By John Moore
Impact Wrestling on PopTV
Taped August 2017 in Orlando, Florida at Universal Studios
After the Impact atlas graphic, the opening teaser video aired. It showed the highlights of Eli Drake and Johnny Impact. It also showed Garza Jr. being interjected in this title picture for no good reason. Johnny Impact talked about how Jim Cornette is selfish who’s going out for his own best interest. They showed clips of Eli Drake’s show opening promo from last week where he gloated about his win over Mundo (Johnny Impact). Cornette talked about how Eli Drake’s plan is in mind games and getting his opponents off balance. Cornette said he wants a clear winner between Johnny Impact and Garza. Garza talked about wanting to win the championship. Mundo said Garza is talented but he doesn’t have what it takes to beat Johnny Impact…
After the Impact intro theme played, they cut to a hype package for Pro Wrestling Noah where Eddie Edwards and Garza Jr. talked about being excited to wrestle in Japan. Eli Drake was also hyped to defend his title in Japan. Garza talked about being proud to represent Impact, The Crash, and Lucha Libre. Eddie talked about wanting to defend his GHC Heavyweight Championship against Naomichi Marufuji who’s a legend in Japan. Eli Drake said “fact of life, yeah!”…
Jeremy Borash and Josh Mathews checked in on commentary as they cut back to the Impact Zone in Universal Studios. Jeremy Borash talked about how last week Konnan announced that they were going to wrestle Ohio Vs. Everything in a 5150 Street Fight at Bound for Glory for the GFW Tag Team Championships. Mathews said LAX is more dangerous when they are the hunters as opposed to being the hunted.
Konnan said LAX is serious like a late period and are the Viagra of wrestling which is why they stay so hard. Konnan said he was invoking LAX’s rematch clause at Bound for Glory. Santana said he was tired of back and forth. He wants oVe out so they can make some money. Jake and Dave Crist made their entrances wearing their Halloween Masks. They had chairs with them! Dave and Konnan stood face-to-face. Dave said Jefe wants his rematch, then Konnan should name the match. Konnan wanted a 5150 Street Fight.
Dave said Jefe should do the research since oVe isn’t afraid of anything. Konnan asked if Dave even knows what that is. Dave said “It doesn’t matter what it is. IT DOESN’T MATTER WHAT IT IS!!!” (I’m guessing Dave doesn’t watch Impact since LAX has wrestled the Veterans of War in this match right before OVE arrived). Konnan said he’s offended that OVE came out armed. Konnan said Jake looks like a Billy Idol wannabe. Konnan said LAX was sending OVE back to Ohio to sell [bleep] in the trailer parks they came from.
Diamante grabbed the mic and told Dave to listen to her. Diamante said 5150 doesn’t mean just Santana and Ortiz, it means all of them. Diamante slapped Dave. Dave shoved Diamante to the other side of the ring. Ortiz and Santana managed to overpower OVE. Jake was beaten up easily too. Borash said it was the numbers game that gave LAX the advantage (even though OVE had chairs and Konnan and Diamante didn’t really do anything. Santana and Ortiz just beat up Jake and Dave with minimal effort). Ortiz destroyed Dave with a rear naked choke. Santana hit Dave with a boot while Ortiz gave Dave a cutter on OVE’s chairs. LAX then tossed Jake into a table that Konnan set up outside. Konnan grabbed a mic as Ortiz but a Mexico flag on Dave. Konnan said LAX 5150, Hasta La Muerte Y Despues. The Impact Zone cheered LAX… [C]
John’s Thoughts: Similar to how Impact (the show) made Moose look like a bitch last week, LAX and Konnan just did the same thing to OVE. Forget that Borash opened the show reminding us that Konnan already made this announcement last week, they also make the Crist Brothers look like dopes for accepting a 5-on-2 handicap match, just like the Veterans of War did a few months ago. It also hurts that OVE are supposed to be babyfaces but Konnan is shredding them on the microphone and in turn setting OVE up as dorks while LAX are the cool guys. Why would you not want to see the cool faction in LAX beat up these dopey guys who can’t even get Universal Studios tourists to chant their stupid tag team name?
