Powell’s Impact Wrestling Hit List: Final hype for Sunday’s Redemption pay-per-view, Brian Cage vs. KM, Johnny Impact vs. Kongo Kong, Su Yung and Braxton Sutter vs. Kiera Hogan and Fallah Bahh

By Jason Powell, Prowrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

Join me for live coverage of the Impact Wrestling Redemption pay-per-view as the show airs on Sunday at 7CT/8ET. Dot Net Members will also hear my exclusive audio review after the show.

Impact Wrestling Hits

Hype for the new Redemption main event: Alberto El Patron put the company in a bad position by no-showing the Impact Wrestling vs. Lucha Underground event, which led to their agreement being terminated. It must be noted that Impact management put themselves in a bad position by ignoring all the red flags before signing El Patron. Still, the company was in a bad spot with only two weeks of television left to establish a new main event involving two wrestlers who haven’t appeared on the Impact Wrestling television show. They scrambled and did what they could to promote the new main event and made a solid effort to bring viewers up to speed on Pentagon Jr. and Fenix. It’s still not an ideal situation and perhaps they would have been better off going with just one of those wrestlers and dedicating time to building him up as a strong threat rather trying to establish both at once. On the bright side, there’s no doubt in my mind that the new pay-per-view main event will top whatever Austin Aries would have been able to get out of El Patron at this point.

LAX footage: A simple and effective clip that framed the unpredictability of Scott Steiner well heading into his latest appearance for the company. Santana and Ortiz showed just the right amount of concern over Steiner without coming off as being truly fearful of him.

Johnny Impact vs. Kongo Kong: A minor Hit for the attempt to get Kong over as a true monster. Kong looks the part, but there are too many instances when he comes off as just another big guy doing the usual big man moves. The use of blood helped, but Kong needs to come off as being completely out of control. He needs to be more crazed and menacing through his facial expressions and go beyond his usual blank stare. The idea should be that he’s an uncontrollable monster, but Jimmy Jacobs smiling and always seeming to be in control of him works against that. It would be more effective if even Jacobs seemed shocked by Kong’s actions and struggled to keep him in line.

Impact Wrestling Misses

Su Yung and Braxton Sutter vs. Kiera Hogan and Fallah Bahh: It was odd seeing Yung sell anything in this match heading into her title match on Sunday. It feels like she should still be in all out domination mode heading into Sunday, but she sold for Hogan for the majority of their time in the ring before capitalizing on Hogan being distracted by Sutter. Yung had been dominant to this point so why have her show any hint of vulnerability on the go-home show before her title match? The post match scene with Allie dominating Yung in a pull apart brawl didn’t help in that regard either, though it did show that Allie is no longer fearful of her opponent.

Brian Cage vs. KM: KM issuing an open challenge and openly admitting that he wanted enhancement talent to accept was mildly comical. That said, I wish the company would give up on the Biff Tannen routine and position KM as more of a serious character since he’s a regular and they need wrestlers who matter more than mid-card comedy figures. The segment served as another dominant win for Cage, but this could have meant more if KM had been booked differently in the past. We’ve seen Cage beat Lashley twice and it didn’t seem to win over the Impact Zone. I blame the flat crowds for some of that, but I don’t get the sense that Cage has really made a connection with viewers either because they don’t know who he is or what his goals are at this point. Hopefully the company has a plan in place to help him connect with fans at the next set of television tapings.

GWN Flashback: On the go-home show for the Redemption pay-per-view, the company inexplicably wasted eight minutes on a random flashback match involving two wrestlers who are no longer with the company fighting to a crappy finish. I praised the company for making an effort to establish Pentagon Jr. and Fenix heading into Sunday, but imagine if this time had been dedicated to telling more of their stories. Or perhaps Impact could have let viewers who don’t watch Lucha Underground know why they should be excited about Drago and Aerostar. These flashback matches need to serve a purpose. How about adding some captions that offer something new and informative and actually sell viewers on the streaming service?



Readers Comments (3)

  1. Three biggest obstacles for Impact

    1) The Impact Zone

    2) Pop TV

    3) The remaining, though declining need to use any connection WWE to boost their ratings. I understand that many of Impact’s former stars are now in WWE, but let viewers see them on Pluto or GWN. Those 8 minutes could have been used to sell Redemption.

    As I’ve said in other message boards, this PPV is a ‘stare of the union’ show. They will gauge whether they have any talent people want to pay to see. I’m glad Patron isn’t a part of this because it’s far more likely Pentagon or Fenix becomes an attraction fans want to see.

    Hopefully, Impact makes a concerted effort post Redemption to find a top 10 they want to push. Aries, Impact, Cage, Rosemary and Sydal are a good start. I’m hoping this PPV solidifies the other 5.

    • Agreed on all three points but I would also like to add them holding on too much to the past rather than looking at growing and looking forward. This is another reason I praised their 2016, they were taking a completely non-TNA approach with less ref bumps, heels that actually won clean matches, nuance storytelling, long term booking, PPVs that seemed worth buying. The only thing holding them back was the “TNA” branding.

      You’re also spot on with your WWE point and Impact gets ridiculous with this sometimes. If Jeff Jarrett goes into the HOF, then all over their social media they are showing Jeff Jarrett matches. AJ wins the WWE title, then they go overboard with AJ all over their PR. Hell, we saw a match between two Raw stars for eight minutes on their last show. I’m not discounting their past, but it’s time to move forward.

      • I can’t believe D’Amore and Callis think people don’t know where Roode, Styles, Joe etc came from. The awareness that the company exists isn’t the problem. It’s the disbelief by fans that checked out long ago that Impact is any different. This is why there are so many people still referring to it as TNA. That’s the last time those fans watched the product.

        The ref bump gimmick is also one of those TNA holdovers that still plagues the company. There should be a moratorium on those, as well as limiting outside interference to one incident per show. We can deal with double DQ’s or double countouts in their places. Obviously, clean finishes would be best.

        Having said all that, the problems still stem from a lack of resources. Perhaps the WWE only bneed Vince, Pat and Bruce Pritchard to keep everything orderly, but it’s clear Impact needs more people to nail down the nuances and technical aspects to every match, angle, etc.

        The mission this weekend is to see who is worth spending future resources on. It’s a more significant PPV than people realize.

        Despite the crowd we know will suck. Despite the broadcasting team, which will be somewhat underwhelming in their selling of the talent, Impact needs at least one young unknown on this card to have a breakout performance.

        It’s Redemption, but actually, ‘Against All Odds’ applies the most for this PPV.

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