By John Moore, ProWrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)
Impact Wrestling on Pursuit (simulcast on Twitch TV)
Taped January 11-12, 2019 from the Frontón México Entertainment Center in Mexico City, Mexico
Highlights from last week’s Impact Wrestling episode aired…
Josh Mathews and Don Callis were on commentary. Josh welcomed viewers from the Frontón México Entertainment Center in Mexico City, Mexico. Josh announced that in two weeks Impact will have a themed episode titled “Un-Caged” which will featured Johnny Impact vs. Brian Cage for the Impact World Championship…
1. Pentagon Jr, Fenix, and Taurus vs. Santana, Ortiz, and Daga (w/Konnan). Josh talked about how Konnan’s great eye for talent and how Taurus and Daga are two more prospects discovered by Konnan. Josh noted that Daga just came back from working in Japan as a part of the RED faction in Dragon Gate (PAC’s faction). Josh also said that Taurus is a bull. Pentagon cheerled the crowd in “Cero Miedo” chants while Fenix led them in “Animo” chants. Pentagon and Santana started off the match. Pentagon and Santana argued a bit before Fenix flew in with a dropkick.
Daga and Taurus were left alone. Taurus caught Daga with a shotgun dropkick and flapjack. Taurus took out Ortiz with a suicide dive. Daga took out Fenix with a Tope Con Hilo. Santana and Pentagon argued again with Pentagon doing his Cero Miedo thing. Both men traded quick precision strikes. Santana caught Penta with a rolling cutter for a two count. Daga hit Pentagon with a three kick combo. Ortiz hit Pentagon with a free fall splash for a two count. Pentagon caused LAX to implode a bit. Pentagon monkey flipped Santana into Ortiz.
Fenix caught Ortiz with a superkick and then a rebound Tiger Feint Kick. Fenix hit a flying headbutt. Ortiz dodged teh slicing Sobat from Fenix and hit Fenix with a Blue Thunder Bomb. Taurus and Daga brawled. Both men traded corner moves. Daga hit Taurus with a delayed German Suplex. Taurus hit Daga with a crossbody. Daga sent Taurus outside. Ortiz followed up on Taurus with a suicide dive. Pentagon hit the pile of people with a flip dive. Santana hit the pile with an Asai moonsault. Fenix hit the pile of people with a springboard crossbody. [c]
Taurus hit Ortiz with a swinging suplex back from the break. Lucha Brothers hit Ortiz with a spike piledriver for the victory. Josh wondered if this victory earned the Lucha Brothers another title shot?
The Lucha Brothers and Taurus defeated LAX and Daga via pinfall in 8:20 of TV Time.
John’s Thoughts: A fun lucha spotfest where Taurus and Daga added absolutely nothing to it. Taurus looked impressive, albeit a bit goofy with the modern day Mantaur costume. Daga is always solid in the ring, but his personality is extremely vanilla once he gets rolling in storylines. At least this gave Lucha Brothers a win? But still, Taurus and Daga were unnecessary and it was very odd to see them go to commercial break only to have the pinfall happen right after the commercial.
Pentagon grabbed a microphone and clapped to cheerlead a Lucha Brothers chant. Pentagon said “Cero Miedo” first. Pentagon then brought up Ortiz’s bragging about kicking the Lucha Brothers’ ass back in Nashville and how Ortiz would like to do so again. Pentagon challenged LAX for another title shot. Pentagon said the whole world is talking about the match at Homecoming but people don’t know that LAX and Lucha Brothers can recreate the same magic. Pentagon challenged LAX and LAX held up their title to show that they accepted the challenge. LAX and Lucha Brothers shook hands while Pentagon’s entrance theme played…
John’s Thoughts: Again, I do miss badass a-hole Pentagon. It’s just so odd to see Pentagon play such a generic white-meat babyface after seeing how great he could be with an edge. Anyway, this is the most generic of builds, but it’s tough to complain when LAX and Lucha Brothers are capable of having Match of the Year candidates in their sleep.