Borash and Mathews recapped LAX beating up OVE before the commercial. Borash cut to an Impact and Noah video package. It was a press conference where Eddie Edwards talked about being happy to defend the title in Japan and how Naomichi Marufuji is a role model to him. Scott D’Amore talked about the importance of having working relationships in other promotions in how it allows for Impact’s wrestlers to wrestle in other markets. Eli Drake cut a promo against this tall bald dude. Drake talked about breathing fire on his king kong booty. D’Amore talked about how he can see a day where Impact stars will own championships in many promotions all over the world…
A Dan Lambert and American Top Team video package aired which showed the “highlights” the random MMA guys in Impact. They started off by talking about how Lashley had to make a decision. Lambert said stuff. They then cut to Jeremy Borash talking about Lashley not being happy with being eliminated at TripleMania (even though they were in a tornado trios Battle Royal where they were on the same team). Lashley talked about being pissed about being eliminated by a teammate (Lashley does have a point!). They cut to Moose talking about kicking Lashley’s bitch ass and how Lashley is a bitch. They then cut to that hilarious scene from last week where Moose was comically beat up by an MMA gym after yelling that Bobby was a bitch boy. The video ended with Moose rolling on the ground in agony…
John’s Thoughts: Yep… They made Moose look like bitch! Poor guy… Maybe he should have brought Ohio with him.
A Bound for Glory ad aired which advertised $20 dollar tickets for the PPV while TV Taping tickets were going for $15. A Mundo and Garza vignette aired. Garza talked about how he understands how Mundo is pissed off at Adonis and Drake but that’s no excuse to interject himself in Garza’s match. Mundo said attacking Garza was an accident since he didn’t know who was behind him and he didn’t mean it. Garza said he was just trying to stop the situation and Mundo just punched him, and nobody punches Garza. Johnny said that he will be going to go to Bound for Glory. Garza said the same…
At the darkened commentary room, Josh Mathews and Borash did some advertisements for upcoming matches. Borash hyped up Drake defending the GFW title in Japan. Rosemary made her entrance in the Impact Zone for an upcoming match.
John’s Thoughts: With the way Rosemary has a connection with the kids in the crowd, Impact Wrestling has a credible merch pusher on their hands. Rosemary has that Jeff Hardy enigmatic charisma to her. Also, just like Peyton Royce in NXT, I think she upgraded her look with the layered and volumized haircut!
1. Rosemary vs. Hannah Harper. Hanna Harper was afraid in the corner. She has no chance! Rosemary gave Hanna a bow. Josh Mathews talked about how Hanna reminds him of Marvel since her name in an alliteration. Rosemary gave Hannah a bow and dared her to punch her in the jaw. Rosemary blocked the strike and gave Hannah an elbow. Josh was obsessed with Marvel alliterations. Rosemary gave Hannah the Red Wedding (a.k.a The F5) to pick up the quick and easy win.
Rosemary defeated Hannah Harper via pinfall in 1:00.
Rosemary crawled and signaled for a microphone while also doing her Crazzy Steve mannerisms. Rosemary said nothing truly excites a demon assassin more than fighting an opponent worthy of their brand of violence and destruction. Rosemary called out Taya Valkyrie to dance with the demon in front of the hivelings (also like Hardy, I assume the “Hive” are just like “the creatures”). Taya made her entrance. Borash said Taya has turned the Knockouts division upside down and she has a reputation for not being afraid to unload violence, unleashing the beast, and being in hardcore matches (she had a damn good one last night on El Rey Network!).
Taya wore her queen robe (and I’m a huge fan of her entrance theme). Rosemary gave Taya a bow in the center of the ring and teased licking her. Rosemary signaled to the crowd that she was going to mist Taya, but Taya surprised everyone by beating Rosemary to the punch with some mist of her own. Rosemary scrambled in pain which allowed Taya to hit her with The Road to Valhalla (a.k.a. Beth Phoenix’s Glam Slam). Taya mounted Rosemary and did an evil laugh… [C]
John’s Thoughts: That was a clean and efficient segment! It was also cool seeing a heel go over without the babyface looking like a chump (see: Moose and OVE right before this segment). The Taya mist surprise was well done and I’m sure no one saw it coming. It was simple and effective. As I said in my Lucha Underground review last night, the stellar Taya Valkyrie vs. Sexy Star match made me look forward to see Rosemary vs. Taya and served as a great preview. Check out Taya’s work in AAA and LU and trust me, you’ll probably be excited to see what these two can do too!
