Date: June 1, 2017
Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Josh Matthews, D’Angelo Dinero
We’re about a month away from Slammiversary 2017 and that means we need to really build up the card. While a lot of it is likely going to be set up during the upcoming India shows, we have a main event already set as Ethan Carter III will challenge Lashley for the World Title in a match that I’m sure won’t be changed. Let’s get to it.
We open with a long recap of last week, including Scott Steiner returning to join Josh Matthews against JB and Joseph Park at Slammiversary and Carter becoming #1 contender.
Here’s Ethan Carter III with a barbershop quartet (in snappy hats) plus a violinist and bass player to sing his theme song. They also sing that he’s the #1 contender, which nobody can deny. Ethan talks about getting ready for the biggest fight of his life before having the group sing a goodbye song to Lashley.
Cue Alberto El Patron but before that can go anywhere, Karen Jarrett, Bruce Prichard and Dutch Mantel, flanked by Tyrus, cut them off. Bruce says it’s not going to happen this way so he makes El Patron vs. Carter tonight for the GFW Title and the shot at Lashley inside a cage. The other three never said a word and really didn’t need to be there.
The show heads to India next week.
Grand Championship: Moose vs. Eli Drake
Moose is defending and Drake has Chris Adonis with him. Mantel, Prichard and Scott D’Amore are guest judges here for no apparent reason. The champ kicks him in the face at the bell and tosses Drake into the corner with ease. Drake starts in on the knee and works it over before grabbing a Figure Four to take us to the end of the first round.
Eli wins round 1 and goes right after the knee again to start the second. Josh completely ignores the match to talk about the upcoming tag match at Slammiversary. The leg is wrapped around the post but Moose pulls Drake into it as the announcers bicker about commentary. Back in and Moose dropkicks him off the top to set up a backsplash and moonsault. The knee is too banged up for the cover though and round 2 ends as we take a break.
Back with Moose being announced as the winner, sending Adonis over to yell at the judges. They slug it out at the bell for round 3 with Moose getting the better of it and hitting his chokebomb for two. Drake comes back with some kind of a throw for two of his own. Moose slugs him right back drop but Adonis grabs the foot, allowing Moose to hit whatever he calls White Noise as the clock expires at 9:00. Moose retains via split decision.
Rating: C+. Same as always: it’s a fine match that really doesn’t need the rounds and doesn’t need the nine minute time limit. As usual Drake continues to look better in the ring almost every time but he needs to actually win something of note. Moose is being built into something interesting and when someone finally takes the title off of him, it might actually be a big deal.
We look back at Rosemary saving Allie.
Allie isn’t sure why Rosemary helped her but Rosemary comes up to freak her out even more. Rosemary says she heard something crying out and she knew Allie needed protection.
Impact will hold a house show on August 5 in Staten Island. I’ll believe it when the opening bell rings.
Matt Sydal talks about tonight’s X-Division Title match with Low Ki defending against Andrew Everett.
Swoggle is in the front row.
Allie vs. Amber Nova
Nova is billed from the Garage (Gradge?) and wears a rather small outfit. Allie shoves her away to start but eats a knee in the corner. The comeback doesn’t take long as Allie starts overcoming her self confidence issues and hits some clotheslines. A lot of shouting sets up a running Death Valley Driver to pin Nova at 3:34. Allie hugs everyone, which totally isn’t a Bayley knockoff in the slightest.
Rating: D+. Allie as TNA’s version of Bayley is fine as she’s certainly popular with the crowd and it’s nice to have her actually win something for a change. It would be nice to have her win a blowoff match against Laurel Van Ness to FINALLY end the story but odds are this gets dragged out even further for some reason. Nova wasn’t bad but you can only see so much out of a three and a half minute match.
Joseph Park and JB arrive in a golf cart.
GFW Tag Team Titles: LAX vs. Veterans of War
Tournament final with LAX’s Impact Tag Team Titles not on the line and no disqualifications. The rest of LAX comes in to help with an early beatdown (makes sense) but leaves after only a few seconds. Wilcox shrugs Ortiz off and brings in Mayweather for a big hiptoss as LAX takes a breather on the floor. Santana sneaks in from behind to clip Mayweather’s knee though and LAX takes over for the first time.
