By John Moore, ProWrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)
Impact Wrestling TV
Taped in Nashville, Tennessee at Skyway Studios
Aired April 29, 2021 on AXS TV
Highlights aired from the Impact Wrestling Rebellion PPV which featured Kenny Omega vs. Rich Swann in a title vs. title match as the main event…
The show cut to the locker room bickering and standing in front of Scott D’Amore’s office. D’Amore got out the office and correctly assumed that everyone wants to wrestle Kenny Omega. D’Amore told everyone that they can leave because he’s going to address the state of the championship inside of the ring. Once everyone left, Don Callis walked out of D’Amore’s office and thanked D’Amore for dispersing the mob of wrestlers after Kenny Omega.
Callis told D’Amore that Kenny Omega will be appearing later in the show via Zoom call. D’Amore told Callis that he and Tony Khan agreed to have Kenny Omega appear on-call for both shows and that if Kenny Omega doesn’t appear in-person physically on this show, that he’d be stripped of the Impact World title. Callis told D’Amore that D’Amore was giving him a bit of short notice.
Scott D’Amore was in the ring surrounded by the male roster. D’Amore’s entrance music was playing to start the segment. D’Amore talked about how historic and unique the situation was at Rebellion. Callis also noted that because of how unique the situation was, there was no rematch clause in the contract. Callis said the number one contender will be chosen at an upcoming show titled “Under Siege” (like the Steven Segal movie?). D’Amore said that if Omega doesn’t show up in-person tonight, the Under Siege contender match will be a match for the stripped title.
D’Amore then talked about how over the next few weeks on Impact, there will be qualifying matches to qualify for the contender’s six way. D’Amore singled out Jake Something and called him into the ring. D’Amore talked about knowing Something for a long time and how he always stood out in a good way. D’Amore said Something will be wrestling in the first match of the qualifiers against “This guy”. Chris Bey ended up making an entrance and return to Impact after a short injury layoff…
John’s Thoughts: Aside from Scott D’Amore having his own theme music, this was some solid work by Scott D’Amore (I kid, I kid. If the man wants entrance music, let the man have his theme music I guess). I like the hook of Kenny Omega appearing sometime during the show as it will also force viewers to stay tuned to the rest of the show and hopefully get sold on the other programs happening on Impact.
1. Jake Something vs. Chris Bey to qualify for the number one contender’s match at the Under Siege show. Matt Striker promised at least two Kenny Omega status updates per match to update the viewers as to where Kenny Omega is. Jake Something utilized his size and power advantage to manhandle Bey early. Bey trapped Something in the ropes and then hit Jake with a slingshot elbow. Striker continued to stress that Scott D’Amore has increased security detail to give him updates as to when Kenny Omega arrives.
Bey hit Something with a springboard lariat for a two count. Something hit Bey with a nice sitout power bomb for a two count. Bey came back with a sunset bomb of his own for a two count. Bey went for his finisher springboard cutter but Something caught him. After trading reversals, Something hit Bey with an Inside-out lariat. Rohit Raju softly touched the boot of Something, which distracted Something. This allowed Bey to roll up Something, using the ropes for levearage, for the dirty win.
Chris Bey defeated Jake Something via pinfall in 6:01 to qualify for the number one contender’s match at Under Siege.
The show cut to Don Callis talking to Kenny Omega on the phone. Callis told Omega that he has to get here and that he can get here in half an hour if he “takes the jet”. After Callis got off the phone, Sami Callihan showed up and joked about Callis being “The Jackyl”. Callihan said when Kenny Omega showes up, Callihan is going to take back what’s “mine”…
John’s Thoughts: Better match result for Something this week. He still lost, yes; but at least it wasn’t a quick and clean squash where he loses in under 3 minutes to chicken-bleep heels. They even double downed in protecting him with both the distraction and leverage finish. While that’s great and all, I still don’t understand where they are going with Something because this build isn’t necessarily making viewers want to invest in Something? I thought they already did his redemption arc with his win over Deaner? As for Bey, good to see him back and he was the right guy to go over here, especially if he’s going to be someone getting more focus on the weekly show.
