This week’s edition of Impact Wrestling featured six Knockouts’ tag team action in the main event, along with the kick-off of a tournament to crown a new X-Division Champion.
Impact Wrestling 27/10/22 from Sam’s Town Casino in Las Vegas, NV
The opening video featured highlights from last week’s show where Frankie Kazarian handed in his X-Division Championship, before being assaulted by Steve Maclin. There were also highlights of Heath and Rhino’s Tag Team Championship win over the Kingdom (who have since departed Impact for AEW). This led to Honor No More disintegrating as PCO snapped and took out Vincent.
The show started off with Scott D’Amore backstage being confronted by an angry Matt Taven and Mike Bennett (obviously taped before they left) who complained about last week. Taven said Vincent was in the hospital and Maria is injured after receiving a Gore from Rhyno. Taven said Impact is an unsafe working environment and that’s D’Amore’s fault. D’Amore apologised for Maria being hurt, even though Taven pushed her into Rhino’s path. D’Amore said he won’t put the Kingdom in that position again and Taven was surprised by that. D’Amore asked Taven if he was sure that they never, ever want to be put in that position again. D’Amore shook Taven’s hand and said he’s glad that they agree because they’re fired.
Analysis: That was a simple way to write Taven and Bennett out of Impact since they signed with AEW. Hopefully the creative team are a bit more switched on for the rest of the show.
The regular Impact opening video played and Tom Hannifan welcomed us to the show and discussed the X-Division tournament, whilst reminding us about Alan Angels, who we haven’t seen for a while. Black Taurus defeated Laredo Kid on the YouTube pre-show to advance in the first tournament quarter-final.
Match #1: X-Division Championship Tournament Quarter-Final Match: Alan Angels vs Trey Miguel
Miguel entered first, with the commentators discussing his obsession with the X-Division Championship (he has it tattooed on his leg), followed by Angels. The crowd is firmly behind Trey as they lock up. The lighting in this arena is really poor and it looks like what you might see when WWE does those still frames when they show highlights from their house shows on rare occasions. Angels tries a few quick roll ups early on for a 1 count. Miguel tries to catapult off the ropes but Angels is there to take him off guard with a dropkick, sending him to the outside. Angels tosses Miguel back inside the ring and takes control with a Northern Lights suplex, with a bridge, for a 2 count. Miguel battles back with right hands and whips Angels across the ring. Angels avoids a clothesline and hits a reverse slingblade for another 2 count. Angels is beginning to get frustrated as he tries to lock in a Full Nelson but Miguel gets to the ropes. Angels tries a suplex but Miguel wriggles free and connects barely with an enziguiri. Miguel blocks two corner attacks from Angels and hits a double stomp to the back. Miguel hits double knees in the corner and a big running double knee with a pin for 2. Miguel sets up for the Meteora but Angels dodges it. Miguel climbs to the top rope again but Angels cuts him off and hangs him up in the middle rope. Angels hits a running dropkick and spikes Miguel with a DDT for a close 2 count. Angels puts Miguel on the top turnbuckle, looking for a Superplex. Miguel ducks out of it and hits a superkick with Angels still on the top rope. Miguel hits the Meteora but Angels kicks out at the last second. Angels counters a sidewalk slam attempt and locks in a submission but Miguel rolls over quickly into a pin for 2. Angels hits a half-and-half suplex then nails a huge frog splash for the closest near fall of the match. Angels sets up for a superkick but Miguel ducks and hits a kick to the chin and a Lightning Spiral (swinging neckbreaker) for the win after 9 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Trey Miguel
Analysis: ***1/2 That was a lot of fun and a great way to open the show, even though the result was pretty obvious. Miguel had to dig deep after he couldn’t put Angels away with the Meteora, then Angels almost won with the frog splash but Miguel pulled out the rare Lightning Spiral to move on in the tournament.
Chris Bey and Ace Austin of Bullet Club confront Bully Ray and Tommy Dreamer backstage. Last week someone took out Austin in the carpark before their tag team match and the finger was pointed at Bully Ray. Bully said it wasn’t him and he’s already explained this. Austin is adamant that Bully jumped him in the locker room, but Bully is telling him to his face that he didn’t put his hands on him. Bully asks them to consider that it might have been somebody else- maybe Moose? This fires Bey up and gets in Dreamer’s face, then challenges him to a match. Dreamer is frustrated that Bully keeps getting him into these messes and tells him not to come down to ringside.
