Impact Wrestling – May 20, 2021

Impact Wrestling
Date: May 20, 2021
Location: Skyway Studios, Nashville, Tennessee
Commentators: D’Lo Brown, Josh Matthews

We’re done with Under Siege and that means it is time to start getting ready for Moose vs. Kenny Omega at Against All Odds. Other than that, we need to fill out the rest of the card, which is a nice feeling as these regular big shows have done a lot of good things for the way Impact works month to month. Let’s get to it.

In Memory Of New Jack.

Opening recap.

Opening sequence.

Rohit Raju vs. Jake Something

Shera is here too. Something forearms Raju outside in a hurry but the Shera showdown lets Raju get in a few cheap shots. Back in and Jake hits a hard shoulder and shouts a lot as Raju rolls outside. This time the referee checks on Raju, allowing Shera to get in a big clothesline of his own. Jake’s missed charge sends his shoulder into the chest, setting up Raju’s flying armbar for two.

A kick to the face gives Raju two more and it’s time for a standing armbar. That earns him an ax handle to the back of the head and a big right hand, followed by the running shoulder in the corner. The discus lariat gives Jake two but Raju catches him with a running big boot in the corner. Jake tries a powerbomb but Raju slips out and hits a jumping Downward Spiral. The Crossface is broken up and Jake tries a suplex, only to have Shera pull the leg so Raju can fall on top for the pin at 7:14.

Rating: C. There is still something so strange about the idea of Raju being completely competent after so many years of being one of the least tolerable wrestlers around. The ending was straight out of the 80s but the classics continue to work for a reason. Jake Something isn’t much in the way of classics, and I continue to base that entirely on his horrible name. Fix that and he’ll be fine, as the match itself here was completely watchable.

Post match Jake unloads on Shera, including a chair shot to put him down. Raju watches from the ramp as Jake puts Shera through a table.

Here is what’s coming tonight.

Taylor Wilde wants the Knockouts Title but here are Tenille Dashwood and Kaleb With A K to interrupt. Dashwood has gotten a match against Kiera Hogan tonight and that kind of a win would get them a Knockouts Tag Team Titles. Wilde again explains that they aren’t a team and STOP FACE TIMING HER.

Rachael Ellering and Jordynne Grace are upset by the loss but need to get back out there. Has Grace always been that short?

Kiera Hogan vs. Tenille Dashwood

Tasha Steelz and Kaleb With A K are here too. Hogan sends her straight into the corner to start and comes out with a butterfly suplex. That earns her a Tarantula but Steelz’s distraction….has no impact as Dashwood snaps off a neckbreaker over the middle rope. A low superkick takes Dashwood down again though and we take a break. Back with Hogan choking on the rope for two and putting on a chinlock. A superkick (which might not have connected) sends Dashwood into the ropes but she bounces back with a clothesline into a rollup to pin Hogan at 7:42.

Rating: C-. The Knockouts division outside of the singles title continues to seem like it just keeps going back and forth week to week, which isn’t the most thrilling stuff. This was more of the same, but maybe they can set up another Knockouts Tag Team Title match so a thrown together team can win the belts again. Dashwood was doing her usual stuff here, and that is not the most thrilling thing.

Post match the brawl is on with Kimber Lee, Susan and Deonna Purrazzo running in to beat on Dashwood. Taylor Wilde runs in for the failed save attempt so here’s Havok to really clear the ring.

Jordynne Grace has gotten herself and Rachael Ellering a match tonight. Against each other.

Satoshi Kojima is coming next week.

FinJuice is ready to defend their Tag Team Titles against Ace Austin/Madman Fulton later tonight and will keep the titles, as always. After that, it’s back to Japan.

VSK vs. Petey Williams

Striker gushes over what a legend Williams is, because the term legend is now the same as “guy who wrestled here a long time ago”. Williams starts fast and snaps off a hurricanrana out of the corner, followed by a toss to the floor. That means a slingshot hurricanrana to drop VSK again but he is right back in with a DDT.

VSK drops a knee for two and then slams him with an immediate splash getting two more. Williams suplexes him out of the corner and hits a basement dropkick. The spinning Russian legsweep looks to set up the Canadian Destroyer but VSK counters into an Irish Curse. Williams elbows him down though and the Destroyer finishes VSK at 5:10.

Rating: C-. This was every Williams match: a bunch of the same spots he has done for years, capped off by a move that was indeed special at one point but has become the most overplayed move in wrestling. It was nice to see VSK get in some offense here as he is being treated as more than your regular jobber. Odds are that doesn’t lead anywhere, but at least he got a chance here.

Rich Swann says he lost the World Title and he felt that loss mentally and physically. He has been watching the show week in and week out and doesn’t like what W. Morrissey has been doing to Willie Mack. Cue Morrissey to jump Swann from behind throw him out the door.

It’s off to Swinger’s Palace for some roulette, though Swinger wants to know where the coal miner’s glove match is. TJP is making some money and gives some of it back, though he stops at Fallah Bahh in a dress. He offers to reform the team with Bahh because he got jumped by Petey Williams at Under Siege. Cue Williams to issue a challenge for himself/Josh Alexander vs. TJP/Bahh. That seems to be on but here is Decay, with Rosemary saying John E. Bravo is looking better.

Here is Moose for a chat. Moose talks about how easy it was to become the #1 contender at Under Siege and now he is ready to be World Champion. Kenny Omega has beaten a lot of great wrestlers but Moose is a different kind of athlete. We hear about his NFL career and now it is time to see a clash of the titans. Moose lists off some various Greek gods….and here is Omega, with Don Callis, to interrupt.