Gia Miller interviewed Taylor Wilde about having her first match in Impact in 10 years. Wilde said it feels like she hasn’t been gone and she’s looking forward to wrestling in “Impact wrestlingpalooza”. Tenille Dashwood and Kaleb Konley showed up and tried to recruit Wilde to be a tag partner. Wilde said she came back for the singles title against Purrazzo. Dashwood and Kaleb continued to try to sell her on the tag titles, but she walked off on them…
Matt Striker and D’Lo Brown checked in from their new commentary set, which now has an animated backdrop. The commentators ran through some of the advertised segments on this week’s show. D’Lo recapped the opening segment with Chris Bey qualifying for the number one contender’s match. D’Lo also reiterated that Kenny Omega will be stripped of the the world title. In a change of pace, Striker advertised some undercard matches for next week’s show…
Trey Miguel’s student with the goofy hair, Sam Beale, made his entrance. His opponent is the artist formerly known as Big Cass, now going as W Moressey. W took the mic and said that you may recognize him, but you don’t know who he is. W said that the people in the back don’t care about the fans, and are rather bad people. W said this industry is filled with bad people. W said the difference between W and them is W isn’t afraid to admit it…
John’s Thoughts: Is it just me or does W look like the result of Edge getting shot by Incredible Hulk Gamma Rays? I praise the guy for his new look and health turnaround. Happy to see the guy back on TV and hope this lifestyle redemption arc works out in a positive way for him. I’m rooting for William! Just based off his promo here and the Violent By Design segment from BTI, it looks like Morrissey might be his own man and not a part of Eric Young’s faction.
2. W Morrissey vs. Sam Beale. Morrissey tossed around Beale and beat him after a Jackknife Bomb.
W Morrissey defeated Sam Beale via pinfall in 1:33.
Gia Miller interviewed Deonna Purrazzo about Taylor Wilde. Susan and Kimber Lee were next to Deonna. Lee took the mic and called out Taylor Wilde. Lee hyped up her match against Wilde later in the show. Lee was looking forward to Deonna and Susan at ringside. Deonna said she was opting to stay in the locker room. Lee thought that was a good idea and walked away from the interview with Susan.
Gia questioned Deonna on her decision to stay in the back. Deonna got defensive about Gia insinuating that she was ducking out on Wilde. Before leaving the set, Deonna crossed paths with Jessika Havok and the two had a bit of a staredown…[c]
John’s Thoughts: I’m with Jason on this one. Chicken heels are a dime a dozen, but Deonna was so good when she was jumping people and breaking their arms without fear. Now she’s just like very other heel champion on TV.
Gia Miller interviewed Willie Mack on his thoughts on W Morrissey and noted that W has singled out Willie Mack as a target. Mack said he’s not really sure why W is coming after him. Mack said that W seems to be taking his anger out on the fans and people like Sam Beale. Mack challenged Morrissey to a match at Under Siege…
Kimber Lee and Susan [Yung] made their entrance. Taylor Wilde made her entrance next and was wearing Stars and Stripes, almost Rosie the Riveter, themed gear. Matt Striker talked about how he used to train with Taylor Wilde in [WWE’s] developmental territory, Deep South Wrestling…
3. Taylor Wilde vs. Kimber Lee (w/Susan). Lee dominated early with methodical offense, but Wilde made a comeback with a rollup. D’Lo noted that he had no updates from Kenny Omega at the moment. Lee regained control heading into commercial break.[c]
The Slammiversary teaser aired which featured New Japan wrestlers along with released WWE talent from the recent set of talent cuts. Back to the show, Lee was working on Wilde with methodical offense. Lee distracted the referee so Susan could smother Wilde with her shoe. Wilde managed to make a comeback and hit Lee with a huracanrana. Lee came back with a jawbreaker and back kick for a two count. Lee crashed and burned on a Swanton attempt. Taylor hit Kimber with a Codebreaker and followed up with a Reverse Indian Deathlock for the submission victory.