Analysis: The mystery attacker angle continues. I don’t need to say it out loud, but we don’t need Dreamer in singles matches in 2022.
VXT and Gisele Shaw are chatting backstage. Shaw is boasting about how great the trio are but Purrazzo tells her not to get ahead of herself, because last week didn’t end so well with Mickie James, Taylor Wilde and Jordynne Grace teaming up to fight off the heels. Green wonders if Mickie’s team loses tonight, then is her career over? Purrazzo said that they need to win tonight and then move on winning back the Tag Team Championships.
Analysis: That’s the main event for tonight. It should be good but probably not worthy of main eventing the show, especially when Matt Cardona fought Alex Shelley. We will see.
Match #2: Tasha Steelz w/Savannah Evans vs Rachelle Scheel
Scheel is already in the ring when Steelz makes her entrance. Steelz kicks Scheel’s face in as soon as the bell rings. Steelz stalks Scheel and hits a cutter. The crowd is chanting “one more time” at the heel wrestler. Steelz leaves the ring and gets a microphone. She complains that management put her in the ring with a jobber. Steelz calls Evans into the ring and she destroys Scheel with a huge clothesline. The referee calls for the DQ. Evans destroys Scheel with a powerbomb in the centre of the ring and Steelz’s music plays.
Winner by disqualification: Rachelle Scheel
Analysis: * Just a squash to ensure that the audience are reminded that the team of Evans and Steelz is still formidable. I agree with Tasha that she should be doing something more meaningful than this, but her feud with Killer Kelly was decent.
Heath and Rhino are backstage with their championships. The Motor City Machine Guns bump into them and congratulate them. Chris Sabin says they’re ready for their shot at the title. Heath says go to management and make it happen. Shelley is happy with that and goes to D’Amore’s office. The Major Players team of Matt Cardona and Brian Myers are already there, about to enter. They’re all arguing about who is next in line and it gets physical. D’Amore comes out and tells them to settle it in the ring. It’s Shelley vs Cardona tonight.
Analysis: That could be great, given decent match time. This sets up the Guns vs the Major Players to crown a #1 contender and I hope Cardona & Myers get the next shot.
Match #3: Chris Bey w/Ace Austin vs Tommy Dreamer w/Bully Ray
Dreamer told Bully not to join him but here he is, accompanying Dreamer to ringside. They come to a stalemate early in the match, then get into a shoving fight. Dreamer avoids a big kick and they talk some trash, then Austin and Bully get up on the apron as we go to a break.
Back to the action, where Bey takes control with a number of kicks to Dreamer’s legs. Bey nails a forearm with Dreamer in the ropes. Dreamer catches Bey in mid-air and connects with a Fallaway slam. Bey takes a breather outside the ring, then comes back in with a kick to the knee and a double stomp to the back of Dreamer. Bey hits a beautiful standing moonsault but Dreamer powers out at 1. Dreamer retreats back to the corner and Bey hits a big running chop to the chest, followed by another. Bey misses a third chop and Dreamer gives him 3 hard chops of his own. Dreamer misses a running clothesline and eats the ring post. Bey hits an armbar takedown and a DDT for 2. Dreamer catches a superkick attempt and nails a cutter for a 2 count. Dreamer climbs to the top but Bey connects with a superkick with Dreamer in mid-air. Dreamer cuts Bey off as he climbs to the top rope. He hits a Superplex but Moose marches down to ringside and gets in Bully’s face, after Bully accused Moose of being the mystery attacker. Back in the ring Bey pokes the eyes of Dreamer, right in front of the referee. Bey then runs the ropes and Moose trips him up, then backs away up the ramp to make it look like Bully did it. Bey gets it Bully’s face, then Dreamer rolls him up for a close 2 count. Dreamer is looking for a Death Valley Driver, but Bey wriggles free and connects with a kick to the midsection. Bey flies through the air and nails the Art of Finesse for the win after 6 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Chris Bey
Analysis: **1/2 That wasn’t too bad and it was cleverly booked with Moose, by continuing to have Bully look like the villain with no actual proof that he did anything. Bey carried the match and I’m thankful he won. I know it’s a taped episode and you don’t want to burn out wrestlers, but I’d much rather watch Moose, Callihan, Maclin, Hendry etc. in action than Dreamer. That being said, this fit the storyline well and did its job.
The Flashback Moment of the Week is from Slammiversary 2013, where it was Bully Ray vs Sting for the World Title, where Bully won which meant Sting could not challenge for the championship again.
