By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Impact Wrestling Hits
Michael Elgin vs. Trey Miguel in a No. 1 contender tournament semifinal match: A hot main event with a disappointing finish. The Trey Miguel we see in the ring is money. The Trey we see clowning around in stoner comedy Treehouse skits is a mid-card guy. More on that later. This was a really good match with strong work from both men. The finish with Sami Callihan’s ICU graphic providing a distraction was a letdown and I wish they would have simply put over Miguel clean. This should have been a big moment for Trey regardless of whether he wins or loses next week, and it’s not like Elgin hasn’t bounced back from other losses.
Ace Austin vs. Hernandez in a No. 1 contender tournament semifinal match: A pleasant surprise both in terms of match quality and the outcome. Austin is typically very good in the ring, and Hernandez had his best outing since he returned to Impact. I’m all for Austin winning the tournament and then taking the Impact World Title. He continues to be the brightest young star in the company and seems to improve with each outing both in the ring and from a personality standpoint.
The North vs. Cody Deaner and Wheels for the Impact Tag Titles: Josh Alexander and Ethan Page have done outstanding work despite being unable to travel to the tapings. Page has been given more time to show off his personality, and Alexander does a great job as the straight man of the team. The praise does not end there. Deaner’s quarantine videos were cute and it was fun to see those worlds come together.
Chris Bey vs. Cousin Jake: A well worked match with some strong near falls. Bey is living up to the hype of his vignettes, and Jake has proven to be too good to keep in the mid-card comedy Deaner tag team act. Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with being a role player, but Jake has shown upside beyond the gimmick and it’s time for an overhaul. Johnny Swinger’s involvement in the Bey act was positioned properly with Bey seemingly getting what he can out of the oblivious Swinger.
Deonna Purrazzo: Another excellent addition to an already loaded Knockouts Division.
Impact Wrestling Misses
Havok vs. Kimber Lee: A minor Miss. The in-ring work was Hit worthy, but I still have no clue what the creative forces want us to feel about these wrestlers. Lee seemed to be a heel based on her use of weapons during both matches with Havok, but then she looked sympathetic when Nevaeh and Havok double teamed her after this match. So now I assume Lee is a babyface while Havok and Nevaeh are heels. We really need to hear from these wrestlers. Meanwhile, with Havok and Nevaeh, Kylie Rae and Susie, Kiera Hogan and Tasha Steelz, and Rosemary and Taya Valkyrie, there seem to be a lot of potential tag teams emerging. Is Impact on the verge of reintroducing the Knockouts Tag Titles? They have a deep enough roster now, so I’m all for it.
The return of The Treehouse: Even when there are decent moments, it’s still just a “That ’70s Show” ripoff. The company has shown some real creativity during the pandemic, but these skits are just plain lousy and make The Rascalz feel like mid-card comedy wrestlers when they have the potential to be so much more. The main event showed just how good Trey Miguel can be, and I’m also very high on the work of Dezmond Xavier and Zachary Wentz. The trio has been doing this stoner comedy bit for well over a year now and where has it gotten them? Can Impact’s creative team actually say with a straight face that they’ve gotten even a fraction of what they could out of this talented trio? The fact that all three members will be in No. 1 contenders matches next week is encouraging, and hopefully all three men will be booked in a manner that allows them to reach their potential.