By John Moore, ProWrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)
Impact Wrestling TV
Taped in Dallas, Texas at The Factory
Aired September 1, 2022 on AXS TV
Highlights from last week’s Impact Wrestling show aired…
Tom Hannifan and Matthew Rehwoldt were on commentary. Dave Penzer was the ring announcer…
1. “The Good Brothers” Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson vs. “Honor No More” Mike Bennett and Matt Taven for the Impact Tag Team Championships. Bennett and Anderson started the match by throwing Japanese Strong Style forearms at each other. Gallows and Taven ran in and traded punches. HNM managed to toss and tackle Anderson in the corner. Gallows hit HNM with a double lariat. Gallows dumped Taven to ringside. Gallows and Anderson traded tags to work on Bennett with methodical offense.
Bennett fended off the Good Brothers with kicks and punches. Taven tagged in and hit Anderson with a hook kick. Taven followed up with a enzuigiri on Gallows. Taven hit Anderson with a swinging neckbreaker for a two count. Hannifan noted that Taven is a former Ring of Honor World Champion. Taven and Bennett cut the ring in half on Anderson. This advantage lasted a few minutes. Anderson got a window of opportunity after hitting Bennett with a Ushigoroshi. Gallows and Taven tagged in wtih Gallows cleaning house. Gallows hit Taven with a flying shoulder tackle and Pumphandle side slam.
Anderson tagged in. Bennett prevented the Good Brothers from hitting Taven with a Magic Killer. Taven hit Gallows with a springboard kick. Anderson dumped Bennett to ringside and planted Taven with a spinebuster. The Good Brothers hit Taven with a double team Neckbreaker suplex. Bennett broke up Anderson’s pin. Anderson went high risk, but Bennett crotched him on the top rope. Bennett and Taven hit Anderson with The Proton Pack. Taven pinned Anderson for the victory.
Honor No More defeated The Good Brothers via pinfall in 8:14 to become the new Impact Tag Team Champions.
Maria hugged Bennett and Taven after the match…
John’s Thoughts: Good match especially down the stretch. The outcome seemed like a foregone conclusion because the Good Brothers’ contracts have been up for a while and it was only a matter of time before they passed the titles over, most notably with Anderson working more singles matches in Japan. As good as the match was, I’m still not sold yet on anything Honor No More or Bullet Club does because both factions have been pretty uninteresting for a while. It’s tough to take Bennett and Taven seriously because they lose so much, complete with their interference always backfiring. Well, I guess mission accomplished with taking the titles off the team that’s leaving (speaking of which, do they have Honor No More locked down contractually?). Here’s hoping they push Taven and Bennett properly moving forward along with giving Bennett, in particular, mic time. I hope HNM doesn’t become a cannon fodder gauntlet to Josh Alexander given Eddie going for the world title.
A Killer Kelly promo vignette aired. Kelly asked if you ever get that feeling that someone is watching you? Kelly said that she’s the person watching. She said she’s a people person and she never gets tired of watching people. She said while Tasha Steelz talks a lot, Tasha doesn’t listen to what other people have to say. Kelly said by observing Tasha, she’s starting to understand how Tasha ticks. She said she’s not doing this to play, but rather she likes watching Tasha watch Kelly. Kelly said it was time to play…[c]
A Bound for Glory ad aired…
Highlights from the last match aired. The rest of Honor No More cheered on Taven and Bennett for winning the Tag Titles (PCO was doing his usual thing of staring around confused). Eddie Edwards said that The Kingdom (Taven and Bennett’s tag team name) are finally reaping the rewards of joining the right side in the war. Eddie said he never doubted Taven and Bennett, but he does doubt PCO. Eddie said they consistantly have to worry about him.
Vincent got in between Eddie and PCO and said that some people just don’t understand PCO. Vincent said he’ll take care of PCO and Eddie should worry about the world title. Kenny King said it’s a time to celebrate because this is the first time since they joined Impact that they can celebrate. Kenny said that Eddie will be world champion while Kenny is going to become a 3 time X Division Champion later on in the show. Maria Kanellis said she hates Scott D’Amore for banning her during the tag title match, but he didn’t say anything about her not being able to join Kenny king during the X Title match. Eddie hugged Bennett and Taven at the end of the segment…
Tom Hannifan and Matthew Rehwoldt checked in from ringside, where they ran through upcoming segments. They also hyped Bound for Glory…
Entrances for the next match took place…
2. “Speedball” Mike Bailey vs. Kenny King (w/Maria Kanellis) for the Impact X Division Championship. King landed methodical strikes on Bailey early on. King hit Bailey with a power slam for a two count. Hannifan noted that King beat Rob Van Dam to win his first X Division Championship. Bailey fended off King with a boot and huracanrana. Bailey hit king with a mid kick. King avoided a chambered kick. Bailey choped King at ringside. King came back with an eye poke and headbutt.