The beating begins in the corner with Ortiz stomping away and Mayweather taking out the knee for more of the same. Mayweather finally comes back with a Downward Spiral to get a breather The hot tag brings in Wilcox to clean house with the heavy clotheslines. Everything breaks down and Konnan hits Mayweather in the knee with a bat, allowing Homicide to blasts Wilcox in the back with a title belt. The Street Sweeper gives LAX the titles at 6:56.
Rating: D+. NOW UNIFY THE THINGS AND NEVER MENTION THE GFW TITLES AGAIN! That being said, this was a big disappointment as the VOW have already lost a match which is likely setting up a rematch at Slammiversary. I mean, it would have made sense to have them both have a title and unify them at the pay per view but this company has far bigger problems than that.
Park and JB have a really lame psych up segment and Park says it’s time to train. JB: “Have you lost your d*** mind?”
X-Division Title: Low Ki vs. Andrew Everett
Low Ki is defending and Sonjay Dutt is on commentary. The champ is in a suit to continue an idea whose origins probably don’t remember in the first place (yes I know what it is). They trade kicks to start with Low Ki getting the better of it and headbutting Everett into the corner. Everett is sent outside and Low Ki yells at Dutt as we take a break. Back with Low Ki in control and pulling Everett off the middle rope for two. We hit an abdominal stretch but Everett slips out and kicks him away.
A bad looking hurricanrana sends Low Ki into the middle turnbuckle, followed by a running shooting star for two. Everett goes for a springboard but completely botches it (calling Maffew, come in Maffew), landing about four feet away and giving Low Ki two off the crash. Andrew shoves him off the top and tries the shooting star, only to have it land on knees. The running dropkick into the corner sets up the Warrior’s Way to retain the title at 13:45.
Rating: C. The botch aside, this wasn’t the worst match in the world but they might as well have held up a big sign counting down to the start of Dutt vs. Low Ki for the title. That’s not a bad thing but it made this match seem a bit like a waste of time. Everett seemed primed and ready to win the title but somehow we’ve moved on to two guys from the original days of Impact for reasons I don’t want to fathom.
Low Ki yells at Dutt.
Lashley wants to make Impact great.
Spud jumps Swoggle and beats on his knee with a hammer. Josh: “WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS???” I’m not sure why I’m so amazed every time Josh asks these stupid questions but it happens every time. Swoggle’s eye is busted and the fans call Spud a stupid idiot.
GFW Title: Alberto El Patron vs. Ethan Carter III
Patron is defending inside a cage and the winner faces Lashley at Slammiversary. Alberto starts kicking away (common trend tonight) but gets sent into the cage. A DDT gets Alberto out of trouble but Carter is right there to cut off an escape attempt. One heck of a Samoan drop off the cage plants Alberto and we take a break.
Back with Carter hitting a charge in the corner, only to get caught in a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. A sitout electric chair faceplant gives Carter two but Alberto is up with a middle rope Backstabber to pull him off the corner. Alberto starts in on the arm with a Codebreaker and the cross armbreaker goes on in the middle of the ring.
Carter gets out again and the TK3 gets two more. A Batista Bomb lets Carter get to the middle of the cage but Patron pulls him down and hits a top rope double stomp from the top of the cage (FREAKING OW MAN). Since that’s not enough, Alberto adds a top rope splash for the pin at 17:40.
Rating: B-. Well I’m shocked. They’ve been setting up El Patron vs. Lashley II since the week after El Patron debuted and I don’t know how many people bought the idea of Carter getting the shot after all those weeks of talking about how the GFW Title was the golden ticket. Also, aside from the ending, there was no reason for this to be in a cage and it’s not like they had any chance to hype it up because, as is the case in way too many wrestling companies, they announced it at the beginning of the show and had the match an hour and a half later.
Overall Rating: B-. It’s amazing what happens when this show has something to build towards. After all the months of running around like seahorses on bicycles, they’ve FINALLY got something to go for instead of just doing the same things over and over again to little avail. The GFW stuff isn’t interesting and there’s no reason for a show with two hours of TV a week to have multiple titles for almost every division but at least they have something to focus on, which helps so much. Much better show here and the direction has so much to do with that.
Moose b. Eli Drake via split decision
Allie b. Amber Nova – Death Valley Driver
LAX b. Veterans of War – Street Sweeper to Wilcox
Low Ki b. Andrew Everett – Warrior’s Way
Alberto El Patron b. Ethan Carter III – Frog splash
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