Josh Mathews and Don Callis checked in from their announce table. Callis talked about how we’re about to see a repeat of a match of the year. Josh Mathews plugged the $5 Twitch subscription. Josh then ran through some upcoming segments. Josh also hyped the “Uncaged” themed show in two weeks…
Melissa Santos interviewed Moose and Killer Kross. Kross was oddly wearing a t-shirt (when we usually see him wearing trenchcoats). Melissa asked Kross about his thoughts on Cage and Johnny Impact. Kross yelled “not really good”. Kross argued about Cage getting in the way of the hurt business. Kross said Cage needs to know that Cage is not invincible. Kross said one thing worse than an impostor is “A HYPOCRITE!!!” (context?). Moose told Kross not to lose his composure. Moose said the only way you can win wars is by keeping composure. Moose said “we gonna kick they ass” and let the idiots implode. Moose said after they are going to hit the town to get some Tequilas. Moose said then after that Moose can take Melissa Santos out on a date. Kross started to crack up but he reminded Moose that they can do all that “after” Johnny and Cage pay the toll. Kross and Moose left. Moose told Melissa “Call me”… [c]
Josh Mathews reiterated Pentagon’s challenge earlier and how LAX accepted the challenge…
The show cut to an LAX clubhouse scene (they no longer use cinematics it seems). Konnan told Santana and Ortiz that Daga and Taurus did a good job tonight. Konnan also brought up how he accepted Pentagon’s challenge on Santana and Ortiz’s behalf because he knew LAX would have wanted that. Konnan said he’s 100% behind the match this time. He told Santana and Ortiz to keep things professional not personal. Santana talked about how they are still tight like family after Homecoming so there was nothing to worry about. Ortiz said he ran his mouth and the LBs gave Ortiz an L. Ortiz said it’ll be a different story next week. Konnan closed the segment with the Hasta La Muerte catchphrase…
Josh Mathews introduced this week’s Global Wrestling Network Flashback Match of the Week. It was Santana and Ortiz vs. Drago and Fantasma vs. Garza Jr and Laredo Kid vs. Marufuji and Ishimori at Slammiversary 2017 for the Global Force Wrestling Tag Team Championships and Impact Wrestling Tag Team Championships. Time to fast forward (they showed about 9 minutes)… [c]
Josh Mathews advertised the next Impact Wrestling PPV titled “Rebellion” coming from the Rebel Entertainment Complex in Toronto. The date for the PPV is set for April 28, 2019…
2. Su Yung and Dark Allie vs. Kiera Hogan and Jordynne Grace. Josh said everything’s bigger in Texas including Grace’s muscles. Josh hyped that he hangs out in the Twitch chatrooms on the Friday simulcast (he actually does and you get his Skype feed during the commercial breaks). Allie and Su tried to double team Grace but Grace took down both heels with a double suplex. Grace hit Su with a meteora and uppercut to the back of the head. Grace body slammed Kiera on Su.
Kiera caught Su with a shotgun dropkick. Kiera hit Su with a few running moves in the corner topped off with a basement dropkick. Grace tagged in and gave Su a fallaway slam. Grace caught Allie with a sit-out atomic drop. Su pulled the ropes to drag Grace outside. Grace ducked a mist. Allie gave Grace a kick so the heel duo could slam Grace twice into the ringpost. Josh noted that Kiera is costing herself the match by complaining with the referee for about a minute or so. Allie then dominated Grace in the ring. Methodical offense ensued. The commentators noted that Keira is hurting her team by distracting the referee and allowing the other team to double team Grace.
Grace carried Allie like a backpack and almost got to her corner but Allie slammed Grace with an axe handle strike. Allie and Su hit Grace with a wishbone stretch. Allie gave Grace punches but Grace hulked up. Grace then hit Allie with the Monty Brown pounce to get a window of opportunity to tag her partner. Right before the hot tag, “technical difficulties” ensued with cheap static effects. When the lights went back up, Rosemary replaced Su Yung just like she did a few weeks ago. Grace got the tag. Kiera hit a scared Allie with a Swinging Fisherman Backbreaker for the victory.
Kiera Hogan and Jordynne Grace defeated Dark Allie and Su Yung via pinfall in 8:33.
Kiera Hogan and Jordynne Grace shrugged in confusion after the match. Josh noted that Rosemary disappeared and wondered where Su Yung and Rosemary teleported to. Kiera even went to the corner to see if she could find Rosemary. Josh said it was like Dark Magic was taking over Impact…
Eli Drake was shown doing pushups backstage while Eddie Edwards was walking around with his stick named “Kenny”… [c]
John’s Thoughts: A good women’s tag team match and I really liked the story of Kiera Hogan costing her team the match due to her emotions and inexperience. Away from that, they are really not doing a good job with Rosemary’s return to the point where she’s really cooling off. At least they’re staying away from the Undead Realm, but they’ve turned an “uhhhhh” story into an “eh” story were the segments end with everyone just shrugging.