Bailey fought back with rapid fire kicks. King gave Bailey a forearm and followed up with an Exploder Suplex on the apron.[c]
King worked on Bailey with methodical offense and dominated for a stretch of the match. Bailey turned the tide a bit with a top rope front dropkick. King came back wit ha sweep kick. Bailey hit King with an axe kick combo and Standing Red Arrow for a two count. Bailey managed to hit King with a delayed chambered kick. King blocked Bailey’s tornado kick by pulling the ref in front of him. King then accidentally gives the referee a crescent kick. REF BUMP!!! Bailey hesitated when going for Ultima Weapon, leading to King low blowing him on the top rope.
King went for the pin, but the referee was bumped. King gave Bailey a Buzzsaw Kick after another referee ran out. Bailey kicked out at two. Bailey gave King a superkick. King used a palm strike to keep Bailey off the top rope. Bailey went for a sunset flip, but King sat down to put Bailey in a pin position. Maria held on to King’s arms for leverage for the pinfall. King picked up the win.
Kenny King defeated Mike Bailey via pinfall in 7:38 of on-air time to become the new Impact X Division Champion. [Decision nullified]
Edwards, Taven, and Bennett ran out to celebrate with Kenny King. The original referee had a meeting with the substitute referee and Dave Penzer. Penzer announced that the original referee overturned the decision and the match will continue with the title not changing hands. Penzer also announced that Honor No More are barred from ringside. Honor No More threw a fit at ringside and the referee took away the X Title from King…
3. “Speedball” Mike Bailey vs. Kenny King for the Impact X Division Championship. King assured Eddie and Honor No More that he had this under control. Bailey hit King with Triangle Moonsault. Bailey hit King with a Tornado Kick. King reversed Bailey’s Ultima Weapon with a high knee. Bailey reversed the Royal Flush into a headscissors rollup for the victory.
Mike Bailey defeated Kenny King via pinfall in 0:56 after the match reset to retain the Impact X Division Championship.
John’s Thoughts: Great match as usual with Mike Bailey, especially the portion after the match reset with Kenny King showing a bit of life. Given that we’ve seen in the past that the referee’s call is final, even if they miss the rope break, I would have gone with Kenny King winning here just to push Honor No More’s momentum in a positive direction. In a real life sense, Impact creative seems to be allergic to giving momentum to Honor No More. That aside, the false finish was done really well here nonetheless. I really like that Mike Bailey is being presented as the workhorse champion in Impact and that stands out given that Josh Alexander is also a workhorse.
Brian Myers met up with Scott D’Amore backstage, who looked to be running the show in a storage room. Myers said D’Amore needs to get his stolen belt back from Bhupinder Gujjar. D’Amore did his usual thing where he mocks the heel up in his face, while being sarcastic. Myers said he’s going to get the belt pack himself. Right when he turned around he walked into a punch by Bhupinder. Bhupinder laid the Digital Media belt on the fallen Myers…[c]
Jessicka, Taya Valkyire, and Rosemary were hanging out in the backstage bar drinking Mimosas. Jessicka said she proved that she’s finally ready and good to go. Jessicka said that with Deonna distracted in a singles match later in this show and now is the time to strike the Knockout’s tag champion. Rosemary continued to argue that Jessicka is still a distraction to their team. Rosemary said she’s still not convinced that Jessicka is ready. Taya proposed that Jessicka join Taya at ringside next week to see if she’s still a distraction. Rosemary agreed. The three women toasted their Mimosas…
This week’s Impact Plus Flashback Match of the week. The match was Sami Callihan vs. Brian Cage in a Cage Match from an episode of Impact in 2019. Sami pinned Cage to win the world title…
Gia Miller interviewed the Aussie Open duo of Kyle Fletcher and Mark Davis. Fletcher talked about dominating tag team divisions all over the world. He said they’re coming after the Impact tag titles. Fletcher said that they going to start that path by beating Ace Austin and Chris Bey. Gia Miller took the camera person to watch Moose and Steve Maclin arguing at a different part of the arena about their upcoming barbed wire match. Maclin proposed that they stay on the same page and take out Sami Callihan. Gia tried to interview Moose, but Moose walked pass her…
Eric Young was talking with Joe Doering and Deaner. Young talked about how Doring is going to have to leave for now to walk his own path and he hopes their paths will cross again once Doering is finished with business. Doering fist bumped Deaner and Young and said “you know it!”. Eric Young said he’s also leaving, and if Deaner chooses to follow, that’s up to Deaner…
John’s Thoughts: Of course, this segment was meant to write Joe Doering out while he goes to fight a battle with brain cancer. Prayers out to Doering, his family, and friends, and here’s hoping he fights through his successfully.
