Sienna a compelling she-skunk. Rosemary said tonight Sienna signed the contract in ink, but on Sunday “we” will sign Sienna’s death certificate in blood.
Davey Richards and Eddie Edwards signed their contract next. Davey called Eddie his brother and told Eddie to kill him now or else he’ll bury Eddie next to his wife. Eddie said he was going to kick Davey’s ass live on PPV. Eddie said he and his wife are going to end what Davey Start. James Storm and EC3 were next. James Storm refused to sign initially because he wanted to beat up EC3 first. Davey and Eddie were still in the ring after the camera cuts. Bruce Prichard calmed James Storm down and got him to sign the contract with EC3. EC3 said he lashes out so Storm, the company, and the people can all feel the one true emotion he has left, disgust. EC3 said at Slammiversary he was going to tear storm apart, flesh from the bone. EC3 said he will sacrifice Storm to the one true golden god EC3. EC3 said it’s not because he wants to but because he has to. EC3 said he is a Carter and this company needs him. Storm asked EC3 to tell his family not to watch Slammiversary because he is going to whip EC3 over, and over, and over, and over… and over. Storm said until the blood runs down EC3’s back. Storm said he will continue whipping EC3’s ass because EC3 is looking at the man who’s been here for 15 years because he’s James Mother F’n Storm and he’s sorry about your damn luck.
Impact cut to El Patron and Lashley joining the table. Lashley and El Patron signed. Lashley said all the talking is over. Lashley said everyone knows El Patron has no chance at winning. El Patron talked to Bobby. El Patron told Lashley to put the title on the damn table and that they should do it now in India. Bruce Prichard interjected. El Patron flipped the table. Prichard pulled a Teddy Long by booking both sides of the signing table in an eight-man tag team match. Since there were six the babyfaces got Mahabali Shera while the heels got Kongo Kong. Josh Mathews hyped Matt Sydal and Sonjay Dutt vs. Low Ki and Trevor Lee in a tag team match… [C]
John’s Thoughts: That wasn’t good, that wasn’t bad, it was just pretty odd. One one hand I’m relieved that we’re not just getting a show filled with pro wrestling contract signings. On the other, I’m not sure why they crammed so many matches including the main event of Slammiversary into a series of quick clips. El Patron and Lashley are great talkers at the main event level and Impact never given them a chance to duel because they always throw Prichard in to cut off El Patron. The best part of the clips was James Storm utilizing his great ability to rally the crowd, but even that was cut. This was just odd and I’m not a huge fan of the Teddy Long classic of booking every on in the ring in a tag team match. Holla holla holla!
Kongo Kong was shown roaming the streets of India. They cut to Swoggle getting prepared for his Mumbai Street Fight against Rockstar Spud. Spud was shown getting ready in front of an ambulance. They cut to Josh Mathews and Jeremy Borash in their dark secluded area in front of the Sony Six backdrop. Josh Mathews bragged about being confident while Borash is scared about their match at Slammiversary. Borash said it wasn’t fear, Borash was just annoyed. Borash then announced the eight-man tag and the Mumbai Street Fight. Impact cut to a Low Ki and Sonjay Dutt highlight package which included Low Ki hyping himself up and Sonjay Dutt talking about his eye injury. The end part of the highlight package showed clips of Low Ki blindsiding Sonjay Dutt and Mahabali Shera during Dutt’s celebration…
John’s Thoughts: I look at this upcoming X Division Tag match, and hope that Trevor Lee isn’t just there to be the fall boy? Via a mental process of elimination, who do you think would get pinned in this match?
