By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Wes Lee: An emotional speech delivered under unfortunate circumstances. Here’s wishing Lee the best with his back surgery, which the broadcast team said will sideline him for eight to twelve months. The angle that followed was nicely done with Dominik Mysterio coming out to taunt Lee for missing their scheduled match only to then be informed by Wes and his father that he will be facing Dragon Lee instead.
Ilja Dragunov and Baron Corbin: The laid back Corbin persona meshes nicely with the super intense Dragunov. They told a nice story with Corbin thinking he got under the skin of Dragunov, only to be thrown for a loop when the NXT Champion hugged him. I’m anxious to see what type of match these two will produce. Corbin’s main roster struggles were due to the bad gimmicks that he’s been saddled with over the years. Corbin can go in the ring and Dragunov is one of those wrestlers who is capable of having a good match with anyone.
Fallon Henley vs. Roxanne Perez vs. Thea Hail vs Kiana James in a Last Chance qualifier for the women’s Iron Survivor Challenge: An enjoyable four-way with a pleasant surprise outcome. Henley has done good character work with whatever she’s been given and she continues to improve in the ring. It’s always good to see hard work rewarded. I also liked the way that Perez and James took one another out of the match to keep their feud going, which eventually led to the announcement of their match at Deadline.
Tyler Bate vs. vs. Carmelo Hayes vs. Eddy Thorpe vs. Joe Coffey in a Last Chance qualifier for the men’s Iron Survivor Challenge: A well worked four-way match with a mild surprise in Bate going over rather than Hayes. It was good to hear Bate abandon the his spiritual guru schtick once he won the match to make it seem like he’ll be a new man at Deadline. The rest of the post match segment was the paint by numbers brief promos from the other ISC entrants followed by a brief and forgettable brawl.
Chad Gable, Otis, and Maxxine Dupri vs. Noam Dar, Oro Mensah, and Lash Legend: This was a Hit the moment that Legend bodyslammed Otis. The rest of the match was solid and it looks like Gable will be getting a rematch with Dar, but Legend had the memorable moment.
Women’s Iron Survivor Challenge summit: A lot of bad acting and a lot of corny lines. Fallon Henley ended this mess on a high note or so it seemed, as then the wrestlers had a needless brawl that ruined the Axiom vs. Nathan Frazer match.
Lola Vice vs. Tatum Paxley: It was cool to see the reinvented Paxley, but not so cool that she lost her first match back. They spotlighted Paxley acting strange after she lost, but why not give her a spotlight win in her return? The actual match falls into the developmental category and was rough in spots.