Mickie James made her entrance for her advertised career announcement. Mickie said she promised not to get emotional, but that’s probably a promise she can’t keep. Mickie thanked the fans and D’Amore for this moment. Mickie talked about starting wrestling 24 years ago in the back of a Jujitsu and Boxing arena. She said she’s bleed and breathed for this business that she loves so so much. She said this year has been a journey the last few years.
She said she had to sit by her sister’s deathbed. She said six months after that she was released from WWE made to feel like garbage after they handed her a literal garbage bag. Mickie started sobbing. She said negative thoughts of people calling her fat, washed up, or too old started to rush back in her mind. Mickie said the fans reminded, inspired, and empowered her to just say “god dammit, you’re Mickie James”. Mickie paused to soak in the cheers. Mickie said Impact was the true first place that empowered a young Alexis Laree (her real name).
Mickie said her recent run in Impact was one of the best runs of her career when she beat Deonna Purrazzo for the Knockouts title and being able to main event in Impact in a Texas Death Match. Mickie talked about recently being on a career slide, losing the title to Tasha Steelz, having her friend Chelsea turn on her and beat her. Mickie said those negative emotions all started flooding back, complete with the thoughts of not being able to hand with the current generation of women wrestlers.
Mickie said she went home and broke up with the longest love of her life, Pro Wrestling (phew, I was afraid for Nick Aldis for a sec). Mickie said she went to her husband and son and did some soul searching. She said she wanted to know what she has to do next. She said she wanted to open more opportunities and help women be seen as equals to men in wrestling. She said you look at the Knockouts locker room and you see the best women’s division in the world. She said she’s grateful for the locker room.
She said she told herself that if there’s a point where she can’t hang, then she should leave. She said she wants to go out at her best. The crowd chanted “You’re the greatest”. She said she needs to find out if she’s great, and she’s not retiring. She said she’s not asking for a Knockouts title shot, but she’s asking for a chance to get a title shot. She said she’s laying out open challenges to the roster and she’ll keep beating women until she gets to the Knockouts title.
Mickie said the only catch is that the next match she loses, will be it. The last rodeo. She said she’s not sure if the ride is long or short, but it’s going to be a hell of a ride. She said the end will either be the championship or her going home for good…
John’s Thoughts: An amazing and emotional promo from Mickie. Going into the show, I didn’t think it was going to be a retirement angle, because they did plant the seeds of it being a story a month or so ago when she walked out of the building after a loss. Mickie provided a lot of unknown context that dragged this into reality. Like Mickie, I’m so ready for this ride she’s going on. This is just like Ric Flair’s (1st) retirement run a few years ago and those “Career Threatening” matches were sooooo compelling, especially the ones where they’re against protected opponents (as a fan, I wouldn’t wanna see Mickie face Masha Slammovich, for example). Good stuff, and it sets up for a good retirement run.
Gia Miller interviewed Josh Alexander on a bar couch and asked for his reaction to Mickie’s speech. Josh said Mickie always comes up in the discussion for greatest Impact Knockout of all time. Josh said Mickie is one of the best wrestlers, man or woman. Gia then talked about Eddie Edwards coming after Alexander’s title. Josh said Eddie earned it. Josh said he’s shockingly never had a singles match against Eddie Edwards (That is kinda shocking, because everyone wrestles Eddie when they show up in Impact). Josh said Eddie was the heart and soul of Impact at one point, but that’s Josh now.