1. Trevor Lee and Low Ki vs. Matt Sydal and Sonjay Dutt. Trevor Lee and Sonjay Dutt squared off early on. Sonjay hyped up the crowd. Lee locked in an early wristlock. Sonjay escaped with an armdrag. Low Ki slammed Dutt on the ground and gave him a boot. Dutt ended Lee’s rally with a huracanrana. Dutt took Lee to his corner and tagged in Sydal who gave a double stomp to the arm of Lee. Sydal attacked Lee’s left arm with various armbars. Dutt and Sydal made quick tags to attack Lee’s left arm. Lee gave Sydal a right forearm to allow himself to tag in Low Ki who dominated Matt Sydal. Sydal and Dutt caught Ki and Lee’s legs and tripped them with legsweeps to head into break.[C]
Low Ki had the advantage over Matt Sydal. Ki hit Sydal with a standing double stomp. Borash talked about Low Ki wrestling in Impact Wrestling’s (TNA) first ever match on Impact. Trevor Lee isolated Sydal in his corner. Sydal gained a window of opportunity to tag Dutt after a spinning wheel kick which he took advantage. Dutt got the hot tag which was capped off with a tornado DDT to Lee to lead to a nearfall. Dutt went for a bulldog which Lee blocked. Lee hit Dutt with a jumping forearm. Ki tagged in and squared off with his Slammiverary opponent. Sydal tried to keep Lee out but it allowed Lee to interfere due to the ref trying to keep Sydal out. Dutt escaped a back suplex which allowed him to tag Sydal who hit Ki with a jumping double knee.
Sydal went for a standing moonsault but Lee countered with a rollup. Sydal recovered and hit Trevor Lee with a rolling sobat kick. Matt Sydal went to the top rope and hit Trevor Lee with Air Bourne for the victory. Dutt kept Low Ki out of the ring with a plancha.
Matt Sydal and Sonjay Dutt defeated Trevor Lee and Low Ki via pinfall in 9:06.
Sonjay Dutt celebrated his win while Low Ki jawed with him from a distance. Borash gave more hype for the “All Star Eight Man Tag Match”. Josh Mathews talked about a DeAngelo Williams training video for after the commercial… [C]
John’s Thoughts: Given where the other three wrestlers are, Trevor Lee was the obvious choice to lose. It sucks that he is the designated jobber of the X Division after being the champion. That criticism aside, this was a good X Division Tag Team match. It was multi-man, which you’d think I won’t be a fan of, but the tag format allowed for a story to be told as opposed to a bunch of guys doing random flips. Sonjay’s probably going over on Sunday, but I truly think Low Ki has more potential as X Division Champion. Who does Sonjay feud with after Ki that would be compelling? Ki vs. Sydal, Sonjay, Lee, Andrew Everett, Caleb Konley, and DJZ (once healthy). All those matchups honestly sound better with Ki than Dutt at this point. Ki is also better as both a badass heel and babyface.
A DeAngelo Williams training video aired. Williams talked about watching pro wrestling ever since he was eight and how the wrestlers inspired him to be in the ring. Williams said now was the time to step in the ring as a pro athlete. Clips showed of Williams training at Scott D’Amore’s training school. Williams did side headlocks and standing moonsaults. Williams said he’s doing this in the ring in respect to all the wrestlers who wrestled before and will wrestle after him. Williams was shown posing with Moose. Chris Adonis and Eli Drake were shown walking around India making weird faces. Mathews said they were training. Borash said it looks like they are just annoying people…
2. Eli Drake and Chris Adonis vs. The Mumbai Cats. Eli Drake started off by beating up a Mumbai Cat. Josh said his name was Felix which made Borash assume the other was Sylvester. Mathews said the Cats were as popular in India as Grado is in the UK. The cats managed to gain an upper hand over Adonis with light strikes. Adonis was wearing the Cesaro kinesiology tape. Adonis grounded the cat with a lariat. Drake tagged in and put the boots to a cat. Drake hit a Cat with a popup backtoss. Drake had the match won but he lifted the shoulder of a cat up. Eli Drake hit the cat with a Celtic Cross to pick up the win.
Eli Drake and Chris Adonis defeated the Mumbai Cats via pinfall in 2:58.
Borash hyped the Mumbai Street Fight between Swoggle and Spud for after the commercial… [C]
John’s Thoughts: The Williams video was well done to show that Williams is taking the wrestling thing seriously. This match is still not exciting on paper as I feel that they had plans to put Moose on a collision course with Cody who’s off doing bigger and better things with world titles this weekend. If Impact really wanted to do something innovative, they can have Eli Drake do the impossible and have him pin the babyface celebrity for once?
