Impact Wrestling – May 5, 2020

Impact Wrestling
Date: May 5, 2020
Location: Skyway Studios, Nashville, Tennessee
Commentators: Madison Rayne, Josh Matthews

We’re finally done with Rebellion and that means it’s time to start getting back to normal shows. I’m not sure what we’re going to be seeing around here but we have a new TNA World Champion, because that company needs some nostalgia instead of an interim Impact World Champion. Let’s get to it.

We open with a Rebellion recap, which seems to include Kiera Hogan leaving the company after her loss to Kylie Rae. That would be a loss to the division as she was a solid hand.

Opening sequence.

Here’s a limping Sami Callihan for the opening chat. He can see everyone watching at home and knows the fans are cheering for him. After making his own sound effects, Sami says it’s time for the Draw to brighten your day a little bit. He took a heck of a beating at Rebellion but he’s still standing. At Rebellion, he went toe to toe with the World’s Most Dangerous Man and the referee stopped it. He doesn’t want OVE messing with his business anymore but for now, he wants to finish his business with Ken Shamrock.

Cue Ken to say Sami needs to calm down and open his ears. Shamrock talks about how he has made a lot of people tap out over the years but Sami didn’t tap. Sami: “No s***.” Shamrock talks about the people he’s made tap before, including Big Show, Bas Rutten and the Rock. Sami didn’t tap, so they can either go out back or put them behind them and go after the Impact World Title.

Cue Michael Elgin (Sami: “Big Mike getting the same reaction from the crowd he always does.”) to say he doesn’t need all of those weapons that Sami needs. Elgin says he’ll fight either of them but the line starts behind them. Sami says it’s the same thing you always hear from Elgin so the fight is on. Elgin bails and Sami disappears to leave Shamrock alone. A three way feud between these three could be….well a disaster is a real possibility.

Chris Bey is ready to become the new X-Division Champion and make it the Finesse Division Champion.

Willie Mack is a little tired from partying over his title win but he’s ready for Bey.

Preview for the rest of the show.

XXXL vs. OVE

Jake Crist/Mad Man Fulton here, with Dave in the corner. Was there ever a reason why we don’t see the Crists team together more often? Josh to Madison: “Do you ever go to an all you can eat buffet?” Madison: “No. Look at me.” Larry and Fulton shove each other around to start with neither really getting anywhere. Fulton’s shoulder drops Larry but he’s back up with a slam so Romero can come in for the elbow.

Jake comes in and gets slammed down to set up the quickly broken chinlock. Larry slams him down for two more but Dave saves his brother from a double shoulder. Back from a break with Acey getting stomped down in the corner and somehow Fulton manages a Regal Roll. He rolls all the way over to Larry for a right hand to the head and then kicks Romero in the face.

Romero comes back with a spinebuster and the hot tag brings in Larry. Everything breaks down with Larry shrugging off the kicks to the face and backdropping Larry over the top. Back in and a powerbomb/reverse bulldog combination gets two on Larry but Acey Pounces Fulton. Larry is up with the Best Hand In The House for the pin on Jake at 13:02.

Rating: C-. XXXL are like the worse version of the Bouncers from Ring of Honor and that’s not exactly a high compliment. I get the idea and what they’re going for with it but how many THESE GUYS ARE HUGE teams can you have? The match was fine enough and they are pushing someone new with XXXL. That’s a good thing, but I’m not sure how much of a shelf life they have.

Flashback Moment of the Week: Kurt Angle b. Mick Foley at Victory Road 2009.

It’s time for Locker Room Talk with Madison Rayne (who changed clothes since she was shown on screen earlier) and Johnny Swinger. This week’s guest is Havok, who doesn’t seem all that impressed. Madison brings up Havok’s loss at Rebellion and gets glared down hard. Havok reminds her of what happens when people get under her skin so Madison moves on to Nevaeh.

Havok doesn’t know why Nevaeh showed up last week so Madison brings in the next guest: Kimber Lee. That doesn’t sit well with Havok either and Lee saying she’s rising to the spot makes it worse. Swinger thinks that means they both want him so Havok shoves him away. Violence is teased between the women.

Cody Deaner has parked his RV on the side of the road for isolation. He talks to some old LJN action figures while having a beer and then tries to sell merch. You knew someone was going to do this at some point.

Suicide vs. Johnny Swinger

Swinger wants a weapons check and jumps Suicide, only to fail with back and eye rakes. Swinger: “WHOA! EASY SPIDEY!” Suicide avoids a charge to put him outside but gets crotched on top. Choking ensues and Swinger elbows him in the head but misses the falling headbutt. The Swinger Neckbreaker misses and it’s a Codebreaker into the Swanton to give Suicide the pin at 3:41.

Rating: D+. They kept this short and Swinger lost, which are the only two requirements for one of his matches. He’s grown on me quite a bit as of late because they haven’t had him winning important matches or doing anything more than goofy. I don’t need Suicide back but that could be said about a lot of the people this company brings back in.

Ace Austin adds himself to the X-Division Title match because he’s beaten names like Eddie Edwards, Tessa Blanchard and Tommy Dreamer.