Bobo was shown kicking his feet around in a swimming pool while cheesy ’70s sitcom music was playing in the background. Scarlett’s theme then played with Scarlett walking poolside. She berated Bobo for playing around while she’s training hard. Scarlett asked Bobo to spar with her. Scarlett punched Bobo’s right hand which hurt him. Scarlett then gave Bobo some roundhouse kicks. Scarlett gave Bobo a roundhouse to the hamstring which sent him falling into the pool. Scarlett pointed that Bobo got her all wet…
John’s Thoughts: Scarlett’s at her best when she’s interacting with Bobo. In fact, it’s almost like they’re picking up right where she left off about three weeks after her debut. She’s even acting a bit more heelish. Good work and they’ve should have done more of this as opposed to the weeks of wasting everyones time with cheap comedy skits that led nowhere.
3. Eddie Edwards and Eli Drake vs. “The Rascalz” Dezmond Xavier and Zachary Wentz. Trey Miguel high fived his faction-mates before heading to the back. Eli Drake dropped “Kenny” to ringside. Eddie and Zachary started off the match. Edwards and Wentz started the match with chain wrestling. Both men ended in a light cruiserweight stalemate. Drake tagged in. Drake and Edwards argued a bit. Drake tried to use a power offense but Wentz used his agility and caught Drake with a corkscrew crossbody.
Dez tagged in and the Rascalz rained down kicks on Drake. Callis said it was interesting that Edwards wasn’t breaking the pin attempts. Edwards tagged in and Dez hit Edwards with a head-scissors. Wentz hit Edwards with a slingshot Senton. Wentz fought both opponents with strikes. Drake tripped Wentz off the top rope. Drake and Edwards argued because Edwards didn’t like Drake’s dirty tactics. Drake caught Wentz and planted him with a pop up reverse power slam. Edwards and Drake traded tags and cut the ring in half on Wentz.
Wentz gained a window of opportunity after hitting Edwards with a high knee. Drake prevented a tag by pulling Dezmond off the apron. Edwards caught Wentz with a rolling Samoan Drop. Wentz fought out of a slam by Drake and tagged in Dez, who grounded Eli with a dropkick. Drake fought off both opponents with punches. Dezmond went for a DDT but Drake caught him. The Rascalz blocked a Gravy Train but Drake countered them. The Rascalz countered with a double DDT on Drake. Edwards broke up the subsequent pin.
Edwards broke Dezmond’s CQC with a running lariat. Edwards took down Wentz with a suicide dive. Edwards then picked up “Kenny” and then started to do his weird mouth things. Josh noted that Eddie was going hardcore. The referee tried to stop Eddie from using the kendo stick. Drake took advantage of this by hitting Dezmond with the Kendo Stick while Eddie Edwards was arguing with the referee. Eli Drake hit Dezmond Xavier with the Gravy Train for the tainted win.
Eli Drake and Eddie Edwards defeated The Rascalz via pinfall in 8:33.
Eddie Edwards and Drake argued at ringside with Drake trying to convince Eddie that Drake’s tactics are what got them the win… [c]
John’s Thoughts: A surprisingly good tag team showcase for Eli Drake and Eddie Edwards as a team. As I said, when I saw Drake wrestle in an Impact Twitch main event a few months ago, it’s refreshing to see Eli Drake doing something somewhat meaningful. I’m fine with the regular tag team losing here because they were screwed out of a win by Drake’s cheating and Drake’s cheating is a good contrast to Eddie’s clean demeanor. “Crazy” Eddie is still the worst part of this and it’s either going to end with the return of normal Eddie, or Impact digging their heels in on this cheap throwback to ECW.