Josh Mathews talked about Bobby Lashley countering El Patron’s cornerman Dos Caras by finding his own cornerman in King Mo Lawal. There was a little man referee. Jeremy Borash said his name was Sodu (?) Kumar. Borash said that he was the guy in the vignette last week that brought peace between Spud and Hornswoggle…
3. Rockstar Spud vs. Swoggle. Spud kicked Swoggle out of the ring before the match. Swoggle countered by throwing Indian Holi powder in Spud’s face. I got a chuckle of Borash thinking the Holi Powder was Curry Powder. That’s such a Taz line. Swoggle threw Spud in the “Mathews Tron” as Mathews called the video wall. Hornswoggle threw nuts at spud. Spud came back by throwing at trash can at Spud’s head. Spud gave Swoggle an unprotected lid shot to the head. Spud set up a table ringside. Swoggle bit Spud’s hand on the apron. Swoggle tried to push down Spud with strikes. Spud kicked Swoggle with a left roundhouse so he can enter the ring. Spud grabbed the mic and told Swoggle that Swoggle was a loser. Spud said it was a big man’s business and Swoggle was nothing. Spud said he, the wrestlers, the people, and the Internet hates Swoggle.
Spud said the secret was that he meant to pull Swoggle’s pants down. Swoggle came back at Spud with a slap. Spud retaliated by putting the boots to Swoggle. Referee Kumar tried to break up the fight from the corner (even though it’s a no-DQ match). Spud pushed the ref down and he bumped. A non-traditional ref bump since Kumar got right back up. Spud then took off Kumar’s pants. I think Josh Mathews gave Kumar credit for the size of his junk? Kumar then beat down Spud with punches. Swoggle pulled Spud’s pants down revealing black trunks and a wedgie. Swoggle and Kumar gave Spud a doomsday device. Spud ran to the apron and Swoggle gave Spud a Celtic Cross through the table for the victory.
Swoggle defeated Spud via pinfall in a Mumbai Street Fight in about 6:20.
Referee Kumar held up Spud’s hand in victory. Kumar then did a dance with Swoggle. Mathews cut to another Jeremy Borash and Joseph Park training skit…
Borash asked Park about taking protein powder. Park said protein was the way to go. Park said he thinks they were ready and they were men! Park came out of the shower with a towel which made Borash feel awkward. Park thought the shower refreshing. Borash said the shower had great water pressure. Borash said there was no time to train but he had one more thing to tell Park. Borash told Park to dig down deep and find his inner monster. Borash handed Park an old school Abyss action figure… [C]
John’s Thoughts: Well, that’s what all the Spud and Swoggle build up was for. This seemed like a Vince McMahon haha sports entertainment classic. It wasn’t too horrible, but certainly not the best these two can do, especially with such a confusing feud. Swoggle’s capable of a PPV worthy match. He had one! The We-L-C! Spud can be a Main Eventer! Trust me! It happened when he wrestled EC3! This was… eh?
Alberto talked about his father Dos Caras Sr. Alberto talked about his father being both a family and a working man. Alberto talked about Dos Caras coming home and going over Alberto’s math and history homework. Alberto talked about his father wanting him to do well in school and said he’s trying to do the same with his kids. Alberto said if you are willing to train and learn hard every single day you can become better. Alberto said if you’re humble enough to learn from anyone in this business you will become something. Alberto said that can make you the next big thing…
John’s Thoughts: That’s the good Alberto promo we all know and love. Let this guy speak and stop sending Prichard out there to interrupt him!