Analysis: I wish those crowds existed for Impact in 2022. I liked the Aces & 8s angle and wish it didn’t burn out so quickly.
The Aussie Open tag team cut a pre-taped promo backstage. Kyle Fletcher vowed to get their revenge over the Motor City Machine Guns, after losing a few weeks back. They issued an open challenge for next week.
Analysis: Before the show I actually was wondering where Fletcher and Davis had been. It’s good to see them back and I look forward to seeing them in action next week. I was surprised that they lost to the Guns after only having a few matches in Impact. Hopefully they get some momentum back.
Tommy Dreamer is backstage with Bully Ray, discussing Dreamer’s lost a few minutes ago. Bully has had enough of Dreamer telling him to calm down. Bully said he came back to do things the right way, but it’s not going the way he planned. Dreamer said that everyone saw Bully doing the right thing at ringside and he has to not let Moose get into his head. Bully vows to get even with Moose the next time he sees him.
Analysis: These are short but effective segments. Impact does them well.
Match #4: Matt Cardona w/ Brian Myers vs Alex Shelley w/ Chris Sabin
Cardona is out first and looking confident. It’s great to see him back in action. Shelley is out next but Cardona attacks him before the bell rings. Cardona tosses Shelley to the outside and in the audience the camera pans to a fan wearing a Dudley Boyz tie-dye shirt from the early 2000s. Awesome. Cardona misses a dropkick through the ropes which allows Shelley to take control. Shelley bounces Cardona’s head off the ring apron and chops him around the ringside area. Shelley throws Cardona back into the ring and hits a springboard splash back into the ring for a 2 count. Shelley returns to chopping Cardona’s chest in and then focuses on the left shoulder. Shelley runs the ropes and Myers trips him up, allowing Cardona to hit a dropkick through the ropes to the outside. Cardona then begins the assault around the ringside area and chokes Shelley out in the ropes with his knee. Back in the ring, Cardona hits a neckbreaker but Shelley kicks out. Cardona hits clubbing forearms to the face of Shelley while screaming “You’re nothing” over and over. Cardona chokes Shelley out in the corner until the referee breaks it up. Cardona hits a back suplex for another 2 count. Cardona hits a snapmare into a chin lock and Shelley is grounded in the centre of the ring. He gets to his knees and fights Cardona off but runs into a back elbow. Cardona covers again but only gets a 1 count this time. Cardona has Shelley in the corner and pummels him with forearms. The crowd is booing loudly and chants “Boo, boo, boo” against Cardona’s trademark “Woo, woo, woo” which pisses him off and he misses his kick in the corner. Shelley finally gets back on the offensive with a Flatliner against the middle turnbuckle pad. They both get back to their feet slowly and it turns into a slugfest. Cardona takes over with right hands but Shelley fights back with a flying forearm to take the bigger man down. Myers gets up on the apron for the distraction, but Shelley moves as Cardona goes to splash him in the corner. Shelley with a kick to the back and a Tornado DDT but Myers puts Cardona’s foot on the bottom rope to break the referee’s count. Sabin chases Myers into the ring where the Guns double team him with an Atomic Drop and Sabin hits a dropkick. Sabin exits the ring and the referee is still dealing with Myers, so Cardona rakes the eyes of Shelley and hits Radio Silence but Shelley kicked out! Myers slides his Digital Media Championship in the ring but it goes through Cardona’s legs and Shelley picks it up. The referee takes it off Shelley, so Cardona rolls him up and holds his tights but only gets a 2 count. Cardona then gets the belt and Myers distracts the referee so he can use it, but Shelley wrestles it free and nails a DDT on the championship. Shelley sits on top but Cardona kicks out at 2! Shelley looks for Shell Shocked but they’re too close to the ropes so Myers pulls Cardona out of the ring. Sabin hits a running kick on Myers, but Cardona trips him up on the ring apron. Shelley throws Cardona back into the ring and rolls him up for 2. Cardona kicks out and as Shelley is bouncing off the ropes, Myers nails him with his championship to the skull. Cardona covers and gets the 3 count for the win after 9 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Matt Cardona
Analysis: ***1/2 That was very entertaining, even with all of the shenanigans. It was evenly poised and Cardona couldn’t get the job done legitimately so he and Myers tried lots of cheating which eventually paid off. Another 5 minutes and a bit less interference and it could’ve been a classic.
Post-match Myers attacks Sabin but Rhino’s music hits and the Tag Team Champions Rhino & Heath come down to the ring for the save. They face off with the Major Players and quickly clear the ring.