Back from the break, Josh Mathews noted that Drake stopped Edwards from using hardcore wrestling in their last match only for Drake to use a weapon himself…
Josh said that “Impact Management” is showing a Tessa Blanchard twitter video to viewers so she can update the viewers on what she’s up to during her suspension. Tessa’s tweet said that Impact was allowing her to come back Feburary 15. Tessa ranted as she usually does. She said she loved what she did to Gail Kim because Kim screwed her over at Homecoming and Tessa said that if it wasn’t for Gail, Tessa will still be champ. Tessa then challenged Taya Valkyrie for a match on February 15…
A Sami Callihan and Rich Swann video package aired. Rich Swann talked about how Sami was right and when Rich was 18, Rich had no family or support system. Pictures of a younger Rich and Sami were shown. Rich said he met Sami through pro wrestling. Rich Swann said Sami opened his home to Rich and that may have even cost Sami his marriage. Rich said he saw the real Sami over the year and that Sami is a person who will take advantage of the best in someone and use it for Sami’s purposes. Rich then brought up Sami’s request for Swann to join “Ohio vs. Everything”. Rich said that Sami will always have a spot in his heart but Sami’s request isn’t “family”…
John’s Thoughts: This story has and still is pretty wonky, but I like the usage and production of the video package. It did clear up some of the confusion at least. The best part of the video package is how it looked bigger budget than a lot of the recent video production things that Impact has done in recent months.
Melissa Santos interviewed Taya Valkyrie. Taya gloated about Tessa attacking referees and Gail Kim. Taya said she wanted to up the ante in a few weeks by making it a “Knockouts Championship Street Fight”. Taya said “See you at Uncaged, Chica”… [c]
John’s Thoughts: With Melissa Santos not as the backstage interviewer (along with Sonjay Dutt and Abyss leaving), this company now feels way more like Lucha Underground-lite as opposed to TNA.
4. Fallah Bahh vs. Psycho Clown. Psycho Clown had a giant “Hang Loose” fist that was also shooting fire. Josh noted that Dr. Wagner Jr. lost his mask in a match against Psycho Clown. Psycho and Fallah had a duel at getting the crowd to cheer. Bahh actually got a lot of the Mexican crowd on his side. Bahh started the match with his “no no no”. Psycho came back with chops. Bahh came back with a shoulder block. Psycho dodged a leg drop and hit Bahh with a low kick.
Bahh threw Psycho outside of the ring and hit Psycho with a flying splash. Bahh ripped apart Psycho’s mask in the center of the ring. Clown escaped but Bahh tripped Clown off the top rope. Clown countered and hit Bahh with a double stomp. Josh noted that KM was gone due to getting attacked by Brian Cage a few weeks ago. Psycho hit Bahh with a suicide dive and then a Tope Con Hilo. Bahh kicked out at two. Psycho hit Bahh with a few kicks. Bahh caught Psycho and then hit him with a Belly To Belly. Psycho escaped a Banzai Drop and hit Bahh with a Sunset Flip. Bahh tripped Psycho and hit Psycho with a corner splash. Bahh missed a splash and got rolled up by Psycho with La Magistral for the win. Psycho Clown celebrated his win…
Psycho Clown defeated Fallah Bahh via pinfall in 5:40.
John’s Thoughts: Your top babyface in AAA folks (or more like the Roman Reigns of Mexico. Psycho Clown was the forced AAA babyface that AAA tried to push after Konnan, Pentagon Jr, and Fenix left the promotion). Not a great match and a good showcase as to why the Psycho Clown experiment in AAA wasn’t great. I don’t blame Bahh. He’s had good matches in the past, and managed to get the crowd to cheer on his side in this match too.
Cage barged into the waiting room that Johnny Impact was waiting in. Johnny said they just need to get through this match tonight. Cage said he agrees and wants to keep Johnny healthy for their championship match at the “Uncaged” show. Johnny said Cage should be happy that he’s getting a title shot soon and the fact that they named the episode after Cage. Cage said he’s taking Johnny’s head off in two weeks. Johnny pulled Cage back and told Cage not to screw Johnny over tonight. Cage said “that’s your department… champ…” to Johnny before he pat Johnny on the shoulder and left… [c]
Josh Mathews noted that the Fallah Bahh vs. Psycho Clown match was a preview to the Impact World Cup in a few weeks…
Psycho Clown was shown rallying the troops. He was hyping up his fellow “Team AAA” wrestlers, Puma King, Aerostar, and El Hijo Del Vikingo. Psycho spoke in Spanish and said that even though Impact is a great wrestling promotion nobody was coming to Mexico and beating AAA on their home turf. Psycho then said to remember that “we are totally clowns”. Psycho then led a “Triple A” chant…
Josh Mathews advertised Puma King vs. Sami Callihan next week…
Moose and Kross made their entrance. Moose was dancing on his way to the ring. He grabbed a fan sign and wiped his ass with it. Kross was walking and looking as focused as he usually does. Brian Cage now his a CG Terminator intro to his entrance theme… [c]
5. Moose and Killer Kross vs. Johnny Impact and Brian Cage. Johnny and Moose started off the match. Moose dominated Johnny early on and then started mocking him by posing. Johnny caught Moose with a roundhouse to the gut. Johnny then kicked Moose with a front kick. Moose hit Johnny with a tackle and then did more poses. Johnny took down Moose with a huracanrana. Moose came back with a kip up. Johnny followed up with a superkick. Moose and Johnny did a kip up but Moose did a Flair flop. Moose tagged in Kross. Johnny took his time to tag in Cage but he eventually did.