KM, Sienna, and Laurel Van Ness came out to Samoa Joe’s entrance theme. Rosemary, Allie, and Braxton Sutter were the opposing team. Rosemary came out separate from the (real life married) couple. Rosemary came to the ring doing her Crazzy Steve hand mannerisms…
4. KM, Sienna, and Laurel Van Ness vs. Braxton Sutter, Allie, and Rosemary. Allie paired off with Laurel. Allie did the fighting while Laurel roared. This was mixed tag rules so Braxton Sutter and KM tagged in. Sutter dominated with chops and kicks. KM escaped the corner by attempting a power bomb. Sutter escaped with a rollup. KM took down Sutter with a full nelson side slam. KM locked in a side headlock and called Sutter stoopid. Jeremy Borash hyped more Impact live events at minor league ballparks.
Laurel tagged in and Rosemary came in on her end. Rosemary dominated and hit as exploder suplex on Laurel. Madness ensued with everyone. Mathews said his obligatory “bedlam and anarchy” line. Sutter blocked KM’s pumphandle and sent him outside. Sutter hit KM with a plancha. Laurel Van Ness hit Rosemary with a jumping Unprettier. Allie hit Laurel with a Death Valley Driver. Sienna pushed Allie down. Rosemary gave Laurel a mist accidently. Allie gave Sienna the Codebreaker. Rosemary gave Laurel the Red Wedding (F5) to pick up the pinfall win.
Rosemary, Allie, and Braxton Sutter defeated Laureal Van Ness, KM, and Sienna via pinfall in 4:00.
Allie was excited and gave Rosemary a hug. Rosemary didn’t reciprocate and scared Allie back. Allie was shaking as Rosemary patted her on the head like a puppy. Allie smiled when Rosemary smiled and licked her. Rosemary pet Sutter on the head too. Borash cut to a Joe Park and Borash training skit…
We picked up where we left off with Borash handing Park an Abyss toy. Park contemplated “finding my inner monster”. Park had flashes of Abyss in his memory. Park said his brother Abyss always said to not be afraid to rely on old friends. Park picked up the nail board named after Dixie Carter’s mom. Highlights of Abyss flashed on the screen. Park hit the Abyss action figure with Janice. Josh Mathews commentated that JB and Park will be disqualified if they used Janice. Borash said Mathews didn’t read the contract closely… [C]
John’s Thoughts: That wasn’t a bad match. Rosemary already gets her win back. It doesn’t excite me for the title unification match though. KM, Sienna, and Laurel are also in this odd position of continuing a storytelling built around Maria Kenellis who’s now playing the exact same character in WWE right now. A lot of the booking behind the Slammiversary hype has been odd. The only thing built well is the JB and Abyss vs. Mathews and Steiner match via their well-paced out skits.
Borash and Mathews went over most of the announced card. They oddly didn’t announce the Tag Team Title match which was announced online (Would Lucha Underground force them to censor Drago like they had to do with Marty Elias? haha). They cut to a highlight package of the Alberto El Patron and Lashley feud. The wrestlers then came out for their eight-man tag team match. EC3 came out to the Indian remix of his theme and called himself E-Singh-3. Mahabali Shera walked into the ring and got his ass beat up by the heels. Davey beat Shera with a chair. Kongo Kong hit Shera with a cannonball. Davey hit Shera with the double footstomp. Kongo Kong went for his big splash. Alberto El Patron’s theme played as he brought out the babyface brigade..[C]
5.Lashley, E-Singh-3, Davey Richards and Kongo Kong vs. Alberto El Patron, James Storm, and Eddie Edwards in a four on three handicap match. Borash told us that Mahabali Shera needed medical attention. The Wolves squared off against each other. Davey quickly tagged out to EC3 who did the Shera dance. Storm tagged in which forced Carter to tag in Lashley. Lashley dominated early but Storm pressured Lashley back with punches. Storm isolated Lashley in his corner and tagged in Alberto. Alberto made quick tags with his partners to lay in the punches on Lashley. Storm and Edwards gave Lashley a double elbow. Borash told us how great the show ER was as a plug for POP.