Jeremy Borash recapped the prior segment where Taya beat Rosemary to the punch by hitting Rosemary with the mist before Rosemary could get her mist out. Josh Mathews cut to the exact same video we saw earlier where Moose walked into the gym calling Bobby Lashley a bitch and then getting beat up like a bitch by weak MMA punches. In new footage. Moose was crying on the phone to somebody about getting dogpiled by the MMA guys. Moose then kept saying “hell yeah” to whoever was on the phone and said he wants to meet the person. Moose said he will “see you there”. Borash said Moose must be crazy for going back to the American Top Team gym, this time at nighttime…
John’s Thoughts: Poor guy… wait? Didn’t we see this earlier? It’s still funny as hell but I’m not sure why they are going above and beyond to make Moose look weak! I’m actually looking forward to Moose re-attempt to “invade” the top team gym for all the wrong reasons!
Taryn Terrell came out to the ring in her underwear and tiny tutu. Taryn gave a pissed scowl to the crowd and shoved the cameraman over. Taryn yelled not to boo her and cheer her. The crowd cheered a bit and gave her cat calls. Taryn then yelled for them to “Cheer!!!”. They then booed her (nice!). Taryn talked about being happy for getting a title shot at Bound for Glory. Taryn said she was going to focus on something more personal, the little loser known as Gail Kim. Taryn said she doesn’t understand why the people cheer for her and why her husband Robert, who she calls Bobby in a soft voice, is married to her. Taryn said she was going to show Bobby that Gail Kim is pathetic at Bound for Glory and they are going to find themselves in divorce court.
Gail Kim then made her entrance. Gail told Taryn not to worry because she’s not here to hurt or touch Taryn. Gail said she was only here to talk. Gail said these mind games won’t work and the psychological babble is BS. Gail said she believes in Karma and that Karma will slap Taryn in the face before Gail can. Gail then said she had second thoughts and then slapped Taryn. Gail put the boots to Taryn. Taryn rolled away and retreated as Gail Kim’s music played and she stood tall…
John’s Thoughts: Another sweet and efficient segment from the women tonight, 2 for 2 with strong Knockouts hype.Taryn did a great job with the reverse psychology yelling and getting the crowd to turn against her. If Rosemary is analogous to Jeff Hardy then Taryn could be the analog to Maria Kanellis another strong part of TNA’s positive history.
An Alberto El Patron vignette aired where he talked about assuming responsibility that comes with being a champion. They showed clips of Alberto celebrating with his family. They then played the recording of Bruce Prichard stripping Alberto El Patron of the GFW Global Championship. The letters “GFW” were edited out of Prichard’s promo (they finally got it right for once!). The words “Alberto El Patron Returns” flashed on the screen as well as the words “what…will…he…do…”…
John’s Thoughts: Dot Net Staffer Haydn Gleed taught me that the best way to predict something in TNA is to think of the most dumbass booking possible. Here’s something I really hope doesn’t happen. Wouldn’t it suck if El Patron’s return is that he comes back with his weak ass family members to beat up the badass LAX faction with OVE? Here’s hoping they don’t bring him back as a babyface because it was so awkward to cheer the guy around the time his personal problems came to surface.
