By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Impact Wrestling Hits
Gauntlet For The Gold for an Impact World Championship shot at Slammiversary: I enjoyed the beginning and later portion of the match. They lost me a bit in the middle with the comedy and the weekly “must spotlight Bhupinder Gujjar on the show” segment. Yes, the Royal Rumble has its share of comedy characters and wrestlers whose won/loss records shouldn’t have them in contention for a title shot at WrestleMania. I was hoping that Impact would take a more serious approach rather than emulate WWE. And I can’t say that Eric Young becoming No. 1 contender does much for me. I’m sure he and Josh Alexander will have a hell of a match, but it feels like more of an Impact Plus main event than a pay-per-view main event. Sure, it’s an anniversary show and Young is an Impact original, but I don’t know if there’s anything the company can do between now and the pay-per-view to actually sell me on the possibility that he wins the championship. Overall, though, there was more good than bad and they did a nice job with the presentation. Perhaps next year they would be wise to start hyping the Gauntlet For The Gold weeks in advance with the hopes of it leading to a surge in viewership.
Josh Alexander and Tomohiro Ishii vs. Jay White and El Phantasmo: A good tag team match with a safe finish. Ishii got a bounce back win after losing to Alexander at Under Siege, but he beat Phantasmo, a fellow New Japan Pro Wrestling regular who only makes occasional appearances for Impact.
Impact Wrestling Misses
Madison Rayne and Tenille Dashwood vs. Gisele Shaw and Alisha Edwards for the Knockouts Tag Titles: The match was fine. The Miss is more about the Knockouts Tag Division being in a bad place. Shaw and Edwards were just thrown together as a team and given a title shot out of the blue. There was no reason to view them as threats to win the title.
Gail Kim announces the first Queen of the Mountain match for Slammiversary: We’ve seen some great firsts for women in pro wrestling in recent years, but this just doesn’t qualify. The King of the Mountain match has always been a hot mess. On the bright side, there’s some great talent in the Queen of the Mountain match, so hopefully they can do more with this oddball concept match than the man have over the years.