By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Impact Wrestling Hits
“Private Party” Marq Quen and Isiah Kassidy vs. James Storm and Chris Sabin for a shot at the Impact Tag Titles: A fun main event match that included three wrestlers who were not expected to appear. Private Party going over to earn the tag title shot sets up a fun match against the Good Brothers.
Matt Hardy and Private Party surprise: Matt Hardy returning to the Impact ring despite how ugly things were between him and Anthem/Impact executive Ed Nordholm was a big surprise. Kenny Omega’s appearances have been really cool, but Impact needed something fresh from AEW to generate more buzz from the crossover angle. They got it via Hardy and Private Party, as well as with Tony Khan and Jerry Lynn making surprise in-person appearances.
Eric Young vs. Rhino: A nice showcase for Young and his Violence By Design faction. Deaner distracted the referee while Joe Doering took out Rhino’s knee, which led to Young applying a figure four and winning via submission. The post match attack was well done with the heel trio leaving Rhino and Cousin Jake lying. Will Cousin Jake get his needed gimmick overhaul soon?
Taya Valkyrie sendoff: As silly as the “Who Shot John E Bravo” saga has been, the payoff was actually a lot of fun. Tommy Dreamer’s cracks regarding Jacksonville and Stamford were good for a laugh, and I got a kick out of Acey Romero chiming in to state that he hoped that Valkyrie wouldn’t end up in Baltimore (ROH). Part of me felt like they could have gotten more out of Valkyrie leaving by building up to a loser leave the company match. Still, I enjoyed this and Valkyrie’s big farewell hug with Rosemary.
TJP ditches the Manik gimmick: It didn’t make much sense, but at least they pulled the plug on the Manik mess.
Impact Wrestling Misses
Rich Swann: I had no problem with Swann taking a pinfall loss to Kenny Omega in the Hard To Kill six-man tag main event. But I was worried when they followed up by having Moose manhandle him with ease backstage early on during last night’s television show. Fortunately, Swann got the better of Moose during their in-ring segment. Swann eyeing up the worthless TNA Title belt for a moment seems to suggest that they are working toward a unification match – between a real champion and a guy who pulled his title belt out of the trash. Swann landed in this section simply because his stock feels down coming off the loss to Omega, but he should be able to bounce back quickly if he gets the right creative.
Jordynne Grace and Jazz vs. Kimber Lee and Susan: I enjoy Su Yung when Impact avoids the hocus pocus nonsense. I also got a kick out of Susie. So I’m trying to keep an open mind regarding Susan, but the new persona has been a bore thus far. She really lost me when she worked the match in her business attire. It’s still early so hopefully they have something good in mind for the character, but I’m not feeling this persona yet.
Brian Myers vs. Fallah Bahh: A flat match. I continue to enjoy Myers as a heel in Impact, and I’ve enjoyed Bahh’s comedy. Unfortunately, Bahh feels really flat at the moment, which made this match feel uneventful. On the bright side, I like that they are not moving right into something involving Myers and Matt Cardona. I don’t think of Curt Hawkins when I see Myers in Impact, but a reunion or a feud with his former tag team partner could change that.