By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Impact Wrestling Hits
Rosemary and Taya Valkyrie: You had to turn your brain off and just accept the fact that the camera happened to be there while Valkyrie was throwing a pity party for herself at a bar that Rosemary decided to crash. Ultimately, though, the segment provided a reason for the duo to form pro wrestling’s latest odd couple.
Joey Ryan scolds The Deaners: Ryan took issue with Cody Deaner offering a harmless compliment toward Katie Forbes. Please tell me this means Ryan is shifting toward playing a PC hypocrite character. I could see that being a lot of fun.
Jordynne Grace vs. Lacey Ryan for the Knockouts Championship: Ryan was the woman who stepped up in defense of Madison Rayne last week, so it was logical that Rayne would choose her to face Grace. While it was odd to see Grace sell as much as she did for Ryan, this was an entertaining match and perhaps Ryan getting so much offense means we’ll be seeing more of her. If Ryan isn’t going to appear until the tapings return to Vegas, then I’ll totally change my tune about this match being laid out to be so competitive.
Impact Wrestling Misses
Michael Elgin vs. Eddie Edwards in the deciding match of the best of five series: The wrestlers saved their best match for last and it was a Hit worthy performance by both men. But this turned out to be an overbooked mess that deprived viewers of an actual winner to a five match series. It’s bad enough that Edwards keeps putting his Call Your Shot trophy on the line rather than use it to actually challenge for the title, but now Tessa Blanchard is giving Edwards and Elgin a title shot in a Triple Threat. In other words, they somehow managed to make the trophy they introduced at Bound For Glory feel even less meaningful than it did going into this series.
Chris Sabin and Moose: The gag was that Moose thinks the King of the Mountain match rules are stupid and questioned “what idiot” created the match. Of course, he’s right about the rules of the match. But whether the joke was meant to be playful or insulting towards the match’s creator, no one is forcing Impact management to bring it back. This reminds me of when TNA spoofed WWE using Big Dick Johnson by coming up with their own version of the character, then started using their version even more than WWE did. And what does it say about the state of Impact Wrestling in 2020 that they feel the need to run a TNA throwback show in hopes of selling tickets and pay-per-views during the busy WrestleMania weekend rather than showcase their existing brand?
Rhino vs. Madman Fulton: I’m not a fan of seeing the OVE monster pinned clean for seemingly no good reason. I haven’t been blown away by Fulton in this monster role, but if you take the monster element away from him, then what is he? Sabu appearing afterward continues the company’s strange love affair with ECW, though it was nice to see the hardcore legend again. Rhino continues to feels flat. He was a popular figure in WWE in part because he displayed a quirky side of his personality that’s been mostly missing since he jumped to Impact.
Dez and Wentz vs. Rohit Raju and Mahabali Shera: Shera has shown some improvement from his time at the WWE Performance Center, but this was a rough outing for the big man. The match was solid when Raju was in the ring and not so much when Shera was involved. On the bright side, the Rascalz got a needed win and hopefully this puts them in contention for the tag titles. Impact needs to elevate all three members of the Rascalz trio into meaningful positions.
Willie Mack vs. Glenn Gilbertti and Johnny Swinger in a handicap match: Bad wrestling, bad humor, and a nonsensical addition of Ace Austin as Mack’s tag partner mid-match even though Mack called for this to be a handicap match. I assume this is somehow leading to Mack challenging for the X Division Title, but I hope they have a good reason why Austin’s character chose to get involved in this. Austin feuded with Eddie Edwards because he wanted to hook up with Eddie’s wife, then feuded with Trey Miguel while trying to make a play for Trey’s Mom. I’d be some combination of nervous and flattered if I were Rich Swann, as he’s the only person we’ve seen Mack’s character bond with thus far.