5/19 Impact Wrestling TV Results: Moore’s review of Michael Elgin vs. Sami Callihan and Ace Austin vs. Rhino in No. 1 contender tournament matches, Willie Mack vs. Johnny Swinger for the X Division Championship, Fallah Bahh and TJP vs. Team XXXL 

By John Moore, ProWrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)

Impact Wrestling TV
Taped in Nashville, Tennessee at Skyway Studios

Aired May 19, 2020 on AXS TV

Highlights from last week’s Impact Wrestling show aired…

Josh Mathews and Madison Rayne were on commentary. Ace Austin made his entrance and Josh Mathews noted that Ace Austin was replacing Ken Shamrock in the Number One Contenders Tournament…

1. Ace Austin vs. Rhino in a first round match of the Impact Number One Contenders Tournament. Austin retreated to the ropes right after Rhino shoved him early on. Austin retreated to the ropes again during Rhino’s arm wrench sequence. Rhino dominated Austin in the next sequence until Austin went back to ringside to retreat and recuperate. Austin managed to rally a bit with kicks and punches but Rhino picked up the pace and then tossed Austin across the ring. Ace dived outside to avoide a Rhino Gore attempt. Rhino suplexed Ace at ringside.

Rhino then worked on Austin with his walk and brawl style at ringside. Rhino dragged out a chair for some reason, and the referee told him to get rind of it. He dropped it in the ring. Austin recovered and hit Rhino with his signature PK from the apron. Ace knocked Rhino to the mat with a gamengiri. Rhino beat the 10 count, but rolled into Austin’s boots. Austin hit Rhino with a Beautiful Disaster for a two count. Rhino and Austin ended up knocking each other out with simultaneous lariats. Austin recovered and hit Rhino with a leg lariat for a two count.

Rhino recovered and punched Austin off the top rope. Rhino pulled Ace back up and hit him with a Superplex. Ace threatened to hit Rhino with a chair but Rhino took the chair from Ace. The referee yanked the chair away from Rhino. While the ref was looking the other direction, Ace Austin produced his retractable staff and hit Rhino with it. Ace then hit Rhino with the Fold to get the pinfall win.

Ace Austin defeated Rhino via pinfall in 10:44 to advance in the Number One Contenders Tournament.

Josh noted that Ace beat a former world champion and a guy nearly 100 pounds heavier than him. Ace kissed his retractable staff as he went to the back…

John’s Thoughts: A good win for Ace who should be racking up wins following his X Division title loss. So far, they aren’t Jake Crist-ing him yet by quickly plummeting him down the card. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen. Ace is a good dark horse to win this Tournament. With Shamrock out, the most likely winner is the winner of the Callihan vs. Elgin match. The only other person that makes an iota of sense to win would be Ace Austin and Ace has proven over the course of last year that he is a rising star.

Josh Mathews had a sit down interview with Moose “earlier today”. Josh kept pointing out that Moose is not a champion and that he’s carrying around a “prop”. Moose kept blowing it off and kept saying he’s the real world champion. Josh also pointed out that Suicide had the visual pinfall over Moose and should be what Moose would call TNA Champion. Moose said that Josh was bringing up an “if” and that he’s not champion. Moose said he’s a fighting champion and will give Suicide a rematch, because he’s the hero of the company. Moose then left the interview set, saying that Josh was pissing him off and he didn’t want to toss Josh through the TV monitor nor get fined…[c]

Kiera Hogan ran into Tasha Steelz backstage, saying she was impressed by Tasha’s debut last week. Kiera noted how when Kiera came in the company she was becoming everyone’s sidekicks (Allie and Madison Rayne). Kiera said she admits she was being a weak ass back then but that’s not Kiera now. Kiera told Tasha to follow her “heat wave” to the top. Ultimately, Tasha agreed to an alliance with Kiera. Tasha said they gonna be “snatching some bitches together” from now on…

John’s Thoughts: I still would have preferred they go a babyface direction with Kiera after the vignettes they just did for her, but I’m also willing to see where this goes because I like the work of Kiera and Tasha. I’m ultimately afraid that this leads to both women being a mid-card heel tag team in what is becoming a deep Knockouts Division with all the new faces showing up in recent weeks.

Josh Mathews and Madison Rayne checked in from the commentary table. Rayne said she liked Kiera doing the same thing for Tasha that Madison did for Kiera. Josh ran through upcoming segments. Moose and Suicide were facing each other again, but this time the graphics said that Moose was the “Self-proclaimed” champion as opposed to being an actual champion (which the graphic said last week)…

2. Dave Crist (w/Madman Fulton, Jake Crist) vs. Crazzy Steve. Steve quickly dominated early on with lariats and a cannonball in the corner. Steve took Dave out at ringside with a dive. Joseph P Ryan showed up at the top of the ramp “taking notes” on his iPad. Dave gained control and choked Steve against the second rope. Dave turned a pin attempt into a nice armbar and knee strikes. Dave worked on Steve with methodical offense, with Jake and Fulton getting in cheap shots when the ref was distracted.