McKenzie Mitchell talked about how Impact had a “completely random” tag team match set up for this episode (even McKenzie Mitchell is aware at how dumb TNA can be!). Sienna yanked the mic away from “McKenna”. Sienna talked about loving to throw Allie around the ring and that El Texano Jr and Caleb Konley shouldn’t get in her way. Texano was next and said that he’s only here to say that AAA is the number one company in the world. Texano said he’s here to show James Storm that Texano is the only cowboy in this country (I know Texano’s name is “The Texan Jr” which should imply that there are more Texans and maybe a few more Cowboys in America). Caleb Konley said Trevor Lee is not in the match now and it was time for Caleb to show them how they do it in North Carolina and he was going to do this for Trevor… [C]
It was time for a Grado skit. He was shown struggling in a parking lot. Grado was exhausted and he said “no more!”. Joseph Park was shown diving around in a nice convertible. He was straight up ballin’ and even bagging dem groupies. Park wanted to get a big hug from Grado. Grado asked if Park’s been partying all night and who were the girls. Park claimed they were interns at Park, Park, and Park. Two of the girls wanted Park’s credit card and some money to buy Louis Vuitton. One of the girls thought Grado was cute and asked Park if Grado was the “Meal Ticket”. Grado was pissed at being dubbed the “meal ticket” and Park stormed off…
A Bound For Glory advertisement aired where the wrestlers talked about being excited to wrestle there. It also included pictures of classic TNA wrestlers like Samoa Joe, Rhyno, Booker T, and even Jeff Jarrett. Josh Mathews then did an advertisement for the Global Wrestling Network…
Next was the “completely random” tag team match as McKenzie Mitchell called it…
John’s Thoughts: I just looked back at my report so far to make sure, but the entire first hour consisted of mostly promos and video packages. The only match was a one minute squash by Rosemary. At least the women’s segments were strong, but that’s a bit too much ad time for a wrestling show. We even got a replay of Moose getting beat up by weak punches!!! Twice!!!
2. Sienna (w/ KM), Caleb Konley (w/ Trevor Lee) and El Texano Jr. vs. Allie, Dezmond Xavier, and James Storm. Oh mah Gawd!!! He Lives!!! Dezmond and his Vegeta Finisher lives!!! Sienna started the match by clubbing Allie in the back and putting the boots to her. Allie countered with a corner splash and bulldog. El Texano Jr tagged in and asked for James Storm. Texano teased confrontation and tagged in Konley. Josh Mathews said it was Texano’s mind games. Storm pressured Konley in the corner. Conley came back with right hands. Storm fired back with a flurry of shots. Storm hit Konley with a spinebuster. Lee distracted Storm and the ref which allowed Texano to interject himself. Konley and Texano isolated Storm.
Storm kept from fading form a sleeper. Texano Jr. hit Storm with a Ruff Ryder Leg Lariat. Sienna tagged in and didn’t follow the mixed tag rules. Sienna put the boots and dominated Storm. Texano tagged himself back in so he could take on Storm. Texano hit Storm with shortarm lariats. Storm gained some breathing room with a neckbreaker. Dezmond Xavier tagged in. He did his fast paced offense on Konley. He hit a corkscrew standing moonsault on Konley. Allie took Sienna out of the ring. Texano teased attacking Allie but Allie caught Texano with the Codebreaker. Storm hit Texano with a backcracker.
Konley and Xavier singled each other out. Konley gave a stiff forearm to Xavier. Storm came in but Konley managed to fight both of them off with chops. Xavier put Konley on the second rope and hit him with a Tiger Feint Kick. Trevor Lee tripped Xavier off the top rope. Konley couldn’t see it and was caught by the Last Call Superkick to give Storm the pinfall victory.
James Storm, Allie, and Dezmond Xavier defeated Caleb Konley, Sienna, and El Texano Jr. via pinfall in 6:49.
Allie was her usually peppy self in giving her tag partners big hugs. James Storm and El Texano had a staredown after the match. Texano told storm to look at his bullrope. Storm shook his beer at the crowd while also singing his entrance theme. Josh and Jeremy hyped Johnny Impact vs. Garza, Moose’s 2nd invasion attempt of American Top Team, and the Noah footage… [C]
Impact cut to the Noah footage. Eli Drake talked about how his championship is Global no matter where they send him. He said they can send him to Cambodia. Drake said at Bound for Glory they find themselves in Ottawa. He called the Canadians “Maple leaf sucking dummies”. Drake said they can bring their maple leafs and wave them. Drake said he doesn’t care who walks into Bound for Glory because the person walking out as champ is “E..Li..Drake”. Eddie Edwards talked about the pressure of defending a world championship. He talked about beating Katsuhiko Nakajima. Edwards said he used a different finisher, the Die Hard Flosion, which is a show of respect to a mentor of his, Mitsuharu Misawa, who gave him a shot at wrestling.