Moose doesn’t think much of Michael Elgin declaring himself the real World Champion when Moose has been the one beating all the big names. The reality is that Moose is the real World Champion because Tessa Blanchard is on vacation in Mexico. Josh points out that there is no value to the TNA World Title….by the way how did Moose even get the belt? Enough of that though because there will be a #1 contenders tournament starting next week. Here are the brackets:

Moose

Trey

Sami Callihan

Michael Elgin

Ken Shamrock

Rhino

Mad Man Fulton

Hernandez

Or not actually as Moose pulls himself out of the tournament. He already has the REAL World Title, which Josh again points out that he didn’t deserve. Moose lists off the people he’s beaten up and those wins make him the real champion. That’s enough of this.

Joseph P. Ryan vs. Cousin Jake

Rebellion rematch. Ryan stalls for the first minute but Jake gets the better of a chase and hammers away. A clothesline puts Ryan on the floor and we stall again. Back in and Ryan hits a dropkick, stops to yell at the crowd, and gets knocked right back down. An attempted stall is broken up by a right hand to the face but Ryan snaps him throat first across the top rope.

The neck crank doesn’t last long as Jake is back with a Michinoku Driver. A clothesline into a sitout powerbomb gives Jake two but Ryan is back up with Sweet Tooth Music for the same. Jake throws him down again but Ryan hides behind the referee in the corner. A poke to the eye and a rollup with trunks give Ryan the pin at 8:46.

Rating: D. What does Impact see in having Ryan as a regular wrestler? His entire appeal is the shtick and the answer is to get rid of what made him work? It doesn’t help when you have him going outside to annoy a crowd who isn’t there, which only made a match that didn’t have much value in the first place feel even longer.

Video on Kiera Hogan.

We go to the Don Koloff Arena, the home of the Battle Arts promotion. The North is introduced and they stop to beat up some mannequins on the way to the ring. Page slips on his way in but picks up the mic, saying it’s time to defend the titles. Alexander is asked who he would face in his dream match. Alexander: “KURT ANGLE!” Page: “Kayfabe man. His 90 days aren’t up yet.”

Two rather skinny guys come out, with one of them holding a mask. There is no disrespect meant and the match is on. We don’t actually see the match but rather some rapid fire clips, with the North winning in about 40 seconds show. This was a fun little bit and it was a nice way to keep the North holding the titles in the mess.

Rosemary consults some cards to see what is in store for her future. She gets some message and realizes she needs to speak to the high priestess. Some of the other cards please her as well.

Rohit Raju knows he should be in the #1 contenders tournament.

The tournament starts next week, plus Moose defending against Suicide and Lee vs. Havok. Rayne has changed again, because this is totally happening live and in real time of course.

X-Division Title: Chris Bey vs. Ace Austin vs. Willie Mack

Mack is defending and it’s one fall to a finish. Austin grabs the title from the referee so it’s Mack taking over early on, including a double clothesline. Back from the completely necessary break after twenty seconds with Mack’s standing moonsault hitting both challengers at once. Ace and Bey go outside for a meeting, but Ace turns on him after all of a split second.

Back in and Ace works on the champ’s arm but lets go after cutting the fingers with the playing card. Bey takes Ace’s place and hits a pop up hurricanrana to send Mack outside. Ace and Bey slug it out on the floor but Mack takes them both down with a running flip dive to send us to a second break.

Back with Ace snapping off a suplex for two on Bey before kneeing him in the ribs. Ace’s belly to back suplex gets two and he unloads on Bey in the corner for two more. They kick each other down as Mack pulls his way back in and the three way slugout is on. Mack forearms Ace down again and hits some alternating running shots in the corner.

An exploder suplex drops Bey again but Ace breaks up the frog splash. Mack tries a powerbomb out of the corner with Bey coming in to add a Backstabber for two. It’s a Stunner to Bey but Ace hits the Fold on Mack. That’s broken up at two so Ace hits the Fold on Bey with Mack making a VERY last second save (which he might not have made in time). Ace gets knocked off the top though and the Six Star retains the title at 19:05.

Rating: B. This is one of the places where Impact has improved by leaps and bounds over the last few years. Mack was the senior statesman here at 33, meaning you had three young guys out there doing what they could to steal the show. It was the best thing on the show by far and Mack retaining makes sense for the future. Very good main event here, and a positive sign for the company’s future.

Overall Rating: C. This was a little bit of an odd show as the main event was the only match worth seeing but the rest of the show was built around storyline advancement. A tournament is the best thing that can be done in a situation like this, as proven by the fact that WWE, AEW and now Impact, as in the only three major promotions running at the moment, are all in the middle of a tournament. If nothing else it can by them some time until Tessa gets back, and that might need a lot of time. Not a terrible show, but that main event had to bail it out.

Results

XXXL b. OVE – Best Hand In The House to Crist

Suicide b. Johnny Swinger – Swanton

Joseph P. Ryan b. Cousin Jake – Rollup with trunks

Willie Mack b. Chris Bey and Ace Austin – Six Star Frog Splash to Austin

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