Gia talked about Eddie trying to get Josh to align with Honor No More and their war against the industry. Josh said Eddie’s convincing is just a waste of time. Josh said there’s no one more vocal about his gratefulness than him. Josh said there’s no way he’s spitting in the face of the company that did so much for him. Eddie Edwards showed up and sat with Josh on the couch, saying he’s just here to talk. Gia left. Eddie said he actually respects Josh’s loyalty to the company. Eddie said when someone is loyal to something that doesn’t return that loyalty, that makes you a chump and everybody sees that but Josh.
Eddie said that Impact knew that Heath was going to attack him last week and Heath cut off Josh before Josh could respond to Eddie’s offer. One queue, Heath ran in and pummeled Eddie with punches. Tommy Dreamer and D’Lo Brown dragged Heath away…[c]
John’s Thoughts: Oh look. A Tommy Dreamer sighting. I guess things have cooled down since his weird comments on the Ric Flair plane ride documentary.
Dreamer and Lance Storm were trying to calm down Heath. Scott D’Amore told Dreamer and Storm that he’s got this and that they can head back to the office. D’Amore told Heath that he totally supports him sneak attacking Honor No More because of what they did to family like Rhyno. D’Amore said the problem now is that he can’t have Heath constantly attacking the man in the world title match at Bound For Glory.
D’Amore said they can handle it in the ring next week where Heath can fight Eddie in a match. Heath thanked D’Amore for the match. Heath left and walked to Josh, telling Josh that he totally didn’t any disrespect towards Josh and that Eddie was all BS. Josh said it’s not all BS, because it’s true that Heath cut him off last week. Heath wanted to talk more, but Josh walked away…
John’s Thoughts: It’s still a tough hill to climb to get us to care about Eddie Edwards as a threat to the world title, and I still don’t think they’ll be able to between now and early October, but I respect them attempting to try to make us care. What I actually like about this is they are trying to slow burn a story. The story isn’t that intriguing, because Honor No More have been buried as a stable of chumps. Why would Josh want to join a bunch of bumbling chumps?
Entrances for the next match took place. Mascara Dorada is also known as Gran Metalik from WWE and CMLL. Hannfan noted that Dorada has won titles in WWE and CMLL. Hannifan noted that the winner will be next in line for a X title shot..
4. Alex Zayne vs. Mascara Dorada. Dorada and Zayne started the match with a cruiserweight stalemate sequence. Dorada hit Zayne with a huracanrana. Zayne dodged a dive and hit Dorada with a huracanrana at ringside. Zayne and Dorada traded chops, with Zayne having the upper hand. Zayne hit Dorada with a backbreaker. Zayne hit Dorada with a draping Liger kick. Rehwoldt noted that Zayne was more deliberate and methodical than usual.[c]
Dorada blocked a Superplex and hit Zayne with his signature tightrope crossbodies. Dorada was dumped to ringside. Dorada hit Zayne with a tightrope flip dive. Tom Hannifan joked that the arena feels like a real “House Party” (Because the guy in the ring is a part of the old Lucha House Party faction). Dorada hit Zayne with a nice tightrope Swanton Bomb for the two count. Both men dodged moves.
Zayne hit Dorada with a nice flip Frankensteiner. Zayne hit Dorada with the Baja Blast (face driver) for a two count. Zayne hit Dorada with a handstand kick. Dorada avoided a cinnamon twist and hit Zayne with the Dorada Driver for the win.
Mascara Dorada defeated Alex Zayne via pinfall in 8:08 of on-air time.
Jordynne Grace met Mickie James on the couch backstage. Grace said she’s so glad that Mickie isn’t calling it quits. Grace said she’s totally ok with giving Mickie a title shot right now, but she knows Mickie wants to fight from the bottom of the ladder on up. Grace said whenever Mickie gets to the top, she’s looking forward to it. She said she has to find her opponent for Bound for Glory soon…[c]
John’s Thoughts: Fun match between two of the former mainstays on 205 Live (Zayne had a bit of a run by the end of the show). I really liked Zayne changing it up and being a bit more methodical as a good contrast to Dorada’s innovative tightrope offense. I’ve seen better from Dorada, but that’s just because I reviewed a ton of Dorada matches. What I’m super hyped for is Dorada vs. Bailey. The tightrope-lucha offense would be good to see go against Bailey’s Tae Kwon Do.
