By Jason Powell
Impact Wrestling Hits
Alberto El Parton vs. Lashley for the Unified Championship: Yes, I am shaking my head at the decision to go with a Slammiversary main event rematch just days later on television. After all, the company only has so many true main event players and they need to make their pay-per-view main events feel special. At least the pay-per-view audience saw a clean finish whereas nothing was resolved in the television rematch. In fact, it looked like the challenger was about to regain the championship when LAX interfered. The match also set up the storyline of whether El Patron is with LAX, so there were some positives to go along with that big negative. That said, I can’t say that El Patron joining LAX or feuding with LAX excites me, but we’ll see where it goes.
Super X Cup presentation: The in-ring introductions were slow and uneventful. However, the video packages that featured the wrestlers were a nice touch. The video features could have been more comprehensive, yet they were still helpful in getting over the characters and their personalities. We’ve heard so much talk about there being a renewed emphasis on the X Division over the years, but this one feels legitimate. It’s still refreshing to see the X Division wrestlers featured in singles matches rather than the big spot-fest opening matches designed to get them all on the show.
Dezmond Xavier vs. Idris Abraham in a first round Super X Cup match: A solid tournament opening match. It was a nice tough to give Abraham a post match interview.
Sonjay Dutt vs. Caleb Konley: A minor Hit for a solid X Division match. The post match angle with Trevor Lee taking the title belt was encouraging in that it provides hope that the company has finally seen the light on Lee and intends to feature him more prominently.
Moose and EC3: The Grand Championship does nothing for me, but this was one of the rare moments in the show where it felt like a new chapter for one of the top wrestlers. By the way, if they wanted fans to feel sympathy for Storm, shouldn’t they have addressed his character’s status coming out of the pay-per-view early in the show?
Grado, Eddie Edwards, Crimson, and Wilcox vs. Eli Drake, Chris Adonis, Mario Bokara, and Fallah Bahh: A crowd pleasing match with the Impact Zone fans reacting to Grado more than they have in the past. We’ll see where the post match angle with Joseph Park is going, but it was encouraging to see the fans getting behind Grado for a change. I developed an appreciation for Grado via The Wrestling Road Diaries 3 documentary that Colt Cabana released, yet for some reason his act just hasn’t clicked on Impact. Hopefully that will change with whatever his Park related storyline is.
Impact Wrestling Misses
Alberto El Patron promo: El Patron seemed to be talking about a much better and more grueling match than we saw on Sunday. Anyway, he spoke about how he will respect Lashley “every single day of my life” to then being offended when Lashley took him up on an open challenge to the point that he tried to splash Lashley with champagne before he even entered the ring. The positive of the segment was that Lashley was very good in heat seeking heel mode.
Matt Sydal vs. Braxton Sutter: A random babyface vs. babyface match. There was nothing wrong with the actual match, but it felt odd that Impact came out of their pay-per-view with matches like this one and even the Super X Cup tournament matches rather than turning the page for some of the wrestlers who were involved in top Slammiversary matches. Don’t get me wrong, I’m looking forward to seeing the Super X Cup play out, but it could have started next week. The whole point of this match seemed to be setting up the post match angle with a frustrated Sutter pulling away from Allie. Are they splitting up the real life husband and wife act? I can’t say I’d mind, as Allie has been spinning her wheels since they were put together (and new creative took over).
Sienna vs. Rebel: The good news is that Rebel connected with the crowd. However, she’s still very green and this was on full display when Sienna applied her finishing hold and Rebel looked more concerned with moving her hair out of her face than she was in selling. It was comically bad to watch her move her hair twice before tapping out.