Edwards talked about how he was overcome with emotion and how Noah means so much to him. Edwards said it’s not just wrestling since he came to this company at a young age. Edwards said the champion belongs to him and he’s going to defend it against a current legend, Naomichi Marufuji. They then cut to clips of the Edwards and Marufuji match in japan. There was a cool nearfall with Marufuji hitting a Sliced Bread #2 and Spanish Fly on Edwards. Edwards hit the Emerald Flowsion for the win. Edwards talked to the crowd to show his respect to Japan.
They cut to Garza Jr. in Japan who talked about how different it was compared to Mexico. Garza talked about representing Impact, Crash, Mexico, and the Garza dynasty. They showed clips at Hector Garza, Garza’s uncle, competing in TNA. Garza talked about being a bit nervous but, nobody was stopping Garza Jr. Clips of the tag match Garza wrestled in was shown. Garza had his shoulder in a sling and taped up…
It was time for “Global Forged – Episode 5” from Winsor, Canada. This video focused on Jon Bolen, the guy who lost to OVE last week and has been an enhancement wrestler on Impact. Scott D’Amore talked about how Bolen has been with GFW, Impact, and WWE. Bolen chewed out some guy that calls himself MM3. Bolin was playing the role of drill Sargent. Some of the students talked to the camera and did some bad reality show acting about trying to win the affection of Bolen. D’Amore said Bolen is crazy. Bolen was then shown dropping F and MF Bombs…
John’s Thoughts: What’s the endgame of this bad parody of a reality show?
LAX were shown in a cinematic at their clubhouse. They were playing dominos. Konnan asked them if he could get a “yey yey-yah!”. Santana dropped a winning Domino bomb. Santana and Ortiz argued weather it was clockwise or counterclockwise rules. Konnan said the tweakers the OVE found out the hard way that when you mess with LAX you mess with all of LAX. Ortiz mocked OVE for trying to bring “toys” like little boys to the ring. Konnan said OVE was lost by accepting a match that they didn’t know. Konnan said that their boy Homicide was going to be back at BFG. Santana said “Bryattttt”. Konnan said to salud to Homicide!
John’s Thoughts: Why are we supposed to cheer for the dopes Ohio Vs. Everything? The only characterization they’ve gotten is what Konnan has called them (which does characterize them to a T) and all they ever did was get a lapdance one time. LAX are the babyfaces here since they are intelligent, cunning, and have a cool factor that a lot of Impact talents are missing.
Moose drove up to the American Top Team gym at night. He was joined by Stephen Bonnar, a UFC fighter. Jeremy Borash said we will find out what happens after Johnny Impact vs. Garza Jr…
3. Johnny Impact vs. Graza Jr. in a match to earn a GFW Global Championship match at Bound For Glory. Eli Drake was shown watching the match on his tablet “from Japan”. Mundo and Garza had one of the better opening stalemate sequences that I’ve seen in a while with lots of fast paced counters. Mundo gained an advantage with a side headlock takedown. Garza made it to a vertical base and sent Mundo outside so he can hit him with a suicide dive. Mundo avoided being slammed into the steps. Mundo hit Garza with a ninja flip elbow over the steps.
Garza showed off after an escape. Garza and Mundo traded forearms. Garza called a time out to take off his pants. Garza took off his pants and threw it at Mundo which distracted Mundo enough to hit him with a Superkick. Garza hit a unique double legdrop into a basement roundhouse. Mundo gained an advantage by hitting Garza with a standing Spanish Fly. Mundo and Garza traded punches. They then both traded headbutts. Eli Drake was shown watching intently on his tablet. Garza blocked a Moonlight Drive and whipped Mundo. Mundo stopped on a dime with his parkour ability. Mundo hit a sweep kick followed by a capoeira leg drop.