Callis talks about how great Moose looks and thinks he might be a bit bigger than 6’5. Moose might be the most physically talented person in all of professional wrestling, but he isn’t about to coast over Omega. There is nothing sadder than wasted talent, and Moose couldn’t even win a title in RING OF HONOR. How many Super Bowls did he win? Callis asks if Moose is coasting on his talent so Moose promises to rip Callis’ head off and stick it in a certain place on Omega.

That’s too far for Omega, who says it is just one One Winged Angel to take him out. Moose offers to let him try it right now but here are the Good Brothers to interrupt. Sami Callihan appears as well and the Elite bails. As usual, Omega is weakened by talking, but thankfully he doesn’t do it very often around here.

Post break, Moose tells Callihan that he isn’t going to be thanking him. Callihan is sick of the Good Brothers and all that matters is he is coming for whoever leaves Under Siege as champion.

Rachael Ellering vs. Jordynne Grace

They shake hands to start and Grace headlocks her over. Grace has to flip out of a headscissors but is right back up with a wristlock. Ellering is right back on the arm and they fight over a battle of the wristlocks. A toss into the corner does not sit well with Grace, who is sent to the apron in a hurry. The tease of a kick to the face doesn’t sit well with Ellering and we take a break.

Back with Grace driving shoulders in the corner, setting up a basement clothesline for two. We go old school with a full nelson so Ellering drives her into the corner three times in a row for the break. Grace hits some clotheslines but Ellering elbows her in the face. The running backsplash gives Ellering two but Grace is right back with some running knees in the corner. Grace’s fireman’s carry is countered into a sunset flip, setting off a pinfall reversal sequence with Ellering getting the pin at 11:02.

Rating: C. The power stuff was good here, but I really hope that I’m not supposed to think it’s a major showdown when these two teamed together like three times. Just making a team and then having them fight isn’t interesting, as they have barely been a team in the first place. Ellering getting the win should give her a bit of a boost, though Grace doesn’t need to be losing again.

Respect is shown post match but Grace doesn’t seem happy.

Brian Myers says everything he has said is justified. Matt Cardona walks by and Myers beats him down.

Here’s what’s coming next week.

Tag Team Titles: FinJuice vs. Ace Austin/Madman Fulton

Austin and Fulton are challenging after becoming #1 contenders at Under Siege. Finlay starts with Austin, who tags out to Fulton less than fifteen seconds in. Fulton powers his way out of a headlock and it’s off to Robinson to hammer away at the monster. Fulton runs him over without much trouble but Robinson grabs the arm and brings Finlay back in with an ax handle. Finlay is sent hard into the corner though and now Austin is willing to come in and…get taken down almost immediately.

It’s back to Robinson for a backsplash and a double flapjack into a double dropkick puts Fulton on the floor. Back from a break with Robinson in trouble (thanks to a chokeslam to send his arm into the barricade) as Austin works on a hammerlock. The paper cut on the finger makes it even worse and the armbar goes on again. A jumping knee to the face gives Robinson a breather but Austin takes Finlay off the apron to be smart.

That means Robinson’s backdrop doesn’t mean a tag but Austin’s rather dumb drop toehold into the corner lets Finlay come in. House is cleaned in a hurry and a Rock Bottom backbreaker gets two on Austin. A fireman’s carry/running kick to the face takes Austin down for the same as everything breaks down. Robinson’s snap jabs to Fulton set up a quickly escaped fireman’s carry, with Fulton hitting a tilt-a-whirl powerslam.

Austin hits a springboard spinning kick to the face with Fulton adding a belly to back suplex for two more. A chokeslam/top rope Fold combination (cool/hard to pull off) gets two more as Finlay has to make the save this time. Everything breaks down again and Robinson superplexes Austin down. There’s an assisted Cannonball to Fulton but he is way too big for the Doomsday Device. Instead the Unprettier finishes Fulton for the pin to retain at 15:54.

Rating: B. This was a good and long title match with Fulton playing the monster role well. He and Austin are a solid pairing and I’m a bit surprised that Fulton took the fall here. That being said, I would rather he take it than Austin, who could be a main event star here at the drop of a hat. Good main event here, as FinJuice is growing on me despite half of their personalities being talking about Japan.

Post match….here’s Violent By Design to surround FinJuice. Eric Young hands over Rhino’s Call Your Shot trophy and it’s time for another title match.

Tag Team Titles: FinJuice vs. Violent By Design

Violent By Design, with Rhino and Joe Doering in this case, are challenging and the brawl is on in a hurry. Doering crossbodies the champs down and hits an AA on Robinson. One heck of a lariat is enough for the pin and the titles at 49 seconds. I don’t care about the team, but if they’re going to mean something, they needed a win like this.

We get another Slammiversary ad with hints about wrestlers coming. The word YES, the letters II and the word FORGOTTEN can be seen this time.

Overall Rating: C. The main event helped a bit but that was about the only really good part of the show. This felt like a lot of quick ideas which weren’t all that interesting, including Grace vs. Ellering and Williams’ latest reheating. It’s all going to be about Moose vs. Omega sooner than later though, and the Slammiversary reveals are likely to shake things up again. Now just have some better TV on the way.

Results

Rohit Raju b. Jake Something – Suplex reversed into a cover

Tenille Dashwood b. Kiera Hogan – Rollup

Petey Williams b. VSK – Canadian Destroyer

Rachael Ellering b. Jordynne Grace – Sunset flip

FinJuice b. Ace Austin/Madman Fulton – Unprettier to Fulton

Violent By Design b. FinJuice – Lariat to Robinson

 

 

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