Taylor Wilde defeated Kimber Lee via submission in 6:07 of on-air time.
Susan blindsided Wilde and put the boots to her. Tenille Dashwood and Kaleb ran out to the rescue. Dashwood cleared Susan and Lee from the ring and then tried to celebrate with Wilde. Wilde looked dismissive in accepting Dashwood’s assistance…
The Impact Plus Flashback match of the week was a multi-person X Division match from Rebellion 2019. Even though Eddie Edwards was still Crazy Eddie, he was clean shaven (which I think is an upgrade over his current bearded look. I still wish they go back to the American Wolf Eddie though). Jake Something looked impressive as “Cousin Jake”. Ace Austin ended up winning via a rollup on Petey Williams.
Striker hyped Josh Alexander vs. Ace Austin for the X Division Championship for after the break…[c]
John’s Thoughts: Wilde looked like she hasn’t missed a beat and seems a bit more dominant than her days as the underdog of Impact. Not sure where they want to utilize Wilde? Is she going to replace Jazz and the designated veteran babyface of the roster? Maybe they have bigger plans for her and want to use her in her old role as the plucky babyface of the division? I continue to argue that they have Kiera Hogan on the roster, who reminds me Taylor Wilde from oold TNA days. In fact, I think Kiera has a higer ceiling to do the plucky babyface act better than Wilde did? They did tease a Wilde and Dashwood alliance, but I’m assuming that this leads to Wilde rejecting the offer and challenging Dashwood to a match at the Impact Plus show (which has been a pattern with Dashwood when she tries to recruit other partners).
Gia Miller interviewed Scott D’Amore for a Kenny Omega update. D’Amore noted that this isn’t the first time they’ve had to deal with a difficult-to-deal-with world champion (Tessa Blanchard?). Moose showed up, hyped up his accolades, and wondered why D’Amore was making him go through hoops. D’Amore went into his usual rant mode and yelled at Moose, saying that this should be a piece of cake for Moose. Moose grabbed D’Amore by the collar and tried to intimidate D’Amore.
James Storm showed up and got between Moose and D’Amore. Storm joked about wanting to beat up D’Amore when D’Amore was the coach of Team Canada, but he can’t attack D’Amore anymore because he’s an executive. Storm noted that Moose was facing him in a qualifier match next week. Moose handed Storm bags of fast food as a joke and then walked off. Moose shoved the fast food bags in D’Amore’s chest and said “This is on you”…
Entrances for the X Division title match took place. Striker praised Alexander for defending the championship just four days after he won the title. D’Lo called Ace smart for quickly cashing in his rematch clause…
4. Josh Alexander vs. Ace Austin (w/Madman Fulton) for the Impact X Division Championship. The match started off with chain wrestling, with both men trading momentum. Alexander got a two count after a Northern Lights. Ace got a two count after a bulldog. Ace got another pin attempt after a jackknife. Ace worked on Josh from the rear guard. Ace swipped Josh’s finger webbing with his laminated card. Josh crotched Ace on the top rope during a springboard attempt.
Alexander hit Ace with a spinning Razor’s Edge for a two count. Ace got to the bottom rope when Alexander locked in the ankle lock, but Josh pulled Ace to the center of the ring. Ace escaped the hold and then made Alexander crumple to a knockout kick. Ace got a two count on Alexander. Ace went for an Irish Whip, but Josh got a moment of respite after clocking Ace with a right hand. Ace tackled Josh into the ring post to get a breather himself. Ace and Josh had a nice counter exchange on the apron. Alexander hit Ace with a World’s Strongest Slam on the apron.