A highlight package aired, saying that New Japan’s Yuya Uemura will make his Impact debut next week…
Tom Hannifan and Matthew Rehwoldt checked in from the commentary table. Rehwoldt said he was super hyped for Uemura making his Impact debut and that Uemura has the potential to be a future ace of New Japan. Hannifan plugged Impact Plus’s Victory Road show which currently only has Moose vs. Maclin vs. Callihan in a Barbed Wire match advertised. The following segments were advertised for next week: Aussie Open vs. Bey and Ace, Taya Valkyrie vs. Chelsea Green, and Eddie Edwards vs. Heath. Rehwoldt hyped up replays from this year’s G1 on the New Japan AXS show…
Entrances for the next match took place…
5. Masha Slammovich vs. Deonna Purrazzo (w/Chelsea Green) in a number one contender’s match for the Impact Knockouts Title. Masha and Deonna started off at a stalemate during the collar and elbow. Masha got Deonna in the corner with chops. Deonna came back with a chop and huracanrana. Masha gave Deonna snapmares by the hair. Deonna quickly rolled away to escape a snow plow attempt. Purrazzo tried to walk away, but was dragged by Masha back to the ring. Deonna dropped Masha off the apron when Green held Masha’s leg.[c]
Deonna worked on Masha with methodical offense. Deonna gave Masha a suplex at ringside during the break. Masha hit Deonna with a slingshot wrecking ball kick. Both women traded several rollups. Deonna gave Masha a front kick. Deonna hit Masha with a standing Moonsault for a two count. Masha kept a low base to block a suplex. Masha got a two count off a backslide. Masha hit Deonna with a big boot and corner knee. Masha hit Deonna with a Yakuza Kick and rolling heel kick for a two count.
Masha and Deonna traded strong style forearms on their knees. Masha pummeled Deonna with headbutts. Deonna kept a low base to block a Snow Plow. Deonna hit Masha with a Russian Legsweep into a Fujiwara Armbar. Green tried to pull the ropes away, but Masha made it to the bottom rope. Masha choked Deonna on the rope a bit. Deonna dodged a Yakuza Kick and tossed Masha into the ringpost. Deonna hit Masha with chained German Suplexes.
Masha blocked a Gotch Driver and hit Deonna with an Air Raid Crash into the turnbuckle. Deonna kicked out at two. Deonna hit Masha with a Pile Driver off the distraction from Green. Masha kicked out of Deonna’s finisher at two. Masha blocked a kick and armbar. Masha hit Deonna with a spinning back fist. Masha knocked Green off the apron with a big boot. Masha hit Purrazzo with a Snow Plow for the win.
Masha Slammovich defeated Deonna Purrazzo via pinfall in 12:50 of on-air time to become number one contender to the Knockouts Title.
Jordynne Grace made her entrance and handed Masha a picture of Masha with an X on it (Masha’s usual calling card). Masha and Grace faced off to close the show…
John’s Thoughts: A very compelling match that was made compelling by the stellar build of Masha and Impact Wrestling’s buzzsaw. If it were my decision, I would have had Deonna lose in 5 minutes while hitting her finishers and whatnot, but I’m also ok with Impact protecting one of their top women (Because there has to be someday when Masha has to wrestle longer matches regularly). They also framed this as a two-on-one situation with Masha fending off both Purrazzo and Green. There’s no way Jordynne Grace is leaving Bound for Glory with the Knockouts Title right? Impact can’t screw up all the equity they built up with Masha.
Impact puts on yet another enjoyable show. AEW has a lot of stars, but I wish those stars were utilized in a company like this where they pace out storylines and logical booking (Don’t get me wrong, I love AEW dynamite, but the recent months of shows have been very scattered and hectic). Not to mention, top to bottom, you can argue that Impact has the best women’s division in all of wrestling. Look at tonight where the women main evented. Look at what they did with Mickie. Look at what they did with Killer Kelly. Look at Jessicka, Taya, and Rosemary. Women draw. I also like how they aren’t just throwing it in your face too like WWE does sometimes. Like they did when they were pushing Tessa Blanchard on top. No joke, there’s a part of me that wants to see Tony Khan roll up a truck of cash to Scott D’Amore to hire him to be head of creative (while also bringing along Lance Storm for Quality Assurance, because I see him as someone who doesn’t like the stupid stuff in pro wrestling).
Purrazzo has a bigger gut than I do. Maybe they should change her name to “Killer Belly.”
“Mickie said Impact was the true first place that empowered a young Alexis Laree (her real name).”
No, her real name is Mickie Laree James. Alexis Laree was her wrestling name.