Mundo hit the Moonlight Drive on Garza to get a nearfall. Garza dodged Starship Pain. Mundo hung Garza on the second rope and hit him with a baseball slide German Suplex. Garza dodged Starship Pain again and turned a Tiger Driver into a backbreaker to get his own nearfall. Garza got another nearfall off a standing moonsault. Mundo caught Garza with a spinning roundhouse and went for a suplex. Garza pushed off Mundo and hit him with a missile dropkick. Garza locked in a modified Boston Crab. After trading rollups, Johnny Impact came out on top in the end for the victory.
Johnny Impact defeated Garza Jr. via pinfall in 9:35 to become number one contender to the GFW Global Championship.
Garza showed a bit of frustration in himself in the narrow loss. Mundo told the crowd to congratulate Garza for a good match. They then shared a hug and handshake in respect. Jim Cornette appeared out of nowhere to announce Johnny Impact as the number one contender for the Global Championship. Johnny was about to cut a promo on Eli Drake but Chris Adonis ran in to hit him with a wooden plank to the head. Eli Drake was shown watching on his tablet with a pleased smile. Jeremy Borash then cut to Moose and Stephan Bonnar’s invasion of American Top Team’s gym.
Moose asked the lady at the reception where everyone was. The lady said they all left for home at night. Bonnar asked if Dan Lambert was around. The receptionist said he wasn’t. The lady asked if she could take a message for Dan Lambert. Moose said yes and asked her to get a pen and paper. Right when the lady went to get a pen and paper, Moose took his metal pipe and hit a championship belt case with it. He took out the MMA championship belts out of the case. Bonnar helped in the case smashing. Hip Hop music was playing in the background. Moose and Bonnar jacked the belts. Moose and Bonnar went to the merchandise area and talked down about the merch. They tossed down a bookshelf. They were about to walk out with their jacked merch and belts but Moose said he forgot to leave his message with the receptionist. He wrote his name in huge letters and said goodbye to the lady. The lady gave him an awkward hand wave as the show closed…
John’s Thoughts: Let me backtrack to the match first. Even though Garza from storyline continuity had no right to be in a number one contenders match for their version of WrestleMania, Garza and Mundo put on one hell of a television match. I’m not slighting Garza whatsoever, the guy’s talented, has charisma, and can hang with a main eventer like Mundo. The only error in the equation here is he was simply pulled out of a program with Braxton Sutter and shoehorned in the main event with no context. That huge gaping hole aside, this was a fine TV match. Totally unnecessary, but an entertaining match despite that.
Moving on to the Moose and Bonnar segment. A part of me wants to hate it, but similar to how Joseph Park is a charming guilty pleasure, I got some entertainment value out of that segment for all the wrong reasons. It fell under one of those so bad, it’s good type of situations. Moose not only looks like a dumbass, but he looks weak given how all of Impact’s vignettes on this episode made him out to be a weak dumbass. Then he shows up for his “invasion” when everyone leaves to go home. Then he goes on and commits burglary, destruction of property, and childish vandalism? Given how Jeremy Borash has been hyping up that this is being shown on television, not only does Moose look like a childish puss, but he also comes off as a felon. This was funny for so many wrong reason.
As for this episode, if the goal week to week is to make this company seem more and more like the bad TNA of old, they’re doing a good job. To pick out the diamonds in the rough, at least what little in ring action we got tonight was good. Even the “Completely Random” trios match was fun as far as in-ring was concerned. The women were the stars of the entire show with limited in-ring and promo time, but they made the most out of their time with great story progression. The Japan stuff was fine but this company always seems to be preaching to an empty choir by going all rah-rah for themselves. The rest of the show was just commercials and video packages, mostly involving Moose being beaten down or talking on the phone. Maybe I’m just having a bad day because my entire city is covered in ash and smoke, but I don’t think that’s the case because TNA-FW-Pact is just illogical sometimes to painful levels. Maybe Jason Powell thought this was a better show. At least I thought that the Moose segments were funny. Powell will be by later with his Hit List and members’ exclusive audio review.