Alexander fended off Madman Fulton and sent Fulton into the steel steps. Ace hit Josh with a facebuster stomp. Alexander dodged a Fold attempt. Ace hit Josh with a Disaster kick. Ace hit Josh with a Wisper of the Wind for a nice two count. The commentators noted that Ace might have got the worst of the move. Ace teased a fold, but then tried to hit Josh with Josh’s finisher. Josh powered out. Ace went for a springboard move, but he was caught out of the air by Alexander. Alexander power bombed Ace on Josh’s knee. Josh Alexander made Ace tap out to a grapevined Ankle Lock.
Josh Alexander defeated Ace Austin via submission in 11:15 to retain the Impact X Division Championship.
The camera cut to Don Callis looking nervous and asking Kenny Omega for status updates. Hernandez and Johnny Swinger showed up in the hallway. Callis noted that Swinger owes Callis $20,000 for Callis betting on Omega at Rebellion. Callis asked Swinger if Swinger knows a stooge or someone who can perform an errand for him and how that will help Swinger pay back his debt. Swinger said he knows a guy named “Deano” who may help. Callis asked if Swinger can send his stooge to pick up Omega at the airport and Swinger agreed. After Swinger and Hernandez left, Callis got back on the phone and told Omega that even though someone dumb and stupid may show up, that dumb and stupid person will drive Omega to Skyway Studios…[c]
John’s Thoughts: A great X Division title match. I have to praise Impact Wrestling for building up Josh Alexander as a credible singles wrestler. It almost seemed like Josh was on his way to AEW once his contract expires, but I think it may be more advantageous for him to stick around in Impact where he won’t risk being pigeonhold on AEW Dark (though I still say that AEW is in desperate need of a mat technician like Josh). Ace came out of this match looking really good. I hope he moves on to the title picture and is put into consideration as to a potential Kenny Omega opponent. Random thought, I really liked Ace’s knockout kick and wouldn’t mind him using that as a finisher. That would play into the announcers always touting that Ace has stronger thighs than your average wrestler.
Gia Miller congratulated Jordynne Grace and Rachael Ellering for winning the Women’s Tag Team Titles. Grace talked about Ellering being the missing link to help her finally win the tag titles. Ellering said it’s not just her and Grace is just as much to praise for their title win.
Kiera Hogan and Tasha Steelz interrupted the interview to trash talk the new champs. Tasha called Grace a “fake ass buzz lightyear”. Ellering responded by calling Kiera and Tasha, “Cardi B and C”. Steelz said that her and Keira are cashing in their rematch clause for a match at Under Siege…
Entrances for the next qualifier match took place…
5. Brian Myers vs. “Always Ready” Matt Cardona to qualify for the number one contenders match at Under Siege. Myers and Cardona brawled at ringside before the bell. Once the separation happened, Myers agreed that he was okay and was able to wrestle. Myers ended up tripping up Cardona and putting the boots to Cardona. Myers suplexed Matt’s knee into the steel steps heading into commercial.[c]
Myers had the advantage back from the break. Matt Striker noted that Kenny Omega was still not at the building. Myers worked on Cardona with methodical heel offense. While Brian was slamming Matt’s legs into the ringpost, Cardona pulled Brian into the ringpost. Cardona hit Brian with a single leg missile dropkick and D’Lo noted that he used one leg because of Brian working on Matt’s other leg. Matt went for Chelsea Green’s Hot Mess move, but Myers reversed it into an Edgeucution. After trading counters Myers hit Cardona with a Flatliner. Myers struck the Edge Spear pose and was about to hit Cardona with a Roster Cut, but Cardona countered the move into the Ruff Ryder Leg Lariat for the victory.
Matt Cardona defeated Brian Myers via pinfall in 6:46 of on-air time to qualify for the number one contenders match at Under Siege.