Dave hit Steve with a Falcon Arrow for a two count. Steve came back with an uppercut followed by a top rope jumping DDT for the victory.

Crazzy Steve defeated Dave Crist via pinfall in 4:08.

Fulton yelled at Dave Crist early on and said this happens to him all the time. Jake Crist tried to calm down Fulton. Fulton said this is Jake Crist’s fault to as to why they lose all the time. Fulton said he’s better than the Crist Brothers and he’s done with OVE now. Jake Crist dragged Fulton by the hair but Fulton grabbed both Crists by the throat. Fulton said, in slow motion, that he quits OVE. Fulton ripped off his shirt and left…[c]

John’s Thoughts: The most predictable match outcome in the world, given that it was an OVE match, but at least it looks like there may be some progression on that story as opposed to the holding pattern they’ve been in for months. Not sure why Joseph P Ryan is involved in all of this? Are they going to “censor” steve and make him like Val Venus or The Goodfather after Stevie Richards censored him? Maybe? I’m more intrigued to see if Steve ends up recruiting Fulton and Rosemary to reform Decay. I’m also hoping that the Crist Brothers become a fun tag team again, as opposed to being predictable cannon fodder.

Rosemary was at the bar again and chatting with Mr. Mundo, the toy dog, about Taya. John E Bravo showed up again to yell at Rosemary for taking away Taya’s toy dog. Rosemary then went on to seemingly hit on John E saying “‘we’ don’t bite. Unless you want ‘us’ too”. John E said Taya yells at him because she loves him. He also called Rosemary a weirdo before walking off. Rosemary was eating an apple while also giving John E an air smooch…

3. “XXXL” Larry D and Acey Romero vs. Fallah Bahh and TJ Perkins. Bahh and Romero started the match with a stalemate during the collar and elbows. Bahh slammed Romero to the mat and hit him with a running splash. Acey recovered when TJ tagged in. Larry d tagged in. Larry shoved Perkins to the mat several times with raw strength. Josh Mathews noted that TJ Perkins is a TNA Original (as Suicide). Perkins managed to sidestep Larry and hit him with a basement crossbody. Perkins then hit Larry with a basement dropkick.

Josh Mathews said that TJP has pet pigs which Madison said she really loves. Bahh tagged in. Bahh took down Larry with a shoulder tackle. Perkins and Bahh traded quick tags to keep Larry isolated and under control. Acey got in via a blind tag. He gave Perkins a Northern Lariat heading into the commercial. [c]

Larry D got a two count on Perkins after the break. Larry hit Perkins with a nice spinebuster for a two count. Perkins used a thunder clap to escape a Larry D Bear Hug. Acey knocked Bahh off the apron. Perkins walked off of Acey’s standing back to hit Larry with a DDT. Bahh tagged in. Bahh did his signature no-no-no no sell, leading to a shoulder tackle. Bahh caught Larry with a crossbody.

Acey came out of nowhere with a Pounce on Bahh. Perkins broke up Larry’s pin on Bahh. Bahh took out XXXL with a running crossbody. Josh Mathews said he noticed that Bahh his clean shaven. Bahh hit Larry with a Belly-to-belly for a two count. Acey splashed Bahh into the turnbuckle. Larry slammed TJ to the mat. Bahh knocked Larry off the top rope. Bahh hit Larry with a Samoan Drop. Perkins hit Larry with a Frog Splash. Bahh picked up the pinfall.

TJP and Fallah Bahh defeated XXXL via pinfall in 10:04 of on-air TV time.

Bahh and Perkins did their Filipino Mega Powers handshake heading into break…[c]

John’s Thoughts: A nice spectacle match given the three super heavyweights in the ring. Aside from that, the Tag Team Division is still in a massive holding pattern until The North can find a way to cross the Canadian border. Speaking of such, the World, Women’s, and Tag Titles are all trapped in quarantine. So the X Division Championship is the only actively defended title on Impact at the moment. Maybe WWE’s decision to hold several title tournaments to crown new champions during COVID season wasn’t that bad of a thing.