Cage and Kross traded strong style punches. Cage and Kross no sold each others’ shoulder blocks. Cage hit Kross with a huracanrana and body slam. Johnny tagged himself in and caught Kross with a slingshot senton. Johnny hit Kross with a Moonlight Drive for a two count. Moose hit Johnny with a knee to block a running knee from Johnny. Johnny punched Moose off the apron which allowed Kross to hit Johnny with a gutwrench suplex. Moose attacked Johnny with ground and pound. Kross and Moose traded quick tags to cut the ring in half on Johnny as they stomped on him.
Callis called Moose and Kross “The Murder-Money Connection”. Callis also reiterated that he wishes Moose were playing Right Tackle for the Minnesota Vikings. Kross manhandled Johnny and used Johnny’s limp body to taunt Cage. More isolation and quick tags ensued. Moose used his hips to soften up the back of Johnny. Moose’s groin then fell on Johnny’s knee which allowed Johnny to get a moment of respite. Kross tagged in and went back to teasing Johnny. Johnny escaped a Dragon Sleeper with a DDT. Moose tagged in and continued to isolate Johnny from his tag partner.
Moose caught Johnny with a back suplex. Johnny used his parkour to escape the corner and tag in Cage. Cage ran through Cage and Moose with the hot tag. Cage hit Moose with a German suplex for a two count. Kross gave Cage a spin kick to block a Drill Claw on Moose. Moose caught Cage wit a Pump kick. Cage fought off both Cage and Moose. Johnny got the blind tag in when Moose hit Cage with the Go to Hell. Johnny surprised Moose with a crossbody when Moose was arguing over the referee not counting his pin attempt due to Johnny being the legal man. Kross broke up Johnny’s pin attempt. Kross no sold a superkick from Johnny.
Moose hit Johnny with a Pump Kick as Kross was kicked into 619 position. Johnny then hit Kross with the world’s worst looking 619. Kross stumbled into Cage. Johnny tried to hit Kross with the Flying Chuck but he accidentally kicked Cage. Cage hit Kross with the Tornado Claw. Johnny tried to argue with Cage but Cage allowed Moose to hit Johnny with a spear to give Moose the win as Cage just nodded and accepted.
Moose and Killer Kross defeated Johnny Impact and Brian Cage via pinfall in 11:45.
Callis noted that all three men in the ring have visual wins over Johnny Impact. Callis noted that Cage and Moose have pinned Johnny while Kross made Johnny pass out. Josh Mathews recapped the closing sequence of the match to try to tie together all the storylines leading to the “Uncaged” show. The Impact signature aired…
John’s Thoughts: Not a bad tag team match and I liked this version of the “reluctant partners” cliche better than the one they did leading into Homecoming. This one was a lot more natural. Another really good aspect they threw in there was Don Callis pointing out how all three non-Johnny guys in the ring have a visual win over Johnny in recent weeks. That helps them set up their main event picture a bit. They’re still in need of trying to build up a heel as strong as Austin Aries was, but at least Impact is doing a really good job positioning Brian Cage as a credible badass babyface.
Overall, another solid (yet uneventful) episode of Impact in the Pursuit run (even though there is an aura of hopelessness floating around the promotion at this point). As for the Mexico tapings, I think they’re doing a better job this time compared to the last time they were in Mexico. While the crowd isn’t as hot for Cage as they were in Nashville, they are still reacting to the Impact Wrestlers overall better this time around.
Check below for the new Pro Wrestling Boom with Jason Powell and his guest Rich Bocchini (f/k/a Rich Brennan) discussing Saturday’s MLW SuperFight, working for Michael Cole in WWE, his trial by fire in NXT, and much more.
The new edition of the Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell and guest Todd Martin on his background, attending pro wrestling events in Japan, the NJPW G1 Tournament, why lucha libre companies haven't been as successful as NJPW in the United States, AEW optimism, covering pro wrestling and MMA, and more (68:57)...