Analysis: Just a quick run-in to show that Heath and Rhino respect the veteran team of Shelley and Sabin.
Impact World Champion Josh Alexander and Rich Swann are backstage discussing last week’s events, when Gail Kim requests a chat with Alexander. Gail wants to give her opinion on Bully Ray when Steve Maclin attacks Alexander from behind. Security restrains Maclin as Frankie Kazarian breaks up the fight, too. Kazarian tells Alexander he is protecting his title shot and that he’s one man that he can trust. Alexander asks Kaz to team up with him to face Aussie Open next week.
Analysis: It’s the Vinnie Mac booking of teaming the champion and challenger up before the championship match. That should be a terrific match up.
Match #5: Raj Singh w/ Shera vs Joe Hendry
Singh is out to a chorus of boos, whilst the audience is again chanting along to Hendry’s music and Rehwoldt is putting him over ridiculously on the commentary. Hendry takes a mic and sucks up to the Vegas crowd. Hendry says there’s probably someone in the audience that lost it all last night- the house, the kids’ college fund etc. but his wife will forgive him because he got to see Joe Hendry live and it was all worth it. The match then begins and Hendry gets the advantage with a snapmare and then starts singing his theme song. Hendry hits a big stalling suplex. Singh fights back with a back elbow and runs at Hendry who catches him and hits the Trust Fall. Singh hits a pair of knees and a kick to the back of the head of Hendry. Singh trashes the fans but turns around into a big clothesline. Hendry nails the Standing Ovation for the win after 2 minutes.
Analysis: *1/2 Just another quick match to put over Hendry, who is clearly popular with the audience. Good to see him get a little mic time to connect with the audience.
Eric Young and Deaner are backstage discussing their favourite topic: violence. Young says he eliminated Sami Callihan at Bound for Glory and will continue to bring the violence against Callihan next week.
Analysis: Just a short segment to remind us of this rivalry.
Jordynne Grace, Mickie James and Taylor Wilde are shown warming up before the main event. Eddie Edwards is shown being mic’d up for his sit down interview with Gia Miller.
Gia Miller interviews Eddie Edwards
Gia thanks Edwards for joining her and asks where Honor No More stands. Edwards says Honor No More is no more. He says Vincent is in the hospital, the Kingdom has been fired and Kenny King is focusing on the X-Division tournament so at this point there’s nothing left to salvage. Gia asks where he stands with Alisha, now that Honor No More has disbanded. Edwards remarks that that’s their business. He has no regrets with his time during Honor No More. Edwards’ job was to bring honor back to Impact Wrestling but PCO stopped that. He says PCO is no monster, he’s just a little bitch. Edwards left the interview.
Analysis: That was only a short segment and explained that the Honor No More stable is finished. That’s a shame because I don’t think they had done all that they could’ve, but with Taven/Bennett/Maria all going to AEW, they would’ve had to shake it up with new members. I still think the long term booking should’ve been Edwards as World Champion and the group running Impact that way, but it’s not to be. Edwards vs PCO will happen somewhere down the line.
The commentators ran through next week’s line up:
* Before the Impact pre-show: X- Division Championship Tournament Quarter Final: Yuya Uemura vs PJ Black
* X-Division Championship Tournament Quarter Final: Kenny King vs Mike Bailey
* Eric Young vs Sami Callihan
* Aussie Open vs Frankie Kazarian and Josh Alexander
Analysis: That looks like a solid lineup for next week, with a first-time match-up between Young and Callihan that will probably end controversially so they can have another match at Over Drive in a few weeks.
Match #6: VXT (Deonna Purrazzo & Chelsea Green) and Gisele Shaw vs Knockouts Champion Jordynne Grace, Taylor Wilde and Mickie James
VXT is out first and Shaw enters separately before the commercial break. James, Wilde and Grace all enter individually for the face team. Mickie James’ career is on the line in this match, even though it’s a tag team match. The stipulation is in play for any match she is involved in, it seems. It’s James and Shaw starting the match off and Mickie takes Shaw down with a dropkick for an early 1 count. James tags in Wilde and Shaw rolls to her corner and tags in Purrazzo. They lock up in a test of strength which Purrazzo wins and tries a couple of quick nearfall attempts. Wilde connects with an arm drag and then a running elbow to Purrazzo in the corner. Grace tags in and clotheslines Purrazzo hard for a 1 count. She drives Purrazzo back into the corner and Wilde tags back in. Wilde hits an athletic running arm drag off the ropes, and Purrazzo flies across the ring so Green tags herself in. Green pokes Wilde in the eye and tags Purrazzo back in. She runs in to a head scissors and Wilde hits a hard running kick for 2. Green is able to tag in and VXT try for a double team but Wilde counters and flips them both down. Wilde hits a backbreaker on Green but Shaw breaks up the pin. All 6 competitors then face off in the ring as we go to another commercial break.