Suicide made his entrance and Josh Mathews noted that Suicide is a character from the TNA video game. Josh also noted that Suicide is a former two time TNA X Division Champion (One as Christopher Daniels/Kazarian and one as TJ Perkins. Impact actually acknowledges this when they dub TJ Perkins as a “former X Division Champion”). Josh also reminded viewers that this is not an official title match. Moose forced Dave Penzer again to do formal title ring introductions…

4. Moose vs. Suicide. Suicide avoided a spear and then hit Moose with a huracanrana. Moose caught Suicide during a plancha attempt. Suicide shoved Moose into the ringpost. Suicide locked Moose in an octopus hold. Suicide got a two count off of Moose. Suicide then hit Moose with a basement dropkick. Moose caught Suicide during a cannonball and ginat swung him into the barricade several times.

Moose worked on Suicide with methodical offense. This lasted for a few minutes. Suicide got a moment of respite when he turned Moose inside out with a lariat. Suicide sidestepped Moose three times and hit Moose with a series of dropkicks. Suicide hit Moose with a Rolling Senton and Lionsault for a two count. Suicide and Moose teased running into the referee, similar to last week. Suicide hit Moose with a codebreaker and five superkicks. Suicide hit Moose with a crossbody. Moose rolled through with a hand full of tights (?) to steal the win (or more like his hand was all up in Suicide’s crack due to Suicide’s suit being all spandex).

Moose defeated Suicide via pinfall in 11:08.

Dave Penzer gave his usual apprehensive acknowledgement of Moose’s prop title…

John’s Thoughts: The match content was actually really good. Sadly, nobody has a reason to care about Suicide or Moose’s prop title. Suicide was a character from a bargain bin video game. Moose is kinda just rehashing what Eric Young did with the title belt at one point when he found it in a trash can. Maybe they can make this mean something? I’m guessing there’s going to be another Suicide vs. Moose match given how Josh kept selling that Moose stole the pin. Can we get Curry Man back instead? That guy was awesome!

Michel Elgin cut a promo talking about how great he is and how he’s going to be World Champion. Elgin trash talked Ken Shamrock and Sami Callihan in his promo…[c]

Chris Bey met up with Johnny Swinger backstage to psych Swinger up for his upcoming X Division title shot…

5. Willie Mack vs. Johnny Swinger for the Impact X Division Championship. Swinger got the early advantage with boots and corner moves. Swinger hit Mack with a series of elbows. Mack came back by hitting Swinger with a swinging body slam. Mack hit Swinger with a leg drop. Swinger surprised Mack with a swinging neckbreaker. Mack broke up the pin by getting his foot under the rope. Swinger grabbed the title belt thinking he won. Swinger was about to hit Mack with the title belt, but Mack countered with his Samoan Drop and Moonsault combo for the win.

Willie Mack defeated Johnny Swinger via pinfall in 3:18.

Swinger hugged the title after the match before Mack took the title back. Swinger chop blocked Mack and put the boots to him. Chris Bey ran out and put the boots to Mack too. Madison Rayne joked about how Mack has no friends to assist him. Swinger hung his head in disappointment for a bit, but later was elated saying that “He gets it!” in regards to Chris Bey understanding Swinger. Swinger and Bey kicked Mack a bit more before the end of the segment…

John’s Thoughts: There’s a good chance that Chris Bey can really gain something by associating himself with the comedically charismatic Swinger. I’m intrigued to see where this goes. Small thing, but I also like it when when a wrestler wins a match with their signature move instead of a finisher as it give those moves more credibility during big title matches. The biggest counter points are when Eddie Edwards or Sami Zayn hit the Blue Thunder Bomb, and you know there’s no chance they’re winning.

Josh Alexander and Ethan Page were shown lounging around in the offices of the Don Kolov Arena in Canada. Page continued to be pompus while Alexander continued to act restless (aren’t we all). Ethan noted that he rented the Don Kolov arena for a month and that the wrestlers at the school would do anything for money. Alexander wondered why there was a referee in the room. Page told the ref to leave because there was no opponents left.

Cody Deaner showed up and challenged The North. Page asked Cody how he knew The North were at the Don Kolov Arena? Cody dropped his accent and said he saw it on Impact TV the last two weeks. Page said Cody doesn’t have a partner. Cody claimed he and “wheels” (the referee was in a wheelchair) will take on the North and he challenged The North to a title match at “The Deaner Compound”. Page laughed it off and shook hands with Cody to accept the match. The North left. After the North left, the referee said he’s just a referee and can’t wrestle. Cody ensured the referee that he has another partner in mind for next week and that the Cam can show up to be a referee next week…

John’s Thoughts: Of the missing champions (Tessa, Jordynne, North), the North have done the best job at being relevant while quarantined. Even boosting their titles in the process. I’m actually looking forward to what I assume is some sort of cinematic next week. Impact cinematics are mostly misses, but there are some hits, especially when they don’t have horrible CG to represent “super powers”.