Lashley escaped an armbar by giving Edwards a side slam. EC3 tagged in. Edwards hit Carter with a hip toss. Storm tagged in and laid punches on EC3 in his corner. El Patron dominated EC3 easily and even hit his tilt-a-whirl back breaker on EC3. EC3 escaped Edwards by raking Edwards in the eye. EC3 tagged in Kong. Kong hit some power moves and tagged in Davey Richards who stomped a mudhole into Eddie. Eddie came back with a hip toss. Eddie tagged in Storm to take apart Richards. Davey locked in the headlock and pulled Storm in his corner. EC3 showboated a bit which allowed Storm to nail EC3 with the Sling Blade. Eddie Edwards ran in with the hot tag and laid in chops on EC3… [C]
Lashley hit Edwards with the delayed vertical suplex and even gave El Patron the middle finger during the delay. The Wolves brawled on the outside. Borash went into a loud Pop TV advertisement by hyping up the Devil’s Advocate movie. Davey locked in the body scissors on Eddie in the ring. Eddie escaped with a side suplex. Eddie made the tag but Brian Hebner put Alberto back since he said he didn’t see it. The heels put the boots while Hebner was distracted. Josh and Borash pointed out that it looked like Hebner saw it. EC3 and Kong Dominated Eddie Edwards. Edwards sidestepped a splash from Kong. Davey and EC3 pulled off El Patron and Storm to keep Edwards from tagging anyone. Mathews talked about how the numbers advantage allowed the heels to trip the faces off the apron. Edwards managed to pull off a double huracanrana on EC3 and Davey Richards.
Mahabali Shera made the hero’s return. Shera picked up the hot tag and did one of his (now) four moves on everyone, the clothesline. Shera put Davey in fireman Carry. Lashley broke it up. Shera gave Lashley an Attitude Adjustment! Yep! Mahabali Shera just hit the Impact World Champion with Cena’s finisher when it’s El Patron facing Lashley on Sunday. Shera tried to body slam Kongo Kong. he sidestepped Kong and body slammed him. Lashley broke up the pin. Lashley went for the dominator but El patron broke it up with the blind tag. Lashley and El Patron put Kong in position for a bad version of the double footstomp finisher. El Patron pinned Kongo Kong clean.
Alberto El Patron, Mahabali Shera, Eddie Edwards, and James Storm defeated Kongo Kong, E-Singh-3, Bobby Lashley, and Davey Richards via pinfall in 14:22.
The camera cut to Mahabali Shera’s father who was proud of his son winning the tag team match. Jeremy Borash gave one last pitch for the PPV before the show ended…
John’s Thoughts: Be careful what you wish for? Now I’m thinking that I would have rather have seen the full versions of those contract signings. The go-home push for Slammiversary was an eight person Smackdown dark main event? And the final hype for the Impact World Title match revolves around making Mahabali Shera look like superman in his hometown? I have no problem with making the hometown guy look like a superhero but what I have a problem with is utilizing your entire main event and upper card picture to tell that story. They then did such a great job building Kongo Kong up as a monster, only to have him lose unceremoniously like Fallah Bahh or someone?
I took a second to look at my hit lists from last year and noticed that I was a lot more excited for Slammiversary last year at around this time. God bless Billy Corgan and Dave Lagana I guess. Impact as so good last year when they were using the Smackdown Six model of building up six main eventers and interchanging them in main event matchups. What are we seeing now? Old school TNA or Memphis Booking? I don’t Know? I talked with Jason on Dot Net Weekly and mentioned that my interest level drops after every Impact. The only match with solid build is the announcer match of all things. I also have a glimmer of hope on that show because there is no way an American Wolves match can be bad so Eddie and Davey can’t disappoint. Alberto and Lashley are really good but they haven’t shown great chemistry in the ring together. I would rather see Eli Drake vs. El Patron and Lashley vs. James Storm because those matches would have shined both in the ring and on the mircophone. Ok, I am hopeful a bit, at least before tonight, that the Storm and EC3 feud was built well. This was a strange go-home show. Will Jason Powell think differently and maybe somehow this show increased is enthusiasm for Slammiversary? Check out his Hit List and members’ exclusive audio review later today.