Grace and Green are the legal competitors as the action returns. Grace tags Wilde in and they hit a double elbow on Green for a 2 count. Wilde tries for a suplex but Green slips out the back and hits a dropkick for a 2 count. Green mounts Wilde and nails a series of right hands. She tags Purrazzo who chops away at Wilde then bounces her head off the turnbuckle pad. Shaw is back in now and hits a big boot on Wilde for 2. Wilde fights back with a jawbreaker and dives across the ring to tag in Mickie James. Mickie is on fire and takes out Green and Purrazzo on the ring apron. She hits a snapmare on Shaw and runs the ropes but Purrazzo trips her up, allowing Shaw to hit a superkick. Shaw covers and gets 2. Shaw pummels James with right hands and tags Purrazzo back in. Purrazzo stomps away at James and then distracts the referee so Green can choke Mickie out in the corner. Purrazzo tags Green who pins Mickie but only gets a 2 count. Green bounces James’ head off the turnbuckle pad and tags in Shaw who hits a series of running uppercuts. Shaw gets another 2 count and then grabs the referee so Green can get another cheap shot on James. Shaw covers but James kicks out at 1 so Shaw tries a headlock. Shaw slams James down by her hair and tries to cover again but James gets out at 1 again. Shaw grounds Mickie with a chin lock on the mat. Mickie slowly gets to her feet but Shaw cuts her down with a knee to the ribs. Shaw runs at James but is met with a neckbreaker. Mickie finally makes the tag to Grace and Shaw reaches Purrazzo. Grace catches Purrazzo with a spinebuster but she kicks out at 2. Grace is going for the Grace Driver but Green sneaks in with a facebuster. Wilde is in now and she connects with a back suplex. Shaw joins the action with a spinning kick to Wilde, then James hits a Mick Kick on Shaw. Purrazzo takes James down with a kick and Grace nails Purrazzo with a front-facing suplex. James flies through the air and nails a Thesz Press off the top for a 2 count. James measures Purrazzo for the MickDT but Purrazzo rams her into the corner and tags Green back in. Purrazzo holds James up and Green connects with the Blockbuster double team move. Green covers but Wilde and Grace both break up the pin. Shaw sends them both out of the ring and now all the heels are alone with Mickie. Shaw gets the Knockouts Championship but Grace nails her from behind. Back in the ring and VXT line Mickie up for a double suplex. Wilde runs in and reverses it into a DDT for Mickie and she covers Green for the pinfall win after 14 minutes.
Analysis: ***1/2 A very entertaining main event with a feel-good win for the faces to continue the Mickie James story. There was plenty of action to cover and everyone had their moments to shine. Wilde continues to look strong in her return to Impact and the last few minutes where Shaw interacted with Grace and the title might signal that she is the next challenger, which would be fine. I have enjoyed the Mickie James retirement angle and I think Green might give her one last match before she leaves Impact which you can read about here.
— IMPACT (@IMPACTWRESTLING) October 28, 2022
Final Rating: 6/10
Tonight’s show was a bit of a mixed bag. 2 squash matches, a couple of matches that got almost 10 minutes, a lengthy main event and lots of little segments throughout the show. There was nothing that really stood out and perhaps they tried to squeeze too much in as a few of the backstage segments felt rushed. Eddie Edwards telling us that his group, that has dominated Impact over the last year, is finished in a backstage interview that went only a few minutes felt like a bit of a letdown. Also, 6 matches in a 2-hour show sounds good, but I’m sure we would all rather see 3 or 4 matches get decent match lengths, like WWE Raw has been doing of late to cover their 3-hour show better. I enjoyed some of the storyline progression this week. They continue to push the Bully Ray/mystery attacker angle which is a way that Bully can engage with some wrestlers that he didn’t in his last run, like Bullet Club over the last 2 weeks. Losing the Kingdom and the Good Brothers hurt the tag team division, but the Major Players and Motor City Machine Guns have been injected back into the scene so that continues to give the titles some decent challengers. We also saw that Aussie Open are still around and they’ll be back in action next week. It was still an enjoyable show but I think they pushed too much this week.