By Jason Powell, Prowrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Impact Wrestling Hits
Austin Aries vs. Eddie Edwards for the Impact World Championship: This match made me miss the sane Edwards character. That version of Edwards and Aries could have had one hell of a match. This was entertaining, but Edwards understandably works a different style in his new persona. Although I prefer sane Eddie, they did manage to get a crowd that gave Edwards a lukewarm reaction during his entrance to rally behind him during the course of the match. So while the character may not click with me, it did click with the crowd, which is obviously more important if they are a good representation of the television viewing audience. The ref bump and visual pinfall felt like a bad reminder of the worst of TNA. The company has been better about not going overboard on those types of finishes and it’s not like this was a pay-per-view main event, so no harm done. Will Killer Kross be aligned with Aries going forward or is this just a way to get to Kross feuding with Edwards?
Pentagon Jr. vs. Matt Sydal: A good television match complete with a clean finish. Sydal continues to shine on the mic and I continue to hope that his recent losses will lead to him snapping and breaking away from the limiting third eye nonsense. The post match angle with Sami Callihan ordering one of the Crist Brothers to shave his head was a mixed bag. It made Callihan look like a strong and demented leader. At the same time, it made the Crists look even more like minions for going along with it. Here’s hoping that creative will come up with a way to keep Callihan strong while also making the Crists come off as more than lackeys.
LAX and The OGz: The show opened with a backstage brawl between the teams and then they had a solid verbal exchange later in the night to set up next week’s street fight. Given the heated brawl and nature of the feud, it was a wise touch to have the OGz in the balcony while LAX was in the ring during the talking segment. They set the table for next week’s street fight and Impact did a very good job overall of setting up next week’s television show.
Tessa Blanchard vs. Alisha Edwards: Another good outing for Blanchard. She gave up some (at times unimpressive) offense to Edwards before putting her away in decisive fashion. Blanchard continues to stand out as the person the company should build the Knockouts division around. She will be in a Triple Threat title match at the tapings this weekend. We haven’t seen Tessa avenge her losses to Madison Rayne yet. I wonder if the idea is to give Blanchard the Knockouts Title and then have Rayne step up as her challenger with the idea being that she has Tessa’s number.
Taiji Ishimori and Petey Williams vs. The Desi Hit Squad: A minor Hit for a solid, fast-paced opening match. I’ve complained a lot about makeshift tag teams consisting of two singles wrestlers defeating actual tag teams. I have no such complaints in this case simply because I’m not into the Gama Singh and Desi Hit Squad act yet. For that matter, the loss also gave Singh a chance to play his taskmaster role by barking at his team after they took the loss.
Impact Wrestling Misses
Impact management characters: I dig Scarlett Bordeaux’s modern day Diva act and the way Bobo is smitten with her. And it was fine that KM and Fallah Bahh were taken aback by her when they crossed paths backstage. But I’m not a fan of making even faceless Impact management members out to be drooling horn-balls who fawn over her. Perhaps it wouldn’t be so bad if she worked her magic on a single management member such as Don Callis while other management members were portrayed as being the professional voices of reason. Playing up management members in this manner just isn’t a good look for the company in 2018. For that matter, the faceless management members came off as pricks for barking at the poor guy who entered the room before Bordeaux arrived. The heel authority figure has been run into the ground. Here’s hoping this was just a one-off and this face-less authority figure bit isn’t going to become the norm.