Josh Mathews and Madison Rayne checked in on commenatary again. Josh advertised that next week will be the semi-finals of the Contenders tournament. Madison Rayne predicted that Michael Elgin would win the overall tournament…

John’s Thoughts: Michael Elgin would be my kayfabe favorite to win too, which has me thinking that Ace Austin is going to win for some reason?

Michael Elgin and Sami Callihan made their entrances for the main event…

John’s Thoughts: Random aside, I think Sami Callihan has good upbeat music now. Upbeat enough to be a babyface. I liked it when Impact gave Shotzi Blackheart this theme and now they’re repurposing it for Sami.

6. Michael Elgin vs. Sami Callihan in a first round match of the Number One Contenders Tournament. Callihan shoved Elgin away with double boots. Elgin smirked in the direction of Sami. Sami slapped Elgin and Elgin responded by chopping Sami’s leg. Josh Mathews noted that Sami Callihan has a leg injury. Callihan rolled to ringside to prevent Elgin from getting hands on him. Josh Mathews recapped Elgin’s various stops in New Japan and Ring of Honor.

Callihan managed to ground Elgin. Elgin blocked Sami’s suplex with a wide center of gravity. Sami kicked Elgin outside with two pump kicks. Sami worked on Elgin’s right arm. Callihan escaped a hold and slammed Sami’s leg on the apron. Elgin suplexed Sami’s injured ankle on the barricade. Elgin kept kicking at Sami’s injured leg. Callihan managed to stagger Elgin by pulling him into the ringpost. Elgin ended what little momentum Callihan had by dropkicking Sami’s injured leg. [c]

Michael Elgin continued to work on Sami’s injured leg. Elgin started his usual NEVER openweight strong style exchange in the middle of the ring. Sami tried to roll up Elgin for a two count. Elgin no sold Sami’s pump kick, but not his lariat. Sami dumpped Elgin outside. Sami sold the knee and hit Elgin with a suicide dive. Sami gave Elgin an Exploder Suplex for a two count. Josh reminded viewers that Sami is the penultimate champion.

Sami tried to give Elgin a pile driver but did his thumb thing which allowed Elgin to escape and work on Sami’s leg. Elgin gave Sami’s injured leg a dropkick. Elgin suplexed Sami on his injured leg and followed up with a Northern Lariat for a two count. Elgin locked Sami’s injured leg in a Half Crab. Sami got his hand to the bottom rope to break the hold. Elgin gave Sami stiff shortarm lariats. Callihan surprised Elgin with a Saito Suplex and running forearm for the two count.

For some reason, Sami Callihan decided yet again during this match to do his thumbs up thing, which allowed Elgin to recover and backdrop Sami out of Sami’s finisher attempt. Elgin hit Sami with a buckle bomb. Sami got a two count off a backslide. Elgin gave Sami a point and backfist. Sami escaped an Elgin Bomb, but then started stumbling on the injured knee. Elgin hit Sami with another point and backfist. Elgin hit Sami with the Elgin Bomb for the win.

Michael Elgin defeated Sami Callihan via pinfall in 15:19 to advance in the Impact Number One Contenders Tournament. 

Josh and Madison talked about how Elgin looks like the odds on favorite to win. Impact closed…

John’s Thoughts: A really good match with them setting up the out with Sami from the beginning by giving him a storyline injury courtesy of Ken Shamrock. Interesting to see Sami work two matches in a row as a plucky babyface. I’m guessing that’s the direction they’re going and I think that can be a huge positive for Impact (Hopefully they hash out the “Hacker” thing though because so far it’s as generic as it was when he tried it in NXT. I’m more excited for the Smackdown babyface hacker at this point). They’re stressing Elgin as the favorite to win, which has me thinking that Ace Austin ends up winning. Hernandez better not win, because he kinda just showed up. Trey would be a neat surprise, but I don’t think he’s ready yet. I expect Ken Shamrock to cost Elgin a tournament match.

Wrestling Tournaments make it easy to write storylines. It’s just that simple. I also thought that Impact is starting to stray away from the stupid stuff they were doing leading into Rebellion. It feels like we’re starting to see the Don Callis influence kick in again as opposed to Scott D’Amore’s weird TNA storylines (and hey, he hasn’t been on TV in a while where leading up to Rebellion he was in a majority of backstage segments). Good show this week.



Jason Powell and Jake Barnett co-host the Dot Net Weekly and Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast combo show and discuss Raw Underground and other WWE concepts, The Rock's group buying the XFL, the Marty Jannetty story, AEW Dynamite and NXT TV, and more...


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