The graphic showed that Matt Cardona joined Chris Bey in the Number One Contenders six way match at Under Siege…
A Violent By Design promo aired where Eric Young talked about how Deaner lost to James Storm on the Before the Impact show. Young said that there was no shame in losing to Storm. Young lost to Storm. Young talked about how they are still trying to elicit violence in Impact. Young said next week The War Machine Rhino will qualify for the six way and will right VBD’s wrongs in losing recent matches. Young continued to hype up his guys by speaking his poetic rhetoric…[c]
John’s Thoughts: A good match and the childhood friends continue to exhibit good in-ring chemistry, but I’m still not high on Cardona continuing to be an anchor to the redefining of the career of the former Curt Hawkins. I thought they should have gone all-in on Myers as opposed to parity booking the former Edge Heads. I guess one plus is that Cardona being in the six way takes him away from feuding with Myers, but at the same time I wouldn’t have minded the redefined Brian Myers being put in the Impact World Title picture.
A hype vignette aired for El Phantasmo aired. The vignette focused on him being from New Japan and being in Bullet Club. The graphic said that El Phantasmo will debut in Impact next week…
Matt Striker and D’Lo Brown checked in from their commentary set. D’Lo said that Kenny Omega has 17 minutes before he gets the title stripped from him per Scott D’Amore’s stipulation. D’Lo also questioned Callis’s decision to trust Johnny Swinger in delivering Omega to Skyway Studios on time. Striker noted that the commentary team will continue to provide Kenny Omega status updates for the rest of the show…
Entrances for the main event match took place. Not sure if this is a qualifier match or not?
6. Sami Callihan vs. Eddie Edwards. Callihan had the early advantage with a suplex. Striker reminded viewers that Eddie and Sami are longterm rivals. Eddie recovered and hit Sami with a suicide dive heading into the commercial break.[c]
Striker noted that Kenny Omega was still not in the building with 5 minutes left in the show. Sami was grinding Eddie’s head into the bottom rope. D’Lo compared Eddie’s hatred to Sami to D’Lo’s hatred for X-Pac when they feuded. Sami worked on Eddie with methodical offense. Eddie recovered and hit Sami with a Frankensteiner. Sami and Eddie traded fighting spirit chops in the center of the ring.
Eddie got a two count off a Blue Thunder Bomb. Sami recovered and was about to go for the Pile Driver on Eddie. Kenny Omega, Doc Gallows, and Karl Anderson ran out and attacked both men for the no-contest.
Eddie Edwards vs. Sami Callihan ended in an apparent no-contest in about 5:40 of on-air time.
The Good Brothers hit both Sami and Eddie with Magic Killers. Dave Finlay and Juice Robinson ran out to attempt to even the odds, but they were cleared from the ring by Omega and the Good Brothers. Don Callis bragged about how Omega and his friends left everyone lying at ringside. Omega told the viewers to enjoy their new world champion.
Kenny Omega’s entrance theme played as the heels exited the ring. Matt Striker closed the show by saying that Impact is in trouble and “Under Siege”. Striker said that Impact needs to fight back…
John’s Thoughts: Not the most climatic of Kenny Omega appearances, but it made sense and set up a presumed multi-man match for down the road. I’m okay with this especially if Omega continues to be a regular fixture on Impact Wrestling’s weekly TV. You don’t want to overexpose the guy, but Impact also offers Omega more character development time via promos and angles, more than he’s offered on Dynamite. Impact Wrestling benefits big time simply by having Omega on their roster while he’s world champion.
This was a really good and focused episode of Impact. I still think it would be better to air these themed shows on TV as opposed to Impact Plus, but at the same time Impact has done a good job with the last few in making them meaningful (Where it hurts is these stacked Impact Plus shows weakens the subsequent PPVs that follow by stretching their matchups thin). There was minimal dumb comedy, minimized to Johnny Swinger having an actually funny exchange with Callis backstage. This show was focused on good wrestling, good stories, and building towards the six way contenders match at Under Siege. Josh Alexander and Ace Austin also delivered in bringing the fire match with good storytelling.